We need to find God, and He cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature—trees, flowers, grass—grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence. We need silence to be able to touch souls.”

Mother Teresa of Calcutta

4 Truths Every Pioneer Should Know

This is a guest post by Mary DeMuth. She is an author and speaker. You can read Mary’s blog or visit her on Twitter. If you want to guest post on this blog, check out the guidelines here.

Pioneering is hard. It is especially hard for those around them. It is even hard for the pioneers themselves.

Backpacker on Mountain Summit - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/cglade, Image #10473146

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/cglade

Through God’s strength, I’ve pioneered a lot of things in my life. I parented my kids in an entirely different way than I was raised (and am still plowing that ground). I broke up the fallow ground of publishing, starting from nothing. And my family and I planted a church in one of the most unchurched places on the planet: France. So I get pioneering.

When You Realize You’re Living in a Bubble

The following is an excerpt from the Foreword I wrote for Jeff Goins’s new book, Wrecked. It’s an excellent book that I recommend you pick up. At the end of the article, I’ll tell you how you can get over $158.00 worth of free resources if you buy it this week.

In 2009 my wife Gail and I traveled to Africa at the invitation of Rich Stearns, president of World Vision. It was our first trip to “the dark continent.” We had always wanted to go to Africa; we just never seemed to find the time.

Woman Relaxing in an Outdoor Jacuzzi - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/najin, Image #17995564

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/najin

Like Truman Burbank (played by Jim Carrey) in the movie, The Truman Show, we pretty much lived in a “constructed reality.”

#020: 3 Strategies for Taking Your Life to the Next Level [Podcast]

In this episode, I talk about what it takes to get to the next level in any area of your live—health, marriage, or career. Based on my own experience, I share the single most important thing you can do to make your dreams become reality.

The very fact that you are listening to this podcast (or reading these show notes) tells me you are the kind of person who wants to grow. I am too. Personal growth is the driving force of my life.

According to Dr. Timothy Pychyl, writing in Psychology Today:

… the successful pursuit of meaningful goals plays an important role in the development and maintenance of our psychological well-being. To the extent that we’re making progress on our goals, we’re happier emotionally and more satisfied with our lives.”

Click to Listen

Play

I am looking forward to being in Texas again this year. This time I will be speaking in Ft. Worth for Cendera Funding and a lecture series they are sponsoring called, “Business with Purpose.” I will do two sessions: “The 5 Marks of Authentic Leadership” and “Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World.”

Date: August 9, 2012
Time: 10:00-12:30 p.m.
Event: Lectureship Circuit 2012
Topic: The 5 Marks of Authentic Leadership
Sponsor: Cendera Funding
Venue: Cendera Center
Location: 600 Benbrook Hwy
Ft. Worth, TX 76116
USA
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

15 Resources for Pro Bloggers (or Those Who Want to Be)

I get asked every week about the various resources I am using. Last week, a blogger asked about my podcast equipment. Another asked about the productivity apps I am using on my Mac. Still another, asked if I could recommend some leadership resources.

Some Well-Used Tools - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/jfmdesign, Image #10304861

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/jfmdesign

So, I thought I’d write a series of posts on these resources, devoting one post to each category. When I get done, I plan to collect these into a permanent page on my blog. In this post, I want to share my blogging tools.

Here are my fifteen go-to resources:

Special Discount for SCORRE Conference Ends Tomorrow!

The next SCORRE Conference will be held in Vail, Colorado, October 17–20, 2012. The special “early bird discount” ends tomorrow.

Here’s the deal: If you register any time before the end of the day on July 31st, we will give you $200 off the regular price.

Don’t miss this opportunity. This is your chance to take your speaking and communication skills to the next level. To take advantage of this special offer, register with the coupon code HYATT.

Note: This conference will sell out. If you want in, you need to take action NOW. Our last two conferences have sold out.

By the way, you take ZERO RISK. If you attend the conference and don’t feel the investment was worth every penny you paid, we will happily refund your full registration fee, no questions asked.

Also, Ken Davis and I will both be there. In addition to teaching one of the sessions, I will be present for the whole conference, interacting with the students. So will Ken.

I hope to see you there!

The Practice of Stillness

According to the popular StrengthsFinder assessment, my top strength is “Achiever.” The report that summarized my test results says,

Person Sitting Quietly on the Edge of a Dock - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/epicurean, Image #7706240

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/epicurean

People who are especially talented in the Achiever theme have a great deal of stamina and work hard. They take great satisfaction from being busy and productive.”

This strength has served me well, but it also has a dark side.

The 3 Lenses of Visionary Leaders

This is a guest post by Tor Constantino. He is a former journalist, has an MBA, and works in public relations where he has directly reported to several CEOs in his career. He lives near Washington, D.C. with his wife and two daughters. You can read his blog and follow him on Twitter. If you want to guest post on this blog, check out the guidelines here.

Good leaders create a vision, passionately articulate the vision, and relentlessly drive the vision to completion.”

– Jack Welch

Every leader needs a clear vision. However, much like common sense, vision is anything but common and rarely clear. When it’s fuzzy or cloudy, it needs a lens to make things more clear.

Three Business People Looking Through Telescopes - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/RichVintage, Image #20339716

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/RichVintage

Before we look at organizational vision, consider the literal example of vision and the human eye. Very few people have perfect 20/20 vision. According to the National Eye Institute (of America):