Your Life Is A Story - Tell A Good One

I will admit, I'm very selective when it comes to picking out what books I want to read. I have a list that I add to as I learn about authors or titles I think I would enjoy. I go off of recommendations from authors I've enjoyed in the past, when someone I like to read says something is one of the best books they've read I tend to pay attention. The downside of that is sometimes a book goes on my list, I acquire it, and I don't always remember where I learned about it. I don't remember anything about how I learned about Donald Miller's book, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: How I Learned to Live a Better Story but when I started reading, it pulled me in more than anything I was expecting.

It was such an engaging story about how Donald Miller learned more about his own life by studying the art form of telling a story. He touched on some basic principles that are required to make a story, and the elements of what differentiates a good story from a bad story. …

Be The Person You Want Everyone To See

One of the greatest adventures we go on in this life is to discover who we are. Understanding what we are good at, what we are passionate about, what makes us happy, what makes us mad and what we have talents for. When you begin to understand yourself you have more confidence. The dangerous side of confidence is believing more in yourself than others do. At that point you begin justifying or defending yourself. If you have to tell people what you are good at, constantly reminding them of how valuable you are or how important you are, it never comes across as confidence, it just seems desperate.
Lots of people are in a position where they feel underappreciated, criticized, under valued or basically unloved. If you find that you are often defending yourself to others, it may be hard to face but there is probably truth in what you are defensive about. If you are told you aren't a good team player but you think you are, you won't get anywhere by arguing. You need to seek out why t…

Why Should I Care?

The phrase that has infuriated all of us at some point in our lives. There is nothing worse than being invested in something and trying to get others to recognize the value only to get an apathetic response. Everyone has areas of their life that they don't care about that much. For many people it is their jobs, they do what they need to in order to maintain their income. Those that want to see the business succeed it is a hard thing to wrestle with. You can't force someone to care. You can't yell at them till they care. You can't even give big raises and bribe them to care, it doesn't last as long as you think. The key is to surround yourself with as many people that are aligned in what they care about. Great teams have a singular focus and goal that everyone is committed to, that everyone cares about.

A great disservice is when the leader doesn't care, or what is probably more appropriate, doesn't appear to care. Appearances are everything. I know that if …

What A Difference A Year Makes

My first ever blog post was in 2006 (I just reread that, can't believe it has been that long), I spent a year back then exploring this online writing forum craze that took off and trying to have a voice as I attempted to sell technology solutions. I think that helped show me that I didn't really like trying to market myself and wasn't really a salesman at heart. After a career change I realized that I still had a desire to write within me. For the next 10 years I was trying to figure out what I wanted to say, who my audience was, what my "voice" was. But I failed more times than I care to remember, never knowing how I was unique, or if what I wanted to say was any different than any number of writers who were far more talented. I told myself that it was pointless because nobody would want to read what I had to say.

I don't know if I needed to struggle for 11 years to figure this out but one year ago a switch flipped. I became determined to set an interval of …

When Things Seem Darkest

We are just coming out of celebrating Easter and every year I reflect on how the followers and disciples of Jesus must have felt between the crucifixion and the resurrection. Here they thought there beloved leader, the one that was destined to lead them to a new kingdom and a better tomorrow, was gone, leaving them with no hope. That Saturday had to be one of the worst days any of them had gone through in their life. There was no hope for them, the feeling of complete darkness and despair had to overwhelm them. But then Sunday came, ushering in something greater than what they had even hoped for. 
None of us will go through the trials that Jesus did, nor have a fraction of the impact on this world that He did. But we all go through events in our life that leave us feeling lost, hopeless, broken and defeated. I once was fired from my job, it led me to doing what I was better suited for. That time between losing my job and finding my next one was one of the worst feelings I've had i…

Looking At A Robot And A Toy Train

I saw this gif once where someone was making a joke about how they feel at their job, barely able to keep one step ahead of the train.
Many people feel like the robotic arm, frantically trying to keep up with the train. You feel like the slightest slip up will cause everything to come crashing down around you.
Some feel like the train, just steadily going through the motions every day and not really getting anywhere.
Instead, think of the problem solvers, the people that you don't even see that are coming up with cool solutions. It may not be the coolest invention ever, because really what is the point of the whole setup? Sometimes you need to make a problem fun. Sometimes you can create something without having a problem to apply it to, but there will be future opportunities. Try to find something where you have an opportunity to use some creativity, get both sides of your brain working.
You can find out more about this project by clicking here.

Better Than Yesterday

Over my life there are different quotes, sayings, mantras, whatever you want to call them, the things that stick with me and I can recite over and over again to myself. The one that I tell myself and find myself sharing the most with people I come into contact with is to simply try to be better today than you were yesterday. To get better at anything, to improve, it usually isn't about big monumental changes, it is about the small incremental daily work and minor improvements. If each day you are the tiniest bit better than yesterday you are improving. Some days might be bigger steps forward than others, but if you are moving forward when you look back after a week, month, or year you can tell that you are in a better spot than you were.
If you are trying to get better as an individual, a team, a department, a family, an organization or a community - start small. The larger the group the more progress you make collectively as each person does what they can to make a small improvem…