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Author Archives: Caruso Leadership

Getting to the Root of the Problem

In my previous blog on How You Define the Problem is Part of the Solution, we used the example of weight loss to examine why some people are successful and others aren’t at solving a problem. Now let’s look at another example: those who blame their job or career for their unhappiness.

 

To put that concept in another context, let’s say that what you define as your problem is your career. Is it bringing you a sense of fulfillment? Does it make you feel good about yourself? Do you like getting up to go to work every day or do you dread the sound of the alarm?

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How You Define the Problem is Part of the Solution

Letting go is really no more than an approach to a problem. Since, by definition, we are active participants in creating our own reality, the number of solutions we’ll see to any problem is limited by the way we define the problem in the first place. I like to tell my clients, “the way we define the problem determines the solutions we won’t consider.”

“The way we define a problem determines all of the solutions our minds can’t possibly consider.”  – Joe Caruso

If you went to see a chiropractor because your feet hurt, she’d probably find a problem with your spine; a surgeon would, more often than not, find a surgical solution; a dietician would tell you to change your eating habits; and an orthopedist might suggest that you need orthotics. Before we consider the solution to a problem, we have to consider how we’ve defined it, because that will determine the kinds of solutions we allow ourselves to see. That is, in effect, the law of congruency.

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Is a Multitasking Culture Actually Lowering Productivity?

My friend McKeel Hagerty shared an article with me this morning that discusses the effects of multitasking, namely through an over-abundance of emails and texting, on the brain; how it affects our stress levels, and, our brains ability to carry on sustained levels of concentration. It’s right along the lines of some of the work I’ve been reading and following lately. It’s an important concept, not just for leaders to understand (see tips at the end of the blog), but for anyone working towards greater success in their personal and professional lives. The article is also a great read for parents, as you look to limit screen time or the number of devices your children use as their young brains are still growing and forming.
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Do You Focus on Achievement or Success?

We have created an achievement-oriented society. Achievements are important. They serve as goals and benchmarks, mile-markers and victories. But think about it: If your goal is to achieve a successful life, how will you know when you’ve succeeded?

Success Strategy # 33 – “Realize that achievement is not success.” — Joe Caruso

You see, success is not a destination. In order for us to see ourselves as successful human beings and to strive to create success, we have to stop framing everything we do as an achievement. Read more »

Win-Win Negotiation: Respond Rather than React

Win-Win Negotiation

“Realize that you are always in a negotiation, if not with others, then with yourself.”  – Joe Caruso

It’s not a question of whether or not you negotiate, it’s how good you are when you do. There is an inherent danger of being in the midst of a negotiation and not recognizing it as such. Virtually all of your communication with other people is a form of negotiation.

You are the only one who can know exactly what you want and what you need. You are the only one who has the bottom-line responsibility of making sure you get it. It is not about taking advantage of people to get what you want in life. It’s about win-win negotiation.

There are five basic characteristics of a successful, win-win negotiation:
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