Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Get To ... Have To ... or Want To?

So, what's the difference between things you get to do, have to do, and want to do? Certainly there are commonalities between those tasks. But isn't it true that mindset has a lot to do with why tasks fall into one of those categories?

I've heard it said that you only HAVE to do something until you WANT to and then you never HAVE to again. I suppose at that point you GET to do it.

Semantics? Maybe. But let's look deeper.

Why is it that there are some things I love to do but others hate them? And some things, like anything that involves details and numbers, that make my heart race (and not with excitement) but light someone else up (in a good way)? Could it have anything to do with the core of who I am?

I'm confident that that's the case. In fact, Bock's Office will be hosting Dick Richards in Fargo June 23-24 to help people discover what Dick calls our GENIUS - that part of us that has been with us from the beginning.


The Genius Workshop will be a day for people to uncover that genius and give it a name. Dick says that everyone has a genius that is inevitably linked to all our activities - in life and in work. Our genius can be thought of in a practical way, as the power that comes most naturally to each of us, and as the businesses we are in as people.

Your genius can also be thought of in a spiritual way, as the essence of your soul, and as an answer to why you exist among the human community. Your genius is the essence of how you can best express yourself. It is your natural power, given to you in order that you might fulfill your life’s purpose.

Participants in Day One - Wednesday, June 23 - learn about the concept of genius and begin the work of discovering their own genius through exercises drawn from Dick's book Is Your Genius At Work, facilitated by Dick himself, and dialogue with one another in pairs and trios.

In follow-up interviews, conducted at least five years after participants had attended a workshop in which discovering genius was a major component, they reported that knowing their genius provided them with:
  • a stronger sense of identity,
  • clearer direction,
  • increased confidence,
  • language to communicate the value they add to work and life situations,
  • higher work satisfaction and productivity,
  • greater personal harmony.

On Day Two - Thursday, June 24 - participants who have already participated in the Genius Workshop, either on Wednesday or in previous years, will get an opportunity to explore the concept of Life Purpose.

Those who study life purpose agree that your purpose cannot be invented but can be discovered, detected, or revealed, that your purpose is directed outward, that knowing your purpose allows you to be more intentional and effective in fulfilling it, and that purpose gives focus to a life. Participants in this day will come to see that knowledge of life purpose will arrive only after the demands of ego have been transcended enough to allow that knowledge to enter awareness, and through a process that is experiential and spiritual rather than intellectual.

Armed with that understanding, participants in this day will explore the ways in which purpose might reveal itself, how it may be revealing itself in their present lives, and how it might reveal itself in the
future. As in Day 1, they will do this work through exercises drawn from the book, facilitation by Dick Richards, and dialogue with one another in pairs and trios.

Are you ready to achieve that personal harmony and clearer sense of direction for yourself and your life? Register today for the GENIUS AND PURPOSE Workshops. Cost for the Genius Workshop is $150; the Purpose Workshop is $100. Register for both days and save $25!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Get the F out of here!

I've just got to sound off today about something that's been bugging me for a long time now. I'm learning that the best way to deal with things that frustrate or upset me is to just get them out in the open. I'm a verbal processor, so that means I have to either write or speak about those topics so I can move beyond them.

So today's rant is about that terrible four-letter F word that just sneaks into every part of many of our lives. It's not a new word or a new concept, but it's something we just don't deal with, so it keeps affecting us without us even realizing it.

Yes, I'm talking about F-E-A-R.

The really interesting thing about fear is that a great majority of the time the things we fear never really happen. In fact, I've heard FEAR has used as an acronym: False Evidence Appearing Real. The only authentic fear is fear caused by a situation which threatens our physical survival. In that case, we have a built-in "fight or flight" mechanism which triggers adrenaline and causes us to get to safety.

But anything other than that stimulus is actually inauthentic fear.

The most curious inauthentic fear I know is not the fear of failure. That's probably the most vocalized inauthentic fear - and probably the safest one to admit. Fear of failure keeps you from taking any action, and allows you to stay in the comfort zone where you can maintain some level of control over the outcome. It may not produce a desired result, but it produces a familiar one.

If you take no action, you won't fail, but you can't possibly achieve anything other than what you currently have.

