How is Your Focus?

Focus is a fundamental requirement in today’s workplace. In the knowledge workforce focus is necessary for productivity and efficiency; It’s necessary for quality and for safety; It’s necessary for self-awareness; And it’s also necessary for the practices of mindfulness and meditation. A colleague of mine who suffered from alcohol addiction, found it impossible to focus for any length of time in order to do the meditation and prayer taught in some of the 12-step Programs for a sober life. She was however, able to re-wire her brain and train herself for focus and meditation, and she shares her story in her book “Madly Chasing Peace – How I went from Hell to Happy in Nine Minutes a day”, by Dina Proctor.

Dina is a bestselling author, speaker, and coach for corporations and individuals. She developed a very simple and quick technique to focus within. Dina’s 9-minutes a day, 3×3 Technique (3 minutes, 3 times a day) delivers impactful changes and has earned the support of co-author of Chicken Soup for the Soul, Jack Canfield, renowned cell-biologist Dr. Bruce Lipton, professional coach and teacher Bob Doyle from The Secret, and a featured presence on Maria Shriver’s blog, among many others.

Dina has given me permission to share her technique which is found on page 141 of her book.

“Many times I will do nothing more than sit quietly with my eyes closed and count how many times my heart beats during the three minutes. When I first started meditating, I tried counting how many breaths I took but kept getting distracted – maybe because there was so much time between breaths that my mind had a chance to wander. For whatever reason, putting a hand over my chest to feel and count my heartbeats with my eyes closed keeps me completely focused. Even if my thoughts are negative or overwhelming before I sit down to meditate, distracting myself with this little task always gives me relief.

It also helps for me to have a mantra or some words I can repeat over and over to give my crazy mind something to put its focus on. My favorite mantra that I use when I’m feeling overwhelmed, anxious or paralyzed with fear is: “I’m open, I’m willing. Show me. Guide me from within.” This mantra puts space around whatever thoughts are choking me and creates an opening inside of me for willingness, letting go and a bit of peace. You can choose whatever words suit you. Other examples are:
a) “I know there is another way to approach this. Just because I can’t see it right now doesn’t mean it’s not there. I am open to the possibility of a new idea, a new way of doing this.”
b) “There is space inside me for new ideas to flow in and to show themselves. I don’t have all the answers and I don’t need to. I’m open to new ideas.”

It can be as easy as setting the timer on your phone for three minutes, three times a day. If you find at first three minutes is just too long to do this, then start with just one minute and increase the timer by 15 seconds every day until you’ve made it to the three minute mark. You will soon notice that the three minutes flies by in no time at all. It is in these moments of total focus that your emotional energy is in harmony within you and around you.

Remember, the more time we spend in the positive, the greater our capacity for achieving peak performance, for building and maintaining good relationships, and for experiencing good health.

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The Role of the Leader in Promoting Accountability

In creating an organization that is built for all outcomes, accountability is a visible practice. All team members are clear about their specific responsibilities. They are aware of the organization’s purpose, mission, vision, values, and how they fit into this framework. They are given measures and tools to use in this framework. They are given measures and tools to use in determining if they are moving forward or falling behind on their objectives. They are empowered to do their job, and they are rewarded for their efforts. The result is a high level of employee engagement with a vested interest in the success of the organization.

Accountability is indispensable in collaboration because the work is interrelated. For example, if one team member makes an error or falls behind schedule, she must report it to the rest of the team to stem the consequences; failure to disclose a problem in one part could potentially damage the entire work. In addition, taking responsibility for errors is easier in a collaborative setting, where the focus is on correction rather than on blame. Thus, fear of retribution is minimal (if it even exists) allowing a more honest exchange among team members. In this environment of emotional safety, the upper brain performs at a higher level to drive performance because the negative energy of the fear factor is non-existent.

In a traditional culture with command and control leadership, however, the opposite is true. Although management demands and praises the value of accountability, it does not provide the resources and environment that enable accountability to flourish. This absence results in widespread confusion, distrust, and underachievement. Fear is the operative emotion driving lower brain behaviour for self-preservation and an impediment to performance thinking. Influential leaders are aware of these pitfalls and thus behave, and urge others to behave, in a manner that promotes safety, trust, accountability, and commitment to outcomes, all of which can only exist within positive emotional human energy.

