Lead by being Good Example

Today I learned a new proverb – The road to hell is paved with good intentions – It is not enough to simply mean to do well, one must take action to do well. A good intention is meaningless unless it is followed by a good action. Many people have a conscience that tells them what the right thing to do is in a given situation, but they give in to laziness or selfishness and do not follow through. Another interpretation of the proverb means that ‘trying’ to do something good often has unintended consequences which make things worse.

Having good intention is not adequate if we do not have enough knowledge or if we are not equipped to handle. The lesson does not mean that we stop having good intention…. but it shows us that having good intention, good heart is not enough, we also need to have enough good knowledge to become a good example in order to truly make a success.

Additional Reference:
Leaders without a professional new years eve resolution are just middle managers

Persist and Don’t Give Up

If you are happy to be an average student, employee, partner, boss, athlete or friend, then simply do as much as most people do. Skim-read books, don’t bother rehearsing your Keynote/ PowerPoint presentation and do the minimum you need to do to get by. The majority of people give up difficult things too easily and stop trying after a first rejection, practice session, failure or disappointment.

It is far too easy to give up and make lame excuses – ‘I would have found a job but I am too over-qualified’, ‘I would have kept training for the charity run, but I am too busy.’

When trying to achieve anything in your life – espeically something that in your heart you badly want – never stop and never give up too soon. You don’t know how close you might be to the winning line. Instead, persist: be the person who has that one extra attempt, who continues whatever it is that others have stopped doing. Sheer persistence will always get you there in the end.

Article extracts from:
100 things successful people do by Nigel Cumberland

Photo by David Taljat from Pexels

girl on swing

Turn Work into Play

Do you enjoy your work? Are you happy to get out of bed each morning and dress for the office? If you answered ‘no’ to either of these questions, you are not alone, in a 2014 Conference Board survey, 52 percent of Americans claimed to be unhappy at work and in a recent CIPD study 23 percent of Britons claimed to be looking for a new job. In the same survey only about one-third claim to feel engaged with their work. You can see the effects of this in absence, stress and depression. In fact, you can see it in the rush hour in the tired-and sad-looking faces of so many commuters.

This would not be a problem if work took up only a very small part of your life but unfortunately it consumes most of our daylight hours – typically 2250 hours per year of your time, assuming a conventional nine-hour working day, five days a week. That ignores your commuting time, overtime and time spent reading all those work-related emails while getting ready for bed.

The majority of people I coach are unhappy or dissatisfied with their working lives. They describe their work in so many depressing ways – as ‘boring’, ‘tedious’, ‘mind-numbing’ ‘stressful’, ‘painful’ or even ‘scary’. I hear similar opinions as I travel the world from all types of people no matter what their background, education or choice of career.

Unless you have retired or inherited a fortune, you need to work to fund your life. You owe it to yourself to ensure that your working day can be as positive and enjoyable as possible – so much fun that it does not feel like work anymore.

Article by Nigel Cumberland, Photo by Krivec Ales from Pexels

Tell the truth

Tell the Truth

“We learned about honesty and integrity – that the truth matters… that you don’t take shortcuts or play by your own set of rules… and success does not count unless you earn it fair and square.” ~ Michelle Obama

In 2002 MIT’s Robert Feldman showed that on average in the space of just a 10-minute conversation we tell two or three lies. Studies give varying results but all show that humans basically lie a lot.

Clearly, there are different sort of lie, some small and insignificant and some enormous and outrageous. But a lie is still a lie, even if we justify it as a well-intentioned ‘white’ lie.

Sometimes it seems as if we are becoming desensitized to other people’s lack of integrity. Every week the media is full of stories of well-known personalities who have lied or cheated in some way. It’s enough to make you wonder if lying and cheating might actually be a shortcut to success. This could take many forms:

  1. You could lie about your qualifications and work experience on your CV.
  2. You could pass off other people’s ideas and work as your own.
  3. You could pretend that you love someone to marry into wealth.
  4. You could create fake salary paparwork when applying for a bank loan.

A lot of people are happy to live with lies like this, saying they’re only small or a smart way to cheat the system. Do or say whatever you want but, if you go down this track, your success with be fake. Your wins will be meaningless. Success without integrity is like building a house without foundations. At some point it will crack and the building will subside.

Success without integrity is like building a house without foundations.

Extracted from the book written by Nigel Cumberland:
100 Things Successful People Do

Photo by Simon Migaj from Pexels

Do the Opposite

Unless you think that the majority of people are living successful lives, chances are that at some point you will have to act differently from those around you. Success can take many forms and it is often about standing out from the crowd or being above average, spotting when the crowd moves one way and making sure that you move the other.

Thinking and doing the opposite of what the majority is doing isn’t about being different for the sake of being different. There are lots of times when the well-trodden path is the right one to take. Your challenge is to know when it will be in your interest to do the opposite.

  • Your friends might talk about studying more but not act; you could comment to completing that much-desired part-time degree course.
  • When prices fall, people may panic and sell their shares or houses, you could buck the trend and hold on to them.
  • Few people exercise regularly enough and eat healthily; you can be the one who walks to work, goes to the gym and eats healthy food.
  • Many people only talk about quitting their jobs to follow dreams of self-employment, you could be the one to break out on your own if your own dreams point this way.

Doing the opposite might make you feel uncomfortable. It can be scary and make you feel lonely and exposed. It is never easy to be seen as going against the grain and ignoring the advice of your colleagues, friends or family, but if you are prepared to explain what you are doing and why, they will come round.

Be Emotionally Intelligent

Have you been guilty of reacting without thinking, getting angry too quickly, acting jealously or being too early provoked? Losing your emotions can damage your chances of living a successful life. It can easily be the difference between success and failure.

