Privilege and Accountability

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Privilege and Accountability

This year my family is having a wonderful landmark vacation. Rose and I along with our three adult children and their significant others are going to Italy. We have been invited to a wedding at a castle near Florence. My niece and the man who is planning to spend the rest of his life with her have asked me to officiate the wedding. I am truly honored and excited to have been asked to play this role in their special day.

 

As you can imagine, I am taking this job seriously and I have been researching things about marriage that might help me say something that can make their wedding special. Yesterday a quote from Richard Needham showed up in front of me. It said;

 

When you marry someone you don’t marry one person, you marry three people.

 

1. The person you think they are.

2. The person they are.

3. And the person they are going to become as a result of being married to you.

 

Yesterday Rose and I celebrated 13,111 days of marriage and we talked about this quote as it related to us. I was 24 when I got married which is pretty young by today’s standards, but it was not uncommon then for people to get married after they graduated from high school. Regardless, it was young. I know we both had an idea of who the other was. I am not sure if we were very clear on who we were but never the less we walked into a new life together. We have truly become different people as a result of being married to each other. We both celebrate the people that the other has helped us to become.

 

The two words I want to focus on in this article are privilege and accountability.

 

It is a privilege to get married and it comes with accountability!

 

It is a privilege to live and design your life and it comes with accountability!

 

It is a privilege to lead others and it comes with accountability!

 

In marriage, in life, and in leadership, if we point our finger in the other direction and say they are the reason I was not successful, we are missing the key point that we are accountable. When we give up this responsibility then we can begin to look like a victim.

 

In a marriage we are accountable for who we choose to marry (an arranged marriage is an exception to this), we are accountable for the importance we give to the other person, we are accountable for the respect, appreciation, affection and caring we show the other person and we are accountable to help the other person know how we need to be treated.

 

Who has your spouse become as a result of being married to you?

 

I realize that people read this article from where they are. Some are single, some are about to get married, some are happily married, some are unhappily married, some haven’t really thought about it much, some have been married multiple times and some may be ending a marriage. There is no judgment about where you are as you read this it is just an opportunity to consider if where you are is a privilege and a place for accountability.

 

Most of the people reading this article are leaders. In our Extraordinary Leader Program we help leaders see the privilege and accountability of being a leader. The truth is that when you hire someone at any level of your organization you are really hiring three people.

 

1. The person you think they are.

2. The person they are.

3. And the person they are going to be as a result of being led by you.

 

How are you at choosing people?

After President and Mrs. Carter celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary President Carter was asked about the secret to a long happy marriage. He said “It is important to marry the right person.” In marriage and in leadership it is easy to look at others and judge them against the expectations we had for them. If we get to choose, choose wisely. If we are leading people who others chose, choose to make them successful.

 

How are you at setting people up for success?

On some reality television shows, and in life people often set others up for failure and then criticize and punish when the person fails. If your people are succeeding, flourishing and excited, there is a good chance they have been set up for success. Do they know what success looks like? Do they have a plan to succeed? Are they given the support and tools to succeed?

 

How are you at serving people?

If you think marriage and leadership is about being served by others, good luck with that! We are service professionals. You can’t give without receiving and you can’t receive without giving. It is a two way street.

 

How are you at celebrating people?

In a marriage and in organizations, celebration creates energy. Catching each other doing things that we appreciate, celebrating the big things, celebrating the little things, celebrating the effort and celebrating the fact that we are connected creates energy. You can create energy or you can suck energy! You have a choice!

 

How are you at caring about people?

In marriage and in leadership, do they know you care? Do you care about their happiness? Do you care about their health and safety? Do you care about their future? Do you care about their passions? Do you even know they exist? If they don’t think you care, there is a chance they won’t either.

 

How are your people as a result of being led by you?

When you look at the people you are privileged to be in life with, do you see Extraordinary? If you don’t you have the opportunity to consider your accountability in that result!

 

You are privileged and accountable!

 

KevinKevin MacDonald and Shelley MacDougall are the coaches for CMAA and can be reached at 1-866-822-3481 toll free. 

Let's Talk Club Management: Members, Meetings, Mulligans, and More

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Episode 1

LetsTalk

Join Kyle Jennings, Manager, Communications & Student Development, and Melissa Low, Senior Director, Communications & Advocacy, for the inaugural episode of CMAA's podcast: Let's Talk Club Management.

