Casting a Compelling Vision – The Key to Building Your Dream Team

You will not achieve your dreams or vision by yourself. To achieve big dreams and significant goals you will have to assemble a team of people that encourage, inspire, and provide honest, constructive criticism. You may think that just because you have a big dream and that it is worthy that people will line up to be a part of it, but this isn’t how it works. You will have to master the skill of casting your vision and transferring that vision to others. The obvious prerequisite to casting a vision is that you have to have one yourself! To convince others of the significance of your dream and vision, YOU have to be convinced of the significance of it.

For those of you that are convicted of your dream, you will need to learn the skills of casting that vision. John Maxwell in his book, Put Your Dream to the Test, tells us that to get others to connect with your vision that you’ll have to do it logically, emotionally and visually.

1. Transferring your vision Logically:

The ability to communicate your dream logically is the first step in gaining credibility. There are two things needed to pass the first gate of people’s intellect:

First, you need to communicate a realistic understanding of the situation today. Maxwell says,

Every time you communicate your vision to people, the first thing the skeptics ask is, ‘But what about…?’ If they don’t ask it out loud, they say it to themselves. And they will keep asking it until you have addressed all of their concerns. You need to demonstrate that you understand the situation at least as well as they do. That requires being extremely thorough when sharing your dream and not dwelling on its positive benefits to the exclusion of the facts.

Second, you need to provide a solid strategy for achieving the vision. A good strategy always breaks the long term vision down into manageable parts; each given to what Maxwell calls, ‘Individual Champions;’ or the best people for the job.

There is fine line to walk when communicating your vision logically. You don’t want to get bogged down in the details or bore people. You need to give enough information to satisfy most people, but not so much that you lose them. This skill takes practice and if you want your goals and dreams, it is a required.

2. Transferring your vision Emotionally:

To get someone to connect to your vision and dream, you have to connect to them emotionally. What people don’t feel, they don’t buy into. There are three ingredients to an emotional connection:

First, show them the dream from their perspective. People will always want to know “what’s in it for me?” If you want to win people over to your dreams, you need to speak in the language of their interestes, not your own.

Second, show them your heart. Maxwell tells us,

People buy into the dreamer before they buy into the dream. To transfer the dream emotionally, you need to let people see your heart and your hope. Sharing your heart tells your story. Sharing your hope tells the story of your dream and how it will impact the future.

Third, show them the benefits. You have to provide them with every reason for joining you.

You need to help them connect with the opportunities for achieving personal growth, finding fulfillment, and increasing their self-esteem. …If you can’t offer plenty of legitimate reasons about why they should be involved, then you have no business trying to recruit them to your team in the first place.

3. Transferring your vision Visually:

You need to bring your dream to life. What people don’t see, they won’t buy into.

We can do that by painting verbal pictures. We can do it by using photographs or film. We can use music. But the most compelling picture is our living what we are trying to communicate.  If we live our dream, practice integrity, achieve a degree of success, people see what the dream has done for us, and that makes them want it too. If you do everything within your power to live your dream, you become a living advertisement for it.”

Being sold out to your own dream and vision of the future is critical for your success in transferring that feeling to others when building your dream team. Maxwell’s book will help you clarify and strengthen your dream. If you want to make a significant difference, make sure to pick it up.

If you want to engage in material like Maxwell’s book that will constantly stretch you personally and professionally in areas of faith, relationships, finances, business, history, freedom, economics or fitness, check out the Mental Fitness Challenge. It’s like P90X for your brain. We need to raise a generation of leaders that have big dreams and want to make a positive impact in this world.

Thanks for reading, and as always, please leave your thoughts below!

God Bless,

Clint Fix

Casting a Compelling Vision – The Key to Building Your Dream Team

Weight Loss as a New Years Resolution – Done Right

As we enter the new year, I’m sure that many of you have decided to make a change when it comes to your health. Weight loss is usually on most people’s new years resolution list. It’s no surprise given that the leanest state in the country is Colorado at 21% and the worst at 34% is Mississippi! 1 in 3 adults are not just overweight, but obese! These are alarming statistics. I applaud you for making a stand to reverse the frightening trend of obesity.

Why should you listen to me on this subject? Because I used to be in the obese category and decided that I needed to make a change.  Is the change easy? Not at all. Is it worth it? I can’t describe the difference it makes in every area of your life. You better believe that it’s worth it! Hopefully I can give you a shorter path to a healthy life than I took myself. You are already off to a better start because you’re seeking help from someone who has done it. I searched for the short cut. Fad diets and magic pills don’t work. They’ll extend the journey and make it much more difficult. Because of things like those, it took me nearly 3 years to lose 85lbs when it should have only taken me 1. Just remember, there are no short cuts to success in weight loss (or anything for that matter).