“Leaders lead”, as the old saying goes. This is a simplistic view of what leaders actually do; it does not take into account the fact that not everything a leader does is worth following. So let’s revise this saying to be more specific: “Leaders lead by modeling effective behaviour.” In today’s complex organizations everyone must be an influential leader. Influential leaders are role models of accountability. Their appropriate behaviour comes from a conscious choice to live by their conviction, to change harmful mental models, and to manage their emotions. Their appropriate behaviour is a result of their well-developed skill of Positive Presence.

For example In health care this choice extends to the way they view their enormous responsibility for other people – from the internal senior management team to governing board to employees to physicians and other clinical providers to the patient population to the community at large. Accountability is a practical instrument that influential leaders use to keep themselves and those around them honest, focused, productive, and positive. Influential leaders know that an organization devoid of accountability is nothing but a collection of people who shift blame, feel victimized, procrastinate, and disguise their incompetence.

One way leaders can role-model accountability is transparency – to admit their own mistakes and vulnerabilities in the face of various responsibilities. For example, the leader can share a story in which he “dropped the ball” on an important project. He can explain the steps he took to recover from this event. The story can then be turned into a teaching moment that may inspire others to change their approach to avoid the negative outcome experienced by the storyteller. The point of this exercise, which is called power of story, is to show that a lack of accountability has the power to weaken even a strong performer and thus needs to be managed with vigilance.

Another way leaders can role-model accountability is to always, in any challenging situation or conflict, ask “how did I contribute to this problem?” This simple question must be followed by an actual evaluation of the leader’s role, because just posing the question is as good as screaming, “I didn’t do it!” This show of genuine concern indicates to others that the leader sees herself as accountable not only for the problem but also for the solution. Without the use of accountability and feedback you will be leading in the dark.

While accountability is effective in establishing behaviour based expectations for performance, the key is to remain focused on improved and effective behaviour change. Repeating ineffective behaviour that is revealed in feedback and accountability ultimately creates a great deal of damage to any relationship. Acknowledging a mechanism that identifies a behaviour I need to change is only of value when I commit to actually changing the behaviour. The key is, to move out of the past and focus on the change I desire. Accountability is a backward looking process. The key is what I am going to change and put into practice moving into the future. Accountability is like an MRI – it identifies what’s broken – you will still need to fix the problem. That comes with personal responsibility with the accountability process of daily purposeful and intentional alignment between what you say you believe and how you actually behave.

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The Science Of Stress

Modern life is full of hassles, deadlines, frustrations, and demands. For many people, stress is so commonplace that it has become a way of life. Stress isn’t always bad. In small doses, it can help us perform under pressure and motivate us to do our best. But when we’re constantly running in emergency mode, our mind and body pay the price.

Stress is a normal physical response to events that make us feel threatened or that upset our balance in some way. In fact, for many people, any amount of change at all can trigger stress, especially if it’s perceived to be unwanted change. When we sense danger—whether it’s real or imagined—our body’s defenses kick into high gear in a rapid, automatic process known as the “fight-or-flight-or-freeze” reaction, or the ‘stress response.’

In today’s fast paced and ever changing business climate, the most dangerous thing about stress is how easily it can creep up on us. We get used to it. It starts to feel familiar, even normal. We don’t notice how much it’s affecting us, even as it takes a heavy toll.

The signs and symptoms of stress overload can be almost anything. Stress affects the mind, body, and behavior in many ways, and everyone experiences stress differently. Not only can overwhelming stress lead to serious mental and physical health problems, it can also take a toll on our relationships at home and at work.

