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the December ’05 edition of Leadership Tools Monthly News has arrived.
December 23, 2005

Taking Ownership


Providing leadership tools with original content on key leadership topics including:

Business Planning
Leadership Development
Sales Management
Customer Service
Team Building

Delivering leadership strategies with fresh ideas, results-focused tools and resources to assist leaders in achieving THE TRIPLE WIN.

The Triple Win consists of creating and supporting a work environment where:

Win #1 Employees - are positively engaged and feel highly valued.
Win #2 Customers - are consistently "delighted" and remain loyal.
Win #3 Owners/shareholders - realize optimal return on investment with continual improvement quarter-to-quarter and year-over-year.

Remember, the Leadership Tools Monthly News is FREE, your information is always kept PRIVATE and we only publish the newsletter monthly. This ensures that you will receive quality tools and content without becoming overwhelmed with too many emails.

Volume III - December, 2005 Issue
T A B L E   O F   C  O N T E N T S

  1. Lessons-in-Leadership
    • Taking Personal Ownership - Leading A Happier Life
  2. Meeting for Results
    • Own Two New Tools & Templates
  3. The Juice Bar
    • Own Your Past & Present - Lead Your Future
  4. Reader Meter
    • Reader Feedback
  5. Site News
    • Updates - and What's Coming Soon

Lessons In Leadership

Taking Personal Ownership
Leading A Happier Life

"It is not only what we do, but also what we do not do,
for which we are accountable."

- Moliere

Ownership - too often people are striving to own things in a misguided effort to achieve inner peace and happiness. They believe that "If only I had a new wardrobe, I'd be happy"; "If only I owned a new car or a bigger home, I'd feel successful"; or "If I could just make more money my life would be perfect."

What so many fail to understand is that happiness truly comes from within, it comes from a strong sense of self, not from the acquisition of external things.

Taking personal ownership of one’s current state of affairs is the first step to achieving a happier and more fulfilling life. When you accept that your current situation is a result of all the choices you've made in your life right up to the present moment, you then realize that you are also in direct control of your future.

No one else is pulling the strings of your life, unless you are allowing them to. YOU - and nobody else, have the authority to steer your own ship.

Beginning today, in a single instant, you can make a choice to change and take complete ownership of your life. In one moment in time you can decide to take a new path and free yourself from the crippling mindset that has been holding you back.

Never again will you allow yourself the luxury of making excuses for why you cannot make progress. No longer will you indulge yourself with self-pity and the endless poor-me-isms.

Blaming other people or outside events for your own misfortune are exercises not worthy of your consideration. Your integrity is diminished and your self-esteem will only suffer from these unproductive, time-wasting habits.

Everyone faces crisis and personal hardships, certainly some much worse than others. However, only once you are determined to "own it" can you effectively overcome the challenges you are facing.

Tragedy is prevalent throughout our society. It's a sad fact of life that too many children grow up in abusive environments. Too often otherwise perfectly normal people battle drug and gambling addiction or alcoholism. Poverty, hunger and disease continue to be real challenges for millions of innocent people.

In most cases, however, isn't it true that whatever your personal situation, there is someone else who is worse off that you? If the answer is yes, then doesn't it make sense to replace the thoughts of "woe is me" with thoughts of gratitude for the many blessings you do enjoy?

Rather than giving up, get determined to make your life better! You can, if you decide you can.

In general, people who are chronically unhappy suffer from low self-esteem and have a strong sense of personal insecurity. Surprisingly, many of these same people are seen by others as appearing to have everything in the world going for them. They appear to be in control, goal-oriented and high achievers.

It's common for these individuals to be strong type-A personalities; they tend to be overachievers and even admit to being somewhat of a perfectionist.

Yet, in the back of their mind these very same people suffer from feelings of anxiety and even depression. Despite their obvious strengths in the eyes of their peers, they continue to feel as if they just don't measure up.

As a direct result of their ongoing negative self-talk, the physical body finally responds with ailments such as sleep disorders, anxiety and panic attacks. In worst cases, depression can overtake the individual and it can even lead to suicide.

Whether you are simply unhappy with your current situation, or you suffer from more serious obstacles - your ability to take personal ownership of your past and present, will determine your future.

As a first step you must begin to take note of the things you are constantly telling yourself. Your self-talk is a primary factor in your ability to overcome any major challenge. If you are constantly telling yourself that you aren't good enough or that you aren't smart enough, or attractive enough, etc. - it should not surprise you when you continually sabotage yourself in business or relationships.

Taking ownership is more than simply accepting your situation or taking responsibility for the decisions that have brought you to this place in your life.

Taking ownership also means that you are committed to taking action toward resolving the challenges that you've identified as barriers to your personal success.

Taking action may involve getting help - from a doctor, a pastor, a friend, from anyone who has the knowledge and skills to guide you toward a path of self-reliance, self-acceptance and an improved sense of self-worth.

