Archive for February, 2011

Need More Time? Find More with Flow – DiSC Showcases, Time-Sensitive Offers

February 21, 2011

People-Whispering Tip:

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to go on a Caribbean cruise with Hay House where I participated in a “Writer’s Workshop.”  My wonderful first coach, Cheryl Richardson, was one of the presenters and it was great to see and learn from her again.  I have posted our photo on my Facebook page.  Check out Cheryl’s work at

As I reentered my “normal” life at home, I began reflecting on the nature of time and how it can be hard to get back into the swing of things upon returning from a vacation.

In my work as an executive coach, I see that many people walk through their days unaware and out of touch with their emotional lives in the workplace as well as at home.  This inattention can cause people to flip back and forth into two extremes:  during much of the day, people live their lives filled with the anxiety and the pressures of work and “making a living” kinds of obligations, while during their leisure time, they tend to live in a state akin to passive boredom “vegging” out in front of the TV or internet.

The real key to getting things done with a high degree of satisfaction and even joy is challenging ourselves with tasks that actually require a high degree of skill and commitment.  Psychologist and author Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (pronounced “chick-SENT-me-high”) wrote the best-selling book “Flow” on this topic and offered compelling research to show that we actually desire the joy of complete engagement and don’t want to just “do nothing.” 

Instead, we want to do what we do with a transformational approach.  It is not so much what we do as how we approach what we do.

Sure, it is easy to say that being on a cruise in the Caribbean is more fun than compiling your information for your taxes or paying your bills both of which I had to complete upon returning home.  That said, I bet you know people who can’t seem to relax even while on vacation such that they must always be doing something or checking their Blackberry or iPhone.

I must admit it took me a few days to drop some of my worldly concerns and projects enough to let the rhythm of the sea enfold me.  And I had to chuckle at the sign in the photo below in Half Moon Cay whose caption reads “I Wish I Could Stay Here Forever.”  This is my writing friend Lucy and me on our last day with the ship in the background.  I suspect the “here” in this message refers not just to this beautiful island in the Bahamas, but to the state of mind we all long to live in daily.

I Wish I Could Stay Here

The good news is, this state of mind can be taught and self-taught and I have included some of my tips in the “Transformational Coaching Tip” section below so be sure to scroll down! 

Over the years, I have learned to train myself and my clients to be more consistently in the flow.  Living in the flow means living fully in the present.  It means not hanging out in the past rehashing old issues or previous conversations.  It also means not hanging out in the future trying to second-guess how things will turn out. 

Instead, it means focusing all of our attention on each interaction, whether it is washing a dish, attending a meeting, doing your laundry, or listening to a loved one or colleague.  Whenever we are fully engaged in whatever we are doing, time seems resonant and full.  Many call this practice mindfulness and there are great books out there about it.

It also means knowing yourself well so that you can be aware of where you are now and where you want to go.  Even more fundamental than that, you must also know who you are and how you help or hinder yourself. 

As a coach, I loved the movie “The King’s Speech” as it exemplifies the ways and whys we struggle when we could be in the ease and joy of flow.  Aside from superb acting, it is an uplifting triumph of awareness.  The main character becomes more aware of the beliefs about himself that drive his behavior and learned some tools and techniques to deal with his stuttering.  But it wasn’t until he reframed his identity and completed a successful public address, that he knew he could stop being derailed by powerful emotions and unknown drives.

Once you become aware of how you think, act, and feel and understand what you believe at work and at home; you can begin to accept where you are now with all of your strengths and limitations and become a leader in your own life.  Then you can begin to consciously mold your own destiny and express yourself with authenticity and real power. 

I wish you success on your journey!  I coach leaders to become more self-aware and emotionally intelligent so that their success is inspired with ease and flow.  This can be done one-on-one and with teams and groups in training sessions or keynote speeches.

For the appropriate balance of challenge and support in becoming a better leader of your life and the lives of your direct reports and colleagues and associates, feel free to call us at 404-327-6330 or email me at

 DiSC® Assessment Application (s):

1) The Time Mastery Profile and Facilitator Kit

Sometimes it is important to get tactical about managing our time and yet effective time management still begins with self-awareness.  The Time Mastery Profile and Facilitation Kit is a unique tool that provides you and your staff with a complete understanding of where they are now and where they need to take action to improve their time-management effectiveness.

Setting priorities and managing time are vital to enhancing individual and organizational performance.  If you could reduce your staff’s wasted time by just 5 minutes every hour; productivity would jump 8.3%!