Examples of poor emotional intelligences (EQ) are all around us – people arguing on the bus, parent shouting at their children on the street or someone swearing at their boss or angrily handing in their resignation.

EQ is an essential ingredient of a balanced and fulfilled life. It is the foundation for being a successful partner, parent and work colleague. Successful careers, marriages, families and business partnerships are destroyed by moments of emotional madness.

It is easy to laugh at someone like celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay who swears and shoutsin his kitchen, but to ensure a successful life you must avoid making others sad, unhappy or fearful. To do this, you have to learn to keep your emotions in check. If you need to get upset or angry with someone, do so in a very conscious way so that you don’t lose control or react without thinking. You cannot spend your life apologizing for having lost control of your emotions.

Being able to put yourself in other people’s shoes and see life through someone else’s eyes is a sign of high EQ and empathy. Highly empathic people rarely lose self-control, making them better equipped to deal with what life throws at them.

Create Your Future

Successful people never rely upon chance or fate. You might look at someone successful and think they got lucky – a case of being in the right place at the right time perhaps? The truth is, every piece of good fortune is the result of hours, or even years, of hard work and preparation.

It is not enough simply to have dreams and a aplan of how to achieve them. Putting a plan into action involves telling yourself that you will create your own future; that luck or fate will not solely determine what happens. You need the right mindset and you need to take control. Be ready to persist, word hard, sacrifice, and take risks, and to simply do what it takes.

Never resign yourself to what the future holds. I coach too many individuals who have given up on trying to influence their future. They have abdicated responsibility, giving all kinds of lame excuses, blaming bad luck or other people for their lives to date and what the future holds. It is too easy and simplistic to feel that, if you have not succeeded yet, you will not succeed in the future. Overcoming fatalistic thinking is essential if you really want a great future.

Many successful people have had to overcome adversity to achieve their goals – think of Winston Churchill who failed in his political career over many years before eventually becoming the UK’s Prime Minister.

Not allowing what happened in the past to determine your future starts in your mind. What you think and feel is key. Are you able to say and believe that you are creating your own future?

Ask for Help

Saying “I don’t know” takes guts but it’s an immensely positive reaction and a clear sign that you don’t take yourself too seriously. Knowing when you don’t now the answer and being honest about it is one of the greatest skills you can have. If you aim to be perfect, you’ll only end up disappointed. When you admit your blind spots, people will flock to support you.

Too many people act is if they know what to do in situations where they’re desperately out of their depth. Too many people try to project confidence in what they’re doing or saying, when they really need is help. There’s immense pressure, both at home and at work, to act as if you have all the answers.

The secret is to know when to say: “Wait a minute – I have absolutely no idea.”

When events challenge you it’s tempting to fight back and hold firm to what you once said or believed, leaving you blind to other people’s opinions and suggestions. Successful people are happy to admit that they were wrong or that they just don’t know.

Life is unpredictable and uncertain. You can never be right all the time. Sometimes the best thing to do is to chill, step back, admit you could do with some help and stop taking yourself so seriously.

Follow Your Dreams

Dreams are the fuel for your success. Without them there can never be any meaningful and lasting success in your life. Like a car engine without high-quality fuel you risk living a life that never quite gets started.

Behind every successful person there is as dream fulfilled. I have coached dozens of successful person and all have come to their success through achieving at least one of their dreams. It may have been a dream from their childhood or a dream that appeared later in their life, but there is always at least one dream linked to their achievements – something that motivated, drove, excited and captivated them. This dream becomes the goal that pushes you to believe in the impossible, to make unexpected life changes, to step out of your comfort zone and to take unimagined risks.

As adults we often choose to ignore or forget what we really love. e let ourselves be driven by other people’s guidance and expectations. I can speak from painful experience: at school I love Geography but followed others’ advice and studied Economics at university. I became an accountant rather than following my own career dreams. Have you made a similar choice in your life? Sometimes it is only with hindsight that you realise you were not following your own path.

Successful people never forget what they love to do and are passionate about. They quickly learn to follow their own path and to make the right choices, no matter how crazy or unpopular theyr might appear to others. Just look at Steve Jobs, founder of Apple, who quit studying at prestigious university to pursue his dreams.

What does success mean to you?

Hi, I would like to start this journey with you on the topic of “100 Things Successful People Do”, a book by the author of Nigel Cumberland. With the aim that by end of 2018, we will become a wiser person practically. Interested? Let’s get started.

What does success mean to you? What kind of success would you like in your life.

Success is the accomplishment of any number of possible aims, dreams, aspiration or goals.

It’s very personal and unique to you. Your greatest desire could be someone else’s idea of hell; you might want to be an award-winning cheff while your best friend hates cooking.

To be able to look back and say ‘I lived a successful life’ means successfully pursuing a myriad of aims and goals.

So think about it now. What does success look like to you?

  • Getting promoted?
  • Flourishing in a new leadership role at work?
  • Losing weight?
  • Jogging every evening?
  • Becoming a published author?
  • Retiring in a good health?
  • Bringing up your children well and seeing them create their own families?
  • Being at peace?
  • Paying off your mortgage in full?
  • Gaining a particular qualification?
  • Following your heart without regrets?
  • Having wonderful people in your life?
  • Learning a foreign language?
  • Recovering from a serious illness?
  • Saving a particular amount of money?
  • Loving your work and never feeling stressed doing it?
  • Being happy and content with what you have?

These are just suggestion based on goals the author hear from the clients and coach. Take time out now to write down your own list. Don’t edit yourself and don’t worry about what order the ideas come to you in. Just let them flow out in a stream of consciousness.


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