‘Tis the Season – Practicing Gratitude

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Happy December!!

It is amazing how easy it is to get caught up in the “moment” of the celebrations and miss the heart or intention behind days off or celebrating!

This weekend, as you’ve got a little time, we’d encourage you to sit down and write out 50 things you are thankful or grateful for from this year.

It can be so easy for us to get caught up in the busyness of life, or to get in the mindset of complaining, rather than seeing all the things that we do have.

In thinking about writing 50 things you are thankful or grateful for, it is easy to think … “that’s too many” or “I don’t know what I’d write.” But we’d encourage you to try it.

As we did, we found that after the first 25 or so items, it caused us to think a little more intentionally about the things that we tend to take for granted … like the coffee-maker we use each morning or the abundance of shoes we have in our closet.

So, we’d encourage you to try it and let us know your experience!

Cheers to stepping beyond what is “normal” for us each day!

‘Tis the season for practicing gratitude!

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‘Tis the Season – Reflecting on What You Learned

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Welcome to December, friends!

How exciting that we have made it to the last month of 2017! What a ride it has been.

We’re not sure if you’ve ever dabbled in project or program management, and either way we’ve got a best practice from some of Coaching Right Now’s PM’ing team this week!

At the end of each project or program we love to capture our “lessons learned”. What are those things that either worked amazingly well that we’d LOVE to make sure we do again? Or, what are those things that did not work so well that we hope to never experience again?!

So for all of us, as we are closing up 2017 and moving into 2018, what if we were to take some time to think about our personal lessons learned?

Need some questions to get you started? Try these!

  • What are three things you are most proud of this year?
    • What made you proud of those things?
  • What is one thing that if you could do differently you would?
    • What is it about it that you’d want to change?
  • What are two things that surprised you about yourself, and would you want to do those things again?
  • What are two things that gave you a lot of energy this year?
  • What are two things that took away a lot of your energy this year?
  • What is something I wish I could have spent more time on this year?

Hopefully these will give you a starting place!

“The future depends on what we do in the present.” – Mahatma Gandhi

‘Tis the season for reflecting on what you learned!

‘Tis the Season – Encouraging Your Team

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WOW – We have made it half way through November!

Where did this year go?

If we had to guess, you may be feeling some of the pressure of the last “to-do’s” before you feel like you totally lose your team’s focus before Thanksgiving – and then in all the busyness of the weeks after!

We’ve found, over and over, that when people feel appreciated, they tend to stay more engaged.

Think about it. When was the last time someone called you out in a meeting, or sent you an email that said … “Thank you for when you did ‘this’. The insight that you brought was just what I needed to hear.”?

As you remember that, you probably felt seen or valued – or more likely, you wanted to bring your “a-game” again!

So, as you are jumping into next week and wanting to keep engagement and morale high, think about each of your team members …

What are a 1 or 2 things that you’ve seen each of them do in the last week that was more than what you were hoping for or expecting?

Write those things down, and we’d encourage you to send them an email (maybe even copying everyone else who was working on that project); or tell them about it in your next one-on-one.

Let us know how it goes!

‘Tis the season to encourage your team!

Refocusing for 2017

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You’ve been going and going, and doing and doing, for about the past month.

Work feels like it has been getting more and more busy – and you could have sworn it would have been slowing down by now!

And… it’s already November (yikes!!).

You know you’ve got some things you’d like to accomplish before the end of the year; and at the same time, it feels like you can barely keep your head above the water!

Before you just “jump” into next week – we’d encourage you to take a step back and take a little “you” time to think and plan!

So, here are some thoughts:

  1. Block your calendar

Look at next week and schedule an hour that you are committed to not scheduling over.

  1. During that time, think about the following questions
  • Where are you now? What is your current situation?
  • Where do you want to go from here? What do you want to accomplish by the end of 2017?
  • How do you get from where you are today to where you want to be come January?
  • Which team member was key in your team’s success this year? What are you going to do about it, and how can you continue to leverage that person’s strengths?
  • What are the known risks or obstacles you will face?
  1. Plan for the next step!

Maybe you need to go to your boss to ask for some additional bandwidth.

Or you need to sit down with a key team member, celebrate their successes, and talk about the next 8 weeks.

Or maybe you need to plan for your “thinking” time each week so that you have the space to accomplish what you need to!

It may be November, but you’ve still got two months to rock out some awesome projects!

You’ve got this!

When Saying “No” is the Best Thing You Can Do

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Some of us have an aversion to saying the word, “no.”

It may be because of the way we grew up, our personality type, or something we’ve learned over time.

No matter why the word “no” is uncomfortable, there are times when it is the best thing you can do as a Manager.

Before we jump into when to say “no,” to successfully say the word “no,” we have to be honest with ourselves.

We have to be willing to look at and admit what our limitations are and what we can handle before we can successfully say “no.”

When you are honest with yourself, then you can say “no” when…

1. You cannot deliver on something in the way it is being asked of you

We’d all love to believe that we can meet every deadline, fulfill every creative idea, and keep all of the balls in the air all of the time.

And, if we are honest, sometimes the requests being made of us may not always be feasible.

If you cannot deliver, try something like, “That won’t work for me right now because… And here are a few ideas that are possible…”

Remember, having the intention of wanting to help, while being honest enough to say when you can and can’t, will help you and everyone else.

If you can’t deliver in the way that is being asked of you, try to come up with some solutions for how you can still meet the need and present those ideas.

This communicates that this option doesn’t work right now, and I have some ideas that can! 

2. When you aren’t comfortable doing something

Sometimes we are asked to do something that we aren’t comfortable with.

Maybe you feel a gut check, or a tension in your neck or throat.

If you find that you are feeling uncomfortable or uneasy about a request, allow yourself the ability to say “no” temporarily so you can pause, assess what’s behind you feeling that way, and then decide what is right for you.

If you still feel uncomfortable, you may want to share why with the person who is asking.

If that doesn’t feel doable, give yourself the permission to say “no” to the request because it is what is right for you.

And, this is a prefect time to give a couple of other ideas what are possible!,

3. When you are burning out and taking on too many responsibilities

 If you are reading this, you are probably an over-achiever.

One thing to know about over-achievers is that we say “yes” sometimes more than is sustainable, and we set ourselves up for potential burn-out.

When you find that you are stretched too thin, be honest with yourself and find things you can say “no” to.

When you do say “no,” and the work needs to get done, ask yourself, “who could successfully accomplish these extra things instead of me?”

This may be a great time for delegating and trusting others on your team to get the job done.

When You Are Wrong

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What if everything you’ve believed about being wrong was, well … wrong?

This week we watched TED Talk by Kathryn Schulz called On Being Wrong.

If you are looking for a different perspective or a challenge on how you’ve always thought about being wrong, this 17 minutes is well worth your time!

Happy learning!