Keynote on Vimy Flight

As we approach the Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy, many have seen our presentations. Some have asked that we publish it for all to enjoy.

https://tinyurl.com/VimyFlightTalk

 

 

Speaker is Speechless

This video articulates the magic I have enjoyed in flying. Especially with friends in our heavenly skies over Vancouver Island.  Enjoy what we get to see on a regular basis.

Keynote Speech to Saskatchewan Air Cadet League

A true pleasure to offer insight on Success and decision making with practical tools for their future.

A Bigger Wheelbarrow – The Mind Has It

I recently presented a persuasive talk to our local Toastmasters group.  It resonated with many. Perhaps you could use a bigger wheelbarrow?

Click to open A Bigger Wheelbarrow

 

Priorities: Family – Career Balance for a Happy Retirement

Have you ever been made aware that your priorities don’t match your actions?

I have and it hurts. I always felt that I was good at controlling my destiny and that my energy matched my motives and my objectives.

Where did I stumble?   And who let me know?

I was becoming focused on career to the detriment of family, and thankfully my wife let me know. More thankfully, I woke up and listened.

Too many friends didn’t heed this peril and paid for it in ways they could never have imagined.

For many, including me, career is important. It provides our economic lifeblood, future security and if well chosen, a deep level of satisfaction. It also tends to thrive when you are passionate and focused upon its demands.

So then why do we struggle with the tension between career and the other aspects of our life?

It goes back to the first question above – putting our actions where our priorities lie.

For many, if you were to ask – lose your family or lose your career, there would be no contest. Many would give their lives for their family and loved ones yet few would give it for their careers. (Military and emergency services personnel are arguably the exception.)   But even though we value our family and our relationships, we seldom invest the time and more importantly, the emotional energy that we give to our ‘career’.

It is only when we are reminded – do we step back and look at our actions and realize that alignment is required.

There are so many moral, emotional and altruistic reasons to be looking after all of the needs of family. The secret benefit that most of us fail to realize? – –  is that you will perform better, last longer and be more effective at work, if you have your family / loved ones fully satisfied by your attention. That way, they in turn can support you. They are your fuel, your backstop and your safety net. Get the career – family balance right and look forward to a wonderful retirement.

Retirement is not important when you’re working and establishing a career, but let me assure you that it is most important when the time approaches. Are you prepared? If not, I suggest you keep in mind; the career – family balance.

Meeting Planner Know your audience but really know your Point of Contact

I enjoyed a coffee with a fellow speaker and we were discussing the importance of bringing value to not just the audience but also the people that are supporting you.

I am speaking of the good folks that work to get you on stage and ensure you can perform at your peak.

The first point of contact is your event or Meeting Planner. They have a responsibility to ensure that the speakers and other presenters are suitable to the task. They also coordinate many of the details to ensure you arrive on time and are prepared to deliver as expected. Hopefully your success will ensure that you are invited back again.

So what can a speaker do to ensure the Event Planner is eager to have your services?

Simple as it sounds, you should focus on cooperation. The lower the maintenance you are to the planner and the other support staff the more appreciated you will be.

They have many stressful duties before and especially during a conference and if you are professional, provide clear communication and assist in making their job easier, you will have a much higher likelihood of being recommended and perhaps even given greater positions on the agenda – if not this year, the next.

Low maintenance as a professional speaker, is basically polite consideration, few if any demands and a complete understanding of the organizers’ needs.  This can be shown by your professional independence and courtesy of being well prepared.

So, please – arrive early, provide your technical requests well in advance and have your own back up plans should the technology breakdown.

Your time slot may be shortened or moved or any other forecasted event can send many speakers and the planners into a tail spin.

Be part of the solution and you will score big points to all involved.

Remember you are there to put a light into the hearts of the audience and your audience includes your hosts at all times.

 

 

How to Avoid Goal Fade

We all do it. We may set the goal and have clarity and understanding.

We emotionally absorb that our goal has purpose and we are excited and motivated to get started.

 

Yet….

 

It takes time and we let other priorities slide light gauze mesh over our target and that starts to obscure our objective.

Before long it loses its shine and sadly transforms into something that is all but invisible.

 

How do we stop this fade?

 

Do we remind ourselves of why we placed the goal there in the first place?

Perhaps we doggedly find ways to re-invent the passion that will drive us there? I’ve been there and tried that. It didn’t work.

 

Here’s what does.

 

You have developed your dreams into a goal. It has clarity, passion and meaning.

You are determined to reach it with all of your heart.

You accept that you will have doubts and may even inadvertently sabotage your progress.

 

Instead of allowing the goal to vanish here’s a tool that works like magic.

Are you ready?

You simply connect your present daily habits and routines with the new goal reaching steps that you desire.

For example – If you have a habit of getting up and making coffee in the morning, then apply a small step just prior to that task that will be a positive movement toward your goal.