In this installment, Kyle and Melissa speak with Jeff Morgan about his recent anniversary with CMAA, what he's learned in the past three and half years, the challenges he's faced along the way, and what he sees for the future of CMAA.

Each episode will also feature an Idea Fair winner - and this month's showcases the winner of the Chairman's Award from the 2018 Idea Fair. Elisha Cicerone, Director of Food & Beverage at Chevy Chase Club joins the podcast to discuss her team's winning entry.

Tune in:

While we're only available on Soundcloud currently, we will be moving to iTunes and Stitcher soon - so be sure to subscribe when we make that announcement!

We look forward to your feedback!

What Are You Afraid Of?

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If you asked that question to one hundred people you would get a variety of answers that might range from everything to nothing. The truth is we all probably have some things that we fear. For some their fears get constant attention and for others they are running in the background. The truth is that we have been taught to fear by some brilliant teachers. They may have been parents, friends, teachers, religious leaders, newscasters, advertisers, politicians… you get the idea. There is no shortage of people who will tell you who or what to be afraid of.

Like a seed, when fear gets planted it tends to grow.

Fear can protect us, but it can also stifle us.

Fears that keep us small can make us feel comfortable and safe, but they can also keep us from reaching our potential.  

As coaches, it is interesting for us to notice how fear plays a role in the success of our clients. Some clients fear failing. In some cases this motivates them to do all they can to be successful and avoid failure.  In other cases the fear of failure seems to paralyze people or in some cases makes them so tight and tense that they are lucky to operate at a competent level. In a time when they need to thrive and show their talent, they fall short.

Some clients fear success. With success there are often higher expectations, demands on your time and less freedom. Some may want to avoid all of the hard work and sacrifice that success may require.

We have had a lot of sessions with students recently who seem to fear the change that given a choice of jobs, they might choose the wrong one.

Some people are afraid of spiders. Some people are afraid of snakes. Some people are afraid of clowns. Some people are afraid of heights. Some people are afraid of speaking to a large group of people. Some people are afraid of taking that first step. Some people are afraid to finish what they started.

It really doesn’t matter what people fear or if it makes any sense to us that they do. What matters is whether or not they are willing to put up with the cost of the fear.

People are motivated to move toward pleasure or away from pain. Of course the avoidance or possible pain can limit us from a lot of the pleasure that makes life amazing.

A wise person once said “Whenever I have made decisions in life that were motivated by fear I almost always paid a price. Whenever I made decisions based on my values I always seem to win.” 

 Life is full of decisions. Some are small and some are big. Often we get to discuss decisions with people before they make them and often we get to talk to people after the fact but we tend to see that a lot of the decisions that people regret were motivated by fear and not values.

We work with people who made the decision to take the wrong job because they were afraid if they didn’t take it they may not get another chance. Perhaps they were afraid that the money would run out. Maybe they were afraid of what people might think if they were out of work too long. Maybe they were afraid that they were too old or too young or too something. What they often find is that fear and desperation make them decide things they wouldn’t normally decide. The warnings signs might be ignored, the due diligence might be skipped because fear is driving them to get the job.

On many occasions these kinds of poor decisions don’t work out and then they find themselves doing the same thing again because their old friend fear is driving again. If it continues to happen a pattern is formed that is hard to get out of and diminishes the reputation, credibility and the value of the candidate.

A client we worked with recently was getting worried as weeks became months in the transition period. He considered taking a job that was very similar to the one that just ended poorly. It would have meant getting income again but it didn’t satisfy what he and his family needed and wanted. He made the decision to not take the job even though there was nothing solid on the horizon. Within a month he landed a job that utilized his skills, excited him and was in alignment with what he and his family wanted. We recently celebrated his decision to align with his values vs. succumb to his fear.

Whether you are in transition between jobs or just in life making daily decisions there are two things we would love to do to support you.

The first is an exercise to help you to determine your needs. When your needs are met you are attractive, dynamic, energized, productive, inspiring, fun and easy to be around. You are in a positon to make powerful decisions. When you don’t get your needs met you can be ugly, short tempered, loud, quiet, isolated, lethargic, tired and not fun to be around. As human beings we have both ends of this spectrum. When we are not getting our needs met, fear has power. Fear can take over and often does. Let us help you learn what your needs are and help you get them met almost all of the time.

