4 methods to better DECISION MAKING!!!

By Jernavis Draughn

Our decisions dictate our destiny. The value of making the RIGHT decisions will determine the direction our life will take. We are influenced by our environment and our friends. Mathew Kelly states, “the people we surround ourselves with either raise or lower our standards”. They either help us to become the best version of ourselves or encourage us to become lesser versions of ourselves.” What was the last decision you made that turned out to be either a bad decision or a good decision? Take time to ponder or write down the decision you made and why that outcome came to life. Most of our decisions are made on autopilot. Our brain produces habitual behaviors that have been created over the course of our lives that drive our behavior. These programmed decisions create a sense of safety and comfortability that keep us from growing in most areas of life.

Looking at the “why” factor behind the DECISIONS we make, helps us discern the meaning behind them. I often ask, how will this decision I’m making affect my life in a positive or negative way. Then I weigh the pros and cons of me not making the decision to see if I’ll regret not doing it in the future. It is believed that good questions inform, and great questions transform. Consistent success is birthed in being able to make the right decisions. As you grow in your area of gifting, relationships, career, business and life, decision making should become easier to make. We should be students of life, where we are learning from the wrong decisions we made in our past.

In the book Crucial Conversations by Al Switzler, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan and Patterson, Grenny, they discuss four of the best methods to making a decision in business, life and relationships.  

  1. Command Decisions. It’s not our job to decide what to do. It’s our job to decide how to make it work.
  2. Consulting Decision. A process whereby decision makers invite others to influence before they make a choice.
  3. Vote Decision. An agreed upon percentage swings to making the decision. 
  4. Consensus. Means you talk until everyone honestly agrees to one decision.

Our beliefs direct our direction in life, which plays an important role on why we make the decisions we do. If we can’t see a better future for ourselves, then we will be doomed to repeating the past. Self-confidence is directly connected to what we believe is possible in our life. Learn how to implement these styles of decision making into all aspects of your life. Remember, success is the result of decisions!

Quote of Day: “You can only have two things in life, reasons or results.”

Five Factors shown to IMPROVE your well-being

By Jernavis Draughn

What does well being mean? The dictionary defines it this way, “it’s the state of being happy, healthy, or prosperous”. When do you feel the happiest or healthiest or prosperous in your life? What actions are you doing daily that creates a positive feeling in any of these areas? What we do daily determines our worth. When we live our core values we attract more things that gives our lives meaning. In the book “Think Small”, by Owain Service and Rory Gallager, they discuss 5 actions that will help improve your life’s well-being.

  1. Strengthening your social relationships. We become the people and things that we associate with most. We are the sum total of the 5 closet people we spend our time with. When we choose wisely the company we keep, our personal growth is expedited. Listen to only voices of value!

2. Getting healthier and active. Our body is our temple. We must feed our mind and body healthy fuel in order for it to perform at a high level.To keep the body in good health is a duty, otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.”-Buddha

3. Learning something new. Commit to lifelong learning. Becoming a person of value requires you to never stop growing. “Try Not To Become a Man of Success But Rather Try To Become a Man of Value.”-Albert Einstein

4. Being more curious. What types of things sparks your interest? What inspires and motivates you? What is another stream of revenue that you could focus on building? What can you do today that will help you reach that goal faster? The quality of your thinking determines the quality of your life.

5. Giving to others. The secret to living is giving. We reap what we sow. In order to move forward we have to give back. The law of reciprocity means, when someone does something nice for you, you will have a deep-rooted psychological urge to do something nice in return. “We rise by lifting others.”-Robert Ingersoll

What we do today will either empower or restrict us tomorrow. We are creatures of habit and our well-being is connected to what we do daily. What we eat, the amount of work we accomplish, how often we exercise, and the people we connect with socially, emotional and spiritually. All of us have the same amount of time daily to produce the results we want in our lives. Take time out today to look at these five areas of your life to ensure they are meeting your standards on all levels. Remember, our time is our most precious gift, and all of us MUST be selfish with it.

Quote of the day: “Act as a master of your life by putting your health, well-being, and happiness FIRST.”-Marianna Olszewski

The 80/20 LIFESTYLE…

By Jernavis Draughn

What is the 80/20 principle? Let me give some history of where this concept originated. The concept was introduced in 1897 by an Italian economist named Vilfredo Pareto. He observed that most income and wealth came from the minority of the people in his samples. He found that twenty percent of the people owned eighty percent of the land. From that day forward he continued his quest to see if his discovery stood true to other areas of our lives.