If it is fitness, then do one sit-up, one slow jumping jack and one push-up. If it is research that you are required to do, then build a checklist of what you will study while you drink your morning coffee. Complete the task and then celebrate with a big arms raised ‘hooray’.

It seems trivial and trite however it will be a building block that is locked into your present routine.

Each time you link a behaviour to your present habits, you engage a process of consistent reinforcement and the association with what you presently enjoy doing is even more powerful.

Another possible example – If you like to watch a favourite TV show, then take the remote control and place it in the location where you need to do the required goal achieving task first. When your task is complete, then reward yourself with another ‘hooray’ and go watch the show.

Again, this may seem silly but when you appreciate how our minds work, we have little capability of appreciating future benefits that show no rewards in the near term. By building better habits that are linked to our present reward triggers, we develop new habits that will soon become stronger. It won’t be long before one sit-up will become more, and the checklist for research will become an agenda for bold action.

I have often had difficulty with motivation for things that are too far in the future – but when my goals are linked to something close to the present, I find it so easy that finding motivation for these short, linked up activities is a non-event.

Link these activities with the steps of your goals and you will enter a building block approach that is achievable, measurable and time accountable.

Without even realizing it, you kept your goal sharply shining and a step closer to your reality.

I appreciate any comments or ideas you may have. Please enter them below.

 

Laser Focus Your Distant Goal (and keep it sharp)

So we appreciate that there is value in having a higher overarching goal that is in line with your shorter term goals. But let me ask you; how do we polish that telescope lens?

When you pick out that ‘dare to dream’ audacious incredible goal, you need to do 3 things to bring it into focus.

Before I outline those three things, let’s be clear – (pun intended),  you need to own it in all respects.  The vision of your goal may not initially be clear but the emotional value – the WHY, must be etched into your consciousness.  For example, you may wish to be a doctor.  You don’t need to identify what kind of doctor but your “WHY’ must include a ‘buy in’ to the value you see in yourself.  That ‘buy in’ might be – making a difference in people’s lives that need you most.  –or- providing a compassionate service at the highest possible level of professional caregiving.

Back to the 3 things…

  1. Write it down.  ( we all know that, but we seldom do it.)
  2. Visualize it.  Make images in your mind. Go to Google images, and make desktop images that reflect your deepest emotional triggers of why your goal is so important.
  3. Go public.  (The most difficult of all.) In order to make yourself accountable, you need to have others know your ‘audacious’ goal.  It is difficult but you may be surprised at the support you will begin to garner.

Congratulations! Your telescopic lens is now polished and you now own the direction and destiny of your design.   What next? A few tools to keep your goal from fading.

Advantages of Building Your Distant Goal

Have you found yourself engaging in a scattered approach and find difficulty in maintaining; or even establishing a clearly focused goal? Like a poorly polished telescope lens, the light is refracted and it is awkward to see a distant goal. So we set closer more practical goals.

Yet, is that what we want?

Is it enough to simply limit our goals to the near and accessible because we can’t visualize a distant goal?

Let’s peek over the telescope for a minute and use the spotting scope on top instead. What if we were to build an audacious goal that would embarrass our very soul to reveal? There is an expression, if you could not fail, then what dreams would become your goals. Make it big and bold – nothing is unrealistic. Then – give yourself a fair and reasonable time to achieve it.

Remember, we always overestimate what we can accomplish in a short period and drastically – repeat, drastically underestimate what we can accomplish in a long period. That is because we don’t have the knowledge, gifts and skills to do it today.

When you set that distant goal, it does several things.

  1. It buys you valuable time. Yes it is time to fail or procrastinate or lose focus again. But it also buys you the opportunity to use this precious ticking commodity to prepare and set shorter goals and objectives that align with our long term focal point.
  2. When this focal point is far enough ahead, it also provides you more lateral maneuvering room to explore your passions and gifts that you create along your journey. Each time you make a choice, you can measure it against the criteria – does this activity assist my experience, pleasure and fufillment in my journey to my long term objective.
  3. It sets the trail for many other shorter goals that you can setup along the way. And as a child crawls before he walks and runs; ensure that first tasks are EASY. We need encouragement, and reinforcement. We will have doubts and failures, so we need to meet simple objectives then feel the gratification of meeting them. This will build mental muscle memory (read habits) that will slowly empower you to progress with greater ease and finesse.
  4. It is easier to complete smaller goals if you have your aim focused on a greater more distant goal. The first goal is simply a step on your journey. It will seem less daunting and have greater purpose in its importance when you tie it directly to the objective of your higher path.

This overarching goal will provide you the guidance to align your actions and provide you with the direction to measure all of your smaller goals against. But we need to keep the focus clear. And it is so far away. How do we do that?

How do we polish that telescope lens?

When you pick out that ‘dare to dream’ audacious incredible goal, you may wish to stay tuned for our 2015 blog when I describe 3 things to bring your distant goal into brilliant focus.

For now, I wish you all a very prosperous and fulfilling New Year.