Change Your Algorithms

All around the news, we are hearing about algorithms built into our social media.  It directs what we see and hear. It is how all social media decides what to feed you next.  If you like this video, then you might like this one.  If you know this person, then you may know this person.  If you respond to this ad, then you might respond to this one.  The task?  To keep you on the app or the website.  Because that is the thing about social media:  they want your attention and your time.  

But guess what?  You have algorithms that are running inside of you.  They are your “Personal Algorithms.”  They are your habits that run your daily life.  And they don’t really function that differently than what the tech companies use.

In essence, algorithms are simply If/Then formulas.  “If” this happens, “then” you do this.  In life, they represent your own daily habits and reactions.  The “If” is a trigger.  Something happens.  And when it does, you “then” do something.  If your stomach growls, then you grab a bite to eat.  If you are walking by the cookie jar, then you grab one and eat it.  If the alarm goes off, then you hit the snooze several times.  If/Then.

Those algorithms can keep you stuck or free you up, depending on how you use them.

Michael Balchan, CEO of Heroic.My guest this week is Michael Balchan.  He is the CEO of Heroic.us, an app based approach to thriving more in life.  Listen in as we discuss your habits, your life, your algorithms, and how to be on your own “heroic journey.”

Throughout his adulthood, Michael has been trying to not just “punch the clock,” but to thrive.  And over the years, he immersed himself in learning and executing.  He sought wisdom from others, then worked to apply it into his life.

Along the way, he moved from finance professional to professional coach.  And on that path, he realized his own mission was to help the world to thrive.

On this episode, we talk about ways to thrive, and a new resource to help you thrive.

Listen below.

RELATED RESOURCES:
Heroic.us
Thrive Principles Simplified
The Habits Series

Start Here

YouAreHere“Where should I start?”, my client asked.

Lots of times, we want to make changes, we want things to be different.  And sometimes, we want things to be different before we make any changes.

We want a different starting point.

If you’ve ever been at a park or mall, looking at the map to figure out where to go, you might notice that one very important feature, “You Are Here.”  It points to the spot where you are now.

Not where you want to go.  Not where you want to be.

But where you are.

If you are at the mall and see the store you want… on the other side of the mall, you might wish you were standing nearby, near the destination store.  Not all the way across the mall.

But if you are on the other side of the mall, that is where you are.  Navigating to the destination from a closer point — a point where you are NOT — is not likely to be effective.

You start where you are.

And you might just find… it is a pretty good place to start.

Listen to this podcast episode for how to start where you are, and why where you are is a pretty good place to start.

RELATED RESOURCES
Accepting What Is
Limiting Beliefs
Making Changes
Book:  The Immutable Laws of Living

Create!

The Thrive Code

Part of the Thrive Code is to CREATE. That is what humans do. And yes, you are creative. Time to embrace it.I must admit, I have said it myself, “I am just not creative.” But that isn’t true. Not for me, and not for you. Perhaps you had some art teacher tell you that at one point. Or perhaps you were looking at the creative work of someone else. And perhaps you aren’t creative in that particular medium (although it may just be you haven’t put effort into that medium).

But you ARE creative. And so am I.

How do I know?

Because we are human. And being human is being creative. We create thoughts all the time. Most of the time, jobs are creative in nature. When we are doing some hobby, it is likely to be creative. Yep, even if it is a sport.

When I am rolling in jiu jitsu, I may think that I am just repeating some move I have learned. But in reality, I am trying to creatively respond to the actions of someone else. They move, and I respond, to which they respond, to which I respond. At every step, it is a creative response.

Or when I am trying to work a problem on the climbing wall, I have to make a creative choice on how I will make it to the top. I have to be creative in the choices I make, positioning I take, and the route I follow.

The fact is, creativity is in our DNA. Humans are probably more creative than any other creature. It only takes a quick look around to see how creative elements surround us with just a quick look around.

One part of the Thrive Code is seeing your creativity, and consciously practicing it. I cover it on this episode of the Thriveology Podcast.  You can listen below.

