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|Introduction: Change Your Mondays and Change Your Life||p. xi|
|Character Choices: The Foundation of Success|
|The No-Victim Choice... Don't Let Your Past Eat Your Future||p. 3|
|The Commitment Choice... Be Passionate Enough to Succeed||p. 16|
|The Values Choice ... Choose the Right Enemies||p. 33|
|The Integrity Choice ... Do the Right Thing||p. 46|
|Action Choices: The Movement Toward Success|
|The Do-Something Choice ... Don't Vacation on "Someday Isle"||p. 63|
|The Persistence Choice ... Learn from Failure||p. 81|
|The Attitude Choice ... Take the Enthusiastic Approach||p. 94|
|The Adversity Choice ... Conquer Difficult Times||p. 112|
|Investment Choices: Making Your Success Lasting and Meaningful|
|The Relationship Choice ... Connect with Success||p. 127|
|The Criticism Choice ... Embrace Tough Learning||p. 139|
|The Reality Choice ... Face the Truth||p. 151|
|The Legacy Choice ... Give Your Gift||p. 162|
|The Final Word: Preparing for Your Special Moment of Success||p. 177|
|Twelve Choices-Twelve Questions||p. 181|
|Five Ways to Bring Monday Morning Choices into Your Organization||p. 183|
|About the Author||p. 187|
|Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.|
Monday Morning Choice #1
The No-Victim Choice . . . Don't Let Your Past Eat Your Future
Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim.
Accept no one's definition of your life, but define yourself.
Harvey S. Firestone
That's what they call him: "Poor Gary." He labors all day in that tiny rear cubicle. His co-workers feel sorry for Gary because he seems to have all the bad luck. He works with the worst territories, the poorest accounts, and the most impossible schedules. Just when he thinks he's closed the deal that will put him over quota, the bottom drops out, and at the end of the month his numbers fall short of the standard.
As the next month begins, Poor Gary's shoulders are more stooped, his head more bowed, and his expression more defeated. His performance lags further behind expectation, and his sales calls are lackluster. Think Poor Gary's results will improve this month? Not likely.
A victim is a person to whom life happens. Without question, Poor Gary falls into the victim category. However, Gary's woes could be caused by his choice to be a victim. He complains about bad management, bad luck, being in a bad situation. Gary is a victim of all the bad things that happen to him.
At the other end of the hall in the same organization is Colin Myers. Colin began in the same small cubicle and worked the territory Gary now occupies. The difference between Colin and Gary is that Gary chooses to be a victim, while Colin made the no-victim choice.
Whenever the unexpected, bad luck, and bad situations occurred, Colin chose to dig deeper to make good things happen. When an order didn't come through, Colin spent time evaluating why he did not get the order, and he made adjustments to help his next call be successful.
In other words, Colin didn't wait for life to happen to him. He made choices to make things happen that would move him forward.
Colin's performance resulted in several promotions, which moved him from the tiny rear cubicle where he had started into the manager's office. From his point of view, the sky remains the limit. Colin had the ability to deal with whatever came his way, and good things kept coming his way.
Meanwhile, Gary was the perpetual victim of bad luck. Coincidence? Probably not.
Drivers or Passengers
On any of life's journeys, we have to make a choice before we begin the trip. Our options are these: we can be a passenger, or we can be the driver. It's our choice.
People who choose to be passengers are subject to going where other drivers are going. Passengers have no control over the speed with which they move ahead, nor do they have any say about whether or not rules are observed.
Then again, being a passenger is appealing. Passengers merely sit in the car, relaxed and oblivious to their final destination. They may put on headphones and listen to music, or they may nap. They may talk on the cell phone or do crossword puzzles. However, they rarely pay attention to where they are, who is in front of them or behind them, or whether progress is being made. Their journey may be pleasant enough, but those choosing to be passengers are just going along for the ride.
Those who choose to be drivers accept responsibility for moving forward toward their goals. They pay attention and focus on getting to their final destination. They make decisions about how quickly they move ahead. They avoid obstacles, like bumps or dips in the road. They may choose to take a detour. They decide when to stop and refuel. During the journey they make the choices to control their safety and success.
The distance between a passenger and a driver in a car is less than three feet, but the difference is huge. The driver has the choice to head toward success. The passenger just goes where he is driven.
In the previous example, Colin was a driver. Gary was a passenger.
Which would you rather be: driver or passenger? The choice is yours.
Responding to the Unexpected
Many people choose to be a victim because something unexpected happens—something completely out of their control. Others have an uncanny ability to deal successfully with the unexpected, the unusual, and the extraordinary. Positively dealing with the unexpected by looking for solutions, not excuses, is the choice you need to make.
If you know someone who is masterful at dealing with the unexpected, take a closer look at that individual, because you've truly met a special person.
Jim Lawton was like that—he was a driver. Whatever came his way, Jim could handle. His dad died while Jim was a freshman in college, and as tuition money dwindled Jim found enough work to support himself and pay his tuition so he could continue his college education.
After graduating, Jim went to work for a company that eventually had to downsize. When that happened, Jim networked his way into a new company and a new job. Notice I didn't say "a better job." No, Jim found an ordinary job and mined each opportunity to move ahead. Jim hasn't allowed anything to keep him from being successful, no matter what life has tossed his way.
Jim chooses to avoid becoming a victim of life's circumstances. He made up his mind to deal with the unexpected. Jim knew that there was no "grand conspiracy" preventing life from being easy for him. Jim also knew it was not what happened to him but rather his response to what happened that would make the difference. Today, Jim is successfully accomplishing his personal and professional goals.
Let me repeat Jim's lesson—it's not what happens to us but how we choose to respond to what happens that determines our next move, next path, next relationship, and next risk.Monday Morning Choices
Excerpted from Monday Morning Choices: 12 Powerful Ways to Go from Everyday to Extraordinary by David Cottrell
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.