After a life-threatening ski accident in Colorado, doctors weren’t sure Steve H. Lawton would survive, but because of his attitude, his helmet, and a rubber chicken named Henrietta, he lives to share the wonders of positivity.
Steve holds a Masters degree in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M and an MBA from St. Edward’s University. Plus, 27 years of business experience in roles like: engineer in the Astronaut office at NASA an executive at Dell and TEDx Speaker.
Steve is the author of “Head First! A Crash Course in Positivity,” a story about how his attitude literally saved his life after the skiing accident. As well as practical advice on how to create a positive mindset, lead with positivity, and achieve better outcomes for individuals and organizations.
And if all that isn’t enough, Steve and his lovely wife Deanna have 26 years of marriage and 2 teenagers
Episode Summary: A Ski Accident Left Steve Lawton Nearly Dead, But Full of Positivity
Jonathan David Lewis is the author of the brand new, on the shelves now, book Brand vs. Wild: Building Resilient Brands for Harsh Business Environments. He is a partner and strategy director at McKee Wallwork + Company, a firm recognized by Advertising Age as a national leader in branding and marketing. McKee Wallwork + Company has won the Southwest Small Agency of the Year, national B2B Campaign of the Year, and national Best Places to Work awards.
On top of all that- Jonathan is an engaging and authoritative speaker on shaping a brand that can survive—and thrive—in today’s tough, uncertain world.
Episode Summary: Is Your Brand Wandering in The Wild?
Bobby Albert is currently president of Values-Driven Leadership, LLC. His passion is helping leaders build inspiring workplace cultures. Grounded in values and powered by the twin engine of enhancing relationships and driving for results, Bobby helps leaders chart a proven path to extraordinary results. He has started twelve businesses and acquired nine others. His approach to business has been to value people, seek wisdom, embrace humility, and never stop learning.
Episode Summary: Values Based, Not Results Only Organizations with Bobby Albert
Mary believes that every person has the ability to create the life that they love. A Presidential Diamond wellness advocate at doTERRA essential oils, and a personal life and business coach, she coaches achievers to wake up, find their voice and become fully alive. She is on a quest to feel alive and to live a life full of gratitude, joy, authenticity, and abundance in body, mind and soul.
Episode Summary: 5 Questions That Will Change Your Life
Starting his first business at age 18 and selling to a Fortune 500 company nine short years later. Unwilling to rest on that past success Aaron started, bought and sold eight successful companies over the past 37 Years and continues in a weekly mastermind group with Dave Ramsey, Dan Miller, Ken Abraham and others.
Episode Summary: The Enemy of Excellence with Aaron Walker
Today Aaron spends most his time HELPING MEN GROW IN SUCCESS AND SIGNIFICANCE his brand-new book, View from The Top is guaranteed to motivate and inspire you to live a successful and significant life.
If you read last week’s blog post than you already know about the fishing, the fireworks, the creek, the mud, the upset dad. My weeklong trip to Northern Saskatchewan wasn’t as relaxing as the brochure promised.
Thankfully, the truck came out, we got it cleaned up and we actually caught some pretty decent fish. If you didn’t read it you can here.
But, the story can’t end there.
Because, just like our goals, even after we get back on track, there can be detours, and there usually are. It is not all smooth sailing to goal success, right?
After a week of fishing, it was time to drive back home. A short 24-hour jaunt. The group split into three vehicles, me driving the now famous mud truck filled with the young folks. The “adults” took the other cars.
The plan was a direct trip back, all 24 hours, stopping only for gas. I got out ahead of the group, but thought I was in the back. Uh-oh. I sped up little by little trying to catch up to the group behind me.
Until… I ran out of gas.
Fortunately, I found the only freeway ramp inside 20 miles and coasted right up to the gas pump.
Unfortunately, it was 5:30am, the gas station was closed, and the folks with money, cash and credit cards, were not there.
Twice within a week I found myself in trouble. The difference was I didn’t cause this diversion.
Sometimes this happens in our goals. We handle and account for all the distractions and diversions of our own creation, but sometimes things just happen beyond our control and then, Bam! We are back off track. What do we do now?
Luck, miracles, and a helping hand.
Somehow, the adult’s truck, the one I thought was ahead of us, pulled to the side of the freeway to wait. You see, they also thought we were behind them; hey, it was o’ dark 30 give us a break. They pulled over to let us catch up knowing we would be needing gas, as were they.
