Why Patience Is So Important For Leaders

I chuckled to myself as I watched the individuals buying plants last weekend. With 3-4 days of temperatures above 65 degrees around the end of March, it seemed everyone was now ready to break out of the winter doldrums and get started with their vegetable gardens and brightening their flower beds with fresh annuals. The reason I was laughing (to myself) was that I knew they would be buying them again very soon.

Sure enough…

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Is It Time To Forget Your Goals?

I love it when I hear or read something that challenges my current perspective. A few weeks ago I was truly shaken when James Clear, in his powerful book, Atomic Habits, wrote:

"You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems."

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How Would You Invest 100 Hours?

The question seemed like such a simple one. I asked a group of senior leaders in an organization how they would invest 100 hours of their time over the next two weeks if all of their day-to-day responsibilities were removed from them. They could only focus on activities that would move the organization forward. I additionally asked them to break down the 100 hours by project or goal. Easy, right?

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How To Shake Yourself Out Of The Status Quo

Last week was going to be different. Maybe you made the decision to start exercising, or to more effectively plan your day. You really wanted things to be different. You're tired of the constant pressure of trying to get everything done or feeling like there's something more important you should be doing with your time. Your new activities lasted about a week... and then you slipped quietly back into old habits and old ways of thinking.

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Five Reasons You Don't Want To Deal With Your Overload

One of the parts of speaking at a conference I find so interesting is interacting with the group before I speak. Whether it’s a networking event on the previous evening or just talking with participants who arrive early, I love to watch the reaction when I tell people what I do. When they ask me about what I “speak” on and I respond with “I help with the struggle of too much to do,” there’s almost always a conflicted response.

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Is It Time To Prune That Overloaded Schedule?

How many times in the past week have you said, “I only have ___________ minutes right now?” Judging from my conversations with coaching clients and program participants, we are all saying it a lot more often. Not that it's a bad thing to be cognizant of how much time you have available. It's just that saying the phrase usually leads to choosing an easy-to-complete task (like checking email, social media, or some mindless activity) that really doesn't move your work or life forward in the most meaningful way.

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Are You Losing YOU In The Struggle Of Too Much To Do?

How often do you spend some time in deep reflection about who you are and where you want to go? A time of sacred idleness when you let those deeper thoughts that have been suppressed by a crazy busy schedule bubble to the surface. Moments when you pay attention to your feelings, questions, frustrations, hopes, and dreams.

If you're like many people, your answer is "rarely."

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Is Your Leadership Creating Short Order Cooks?

While on vacation you stop in a local restaurant for breakfast. You’re adventurous so you didn’t check the Yelp ratings before choosing this one. Seated near the kitchen, you have a birds-eye view of all the action. Cooks are working furiously to keep up with all the orders thrown at them, dropping dishes or utensils from time to time, and occasionally getting yelled at by the wait staff or manager for how long it’s taking to fill an order. The menu is extremely limited because the cooks have only basic ingredients and haven’t been trained to do anything except the quick stuff. Those apples and breakfast bars back at your hotel room are looking better all the time, aren’t they?

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Why Work Life “__________” Needs More Than Just A “B” Word

It seems like there is always a desire to describe the essence of a concept, philosophy, movement, culture, or societal ill as succinctly as possible. In our sound-byte driven world, having just the right catchphrase for one of the afore-mentioned situations gets attention from others. “Knowledge worker,” “millennials,” “#metoo” and the “experience economy” are four that quickly come to mind.

Sometimes, however, these phrases don’t work as well.

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Three Rhythms You Need To Improve Work Life Balance

While sitting with my daughter Sydney at a recent violin lesson, I watched her struggle to get the rhythm right with one particular piece. Her teacher was so patient and helped her understand how the rhythm of the piece should be played by focusing on a few measures at a time. Then, when they played the whole piece together with different rhythms, it sounded amazing! (from a proud dad's perspective).

The experience reminded me of how important...

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18 Simple Ways To Make 2018 A Better Year

By the time many of you are reading this blog, you will have already broken one or more of your resolutions for the new year. You didn't mean to... it was just so hard to keep that major commitment. While I do believe in setting worthwhile and measurable goals for a new year, I prefer identifying small changes I can sustain throughout the year as opposed to vague or emotionally-driven resolutions. For example,

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Jones Loflin
Which Word Best Describes The Focus Of Your Calendar?

Open your calendar (app or otherwise) and look at last week. As you reflect on the meetings, activities, and reminders from the past seven days, would you say the focus of your time was on getting things done or becoming a better person than you are now. Sure several activities play a dual role, but what's the "feel" of where your time is being spent?

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