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Thursday, 30 May 2013 17:00

My Mindset Stinks!

I excitedly retrieved my monthly auto magazine from the mail this afternoon.

For me, the contents usually represent nothing but eye candy, machines I will never have the opportunity to enjoy.

Until today that thought never really bothered me, but it is a sad, sad commentary on where I find myself…

My mindset stinks!  I suspect yours might too…

Here I am, someone others engage to help with their mindset – to lead them through the process of overcoming their self-created obstacles, which I do exceptionally well (he says humbly). I have a file full of amazing client success stories to validate this. Yet, I suddenly became aware that I was buying into a thinking small mindset—something that I help others work on each day. What???

As I looked through that magazine and felt the guilt, remorse, and disappointment of never actualizing some of my dreams, I realized that at present, I was not worthy of my dreams. Something had to change…and I knew it started with my thoughts.

While I know that my core is good, solid, dependable, and full of love and joy, I was not realizing my full self with this kind of thinking. I realized that I was going to have to think much bigger to support my dreams. I knew that I had to focus even harder on working from the inside out.

There was a time in my life where this was not the case…a time where I felt worthy of anything. I saw no barriers…only opportunities. How did I let that slip away?

It’s high time I find that mindset again.  Not only for me, but for those whom I serve as well.  I must be worthy of the faith and trust they have in me to assist them along their journey. I need to lead by example again.

Right now, my mindset is not worthy of my dreams.  I have a discipline level that is not worthy of my dreams.  With this awareness I know how to make the changes I need to.

Do you need to change your mindset? Are you playing small? Is it time to actualize your dreams?

I’ll be working extra hard to make sure the following quote won’t ever apply to me again.  Will you?

“Long before you reach the limits of your skills, you’ll come up against the limits of you!” – Pace Klein.

I now anxiously await next month’s issue knowing that my recalibrated mindset will view each page through a “possibility” lens.

©2013 and beyond Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.
Monday, 06 January 2014 00:00

Coaching in the Workplace Training Program

It is with great pride that we announce our latest coaching program- Coaching in the Workplace™.

Click here to get more details.

Our goal has always been to help spread the amazing benefits of coaching in the workplace. This program takes tools and resources used by thousands of people in 36 countries, and packages them for use in any organization. This course represents many years of work perfecting tools that truly can help transform an organization.

This program is for executives, HR professionals, managers, and coaches. It is designed as a self study course that you can take on your schedule.

If your organization has any issues with turnover, absenteeism, employee engagement, or any other Human Capital related challenges, then this course is for you.

According to Gallop (and other leading survey firms) here are the workplace realities…which coaching, and this program specifically, can help with:

  • 75% of people wished they had a different job.
  • 51% of “A” workers are actively looking for a different job.
  • Worker productivity is only at 33%.
  • Lack of engagement costs U.S. businesses over $385 BILLION a year!
  • 80% of people NEVER use their greatest gifts at work.

Coaching can address all of these issues…in fact; it may well be the ONLY thing that can cure these workplace “ills.”

If you don’t have a coaching strategy in your organization, we can guarantee you one thing—these statistics will not go down…

Coaching is the “cure.” Isn’t it time you used coaching to focus on your most important asset…your people?

Click here to enroll or to get more details.

Thursday, 23 May 2013 10:58

Progress...Not Perfection

Do you spend a great deal of energy trying to make things perfect?

You can’t let go of this project until it’s perfect...

You can’t have this discussion until your comments are perfectly rehearsed...

You can’t move forward until you know how it will all play out... 


How much of your energy is spent thinking, and re-thinking, about the action you want to take?  How much time are you wasting working toward perfection?

Has being perfect become an excuse for you? Perfection can move from a need, to a wonderful excuse for not moving forward, in the blink of an eye.  Lack of perfectionism isn’t about being lazy or doing things half way, it’s about understanding the natural progression some things take.  How are we possibly going to know how a situation will play out unless we make our first move?

