Archive for Chris Widener

WINNING: DEFINING IT! ACHIEVING IT! by Chris Widener

Posted in General Management, Life Management, Winning: Defining It! Achieving It! with tags , , , , , , , , on June 17, 2011 by Robert Finkelstein

Along with the inspirational quotes, the beautiful images, and my own personal and business blogs, at Behind the Scenes / Virtual COO you will find the writings and videos of various thought leaders.

Winning: Defining It! Achieving It! by Chris Widener

If you ask most people whether they would like to be considered a winner or a loser in life, they would most assuredly reply that they would like to be a winner. But this begs the question: “What does it mean to win at life?” In some things it’s easy to define a clear winner. In a basketball game, whoever has the most points at the end of the game is the winner. In a game of hearts, my favorite card game, whoever has the least amount of points when one of the players reaches 100 points is the winner.

But it isn’t quite as easy to decide what it means to win in the game of life, is it? And that is because people define winning in different ways. For many, winning is through the accumulation of money or material possessions. “He’s a success, a real winner,” they say. Others think winning means living the longest. Still others say that it is to have their body in tip-top shape. Some say it is to have a happy family. Some say it is to regularly enjoy their hobbies.

All of these are fine, in and of themselves. But, I would like to encourage us to think about winning or success in a different way. Generally, people think of winning as the over-achievement in a particular, chosen area. I like to believe, however, that to truly win at life is not to overachieve in one area but to succeed in maintaining balanced achievement in numerous areas.

Let me repeat that: To truly win, to be a success, is not to overachieve in one area, but to maintain balanced achievement in all areas of our lives. For instance, is a person a success if they earn millions of dollars but lose their family? Is a person a success if they garner national fame but have no friends? Of course not. In fact, they may live the most pitiful of all lives.

First, Define
So the first thing we must do is define what we will consider “winning in life.” As you ponder this for yourself, I would like to recommend that you focus in on three overarching areas: Body, Soul, and Spirit.

The body is that which has actual connection with the physical world and would encompass physical health, financial health, family, work, and relationships. How is your health? How are your finances? Are your relationships, both with your family and others,
all that they could be? Is work fulfilling? How would you define winning in these areas?

The next area, the soul, is that which deals with the emotions, will, and intellect. It is our thoughts, ideas, and attitudes.

How are you emotionally? Are you able to exercise your will? Are you growing intellectually? Have you done an attitude check lately? How would you define winning in these areas? And the spirit is the part of us that transcends this life, the part of us that communes with God.

Zig Ziglar said, “Money will buy me a house, but not a home, a bed, but not a good night’s sleep.”

So true. Inner peace comes from something much deeper. Have you thought about going back to your spiritual roots? Are you able to spend time in quiet, solitude, and prayer from time to time? This is an extremely important area and all too often neglected. What would you like to achieve in this area? How would you define winning in these areas?

As we experience balance in these areas, we will find ourselves much more at peace with ourselves than if we were to experience tremendous success in one area but loss or failure in the other areas. We were designed to work as congruent, balanced people. This is how we get to the end of our lives and say, “I won.”

Second, Prioritize
Once you have defined what it is that you would like to achieve in each of these areas, you have to prioritize them, and let other, non-important areas drop off the chart. Commit to developing a plan to succeed in a balance of areas. Exercise your will. Choose.

Dwight D. Eisenhower said: “The history of free men is written not by chance, but by choice—their choice.”

When we manage our time and schedule, we are simply making choices in regard to our priorities. For most, their priority is to take action on whatever is screaming the loudest at the moment. For those who become winners, they reflect on what they desire to achieve, make a plan and decide to eliminate the rest.

Last, Do It
Okay, you have defined winning. You have prioritized your life. Now, the hard part: Doing it. This is where we are all alone. We all make this step on our own, but having a written plan is as good a preparation as you can get. Rather than saying that you are going to do this for the rest of your life, take the next week to implement your new balance of winning. If a week sounds too long, just focus on today. Spend some time, be it ever so small, enhancing your life in these areas. Exercise a little. Read for a while to challenge your mind. Deal with your emotions. Spend time in silent contemplation to renew your spirit. Give some time to your spouse and children. Will Rogers said, “Even if you’re on the right track, you won’t get anywhere if you’re standing still.” There has got to be action.

