Issue #9 September 7, 1998
About the Author:
Sherry Lowry is a Austin-based
business coach who works nationally and
internationally with executives, manages, business owners other coaches,
psychologists and therapists. She brings experience to her clients as a
founder and developer of 7 businesses, including one non-profit organization,
as a consultant and trainer, and professional mentor. Co-leading group
telecalls (via regular telephone connection) and telegroup series is a
speciality....with other field experts on corporate marketing, using public
speaking as a marketing took, marketing with heart, and offers with Diane
Menendez special teleclasses for mental health professionals transitioning as
coaches. In 1996, Sherry founded and continues to host The Coaches’ Showcase,
a free theme-based telegroup exchange with some of the industry’s most
experienced coaches. Also useful is her online collection of The Lowry Notes -
free to the public at her WWW site. She holds two traditional graduate degrees
and has completed the Coach University curriculum. She is on the Board of
International Coach Federation and is a member of Professional Coaches’ and
Mentor’s Association and Texas Executive Women.
Sherry Lowry, MCC
Austin, Texas, USA
Web site: www.sherrylowry.com.
Part One of Two
Are you old enough to remember the 1960's TV
series, "Mission: Impossible"? Each week the show began with Mr. Phelps
finding an audio tape player with a message for him, left by an unknown
ally. The tape began, "Your mission, Mr. Phelps, should you choose to accept it, IS..."
Every week, the voice went on to describe a bold, audacious, and dangerous
quest--Mr. Phelps' Mission. Every week, Phelps
accepted--and we watched him create the Possible out of what was
Phelps had it easy. All he had to do to find his mission was listen.
For you, discovering your
mission--that big, hairy, audacious goal through
which you fulfill your Purpose and create your Vision--may
require more of you. So, we say this: "Your mission, Reader, should you
choose to accept it, is to develop a Mission: Possible for your work and
your life." Do you accept it? Here's what to do.
1. Start with the Lively Vision and Purpose statements you've
(See The Seamless Life™, Issue #7
and Issue #8).
Read the statements aloud to yourself several times slowly. Let your
intuition go to work. Imagine yourself doing things today that would
fulfill them. Write down what you imagine on an index card.
2. Remind yourself of your Gifts.
Creating your mission means finding a big, hairy, audacious goal that
will let you be at your best every day. The best Mission is one that
will let you:
- live through your Values
- allow you to easily satisfy your Needs
- lets you use your gifts as often and as richly as
See The Seamless Life™Issue #6 for our article on
Discovering Your Gifts.
One of the best ways to identify your primary strong points
is to ask five people you trust to tell you what they see as your
essential gifts. Ask them, "What are the qualities, gifts and
attributes I bring to my work and relationships? What do you value most
about me?" You may hear things like:
"your teaching skills,"
Listen and write down what you hear.
"your insight into people,"
"your persuasive communication,"
About the Author:
Diane Menendez, Ph.D., is a business and personal success coach. She has been
coaching since 1983 when she began the High Performance Coaching process as an
internal staff coach at AT&T. Since 1988 she has coached more than 250
business executives in Fortune 100 companies and has provided leadership for
company-wide efforts in executive and leadership development. Menendez’s
special niche in executive coaching is providing support to leaders of rapidly
changing industries who are committed to transforming their personal
leadership styles. She has successfully also transferred her skills to work
with entrepreneurs, other business owners, family owned business leadership,
and non-profit executives and their organizations. She created Results-Focused
Leadership Development, an intensive, creative and empowering process that
influences and inspires client to fully develop their leadership potential
while supporting their company’s mission and goals. Her passions are inspiring
the success of family business members, entrepreneurs and therapists and other
professionals in transition. Her www domain name, HeartDance.com, is an
expression of her belief that, "Our work can bring us joy as well as financial
rewards." Yes, that’s what she means -- real joy, enough to make your heart
Contact info: HeartDance, Cincinnati, Ohio USA, 513-474-1137
3. Brainstorm #1: Identify possibilities for using your gifts.
When you have your list, ask the same people to brainstorm with
you the ways they believe you can best use these gifts during the next
phase of your life. Look for ways to combine your gifts in unique
achievements. For example, for the gifts list above, you might craft
the following mission:
"Use my leadership, caring and communication skills to turn around an
old, failing business which employees 200 people in an inner city,"
as did one of Diane's clients.
Post your qualities and the possible Mission Goals on 3" x 5" cards.
Put them in front of you.
4. Look Inward. Reflect. Free-Write.
For this, you'll need:
Find an uninterrupted, quiet hour. Get comfortable. Go outside if you
want to. Ask yourself this question: "What 100-200 things
could I do to feel like I am 'on my path' in the coming year?"
- a journal or a notebook
- a favorite pen or pencil
- a small stack of 3" x 5" cards
- 2-3 bright-colored highlighters or markers
Then, begin "free-writing," or writing non-stop. List
everything that is appealing--and just keep on writing. If you run out
of ideas, just write, "I will..., I will..., I can..." and
repeat this until the next possibility shows up. Keep going.
5. Work Your List.
OK. You now have a running list, compiled from your free-writing and
your friends' ideas for you. Go back and number your ideas if you
haven't done so already. Quickly run through your lists and cluster the
similarities, by drawing arrows to connect related possibilities. Or,
use your colored markers to emphasize the clusters. If this triggers
more possibilities, add these to your list. Don't be surprised if your
list doubles itself as you work it.
This issue ...to be continued...
Even Mr. Phelps could only accomplish so much in one episode!
Hang on to your list, and tune in next week for the remaining
six steps in creating your Mission Possible and for the reasons
why this is a mission you should "choose to accept".
Mission Possible: Part Two of Two
E-Mail us with questions or suggestions.
Sherry can be reached at email@example.com.
Diane and Sherry's book, Discovering Your Best Self Through the Art of Coaching, can be ordered at http://www.sherrylowry.com/book.htm.
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