If you are spending too much time analyzing and rehashing the situation, you are stuck in your thinking mind.  This loop will create zero momentum.   Step out of your thinking mind and connect to your higher vision...and take inspired action!

Inspired action is based upon trust. Trust in your instincts. Trust in your talent. Trust in the fact that everything will be o.k. Take action based upon knowing these things.

Our thinking mind, the one that loves perfection, can truly limit your grow---and success. Yes, you may fail at some things. Yet you will never have any chance of success unless you take action. Any action equals progress.

And remember, there is really no such thing as being perfect. Be perfectly happy knowing that.

To your continued success!

©2013 and beyond Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.
Many sages observe that it is in relationships that we have the greatest opportunity to learn and grow ... and that the quality of our communications with others is where we turn our awareness into actions that bring us closer to our goals.

You might find value from this excerpt from my book, Living an Extraordinary Life.  It deals with the toxic effects of a major communication breakdown inherent in being a human being...the need to be right: 

Try this. At a dinner party sometime, kick off the conversation with: "I believe that the most important objective for every human being is to be right."  Then sit back and watch the fireworks.  It won't take long for some bright spark to respond with something like, “Nonsense!”  Or “I don't believe that!”  Or “You don't know what you're talking about!”

Or, maybe they’ll agree with you, and join the argument on your side.  Either way, people will prove your original statement to be true by in effect saying, “I’m right, and anybody who disagrees with me is wrong!”

Over a century ago, the philosopher William James noted: “Man has but one interest: to be right. That is to him the art of all arts, and all means are fair which help him to it.”  Put in more modern terms, we can say that human beings have an instinctual need to be right.  It's not just important, it's a matter of life and death, a major part of the most powerful of all our animal instincts, the will to survive.

"Human beings are perhaps never more frightening than when they are convinced beyond doubt that they are right." Laurens Van der Post in Lost World of the Kalahari.

Although it’s not so easy to see in yourself, I’m sure you can see clearly how other people view being wrong as virtually life-threatening.  And, no doubt, in more primitive times, when we were threatened by savage predators (both human and non-human), being wrong, making a mistake, could easily cost us our life.  Yet, as with many other primitive reactions that once helped us survive, our need to be right is now destroying us personally and as a society.

“Don’t talk unless you can improve the silence.” a Vermont USA folk saying.

“I'm right” is what arguments, the law courts, divorce and even wars are all about.  The need to prove ourselves right and those who oppose us wrong destroys people and families and friendships.  It actively holds us back and stops us from getting more done in life.  Once our beliefs about ourselves and our world get established (many experts say by the age of 8 or 10) they become monumentally important to us.  We will do almost anything to preserve and validate what we believe rather than look at things from a different point of view.”

Action Steps for Being Right is a Life-threatening Condition

The action step here is to “give ground.”  Practice really hearing others without the instant retort.  A great technique is to repeat back to them what you heard – it shows a rare level of attention, understanding and caring for the other person.  You’ll instantly become the most popular conversationalist in the room!

An effective response we’ve taught for years is “I understand your point-of-view. Here’s mine...”

Since your conversational partner is just like you and me, she or he will be “right” about what they’ve just said to you.  Just re-naming it as a “point-of-view” changes the energy and stops any potential battle for idea supremacy.

Of course, I’m right about all of this!

Robert White is a Transformational Architect for business executives. Founder and CEO of Lifespring, ARC International and Extraordinary People, He’s an experienced entrepreneur, professional speaker, and leadership team trainer. 

©2013 and beyond Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.
Wednesday, 08 May 2013 19:15

Live Your Life From Your Eulogy Backwards

There’s an old saying- “An old man can see backward better than a young man can see forward.”

What can we learn from the old man? How does writing your own eulogy sound? Come on, stay with me on this…

How would your eulogy sound if you died today? “He had such promise.” “She wanted to be a senator, but...” “He dreamed of ___, too bad he died before he could do it.”

