Convictions

Do you know what you believe?

You should, because you're living it out. You're living out your beliefs, your convictions. Maybe by default, but you are living them out.

Convictions. We could say our convictions are those habits, manners and behaviors we could be accused and convicted of.

Do you want to change your behaviors? Start by identifying what you genuinely believe, where you want to be, how you want to act and then establish disciplines you can be convicted of. 

We operate off our convictions.

I contend most of us can't truly speak into our beliefs, what convicts us.

Something to ponder...We are spiritual beings, gifted with an intellect, living in a physical body.

If you can get a grip on that. If you believe that...then you must consider growing your entire self.

...it’s not just being more effective at completing daily tasks, being a better sales person, making more and better calls (my current struggle), having a good marketing campaign (another struggle). 

If we believe we’re spiritual beings, gifted with an intellect, living in a physical body, we owe it to ourselves, and God, to grow our entire selves.
Don’t disregard this, at least consider it before casting it aside. 

I believe it was Jim Rohne who said “some things are too important to be left un-researched.”

This is important.

Our Most Powerful Tool

The mind is our most powerful tool.  It has two parts - the conscious and the subconscious/unconscious (other than conscious). The mind can distract us or keep us focused.
It’s the mind that allows the late night ice cream binge or the discipline to eat right all day.
The mind will awaken us, without an alarm at 4:45 to start our morning routine, or the mind can cause us to sleep in and rush panicking into the day.
We can be conformed to this world by going with the norm of our existing thoughts and the world around us......or we can be transformed by the renewing of our minds.
Renewing of our minds is a powerful principle. It’s out choice, our decision, our outcome! What we focus on, we’re more likely to get. Do our actions and habits produce the positive results we want? If not, change the way we think, practice daily disciplines to renew our mind. As a result, new actions and habits will follow.
What’s going into our mind through our senses is changing who we are in the inside that we live out on the outside. Who we are on the inside will determine who we are on the outside.
We cannot always change what just happened us, but we can control how we respond by controlling how we renew our minds.
We will all be different 5 years from today, than we are today. That difference is determined by who we associate with, what we watch, what we hear and what we read.

Pondering - Leadershift

I read Maxwell's "Leadershift" as I was shifting into a new role 6 months ago.

This new role has been an emotional shift and I'm surprised I've lasted. My 12WkYr Coach, coming into the new job, recommended my only goal should be "to show up every day."

Wise. Simple and wise.

This morning I find myself looking through this list of shifts Maxwell writes are necessary.

- SOLOIST TO CONDUCTOR

- GOALS TO GROWTH

- PERKS TO PRICE

- PLEASING PEOPLE TO CHALLENGING PEOPLE

- MAINTAINING TO CREATING

- LADDER CLIMBING TO LADDER BUILDING

- DIRECTING TO CONNECTING

- TEAM UNIFORMITY TO TEAM DIVERSITY

- POSITIONAL AUTHORITY TO MORAL AUTHORITY

- TRAINED LEADERS TO TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERS

- CAREER TO CALLING

These recent months have further confirmed my belief that we (humans) perform best when we "manage processes and lead people." John gives a good explanation of my belief on page 1....

"Management systems and processes tend to be linear. They assume that similar inputs will result in similar outputs. In many situations, this holds true. Leadership, however, requires a more nuanced view of the world because it involves people: what motivates them, what their interests are, and how engaged they become."

To that end....I think I know what I'm rereading this weekend.

The Way You've Been Taught To Plan is Likely WRONG

I quick research (Google) on “business planning” overall says the same-old-thing…..1 year plans, 3 year plans, even 5 year plans.
 
That worked for Columbus and the Pilgrims. They’d need something, send a courier across the sea to England and 6-8 months later, get it. No big deal if it was another few months, ok. Everything moved slowly.

It worked for Ford and Carnegie. It even worked for Jobs and Gates, but they and others changed the scope of planning.
Today’s planning has to be short-term, with shorter-term checks and balances.
Today’s business moves FAST. Planning and goals must be short-term, vision long-term. 
 
Moran and Lennington have nailed it in their book “The 12 Week Year.” They propose a 12 week plan that’s carried out through weekly plans carried out with daily execution.

And it works!
To the point behind the 12 Week Year, there might be a place for long-term planning but I’m not wasting my time imagining where.
 
