by Lou Russell

October 10, 2011

Leading Yourself & Others Through Jaw Dropping Change

So, Gary says to me "do you know there are 800 people following you on Training Magazine Network?" and I said HOLY POOP! I'm being quite rude. And Gary said "Yes, you really should talk to them once in a while" so here I go. Check out for my virtual group discussions. If I forget, please email me and give me the dickens Here are a couple of other ways to hear my virtual thoughts: @nolecture and my blog

We're going to have another webinar this Tuesday which is about leading through change which is something we are all experts on. It's called:

Leading Yourself & Others Through Jaw-Dropping Change

RMA thought-leader Mary Cook we'll be our guest. We've changed the topic from accountability, in case you were wondering. We'll do that later. You will find these materials very powerful. Register at:

It's a rainy day here in Indy today and it feels right. Slow, dark, and restful in a way. Washing away the leaves and likely the fake summer we've been having. It's been a tough emotional week since a dear friend lost a young son. And yet the world continues to spin and we are reminded of what matters if we only open our hearts and eyes.

Here's a cool exercise that Thiagi ( ) taught me years ago. It's a tough one on a personal level, so don't try this unless you have 15 minutes or so to think it through. The activity itself is short but very meaningful.

1. Rip a piece of paper into eight equal pieces (folding first helps)

2. Write the following, each on one piece of paper: 2 possessions that you value above all others, 2 people you love above all others, 2 strengths that you have that you are proud of above all others, and 2 hobbies that you have that you enjoy the most. You should now have 8 little pieces of paper, each with one of these eight things written on it.

3. Here goes the tough part: pretend you have become ill and no one is really sure what's wrong with you but you are missing work, etc. You don't feel like doing the things you used to do. Pick out 2 of your pieces of paper and crumple them up.

Next, it turns out they are going to hospitalize you to figure out what's going on. Throw away 2 more of your pieces of paper.

Very bad news. You have aggressive cancer that will require radiation and chemo. You are very weak. Crumple up 2 more pieces of paper.

Now take your remaining pieces of paper and find someone you like. Don't let them see what's on either piece. In our scenario, you are so weak someone else is taking care of you. Ask the person you have found to randomly pick one of the pieces of paper and crumple it up.

The power comes from thinking through your choices. We prioritize our focus all day every day. We choose no by the way we choose yes. And sometimes things are chosen for us no matter how hard we try for that not to happen.

I'd love to hear from you about what you think about this exercise! More to come! Peace.


Lou Russell

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