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Knowing is not enough

It’s one thing to know a lot – to read, to learn, to have life experiences, but it’s everything to turn that knowledge into getting the things done that matter. Being smart is not so smart if you don’t use that knowledge to take the action to create the life you want. For 12 years, several times a year, I attended sales and leadership training – often with the same leaders from the real estate industry. We shared the same training experience, the books we purchased were the same and the methods we used and the market conditions were the same in our offices. Despite this similar knowledge there were vastly different results and profits across the offices. The winning teams took action on what they learnt at training. The mediocre teams would make comments like “I know what I should be doing but I don’t have time” or “I’ve heard it all before”. Those with a growth mindset and a bias for action understand that to create a fulfilled life we need to be aware of what we know, but we also need to apply what we know. Action is how we progress through knowledge. Without specific action the benefit from training might be a…

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Solutions behind closed doors

Our life satisfaction is greatly influenced by our mindset. Our state of mind, assumptions and beliefs, are a powerful motivator determining our action or inaction. Holding a fixed mindset can close us down to new thinking and to finding solutions. Success lies in our ability to challenge existing ideas, be open to learning and embrace the action required. Do you sometimes say, “That’s just the way I am” or “I’ve always done it that way”? Are you a “know it all” – thinking you have learnt all you need? At 14 I declared to my parents, “You can’t teach me anything, I know it all!” Imagine the attitude that must have gone with that thinking. Thankfully, leaving home at 17 brought swift changes to that closed mindset! Do you have a fixed or growth mindset? After decades of research on achievement, Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck made groundbreaking findings on fixed and growth mindsets, documented in her book Mindsets – The New Psychology Of Success. In a fixed mindset, we believe that our intelligence or talents are fixed traits – that talent alone creates success. In a growth mindset, we believe that our abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work –…

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Take control

Our environment can adversely influence our performance and engagement in life. When something is not serving us, and we cannot remove it or remove ourselves, it’s time to take brave action and limit our exposure. In a poor environment, why do some thrive while others languish? Previously as a leader of a highly profitable real estate office I’ve experienced several market changes – none more memorable than the Global Financial Crisis. At the time others insisted we wouldn’t maintain high profits in a market where approximately 30% of offices were ready to close. The media was heavily publicising economic problems, and it would have been easy to blame the market, accept that we could not maintain our results and begin a period of poor outcomes and income. As the leader this would have set the wrong example – the proverb “a fish rots from the head down” comes to mind. We made the decision not to blame the market. The Australia-wide real estate results in our group proved winning offices were not affected in this poor market. Those in the top 100 in the boom were still in the top 100 in the tough market – we couldn’t use the market as…

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It’s over – now get on with it

There’s no denying that life can sometimes offer up some tough blows. However our mindset can be like insurance against the tough stuff. Without this we get stuck and find it hard to move forward and live the life we want. Moving forward means realising that we may need to put an expiry date on old stuff. Like the expiry date on a passport or driver’s license or the use-by date on grocery items there are areas in our lives where we need to renew, replenish or throw out those things that have expired. When something is no longer working to support you to lead the life you want or there is no longer satisfaction guaranteed, it’s time to accept that the expiry date has arrived. I have observed that those mentoring clients who put an expiry on their old ways of thinking or behaving take the greatest steps forward. They expire habits, practices and mindsets that don’t support where they want to be in life like: Low value tasks Doing work they don’t love Hanging with wrong people Comparing themselves to others Worrying what others think Being a victim or persecutor Repeating old stories Making excuses Playing safe to…

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The true wealthy

Some people look like they have it all – heaps of money, flashy houses, cars and fabulous holidays but we often don’t see what is going on in the background. While it may seem that they have it all they could be going further and further into debt and taking their health and relationships down with them. Making life look different to what’s really going on is the surest path away from fulfilment. Twenty years ago we bought an old house for $500 000. It would have been easier – given we had two babies – to renovate before we moved in but we decided to live in the house during the renovation. For three years we lived with the noise, mess and disruption. When it was finished we had spent $300 000, created a spectacular home and increased the house’s value to $1 600 000. I learnt from an early age, plus add in 15 years experience in real estate sales, that one successful strategy was to buy smart and sell smart as the way to build wealth. This time we made the decision to do what was financially smart – sell the house to clear our debt and reinvest the profit. Many…

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