 

RELATED RESOURCES
Challenge
Control
Community
Contribution
Lee’s Books

Contribution

The Thrive Code

What are you giving (versus what you are getting)?  And why contributing to leave the world better leads to thriving.When I talk about Thriveology, many people say, “Oh, that is more of that ‘being happy’ stuff, isn’t it?”

My response:  No. Well, not just that.  Sure, being happy is fine.  No need to avoid being happy! But that is only one dimension of life.

It IS the dimension of life that hedonism celebrates and pursues.  If it feels good, do it.  Enjoy life.  Have a good time.  Seek out pleasure and avoid pain.

Except that doesn’t lead much to thriving. It posits your satisfaction with life externally to you.  It is THAT thing that makes you happy, brings you pleasure, makes life worthwhile.

Eudaimonia was the counterpoint in greek thought.  This is the pursuit of life satisfaction by what things mean to you internally. It is how you bring meaning, enjoyment, and satisfaction into your life from within.

And there is a cornerstone of that:  Contribution.  What we GIVE to the world, versus what we GET from the world. Giving versus Taking.

Research has long pointed out the power of giving and contributing to the mental health, wellbeing, meaning/purpose, and satisfaction of people to their lives.  Which is why it is part of The Thrive Code.

Listen below to learn why contribution matters and some principles of doing it.

RELATED RESOURCES:
Challenge
Control
Community
Lee’s Books

Community and Connection

The Thrive Code Series

We all need connection and community in our lives. Where is your connection? Where is your community?It’s in our DNA.  We have a need to connect with others, to have connections and relationships.  We express that in close relationships and larger groups.

And unfortunately, lately, we have often allowed tribalism into our connections.  When we slip into our tribal thinking, we work from a place of exclusion.  This leads to a greater illusion of connection.  In reality, that connection is based in being the same as others in the tribe.

Community, on the other hand, allows others to include themselves.  It is not about differences.  Lines are not drawn to separate.  Differences have room for inclusion. And true connection can grow.

Speaking of connection… we need connection in life to thrive.  Those who are caught in isolation suffer, both emotionally and in their health.  It is also deeply wired into our DNA.

Where is YOUR community?

Where is YOUR connection?

Listen to this episode of Thriveology Podcast for why community and connection are so important.

RELATED RESOURCES
Challenge:  Thrive Code #1
Control:  Thrive Code #2

Controlling What You Can

The Thrive Code Series

Control what you can in order to thrive.  The Thrive Code.Many people make the Control Error — they attempt to control what they cannot control, while also failing to control what they can.

Why?

Because they don’t know what they can’t control and they don’t know what they can control.

Humans have a desire to feel like they are “in control” of their lives. Most people hate feeling out of control. And yet, by making the Control Error, they constantly feel out of control (and work harder to control… what they cannot control).

Thriving is tough when you feel out of control. And it is even more difficult when you are not controlling the areas you can control.

There is a code to thriving. Think of it as the computer code behind all the things your computer programs can do. The basic assumptions and directions come from the underlying code. It allows the tasks to happen.

Similarly, there is an underlying code to thriving. If the code is working, daily tasks and living go much better. You thrive in your life.

One element of that Thrive Code, we discussed in the last episode:  Challenge. In this episode,we take on the second element of the Thrive Code: Control. More importantly, it is about controlling what you can control, while releasing yourself from what you cannot control.

Listen to the episode below.

RELATED RESOURCES:
Thrive Code 1: Challenge
Your Circle of Control
Solving the Control Paradox
Lee’s Books

Correcting Course

Do you need to make a course correction or a course change?“How did I end up here?,” my client asked.  He told me that for so long, he thought he was headed in the right direction.  Now, he thinks maybe it was the entirely wrong direction.

I asked him, “Did you course correct along the way?”  He looked at me rather quizzically.  So, I elaborated, “If you are sailing, you point the boat toward some object in the distance, in the direction you want to sail.  You sail toward it.  But the winds push, the current pushes, and you end up a little off-course.  So, you course correct.”

But then, I added: “Sometimes, you realize that where you thought you wanted to go is not really where you want to go… or maybe it isn’t safe to go.  Maybe a storm or something else.  But you have to go somewhere else.  So, you change course.”