The second exercise is to determine your values. Your club may have identified values for people to live by but this is your chance to do it or re-examine your values. When you are living life in alignment with your values life is easier. Decisions are easier.

If you are interested you can live life with less fear! 

Let’s do it! If not, what are you afraid of?

KevinKevin MacDonald and Shelley MacDougall are the coaches for CMAA and can be reached at 1-866-822-3481 toll free. 

Reunion at Reunion

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As a coach I get to work with Extraordinary People. It is truly a benefit that I didnt consider when I discovered this vocation. Coaching could change the lives of the majority of the population, yet a very small percentage of people are the ones who show up. 

I would like to think that after 18 years of coaching thousands of people, I have made a difference in many of their lives. I would like to think that, but I know without a doubt they have made a huge difference in mine. I know I am a very different person than I was when I started out. Spending time with Extraordinary People has that kind of effect on you.

 

Last summer the Club Foundation asked if I would attend an event in Florida in January called Reunion at Reunion. It was an event put on by a wonderful organization called Tee it up for the Troops. In the next six months I had a number of phone calls with Tim Wegscheid and Jodi Baer explaining the concept of the event. They told me that when military personnel are in war zones they have combat buddies. They form an extraordinary bond and their lives depend upon it. When one of them gets hurt they are shipped off for treatment and it is not unusual that they might never see each other again. One of the things this organization does is an event to bring these people back together. They create a wonderful environment around the game of golf where truly amazing things happen. Their vision is to help wounded veterans do these four things.

 

Heal, Transition, Grow, and Thrive.

 

There were about 35 reunions. There were caregivers, sponsors, and support from Tee it up for the Troops. The group was small enough that it was possible to spend time with everyone over the four days of the event. It was amazing to watch people show up in whatever stage of healing, transitioning, growing, or thriving they were in, and then see changes throughout the four days.

 

They shared their stories. They were back with people who understood them. They were not alone. They were laughing and having fun. They were playing a game that some said saved their lives. They were being honored, appreciated, and taken care of.

 

I met them. I spent time with them. I heard their stories. I was with them in laughter and in tears. I saw their strength and sometimes it showed up in vulnerability. They were open about their pain and their limitations. They were changing because of the experience.

 

It was an amazing event. The veterans got so much and I cant imagine that many left without being changed by the experience.

 

I was changed. Here are some of the things I learned.

 

Perspective

We all need to understand perspective. The problems that most of us face pale in comparison to what some of the people I met face. The problems they face sometimes pale in comparison to people they know with much bigger problems. What kind of power do we give to our challenges? What kind of fuel do we get from focusing on our blessings?

 

Love

Although I was hanging out with tough military people who might see love as a soft, pathetic emotion, I saw so much love. I saw the love they had for each other. I saw the love they gave and received from their caregivers. I saw love of country. I saw love doing what they did. I saw love for the person there beside them.

 

Golf

The game of golf has been a passion of mine since I was 12 years old. I have worked in and around golf for most of my adult life. I love the game, but I saw it differently at this event. I truly saw that lives can be changed by a game. Things could be said on a golf cart that might not be said in a classroom or a coaching session. I learned that it can be played with one arm, no legs, an injured brain, and little experience. It creates magic!

 

Caregivers

There are so many people that care about and care for wounded veterans. There are people and organizations doing things that blew me away. There are also the caregivers who married these men and women. In most cases the person they married is different than the one who came home. I had the chance to understand their challenges. I had the chance to see their strength. These people are true heroes.

 

Isolation

Isolation is the enemy. Get help! Get moving! Get out there!

 

Loyalty

The idea that you would never want to let your team down is such an understatement with this group of people. The loyalty to go back and be injured for the second or third time was what I saw.

 

Common Ground

We live in a world where the idea that if you are not like me, you must be wrong or bad. The opposite was exhibited here. It didnt matter if you were Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, or a Reservist. It didnt matter if you were male or female, black or white, born in this country or born somewhere else. Everyone was a human being doing the best they could to live a good life and give a good life to their families.

