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Being Selfish With Your Goals

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Title:
Being Selfish With Your Goals

Word Count:
790

Summary:
All too often good-intentioned people set forth goals designed to satiate others rather than themselves. While the intent is honorable, the results will likely lead to failure. Why? As the somewhat provocative title of this article indicates, you need to be selfish with your goals and select ones that mean something to you.


Keywords:
goal setting


Article Body:
All too often good-intentioned people set forth goals designed to satiate others rather than themselves. While the intent is honorable, the results will likely lead to failure. Why? As the somewhat provocative title of this article indicates, you need to be selfish with your goals and select ones that mean something to you.

Through segments on the evening news, magazines, talk shows, radio programming and even the advice of family and friends, we are consistently subjected to a whole litany of goals that anyone with half a brain should strive for. If we were to listen to all the experts, we would all need to be perfectly fit and rich individuals with at least two college majors under our belt.

Baloney.

Now I won't deny that there are tremendous benefits to being physically fit, financially well off or highly educated, but let's be honest here, one doesn't require all of the above to live a successful and happy life. There are many somewhat overweight individuals that are quite happy to escape the annoyances of careful food selection and exercise and instead focus on earning money or spending time with family. By the same token, there are many physically fit individuals that see no need to bring in extraordinary levels of income to be happy; they would just as well get by with what they need to live.

I firmly believe all of us should constantly strive to improve ourselves, but there is no single blueprint that we should all follow. What might be important to me (business and management) might not be important to you, and vice versa. For this reason, when you are determining which goals you would like to pursue you should always block out the wishes of others and select goals that are dear to your heart.

This sounds incredibly selfish, but obviously I'm not advocating adopting a goal that would hurt others, and ideally in a committed relationship you and your significant other would share common goals. But when push comes to shove, if you choose a goal for someone else rather than yourself you will do yourself a huge disservice.

Take, for example, weight loss. Many overweight people lead happy and successful lives despite their weight; you don't have to be as fit as a fiddle to be happy. Let's say one of these somewhat overweight individuals decided one day to finally buckle under the constant societal harping about the benefits of weight loss and begin a diet program. What would happen?

Chances are very high the individual would adjust his diet and get off to a good start. Almost all of us are capable of losing a few pounds during the first couple weeks, particularly since much of the initial weight loss is water. But during this time chances are good the dieter will be fairly unhappy, and this unhappiness will fester over time. Eventually when the body stops losing water weight and shifts into fat loss, the weight loss will slow down to about a pound or two a week.

Throughout the diet the dieter's morale and optimistic outlook on life will suffer, and this might even affect other areas he was already successful with, such as his relationship with his family or his business. Eventually he will quit his diet in disgust, and immediately upon reverting to his old eating habits he will not only gain what he lost he'll also gain even more! Diets play havoc with the body's metabolism, so more often than not a person that quits a diet will end up weighing far more than had they never dieted to begin with.

Clearly weight loss is a fantastic goal that can provide a lifetime of benefits, but it isn't for everyone! If you are not passionate about such a goal, you could actually harm other areas of your life when stress is added and morale and motivation drops due to your lifestyle change, and then to add insult to injury you just might end up being heavier than you were had you not even tried to adopt to society's standards.

The above example holds true for every single goal under the sun. Many people love the business world and all its risks and challenges, but others would rather avoid the stressful situations and problems that all businessmen face. Perhaps they would rather live a middle-class lifestyle, stay physically fit and enjoy hiking or camping trips with a partner over the weekends during the time the business-oriented are probably working overtime.

Choose only the goals that are compatible with your desires and needs, because selecting an incompatible goal that society or family advocates is a virtually guaranteed formula for failure, and can very easily do more harm than good.


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BONUS : Title:
Best Leadership Advice: Business Success Secrets From 7 Top Leaders

Word Count:
945

Summary:
Great advice comes from many sources - parents, other relatives, consultants, bosses, co-workers, mentors, teachers, coaches, and friends. The important point to remember is to stay open, listen to everyone, but develop your own leadership style.


Keywords:
leadership, leadership advice, management, business success,


Article Body:
Fortune magazine once published an article entitled "The Best Advice I Ever Got." It was a great article that offered wit and wisdom about achieving business success. I liked it so much, that it motivated me to produce my newest book, Leadership:Best Advice I Ever Got, which describes the best leadership advice 136 successful CEOs, coaches, consultants, professors, managers, executives, presidents, politicians, and religious leaders received that most helped them become effective and successful leaders.

