Are you a mediocre leader?

“The only way mediocracy can feel close to originality is to suppress other mediocracy.” ~ David Neagle

I wasn’t always a great leader. I was actually a pretty mediocre leader.. and that might be generous. I didn’t know it at the time, I was completely unconscious… I was asleep at the leadership wheel.

Bringing others down…

Often the only thing I could do to make myself feel better was to bring others down to my level.  Again, this was all happening unconsciously.  I was in interrupter… I was a communicative railroader … And I had an insatiable need to be right! I did not realize that I was doing it… Or the damage that was being done to those around me. Especially not my employees.

“It’s never a climb out of mediocracy. It’s a con game of abuse.” ~ David Neagle

The terrible cycle I was running around in was limiting my own ability and the ability of those around me. I was trying desperately to find my unique authentic self… or at least I thought so… what I ended up realizing is that I was actually working on being superior and my ego was running the show.

“Superiority has no known human terms. The greater love one has one understands everyone.” ~ David Neagle

When my ego was running the show I was not coaching or leading my team to be the best versions of themselves they could be… I was doing the exact opppsite.  And I was on an even bigger path to self destruction. I was teaching them that in order to get ahead you must step on other people. Or treat them as if they have something to learn from you. Be above them.

Service Leadership

However, what is really true is that when you serve people and you remove the ego amazing things begin to happen. A shift in your life, organization, and in others around you begins and you will feel it in your core. It is a brilliant feeling!

“The desire to know greater … than my ignorant addictions of predictability.” ~ David Neagle

Let go of your ego and of what people might think of you and come from contribution. You will change both internally and externally… your team will shift internally and externally… and the organization will shift internally and externally!

 

Are you ready to let go of mediocrity and embrace true authenticity and lead by example? Let’s give it a shot! You can always go back to being what you were before you committed to this process! Nothing to lose… jump in!

My 2017 Mantra.. SHOW THE F$@K UP

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My ONE Thing

As a coach and trainer I’m committed to a life of growth both personally and professionally… So, I’ve been working on myself for many years now… however I never had the kind of clarity and focus that I have now.

A few months ago I made a commitment to myself to get into the best shape of my life… This was going to be my ONE Thing! I decided I was no longer going to be the ONE Thing in my own way.

On this journey I have received so many aha’s! Most of them around how I was hiding and not showing up! And more importantly how when I did show up I was apologizing for it…

Show the “&@$k” UP!

I was chosen by the authors of The ONE Thing as one of 75 people in the world who represent the brand and to teach and train on this amazing book. I went to Austin Texas to complete my certification, and the messages I received while there were unprecedented for my growth.

During a visualization exercise, my older much wiser self came to see my present self and the advice that she gave her… and I quote “SHOW THE FUCK UP!”

As I sat there quietly in the room with the rest of my cohorts, I knew she was right. I knew that I wasn’t showing up the way I can show up and that I intend or want to show up… yet I allow fear to get in the way.  It was time for me to stop hiding and show the fuck up!

As a result of this visualization and the many other things that led to this epiphany, I was able to see that I wasn’t always standing in my authenticity… I have grown and I’m more authentic than I’ve ever been, but not as authentic as I can be!

Growth

It was time to get comfortable being uncomfortable again… on a whole new level.  I can see how every day there is an opportunity for me to make a conscious choice to stand taller, be even more brave, and hella courageous than I’ve ever been.

This will mean that I cannot worry about judgment or criticism… in fact I must welcome it… embrace it. I must think of those who have walked before me and who live in full authenticity and are sometimes ridiculed for it… yet that’s how they inspire and attract their tribe. Those that love them and would be dissapointed if they were anything but their most authentic selves.

If you know you can and should be more authentic than you are today… join me and let go of who you think you need to be, should be, or ought to be and embark on SHOWING THE FUCK UP!

My 2017 mantra… SHOW THE FUCK UP! 

