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My kids.

They don’t always get me.

In fact, they cringe at some of the pictures I post of them and me on social media.

Every-once in a while I get a text out of nowhere that says, “Mom PLEASE REMOVE THAT LAST POST!” And it’s usually in ALL CAPS as if they are screaming or trying to emphasize with urgency that I will ruin their lives and mine if it stays up.

They have a set of social share standards…

  • They think I should be more careful to crop my pictures “just right” so they are ascetically pleasing.
  • They think I should use filters on my pictures so my skin tone looks more appealing.
  • They think every picture needs to pass their approval so I don’t look bad nor make them look bad.

Guess what?

I don’t give a rip.

That’s why I purposely post pictures that are…real. Unedited. Not showing my best side, frequently featuring bad hair days….And yep, a few without makeup.

I don’t have time to be concerned with looking perfect or getting the perfect shot. But there’s more to it than that.

What’s this got to do with leadership and personal development? Well, hang on. I’ll show you.

Get the picture…

Successful leaders are often put on pedestals by people. To stay real and grounded, leaders need to get off that pedestal and stay with the people.

They do that by being honest and authentic.

Maybe that’s why Mark Batterson, an author and the lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C., identifies authenticity as the new authority in leadership.

If you are a leader, your goal is to lift up your people, not have them lift you up.

If you allow others to put you on a pedestal or if you minimize your faults and accentuate your successes, you create what I call the Success Gap.

Success Gap
That’s the perceived distance between successful people and those who are less successful. Inauthentic people enjoy that gap, protect their image, try to stay above the crowd, and, if anything, make the gap look even larger.

In contrast, authentic leaders work hard to close that gap. How?

They are open about their failures and shortcomings. They use self depreciating humor and laugh at themselves. When they are asked to speak, they prefer simple introductions, and they walk among the people and connect with them before and after their time onstage. They do everything they can to be themselves without pretense.

So how about you? Do you close the success gap, or try to close it?

  • Are you ok with people seeing the real you?
  • Are you ok with people knowing your not “all that”
  • Are you ok just being normal and imperfect in front of people?

If so, you’re not only in good company…you’re closing the success gap so your followers can catch up with you. And when they know that they can get to where you are because you’ve shown what you’ve achieved is not so out of reach…and they can do it too…you help them become more authentic leaders who change lives. They start believing they can be great leaders too.

So my encouragement to you… don’t be afraid to look…Umm…not so hot. It’s cool. If it’s you.

I think I may start a new hash tag or campaign:
“Ugly selfies. It’s what authentic leaders do.”
#UglySelfies=AuthenticLeaders

What do you think? If you’re game, post a selfie this week with this hashtag:
#UglySelfies=AuthenticLeaders – And be sure to tag me in it!

Connect with me:

Twitter: Linda Travelute

Let’s be the real deal. Bold. Brave. Authentic leaders.

Closing the Success Gap,
Dr. Linda Travelute

Are you a leader with the WOW factor? When someone thinks of you or talks about your leadership do they have good things to say? Do you wow them as you lead? Do so, and you’ll have more impact.

Watch this quick video live from our John Maxwell Leadership Certification Conference and you’ll learn the simple ingredient that will triple your influence.

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  • The cussword we have on the John Maxwell Team (John makes us promise to never use it or do it…)
  • The must have ingredient if you want to continue to triple your reach as a leader
  • The most important thing you can do to make people feel more valued than ever before.

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Are You Creating the Right Climate So Your Team Can Do More, Be More? Sports records provide tangible evidence of the positive changes that can occur when the right climate has been established.

One Olympic athlete, Parry O’Brien, won a gold medal at the 1952 Olympics by throwing a 16 pound shot 57 feet. In 1953 he set a new world record by throwing the shot 59 feet, 3/4 inch.

Experts at the time said O’Brien, the best in the world, might beat his record by a few inches if he practiced, but they were certain that no one would ever be able to break the 60 foot barrier.

Luckily, O’Brien didn’t think like an expert! As an athlete he was determined to continue improving himself. He began experimenting with different styles and invented a new technique for his event, which would become the universal style of putting the shot until the mid1970s.

In 1956 O’Brien won at the Olympics again—not by a few inches, but by a few feet. He also broke the unbreakable barrier by tossing the shot 60 feet, 11 inches.

O’Brien set his final record in 1959 when he threw the shot 63 feet, 4 inches. From that time on, every competitive shot-putter has tossed the shot beyond that length. Today, the record is over 75 feet.

The same is true of the four minute mile. No one, the experts said, would ever be able to run the mile in less than four minutes. Then, in 1954, a young medical student named Roger Bannister did the impossible by breaking that barrier.

Today, every world-class runner can run the mile in less than four minutes.

Why?

