• Chemical Brain Freeze

Being Your Best on Your Next Adventure

No coastingHave you ever asked yourself the question “What would it look like if I became my personal best on my next adventure? Most people just rise to a level of acceptability and not excellence. A great question Mike Rayburn (www.MikeRayburn.com) raised during a recent presentation. “Have you resolved to be your best?” What do you think that would look like?
In today’s world most people coast through life and that’s fine. The one thing you need to recognize and understand is that the problem with coasting is that it’s all downhill. If comfort is your goal, success is not in your future.
So what does it take for you to become the best at what you do? Interesting question because most of us know what we need to do but we just don’t do it. This why a sense of purpose is so important to us. What are those goals and adventures that are so important we don’t want to approach them half-hearted or in a coasting mode? Do you really want to be a half-hearted spouse, parent, friend or co-worker? Every adventure we embark on has an impact on others and do we provide a positive impact? Anything worth doing is worth doing well. But sometimes we need help and this can be our biggest stumbling block.
You’ve heard people talk about being self-taught and we all teach ourselves quite a bit and the Internet makes it easier everyday. However sometimes when we are self-taught we fail to notice that our teachers aren’t great in every area. Take the time and effort to find good coaches to help you with you adventures. It can have a big impact.
Sometimes when we set out on a new adventure we start by compromising when setting our goals. We aim too low and wind up settling for mediocrity and second best. Instead, continue to work on asking the question “What if? What would this adventure look like? How could I make this happen and what would be the positive impact on those around me?”
Tough questions to ask, even tougher questions to answer when you are true to yourself. But by asking these questions and answering them truthfully, you define who you are as you embark on your next adventure.
Thanks for coming along!

What if, When Making Plans for the Next Adventure

Mike RayburnThere I was, working and planning away on my new adventure and feeling good about it. Then I had an opportunity to go see Mike Rayburn(www.MikeRayburn.com) live at a recent program. He was absolutely phenomenal. Not only a gifted musician and storyteller but he really got you thinking. He has a book titled “What If?” and I would suggest purchasing it on his website. I wanted to point out just a few key things Mike got me thinking about as I plan my new adventure.

He asks the question, “What if?” Not meaning that you are going to do it but rather just asking what is possible. What if I could? How would that work if I could?
He points out that our default behavior in life is that we look at or for reasons not to do things. Instead we should change our default behavior to where we look for reasons we can do things! A very simplistic but astute rationale on how we can get things done. He also points out the only way to manage change is to create change. Again our default behavior is to fight change. What if we shifted that to creating change and embracing change? It creates a completely different picture doesn’t it? The one thing we know to be true about our plans is that nothing ever goes according to plan! So embrace change.
Here is the reason for these default behaviors: We take problems and put them on a pedestal and worship them. Mike’s perspective is, quit driving through life with the brakes on and get creative. The world need’s our creativity. He lined out three steps to get started:
1. Outside Observation – get that 30,000-foot view of what you are dealing with and get a handle of the size and scope.
2. Take a problem or situation and say, “What is the Opportunity?” Then ask, “What if?”
3. Open up creativity and take physical action on it.
Here are a couple of his other thoughts, which will get your thinking moving in the right direction:
A. Set goals you can’t achieve, not 5-10% increases. What does it take to double what you want to do?
B. Don’t start with what’s possible?, start with what’s cool?. The type of goal it takes courage to think about.
A sense of purpose is the most motivating factor. What is your sense of purpose? Some good food for thought until next time.
Thanks for coming along.

What’s your next Adventure?

Backpacking crossingThe great Helen Keller provided this prolific statement, “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all!” What a great way to look at our lives. Helen Keller overcame so much adversity and became an inspiration encouraging boldness and audacity. We may not have the adversity Helen Keller did, but we do have our ups and downs, our successes and failures and our starts and stops. Sometimes life doesn’t turn out exactly as we plan but the key question is, ”What do we do about it?”
I have watched people who have stumbled and they just struggle trying to get back up and moving forward. Sometimes they get moving again but its like they are in a fog and not really living life but rather just going through the motions.
What is it that we have to do to begin living the life we want to have and move in the direction of our dreams? In my book Chemical Brain Freeze, I talk about overcoming default behaviors and moving forward. These are some key thoughts to making a positive move in order to get you moving in the direction you want to go.
Sometimes it just makes sense to break things down into smaller steps.
Summer has just about come to an end and it was a great summer. We usually think of all kinds of adventures to be had during the summer months.
Now ask yourself the simple question; “What’s my next adventure?” What’s my next adventure for today? This week? Next month? Next year? Come up with an adventure and go make it happen. It can be such a positive experience. Don’t wait for something to come to you. Go make something happen and have fun with! You’ll be glad you did! In the weeks ahead I’ll fill you in on what I have been working on the last half of this summer and what an adventure I’ll be starting. Over 25 years ago I was told I couldn’t do something and I decided now was the time to go it.
Thanks for coming along!