As we do this over time, and balance our lives out, we will begin to finally feel like we are winning at life. That will be exciting, as will the process!

– Chris Widener

If you’re interested in a complimentary 20-minute business strategy session with Robert Finkelstein, for more information, please refer to Behind the Scenes Consulting. If you have questions, please email Robert at Consulting@RobertFinkelstein.com. Your comments are welcomed below. Thank you.

SEVEN STEPS TO ACHIEVING YOUR DREAM by Chris Widener

Posted in Life Management, Seven Steps to Achieving Your Dream with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 21, 2011 by Robert Finkelstein

Along with the inspirational quotes, the beautiful images, and my own personal and business blogs, at Behind the Scenes / Virtual COO you will find the writings and videos of various thought leaders.

SEVEN STEPS TO ACHIEVING YOUR DREAM by Chris Widener

“Vision is the spectacular that inspires us to carry out the mundane.” — Chris Widener

Can achievement be broken down into steps? Well, it isn’t always that clean and easy, but I do know that those who achieve great things usually go through much of the same process, with many of the items listed below as part of that process. So if you have been struggling with achievement, look through the following and internalize the thoughts presented. Then begin to apply them. You will be on the road to achieving your dream!

1. Dream it – Everything begins in the heart and mind. Every great achievement began in the mind of one person. They dared to dream, to believe that it was possible. Take some time to allow yourself to ask “What if?” Think big. Don’t let negative thinking discourage you. You want to be a “dreamer.” Dream of the possibilities for yourself, your family, and for others. If you had a dream that you let grow cold, re-ignite the dream! Fan the flames. Life is too short to let it go. (Also, check out my article “Dare to Dream Again,” Which has been read by close to a million people in the last 4 months alone. You can see it at the website.)

2. Believe it – Yes, your dream needs to be big. It needs to be something that is seemingly beyond your capabilities. But it also must be believable. You must be able to say that if certain things take place, if others help, if you work hard enough, though it is a big dream, it can still be done. Good example: A person with no college education can dream that he will build a 50 million-dollar a year company. That is big, but believable. Bad example: That a 90 year-old woman with arthritis will someday run a marathon in under 3 hours. It is big alright, but also impossible. She should instead focus on building a 50 million-dollar a year business! And she better get a move on!

3. See it – The great achievers have a habit. They “see” things. They picture themselves walking around their CEO office in their new 25 million-dollar corporate headquarters, even while they are sitting on a folding chair in their garage “headquarters.” Great free-throw shooters in the NBA picture the ball going through the basket. PGA golfers picture the ball going straight down the fairway. World-class speakers picture themselves speaking with energy and emotion. All of this grooms the mind to control the body to carry out the dream.

4. Tell it – One reason many dreams never go anywhere is because the dreamer keeps it all to himself. It is a quiet dream that only lives inside of his mind. The one who wants to achieve their dream must tell that dream to many people. One reason: As we continually say it, we begin to believe it more and more. If we are talking about it then it must be possible. Another reason: It holds us accountable. When we have told others, it spurs us on to actually do it so we don’t look foolish.

5. Plan it – Every dream must take the form of a plan. The old saying that you “get what you plan for” is so true. Your dream won’t just happen. You need to sit down, on a regular basis, and plan out your strategy for achieving the dream. Think through all of the details. Break the whole plan down into small, workable parts. Then set a time frame for accomplishing each task on your “dream plan.”

6. Work it – Boy, wouldn’t life be grand if we could quit before this one! Unfortunately the successful are usually the hardest workers. While the rest of the world is sitting on their couch watching re-runs of Gilligan’s Island, achievers are working on their goal – achieving their dream. I have an equation that I work with: Your short-term tasks, multiplied by time, equal your long-term accomplishments. If you work on it each day, eventually you will achieve your dream. War and Peace was written, in longhand, page by page.