 

Mission

I saw the power of not stopping until the mission is accomplished.

 

Gratitude

The displays of gratitude for these men and women and from these men and women will not soon be forgotten.

 

An Open Mind

When we have an open mind we can learn from everyone. When our mind is closed it is hard to learn from anyone.

 

I am sure I have not come close to conveying the respect I have for everyone involved in this event. I hope I have conveyed the gratitude I have for being asked to participate.


KevinKevin MacDonald and Shelley MacDougall are the coaches for CMAA and can be reached at 1-866-822-3481 toll free. 

 

A Million Dreams

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A Million Dreams

A Million Dreams

It seems that during the holidays we find time to do things that we might not usually do. One of those things for me was going to a movie theater to watch a movie. Even more unusual for me was that I was going to watch a musical. We went to see “The Greatest Showman”. In this movie Hugh Jackman plays Phineas Taylor Barnum. We loved the movie for a number of reasons but it left me thinking over and over about the power of the dream.

 

“’Cause every night I lie in bed

The brightest colors fill my head

A million dreams are keeping me awake

I think of what the world could be

A vision of the one I see

A million dreams is all its gonna take

A million dreams for the world we’re gonna make”

 

Whether this is being sung by a young, poor, destitute PT Barnum, his adult version or with his young girlfriend or future wife the idea that no matter who we are, no matter how young or how old, we have the opportunity to dream.

 

But maybe it is like going to a movie theater to see a musical. Perhaps it is a rare occurrence when we take the time to dream. Perhaps we are too busy. Perhaps there are way too many “real” things to deal with to take time for the unreal. Perhaps we have had dreams in the past and they didn’t work out and we don’t want to delude ourselves again. Perhaps we have had dreams in the past that did come true and we don’t want to try some new ones that might not. Perhaps we are brilliant dreamers and we don’t even know it. Perhaps we have been dreaming in the form of fear and worry and some of those dreams have come true. Perhaps we have had dreams and when they come true we diminish the power of having the dream in the first place.

 

I have a dream! It’s not a big dream, it is just a little dream. My dream, and I hope you don’t think this is crazy, is that every person who reads this article would take a little time to dream. What do you think would happen if everyone took some time out of their busy schedules and the reality of the way things are, to dream about the way they want things to be? What would happen if everyone who took this challenge passed this article on to people who deserve to take some time to dream?

 

If you are ready to dream, let’s go!

Here are some questions that can be answered by the chorus above and some thoughts of mine.

How often should I dream? Every night! It could be during the day as well. It could be once a week or once a month, but it is a good habit to practice.

 

What should I put in my head? The brightest colors. Powerful, inspiring, exciting dreams.

How many dreams should I have? A million dreams are keeping me awake. Ok, a million might be exhausting, but many, or as many as you would like. You are planting seeds. A farmer doesn’t plant one seed and hope to have a great harvest. Plant many seeds!

 

What should I dream about? Dream of the world you would like to create. Dream of the big things and the little things that will make that world a reality - some would say a new reality.

 

What should I do after I dream the dreams? Gonna take, gonna make. Have faith. They didn’t say may possibly, perhaps, if all goes well, take or make. They said “gonna”. When the belief is there, the thoughts, feelings and actions that it takes to make it happen can be engaged. There are some people who dream dreams with the conviction that their dreams will never come true. Then in some bizarre way seem to be proud that they were right when they don’t come true. You have a powerful mind! Use it to your benefit not your detriment.

 

You’re just a dreamer!

Some people have stopped dreaming because some significant person in their life discouraged them from dreaming. Some people are afraid of your dreams. Some people want to keep you safe from dreaming so you don’t get hurt. Maybe some are suggesting that all you do is dream. If all you do is dream you would be like a farmer who only plants seeds, but does nothing to nurture and harvest the crops.

 

You as a farmer!

Let’s assume your mind is fertile soil for dreams to be planted. When you have planted your seeds, whether you know it or not you have created energy. You have created energy in you. You have taken the effort to plant seeds, now you are motivated to make sure they grow. You will learn ways to bring those seeds to life and care for what they grow into. You will believe in, protect and nurture your crop and be grateful for the harvest you receive. But it isn’t just your energy that brought your dream to fruition. The energy of the soil, the sun, the water, the fertilizer, and the cool night air were all working along with you to make your dreams come true.

