The Key to making a Great Decision Every Time

How do we know when to take that leap make an important decision: either “go” or “no go”?

For most of us it’s torture and then guilt and many false starts wasting time and vibrational, psychological and emotional energy.

Here’s a foolproof way to make sure you’re making the right decisions in the right way so that you take the right ones and avoid the wrong ones that won’t work anyway (because they scare you subconsciously, fear attracts failure).

First get down to what the worst case scenario of the decision is. Most of us don’t want to go there, we don’t want to worry about that or don’t want to focus there but the fear ends up running us. Be 100% honest with yourself most of us sugar coat with ourselves, “It will be fine” is not a powerful strategy.

Here’s an example from my life to apply this: I had to do a book signing yesterday and I was little nervous about it, as it was the first time I do this sort of thing. So I thought about the worst case scenario. In my case, the worst case scenario was “I won’t sell one book at all I was a complete  failure and I was never invited back to the store that invited me and worse than that, they would’ve maybe sent an email to head office or other stores to avoid me.” 

Now yes it that was very scary for me but I knew that I had to learn how to do this and this is a new channel for me (book signings at stores) and I I was prepared to fail miserably at it.. The mistake most people make at this point is not digging deep enough and really going to worst-case scenarios. For example if you’re about to launch a new product what’s the worst case scenario? Most marketing people tell you: “the worst case scenario is that we will sell 50% of what our target is.” We need to dig deeper.

  Here is my first book store signing sale!

That’s not really the worst case scenario, it’s too rosy. The absolute worst case scenario is: you spend months developing the product spending on its development, packaging, making sure the packaging is good and then you fill up your warehouses with the product, you promote it and not one item sells. That is the absolute worst thing that could happen.

That’s why they’re called worst-case scenario not medium-case scenario but most people are afraid to look at the absolute worst case because they think it looks like a failure. Failure is and not admitting what the worst case is possible.

Counter-intuitively perhaps, once you’re really really comfortable that is the absolute worst thing that could happen including impacts to your reputation, your cash flow and your ego then comes the fun part: What is the best case scenario?

So in my case the best case scenario was that I would hit it out of the park and sell over 20 books at my book signing and impress everybody, feel great make, make some money and impress the store and have them send a letter to head office or other store say how great I was.

Now obviously the reality is somewhere in between the two of those but most the time our minds won’t allow us to go to the worst case scenario. If you’re still okay with the worst case scenario happening in terms of your growth, in terms of the opportunity that it presents and you’re okay with that then you can definitely say: “Let’s do this thing and put all of your horsepower (intellectually psychologically) and your belief that it’s going to work and just do it with all your passion (#2 on the Emotional Scale). Once you confront the fear, you break through and can succeed.

Just to wrap things up in my personal example I didn’t end up selling the 20 books. But I didn’t also end up selling zero books either.
I sold somewhere in between those two numbers . But it went well, I was happy the way I was dealing with people and I had fun.

The store Customer Experience Manager was happy and we are discussing doing a book writing workshop. The result was better than my best case scenario actually in this case.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Cheri Gibson from Indigo Books Milton. She was absolutely a superstar yesterday helping me feel great having a great first day signing and was incredibly supportive in and allowing me to to learn this and helped me shine. So I’m really appreciative of all of her support. If you’re in the Milton area, drop in and go say hi to Cheri. She’s probably one of the best customer Experience Manager’s I’ve ever met.

For all your great projects, go to the worst-case scenario, keep digging make sure it’s as bad as it can be. Then look at the best case scenario and then if you can handle the worst case scenario pull the trigger do it and never look back. Just do it, remember a good decision today beats a great decision next week all the time. You get the benefit of time and experience of doing it.

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In a Complex World: Leaders need a Broader Mindset

From the Globe and Mail January 13th, 2013,

by Harvey Schachter

Amazing article that outlines the big picture issues faced by management but also academia. Frank

“The two are partners in a leadership consulting firm, even though Ms. Lahl lives in Maui, Hawaii, and Dr. Egan is in California, where she is an associate professor of applied behavioural science and director of the master of science in organizational development program at Pepperdine University.

They observe that most people now find themselves living in a volatile, complex, uncertain and ambiguous world.

“The pace of the world has outstripped where we are as human beings,” Dr. Egan explained in an interview. “Any leadership development has to help people develop bigger minds that can match the world we’re in.”

This bigger mindset, the consultants say, includes not only the traditional analytical approach as well as the soft stuff – such as navigating workplace relationships. It involves tapping into five elements of ourselves, which they group under the acronym SPINE:

Spiritual: Developing a sense of meaning, purpose, and community at work.

Physical: Understanding how to manage well-being and energy, and using your body as signalling system.

Intellectual: This is the mind component, being comfortable with complexity and ambiguity, and thinking systemically.

Intuitive: Our ability to see patterns in unrelated data, which serves as a source of creativity and insight.

Emotion: We want to control emotions in the workplace, but we need to learn to value emotions as information – to be able to regulate emotions and be attuned to ourself and others.

