Change

Approach your career like an artist

Posted by on Jan 14, 2019 | 0 comments

Approach your career like an artist

When you are feeling stuck, uncertain, and afraid of taking action, you would do well to remember Diebenkorn’s  “Notes to Myself on Beginning a Painting.” Number 7 is: “Mistakes can’t be erased, but they move you from your present position.” He was, of course, explicitly talking about paint on a canvas, but his words speak more universally to the need to shift perspective and to risk failure.  The tenet that getting into action–even “wrong” or misguided action–is productive and even necessary for change is at the heart of coaching. Taking action gives you data. The first line on a canvas or...

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Different Strokes for Different Folks – How Gretchen Rubin’s 4 Tendencies Can Help Identify the Right Strategies to Change a Habit

Posted by on Dec 17, 2018 | 0 comments

When I want to make sure I do something, I do it first thing in the morning. For me, this is the time in my day that is most in my control — before other tasks, emails, and the laundry get in the way. Before things have the chance to go off the rails. For years, I have been advising clients to do the same: exercise in the morning, write in the morning, etc. And while this advice works for me and for many others, for some it is a complete flop. When it comes to cultivating a new habit – whether a personal goal or a leadership aspiration – we are not one size fits all....

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How One Leader Conquered His Fear By Channeling Curious George

Posted by on Dec 5, 2018 | 0 comments

“It’s like I’m always vigilant, walking around tense all the time, bracing for an attack, ready to defend myself,” said David, a former client. He was not describing being in a tough neighborhood at night, but roaming the floors of the start-up where had worked for a number of years and had risen through the ranks to a leadership role. He was shocked to recognize his emotional state for what it was: pervasive fear. This was surprising to him because work didn’t look scary. The company culture was somewhat chaotic, but mostly positive. David trusted and respected the majority of his...

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Scaling Up – How Our Hidden Immune System Makes It Hard to Change Old Habits

Posted by on Dec 3, 2018 | 0 comments

“What got you here, won’t get you there.” Many a new leader or manager has heard this truism coined by Marshall Goldsmith and have understood it to mean that they will need to up their game and change their approach if they want to succeed as leaders. They are advised to “be more strategic and less tactical,” to zoom out and view the whole system rather than being stuck in the weeds. To delegate more and to empower and motivate others. To set a vision and “bring people along.” Most of them genuinely want to step into this new leadership space and make a larger contribution. But...

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An Alternative to New Year’s Resolutions: Year-End Lessons

Posted by on Dec 31, 2012 | 0 comments

Many of us fall into one camp or the other: the optimistic resolution-makers — who begin the year with energy and hope for positive change — and the cynical non-resolvers who sit on the sidelines and dismiss resolutions as delusional and doomed to be broken. But for those who see a value in year-end reflection and intention setting but don’t embrace the resolution model, I’d like to invite a slightly different approach — one that is both grounded in experience and constructively future-oriented. It has three steps: we celebrate our successes; we acknowledge our...

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Life on the Other Side of the Finish Line

Posted by on Oct 2, 2012 | 0 comments

Last weekend I completed the Bike MS Waves to Wine ride — the longest cycling event of my life — and I raised nearly $4000 for the MS Society. I feel strong and happy and proud. (I hesitate to admit that I feel proud, because my good New England upbringing taught me not to get “too big for my britches,”  but I do. Yay, me!) But what comes next, now that I have reached my goal? As I’ve been thinking, talking, and writing about effective goal setting, I haven’t addressed the crucial followup question: what’s next? When you are working toward a goal,...

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