The stress hormones, most notably adrenaline and cortisol, erode higher-brain networks, inhibiting us from succeeding fully at life. Chronic stress means the stress response system is turned on nearly full-time, releasing toxic hormones into our system, and shutting down the ‘creative and executive’ parts of our brain. Stress hormones, when continuously in our system can even shrink our higher brain networks responsible for creativity and decision-making. Stress hormones can impair the immune system, ruin the cardiovascular system, and damage chromosomes producing cancer cells and cause premature aging. At work, stress dampens performance, thwarts teamwork, leads people to make bad decisions, and accounts for nearly half of turnover.

Because of the widespread damage stress can cause, it’s important to know your own limit. But just how much stress is “too much” differs from person to person. We’re all different. Some people are able to roll with the punches, while others seem to crumble in the face of far smaller obstacles or frustrations. Some people even seem to thrive on the excitement and challenge of a high-stress lifestyle. Our ability to tolerate stress depends on many factors, including the quality of our relationships, our general outlook on life, our emotional intelligence, and genetics. Having the necessary knowledge and awareness, and then mitigating the stress using techniques appropriate for you personally, is essential for every single person in today’s workplace.

In today’s organizations, when a company hires an employee, they are essentially hiring that person’s brain and hoping it’s a smart brain that will grow even smarter with experience. But place that person in a high pressure work environment without the tools to transcend stress, and the likelihood is that he or she will lose brain capacity. In reality, stress can drain organizational brain power.

One of the most necessary tools in today’s work place is a well-developed program for workers to learn about how stress affects their brain, and their physical and emotional wellness, and then provide an environment equipped with the exercises, techniques and trainings necessary to mitigate their stress.

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Great Leaders Don’t Learn From Crisis

Do you ever go to work and ask yourself, “How can I perform my very best today?” If you are asking that question, have you ever asked, “What do I need to do to perform to my full potential?” As leaders we not only need to be self-aware but we need to be self-evaluating constantly for individual and organizational performance improvement. The day we stop continuing to learn, to grow, and to develop is the day we start dying an inevitable slow death. Rest assured your competitors will not stop improving if you become comfortable with your status quo.

A key element in performance improvement is evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of the organization. Think of yourself as the captain of an old sailing ship. As the captain you would survey your vessel assessing how well your ship is prepared to weather a storm or any other form of catastrophe the ship may encounter. As captain, you know that crisis is inevitable, so you plan to ensure your vessel is prepared as possible to withstand catastrophe. Like our metaphorical ship captain, the best companies don’t just weather storms or crisis, they deliberately plan and plow through them. They thrive in the natural chaos of the business world in which we live. Why is this? Simply put, they are built for it creating a human response capacity to crisis and chaos that produces optimal outcomes no matter the magnitude of the external events. Great leaders do not learn from a crisis. They learn from how they choose to respond to a crisis. Great leaders continue to focus on achievement in the crisis while lesser leaders focus on the crisis itself.

Likewise, the teams of these companies don’t stand around waiting for direction in moments of potential crisis. With a highly developed sense of purpose, they take initiative, problem solve with collective intelligence and effectiveness in a systems based approach to averting crisis and obtain optimal levels of sustained outcomes. More so, in the collective and collaborative approach to performance, they focus on upper brain response for achievement rather than a lower brain response to self-preservation. These highly functional teams have the sense of clarity to operate at all times to the highest levels of emotional intelligence. Sounds like a pretty great organization does it not? Sound like the way you and your leaders and teams function in crisis? It would be if you had an integrated leadership development model, decentralized power structure, and a systematic approach to driving performance to thrive as opposed to simply solving problems and averting crisis to survive.

My colleague and mentor, Dr. Michael Frisina, quotes the former mayor of the city of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, he says, “you never let a good crisis go to waste.” There is a resounding truth and critical flaw in this statement. Frequently today, the only time our large organizations truly learn or care to self-assess is in a moment of climatic catastrophe. Leadership teams are exposed to pain of outcomes predictable to reaction to crisis (surviving) rather than responding for achievement (thriving). Most of us have lived long enough to be in organizations where this is true. While we do achieve a certain level of change from these crises, the problem is that the organization never truly improves. We only improved in preparing for the crisis we just came out of, not truly improving the organization to be resilient against all forms of calamity. This is why we see the same organizations continue to go through one avoidable crisis after another.

