Oh progress…oh purpose, wherefore art thou?
Head to the bottom to go straight to the Book Giveaway!
Well, here we are at the end of 2016. It’s about time for a fresh start. We are all tired of 2016 and the baggage that came with it. Regardless of your political or philosophical mindset; there are many negative words to describe the feelings of 2016:
Death (For heaven’s sake someone please cocoon Betty White in bubble wrap for another few days, my heart can’t take it anymore!)
But as you know, it has always been easy for human nature to focus on the more negative aspects of life, we are hard wired with a negative bias. I get it – from an evolutionary point of view, being able to recall the scary is critical to survival. We wouldn’t be here if our ancestors ignored the cave drawings on the wall about the wild animals around the corner.
Whereas, some people seem to have an uncanny ability to turn the other cheek regarding the negative experiences in their lives and manage to make lemonade when handed lemons. Why? Is this mind over matter? Is it a skill set some people have but others do not? Without going all brain science on you – in short, scientists say that such behaviors, such as building in positive filters are a learned and conscious effort. Progress and purpose. P-squared.
My own anecdotal evidence tells me this is true. It would be easy to fall into wild generalizations and say “everyone” is feeling down in the dumps with no rainbow at the end of the day. However, through my travels, (and by my count, Learning Rebels traveled 23 times, for a total of 124 days in 2016), speaking with countless people at conferences, in workshops, hotels, restaurants and airplanes, the positive feelings were strong and alive. The Force is with many! (RIP Carrie Fisher)
These are positive feelings drives us all. They are what makes progress happen. We have a choice, either see life through negative filters or through positive filters. Choosing positive filters is progress. However, positive progress doesn’t suddenly raise up like the morning sun. It takes awareness, work and purpose. People need purpose, but people need to know what their purpose is. Purpose doesn’t just jump up and announce itself. “Hi, I’m PURPOSE!” We have to analyze, think, be self-aware – be emotionally connected to the world around us.
Why focus on emotion?
Because without emotion there is no attachment to a goal. Without attachment to a goal there is no progress, there is no purpose. We need to progress to evolve. I may be wrong here, but 2016 felt like this…go to work, read some emails, attend some meetings, work on tasks, go home, hide from negative TV, go to bed…wash – rinse – repeat.
Emotional attachment to our purpose gets us off the human hamster wheel, but we need structure (oh UGH!). By this I mean, developing methods that support good habits. But this is hard, what exactly is a good habit? A good habit is anything that supports progress toward your purpose – they support your Big Hairy @SS Goal (commonly known as a B-HAG) okay the “A” may not mean @SS in your organization, most likely it’s “Audacious”. But still. You get it. Most likely, you have a mix of BHAG’s professional and personal. Let’s talk about the personal for a sec., where would your destiny take you if knowledge, skill and money were not a consideration? That my friend, is your purpose. Hopefully, your personal BHAG supports that purpose. Now, let’s make some progress.
To help with progress – here is a habit/progress template. I’m using it for myself, to help move my progress forward to achieve the BHAG’s I shared here with Nick Leffler. Nothing like sharing your goals online to light a fire under your backside. Now, that’s an emotional trigger!
Here is the template, click on the image and it will take you to the downloadable/printable file.
Here’s how it works:
- Determine three “good” habits you want to acquire. I mean GOOD, solid, make a difference with what matters – habits. Example: Determining you are going to begin answering and filing all emails immediately, while this has good intentions, this not the GOOD habit that is going to propel progress. Seriously, it isn’t. Emails keep on coming, regardless – what happens is we get all depressed as we seem to be in an email vortex, we get discouraged and give up when emails continue stack up. See what I mean?
- Think about what you really want to impact. Then DO THAT. If you meant to say that by answering all emails more rapidly, you will improve communication with your team, then focus ON THAT. Make THAT the habit. The habit you’re looking for, is to find a way to communicate in a more effective and transparent way. What habit could you develop to reflect this? Maybe it’s coffee pit stops every Wednesdays. Maybe it’s group lunch and talks (no phones allowed) once per month. Those are habits that impact communication which in turn are meaningful and have purpose for progress.
- Now, write out why you want to acquire these habits. Think deeper with the “why statement”. “If I develop this habit, why is will that be a good thing for my BHAG and how I want to progress through the year?” Serious questions to consider as we roll into a New Year. Create habits that are uplifting. Make them positive statements. “Losing weight” is not a positive statement. That has negativity written all over it. Be a Rebel, flip the script and think “Feed my body and mind with more colorful food”. See the difference? When you do the later, you are again, making positive progress. Feeding the body and mind are infinitely more positive than worrying about a number on a scale. Don’t you agree.
The January 2017 Book Giveaway!
Learning Rebels, you…are going to rock 2017. Why? Because we are going to have purpose and with that purpose we are going to make progress and to move us all along, I have purchased 4 books. See the giveaway plan below… each week in January one winner will be chosen. the entry requirements will be different each week so pay attention. This week an entry requires a comment. In the comment section below, share how you are going to make progress and purpose happen for you in 2017. Be sure to enter your name in giveaway below.
Second Week: You are a Bad Ass. Stop doubting your greatness. We’re all going to head into 2017 through a positive filter!
Third Week: The Brain Fog Mix. We can’t do anything without focus so let’s focus on what matters most!
Last up: The Motivation Manifesto because, #LETSDOTHIS
Good luck and here’s to progress and purpose in 2017