The Pudding and the Process

December 3rd, 2013   •   Articles, Blog, Leadership   •   Comments Off on The Pudding and the Process   

by Jen Sellers

home_photo3I often hear clients use the phrase, “The proof is in the pudding!” They usually say this when they’re going to try something different that they’ve come up with in our coaching session, and they’re not sure how it’s going to work out.

I wonder, does the emphasis on the pudding negate the value of trying something that might fail? If the proof is in the pudding, do we focus so much on the pudding, a desired outcome, that we undervalue our knowledge and intuition and shut ourselves off from an experience that might lead to something even greater?

The Power is in the Process

As I pondered these questions, the phrase came to me: “The power is in the process.” What if the process of making a great pudding is as important as the pudding itself?  An outcome is straight-forward and a process can feel complex.  Here are four simple questions to get the most power from the process:

  • What will I align with? What is the highest good for, the business, for me, and for everyone involved?
  • Who will I be? What role or roles will I play?
  • How will I be? How can I be true to myself and honoring of all involved?
  • What will I focus on? What is the long view and what is the next step?

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Can Bullies Change?

September 24th, 2013   •   Abrasive executives, Leadership   •   Comments Off on Can Bullies Change?   

by Jen Sellers

bully4Is there a leader in your organization whom people are afraid of? Or who demoralizes and demotivates? Perhaps you’ve heard comments like these:

My boss is nice one minute and yelling obscenities the next.

He’s a control freak – everything has to be his way or you’re snubbed.

She gets mad when everyone isn’t willing to be superhuman and work like she does.

He constantly reams people out publicly in emails.

Often, abrasive behavior is allowed to continue indefinitely. Why? Because these leaders are generally highly valued for their business acumen or technical abilities and feared for their tendency to run rough-shod over people.

Bullying leaders know what they’re doing and don’t care, and even if they did they can’t change. Right? No! Based on the research and my own experience with leaders who exhibit abrasive behaviors, it is worthwhile for organizations to intervene.

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Why Coaching has Grown

May 8th, 2013   •   Articles, Blog   •   Comments Off on Why Coaching has Grown   

Why has coaching grown so much? Because it works. Professional Coaching results in increased productivity, positive people and has a huge return on investment. Data taken from the 2009 ICF Global Coaching Client Study.

Turn Up the Willingness Dial

July 30th, 2012   •   Articles, Blog   •   Comments Off on Turn Up the Willingness Dial   

by Kate Harper

Leadership RetreatsPain is inevitable, suffering is optional. I’ll never forget reading this First Noble Truth in Sylvia Boorstein’s It’s Easier Than You Think: The Buddhist Way to Happiness. I was 42 at the time. When I was 12, my father died of malignant melanoma. I felt abandoned, let down by God, alternately mad and sad and numb. Thirty years of suffering.

This Noble Truth resonated deeply. It felt both honest – yes life can be hard and painful, and hopeful – I don’t have to suffer. I began to explore ways to find happiness and lessen suffering: practicing meditation and yoga, focusing on letting in the good, being kind to myself, staying present. How I experience life is forever changed. Thank you Sylvia! Thank you Buddha!

Imagine a Dial in the Brain

Imagine that each of us has a dial in our brain labeled Suffering that can be turned up or down. I have practiced turning down the dial on suffering. When negative emotions arise, I do my best to not resist and allow the experience. When things don’t go the way I want, I notice when I want to beat myself up and try kindness instead. I have spent a good deal of time and energy tuning my Suffering Dial. So imagine my shock when I read Martha Beck’s blog post on the Willingness Factor. She writes:

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Self Awareness and Coaching

October 4th, 2011   •   Articles, Blog   •   Comments Off on Self Awareness and Coaching   

by Sheri Boone, MCC

oakcreek1Today I was sitting in a coffee shop, taking a break from my office and computer. Sitting at the next table was a young woman and her friend. As much as I tried to focus on myself and not listen to her conversation, her proximity and the level of her voice made that pretty much impossible.

Her conversation was very intense; she was quite heated up, and was frankly what I would call “righteously indignant” about a variety of topics. I suddenly thought: “I recognize her.” I realized that I was this young woman once upon a time — so sure of my own opinion, my own views, and my own righteous indignation. And so, in that moment, I was able to let go of my judgment.

Lately, I’ve been very aware of how that young woman still shows up in me. How, as much as I want to be in a place of not judging others, I still do it with alarming frequency. And, I would rather not. But, there you have it — I still do.

Here is what I also know: when I judge others, I’m really judging myself. So, as long as I’m aware of doing it, aware of that judgmental voice, I can either choose to continue to listen to it, or I can make a new choice. Here then, is the real work to be done — on how I judge myself. In that moment of awareness, I can choose to love myself a little more.

I believe that to be a masterful coach, one must be masterfully self-aware. What’s your self-awareness today?

Take More Breaks; Get More Done

September 30th, 2011   •   Articles, Blog   •   Comments Off on Take More Breaks; Get More Done   

Have you ever become convinced that if you work harder you’ll get more done? Hard work can be invigorating and inspiring. At the same time, we humans weren’t meant to sprint indefinitely. Overwork leads to a foggy mind and burn-out, while slowing down and taking breaks leads to creative thinking and better ways to get things done. I was headed down the overwork road recently, and I’m happy to say I woke up before I got to that dead end.

It happens to our clients sometimes, too. Two of them coached with me recently. They’re consultants who are gearing up for more work after the relaxed pace of summer. Cassandra O’Neill and Sarah Griffiths of Wholonomy Consulting are business partners who pay attention not just to what they do but to how they do it.

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