5 Inspiring Traits of Successful People

There are a few universal traits of successful people — and you may be surprised to learn they aren’t all that mysterious.


Wondering what makes successful people tick? Don’t miss these 5 inspiring traits of successful people, including tips to emulate these qualities.


What makes a successful person, well, successful? We all know someone magnetic. They’re good at what they do, firing on all cylinders, passionate, and engaged. But what are the traits of successful people (and how can we get some of what they’re having)?

When we meet a successful person, they’ve “got it.” But sometimes, we might also see familiar flickers in these qualities. The truth is, we all have the capacity to become successful and to fully live the life we want to pursue. Yes, there may be logistical hurdles, but everyone has infinite potential.

So, how do we tap into our potential? How do we emulate the traits of successful people so we can enjoy the same high-quality results?

Defining Our Idea of Success

We all know when we meet someone who’s successful. Sometimes it’s hard to put our finger on the quality, but when we connect with inspiring, dynamic, successful people, we’ll likely notice that they all share some commonalities.

  • Successful people are magnanimous.
  • Successful people know how to “work the room.”
  • Successful folks know how to draw people in.
  • Successful people own it.
  • Somehow, the most successful people make every person they meet feel essential and vital to their mission, project, or task.

These universal traits of successful people aren’t all that mysterious. The question is how they acquired these qualities, and is it possible for us to tap into the same dynamic?

Before we examine the traits of successful people, it helps first to define what it means to be successful. Does a successful person make a lot of money? Are they at the pinnacle of their career? Are they attractive? Popular? There are a lot of different definitions of success, and most of us can probably agree that the markers of success may vary.


But in the most significant sense, all successful people are fulfilled. The most successful people are vision-driven. They’re leaders. Successful people have a sense of purpose.


Are these bastions of success happy all the time? Of course not! (Who is?) However, they’re generally positive and enjoying their life. They’re engaged and extracting the most out of every moment. Successful people might feel satisfied and confident in what they have and what they’ve achieved, but they also drive themselves forward to keep reaching the next milestone. Successful people don’t rest on their laurels; they strive for the next peak and the chance to tackle their next goal.

What Makes a Person Successful in Life? 5 Traits of Successful People

1. Successful People Know Their “Why”

Successful people understand their raison d’être: their reason for being. They know why they get up every day and why they want more. Successful people have a larger mission. They have a vision of where they want to end up.

One of the universal traits of successful people is that a higher purpose generally drives them both in their professional life and personal goals. Now, “higher-purpose” doesn’t mean they’re always religious or even spiritual. It means that they understand their true calling and impact on the world. They’re heeding the call, and it propels them forward. They’re not focused on the simple, temporal rewards that will only get them ahead in the here and now.

Successful people are mission-driven with their eyes on the prize. They stay laser-focused on their larger mission, even if it’s broad, lofty, or nearly unattainable.

2. They’re Willing to Fight

When we say that successful people are willing to fight, it might seem to contradict what we mentioned above. After all, didn’t we just say that successful people were magnanimous and driven by a higher purpose? That doesn’t sound like a person who’s argumentative or angry.

But there’s a distinction between being willing to fight FOR someone or something we believe in and being a petty, angry, or argumentative contrarian. Fighting for something means that we aren’t afraid of conflict because we recognize that conflict is sometimes a necessary step toward reaching a larger goal.

For example, it’s healthier for both parties when we fight for the betterment of a relationship (rather than zoning out or resorting to passive-aggressiveness). Similarly, it can be healthy and productive when we’re fighting for a cause or idea that we feel passionate about at work. We might even be the one who saves the company from a disaster rather than silently watching the ship sink.

Successful people aren’t doormats. They don’t ignore problems; they stand up and get their point across. They also handle their frustration responsibly—they don’t demean others or engage in collusion, bullying, or gossip. Instead, they rally and inspire others to their cause. They share the vision and engage in conflict because they believe in their cause and are willing to fight for it.

3. They’re Present in the Moment

Our lives are full of distractions, but successful people don’t let their distractions get in the way of fulfilling their yearnings. Successful people are mindful, present, and work to stay in the moment. Mindfulness roots us in the here and now rather than replaying the past or fearing the future. Mindfulness connects us with what we want—our deeper yearnings.

“If you’re not in touch with your yearnings…you may waste time and energy complaining to friends about how your company is being run by shortsighted leaders. Or you might miss that moment to love and to matter in your child’s life when you’re tucking her into bed, and she wants to talk, but your mind is jumping to all the “to do’s” left at work. Or maybe you dash off a hurried peck on the cheek to your mate on your way out the door and miss the opportunity to really see and appreciate each other for a moment while nourishing your yearning to love and be loved. When you are truly in harmony with what you yearn for, you experience every moment in a deeper and more fulfilling way.”
Transformed! The Science of Spectacular Living

Successful people don’t allow themselves to veer off course and waste time. They’re productive and focused. They don’t while away the hours with soft addictions like television, social media, and other methods people use to distract and numb themselves from reality. Instead, successful people stay fully engaged. They go for it! They’re in the moment because they know each moment gives them a chance to grow, explore, and get more out of life.

4. Successful People Practice “Know Thyself”

Now, depending on how we define success, we know that not all “successful people” are self-aware or self-actualized. Take a look at the current political climate or the latest corporate scandal! But people who are the most successful and get the most satisfaction out of their lives practice a growth mindset.


A growth mindset means learning from our mistakes and constantly exploring ways to be better. We’re figuring out our drivers, yearnings, and what our heart truly wants and needs to feel a sense of purpose.


Successful people identify ways to get what they want—what will bring them a sense of satisfaction. They aren’t afraid to roll up their sleeve and do the work to get to where they want to be.

When we learn new things, we form new neuropathways. These new experiences reshape and grow our brains. Without learning and growth, we become dull and stagnant. We may show signs of aging and cognitive decline. We start to disengage and checkout. We find ourselves on autopilot. When we stop growing, we experience the antithesis of success.

On the other hand, successful people explore their inner workings because they want to understand themselves. They aren’t afraid to do personal growth work. They work with coaches, mentors, allies, and peers to understand who they really are. Successful people know that unlocking the secrets of our personality, motivations, and yearnings helps us build up our emotional intelligence—our superpower!

5. They Listen and Lead

When we’re around successful people, we often feel more successful ourselves. It’s almost like osmosis. Transformational leaders become powerful because they share their vision of success with others. They don’t dictate their goals and tasks, but they lead people to realize their own visions. Then, they explore how those visions align and overlap to bring success to the entire team.

Successful leaders don’t bark orders at people. They don’t talk over others or treat them down. They’re assertive to be sure—they say what they want, but they also listen. They work to hear and understand their peers. They want to learn what drives others and what makes them tick. Successful people know that they’re only as good as their team, spouse, and social circle. Their bosses love them because they make their boss look great!

Listening is a powerful tool for success. Often, we want to power through our discussions with others and drag them toward our point. Yet, listening, suggesting, and guiding would get us better results and allow others to share in the success. We can learn to listen by practicing with others—stay in the moment, engage, and really hear what they’re trying to express. We can share our vision and figure out a path together to get what we both want.

Success isn’t a trait we’re born with or inherent talent. To become successful, we have to work and focus. We must be willing to grow, change, listen, and lead. The traits of successful people aren’t mysterious or secretive. The path to success is clear and attainable for anyone willing to do the work.

If you’re ready to find success, don’t miss our resources at Wright Now! We have courses and materials to help you bring out your best in your career, relationship, and personal life. Get more of what you want today!

 


About the Author

Judith Wright receives the Visionary Leader Award from Chicago NAWBO.

Dr. Judith Wright is a media favorite, sought-after inspirational speaker, respected leader, peerless educator, bestselling author, & world-class coach. She is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.
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The Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential is a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Foundation performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Tips for Professional Networking Events You’ll Actually Enjoy

Professional networking events—we’ve all been there. Here are some new ways to think about making business connections.

