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Inspired Action Blog - Write 4 Life

Posted on
Mar 21, 2011 @ 08:47 PM


New Year’s Progress Report - 3.5 Steps to Getting Back On Track!

Can you believe we’re in the third week of March?  April 15th is quickly approaching, dandelions and crabgrass are taking root and planning a healthy launch, and the first 1/4 of the year is soon to be history!  So how are you doing on your New Year’s intentions, goals, and resolutions?

Every quarter my 5th grade son, Gary, brings home his report card which lets me see how he’s progressing with his grade appropriate learning objectives.  I can see where he’s really on top of his game (math, science, and social studies), and where he may need to exert a little extra effort (reading and language arts).  Rather than wait until just days before the end of the school year to ‘check in’ with his progress, I can work with him in a very timely manner to help strengthen and reenforce his study habits (behaviors) as well as look at what distractions we need to manage differently (TV, Wii gaming, etc.).  If I waited until the end (of the school year) there would not be enough time to affect the outcome.  (On a side note: I’m very proud to say Gary is a strong student in all of his subjects!)

Let’s bring this a little closer to home.  With the first quarter of 2011 quickly coming to a close, is it time for each of us to reflect and self-assess how we’re doing?  How would you grade yourself so far this year on the progress of your New Year’s goals, resolutions, and ‘commitments’?

Have you been successful in taking deliberate, focused, and intentional action towards accomplishment of your 2011 goals?  Do you feel like you’re on track?  Yes?  Terrific!  Keep up the great work!  If, on the other hand, you’ve made little if any progress, what’s up with that?   Now is a great time to really check-in witht where you are, what you aim to achieve, and what you want to do to deliver on your goals.  We’re 25% into the year, there is still time to take (corrective) action and make things happen.  Here are 3 steps to get you back on track!

1.) Validate. 

Validate the goals, resolutions, and  commitments you made at the first of the year still fit, make sense, they’re relevant, and you own them 110%.  If you’re not fully completely, absolutely 110%  enrolled into the possibility these goals hold for you, then you need to really assess: 1) How did they end up on your list?  If they’re NOT rocking your world, whose world/agenda are they designed to rock? (In other words, are they there to please or satisfy someone else?)  2)  What goals do you REALLY want to continue to pursue?  Which are truly most important, to you?  Which do you absolutely, positively, without a doubt own 110%?


2.) Critique. 

Critique how well you apply yourself towards the progress and accomplishment of your goals.  Score yourself on a scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high).  What would it take, who would you have to be, to score at an 8, 9, or 10?  Ask yourself (and answer!) these questions:

  1. What and Who am I allowing to get in the way?
  2. What am I making more important (than my own progress towards these goals)?
  3. What/Who do I need to say NO to more often?
  4. What/Who do I need to say YES to more often?
  5. What difference will it make, to me and to those I care about, when I do (or if don’t) accomplish these goals?


3.) Design, Build, Commit.
Design specific action steps to achieve your goals.
Build a daily, weekly, and monthly schedule and allocation of resources to support your progress and accomplishment.
Commit to living in integrity - where your thoughts, choices, and behavior align with and support positive, empowering, and inspired action (toward your goals).


3.5)  Hire a Life and Personal Transition Coach
Working with someone who is as committed and passionate about you achieving your goals as you are is a powerful advantage.
Hiring an accountability partner, as well as someone who will help you navigate the speed bumps, road blocks, and inevitable crossroads you are likely to encounter can make all the difference.

Wishing you the very best in the rest of 2011!  Make this a year of inspired action!

Live your best life,

-- Todd

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Posted on
Mar 08, 2011 @ 07:15 PM


3 Life Scenarios “Primed” to work with a Life Transition Coach…

How many times do you get asked... “So, what do you do?”  It happens all the time.  When I tell someone I’m a Life Transition Coach they often say “What’s that, and what type of people work with a Life Transition Coach?”  “Great questions”  - I say, “glad you asked.”  I explain there often certain life situations which spark the search for a life transition coach:

  1. Approaching (recently passing) a major life crossroads - career, empty nest, retirement
  2. Beginning again after a divorce
  3. Deciding to embark upon and live a ‘life-long dream’

There are certain life situations AND there are also 3 Life Scenarios “primed” to work with a life transition coach.  Often, as I explain each of these scenarios, someone I’m talking to will say... “Yeah, that sounds really familiar, I think that’s me.”  Do any of these sound familiar to you?