The consultants have developed a short assessmentthat asks questions about whether you are comfortable with ambiguity, find that your emotions have an impact on your energy, and have the courage to act on your values.

“We see many leaders who are intellectually quite evolved but their emotional self is not fully evolved,” Ms. Lahl noted in an interview. To help this emotional self evolve, to develop your SPINE, they urge you to:

– Take the opportunity each day to look for inspiration and meaning in your work.

– Develop a map of your physical signalling system. Note what gives you energy and what depletes you. Pay attention to what your body is telling you about the decisions that you are making.

– Expand your problem-solving circle to include perspectives that are different from your own.

– Take time every day to develop your intuition by spending time in nature, with no focus and no agenda.

– Spend a week paying attention to what kind of impact your emotions have on your thinking and performance.

If you struggle with some areas of SPINE, neuroscience offers heartening advice. It is possible to change, to reprogram your behaviour – if you have the will and desire.

“It calls for the passion that allows us to go beyond our comfort zones,” Ms Lahl said.

Beyond the SPINE approach, they highlight three other capabilities that can help you handle complex situations.

The first is “dynamic attention,” which refers to deliberately breaking the multitasking habit. Create a distraction-free workplace, and in a trial week, set aside 20 minutes every day where your attention is focused on one item, noting what changes within you or in your productivity. Over the next two weeks, build up to an hour-long distraction-free zone. Research about awareness, they note, shows that we can only change ourselves if we create periods of dynamic attention.

The second is “strategic clarity.” This refers to our ability to step back and assess a situation, challenge our current understanding, seek additional information, incorporate new insights, and take action. This will involve understanding your past, because unprocessed memories can drive our choices. Ms. Lahl talks about the part of herself that gets antsy in meetings and starts daydreaming, and another part that wants everything to be neat and orderly, with all tasks checked off. “If my wise self is not in control of that, I can burn out,” she said.

The third capability is “authentic collaboration.” This means creating communities in the workplace so that you’re not alone in dealing with the complex, volatile world and are able to react in an agile way.

“The world is becoming increasingly complex and that won’t change soon,” Dr. Egan summed up. “We each have a choice and obligation to work with ourselves and others so we can have the impact we want.”

Special to The Globe and Mail”

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You Become What You Think

For those of you wishing you could have access to the best personal growth information, events and people who can really help you achieve your dreams, I may have the solution for you. Drop me an email so I can send you some information.

Via this incredible bank of material I came across what many believe (as do I) is THE source document for all personal growth material. From Tony Robbins, The Secret, Abraham Hicks, Wayne Dyer, etc.

It is by a gentleman named Earl Nightingale. In 1957 he was a very successful insurance broker who came up with a 30 minute video to train his salespeople. People were changed and it became the greatest selling non-musical recording ever at that time. Though the audio and video are dated and a little worn, the perspective is definitely from the era, don’t let that throw you off.

It is a very layered and complex recording with a lot of information, I’m at my 4th listen and I get something new every time. I challenge you to listen to it every day. The video is called “The Strangest Secret”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62DqsD2s5V8

One of the key learnings here is that our thoughts create our reality, “We Become What We Think Of” Remember that where you are is the sum total of the thoughts (at certain vibrational/energy frequencies) you have thought.

Once we take 100% responsibility for our results (not blame others, the economy, our parents, our employer, etc.) we are at the wheel of our life and can go where we want when we want.

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SMART Goals

Now that all the New Year celebrations are behind us it’s time to focus on making 2013 a banner year in all your life areas. I figured a quick refresher on setting SMART goals in each of your life areas.

SMART Goals are:

Specific to one area of your life. Example: Health

Measurable, if it can’t be measured it doesn’t work. Weigh 170 pounds and run 5 km a day

Accountable, Can be a coach, friend, someone to keep you on track

Resonant, Needs to be connected to your heart and make a difference in your life

Thrilling , If it doesn’t freak you out a little or take your breath away, you won’t be inspired

Remember to NOT PUT a timeline that’s too exact as it can discourage.

Here is an example in my life. A huge goal for me in 2013 is to launch my new Motorcycle book called, “Motorcycling: A Lifelong Passion”. I want to sell 5000 copies and go on a summer  20 city U.S and Canada book signing tour on my motorcycle, with my writing partner Greg Powell. It is Specific, Measurable (5000 units and 20 cities), Accountable (to Greg and you now), Resonant and Thrilling  (I am thrilled and excited and can’t wait to touch people with this passionate book!),

Here are your 8 Critical Life Areas with a SMART goal for each one, I dare you to actually complete this:

My SMART GOAL for 2013

Family and Friends:       _______________________________________________

Significant Other:            _______________________________________________

Fun & Recreation:            _______________________________________________

Health & Fitness:              _______________________________________________

Career:                                 _______________________________________________

Money:                                _______________________________________________

Physical Environment: _______________________________________________

Personal Growth:            _______________________________________________