 

It starts with a dream!

It starts with a dream! If you don’t dream it you may become committed to someone else’s dream. That can work well too if you have connected to a really great dreamer. Please take the time to consider what is important to you. Have the courage to dream. Dream without limits! Be ok with some dreams not coming true. Many people we work with can’t believe that their dreams have come true.

Please take time to dream. Come up with one to one million dreams!

 

If you don’t have time to dream, go to the theater to see “The Greatest Showman”.

Kevin Let’s stay connected! Kevin MacDonald and  Shelley MacDougall are the coaches for CMAA 1-866-822-3481! 


The Gift of You!

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gift


It is the time of year when a lot of people are thinking about gifts they can give to important people in their lives. Some will put great time and care into finding that perfect gift that someone you care about wants or needs. Some will send money or a gift card because that way the person will get what they really want and it reduces the risk of buying gifts that they are not thrilled with. This year in addition to choosing the strategy of gift giving that works for you, I would like to suggest that you give them the gift of you! Of course, there is the risk that you are not exactly what they were hoping for, but maybe they can see the gift differently this year.

 

The Gift of You: Your Time

Have you thought about how you might give you as a gift this year? Not just you, but this year a more present you! Currently, when time is such a present commodity what would it be like if you gave someone yours? Beyond the number of minutes and hours you give them, it is probably more about the presence you give them. How can you truly be with them in a meaningful way without distraction? When we had young children, we spent lots of time with the three of them, but found it important to create one on one time with each of them. It is a time when the recipient is the focus of your attention in an environment that is important to them. Maybe it is a time to talk, to play, to explore to build memories and just enjoy! Maybe it is one hour without devices. If time with you hasn’t been viewed as a great gift in the past, maybe it is time to redesign what time with you is like.

 

The Gift of You: Your Service

Many people who are reading this are truly service professionals. Many are experts in designing and leading world class service. If that is one or your gifts, perhaps it could be one or your gifts this year. How could you serve someone that would blow their mind? You could pick their loved one up at the airport, shovel their sidewalk, make them a dinner, sing them a song, knock three things off their “To Do” list, drive them home after a holiday party, deliver a spa treatment… if you are a service professional you can come up with an innovative idea!

 

The Gift of You: Not Your Judgment

If you can spend some time with loved ones in the next little while, truly give them you. Appreciate them for being who they are in all their perfect imperfection and perhaps they will be gracious enough to do the same for you. Some people get together with the people they love and spend the time telling them what they should do or how they should be different. Some people spend time with people who do that to them. What if this year we could let go of the need to be right or the need to control and replace it with the gratitude of having what we have?

 

The Gift of You! The Extraordinary You

What if this year you give them a different you? A reinvented you? An extraordinary you? What if you decided to give them a different version of you? It could be a more patient you, a more energetic you, a more grateful you, a more optimistic you, a more present you or a more fun you? Don’t underestimate the kind of gift you are. Don’t underestimate the kind of gift you could be.

 

The Gift of You! The Creative You

Whether you realize it or not you have a creative mind. You are creating things, experiences and stories all the time. What if this year you shared the gift of your creativity? Create a holiday environment, create an event, create a moment, create an experience, create a surprise, create a lifelong memory, create something big, create something small, but flex your creative muscles and create.

 

The Gift of You, to You

What if the recipient of the gift of you, is you? What if it is time to decide to be authentically you? The authentic you, not the you that others think you should be, or even worse the you that you think others think you should be, but the true you. Of course, you get to decide who that is and what it looks like, but it is your life, so you owe it to yourself to decide. It may be the greatest gift you ever receive.

 

The Gift of You, to the World

Ok, so maybe the world is not usually on your gift list, but maybe it is time to consider adding it to you list. The day you were born there was the potential that the world just got a little better. For some people on the planet there is no question that it did. You brought something different, special and truly unique. You had the potential to make the world a better place and you still do. You might ask “What difference can I make to the world?” You can make a big difference or a little difference. You can improve the lives of billions or you can improve the life of one. You can dream what nobody else has dreamed. You can show us the way. You can be an example for that one person who will show us the way. You can share your gifts. You can take your skills, your genius, your love or your generosity to a higher level. You can make an impression on the world while you are here.

