Resolve To Be . . .


This is the time of year when out with the old and end with the new is the mantra by which many live.  It is a time to begin thinking and planning for the new year and to create resolutions. 

Resolutions are typically made but most often not followed through. Of all the resolutions made for the new year, only about 10% of them will come to fruition. Why is that?

Resolutions are decisions to DO or NOT DO something. Lose weight, work out more, be more kind, or save money. To truly follow-through with any of our resolutions we need to be changing our day-to-day behaviors, to change our mindset, alter our ways of thinking and acting.

What is your new year’s resolution? What course of action are you going to take to resolve an issue, problem, or obstacle in your life? How are you going to program your mindset to change habits and create new ones?

This year, instead of writing resolutions you may or may not accomplish, resolve to BE the thing you desire most this year.  

BE lighter, BE healthier, BE kinder, BE a saver or whatever it is you desire. 

It’s inevitable that when trying to make a change, there will be lapses. You shouldn’t feel guilty about giving in to your cravings but accept that it is part of the learning process and move on. Do not wallow there. It does you no good. Bad habits can take years to become ingrained and there are no quick fixes in making major lifestyle changes. These may be clichés but we learn by our mistakes and every day is a new day – and you can start each day afresh.

Resolve to enter the process of becoming. The process requires you to try, fail, and try again.  Becoming is hard work and it’s okay to need more than one try to get it right. Resolve and promise yourself to enter in to the journey and not give up at the slightest sign of weakness or temptation. A resolution is a purposeful action designed to move and motivate you to BE better.

If you begin thinking and behaving like the resolution you desire, then you will BE what you need in 2019. 

What are YOUR new year’s resolutions? Do you have an action plan when you grow tired or weary?  I would love to read your resolutions, and help you get where you are going.  

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What IS Excellence?

I love this meme! Makes me smile every time!

The definition of excellence is, “the quality of being outstanding or extremely good”.

Excellence is not something that is established and set in stone. It does not magically occur and become something that is a set label.  Excellence is, according to Matt Hann of Hillsong, “…an ever-changing dynamic in both our personal journey and the collective journey of our teams”[1]

When we strive for excellence, we experience true growth. When we strive for mediocrity, we experience stagnation.  When we continually offer up to our Creator the very best we have to give in ALL things that we do, then excellence becomes ACTION and it becomes HABIT.  It changes over time and redefines itself according to our experiences and our mindset.

What is excellence for you? If excellence is not an end, if it is not something to which we can arrive, than how do we achieve it?  Is it a destination or a process?  In Matt Hann’s definition, excellence is absolutely a process and is that not what the entire human experience is supposed to be? 

When we empower ourselves and those around us to make things excellent, we remove our need to examine quality control and we focus more on our actions. 

I want you to strive to be an artist of excellence.  An artist makes a difference. An artist will do something that has never been done before. An artist will dig deep within themselves to find the creative, passionate drive.  An artist will strive to plug us in to the act of making things better.  An artist of excellence is constantly in motion, is constantly changing and adapting, and is constantly striving to exceed the excellence achieved the day before.  Go forth and be excellent!

I would love to hear from you.  What are YOURS plans to achieve awesomeness in 2019.  I’m not talking resolutions – I’m talking about empowering yourself, granting yourself permission to exceed your own expectations!  Head over to the contact page (https://raushawnaprice.com/contact/) and select “I Just Want to Say Hello” and then share with me.  You can also email inquiry@raushawnaprice.com

Don’t forget to join my newsletter group HERE.

[1]https://hillsong.com/collected/blog/2014/11/what-is-excellence/#.W9sE9S2ZPUI

Epiphany Mistakes

Wikipedia defines Epiphany in this manner:

“An epiphany (from the ancient Greek ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, “manifestation, striking appearance”) is an experience of a sudden and striking realization. Generally the term is used to describe scientific breakthrough, religious or philosophical discoveries, but it can apply in any situation in which an enlightening realization allows a problem or situation to be understood from a new and deeper perspective.”

Maya Angelo defines epiphany like this:

“…It’s the occurrence when the mind, the body, the heart, and the soul focus together and see an old thing in a new way.”

I like to refer to an epiphany as an a-ha! Moment. It is the moment in time when something is revealed, allowing us to see it for the first time or to see something again as if for the very first time.  

These moments can be life-changing but what happens when we have spent time on something and achieved the end-goal just to learn that it was a mistake?