Leaders have only mastered how to not repeat the last crisis, but never discovered the root cause, become adaptable, and second-order problem solve to drive achievement. Even worse these leaders never achieve beyond a certain level of attainable performance because they keep moving from managed crisis to managed crisis, instead of behaving in ways to drive maximum performance. To truly transform, the leaders of these organizations have to elevate their behaviour and thinking to what we call upper brain performance capacity – the ability and performance competence of the leader technically, mentally, and emotionally to truly adapt from times of crisis thinking to continual positive achievement thinking. In this attainable human attribute the maxim is this: it never matters what is happening to me but how I choose to respond to what is happening to me that predicts my level of performance.

So how does a leader go about creating such an organization that can take the beating of the daily grind, remain just as competitive, and ascertain repeatable high performance? The answer to this lies in this age-old truth – organizations do not do things, people do. The people of your organization remain the performance leverage to your business performance. You mess with the brains of your people at your own performance peril.

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Negativity – The Greatest Threat to Success

In the knowledge-based economy it is the first time in human history that a ‘hard day’s work’ is not ‘hard’ in the physical sense, but instead it is the employee’s brain that’s being worked — it is their ‘mind,’ that is employed. That being said, for today’s organizations to succeed and thrive will depend on the ability of the collective working brain-power of their workforce to create and produce.

Furthermore, research has proven that the ‘brain-power’ needed to create and produce and to work collectively through collaboration will only occur when we are in a state of positive emotional electro-magnetic neuro-chemical energy. In other words, the emotional state needed for productivity, efficiency, and wellness, is the same emotional state that we are in when we are content, energized and happy. The research shows in fact, that the greatest risk to productivity, to work relationships, and to overall wellness in today’s complex and ever-changing organizations is negative energy.

Research has also proven that a person’s emotional state – their emotional energy – is driven by their thoughts and feelings, and the most explicit evidence of a person’s thoughts and feelings is their behaviour.

That being said, following are some of the most obvious behaviours indicating a person’s negativity:
• Constant complaining and/or whining about work, coworkers, or just life in general
• Cynicism about the organizational leadership
• Anger, frustration and easily overwhelmed
• Behavior and mannerisms that are mocking toward others.
• Skepticism
• Sarcasm
• Distrustful
• Critical and/or dismissive toward others.
• Arrogance
• A tendency to exaggerate issues and/or make insensitive comments
• Consciously ignoring the positive and/or pessimistic
• Self-victimizing
• Bullying
• A tendency to dwell on slights of the past.
• A lack of focus, motivation and/or action
• An inability to accept change – mandated or otherwise

Unfortunately as humans we have a natural tendency toward negative thoughts and feelings. In fact, for some people it’s the only way of thinking that they know and they thrive on the drama and chaos of negativity. For many of us in fact, living in the present with a positive outlook on life and everything we do, is a learned skill. ‘Positive Presence’ is the skill of adjusting and creating a positive and energized mindset through conscious thought processes resulting in the positive emotional energy needed for both professional and personal success.

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High-Performance Behaviour

Research and personal experiences are telling us that the phenomenon of ‘re-wiring’ through the neuro-plasticity of your brain is easier than it may sound. In fact anyone with a keen self-awareness and some really good coaching can, through their conscious thought processes, change behaviour habits in three to four weeks, or even in as little of eight days.

We all know the human form is a complex chemical manufacturing plant for energy – neuro-chemical electro-magnetic energy, to be exact. The findings coming from the neuro-sciences is proving that the ‘brain-power’ needed for productivity and efficiency in today’s work environment can only be attained when we are in a state of positive emotional electro-magnetic neuro-chemical energy. In other words, the work environment needed for success in today’s complex, chaotic and every-changing organizations is one that is conducive to positive emotional energy.

Unfortunately, the very nature of today’s organizations – the complexity, the chaos, and the constant change – runs counter to creating an environment that is positive and energized. And so it is that as a leader you must learn how to look beyond the complexity, the chaos, and the change, for evidence of, and opportunity for, creating a positive experience for each and every employee.

