Self-Improvement and Education

9 Leadership Books To Help You Become A Great Leader

“Look at this apartment…do you see it? It’s a mess it hasn’t been cleaned in weeks.” She continues, “You’ve all failed, you haven’t done anything. I asked you to clean this up, it’s filthy. How can we expect to fill this room with a new resident when it looks like this? The walls need paint, the carpet is stained, the windows…” she continued on for awhile.

I stood there thinking, wow, I’ve never been treated like this in my life, let alone by a supervisor. My thoughts were interrupted with, “Kyle, didn’t you know about this?” Looking at her I thought, I just don’t care, I don’t want to be treated this way. She doesn’t even have a clue how much effort the team put in to fix 100s of other issues. I didn’t say any of that I looked at her and said, “yes.” This type of conversation and treatment went on the whole day. We are all failures and she’s “pissed.”
Never Again
This experience was at a senior living facility that I briefly (thank goodness) worked at. Durning a “walk-thru,” it was all urgency and emergency. The writing was on the wall after I experienced 3 of these visits. Working for someone that communicates like this, speaks in this way, and has no understanding of the actual progress within the facility was no longer an option. Within the week I gave notice.

I never want to experience a boss like this again and I don’t want others to either. This list of leadership books comes from a heart to change the way some people see how to lead and supervise. Some items on this list may surprise you, but every one of them is powerful and effective. I’ve […]

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    2 Steps To Turn Self-Doubt Into A Powerful Tool For Accomplishment

2 Steps To Turn Self-Doubt Into A Powerful Tool For Accomplishment

There are two sentences in the English language that are incredibly damaging. When someone tells us you can’t… or when we tell ourselves I can’t…. Think of the last time you told yourself, I can’t or I’m not capable. My guess is after you said you couldn’t, you were right.
When I say I can’t I begin a self-fulfilling prophecy that generally ends in a lack of action. But what if you could change your I can’t into I will?

Changing I Can’t to I Will
A great example of the power of changing I can’t to I will, can be found in remembering people’s names. When we begin to think that we can’t do something we are slowly preventing any hope of success in that area of our lives.
For years I claimed to have a bad memory and ultimately, this resulted in minimal effort into learning or remembering new things. To the point where it became an excuse to not learn new things or to apply myself to memorize things. I didn’t exercise that “muscle” and of course, it withered.
The classic example of this is when you meet someone new and you tell yourself or you hear them say, “I’m terrible at remembering names.” Sound familiar? I used to say this, but when I was reading the book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People” there is a chapter that talks about how important a person’s name is to them. In one part it says, “A person’s name is the sweetest sound to them in any language.” Because of this, I stopped telling myself I was bad at remembering names. The results? I’m much better at names and have learned new skills to remember names and other things too.
When it comes to self-doubt, It’s not just about […]

Get Your Motivation Mojo Back With LifeMap

What do you do when you are feeling a bit demotivated in life? There could be a hundred reasons your motivation is down but whatever it is, your struggling to pick yourself up again.
It’s at times like these I know the best thing for me to do is to begin working on my LifeMap again. I’ve always found the LifeMap process to be motivating and encouraging.
At first, it’s a struggle because I’m not super motivated to get started. But once I begin working through the workbook questions and dreaming about my future, it perks me up. The LifeMap process is great like that. It’s simple and powerful. Once you begin, you are immediately put into a great headspace about your future. Thinking back to the last time I did a LifeMap, really brings the power of the tool to light.

My Most Recent LifeMap Results = Motivation
It’s been about 9 months since I last completed my LifeMap. Since then I’ve crossed off several goals. This list was a bit of a surprise to me. Don’t take this as me showing off, realize it is the power and simplicity of the tool that helped me accomplish these things.
LifeMap Goals

Lead classes on LifeMap
Create a new website
Get DISC certified 
Earn a raise
Dial in our budget 
Get up early every day
Start a life coaching certification

Of course, there are several other goals I have in play right now. And there are some goals that I didn’t complete. But I am proud of this list and look forward to what I can accomplish in my next LifeMap Cycle.

This is the amazing power of LifeMap and I look forward to what this next cycle will look like. This gives […]

Do You Want A Better Financial Future?