 

Looking for tips for your next professional networking events? Here are some new ways to think about making business connections.


Professional networking events—we’ve all been there. Usually, we mull around the room awkwardly, a glass in our hands, trying to munch on a few crackers and talk to strangers between bites.

We’ve all read the tips for professional networking events, too, like “practice your elevator pitch” or “remember to ask for a business card.” Perhaps we follow a mnemonic device like picking out a color on someone’s tie to associate them with what they do or repeating their name three times during the conversation.

But do networking tips ever really work? Does anyone actually enjoy networking events, and do they even pay off? Are we just wasting our time?

The Secret to Better Networking

If we really want to be better at networking, we can throw most of the standard tips for professional networking events out the window. The goal of networking isn’t about how many contacts we can make or how many business cards we can collect. The real goal is to build a real, quality connection.

If we walk out of the room with one great, authentic connection, it’s far more valuable than ten business cards that we’ll toss in a drawer and forget. The truth is, we can build that great connection with almost anyone. Will it always be a relationship that will pay off professionally? Perhaps. But if we’re only looking for new customers and clients, we’re approaching professional networking with the wrong mindset.

We should look at events as though we’re the host. What does that mean? It means we assess the needs of others in the room. We may welcome them; we might ask if we can get something for them. Most importantly, we show a genuine personal interest in them—not because we want to “sell” them something or because we want to get their card, but because we actually see them for the person they are. We sincerely want to get to know them.


In many ways, professional networking events are akin to speed dating. It’s a quick snapshot of another person.


Most people try to “work the room” looking for someone who will be useful to them as a customer or who will be the next person who can give them something. But we’ve found that it’s far more engaging (and authentic) when we flip that idea on its head.

When we hold events at the Wright Foundation, we help attendees take a different angle. Even if our events are career-focused, we know that authentic engagement doesn’t simply come from reporting what we do or talking about the nuances of our day-to-day tasks. If we want to really network with people, we need to find better ways to connect with them on a deeper human level. We need to focus on human networking, not just professional networking. That means looking at who the person is. It means listening and engaging, not on a superficial level, but in a genuine way.


What if we look at networking as a chance to find out what the other person needs and how we can deliver it to them? What if we gave ourselves the challenge, not to see how many people we could meet, but how deeply we could engage with just one person at the event?


What if we went beyond the elevator pitch to discuss the real struggles our peers are facing in their careers? We might find out far more if we asked about the biggest challenge they have at their office or the largest roadblock they’re facing right now. Will we be able to help them with that problem? It’s hard to say, but chances are that when we start to really engage with each other, we’ll find ways to help each other now or in the future.

Engagement by Authenticity

When we begin many of our events at the Wright Foundation, we start by discussing and filling out the C.A.R.E. personality profile. The profile isn’t simply about what people do and their career goals, but who they are in any situation. It helps people understand how they interact with each other—are they Cooperators? Do they tend to be Analyzers? Are they Regulator types who want to be in charge? Or are they Energizers who lead the crowd with enthusiasm?

When people start to reach deeper into their personality type, they begin to talk about those bigger-picture concepts—who they are, what they value, where they struggle. It gets to the core of their emotional intelligence, their values, and their vision. In other words, things get real. Instead of putting forth a polished, professional, generic answer to questions, they start to really open up and talk about their approach and perspective on business and, more importantly, on life.

We may think that our business life and personal life are entirely separate and never cross over, but the truth is that most of us display very similar personality traits, whether we’re at home or the office. We don’t turn into a different person when we lock our office door and drive home. Many times, our relationships at work are similar to our relationships with our family and friends. We may have similar challenges, communication styles, and reactions. We may even find that certain work connections mirror certain relationships in our family life. Our boss might be very similar to our mother, or a coworker may remind us of the relationship we have with our brother. We often see these dynamics repeat in different areas of our life.


So it stands to reason that the personality we bring to the networking event should be the same personality we have all the time. Rather than presenting a curated “professional” persona, what if we were simply our true, authentic selves? What if we actually answered questions honestly and truthfully?


Like professional networking, when we go on dates, we often have this idea of putting our polished selves out there. We might dress a certain way, answer questions with what we think our date wants to hear, or we may try to order something from the menu that seems “appropriate.” But what if we were open and honest about who we were and what we really wanted? What if we weren’t trying to seduce someone with a concept of who we might be, but instead, we made it a goal to engage with them as our true selves?

It seems funny at first to think of walking into a date wearing sweatpants and saying, “I have $20,000 of student loan debt, four cats, and I would like to order the lobster, please.” But what if we did just that (assuming it’s reflective of who we really are)? After all, after a few dates, chances are our love interest is going to discover the cats and see us in sweats. Presumably, at some point, they will also discover our student loan debt, and we will eat something expensive and messy in front of them. What if we cut the crap and got to the truth right away?

Becoming radically honest in our interactions may seem challenging. Or we may even think, “Okay, maybe that’s fine for our social lives, but not in professional settings.” But if we’re living our best lives and reaching our fullest potential, why not embrace our authentic selves in our interactions?

Make Your Next Professional Networking Event Fun

So how do we apply these tips and ideas to our next professional networking event? In the past, many of us may have gone in with a goal like “get the most business cards” or “get x number leads.”

This time we can make it a game to see if we can instead push ourselves to have better engagement. Instead of thinking of a business networking event as a serious event when you need to generate leads, take the pressure off. Instead, focus on better human engagement and building stronger connections. Make it an event that’s actually fun and exciting—treat it as an experiment and a new adventure!

What will this mean when we’re working the room? Instead of rushing through conversations, really listen. Instead of asking superficial questions about the weather, what the person does, or general topics, really go for the deeper discussions right away. What if we asked people, “What is your biggest problem? What do you need right now? How are you REALLY doing?”

From there, we can listen with intention. Ask ourselves how we will see the other person for who they truly are? How will we hold space for them as they engage with us? More critical than practicing “active listening tips,” where we’re trying to retain information (and waiting for the next break in conversation so we can share), simply listen. Focus on what the other person is saying. Get to know them and when asked for information, communicate with the same openness and candor.


When we start to really see people not as business cards or potential leads but as beautiful human beings who are waiting to engage with us, we’ll experience a paradigm shift. The way we communicate will change.


If we want deeper engagement with others, we don’t need to wait for a special “networking event” either. We can find opportunities to engage with others throughout our day. Build your network of social connections by finding ways to engage with the barista at the coffee shop. Talk to the person next to you on the train. Strike up a conversation in the elevator that goes beyond, “nice weather we’re having.”

Our network builds our net worth. The more social ties we can cultivate and grow, the stronger our engagement skills become. Our circle of influence will broaden, and we’ll enjoy all the benefits of the networking event called life.

For more personal development ideas and opportunities to boost your career, explore our courses at Wright Now. We offer an array of class selections to help you discover a life of MORE.


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The Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential is a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Foundation performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Finding Your Power at Work

We spend much of our time at work. In fact, for most of us work takes up nearly a third of our weekday hours.

Do you want to get more out of your job? The Wright Foundation will teach you how to find your power at work.


When we spend so much time in our work environment, it’s important we feel positive about our careers. Yet finding your power at work is often a struggle.

How do you get out of a rut at your workplace? Even if your job is okay and you feel you’re doing well, is it enough? What’s the secret to getting more satisfaction and fulfillment out of your 9-5?

For many of us, the answer to a happier workday means engaging in self-examination. Are you standing in your own way?

Discovering Power at Work by Expressing Yourself

Do you feel stuck? Overlooked? Powerless at your job?

For starters, most people look at job dissatisfaction and start blaming it on every aspect of the workplace BUT themselves:

  • My boss is a jerk.
  • My team doesn’t support me.
  • I haven’t been given the promotion or position I want.
  • They expect too much of me.
  • I don’t click with my coworkers.