How would your perfect eulogy sound? What would your legacy be? How many lives would you want to have positively affected? Did you achieve the dreams you had when you were young? Did you fulfill your life’s purpose?

Stonewall Jackson said on his deathbed- “Let me cross the river and rest under the tree.” What would you most regret not doing before you “rested under the tree?” 

I submit that nothing, absolutely nothing, is stopping you from leading the life of your dreams but yourself!

We should all leave with no regrets. Wouldn’t it be better to try and (so called) fail then to regret not trying? How would it feel to leave a truly positive mark on the world before you go? Well, you can!

Here’s an exercise for you. Make a list right now of 10 things that you really want to do before you die. Yep, your bucket list…but with a higher purpose than things like “visit Toledo.” The list could include things as simple as “inspire one person” or as noble as “start a nonprofit foundation.” The key is to commit to something!

Now write your eulogy based upon this list. Think about how people would remember you. Yeah, this can get pretty raw and that’s the point. You need to face your current reality in order to change your course. Remember, it is never too late to work on fulfilling your dreams. Start today!

I’ve been using this eulogy exercise for many years to keep my goals fresh and to stay focused on my big picture - my life’s work. It forces me to slow down and take inventory of the trajectory of my life. I don’t want to wait to take inventory when I’m on my death bed. Do you?

One thing on my “list” is my mission to serve people through coaching. If I can inspire just one person to be a better leader and person I will have achieved my goal. Hopefully this article will help. My eulogy is counting on it!

May your real eulogy be a long time coming!

©2013 and beyond Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.
Wednesday, 01 May 2013 11:13

Demigod Leaders

My daughter and I share a love of Greek and Roman mythology. We are currently reading “The Mark of Athena,” the third installment of Rick Riordan’s “The Heroes of Olympus.”  It is such great material and rich with modern interpretations of the stories.

Percy Jackson, a demigod (son of Poseidon and a mortal) and one of the main heroes in the book series, is confronted with a particularly challenging quest.  Following a confrontation with another demigod in which Percy very well could have been killed, he begins to question his power…and himself. Eerily like many leaders in top organizations I work with on a daily basis. 

“Percy didn’t feel powerful.  The more heroic stuff he did, the more he realized how limited he was.  He felt like a fraud. ‘I’m not as great as you think,’ he wanted to warn his friends. Maybe that’s why he had started to fear suffocation.  It wasn’t so much drowning in the earth or the sea, but the feeling that he was sinking into too many expectations, literally getting in over his head.”

When I read Percy’s rumination I flashed back to a conversation I had with a CEO of an organization last year. Much of the business’s growth had been meteoric and his “reputation” had grown with similar speed -- to almost cult like proportions.

His ego reveled in being held in such high regard, but through our discussions he acknowledged he was quaking inside, “Just waiting for them to see who I really am and for it all to fall apart!”

As his external world seemed to improve his internal world deteriorated. This leader found himself closing down and trying to control more and more.  He was less open to comments from his executive team, often making unilateral decisions without consulting them.  He discounted information that he did not agree with. He was cutting himself off -- suffocating himself!

He began to lose touch with the values that anchored his initial success, replacing them with others’ expectations. His compass no longer pointed to his “true north,” and he began to lose his way.

We see it constantly in the news -- General Patraeus, Eliot Spitzer, and the Secret Service detail in Columbia, to name just a few leaders (or those considered leaders in their field). They drowned in others’ expectations or projections of greatness, leading to poor judgment and a belief to some extent of being “above the law.”

When a CEO (or any leader) loses their way, it has a ripple effect throughout the organization, their family, and their entire community! The collateral damage is immense.

Who else do you know who responds to feelings of vulnerability and inadequacy with greater levels of denial, self-importance, and constriction?  We all know someone who fits that profile...they might even be staring at us in the mirror in the morning.

