Stopping Negative Narratives

A coach who motivates through fear or fear of loss will not last long.

Most of us eventually become our own life coach but we often turn to negative narratives to keep going.

If I don’t (you name it), I’ll get fired.

If I can’t make her happy, she will not like me. 

If I don’t give my children everything, I am a bad parent.

Even the mere thought of failure, allows it to come in.

Staying positive is not a pep-talk.  It’s respect for ourselves.

The Fear of Being Fired

Anxiety is worrying about worry.

As an air talent, I worked for a newly-hired radio program director in Philadelphia who would fire a personality every Friday until he removed every performer he didn’t like – approximately six.

The firing schedule was by design – never more than one person a week.  Always Friday.

So, you can imagine how paranoid we all became.

One day as I reached for the front door of the station, I asked one of my fellow air talents exiting “who got fired today?”  Me, he answered.  It was that surreal.

To survive in such a toxic workplace, we needed to focus on doing our best rather than trying not to get fired.

The station failed.  Our competition adopted a more person friendly approach and they won the ratings war.

It took this toxic workplace to teach a tough lesson:  stop worrying about worry because it wouldn’t save our jobs and made us even more anxious.

The Other Side of Silence

Few of us really reveal what we mean.

You can’t make a person talk.

But you can become skilled at listening for the other side of silence.

What they are not saying that speaks volumes.

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To Handle a Major Disagreement

Put aside what you think and know, consider it from the other person’s point of view.

You know what you want, what do they want?

Is there anything you can give them to settle things?

A media broker told me that he orchestrated a multimillion deal only to see the both parties blow it up over a mere several thousand dollars.

Shouting, threatening, suing would not put the deal back together again but the shrewd broker met with both parties separately and emphasized that it wasn’t the few thousand dollars that threatened completion of the deal.

What was it?

He knew and got both parties to admit they hated the other person at which point the broker just said, take the money and never talk to them again.

The deal closed.

To handle a major disagreement put aside what you know and see things from the other person’s point of view.

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It’s Not More Time Busy People Need, It’s More of This

If busy people could somehow be granted more time to accomplish all their priorities, they would most likely go out and find more things to do and more projects to take on.

More time is the great deception for – “I don’t know how to prioritize”.

No one can do everything.  Achievers know that and they do less of what is not important.

They prioritize.

What one thing today is so important it deserves the most time and first priority?

What is the most obvious thing (or things) I can get away with not doing? 

Repeat after me “I’m sorry, I cannot take that on right now” – achievers win more respect for being honest even from their bosses who may not be aware of your time crunch.

Set a deadline that includes exceeding expectations for completing your responsibilities.

There is no law that says every deadline must be when time runs out and have stressed yourself out even further.

It’s not more time that busy people need, it is the willingness to say no, say later, say this doesn’t need to be done and to build in a buffer to reduce stress.

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Hostage Negotiators’ Advice on Communicating Martial Conflicts

From the Alan Alda podcast Clear+Vivid sharing an FBI hostage negotiator’s professional technique that can also be helpful in getting through marital disagreements …

“He said interesting things like he never argues…he uses empathy to let them know that he understands what their complaint is. He doesn’t agree with him but he doesn’t argue with them. He just lets them know he’s heard them.”

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A Lesson from Radio About Teamwork

I worked for a Philadelphia radio station that was number one in the market.  Its personalities were sought after because they were among the best.

Soon a competitor with an inferior broadcast signal but a lot of money started stealing the station’s top personalities away to join their attempt to knock the station down in the ratings and elevate themselves.

Many months and lots of money later, these same superstars on the number one station were also-rans on the ambitious competitor.

The lesson appeared to be that it takes a team to be number one – promotion, the right content, a comparable signal so that these assets could be heard and of course the personalities.

Radio without the personalities didn’t work.

And personalities without the right radio station didn’t work.

It not only takes a team to succeed in broadcasting but in life.

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Depressed? These 7 Lines Can Lift You Up

Do something for someone else.

Anything.

Reconnect.

Be a good listener for them.

Build their confidence.

Spend time with them (especially face-to-face).

Often the remedy for feeling down is to help lift someone else up.

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Forget Everything You Know About Being Liked — Here’s a Popularity Makeover

Hardly anyone can resist a person like this …

  1. The one who is first to give out praise without seeking it for themselves.
  2. The one who listens without judging.
  3. The person who asks questions instead of talking about their own lives.
  4. The one that expunges all jealousy from their soul and wishes others success even if they can’t share in it.
  5. The one who can say “I’m sorry” many times a day and be proud of it.
  6. And the one who bans the word “me” and replaces it with “you”.

Start with the first until it’s mastered and then go through the list one at a time for a popularity makeover.

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The Biggest Regret — Is It Yours?

You may think it was working too much but it is actually not loving enough.

This from a recent survey of 90-year old’s looking back on their lives.

Too much work, not enough time, more attention to the family are all issues that have come up in similar surveys but now the biggest regret of those who have lived a full life is not loving enough.

Imagine if these seniors had their epiphany 30 or 40 years sooner.

So, it’s not too late for us this morning.

Who do you love the most and what can you do to show them?

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