“My life is my message.“
Mahatma Gandhi Mahatma : Life of Gandhi 1869-1948 (1968) Reel 13 Response to a journalist’s question about what his message to the world was.
Sigh … I am already tired just thinking about trying to compare my life to that of Gandhi. He’s ahead in the running, if you did not already know.
I recently made a fairly obvious pain of myself in a meeting. The reasons included some valid stress from the illness of a loved one and some rather immature jealousy of another person.
Whatever the reasons, my behavior was poor. I was testy and somewhat confrontational, with a touch of “miffed” thrown in.
Whatever my reasons, what others saw was how I acted and how I interacted.
In the world of psychology, the term “incongruence” seems to fit this best. My behaviors did not fit the image I have of myself.
I sense a clear and simple message here from Gandhi:
1) What you do matters
Your actions are important, since they are the outward manifestation of what you believe important and worth your energy and time.
2) Others are aware of what you do
Other may not know what you think or how you feel, but they can see what you do. Your choices and decisions which result in action are there for others to see and judge.
3) You will be remembered for what you do
Images make strong impressions. What actions are you taking every day that will stick in people’s memories?
So the real question is this:
What message are your actions sending to others?
Trying to act in a more admirable fashion in the Heartland ….
Posted in Behavior, Communication, Congruency, Decision Making, Leadership, Learning, Reflection, Relationships
Tagged Communication, Congruency, Decision Making, Gandhi, Professional Development, Reflection, Workplace Behavior
“You’ll worry a lot less about what people think of you when you realize how little time anyone spends thinking of you. They’re too busy with their own stuff.”
This was today’s Great Work Provocation. These little gems appear regularly in my inbox and are never deleted without reading. I will always make time to open any message from Box of Crayons, because I can trust that value resides within.
I have never been disappointed or proven wrong in this belief. Great Work Provocations are keepers.
The source of this ongoing stream of wisdom is Michael Bungay Stanier, whose latest book is Do More Great Work. When you visit his site, and you will want to do so, you’ll see much, much more good stuff being done with Michael providing the primary drive.
I have followed Michael’s work for years and can safely say that he is one of the most clear-headed, energetic, and thoughtful change agents and leadership guys out there.
… but don’t take my word for it. I have obviously drank the Koolaid, as one unfortunate cliché goes.
Spend a few minutes on Box of Crayons - I can promise that the time will be well spent, especially if you like creative, positive, and useful workplace learning and behavior advice, offered with just a dash of humor and whimsy:)
Loving this trusted source in the Heartland ….
Posted in Behavior, Change, Coaching, Effectiveness, Emotion, Informal Learning, Learning, Reflection, Sharing
Tagged Box of Crayons, Do More Great Work: Stop the Busywork. Start the Work That Matters., Effectiveness, Emotion, Informal Learning, Michael Bungay Stanier, Professional Development, Reflection, Sharing, Workplace Behavior
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Thomas A. Edison
Great-Quotes.com note: Commonly attributed to Edison and certainly in-line with his tone and things he often spoke about.
First , Edison’s statement is one of great optimism
Many people view failure as … well, as failure. Failure is a negative state, a loss, a set-back, a “fail” in the current culture.
Our society tends to idolize winners and ignore or even castigate losers. For proof, see most advertising.
Optimism, especially in the face of failure, might be seen as either a total disregard for reality or a sign of inner strength. It can be either, depending on the person.
Second, Edison is a phenomenal failure
Based on Malcolm Gladwell‘s idea in Outliers that we need to do something for 10, 000 hours to become a “phenom” or expert at it, Edison is apparently a phenom on failing:)
Just because you do something a whole bunch does not always make you what you do.
You are more than what you do. You are more than what others see. Only you knows the completeness of you.
Third, the value of failing is only as high as what you do with your failure.
Edison used what he learned from all those failures to continue to learn and to seek new ways that worked better than before.
Maybe Edward Deming got his concepts from examples like Edison, who appears to personify continuous improvement.
As leaders, managers, or just someone trying to make a difference, we should develop the ability to persist. Take the mistakes and the setback as learning experiences, and not personal disasters.
If you can create a culture where failure is not just tolerated, but viewed as a learning strategy, you will do well.
Learning tons of stuff from all the failures I’ve had in the Heartland ….
Posted in Career Management, Coaching, Competencies, Continuous Improvement, Effectiveness, Leadership, Learning, Reflection
Tagged Career Management, Competencies, Continuous Improvement, Effectiveness, Failure, Malcolm Gladwell, Organization Development, Outliers, Performance Improvement, Professional Development, Reflection, Thomas Edison