All of us have disappointments throughout life. Some of us seem to have more  than others. The difficulty of dealing with disappointments is the same however.  People need coping skills to address their disappointment. Today, our schools,  organized sports for kids, etc. have adopted the attitude that everyone wins.  How does that help children develop healthy skills to deal with disappointment?  We learn coping skills very early in life. Now our children are not learning  them and it becomes more difficult as one grows to respond to disappointment in  positive, healthy ways. This article will present  a few reasons people get  disappointed and what you can do about it.

  • Not being clear about what you want. When we plan we have a better idea of  the obstacles we may meet and are aware that we might not get what we want. When  disappointment happens we can move on fairly quickly, especially if we  have  also created contingency plans. I urge my clients to always make contingency  plans for things they really want. That helps them not be so frustrated when  they don’t get it and it alleviates a lot of the disappointment.
  • Setting expectations that are too high. It is important to think through  expectations to be sure they are attainable – maybe take a bit of stretching on  your part – but still attainable. I have nothing against well-set stretch goals.  As a matter of fact, I think they are important to continued growth. Pushing  yourself to the next step is not bad except when you are not ready for it. You  would be greatly disappointed if you pushed for a promotion, got it and then  failed at the job because you were really not ready for it.
  • Not being realistic. Often, we do not set realistic goals and expectations  for ourselves. I have coaching clients who under estimate the amount of time it  will take to do a job. Then they don’t get the promised work in on time and they  are disappointed with themselves. It works the other way too. One of my clients  has found that she has been expecting way too much from her young children. She  is getting a lot of rebellion from them because they are frustrated they can’t  do the assigned tasks and she feels disappointed in her parenting and in her  children. When she became realistic about what she could expect things went much  more smoothly.

 

The next time you are disappointed in something look to see if you have  violated any of the items listed above. Then develop coping skills to deal with  your disappointment and re-establish your goals and expectations of yourself and  of others.

If you really are stuck in this I recommend you find a well-trained coach who  can help you see where you are getting in trouble and you create new ways of  coping.

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC is known as a Masterful Coach. She  specializes in helping women, executives and entrepreneurs make the most of  their opportunities and potential. Her years of working with small and large  businesses has given her a depth of knowledge that is invaluable to her clients.  You can reach her at http://www.discoverypointcoaching.com  or at her email address listed on the site. Also check out Lynn’s other  businesses: Coach Academy International, a cutting edge coach training company;  and Turnkey Coaching Solutions, a coaching program management and contract coach  staffing company.

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I’ll Be Happy – When ………

Can you hear yourself saying “I’ll be happy when..” this week is over; I’m  finished with this project; I make $x amount of money, etc.”? What about others  around you? What do you hear them say along the lines of I’ll be happy when…?  Think for a minute what that means or implies. I read it as meaning there is no  happiness in your life and there can’t be any happiness until you have reached  this particular goal. Is that what you mean? It keeps happiness in the future  for you. Even though you may not mean it your subconscious is hearing it and  believing it. You may even be self-sabotaging yourself in the process! Your  subconscious attends to what you say but it cannot make distinctions between  something said in jest and what you really meant.

That said, you are really talking about goals, aren’t you? When was the last  time you took a look at your goals? Did you know that only 3% of people in the  United States actually write down goals for themselves? Are you a 3%er? Chances  are very good that you are not. What would it take to get you to write down your  goals? Research shows that people who do write down their goals are more likely  to achieve them. They have a target, they know exactly what it looks like, they  have a time line and an action plan on how they are going to get to their  success. They are on their way!

That brings up an interesting question. What is success? How do you,  personally, define success? How do you measure your success? These are not  rhetorical questions. They are real and seemingly profound since very few people  seem to address them much less commit the answers to paper. OK, maybe you really  don’t have to write them down but you should be able to recognize that you have  made it when you have a success. It may sound funny but many people don’t  recognize success. They get to a point and then raise the bar higher. Some never  find success because they have not defined it nor identified what it looks and  feels like. This is one reason why some folks don’t enjoy their work. They never  stop to smell the flowers by looking back at what they have achieved and take  the time to celebrate. Hence, they are always is a striving mode.

How about you? Where are you regarding goals, how can you measure yours and  celebrate the accomplishments you have already made? You know, in our society  you have to decide how to celebrate – nobody else will unless it is a huge,  public thing. We are a society that values personal effort and expects  individuals to succeed on their own.