The remedy is a loving, tough, trusting, outside advisor. A person who calls it like they see it and says the things that a person often doesn’t want to hear. Luckily, Percy Jackson had his demigod friends as trusted advisors to help him find his way.

Who do you have?

Commit to getting your own advisor (it could be an executive coach, a mentor, or a trusted friend), or you may run the risk of becoming a self destructive high performer. Leadership is a challenging path that all of us need help navigating. Make sure that you have a support system that will keep you from a path like Percy’s.

Oh, and that CEO I had the discussion with…he’s still looking for work.

©2013 and beyond Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.
Our Founder and CEO, Drayton Boylston, is once again honored to be presenting at WBECS this year with the likes of John Maxwell, Marshall Goldsmith, and many other esteemed colleagues. Please join us for 30 complimentary pre summit sessions. All sessions are "no pitch," which we love. Pure content. Pure growth.

Here's the link to enroll for the FREE sessions: 

Photo: Looking forward to presenting with Dr. Marshall Goldsmith and John Maxwell at this year’s WBECS.

One of the primary goals of The Executive Coaching University is to promote the best practices in our profession. Additionally, we want to raise the awareness and standards of coaching worldwide. 

With that desire, we have partnered with the well respected World Business and Executive Coaching Summit to bring the leaders in the coaching industry together to provide a no charge, no pitch, educational experience.

WBECS offers an outstanding professional growth opportunity. It brings together the thought leaders of the coaching world to share their knowledge and experience with practicing, and aspiring, coaches.

You can get your complimentary pass here:

The presenters are diverse and first rate. They include:

John C. Maxwell: One of the top coaches on the concept of leadership.

Dr. Marshall Goldsmith: One of the top thought leaders in the field of management. 

Frances Hesselbein: Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipient and President of the Drucker Foundation.

Last year, hundreds of professional coaches gave testimonials as to the value of the conference.  That is why we not only endorse this conference but will also be providing a discount for you to attend the full summit. We will send you details about this next month. For now, be sure to register for the complimentary pre-summit series here:

You’ll be able to attend all 30 sessions live or listen to the recordings at your convenience.

Once again, here is the link to join the complimentary sessions:


Thursday, 25 April 2013 11:36

Where Has Your Happiness Gone?

My inbox sat at 1,405 emails, my calendar was over flowing, and my task list was miles long. I was in a state of overwhelm. Certainly not in a state of happiness...

Sound familiar?  I bet it does…

If I only had the time to catch up. If only I had the time to be happy…

With most of us over scheduling and multitasking, how can anything really get our attention, much less, our focus? Especially our focus on what is truly important. “Busyness” has taken over. At what cost? Where has our happiness gone?

I spent time with a client the other day who, from an outside perspective, you would think has it “all.”  Beautiful home with a panoramic view of the ocean, fancy car, high status, lots of money. With one question I stopped him in his tracks; “Are you happy?” It was like I hit him with a two-by-four. The conversation went dead silent.  After a long pause he answered “No.”

I harken back to when I was “slapped in the face” by life. Within one day my life as I knew it was forever changed. I never saw it coming.  My ambition as an athlete, my thriving career, my beautiful home, didn’t mean a thing.  I had lost my health and immediately nothing else mattered.  All that mattered was that I made it through the day. All that mattered was finding a glimpse of happiness through the pain.

Life changes on a dime, so my question to you is “Are you ready?” and more importantly, “Are you happy?”  Isn’t that what we are trying to achieve will all of our efforts? Have we lost sight of that? I know I did and didn’t even realize it.

Right now take inventory of your level of happiness. On a scale of 1-10 what is it? If you are like most it needs some work. I challenge you to ask yourself, “What one step can I take today to create a little more happiness in my life?”

Trust me, it’s worth it. You’re worth it. If you don’t take care of yourself and focus on finding your happiness you may well get a big wakeup call like I did. 