Furthermore, the fact that ones’ ability for creating positive feelings and thoughts is dependent on one’s life experience, personal beliefs, the paradigm within which one lives, and even genetics to some extent, means that every employee will be different in their ability to stay positive and energized amid the chaos and change. Behaviour it turns out is one of the key informants to identifying what and how a person is thinking and feeling. Behaviour it turns out is, for the most part, the physical manifestation of a person’s human energy flow.

Neuroscientists looking at cognitive functioning and behaviour at the individual level have suggested, simply put:
We can assess our personal energy flow through our feelings.
Feelings such as happiness and optimism can be linked to a positive energy flow, and feelings such as anger and frustration can be linked to a negative energy flow
We can control our feelings with our thoughts.
It is through our thought process that we choose how to behave.
And the bottom line is …. the measurable result of a person’s energy flow is reflected by one’s choice of behavior.

Following are just a few of the behaviours that arise from positive human energy and are seen in high performance behaviour:
• Kindness
• Fairness
• Consistently constructive action that betters the work-life or home-life of those around you
• Focus is on present and future, not the past
• Able to set priorities and stick to task
• Lack of bitterness
• Compassionate and empathetic
• Consistently calm, rational, generous, and loving
• Self-controlled
• Enthusiastic, active, and alert
• Agent for change
• Collaborative
• High Emotional intelligence

The skill of Positive Presence skill builds capacity for all of the above and more for achieving peak performance, for building and maintaining good relationships, and for experiencing good health.

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Why Workplace Behaviour Is a Big Deal

The Skill of Positive Presence is your natural ability to adjust for and create a positive and energized mindset within yourself through conscious thought processes.

Our proficiency for Positive Presence is different for each of us …. greatly dependent on our life experiences, on our beliefs, and on the paradigm within which we live. For many of us, our thought patterns are automatic and we give them little notice …. but if we want to give them notice, and if we consciously practice how we think, our brain will re-wire for that, and the new process becomes automatic again (unconscious, if you will…)… in really no time at all!

We all know the human form is a complex chemical manufacturing plant for energy – neuro-chemical electro-magnetic energy, to be exact. Relatively recent research in the neurosciences has shown there is this continuous looping and re-looping of energy both positive and negative, between our two dominant human energy fields — the heart and the brain.

It is this looping and re-looping of energy that makes each of us a unique individual. Joseph Chilton Pearce, in his book “The Heart-Mind Matrix” refers to studies showing that when our energy is positive we are experiencing positive thoughts and feelings such as kindness, happiness, optimism and love….and on the flip side when thoughts and/or feelings are negative (like, anger, frustration, jealousy, and cynicism) … our energy is also negative. Pearce also explains linkage between positive energy (positive thoughts and feelings) and an increased ability to ‘connect’ and ‘mesh’ with others …. an increased ability to work together, if you will. So it takes a positive energy flow for people to be tuned into one another and to work together collaboratively.

Evidence is coming forth suggesting too, that a person’s negativity not only diminishes the benefits of someone else’s positive flow … it can counteract it altogether. Our brain determines what we think, what we feel, what we say, and what we do. To ensure survival, our brain evolved a negativity bias, described by Dr. Rick Hanson in his book “Hardwiring Happiness”, as “making it like Velcro for bad experiences but Teflon for good ones.” The good news is — every one of us has the ability to re-wire (through the neuroplasticity of our brain) for positive thought habits … and even better – unlike most everything else as we age — our ability to do this, if we have a healthy mind, does not diminish with age!
So, when we are in a positive flow of energy …. It is then that we are able to really connect and mesh within our self, and with others. What’s more, the more time we spend in a positive flow, the greater our capacity for achieving peak performance, for building and maintaining good relationships, for experiencing good health.

With the enormous advances over the last decade in neuro-imaging technology (watching the electro-magnetic activity in our brain) …. research in the field of neuroscience has exploded. Neuroscientists looking at cognitive functioning and behavior have suggested, simply put:
• We can assess our personal energy flow through our feelings.
• Feelings such as happiness and optimism can be linked to a positive energy flow, and feelings such as anger and frustration can be linked to a negative energy flow
• We can change our feelings with our thoughts.
• It is through our thought process that we choose how to behave.
• And the bottom line is …. the measurable result of a person’s energy flow is reflected by one’s choice of behavior.

