Archive | May, 2015

Five Podcasts That Will Up Your Game

As a lifelong student of self-improvement, I remember a statement by personal development icon Earl Nightingale that has always stuck with me.

“An hour a day is all it takes; one hour of study in your field will put you at the top in 3 years, 5 years of learning and improvement will make you a nationally recognized expert, and 7 years makes you one of the very best.”

While some may question the specifics of Nightingale’s formula, the point is that committing to a daily habit of intentional learning will, over time, produce profound results. One of Nightingale’s contemporaries, author Brian Tracy, puts it this way: “If you read just one book per month, that will put you into the top 1% of income earners in our society.”

I can hear your reaction: “I don’t have time to read.” When you consider all the time you spend driving, cooking, or working around your house every month, there are two great alternatives — audio books and podcasts.

For me, since I intentionally create time to read books, I use podcasts to supplement my learning and make great use of otherwise idle time. There are thousands to choose from on i-Tunes. And while I’ve discovered that many are glorified promotions for someone’s book or other products, there are also many excellent podcasts that will help you take your personal brand — your ability to present the best version of yourself every day — to another level. And they’re free!

Here are my current top five podcasts that will up your game, build your personal brand, and take your leadership to the next level:

 Photo: Jupiterimages

1) This is Your Life – Created by former book publishing CEO Michael Hyatt, this podcast is dedicated to intentional leadership. Michael’s goal is to help you live with more passion, work with greater focus, and lead with extraordinary influence.
2) Read to Lead Podcast – Each week, host Jeff Brown interviews what he calls some of the brightest minds of our generation — today’s top-selling nonfiction authors. Jeff is a former radio broadcaster who brings a high level of energy and insightful interviewing skills to this meaty podcast.
3) EntreLeadershipDave Ramsey leads lively discussions with tips on leadership from some of the best minds in business, sports, ministry, and entertainment.
4) Underground WellnessSean Croxton’s energetic weekly broadcast features the latest breakthrough research in nutrition, fitness, and enhancing your overall vitality, plus live interviews and caller questions.
5) Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast – Along with being one of the most recognized pastors in America, Andy Stanley is an author, communicator, and founder of North Point Ministries in Alpharetta, GA. His podcast delivers practical advice and breakthrough strategies to help leaders go further, faster.

If you are searching for ways to better use your time to grow and develop, try listening to podcasts. To download my recommendations and browse through thousands of others (like does for books, iTunes provides a list of other podcasts with similar themes and content for each podcast you search for), go to the iTunes Store and use the “search” bar. I’d love to know more about what you’re listening to and what you’re learning.

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A Complaint-Free World: One Man’s Mission

In one of my recent posts, I explored the life-changing potential of taking personal responsibility for everything that happens in your life.

Recently, I came across a similar story.

In 2006, a minister from Kansas City named Will Bowen laid out a simple challenge to people across the nation: Eliminate complaining from their lives for 21 days — the length of time it takes to make something a true habit.

His book, A Complaint Free World: How to Stop Complaining and Start Enjoying the Life You Always Wanted, got him featured on Oprah, The Today Show, Fox News and hundreds of other media outlets nationwide. He makes eight key points — both positive and negative about the impact of complaining.

  1. Complaining is about what you cannot have or get. Get over it.
  2. Avoid chronic complainers — the disease spreads.
  3. Patience is key: It takes 4-8 months to move from unconsciously incompetent to unconsciously competent.
  4. Complaining traps you in a constant state of “something is wrong.”
  5. Complaining is a form of manipulation; it pulls other people down.
  6. Instead of complaining, seek alternative language or be silent.
  7. Silence is mature self-possession.
  8. Commit to what you want and go after it without complaint when you encounter the inevitable obstacles.

Since the book, Bowen’s movement has persuaded more than 10 million people in over 100 countries to wear his purple bracelet symbolizing their commitment to go three straight weeks without uttering a single complaint. One of his many colorful quotes is:

“Complaining is like bad breath: You notice it when it comes out of somebody else’s mouth, but not your own.”

How would you respond to this challenge? Could you do it? Do you think you would have the self awareness, emotional control, sense of optimism and, at times, sheer willpower to eradicate complaining for 21 days? What would it mean to you — and to the quality of your life – -if you did?

Imagine… a complaint-free world! I’d love to get your feedback. You can reply by leaving a comment below.

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