Get Out Of Bed

Get Out Of Bed

If you want to see the sunrise, you’ve got to get out of bed early, right?

I know it’s hard.  Your bed is so warm, and so very comfortable, especially on those chilly winter mornings.  The temptation to lie in that little bit longer, doing nothing, and just enjoying your comfortable space is so, so strong.

But when you lie in your comfortable space for too long, you’re missing the most amazing opportunities to experience life as it was meant to be lived.  Spectacular moments like a sunrise over the ocean, or the stillness of an early morning are what you and I take for granted all the time. 

It’s exactly the same with opportunities.  They always present themselves, but its up to you whether you jump out of bed and grab them with both hands.

It’s only when you push yourself out of a comfortable space, that you get to experience the magic.  That magic might be a magnificent sunrise in winter, or it might be renewed confidence that comes from a change in your fitness or diet routine, or the extra sales you close due to a renewed effort with your prospecting.

Right now there is magic happening all around you, as your colleagues and competitors are getting out of their comfortable beds and challenging themselves to grow, and the results are amazing.

What are you going to do this week that is going to challenge you?

How many opportunities have you wasted because its just too warm and cozy under your duvet?

Maybe it’s time to kick off your warm duvet and jump out of bed.

Talk With Candour this Week

Talk With Candour this Week

One of the most difficult conversations to have as a Leader, is the type of conversation when you know that your words may lead to some form of conflict.

It’s that type of conversation that requires you to speak with candour.

Candour is different to honesty.  It’s more than simply telling the truth.  Candour refers to an openness, and a frankness when approaching a topic that could be regarded as being difficult, awkward, or even embarrassing to discuss.

Sometimes the bare truth delivered in these conversations is hard to hear.  Well, make no mistake, this type of truth is also difficult to deliver at times too, especially if you fear confrontation.

It’s in these moments when Leadership will challenge you.

To be clear, Leadership doesn’t require a title, and Leadership is not confined to the business world.  

You can take the role of leader in your department at work, with your customers, within your circle of friends and in your romantic relationship.  You can also step up and be a strong leader for yourself, especially during times when you feel you may be drifting off course.

You are the captain of your ship, with regards all aspects of your life.

Your ability to deliver a conversation with candour will define your ability to lead, in any sphere of your life, and the way that you will do so effectively is to combine your candour with an equal amount of care.

Speaking with care demonstrates that you value the person you are speaking to, and shows that you are there to help them grow and develop through whatever situation you need to address. 

How you care for someone defines the relationship.  How you speak with candour will direct the relationship.

Some of the best words of advice I ever received came from my Father.  15 years ago when I took over the family business he said to me “always be hard on the problem, but soft on the person.”  Whilst not easy at all in the early days, these words have always guided me through my life.

As a Leader you will have two choices at any point in time:

1. Avoid the difficult conversation – this approach is taken when you are not prepared to confront.  You hope that the problem will simply go away.  It very rarely does, especially when it involves the behaviour of another person.  Avoiding this type of conversation keeps you safe, but hurts your business, your relationships and your friendships.  It’s a case of short term safety, versus long-term pain.

2. Confront the difficult conversation with Candour and Care – this approach is difficult at first, but when choosing your words with the right balance of care and candour, you have the ability to correct a challenging situation, and also establish a sound relationship that will develop over time.  It’s all about taking the short term pain, to ensure long term happiness.

Of course, always remember that the person who receives your candour and care also has the choice of how to receive your words.  That is up to them, and is in no way a reflection of you. 

As a Leader, if you’re brave enough to step forward and speak in the best interest of the person, relationship, or business, then their reaction is simply a reflection of how they see the world.

Any loss as a result of this type of conversation is potentially a good loss.  If you know what I mean…

Remember, you can never say the wrong thing to the right person.

Step up this week.  Find the courage to speak with candour and care this week, and start entrenching your value as a person, and a Leader with those around you.

Good Luck

Look for Evidence that Proves You’re Wrong

Look for Evidence that Proves You’re Wrong

In 1975 a 24 year old Kodak engineer named Steven Sasson invented a digital camera and presented his invention to senior executives at the company.

His invention would require people to record photos onto digital tapes and then view the photos on a standard television screen.

This was the response of the Kodak executives as told by Sasson to The New York Times:

They were convinced that no one would ever want to look at their pictures on a television set. Print had been with us for over 100 years, no one was complaining about prints, they were very inexpensive, and so why would anyone want to look at their picture on a television set?

believed that photo prints would be around forever, and their actions as a company, were based on this rock-solid belief.

