Finally – Tomorrow is Here!

by Onyeka Nchege on April 19, 2016

An inch of movement will bring you closer to your goals than a mile of intention ~ Dr. Steve Maraboli

Progress Bar Loading with the text: TomorrowAs many of you read this, you already have made intended plans to carry out in your tomorrow. You intend to wear certain clothes, or put some time in on that big project, or reach out to someone that you haven’t talked to in a while. When most of us hear, or think of, the word ‘tomorrow’, we delve into planning our intentions. It is usually not until we get to the end of that day of tomorrow that we realize the many intended plans we did not fulfill. So again we think about tomorrow and we start making intended plans, hoping again that we will fulfill them this time.

Three months ago, I said I’ll start working on my next blog post tomorrow. As you can see, there were many tomorrows between when I said that and today. You are reading this blog post today, because I finally stopped making intentional plans for tomorrow and I started acting before tomorrow came.

It is a simple theory many of us have heard time and time again; good intentions will lead you nowhere, but committed actions will take you everywhere. For the past three months, I have been intending to start working on my next blog post, but for the past day I have committed to writing my next blog post.

I know one question that is on the minds of those who regularly read my posts; how can someone who touts the habits of effective leadership fall into the bad habits of ineffectiveness? In short, the answer to that question is I too, am human. With true analysis of myself, I can say that I allowed the excuses of life to dictate my actions, or rather the lack of my actions. Every day, I told myself that tomorrow I would start my next blog post, and at the end of every day I pacified myself with excuses as to why I didn’t make the time to sit down and write it.

And I know the next question that is on the minds of those who are reading this now; so what changed? In short, the answer to that question is my actions changed. Like magicians say at the finale of a great trick, “TA-DA!”

Time
– A specific amount of time needs to be allotted up front before starting anything; 10, 20 or even 30 minutes of initial time invested can manifest into the actual hour or two that is needed to complete the task.

Accountability

– When someone else holds you accountable to something, whether it is for your own benefit or theirs, it assigns a needed level of importance to the task. Set parameters on when you are going to complete your task and then ask someone to hold you accountable to them.

Dedication

– Dedicating your time and/or resources to something immediately makes it a priority to you. Asking yourself why a project is important to you and what value will be gained can assist you in putting forth the effort necessary to finish what you start.

Activity Action
– Planning is nothing without execution. Once you plan to take action, you must move forward and actually do the thing you set out to do. Thomas Edison said it best, “Being busy does not always mean real work. The object of all work is production or accomplishment and to either of these ends there must be forethought, system, planning, intelligence, and honest purpose, as well as perspiration. Seeming to do is not doing.”

When I allotted a specific amount of time for writing my next blog post, I asked someone to keep me accountable on delivering it by a specific day; I dedicated a period in my day when I knew I would have the least amount of distractions to work on it; I performed the actual activity of writing it, and then TA-DA…I had my next blog post.

Take action: The next time you find yourself behind schedule, procrastinating, or just avoiding a task that seems daunting, remember that a little TA-DA goes a long way!

Leadership on the GO…..Its O.N!



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People in Glass Houses Need to Throw Stones

by Onyeka Nchege on January 11, 2016

hand holding stoneMost of us have heard the glass ceiling adage in which one can see the place they want to reach but is stuck at a certain level due to a “glass ceiling” impeding them. It is true that there are many glass ceilings, (often ending in the suffix ism), that can be imposed to limit our upward mobility: ageism, sexism and racism. Though it is very unfortunate that those ignorant isms still exist and are limiting the ascension of some talented individuals, it is more so unfortunate when we limit our own progress with our self-imposed “glass ceilings”.

In this age of our society, we are taught now more so than ever how important it is to be our own loudest cheerleader. Even though we know how much that practice contributes to us striving forward to greatness, we insist on being our own worst critics. Talking ourselves out of taking new chances, because there is a good chance that we will fail at them. Stifling thoughts of creating new things, because we are sure the work will not be good enough. Taking stock in the disheartening, negative rhetoric from those around us, because they are sometimes our superiors. These are ways that we impose our own glass ceilings.

Self-imposed glass ceilings can hinder us both as individuals and as collective organizations. In organizations, self-imposed glass ceilings often take the forms of stifled creativity and less risk taking. When an organization is continually getting the message from their consumers that their products or services are not needed due to any number of reasons, their unfortunate response can be to simply stop trying.

So how do we break through our self-imposed glass ceilings? We break through our glass ceilings by throwing STONES.

  1. Stake your claim – Stand up for yourself. You matter! Be confident in the choice you are about to make and go out there and get it. Find mentors and other visionaries that will help you on your road to success.
  2. Take necessary risks – It takes courage to make a difference. The only way to make change is to be bold and take a chance on yourself.
  3. Own your achievement – Take responsibility for your own success. No one can do it for you. You have to take ownership of your goals, visions, and dreams.
  4. Note external interferences – Be aware of your surroundings. They can come in the shape of people, media and your environment. Then make the necessary changes to minimize those interferences. 
  5. Execute your plan – Set Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, & Time-bound [SMART] goals and then start working towards those goals. Set yourself benchmarks to reach and check-in with yourself from time to time.
  6. Setbacks are opportunities for learning – It’s OK to make mistakes. Mistakes are necessary for success. Use those mistakes to help change your game plan.

Our professional lives can come with many challenges imposed by others that we all have to overcome in order to continue to reach our goals. When we impose our own glass ceilings, we too are contributing to the challenges of meeting our goals.

Take Action: Don’t let glass ceilings keep you from achieving your goal. Break through those barriers – whether imposed internally or externally – and take charge of your future by throwing STONES



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Simply Grateful…

November 25, 2015

  “When you practice gratefulness, there is a sense of respect toward others” ~ Dalai Lama  During this time of year we are encouraged most to think of others and reflect on all that we are thankful for. In both of those regards I can honestly say that I am thankful most for those that […]

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Mastering Those Martian Moments

November 14, 2015

“Mastering Those Martian Moments: Surviving as a Leader When You Feel Stranded on Mars” Those of you who know me are aware that I love going to the movies. It’s my chill thing and it’s one of my “relax and revive” stress busters. A couple of weeks ago, we had a family outing and we […]

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Looking Between The Trees

October 20, 2015

Many of us have heard the old adage, “Can’t see the forest for the trees”; meaning one doesn’t realize the vastness of what they are exploring, because they are focused only on the immediate things in front of them. As I ponder this saying, I think about my own personal and career journeys that I […]

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