7. Enjoy it – When you have reached your goal and you are living your dream, be sure to enjoy it. In fact, enjoy the trip too. Give yourself some rewards along the way. Give yourself a huge reward when you get there. Help others enjoy it. Be gracious and generous. Use your dream to better others. Then go back to number 1. And dream a little bigger this time!

– Chris Widener

If you’re interested in a complimentary 30-minute business strategy session with Robert Finkelstein, for more information, please refer to Behind the Scenes Consulting. If you have questions, please email Robert at Consulting@RobertFinkelstein.com. Your comments are welcomed below. Thank you.

THE SEVEN C’S OF SUCCESS by Chris Widener

Posted in General Management, Life Management, THE SEVEN C’S OF SUCCESS with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 9, 2010 by Robert Finkelstein

In addition to the inspirational quotes, the beautiful images, my own personal and business blogs, the recommended reading list, and information on my consulting business, I would like to share some of the writings of various thought leaders.

THE SEVEN C’S OF SUCCESS by Chris Widener

Get ready to sail the Seven C’s – the Seven C’s of Success that is. Learn to navigate your ship of destiny in these seven “C’s” if you want to be a total success. Here they are, in alphabetical order:

1. Caring – I believe that to be a true success in this world we must have a bigger vision than simply accomplishing a goal for ourselves or simply lining our own pockets. I believe that successful people have a deep care for others. Yes, they are aggressive, but they are not aggressive to the point that they run roughshod over others.

Question: What is your care factor? Have you placed people in their proper place, as people worthy of dignity, respect, and proper treatment? Or have you begun to treat others as a means to an end for yourself?

2. Character – Becoming a success is more than increasing the digits in your bank account. In fact, I believe ANYONE can increase his or her bank account with a simple plan. Financial development is the easy part. Character development is the hard part, letting each and every experience shape and mold us as we experience them, always moving toward our goal and never allowing negative circumstances to destroy us but make us better people. This is what true success is about!

Question: How is your character? Are you becoming a better person with each passing experience? Are you becoming a rock of wisdom and experience, deepening your foundation of character?

3. Choice – Eisenhower reminded us that our histories are written by choice, not by chance. Every movement you make toward your ultimate success and destiny will be because you choose to move toward it. The actions that you choose, each and every day will add up, over the long-term, to your final destination. The power we have as humans to choose is one of the greatest gifts known to mankind.

Question: Do you choose success with each and every choice you make? Each choice you make either moves you toward your goal or away from it. Which do you choose?

4. Concentration – Often those who fail do so because they lose their concentration. Something else comes along and becomes their newfound fancy. They move from whim to whim, tossed to and fro by the strong blowing winds. The successful person however, stands firm, with their eyes transfixed on the goal. One of my favorite posters as a boy was of George Brett of the Kansas City Royals Baseball Team. The picture was taken just as the bat was hitting the ball. Where were George’s eyes? Straight down the barrel of the bat, looking at the point where the ball and bat came together. Now that is concentration!

Question: How is your concentration? Do you stick to your goal and focus firmly on it, or do you let your mind and heart wander from whim to whim?

5. Confidence – Success comes to those who have the confidence to try, and more than that, the confidence to win. Confidence is something that you can grow in your mind and heart. Each passing victory that you achieve builds more and more confidence in you to draw from the next time you go to fight another battle on your journey to success. Do what you can to build confidence inside of yourself so you will be able to dip deeply into that well when you need it!

Question: How is your confidence? Do you believe that you can achieve what you conceive? Are you winning victories that you can then draw on later?

6. Consistency – People who become a success realize that to a great degree, success is a formula. At the very least it is sticking to doing the right things for a long enough period of time for them to create their destiny. This is consistency. They consistently do the things that will bring them their success. Tiger Woods hits hundreds of practice balls each and every day. He doesn’t do 100 one day, then two days off, then 500 balls, then a day off, then 300 balls, then three days off. No, he knows the power of consistency and has achieved a level of success that that consistency formulated for him.

