You already know enough, go out and apply that knowledge and see what happens.
Last week was a hell of a week and I have been noodling around this idea in my mind as I was challenged by someone I met with. He asked me if I was a confident person to which I said I was. He then said that even so, he sensed and got a feeling of a lack of confidence. As he pressed into what he meant, I couldn’t disagree with him. In fact it is something that my wife has said time and time again. I don’t feel that I am trying to prove myself to anyone but I always seemingly find myself not applying anything and just talking about what I have read or heard. I don’t have many business success stories and so I feel I need to compensate with words.
What I am learning though is that I know enough. It’s time to take that knowledge and apply. In fact a perfect example is that I just took copious amounts of notes over the past month from podcasts, books, conversations and I don’t think I have consciously applied one iota of what I’ve learned. This thirst for knowledge is great, and I never want to stop, but this lack of application and measuring what happens can’t continue on. Today, March 22nd… I am letting you know all of this because I want you to keep me accountable. I want you to ask me what I am applying and learning from that application. In a month, I hope to have tangible experiences and not just head knowledge. Keep me honest folks.
When creating goals, mindset matters.
Whelp, that’s about all I need to say on this topic, but for those of you wanting / needing a little more, let’s dive a little deeper.
As I was thinking through what my next big goal should be, fear crept in. The fear that crept in was that I was going to become the arrogant ass that I was before. Not only that, but instead of building relationships as I accomplished this goal, I would actually be pushing people away as I chased down what I thought was a great opportunity.
I knew that I needed to go about this goal setting process differently. Instead of having some arbitrary goal that would benefit only me, I made others my focus. I knew that if I had a goal that was me centric, I would push people away as I chased an opportunity. However, if my goal was focused on benefiting those around me, then as I strived for that goal, I would be building the very relationships that would lead to the opportunities that I needed.
Mindset is everything. When our goals are focused on us, our interactions take a turn for the worse as conversations go from a we, to all about me. As you set your goals be careful of what kind of mindset you have, because it’s that very mindset that may just keep you from reaching your goals.
By default we are all consumers. You don’t have to ever try to consume something. it is in our nature to get what we want, whether that be food, clothes, tickets to an awesome event, scrolling through mindlessly on LinkedIn or other platforms. The real challenge is creating something that isn’t a humblebrag and actually adds value to those who read it.
Please, create something fun, create something intriguing, create something that sparks a new thought, even if its a potentially controversial one. Think of a hobby you have, a conversation that made you think, an organization that you volunteer for and create something that isn’t focused on you, but brings light to something that you want the world to know about.
A word of caution, don’t only create content that makes you look awesome. If you actually want to bring value to those around you, get beyond your big head and ego, and bring OTHERS value. What brings others value? Think about what brings brings them joy, stretches them in some capacity, or shines a light on something that could bring about a new passion or cause to fight for. Don’t think too much about the content itself, and instead, take the words of the great company Nike to heart… “Just do it.”
(The 5 pics in this post are just random shots that added a visual element. They are nothing special. Capture and create.)
I’m pretty sure it’s a universal law that we all love the sound of our own voice… I mean I know I do. I love hearing my sweet sweet tumbra as I drone on about things I’m passionate about. As true as this is, I also realize it is the worst thing for me to do to build relationships and really be able to share in people stories.
I have recently been challenged to shut up and listen, and I’m doing my absolute best to heed this advice. Side story: One of my greatest fears is to have silence in a conversation. I mean I literally used to pray Proverbs 29:25 “Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but to trust in the Lord means safety” over and over again as a mantra. I would pray that over conversations saying to myself that it is dumb to worry about silence or lack of conversation, and that I could trust that the Lord would bless our time and make it beneficial. I still deal with this fear to this day.
Back to the post: I have had some great advice given to me that I believe will help me conquer the above mentioned fear and make me a better human being, father, husband, friend, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. To put the advice simply, it is to ask an intriguing question and to shut up and let the other person talk. If I really want to go one step further, it would be to take a vow of silence for a day, or at a networking event, so I can give the other as much runway as they need to talk. One last thing that I have started doing is bringing a little notebook and pen that I can jot down thoughts that come into my mind so I don’t have to interrupt. Please, if we ever have the opportunity to talk, hold me to this.
A couple questions to end on. Are you a fellow interrupter? Do you equally love the sound of your sweet sultry voice? If so, take up this challenge and start to listen more. Lean into the silence. Create better questions. Learn to listen, actually listen, and give the other person the gift of hearing their own voice / talking about themselves and what is interesting to them. When you give them this gift, it’s actually quite amazing how much you learn about them and figure out how you can both benefit from the relationship.