“Personal finance is about 80 percent behavior. It is only about 20 percent head knowledge.”  – Dave Ramsey

Several years ago a friend and I decided to make a large investment in a condo on the central coast of California. If you’ve read this story in the book, you know things didn’t work out too well with this condo. After 7 years of paying on the condo, we sold it for a whopping $1000 more than we purchased it for.

We lost all of our initial investment in the house. We had, unfortunately, purchased just before the housing market bubble burst. The frustrating thing about all of this was more than just losing the money. It was how we lost it.

We were being financially responsible by putting down 20% and buying a home that was completely reasonable to live in. With the hopes to have an investment property and begin building a financial future with this condo. We planned to rent the condo and then go on and buy our own homes. Obviously, this did not work out for us as planned.

We lost out on the investment and our plan failed because so many other people had failed to plan properly and wisely. They had purchased a home they couldn’t afford put 5% or less down and defaulted on their payments. Ultimately, leading to the housing crash. While many of them took only a credit hit, we lost 1000s of dollars!

Not fair, I would say. But fair isn’t how building your financial future works. It’s hard work, saving, investing, and giving. As the Dave Ramsey quote says it’s 80% behavior.
The Choices You Make Now Matter More Than Your Past Financial Mistakes
So in this […]

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    8 Behaviors That Will Dramatically Change How You Communicate

8 Behaviors That Will Dramatically Change How You Communicate

Next time you have a conversation with a friend try communicating using these 8 behaviors as your tool. When you find yourself having a hard time connecting with someone, lean into these 8 behaviors. The insights that this approach to communication brings is nothing short of amazing. But before we look at these powerful words, let’s do a brief review of what we know about Disc.

In the previous articles on Disc, we discover there are four different “styles” people use to communicate. Each of us displays all four styles in varying degrees of intensity. As a recap, the four styles are Dominance, Influence, Steady, and Conscientious. Each of these styles brings specific behavioral attributes to the table. For the details on each style, you can refer back to last week’s article.

Today, I want to give you a gift. The gift of changing the way you have your day to day conversations. The gift of better communication.
Real Connection and Communication Starts With Observation
James Thurber, an American cartoonist, author, humorist, journalist, and playwright has a powerful quote about communication. James Thurber died in 1961, yet this quote may be even more fitting today. He says, “precision of communication is important, more important than ever, in our era of hair-trigger balances, when a false or misunderstood word may create as much disaster as a sudden thoughtless act.”

So if we agree with Mr. Thurber, it would do us well to take care when we communicate. And if real connection and communication begin with observation, where do we start? We start be looking for these 8 behaviors so we can adapt and mirror the person. Serving as the catalyst for greater connection and communication.

As you look at each of the next four sections, begin […]

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    Discover Your Disc Style and Discover New Ways To Communicate

Discover Your Disc Style and Discover New Ways To Communicate

Have you ever wondered why your sibling or spouse is so assertive? Why does your coworker seem to focus on the facts and analyze everything so much? And still another coworker takes way too much risk? In this short article on Disc styles, we’ll discover what people’s behaviors reflect and you’ll get some great insights on how to connect with each style.

Every person is unique in the way they communicate and connect with others. This “style” of behavior can be discovered through a Disc Assessment and is based on over 40 years of research. In fact, the accuracy of these assessments is close to a .90 alpha value or excellent reliability. Despite our uniquenesses, with a Disc Assessment, we can categorize people into 4 specific Disc styles. Making understanding these 4 styles such a valuable tool for communication.

When we understand the basics of these Disc styles and observe them in other people, we can then begin to adjust how we communicate. This gives each of us a clearer understanding of ourselves and others. Providing opportunities to better connect and communicate. Let’s start with a simple summary of each Disc style.
The D-Style or Dominance Style is assertive, competitive, and results-oriented. They are direct in their communication and desire to accomplish things quickly. D-Styles stay more focused on goals than people, they love to solve problems. Because of this, the D-Style is much more likely to have a task orientation in their work and to present themselves to others in a guarded way, limited sharing of personal life.

