Posts Tagged ‘commitment’

A few years ago I started working with a company called City Fire here in NJ (www.cityfire.com). They provide fire safety services (sprinkler systems, alarm systems, fire extinguishers, etc) to schools, apartment buildings, office buildings, small businesses, etc.


Among the many amazing things I’ve had the privilege of witnessing at City Fire has been their strong and steady growth through one of the most difficult economic times in recent history. While there are several factors contributing to their success – “getting the right people with the right skills in the right jobs”, setting goals, establishing stronger communication and communication channels – probably the single greatest contributor to their success has been their commitment to measurements.


Once they establish their annual goals they track them on a quarterly basis and, here’s the important part, they hold every manager accountable for achieving their goals. At every quarterly meeting each manager reports on their progress, areas of success and issues where they are challenged.


Their success is not a magic bullet they mysteriously uncovered and are not telling anyone else. Their success is a function of the simple concept of setting goals, continually measuring them, and taking creative, proactive action when they see a deviation from their targeted goal.


While some people and companies attribute success to luck, natural talent or being in the right place at the right time, most lasting success is a function of hard work, focused dedication, a commitment to a goal, and being willing to be held accountable.


In my continued belief that life is not rocket science, here are 5 simple steps to achieving the success you desire in your life or business.


1. Declare your goal – If you don’t know where you are going that’s exactly where you will arrive.
2. Set a plan – “A goal without a plan is a dream”
3. Take action – Do at least one thing everyday that contributes toward that goal.
4. Measure your progress – Be willing to track your progress and see how you are doing against your goal.
5. Recalibrate – If you are not hitting your target, take creative, proactive action to re-adjust your aim and actions.


Following these simple steps will have you meet with the success, happiness and satisfaction you seek in your life.


Most people use statistics the way a drunkard uses a lamp post, more for support than illumination

– Mark Twain


The greatest thing about measurements is that they can help illuminate our lives. What are we really doing on a day to day basis? Are our actions truly making a difference? Are we getting closer to our goals in life? By measuring, we can answer these important questions. Without measurements, we run the risk of floating through life aimlessly, never truly being satisfied.


And, if you want to discover perhaps the most important measurement of all, give a listen to the video below.

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I wish I could say that as a coach I always set goals, develop a plan, work the plan and achieve the success I desire. The truth is that is not the case. As the age-old saying goes, the cobbler’s kids have no shoes. I guess I could beat myself up about it, but I imagine this fact only makes me more human and has me better understand the challenges my clients face.

However, during the past 14 years that I have been coaching, I have found something that is more frustrating, more crushing, more defeating than not successfully accomplishing a goal . . . . . . . living your life in purgatory.

In my work, I consider purgatory a state of being where there is no commitment. It is a place where the client cannot commit to either A or B, and as a result, they just float somewhere in the middle, making little or no progress in their life. There is no doubt that this state of being is the most frustrating state that exists. It is more frustrating than committing to a certain path and finding it is the wrong direction or choosing a path and failing to achieve the desired goal. At least in the latter two, a choice was made and something was learned.

A life spent in purgatory gets stale very quickly, which is why I often encourage clients who are stuck there to make a decision – ANY decision – and not worry about whether it is right or wrong. When stuck in purgatory, the first and most important step is to break free of inertia. Once that is done and momentum exists, then you can adjust the course.

If you are stuck in purgatory in any area of your life, don’t let the fear of making a wrong decision keep you there. The important action is to take a step. Any step. And then adjust your course from there. The freedom you will feel in the movement will be invigorating!

Don’t be afraid to backtrack in life. It gives you the opportunity to see what you missed while you had your back to the world.

                                                               – Rich Largman

We were not meant to live in purgatory. Those moments in life are simply tests to help us determine what we truly desire in our lives. The trick to getting out of purgatory and any suffering we may experience is to make a choice. And do not let the fear of making a choice stop you. A “wrong” choice gets you closer to what you desire than no choice at all.

And to help inspire you, here is a clip of one of the coolest choices ever made in movies.

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I’ve had the good fortune to hike the tallest mountain in 5 states: California, Vermont, New York, New Jersey and South Dakota.

14,494 feet! It’s all in your altitude! 

At 14,494 feet, Mt. Whitney in California is the tallest mountain in the continental US.  From the summit of Harney Peak in South Dakota, I could see both Mt. Rushmore and the Crazy Horse monument, which is still being carved into the granite mountain face 60 years after its inception.  From the peak of Mt. Marcy in NY, known as Tahawus, The Cloud Splitter, I literally witnessed the thick clouds that blanketed the area all morning being parted to reveal the gorgeous valley below me.  All of this just moments after I said a prayer for the victims of 9/11, which occurred just days before.  It was truly mystical.

This summer I decided to add 5 more peaks to the list as I set my sights on climbing all 50 in the US.  Sounds impressive, right?  Perhaps, but don’t let the images of Mt. Everest delude you.

This past weekend I scaled the treacherous peak of Ebright Azimuth, the tallest peak in . . . Delaware.  It soared above the landscape at an astounding 448 feet and it was literally in a residential neighborhood.  There was a sidewalk, bench and beautiful garden next to the sign marking the elevation.  An elderly neighbor even came out from her house to say “hi.”