Because one man decided to keep improving.

One man decided to pay the price of personal growth.

He was willing to lead. As a result, he created a climate for those achievers who followed him.

Are you the type of leader who is willing to pay the price and create a climate in which your people can follow you and emerge as the leaders of tomorrow?

Let’s find out.

The environment in which you work will influence you and those you lead. Answer the following questions to help determine your organization’s dedication to developing leaders and providing a climate that promotes organizational and personal growth.

QUESTIONS TO ASK CONCERNING ORGANIZATIONAL GROWTH

1. Has the organization made a specific commitment to grow and develop people? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

2. Is the organization willing to spend money to develop employees’ growth? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

3. Is the organization willing to make changes to keep itself and its people growing? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

4. Does the organization support leaders willing to make the difficult decisions necessary for people’s personal growth and the growth of the organization? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

5. Does the organization place an emphasis on production rather than position or title? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

6. Does the organization provide growth opportunities for its people? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

7. Do organizational leaders have vision and share it with their people? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

8.Does the organization think big? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

9. Does the organization promote from within? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

10. Are there other leaders in the organization willing to pay the price of personal sacrifice to ensure their growth and the growth of others? (Seldom, Sometimes, or Usually)

If the majority of the answers to these questions is Seldom or Sometimes, a change is in order.
If the organization is controlled by you, begin changing now.

If you head a department in the organization, then you are in a position to make
positive changes. Do as many things as your organization will allow to create a positive climate for potential leaders.

If you are in a position only to make changes for yourself, try to find someone in the organization who will develop you—or change your job.

Great leaders share themselves and what they have learned with the learners who will become tomorrow’s leaders. A person can impress potential leaders from a distance, but only from up close can he impact them. Great leaders share themselves and what they have learned.

“If you really want to grow your business, you have to grow your people.” –John Maxwell

So, what are you doing to create a climate for potential leaders?

Training and coaching you and your team will help you create a climate for potential leaders so they can be more and do more. Click here for more information now.

What You Need to Know About Getting Along With Anyone

Human Relations…sometimes sucks.

Strong word, huh?

I could have used an expletive…

Let’s be real, it’s not always easy getting along with co-workers, supervisors, neighbors, friends, and even family.

I love this little story of a mother who’s preschooler locked her out of the house and how she spun it with understanding.

Leaving my four-year-old son in the house, I ran out to throw something in the trash. When I tried to open the door to get back inside, it was locked. I knew that insisting that my son open the door would have resulted in an hour-long battle of the wills. So in a sad voice, I said, “Oh, too bad. You just locked yourself in the house.” The door opened immediately.

Since getting along with others is so challenging, allow me to pass on this quote that reminds us what our priorities should be when dealing with other people:

A Short Course in Human Relations:

The least important word: I
The most important word: We
The two most important words: Thank You
The three most important words: All is forgiven.
The four most important words: What is your opinion?
The five most important words: You did a good job.
The six most important words: I want to understand you better.

The moment people know that you care about them, the way they feel about you changes.

Read that again. Here, I’ll help…

Oh, that’s good, admit it! (Go ahead and tweet it, you know you want to.)

Just try this: Next time you’re in a heated argument with someone, stop and say, “Help me understand where you’re coming from with this.” And watch what happens.

They will become softer, and more open to your comments because you’re showing that you care about how they feel about the situation.

Showing others that you care isn’t always easy. Your greatest times and fondest memories will come because of people, but so will your most difficult, hurting, and tragic times.

People are your greatest assets and your greatest liabilities. The challenge is to keep caring about them no matter what.

That’s the right way to treat people. Besides, you never know which people in your sphere of influence are going to rise up and make a difference in your life and the lives of others.

In the end, the ability to understand people is a choice.

It’s true that some people are born with great instincts that enable them to understand how others think and feel. But even if you aren’t instictiely a people person, you can improve your ability to work with others.

Every person is capable of having the ability to understand, motivate, and ultimately influence others. It starts with caring. Get that down and you’ll get along better with everyone you meet.

Pick one person you’re going to try to give understanding to tomorrow. Yeah, test this out – I dare ya!

If you’re interested in having Dr. Linda, The Personal Growth Doctor of the John Maxwell Team, train your team, business, company, or faith based organization, click here.

How bad do you want to become the best version of yourself? I know you want to go to the next level, but you’re not sure how, right? You want to have better relationships, a richer life, and be a better leader, but you’re stuck not moving forward. I hear ya, and I’m here to help! As a certified John Maxwell Speaker, Trainer, and Coach, I’ll show you 3 steps to creating a growth plan so you can become the best version of yourself.

Dr. Linda Travelute with John C. Maxwell

Dr. Linda Travelute with her mentor, John C. Maxwell

In this podcast episode, I’ll describe the easiest path to growing yourself personally and professionally so you can do more and be more.