If more people would put the same level of energy and enthusiasm into taking personal ownership of their lives, as they do in blaming, complaining and finding fault in others or "the system", just imagine how much more meaningful their lives would be. Imagine the sense of fulfillment they would enjoy.

Unhappy / Low-Ownership individuals focus on:

  • Making excuses
  • Getting even
  • Having others help them out
  • Asking, "What for?" Or "What's the use?"

Happy / High-Ownership individuals focus on:

  • Making progress
  • Getting going
  • Finding answers to help themselves
  • Asking, "Why not?" Or "What do I need to do next?"

Now imagine yourself being that happy, successful individual who has taken ownership of your life. You've overcome your personal challenges by stepping out of your comfort zone and by taking action. You've educated yourself to the point that you are now an expert on the very issue that was holding you back.

Personal growth and development is not always easy. Nothing worth having in this life is for that matter. Going through life assuming the best is yet to come, versus believing the worst is here to stay, is simply a more thoughtful and productive choice.

My wish for you is that you are able to decide today to take personal ownership of your life. Take credit for all the good things you've done and take ownership of any bad choices you've made. Accept the blame and/or the glory for your personal circumstance. Learn from the mistakes that you've made in order to avoid repeating them.

Read - Learn - Grow - and Live a happier life – for you and for the benefit of all of those who love you.

Now I ask you, what's the alternative now that you know what it takes to improve your life?

Isn't it true that a person who chooses not to read is no better off than a person who can't read? The bigger failure would be the person who has the tools to succeed but because he lacks the self-discipline and/or work ethic, simply chooses not to make the effort.

Understand that in the past fear has paralyzed you from taking action. Fear of failure, fear of the unknown. All of the obstacles and barriers that seem to be carrying so much weight on your shoulders today - can soon become sources of motivation that prepare you for a brighter tomorrow.

Begin now – decide today.

"I will find a way, or make one."
- Orison Marden

Meeting for Results

Own Two New Tools & Templates

"He that is good for making excuses
is seldom good for anything else."

- Benjamin Franklin

Over the past month we’ve been extremely busy adding new tools and even more content to support our readers.

Introducing our free Business Letter Writing Template tool.

We recently posted an introductory page, with links to 13 individual supporting articles that provide our readers with this new free tool.

Almost daily, leaders are required to use written communication for a wide variety of reasons. Due to potential legal issues, written documentation is more important than ever.

Leaders are always being told "Get it in writing.", or "Put it in writing."

Now, you’ll be prepared to tackle your most common letter writing needs.

Effective teamwork is critical for any organization to ensure quality work and maximum production and profitability.

As a result of this basic need, we’ve created and compiled 40 unique team building exercises and activities.

This new free tool provides original team building ideas that you can quickly implement at your next staff meeting. By referencing this free tool each time you have an important meeting, you will save valuable time as you work to ensure that your meeting is fun, engaging and more importantly, highly productive.

In addition, we’ve created an individual page for each of the 20 Team Building Benefits that are gained through effective teamwork.

Here is a quick list of all the many benefits you receive from effective Team Building At Work

Serve your employees well and they will in turn take care of your customers. Use our team building tools to retain your best and brightest.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed. It is the only thing that ever has."
- Margaret Mead

The Juice Bar

Own Your Past & Present
Lead Your Future

The Power of “I” – Taking Ownership

"I am responsible. Although I may not be able to prevent the worst from happening, I am responsible for my attitude toward the inevitable misfortunes that darken life. Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I have - life itself."
- Walter Anderson

I am only one, but I am one.
I cannot do everything, but I can do something.
And what I can do, I ought to do.
And what I ought to do, by the grace of God, I will do.
I will do more than belong...I will participate.
I will do more than care...I will help.
I will do more than believe...I will practice.
I will do more than be fair...I will be kind.
I will do more than dream...I will work.
I will do more than teach...I will inspire.
I will do more than earn...I will enrich.
I will do more than give...I will serve.
I will do more than live...I will grow.
I will do more than talk...I will act.
I will be more than good...I will be good for something.

- Anonymous

Break Bad Habits – For A Happier Life

How shall I a bad habit break?
As you did that habit make.
As you gathered, you must lose;
As you yielded, now refuse.
Thread by thread the strands we twist,
Till they bind us, neck and wrist;
Thread by thread the patient hand
Must untwine, ere free we stand;
As we built it, stone by stone,
We must toil unhelped, alone,
Till the wall is overthrown.

- John Boyle O’Reilly

"My belief is that personal freedom cannot grow beyond personal responsibility. The more people that learn to be fully accountable for their lives, the more freedom each of us can enjoy and the more fulfilling all of our lives will be."
- Reed Konsler

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UPDATES - and What's Coming Soon!

  • IT'S FINALLY HERE! 10 Quick Steps To Leadership Development - PDF Version On Sale Here! Audio Version Narrated by National Radio Host David Lawerence - Coming Soon. Stay tuned.
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  • Life's Ultimate Experience List - In The Works. Set Your Goals, and Go For It. Make your life, a life worth living.
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