I decided to do my own research on books discussing the 80/20 principle, in order to get a clearer understanding of this concept. I just completed a great read by Richard Koch called the 80/20 principle. He goes in depth on how we can implement the rule into all facets of our life to produce success. Richard explains how using the principle can increase success in your company, career, relationships and overall health.

Here are a few statistics of the 80/20 principle:

-Eighty percent of what you achieve in your job comes from 20 percent of your time spent.

-Twenty percent of the products usually account for about eighty percent of dollar sales value.

-Twenty percent of criminals account for eighty percent of the value of crime.

-Twenty percent of motorists cause eighty percent of accidents.

-Twenty percent of your carpets are likely to get eighty percent of the wear.

-Twenty percent of your clothes will be worn eighty percent of the time.

The key is to concentrate on the most important twenty percent that will create the most success in your life. This will take you sitting down and writing down what actions, behaviors and rituals create the results you ultimately want. Here are four rules for understanding how decision making connects with the 80/20 rule.

  1. Not many decisions are very important.
  2. Most decisions are often those made only by default.
  3. If what you have decided isn’t working, change your mind early rather than late.
  4. When something is working well, double and redouble your bets.

The premise of the book is to find where twenty percent of your efforts gives eighty percent of your return. This premise is the true essence of the 80/20 principle, to do a few things well and specialize in that particular area.

Confucius once said, “the man that chases two rabbits catches none”. We are so consumed with trying to do everything, instead of mastering a few things. Discipline yourself to improving twenty percent of the most important areas in your relationships, company services, Job performance and health. That is the only way you will see exponential growth and lasting success in all areas of life.

Quote of the Day: “Success demands singleness of purpose.”-Gary Keller

Why you should ride the ENERGY Bus…..

By Jernavis Draughn

Benjamin Franklin once said, “Energy and persistence conquers all things.” Successful people don’t make excuses, they get it done even when they don’t want to do it. They push through the pain, because they know it’s only temporary. Our lifestyle plays an important part on our daily energy levels. There’s five energy drivers that help us increase our productivity; exercising, eating healthy, sleeping, relaxing and connecting with people. We need to invest time in all five of these energy boosters daily to maximize our output.

I’ve recently implemented a new method for improving productivity called, “brain investment tasks”, for only 30 minute segments. I focus on the task I’m working on for 30 minutes, then I take a 10-15 minute break if needed. If I’m in a flow state, I will go as long as my brain and focus allows me too. The key is to implement brain breaks when working on assignments that need deep thinking, to help you not feel burned out, overwhelmed and engaged.

You know by now, I’m an avid reader and I just completed a great book called, The Energy Bus by John Gordon. He creates a great story of a manager that is struggling in all rems of his life, because he lacks positive energy, accountability, vision and persistence. In the book John Gordon, explains 10 rules that will increase your productivity in life, business and relationships.

Rule 1: You’re the driver. Your life is a sum total of the thoughts you’ve created and actions you’ve taken.

Rule 2: Desire, vision and focus on moving your bus in the right direction. What you focus on will expand.

Rule 3: Fuel your ride with positive energy. Focus more on the positive instead of the negative.

Rule 4: Invite people on your bus and share your vision for the road ahead. Alone we are limited, together we are limitless.

Rule 5: Don’t waste your energy on those who don’t get on your bus. Distant yourself from the energy vampires.

Rule 6: Post a sign that says no energy vampires allowed on your bus. Positive energy is like a muscle, the more you use it the stronger it gets.

Rule 7: Enthusiasm attracts more passengers and energizes them during the ride. Momentum breeds momentum. Passion is contagious!

Rule 8: Love your passengers. Practice servant leadership.

Rule 9: Drive with purpose. Only purposeful achievement is ultimately sustainable.

Rule 10: Have fun and enjoy the ride. You always have fun when you love what you do.

Quote of the day: “The future brings only what the present gives it.” Unknown

 

 

The Power of DAILY RITUALS!