Stick with me till the end of the podcast, as I give away over $700 worth of coaching goodies you may scoop up!

You’ll also hear special mentions of my mentors and favorite personal development books. Insights from Jim Rohn, Darren Hardy, Zig Zigler, Myles Munroe, Brian Tracey. Bishop T.D. Jakes, and of course, John Maxwell. Personal and professional development starts here!

Listen below:

Ever wonder how some people seem to have a knack for being in the right place at the right time? Don’t you just want a little of that? If you’re success minded and are looking for the right opportunities, let me show you how to be in the right place at the right time, every time.

What Most Success Gurus Teach You That’s Wrong

You may have attended seminars by people who teach you how to be a self-made success. They’ll teach you about preparing and positioning yourself for that golden moment that will open doors. But they won’t teach you what I’m about to unfold for you.

You may have a plan for your life, you may have a plan for your day, and you may follow your goal planning sheet religiously. But let me rock your self development world and show you how to position yourself for opportunity in a way that will give you an edge over everyone else.

Proverbs 16:9 says,

“We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”

I have found that I can plan my day, I can plan my year, and I can plan my life all I want, BUT…

At the end of the day…it’s the Lord that determined my steps. 

Opportunities You Can’t Plan:

I know people who have been experiencing huge financial blows and just like that – they bump into someone who gives them a job. A check. A unexpected miracle. Even a new car.

I know someone this past week who was searching for a home to rent, and they met someone in the parking lot who just happened to have a rental home become available the same day.

The home has the right amount of bedrooms for their family, the home is in the right location, close to the school their kids already attend, and the home is in their price range.

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Know what? You can’t plan for that!

That’s not luck. That’s not coincidence. That’s not even due to diligence.

It just happened…but not by chance…By God.

Being in the right place at the right time happens because God makes it happen.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 says,

He has made everyting beautiful in its time…

But what about preparation?

  • What about training?
  • What about talent?
  • What about discipline?
  • What about education?
  • What about all the things the success guru’s tell us we need to do to make sure our preparation meets opportunity?

Let’s see what the Bible says…

Ecclesiastes 9:11-12:

I have observed something else under the sun. The fastest runner doesn’t always win the race, and the strongest warrior doesn’t always win the battle. The wise sometimes go hungry, and the skillful are not necessarily wealthy. And those who are educated don’t always lead successful lives. It is all decided by chance, by being in the right place at the right time.

Notice what Solomon says:
“The fastest runner doesn’t always win.”

This means that the winner is not necessarily the fastest or brightest person. (That takes a little pressure off, huh?)

Solomon also said:
“the strongest warrior doesn’t always win the battle.”

This means the one who wins the battle is not necessarily the stronger person. (And all the weaklings say, YAY!)

And Solomon also said:
“The wise sometimes go hungry, and the skillful are not necessarily wealthy.”

This means wisdom and skill don’t automatically bring you financial success.

And here’s the best part of all:
“And those who are educated don’t always lead successful lives. It is all decided by chance, by being in the right place at the right time.”

He’s saying, those who are better, wiser, and stronger don’t always win the war, don’t always win the race, don’t always get the riches, and don’t always get the favor. Don’t always get the opportunities they’ve prepared for so diligently.

Oh snap!!! What about all of your hard work? Hang tight…

Solomon is mapping out a God-development plan for us not a self-development plan.

The ones who are in the right place at the right time are the ones whom God puts in the right place at the right time.

God is the only one who can put you where you need to be at the right moment.

You can try through self-effort to better position yourself for success. You can try working harder. You can try studying more. You can try networking more.

Yes, you might end up being slightly faster, slightly stronger, and more connected with movers and shakers, but only God can put you in the right place at the right time and give you good success.

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Yes, plan. Yes, prepare. Yes, be ready.
But know that it’s really up to God.
When He says it’s time, it’s time.

  • I spent years – decades actually – preparing and training for the things God uses me to do today.
  • I went through four years of Bible College to get my bachelors degree in pastoral theology.
  • I put myself through grad school while working full time as a pastor, with 2 school aged children at home to get my masters degree.
  • And even continued by pursuing my post graduate work and received my ph.d in clinical psychology.
  • Then I became a certified life coach and also a certified temperament analyst.
  • And I have 25 plus years in leadership and ministry training.
  • I’m also a voracious reader of books and personal development materials.

See, I’m not discounting preparation. I’m still preparing because I’m committed to life long learning. It’s important. But know this…

Just because you’re prepared, doesn’t mean the time is right. 

No amount of self effort on your part is going to open the door for you. You have to rely on God to position you and give you the opportunities you need.