And I continued, “Then there are the times when you don’t course-correct as you go, and the small space of being off-course begins to broaden as you go.  What might have been just a course correction at the beginning is now a course change.”

Then I returned to our dialogue and asked, “So, did you course correct… or is this a course change?”

Just to be clear:  either is fine.  We all have the option of course changes in life.  Sometimes, it is just a course correction.  But it is okay if you need a course change.

It’s a part of life.

In this episode of the Thriveology Podcast, I explore the difference between a course correction and a course change.  What does it look like, and when is it time for a change?

Listen below.

RELATED RESOURCES
Book:  Immutable Laws of Living
Dealing with Change
How Are You Showing Up
Meaning and Purpose

Broken??

broken plate meme has it all wrongHave you seen this picture in your FB feed or on Twitter?  It crossed my path a number of times.

The first time I saw it, I was immediately uncomfortable.  But it took a little time for me to be clear on why.

There is a point to it:  just because you apologize doesn’t mean everything is okay.

I like that point.

But I worry about going the other way:  if someone hurts you, you are shattered.  With that, I disagree.

Not just a little.

A lot.

I firmly believe that we are all built to heal from hurts.  I firmly believe that encoded within us is the capacity to not just move forward, but to thrive, even when someone deeply wounds us.

We humans are natural story-tellers.  And we all LOVE to tell the “someone done me wrong” stories — thus, 90% of country songs!

And people do, indeed, do us wrong (and we do others wrong).

The problem is not the stories.  It is our attachment to those stories.  When we begin to define ourselves by the stories of what happened to us, we become that story.  It no longer happened TO us, it IS us.

And we get stuck.  We become defined by the story, (almost always, A story).  Then, we are limited.  We stop growing.  We stay attached to the story.

In this week’s podcast, I discuss what happens with a story, and why we can’t allow ourselves to be caught by the story.

RELATED RESOURCES:
Apologies
How to Forgive
Book: The Forgive Process
Book: The Immutable Laws of Living

Are Mis-Wants Keeping You Stuck?

Chasing mis-wants does not lead to happiness. It does shift you toward misery.Have you ever wanted something… just knowing that if you had it, you would be… happy?

And if you got it, did you find yourself happier?  Not just for a few moments or days, but long-term?

Sometimes, the “buyer’s remorse” sets in right after the purchase, with you realizing that no, that shiny new object didn’t make you happier (and may have even become an instant burden), and no, happiness did not suddenly appear.

The term for our wanting those things that don’t actually lead to satisfaction or happiness is “mis-wants.”  The wants we have that aren’t as significant as we thought.  We literally “miss” when we aim at those “wants.”

And guess what?  That is MORE often true than not.  Rarely does that thing get us the effect we want and expect.

What DO we want?  We think it is happiness.

But it isn’t.

Not really.

Listen to the episode for more on those Mis-Wants.

RELATED RESOURCES:
It’s Not About Happiness
Purpose and Impact
The Happiness Trap
The When/Then Trap

Book:  The Immutable Laws of Living

 

Responsibility vs. Blame

Responsibility in a culture of blame.Blame is rampant in today’s world.  We all quickly point the finger at someone/something else, proclaiming, “It’s not my fault!”

Interestingly, I also notice how rampant it is for people to take the credit for successes.

They/we claim credit for what goes right but refuse blame for anything that goes wrong.

We live in a “culture of blame.”

Which is what often keeps us from growing.  From changing.  From learning from our mistakes.  If someone/something else is to blame, what could I (or you) do?  Not my fault… not my problem.

Change requires us to change the equation.  To take responsibility, when we are responsibible.  To share credit when others deserve credit.

Great leadership is about accepting ultimate responsibility for mistakes and problems, while giving credit for successes.

So, how do we turn the equation around?  I discuss it in this week’s Thriveology Podcast.

RELATED RESOURCES
Responsibility
NMF Syndrome In Marriage
Showing Up
Thrive Principles Book
Immutable Laws of Living Book