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Lesson #6 in my “Average Sucks! Learning How To Become Remarkable” series.  To begin the series (highly suggested), please click –> Here

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Bet you never realized that so much of your life and your emotions are run, controlled by the expectations you have of yourself, of people, of loved ones, of co-workers, of virtually everything and everyone.  Well, what if that could change in an instant?  What if by changing one small, rather simple perspective so much of your life (that was formerly based on those expectations) could become so much happier, productive and worth living?

I bet you have expectations of most people in your life.  Maybe even everyone.  Maybe even of yourself.  Well, I am here to tell you to STOP.
Look at it this way, is not your greatest responsibility in this lifetime to self… yourself first and perhaps your health and happiness second?  A responsibility to be happy everyday.  To live with joy. 
Honestly, what is the point of living if we are not happy or seeking to become happy (pursuing happiness)?  Of course there also needs to be depth and meaning to our pursuit of happiness.  And typically, a more complete sense of happiness seems to find us when our actions not only serve us but, that of others.  Especially, others in need of just what you bring to them.  Your intelligence.  Your story.  Your experience, talents, passion, compassion, and yes even… your love.
If you believe this to be true (that you owe it to yourself to be happy) then let’s consider the possible outcomes of living and leading based on this way of life we call living by “expectation”.   Assuming most of our realities have been framed (really more confined) in this manner, then living and leading through (and by) expectations can yield only two possible outcomes…
  1. Muted or Colorless Happiness – I call it gray happiness because it is more a sense of unexciting satisfaction than it is true happiness.  If you expect your staff to do what they were hired to do then how enjoyable can that be – for them and for you?  Again satisfaction, sure.  Happiness, joy, likely not.
  2. Disappointment and Frustration – This happens when you and the people in your life (personally and professionally) do not perform or do as they were told.  When you and everyone around you did not meet expectations.  Notice here that you are doing the telling and they are carrying out your orders.  Some happily and some merely acquiescing.
Now, agreements on the other hand are an entirely different and much more purposeful and happier way to live and lead.  It is an entirely different mindset in fact.
When two people together agree on an activity, a responsibility, a process, a system which leads to a mutually desired outcome, the leader or person of authority becomes a stakeholder in that person’s success.  They together set a goals or goals.  They together share in the journey toward achieving them.  The outcomes here yield either… 
  1. Happiness, Fulfillment & Gratitude – a fuller more robust sense of happiness is experienced here.  If your staff member does what you together agreed he or she was going to do then happiness is experienced for both! And, along the way, a bond is created and trust is nurtured, earned and emboldened.
  2. Shared Reflection, Bonding & Renewed Determination – Here, when a task it not performed properly or not at all, when a goal is not achieved, instead of failure, disappointment or even disgust what is experienced here is shared culpability and opportunity.  Opportunity to build a bond.  Opportunity to examine together what went wrong.  Opportunity to get it right next time and feel like someone has your back that “next time.”  Opportunity to examine the circumstance more as a lesson learned rather than a failure.   Opportunity to build and grow.  And, the side effects here folks are pretty wonderful.  It is ironically when we lose, when we fail that we discover our truer selves.  What we are really made of.  How determined we are or are not.  It is from losing, failure, lessons learned where we grow.  Get better.  Stronger.  Faster.  So even if there is disappointment here, it is only temporary.  Disappointment quickly here metamorphoses into excitement, trust, motivation, exuberance.
So you see folks, having expectations (at least most of the time) is not the way… the best course.  Not for your career.  Not for your company. Not for your people.  Not for you.  Not for your own happiness.
Start taking on more responsibility.  Live and lead through agreements.  If you do and you commit to it, your life will be so much richer.  Happier.  The journey and path toward fulfilling your own goals will honestly be that much more worth living.
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If you want to learn how to live and lead more through agreements rather than expectations I assure you it will be something you will have to practice.  Practice regularly in fact.  And, what better way to get started practicing than sign up for Andrew’s Hour Of Power.  See what so many others are saying about it go to the “What They Are Saying” tab above.
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GROW YOURSELF AND GROW YOUR BUSINESS: Learning How To Live and Lead So That Success Simply Finds You

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While almost everyone is singularly focused on IT (your business, your company, your dream), within these pages you quickly learn about there is a relationship between IT and YOU and that you need to focus on both. So, if you are one of those leaders whose business, company or startup is struggling or seeks to get to the next level, this book will teach you how to grow yourself so that you can grow it. WARNING! What you are about to read may surprise you. Ironically, much of it you likely already know. Some perhaps you may not. Either way, this will challenge you for sure. It does everyone.

Andrew Kolikoff: A 3 time successful entrepreneur (one of those times landing him on the front page of USA Today for a product he invented), Andrew is now a world renowned coach, keynote speaker, author and co-founder of MentorMash… the world’s first and only success building system designed to deliver both happiness and financial freedom through mentoring – mentoring both You and Your Business. Feel free to connect with Andrew on Linkedin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/businessbreakthroughmentor. He can also be found at www.mentormash.com and www.kolikoff.com.