1. Our Own Worst Enemy: Keeping our own dreams at bay

This type knows what they want. They know what their goals, dreams or aspirations are. They have a pretty good idea what they’re destined to do or become, but for any number of reasons they haven’t done anything to achieve or realize them. They’re stalled. Stuck. Blocked from moving forward. This is no way to live. It’s wasted potential.  Their goal, dream or aspiration has been parked in a “wishful thinking garage” which is out of sight but often top of mind. This type is too busy, too tired, too distracted or too committed to other “priorities.” They are in that most useless of places “The Waiting Place,” (according to Dr. Seuss’s Oh, the Places You’ll Go). Such wasted time; time that if spent with the right coach could be turned into something so much more productive and meaningful.

  1. Typical Characteristics: No clear action plan. Multiple communication barriers acting as resistance to the dream.
  2. Common Obstacles: Fear/anxiety of what the possible outcomes, responses, changes in status quo might be. Fear of failure. A lack of a high degree of accountability. The design of WHAT they want and WHY they want it is not clear enough or bold enough to compel them to act.


2. The Fog: Substance surrounded by a lack of clarity and inaction
This type has a pretty good idea of what they don’t want, but aren’t real clear about what they do want. There are a lot of things they’re capable of and many things they’d like to experience. They are too distracted by all the choices and options that exist beyond just knowing what it is they don’t want. 



  1. Typical Characteristics: Too many ideas, possibilities, or considerations to choose from; no clear priority or preference
  2. Common Obstacles: Lack of self discovery, self assessment, self interrogation to define life’s purpose, passion, or vision. Other demands for time and life responsibilities seemingly prevent any real commitment to self.


3. The Robot: Existing merely to serve one routine purpose
These types find themselves living an almost mechanical routine doing the same thing again, and again and again. They have forgotten how to dream. They simply cannot imagine living their lives with great passion, enthusiasm or spark for life.

  1. Typical Characteristics: Too many reasons why things don’t or can’t work the way they want them to, not enough reasons why they can. Too many negative attitudes, negative forces, negative influencers have squelched their spark and spirit for dreaming and believing in the possibility of something better than what they live today.
  2. Common Obstacles: Their “reality” of today is fixed, they can’t see their own ability to affect and change their reality; their experience in the moment doesn’t have to last all the moments of their lives. They’ve been living the same story, telling the same story over and over and over that it ‘s the only story they know and they don’t know how to begin telling another one!


If you or someone you know fits one of these 3 Life Scenarios, please encourage them to get in touch with me.  I’d be happy to have a short conversation with them to explore whether working with a Life Transition Coach is something they feel could benefit them.  Thank you for your referral in advance!


Live your very best life!
-- Todd

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Posted on
Feb 28, 2011 @ 05:57 PM


Different Strokes - 5 thoughts on creative self expression!

Paint Brushes

I’m not a painter, but when I saw this image of different paint colors, brushes, and the intriguing shapes/textures each was creating, it occurred to me there’s a metaphor in there somewhere! Looking with a little more curiosity, what struck me was how great each brush painted a very unique line!  And while the lines they painted seem to fit the brush quite naturally, like they make sense - almost predictable, it’s also quite apparent each brush could easily paint a very different line, or shape, or whatever we might imagine.  Each brush has an amazing depth and breadth of possible expression - very much like yourselves!  Do you find yourself painting the predictable or unpredictable? Single color or eclectic mix of color and texture?  How do you imagine and ‘paint’ different possibilities of self expression?  You are the artist, the painter, the creator of your own life’s canvas!   The paints or brushes you choose to work with might reflect your sense of spirituality, relationship, profession, health and wellness, or financial security.  What are the paints and brushes you work with?  While you likely have a ‘favorite brush’ and preferred palette of colors, what can you do to add greater depth and breadth to your life’s self expression?

How often do we explore and embrace our full range of human expression for who we are? And how fun would it be to start painting your life different than what you and those around you are so familiar with?  Does it ever occur to you whether or not you use all the different paints, colors, and brushes you have available to create the most vibrant expression of you?


Have you limited who you are, and who you may become by the limits you place on how you express yourself...

  1. Color only within the lines
  2. Color by numbers
  3. Paint only through the perspective of “realism” vs. exploring the art of an impressionist
  4. Only mix these colors and certainly don’t mix “those” colors



Here are 5 thoughts to consider as you rethink and hopefully broaden the depth and breadth of your life’s expression...


1. Appreciative Inquiry

 what works well and what do you truly value in the current rendition of your life’s self expression?  What are you certain you want to include and continue to carry forward?  What do you consider ‘hallmark‘ parts of you?  What values will you always honor through your authentic self expression?


2. Play “I Spy”

 I spy travel, I spy quite time & meditation, I spy dance and play, I spy....  something completely new.  Or maybe you spy so much more of something you only express in very small ways today. By paying attention to what’s different, to what you want to BE different, you’ll be inspired to include these new paints, brushes, and designs as part of your expanded self expression.


