How Much Potential Do You Have?

A guest post from my friend and mentor Scott Fay. His new book, Discover Your Sweet Spot: The 7 Steps to Create a Life of Significance, is making its launch this week.

13.5 Million Acorns in Your Hand

By Scott M. Fay

Author, Discover Your Sweet Spot

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In order to build my organizations, I first needed to build myself. And in order to build myself, I needed to create an environment conducive to growth.

Think about it. As humans, space is essential. For starters, we take up space.

But more than that, we also design space, build space, and even maintain space. In landscaping, we intentionally utilize space with a specific purpose in mind. But too often when leading ourselves and those around us, we unintentionally permit a space that sabotages our potential.

I’ve never met people who felt they achieved their full potential. This tells me that we’re all living and leading below our capacity. Imagine what we could do if we were just a few percentage points better. Imagine what we could create or accomplish.

When we look to nature, we can see a powerful and encouraging example. Think about an acorn for a moment. It possesses tremendous potential. As the fourteenth century proverb teaches, “Great oaks from little acorns grow.”

But if we place an acorn in a safe, comfortable, and protected place, we will watch it slowly die over time. In these types of environments, acorns will do nothing. Yet if we take this same acorn and place it inside the ground, something miraculous happens. This little acorn sends out a powerful signal to the surrounding soil. It attracts everything it needs in order to grow and thrive.

The acorn doesn’t need a safe, comfortable, and protected place. It needs a conducive environment to unleash its potential. And when it grows, it increases in size and strength, but also in productivity. This same acorn—now a mighty oak—produces other acorns.

The average oak tree produces 70,000–150,000 acorns a year. During the tree’s entire life, that number jumps to around 13.5 million acorns. 2 And this staggering number doesn’t even account for the other acorns that will come from that first acorn’s acorns and so on.

The next time you hold an acorn, realize the potential of 13.5 million other acorns coming from the one in your hand—all conditional upon its environment.

And then consider the value of one human life compared to an acorn. How much potential do YOU have? I guarantee it is much more than you can imagine. Create an environment conducive to growth.

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Excerpt taken from Discover Your Sweet Spot by Scott M. Fay, published by Morgan James Publishing, available here via Amazon. More info:  www.thesweetspotsystem.com .

What I learned about 360-Degree Leadership Assessments

Recently I took the new John Maxwell 360-Degree Leadership Assessment. I wanted to familiarize myself with the tool. The assessment evaluates 64 leadership attributes from John Maxwell’s book The Five Levels of Leadership. Here is what I learned:

  1. There is a tendency for resistance to a 360-degree assessment. Being confronted with uncensored data can be upsetting and I needed to explore my feelings about the feedback.
  2. It was most helpful to use a coach to help me process the data and think into the results I want to get from the assessment. This is one of those things I would recommend to not do at home by yourself.
  3. It was best to look at the data and try to identify several patterns or themes. Otherwise the feedback can be overwhelming when trying to decide on an action plan.
  4. Ultimately I had to decide if the feedback was valid and what the results really meant. I also had to decide what areas were worth working on. Not every area brought up in the feedback would contribute to the results I am trying to achieve if I worked to improve it.

About the feedback:

  • It affirmed some areas of my leadership
  • It validated other areas where I knew I needed improvement
  • It identified some blind spots

All together the experience was positive and gave me a solid action plan to improve my leadership abilities. I recommend the 360-Degree Leadership Assessment for anyone that wants to get better as a leader.

To check out the assessment go to my website at www.JohnMaxwellGroup.com/RobertEnglish. Contact me for assistance in administering the assessment, processing the feedback, and developing an action plan.

Are You Living In Your Sweet Spot?

A guest blog from my friend and mentor Scott Fay:

 

Are You Living In Your Sweet Spot?

By Scott M. Fay

Author, Discover Your Sweet Spot

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The Sweet Spot is the convergence of three things: Purpose, Passion, and Plan.

  • Purpose is who you are designed to be.
  • Passion is what you love to do.
  • Plan is the strategic convergence of being and doing.

 Living and working from our Sweet Spot results from intentional design, not accidental disorder. Similar to what I do with my new landscaping clients, we must design our lives with the end in mind. Unfortunately, too many people just accept their lives rather than lead their lives.

Living to and from your Sweet Spot yields exponential potential.

My mother still tells me that I first found my Sweet Spot at the age of four while playing in the sandbox. Every day in summer, I loved spending time in a gigantic 10-by 15-foot sandpit with toy ‘dozers, trailers, and trucks. Like boys my age, I built roads and rivers during playtime. But perhaps unlike other boys, I also built little homes out of sand and then I felt the need to landscape those little properties. I’d use pine cones for shrubs, twigs for trees, and place little stones around freshly-dug miniature swimming pools. In that vast sand pit, I made a little square shop out of red bricks that I’d found lying around from my father’s projects. On top of that square shop, I made a flat roof out of pine boards.

I’d spend nearly all day playing in the sand pit. But just before dinnertime, I’d perform a unique ritual. I’d drive the equipment up onto the trailers, hook them up to the trucks, and then drive the trucks back to the square shop with the flat roof. By this time, mom would make a final dinner call and, according to her, I’d spend a couple more minutes at the shop off-loading the equipment, lining up the trailers, and, finally, backing up the trucks. Ritual complete, I’d head off to dinner, satisfied and smiling.

More than forty years later, I still perform an odd ritual. Today my sandpit is a bit larger, though. On most days before dinnertime, I pull into a square shop with a flat roof at 7900 SE Bridge Road in Hobe Sound, Florida. While driving around the lot, I see my employees off-loading the equipment, lining up the trailers, and, finally, backing up the trucks. Waving to them, I see the ritual completed, and then I head off to dinner, satisfied and smiling.

What about you? Have you ever functioned in your Sweet Spot? Do you know what it is? Is your Passion, Purpose, and Plan clear? If so, you don’t even need to look to see if you’re effective. You already know.

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Excerpt taken from Discover Your Sweet Spot by Scott M. Fay, published by Morgan James Publishing, available here via Amazon. More info:  www.thesweetspotsystem.com .