This profile helps people explore time-related behavior in 12 categories:  Attitudes, Goals, Priorities, Analyzing, Planning, Scheduling, Interruptions, Meetings, Written Communications, Delegation, Procrastination, and Team Time.

The 32 page EPIC Time Mastery Profile is more robust and includes the Skills Gap Analysis.  This feature shows how respondents rate their skill in each category as well as its importance to their jobs.  This data helps a “leader as coach” to determine where to assist someone in focusing their time-management efforts for greater personal and professional success. 

There is also a Facilitator Kit with fully scripted training and coaching exercises for use with both the paper and online Time Mastery Profile.  The online assessment is only 10 EPIC credits or $32.00.

For more information on how these training and coaching tools can support your business, please call us at 404-327-6330 or email me at

2) Virtual Educational Webinars – Limited, Time-Sensitive Seating Available

Enhance your internal management, sales, and employee training programs with The Everything DiSC Application Library product line

One of the biggest benefits of having your team take any of these profiles is the ability to run Comparison Reports on any two individuals for free.  This is excellent information for coaching for performance or for conflict resolution, etc.

If you or your internal training staff are interested in learning more, join me for the upcoming webinars led by the experts at Inscape Publishing.

 You will experience the profile of your choice (Everything DiSC Sales, Everything DiSC Management, or Everything DiSC Workplace) as pre-work, and then participate in an interactive, 90-minute webinar from the comfort of your office.  


February 22, 2011:  Everything DiSC Application Library from 11 AM to 12:30 PM Eastern.

This webinar provides you with an overview of all of the assessments and training programs in the suite including Management, Sales, and 363 for Leaders.

March 2, 2011:  Everything DiSC 363 for Leaders from 12:30 PM to 2 PM Eastern  

363 for Leaders is meant for anyone who wants to use 360 degree feedback for leadership development; whether they are an emerging high-potential leader or an experienced executive.  In addition to the free profile with a retail value of a very cost-effectively priced $155, you can purchase an invaluable Coaching Supplement Report to create an action plan for development.

March 14, 2011:  Everything DiSC Application Library from 4:30 PM to 6 PM Eastern

This webinar provides you with an overview of all of the assessments and training programs in the suite including Management, Sales, and 363 for Leaders.

TO REQUEST A SAMPLE REPORT AND/OR PARTICIPATE IN THIS FREE OFFER, send your name, company name, approximate number of supervisors/managers, your title, phone number, city/state to  The relevant information will be sent to you electronically.


Schedule a DiSC Strategy Session with me.  During this 45 minute complimentary discussion, we’ll discuss your business objectives and challenges, talk about your organization’s leadership capabilities, and see what assessment and coaching/training tools would best benefit you and your team/organization’s needs.  You are under no obligation to make a purchase and there is no pressure, just a process of education about your options.

Call us at 404-327-6330 and/or email me to have a conversation about how these tools can help your organization start on the path towards more effective talent development today!                                                                    
Transformational Coaching Tip:

“We are shaped and guided by what we love.”  Goethe

Coaches and leaders who are coaches have learned to ask themselves and others questions that create value and new ways of thinking and being. These questions can help to guide us in discovering what we love. Here are a few for you on your journey into flow:

1. What is your natural pattern for getting things done? If you are not a morning person, don’t fight it. Schedule your important activities and meetings for the time you are naturally in “the zone.” I resist any “one size fits all” advice as it just doesn’t work that way in my experience.

2.   What are your natural talents and defining strengths? Skills are things that you can do while talents reveal how often and how well you do it.  Talents are instinctive, naturally recurring patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving that can be enhanced by new knowledge, skills, and experience. Identify yours and leverage them!

3. What are the activities and tasks that I can get so absorbed in that I lose track of time? There are clues in your life that can help you determine your career path and perfect creative self-expression.  For example, I love to speak, coach, write, and help people with personal and professional growth.  It took me awhile to realize I could make a living at it.  Make sure your career is aligned with your passions and you can’t help but succeed.

 4.   How can I keep developing hidden talents into new strengths?  Commit to a life of continuous learning and growth.  That’s where the fun is!

 5.   How did I take on new challenges this week or how did I face old challenges in new ways?  Exercise your reframing muscle and remember the power of a positive attitude in getting things done under even the most challenging of circumstances.