In every area of my life if I will stop apologizing and SHOW THE FUCK UP… everything will shift dramatically…

In my spiritual life… things will shift…

In my physical health… things will shift…

In my personal life… things will shift…

In my key relationships…

In my Job…

In my business…

In my finances…

EVERYTHING WILL BE DRAMATICALLY DIFFERENT IF I AM WILLING TO DO THIS ONE THING…

I’m ready to SHOW THE FUCK UP… Are you?

Have you reached the moon?

Sometimes we don’t know why things happen, why people come and go, or why we feel the way we feel. It is challenging to wrap our heads and hearts around it. You’ve got to believe that in the moments when you feel you are at your absolute lowest, and you’re being kicked while you are down… It is all happening for a reason.

Believe it!

That is the most challenging time to really believe, that is most challenging time to rally yourself to see something bigger, and know there is a purpose. That is when you must ask for support. Find someone in your life that does not enable you to stay where you are, they encourage you to push yourself and really really reach out side of your own narrow perspective and see there might be something on the other side of the pain, fear, and heartache.

Be it a job, lover, friend, or person that you are having these feelings about you need someone to pull you out of your own spiraling thoughts that are dragging you farther away from feeling good and closer to curling up on the floor in the fetal position. You need someone to listen, love, and support you. You need someone who doesn’t agree that you are a victim. You need someone to say… what part of this do you own? You need someone to ask.. how this is benefiting you?

Take responsibility & utilize your resources!

You may not want to hear what that person has to say, but you need to listen. I have several of those people in my life. I keep them close to me so I can pull myself up from a potentially hazardous thought or from back sliding so far that it’s tough to recover quickly. Identify who those people are, what their value is to you in your life, and how you can really, really, really capitalize on their gifts when you are in a space like this.

If you don’t have someone like this in your life… you are probably WRONG! They are there you are just not tapping into your resources. If you really don’t have one…FIND ONE, or a few. Hire one! Offer to trade for one. Whatever you do, get one. They are imperative to your growth, your development, and your mental health. They will help you find peace inside yourself and ultimately step into your ideal life.

I am one of those people. I am here to help shift thought processes and old belief systems. I am here to support you and kick your ass! If you are at the top of your food chain and you don’t have anyone who is mentoring you, guiding you, or giving you things to think about in regard to your life, I’ve got news for you… You have stopped growing and that doesn’t mean you “made it”. It means you have put yourself and your life on pause. Sure you are going keep doing the things in life that you do every day. Time doesn’t stop, but if you aren’t getting better you just might be getting worse.

Athletes don’t STOP training & neither should you!

What happens to an athlete when they stop practicing? Do they lose what they have learned? No, not necessarily. But what does happen is that after a period of time, they are no longer able to play the way they once did, they are not as agile, and they haven’t learned new ways of attacking the game the way other athletes who are practicing every single day can. In the game of life, personal growth and development is practice. It helps you become more agile, faster, smarter, stronger so that when you get thrown a curve ball you know what to do, and how to handle it. You look for solutions and fetal position is a mere thought for a split second, rather than a three day way of life.

So if you are after the MOON, don’t just look at it! GO GET IT!

No matter what your goals are it is time to stop letting yourself down and get started moving in the right direction. One step after another, just take the steps you need to get a little farther ahead than you were the day before. :) It’s not about eating the entire elephant it’s about eating one bite at a time, not stopping and forgetting what it is that you want and what your goal ultimately is at the end of the day.

Empowerment was the KEY to Unlocking ME!

Empowerment, what is it? What does it mean? Well dictionary.com says Empowerment is a verb and that it means…

  1. to give power or authority to; authorize, especially by legal or official means:

I empowered my agent to make the deal for me. The local ordinance empowers the board of health to close unsanitary restaurants.

  1. to enable or permit:

Wealth empowered him to live a comfortable life.

