Fraud Prevention Tip

Manage Your Energy (Because People Can Read It) – Better! Results Tip #19

Charlie let loose with a world-class yawn. Right in the middle of the meeting. And we all saw it.

“What”, he said. “I’m soooo tired.”

Which was apparently soooo true.

Handsome businessman working in the office

But it wasn’t anything new. We all knew Charlie was always tired. We ‘saw’ it every day in his work, his pace, his attention to detail, his suggestions, and especially in meetings when he thought no one was watching.

About 20 years ago, I listened in on an interesting presentation. It was about the ‘energy signature’ we all leave. The lesson of that program was simple: be more aware. People notice.

One of the foundation principles of Better! Results is the conscious elimination of barriers to our success. You know, those little and not so little habits and other things that we put in the path of our progress. And unless we have a medical condition, are working two or more jobs, or are raising one-year-old twins, it’s very possible that we have more control over our energy level and resulting signature than we believe.

So here are a few ideas to lean us all towards Better! Results through Better! Energy.

One, turn off the TV and get an extra 30 to 60 minutes of sleep each night. Such a simple step with extraordinary potential results.

mix fruit and vegetable salad

Two, eat Better! Food is fuel. Bad food, bad fuel. Real food, good fuel. We wouldn’t dream of intentionally putting bad fuel in our $30,000 car. But most of us put bad fuel in our bodies every day. Does that make any sense? It’s that simple.

Three, watch the sugar intake. A 12-ounce can of ‘regular’ Coke or Pepsi has about 39 grams of sugar. I was never very strong on the metric system, so I had to look it up. Conversion is 4 grams per teaspoon (a measure even I can understand). So a 12-ounce can of pop has about 10 teaspoons of sugar. Result – a raging sugar high followed by a hard sugar crash. No wonder they call it ‘pop’!

Watch out for the hidden sugar as well. Ketchup, tomato sauce, processed breakfast cereal, yogurt, condiments, processed meats, and bread. Plus the bagels, donuts and pastries that seem to be required at too many business meetings and training events.

refined sugar cube

Just so we’re clear, I love sweet treats. (So you can skip the protesting email.) And I have to watch out every single day. But I know from experience what the hidden and not so hidden sugars can do to my energy level. All I’m suggesting is a little conscious thought and modest adjustments to intake. Find that elusive middle-ground between sugar-pleasure and Better! sustained energy

Become that person everyone wants on their project. Bring the energy that inspires confidence in your work. You’ll think Better!, perform Better!, and feel Better! And others will notice – especially your boss.

Businessman in black shoes standing at the crossroad making decision which way to go - easy or hard

At Decisions – Large and Especially Small – Stop, Think and Choose Better! – Better! Results Tip #15

Example One

Diane set a common New Year’s goal. To lose 10 pounds and get herself in better shape. Two days later, she’s at the food market pushing her cart around the store. Produce came first: a head of lettuce. small bag of broccoli, five bananas, and a ripe tomato. A great start in support of her goal.

Woman standing in front of a row of produce in a grocery store.

Then the moment of trial. Bags of chips, pretzels and cookies lined both sides of the next aisle for the entire length of the store. Then another aisle stocked with nothing but sugary soda and candy – much of it on sale after the long holiday period just finished.

And this is exactly where the Moment of Better! occurs.

If Diane can make it down those aisles without reaching out and placing any of this junk food in her cart, she is setting herself up for Better Results! in the days that follow. Because if this stuff isn’t in her pantry or refrigerator when she hits that inevitable late afternoon moment of hunger for sugar, when she scans her kitchen for something to eat to kill the cravings she simply will not be able to give in to the cravings for junk food.

It’s just not there (but a banana is!).

To review, Diane set herself up for later success – her goal on her terms – when she made Better! Decisions while shopping days earlier.

Example Two

David has an important meeting with the big boss next week. He’s nervous because his improvement suggestions are based in small part on data and in large part on his years of experience and gut feeling.

Let’s face it. David would be crazy to wait until the morning of the meeting to get ready. Instead he makes the Better! Decision of preparing five days in advance. He writes out a one-page agenda with the purpose of the meeting in bold at the top of the document. He prepares his talking points and a tight example of each. And then he does the two things that most of us forget or ignore.

Business planning. Marketing strategy brainstorming. Paperwork and digital in open space.

One, he consciously takes the opposite point of view and prepares to refute his own suggestions. This makes him better prepared to anticipate the soft or weak spots in his recommendations as well as the specific questions he should expect.

Second, he rehearses for the meeting. Not just in his head. Out loud. And he records the dry run rehearsal so that he can both see and listen to himself make the presentation. No fancy studio. He just uses the video and audio recording functions on his mobile phone. Result: outstanding free feedback in a very private setting – allowing David to adjust his delivery and examples for Better! Results with the big boss.

And the goal is always Better! Results.

Example Three

Terry had a crappy day at work. There’s just no better way to describe it. His boss was all over him. His cubicle mate spent the day on the phone arguing with their partner. He started the day with 20 unanswered emails, and 10 hours later ended the day with 35. Then there was the traffic on the way home. Normally a 35-minute drive, tonight it took over an hour.

cars in a tourist traffic jam

So now late for dinner, he sits in his car in the garage about to head into the house where his bride and two children are waiting for dad to make his grand entrance.

How will he choose to feel when he walks through that door? What will he choose to say? Will he take a moment to collect his thoughts, take a breath or two, paste a smile on his face? Or not.

A decision moment for sure.

The Simple Lesson

In our complicated business and personal lives, so much is beyond our immediate control. So when we find that increasingly rare opportunity to control our results on our terms, we should reach out and grab it with passion.

We all have 100% control over our decisions. Every moment of every day in every situation. Whether to get up from our desk or couch and take a five minute walk. Whether to buy the junk food or not. Whether to prepare effectively for meetings and less-formal business conversations or not. Whether to turn off the TV and get to bed a little earlier or not. Whether to be kind to others or not. Whether to volunteer to assist a co-worker or not. Whether to talk on the phone while we drive or not. Whether to smile when we just don’t feel like it, or not.

Better! Results come from Better! Decisions. And opportunities for Better! Decisions are present hundreds of times each day. All we have to do is be present, see them, and Choose Better! in the moment.

Our Challenge Together

Positive change begins with being present and aware. Better! Results come from Better! Decisions at moments of opportunity.

Months and dates shown on a calendar whilst turning the pages

Consciously mark one day on your calendar. On that day, stay present and mindful every time you face even the smallest decision. For one day, pause, give yourself just five seconds to take a deep breath, exhale, and then decide. Consciously. Which option that I have right now will increase the probability of advancing me towards my smallest intentions or larger life goals?

Let me know how you make out.