No, the most curious fear I've identified is the fear of success. What if we really do achieve those goals we've dreamed about? Then what? What action will that force me to take? How much further out of my comfort zone will I have to be pushed then? The stories we make up in our heads are so often much worse than reality ever will be. That's the sneaky part about inauthentic fear.

What's a solution? Take a step - a BABY step - in the direction of your dream or goal. Even a baby step out of your comfort zone will provide a new perspective. Identifying the fears in our lives would be a super first step. Where are you complaining about something over which you have no control? That might provide another clue.

The conditions will never be perfect for taking action as long as you are stuck in alibi mode. That's where "Old Man If" has you bound. The entire epilogue of Think and Grow Rich is called "Outwitting the Six Ghosts of Fear" and one section identifies 57 alibis that may be preventing us from achieving our goals. Here's the greatest one of all, according to Napoleon Hill:

If I had the courage to see myself as I really am, I would find out what is wrong with me and correct it, then I might have a chance to profit by my mistakes and learn something from the experience of others for I know that there is something WRONG with me or I would now be where I WOULD HAVE BEEN IF I had spent more time analyzing my weaknesses and less time building alibis to cover them.

Where are you holding yourself hostage to a ghost of fear? How committed are you to changing that? Start today! Get the F out of there!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Inspiration ... or Desperation?

Why do people choose to change? Or, on the other hand, choose not to?

I learned, in a class not too long ago, that "why" comes in two flavors: inspiration and desperation. And, despite me wishing that all people changed their minds, their attitudes, their business practices, etc. in response to inspiration (toward pleasure), I'm reminded every day how it's really more likely that if anyone changes anything, it's out of desperation (away from pain).

One of the differentiators may be how the stimulus is interpreted (that which causes either pleasure or pain). Is it out of a response or a reaction? To do either involves choice. Reacting means we have given that choice to someone or something outside of ourselves. We find ourselves in reaction mode when we do not have time to create the future because we are so busy handling the present. Heck, in reaction mode, the future can only look a lot like the present because it doesn't require any original thought on our part.

When we respond, we take back control. We anticipate things to come and think about them before saying or doing anything. We get to decide how, and really if, we allow outside forces to affect us, both externally and internally. When we respond instead of react, we actually feel more at ease (or less in dis-ease) and actually have many more opportunities to move toward pleasure instead of away from pain.

Despite the fact that nearly all of us are able to respond to things instead of react to them (that's why it's assumed that when we get to a certain age, we are response-able), it appears that not all of us are willing to do so.

One way to determine whether you are spending more time reacting or responding is to check your results. What's happening in your life? Are you happy, fulfilled, energized, surrounded by great people, feeling pretty fortunate? Or more the opposite - like a victim of your surroundings and upbringing? In other words, when you do make a move in your life, is it away from things or toward them? Think about jobs you've had.

I know for me it took 4 different career moves for me to realize that in each case I was moving away from pain (in desperation) and the cause of that desperation kept following me to the next move. At some point it finally occurred to me that the only thing each of those jobs had in common was me and unless I changed something other than my external circumstance, I was going to keep getting the same result.

Becoming an entrepreneur, albeit an accidental one at first, was the first time I really moved toward something instead of away from it. And that first step in 2003 was taken on really shaky, unsteady and unsure legs. In June of 2005 when I launched Bock's Office, I think I was finally beginning to understand that it is possible - and I was willing - to respond and create something instead of react and wait for something to be created for me.

Where are you in your reaction/response journey? Do you identify more with pleasure or pain? The first step is to become aware of the distinction.

If you're ready to take your future into your own hands, consider joining a Think and Grow Rich study group. We'll be launching several in-person, semi-virtual and virtual groups over the summer to help you determine that for yourself by studying the principles of this classic book, and their application to your own life.

No matter which camp you find yourself in - inspiration or desperation - if you're feeling any restlessness or discontent, this may be the time to act.

A year from now you will wish you had started today! Our next in-person group starts Thursday, May 13 in Fargo. If an 8-week study won't fit into your plans, mark your calendar now for the Genius & Purpose workshops June 23 & 24 in Fargo where Dick Richards will guide us in uncovering, naming, and putting into practice our Genius.

When you're ready to move into response mode, you will be amazed and delighted at all the people and resources at your beck and call. Look for opportunities and they'll be there. Argue for your limitations, and sure enough, they'll show up.

Which do you prefer? The time is now!