“What is the least I can teach you that would be the most valuable?”
Michael Bungay Stanier, Founder of Box of Crayons
How familiar are you with the developmental and problem-solving tool called a quadrant graph?
Even if this specific term is unfamiliar, my guess is that you use some form of this concept to be productive and achieve your goals.
Take the example above, using effort and result as the two axis of the graph.
By evaluating each quadrant, we can calculate a course of action to optimize a path toward the result we desire.
The Quotable Coach blog series tries to apply a similar approach by offering a nugget of wisdom in about a minute’s read, potentially providing significant value to the reader.
Where and with whom could you apply today’s quote in your role as either a teacher or a student?
Please reply to this post to describe the value created.
“You don’t have to be sick to get better.”
—Hale Irwin, American professional golfer
Image from Unsplash by Morgan David de Lossy
Golf has become one of the go-to sports given COVID-19 and our need for social distancing. Being in the fresh air and walking or riding in a golf cart solo allows players to enjoy natural beauty, be with friends, and engage in a game that can never quite be mastered.
I recently heard the story of a fan watching legendary golfer Hale Irwin practicing on the range following one of his many career wins, where he shared today’s quote. Clearly he was driven by the desire within most of us for the goal of continuous improvement and personal mastery.
Where can and will you continue to practice and apply your most committed efforts to take an aspect of your life from good to great?
Please share this intention with a coach or two who would be delighted to support your efforts to get better.
“Curious that we spend more time congratulating people who have succeeded than encouraging people who have not.”
—Neil De Grasse Tyson, American Astrophysicist
Image from Unsplash by Jason Leung
The world idolizes winners. Examine the media and you will find countless examples from game shows, reality TV, sports, social media icons, and even speakers, leaders, and coaches.
Who sits at the top of the list of super achievers in your personal and professional communities?
In recent weeks I’ve been paying even closer attention to my daughter Rachel and my grandson Weston. Beyond learning his numbers, letters, shapes, and colors, he is in new territory with potty training.
If you’ve experienced this right of passage with children and grandchildren, you know that there are far more mishaps than successes in the early stages.
Where is it time to give out far more “A’s” for effort and supportive encouragement in your world? Where and from whom could you most benefit from a booster shot of encouragement?
“A surplus of effort could overcome a deficit of confidence.”
—Sonia Sotomayor, U.S. Supreme Court Justice
Take a few minutes to reflect on your level of confidence regarding your personal and professional skills, abilities, and talents.
In which areas are you most or least confident?
Examine the levels of effort, practice, and overall experience you have put forth in each of these areas.
What factors seem to be most associated with higher versus lower confidence?
Where and on what personal or professional matter would a surplus of effort increase your effectiveness and your confidence?
What actions can and will you take to do just that?
“People can’t jump on your bandwagon if it’s parked in the garage.”
—Sam Horn, Intrigue Expert, Author, Communications Strategist
Image by Freekee, in the Public Domain
The term bandwagon first appeared in a book about P.T. Barnum, the famous circus promoter.
Back in the 1850s, a circus made a showy parade through town before they set up. The bright and ornamental wagons were always part of the parade, meant to attract villagers. Musicians were always included, so their arrival could be heard and seen for considerable distances.
What ideas, causes, missions, or purposes do you wish to share with the villagers in your personal and professional communities?
What are you currently doing to broadcast your energy and excitement so that others will climb aboard and join your parade?
Where are you still in the garage with your idea and vision? How can and will you strike up the band so that others can jump aboard?
“Argue as if you are right and listen as if you are wrong.”
—Chip Conley, American hotelier, author, and speaker
Image from Unsplash by Maria Krisanova
We all desire autonomy. We all wish to be heard and to have what we say make an impact and influence our world. To do that, we must voice our thoughts and opinions, sometimes loudly.
After all, speaking about the future well beyond our current reality may never be noticed if we are silent or only whisper our views to avoid a ruckus.
We have two ears and one mouth. Our creator must have known that we would need to hear other’s voices that might be contrary to our own, and consider the possibility of our own views being incorrect.
To what degree do you currently speak up and argue for what you believe?
How carefully and completely do you currently listen to others, given the potential for being wrong?
In which of these areas and with whom would an extra effort make the biggest difference?
“Setting your intentions is like drawing an arrow from the quiver of your heart.”
—Bruce Black, American writer, teacher, and poetry judge
Image from Unsplash by Bianca Berg
The modern expression, “The road to Hell is paved with good intentions” is a proverb first published in the mid 1800s in Henry G. Bohn’s Handbook of Proverbs. An alternative form is, “Hell is full of good meanings, but Heaven is full of good works.”
In 2004, Dr. Wayne Dyer published The Power of Intention: Learning to Co-Create Your World Your Way, which is one of my personal favorites.
What are your intentions for 2020?
How many heart-based efforts do you intend to realize, personally and professionally?
How may arrows will you let fly?
“You can’t expect to hit the jackpot if you don’t put a few nickels in the machine.”
—Flip Wilson, 20th Century American comedian and actor
Image from Unsplash by DEAR
Are you a gambler? When was the last time you went to a casino hoping to hit it big, knowing in the back of your mind that the house always wins?
What if today’s quote were suggesting a different type of wager, in which we bet on our resources of time and effort?
In what areas of your life will you insert a few more nickels to guarantee hitting the jackpot?
Unlike money, you will never run out of the currency to bet on yourself.
“We can only see a short distance ahead, but we can see plenty there that needs to be done.”
Image from Unsplash by The New York Public Library
The world recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of man’s landing on the moon.
It is interesting to note that many of the first pioneers into space pointed to the fragility of the earth and how vital it is for all of us to be better stewards of our precious planet.
We are so often enthralled by the big picture that we can fail to pay attention to what is right before us, as today’s quote implies.
Did you know that the human eye is so sensitive that if you were standing on a mountain top on a dark night, you could see a candle flame flickering up to 30 miles away? The height of the mountain would remove the impact of the earth’s curvature.
We can also sense the light from the Andromeda Galaxy, composed of about a trillion stars and located an amazing 2.6 million light-years from Earth.
Yet how often do we not see what is right in front of us?
Regardless of how far you can see, what are some of your top personal, professional, and even global priorities that need your best efforts?