W.I.N. Wednesday: Lessons From Life's Most Powerful Question - You can't reach out with folded arms.
Technology guru and Hall of Fame speaker Terry Brock wrote a recent post titled 10 Steps to Learn New Technology Faster. While there is great value in the full list, the first point struck me as a gold mine:
#1 -- Have an open mind
This is critical for starting. You can't reach out with folded arms. Change your thinking from "I can't do that" to "I'll figure out a way to make that happen." I like to call this moving from "No Way to Not Yet" thinking. Instead of telling yourself why you can't do it, tell yourself you might not be able to do it yet, but you're willing pay the price. Take courses, hire professionals, read books, watch educational videos, and do whatever is necessary to learn new skills that help you. This is your critical first step to get ahead.
I believe an open mind is critical to your success in relationships, leadership, training, coaching, business and life. I often use the quote, "The mind is like a parachute; it works best when it is open." It is easy however, to think that you have all the answers, or to think that because you are the boss or the parent that you are supposed to have all the answers.
The only way to grow is to open your mind to new ideas. Sometimes all you need to do is ask those around you what they think, or what new and creative ways they imagine for solving the problem. If you are going to ask the question, make sure you are open to the answers. I have seen too many people that ask the question to give the appearance of being open, but immediately shut down all suggestions for new ways of doing business.
In your organization ask for input from the people on the front lines. If you are a trainer, ask for input from the people you are training. If you are a parent, ask for input from your children.
Read books, listen to podcasts and attend webinars from outside your industry to get fresh perspectives and ideas.
I love Terry's line "You can't reach out with folded arms." Not only is it a powerful adage, it is a powerful image. As I read that line the image that came to mind was of someone standing defiantly, with crossed arms and a scowl on his face, sending a clear message that what I had to contribute was of no value. I have encountered these people my entire life, and sadly at times have been that person.
When Terry talked about changing your thinking from "I can't do that" to "I'll figure out a way to make that happen" I immediately thought of my sons Jesse and Cody and their growth mindsets and entrepreneurial spirit.
When you develop the skills Terry outlines in "Have an open mind" you will become a powerful role model for the people you lead, coach and mentor and for your children.
What's Important Now? Spend time today in reflection by reading that one paragraph by Terry Brock a number of times and pull something new from it every time you read it. Use it as a guide to help you on your journey in the pursuit of personal excellence.
Committed to the pursuit of excellence through Life's Most Powerful Question - What's Important Now?
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