If you could take your Dad anywhere, where would you take him?

Many of us have complex relationships with our Fathers and mixed emotions about holidays like Father’s Day. So facing right into the situation, I want to know where you would go if you could take your Dad anywhere.

My Dad was in the navy during WWII. He served stateside, but was always interested in world affairs in a way that everyone in that generation was. It was personal, and they had earned their viewpoints with their service and their sacrifice. Like many after the war, he was able to create a business and have a family. He would not take on debt and and saved up to pay with cash.

He got the opportunity to travel to Western Europe and never forgave our leaders for letting the Russians have Eastern Europe where his parents were born. When the wall came down in the fall of 1989, I cried that my Dad had died 4 months earlier and did not live to see this day.

If I could take my Dad anywhere, I would take him to Berlin.

Asking people this question, I heard all sorts of wonderful stories about my friends’ fathers. Then again, maybe your Father was absent, so you would take him to something he chose not to attend. In any event, honor yourself today, as well as the Dad you had. You get to choose how you carry these memories and how they affect you from now on.

Are you over-committing?

Keeping commitments is a major factor in trustworthiness and accountability. It can be described as “Doing what you said you would do.”

And then there is committing. You can do anything, but not everything. Some signs of over committing are:

-not keeping your commitments (duh);

-being grouchy or hard to be around;

-not enjoying what you are dealing with;

-neglecting important people (like family) or activities (like exercise);

-spending the whole weekend catching up on the work you couldn’t get to during the week;

-not doing the work only you can do ’cause you are doing other people’s work…..

Shall I go on?

Yes, I know in some way this is all of us, but don’t use that as an excuse. As humans, we are so tempted to justify our bad behavior by pointing at someone else we know who gets away with it. My classic whine from my childhood was “But you let Joe do it!” (my older brother). Poor Joe, I got away with a lot more than he did. Don’t feel sorry for him. He was very good at pointing this out to Mom.

Speaking of which, whining and pointing fingers just makes you look weak. Feeling sorry for yourself doesn’t get you anywhere either.

Here are some ways to address the issue:

Delegate. If you are able to, delegate everything that you aren’t good at. Especially when there  are people within your organization who are extremely good at it or need new challenges to grow.

Don’t take the monkey back. Read Who’s got the monkey?

Say no. If you don’t say no to the lower priority activities, you can’t say yes to what will bring you and your company value. Get clear on where you bring value and what brings you joy, or meets your goals. Do you know what those are? If not, start there.

Get more sleep. Take a vacation from Facebook, email, late night television and get a half hour more sleep each night.

Block out time on your calendar to spend time doing what is important and stick to it. You don”t have to be perfect; you do need to get better.


Photo courtesy of drivetime.com

Do you have good SOP’s?

While processing an opportunity at a Vistage meeting last week, one member asked if the company had a SOP around the process being discussed.

“What’s an SOP?” asked a Second Member.The group laughed or groaned. >

Does the new California gas tax annoy you, too?

Governor Jerry Brown and the Democratic super majority legislature have swept through a new gas tax of 12 cents a gallon to be effective November 1st. Argh! Every time the price of gas went down in the last few years, I threw a little party in my car and spent that extra $1.20 I got back toasting the oil companies for the gift. >