As stated earlier, the best of life comes from a willingness to stretch byond your current capabilities amd explore, test, and reflect on expanding in new and exciting ways.  Enjoy the process and find the flow without effort!

Of course, it is easier to stay focused in an empowering direction with the assistance of a trained coach.  For assistance in operationalizing any of these best practices into your workplace for more powerful, effective results, feel free to call us at (404) 327-6330 or email me at 

To your inspired success!

What Makes Change Hard and What To Do About It!

February 11, 2011

 Written by Laura A. Davis,

People-Whispering Tip:The start of a new year and, in the case of 2011, a new decade is a wonderful time for reflection and renewal. Many of us have some ritual for honoring the gifts of the past year and for making resolutions for the new one. Yet, one doesn’t have to look far for dismal success rates and depressing statistics on the sustainability of commitments to behavior change whether they be New Year’s Resolutions or not.As a professional coach and facilitator, one of my greatest passions is learning why people do what they do. The corollary of that is to understand how to use this knowledge to increase the quality of our lives personally and professionally. Earlier in my career in working to assist clients as well as myself to learn and grow, I naively thought it was mainly about “knowing what to do.” 

I actually knew better and yet there is such an emphasis in our culture on strategies, “how to’s,” certifications, and credentials that it can be seductive not to think that that is the main event. And I am not saying ignorance is bliss as it is important to know what your options are and to keep abreast of new developments in any field. As Goethe said, “we must always change, renew, rejuvenate ourselves; otherwise we harden.” Heaven knows in today’s world the recognition of the importance of resilience is certainly the opposite of hardening. We do need to stay current if not inundated.  

Yet over time, having witnessed the results of coaching and training thousands of individuals, teams, and employees in Fortune 500 companies, I have come to the conclusion that there are at least 4 main reasons why transformational, desired change doesn’t occur as rapidly as it might. Actually, the 5th main reason underlies all the rest which could be summed up with a lack of radical personal responsibility. That in of itself is an important topic for another day.

The 4 main reasons conveniently make yet another acronym akin to WIIFM (what’s in it for me) and relate to radio and sound as well; they are HIFI for 1) Habits, 2) Ignorance and/or Misinformation, 3) Fear, and 4) Identity.  

There is a wonderful Spanish proverb which says “Habits are at first cobwebs, then cables.”  If you have ever tried to change a habit, you may be smiling at this quote with a sense of recognition. The latest neuroscientific breakthroughs show that when we consistently think certain thoughts and reinforce them with feeling and behaviors, we form neural networks or circuits in our brains which become “hardwired” over time. 

Likening the brain to a computer, when certain programs are running, our actions become automatic, routine, and we are no longer aware of them. Behaving habitually takes no effort at all, and no conscious awareness means no personal responsibility needs to be exerted. 

The good news is that by not engaging in certain thoughts, feelings, and behaviors consistently, those neural networks atrophy and die and can be replaced with new, more productive patterns of thinking, feeling, and doing. Working with a coach and with transformational processes helps to release and replace some of these unproductive programs.

The second barrier to effective sustainable change is ignorance and/or misinformation. Remember, humans once thought that the world was flat and that the sun revolved around the earth and that air flight was impossible. Who knows what else we will discover about managing our minds and emotions that will continue to support us in the coming years?  For instance, I have found the techniques of energy psychology, especially the emotional freedom technique developed by Gary Craig, to be very effective in facilitating changing beliefs and therefore behavior. 

Do stay informed and do learn through books and reading and courses and whatever other educational media supports your goals. There is so much exciting research in the mainstream today about emotional intelligence, neuroscience, energy psychology, and much more that it is truly exciting. I truly believe that revolutionary changes lie ahead and I am optimistic about our collective future. 

Of course, I am not so naive to think that real change takes place from reading books and from going to seminars and training courses alone.  It is life experience that truly teaches. And alas, ‘”the rubber meets the road” so to speak when we look at results over time. 

Both knowledge and intellect are wonderful tools when knowledge leads to insight which is supported by practical application. And that practical application must go deeper than just the behavioral level in order to stick.

Which brings me to the third barrier to lasting, effective change which is simply put, fear. Fear is sourced from our emotional nature and yet can be reprogrammed through thought and repetition. In the late 90’s, I had the pleasure of working with a knowledgable change expert Harry Woodward who wrote about 5 major fears in his book Navigating Through Change

They are the subject of this month’s Transformational Coaching Tip so please scroll down to learn more. The main point I want to make here is that all of these fears are learned. In fact, the only two fears we humans possess from birth are the fear of falling and the fear of loud noises. Both of these undoubtedly served some evolutionary purpose in their day. The good news is, if all of our other fears are learned, then they can be unlearned or released and replaced with more effective beliefs and behaviors.