We ran up, met them, got the credit card, filled the tank and made it home. The end. (Of this story.)
When it comes to goals, and we find that difficult times arise, I find the best way to get through the distraction is enlist the support of a helping hand.
Without the credit card it would have been impossible for us to complete the journey.
Likewise, without mentors, masterminds and accountability it is impossible for us to make it through to the end of our goals. We can try to make it on our own, but the reality is most obstacles are easier to overcome with assistance. Mentors can take us to higher levels FASTER than we can go without them.
Look at every famous athlete: performance coach, every successful actor: director, every popular singer/performer: voice coach, and every successful CEO: mentor. Coaching, mentoring, mastermind groups and accountability partners are imperative to your successful journey.
If you don’t have someone holding you accountable to your goals, assisting you when you run out of gas, energy/motivation, or mentoring you through tough times, you need to.
Promise: Nothing in your business and life will have a more immediate impact on your success or a larger ROI than working with a coach.
Someone knocked over a drink. Surprise? Not really; it happens every pizza night. My kids aren’t clumsy, they just have a scarcity mentality. We love pizza over here (my son’s favorite song “I love pizza more than you”, a song he made up; he’s five). The scarcity mindset drives them to inhale their pizza and fight for the final slice. Someone always walks away in tears. Silly and immature, we can always get more pizza.
How many of us go through life with the same scarcity mentality?
A scarcity mindset is convinced that opportunities, resources, promotions, and success are limited; there just isn’t enough to go around. Forcing feelings that you must get yours before it runs out. This type of thinking leads to fear, failure, unhappiness and insecurity; characterized as a belief in the existence of too much competition, not enough money, uncontrollable environments and comparison.
Scarcity focuses on:
The short term
Jealousy & unhealthy competition
Limiting views of growth
Unwillingness to share credit or recognition
Insecurity, pessimism and small thinking
Materialism & a fear of missing out (fomo)
An Abundant Mindset
Alternatively, the abundance mentality recognizes that opportunity, like air, are limitless; plenty to go around. Abundant leaders concentrate on what they want to accomplish, even if it appears impossible. If only I could help my kids understand there will always be more pizza.
Abundance focuses on:
The big picture, the long term
Collaborative opportunities to progress
There is more __________ where that came from
Building trust & rapport
Optimism, service & giving
Finding happiness in the success of others
Commitment and Motivation
Ideas and opportunities are not scarce, they are abundant. Yet few act on their inspirations. It isn’t a lack of ideas, rather a lack of motivation and commitment. Unlimited excuses begin to surface; too busy, no funds, too much competition, no time, etc. Success begins between your ears, it starts with mindset.
6 Steps to an Abundant Mindset
Reduce media consumption – conscious media consumption (including social) is imperative. So much is negative, a continuous parade of failure, hate and depravity creating unhealthy competition, lowered self-esteem and fear others will steal your success. This is not representative of your reality. Recognize that equal promotion is not given to stories of abundance and positivity. They do exist.
Give-Share-Serve – giving starts the receiving process. Turning your focus outward draws opportunities toward you. In life, you get back what you send out. Start by serving with no expectation of return and be surprised at the return. Help others achieve their dreams.
Stop comparing – recognize that the experiences your friends, coworkers and others appear to be having are often the “Photoshop” version, not the real challenges. Celebrate their success but don’t compare.
Commit to work for it – “opportunity is missed by most people,” as Thomas Edison famously said, “because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work”. Anything worthwhile is going to take commitment, sacrifice, dedication and intention. Abundance exists for those willing to commit to work for it.
Don’t fear failure – failure is an event and a mindset, not a person. It is not permanent. Never permit fear to obscure opportunity. Ask, “what is the worst thing that could happen” (really happen). Often, very little. Take a step into the unknown confident you will be able to see further. Look for positives in failure as stepping stones to your next victory. Sometimes we win and sometimes we learn (tweet that).
See opportunity – Make the choice to see opportunity, to expect opportunity. Like buses, another will be coming shortly. The choice to have an abundant mindset is within.
Abundance and Scarcity
The scarcity mentality causes sufferers to accept things as they are, not as they can be. This thinking will not benefit your dreams. To be successful, focus on building trust and working collaboratively. If you support others in their journey to accomplishment, you will be rewarded with abundant opportunities.
