Cultivate Something Special

“Like an oyster cultivating a pearl, cultivate something that is special to you.”

—Author Unknown

Image of a pearl in a shell

Image from

I recently watched a National Geographic special explaining the process by which South Sea pearls are produced. The show demonstrates the massive lengths of time and even life threatening dangers involved in creating these beautiful and highly prized marine gems.

Each of us has abilities, talents, and characteristics that make us who we are. These special qualities bring much pleasure and satisfaction when we express them and share them with others in our personal and professional communities.

The use, practice, and pursuit of excellence and even mastery in these areas can create a sense of flow and timeless engagement, which often produces even more fulfillment.


What special qualities, talents, and unique abilities can you emphasize and cultivate moving forward?  Who in your communities can help you identify these qualities and support your growth in the areas that are special to you?

Check out The Secret Life of Pearls on the National Geographic Channel or on YouTube

become a cause not a company

“How can we become a cause and not just a company?”

—Tim Ogilvie, New York City-based Entrepreneur

Image of Daniel Pink's book "Drive"

Employee engagement is a hot topic. Every day, I meet with business leaders pulling their hair out over the challenge of attracting and retaining top talent.

In his 2009 book Drive, Daniel Pink explores factors that engage and motivate employees to be their best, to be attracted to the organizations that fulfill their need for meaning and purpose.

Some companies do a better job than others at making a profound impact on the stakeholder groups they genuinely seek to serve.


Where and in what ways can you ignite and expand your company or organizational purpose?

How can tapping into this desire for a passionate purpose set you apart from your competitors?

How might it generate a waiting list of eager talented applicants who want to be part of something extraordinary?

Friday Review Talent

Friday Review: Talent

What talents do you bring to your personal or professional worlds? Here are a few behavior-related posts you may have missed. Click on the Quote to read the full message:


Image of The Talent Code book cover

“One of my greatest talents is recognizing talent in others and giving them the forum to shine.”





Image of man daydreaming

“Don’t quit your day dream.”





Image of fireworks

“Light yourself on fire with passion and people will come from miles to watch you burn.”





“Light yourself on fire with…”

“Light yourself on fire with passion and people will come from miles to watch you burn.”

-Author Unknown

Image from

Image from

Years ago, I attended a local meeting of coaches, where the majority of people did not know one another. As an ice breaker, the group decided to engage in an exercise we called a “passion presentation.” The rules were simple: each person had two to three minutes to share any area of their lives that literally lit them up. The fellow coaches could then ask questions in order to learn more.

The result was a room on fire! No one could contain their passion to the few minutes allotted, and we eventually threw the time constraint out the window. The exercise continued for most of the meeting.


Whenever you see the need to break the ice in your personal or professional world, just ask people what they are passionate about, and watch their fires burn. Sharing your passions with others will likely excite those around you, as well.

“Inspiration exists, but it has to…”

“Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.”

—Pablo Picasso

Image from

Image from

How often do you find yourself or others in your life waiting to be inspired by some outside source? During his 75-year career, Pablo Picasso created 13,500 paintings, 100,000 graphic prints or engravings, 34,000 book illustrations, and 300 sculptures and ceramic pieces. He was also a stage designer, poet, and playwright.

To say he was a man of action is a massive understatement. He was definitely an individual who used his propensity for action and ever-present momentum to continually inspire creative expressions of his genius.


How can you find greater inspiration through the various personal or professional work projects underway? What additional work could more fully utilize your gifts, talents, and unique abilities to inspire even more of your own genius?

“Don’t quit your day dream”

“Don’t quit your daydream.”

-Author Unknown

Image from Unspash by Icarus.jpeg

For many of us, the act of daydreaming is about longing to be somewhere else, doing something else. This often flies in the face of our day jobs—jobs that have become, for some, unfulfilling or even toxic.

When we daydream, there is a heightened sense of excitement, and a desire to live and work more consistently with our most authentic beliefs and desires.

In many ways, the coaching process encourages each individual to be true to themselves, giving them greater access to more of their personal power, gifts, and inherent talents. Who wouldn’t want far more of that?


What would be possible if you lived more consistently by the phrase, “Don’t quit your day dream” instead of “Don’t quit your day job”?

What specific actions can you take today to do just that?

“Hide not your talents…”

“Hide not your talents, they for use were made / what’s a sundial in the shade?”

—attributed to Benjamin Franklin

Photo from Flickr by James Achel

Photo from Flickr by James Achel

Yesterday’s quote about talent caused me to select today’s quote, attributed to Benjamin Franklin.

One of the values of a coaching relationship is helping the individual more fully discover and express the talents within. In many cases, these talents have been hidden, or kept in the shade.


Who are the people in your professional and personal lives most capable of shining a bright light on your visible and hidden talents? How can you—and how will you—play this important role for others?

“One of my greatest talents…”

“One of my greatest talents is recognizing talent in others and giving them the forum to shine.”

-Tory Burch, American fashion designer

QC #764
For my birthday this year, my son-in-law Chris gave me a wonderful book titled The Talent Code, by Daniel Coyle. Chris knows me pretty well and has a knack for finding the perfect gift. It seems only fitting, since we have given him our wonderful daughter Rachel!

Recognizing and developing talent is and will continue to be a critical factor in the business world. This is particularly so as the Baby Boom generation begins to exit from the workforce.

Coyle drew on cutting edge science and first-hand research gathered on his travels to “talent hotbeds.” He identified three key elements that allow us to more fully develop our gifts, and optimize our performance in just about any area of life. They are:

Deep Practice
Deep Practice combines experiential efforts of trial, error, and rapid correction, to increase skill development at rates up to ten times faster than conventional methods.

Ignition is that special factor that fully captures the passions and commitments, and is the catalyst for an individual to start and stay with the efforts to master a particular skill.

Master Coaching
Master Coaching reveals some of the secrets and tools used by the world’s most effective teachers, trainers, and coaches to fuel and bring out the best in their students.


Purchase, read, or better yet – study – The Talent Code. Recognize and develop your talents, and those of others, so that we can all shine more brightly.

“Of all knowledge, the wise and good seek most to know themselves.”

“Of all knowledge, the wise and good seek most to know themselves.”

—William Shakespeare

Image from Unsplash by NeONBRAND

The pursuit of knowledge is a never-ending journey. Whether we wish to win the national spelling bee or master our own vocation, the inner journey to amass the necessary amount of information is daunting.

The journey within oneself can be mysterious and enlightening.

Commit to a personal journey of inner discovery and self-awareness. Discover your strengths. If you are not sure what they are, ask those close to you. Discover your unique abilities and talents. Discover your core values and fundamental beliefs.


Consider creating a daily self-discovery journal or log to capture your observations once a week. Share those observations with a close colleague or family member.