So it is that in order to develop a collaborative and productive workforce one of the key performance indicators will be workplace behaviour.

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Re-wiring for Wellness

In today’s work environment where people bring their mind and the expertise together for a common goal, and where virtual meetings and social distancing are the new normal, it is particularly critical that we take the time to figure out how we can come together, face to face, to acknowledge and clarify our purpose and our connection. This coming together, whether it’s around a desk, around a board room table, by way of a huddle or a video call, is crucial for success. It is this coming together that builds trust and enables us to truly appreciate our uniqueness and celebrate our differences, particularly in terms of speech, mannerisms and behaviour.

Our brain is an extremely powerful machine to which we hold the controls. Having ‘control’ requires a keen self-awareness into our emotional energy and our behavior and thought habits. It takes anywhere from 14 days to 8 weeks to ‘re-wire’ our brain for a higher skill level . We ‘re-wire’ by continuous reading, writing and reciting of information for creating new thought and behavior habits. This re-wiring occurs via the neuroplasticity of your brain. Tell yourself often, “A learning mind is a healthy mind.”

Research and personal experiences are telling us that this phenomenon of ‘re-wiring’ is very possible even with those people who have suffered a severe concussive brain injury. In fact, an entrepreneurial colleague of mine was completely disabled by an acquired brain injury however, with disciplined and deliberate exercises and techniques she was able to re-wire her damaged brain. She did this by using both traditional and non-traditional thought techniques and mind exercises as she systematically honed her skill of generating a positive emotional energy flow … allowing the neuroplasticity of her brain to ‘rewire’ as she consciously adjusted her thoughts … relieving her from her episodes of depression, psychoses, frustration, and anxiety . She altered her level of anxiety and frustration by consciously practicing a positive thought process; She became better able to focus for greater periods of time and started making informed decisions; And she became a generally happier and more optimistic person, with a clearer mind of what she needed to do to reach her goals.

The big take-away here is the realization that the practice of positive thought is a learned skill …. Many of us (in fact, most of us…me included) do not come ‘pre-wired’ for positive thoughts …. basically, our thought-habits are the product of our life experiences to date — and the skill of what we call “Positive Presence” becomes a matter of learning how to think and then practicing how to think.

Every one of us has the ability to re-wire through the neuroplasticity of our brain, and the fact that this ability does not diminish with age is a true gift of enlightenment. Furthermore, if it is possible to re-wire a brain damaged by concussion, just imagine the opportunity there is for re-wiring your healthy brain for thoughts and actions that bring wellness and success.

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Positive Presence – a Necessary Skill for Today’s Workforce

Positive Presence is your natural ability to adjust and create a positive and energized mindset within yourself through conscious thought processes.

Your skill level for Positive Presence depends on many, many things, but mostly, it is developed through your life experiences to date, and your level of self-awareness, and to some extent, your genetics.
The field of Neuroscience is a relatively new area of scientific study that began to formally organize in the 1960’s. Since then, research coming forward about the workings of the human nervous system has exploded on a global scale, and most significantly, with the aid of neuro-imaging technology, brain research is advancing in leaps and bounds.

The findings coming forward from the neuro-sciences have huge implications for business organizations on a global scale. And in fact, these findings call for a gigantic shift in how the modern organization develops its employees, its leaders, and the overall organization, in order to succeed in today’s global knowledge-based economy.

In the knowledge-based economy it is the first time in human history that a ‘hard day’s work’ is not ‘hard’ in the physical sense, but instead it is the employee’s brain that’s being worked — it is their ‘mind,’ that is employed. That being said, for today’s organizations to succeed and thrive will depend on the ability of the collective working brain-power of their workforce to create and produce.

