I’m currently writing two books at once. One’s a church leadership-type book, the other is a “discover yourself” type book. They’re different. And I’m so glad I’m writing them at the same time.
I did this with Created for More and Unwelcome. I didn’t intend for them to release within a month of each other; that just happened. But I found it so liberating to write the two at once. And here’s why. (more…)
There’s a popular concept going around the church and it’s this: Everyone is a leader. Along with that, everyone is their own replicator. If everyone’s a leader, everyone is supposed to spend much of their time replicating themselves. Essentially, we should keep promoting ourselves in higher and higher leadership roles as other people take over our previous roles.
Many people aren’t going to like this statement I’m about to make: Not everyone is a leader. And more than that, some people should never grow beyond their current role.
There’s a concept in business called the Peter Principle. The premise of the principle is that if someone in business is doing well, they get promoted. They keep getting promoted until they stop doing a good job. So inevitably what happens, is the people who are stuck in their jobs are the people who got promoted beyond their ability. Eventually, everyone sucks at their job because they got promoted out of their competence. (more…)
I spend a lot of my time on Facebook throughout the day. I always laugh when I see people proclaiming their disillusionment with Facebook and leaving the platform. They’ve decided there’s too much politics and controversy on the platform, so they leave. And then they’re back in a week or so, equally frustrated, but finally giving in.
Well, I’ve been doing something lately that has made my Facebook consumption so enjoyable. I’ve been systematically hiding people, hiding apps, and changing settings. I imagine the Facebook algorithm they’re using to serve me information is rather complex. But it’s worth it.
I’m hiding anyone who consistently posts discouraging stuff. Anyone who posts inflammatory stuff. And anyone I don’t know or don’t have an investment in their life. (more…)
I love the story from Hans Christian Andersen: The Emperor’s New Clothes. The story goes that man years ago, there lived an emperor who was exceedingly vain. He spent all his wealth on the finest clothing.
Two con artists hatched a plan to swindle the emperor. They were weavers, and they offered to create clothing for the emperor that would be like none other. The two proceeded to weave invisible threads together. They assured the king that only those who were worthy could see the cloth.
Worried that he might be getting swindled, he sent advisors to check on the clothes being made for him. But because those advisors didn’t want to be deemed as unworthy, they confirmed that they could see the threads too. More advisors inspected the work-in-progress, and more confirmations of the clothes’ authenticity reached the emperor’s ears. (more…)
It’s okay to have butterflies in your stomach. Just get them to fly in formation.
I heard a great quote last week: “It’s okay to have butterflies in your stomach. Just get them to fly in formation.”
Any time you attempt something new, it’s natural to get scared. It’s normal to feel a bit of fear associated with a risk. But fear is not a bad thing. It keeps you from making foolish decisions. The only time fear becomes bad is when it starts to confuse you and hold you back from making forward progress.
Feel the fear. It’s good. But focus the fear on positivity. Focus the fear on forward progress. And let the butterflies move you toward the goal instead of away from it.
We were in the planning stages for Echo Conference, when we found out we didn’t have a place for dinner during the first night of the conference. We would have around 1000 people at the conference and we planned to provide a meal for them. Unfortunately, the church where we were hosting the event informed us that we didn’t have a room available that could seat that many people. They needed it that night.
You’ve probably been to a Chipotle, standing in line, realizing there were no available tables when you got your food. Now, picture that frustration and anxiety magnified to a group of 1000. That’s what our team felt when we got this news. And this was the first night of the conference—the first impression to many people who were experiencing this event for the first time. (more…)
I’m writing two books right now. One is a co-writing project about guest services in church. It’s with a fairly notable individual and I can’t wait until we get it all together and out into the world.
The second one is a personal book project my literary agent and I decided would be a good project. It’s not really related to church work at all, so it’s a very different book from the first.
To be honest, it’s tough to flip back and forth between the projects. Sometimes I am more excited about what I’m writing in the one book, and sometimes I’m more excited about the other. Still at other times, I hate what I’m writing in both.
There are times when I feel my writing sucks. I’m conveying thoughts, but I don’t feel particularly inspired. There are times I’m merely forcing myself to write 1000-3000 words in a day so I can make my way through the work. (more…)
I was visiting a church one Sunday. It was rainy that morning, and on top of that it was the day Daylight Savings Time began. That meant everyone had lost an hour of sleep, so the day was ultra gloomy. The service was relatively full, even with all the elements working against the church, so it wasn’t as bad as I thought. The worship was great and the crowd energy was pretty good for a service like that.
But when the message began, I found myself having a difficult time paying attention. The speaker just wasn’t capturing my imagination. It wasn’t that he was a bad speaker. He was logical in his thought process and he didn’t use archaic language. Something just wasn’t connecting, though.
He told one story of a prominent CEO his friend once knew who was great at his job. When asked, the CEO could provide a verbatim response for the mission of his company. And more than that, he could give a succinct explanation of what his role was within the organization. Imagine if we could do that same sort of thing for our lives. (more…)
For about two years, I spent about 5-8 hours each week on a website that made no money. I researched information and tweaked the design. I spent my lunch hours and sometimes my evenings trying to figure out how to drive traffic to the sucker and make it a valuable resource.
It was part hobby. But it was a bigger part investment. I knew I could put in tons of hours on the front end of this thing and that it would bring long-term results eventually. In fact, that’s pretty much everything I do.
I write a book—pouring hundreds of hours into research and crafting words. I design a site and work hours on building traffic and creating content. I start a business… None of these things see short term results. But I’m convinced some of the most exciting opportunities in life require a whole lot of work on the front end before you can see returns on the back end. (more…)
One of my favorite things about blogging is the ability to see how people are finding my blogs. Most statistics programs let you see what people typed into a search engine in order for your website to show up.
But sometimes I’m amazed by the results I see. For one, many of the search terms are almost completely unrelated to my blog topic. But secondly, I’m often amazed at the types of questions people are asking. Specifically, they’re asking the wrong questions.
Take for example these two search terms I saw on Sunday| Mag last Wednesday: