But, let’s face it: many of us won’t commit to doing that. So, let’s make this simple. Let’s improve our spirit of thanksgiving and gratitude right now, whatever we are doing, wherever we are, even if we are not celebrating Thanksgiving.
Though I don’t like to admit it, I’m an expert on this topic due to a lifelong battle with insomnia. I’ve learned to channel my sleepless nights into positive areas. Instead of living on email all night, I now turn off all my devices and read or write. That time is precious to me since it is quiet, uninterrupted opportunity to work on myself.
“Though sleep is called our best friend, it is a friend who often keeps us waiting!” –Jules Verne
What should a leader do when she arrives at a company that is struggling?
The founding director of the Center for Neuroeconomics Studies recently wrote a book, Trust Factor: The Science of Creating High-Performance Companies to answer these and other questions. Paul J. Zak, PhD, is also a professor at Claremont Graduate University. He recently answered some of my questions about his extensive research into trust. His book is fascinating and contributes to the body of work on trust and organizational culture.
Survey of 200,000 employees: 71% of companies have mediocre to poor cultures.
In one part of the book, you tell a story of walking into an office full of cobwebs, old furniture, and a struggling culture. What are some of the signs of a low-trust culture?
Distrust drains employees’ energy, so people move slow, think slow, and lack a passion for their jobs. Organizations with low trust also have lower profits, so offices often look out-of-date, even while new employees show up as turnover tends to be high. We have also shown that people take more sick days when they work at low-trust companies, so one sees empty desks. All these factors are signs of a low-trust syndrome and a downward cycle of productivity, innovation, and profits.
“High-trust companies invest in employee health and productivity.” –Paul J. Zak
Why is a healthy culture based on trust so vitally important to its success?
Companies are, first and foremost, people. As social creatures, we naturally form teams to accomplish goals together. Extensive research shows that teams are more effective when they have a clear objective and when team members are trustworthy. Trust reduces the frictions that can arise in teams so getting things done takes less effort and as a result more and better work is done. By measuring brain activity while people work, we’ve shown that people are more relaxed when they trust their colleagues. They innovate more and shed the stress from work faster than those in low-trust companies. Creating a culture of trust provides powerful leverage on performance because it harnesses what our brains are designed to do: cooperate with others in teams. And the neuroscience I’ve done shows how to create a culture of trust in a system so it has the maximum effect on brain and behavior.
Workers in high trust organizations are paid an average of $6,450 more.
69% of adults and 33% of children struggle with their weight.
An estimated 50% of adults have pre-diabetes or diabetes.
Health care is an increasing financial burden for many people and businesses.
And every leader wants to be more effective, have more energy, sleep better, and make a bigger impact.
David Nico, PhD, affectionately known as Dr. Healthnut, wants to inspire all of us to live healthier. His new book, Diet Diagnosis: Navigating the Maze of Health and Nutrition Plans is a recipe for health. In his book, he patiently walks through all of the various confusing diet plans, explaining them in an easy to understand way that will help you make the decisions that are right for you.
I recently had the opportunity to talk with him about his research.
“Health is not valued until sickness comes.” –Thomas Fuller
There is so much conflicting news about health and diet. Your new book indicates each person is unique and needs a different plan. How do you know what is right for you?
Year after year I walk into bookstores and see the same methodology in terms of diet and health book approaches to the lifestyle disease epidemic. It goes something like this, “Here’s my diet plan. Do my plan. It will work for you. I have testimonials to prove it.” Our society focuses on scales and pounds and we look for quick fixes. This only lasts for a short time in most cases. Once you finish the diet, you can just go back to your former lifestyle or take a magic pill.
The myth in diet and nutrition and the health industry is that one specific diet plan will work for everyone instead of a personalized approach for each individual based on their interests, preferences, situation, and lifestyles.
I go opposite of every other prescriptive diet and health book and encourage a lifetime personalized lifestyle approach which is much easier on the mind and healthier for the metabolism! Everyone needs a blueprint that works individually for their unique lifestyle. I show how to create an action plan, to listen to your body, add the right foods, and avoid problem foods or ingredients. Instead of giving you the fish, I teach you how to fish, so you will fish for life.
69% of adults and 33% of children struggle with their weight.
Weight gain. Our whole society is struggling more than ever before. Why?
Weight gain is NOT the problem! We need to change how we THINK about our food and lifestyle behaviors. The truth is, we are gaining the wrong type of weight (fat). For example, an athlete may gain muscle weight but is fit with less inches compared to a dieter who weighs less but is unhealthy. Muscle weighs more than fat. Ultimately, we want to feel great and look great, and my self-leadership approach with coaching methodology shows how to think about food correctly which results in a lifetime lifestyle transformation.
“Everyone needs a blueprint that works individually for their unique lifestyle.” -David Nico
After our first interview, I thought to ask Anese about some of her tips for shifting someone’s state. Why? Because it’s one of the most important aspect of leadership. The ability to help someone from one state to another is a skill that every leader should master.
Leadership Tip: Increase your awareness of what is working and the impact your choices have.
In your work as an advisor and “thinking partner” to leaders and organizations, you developed 7 game changers to shift someone’s state. What has been your experience using them as a coaching tool?
I’ve found that even offering these as places for people to look can make them game changers within themselves. So much of this work is about awareness. Awareness as to what’s working – and what’s not, awareness of their role and impact in how things are and how their choices have led them here, awareness that they can choose, awareness that there’s dissatisfaction, awareness of the impact their relationships have on them (and vice versa), and awareness that they can very much in fact do something to shift things – even if that something is just getting a bit of extra water, finding ONE thing they’re grateful for, telling someone they see how great they are, taking ownership and cleaning something up, asking for help, or finding (and claiming) the request (or wish) that lives underneath their complaint. Once they have awareness that these 7 things have impact – they can get into action. Big or small.
7 Game Changers To Improve Your Leadership Position
7: Love your kids. Love your friends. Love your people. Love yourself. Remember who you are.
Simple ways to integrate these 7 points is to take each one and try it on for a day. For example, ask: Where do I need to show up bigger? Where can I be more accountable for the choices I’ve made? How did my choices lead me here? What choice can I make now to start shifting this in the right direction? How would I like things to be instead? Where do I need help? Where am I making “looking good” more important than asking for help or creating real and positive impact? Who’s my professional posse / my advisory board? How am I taking care of myself? (Truly?) What’s the littlest thing I can do to shift ANY of these? Little things make big ripples.