Adventure Lessons

This week a good friend shared this perspective with me. He said, “The trouble with America today is that the adventure is gone.” I showed my grandson his Mom’s hiking stick she had wLittle man big stickhen she was little. It had feathers, a tiny pine cone and beads she had used to decorate it. I carved her name into the side of the stick. We journeyed for years. Each summer I would carve another summer hiking ring at the bottom for our adventures. There were 13 rings she had accrued, when I showed it to my grandson. I don’t know if he had a clue what it was I told him about heritage. He just picked up the stick and started walking. He has that adventure gene in him. The same gene that made America great. I think we may need more hiking sticks in America today. It’s still a great country full of adventure, even if 2 1/2yr olds teach us this lesson instead of today’s Congress. What is your next adventure?

Aggrandize vs Minimize

AggrandizeSometimes the most difficult item in coaching people is getting them to move forward. People are afraid of making mistakes and they hold back and don’t grow. If you think about martial arts, you start as a beginner and learn the basics of movement from using your, hands, elbows, feet, shins and your head. Each new belt you add skills. You make mistakes but learn along the way. In fact if you make the same mistake over and over in martial arts, you will have the bruises to show for it. The secret is not to repeat the mistake but rather to learn and grow from the mistakes and missteps and aggrandize.
In business and life it’s not always about being right all of the time but rather learning, growing and contributing. Once one becomes a black belt it doesn’t mean the journey is over. Rather it means the journey has just begun because now you have the skills to take it up to the next level. Keep working on your management and leadership skills the rewards are big.

The Backwards Brain Bicycle

BicycleThere are times when we need to have a difficult conversation and it is just tough to turn that difficult conversation into a positive experience. Our brain does some very strange things during difficulty and stress and we wonder why it is so difficult to accomplish our goals.
This short video utilizes the skills of riding a bicycle to demonstrate how our brain works and the default behaviors we acquire. What is intriguing is the difficulty in overcoming these default behaviors. Consistency is a big factor in creating new constructive behaviors.
After watching this video think about the skill sets, behaviors and routines we have that come to us as easy as riding a bicycle but yet may be holding us back from what we want to achieve. We may not even be aware of these behaviors until we start to analyze why we haven’t reached all of goals.

Copy and paste into your browser to watch this unique video. (Smarter Every Day 133)

http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=smarter+every+day+forget+to+ride+a+bike&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=F706017762DDD03B719DF706017762DDD03B719D

Default Behaviors and Resolutions

2015 resolutionsWe are midway through the month of January and I’m already noticing a decrease in people at the fitness center. Right after the first of the year, people flocked into the fitness centers vowing to uphold their New Year’s resolutions to get into shape and lose weight with their new memberships. How are you doing with your resolutions?
In my book “Chemical Brain Freeze – How to Stay in the Game During Difficulty and Stress”, I discuss default behaviors and how we get off track from our goals and resolutions. Sometimes it’s understanding the unmet emotional needs that drive our behaviors, which can cause these to become default behaviors. Everyone has sincere thoughts and ideas about making changes. Sometimes it is health related, other times it just to get the benefits from getting back into shape.
I hear people talk about feeling self conscious about going to the fitness center to work out. That portion of the brain called the amygdala is warning us we may not feel like we fit in properly. Our default behavior kicks in and we wind up talking ourselves out of going to the gym. Here is the interesting aspect of this type of self-talk. We get all worked up about what other people may be thinking about us. In reality nobody cares what you do, they all think everyone is looking at them. To overcome our default behaviors in this situation we need to understand why we want to get fit with our resolutions.
If you take just a little bit of time to work on what your fitness goals are, such as losing weight, muscle toning or increasing aerobic time and then figure out what the rewards will be from these workouts during the week. Write them down and keep track on a calendar. Give yourself benchmarks. Celebrate when hit your goals. Simple effective way to overcome default behaviors.
Guess what? If you can overcome default behaviors that keep you from exercising you can use the same strategy for any goal you have set for 2015. Don’t wait until October to start working on your goals. Start now and watch what happens.

