5 Go-to Goal-getting Quotes

Nearly 50% of Americans started 2016 by setting new goals ranging from personal to professional. Now, as the first month of the year comes to a close, 1 in 3 has already abandoned their goals. The struggle is real. Achieving goals requires inoculation against self-doubt and steady dosages of encouragement.  I have found five quotes that are the right prescription for moving me from goal-setting to goal-getting.

Here are my top 5 go-to quotes that fuel me with the right balance of self-patience and self-encouragement to stay the course.  If your goals are feeling sluggish, take at least two quotes and call yourself “re-charged” in the morning!

walt disney quote 1

henry ford quote 2

td jakes quote 3

yoda quote 4

jana stanflied quote 5


The goals have been set, now go get ’em!


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    5 Emotionally Intelligent Tips for Filling the Space Left Vacant by an Empty Nest

    Life transitions are by choice and by circumstance, happy and sad, planned and sudden. Despite their method of arrival, like change, life transitions are constant.

    Transitions usher us from one chapter of our lives tEMPTY NESTo the next. The recent high school graduation season closed the door on an estimated 3 million high school careers and emptied the nest for many of the cheering parents who sat in the audience.

    The commonly felt emotions of grief, loneliness and depression that mark the time when children grow up and leave home is called “empty nest syndrome”. This can range from adjusting to the resonating silence in a once raucous house to moving through a deep sense of loss. Tapping into your emotional intelligence will help you navigate this transition.

    Increased emotional intelligence is not stifling what you feel, it is being aware of your emotions and more intentional about your behavior in response to them. There are five core categories of emotions (happy, sad, angry, afraid, and ashamed) each with varying degrees of intensity. Research confirms that we have emotional reactions to everything that happens in our lives, whether we’re aware of our reactions or not. Experiencing the transition of an empty nest pulls from all five categories. For example, feeling loneliness from not being part of the “active day-to-day” parenthood team, excitement and anxiety about your future, peace for completing an 18 year plus task, and sadness over the known and yet-to-be discovered parental mistakes we all have surely made.

    Popular author Deepak Chopra, who defines happiness as a state of fulfillment, writes about two truths: (1) we seek to be happy and (2) when we feel empty, we will fill the void. It is in our nature to plug the holes created by separation and loss in order to feel full.

    Empty nest is a loss of a way of life. It rattles what for many are a closely held identity connected to our roles as Mother and Father. True to our nature we will fill the emptiness with something. So, embrace this time to intentionally reimagine and reinvent you. Become full on something fulfilling.

    With the dorm bathroom caddy and twin XL sheets off your to-do list, spend mindful time preparing for your own transformation. Here are 5 emotionally intelligent tips to get you started:
    1. Self-awareness: Get reacquainted with yourself. Do an assessment to determine what you like, what you do well, and how you prefer to spend your time. It will make you more intentional when deciding how to fill your new free time and how to use the increased energy you’ll have.
    2. Self-management: Hold space with what you are feeling. Honor it. Allow yourself time to process and grieve if necessary. Be patient with yourself as you adjust to this new and different chapter.
    3. Empathy: As you move through the emotions of adjusting to an empty nest, know that the adjustment your child is going through is equally, if not more, significant. Resist the urge to share with them how much you miss them. Show some empathy and make sure your tone and mood don’t dampen the thrill and excitement of their new experiences.
    4. Interpersonal relationships: Reconnect with your spouse or partner and friends. Practice making friends again, on your own terms, not at PTO or on the soccer field as “Jane’s Mother.”
    5. Resilience: If you have arrived at the empty nest chapter in your life, guesses are you’ve moved through several life transitions. Know that you’ll move through this one too. Having a listening ear, a friend or coach you can brainstorm with, can be comforting. Ask for help. You don’t have to go it alone.

    Take solace in the fact that children may leave your home, but never your heart!

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      Happiness – The EI Indicator

      By Patrice Baughman Borders, J.D.