I get planning. I get putting together some good what-if scenarios. I get having big hairy audacious goals. But that’s not planning. Planning is what we do to prepare to carry out those goals, intentions and aspirations.
 
And planning more than a few weeks is lazy. Pure laziness because the planners know they need to plan, but they know the 1 year plan is useless after a few weeks, even a few days. Yet, they don’t want to take the time to continuously re-engage in he planning process.

So, why waste time making a plan you know can’t be carried out?
Who can put together a plan, divide it up into quarters and expect to follow it to any extent?
 
Definitely not an engaging salesperson. It’ve been using the periodization technique describe in The 12 Week Year for over a year. Actually, I’m in my 5th 12th Week Year.It’s a game changer and I’m not sure that 12 weeks isn’t too long. Business moves fast. Competitors most fast. New opportunities come at the engaging salesperson and they come FAST.

To that end, be great-in-the-moment.

My Method of Navigation Planning and Structure - adapted from The Law of Navigation by John C. Maxwell

1. I plan to plan.

2. I determine my primary purpose in each role

3. I assess the situation.

4. I prioritize the needs.

5. I ask questions.

6. I set specific goals.

7. I clarify and communicate.

8. I identify possible obstacles.

9. I plan no more than twelve weeks.

10. I schedule everything I can.

11. I budget everything I can.

12. I measure lead and lag indicators.

13. I study the results and make corrections where necessary.

14. I do less and obsess.

Remember, anyone can steer the ship, but it takes a leader to chart the course - John C. Maxwell

The Transforming Power of Mental Renewal

http://www.geistchapel.org/content.cfm?id=213&download_id=307

Jordan Raynor: Passion - Competence ≠ Calling


Passion - Competence ≠ Calling

Discerning Your Calling

Devotional 3 of 4
"We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith." Romans 12:6 (NIV)
Last week, we saw that identifying our passions are key in the process of discerning our calling. But passion without competence is worthless. In Romans 12:6, Paul said, "Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly." We have largely ignored this verse in the Church today, choosing to define calling as simply what we are really passionate about, rather than the intersection of both our passions and giftings.

Our work won't feel like a calling until we reimagine it as service to our Caller and the world. It's impossible to serve someone well if you aren't gifted at your craft. You may be really passionate about wanting to fly an airplane, but if you've never been to flight school, you won't be serving others by taking the controls in the cockpit. You may really want to be an entrepreneur, but if you've started multiple companies and have consistently lost investors' money and laid off employees, are you really serving others through your chosen work?

In order to best glorify our Creator and serve others, we should do the work we are best at, work that God has equipped us to do exceptionally well. In her classic essay, Why Work? renowned British novelist Dorothy Sayers said, "The Church's approach to an intelligent carpenter is usually confined to exhorting him not to be drunk and disorderly in his leisure hours, and to come to church on Sundays. What the Church should be telling him is this: that the very first demand that his religion makes upon him is that he should make good tables."

Nobody starts their career knowing what they will be exceptionally good at. We learn what giftings God has given us through continual trial and error. Individual failures don't necessarily mean that we aren't gifted and called to a particular line of work. But if we are to glorify God and serve others through our vocations, we should be in a continual process of analyzing where our passions and giftings align. It is that intersection that brings us one step closer to discerning our calling.

--
Jordan Raynor
Author, Called to Create
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Is Interest on Home Equity Loans Tax Deductible?


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The Internal Revenue Service recently advised taxpayers that interest on a home equity loan used to build an addition to an existing home is typically deductible, while interest on the same loan used to pay personal living expenses, such as credit card debts, is not. Click here to view the announcement.  Here are three examples from the announcement:
  • Example 1: In January 2018, a taxpayer takes out a $500,000 mortgage to purchase a main home with a fair market value of $800,000.  In February 2018, the taxpayer takes out a $250,000 home equity loan to put an addition on the main home. Both loans are secured by the main home and the total does not exceed the cost of the home. Because the total amount of both loans does not exceed $750,000, all of the interest paid on the loans is deductible. However, if the taxpayer used the home equity loan proceeds for personal expenses, such as paying off student loans and credit cards, then the interest on the home equity loan would not be deductible.

On a quote: Dallas Willard

I've squinted this morning on this quote from Dallas Willard..

"The main thing God gets out of my life is the person I become. The main thing I get out of my life is the person I become."

I need an emoji for astonishment!

