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Scott Eblin offers his take on lessons in the news and his advice on your pressing leadership questions.
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Your Weekly Perspective Check

Last year, I spent some time talking with the colleagues for a new senior executive I was coaching. The point of the conversations was to incorporate their perspective into the coaching agenda for my client.

The good news was that he appeared to be off to a strong start in his new role. Like a lot of new senior leaders, he was all in on doing a great job. That was appreciated by all but some of his colleagues shared a concern that he not go so all in that his health and other priorities in his life suffered. They cared about this guy personally and believed he would be more effective professionally if he kept his perspective.

One of his direct reports shared a personal story with me that illustrated his point about the importance of regular perspective checks. A few months earlier, he had accompanied his girlfriend to the emergency room when she had stomach pains. (It turned out to be appendicitis and she got the care she needed.) While they were waiting for the doctor to arrive at the examining room, the executive caught a glimpse of an empty room across the hall. As he described it...

Two Simple Ways to Be More Mindful This Year

I’m always looking for great examples of simple things that any of us can do to be more mindful – aware and intentional – about how we approach work and the rest of life. Last week, I heard two great ones from my friend and colleague, Jeff Smith of Voltage Leadership Consulting. Jeff is a former financial services executive, runs a very successful business and is a member of our Conduit program for coaches and our Life GPS certification program. With his permission, I’m sharing with you what he’s been doing that’s working.

We were talking about 2016 goals in our monthly Conduit call last Friday and Jeff shared that his goal for this year is to be more mindful in day to day life. The cool thing about Jeff’s goal is he’s already implementing simple but effective ways to follow through on his goal.

The first is to show up five minutes early. Like so many of us with racked and stacked calendars and to-do lists, Jeff found himself getting to meetings and calls with zero margin for error in terms of being on-time. That left him with no space or bandwidth to start his...

How to Perform Your Best in 2016

As I write this, today is the first full-on work day of the new year for many people. Most of us have hopes and dreams for how the year will go and what we’ll accomplish. Many of us have a long list of goals. Personal improvement, better health, professional accomplishments, stronger relationships, big projects, financial goals – any or all of those and others could be on your list. The lists can be so long they can be overwhelming.

What difference would it make if you could boil all of that down to one simple and memorable goal? What if your primary goal this year was to perform at your best more often than not? What difference would that make? What would that even look like?

That’s what I’ve been working on for the past several years. It’s one of those “It’s about the journey, not the destination,” kind of endeavors. There are days and moments when I hit the target and there are plenty of times when I don’t. But I’ve found that by keeping that primary goal of performing at my best front and center, I’m learning a lot about myself...

8 Ways to Stay Sane During Holiday Travel

Back in the summer of 2010, I wrote a post called “The Business Travel Diva’s Guide to Summer Vacations.” I meant it to be tongue-in-cheek when I wrote it but you know that saying that there is truth behind every joke? When I reread it for the first time in several years this morning, my thought was “Wow, the guy who wrote that was an ass!”

The thing about it was there was no way I could have come up with all of those tongue-in-cheek rules for my family unless I had actually practiced them myself. Just reading through them today made me tense. Which brings us to the upcoming holiday travel (and hosting) season. Among the many reasons that the holidays can be one of the most stressful times of the year, traveling (or hosting the people that travel) can top the list. Traffic, weather, confined spaces, uncertain timelines, strange beds, strange food, strange people, disrupted routines – it can all add up to make you feel a little nuts.

So, with the benefit of five years of yoga and meditation-infused perspective since I wrote the Business Travel Diva post, here are eight suggestions for how to stay sane...

Thrown Into the Deep End

This is the time of year when it’s natural to look back on the year that’s ending and look ahead to the year that’s coming up. You may find yourself focused on tallying up wins, losses and what’s too soon to call. If you’re charged with leading a team, you may be thinking through what you need to do coach your team to the next level of performance in the year to come.

Here’s some food for that thought process. Throw some of them into the deep end of the pool.

If that sounds intriguing if not a little harsh, check out my latest article for Fast Company for more details on a mindful way to develop your key players this coming year. It will require everyone – you included – to stretch past their comfort zones. The good news is that 10 years of real world research shows that it works. Read on for the “how-to.”

(Image via Andrey Armyagov/Shutterstock.com)

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