If any of these statements have come out of your mouth recently, it may be time to look around and identify the roadblocks keeping you from harnessing your own power. Often people’s reaction to the way power is being used around them is the very thing that’s getting in their way of claiming their own power and strength.

Many people at work complain and criticize others, but without a clear goal or resolution in mind. Before you start to criticize those around you, it’s important you examine your feelings. First, what are you doing that earns you the right to point fingers at others? Second, if the criticism or frustration is valid, how can you express it responsibly with a clear resolution and vision for the outcome?

Frankly, at work, many of us simply bitch because that attitude or habit has become ingrained into our office culture. We bemoan and whine about circumstances “out of our control.”


When we complain just to complain, we’re handing off our power. It often feels far easier to blame someone else, than to go through the process of finding your power at work.


Once we realize change is within our grasp, we can start to take the steps to refocus and harness our power, taking control of our position and interactions at the office. The first step is to express what you think, need, and desire from your boss, coworkers, and team. Say it responsibly, taking personal accountability for your role and contribution. Second, align yourself with the company’s purpose.

So, if I were to express my frustration with an aspect of the office, I would first examine my vision and goals for the outcome. How do I plan to contribute to the resolution? Next, I would discuss it with colleagues, starting out with, “I see our company’s purpose as X. I believe our highest functioning in the direction of our purpose would be to take steps Y and Z, rather than the A and B ideas we’ve been discussing.”

By aligning with the company’s purpose, you’re finding your power at work, taking responsibility, and not blaming others. You’re working to ensure the outcome aligns with the overall purpose and goals. When this happens, your office interactions become purpose-driven. You’re moving forward with a goal in mind. You will see a paradigm shift toward being more engaged, influential, and visible. Using direct and honest feedback, fueled by alignment to your company’s purpose, will lead you toward becoming a powerful leader.

What Do You Really Want from Work?

Finding your power at work means identifying your true yearnings. What do you really want? Hint: it’s not just a new car or a bigger salary. What is the yearning of your soul?

Our deeper yearnings inform our goals and direct our path. If we yearn to have control, for example, we may be driven toward a leadership position. If we yearn to make a difference, we may find ourselves gravitating toward teaching, training, instructing, or helping professions. If we long to matter, we may be seeking the validation that comes from positive feedback.

Once we identify our yearnings, we can align our goals toward them. We also become focused in our pursuit to get our yearnings met. This means not being afraid to speak up, disagree, or engage in conflict when we dislike a situation. Often, if we want something, we need to ask, speak up, and express our desires.

At the same time, there is also power in silence. Not the passive-aggressive silence some people use to manipulate others or steer a situation toward the desired outcome, but the silence that comes from engaging and listening to others.


When we’re truly engaged, we’re focused on connecting with those around us. We’re working not only toward our own yearnings, but toward identifying and meeting the yearnings of others.


Many people fail to maximize their potential in their careers because they don’t recognize or claim their personal power. Each of us holds vast amounts of personal power and human potential. We define leadership as the power within individuals to influence the thoughts, feelings, and actions of others.

You may be sitting quietly in a meeting, but if you’re truly engaged and listening, you’re holding your power. If your eyes and your mind are engaged with the conversation, you’re participating in the meeting and bringing aliveness to the situation. If you zone out, your eyes go dead, you doodle on a piece of paper and otherwise disengage, you’re killing the entire dynamic.

Finding your power at work means being present, telling the truth, learning what you can in each situation and realizing the influence you hold in each situation.


If you consider that knowledge is power, then expanding your self-knowledge is expanding your personal power.

Transformed! The Science of Spectacular Living


We may get so eager to express ourselves and react to the way power is used around us that we forget the importance of learning and listening. Once we learn to be present and active in our participation in meetings and discussions, we shift into higher personal power.

The Power of Allies and Support

The truth is, it’s often hard to understand our relationship with power and authority. It’s even hard to understand the way we view power objectively.

To most people, power means force. It’s something someone else has. Power isn’t “nice” and in fact, we may think there’s something wrong with having power.

If you were spanked or disciplined heavily as a kid when you did nothing wrong, for example, your view of power gets mixed up with authority and the misuse of power. This may lead you to a pattern of reacting against the power of others, rather than expressing your own power.

Most people spend more time avoiding rejection than they spend seeking their own satisfaction and fulfillment. We fear rejection and the pain that comes from mistakes or critiques. So instead, we hold back and fail to go for it.

When we become our own roadblock, it’s often helpful to work with an outside source like a mentor, ally, or coach to point us in the right direction. As Bill Gates once said, “Everyone needs a coach. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a basketball player, a tennis player, a gymnast, or a bridge player.”

In a similar vein, Harvard professor Howard Gardner identified seven areas of intelligence. These areas include arts, kinesthetic (body) intelligence, mathematical intelligence, scientific understanding, and interpersonal intelligence. Many of us go to school for years, we go to the gym and work with a trainer, but when it comes to interpersonal intelligence, we’re left to navigate on our own.


Working with a guide like a life coach helps us learn how we relate to ourselves and relate to other people. It helps us strengthen our emotional intelligence “muscle” and move toward more fulfilling relationships.


We seem to think we’re doing okay as long as we have a positive rapport with others. Yet, underneath it all, we need to have rapport and satisfaction with ourselves.

An ally may come in the form of a good friend, a boss, an advisor, or a life coach. For many people, truly finding your power at work requires the backing and assistance of a team. This isn’t because of personal inadequacies. It’s simply because an outside source gives us perspective and objective feedback. It’s then our job to listen and apply that feedback to our lives.

If you’re hoping to find more power at work and greater job satisfaction, start with self-examination. Are you taking responsibility for your feelings? Are you expressing your yearnings and engaging with those around you? Do you work to understand the vision and goals of others you work with? Do you need an objective source, like a life coach, to help you navigate and move you forward toward your goals?

Each of us has great power and potential. It’s up to us to uncover it and move toward harnessing our power. As we fulfill our potential, we’ll discover greater satisfaction at work and in all aspects of our lives.

For more on discovering your strengths and potential please visit us at the Wright Foundation. Join us for an upcoming networking event where you’ll meet others who are on the path to living their best lives.


About the Author

Dr. Bob Wright

Dr. Bob Wright is an internationally recognized visionary, educator, program developer, leadership and sales executive, best-selling author and speaker. He is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


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The Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential is a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

 

Life Coaching?
Career Coaching?
What Is Coaching?

 

When we reach a crossroads in life, we often have a lot of questions we need help working through, so we can find solutions and move forward.


Is this you?

  • My life feels unfulfilling and blah.
  • I’m overwhelmed at home and/or at work.
  • I’ve considered hiring a life coach, but I don’t know if it’s the right time or if I need one.
  • I’ve heard about coaching, but I’d like to know: What is coaching, anyway?

Maybe you’re hoping to change careers or pursue a new field. Perhaps you’ve recently been through a major relationship change, such as marriage or divorce. Or possibly you’re experiencing another big life event, like a move, a child leaving the nest for college, or the career change of a spouse. All of these big life moments can leave us feeling a little lost or uncertain how to proceed.

On the other hand…

As anyone who’s experienced a milestone birthday (30, 40, 50…) can attest, sometimes life’s critical junctures occur not because something big and obvious happens, but simply due to the passage of time.

Maybe you aren’t getting the same satisfaction from your life and career that you used to. Maybe your relationship isn’t quite where you want it to be. Perhaps your job, while it’s going “just fine,” doesn’t give you the thrill it used to.

You’re left wondering, “Is this it? Is this all there is?” All of these points in life can leave us wondering where to seek guidance.

What is Coaching & Do I Need a Coach?

Whether you’re totally overwhelmed or feeling unfulfilled with life, you’re probably asking a lot of questions.

“Do I need career coaching?” Possibly, if you’d like to take your job further, but you aren’t sure of your next steps. Or maybe you’re an executive or entrepreneur perching dangerously close to burnout. Is a mentor enough?