By Jernavis Draughn

What you do DAILY will expand! From our consistent actions, behaviors and thoughts, we are unconsciously creating our life. Oprah once said, “what we dwell on is what we become”. The main reason we NEED to create successful daily habits. Have you ever paid attention to your daily rituals? From the moment you wake up, everything we do is a HABIT, a learned behavior. “Chains of habit are too light to be felt, until they’re too HEAVY to be broken.”-Warren Buffett

Aristotle was one of the first leaders of teaching to recognize that our success in anything we do is a result of our daily rituals. He once said, “We are what we do repeatedly. Excellence then is not an act, but a habit.” Most people are unaware of what they do, why they do it and the results it’s producing in their life.

Can you name 3 positive rituals or routines that’s creating success in your life today? W.H. Audent once said, “Routine in an intelligent man, is a sign of ambition.” In the book Daily Rituals, by Mason Currey, he displays some of the highest achievers rituals that helped them reach their goals.

Benjamin Franklin                                                                                                                    -He would schedule his day out until he went to bed.

-Each week was devoted to a particular virtue, temperance, cleanliness, moderation. He would track them on his calendar.

-He believed if he could maintain his devotion to one virtue for an week, it would become a habit.

Beethoven                                                                                                                                        -Kept a pencil and a couple of sheets of music paper in his pocket, to record chance musical thoughts.

Maya Angelo                                                                                                                                 -She would write consistently from a hotel or motel room. Every writing session she would include a dictionary, a bible, a deck of cards and a bottle of sherry.

Alexzander Graham Bell                                                                                                         -He would work 22 hours straight without sleep on  some days.

Vincent Van Gogh                                                                                                                      -He worked from 7am-6pm nonstop barely pausing to eat.

Andy Warhol                                                                                                                                 -Recorded his life by phone daily from 1976-1987. For a daily 24 hour period, he would keep record of the people he saw, his money spent, gossip he heard and parties he attended.

 Twyla Tharp                                                                                                                                -She begins each day with a 5am workout for 2 hours.

 Stephen King                                                                                                                               -He writes every day, even birthdays and holidays. His daily writing quota is two thousand words.

Here’s a few successful principles that I’ve learned from reading about the daily rituals of some of the greatest minds of our time. I’ve implemented these principles below and it has increased my productivity in all areas of my life.

  1. Be committed to doing the WORK. Showing up daily and enjoying the process.
  2. Discover your PURPOSE. Remember your passion is a preview of your PURPOSE!
  3. Love your CRAFT. It shouldn’t be work to you. Honestly, you should get lost in working on your craft. Time disappears!
  4. Create your own INSPIRATION & MOTIVATION! You are your own self-starter.
  5. Plan your DAY the night before. Preparation is key.
  6. Get up early! The early bird gets the worm.
  7. Create successful habits and routines for themselves.

Quote of the Day: “Routine in an intelligent man, is a sign of ambition.”-W.H. Auden

Mission vs Vision…?

By Jernavis Draughn

What’s the difference between a vision and a mission? The bible says, “Where there is no vision people perish.” Our life’s vision provides clarity for the mission AND direction we undertake. But destination leads our direction. It governs our behavior, which creates our daily habits. This is the reason our DECISIONS dictate our DESTINY. Let’s break down the difference between both in effort to gain more understanding on WHY both are necessary in reaching our GOALS. Remember, reasons come before results. If our WHY is powerful, the how is easy. In the book, Leadership by Alison and David Price, they explained the difference between the two:

A vision, is where you aspire to be in the future. Your vision summarizes what you’re aspiring to achieve.

A mission, is what you aspire to do, your purpose for being on this earth. Your mission summarizes your purpose.

What is your life mission? What compelling vision do you have for your life? Hence, this is the reason we need daily, quarterly and yearly goals. Intrinsic motivation is the one thing that inspires us to become better human beings in the journey to reach our goals. It is the hunger to solve a problem that the world hasn’t found the answer too.

Examples: food and water security, free health care, lack of economic opportunity and unemployment, poverty and inequality are just a few of these things.

The list can run as long as the Amazon River. The point I’m making is, some of the best business ideas come from unsolved problems. My vision and mission for my life is connected to helping others grow emotionally, spiritually, mentally and financially. They are intertwined with each other, because my WHY is connected to giving.

I’ve learned success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure. We were created by GOD to be givers and to help other people! The major key is to discover what your gift is, then finding how you can use it to help the world become a better place. That takes time, self-discovery and pondering about what your strengths are and what you want your legacy to be when your story ends.