      “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success.” Albert Schweitzer

      Raise your hand if you have ever postponed happiness by justifying that happiness is what comes at the end of accomplishing a goal or completing a task. “When I make partner, I’ll be happy. Or, maybe, “Once I reach my ideal weight, I’ll treat myself to a beach vacation.” I am assuming that every reader of this article has a raised hand because we’ve all done it. Yet, this very common act, research asserts, is counterintuitive to how happiness really works.
      According to happiness scholar Shawn Achor, “happiness works the other way around: People who cultivate a positive mind-set perform better in the face of challenge.” Achor’s research reveals that “when people work with a positive mind-set, performance on nearly every level – productivity, creativity, engagement – improves.” Being happy first, rather than postponing happiness, invites more success.
      While happiness admittedly possesses an “eye of the beholder” quality, as a general proposition you can spot a happy person because they “have a sense of cheerfulness and enthusiasm about them, a strong capacity to enjoy life, have fun, and be spontaneous. They take pleasure in the small things in life.”
      In the Reuven Bar-On EQ-i 2.0 Assessment, a well-being or “happiness” measure complements the 15 skills against which one’s EQ is measured. Happiness both contributes to, and is a product of, emotional intelligence yet it is not an EI skill. Four EI skills are used to discern the level of one’s happiness: (1) Self-Regard, (2) Optimism, (3) Self-Actualization, and (4) Interpersonal Relationships.

      EQi-2.0 Model

      EQi-2.0 Model


      Well-Being Indicator_HappinessHappiness at Work

      If you do a google search for books on happiness at work, you’ll get over 5 million results. The subject is well-researched because while the value of happiness is clear, achieving and maintaining it are somewhat elusive. Individuals want to be happy and employers want happy employees. One of the most recognized names in the field of EI, Daniel Goleman sets out the top workplace triggers that lead to unhappiness at work in his book, The Brain and Emotional Intelligence: New Insights:

      1. Condescension and lack of respect
      2. Being treated unfairly
      3. Being unappreciated
      4. Feeling that you’re not being listened to or heard
      5. Being held to unrealistic deadlines

      It doesn’t require volumes of research to conclude that if the workplace includes any of the above triggers, there too you’ll find unhappy employees. Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh built the most successful online shoe retailer by focusing on creating a happy work culture. According to Hsieh, “businesses often forget about the culture, and ultimately, they suffer for it because you can’t deliver good service from unhappy employees.” A workplace culture is simply a collection of the attitudes and behaviors that are permissible. If you want to be part of a happy work culture, you have to bring happy and you have to eliminate the unhappy. And, eliminating the triggers Goleman identifies is a good place to start. The author of Happiness at Work: Maximizing Your Psychological Capital for Success, Jessica Pryce-Jones presents intuition-confirming research that finds happy people:

      1. Get promoted more
      2. Earn more
      3. Generate better and more creative ideas
      4. Achieve goals faster
      5. Interact better with colleagues and bosses
      6. Receive superior reviews
      7. Learn more
      8. Achieve greater success
      9. Are healthier – use less sick days
      10. Are more resilient

      How Happy Are You?
      Do you know how happy you are? Authors of The EQ Edge Emotional Intelligence and Your Success, Steven J. Stein, PH.D. and Howard E. Book, M.D. offer the following 9 Question Self-Assessment to get a baseline of your happiness quotient:Happiness_  Self-Assessment


      Get Happy(ier)
      If you think you could benefit from increasing your happiness (and those who have to work around you would agree) the answers are a google search away. The visionary behind Google’s groundbreaking employee training program, Search Inside Yourself, Chade-Meng Tan, teaches that mindfulness and emotional intelligence are the path to success and happiness at work. Tan reports that while participant feedback describes improvements in work, work relationships, productivity and creativity, most report that the course was life-changing. Not a Googler, no worries, Tan’s course has grown into a non-profit and he widely shares one of the courses’ happiness exercises.Second Happiness exercise

      The exercise, Tan asserts, grows our compassion and empathy and grounds us in the present moment. It changes the way we perceive and treat others. It creates not only happy thoughts and energy, but also a happier and more collaborative work culture.

      Want a more emotionally intelligent workplace? Take 10 seconds and go make happy happen!

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        Emotional Smarts Count

        By Patrice Baughman Borders, J.D.