“Do we need couples coaching?” Maybe, even when things are going “okay.” Are you feeling like you’re not quite as connected as you used to be? If you’re wondering if that’s a natural feeling that happens with time…you may be surprised to learn it doesn’t have to be that way.

If you’re playing a basketball game, you wouldn’t want a swim coach to talk you through it, right? Although there are the Lombardis, Bryants and Landrys of the world who could probably inspire any team or player to reach their full potential, in most cases, to bring out your best in a specialized area, you need the right coach for the task at hand. You need a coach experienced with your particular area of need. Someone who can ask the right questions and help you discover the answers you need.


A great coach will guide you and help you find the answers within yourself. They aren’t a Magic 8 ball or a psychic. They can’t tell you what to do, what career path to choose, or how to make a million dollars next year—but they can help you learn to bring out your best.


There are many different types of coaches—relationship coaches, career coaches, and life coaches. There are coaches for executives and coaches for singles. There are coaches for parents and coaches to help you overcome soft addictions and personal challenges. If you aren’t quite sure what area you want to work on, you may decide a life coach can help you determine your path and direction. If, on the other hand, you’re trying to achieve specific goals in your career or relationships, you may want to seek out a more specialized coach.

The right coach can help identify and enhance your strengths. They can guide you through life’s questions as a sounding board, an unbiased and objective voice, and as someone who will hold you accountable for your goals. A great sales coach can help you figure out what’s holding you back from making your sales goals. A great life coach can work with you to discover why your life isn’t feeling as fulfilling as it once did. A great leadership coach can help you articulate your vision and work toward it.

Is Coaching Effective? Why?

How much of a difference does a great coach make? A study of Fortune 100 Executives by the Manchester Consulting Group found coaching had an “ROI of six times the program cost, as well as a 77% improvement in relationships, 67% improvement in teamwork, 61% percent improvement in job satisfaction and 48% improvement in quality.”

Unlike a therapist, a coach isn’t necessarily there to fix (or help you fix) a problem. They can help you discover the answers to the questions that might arise in your life, but they aren’t necessarily there to address mental health concerns and personality disorders. Instead, a great coach is there to aid you through your journey of personal discovery and potential.

A coach will help you identify things about yourself you didn’t realize. These realizations can lead to “aha” moments and transformation. If you feel you’re stagnant in your career or looking for ways to grow as a person, a life coach can help you identify those areas and help you set up a path to get to where you want to be.

The wonderful part about coaching is that, although they of course want you to succeed, they aren’t personally affected by your relationships and career. They’re able to remain objective and they’re invested only in helping you succeed in attaining the life you want.

This isn’t your boss or superior at work, who might help you set goals and give you guidance, but definitely has a strong monetary interest in your professional success (whether you find satisfaction with it or not). This isn’t your spouse or partner, who wants you to succeed but also has his or her own hopes and yearnings within your relationship. This isn’t your parents or siblings, who can offer guidance but also come with the weight of your past and relationships. It’s not even a friend, who can enhance your life but who, of course, is also looking for reciprocity in friendship.

A coach is an objective party who can simply guide you and help you achieve and unlock your full potential. You are their only agenda. A great coach encourages you to dream big. They help you focus on your vision, beyond your apprehensions, fears and even hopes. A coach provides a supportive role, guidance and accountability. A coach helps to train you, and push you to reach further, so you can live your best, most fulfilling life!

If you have questions about coaching and how to get a coach, START HERE.
To learn more about coaching and bringing out your best, join us for our upcoming Foundations Training Weekend to get a jumpstart and really discover what life coaching can do for you.

 


About the Author

Dr. Bob Wright

Dr. Bob Wright is an internationally recognized visionary, educator, program developer, leadership and sales executive, best-selling author and speaker. He is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.

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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.


 

 

What Motivates You?
Here’s How To Find Your Spark!

Finding out what motivates you is an interesting process, especially seeing as we’re all driven for different reasons. It’s about finding that deep down stirring that pushes you.

It’s what makes you get up in the morning, put your pants on, and get out the door.

Maybe you’re motivated by a desire to nurture and care for those around you. Some of us want power or control. Some of us are motivated by praise from our colleagues or boss. Some of us are motivated by cold hard cash (or think we are). Deep inside of each of us, though, something drives us.

We’ve all had days when we just aren’t feeling it. We phone it in, trudge off to the office, and give less than our best. We ALL have days like that. Maybe you didn’t sleep well, maybe you’re coming down with something, or perhaps there’s a personal concern weighing on your mind. Whatever it is, you know your heart just isn’t in your work. Your mind is off, and you just don’t feel like being there.

Having one or two days of feeling unmotivated isn’t such a concern. It’s normal, and it happens to all of us. However, weeks of feeling unmotivated and lackluster can indicate a deeper problem—a loss of desire, a loss of drive, and a falling out of touch with our yearnings.

We’re designed to be driven—but we must find our authentic selves. Maslow saw our drive as the desire for self-actualization and the realization of our full potential.

So how do you find what motivates you? What would “make” us be our best and give it our all every day? Psychologists have determined it’s about finding the meaning in our lives and embarking on a path where we’re constantly improving and growing as people. So how can you get there?

 
Designed to Transform

Our brains are pretty amazing. Deep within our neural circuitry, we’ve developed neuroplasticity: the ability to build new circuits and form new neural pathways, allowing us to learn, adapt, engage and constantly grow—and love the process! We’re not simply creatures of habit, or driven only by our biological imperatives and instincts. We are constantly learning and growing from each experience. We’re adapting and changing.

We can literally change our brains and our minds, and what we believe, who we are, and how we live. We can transform.

The very fact that we have neuroplasticity lets us know that we possess these amazing capabilities. Our transformation circuits are only activated, however, with our conscious choice and intent, through the stimulation of novelty and focused attention, as well as through our yearnings and emotions, which signal to our brains, “Pay attention, this matters!” Such attention not only rewires the circuitry of our brains, but it also affects the expression of our genes.

We are designed to seek, to be curious, to discover. When we are thrilled about the world of ideas and divining meaning, our seeking circuits are firing, activating one of the pleasure centers in our brains. We are in a state of eagerness and directed purpose—a state we human beings love to be in. This thrill of anticipating reward motivates us to act…


…We are designed to be explorers, and when we explore, our brains light up with pleasure. It is the novelty, not the outcome, that most delights our brain and activates our neuroplasticity. Our brains are never “happier” than when we are learning new things, stretching just beyond our current capacities. This is where we build new circuitry and develop mastery.

Transformed! The Science of Spectacular Living


That transformational spirit and desire to explore, grow, engage and deepen our understanding keeps us moving. When we’re connecting with those around us, listening to what others want, and finding ways to work toward our goals and vision together, we’re going to feel that spark!

You know those moments when it happens. Say you’re in a meeting and you totally nail it. The words that come out of your mouth are confident and thought out. You have a clear picture of what you want. You’re listening to those around you and sharing in their vision as well as your own—there’s a dynamic atmosphere, a synchronicity that just can’t be denied.

Understand Your Yearnings, Find What Motivates You

So if you feel like you’ve lost your mojo, and you’re feeling down and just not reaching like you once did, it’s time to figure out how you can connect, grow and push yourself!

What does that mean for you? It means you need to get back in the game. Volunteer for a project you’re holding back on, sign up for professional development courses, or take classes and training to get you to the next level in your job. Even learning a new task or how to use new technology or software will give you a little bounce and boost.

As our brains learn and discover new things, we find out what we really want, and we become happier. Those neuropathways are formed and we start to feel more alert, more alive, and more motivated to achieve our goals.

Explore a deeper understanding of your yearnings. Our yearnings are more than simple wants or desires. They’re the very fabric of our motivation and they propel us forward toward our goals. Understanding the yearnings within our hearts can help us unlock the path to our goals. We can see what drives us and what accomplishments will give us the most pleasure and satisfaction.