Question: How is your consistency? Are you consistent? Are you doing the things you need to do each and every day that will bring your goal to you?

7. Courage – Successful people are brave people. They know that even success has its challenges, yet they face them head on and move forward anyway. No mountain is too high, nor river too wide, nor foe too large for the person who will choose to live out their dreams! They are courageous people who continue on even when others have quit. And for that they receive their reward!

Question: How about you? Are you courageous? Are you willing to face the obstacles and move forward in spite of the fear that may try to well up within you? Be courageous and you will succeed!

There they are, the Seven C’s of Success. Set sail today!

Caring
Character
Choice
Concentration
Confidence
Consistency
Courage

– Chris Widener

If you’re interested in a complimentary 30-minute business strategy session, for more information, please refer to my Behind the Scenes Consulting. If you have questions, please email me at Consulting@RobertFinkelstein.com. I welcome your comments below. Thank you.

THE POWER OF THE TONGUE by Chris Widener

Posted in General Management, Life Management, The Power of the Tongue with tags , , , , , on October 29, 2010 by Robert Finkelstein

In addition to the inspirational quotes, the beautiful images, my own personal and business blogs, the recommended reading list, and information on my consulting business, I would like to share some of the writings of various thought leaders.

THE POWER OF THE TONGUE by Chris Widener

There is an old proverb with a lot of wisdom. It says, “The tongue has the power of life and death, and whoever loves it will eat its fruit.”

It is so true. What we say has the ability to create situations, emotions, and thoughts in others. A kind word helps people, negative words hurt – sometimes for a very long time.

But here I want to talk about this concept in relation to ourselves. How does what we say affect us? Tremendously. There is a simple principle here. Only say things that will create in you positive emotions, thoughts, feelings, and ultimately, actions.

Let me give you a good example. We do not allow the words “I can’t” in our house. Why? Because we CAN! The very minimum is “I’ll try.” We ask our kids to say “I’ll try.” If we allow our kids, or ourselves, to fall into the trap of saying “I can’t,” guess what? We won’t! And that’s not good, is it?

Do you tell yourself negative thoughts during the day? Most of us can fall into that temptation, can’t we? I was working the other day and I was brewing over something bad that had happened and I was just getting bent out of shape. So I stopped, realized I had the power to choose what I was saying to myself and began to think about and tell myself good things. And my day changed for the better.

Have you ever been in your backswing on the golf course and said to yourself, “I am going to shank this one.” What happens? You shank it. This actually happens to me. So what do I do? I stop my backswing, reset myself, and tell myself I am going to hit it straight down the fairway. What happens? About half the time I hit it straight, the other half, I shank it, but increasing your ability is a future article! At the very least I increase my chances of performing better. Bad thoughts almost guarantee my failure, while good thoughts increase my chances for success dramatically.

A salesman may see someone walk through his door and say to himself, “I’m not going to be able to make this sale.” I can’t. I won’t.

Some of us aren’t even aware that we talk negatively to ourselves. Take some time today to think about what you say to yourself. Maybe ask a close friend if you have this habit. If you find yourself doing this, it is time to change!

Now, don’t get me wrong. Self-talk is not a substitute for effort and ability, but it is a strong helping factor. Find some simple phrases that will help you get through the day with more success. Whatever your situation or work is, I am sure there are specific things you can say that will build you up and stick you on the road to success!

The words that you use and the conversations you have with yourself create things in you. They can create positive things or negative things. It is our choice. The tongue has the power of life and death. This is why it is so important to be diligent in using the power of the tongue to create a positive force in our lives.

Remember, your tongue has power. Use it!

– Chris Widener

If you’re interested in a complimentary 30-minute business strategy session, for more information, please refer to my Behind the Scenes Consulting. If you have questions, please email me at Consulting@RobertFinkelstein.com. I welcome your comments below. Thank you.