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Without Self-Control You’re Out Of Control

by Richard Norris on September 1, 2014

No 238x300 Without Self Control Youre Out Of Control

Without Self-Control You’re Out Of Control

No matter what you want to achieve in life, you will need a measure of self-control. Anything truly worth having is never an instant fix. Success is never instantly gratified. It requires patience. Success demands self-control.

Our self-control will determine the level of our success at work, rest or play. If you’re not happy with where you are right now, it’s likely that some area of your life is out of control. Self-control is what will get you back on track.

The world is one of contrasts and comparisons. Better. Worse. Bigger. Smaller. Richer. Poorer. As I’ve learned, it’s better not to compare and contrast other than with and to yourself. There have been occasions when I’ve looked in the mirror and not liked what I’ve seen. When you look at the marketing of many of the various fitness and weight loss programs and products today, those “Before & After” photos are very condemning and encouraging. You don’t like what you see and like what you see at the same time. One image you want to run from and the other you want to move toward.

For me, there have been times when, all of a sudden, I’ve woken up to some stealth weight gain and/or some pervasive negative thinking patterns. Neither are healthy when you’re intent on being your best, fulfilling your potential and being the success you deserve, desire and are designed for.

How disciplined are you?

Most people would say I’m a very disciplined person. That may be true in most areas of my life, but, sadly, not all. When I catch myself out at such times, I know I’ve been making some poor decisions. I know I’ve overindulged in some way. I know I’ve allowed some poor habit patterns to rule. I know I’m no longer in control of those aspects of my life. I know I have to make some changes for the better. I know it’s down to me. It always is.

At least 90% of who we are is a result of our habits. If we don’t like what we see, hear, feel and/or think, only we have the power to change that – to regain control. Success demands self-control. No person can succeed without the right discipline. Ask any Olympian, martial arts sensei or leading entrepreneur. Self-control requires willpower. It requires purpose. It requires patience.

I love bread and I love chocolate. Because I do, I eat far too much of both at times. I overindulge. And overindulgence usually means too much of a bad thing i.e. it’s not good for me (or you). When I overindulge for a long period, I put on weight. When I finally wake up (as I did recently), I hit the reset button. I buckle down and change my habits. Often I fast from these and change my diet. I train as per usual. I just say “No” to what I really want. I actually find it easy. Over the fast the weight goes. Result. Self-control won the battle. Except…when I stop the fast, I revert to my old patterns. The battle resumes.

If you do not conquer self, you will be conquered by self.
Napoleon Hill

For me, something had to change. Rather than eliminate such food items, I allowed myself one “treat day” per week – a Sunday. It’s my 6 & 1 plan. It’s been working well for the last 42 days. I’m not denying my self-gratification; I’m deferring it. I believe I’m onto something here.

The world wants you to focus on what you want and works hard to make you feel crap if you don’t have it. That way you’ll throw any caution or sense to the wind and get what you want far sooner that you should (if you should at all). We indulge ourselves. When we do that we’re starting to lose control. I know for me I often regret what I’ve done. That’s starts a cycle of negative thinking. Not good.

If we’re not careful, we do not control our habits; our habits control us. Our self-control goes out the window. Before we know it, we can be massively in debt or hooked on drugs or drink or pornography etc.

No person or organization succeeds without the right discipline. Our self-control is integral to our level of success in anything we seek to achieve. Self-control helps Olympians reach the podium. Self-control maintains the integrity of a marriage. Self-control is imperative for anyone who wishes to get fit and/or lose weight. In Galatians 5:22-23 it talks about self-control being a fruit of the Spirit. Of the fruit, self-control is book-ended with love. Our level of self-control is a measure of how much we love ourselves. When we love ourselves we be and do truly what’s best for us. That requires self-control.

To take back control of those areas of your life you want and need to, may not be easy, but it is worth it. I recall listening to an Olympic athlete from London 2012 share how they had committed 4 years to achieve their goal. They had just finished their event. When asked what they were looking forward to she said, “Dessert!” It had been 4 years without.

It took me 16 years of disciplined studying to achieve my goal of being a veterinarian. It took me 4 months of training to complete the London marathon. It took me 60 days to hit a fitness goal. You may not be an Olympian, but to regain and maintain self-control may take your equivalent of an Olympic effort. Whatever victory you have in mind, trust me it will be worth the effort. With your winning in mind, here’s a few helpful hints and hacks to help you with re-establishing self-control along your way:

1.Commit to yourself the change you will make; the goal you will achieve.

2. Put accountability in place to help ensure you stay true to your commitment.

3. Start with what’s easiest. Take small steps. Begin with moderation.

4. Keep focus on what you need rather than what you want.

5. Say “No” more to what you don’t want and “Yes” more to what you do want.

6. Fight impulse. When making a decision slow down. Sit on your answer 24 hours before finalizing.

7. Remind yourself of the benefits of making the change.

The control of your life is down to you. You can be out of control or in control. Greater self-control will change your habits. It will change your self-leadership. It will change you. It will change your life…for the better.

Your Powerplay

Identify where you need more self-control today. Take the first steps to win control over yourself.



Let’s Be Honest…Honesty Is NOT The Best Policy

by Richard Norris on August 28, 2014

Affirmation Yes 300x244 Lets Be Honest...Honesty Is NOT The Best Policy

Let’s Be Honest…Honesty is NOT The Best Policy

Everyone appreciates honesty but not everyone is honest. Were we to all be more honest, let alone completely honest, the world would be a much better place. Honesty as a policy falls short. What we need to do is practice it every day.