Last, our identity is the main challenge when attempting to create lasting sustainable change whether that be as individuals, or in organizations on a collective level.  Years ago, I quit smoking (at the wise old age of 23) through the help of an organization that no longer exists called Smokenders. What impressed me about the Smokenders approach was the lack of scare tactics and shaming to stop smoking.

Instead, the emphasis was upon becoming a nonsmoker or one’s identity. Not only were the benefits of becoming a nonsmoker in terms of a healthier lifestyle addressed, but so were the identity-based issues associated with smoking. In short, they asked “who would you be as a nonsmoker?” I have always remembered the wisdom of that approach and apply it to my work today.  As a footnote, I haven’t smoked since I was 23 (a few years ago!) nor do I have any desire to do so. Those neural networks have thankfully died and been replaced with healthier ones.    

So in seeking to change and grow, remember it is not just about resolve, will, to do’s, how to’s, and/or strategies.  Instead, tune into the power of HIFI by understanding how to work with your habits, your ignorance and societal misinformation, fear, and identity.

Here’s to your best decade yet!  

For more practical tools and application on how to apply this to your business, feel free to call us at 404-327-6330 and/or email me at  We are here to make you and your organization an inspired success!



DiSC® Assessment Application:
1)  The Discovering Diversity Profile: Over the holidays, I finally went to visit the “Bodies” exhibit that everyone has been raving about. As someone who is not very knowledgeable about the human body and anatomy and physiology, I thought it would be somewhat interesting just for the heck of it. Instead, I came away from the experience with an incredible appreciation for the diversity of all of the systems in a human body and the incredible way they are designed to work together, each fulfilling a unique function, and yet expressing and fulfilling needs that work together in a unified whole.Similarly, a well-run organization has people who fulfill many unique functions in diverse and highly orchestrated ways, that when well-run, lead to a successful, unified whole. Successful organizations understand that the cultural backgrounds and experiences of their employees and customers are valuable resources which enrich the whole just like the diverse systems within a human body contribute to its well-being.

  The Discovering Diversity Profile helps employees:

  •  understand how they respond to workforce diversity
  •  where they need to develop further understanding

 The profile explores the complex issues surrounding diversity in four key areas which are:

  • Knowledge:  Explores diversity and where that knowledge comes from
  • Understanding:  Examines empathy and the willingness to consider another’s position
  • Acceptance:  Looks at receptiveness and respect for diverse behaviors and backgrounds
  • Behavior:  Explores self-awareness of attitudes and behavior towards others   

The 20 page EPIC Discovering Diversity Profile individual report contains feedback about those items that need attention, provides suggestions for improvement, and offers a detailed action plan.

Let us all be reminded of the incredible positive impact managing diversity well can have in whatever context you find yourself; a leader in business, in the non-profit world, in your family, and/or in your community.

 Transformational Coaching Tip:


Earlier I mentioned having worked with a change management expert on our basic fears and how they can get in the way of our creating lasting, sustainable change. Actually, it is normal to have desires and goals but when they become demands they can become unhealthy and generate fears.Psychologists agree there are five major categories of goals or desires which are:

  • To be right
  • To be loved
  • To succeed
  • To be in control
  • To be comfortable

The associated fear with “I must be right” could be a fear of making mistakes which could lead to procrastination. If you “must” be loved in an unhealthy way, you may fear rejection. This could result in a failure to act for fear of upsetting people with an unpopular decision for example.

If your desire to succeed becomes extreme, you may fear failure such that you won’t take a necessary risk. Likewise, always needing to be in control can be at the root of fearing changes. This fear can result in the classic micromanaging behavior where you overcontrol people or a job function.

Last, we coaches talk about the fear of pain or wanting to be comfortable or stay within your comfort zone. This can lead to inaction and freezing up for fear of “rocking the boat.” Another way to say this might also be the fear of the unknown.

Regardless, awareness is the first step and an understanding of DiSC allows one to get at the underlying fears of people by style so that you can support them in moving through their self-imposed limitations.

I invite you to call us at (404) 327-6330 or email me at to learn how to work with these desires in a healthy way to reach your personal and professional goals.

 To you and your organization’s BEST YEAR YET!