The Saddest Excuse for Mediocrity

One of my childhood friends liked to say this…

The more you study, the more you learn. The more you learn, the more you know. The more you know the more you forget.  The more you forget the less you know, so why study?

He made me laugh!  I assumed that was his intent and not his philosophy because he was a good student and a good friend.  Today it’s not so funny.  I see people living their lives this way, in fear of the responsibilities that come from high achievement, excellence, mastery and proficiency.  I imagine the following thought process spinning around in their minds…

The more I prepare, the better I become. The better I become, the more I can achieve.  The more I achieve, the more people expect of me.  The more people expect, the busier I get.  The busier I get, the more stressful my life gets.  The more stressful my life gets, the less I will achieve.  The less I achieve, the worse I become, so why prepare?

In other words, this imagined sequence reflects “fear of success.”  Some will miss the irony and significance of their rationalization.  Others will just laugh it off, not admitting their fear.  Still others will simply choose to be in denial.

652x360

The truth is simple.  This preparation formula demonstrates the reality of fear and why people settle for mediocrity.  It’s real, it’s unnecessary and it’s NOT FUNNY!  Since it’s a serious matter, we should be engaged in stomping out mediocrity by inspiring parents, teachers and others to leverage their influence to help others dispose of limiting beliefs by replacing them with empowering beliefs.  Most importantly we should be helping the young people closest to us become who they were meant to be.  That responsibility gets me up and going every day.  What about you?  Who do you know?

P.S. There is undoubtedly someone close to you that is unprepared for the future. If their developmental gaps include productivity, professionalism, relationships or leadership, then perhaps they would benefit from LEAP, my on-line course.  Learn all about it at: www.MoEaH.org.

The Making of Superheroes

Zig Ziglar said you were “designed for accomplishment, engineered for success and endowed with the seeds of greatness.” In other words, YOU were born to be a superhero!  As such, your mission (you should decide to accept it) begins with the following four assignments…

  • Assignment #1:  Be intentional and be prepared. Do something everyday to learn and grow. There’s no time to waste. People are mired in mediocrity and they need a superhero you!  Prepare yourself to “save the day!”
  • Assignment #2:  The Lone Ranger had a partner known as Tonto. Batman had Robin at his side. Choose your Robin and bring him or her with you to the next superhero growth opportunity.
  • Assignment #3:  Invite your superhero colleagues to participate in superhero growth experiences. Then, help one another learn, develop, grow and sharpen each others superhero powers.


Contact
CrossAbilities!
ClancyCross@gmail.com   |   937.308.7966   |   www.CrossAbilities.com

Growth That Matters!

Here’s a simple model for understanding personal and professional growth: 1) Feed Your Mind;  2) Engage Your Thoughts; 3) Establish Your Purpose.  Here’s a short description of each part.

What We Know

Intentional or not, our minds constantly take in new information and increase what we know.  So, people everywhere should be asking: “Am I living a low-information or a high information life?”  This is not a question about quantity.  It’s about quality.  Maybe a better question would be: “Do I stuff my mind with the junk food of pop culture, gossip, salacious novels, and the babbling of talking heads OR do I strategically feed my mind with high-nutrition information from sources that matter?” If you want to grow, don’t just feed your mind.  Nourish it!

“You are what you are and where you are because of what has
gone into your mind.  You can change what you are and where you are
by changing what goes into your mind.”
-Zig Ziglar

Some information scratches an itch or tickles a funny bone.  Some plays around with our moral compasses and plants seeds of negativity that influence the stories we tell our selves about who we are or should become. Even if we believe we can manage the negative impact, we reduce the available time and energy we have to take in beneficial information that prepares us for growth.

“You can make positive deposits in your own economy every day
by reading and listening to positive, life-changing content, and
by associating with encouraging and hope-building people.”

-Zig Ziglar

The first part of the growth equation is this: “Growth begins with better management of your mental diet.”

What We Do With What We Know

“Information’s pretty thin stuff unless mixed with experience.”
Clarence Day

The value a person gains from collecting and sorting information is barely a scratch on the crystal of potential.  Why?  Because gathering and organizing information is done faster and more efficiently by computers.  Information is what it is and nothing more until people get involved.  It’s real value is released when a person, not a machine, connects with its innate qualities, conceives a use for it, and creates context that places the information and its users into a leveraged position.  Whenever this occurs a person grows professionally and in market value.

Growth is the understanding that comes from engaging in real-life activities.  The potential value of what we know becomes more real as we put it to use. Everything we do to understand more broadly and more deeply paves the way to wisdom.Prepare to Win !

“There are many truths of which the full meaning cannot
 be realized until personal experience has brought it home.”
John Stuart Mill

Action has a way of forcing us to think, evaluate, rethink, and try again. When the brain is fully engaged, more than simply gathering and sorting, new wisdom is born.   This uniquely human phenomenon cannot be automated.

A one-and-done experience has some value, albeit limited. The greater value is released when we add two more elements to the experience: Commitment and Repetition. Commitment is the attitude of integrity. It says, “I insist on doing this right and I will do whatever to takes.” Repetition is the consistent practice that honors the promise you made to yourself.  “Committed, repeated action” is what we mean when we say, “Prepare to Win!”

“I’m not gonna give up, shut up, or let up…
 as a matter of fact, I’m just getting warmed up.”
-Zig Ziglar

The second part of the growth equation is this: “If you want to grow, do something useful with what you know.”

Why? The Question That Seeks Purpose

Many coaches and mentors teach the importance of identifying the why in life when choosing a career or making some other major life decision. This advice is invaluable. It’s equally important to periodically ask, “Why?” as a gut check and motivator. Why am I doing this?  Why is this task or rehearsal important?  A periodic revisiting of your purpose is every bit as important as discovering it on the front end of forming your mission.  Most why’s in life center around people.  Therefore, we must remember that people need us and we need to reconnect with our purpose if we are to remember them.

The third part of this basic growth equation is this: “Growth is sustained by serving a purpose bigger than you.”