Tag Archives: goals

Getting your life off pause

The song is on the playlist but there’s no sound. It’s all quiet and serene when it should be happening and upbeat!

The equipment is in order so what can it be?

We’ve hit the pause button! We didn’t hit pause consciously so what happened?

Many of us experience this in a much more significant fashion – our life seems to be on pause. It hasn’t finished, we know that, yet nothing’s happening.

How can we get our lives off pause? It’d be great if it was as simple as pushing the play button… it can be, kind of 🙂

Getting your life off pause starts with alignment. We need to align our actions with our aspirations, those goals that demand us to stretch. We can gaze upon where we’d like to be or consider the person we believe we could be and see only the gap between here and there. This leaves us parked in the gap, on pause.

Stepping out of the known, taking a risk, can be both challenging and confronting. This action, though, will help build a personal culture of growth and opportunity. It will close the gap between here and there.

Aligning our actions with our aspirations starts with everyday decisions. We can have amazingly productive days or weeks, crossing multiple items off our ‘to do’ list, but if finalising them do not move us towards our goals, then we need to re-prioritise. Consider the macro goals and make decisions that reduce the gap between here and there by one step. Start. Daily.

Find your play button and let’s close the gap between here and there!


Learner or Judger?

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel “stuck”.

Maybe you, too, sometimes feel this way and want to move from being “stuck” to finding possibilities and solutions?

Marilee Adams, an adjunct professor and leadership author, explored the premise of changing the mindset of a team – or ourselves! – by considering the questions we ask. Are we asking questions that lead to breakthrough and encourage change or we are asking questions that lead to stagnation and demoralization?

According to Professor Adams, we need to consider whether we’re asking ‘learner questions’ or ‘judger questions’. It’s natural for us to ask both types of questions when addressing a challenge or responding to a situation, but without learner questions, outcomes suffer.

Judgers ask… Who is to blame?

Learners ask… What am I responsible for?

Judgers ask… How can I prove I’m right?

Learners ask… What are the facts and what am I assuming?

Judgers ask… Why bother?

Learners ask… What’s possible?

What are we asking?

Am I asking myself learner or judger questions?

We need to consider what impact the questions we’re asking are having on our attitude, our engagement, our productivity. To move from being stuck to finding possibilities, we must be intentional towards the outcomes we desire by creating learner questions focused on our goals in specific areas.

Flick the switch – become a learner!

Let Hope Rise.

Can you give an hour a day?

Having been challenged to write a book, I know the journey is not as simple as telling the story. It is significantly more complex and demanding than I could ever have imagined!  But the process reminds of the old joke: ‘How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time…’

I heard a radio interview with an author where he was asked how he found the time to create his work? After all, he was dad to two small children, had a demanding full-time job that often took him away from home, and had all the usual day-to-day responsibilities associated with running his household.  Anticipating his answer would be the revolutionary key I needed, I eagerly awaited his response…

One hour a day.

That was the revelation. One hour a day. One bite at a time.

He explained that after his daughters went to bed he committed himself to writing one hour every night. And over the course of many years, his novel slowly took shape, until the day when he invited his eldest daughter into his office to type those incredible words “The End”.

One hour a day.

If we think we’ve over committed, it could be that we’re trying to consume the entire project. Perhaps, we need to break it down into manageable portions spread over a longer period.

One hour a day. Is your dream worth this investment?


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Lessons from the Wii

Some things are just frustrating!

There I was, smashing baddies on Wii’s Lego Batman with my 9-year-old, enjoying great hang time, but it was seriously frustrating! I’m one for determining the objective and then pursuing the path that will give us glory! My 9-year-old is a little more random than myself so I felt like we were wandering around Lego Gotham with little purpose nor strategy.

At the end of the day, this was just a game, and my purpose was more about a shared experience with my son. Whilst this might be fine for a game, I reckon many of us experience this in our lives where the consequences are much more significant and enduring. If we’re wandering around with no clear purpose, without strategy, we’re unsure of what we should be achieving and certainly have no definite plan. Welcome to frustration city!

Frustration is an emotional response to opposition. It arises when we encounter obstacles to our will or desires. When we’re unsure about what we’re chasing, frustration will abound as everything could be perceived as a potential roadblock. We must first determine what it is that we are seeking. What is our goal? Once we know what we’re doing and why we’re doing it, we can decide upon the route, the strategy.

Stubborn refusal to accept new conditions can also be a primary cause of frustration. Many things are simply out of our control (for instance, the economy) and our failure to respond accordingly will challenge us. So in addition to knowing our purpose we must be willing to accept changes to the environment which may alter our strategy.

The old saying “set your goals in concrete and your plans in sand” rings true. Be sure of where we’re going, but be flexible as to how we get there.


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There are times in our lives when we simply need to stand. Not complacently sit, not fearfully turn away, but rather boldly stand.

History is littered with countless examples of men and women who decided it was time to stand. Time to stand up for their beliefs, time to stand up against the norm, time to make a courageous choice. Rosa Parks of the US civil rights movement and Nelson Mandela, South African anti-apartheid activist, are two well-known examples. Lesser known is your neighbour, the single mum who stands against society’s permissive culture to ensure her values are instilled in her kids and what about the women mobilising people and influencing governments to end human trafficking and sex slavery?

We need to know for what we stand and we need to decide to stand, and stand strong. When we boldly stand, we encourage others to also stand, to come alongside and give power for change.


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Doors open or closed?

I pray. And I know many others who also pray and can testify to the power of prayer. I think sometimes, though, we may not be asking God the right questions…

When we’re looking for opportunity we’re knocking on doors and when a door opens onwards we boldly stride. We’ve asked God to open doors so this must the one, right?

Maybe not… I’m not suggesting I know what God’s detailed plan is for me, let alone you, but I’ve learnt that opportunity presents as a series of decisions. Often there are several doors from which to choose. Asking for open doors is one thing, I reckon asking for doors to be closed is another!

After all, we don’t need endless open doors, we need the right God-given opportunity for this time. For me to make sense of this I need less choice – I need doors to be closed. I need opportunities to be shut off once I’ve elected to investigate, I need the field to be narrowed.

Let’s keep praying but let’s start asking the right questions!


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