Rabbi Lapin is known widely as America’s Rabbi. He is a noted rabbinic scholar, best-selling author and TV host. He studied in England as well as Israel and established a boat building business in Johannesburg South Africa before immigrating to the US and founding the Pacific Jewish Center in California.
In addition to writing the bestselling book, Thou Shall Prosper, Which is actually his 3rd book, he is a frequent speaker for hundreds of organizations including keynoting the Congressional Bi-Partisan opening of the 106th Congress in Washington, DC. His articles have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, National Review, The Jewish Press, and The Washington Times
Episode Summary: Thou Shall Prosper with Rabbi Daniel Lapin
I received an email from an outstanding performer. One line that immediately flooded me with anxiety. Do you have 5 minutes to meet? Maybe you can relate, these inquiries are never five minutes and rarely positive. Is he quitting, taking a better offer, asking for more money, did he screw up? So many possibilities. But, the question that haunted me most, why the email, why not just come into my office?
Open Door Policies Don’t Work
As a leader, I have always maintained an open-door policy, accessible when needed. I kept the physical door to my office open, smiled often, and even referred to my availability in nearly every staff meeting. But very few took advantage of it. If leadership experts ardently encourage the importance of accessibility, why don’t open-door policies work?
The idea of an open-door policy is great for employee orientations and handbooks but to make them work in practice, you must create a culture of comfortability. Think about it from the employee’s point of view. As they approach your “open-door” They worry about:
Is my question or dilemma too small for the leader to be bothered with? Timid
Is the mistake (or problem) so big that I will be escorted out (fired)? Fear
Will the leader ask a bunch of questions I can’t answer? Embarrassment
Will solving the problem create more work, longer hours, or push me outside my comfort? Ability
Will the leader think that it is my fault? Blame
The conundrum of accessibility
The more successful you are, the less accessible you become. The more leadership influence you attain, the more trepidation from your followers. As responsibilities increase, more people get involved, and you get pulled in more directions. The dilemma, who gets how much of your time?
Passive versus active accessibility
I worked for a great leader who understood active accessibility. Every afternoon he would leave his office and walk the building. He would randomly pop his head into offices and over cubicle walls to invite the occupant to join him for a short break to Starbucks. He did this nearly daily, learning about the lives of his team and their struggles, offering teaching experiences. Employees often shared concerns they were hesitant to share in his “open-door” office. When leading, actively seek opportunities to be involved with your team.
Unfortunately, as your team grows, your capacity to give equal accessibility becomes unrealistic. That is why it is important to create a healthy culture that doesn’t hinder your ability to accomplish your other responsibilities.
Maximize active accessibility without destroying your life by:
Setting boundaries – My accessible boss walked the building in the afternoon when his energy dropped and he needed a break. He chose the opportunity to interact when it fit his agenda.
Determine who needs and who merely wants your time – As your team grows spend most of your time with members who need Allow other leaders to handle requests from those who want your time. Your aim is to drive the organization forward not respond to every request.
Delegate – Let others step up to the role of leader and handle appropriate responsibilities on your behalf. Give them the opportunity and watch them rise to leadership.
Identify common requests – As your leadership experience increases you will recognize that certain inquiries come up multiple times. This is especially true as the layers of leadership increase. Systematize your response for simplicity and ease of communication.
Be consistent – The fear of comfortability is the chief cause of open-door policy failures. Consistency creates comfortability. When team members learn to anticipate your response, their concern about approaching you diminishes. You want your team to bring mistakes to you before they become problems. Reduce their fear of coming forward by always responding consistently.
Accept you can’t do it all (though we want to) – Understand, as your leadership increases, there are roles you will no longer be able to play. This doesn’t make you a bad leader, but heightens the importance of your active accessibility. Make each interaction productive knowing you will not be able to participate as often as you would like (or did before).
The appearance of accessibility – Perception is often reality. Creating the impression of accessibility may be enough for a healthy work environment. Talented team members will not abuse availability. If they do, use the preceding six suggestions, or accept that the individual may not be a good fit for your team.
The “5 minutes to meet” email
My outstanding performer didn’t want more money, to resign, nor did he make a mistake. He wanted a few suggestions on responding to his team member’s concern. I spent more time concerned about the open-door policy than I did on his response. Create a culture of active accessibility and save your sanity.