Monday, September 30, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Build Meaningful Relationships




What you think should not always be what you say,
but what you say should always be what you think.
--- Anthony Silard

Sharing thoughts without a purpose is like driving without a direction: you can end up just about anywhere. Feeling obligated to communicate every thought that crosses your mind – whether it’s aligned with your Vision or not – is not being authentic. Why? A thought based on a temporary mood or a negative emotion such as insecurity, anger or fear, or a thought that would unnecessarily harm another human being, does not reflect your deeper, more intact Self – where your authenticity resides. Identify a person you would like to be authentic with this week. Plan your conversation in a way that enables you to be yourself – with purpose. Start with someone who is easier to talk to – consider it batting practice – and gradually work your way toward more challenging conversations with other important people in your life.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).

Monday, September 23, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Live the Life You Have Imagined



I can’t stand to sing the same song the same way two nights
in succession, 
let alone two years or ten years.
If you can, then it ain’t music.

It’s close-order drill or exercise or yodeling or something, not music.

-- Billie Holiday

In 2007, Netflix had a lot to be proud of. Through an unprecedented, innovative, internet-based model of DVD ordering and mail delivery, it had virtually put Blockbuster (remember them?) out of business. Blockbuster took years to develop its own online presence for DVD rentals, and it hurt them irrevocably. By the time they had copied Netflix’s model, Netflix had already built inimitable brand equity through quick turnaround and high-quality customer service. Founded by Reed Hastings in 1997, Netflix’s revenues exploded from $5 million in 1999 to almost $1 billion in 2006. Blockbuster shrank from Goliath to David during the same period, and closed thousands of stores. Hastings remained agile: he knew it was just a matter of time before downloads replaced DVDs, and boosted spending on digital downloading research from $10m in 2006 to over $40m in 2007. The new Goliath triumphed: one year later, instead of moving to a new movie downloading startup, Netflix’s customers shifted to the company’s downloading plan in record numbers (Netflix’s current plans include free streaming of movies from the internet). Pick a current challenge you are facing in your life and ask yourself, “How can I play the ball not where it is, but where it’s going to be next?” Whether it’s a challenge you are facing at home or in the office, project yourself into the future. Envision the direction, based on current dynamics, that a product, initiative, or relationship is heading. Ask yourself what you can do now to embrace change and work toward the outcomes you desire later.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).

Monday, September 16, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Become Your Greatest Fan



If you want to become a leader on the outside,

you must first become a leader on the inside.
--- Chris, a student in The Center for Social Leadership's
Young Leaders Program

So many of us focus almost all our time on the results, desired outcomes and changes we want to see in our companies, organizations, schools, families and society. Yet we fail to realize that we can’t export abroad what we can’t produce at home. Visualize the person you want to become and how you want to treat others. Write down a few adjectives to describe how you would like others to perceive you. If you truly want to act this way toward others, start by acting this way toward yourself. Why? Because the voice you use with others is always the same voice you use with yourself, and vice-versa. Those who are self-critical will soon be criticizing you. Those who love themselves and believe in their ability to reach their highest potential will, if you are fortunate enough to win their hearts, love and believe in you. Whatever you want to be in the eyes of others, start being it in your own eyes. Not only will you achieve much more in your life, but you will be a much happier person along the way. Write down one thing you can do this week to develop the most important relationship in your life: your relationship with yourself.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).

Monday, September 9, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Balance Work and Life



When you have been emailing or Facebooking or Skyping lots of people for hours 
and then you turn off your computer, the feeling you get is as if you’ve just had a party, 
everyone has left, and you are all alone – only you haven’t had the party.
--- Anthony Silard

Technology has turned most of us into people who live almost entirely in their minds. We compute, calculate and quickly ingest, process and regurgitate others’ ideas. It’s the pinnacle of the capitalist revolution: never before have human beings been so capable of attaching labels, numbers and images to the outside world. Never before has everything imaginable under the sun been so easy to identify, measure, codify and utilize for profit. If you put a prism in front of a rose, it begins to believe it’s the rose. If you put the same prism in front of a pile of cow dung, it takes on the appearance of the dung. Yet it is neither the rose nor the dung; it is the prism. We have begun to take on many of the qualities of the machines we sit hunched over for the better part of our waking hours – we process myriad piles of data in the form of emails, text messages, attachments and links; we make quick calculations and decisions as to what to give attention to and what to put into our queue; we complete function after function in an iterative, rapid-fire succession, quickly toggling from one to the next. This would all be well and good if one vital part of the human body was not being sacrificed, day in and day out: the heart. What activities can you engage in this week to reconnect with your heart? This is a very real and, in an existential sense, urgent challenge. Your humanness depends on it.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).

Monday, September 2, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Balance Work and Life



People often tell me, “I don’t have the time to exercise.”

I always reply: “You don’t have the time not to exercise.”
--- Anthony Silard

In Catholicism, the custom of “tithing” was to give 10 percent of one’s income to the church. Many people give a percentage of their time to volunteer for a worthy cause in their community. We can apply the same concept toward our bodies. In today’s technology-laden world, you complete many tasks that you used to have to stand up and move around to accomplish without even leaving your desk. Yet our bodies weren’t created to be stationary for such protracted periods of time. Lie in bed for a few days without getting up and what happens? You get “bedsores.” What are the long-term effects of sitting in your chair for hours on end in front of a computer? You have 168 hours in every week – 168 hours that you will never have the privilege of living again. Consider the emotional, physical and psychological benefits of devoting five of these hours – one hour per day for five days – to exercising your body, and how much more you will both enjoy and accomplish during the other 163 hours. Get started now by creating your exercise schedule for the week. Follow your exercise schedule as you do your schedule for eating, or sleeping, or brushing your teeth. You don’t skip dinner or decide not to brush your teeth if you are in a bad mood; apply the same thinking to exercise: it’s a necessary part of what makes your week flow and come together.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).