As that is the case, it is up to you to clearly identify your goals by  fleshing them out so that you can hear, taste, smell and feel what it will be  like when you get there. Then you have to figure out the steps you will take,  the obstacles that might get in the way, contingency plans, measurement metrics,  etc. You have to decide how you will celebrate you successes. It sounds  overwhelming when laid out this way but when you think about it, it’s not as  overwhelming as just diving in to something new with no direction at all.

For those of you who would rather not try this on your own, a talented,  well-trained coach can help. Once you learn a good process you will be good to  go on your own.

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC is known as a Masterful Coach.

Need an Attitude Adjustment?

Feeling down? Frustrated? Aggravated? Bummed out? Angry? Vengeful? Whatever  it is, it is not the place you want to be but you are not sure how to get out of  it. All of us get out of sorts at times. Getting back in a good mood is  sometimes – well, lots of times – harder to achieve than just staying in the bad  attitude. What can you do to quickly make an attitude adjustment?

First, you are the only person in charge of your mood and only you can change  it. When you can make the shift to really believe that, not just intellectually  but deep down in your heart, you will begin to realize that up until you make it  part of your belief system you are giving over your power to other people. What  do I mean by that? How often have you said, “You make me angry. That made me so  sad. Public speaking makes me so nervous.”? That is what I mean by giving over  your power. How exactly, do those things make you angry, sad nervous? Are they  standing there say you must be angry, sad, nervous? Are they forcing you to do  it? How is that possible?

I am definitely not saying that you don’t have legitimate emotional  reactions. I am saying that you chose how to feel from then on. For instance,  when my son talks back I feel angry. I then have a choice to make. I can chose  to stay angry and fight with him, I can feel sad that he feels he needs to act  that way, I can feel vengeful and laugh at him – there are all sorts of things I  can chose to feel. What happens after my choice will be based on what I said or  did. If I chose to empathize with my son yet stand my ground, I believe I might  have a opportunity to open up some communication about why he was late.

Now let’s apply this to ourselves when we need an attitude adjustment. The  first step is to recognize opportunities to step in and take charge of your  attitude. Usually we don’t realize we are in an “attitude” until we are well  into it. What is the first thing you notice when an attitude that you would like  to change hits? Try to think of a physical thing. Maybe you have a tightening in  your chest or stomach, maybe you feel your neck or face blush. Whatever it is  for you can be turned into a signal telling you to stop and make a decision  about how you are going to look at this situation before going forward.

Second, when your signal or red flag, as I call it, goes up STOP. Acknowledge  to yourself that you caught it and then remind yourself that you are now in  charge and you can chose what you are going to do and how you are going to act  in response to the triggering incident.

Third, consider what you really want out of the situation. Do you want a  fight, then fight. Do you want to clear the air, then clear the air. Do you want  to minimize the incident, then minimize the incident. You get the picture!

Remember, your behavior and the emotions – which come across to others as  your attitude – are yours to control. Step up and take your life back. It is  yours after all.

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC

The High Potential Coach

I’ll Be Happy When …….

Can you hear yourself saying “I’ll be happy when..”this week is over; I’m finished with this project; I make $x amount of money, etc.”? What about others around you? What do you hear them say along the lines of I’ll be happy when…? Think for a minute what that means or implies. I read it as meaning there is no happiness in your life and there can’t be any happiness until you have reached this particular goal. Is that what you mean? It keeps happiness in the future for you. Even though you may not mean it your subconscious is hearing it and believing it. You may even be self-sabotaging yourself in the process! Your subconscious attends to what you say but it cannot make distinctions between something said in jest and what you really meant.

That said, you are really talking about goals, aren’t you? When was the last time you took a look at your goals? Did you know that only 3% of people in the United States actually write down goals for themselves? Are you a 3%er? Chances are very good that you are not. What would it take to get you to write down your goals? Research shows that people who do write down their goals are more likely to achieve them. They have a target, they know exactly what it looks like, they have a time line and an action plan on how they are going to get to their success. They are on their way!

That brings up an interesting question. What is success? How do you, personally, define success? How do you measure your success? These are not rhetorical questions. They are real and seemingly profound since very few people seem to address them much less commit the answers to paper. OK, maybe you really don’t have to write them down but you should be able to recognize that you have made it when you have a success. It may sound funny but many people don’t recognize success. They get to a point and then raise the bar higher. Some never find success because they have not defined it nor identified what it looks and feels like. This is one reason why some folks don’t enjoy their work. They never stop to smell the flowers by looking back at what they have achieved and take the time to celebrate. Hence, they are always is a striving mode.