 Victim Mode

I used to live my life as a victim feeling like I wasn’t in control of what was happening to me in my life. I made a lot of excuses around the way I was, the way I spoke and the way I behaved toward others. I am going to be completely honest, and tell you that I was quite a bitch. Now, not everyone thought I was a bitch, my kids loved me, my husband, and my family didn’t even think about it like that. I only know because I can look back on my life before I started to do the work and realize what I was and how I treated those around me. It is not something I am proud of, however I am grateful for the point of reflection because I truly love who I am today.

 Empowerment was the KEY to unlocking ME!

Empowerment was the key to unlocking me. I looked at nine areas of my life and I began to identify what wasn’t working and empower myself to create what was in each area.

 

What is the first step toward empowerment?

  1. Taking responsibility.

This was the hardest part of the journey and for me the most painful. It’s starting. Peeling back the layers and getting to the root of what was causing the insatiable need to be right, the know it all attitude, and the constant interrupting. I can remember feeling so awful at times when going through this process. My past wanted me to be defensive and make excuses. Yet when I stopped being the victim and making excuses for why things weren’t working or what wasn’t going to go right, I actually got some relief and I felt much better. Look at yourself, listen to what people say, and begin to accept it. I am all about patting yourself on the back and being the cheerleader, but if you want to grow you’ve got to strip yourself down and build a strong foundation under there. If you’re finding you identify with any of these things, you probably need to step outside of yourself and take a look. Sometimes the things that sting are the things that we need to take the closest look at.

The Funky Stork Brings Authenticity & Empowerment

Welcome Guest Blogger Allexia Brewer!
Creative, funky, quirky, unique, out of the box, innovator, leader, artist… some of the words used to describe this raspberry filled in a box of glazed. I’m different, always was. You might know this about me already if you’ve read my previous blog, but one thing you may not know is that my parents?? TOTALLY OPPOSITE. like I was dropped into my family by the FUNKY STORK:) My stork wore Cruella by Nars(the hottest red lipcolor ever), awesome, handcrafted, one of a kind earrings and leather booties. SHE was the ROCKSTAR stork!

“Where did you come from?” A question posed to me by my 17 year old daughter. I pondered that for a long time. I always thought my brother was the black sheep of this family. NOPE. It’s ME. All the way and you know, I’m proud of it, very proud of it. Not that there is anything wrong with my parents, I love them, but they are different from me, a teacher and a business man.Different.
Conservative, old school, just different. I do see glimpses of my spirit in my dad, so maybe it started there, but my absolute NEED to be different, I have no idea where it came from.

It’s a need that dominates every thought and action in my life. From what I wear that has to be different than everyone, to the color of our home that I painted Purple, yes purple, because… well because it was purple and no one had a purple house!! I think about unique ways to live and read, to exercise and draw, to express and internalize.Even where I eat, the experiences I have, where I shop, what I buy, always looking to be unique, needing to be unique. I always live in a creative state. ALL THE TIME. It’s just the way my mind is wired.

So how do we find ourselves, honor ourselves and live our FIERCELY AUTHENTIC SELF when those around us might not get it? When those around us are just different? When conformity is the order of the day? Well, I’m not exactly sure there is a right or wrong way but here’s what I did.

-I embraced who I was hook, line and sinker. I left no room for negotiation.

-I ignored the comments and sneers and remember, I was 13 when I liberated myself from the boring and mundane. YOU CAN DO THIS.

-I began to SEE that even at a young age, being myself was refreshing for those around me. They liked it, they might not have fully have understood it, but they liked it.I could tell:) and that gave me confirmation that being ME was a good thing.

-I got compliments and inquiries.Confirmation. Permission. Admiration. Validation. “That’s cool.” “That’s soo Alexia.” “Where do you shop?” OMG if I only had one cent for everytime I’ve heard that!! This gave me a sense of my power as an individual and as a woman.

