Mentorship By Example
Every week that I work as a business coach and for Clay Clark, I learn a little bit more about the world, as well as myself. I’m constantly finding myself facing new challenges or obstacles head-on. I find myself on an unexpected path of self-growth, or I find a new way to relate to my business coaching clients and assist in helping them break through their own personal struggles. Typically this is a result of a quote or idea from sensei Clark. Other times it is something I’ve learned simply by observing Clay or Jonathan Kelly while they handle a particular task.No matter the subject, I always find myself coming out on the other side a better person for having undergone the experience. This week it was the result of another literary challenge. A few meetings ago, Clay decided to share with us the importance of the teachings from a book written by one of his personal favorite authors as well as mentors, Mr. Napoleon Hill. At this point, if you’re following the narrative of Clay, you should know that Hill has played a massive role in Clay’s life. After all, half of his son’s name is dedicated to the legend. Clay closed out our meeting with examples from Hill’s posthumous book, Outwitting The Devil. He ended our meeting with a simple challenge, purchase this book and come back next week with notes on what you learned as a result of reading it. I’ve never been one to doubt the teachings of Clay especially when it comes to lessons that can be learned from masters of their industry. After all, one of the reasons I look up to Clay is due to our shared challenge when it comes to reading… I mean, it’s not often I find another human being that rereads the same paragraphs as many times as I do just to find the core meaning. The following weekend I purchased the book and began consuming the lessons in order to fulfill my business coach duties and the task at hand. I knew that Clay wanted me to read it for the knowledge bombs it possessed, but truth be told, I didn’t expect to come to the realizations within myself that I followed.
The fearful do not make history. Those who turn their backs to conflict with their tails tucked between their legs do not reap the benefits of a well-fought battle.
The Kaizen Approach To Achieving A More Successful Life
Working with Clay and the Thrive team for almost 3 consecutive years, I have become a firm believer in the Kaizen method. Kaizen is defined as “ an approach to creating continuous improvement based on the idea that small, ongoing positive changes can reap major improvements”, or in a nutshell, getting better by 2% each day. Each and every day I strive to make the time for self-reflection. In this time I ask myself such questions as, “What did you accomplish today and how could you have achieved the outcome faster? In what ways could you improve the actions taken to better streamline them in the future? Did you do your absolute best, or did you simply do the minimum amount of what was expected in order to complete your tasks?”. This process of self-reflection truly helps me grow as an individual. After all tracking and refining one’s methods are the best way to honestly improve. Shortly after picking up Outwitting The Devil I was able to identify a few major areas in which I needed to improve my overall work ethic and drive.
Fear Is The Great Leveler
After reading only the first few chapters of Hill’s book, I realized an important epiphany, fear is one of the great obstacles that stifle growth and causes people to fail as well as to give up on their dreams. Fear takes a multitude of appearances, the fear of speaking out, the fear of pursuing goals without assistance, or the fear of walking an unknown path. After reading and annotating, as well as self-reflecting on personal experiences, I’ve realized this week that one of my greatest fears has been standing my ground and establishing myself as an authority on any given subject when I receive pushback. I have long feared backlash when trying to steer others in the right direction. My fear has been a result of the responses of others. Will they accept my feedback? Will I alienate them in my pursuit of aiding them? I have realized that no matter what the outcome maybe, I cannot stifle my personal business coach growth by acquiescing to opposing ideas. If the approach is truly in the best interest of another party, I must swallow my pride and risk any blemishes or bruises to my pride in order to help those that need it most. The fearful do not make history. Those who turn their backs to conflict with their tails tucked between their legs do not reap the benefits of a well-fought battle. My friends, if you find yourselves living a fearful life, you must also accept the fact that your life will not be yours to live. It will be controlled by those who do not share that same fear. One of the most important things that I have learned so far by reading Hill’s work is that no matter the opposition, we must keep pushing forward and persevere towards what matters to us the most. Fear only has as much power and hold as we give it. I have learned that living a fear-free life is the only path towards achieving one’s goals.