Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Make the Hard Choices

Are you faced with a hard choice? A hard choice is one we don't want to make, and yet realize that sooner or later we need to. It could be making that big career change. It could be ending a destructive relationship. It could be selling that car that costs too much to keep repairing.

Make the choice.

Moving on is the direction of growth. Gathering the facts, discovering the reality of the situation, and making the choice is the way to go.

We might need to get creative to do it. It may take all of our creative juice just to figure out a better way, but there is always a better way.

A creative act may close a door or two but it will soon open thousands of possibilities.

And possibilities are what we want. Positive, energized, growing possibilities. This all becomes easier when our goals are clear. When we know where we're headed -- and we're willing to do the hard work it takes to get there -- any distraction is more easily exposed. Choices become more clear.

Make the hard choices as a matter of habit, and they will get easier to make. What hard choice are you holding out on?

-- Douglas Brent Smith

Friday, August 29, 2014

Forget About Blaming

When you run into obstacles are you ever tempted to blame someone? The goal is within your site, but something keeps blocking it so it must be someone's fault, right? Maybe not.

And even if there is someone to blame, blaming them doesn't get you closer to your goal. Relentless action gets you there. Constant follow-up gets you there. Persistence and patience gets you there.

Setbacks are not always rational and there isn't usually one thing to blame.

So drop the blame. Move on with the action. Stay curious. Focus on your goal and (most importantly) the people who can and will help you achieve that goal. 

Because once you've achieved your goal, blame doesn't matter, does it?

-- Doug Smith

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Find Help In Your Wilderness

Does it ever feel like you're stuck, wandering in the wilderness?

We all find ourselves in trouble sometimes, lost and a bit afraid of what might be coming. Those hard feelings are not meant to polarize us, though. Those danger signs are meant to signal that we should find help. Find the people able and willing to navigate, prod, motivate, or steer. Someone to offer a hand, a shoulder to cry on, or a brain to storm with. Help.

Your wilderness is someone else's comfort zone.

They have the experience, the capacity, and the willingness to help. All we have to do is ask.


-- Douglas Brent Smith

Monday, August 18, 2014

Solve That Problem Without Creating Losers

Who wins when you solve a problem?

Your answer to that question likely defines whether or not you've actually solved the problem.
Any solution that creates a loser is likely not sustainable. It's a never-ending game.

Problem solving is a game that can be played with everyone winning.

That's probably the only way to really put an end to the problem. Centered leaders solve problems without creating losers.

Could that take longer? Yes. Is it more likely to succeed? Yes, and yes, and yes!

-- Douglas Brent Smith

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Centered Leaders Keep Their Agreements

It's tempting. The circumstances have changed. What seemed like a great idea is now a burden. How could anyone expect you to keep an agreement when it now is turning out poorly for you? Can't you just drop the whole thing?

Centered leaders operate with integrity. They stay true to their word. The time may come when we need to renegotiate, but we do so with openness and with the sincerity of keeping our agreements if those we agreed with expect us to hold to them. There is no room for dropping in the name of convenience or breaking an agreement because it no longer suits our needs.

Centered leaders keep agreements even when they are no longer convenient.

That builds a reputation of reliability. That sustains a relationship of trust. That demonstrates true character.

What kind of character do you want to be known for?

-- Douglas Brent Smith

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Enhance Your Team's Skills

What are you doing for your team to develop it?

Our development and our team's development is never done. There's always something new to learn. There are always skills that are changing and need updating. The work is a work in progress.

Give your team the training they need. Help them to enhance their skills. Make resources available to them so that they can grow. It's better for your team members and it's better for you.

Enhancing your team's skills will improve your team's performance.

As a leader, that's your job!

-- Douglas Brent Smith

Monday, August 11, 2014

Train Your Team

Does your team get all the training that it needs?

No matter how skilled, no matter how masterful, teams need to constantly learn. Centered leaders find ways to provide the training that their teams need so that they can continue to grow and excel. Are you doing that?

People enjoy their jobs more when they have the skills to do their jobs expertly.

Why not help them on that journey?

-- Douglas Brent Smith