 

You can share the gift of you!


Kevin Let’s stay connected! Kevin MacDonald and  Shelley MacDougall are the coaches for CMAA 1-866-822-3481! 


If Not Now, When?

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Change

As coaches we have the opportunity to work with our clients at many stages of their lives and their careers. Some people are in a stage of repair when they are working on efforts to make a segment of their life better or to fix a problem. Some are in a stage of foundation where they are making sure that everything is in place to set them up for a more effortlessly successful life. Some are in a stage of reserves where things are in place and they have more than enough of the important things in life. Some come to us in a stage of mastery where they are thriving and they are living the life they have designed. 

 

Regardless of the stage that a person is in, there is an opportunity to look at something in their life and create an awareness of what is not working the way they want it, why, and then identify what they can do to change it. 

 

They also have a chance to dream about things they would like to do, places they would like go to and things they would like to be.

 

They can design and create the blueprint for the life, the adventures and the transformation they want to make.

 

But after all that is done the key to success comes in this little word: Decide.

 

Change can happen after 28 days, change can happen after 21 days, change can happen in a nanosecond. The change that happens in a nanosecond is what happens when you shift from “I am going to be” to “I am” or “one day I would like to go there” to “I just booked the trip”. 

 

There is no doubt that we make hundreds of decisions every day. Many of the decisions are to do today what we did yesterday. If that is what you truly choose to do that is great, but it might be time to decide on something that is really important to you instead on deciding on what is familiar and comfortable. You don’t have to decide, but you get to decide.

 

You can decide what you want to do, you can decide what you want to have, you can decide what you want to be. 

 

But let’s be clear – If you don’t decide then someone else will probably decide for you. When you have other people deciding for you don’t be surprised if you are not passionate and excited about their decision. 

 

I love these lyrics from the John Mellencamp’s song “Your Life is Now”:

 

Your life is now, your life is now, your life is now!

 

In this undiscovered moment, get your head up above the crowd. We could shake this world, If you would only show us how.

 

Your life is now!

 

Would you teach your children to tell the truth? Would you take the high road if you could choose? Do you believe you are a victim of a great compromise? ‘Cause I believe you change your mind and change our lives!

 

When you decide you can change your life. If you are a leader, when you decide, you can change many lives.

 

If not now, when?

  • When will you decide on how healthy you will be?
  • When will you decide to go where you always wanted to go?
  • When will you decide to do what you were meant to do?
  • When will you decide to step past your comfort zone?
  • When will you decide who you are going to be?
  • When will you decide to ask for what you deserve?
  • When will you decide to call and ask for support?
  • When will you take time to design the rest of your life?
  • When will you decide to get rid of that thing you have been tolerating?

I have a few challenges for you:

The first is to organize your bedroom closet. If by chance you have a very organized bedroom closet then consider organizing your office. I challenge you to decide to either have your bedroom closet organized by the end of today or one week from today. Your bedroom closet is often a great example of one of those things you plan to do one day. If not now, when? You will probably find that you have a lot of things in there that you never use. Let them go! You will probably find that they just take up space in your closet and in your mind. They make it difficult or at least a little more challenging to find the things you really need. Instead of taking two minutes to find what you are looking for you can find it in ten seconds in your organized closet. If you have a number of those moments per day you are leaking energy. What percentage of what you have, will you let go of? When you have an organized closet, enjoy it, and then notice how it parallels your life. You may have accumulated a lot of stuff, habits and people that are not working for you anymore. It may be time to decide! If not now, when? 

The second challenge is to decide what you would like to be, and then decide today to think, feel, and act like you already are that thing. If you want to be happy, healthy or wealthy, a photographer, a scuba diver, an eight handicap, or a rock star, decide today to think, feel, and act like you already are that. 

It is time to decide! Perhaps you decide on a theme or focus for this day or this week. Perhaps you decide to call that person who just came into your thoughts. Perhaps you decide to sign up for that course you have been passionate about taking. Perhaps you decide to take a day when you are absolutely disconnected from the world. 

You get to decide whatever you want to decide, but if not now, when? 