At first hearing this, I was taken back. I'd never thought of it/life/things that way and wanted to object.

But I had to consider the sources. First, it's a quote from Dallas Willard. Second, the quote was quoted by Max Anders in his sermon on Life's Purpose.

What if it is true? What if I did agree?

"The main thing God gets out of my life is the person I become. The main thing I get out of my life is the person I become."

Then, my friend John Becker sent a text with....

"Today, instead of 'What am I getting out of this worship?', maybe we should ask 'What is God getting out of my worship?" '
- Rick Atchley

Piling it on! I love it when I see God's plan coming together.

#OnwardAndUpward

The 7Ps of Picking the Right Employer

What do sales people look for in an employer?

Purpose
People
Pricing
Pay
Platforms
Products
Processes

 

Dualism in the Christian Era, by John D. Beckett

From "Loving Monday," by John D. Beckett 

The Greeks couldn't get away from the concept of "dualism"—the idea of higher and lower planes of ideas and activities. 

Plato was the clearest on this. He sought to identify unchanging universal truths, placing them in the higher of two distinct realms. 

This upper level he called "form," consisting of eternal ideas. The lower level he called "matter." This lower realm was temporal and physical. Plato's primary interest lay in the higher form. He deemed it superior to the temporary and imperfect world of matter. 

The rub comes when we see where Plato placed work and occupations. Where, indeed? In the lower realm.

Nearly a thousand years later, in the fifth century A.D., Augustine sought to merge Platonic thought into a Christian framework. This approach resulted in a distinction between "contemplative life" and "active life"—the same distinction between higher and lower, but with different names. 

The higher of these realms came to be equated with church-related concerns that were considered sacred, such as Bible study, preaching and evangelism. 

Other things were secular, common, lacking in nobility. 

Where did Augustine place work and occupations? As with Plato before him, in the lower realm. 

Thomas Aquinas, in the thirteenth century, furthered this derogatory notion of work as he perpetuated the dualism of Greek thinking. He also categorized life into two realms, which he called Grace and Nature. Revelation, which gave understanding to theology and church matters, operated in the upper realm of Grace. 

In the lower realm of Nature, man's "natural" intellect stood squarely on its own. Business and occupations, operating in the lower realm, didn't require revelation. 

According to Aquinas, they survived quite well on a diet of human intellect and reasoned judgment. 

Now we bring this dichotomy up to the present. Francis Schaeffer, one of the modern era's greatest thinkers, wrote on the more recent impact of dualistic thinking. In A Christian Manifesto, he speaks of the flawed view of Christianity advanced through the Pietist movement in the seventeenth century. 

Pietism began as a healthy protest against formalism and a too abstract Christianity. But it had a deficient, 'platonic' spirituality. It was platonic in the sense that Pietism made a sharp division between the 'spiritual' and the 'material' world—giving little, or no, importance to the 'material' world. 

The totality of human existence was not afforded a proper place. Christianity and spirituality were shut up to a small, isolated part of life. 

The result of such a view is that the activity of work is removed from the sacred realm and placed squarely in the secular—making it "impossible" to serve God by being a man or woman in business. 

To me, this is a startling revelation! 

Now here's a question for you. Has this view affected you, as it has me? Second-Class? 

I can now see that the perspective of the Greeks, established so many years ago, continues alive and well to the present day, influencing and distorting our perception of work. 

For years, I thought my involvement in business was a second-class endeavor—necessary to put bread on the table, but somehow less noble than more sacred pursuits like being a minister or a missionary. 

The clear impression was that to truly serve God, one must leave business and go into "full-time Christian service." Over the years, I have met countless other business people who feel the same way. 

The reason is clear: Our culture is thoroughly saturated with dualism. In this view, business and most occupations are relegated to the lower, the worldly, the material realm. As such they are perceived to lack dignity, spirituality, intrinsic worth, and the nobility of purpose they deserve. 

Schaeffer, looking back over the legacy of nearly three millennia of Greek thought, proposes this radically different view of true spirituality: It is not only that true spirituality covers all of life, but it covers all parts of the spectrum of life equally. In this sense there is nothing concerning reality that is not spiritual. 

Indeed, there is a dramatically different way to view the world and our work—a view that liberated me to see business as a high calling. But to find this view, I had to look through a different window. 

This text is from "Loving Monday," by John D. Beckett, pages 67-69