So what’s the first step? Resolve to drop all excuses. You will NOT get your weight loss goals if you cop out by making excuses like, “I don’t have time to work out,” or “I just can’t lose weight,” “I don’t know what I’m doing,” etc. If time is your excuse, throw out your TV or at least get rid of cable. This will be a double whammy when it comes to weight loss; you’ll get off your butt and if you are an average American, you’ll save an average of 20-30 hours of time per week. You can lose weight. The only way to figure out what you’re doing is to start doing it and seek help from those that know what they’re doing. It only takes ONE excuse to keep you from your fitness goals.

For those of you that are serious about weight loss and resolve to not make any excuses can move on to the next step: setting a real goal. Just saying, “I want to lose weight” is not good enough. Goals need to be SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time Specific. Tim Marks does a great job diving into the goal setting process. Exactly how much weight do you want to lose? A realistic weight loss goal should be somewhere in the realm of 2-4lbs a week. When do you want to reach your goal by? Do you want a certain toned look? If so, you may need to get even more specific and take into consideration your body composition, not just weight. My fitness goal for 2012 is to be 165lbs at 8% body fat by December 2012.

Now that you have the vision of where you want to be clear in your mind (and hopefully on paper), we can begin what Orrin Woodward calls  PDCA or the Plan, Do, Check and Adjust process.  Remember a mediocre plan acted upon is infinitely better than a perfect plan that remains unimplemented. To help out, here are a few tips that should start you on your journey.

1. Cut out refined carbohydrates (sugar, starches, etc).

2. Replace at least one meal per day with a higher protein meal replacement shake (there is very strong evidence showing the link between meal replacements and long term weight loss)

3. Start a weight training regimen. Don’t even start to make excuses – this is a must for both women and men for long term health. Don’t worry women, you won’t get big and muscular.

4. Eat most of your carbs towards the beginning of the day, tapering them off throughout the day.

5. Eat 4-6 SMALL meals per day. This is where meal replacements can come in handy.

6. Don’t make drastic changes all at once. You will probably end up quitting. Ease into these suggestions. Set little goals along the way.

7. Find someone to encourage you and hold you accountable.

8. Reward yourself along the way! Wayne MacNamara, who competed in competitive body building, tells us that we need to reward ourselves to motivate ourselves. Make sure to check out his blog on fitness!

These are some simple tips that should get you started on your weight loss journey. As you go along, you may need a more specific plan which can be provided by a professional (not a doctor…they usually don’t know jack about nutrition) or someone who has done what you’re trying to accomplish. If you live in Colorado Springs, here are a few great personal trainers:

24 hour fitness: Jerod Langness – he trained me after a car accident and did a great job getting me back into working order.

Gold’s Gym: Benito Juvera – Great if you want a hardcore, no excuses trainer. Definitely knows what he’s doing and will get you results!

Lifetime Fitness: Rachael Smith – Awesome trainer with some physical therapy training. Ladies, she is your go to gal!

If you’re not seeing results, or not getting the results you want, it’s time to check if you’re doing the steps of your plan correctly. If so, adjust and start the PDCA process over again.

Your weight loss journey will be rewarding. It will boost your confidence, self-image and help you function better at work, as a wife/husband, father/mother, etc. It will make every part of your life better! Now that you have the basics – GET INTO ACTION!

Physical fitness isn’t all that counts, however. Make sure you’re also working on your Mental Fitness as well. The best program I’ve seen for getting rid of flabby thinking is the Mental Fitness Challenge. It’s kinda like P90X for your brain.

As always, let me know your thoughts down below!

Happy New Year!

Clint Fix

 

Weight Loss as a New Years Resolution – Done Right

Review: The Lens Effect by Orrin Woodward

The lens through which you view the world has a massive impact on the level of success you will achieve. Orrin Woodward, who recently won the Top Leadership Website of 2011 from the Independent Association of Businesses, dissects this idea in detail on a recent LIFE business CD from the Launching a Leadership Revolution (LLR) series called, “The Lens Effect.” I love listening to the LLR series CDs because they always challenge my thinking and inspire me to grow personally and professionally.

Orrin describes four different lenses through which people choose to see life. The first is the Victim Lens. Someone who piers through the victim lens will usually comment on their results in life with statements like, “no one’s helping me,” or “If I had that then I could be successful too'” or “if only this or that didn’t happen to me,” etc. The victim will always blame and pass off responsibility for their results in life to an outside force, surrendering all power to change as a result.

The next lens, the Follower Lens, while better than the victim lens, will still usually keep people back from the greatness that lies within them. The follower always wants to fit in. They go the way that the crowd goes, inevitably getting the same results as the crowd. If you want something different than what the average person gets, you’ll have to do something that the average person isn’t doing.