We’ve all heard that honesty is the best policy, but policy is just words – spoken or written. Policy is lip service. It’s too easy to say one thing and do another. Honesty needs to be best practice.

My dad told tall tales of his fishing and hunting escapades that made us all – friend and family alike – laugh. But he told these with a wry smile, a twinkle in his eye and, at times, a good bit of humor. That said, when he was serious, dad was serious. He was the most honest man I’ve ever known. And I have done my best to be just like him.

As every father should, Dad stressed to my brother and me the importance of being honest…always. Along with Nancy, my wife, we are underlining this lesson with our kids. I’m sure you are too. However..

How honest are you really with yourself and with others?

Throughout my life I’ve tried to be honest at all times. But I’m human. I’m fallible. I confess there have been times when I’ve lied. I doubt you or anyone you know hasn’t lied. I’m sure you, like me, have lied to protect yourself or others – rightly or wrongly. Just the other day our son, Jensen, got caught taking a cookie and hiding it in his pocket. When asked if he had taken it, he denied it. He was in self-preservation mode. He didn’t want to get in trouble. As it happens, his lie only compounded his trouble. But, a lie often seems a good idea at the time. Sounds familiar right?

At times, people dumb down not telling the truth and admit a white lie. But a lie is a lie and the truth is the truth. No one of us is perfect. As I learned, the sooner we admit that (I used to be a perfectionist), the more we’re able to grow and become who we are meant to be.

As it happens, I don’t lie very well. Interestingly, on the occasions when I have tried to lie, I failed. Apparently, I do this thing with my lip. Nancy catches me every time. Why do I try? Good question!

Nancy often tells me I’m honest to a fault. I call it being direct. If someone asks me for an opinion, I give it…often untempered. At times, the truth hurts. Now, at least, I work on my delivery. I’m still honest; I just deliver it better.

Leading Men Only began because God challenged me to share the struggles I have been/am going through. He said that there are men particularly who need help going through what I have or am. The challenge for me was and is that I have to come clean. I have to be honest and share the good, the bad and the ugly of my journey so far.

To be honest, we must first be honest with ourselves. This is something that many of us have difficulty with – men perhaps more than women. We men do not like to admit our faults, especially to others. To do so is to show weakness, and most of us cannot or will not do that. We prefer to keep our armor on and hide our chinks. We continue to wear our masks to keep our poker face. We have our pride.

In preparing to write this, the prevailing thought came to mind to share honestly what I’ve tried to hide in the past. As I am reading more and more, people engage with those who are real and authentic. Oh that politicians and spin doctors would learn this!

I’ve shared honestly throughout my blog over the past 2+ years. I will continue to do so. My hope is that by my being honest will help others to own up and, thereby, grow up. As I’ve learned, it’s good to bring into the light, what we’ve kept hidden in the dark. When we do, only then, can we truly begin to address any issues. Then we can begin to grow and become more who we are meant to be.

So…time for me to be honest:

I’m a proud person and have refused help when I needed it most.

I get frustrated, especially when things don’t work out the way I’d like. Right now I’m underemployed and I’m not happy.

I get angry sometimes at those I shouldn’t.

I can be impatient with myself and those who matter most.

I wrestle with confidence when all seems against me.

I’ve worked to better myself so sometimes I think I’m better than someone else.

I’ve failed more than I admit in business and elsewhere.

I battle resentment at times.

I can be selfish when I think my way is best.

I am a big softy – just ask my wife and kids.

Now how about you? Do you keep things from others that not even those closest to you know about?

Being honest is tied closely with integrity. Being honest is the best thing to do. Knowing the right thing to do and not doing it is just wrong. Being honest is a choice. It’s a decision to live and lead with integrity or to live a lie.

Before us lie two paths – honesty and dishonesty. The shortsighted embark on the dishonest path; the wise on the honest.

Napoleon Hill

Honesty starts with being honest with yourself. It’s also about being open to people being honest with you. Honesty is an outcome of being honest. As such when you say, “I am honest” that means it is part of who you are – your identity. Honesty is not a policy; it’s a way of life. It’s a life with nothing to hide; a life lived true to your purpose.

I could never be an undercover spy or cop. I lie poorly. Even if I did lie and get away with it, I’m sure I couldn’t keep track of my lies. As I’ve witnessed, once you tell one lie you likely have to tell another to cover the one you just told. You can dig yourself a very dark hole very quickly and you have no ladder to help you get out.

For me, be honest. You have a clear conscience. You don’t have to worry about what you said or didn’t say. You have nothing to hide. You don’t need to remember what you said. Telling the truth and being honest is a lot simpler than deception. Being honest with yourself about your own challenges and weaknesses allows to to grow stronger. You are more open to solutions and getting help.

Honesty is not the best policy, but it is the best practice for you to follow. Honesty sets you free. With honesty you lead the best example and grow as a person and as a leader at work, rest or play.

Your Powerplay

Choose honesty. Own up to a weakness or something you’ve kept hidden or denied.



When It Comes To Your Success, Where’s The Fruit?

August 25, 2014

When It Comes To Your Success, Where’s The Fruit? Success is a relative term. It means different things to different people. However, regardless of how you define it, success can be measured. Your success will be known by the fruit it yields. I think. I think a lot. My wife even says I think too […]

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