So, if setting free your FIERCE AUTHENTICITY is what you need to do to find your voice, live your life and contribute to this world fully and magically, THE TIME IS NOW. SET HER FREE!! It is in that expression that parts of you will awaken, your truth will not be withheld from you. Your voice will no longer be silenced. We need FIERCE AUTHENTICIY in this world. This I do know for sure:)

Sincerely,

Allexia


Empowerment and Authenticity: Loud & Proud

As a leader I wasn’t always authentic and I wasn’t always empowered. I was hiding from who I was and where I had come from. I was trying to be someone I wasn’t. I can remember a time when I would walk into work and not make eye contact with my employees. Not everyday but somedays and it had nothing to do with them. I didn’t dislike them, and I didn’t intentionally mean to be what they presumed as “bitchy” on occasion..

I just wasn’t sure who I was or how a leader would BE with their people. I hadn’t done any work on myself at this point, read any books on leadership, or knew that it was ok to be me. However I didn’t really know who ME was and looking back it showed. This spilled over into my personal life too. I wasn’t a leader in love, life, or business. I was hiding. I was hiding inside of 100lbs of fat, insecurity, know it all attitude, and an insatiable need to be right. I can look back knowing that all of the stuff that I was hiding beneath wasn’t intentional. I was just asleep. I needed to accept myself as I was and begin to investigate what had helped shape me. I clearly had drive, but I was a victim, I had passion but no purpose. Creating an awareness around these things helped me to notice who I was and who I wanted to become. I was able to stop the behavior that was causing the pain and start with a mindset that would shape the woman I am today.

What does it mean to be empowered? What does it mean to be loud and proud?

Ask yourself:

Where am I?

Who am I?

What do I want to say?

Look for those three questions to help you evolve and when you do walk a little taller, show up a little differently and find a way to be a little more loud and proud.

How do you want to be remembered?

We talk a lot about the things we want and what we want to do in life, but it isn’t often that we think about how we want to be remembered. Death is something that people fear. The fear of dying is the number one fear of most people on the planet. Next to public speaking I think. It is interesting to me that is the case. I don’t have either one. I am one who doesn’t get caught up in loss, nor has a fear of getting up in front of people to talk. It wasn’t always this way though. I really had to work on it. Buddhist principals helped me to really find peace around the idea of death.

I was talking to someone this week and we were having a discussion about how you want to be remembered and the message he sent was something I wanted to share with you because it had an impact on me.

He said “How would I like to be remembered, if today was my last. My first thought was all the clichéd answers that are usually given in answer. I want to be remembered as being a kind man. A honest man, sincere, loving and forgiving. Then I thought. No I don’t want to be an average run of the mill obituary. I want it to talk about my travels in life my deeds. Being of conflicted mind, I decided to set it aside and give it more thought. Well, the usual business of life took over. The process of life, not living. Last night I recalled a funeral For a good friend of mine.. His family torn apart by his passing. The end of life as they knew it. In a certain respect that is absolutely true. Yet, I remember the life he lived.. He would have rather everyone had a party. Got drunk. Told the crazy stories about what we all did together. Loved each other completely. That was him in a nutshell and so much more. Then it dawned on me. I want to be remembered for all the things that seem clichéd. As well as those we believe we are worthy of. Because they are not what makes a life, but a life lived. Truly squeezed for all it’s worth.”

That got me thinking… How do I want to be remembered… Well, I want to be remembered as a woman who inspired and motivated people to be the BEST version of themselves they could conceive and then the one who kicked their ass and supported them until they showed up! I want to be remembered as a soft and kind soul who really really embraced people from where they were but required more from them than anyone else they had ever met. I want to be remembered as someone who’s purpose was to serve others and who changed lives and left this place and the people she met along the way far better than she found it and them. Someone who was an example and gave other people courage to stand in their truth and not hide who they are for anyone. I work on it every single day!

So is this a morbid conversation to be having… to some maybe. But for me it is empowering because if I know how I want to be remembered I can focus on that every single day. I can work toward being the person that I want to be remembered as doing the things I want to do. I can work to live my life in a way that is in alignment with the end, and by doing that I will have no regrets! So how do you want to be remembered?