3. Be Creative

Be Creative with what you have.  How can you blend colors, use some of the same brushes as before to create a completely refreshed or maybe an altogether new look?  Do you have friends or family you might ask to get their ideas?  What if you actually bought some paints and brushes and just let your creative juices flow?  Paint something unpredictable and then explore the possibility of meaning in it.


4. Try Something On

 Try something on for an hour, a day, or a week.  You don’t have to keep this new color or stroke of a brush, but what will it hurt to give it short test drive to see what it’s like?


5. Accept Yourself

 Accept yourself with the greatest degree of love and appreciation for who you are!  After all is said and done, you are you!  Own your amazing greatness, acknowledge your incredible sense of self and how you express yourself to the world.  Behold in your eyes the splendor of the masterpiece... of YOU!

Here’s to the many different strokes we all have within our reach!



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Posted on
Feb 07, 2011 @ 04:00 PM


Self Storage - a metaphor worth exploring… (part II)

Have you ever attended a large corporate event, maybe a national or regional sales meeting?  Or maybe just a routine meeting with your boss or business team.  In my days at Black & Decker and other corporate settings I attended numerous events and meetings such as these.  I always attended these meeting and events with a sense of having to ‘store’ part of myself because (I felt) these companies wanted everyone to fit a particular mold, to sport a ‘blue suit’ if you will.  I ‘played’ the parts of the roles I held pretty well, but I remember it being a lot of work, exhausting work.   I constantly measured my words, my ideas, my contribution and self expression to fit the mold, to sport the blue suit.  

The cost of keeping my doors of self storage locked and secure were great. 

It required a great deal of energy to maintain the image I felt was necessary to succeed within these corporate environments.  How much of this perspective was real, how much imagined?  I acted is they were real, real to me anyway.  The costs were high indeed, both to what (more) I could have contributed to these organizations, as well as to myself in terms of living into my greatest potential and lifelong aspiration, to living with authentic self expression and honoring my values.

Show up 100%  - no self storage!

In October of last year I attended the International Coach Federation Conference in Ft. Worth, TX.  What an amazing experience!  To show up 100%  - no self storage!  It was easy, liberating, expansive, empowering!  Giddy Up!  Not only were there no ‘costs’ associated with self storage, to the contrary, there were amazing returns!  The relationships I formed, the learning I experienced, the contribution I made to others, my voice spoken with resonance, passion, and purpose!  There were no ‘molds,’ no ‘blue suit’  expectations to conform to.  What opened up for me was (and is) an expansive possibility within the coaching profession, amazing connections with powerful people, coaches from around the world, creating relationships committed to making a positive and profound difference in the world and to humanity.  What opened up was the reality of a dream - come true!


How well does your environment nurture your values, beliefs, and true potential?

For me a big part of opening up my self-storage had to do with placing myself in an environment that nurtured my own values, beliefs, and potential.  How well does your environment nurture your values, beliefs, and true potential?  Are there ways to have your current environment welcome, embrace, and appreciate more of you?  Maybe our self-storage has as much to do with our environment and the relationships we create, as it does with each of us embracing our own magnificence and vulnerability - all at the same time.  Maybe how far we open the door has something to do with how much risk we’re willing to take?  Perhaps it depends on how strong of a personal and professional platform we have designed and built for our truest selves to stand upon?  How amazing it is to stand on our own platform of self, open and exposed to the dynamic and diverse elements of our lives, BEing our most authentic self, and at the same time our most vulnerable?

Roll up the doors!  Unlock the possibility!  Live BIG!  Be BOLD!  BE YOU!

Declare an end to self storage!

Looking forward to seeing you, 100%!

-- Todd

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Posted on
Jan 26, 2011 @ 09:55 PM


Self Storage - a metaphor worth exploring…

We’ve all driven by those ever so familiar bright orange or blue roll-up doors, lined up in straight rows, door after door after door... locked, secure, and safe from the elements.  Seems there’s ample ‘self storage’ at the ready.  As I was driving by a self-storage facility theStorage Units other day it occurred to me - what a poignant metaphor for what we all tend to do with various aspects of our lives!  Are there aspects of your life you keep within the confines of ‘self storage?’  Hidden, closed off, locked away, ‘safe’ from the elements of your everyday life and the lives of those around you?  What’s there?  Maybe you’re not even sure anymore, you stored it away so long ago you’ve forgotten.  Or maybe you know exactly what’s there, in great detail.

  1. What are the costs associated with your ‘self’ storage?
  2. How much energy and effort does it take to keep the door down, locked and secure?
  3. What are you hiding?
  4. What are you afraid of?