To feel more motivated, we have to connect with those around us. We have to listen, hear them out, and gain an appreciation for their humanity. Does that mean you’re going to like everyone you work with? No, of course not, but you should be open to hearing everyone’s ideas around the table. When people know you’re listening, they’re more likely to share and find ways to reach a common consensus and goal.

Lastly, to stay motivated, we have to stay healthy. We can’t zone out in front of the television, check out by scanning social media, or get caught up in comparing ourselves to those around us. We have to care for ourselves by getting rest, exercise, and spending time doing the things that make us feel healthy, strong and ready to go.

Keeping up your motivation isn’t as difficult as it can feel on a Monday morning when your alarm goes off. Work to discover new things about yourself, make an effort to grow, and explore the inner workings of your heart—and you’ll find what motivates you, and get that spark back in your life.

For more on unlocking your motivation and discovering what you really want, visit us for an upcoming Foundations Training Weekend. Learn more at www.wrightliving.com.


About the Author

Judith

Dr. Judith Wright is a media favorite, sought-after inspirational speaker, respected leader, peerless educator, bestselling author, & world-class coach. She is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.
Loving the content and want more? Follow Judith on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!


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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Inspire and Ignite :
How to Be a Better Leader

 

When you talk, do the people you’re working with perk up and listen…or do your words fall on deaf ears? Do you feel like you’re constantly yelling or frustrated by the “attitude of apathy” your coworkers or subordinates direct your way?


Maybe it’s time to reconsider your approach and learn how to be a better leader.

Many so-called “leaders” talk and give lip service; they drive through fear and threats of scarcity. They bully, they pout—essentially, they act like big babies, whining until they get their way. Or they act like big toddlers, bossing around their peers and threatening to take things away and punish if they don’t get the results they want.

Don’t believe me? Look at our current political climate (or take a step back and look at the climate in your own office). Are all the people in charge inspiring confidence or are they fearmongering? This climate of fear and stress is an epidemic in many workplaces throughout our country and it’s taking a toll on both workers and leaders alike. People in positions of authority are making themselves miserable and they don’t know how to fix it.

This mismanagement and bossy leadership is particularly rampant in middle management. It’s indicative of people in positions of supervision, but without the autonomy to really affect the change and inspire the kind of work they need to extract from their team. It’s a sign of someone losing his or her grip on control—control they often didn’t need to grasp onto to begin with.

Bully management and demeaning bossiness isn’t real leadership. You might get your team to perform, but inside you know they aren’t fulfilled and they won’t embrace the work as their own. They’ll perform on a mediocre level, phoning it in and doing what you demand, but never taking any steps to go above and beyond.

You’ve got to put the heart and soul back into your team. It’s likely they don’t understand their purpose or share your vision, which are the keys to great performance. Unlocking our purpose inspires us to greatness.

As leaders we will either instill confidence, or we will instill fear and doubt.

Which kind of leader do you want to be?

Taking the Steps to Be a Better Leader

If you’re wondering how to be a better leader, the first step is realizing leadership requires more than simply a loud mouth and cockiness or making a list of demands. You don’t have to be bossy to be a boss.

Leaders don’t have to know it all (or even half). I know many great leaders, CEOs and directors who don’t know half of the technical stuff their staff knows. Yet, they inspire them to perform at a high level, and they get results. They understand the importance of a team. They hire people who know what they’re doing and take pride in their work. They don’t micromanage or nitpick, but they step back and give employees the chance to rise to greatness.

The secret of how to be a better leader is to have a solid grasp on what makes people tick. If we look at great leaders like Martin Luther King Jr., Vince Lombardi and John F. Kennedy, we can see they were great because they understood their audience. They had a great deal of social and emotional intelligence.

They lead by inspiration, not by force.

Does inspiring leadership come naturally? No, of course not! Leadership is a skill that’s learned and built upon. It comes from learning how to help people evolve and transform; leadership grows from helping people find their own greatness within and discovering ways to extract that greatness and apply it.

Unless you directly report to the CEO (or are the CEO), chances are you report to someone, and they report to someone above them. In this chain of reporting and accountability, we all strive to make ourselves appear important. We’re longing for the acknowledgment, praise, and reception of our work indicating we’re special, unique and indispensable.

The real secret to great leadership isn’t in letting go of this longing or yearning to be special and important. The real secret in how to be a great leader is the realization that if your team looks great, YOU look great. If your team succeeds, you all succeed! So rather than focusing on climbing up the ladder by stepping on those below you, you must focus on how to lift up everyone—how to elevate the entire office.

Raising Your E.Q.

Where does the ability to engage with others, transform and elevate those around you come from? It’s a direct result of your social and emotional intelligence. You might have a PhD from MIT or an MBA from Harvard, but if you don’t have the emotional intelligence you need, you’ll never be an effective leader.

Transformational leaders understand this and they work to evoke their empathy in all their interactions. They share their vision with the team—not the vision they want for themselves or the way they want the company to grow for their own personal gain—but the vision they have for everyone involved. They find ways to bring out the success in every single member of their office, from the intern and the entry-level clerk to the CFO and the Chairman of the Board. They listen and they learn. It’s not about the money, the power or the fame—it’s about making a difference in the lives they touch.

No matter what you do in your business—whether you’re a teacher, an artist, a software developer or a lawyer, you can lead others by exploring what makes them tick. You can find success by figuring out where the overlap happens in the Venn diagram of your success and vision, and the vision of your customers, clients, and coworkers. How does the widget you make or the service you perform make the world a better place?

Understanding things on an intellectual level isn’t enough. You have to connect with the emotions, the empowerment—the heart of what you’re doing. You have to engage with others.


“Many people, including some very smart people, have a lot going on in their minds but are unable to translate all this mental activity into action. Or they take action, but only within the confines of their regular routines, rarely doing or saying anything that varies from what they’ve always done or said. In these situations, it’s very difficult to take action in ways that are congruent with their yearning, to experience emotional involvement in their words and deeds and to learn and grow.

If you need further evidence that real engaging is worth the effort, consider that prominent scientists offer highly motivating evidence that you have to engage in two distinct areas—feeling and doing. They make it clear that intellectual engagement is insufficient. You have to recognize and honor your emotions and get off your kiester and act!” from Transformed! The Science of Spectacular Living


In other words, you can’t lead, inspire or bring forth your vision by reasoning it to death. You have to bring others on board and explore things with them on an emotional level. You have to ignite, excite, impassion and get them involved to take things to knock your entire team up a notch (or several)!

For more on how you can bring out your best leadership skills and become a stronger leader wherever you are, please visit www.wrightliving.com. Go forth and make the world a better place! Join us for our next More Life Training to jumpstart your social and emotional intelligence.

 


About the Author

Dr. Bob Wright

Dr. Bob Wright is an internationally recognized visionary, educator, program developer, leadership and sales executive, best-selling author and speaker. He is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Defining Company Culture :
Do You Fit In?

 

“Company culture” is a phrase we’re hearing a lot of these days. But what does “culture” really mean in this instance?


If we were talking about a country’s culture, we’d be talking about its customs, people, history, social infrastructure and traditions. So defining company culture sounds straightforward at first. It’s the office environment: the attitudes, personalities, and atmosphere of the office. But truly defining company culture goes beyond even that.

A big part of defining company culture is examining the story that the company tells to the world. For example, what makes the company unique? What is the history of the company? Who are the company’s employees? Who are the company’s customers and how do they feel about the company?  What is the overall “attitude” of the company? Is it hip? Edgy? Serious? Professional? Is there a culture of caring or a culture of competition?

Fitting In, Aligning With, and Defining Company Culture

When we easily understand and naturally fit into our company culture, we tend to take it for granted. It just works. Fitting in feels effortless.