Dorie Clark says “Humans are highly susceptible to the sunk cost fallacy, which makes it hard for us to end something into which we’ve already put time, money, or effort” (Harvard Business Review, What To Do When You’ve Made a Bad Decision August 11, 2016).  We are victims to our own ego, not wanting to admit a mistake or a failure and many times covering it up at all costs. But imagine the POWER in admitting you failed! Sending energy of raw honest out to the world is empowering and cleansing, scary too, the first time, but worth it.  

Our moments of sudden clarity, our “a-ha” moments, are meant, I believe, to teach and  empower us to continue the forward momentum regardless of the outcome.

We failed.  

We made a mistake.

We must move on from it and allow ourselves to build upon that mistake. Don’t push it aside and try to cover it or paint it another color. You can dress a rock up in a puppy costume but it is still a rock.  You can call your failure whatever you like but it is still a failure and THAT’S OK!

We must make the decision to either “know and grow” or “whine and repine”. The choice is ours but I’m here to tell you that when we elect to grow from our mistakes the reward is just as sweet as the taste of victory!

Raushawna Price
Giver of Awesomeness (R)

Listening & Hearing: Two Different Acts of Obedience

When we speak with other people do we speak AT them or WITH them?  Is it a monologue or is it a dialogue?  When we participate in dialogue, do we listen to HEAR or listen to RESPOND?

Most people will, if they are honest with themselves, realize that they listen to respond.  Do we automatically begin writing and editing a rebuttal script before the other person completes what they are saying?  There’s a good chance there is a second monologue going on in your head WHILE you read this!

Another way to put this is to understand the difference between ACTIVE and PASSIVE listening. It is about BEHAVIOR.  Listening is not just the act of hearing something but is also the process of making sense out of what we are hearing.  ACTIVE listening is full engagement.  We can determine if people are engaged in active listening by looking for physical cues such as nodding, smiling, eye brow or forehead responses and eye contact.  The listener may ask questions, respond with non-sensible vocalizations to signify their agreement, disagreement, or understanding.  This is analytical listening – it is piecing together the information that is coming at them, ordering it in their minds, placing the words and phrases in categories, and matching them with historical references throughout our own lives.  If we are inclined to counsel individuals, we are engaging in active listening. Carl Rogers defines empathetic listening as “entering the private perceptual world of the other.”

What, then, is PASSIVE listening?  Typically, the listener is not reacting and is not listening with the goal of responding. We may be taking in and absorbing the information. The passive listener is not necessarily NOT paying attention. We are simply absorbing.

When I speak in front of small or large groups, they are typically the passive listener.  There is little two-way communication, not a lot of eye contact from the listeners, and the listener feels safe from feeling that they have to participate.  This can be very helpful to the speaker because it gives that person flexibility to drive the conversation, direct the imagery, and create emotional responses.

This all sounds pretty analytical but there is something I’m trying to point out.  In our everyday interaction with people it is helpful to know if we are being active or passive listeners. When the clerk asks, “how are you today?” are they listening for our response as an active participant in the dialogue or as a passive engager?  More than likely, a passive engagement as they are merely on cruise control and likely following the corporate script of customer engagement.  When someone approaches us with an emotional declaration such as, “I love you” or “I need to talk about something” the immediate reaction they get from us will typically set the entire tone and direction of the conversation. It will either slam the door on our availability or open it up and welcome them in to the inner circle of our undivided attention.

Counselors, especially lay-counselors (camp, church or small community helpers), are trained to face the person, not respond to other people or situations in the room, make eye contact as well as other verbal and non-verbal responses in order to establish the ground rules with a response. That response is this:  I’m going to listen OR I’m not really going to listen.

The active listening test:

We can check whether people are engaged in active listening by asking questions about the content and about their emotional reaction to what was said.  We can paraphrase what we heard, or ‘parrot’ back to the speaker what we believe we just heard. We can check on the perception of both listener as well as speaker by asking for confirmations, affirmations, or clarifications.


Specifically, for me, I am a very active listener when I am in Church.  I grew up in an AME church and when my Pastor asked for an amen, you responded.  Today, I give an “amen” without being prompted, to show my active listening and to solidify the statements within my understanding.  I am sure, if you stopped and thought about it, you could think of times when you were a very active listener.  Maybe with your children as they are sharing their day, or with a coworker who is discussing a concern.

 

 

We can all continue to improve our listening skills and today I want to encourage us to do that by simply being more aware of our bodies and our minds while someone is talking with us.  is the inner monologues in our heads louder than the speakers’ voice?  Are we solely listening to respond or are we listening to understand? There is a time and place for both these acts of obedience and it is our job to determine what is appropriate for each setting in which we find ourselves.

 

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