The third lens is the Performer Lens. This lens is much better than the first two, but still comes with its downfalls. The performer lives by the mantra, “If it’s to be, it’s up to me.” They will get the work done. Unfortunately the performer is always thinking, “Whatever it takes, I will do it!” They may do some great work, but it will rarely make a large impact or leave a legacy.

To leave a legacy and make a large impact, the fourth lens, a Leadership Lens, is required. The leader doesn’t think in terms of I or me, but in terms of we and us. Leaders understand that it will take a team of interdependent people, not just themselves to make a lasting difference.

Everybody has the ability to choose which lens they wear. Changing your lens requires a few areas of internal change first. Orrin describes the three changes necessary to develop a leadership lens in a way that I could never do in a review here. Make sure to grab the CD and study it! It will help you grow into the leader that you’re meant to be!

God Bless,

Clint

P.S.: Check out my review of Orrin Woodward’s incredible new book, Resolved: 13 Resolutions for LIFE

Review: The Lens Effect by Orrin Woodward

Orrin Woodward – Resolved to Make a Difference in Life

Orrin Woodward knocked the ball out of the park with his most recent book, RESOLVED: 13 Resolutions for LIFE.  I picked it up with high expectations stemming from him and Chris Brady‘s New York Times best selling book, Launching a Leadership Revolution, and to put it simply: this is Orrin’s best work yet. Edit 5/7/2012: Now it’s available as part of a Mental Fitness Challenge (MFC). The MFC walks you through each of the 13 resolutions step by step, gives you a self-assessment test to see how you are doing in each of the resolutions and gets you connected to a community of people through Challenge Groups that will encourage you and become your accountability partners along the journey. This is the most powerful self-development program I’ve ever seen. Check out some testimonials of people that have gone through it: Mental Fitness Challenge Testimonials.

I am definitely not alone in the praise for RESOLVED. Oliver DeMille, founder of George Wythe University and author of A Thomas Jefferson Education recently added RESOLVED to his top 5 reading list for the holiday break saying, “If you are going to get one book for the holidays, this is it. I have never read a better book on leadership than this one.”  I definitely agree and the timing of its release couldn’t be more perfect.

I have to warn you, though. Orrin did not write RESOLVED as a feel good leadership book. It is a book that sets the bar for character based leadership and as such, it will hurt to read. It will reveal your inadequacies. Fortunately, it doesn’t just leave you hanging without a plan for growth and change. Orrin clearly lays out 13 resolutions garnered from leaders like George Washington, Jonathan Edwards, and Benjamin Franklin that, if followed, will develop the character and work ethic needed to succeed in nearly any area of life.

I can’t think of a better book to read as we approach the new year. Many people are starting to think about what they want to accomplish next year. They are coming up with their new years resolutions. My recommendation would be to read RESOLVED, and start the new year off right with a set of resolutions that will change your life forever.

Here are some links to other fantastic reviews for RESOLVED: 13 Resolutions for LIFE by Orrin Woodward:

Randy Gage – Prosperity Blog

Oliver DeMille – Review and email to Orrin

For background and a bio on Orrin Woodward and his business, LIFE, check out the links below:

The Center for Social Leadership – Social Leader Spotlight – Orrin Woodward

The Goal of LIFE: Making a Difference in a Different Way

God Bless,

Clint Fix

Orrin Woodward – Resolved to Make a Difference in Life

Encouragement: The Key to Caring

All of us are called upon to lead at some point in our lives.  There are many skills that a growing leader will have to constantly improve upon; encouragement chief among them.  I recently had the pleasure of reading a recent AGO series book from Orrin Woodward’s LIFE Business on encouragement called Encouragement: The Key to Caring  by Dr. Larry Crabb and Dan Allender.

The authors did a fantastic job diving into the nuances of encouragement and how to develop the skill to lead our teams. They expand on the idea of encouragement as a process; one that reflects the operation of three principles.  Before I highlight those principles, it’s important to understand the authors’ definition of encouragement since it is much different than most would expect.

Encouragement depends on loving motivation in the encourager as well as the wisdom to discern the needs of the other person accurately. The actual words may be admonishing, rebuking, correcting, reproving, instructing, explaining, sympathizing, reflecting, affirming, or self-disclosing. If the motive is love and the target is fear, the words will be encouraging.

This view on encouragement is much wider than I had originally thought. What’s important to note, though, is that the words must be spoken from heart to heart. If any words are spoken from a layer that we put on to cover up our own fears of inadequacy or low self-esteem to a similar layer of the person we’re trying to encourage, the words will have no meaning and may even be destructive. Bill Lewis digs into layers and their hindrance on meaningful encouragement. Encouragement must be spoken in true love directly to the underlying fears of the person we’re encouraging.

Continue reading “Encouragement: The Key to Caring”

Encouragement: The Key to Caring