Life is Calling … Only You Can Answer

What happens when what you feel is SO INTENSE that you can’t dismiss it? It’s so powerful; if you ignore it, the noise only becomes louder …

A friend of mine is going through this. Life is calling her, more and MORE everyday. She shuffles through all the possibilities. Overwhelmed by the options. Excited by the prospect of something new. Considering living in other countries. Aware that “running from her problems” won’t solve them. Although in her mid twenties, she is calling it a “mid life crisis” (although humorous, she’s not joking – it’s real for her). As this noise gets louder, it drowning out the opinions of others & her own logical mind. She’s now tapping into something bigger then her. Although scary & unfamiliar grounds, it’s the gateway to a life of possibility!

After all “new inputs = new outputs”.

(Maybe this is true for you too …)

As someone who is familiar with this process … it seems others turn down this voice, not believing in their worth as a human-being or simply saying “next time”. This friend however is fortunate, she’s listening to it. With commitment, great reward can come for her, more then she even knows. Some might say the “fruits of life”. If you’ve seen or read “The Secret”, it’s like that, but real life, not some mystical thing.

For me, finding & honouring this voice is the very reason I’m committed to being more everyday. Also why I strive to be more open & authentic on my blog every entry (scary as it is sometimes). The voice is the most powerful “thing” I’ve ever found; it’s all inside me. Just like your voice is inside you … it’s not in your friends, family, coaches, teachers … anyone else, although they might help you find it. It’s 100% in you.

Finding your voice —> where to start?

As mentioned above, your voice is 100% in you, which means yes … it starts & ends with you. Here are some questions to consider …

  • Why are you here?
  • What draws passion out of you?
  • What do you want out of life?

(take some time to be with these questions … the answers may be elusive, but they’re very valuable)

* Tip: look at times in your life where you’ve “swam downstream”, where things happened easily. Life doesn’t need to be hard, that’s something we create.

Here’s what’s true for me …

“A large part of my “why” is fueled by the loss of my father, in addition to a deepening appreciation for life. It’s through this experience, I know life is to short to chase some “dream” unconsciously thinking it’s my passion (something I have done), when it’s more truly the passion of some author or speaker.

Consciously choosing my path is the most rewarding way to live. I can either float around aimlessly in the ocean, associating with “good people” and “cool things” or board the ship-liner of my journey & go for it!”

We’re only scratching the surface of what’s possible. Our potential to be powerful, open & responsible in our life & support others is left mostly untapped. Ego runs rampant in the world. We blame others, trapped as victims, not realizing we have the capacity to change our life experience, which will domino positively into the life of others.  All the potential in this world is latent inside you & me. It’s waiting …

Consider this … you’re one of 6 billion people who’ve been selected to walk the face of this earth, for somewhere between 50-100 years. That’s phenomenal! Someday you will be a part of history. How will you reflect on your life? How will others speak of you?

Will it be in awe & gratitude for what you’ve done, & who you’ve been?

It’s 100% possible, in fact you may already be on that path. Ultimately you know best … that voice will speak 😉

What if you could start this journey today, would you?

I hope so. You deserve it & it’s available!

Email me kyle@kylemcneil.com if you’re looking for guidance on this or simply want to discuss.

All the best,

Kyle

PS – “The DNA of Success” is a great book to consider reading. Zufelt says: “when you’ve found your core purpose, you’ll climb mountains & swim rivers to achieve your goal”. 15 months ago I wasn’t anywhere near this place. It was an incredibly trying time, so lost & nowhere near my purpose. This awareness though, was the first step towards change & ultimately a much more fulfilling life experience. After all isn’t that the point? To LIVE life …

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Treat Business Like Sport – Fearless

Over coffee yesterday a new friend, Paul Harding shared something that struck me, he said “I treat business like sport; I’m competitive”.

Just a day earlier I came across some old notes I’d taken at a course … one note said “the time in my life I was the most fearless, was when I played hockey”. Hearing Paul & coming across this note … two things merged for me.

