Are You Important?

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Do you feel important? How important do you think you are compared to other people? Your responses will determine how successful you will become.

It’s tough to be successful if you don’t feel important. Your beliefs and your mindset might even start to sabotage your success. Hey, why should you be so successful? You’re not important enough.

Most of us overestimate other people and underestimate ourselves. You are better than you think. –Greg Knapp

Decide right now to stop the self-deprecation. You are important. No one is more important than you.

Here’s the other side of that. No one is less important than you are, either. Someone may have a more “important” job, or responsibilities or status, but we are all equally important as human beings.

Remember that the next time you are dealing with someone who intimidates you and remember it the next time you’re meeting with someone you might think you are superior to.

If you treat everyone as an equal – there is no one more important and no one less important – good things will happen. You will have more confidence and more compassion.

It’s a great way to improve relationships, make more friends, and become a better person.

As a bonus, you will be surprised how much more business it will create. You never know what the “unimportant” person might mean to you one day.

As you elevate others, they will elevate you. As you feel more important, the idea of you becoming more important resonates with your subconscious. You will start to think, “You deserve it.” “You’re important.”

Guess what? You are!

The best way to turn your day around is to help someone else. –Greg Knapp

Working Too Many Hours Hurts Everyone

We tend to think that working long hours shows we have a strong work ethic. It’s proof we’re not lazy and it will lead to more success.

Some of us even get in competition with our buddies on how many hours we put in.

But research shows that too much work is actually counterproductive. It hurts your health and your productivity.

A new study, published in the Lancet medical journal, showed a correlation with work hours and risk of stroke.

Compared to the “normal” 40-hour workweek, working from 41-48 hours increased your risk of stroke by 10%. If you worked up to 54 hours a week the risk jumped to 27%. The last group working over 55 hours a week saw risk of stroke increase by 33%.

The reason for this isn’t proven yet. The researches think it could be due to increased stress, longer periods sitting at your desk, or just the fact that you have less time to eat right, exercise and take care of yourself properly.

Meanwhile, a Stanford study shows that after you reach 50 hours a week your productivity takes a big hit. Push it past 56 hours and your work starts to downhill fast. When you reach 70 hours a week, you produce nothing worthwhile with all that extra time.

That study focused on munitions workers so it’s not exactly the same for most of us who do office work. However, many other studies show the diminishing returns from overwork and not enough sleep.

You can get away with it in short bursts for big projects, but if it becomes the norm, your quality of work – and your health – will suffer greatly.

Depending on the survey, around half of American workers now say they put in more than 50 hours a week.

It’s time to start asking ourselves what we – and our employers – get for that?

Is there a better way to work less, get more done and achieve more balance in our lives?

Yes!

I’m going to give some ideas on that in my next post.

Would You Rather Be Redirected or Reprimanded?

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Is this a trick question, like does a one-legged duck swim in circles? Or is this just semantics and being redirected is simply a nicer way of saying reprimanded?

Neither. This is a real question and there’s a big difference between the two things.

Most bosses, managers, and even some parents tend to reprimand you when you’re not doing what they want you to do. Very few redirect you.

I’ve been reading The New One Minute Manager by Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson, and this is how they explain the difference:

Reprimand:

The boss/manager/parent tells you that what you did was wrong. There is a punitive feel to it. It tends to make you feel bad about yourself or get angry with the person reprimanding you.

You usually don’t receive the feedback until your yearly review (unless you did something really wrong). This gets you frustrated because you could have fixed the problem if you were told about it.

It creates an “Us v. Them” mentality.

I had a basketball coach who reprimanded us all the time. The slightest error and he would yank you out of the game and yell at you. The team played tight because we were afraid of making a mistake instead of reaching to play our best.

Redirect:

The boss/manager/parent re-clarifies your mutual goals to make sure you’re on the same page.

He explains to you what you did wrong and gives the feedback as soon as he can.

He lets you know he is truly concerned and pauses to let you reflect on why this should concern you as well.

He then explains how he values you, knows you’re better than the mistake, and still expects great things from you from now on.

When the redirect is over – it’s over.

I also had a basketball coach who worked in a style very similar to this. He would tell you when you blew it – even yell at you at times.

Then he would give a quick instruction on how to do it the right way and encourage you.

Then he would let it go.

I played way harder for him than I did the other coach.

“A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after success”

– Unknown

Does any of this resonate with you? What can you do to use redirection instead of reprimands in your daily life?

Who Doesn’t Like Praise?