Kevin Let’s stay connected! Kevin MacDonald and  Shelley MacDougall are the coaches for CMAA 1-866-822-3481! 

Let’s Stay Connected!

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Connection


I think it was just after the Olympics when we got to spend a day with the Kueblers in Vancouver. We had a wonderful day with so many great experiences and conversations. I remember them telling us about two great restaurants in the Jupiter area. One was called “Leftovers” and the other was called “Harry and the Natives.”  I had been to the first one a few times and loved it. Yesterday I woke up in Hobe Sound Florida. I knew that is where Harry and the Natives hang out. I punched it into my GPS System and it was a mile and a half away. It was 11:20 a.m. when I got there. The parking lot was pretty full but I got a spot. I opened the door and it was busy but it seemed that they had been waiting all of these years for me to arrive. I watched in amazement as people walked in and multiple people on staff would call them by name. The food was hearty and good! But this place was truly serving love and connection. Every staff member seemed to be consistent in their joy and friendliness. Especially Harry! Yes there is a Harry! It was clear that everyone loved Harry as much as he loved them.

When I went back to the club, I met Cathy. I told her where I had been. She asked if I got to meet Harry. I told her that I saw him but didn’t meet him. She told me that her Mom who is in her 90’s has been going to that restaurant for about forty years. She said that once a week she goes 20 miles out of her way to have a Sunday meal there. 

Many people who read this might be in the service industry and think they have experienced places like this or have heard of places like this or even be leaders in places like this. It might not seem that special or conversely it might seem so rare and refreshing.

As I write this article about staying connected I am not going to focus on how many friends or connections you have on various social media platforms but rather how connected are you?

I am not asking that in terms of quantity but rather quality.

Who are the people who need to see you once a week? Who are the people who receive your version of a shoulder massage? Who are the people that you need to be connected to? How connected are you to you? How connected are you to the closest people in your life!

Being connected or not is a choice. What kind of choices are you making? If you are a person that doesn’t need connection with others and is comfortable with your own company that is great! If the only connection you need is with your higher power that is your choice. If you want to be connected to one million people by social media that is great. An important question to ask is “How are my choices supporting me or working against me?”

How connected are you to the people you work with? Some people spend more time with the people they work with than they do with the people they would choose to be most connected to. Some of these connections will be professional, some will be personal and some may turn into lifelong friendships. You certainly will have time to get to know people’s values, traits, and the level of trust you have with them.

How connected are you to the people in your family? There are times when we might tell ourselves that we value these people more than anyone else in the world and our schedules or our level of presence with them when we are together might indicate something else.

How connected are you to your best friends? How long has it been? What do you do to keep the connection strong? Are you the one who makes sure you stay connected or is it your friend’s role?

How connected are you to yourself? Sometimes we can get so disconnected to who we are and what is important to us that we lose and the important people to us lose.

How connected are you to the people who just come into your life! Some people may just come into our lives for a few moments, a few hours or a few days, yet they might be significant connections that change our course.

It is up to you to decide how you look at your connections. 

Here are some of my thoughts:

Value your Connections
Take some time to realize the value of the important people in your life and take some time to decide on who the important people in your life are! Make a list that you can review from time to time to remind you of how you are doing with them.

Don’t take them for Granted  
Sometimes we assume that they will always be there. Sometimes we assume that we will always be here. Sometimes those assumptions are not correct. Sometimes if they don’t feel connection they may just connect with someone else. Last year a dear friend’s husband passed away. He was younger than me and he left his wife and a five year old son behind. It prompted me to write a love letter to each of my three children. The intent was for them to receive it if something were to happen to me. I decided to give them the letters right away rather than wait.

Act Upon Your Thoughts
If someone comes into your thoughts or memory reach out in some way immediately. You may find that they needed you to do so.

Be an Extraordinary Connection! 

 

KevinLet’s stay connected! 
Kevin MacDonald and  Shelley MacDougall are the coaches for CMAA 1-866-822-3481! 


This information is provided for informational purposes only. The contents are presented with no warranty, either expressed or implied by the Club Managers Association of America. No legal responsibility is assumed for the outcome of decisions, commitments or obligations made on the basis of this information. If your club is faced with a question concerning legal issues, you should contact the club’s legal counsel for the specific application of the law to your situation.