All of a sudden “work” just became even more fun. Sport is fun. Also being fearless – living on the edge, that’s when life is the richest.

🙂

Kyle

Self Serving or Truly Serving??

Over coffee yesterday morning Stephen Lau asked my motive for wanting to meet (a fair question, since it was the first time we’d had a “meeting”). My answer was in the line of: “exploring ways we can collaborate/support one another”.

In the Joint Venture world, we call this creating “overlap”. In other words, mutual interest in reciprocal success.As conversation evolved Stephen talked about “service above self” & how integral this paradigm is towards the partnerships & agreements he *does* enter.

And you know what??!! As my entrepreneurial path evolves, this comes up so much!! Successful business people are VERY conscious about avoiding the “self-server” & instead work with the responsible and capable team player.

On the topic, my friend Bryan Nickel shared some wisdom recently,

“When you’re focused on what you need, your ‘needs’ come out; people can smell that”

Newsflash!! In other words, “self serving” doesn’t work 😦

(in case you were sleeping)

*** On the flip side ...

Consider the “The Four Way Test”, courtesy of Rotary International … the four questions to ask before ever moving forward, on anything.

1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all Concerned?
3. Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?

As Jill Brock mentioned on my facebook page this week,

“It is great to ‘serve’ others, when they want to be ‘served.’ Adding value (serving) doesn’t necessarily mean a product or service…but rather, value can be just knowing that you are there to support and empathize, whenever they need it”.

With this in mind, 2 short days ago this popped up in a book …

I sought my God and my God I could not find.

I sought my soul and my soul eluded me.

I sought my brother to serve him in his need,

and I found all three — my God, my soul & thee.

– Anonymous

Think back to a time when you shared something deep, something meaningful and it really impacted someone. How did that feel??

… yes, indeed … service at its finest 😉

Kyle

PS – thanks to everyone mentioned above – your wisdom and perspective inspires me.

Today Matters … It Builds the Future

Let one of the world’s best speakers enlighten us …

Does Everest Exist? Sure … build a map!

In the past I’ve been drawn to certainty and knowing “what’s next”. For me there has been a certain comfort is found in this place. That said, it’s time to take life from another angle. Taking more chances and risking … going for it!

This week over some herbal tea @ a cafe near Whyte Avenue, Mark Anielski (author, public speaker, economist & thought leader) shared something that was very profound. I was checking with Mark’s experiences regarding this whole vision and “taking action” thing . So I inquired by saying, “Mark, I’m 26 years old; I’ve got all these ideas and vision … how do I draw a line from here to where I want to go”?

Loosely paraphrased he responded, “Kyle we are map makers and just because we can’t see Mt. Everest doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, the path presents itself as we walk it.” With that in mind, what I got from his reply is to … build the map as I grow – go for it – and TRUST.

———-

In relation to this, today my email inbox courtesy of JingleInYourJeans.com had this message …

Activationist: A person that takes action NOW and follows-through. They get things done NOW, which gives them confidence to do more, which earns them more and more money, and continuously builds their inner-security.

Passivationist: They postpone things until they have proved that they shouldn’t or can’t, or until it’s too late. By not acting, they lose confidence, destroy their own self-reliance, and live in mediocrity.

(From “The Magic of Thinking Big”, by David Schwartz, PhD)

To sign up for access to other great tips and ideas … straight to your inbox click here.

———-

So this leaves me with two choices:

1) try to predict and draw the entire map from where I sit now

OR

2) grab a pencil and large sheet of paper and build the map as I go …

*** The second option’s scarier. At the same time it sounds like way more fun!!

And for the record, the Magic of Thinking Big is a RIDICULOUS read. If you want an injection of what’s possible in your life, please take it upon yourself to read the book. I’ll even make you a deal – if you read it and it’s absolutely of no value to you … I’ll buy you a coffee.