They did eventually change their minds though, and made the switch to digital 18 years later.  It was however, too late, and one of the largest businesses in the world filed for bankruptcy in 2012.

Is it possible that just like Kodak,  you and I cling onto rock-solid belief systems and thought processes for years and years, even though there is probably evidence to suggest that those belief systems are fundamentally wrong?

How could this be impacting your outcomes?

It’s possible that you just aren’t open to seeing what you do not want to see.

Money is not the root of all evil.  
A woman’s place is not in the kitchen.
Children should be both seen and heard.
It’s not just the way you are.
No, you’re not broken.
You’re not too old to change.
You can be a single mom and have a successful career.
You’re not too big to run.

That last one was mine.  I believed that I could not run because my body shape was too big.  It was the perfect excuse to avoid any form of running exercise for 40 years.  Until I eventually saw evidence that proved to me that my belief was wrong.

For the first time in my life, at age 40, I went down to watch the finish of the Comrades Marathon at the Moses Mabida Stadium in Durban.  I went to support a few friends who were running.  While waiting for my friends to finish, I saw what I will describe very respectfully, as one of the largest women I have ever seen, successfully completing the 90km road race.

For you, she may have been another female athlete completing the toughest road race in the world.  For me, she was not only a source of inspiration, but a message received loud and clear that my own belief was fundamentally wrong.  I was presented with evidence to prove that my own thinking was wrong.

I was however, open to receiving this message.  I was ready to accept that I could be wrong.  How many times have you had evidence presented to you, only for you to dismiss it out of hand because it was maybe “too good to be true”?

You can only see what is in front of your eyes when you are ready to see it.

A few years later I can proudly say that I have completed 2 x 10km races and a very grueling 21km race.  I also do weekly 5km runs with my friends. 

Most importantly though, guess what?  I am certainly not too big to run.

This week, I want to ask you to do something that could change your life forever.

Be aware of what is happening around you.  Be open to the evidence that exists around you that can prove your limiting beliefs to be wrong.   Seek the evidence out if you have to.  There is no such thing as coincidence.  The universe is sending you messages every day. 

All I am asking you to do is to be open to the possibility that the belief system, or the thought process, that governs the majority of your actions and habits, could be fundamentally wrong for you and the results you aspire to.

Be aware.

These thoughts and beliefs that you hang onto are so often designed to keep you safe.  They are a protection mechanism that can hold you back from fulfilling your true potential in this life.

What if you could release that limiting belief?

Who could you be?

This is powerful.

Have an amazing week.

Energy vs Time Management

Energy vs Time Management

A married couple were recently in South Africa visiting our amazing country.  They landed in Durban in the early morning and arranged to drive up North to an exclusive game reserve.

Their first game drive was scheduled for 5pm that day.  With no time pressure, they had an entire day to complete a 3 hour journey.  They took a slow, pleasant drive up the Coast, stopping at numerous tourist spots along the way.

Despite having all the time in the world, the couple ended up missing their 5pm game drive.  They were devastated.  This was the most important part of their day, and they missed it.

Why?  They didn’t manage their energy. 

They missed an opportunity to fill up petrol in their car, thinking that they would get another opportunity further along their journey.  Unfortunately, they miscalculated their distances and ran out of petrol.  Stuck on the side of the road, they waited hours for help, and eventually arrived at their destination at 7pm.


Lack of Time was never their issue, and it’s the same for you.  

You have all the time in the world to do whatever you want to do.  Managing your time is actually simple.  Work out which of the following 4 elements of your life are most important to you, and then prioritize them into your day in order of importance:

1. Family
2. Business
3. Community (Friends, Clubs, Church etc)
4. You


Prioritize what is most important to you, and schedule that in first.  Then work the rest of your day around those important activities.  For example, if Family is Priority number 1 for you, then create appointments in your diary for collecting kids from school, or taking them to after-school activities.  Then move to Priority number 2, and allocate the most important activities next.  Etc etc.

Managing your time is all about prioritizing what is important and making sure that gets done first.  If you don’t schedule the important activities, you will get distracted by “urgent, not important” tasks and before you know it, your day is over and you’re lying in bed stressing about what you never got to during your day.

Managing your energy comes down to where you place yourself on your list of priorities when planning your time.  You simply cannot come last.

If you are putting yourself last, then you are at some point going to run out of energy, and this is not in the best interests of your family, business or community.