Give yourself the gift of happiness once again. It’s a choice. Slow down and make it.

©2013 and beyond Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.

Friday, 19 April 2013 14:18

Are You Feeling Lost?

You kept reading after seeing that title for a reason. What is it?

Do you feel lost? Do you lack purpose? If so, you are not alone…

How many people do you know that jump out of bed each morning - completely excited about starting their day…focused on fulfilling their mission in life?

Not many, eh? Hmmm…how about yourself?

What is your mission in life?

Yes, it's a heavy question, but one worth asking yourself. Have you spent time thinking about what gifts you possess and how to utilize those gifts to the best of your ability? Or, are you just going through the motions each day? Could you possibly be one of the people who say- “I just want to make it through the day?”

Really?! Is that why we are put on this planet…to make it through the day?

Heck no!

As I work with organizations to formulate their long term strategic plans I am struck by what a great job we do in the corporate world regarding defining an organization’s mission, yet how little we do about this as individuals. In reality, what could be more important for us to figure out?

Think of what it would mean for you to know each day what you stand for and what your mission in life is. Take the time to explore what is important to you and use that knowledge to create the perfect path for yourself.

Here's the challenge - commit one hour this week to work on your mission. Just one hour. If you think this is too much to ask then you may well continue to be one of the lost…

Think about what you love to do. Think about the last time you were in “the zone.” What were you doing? When you start to focus on what brings you the most joy you will soon discover why you are here. It’s kind of funny how that aligns. 

Where there is passion, there is purpose!

Be patient with yourself. A person rarely discovers their mission in a lightning bolt fashion. It takes time and multiple iterations. It is not a linear process. Give yourself the space to let your mission reveal itself. Remember, it’s always been with you…you just haven’t let it emerge yet.

Post your thoughts below…share what you discovered. Who knows, you may provide great motivation for others to follow your lead. You could go from feeling lost to helping others discover their purpose. Who knows…that could be your mission! 

As you take ownership of your life you will discover that feeling lost is a choice, not your destiny.

©2013 and beyond Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 17:06

How Coaching Can Save Your Career

I had a wonderful conversation with one of my new clients (currently at the mid-manager level) the other day about what he needed to do to take that next step, evolve from mid-management to the upper echelons of his corporation.

He was very frustrated, feeling- “I have done everything they have asked of me!  I know the product inside and out...but they keep passing me by!”

While this individual had mastered the technical aspects of his job, and of those he managed, he was consistently passed over for promotion consideration.  Know anyone like that?

Here’s the rub – my client is excellent at being a technocrat, but his interpersonal and leadership skills require much attention – thus the reason he was referred to me!

My client needs to incorporate the following skills to take that next step. Maybe you do too…

  • · Active interest in what others have to say.
  • · Active listening (and looking – reading body language) for understanding.
  • · “Hovering Attention” – being able to pay attention to what is being said while also tracking the process of what isn’t being said.
  • · Creating solutions cooperatively.
  • · Increased comfort with the “crucial conversations” – understanding the transformational power of these interactions.
  • · Using the “velvet whip” when needed to accelerate and reinforce accountability.
  • · See oneself (and revel in it!) as one who facilitates the human growth of all those around you – not as a taskmaster.

Take a look at the most influential mentors and leaders you have had in your life and/or career.  I would wager they demonstrated each of the above and more.

These are all skills world class coaches possess and utilize to help others achieve their highest levels of self – production, expression, satisfaction, etc.

These are also the skills all world class leaders possess and utilize to inspire others and bring their vision to the world.

Ask yourself “Do I possess these skills?  Do those around me see me as a world class leader?”

If not, what are you waiting for – to lose out on another promotion like my client? 

No more excuses – get trained in coaching skills…now! See your career opportunities explode!

Find out how to gain Coaching skills here.

© 2013 and beyond. Executive Coaching University. All rights reserved.

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