How about you? Where are you regarding goals, how can you measure yours and celebrate the accomplishments you have already made? You know, in our society you have to decide how to celebrate – nobody else will unless it is a huge, public thing. We are a society that values personal effort and expects individuals to succeed on their own.

As that is the case, it is up to you to clearly identify your goals by fleshing them out so that you can hear, taste, smell and feel what it will be like when you get there. Then you have to figure out the steps you will take, the obstacles that might get in the way, contingency plans, measurement metrics, etc. You have to decide how you will celebrate you successes. It sounds overwhelming when laid out this way but when you think about it, it’s not as overwhelming as just diving in to something new with no direction at all.

For those of you who would rather not try this on your own, a talented, well-trained coach can help. Once you learn a good process you will be good to go on your own.

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC

The High Performance Coach

Surviving and Thriving in Stretch Goals

Many of us are now being asked to create stretch goals for ourselves. Instead of creating annual goals that we know we can meet, our bosses are requiring that we make them more difficult and it is somewhat less likely that we will meet them. Stretch goals are not meant to put us in fear of failure. They are to encourage our professional growth. Stretch goals are goals that you have not been ready for until now. To many of us though, adding stretch goals to already overflowing plates is more than we want to envision. How do we cope, stay productive, and have any work/life balance at all when we are working so hard?

When I think about stretch goals for myself at work I think of doing things like developing a new product line, enlarging my scope of service, doubling my service capacity and things like that. When I think about stretch goals for myself in my private life I think about such things as paying off my mortgage in fifteen rather than thirty years, consolidating my mountain of debt and paying it off in a year, learning a new language so I can speak it fluently.

All of these stretch goals, both business and personal, will take a lot of time and effort- time and effort that we may not see ourselves having right now. That is why they are called  stretch goals, they are doable but will take extra effort to achieve. How are you going to fit that into your already full life and how will you find the energy and enthusiasm to make it through to your goal?

Here are some ideas that might help.

  1. List all of your tasks including your stretch goal(s). Use a ten point scale to prioritize them with 7-10 being something you absolutely must do and do well, assign 4 – 6 to things that are nice to have but do not have to be done 100% or can be done by others, let 1 – 3 be things that can be put off or even fall off the list. Now make the changes necessary to focus on the 7 – 10 items.
  2. Find out if it is even feasible to reach your stretch goal. Ask yourself the following questions:
  • What will it be like when I reach my stretch goal – what will be happening, what will I be seeing and experiencing?
  • How will I know I have reached my stretch goal – how will I measure success?
  • What part of reaching my stretch goal am I in charge of? If you don’t have control of it you may not be able to reach it.
  • When I reach my stretch goal who will be affected and how will they be affected. If your goal attainment will hurt others you may not what to do it.
  • What good parts of my life can I keep and still reach my stretch goal?
  • What can get in the way of my success? How will I deal with that?
  1. Create a time-line and action plan. Once you have figured out that this goal is appropriate and achievable create action steps you need to get there. Place those action steps along a timeline. Identify key milestones and write those on the timeline also. Don’t forget to include celebration ideas for when you reach your milestones. Celebration makes you feel good and it acts as a motivator to keep going.
  2. Get an accountability partner. Don’t try to do this all alone. Find someone who will support your efforts, someone you can trust with your intentions and someone who will keep after you to stay on course.

If you have trouble with this or are not really sure you can do it the best thing you can do is to hire a well trained coach. A good coach will help you sort though the steps above and will help you get through roadblocks that may come up. She will also hold you accountable for your success. Why wait? There’s no time to get started like the present!

Lynn Banis, MCC, BCC

The High Potential Coach

If retirement looms large for you it is time that you do some serious planning. I am not talking about the financial side – there are plenty of workshops and seminars about that and it is something that should be taken care of when we are much younger than retirement age. I am talking about life-style. Have you thought about what you want your life-style to be? Many people get so burned out at work that they can’t think of anything else beyond playing golf, bridge, tennis or just taking it easy. There is much more to retirement than that.

