Archive for January, 2018

#795 It’s not an accident

Posted by frank January - 15 - 2018 - Monday ADD COMMENTS

First of all please take a moment to remember a great American on his day. The Reverend, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

I spoke with the CEO last week whose company does over one hundred million dollars a year in revenue and employs 300+ people. He built his company to that level from a humble starting point of two million a year and 8 employees. During the conversation he mentioned two things that should not have surprised me.
1. He is a constant reader of self-help and business books and spoke, excitedly, about the one he is currently reading
2. He has a professional coach.
The man is wildly successful by most standards. He is rich. He is respected in his business community. He has a wonderful family. He is a generous philanthropist and he is a hell of a lot of fun to be around.
Why not sit atop the mountain he has created and chill? Why not look at his accomplishments and feel as though he knows what he’s doing? Why is he looking for answers in books and seeking betterment and accountability through coaching?
Because that’s how he got there in the first place. Success isn’t happenstance; it’s intentional.
There are certainly some accidental and undeserved successes you can point out to me, but by and large, people who focus on personal development and improvement tend to develop and improve better than those who don’t. Could it really be that simple?

2018
Motto: Be nice; people like that…

#794 Emotional Choice

Posted by frank January - 8 - 2018 - Monday ADD COMMENTS

I sometimes infuriate people close to me, (family, friends, and coworkers). I know I do it but I have trouble figuring out how not to do it.
I’ve become somewhat of a stoic. Not when it comes to joy or tragedy. My emotional range seems OK there but not so much when it comes to perceived injustice or injury.
When I am presented by a coworker or friend with a purported social or employment crime I have a tendency to think of excuses that may apply to the accused or sometimes I say nothing choosing instead to think (evidently too long) before I weigh in. What these folks want is for me to instantly match their anger to validate their rightness.
The crimes they report seem obvious as hell to them and they look at me as though I am catatonic from shock therapy or something because I refuse to immediately take their point of view as fact and escalate my words, pitch and posture to match theirs.
This is intentional and has taken decades of practice. (Not the aggravating them part, the stoicism part.)
It’s been my experience that words, pitch and posture often escalate what may be a relatively minor incident. Think, “Killing an ant with a sledgehammer.”
I believe that the words and the emotional charge of the words actually shape the outcome of the situation and I often choose to slow down and react quietly in an attempt to deescalate it.
Try this as an illustration. If something goes against my grain and I shout “THAT REALLY EFFING PISSES MY OFF! Aren’t I likely to become angrier than if I had said, “That has me a bit miffed.” Doesn’t my reaction somewhat shape the actual event or at least my memory of it?
Isn’t it the same thing when I am presented with an egregious infraction suffered by my coworker? If I jump into their pool of perceived perdition, am I not throwing gas on the fire?
My choice is to wade into that pool slowly, checking the depth and temperature as I go, in an effort to bring ballast and perspective instead of grabbing a torch to join the mob.

2018 Motto: Be nice…people like that.

#793 Happy New Year

Posted by frank January - 2 - 2018 - Tuesday ADD COMMENTS

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
I write this message each week in the hopes that I can touch a nerve, spark a flame, or inspire an idea. I imagine you taking precious time out of your day to read it and try really hard to make it worth that time. I really appreciate that you’ve allowed me to do this for over 15 years now.
As you will see my new motto is in play and I can tell you my 2018 goals are finally set.
If you haven’t crafted a motto yet, Jump on that now!
If you haven’t set your goals yet here is a quick tip. Divide them in to four categories; personal development, business, finance and material things. Personal development is things like learning a language, or visiting your mom often or losing 5lbs. Business is everything career related and finance can be paying off debt or saving a particular sum or upping your charitable donations. Material is, of course, things you want this year, like that new boat or a ski vacation.
I write them down and leave them to marinate for a day or two and then revisit them. I do this three times until I am fairly certain I have a list that is worth trading a year of my life for and then I commit.
I don’t always accomplish them all but I do OK.
Again, thank you for allowing me to offer up my writing and for all of the great feedback I get from so many of you each week.
I wish you all a healthy, happy and successful 2018!
2018 Motto Be nice; People like that…