The most powerful lock on most self storage is fear.  Fear of rejection.  Fear of judgement.  Fear of failure.  Fear of not ‘fitting in.’  Believe it or not, even fear of success.  And so what?  What if some of these fears came true?  What would you learn about yourself, and about your relationship with others who don’t ‘approve’ or ‘accept’ the whole of you?  What does it tell you about those who do approve and accept?

Here’s a powerful question I encourage you to explore... What are you making more important than your own authentic self expression?

Not ready to open that door up all the way; maybe you have more than you care to share all at once and you’d rather open up a little at a time?  No worries.  But let me ask you to simply imagine...

  1. What’s possible for you?
  2. What’s possible for others and your relationships with them?
  3. What will ‘open up’ in your life when you share more of you with the world?
  4. What would your life look like, feel like, BE like if you abandoned all ‘self’ storage and simply rolled up the door and put all of YOU out there?

Do a little work with the questions and ideas we’ve explored so far.  Next week I’ll pick up on this notion of self storage and give you a personal example of where I’ve unlocked parts of my own self storage.

Until then - here’s to you, all of you, 100%!


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Posted on
Jan 12, 2011 @ 05:45 PM


Are you up for a challenge?  It’s your choice!



In my last blog posting I wrote about the choices we make, moment by moment, by... well you get the picture.  So it occurred to me why not challenge you, (my hopefully loyal readers) much like I do with my coaching clients, to actually track and measure their choices around a specific goal.   When we have a specific goal, there are choices we make which either move us closer towards accomplishment of our goals, or further away from (accomplishing them).  If we think about it over the course of a day, we might be able to remember when we made a choice that leaned one way or the other.  But if we had to assess how well our choices (and respective actions) moved us closer towards or further away from our goal over the course of a week, two weeks, or a month we’d be hard pressed to know just how well we scored.  Not only could we not remember about the past day, week, or month, but our lives move at such a fast pace it’s hard to even think about it in the very moment!  We need a way to interrupt our unconscious way of behaving and instead, behave in ways with much greater intention and deliberate design.

30 day ‘Be In Choice - Challenge.’

So I’ve come up with a 30 day ‘Be In Choice - Challenge.’  It’s simple in design and execution, but exceptional in results and outcome.  You have a choice (go figure!) in how you want to take on the challenge...

 ChallengePennies in your pocket...

 Get a roll of pennies, put them in a small ziplock bag and keep them handy.  Each time you’re about to choose - STOP!  Consider the bag of pennies and what choice best serves you reaching your goal.  Now make a choice, put a penny in either your left or hopefully your right pocket.  The penny goes in the right pocket when your choice and action supports and moves you closer towards achieving your desired goal.  The penny goes in your left pocket when your choice/action moves you further away from your desired goal.  At the end of the day, take a tally and record your ‘count’ in the scoresheet.

Scoresheet in hand...
Print up the worksheet, fold it so it fits in your pocket. Keep it with you throughout the day.  Each time you’re about to choose - STOP!  Consider the scoresheet and what choice best serves you reaching your goal.  Now make a choice, pull out your scoresheet and keep a tally each day, either on the left side or hopefully on the right.  When your choice and action supports and moves you closer towards achieving your desired goal you’ll tally the right side (of the worksheet).  When your choice and action moves you further away from your desired goal you’ll tally the left.  At the end of the day, take an account of your choices. Download the Score Card here --> Be In Choice - Score Card


End Results...

At the end of the month you will clearly see just how the choices you make and the actions you take either move you closer towards or further away from you desired goals.  I hope you’ll be celebrating the success of moving so much closer toward accomplishing your goal (if you didn’t accomplish it completely).

Though Provoking Questions (TPQx2)
What goal are you going to challenge yourself with?
How will you play the game - Pennies in Your Pocket or Scoresheet in Hand?
How would you like your scoresheet to look at the end of the month?
Are there choices you know will be harder to make on a day-to-day basis?
What do you think about the idea to STOP!  Then choose!  To interrupt your fast paced processing of life?
Will you tell anyone about the challenge you’re taking?  What would happen if you did, and you actually shared your results daily, weekly, at the end of the month?
I’d say good luck, but It’s really up to you - it’s your CHOICE!

Live your best life!



Like this Challenge?

Then you will LOVE my TPQx2 Journal! The TPQx2 journal weaves together the idea of how a great quote can inspire us to think and act differently with one of the fundamental components of great coaching: asking powerful questions. Within these pages you'll find five TPQx2, Thought Provoking Quotes and Thought Provoking Questions.

Purchase one today and feel the power of a great quote! See Journal >>

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Posted on
Jan 05, 2011 @ 07:58 PM

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