People are healthier and living longer these days and you could live one third of your life in retirement. That is a long time! With the Baby Boomer generation just beginning to retire there will be a huge influx of retirees who will be making up their minds about what they want those years to be like. What are your hopes and dreams for retirement? The first concern, of course, is finances. Do you have enough to retire on or will you be working full or part-time? Where are you going to get a job? That is a big concern because ageism is alive and well in our country.

You will have twenty-four hours all day and every day to fill up with the things you want to do. That is the beauty of retirement – you get to focus on what you want to do over what you have to do. You want to find things that have real meaning for you, that feed your soul and keep you energized. You want to do things that will also feed your body. Living a healthy and active life-style is essential for keeping yourself going. The myth of our countrymen is that once you retire you are put out to pasture and all you do is play golf and go to early bird dinners. That couldn’t be further from the truth and I am sure that the vibrancy of Baby Boomer retirees will put that myth to rest quite quickly.

The problem is that Boomers have not yet retired in great numbers and they have not yet had the chance to push for the needs of active retirees. Much of what those who will be retiring in the next ten years will be doing is trailblazing a path to a new concept of retirement. What will your part be in that effort?

Lynn Banis, PhD, MCC

The High Potential Coach

The Power of Vulnerability

Most of us don’t like to feel vulnerable. Do you? The thesaurus offers adjectives like susceptible, weak, defenseless, helpless, in danger and exposed as alternative meanings. None of those words have very positive feelings attached to them and most of us do not want to be in situations where those words describe us. We feel like we want to avoid those situations rather than embrace them. But there is another meaning that needs to be examined and that is “open to”. Being vulnerable also means being open to new things, being transparent, discussing things, etc. Now that is a definition that can connote positive power.

Lets look at some of the options we have when we are “open to” and what that can mean for us and for our success in life and in the workplace. If being vulnerable means we are open to new learning it allow us to admit that we don’t know something and then empowers us to go learn. Instead of having to know everything – which is humanly impossible – we are then freed to learn new things and generate new ideas from them. I am sure you have seen this happen at work or at home: someone maintains that they know something when they really don’t but their fear of being vulnerable keeps them from admitting it. Then their pride keeps them from getting the knowledge they lack. Usually that comes back to bite them in the long run. A person is much more powerful when they are vulnerable to not knowing and then feel free to go find out.

Another option in being vulnerable is being transparent. If we are transparent in our dealings with others we have nothing to hide. We are required to live in integrity and that in itself is a powerful state of being. When we are living in integrity we are leading mindful lives, we are role modeling for others and they are more likely to be transparent with us. When that happens communication, relationships and all sorts of other good things fall into place.

A third opportunity in being vulnerable is having the freedom to be wrong. Instead of feeling like we need to cover it up or be ashamed we can admit we were wrong and have the option of changing our mind and/or learning something new. A power in that is gaining respect for being an honest and open person.

Those are only a few ways being vulnerable can open us up in powerful ways. What are some others that you can think of? Sometimes it is scary to let yourself be vulnerable but to step into your own power you need to be. Give it a try – what do you have to lose?

If you are a person that is willing to step into their power contact me now for some coaching on becoming transparent. Contact me at lynn@discoverypointcoaching.com for a complimentary consultation.

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC

The High Potential Coach

Getting Unstuck By Reformatting

Do you have a routine for your life? Most of us do. We go from day to day not really thinking about it but just sort of robot-like following our routine. Have you gotten to the point where you feel you are in a rut or stuck in doing the same thing over and over and over without making any headway? If so, you are not unusual but you are probably feeling some frustration and are not living the best life you could be living. Maybe what you need to do is to take a good look at your routine and reformat it so that you are experiencing life in a different, more exciting way.

Reformatting your life, if taken all the way, can be a form of reinvention. That can be exhilarating and frightening all at the same time. If you are up for a change in your life and a chance to get unstuck from your routine read on.

First make a list of your top five to ten values. Prioritize them thinking of your life as a whole not from just a work perspective or a home perspective, etc.

Next look at your many life roles. Make a list of all of the things you do like worker, wife/husband, parent, handy person, “taxi” driver, coach, etc. etc. After you have made your list prioritize your roles, again from a whole life perspective.

Now put your two prioritized lists up against each other. Are they in alignment? If they are you are on the right track. If they are not aligned you have some work to do to get them in alignment.