        IQ is a threshold competence. You need it, but it doesn’t make you a star. Emotional intelligence can.  Warren Bennis, author of On Becoming a Leader

        Cognitive intelligence (IQ) and competence in your field are still the cost of entry; however, emotional intelligence (EI or EQ) is the currency that opens the doors to the highest levels of success.
        As more and more research supports the correlation between high Emotional Intelligence and better judgment, effective relationships, and higher productivity, the legal profession is taking note. Like business schools, some law schools are now offering EI courses and law firms and legal associations are catching up with the corporate EI training boom. NYU Law has recently rolled out an emotional intelligence training program to the entire student population led by Vice Dean Jeannie Forrest. In the workshop’s introductory segment, Dean Forrest lists three “buckets” necessary to be a good lawyer: (1) knowing your stuff, (2) getting stuff done, and (3) exhibiting emotional intelligence. Forrest cautions students that the one with the high EI is the one who gets hired and the one you want to work with. The course strives to make students more aware of who they are, what they’re bringing to the table, and how they interact with others.
        At the most recent annual meeting (New Orleans, Oct. 2014) of the Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC), EI stole the show. Over 500 registrants attended the EI panel discussion entitled, What Makes Smart Lawyers Fail – How to Increase Your Emotional Intelligence and Your Impact! and according to panelist LaKeisha Marsh, Senior Attorney with Miller Canfield, “we were extremely surprised by the turnout.”
        In retrospect, Marsh attributes the reception to the topic to the fact that emotional intelligence is so integral to success, “as legal professionals, EI is a part of how we do the work we do on a daily basis – it helps you understand how to provide better client service and to be a better attorney.” The EI buzz was so loud following ACC’s annual meeting the panelists were requested to do an encore webinar presentation.
        Whether the question is presented to lawyers, legal professionals, or to the general workforce – the answer is the same, what makes smart people fail, is the lack of emotional intelligence.
        What is EI?
        More than 20 years after psychologists Peter Salovey and John Mayer introduced the concept of emotional intelligence, Daniel Goleman’s definition and framework propelled the phrase into pop business culture. Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence primer was the subject of the 2000 Harvard Business Review article, Leadership That Gets Results.

        Goleman’s definition of emotional intelligence identifies four key elements:
        1. Self-Awareness is your ability to accurately perceive your emotions and stay aware of them as they happen.
        2. Self-Management is your ability to use awareness of your emotions to stay flexible and positively direct your behavior. 3. Social Awareness is your ability to accurately pick up on emotions in other people and understand what is really going on.  4. Relationship Management is your ability to use awareness of your emotions and the others’ emotions to manage interactions successfully.

        Goleman EI Framework

        Harvard psychologist David McClelland concluded after studying a cross-section of professions and organizations that the following EI characteristics differentiated average performers from top performers:
        • achievement drive (optimism; the desire to improve performance);
        • the ability to develop others (which involves sensing others’ needs and bolstering them);
        • adaptability (being able to manage change, and being open to new ideas);
        • influence (the ability to sense others’ emotions, and the ability to persuade);
        • self-confidence (including awareness of one’s own strengths and weaknesses); and
        • leadership (inspiring others toward a shared vision).
        Research shows that emotional intelligence matters twice as much as technical and analytic skill combined for high performers. And, as individuals progress in their careers, the more essential high emotional intelligence becomes. Goleman says “at best, I.Q. contributes about 20% to the factors that determine life success, which leaves 80% to other forces: forces grouped as emotional intelligence.”  Knowing that EI matters a lot, the next logical questions to ask are, how much EI do you have and how can you get more.
        How Emotionally Intelligent Are You?
        How you show up in meetings, when giving assignments, providing feedback, and even in emails allows others to draw conclusions about your emotional smarts. We’ve all encountered the team member who is anything but a team player. To know EI is to know what it looks like, what behaviors convey a mastery of one’s thinking and feeling. We all get a pass for having a bad day, but we need to be aware of and own what we consistently show to others. While I highly recommend taking a validated EI assessment, to start the process, ask yourself how many and to what degree you possess the 14 characteristics Huffington Post offers as tell-tale signs of high EI:

        How emotionally intelligent are you?

        EI can be learned
        Knowing one’s emotional state allows the possibility of scripting the appropriate response – or no response. In short, self-awareness is the gateway to managing your reactions and impulses. It allows you to direct your words and actions versus being led by them. Our words and actions are the vehicles through which our emotions are expressed – self-awareness puts you in the driver’s seat. When we are more aware of our own feelings, we are better able to perceive the feelings of others and to operate with enhanced interpersonal aptitude. Reading others’ emotions accurately makes you a better mentor, coach, team member, and leader.
        If you’re feeling like you’re not stacking up the way you’d like against these characteristics, don’t throw in the towel just yet. EI and its appropriate application can be learned, taught, trained, and practiced. According to Goleman, “unlike IQ–which some argue doesn’t change throughout life–emotional intelligence can be developed.”

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