“Chemical Brain Freeze® ” Book release

CBF Book photoF

New book just released – “Chemical Brain Freeze® -How to Stay in the Game During Difficulty and Stress”. This is Chuck’s new book that demonstrates how to reach higher performance levels.
Our behaviors are affected by the fast-paced world we live in and the stress and difficulties that come with this hectic pace. We need to be at our best during the most stressful situations but our brain isn’t on the same wavelength. Chuck teaches you how to stay engaged in those stressful situations and perform at your best.
Chemical Brain Freeze® explores what happens when we get stressed out and how we can handle situations more productively:
• How the brain works during difficulty and stress
• How we get derailed from reaching our goals

You will learn:
• What you can do to stay in the game during pressure situations
• How to overcome default behaviors
• How to increase performance both professionally and personally
Go to the Chuck Inman on-line store or Amazon.com and purchase your copy today!

What stops us from reaching our goals?

boy fishingWhen I was a small child, my family went fishing with my aunt and uncle at their favorite lake. To get to their boat you had to go down stairs to a raft and then paddle out in a small skiff to retrieve the boat. I am one of the first on the raft along with my aunt and uncle. Before I put on my life jacket, I walk over to the edge of the raft and fall into the lake.

Aunt Pauline is in shock when she hears the splash and then can’t find me on the raft. She freezes in place. Uncle Bill moves quickly to the edge, grabs my arm and pulls me back up on the raft. I’m wet but no worse for wear.

Later Aunt Pauline confesses, “I was so shocked I couldn’t do anything. I couldn’t scream, move or think. I just stood there.”

Sometimes events in our lives, like watching someone fall off a raft, cause us to have a Chemical Brain Freeze®where we freeze and can’t move. But have you noticed there are times in our everyday lives where we feel stuck in a rut and we can’t move just like aunt Pauline? When we question why we aren’t moving forward and reaching our goals, we realize there are default behaviors holding us back.

In my new book coming out in a couple of weeks, Chemical Brain Freeze®– How to Stay in the Game during Difficulty and Stress, we look at default behaviors and reasons behind the behaviors that hold us back.

It is fascinating to understand what keeps us from becoming all that we can be and reaching the goals that are most important to us.

We’ll continue to explore this concept in the next couple of blogs.

Thanks for coming along.boy fishing

Change Ahead

Change aheadChange–it has amazing stopping power, doesn’t it? The very mention of change will get people digging their heels in to protect how they currently do business.

When we undergo change there are three basic phases involved. Each one has an effect on our ability to make the change successful.

•    The Current phase is our comfort zone where we perform our day-to-day activities with confidence. We understand the workflow processes, how to multitask and anticipate the pace of the work. Our sense of worth, productivity, value and status are recognized from being competent in our role in this phase.

•    Next is the Action phase where we begin to develop new behaviors, values and attitudes.  We are now being asked and asking employees to look at performing our work differently, which will disrupt the current way of doing things.  We aren’t as sure of the outcomes of our work in the Action phase.

•    Finally we move into the New phase, which is the final stage of crystallizing our thoughts and adaptation of ownership to the new change. The New phase is where we will be working in the future. We have questions as we enter this New phase:

•    Will we be recognized for our contributions?
•    Will we have the ability to provide input and have a share of voice?
•    Will we be able to provide value and be flexible?

Here are four key steps that will help people move through the three key phases of change.

1. Create a clear view – Explain why the change is taking place. Understand where you are going and why it is important for the team to reach the destination. Be able to articulate clearly so members of your team understand the reason for the change.  Also explain the value of their role in this change process.

2. Move Quickly — One of the success strategies for nimbly moving through change is to get to the New phase as quickly as possible. Get started by moving through the Action phase and find a footing in this New phase where you can begin to experiment with new processes. Look at the resources and skills you are bringing with you to assist in this change process. Your problem solving, analytical, and time management skills are all tools that will help with the change. Recognize some things will be ending, some will be continuing and some will be new because of the change. When you can identify those items it takes the fear of the unknown away.

3. Communicate continuously – Don’t assume because you told people once they fully understand the reason and process for change. Communicate consistently and often.  Use different media. Don’t assume an e-mail or website will be read and all questions will be answered. Regularly ask for feedback on what’s working and what’s not working. Ask members of your team to describe back to you the reason for change and why it is important. This will enable you to determine if they understand why the change is taking place. Continue this exercise throughout the phases of change as reinforcement.

4. Recognize early achievements — Try to attain small victories and accomplishments early and celebrate these small wins quickly. Don’t wait for monthly or quarterly reviews. Recognize the accomplishments on a weekly or even daily basis for some milestones. Give credit where credit is due. You build value and show yourself and others they have the ability to act and make progress in the change process.

Change is inevitable but the above steps are some ways to get you and your team through change quickly and effectively.  It takes hard work and consistency but it is worth the effort.  You C.A.N. move through change.

Thanks for coming along.