One of the things you can do is to figure out where your time goes. Create a pie chart and put all of your roles on it with the amount of time you spend on each. Does your highest priority get the most time? If something is truly important to us we make time for it. What can you do to reallocate your time so that it reflects your values? This is really important to your happiness because when our values are out of alignment we feel frustration and stress.

You have now taken a look at your values, your roles and where your time is going. What changes can you make that will reformat your life’s activities to reflect who you really are? How will it feel when you do that? What will you gain? What will you lose? How will your overall life be better?

Reformatting your life can be daunting and difficult. Now may be the time for you to hire a coach. Contact me at lynn@discoverypointcoaching.com for your complementary consultation!

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC

The High Potential Coach

Getting Unstuck in Your Job Search

Are you about to or have you been conducting a job search? It is not easy these days. It has always been a process of getting past the “no’s” to the “yes” but that list of “no’s” has been much longer and deeper for the past few years. It is no longer a matter of having a good resume and sending it out to all of your network and everyplace you can find online. There is way too much competition for that to work anymore. It can be very discouraging. After a while with no or few prospects you can begin to feel very stuck indeed.

What can you do to break out of that stuckness? There certainly is no magic bullet and you will still have to do all of the networking, etc. but you can do some things to make yourself stand out in the crowd and get noticed. One way is to learn how to present yourself. There is a new book out by Paula Asinof and Mina Brown called Be Sharp. Paula and Mina devised a way to introduce yourself that is both memorable and unique. They suggest that you put together three factors that are designed to leave an impression and put you ahead of your competitors. The three factors are your Essence Factor, your Guru Factor and your Star Factor. Using their format you can create an introduction or “elevator” speech that truly sets you apart.

While you are thinking about how to present yourself you should also be getting very clear on what you really want to do and how it will be a good fit for you and your skills, capabilities and experience. An excellent career coach can be a pivotal factor for you in this department. Don’t just look at test results that identify your strengths. You need to examine what it is like for you when you are really in your “zone” – what are you doing, how are you doing it, what is your environment, how are you working with others, what is your bottom-line motivation? Put those together and you will have a powerful and impressive picture of your ideal job.

Another thing you can do is to get some help building a resume that is impactful. You only get a couple of seconds to make your resume stand out in the pile on a recruiter’s desk. This is another good place to get some professional help. Find a resume coach who has a unique understanding of the process and output so you can crack the entrance criteria with your resume.

I recommend great resources: http://www.discoverypointcoaching.com, http://www.positivecoach.com. Good luck in your job search.

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC

The High Potential Coach

Managing People Who Work Remotely

Are you a manager of a virtual team? Do you have one or several people who work from home either part-time or full-time? Are some of your workers off-site? If so, you know how difficult it can be and what the issues are of managing remotely. Although it is difficult it is a necessity in our current business environment. In this article we will discuss some tips for making managing remotely a little easier. After you have read this I would love to hear some of your own insights and ideas.

  1. If you are managing remotely and cross culturally it is essential that you make sure everyone on the team has had training in cross-cultural management and that the specific cultures represented are discussed and understood. It is also important to make sure that language is not a barrier and that people know what to do when it does become a barrier to understanding.
  2. Before starting to work be sure to do some work in another specific area. That is training on group process and what the team can expect as the group moves through the forming, storming, norming, performing and adjourning stages. Help them understand how they can make the process go smoother and what to do when there is a breakdown. This will take time but it is well worth it in the long run becausse it allows the team to move faster and more effectively over time.
  3. Help the team set ground rules for how it is going to work together. These rules should cover things like respect, sharing ideas, taking turns on the phone, getting work completed, pitching in to help, what to do when work gets bottlenecked, conflict, having fun – you name it. Include everything that the team needs to do to be effective.
  4. Another special area to work on is conflict that takes place remotely. You will need to spend some time upfront on how to handle this. Not only do personalities play into conflict but so does culture. As a team leader you will need to stay on top of this. What steps will you take and what steps will you expect your team members to take when there is conflict. How can you turn it from destructive to constructive conflict?
  5. The bottom line is trust building. You will have to work hard from the very first day to build and maintain trust because it is the foundation of working well together. You will have to expect it, role model it, monitor it and teach it. When you do you will find that your team flourishes.

 

Now is the time to learn to manage remotely. Contact me at lynn@discoverypointcoaching.com for your complimentary consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Lynn Banis PhD, MCC, BCC

The High Potential Coach

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