Sincerely,

Kyle

P.S. One of my favourite songs right now … totally relevant to this post – enjoy 🙂

Steak is In; Sizzle is Out – Which are you …

Last night Michael Drew was in Edmonton to speak about trends in society, where we’ve been, where we’re at and where things are headed.

First a bit of background … Michael has worked with a number of name authors (including T Harv Eker) moving these authors onto best seller lists across North America (including the New York Times). At age 30 his record is 58/58 in meeting this goal for his authors – this guy’s impressive.

Michael  mentioned in a private conversation that he’s drawn to “big thinkers” … in his presentation he described “the age of authenticity” , which featured these two societal cycles …

A) “Civic Cycles”… where it’s not about BIG DREAMS, it’s about small actions. We started the most recent civic cycle in 2003, which society is prominently being guided by right now.

B) “Idealistic Cycles” …where it’s about the individual … 1983 was the most recent peak for this. “Billy Jean” by Michael Jackson came out and Madonna was also doing her thing. In this cycle there’s more glitz and glam … more plastic. In business & marketing in this period it’s about how the steak sizzles, not the steak.

Being that we’re in a Civic Cycle, it’s now about the “steak” – the content, an authentic experience and the true value for people. People turn to their friends and their circle for advice and experiences … advertising doesn’t work like it once did. For example, if someone has a bad experience at Future Shop they can instantly “tweet” about it and share it with 100’s to 1000’s of people. Future Shop can advertise all they want … but if they’re not delivering on their customer promise, their reputation can go sideways instantly. For you as it was for me this likely isn’t news … personally I found it profound the manner it which he described it and pieced it all together.

*** Here’s something Michael left us with that I wanted to share with you 🙂

10 Tips from Michael Drew – for Success in a “Civic Cycle”

# 1. Refer to things in your marketing materials, that you know your customer has experienced.

# 2. Deliver to your customer exactly the experience you promise them.

# 3. Evaluate what you’re doing to make a difference. (specifically in society … not the bottom line of your business)

# 4. Look for loopholes. Loopholes in your own business and close them. Expose them in your industry & competition; you’ll get the attention (example: Mac computer vs. Microsoft).

# 5. Make it easy on your website … to do this, you must have a website! It’s your bookmark on the web.

– Clear concise messaging that’s easy to “get” is key.

# 6. Don’t “wee-wee” all over yourself. In a “civic cycle” it’s not about you. It’s about others.

# 7. Learn two wonderful little words “which means”; complete the phrase “which means …” to explicitly let your customers know how what you do applies to them and benefits them.

#8 . When available, include raw unscripted testimonials.

– Don’t use testimonials with hype – whether it’s true or not people see through this. On Michael’s site he provides a perfect example – key in on the words “it’s not an easy strategy, but it’s effective“. When you watch this also notice how authentic/real Ivan Misner is vs. something really flashy & phony.

# 9. Keep your pocket notebook at all times.

– There’s golden nuggets of information around us everyday – capture it, you never know when it might come in handy.

# 10. Put someone in charge of studying the practical applications of social media. If you don’t have that person – you’re in charge!

================

By the way – if you’re an author, Michael’s site is loaded with free tips, ideas and information. To apply a “raw testimonial”, it’s impossible for one to say Michael’s perfect … however 58/58 looks pretty perfect to me … haha.

Good luck authenticating!

Kyle

P.S. Thanks to Lara Solara & David Matichuk for their tireless work in bringing Michael to Edmonton!

P.S.S. Tips for writing a great song in the civic cycle by clicking here

… “I’ve got a neat gimmick, let’s tell the truth.” – William Bernbach

Let Go Of Your Pain – There is A Life Waiting For Us

Thanks for these quotes and the great conversation this morning Miles !

This rings so true for me … especially after my time in Florida last month, where I now feel so much clearer and lighter.

