Archive for May, 2009

Lessons from baseball

Tuesday, May 26th, 2009

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I recently ran into one of my son’s old coaches from a previous baseball team. I asked how baseball was going, and was surprised to hear that the son had quit baseball. His son walked up at that moment, and the dad went on to explain (in front of his son) how his coach last season wasn’t fair to his son and didn’t play him much. So, he got discouraged and quit.

This was particularly interesting to me, because my 14 year old son is going through a challenging time on his select baseball team. He has had a shoulder injury that has slowed him, and for the first time ever he is not playing every inning of every game. Saturday, he struggled at the plate. After the game, which ended at 9:00 PM, he insisted on me pitching to him in the batting cages there at the field. So, while everyone else went home to bed, we spent another 30 minutes (until they turned the lights out) in the cages.

I do not know if my son will have the skills to be a baseball player. But, if he carries his work ethic over into whatever vocation he chooses, he will be a success.

You can learn a lot from watching kids. All of them will eventually struggle. When they struggle, do they blame the umpire? The coaches? Or does it motivate them to work harder so the next time they will succeed? Much of their success will be determined by how they react to their challenges. If they use the challenges to motivate them to higher levels of achievement, they will eventually succeed.

How do you react to challenges? Do they spur you on to work harder? To learn new ways to handle the challenges?

Acting Your Way to a Better Attitude

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

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Reproduced with permission from Rex Houze, President and CEO of Improving Performance and Results, Inc (improve-results.com/)

It was mid-morning on a dreary day in Tallmadge, Ohio. It was early in my career and I was struggling to get my business going. I hadn’t made one phone call that morning even though my goal was to make twenty by 9:00 a.m.

The phone rang and fellow franchisee Howard Tangler greeted me with, “What are you doing?” I told him, “Howard, I’m not going to lie to you; I’m sitting here shuffling prospect cards feeling sorry for myself.” He asked me if I had at least five prospect cards and I told him I had several hundred. He told me to call any five and call him back in 10 minutes. I called him back in less than 10 minutes and he asked me how it went. I said, “Fantastic!” He said, “Tell me about it.” I had called five random prospects, talked with three of them, and scheduled an appointment with one of them. And, as a result, went from feeling sorry for myself to feeling on top of the world.

Shortly thereafter I heard a speaker say, “It’s easier to act your way to a new set of feelings than it is to feel your way to a new set of actions.” I have benefited from this thought thousands of times in my career and have coached hundreds of people to use it to overcome inertia.

Although your emotions are many times more powerful than your thoughts, they are more difficult to access because they are buried deeper in your psyche. Think of concentric circles. Your thoughts are located on the surface of the circle. The next circle contains your beliefs, the next your attitude, and the innermost circle contains your feelings or emotions. Your feelings or emotions will only cause you to take action when something is serious enough to reach that deep. For day-to-day decisions, it is easier to act your way to a new set of feelings than it is to feel your way to a new set of actions.

When you catch yourself procrastinating, or otherwise not acting, consciously think about some short-term action you can take immediately, within the hour, or by the end of the day to eliminate procrastination and encourage action. When you are feeling sorry for yourself, take some short-term action. If you get disheartened or discouraged, take action. When you have a setback, take some action. Taking action will give your attitude a boost and once your attitude is boosted, it will have a tendency to take over.

Even if you don’t have a choice about the circumstances you find yourself in, you do have a choice about your attitude toward the situation. The attitude you choose can change the outcome. The positive action you take will “kick-start” the positive side of your attitude.

One of the best investments you can make every day is to take action on your personal development. It is important to recognize that you will be no better tomorrow than you are today except for the books you read, the positive messages you listen to, and the people you associate with. What books are you reading? What personal or professional development CDs are you listening to? What seminars or workshops are you attending? Who are you associating with? In what ways are you getting better every day?
 

1.

 

Look at all the things you do on a regular basis and pick one you’d like to improve.

2.

 

Determine an action you can take to improve and take that action.

3.

 

Repeat this process every day with the same area as long as needed or with a new area.

4.

 

Say, “thank you” when people start noticing your improvement (be patient).

By devoting 10 minutes every day to continuous improvement, you will enjoy over 60 hours of improvement in a year. If you choose to only improve on weekdays, you will still enjoy over 40 hours of personal improvement. I’m confident you won’t miss what you displace in those minutes. Decide now to act your way to a better attitude – every day.

Colorado AF having success

Saturday, May 2nd, 2009

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Regional Business Developer Larry Louwagie was bragging on Associate Franchise Kirk Johanson in Ft. Collins, CO.

Kirk has been an AF for 3 months, and has 3 contracts to purchase houses, and one already under contract to sell.

You will see his commitment based on the pictures below. It appears he understands the power of marketing, which includes wrapped vehicles.

Larry says you will see more of Kirk in the future. Keep up the good work, Kirk! (Great looking kids.)

Kirk_colorado_vehiclesKirk_truck