As a child of the 70′s I grew up 80′s where baby boomers were loving life, loving love and loving themselves. This translated to every area of life including their parenting. The seeds of self-esteem were laid by my parents generation and have taken full root in my generation. It’s this idea that kids need to have a positive outlook in life, they need to love themselves. While in limited ways this can be true the pervasiveness of this idea is killing the collective conscience of our country and is ruining our kids.
If you are a leader on any level for better or worse meetings are a part of your life. it’s unavoidable. I am not going to tell you how to do a good meeting Patrick Lencioni does a far better job than I ever could in his book “Death By Meeting.” It’s a must read for any leader.
What I want to cover is how to survive bad meetings. Bad meetings do more damage than we realize. Bad meetings produce silos, mavericks and rebels. Bad meetings tend hurt more organizations than anything else. It’s often in a bad meeting that energy and vision is crushed and conformity is pushed. Bad meetings force people to abandon the ship of team and jump on the life raft of department.
I have been a mac evangelist since 1997 the way Steve Jobs thinks blows me away. Here’s the thing. I use my iPhone for everything it has to be the single greatest innovative thing Apple has ever done. I am rarely without my iPhone. I left for Australia a couple of weeks ago and if you know anything about international roaming fee you know that it forces you to look for wifi hotspots with the same frivolity I search for the coffee first thing in the morning. I arrived back home in the states my phone starts doing weird stuff, dropping calls, showing no services then out of nowhere it heats to ear scalding temperatures and starts dropping it’s charge even when plugged in. Once the phone had fully discharged it’s battery it was not turning on and was not responding to being plugged into a computer or to the wall. So I am without a phone for the next few days.
It’s actually been a good thing.
Here are the 3 things I have learned by not having a cell phone.
I love the Heath brothers I have read all three of their books. I like their books because they start with a hypothesis then do research and mix in person stories and application. Recently I read a book they wrote called Decisive. In the book Decisive they tackle the idea of how we make decisions in life and work. I found the book very insightful and helpful.
One of the quotes that stood out to me is when they were referring to what they call “Mental tripwire” They said this “We spend 90% of our time driving straight but it’s the turns that determine where we end up.” The basic idea of a mental trip wire is to wake you up from the numbness that routine provides. We do something so much and so often we switch to auto pilot and rather than turning when we need to we fly off the cliff of irrelevance.
Here are three mental trip wires you need to set in life and ministry.
- Make appointments trip wires for yourself with alarms on you calendar – Set an appointment with your self to exercise, think, pray, spend time with your wife and kids. If you don’t set aside time on purpose you will give it all away by accident. -
- Set feedback trip wires – Email out feedback surveys to those who attend, ask for feedback from those who attend your services, employ secret shoppers.
- Set evaluation trip wires – My friend Jim Wideman does this and I think is great either put on your calendar a question or use boomerang to send yourself an email in the future asking yourself questions you forget to ask. Is my passion for The Lord where it should be? Am I dating my wife? Am I leading with clarity or expecting with ambiguity.
Most people say that they are more afraid of speaking in public than they are of death. Which is understandable on one level and crazy on another. I guess when you are dead you can’t read posts on facebook of people comment on how bad you did. I like most people was at one point in my life very afraid to speak in front of other people, but if God has called you to be a pastor and lead others it’s a fear you don’t have the luxury of retaining.
Here is the reality that even though I have preached many messages and spoken at conferences I still need to be nervous at the right time, because when and what makes you nervous tells a lot about you. I still get nervous after years of experience but what makes me most nervous presently is very different from what used to make me nervous.