Not exactly a grueling adventure or something to recount magnificent tales about . . .   except for one thing.  The commitment.

I didn’t really have a strong desire to visit Delaware.  And it certainly didn’t require much effort.  Nonetheless, at some point Delaware’s highest “peak” needed to be visited to achieve the goal.  And sometimes, goals that appear as insurmountable mountains must begin with the molehills.

Often, success in one’s goals is not about who is the best skilled or the one with the most training or the one with the most natural talent.  Success lies in one’s commitment and the promise they make to themselves.  And sometimes, that first step toward your promise is all you need to propel yourself to the life and achievements you desire!

Small deeds done are better than great deeds planned.

           –  Peter Marshall

What is it that you are called to do this summer?  Don’t overwhelm yourself by choosing the Mt. Everest of goals.  Often, the hardest part of a goal is starting and breaking the inertia.  And sometimes, the Ebright Azimuths of the world are the perfect place to start your journey to achieve your dream.

I can think of no better example of how the commitment of a nation, and taking one small step at a time, can lead to achieving a dream.

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On a recent trip to Israel, I experienced many wonderful observations about life and living. Many of them were about religion, spirituality and belief. One powerful insight, however, had nothing to do with any of those areas.

Our guide, who fought in Israel’s foundational wars of 1967 and 1973, shared some amazing stories about the spirit of the Israelis as they confronted their enemies. In some cases, the stories sounded nothing short of modern day miracles. And they were. But upon deeper reflection, I realized that they were brought about as much by human inspiration as they were by Divine intervention.

This realization was crystallized when someone asked our guide how the small nation of Israel managed so many successes against many larger nations with greater armies. His response was an answer that can lead all of us to victory in every aspect of our lives. It was not about superior planning, greater numbers, logistics, equipment or luck. His answer, in my opinion, is summed up in one word – commitment. He simply replied, “We cannot afford to lose one war.”

The Israelis know that if they lose even one war, they will lose all they have worked tirelessly for not only these past 60 years, but for much of their existence. And their accomplishments in that short period of time are amazing. They have literally turned deserts and barren land into forests and orchards. I have never seen so powerful a transformation as I did while traveling their country.

Spirit of 1776In our guide’s concise, yet incisive answer, not only did I understand commitment at an entirely new level, but I realized the power of fighting for something vs. fighting against something. The distinction between the two is one that has given birth to nations and had a people thrive against almost insurmountable odds. Each and every day, in almost every action, Israelis wake up knowing what is at stake for them. It is almost as if it is coded into their DNA.

There is a huge difference between fighting for something vs. against something. If you are fighting for something, you are inspired by what is in your heart and feel as if you are being pulled toward a vision that is greater than yourself or where you might stand in the moment. You feel as if you have a direct responsibility to care for that vision and have a direct impact on its success.

When you fight against something, you are directing your energy, or even worse, surrendering your energy, to what it is you oppose and do not want. Your whole existence becomes not about your vision and what you want to create, but rather someone else’s vision of what you do not want. It is a resistance that blinds you and pulls you off track, rather than a vision and commitment that pulls you forward and inspires you.

So the question with which I returned to this great country, a country born of the same spirit, was quite simple: What am I fighting for? What commitment is coded into my DNA that gives rise to a vision toward which I wish to direct my every action?

I leave you with those very same questions.

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Not to long ago, the movie/book The Secret received a great deal of attention. Ever since, its wisdom has been helping millions of people create miracles in their lives. I see this phenomenon as part of an “awakening” that is going on in our country and throughout the world.

But there is a hidden secret within the concept of the Law of Attraction that I believe is not emphasized enough in the movie and book. It is incredibly simple and it magnifies quite measurably the power of manifesting all you desire.

The secret is this: more than just thinking and visualizing our desires, we must also speak them into the world and take action. By expressing our desire, we connect with those around us and tap into their infinite energy and possibility as well. There is certainly power in holding an intention by oneself, but there is unlimited power in sharing it with the world and connecting to all those around you. Imagine how the energy of that intention is multiplied when others hold it along with you.

In the world of physics, this concept is known as resonance – when two objects vibrate at the same level or frequency. When this occurs, not only is their energy transferred, but it is also combined and strengthened. The power and possibility of this simple concept is amazing.


To find a very simple and clear explanation of this concept click here:



To see one of the most mesmerizing and powerful examples of resonance and frequencies aligning, click below:



Equally as powerful as speaking your desire into the world is taking action upon it. The Universe responds to energy, and what greater way to poke the Universe into action than to send your own wave of it out into the world. That is what an action is, a wave of energy. And invariably, the Universe will respond. I believe the philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe captured this concept best when he said,

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness, concerning all acts of initiative (and creation). There is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.”

The Universe does indeed want to give us all we desire in our heart, but just thinking it is not enough. Keeping an intention a secret does not serve us as powerfully as it can. There is a massive amount of help and support around us to help fulfill our desires, but we have to let those around us know what we desire, take some action and allow them to contribute to us and increase the frequency.

One voice singing a cappella can be beautiful and moving. A whole choir of voices singing in unison inspires the world.

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