Archive for the 'Leadership Challenges' Category

Challenge: Eliminate Energy Drains

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Energy drains are the situations, people, or things that keep you from moving forward. Energy drains are counterproductive forces in your life.  Here are some examples of things that can drain a person’s energy:

  • wasting time or using time inefficiently
  • unnecessary conflict
  • worry
  • clutter and lack of organization
  • relationships that only “take” from you
  • doing too many things


Name 3 things that are currently draining your energy. Then, for each one identify what you will do by the end of the year to eliminate that energy drain.

Challenge: Eliminate A Toleration

Monday, February 16th, 2009

Tolerations get a lot of attention in the process of coaching. Tolerations are quiet aspects of your live that slowly and quietly drain your energy and keep you from pursuing your dreams. They are the things that you allow to exist in your life that do not serve you.

Have you ever thought about your tolerations? For example:

  • the extra twenty pounds that keep you feeling sluggish
  • the friend who consistently crosses your boundaries, no matter what you tell them
  • the coworker who creates great stress by their frequent outbursts of anger
  • knowing you are underpaid for the work you do
  • the messy room you never get to organizing

When you eliminate your tolerations, you simultaneously reduce your stress and make room for new things to come into your life. Eliminating tolerations affirms that you consider your life worthwhile and that you honor yourself.


  • Designate a toleration-free day. Let your family, friends, and others know what you are doing. Tell them you are going to spend the day honoring yourself. When something comes up that you do not want to tolerate – don’t tolerate it. Be civil, but spend the day in a life-affirming way. At the end of the day, identify the tolerations that you eluded and make note of how you feel.
  • Create a list of the tolerations in your life. Include them all. If your list is huge, great! Post the list as a reminder that these are things you want to eliminate in your life.

Challenge: Take a Break

Friday, May 9th, 2008

How has your pace been in the past two weeks: breakneck speed, out of control, just right? Sometimes a fast pace is necessary, but it can’t go on forever — you can’t sprint a marathon. Develop the ability to know when you must take a break.  One thing you can do is identify some signs — physical, mental, emotional and spiritual that it is time for a break. Name some ways you can refresh yourself when you need to. Accept that breaks are necessary to maintain a productive pace — you need fuel to sustain yourself.

Exercise: In the next week, take a 4 hour break and replenish your energy. Make sure you stop and do not do work. Observe how easy or difficult this is to do and how you feel once you’ve taken a break.

Challenge: Acknowledge You Have Choice

Friday, September 21st, 2007

You have choice in everything that happens to you. Of course, you may not control the occurrence of all situations or events in your life, but you do have choice in how you handle them. Proactive choice lets you guide the direction of your life. Acknowledging that you have choice in every situation is an important element of personal power and self-esteem. Your choices create your life.

Many times people allow choices to be made for them. Choices can be made by default. If you procrastinate, for example, a choice may be made without your input. If you feel you have no power in a situation, you may block your ability to choose. If you fear the results of a specific choice, you may not make the choice that is in your heart. If you have given another person power over your life, they may feel the right to make choices for you.

Acknowledging your power of choice will make your life better. You will navigate the direction of your life. Choice will set you free!


  • Think of one situation where you are allowing or have allowed someone else to make a choice for you. Identify one thing you can do to take back your power of choice.
  • Make one choice this week that serves your best interest.

Challenge: Improve Your Negotiating Skills

Tuesday, August 21st, 2007

To negotiate effectively, you must bring yourself into the present moment and prepare to negotiate. First, lay out what is before you. Who are the players in the negotiation? What are their interests and desired outcomes? What do you want from this negotiation? What are the possible points of contention and how will you handle them? What is the “bottom line” offer you are willing to accept? Look realistically at “who you are” going into this negotiation. How do you want to present yourself? Will you be aggressive, compliant, reasonable, contentious, or shrewd? Are you willing to walk away if you do not get what you want? Following these steps will allow you to walk into the negotiation with a clear picture of who you are and what you want the outcome to be.

Practice negotiating with a friend. Create a scenario where you are negotiating a job offer. Prepare your questions and strategy and determine the outcome you want to create. Role play the negotiation with your friend.