And guess what? He will. Because God is interested in your success more than you are. He’s got a plan and you fit into it. He’s making all of heaven come together and your days are lining up perfectly.

Right now, at this moment, he’s orchestrating your steps behind the scenes. You have no idea the things he’s up to right now positioning you for your destined moments.

Jer 29:11:
For I know the plans I have for you,” says the lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.

So what do you do on your end?

You trust. He’ll move. Let his plan give you hope. That’s how you can be in the right place at the right time – every time!

And that too… is fusing faith with personal development. Liked this? Please share.

Want to be be a winner? Ahh, of course you do! But hey, it doesn’t matter how many times you’ve lost. Losing has nothing to do with winning. As long as you don’t stay stuck there in “lost-land” you’re going to move higher.

So what separates winners from losers?

In my mind, the dividing line is growing. Winners are in love with growing.

Highly successful people intentionally grow their minds because they get sick at the thought of being status quo. They salivate at opportunities to learn.

And losers? Losers give up. They lack motivation to go-for-it because they don’t know how to move forward. And not knowing how can put you into a hopeless state.

I’m emphatically and passionately a life long learner. I LOVE learning. It’s my favorite pastime. As I see it, the more I learn, the more I can help you and others. And of course, the bonus is that leaning ultimately helps me.

Last week I had the privilege to put myself in a mega-learning environment. By attending Dr. Dave Martin’s Ultimate Life Conference, I rubbed shoulders with multi-millionaires and some of the most brilliant business and
ministry minds on the planet. Business consultants, ministry leaders, and pastor-perenuers!

Ultimate Life Conference 2014

Not gonna lie, I’m still in over-load mode processing all the info that was thrown at me by these movers and shakers. As I process… join me, process with me, grow with me.

I’m sharing these info-bites with you to wet your appetite. I want you to hunger for more in life. And to get there, you need to learn. So here are a few tidbits that will nourish the “world-changer” in you.

11 of my biggest take-a-ways from Ultimate Life Conference 2014:

  1. The stream that you drink from is the stream that you think from.  –Simon T. Bailey, author of Shift Your Brilliance. (I bought Simon’s book as soon as I got home – He IS brilliant.)
  2. That which has fed you in one season no longer feeds you. Individuals who know how to shift their brilliance do not usually follow conventional ways. –Simon T. Bailey, author of Shift Your Brilliance
  3. Most Christians already know what to believe but they don’t do what they believe, they need to be taught how to act out their beliefs, what to do. It s not until you do something that you really find out what you believe. Dr. Robb Thompson
  4. In life we decide our relationships. Then our relationships determine our destination. It’s people who determine where you go. Relationships will either promote you or stifle you. You’re the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. You will suffer the consequences and rewards of those closest to you. – Dr. Robb Thompson
  5. We go toward our focus. What we visualize is what we get.
    You can’t avoid “a don’t do that” because it gives you an exact visual of what you don’t want to do.
    (Freshman boys who practice seeing themselves swish the ball in the basket 100 times before they go to bed every night perform better – because they see themselves doing it in their mind before they ever see themselves do it on the court.)  –AmyK Huchens
  6. If you can’t explain what you do to a kindergartner, you don’t know it good enough..make it simpler. –AmyK Hutchens
  7. If money is not important to you that would explain it’s absence from your life! – Pat Mesiti
  8. What happens to people who have lots of money, and lose it? Their money grew, their mind didn’t. – Pat Meseti
  9. Never sell what you’re in a position to sow. – Dr. Dave Martin, author of 12 Traits of the Greats
  10. People who change the world start by changing themselves. – Dr. Dave Martin
  11. 10 things Donald trump does everyday comes from the book of proverbs. -Dr. Dave Martin

That’s a mixed bag of goodies but here’s what I want you to take from this post:

In order to grow your mind so you can be more and do more, you have to put yourself in an environment to receive more.

More Information + Different Setting = Better Ideas. – Dr. Linda Travelute

How you can put yourself in an environment so you can recieve more:

  • Read. Read. Read. (Leaders are readers!)
  • Attend conferences. (Put money aside each month so you can afford the big ones!)
  • Invest in yourself: Buy educational programs, personal development materials, coaching programs.
  • Get a mentor or a life-coach (By the way, I’d love to coach you, connect with me here.)
  • Watch educational videos. (Ted Talks are amazing, see them on Youtube. Get the TedTalk smart phone app.)
  • Spend time with people who think differently than you do. (As AmyK Hutchens says: “You need to agitate your thinking so you can think differently.” …so you can come up with new and better ideas.)

So what’s your action item today?

Get one of the books listed in this post and start reading or watch a Ted Talk. Leave a comment below and let us know what you’re going to do right away to grow your mind and your world!

I hope to see you at next year’s Ultimate Life Conference!

AmyK Hutchens

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