Creating the Best Support Team (Newsletter Vol 2 Issue 5)

By Lori Howard

Live A Better Life Newsletter
(Tools and Tips for Intentional Living)

Volume 2 Issue 5, April 27, 2010
Creating the Best Support Team

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In This Issue:

Creating the Best Support Team
Recommended Resources
Contact Me
About this Newsletter

Creating the Best Support Team

At some point in your pursuit of your goals, you will very likely encounter some sort of obstacle. If you don’t, I’d say you’ve you’re aiming too low.  Some obstacles seem overwhelming, insurmountable.  You run out of time or money or support.  You feel like you’ve hit the end of the runway, but the plane isn’t going to take off, instead, you fear you’re might crash and burn.

So what do you do? 

I want to talk this month about how to create support for yourself to keep you going when things get tough.  How to assess the value of your support system and then how to use it effectively. 

So right now, take a quick inventory of the people you are closest to, the one’s you trust.  List their names.  Let’s group them into simple types. 

–         Which ones are the ones who are great at cheering you up when you’re feeling down?  The ones most concerned with how you feel, and who want you to feel good.  Let’s call them our Cheerleaders.  Put a “C” next to their names.

–         Which ones are the ones who are great at analyzing things and finding problems in our logic or holes in our reasoning?  These are the problem-solvers.  The ones you talk over your ideas with when you are ready to have them challenged.  Let’s call them our Testers.  Put a “T” next to their names. 

–         Which are the really good listeners?  The ones who can listen to what you say without interruption, and respond with things like “So what you’re saying is …” or “I hear you…”  or “That sounds difficult/exciting…”.  Let’s call them our Listeners, and put an “L” next to them. 

–         Which ones are the ones who will call you out when you’re full of crap?  The ones who will challenge you that you can be more, do better?  Let’s call them our Butt-Kickers, and put a “B” next to their names.

It is important to have some of each of the Cheerleaders, Listeners, Testers, and Butt-Kickers in your support system.  It is equally important to know which type of support you need when you call on your support system for help.  Do you need someone to pick you up, remind you of how great you are, that you can do this?  Call one of your Cheerleaders.  Do you need someone to listen to you, and reflect back to you what you’re thinking and feeling?  To give you time to vent or clear your mind of thoughts and feelings.  Give a Listener a call.  Perhaps you need help fixing a problem to overcome an obstacle, actually looking at the solution you’ve come up with, and want to see if someone other than you thinks it will work, then call your Tester.   Or do you really need someone to call you forth, challenge you to step it up and bring your real A-game?  Boldly seek out your Butt-Kicker to come along and kick your butt. 

It’s important that you know who can do what in your support system.  Call on the wrong one at the wrong time and you could end up feeling crippled, instead of lifted up and helped along your way.   

Now, there’s one final category I’m struggling with mentioning, but I think they do exist and are important to discuss.  These are the Nay-Sayers.  The ones who no matter what you say or do, are always focused on the negative.  To them the sky is always falling and we are all doomed to destruction.  There is a difference between our Testers and these Nay-Sayers. Testers know how to dig in and find problems in our thinking.  The Nay-Sayers take it to a whole other level – and can be destructive to our hopes and dreams and ideas.  We may love them dearly, but need to limit our contact with them, especially when we’re in need.  Put an “N” next to their names so you remember who they are.  When you really need support, don’t go these individuals. 

So what do you do when you encounter those uber-challenging obstacles?  Take a moment to decide what kind of support you need, and reach out your support system:  Ask for help.  What if some people in your support system can serve as different types?  Tell them what kind of support you need. 

If your current support system doesn’t contain Cs, Ls, Ts, and Bs, then start looking for people to add to the mix.  Not sure how to do that?  I invite you to schedule an appointment with me and we can talk about how you can create a stronger support system for yourself and your dreams.

Unearth your worth™ today!

Warm regards,

Lori Howard

p.s. Post your thoughts below!

Recommended Resources

The topic in this section is resumes.  You never know when you’ll need yours.  Would you like to make your resume powerful and compelling? Check out this new product:  Write a Resume that Works!  For newsletter subscribers – there’s a special 30% discount.  Click here for details!

Would you like to just beef up the language in your resume to give your accomplishments greater impact?  Pick up this f*r*e*e list of Action Verbs.

Contact Me

I welcome your feedback, comments and questions. Also, if you’re interested in contributing to this Newsletter, email me your submissions.

Tell me what you think about this newsletter by posting a comment below.


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Client Stories

 I was looking to make large changes in my life, both job and city.  I was a happy midwestern resident for nearly 30 years but wanted to see what life on a coast was like and get a dream job.  This was a tall order and going into it I thought I would have to make large compromises on parts of my dreams to get any of it.  

I went to Lori to help me achieve these dreams.  It was the best decision I made.

She focused on two things right out of the gate:
  1. clarify my goals, both personal and professional
  2. get me to stop selling myself short

These twin achievements allowed me to approach my hunt with confidence, patience and focus.  My original dream job was to try and combine my technical joys with a personal one.  I enjoy large scale data processing with cutting edge tools, music and baseball.  Through the tools Lori taught me and helped me unearth in myself I got that gig that would have fallen into day dream territory before our work together.  

And yeah, there's platinum records on the walls of my lobby and I have tons of data to process.

Pat Christopher, Intelligence Engineer, Seattle, WA