Has Your Answer Been 'No' for too Many Days in a Row?

The late Steve Jobs, while speaking to the graduating class at Stanford University, once spoke the following words . . .

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

So what if today was your last day? Would you be looking forward to doing what you are about to do? If your answer is no, perhaps it is time for you to make a change.

FYW image

A couple of years ago, I joined my friend Dan Webster to write FINDING YOUR WAY: Discovering the Truth About You. The book was created to help those who would answer “NO” to Jobs “Would I want to do what I am about to do today?” question.

If you fall into that group, or know someone who does, let me encourage you to visit findingyourway.us and join the movement.

Finding your Way is not just an engaging story, it is a brilliant process that will help you find the work you were born to do . . . at any age. I’m not only giving this book to college graduates, I’m also giving it to a few fifty year old friends searching for their passion and purpose.”

– Jon Gordon – Best Selling Author & Keynote Speaker

Life is too short to go through the motions. Every day is a gift. Take a look in the mirror and ask yourself if you are doing the things that bring you life. If not, maybe it’s time to start FINDING YOUR WAY.

Leadership Begins at Home,

Randy

If you could do one thing today, what would it be?

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Do You Ever Fail on Purpose?

When is the last time you failed on purpose?

Oh, I don’t mean you tried to fail. I’m simply asking when you attempted something so hard you knew at some point you would be doomed.

Recently, I have been reading Carol Dweck’s book, Mindset. Dweck reminds readers there are two types of people … those with a fixed mindset and those who lean toward growth. The ones on the fixed side usually resist change. They like to play it safe, and certainly never fail on purpose. They spend most of their time trying to manage an image and protect a reputation rather than seeking to improve.

Dweck challenges the fixed mindset when she writes, “Why waste time proving over and over how great you are, when you could be getting better? Why hide deficiencies instead of overcoming them? Why look for friends or partners who will just shore up your self-esteem instead of ones who will also challenge you to grow? And why seek out the tried and true, instead of experiences that will stretch you? The passion for stretching yourself and sticking to it, even (or especially) when it’s not going well, is the hallmark of the growth mindset. This is the mindset that allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times in their lives.” 

Many leaders I know have ignored the spirit of those words and settled for average. 

How about you? Do you equate failing with failure? There is a big difference. Failing happens when we reach. Failure is when we never do.

The willingness to fail is often the precursor to accomplishment. Few have ever done anything great on the shores of safety. The real failures are those who choose comfort over courage.

If today finds you stuck, I challenge you to find a place to fail on purpose. Doing so will put you on the path to growth.

Leadership Begins at Home,

Randy

Can you think of a time when you failed in the past and it made you stronger?

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Are You Ready for A Struggle?

“Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle.”

Those words of Martin Luther King, Jr. are a great reminder for leaders. Like him, I hope you have a dream. If you do, and if your dream is different form your current reality, you can expect a battle.

Roll up your sleeves today and go pick a fight with a challenge. The world needs leaders who are willing to struggle!

Leadership Begins at Home,

Randy

What is the biggest challenge you are currently facing?

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Out with the Old? Not all of it!

The past month has been one of the most refreshing in recent memory.

I have spent time with friends and family, completed a major project, watched too many movies and football, celebrated a milestone birthday, and observed the real meaning of Christmas.

Like you, I am ready for a new year. However, before it cranks up I am taking time to reflect on 2014. While there are many things from the past year I am ready to leave, there are three words that defined much of my life and I am resolved to take them with me.

The first is COURAGE. I experienced massive personal change in 2014 as I made a career shift, leaving what was comfortable to take on the challenge of being more true to who I am in my work life. So far, so good. However, I’ll admit there have been scary days. When making the decision to transition, I never could find a place in Scripture where God commands me to be comfortable. Believe me, I looked. Yet, over and over I kept finding the words, “Be courageous.” My choice has created excitement, and has also reminded me that there is never regret when we live in obedience.

The second word I am bringing into the new year is FAITH. It’s funny how courage and faith go hand-in-hand. What kind of person quits his job with three kids in college and one soon to graduate high school? Maybe the word here should be crazy? Not wanting to admit I’m nuts, I’m calling it faith.The reality is, I really do believe my life is not about me. There is a larger story being written and I am simply a small part of it. After several decades and a few trips around the block, I am convinced more than ever you can’t get where I am from where I started … at least I can’t take any credit for it. I leave 2014 grateful to be to experiencing Grace. If you ask me, faith is a no-brainer for any leader.

Word number three is ENCOURAGEMENT. Rather than a surprise party for my birthday, my daughters collected letters of encouragement and gave them to me for the past several weeks. There were memories shared and positive words from former players, colleagues, neighbors, leaders, and students from all over the world. I was truly blown away by the power of affirmation. Being an encourager myself, it has renewed my desire to add value to others.

I am not a New Year’s resolution kind of guy. But I am resolved to live courageously, believe continuously, and encourage relentlessly in 2015. As you approach a the new year, I hope there are some things you will leave in the past. However, I’m guessing there are some things you need to bring with you too.

So pack your bags and let’s take on 2015. My prayer is that this will be your best year ever!

Leadership begins at home,

Randy

Is there something from 2014 that you are resolved to bring with you into the new year?

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