—-

“Even though you may want to move forward in your life, you may have one foot on the brakes. In order to be free, we must learn how to let go. Release the hurt. Release the fear. Refuse to entertain your old pain. The energy it takes to hang onto the past is holding you back from a new life. What is it you would let go of today?” – Mary Manin Morrissey

“There’s always the motivation of wanting to win. Everybody has that. But a champion needs, in his attitude, a motivation above and beyond winning.” – Pat Riley

“The best way to predict the future, is to create it.” – Craig MacTavish

“I have told you that, no matter how many times you have refused to enter the sanctuary, you have only to knock and the door will be opened to you. I have said to you “Ask and it shall be given you,” but you refuse to believe in me. You think that someone is counting your sins, your moments of indecision or recalcitrance, but it is not true. You are the only one counting. I say to you brother, “stop counting, stop making excuses, stop pretending that the door is locked. I am here at the threshold. Reach out and take my hand and we will open the door and walk through together.” I am the door to love without conditions. When you walk through, you too will be the door.” – Paul Ferinni

Published in: on September 16, 2009 at 12:27 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Post RDC – 7 Books that have inspired me!

To Students @ RDC,

For those of you that have come to hear about some of my favourite books, hopefully you find value in this. Personally, these have been huge in shifting my perspective!

It was a pleasure speaking with you on Tuesday. Feel free to stay in touch – you can find me on facebook.

1) Tuesday’s With Morrie – the last two pages brought “water works”… and put much perspective on what life’s really about. That being people, relationships and being in the moment.

2) The DNA of Success – this book did a great job challenging my “dreams” and defining those which are actually mine. One message that really stood out was “are you willing to climb mountains & swim rivers to achieve this dream or goal”? At the time I realized that wasn’t the case in my life … acted on that realization … as a result the mountains and rivers I have climbed have actually been a lot fun … where as before they were daunting, painful & truly an energy void.

3) Rich Dad Poor Dad – at the core this is a book about the difference between abundance thinking and scarcity thinking. It also sheds light on common assumptions about what are the best ways to make money. Be aware you take your advice from … do they have what you want? Are they a living example … if not, find someone that is and learn from them.

4) The Magic of Thinking Big – amongst many lessons, one that stands out for me is “there’s lots of room at the top”. So many people assume that it’s hard to be successful, to lead … to inspire. When in reality, so many people are thinking that way, it’s actually easier to reach the proverbial “top”. There’s less competition at the top … and more in the middle where people are scraping away for mediocrity … thinking it’s the only way.

5) The Celestine Prophecy – I read this one recently. It speaks much about “energy” and those things we can’t see, but do experience … elements of the unknown and unexplainable. One thing it discusses is “the power struggle” and how people are fighting for power all the time, b/c they think there’s a scarce amount of it. The author suggest there’s ways to tap into deeper reserviours of power … and nature is a great inlet, with an abundance, a never ending flow of energy.

6) The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen Covey is a REMARKABLE teacher and author. This book is a constant reference point. “Seek First to Understand, then to Be Understood” is as he calls it the most important principle. It’s often said: “people don’t care what you know, until they know you care” … well this cycle plays out even in established relationships. Seek First to Understand is powerful!

7) Relationships that Work (by: Dr. David Wolf – I’m only 30 pages into this book, however I recommend it b/c I’ve taken two of their courses and it has literally changed my life. Yes, incredibly cliche I KNOW! At the same time, it’s true. Much like Red Deer College’s tag line of “When you get here you understand” … a similar perspective applies. David Wolf (& Marie Glasheen) have been instrumental in my growth … and HUGE contributors in the ease, clarity & confidence I was able to experience and deliver upon @ Red Deer College, this past Tuesday. This book is a GREAT starting place if you’re looking for that type of potential.

Enjoy & good luck!

Kyle McNeil

RDC Alumni (2002-2004)

Published in: on September 10, 2009 at 4:18 pm  Comments (1)  
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A thought or two – Be The Change

This was a note I posted to facebook in February 2009 , before I started blogging … and it’s something I wanted to archive on my blog …

——————

Be the change you want to see in the world …

* Did you notice that Fall 2008 was a crazy time?