When we don’t fit in, chances are we feel like something HUGE is missing. Like the song says, “You don’t know what you got ‘till it’s gone.” When you work somewhere with a company culture you love, then you move on to a company where you feel like a round peg in a square hole, the importance of a great company culture becomes clear.

A foundation we’ve helped with professional development recently brought in a successor for their Director, Stan. The plan was she would train alongside the Director for a year to “learn the ropes” and then move into his role when he retired. The Director-To-Be, Jamie, was highly qualified, experienced and educated. On paper, she seemed like a perfect fit and a natural for the job.

After about six months we received a desperate call from Stan, asking if we could mentor or train his successor. Several employees had approached him with concerns about Jamie. While these concerns were varied and seemingly unconnected, none of them pointed to a problem with her qualifications…it was something more ambiguous.

Stan said, “I just don’t understand. On paper she seems great. She’s a very nice person and she seems likable enough, but it’s almost like our employees are adverse to her approach to things. The board is happy with her qualifications and direction. I can’t quite explain it, but she just isn’t fitting in. In fact, I have employees threatening to leave our foundation if she’s promoted as my successor. I may have to delay my retirement plan. I don’t know what I did wrong.”

We assured Stan he didn’t do anything wrong. In fact, the succession plan worked out perfectly! How lucky to be able to steer the train back onto the tracks BEFORE it really crashed and burned. This gave us plenty of time to get to the root of the problem.

When meeting with Jamie, after some discussion, it turned out the foundation had a very tight-knit and specific culture.

For example, they kept a plush squirrel on their conference room shelf as a running joke and metaphor for how their team approached new ideas. As in, in the middle of brainstorming sessions, someone would always pop up with an “Oh look a squirrel!” idea and chase off after it. Chasing after new ideas was a vital and an encouraged part of their company culture.

Stan, an Energizer personality type fit in perfectly: he was always excited about new ideas, enthusiastic, and quick to lead and make decisions. He let people run with their plans and share their visions, then helped them find common ground. Employees felt a great deal of personal investment in the foundation, not only because they could see the results of the foundation’s work, but also because they could clearly see their roles and ideas play out. They felt ownership.

Jamie, on the other hand, was a classic Analyzer. She had great credentials and experience, and she could look at reports and data like a crystal ball. She had high standards for perfection and accuracy and was cautious about change. She expected employees to give her frequent updates and she wasn’t allowing for the autonomy they were afforded with Stan. She was frustrated by what she perceived as a lack of focus and planning, while the employees felt stifled and miserable. In some organizations Jamie might have flourished, but in this environment she was floundering.

What was missing? A clear definition, alignment, and understanding of the importance of the existing company culture.

Understanding Your Own Company Culture

Defining your own company culture can seem nebulous. Is it a team where everyone is “in” on the joke? Does it mean everyone gets along as friends? Is it a team built from only certain personality types?

While it would be amazing if we could all find the perfect office environment and corporate culture to align with our different personalities, it’s not so realistic. It’s much more feasible to simply grasp the company culture of your office and learn how to thrive and grow within the environment—bloom where you are planted, so to speak.

In Jamie’s case, it meant she needed to be self-aware enough and willing to do leadership work it would take to get where she needed to be. Fortunately, she right jumped in, working hard to deeply understand her personality and how she fit in with the atmosphere of the office. We used our CARE personality profile to determine her strengths and which areas she needed to pay more attention to. She became much more aware of her interactions with employees and the energy she as putting out. She worked hard to give more autonomy to individual team members and to be more open and willing to hear new “squirrel” ideas.

While Jamie wasn’t going to turn into Stan the Energizer, she was able to play into her other area of strength—her Cooperator side—to find commonalities and share her vision with her fellow team members and to realize each person in the organization had their own vision, ideas, and hopes. Rather than working with a black-and-white/right-or-wrong approach, she was able to find the grey areas where her vision overlapped with theirs.

Jamie worked hard to adapt and to become the leader the foundation needed her to be, and fortunately, Stan was still able to retire on schedule.

When you come into a new office, there’s an existing culture. Depending on the size and structure of the company, you might be able to sway and influence the culture as you grow together, or, you may have to adapt and learn to grow to align with the existing structure. It doesn’t mean changing your personality or getting lost. It means learning how to listen, adapt and grow with those around you.

Finding Your Shared Vision to Grow

One of the best ways to get a handle on the culture of your company is to understand the vision and mission of company leadership. This might be clearly articulated or it might mean you need to have a conversation with your boss. Your goal is to understand the greater, ultimate vision for the organization and how you can help your team achieve it.

Not only will understanding leadership’s vision help you to become more invested and connected to your office, but it will also help you become more valuable and endeared to your boss. After all, every leader wants great people supporting them and working with them to carry out their dreams for the company.

Once you understand the vision of leadership, talk about your own vision and how you can align your career goals to help propel you and the entire office forward. Invest your energy into the company as if it were your very own. Take ownership and leadership over your projects. Offer to go the extra mile and do what it takes to help make your successes the company’s successes.

Don’t shy away from speaking up when you have an idea or when you feel something needs to be addressed. Just because you see something different or have a conflict with a plan doesn’t mean you’re not fitting in. The idea is to find a productive resolution to the problem together. Follow one of our favorite rules of engagement: “assume goodwill” and realize everyone wants the project or company to be successful—but you may just have different ideas of how to get it there.

You represent your company or organization so you reflect its culture. Even if you aren’t a “team player” by nature, when you’re part of an organization, you have to let go of the “my way or the highway” mentality. Focus on the big picture and the ways you can help your company reach its goals.

For more information on defining company culture and leading wherever you are, check out our Career Coaching Program in Chicago, visit our website at www.wrightliving.com, or join us for our next Foundations Training Weekend.


About the Author

Judith

Dr. Judith Wright is a media favorite, sought-after inspirational speaker, respected leader, peerless educator, bestselling author, & world-class coach. She is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.
Loving the content and want more? Follow Judith on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!


Liked this post and want more? Sign up for updates – free!

Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

How To Impress Your Boss
and Reinvigorate Your Career

 

If you want to learn how to impress your boss (or anyone, really), the real magic happens when you start working on YOU, transforming yourself from within..


Does this sound like you?

  • I feel bored or uninspired at work.
  • I think I do a good job, but no one seems to notice.
  • I want to be a better leader.
  • I’m ready for a challenge that will inspire me in my career.
  • You want to know how to impress your boss.

Most of us really want to do a good job. Almost all of us want to get noticed for a job well done or be singled out for going above and beyond at work. But some days, work feels kind of blah. We start to think things like, “No one notices my hard work anyway, so why bother?”

Making an Impression 101

Impressions are often thought of as the first step in the beginning of a journey. We make a first impression when we walk through the door on our first day at a new job. We make an impression at work when we join a new team or embark on a new project. Those are the moments when we really get noticed. But after a while, we might feel like we’ve stopped making any impression at all. (In fact, sometimes we feel like we’re hardly noticed at all.)

Remember when you were in grade school and it was all about making an impression on your teacher and peers? Maybe you were thrilled when you got called on in class because you knew the answer. Or maybe you dreaded getting called on because you were worried your classmates would get the impression you didn’t understand the problem. You probably wanted to make a positive impression on your friends and on the “cool kids.” Your carefully cultivated image was honed from the very first day of the school year.

Ever since we were young, we’ve all wanted to make an impression (of some sort) on those around us.

Even though you’re all grown up now, it’s perfectly normal and very common to want to stand out. Like so many of us, you want to impress your peers and learn how to win over your boss. We all want to be at the top of our field, even those of us who work in education, medicine or psychology. When we aren’t “closing deals” or “making hot sales” every day, but instead helping others, it’s easy to feel satisfied but still a little blah at the same time. Sometimes it feels like we’re just doing the same processes over and over.