 Quote of the Day: “The secret to living is GIVING.”-Tony Robbins

Why EVERYONE is in SALES!


By Jernavis Draughn

We ALL are selling something every single day. From having to convince your kid to take a bath, or the value of going to school, negotiating a lower price on a new car purchase, to asking for a raise at your job. I believe sales is the number one skill set to attain and mastery for the future. With the rise of artificial intelligence and more jobs being automated, there won’t be many jobs a robot can’t render. Learning the art of communication and the ability to sell, will place you ahead of someone who only has a degree, masters, PHD, certification, etc. You will have the skills to sell your particular skill sets in a manner that will separate yourself from competition and provide complete clarity on why you’re the best candidate for the that position.

Zig Ziglar, once said, “Every sale has five obstacles: no need, no money, no hurry, no desire, and no trust.” Sales is essentially a transference of feelings. I believe no TRUST, no SALE. Creating a rapport is the first step to connecting with your prospect. Next is using active listening, to hearing the needs of your prospect. Active listening, means listening with the intent to understand. Closing any sale starts with knowing exactly what problems your prospect needs solved. In the book, little red book of selling, by Jeff Gitomer, he explains there’s certain principles that lead you to becoming a top sales producer. Here’s a few that resonated with me that have improved my sales skills.

-Believe you can close every sale. Have a winner’s mindset.

-Plan your day and the goals you want to accomplish.

-Recognize and take advantage of all opportunity.

-Take responsibility for your success in sales.

-Take risk and embrace failure as a learning opportunity.

-Hang around the right people that inspire and motivate you.

-Prepare to win or lose to someone who is.

-Position more. Compete less.

-Prospects buy the sales person first.

-Become an expert or influencer in your field.

-Celebrate effort, not victory.

Commit to sales mastery. Measure your closing rate and continue to work on your sales game DAILY!

Quote of the Day: “Make a customer, not a sale”-Katherine Barchetti

Why Marketing starts with POSITIONING yourself first!

By Jernavis Draughn

Marketing is a battle by which a company gets into the clients minds FIRST. Let’s look at some of the most famous companies in the world. If I would ask you to tell me what company comes to your mind first when I say sneaker, most people would probably say “Nike”. If I say fast food, most people would probably say “McDonalds”. If I say coffee, most people would probably say “Starbucks”. And if I say fried chicken, most people would probably say “Kentucky Fried Chicken or KFC. All of these companies were first in there industries to win the battle of marketing themselves as number one for the particular service or product they provided. It all starts with having clarity on your vision for how you want to be PERCIEVED by prospects.

The book “Positioning”, by Al Ries and Jack Trout, define “Positioning”, as an organized system for finding a window in the mind. Al Ries and Jack Trout explain how, “Language is the currency of the mind. To think conceptually, you must manipulate words. With the right selection of words you can influence the thinking process itself.” Introducing a new product or service, provides only two types of responses: Praise for innovation and secondly, problem solving or copycat entitlement of being a knock off brand. The key is to separate yourself with a unique selling proposition that gives you an edge or differentiates you from competitors. Every advertisement is a long term investment in the image of your BRAND. Therefore, this is the reason why companies pay millions of dollars to increase their Brand awareness.

The average human mind cannot deal with more than seven units at a time. This is one of the reasons why seven is a popular number for most lists that have to be remembered. Examples: Phone numbers and the Seven Wonders of the World. Most people have a hard time remembering seven or more numbers. Businesses have to connect with their clients on a mental and emotional level in order for them to remember their products or services.

Advertising is not a debate, it’s a seduction. Most companies fail to reach or build trust with a prospect, for them to make a purchase. To get inside of your prospects mind, you have to relate to what’s already there. You can’t walk away from your existing position in the prospects mind. Decide today what you want to be known for and what your brand stands for. Your purpose has to connect with your vision in every advertising campaign you release to the world.

Here are a few questions from the book “Positioning”, by Al Ries and Jack Trout, which has helped me reposition our marketing strategies. It also helped me focus and confirm how we want to be perceived by new prospects and existing clients.

  1. What position do you own?
  2. What position do you want to own?
  3. Whom must you outgun?
  4. Do you match your position?

Remember, prospects don’t BUY, they CHOOSE! Continue reinventing yourself, improving in all areas in your career and company.