In October Canada went to the polls and the USA did the same in November. In late November all of this news worthy activity was trumped by talks of a coalition government.

As you’ll recall, this triggered a massive amount of conversation throughout Canada … as much as we’ve seen in years!!

* Pausing briefly …

In October 2008 I spent time in San Francisco, a city that for years has been the core of political activism in the USA. It was remarkable, you’d hop a cable car and some guy would blitz by outside yelling “vote no for prop B”. There were all kinds posters and people flying around supporting their various messages (gay marriage, health care, etc.). Local businesses had cardboard cut outs of Barrack Obama at their front door. Buying political merchandise from street vendors was also available!

Previously I’d only seen this in Forest Gump, haha!

* Back to Canada …

The coalition government was a legitimate concern and I’m happy it generated much discussion. But, was that just a flash in the pan for Canadians involvement in politics? Will we learn something from the Obama campaign and the overall American approach of getting involved & active?

I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

——

* Something I’d never done …

As you can likely tell … I do have an opinion (very insightful of you!). In fact I was so unimpressed with our government that I wrote an email to my Member of Parliament. His assistant wrote back and we scheduled a time for me to meet with Mr. Brent Rathgeber, the Conservative MP for St. Albert.

I’d never done anything like this before, but this new experience was worth it. These are the five most interesting things that came from it:

1) Being 26 years old, puts me right in the middle of the 20-30 demographic that is seldom heard from. As a result Brent was quite intrigued to hear my perspectives on a variety of topics. He even started writing down things I mentioned, so that he could look into them.

2) Brent knows the bulk of their party support comes from Canadians 40-60 years of age who have money & own businesses. He said these people have, “reached a point, where they’re not as concerned about saving the world … they’re more concerned about retirement”. He also shared that when our generation (20-30) reaches 40 plus years … his party is in trouble unless they change their ways, specifically as it relates to the environment, b/c there’s a major shift happening there.

3) It was very easy to meet with my MP … they’re normal people too us and really want to hear from their constituents (it’s part of their job). All together I spent 3 hours writing an email, coordinating a meeting time and meeting with my MP … EASY, haha.

4) When I left, it was an incredible feeling … the ability to push for positive change. It was also relieving to be a Canadian that spoke to someone that has the ability to create change (no matter how well your dog listens, ‘Butch’ can’t make those decisions). It’s difficult to describe that feeling, but I do know it felt incredible!!

5) Although I didn’t agree with my MP any more or less than when I came in, I had a greater degree of understanding for what they’re dealing with. It’s a very dynamic role they take on daily.

——–

* Something to think about …

Do you feel strongly about something? Something you’ve wanted to share for days, months and/or years? If so, writing your councillor, MLA, MP … or whomever has decision making power, is a great way to find resolution (or at least to be heard).

We all have the power to shape our society for the better (and worse if you choose). Talking to those who are there to not only listen (politicians), but institute change is where it starts. If they don’t deliver, we can look at ways to make things happen. An interesting example of an organization in the USA doing exactly that is here … http://pol.moveon.org/sixmonths/?rc=homepage

As Ghandi once said, “be the change you want to see in the world”.

Kyle

P.S. If you 1) feel strong about something and 2) want to do something about it, but haven’t … I’m willing to brainstorm ideas with you to start that. Additionally, if you’re looking for someone to keep you accountable in whatever form, I can help there too. Just send me a message … as long as what you’re wanting to accomplish is moral, ethical & legal I’m fully onboard to help you!

Published in: on August 7, 2009 at 1:59 am  Leave a Comment  
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Quote – Shining Through

This is something a new friend of mine shared today in a phone conversation … it resonated 🙂

“It’s when we stop forcing it … trying to impress that we really shine through; we start having strong people like us, just fall into our laps – and those that are weak are empowered by the tone of our voice” – Miles Patrick Yohnke

Published in: on August 5, 2009 at 4:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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