Thank you for taking time to be with me today. I look forward to supporting you on your journey. If you want to be empowered and create some real results in your life then let’s work together! Email me at emily@evovlewithemily.com. Cheers to the next phase in your evolution!

This ONE thing will change your life forever!

Today I forgive myself for being angry and judging myself and others. I forgive myself for being angry at myself for all of the “bad” decisions, yelling, and hurt I have caused. For so long I was one of those people who was a “do as I say not as I do” kind of person (we usually attribute this to a parenting style but I think it is applicable to people in general). I didn’t want to be judged for my decisions, mistakes, or choices; and yet I still was highly critical and judgmental of others for theirs. I can remember judging my family, my children, my friends, co-workers, and perfect strangers. I would place a judgment on them for a number of different things. Much of this judgment caused arguments, uncomfortable discussions, and lots of time it left me feeling empty.

I was trying to prove that I was right and they were wrong. If I was wrong it would threaten who I was and my sense of self worth. When I learned the things we don’t like in others are often the things about ourselves that we don’t like it was a real tough thing for me to hear and apply to myself. It stung pretty bad.

I learned that most of the time when I am offended by what someone says about me it is usually because I know it is true. Or I have worked on it for a while, and it was something that I have been able get over, but if triggered it could pop right back up. There are rarely times when someone says something that I cannot find a way to own what they are saying, (This is where I have found the biggest growth opportunities) whether it be from my past or in my present. The other thing I have come to acknowledge that has also helped me in so many ways is knowing that I don’t have to agree with them. I am not talking about denial. I am talking about taking a self-inventory, recognizing the behavior is or was a behavior that I do or did and that I am not going to participate in the negativity of that behavior anymore. I forgive myself for doing it, I forgive them, if I was angry at them for saying it, embrace where I can grow and move to another place. “Someone else’s opinion of you does not have to become your truth” is a quote that I love.

Today I forgive myself for judging others, and being angry. I commit to focusing on myself and being a good example by never expecting someone else to do something that I am not willing to do myself. I use the feedback and the experiences I’ve had to evaluate myself, my behavior, and elevate to another bigger, better version of myself.

CHEERS to Forgiveness!

If things went smoothly what the hell would they pay you for?

There are many situations in my life that do not present themselves in ways that keep me in positive state. They may be situations professionally with clients, personally with friends, family, or my kids. Every day I create situations in which my life throws me all kinds of curve balls. However, I have learned that after I have “reacted” to the situation there is always a reason or purpose for the situation no matter how good, bad, or indifferent it may feel at the time or how it plays out. I don’t always respond the way that I could and I work hard to stay grounded, see things from the other person’s perspective, and let go of any attachments I have to the way I think things “should” play out. (Did I mention that I am a recovering control freak who still dabbles in it from time to time!?)

I often use my feelings as a way to measure my success or failure with a particular situation and I know that is not fair to me (or other people). It is extremely difficult to measure feelings. And success and failure are metrics we use to measure many things in life. If I combine these elements (success, failure, and feelings) they often don’t align and can cause a lot of pain. If I am going to judge myself by my feelings or “pass/fail” myself by my feelings it is easy to get wrapped up in a negative space. It also makes it difficult to really know if I am successful or if I am failing. The definition of success and failure to me will be different than another person and ultimately could be the very thing that keeps me feeling stuck.

For example, a few weeks ago I had a conversation with a client about her business. She was feeling like a “failure” because of the way that the last few employees had acted and how the relationship ended. She had decided that she was a failure at employee relationships. She had defined it, without realizing it, and she felt shitty about it. (She failed herself based on her feelings.) However, my definition of what she had accomplished was one of success, and one that many people (lots of my other clients) wish they could do. She had the courage to let go of an employee who did not serve her or the business any more for many reasons. I asked her to determine what failure was in that situation and what success would have been in that particular relationship. She really couldn’t define it, outside of the person staying. However, the more we talked and the more questions I asked her about the situation the farther and farther she moved away from failure. Now, she was still experiencing the feelings and the emotions that lead her to that failing grade but she could see a little clearer that it might not be “failure”. You see just because we “feel” a certain way might not mean that we have failed, especially if we cannot define it.

