“What To Do When It’s Your Turn” by Seth Godin

“I’m no longer sure what the question is, but I do know that the answer is Yes.” — Leonard Bernstein

And thus begins Seth Godin’s latest book, What To Do When It’s Your Turn (And it’s always your turn). I have read many of Seth’s published works and have enjoyed and been motivated by all of them, but I was particularly enchanted, excited and inspired by his latest effort.

Printed in full color, the unique format includes photographs, collages, and blocks and circular colors, in addition to the text, which appears in different sizes and fonts. Seth created what in his own words, “seems more like a high-end magazine than a book, that will encourage even people who hesitate to buy and read books to be engaged by this one.” I wholeheartedly agree.

According to Seth, “The book explores, as directly as I can, the dance we all have to do with our fears, the tension we all must embrace in order to do work that we care about. It pushes us to dig deep inside so we can do better work and impact the things we care about.” Fear is a word used throughout the book.

Seth explores, creatively and consistently, the very critical issue of personal fears and what we all do — and how we do it — about grappling with them. He does not for one moment let us forget that we have fears and how they can and do prevent us from moving forward, from fulfilling our dreams, and even preventing us from having dreams. Because we would then fear having to fulfill them.

Also at the core of What To Do When It’s Your Turn is Seth’s belief that freedom is not only an opportunity, but also a problem. Freedom allows us to make choices, which bring the appearance of risk and responsibility. What if we make the wrong choice? By liberating ourselves from the need to be right, we can also liberate ourselves from the fear. Says Seth, “If you are not willing to imagine failure, you’re unable to be free.”

Despite the fact that our culture reinforces the fear of failure daily, Seth believes that “failure is almost never as bad as we think it will be, but it’s our fear that we fear, not the failure.”

Seth includes in What To Do When It’s Your Turn many quotes, thought-provoking comments and questions, inspiration, and a very real determination to encourage us to get out there and “Take a Turn.” He warns that it might not work. It might not be fun. But he’s hoping that we will “do it anyway.”

Our need to be recognized as a winner, Seth believes, can destroy our ability to take our turn, because that requires that we are not willing to not win. However, if we care enough to do exceptional work, we must choose to risk failure.

Seth asks: “When was the last time you did something for the first time?” My answer: I don’t remember, but will try to do that each and every day. Like Leonard Bernstein, I am saying, “Yes!”

How Great Leaders Inspire Action — TEDx (Puget Sound) Talk by Simon Sinek

 

How Great Leaders Inspire Action
TEDx (Puget Sound) Talk by Simon Sinek

Listening to Simon Sinek explain what he calls “The Golden Circle” is fascinating. He begins with questions. “How do you explain when things that do succeed defy all of the assumptions? Why is Apple so innovative year after year,” he asks, “when they are just like everyone else? Same assets, talents, agencies.” Using three little words — why, how and what — Sinek explains why some leaders and organizations are able to succeed and others are not.

Sinek

Simply put, all of the great and inspiring leaders and organizations in the world think, act and communicate the exact same way. And it is the complete opposite to everyone else. Let’s think about his Golden Circle.

The outer circle is WHAT. Every single organization on the planet knows what it does. Apple, as an example, “Makes great computers.”

Next is HOW organizations do what they do. Some do know how they do it; others do not. Citing Apple again: “We make great computers. They’re beautifully designed, simple to use and user friendly.” [Read more…]

Crucial Conversations: Tools For Talking When Stakes Are High

CRUCIAL CONVERSATIONS: Tools for talking when stakes are high

By Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler

crucial conversations

This is a terrific book! It delivers practical skills that will help you succeed with any crucial conversation in your life, whether personal or professional. Most people avoid having really important conversations because they fear a negative outcome. This is particularly true if the talk is with someone of importance in your life or it is a particularly difficult and meaningful topic.

Crucial Conversations will [Read more…]

The Judge

This movie could have been entitled, The Grudge. When loss and tragedy reunite a father and son who have been estranged for years, a deep family rift and secrets unleash a torrent of long-festering resentment and nastiness.

Robert Duval, as the judge, epitomizes a hard-hearted, proud old patriarch — gruff, ferociously principled and well respected.

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Robert Downey, Jr., as his son, Hank, embodies the legacy of his father. A cold-hearted, amoral, formidable defense attorney whose glib and biting recriminations cut to the core, he longs for his father’s approval and reconciliation. [Read more…]

Want To Be Happy? Be Grateful: TED Talk by David Steindl-Rast

TED Talk by David Steindl-Rast 

”The one thing all humans have in common is that each of us wants to be happy,” says Brother David Steindl-Rast, a monk and interfaith scholar. I agree with Brother David and watched his TED Talk with great interest as he made his case for the need to be grateful, in order to be happy… rather than the other way around. What each of us imagines will make us happy might be different, but the desire for the feeling is universal. [Read more…]