The intensity of your D-Style behavior will determine how you solve problems. The more intense your Dominance behavior the more aggressive you are in your approach to problem-solving. The less intense, the more […]

3 Keys To Changing How You Communicate

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” 
– George Bernard Shaw
Recently I went to lunch with some friends and we were talking about what we watch on YouTube. After discussing SNL and The Voice, I mentioned I like to watch videos on UFOs. After the laughter died down a bit I said, “no really I do, I’m not a tinfoil hat wearer yet. But it’s all interesting.”

Everyone has their own interests, quirks, and struggles. This makes people fun to be around and challenging to communicate with. Especially if they are the tinfoil hat wearer type.

Your communication challenge may not be talking to the UFOlogist, but it could be your weird neighbor. Or it could come in the form of a challenging boss or possibly your spouse. If you can’t think of anyone, maybe you’re the one that is difficult to communicate with. No matter who you find it difficult to communicate with, discovering your Disc Style and that of others will change the way you communicate.
Use A Disc Assessment To Change How You Communicate
After giving Disc Debriefs to staff at my workplace, I’ve heard some great feedback. These comments highlight how effective using Disc can be.

“So that’s why he’s always optimistic.”

“No wonder she cares about the details so much.”

“People always come to me for advice, now I know why!”

“Okay, I get it, I have to be more direct with him.”

I love these aha moments during Disc Assessment debriefs. After completing over 100 debriefs, I can say from personal experience, the tool is extremely accurate. But so what? How can it help you? There are three key ways a Disc Assessment will change the way you communicate.
Key 1: Start By Learning About Yourself
Changing and improving […]

6 Bible Verses to Help You Shape Your Financial Future

For some, turning to the Bible for their financial future may be a strange place to turn. Yet, Jesus spoke about money more than love or faith. In fact, says, “Sixteen of the thirty-eight parables were concerned with how to handle money and possessions. In the Gospels, an amazing one out of ten verses (288 in all) deals directly with the subject of money. The Bible offers 500 verses on prayer, less than 500 verses on faith, but more than 2,000 verses on money and possessions.”

Let’s take a look at six verses in the Bible to help us with our finances.
Where is Your Focus?
Matthew 6:21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

This verse is one of those that can cut you straight to the heart. Wherever we focus our hearts and our energies there lies our treasure. A financial future with the wrong focus could ruin your life. Do you find your heart longing for possessions and money or maybe it’s fame and prestige? God desires that we focus our heart, mind, soul, and strength on Him. God wants our treasure to be Himself, then all else to follow.

For God to be your treasure, place your focus on the God who created you and gave you the talents to earn your money and possessions. Serve Him first.
Serve God, Not Money
Matthew 6:24 No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.

This is one of the more known Bible verses on money. The message is obvious and simple. Yet, it is so easy to struggle in this. […]

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    Do You Have An Advisory Board? – If You Don’t, You Need One

Do You Have An Advisory Board? – If You Don’t, You Need One

When I wrote the LifeMap book, I consulted with my advisory board frequently. They gave me expert advice, honest feedback, and great encouragement and support. The thing is, I don’t have a large business or some room to sit in with these people. We never all met at the same time. In fact, they don’t even live in the same states. But they were extremely helpful through the process.

Without their advice, feedback, and criticism I would not have finished the book. And this book is one of the biggest accomplishments of my life.

When I began writing the LifeMap book I consulted with several trusted people. Each of them cast their vote (opinion) on what I should do with the book, how to write it, how to produce it, etc. But if you asked any of these board members they wouldn’t have a clue what I’m talking about. Here’s why. They didn’t even know they were on my board.

Here’s the deal, you need a personal board of advisors too.
Why You Need An Advisory Board
You can’t accomplish a thing without other people. You especially can’t accomplish anything great without other people. If you have any desire, big or small, to accomplish things in your life, to venture into the unknown, you need a board.

As mentioned above, without this team I wouldn’t have completed the book and it would be nowhere near the quality that it is. Since you need a great team or board for your next project, why not pick an ideal one?
Who Should Be On Your Board
The ideal board members are experts in their field, will be honest with you, and will support you along the way. The great thing about this board is they don’t […]