Here are 3 tips to help you get this balance right:

1. Schedule your “You Time” First :  How often do you run out of time to do the things that help you recharge?  Everybody else comes first, right?  Well, you have the power to change that.  Schedule 45 – 60 min into your day to do something that you know will help you to recharge.  Walking on the beach, going to the gym, running, meditating, reading a book, listening to music, prayer, or even just time alone to think and plan.   If you don’t plan this time into your schedule, it will not happen.

 2. Communicate this to others:  Time out for you is important.  Understand that others may see this as being selfish, and therefore it is so important that you communicate clearly to them as to why you need to plan this into your time.  The reason is obvious, but it never seems that way to others, because “you time’ removes you from their space.  The alternative is also true – if you run out of energy, everyone else suffers.  You can only give 100% to your family, business and community if your tank is full.  You are doing this for them as much as for yourself.  They need to know.

3.  Keep Your Discipline:  Once you have your schedule, and your significant others have bought into your schedule, it’s now up to you to remain disciplined.   The short-term benefit of your “you time” activity is minimal.  The longer term benefit of disciplined daily activities however, will manifest over time in so many different aspects of your well-being.  It takes 29 days to form a new habit, so don’t give up too soon.  Stick with the plan.

Getting this right is really difficult for most people, but these 3 points are real-life action points that I have used in my own life to good benefit, as well as having had positive impact on many people I have coached.

No more excuses.  Start making yourself more of a priority and ensure that you keep your own petrol tank full.

You have all the time in the world.  Make sure you’re in a fit state to use it all.

Success is Actually Simple.

Success is Actually Simple.

Success is actually fairly simple.

Firstly, set a goal.  Then break it down into actionable activities.  Do the activities.  Add in some patience, resilience, hard work and discipline, and voila…..Success!

Easy, right?

Well, if it were that simple, we wouldn’t need an entire industry dedicated to motivation, training and coaching. 

You’re more than likely going to fall short in one of two areas:

1. You don’t know your goal. 

If you aim for nothing, you will achieve it with alarming accuracy

Setting a goal, or knowing what you want to achieve is the absolute first step in aligning all your efforts towards a desired cause.  If you don’t know what you want or where you are going, how will you know if you’re on the right track at any point in time? 
People who don’t have clear defined goals often feel lost and lack motivation.

Action:  Set a goal that is going to inspire you.  If you’ve never ever set a goal, set one for this week.  What do you want to achieve?  It might be as simple as “Wake up 30 min earlier each morning and have time for breakfast.”  Or, “Find 2 new sales prospects this week.”  Then prioritize and focus on the activities that you need to do in order to achieve that goal.

2. You Don’t Have the Discipline to Stick with the Activities
Yes, the goal inspires you, but the actual ‘doing’ part requires that you change your habits, break comfort zones and work hard on your mindsets and perceptions that have held you back in the past. 

You’re a human being, and that means you have a brain.  Your brain is designed to keep you safe, warm and comfortable.  This creative muscle of yours is the most powerful creativity and visualization tool you have, but if you don’t work on it, it can get lazy. 

You’re also more inclined to become impatient when success takes longer than expected, and when you don’t see immediate results, you will end up quitting too soon, or when things get tough.
Resilience is often in short supply with human beings.

Action : Find an accountability partner.  Give somebody you trust the permission to hold you accountable to the activities you need to do in order to achieve your goal.  You cannot do this by yourself.  If you could do it, you would have done it by now. 

You can either get a coach and pay for accountability, or you can find a friend who buys into your goal, and wants to see you succeed and prosper.

Believe me, I know all about quitting points  In my journey from complete non-runner to half marathon finisher, I probably quit on myself a hundred times.  It took me 6 months to run a full 5km stretch without stopping.  I had to find a way to distract my mind from its natural quitting points. 

Accountability helped me transform my running in 2 sessions.  All it took was getting one good running friend onto the road with me, and before I knew it, I had an accountability partner, and a distraction from my own mind, all in one.
In the 6 months that followed, I completed my first 10km and 21km races.

One final point – choosing your accountability partner is important

I would recommend that it is not you spouse/partner.  At one point or another, your accountability partner is going to have to push you harder than you might expect and in that moment, you cannot afford to be sensitive to a few harsh truths.  Someone too close to you might not be willing to ruin a relationship by speaking those truths.

Give it a try.   Given someone permission to help you achieve everything to want to achieve.

Do it this week.