After you’ve been with a company or working in a job for a while (or if you’re in an industry that’s less dynamic), you might lose some of that “go-getter” or rockstar status. You know you’re doing a good job, and you’re satisfied with your work. Your boss seems happy with you, but you’re no longer the head of the class. Maybe you run your department or you’re the lead on your team, but you’ve got to ask: “Is that all there is?” When we hit that wall, it’s easy to feel like we’re just phoning it in.

No matter what your industry, or how big your office is, there’s something highly satisfying about being recognized for a job well done. Of course none of us want to sound like we’re sucking up to our boss or being too much of a supplicant to their wishes. Nor do all of us agree with our boss all the time. Most people are seeking some sort of healthy balance.

Getting yourself noticed, reengaging and focusing on making an impression at work can help you feel like you’re back on your game. Not only can it make your boss stand up and take notice, but it can re-energize you and help you feel excited about going to work again. So, how do you do it? Roll up your sleeves and get to work!

Recognize Your Personal Vision

When you’re going through the motions and going unnoticed, it’s a big-time sign you’ve lost your passion for your vision. It’s time to reexamine what it is about your job you really love. Name those specific moments when you really feel connected to others. When do you feel most engaged, most energized?

Work on your personal vision plan. How do you see your life and what are your goals? What can you do to reach those goals? What greater purpose gives you the most job satisfaction? Helping others? Solving problems? Making your customer’s life easier? Step back and rediscover your big picture.

Part of becoming reengaged involves working on your life goals and your vision, and tackling areas of social and emotional growth. All aspects of our lives are deeply intertwined: our relationship with our spouse or significant other, our role as parents, our social lives and our careers. Often, feeling disengaged or disconnected in one area can lead us to feel the same way in other areas of our life.

In reality, this disengagement comes from deep within ourselves. It can stem from our childhood and from the things we’ve come to believe about ourselves—things that might not even be true. We call these “limiting beliefs.” They can be things like, “I’m not a confident person,” or “I’m not as smart as everyone thinks. I’m just fooling them,” or even “I’m not worthy of respect and love.”

These limiting beliefs hold us back from reaching what we long for (our yearnings)—the same things that drive us toward achieving our goals and realizing our vision. If you find continuous roadblocks on your journey or you can’t quite pinpoint the ways to break through a rough patch, it’s time to enlist the help of a career coach or life coach who can help you work toward your goals. Doing your own transformational work can help you ignite the motivation and spark you need to get re-engaged and back in the game.

How To Impress Your Boss: Make an Impression and OWN IT

When you walk into a meeting, are you a participant or just an attendee? Better yet, challenge yourself to be the conductor. Rather than sitting back and waiting for someone to call on you or ask your opinion, jump in.

Treat each meeting as though it’s your own. When you find you’re holding back because you want to avoid conflict or stay “under the radar,” try speaking up and expressing yourself. So often we avoid saying things because we don’t want to rock the boat, but if the boat is stuck sometimes it’s got to be rocked to start moving forward.

Ask your boss for a review or ask a mentor to help you set some professional milestones. Sign up for a professional development course to get enthused and excited about what you’re doing. Yes, you might be teaching the same class or seeing patients with the same ailments day after day, or you might be selling the same products to the same clients—but adding something new to your job and pushing yourself to learn will make you feel energized.

It can seem daunting to take on “one more thing” or to push yourself to grow professionally, but when it comes down to it, growth keeps us energized. Growth isn’t always easy and it can take work and time, but it’s the secret to engagement and igniting the fire within ourselves.

How to impress your boss? Polish your impression at work by practicing self-care like eating healthy, exercising, and avoiding soft addictions, like zoning out watching television or scrolling through social media. Make sure you’re dressing for success and projecting confidence by taking time to look your best. There’s much truth to the adage “dress for your next promotion.” Be a little more professional than your peers and show more initiative and you’ll stand out from the pack. No kissing up required.

Consider taking on an extra task or two as well. Offer to mentor a younger colleague who needs professional advice. When the boss needs someone to throw out a big idea in an important meeting, be the one who steps up to the plate. It doesn’t take a huge effort, but these little “yeses” can add up to big results.

Always keep your vision in mind and work toward your goals. Think of your career path as a mountain. Many people reach the first summit, stop to rest and never move on. Push yourself to go to the next peak, and the next, and the next, until you’re tackling the whole mountain range. Life is a journey and you’re at the very beginning!

Learn more about realizing your vision, making an impression at work and moving ahead in your career by visiting www.wrightliving.com. Join us for our next More Life Training, so you can learn how to engage in day-to-day life, ignite the world, and transform your existence into the life you want!


About the Author

Dr. Judith Wright

Dr Judith Wright is a media favorite, sought-after inspirational speaker, respected leader, peerless educator, bestselling author, & world-class coach. She is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.
Loving the content and want more? Follow Judith on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!


Liked this post and want more? Sign up for updates – free!

Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Tips for Staying Focused
When Work Isn’t Exciting

Read this post if you’re:

  • Searching for a more fulfilling career
  • Feeling like the “thrill is gone” when it comes to your job
  • Looking for tips for staying focused at work
  • Aching to reignite your passion for your work

 

We all love the hum of productivity! When you’re closing deals and making sales, do you get a little high? A little thrill?


What about the first time you meet a new prospect? How does it feel to share the details of your business and ask how you can help? That first pitch conversation is just the best, isn’t it?

Even leading meetings and training new team members can be thrilling.

How about sharing your vision, coming up with a new plan, or implementing a strategy to tackle a problem? Maybe you’re hosting an event, running a board meeting, or taking your job to the next level—adrenaline is high and you’re engaged and “buzzing.”

We all love our jobs and feel satisfied during the exciting times—when we’re really working, closing, signing and winning! It might be challenging, yes, but it’s also fun as hell. Those moments are what drive us and propel us.

What about the rest of the time, though?

Why Work is a Bummer

What about the days when you have to enter numbers off your contact sheets into your database, work on your marketing plan for next year, or file tax forms? Some Analyzer personality types might really enjoy viewing the website metrics or planning for the next fiscal year, but the thought of leading a dynamic sales meeting leaves them quaking in their boots.

Energizers, on the other hand, might feel that dealing with data and crunching numbers is absolute torture! How stifling and miserable! Energizers shine when working with others and getting them psyched up for the next idea.

If you’re a Regulator, maybe you love the reassurance in knowing how everything’s working. You probably like having control, but when it comes to minutiae, you find yourself less engaged. Cooperators, too, may enjoy seeing how the team can share a vision and plan for upcoming events, but being sequestered away in an office to look over spreadsheets just becomes depressing.

Each different personality type brings different strengths to their team. No one can do it all—and it’s different strokes for different folks. The thing that makes your heart leap and gives you a high at work might give someone else anxiety or feel like drudgery.

So how do you keep the thrill alive and love your job, even when you don’t love the task at hand?

Finding Your Happy Place

No matter where you fit on the C.A.R.E. personality profile or what your Myers-Briggs type is, one thing’s for sure: not everyone is great at every aspect of a job. There are Regulators, Analyzers, Cooperators and Energizers and they play off each other and work together in an interdependent way.

Unfortunately, in small offices, you might only have one or two employees—maybe you even work solo. Unless you can afford an assistant whose Cooperator-Analyzer skills play perfectly with your Regulator-Energizer profile, chances are, every so often you’re going to end up facing a task you don’t love.

During one of the most productive times in my career, I was swamped with work. I was in the throes of working with several clients, finishing a book with Judith, and expanding our curriculum at Wright Graduate University. Anyone who knows me knows I don’t take well to plodding along at tasks I don’t find stimulating. I’m not the type of guy who loves doing paperwork and analyzing research. I love learning and discovering new things, but I prefer when it’s hands-on and stimulating, not poring through data.

Somehow, during this time when I was faced with paperwork and challenges, I found my most productive moments through learning to balance my work with mindfulness and meditation.

