#844 burning

Former pro golfer and sportscaster Johnny Miller was on the circuit for 30 years and spent  20 years broadcasting the U.S. Open.  Over time, the outspoken Miller made a few observations about the golfers who came and went on the tour.

One of his thoughts was the “wick theory”, indicating that every player’s wick burns only so long.  

This explanation of behavior can apply to other settings outside of sports:
> In entertainment, stars come and go in music, movies, etc.
> People ride the tide at work, going from “golden girl/boy” when they ace a pet project to the scapegoat when the risks that put them on top cause them to fail
> Politicians are the darlings of their party — until they aren’t
> Popular kids at school tend to run their course too — they are part of the “in crowd” only for a limited time
> Celebrity chefs and/or their dishes are in high demand for short spurts of time until the next person’s star rises
> Fashion designers are copied and sought after for brief periods before the stars want something different

Think about the wick in your career or your industry.  If it will only burn for so long, how can you take advantage of that brightness to do something that will let the light continue to shine after you move on?

— beth triplett
leadershipdots.blogspot.com
@leadershipdots
leadershipdots@gmail.com


Quoted in Haney shoots straight on Tiger by Teddy Greenstein, Chicago Tribune, June 6, 2014, p. 6

#843 three

A recent advertisement for Ann Taylor (women’s clothes) proclaimed:  “Never underestimate the power of the third piece.”

The purpose of the ad was to promote the purchase of a jacket or sweater, showing that it made the outfit look much more professional and polished than just a blouse and skirt or pants.  They were right.

The “third piece” can be a descriptor for many things that add the extra finishing touch:
> a clear plastic cover to make an ordinary report and its cover seem more special
> an embellishment on a package in addition to the bow
> a garnish flower on the plate with the meat and potatoes
> a tie that pulls together a man’s outfit
> a cherry on top of the whip cream on the sundae

Think about the power of three as you get dressed tomorrow or do your work today.  That third piece may be the tipping point to move you from ordinary to extraordinary.

— beth triplett
leadershipdots.blogspot.com
@leadershipdots
leadershipdots@gmail.com

#842 blue

If you needed yet another sign that the world is changing, take this:  last year, sales of blue jeans declined by 6%.  For most of the 141 years since Levi Strauss invented the ubiquitous denim work pants, sales have been steady or rising.  But recent figures show that the popularity of the wardrobe staple is waning.


The cause of this shift is being attributed to the growth of the “athleisure” category of apparel.  Women in particular are buying more athletic clothes, and wearing them as casual attire outside of the gym.  This type of clothing is seen as looser-fitting and more comfortable.  It is also noted that some women “want to look like they’re running to the gym, even if they’re not.”

Jeans are in nearly every closet in America.  Everyone owns several pairs, from toddlers to seniors.  They are omnipresent. 

Or at least they were.  If the sales of such a fundamental product can be threatened, it should be a lesson for you to take nothing for granted.  A long, storied past is no longer a guarantee that there will be a long, prosperous future.

— beth triplett
leadershipdots.blogspot.com
@leadershipdots
leadershipdots@gmail.com

Source:  Makers of jeans enduring rough patch by Ann D’Innocenzio for the Associated Press in the Telegraph Herald, September 14, 2014, p. 2B.

#841 inward

I wonder who came up with the idea to add the technology to phone cameras that would allow people to take “selfies”?  Think about it — for generations the only way to take a picture of yourself was to set the timer and run.  I wonder why someone thought the option would be popular.

But now selfies have become as prevalent as almost all non-selfie photography out there.  An exhibit at an area art gallery displays 100 phones with different selfie images.  Artist Paul McCormick* “mingles digital and physical self-representation” by showing people the images that were taken with the intent to be shared. 

How can you use the metaphor of a selfie to take a look on the inside instead of just a picture of how you appear?  Is there a way for you to take time to reflect on your inner dreams and intentions?  If you could see what thoughts are inside of you, would you like the selfie that reflects back?  Do you want to post what is there for the world to see or would you rather hit delete?  

People spend a lot of time taking pictures of their external view.  As you drive home from work tonight, turn off the radio and take a mental selfie. You don’t need a phone or a camera to see what is in your head and heart.  

— beth triplett
leadershipdots.blogspot.com
@leadershipdots
leadershipdots@gmail.com

*See http://www.pauljmccormick.com


#840 underestimate

One final thought from the Tory Johnson webinar.  I did not tack this on the end of yesterday’s blog because I did not want it to get lost.

Read this slowly and let it soak in:
“We over-estimate what we can do in a short period of time, and we under-estimate what we can do in the long haul.”

How true that is.  People start things and give up because they don’t see progress right away.  But if we stick with something for an extended period, we can make a difference.  “Time flies,” she said. “Tiny things lead to big results and you really can make dramatic progress in a year.”  She called it “time logic”, but I think it’s really “time illogic”, in that we think things need to happen quickly.  

Examples:  eating healthy every day may not show instant weight loss, but over time the pounds will come off.  Same for regular exercise or strength training.  Taking one art class may not make us Picasso, but over time our technique will improve.  One course plus another plus another will lead to a degree.  Saving something each week will create a nest egg.  Writing every day will lead to a book.  Making calls will result in sales.

Think of a big goal that has been too daunting for you to tackle. TODAY, start on the path to achieve it.  We all know how quickly the days and weeks and months seem to pass.  Don’t underestimate how the little steps you take can add up at the end of a period.

— beth triplett
leadershipdots.blogspot.com
@leadershipdots
leadershipdots@gmail.com


The Shift: How I finally lost weight and discovered a happier life by Tory Johnson

#839 shift

A few more thoughts from the Tory Johnson webinar I referenced yesterday.  

Tory shared five steps that she believes will help you achieve any of your goals because they “shift” your thinking (which is conveniently the title of her recent book)

1.  If you have tried and failed, spend the time to dig deep to understand “why this next attempt must be different”.  She advocates outlining in brutal black and white why you are too fed up to accept the way things are.

2.  Ask yourself what you are willing to give up. Tory believes that you have to get uncomfortable to get where you want to go.

3.  Develop a specific plan that outlines the three key things you must do to get the outcome you desire.  Her plan to (successfully) lose 60 pounds:  “Eat less, choose smarter, move more.”  Repeat it over and over when faced with choices that make you uncomfortable (see #2!).

4.  Determine your DAILY accountability.  If you see daily progress, it will be a motivator to continue.  (There is a reason I number these blogs!!)

5.  Embrace patience and celebrate victories.  “There is no potion that trumps patience and perseverance and we can control these,” she said. 

What big goal do you have that could benefit from a shift in thinking?  Perhaps employing Tory Johnson’s methods will make you uncomfortable enough to become successful.

— beth triplett
leadershipdots.blogspot.com
@leadershipdots
leadershipdots@gmail.com


The Shift: How I finally lost weight and discovered a happier life by Tory Johnson


#838 conundrum

If you have a really bad year at work, you may think you need to start looking for a new job.  But the paradox is that if you are coming off of an extended bad period, you don’t have the resume fodder or self-confidence to land yourself a new position.

If times are great at work, you have the employment capital, but not the desire to leave.

In a recent webinar, author Tory Johnson recommended that you “abandon the search for the job fairy”, and realize that it is you who create your own destiny.  It sounds to me like the best thing to do is strive everyday to be amazing at the job you have.

— beth triplett
leadershipdots.blogspot.com
@leadershipdots
leadershipdots@gmail.com