Research has proven that the ‘brain-power’ needed for productivity and efficiency today will only occur when we are in a state of positive emotional electro-magnetic neuro-chemical energy. In other words, the emotional state needed for productivity, efficiency, and wellness, is the same emotional state that we are in when we are joyous and happy. The research shows in fact, that the greatest risk to productivity, to work relationships, and to overall wellness in today’s workplace, is negative energy.

Building the skill of Positive Presence requires a focused self-awareness through which you learn to adjust and create a positive and energized mind set through conscious thought processes. The skill of Positive Presence is best learned through real-time on-the-job practice – as you develop a keener awareness of yourself, of others, of behavior habits, and most importantly, of human energy.

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Leading from Your Upper Brain™

In December of 2018 my good friend and mentor, Dr. Michael Frisina, was published in the International Journal of Academic Medicine | Volume 4 | Issue 3 | September-December 2018. http://www.journalonweb.com/ijam As an licenced affiliate of The Frisina Group’s ‘Center for Influential Leadership’ I am honoured to present the following excerpt from his publication:

There is a revolution taking place exploding decade’s long false beliefs about individual and organizational performance related to the tension between the human performance brain and the human survival brain. This neuroscience revolution is fundamentally shifting learning and development strategies completely transforming what leaders need to be in a behavior‑centered approach to performance and the traditional technical skills they need to know to drive performance to the highest level. More than technical skill and intellect, individual leadership behavior is the singular most important predictor to a team’s performance. Sadly, very few leaders know that this dynamic exists or how to leverage leadership behavior to drive performance.

…“If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a negative thought again.”
‑Peace Pilgrim.

What would you do if you discovered a way to turn on your brain and enable you to be happier, to be
more prosperous, and to achieve the goals you set for your life?

Based on the foundation of the latest neuroscience research on the brain, you can learn how thoughts impact your body, mind, and spirit. Based on your thinking patterns, you can promote positive and productive behaviors that lead to mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual health. Think poorly and you can alter the cell structure of your body, lower your immune system response, and become less healthy in mind, body, and spirit. What you are thinking every moment of every day becomes a physical reality in your brain and body that affects your optimal mental and physical health. Gaining the ability to think effectively, choose effectively, and behave effectively is the hallmark of all high achievers and life success regardless of a person’s chosen field of endeavor.

Understanding epigenetics, how the brain responds to physical stimuli of electromagnetic and chemical flow in the brain, triggers groups of genes to act in a positive or negative direction based on your reactions to life events. Events plus your response to events determine the outcomes of your life. Negative responses create negative outcomes, and positive responses drive more positive and optimal outcomes even in the most challenging of life circumstances.

…When you change your behavior, you change your life circumstances.”

…You are free to make choices about how you focus your attention, and this affects how the chemicals and proteins and wiring of your brain change and function. Neuroscientists are proving that the relationship between what you think and how you understand yourself and the world around you – your beliefs, dreams, hopes, and thoughts – has a huge impact on how your brain works and ultimately what you achieve in levels of performance excellence.

…The link to neuroscience and thought is that thoughts are real, physical things that occupy mental real estate. Moment by moment, every day, you are changing the structure of your brain through your thinking. When we are thinking positively, productively, and when we hope for something better, we alter the physical structure of our brains in a more positive, productive direction allowing our brains to function in the high capacity for which they are created. Rudolph Tanzi, PhD, says there are four roles you can learn and manage every day to take control of your thoughts so you take control of your life:
1. Lead your brain – you can give your brain‑specific orders every day
2. Reinvent your brain – create new neuropathways and connections inside your brain to become more productive and to achieve your goals
3. Teach your brain – train your brain into new habits and new skills
4. Use your brain – you are responsible for keeping your brain in good working order.

Your brain is the gateway to your future. Your brain cannot do for you what it thinks it cannot do. Primitive reactions to external threat stimuli (fear, anger, jealousy, and aggression) can overrule higher brain function necessary for higher‑order cognitive function (problem solving, critical thinking, teamwork, unit, clarity, and cohesion). Learning how to create a robust response capacity – mental resilience – you can learn to take control of your thinking and ultimately learn to take control of your destiny. ..

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