The Power of Meditation

When I was at the height of my productivity, I was spending a third of my time meditating. Twenty minutes of each hour, I’d lock my office door and work on my TM (transcendental meditation). The 40 minutes that followed, I experienced hyper-focused productivity. Because I was operating in a state of mindfulness and focus, I was able to achieve more in 40 minutes of focus than I could normally get done in an hour of distractions.

Now I know this might not be completely realistic for everyone. You might even cringe at the thought of closing your door to meditate for 20 minutes every hour. It’s not something I still do regularly, but it IS something I recommend for times when you’re facing major deadlines. It’s one of my most important tips for staying focused at work.

Turn off all distractions and learn to tune out the things that turn your head during your workday. Instead of going to the watercooler or the bathroom, or getting up to sharpen a pencil or straighten a pile of papers, push yourself to really focus. Let go of soft addictions like Facebook and social media, and keep your mind as focused as possible on the task at hand.

If you feel concentration is still a problem, then get expert coaching or instruction on how to meditate properly. This will help you learn to up-regulate and down-regulate your emotions so you can react to work situations with a high level of control and awareness. Learn to strengthen these skills and you’ll become more socially and emotionally intelligent.

Maybe, on the other hand, you’re the type of person who really loves getting absorbed in data and you don’t mind the spreadsheets—but you hate facing sales calls and meetings. Mindfulness can help you just as well. Instead of being bogged down with anxiety and “what if” scenarios before you get to a meeting, practice staying in the moment and facing the situation as it comes. Be present and in the moment and you’ll find yourself filled with less dread and despair.

Being engaged fully in what you’re doing (rather than stressing out about what’s to come or ruminating on the past) can keep you in the game and hitting home runs at the office, even when the job you’re facing isn’t your favorite.

We all have aspects of our job we love and some that just get under our skin. When in doubt, revisit your larger vision and goals for your career. Each task, no matter how basic, boring or stressful should be moving you toward that bigger picture. It’s learning to balance your reactions with the things you don’t love to do and keeping yourself in a present, mindful state that will help you love your job each and every day.

For more tips for staying focused at work and bringing out your best at work and in your day-to-day life, join us in Chicago for our next  More Life Training. You’ll learn how to find the positive in your life and bring out your strongest, most engaged self.

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About the Author

Bob-300x250-1

Dr. Bob Wright is an internationally recognized visionary, educator, program developer, leadership and sales executive, best-selling author and speaker. He is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

 

 

Dealing with Malicious Gossip
in the Workplace

We’ve all worked with a “door closer.” You know the type: the moment they walk in your office and shut the door, you know they’re about to spill some juicy info about someone else.


Conversely, when you see this spreader of malicious gossip in the workplace walk in someone else’s office and shut the door, you wonder if they’re talking about you.

Some people can’t get enough office gossip. Are you one of them?

Whether you work with a gossiper or if you engage in dishing out the dirt yourself, you have to consider if your words and actions are really moving your team in a positive or negative direction.

Every interaction with a gossiper takes on an adolescent quality because gossip is an adolescent and immature form of communication. With gossipers, oftentimes you’re either “in” or “out,” which is why dealing with malicious gossip in the workplace can feel like you’re back in high school. Gossipers thrive on passive-aggression and fear tactics. People who are engaged and direct confront issues head-on. People who are secure in themselves don’t concern themselves with what’s going on in other people’s lives.

From Expressing Concern to Participating in Office Gossip

There’s a huge difference between gossip and expressing legitimate caring or concern for another person. Highly socially and emotionally intelligent people have empathy and sensitivity to the feelings of others.

Let’s say you’re advising your coworkers about a client going through a rough time or a coworker who might be struggling and could use a hand. These pieces of information aren’t necessarily born of negativity or malice, but rather, of tact and kindness. Talking about other people isn’t always negative. Sometimes sharing sensitive information can even can help someone else steer clear of an embarrassing gaff or misstep.

How to Identify Malicious Gossip in the Workplace

Identifying malicious gossip vs. genuine concern is usually pretty easy. Gossip is divisive and fraught with drama. Gossipers are often trying to cut down others, make excuses for their own shortcomings, or make up for an inferiority complex. The purpose of gossip isn’t to build up and help others, but to tear them down and allow the gossiper to appear like they’re in a superior position.

So how do you know for sure if you’re gossiping or just passing along information?

First of all, look at the intention and whom you’re sharing the “news” with. If you’re going to your boss with a genuine concern about a coworker or if you’re seeking guidance on a problem, then it’s probably not gossip. If you’re sharing something that was told to you in confidence, speaking to someone who’s not directly involved in the situation, or passing something on to make yourself look or feel better (or to make the other person look or feel bad), then it’s gossip. Gossip is no way to get ahead at work.

Examine your intention and if you stand to benefit from smearing someone’s reputation or from making others question their integrity. Have you addressed your concerns with the person directly? Have you put it out on the table and tried to work through your conflicts? Or are you throwing the “deal with it” ball in someone else’s court? Are you telling your boss or coworkers about someone’s behavior in the hopes they’ll intervene and “save” you or think more highly of you? Are you acting on your own insecurities?

When we engage in this damaging pattern of spreading malicious gossip in the workplace, hurting others, or swooping in to fix someone’s hurt feelings, we’re in the Drama Triangle.

Dealing with Soap-Opera-Level Office Drama

When we’re intrigued by someone else’s potential drama, whether it’s information about their relationship or job performance, we’re acting as a spectator. If we’re blowing confidentiality and perpetuating negativity, chances are we don’t have enough action in our own lives or we’re used to operating in the Drama Triangle.

Behavioral theorist Stephen Karpman explains the Drama Triangle as the classic pattern of Good Guy (the Victim), Bad Guy (the Persecutor) and the person who swoops in to save the Victim (the Rescuer). Everyone caught in a Drama Triangle feeds off the Triangle itself. Just as triangles are the strongest structure in geometry, a drama triangle can be hard to break out of.

Often we engage in this pattern because we’re not approaching situations out of legitimate concern, but out of schadenfreude, literally meaning “harm-joy” or happiness at another’s misfortune.

Schadenfreude is why people love to stay in the Drama Triangle. It’s the reason you may end up the playing the Persecutor, constantly gossiping about others. Or alternatively, it may cause you to play off the gossiper’s words, swooping in as the Rescuer to “save” the subject of the story. Whether you’re the Victim, the Villain, or the Hero of the story, there’s a distinct absence of personal responsibility in all three roles.

The Drama Triangle in Action at Work

Think about it. Susan comes into your office to tell you about a relationship issue Stan shared with her in confidence. If you engage with Susan and say, “Oooh, I thought he and his wife were having problems! That explains why his work’s been going downhill,” or “Well, I heard he’s been out late drinking a lot,”—you’re playing into the drama. Even if you want to come in as Rescuer and help Stan or stand up to Susan and defend him, you aren’t acting from a sense of personal responsibility.

If Stan’s problems aren’t directly affecting you or your team at work, then it’s not your responsibility to involve yourself with his life. If his performance has become a concern or if you’re trying to balance different personality types at the office, then going to him directly and addressing the issue head-on would be much more productive than discussing it behind closed doors.

In all relationships, work, romantic or otherwise, each party is responsible for their own emotions and role. By shifting to gossip, you may be trying to blame someone else, make someone feel guilty, or defend your actions or emotions rather than facing them and working through them in a productive, growth-oriented manner. Gossip causes us to tread water and churn in the same pool rather than swimming forward and past the problem.

Gossip isn’t worth it—and it does nothing for our personal and professional growth.

Listen to this episode here on BlogTalkRadio or here on iTunes.
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About the Author

Bob-300x250-1

Dr. Bob Wright is an internationally recognized visionary, educator, program developer, leadership and sales executive, best-selling author and speaker. He is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


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Learn more about Wright Living’s Career & Leadership Coaching in Chicago & Career Coaching Courses in Chicago.

Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.