Dictionary.com says that the definitions of failure are: 1.) An act or instance of failing or proving unsuccessful; lack of success. 2.) Non-performance of something due, required, or expected.

The definitions of success are: 1.) The favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors; the accomplishment of ones goals. 2.) The attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like.

The definition of feelings are: 1.) The general state of consciousness considered independently of particular sensations, thoughts, etc.. 2.) A consciousness or vague awareness.

These definitions of success and failure are not attached to feelings. Although I have felt “failure” it is really more about action, not feelings. Although I have felt “success” it is really about action, not feelings. The feelings are the thing that follow the action. In my client’s situation, it could be possible to feel “success” for removing a person that didn’t fit anymore. In addition it could be possible to feel failure to keep a person that didn’t work anymore. It all depends on your definition of success or failure and the actions or inactions that follow.

I am not suggesting that we “fire” people and move on. Each scenario is different, however it is important that we examine the difference between success and failure and our expectations around that. What other people or “society” thinks is a big reason we attach attach success and failure to our feelings and situations. Many times I react or respond not based on my own feelings but on how I think I “should” respond or react.  Or how I “should” or “shouldn’t” feel about something, not about how I really feel. For this client she felt failure because our society says that keeping an employee is often the “right” thing to do… success. However, I have another client who kept an employee 30 years past when she thought she should because of that same societal conditioning. She now looks back at the last 30 years and feels like a failure. She feels like a failure because of the action or not “doing” something about her situation. In her mind my client who had the courage to follow her heart against all odds is more successful than she will ever know.

Each of us gets to define what success and failure is and how we feel about it. But ultimately the feeling comes from an action or inaction attached to it and how you have defined success or failure. We have all experienced success and failure in many ways, this is not only about personal or professional relationships. Your success or failure might be attached to your job, your children, your physical appearance, or your bank account.

For me the only thing that keeps me moving forward with positive momentum is forgiveness. I forgive myself for my action that caused my failures and my inaction that caused my failures. When I boil it all down to the actions associated with the failure or success I am able to have a healthier relationship with my feelings and emotions and pull myself out of the rut that I was stuck in. I realize that if I feel like a failure because I was at one point 300lbs it is not that I am a failure. It is that I failed to do or not do what would get me to my goals. And I have the ability to make a different decision. If I stayed in my corporate job too long I would have felt like a failure to take action accomplishing my dreams, not because I am actually a failure. It seems like semantics and it is to a certain extent, except that these very words and thoughts keep most of us down and feeling badly about ourselves, which leads us into a deeper in the opposite direction of where we really want to go.

If you find yourself experiencing negative feelings and you have passed or failed yourself on one topic or another, here are a few things you can do:

  1. Recognize your failure might be someone else’s success.
  2. Recognize you can begin to take action or stop taking action to get the result you desire.
  3. Be kind to yourself.
  4. Let go of what society thinks you should do.
  5. Forgive yourself for what you did or didn’t do.
  6. Forgive others for what they did or didn’t do.
  7. Develop a new thought pattern or belief system that supports you in a positive way.
  8. Don’t dwell on the past, it is not a predictor of the future. You get to decide at any time you want to be or do something different.
  9. Be careful giving yourself or others the success/failure label.
  10. Your job as a leader in any capacity is not supposed to be easy! You get paid for things to be challenging, and if you don’t believe that then you should QUIT today!

I am committed to a nonjudgmental perspective and growth from within. Evolve!  If you have a story of success or failure or have a question about success, failure, or your feelings about it share your story or comment. I would love to hear how you have overcome these things or if there is anything I can do to support you in moving in a new direction.