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Confession time. I like hearing praise. Crazy, huh? I’m betting you like it too.

I’m not talking about the “everyone gets a trophy because we all have value,” empty praise. That has been proven to actually hurt future performance. I’m talking about earned praise for a job well done.

A friend of mine this week said, “A raise is great, but sometimes a pat on the back letting me know my hard work is valued and that I’m making a difference is just as important.”

Do you agree?

There are two things people want more than sex and money… recognition and praise.

–Mary Kay Ash

That got me to thinking: When’s the last time I gave someone earned praise for a job well done? Too long.

When was the last time you did?

The New One Minute Manager has a great tip on one minute praises. Yes, you can do it in one minute, make someone’s day and really make a difference. You can use this at work, with your family or with friends. Here’s how it works.

  • Praise the behavior as soon as possible when you see it.
  • Make the praise specific.
  • Say how good it makes you feel to see their success.
  • Pause to let them enjoy your comments.
  • Encourage them to keep up the excellent work.

Is there someone you can use this with today? Why wait?

Workin’ Hard or Hardly Workin’?

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We all work hard and it seems like there’s always more work to be done.

I’ve noticed something about myself and I’m wondering if it’s the same for you. When I plan out my day and stick to the plan I get a ton done.

When I just have an idea of what I’m going to do, I don’t get as much done. Yet, I still feel like I worked just as hard. How does that happen?

This morning I realized how it happens for me.

I work from home in the mornings and I had great plans on important things to do. Then I decided I needed to upload the video of my daughter’s recent musical performance. My phone didn’t sync with my Mac, so I had to download a program – 30 minutes gone.

Then I noticed a few hundred photos on my phone that were taking up space so I decided I needed to upload select photos from my phone to my Mac – another 20 minutes gone.

And so it went:

Check my email — four different accounts – 25 minutes

Send YouTube video I created to a contact (and watch some of my old ones) – 30 minutes

Check FB messages and notifications – 5 minutes

Renew my library books online – 5 minutes

I finally shook myself and realized that although I felt like I was working I had spent almost 2 hours doing absolutely nothing on my daily planner. Not good.

I hadn’t planned well, and I wasn’t even sticking to my not so great plan. It wasn’t that the things I was doing were bad, it’s just that they were taking me away from the more productive things I really wanted to get done.

Focus, Grasshopper, focus.

When I stick to my plan and work in hour blocks on my most important thing that aligns with my purpose, great things happen.

We can spend all day working on things that aren’t very important, or we can focus on the things that really matter. At the end of the day we’ll be tired either way.

The first way is an empty, dissatisfied, frustrated tired.

The second way is a job well done, life is good, earned relaxation now kind of tired. I love days like that.

Let’s GO!

If this post resonated with you, Please subscribe to my blog and get my free eBook — 5 Steps to Finding Your Passionate Purpose. You can also purchase my book, GO!

Compromise is Overrated

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Conventional wisdom says we all need to compromise. If only the politicians, bosses, clients, customers, spouses… would compromise. Then, what?

The implied promise is that everything would be great! Sure, neither side would get everything, but both sides would get something, and at least we would be getting things done.

Compromise is overrated. It starts with the premise that we are on different sides. Why do we have to be? It moves to the idea that we can’t get what we want and need. Who says? It suggests that if you don’t give in a little, you’re wrong. What if you’re right?

All compromise is based on give and take, but there can be no give and take on fundamentals. Any compromise on mere fundamentals is surrender. For it is all give and no take.

– Gandhi

As Gandhi said, you can’t compromise on fundamentals. Would you compromise with a serial killer? “How about instead of killing 28 people, you just kill 14. Can’t you meet me half way here?” That just doesn’t work.

Whose voices are you hearing in your head?

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What we say to ourselves in our heads determines our future. Those little voices determine our thoughts, feelings, dreams, moods, and how we feel about ourselves. Those voices can help us accomplish our goals or lead us to dismiss them as silly wishes that we will never achieve.

We all constantly talk to ourselves and narrate everything that’s happening to us. (Let’s remember to use our inside voices so the men in white coats don’t come to get us.) This internal monologue can help or hurt us depending on:

Whose voices are you hearing?

What are you telling yourself?

Are you controlling the voices or are the voices controlling you?

We need to be aware of our internal monologue. Then we need to take control of it.

If you notice that the voice you just heard in your head telling you that you aren’t good enough is from your mom/dad/boss/teacher who always put you down, now is the time to create a strategy to erase that voice and replace it with a positive one…