Here are 7 secrets to leadership success:

1. Leadership is about making things happen

If you want to make something happen with your life, in school, in your profession or in your community, do it. Perceived obstacles crumble against persistent desire. John Baldoni, Author, Leadership Communication Consultant and Founder of Baldoni Consulting LLC, shared this advice that had come from his father, a physician. He taught him the value of persistence. At the same time, his mother taught him compassion for others. Therefore, persistence for your cause should not be gained at the expense of others. Another bit of leadership wisdom!

2. Listen and understand the issue, then lead

Time and time again we have all been told, "God gave us two ears and one mouth for a reason"...or as Stephen Covey said..."Seek to understand, rather than be understood." As a leader, listening first to the issue, then trying to coach, has been the most valuable advice that Cordia Harrington, President and CEO of Tennessee Bun Company has been given.

3. Answer the three questions everyone within your organization wants answers to

What the people of an organization want from their leader are answers to the following: Where are we going? How are we going to get there? What is my role? Kevin Nolan, President & Chief Executive Officer of Affinity Health Systems, Inc. believes the more clarity that can be added to each of the three questions, the better the result.

4. Master the goals that will allow you to work anywhere in today’s dynamic business world

Debbe Kennedy, President, CEO and Founder of Global Dialogue Center and Leadership Solutions Companies, and author of Action Dialogues and Breakthrough once shared this piece of advice that was instrumental in shaping her direction, future and achievements.

She was a young manager at IBM just promoted to her first staff assignment in a regional marketing office. For reasons she can’t explain, one of her colleagues named Bookie called her into his office while she was visiting his location. He then began to offer unsolicited advice, but advice that now stays fresh in her mind. He mentioned that jobs, missions, titles and organizations would come and go as business is dynamic-- meaning it is always changing. He advised her not to focus your goals toward any of these, but instead learn to master the skills that will allow you to work anywhere.

He was talking about four skills:

The ability to develop an idea
Effectively plan for its implementation
Execute second-to-none
Achieve superior results time after time

With this in mind, Kennedy advises readers to seek jobs and opportunities with this in mind. Forget what others do. Work to be known for delivering excellence. It speaks for itself and it opens doors.

5. Be curious

Curiosity is a prerequisite to continuous improvement and even excellence. The person who gave Mary Jean Thornton, Former Executive Vice President & CIO, The Travelers this advice urged her to study people, processes, and structures. He inspired her to be intellectually curious. He often reminded Thornton that making progress, in part, was based upon thinking. She has learned to apply this notion of intellectual curiosity by thinking about her organization’s future, understanding the present, and knowing and challenging herself to creatively move the people and the organization closer to its vision.

6. Listen to both sides of the argument

The most valuable advice Brian P. Lees, Massachusetts State Senator and Senate Minority Leader ever received came from his mentor, United States Senator Edward W. Brooke III. He told him to listen to all different kinds of people and ideas. Listening only to those who share your background and opinions can be imprudent. It is important to respect your neighbors’ rights to their own views. Listening to and talking with a variety of people, from professors to police officers, from senior citizens to schoolchildren, is essential not only to be a good leader in business, but to also be a valuable member within your community.

7. Prepare, prepare, prepare

If you fail to prepare, you are preparing to fail. If one has truly prepared and something goes wrong the strength of the rest of what you've prepared for usually makes this something easier to handle without crisis and panic. One of the best pieces of advice Dave Hixson, Men’s Varsity Basketball Coach at Amherst College has ever received and continues to use and pass on is this anonymous quote, "Preparation is the science of winning."

Along with this are two expressions from Rick Pitino's book Success is a Choice, which speaks to preparation. Hixson asks his teams every year: "Do you deserve to win?" and "Have you done the work?" This speaks to the importance of preparation toward achieving your final goal. If you haven't done the work (preparation) the answer to the second question is an easy "no!"

Great advice comes from many sources: parents, other relatives, consultants, bosses, co-workers, mentors, teachers, coaches, and friends. The important point to remember is to stay open, listen to everyone, but also develop your own leadership style.


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"Développez Votre Efficacité en 5 Jours"
de Christophe MONGREDIEN

"Les Secrets de Ceux Qui Ont Plus de Temps"
de Christian H. GODEFROY

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