Friday, January 18, 2008

Lead Better - Good Game

In Sound On Sound Magazine, the geek squad of the music industry did a study of just what makes a great song great to see if the magic in one song can make magic happen if applied to the creation of another song. They took the elements of James Brown's "I Feel Good" and analyzed if various components could strengthen other songs. Their findings: a big GIANT yes. It seems that the media adage "Good Is Good" holds true for more than just adapting Iron Chef for U.S. audiences - what resonates with us on an intrinsic level holds no matter if it is being applied under different circumstances.

This month, we used this approach to setting our intention for the year. First we called Brooke Emery of Attraction Boutique for her favorite strategies for having a year worth celebrating. In describing our ideal year, the characteristics we named included the obvious: geographic growth, profitability, evolution of services/offerings, continued expansion of client base. Pretty good business-speak, but working with Brooke we realized that something HUGE was missing - FUN. Given the seriousness that tends to set in when people use the word "intention" - FUN is the perfect antidote.

Think about it - humans thrive on fun. Give me a five star meal and if I am not having fun I might as well be at Micky D's. Show me a great movie, and if my mental disposition keeps me from enjoying it, I might as well have never seen it at all. Fun is the magic dust, the special sauce that allows our lives to feel lively. And when it comes to having work that is anything but drudgery, having fun is a must.

Of course, fun happens on it's own - from a random playful smile from a co-worker to a presentation that blows the audience away. But practicing mastery means that if fun is a must have or core value, you have to approach work and life in a playful, fun way. And if "I Feel Good" can be a guide map for other good feeling songs, whatever has made you feel good in the past can point the way to your good feeling now and at any time.

To make something fun, ask yourself: what's a phrase you can use to remind yourself to be playful as events unfold this year? It might be related to a time in your life when you were having the most fun, or it might be a phrase that inspires you. For Linda in our LA office, the phrase was "Flow With the Go" - a play on the old go with the flow that emphasizes not just being reactive but being ACTIVE but still in alignment with whatever is happening. As a fan of De La Vega, notorious NYC graffiti artist, I borrowed from one of his famous scribbles "Realiza Tu Sueno" or "Become Your Dream" which reminds me to see life as my own dream unfolding even when things seem more like a nightmare. Brooke herself claimed "Everyday is Jazz Fest" to remind her of the great feeling of being in the sun, having a beer & hearing great music. Beer aside, the point is to remember the BUZZ of feeling good no matter where you are.

So what's yours? Think about times that you have felt fantastic or phrases that inspire the best feelings in you. Pick one that feels especially evocative to you and name it. By claiming that image, memory or positive association, you are tapping into a pathway to feeling great no matter where you go or what you do.

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