7 Disempowering Traits To Move Away From…John Page Burton

We live in a diverse world made up of many different personality types. Therein lies the beauty and bane of existence. As a student and teacher of personal development, I am fascinated by the great adventure we call life and by how each of us chooses to participate in this adventure. In the past, I have written articles highlighting some of the traits found in leaders and others I believe we would be well served to move toward. Today, I desire to take a slight departure and examine 7 disempowering ADULT personality traits that I believe each of us should move away from. (nor would it be a good idea to include these types of folks in our circle of influence).

7 TO AVOID…

1. The Small Child. The small child is just that, someone who never truly grew up. They “demand” attention and acknowledgement from everyone around them and can be prone to adult tantrums when they don’t get their way. NO is their least favorite word and boundaries tend to frustrate and anger them. Because they choose to make everything about them, they are rarely good team players and often make challenging romantic partners.

2. The Mind Reader. The “mind reader” believes they know what you are thinking and they expect you to know what they are thinking. The fundamental problem with the “mind reader” is that the foundation of their communication is based on guesswork. “Mind readers” are implicit communicators who can be left dazed and confused when they are confronted by a “fact based” explicit communicator.

3. The Assumer. “The assumer” creates their own story line, one that is rarely based in fact. They form their opinions and pass judgment based on assumptions. For example, one of my neighbors told several other neighbors that we had decided to sell our mountain home. She later confessed that she had arrived at this conclusion because we had not come up for the summer when we normally did. We had not spoken to her since the previous summer and had NEVER discussed selling our mountain home. In reality, we had numerous social engagements during the month of May that prevented us from coming up sooner than we did. This is referred to in many circles as “foot in mouth disease”.

4. The Buck Passer. The “buck passer” has never met a decision they didn’t prefer to defer. Fearing they will fail, look stupid, piss someone off or be unpopular they simply leave the decision making process to someone else. “What would you like for dinner honey? I don’t know you decide. I decided last time, you decide this time. C’mon honey, you decide, I’m good with whatever you decide”. Sound familiar? The “buck passer” plays this game in every corner of their life and it can be “mind numbing” to be around for any length of time.

5. The Blamer. Nothing has been or ever will be their fault. This pattern began in childhood and has seemingly served them ever since. The problem is that conscious people see right through the blame game. Failure to take personal responsibility leaves the “chronic blamer” with one card left to play…the victim of circumstance. Taking personal responsibility for ALL of our choices and actions is true EMPOWERMENT!

6. The Distorter. Let’s just say that reality is NOT their constant companion. They will change or alter the truth in order to gain an upper hand in their emotional, financial or career objectives. Distorters create “smoke screens” in an attempt to hide their insecurity and shortcomings. Unfortunately, significant damage may occur before the veil is lifted.

7. The Magician. Now you see me now you don’t. The magician is adept at avoiding anything that is uncomfortable. When the going gets tough…poof, they’re gone! This includes relationships, jobs and friendships. Their life is a never ending illusion. They rarely stop “performing” long enough for anyone to meet the “real” person behind “the mask”. Should you challenge their authenticity, you guessed it…poof!

In fairness, we ALL tap into theses 7 traits from time to time. Our awareness of them is a positive step toward conscious living. If you strongly identify with any of them it may be time for a “check up from the neck up”. As always, I look forward to your thoughts and feedback.

Managing Our Demons…John Page Burton

All of us have demons and many of us find ourselves in a seemingly endless battle to exterminate these destructive “bed fellows”. As the recent death of Robin Williams clearly illustrates, our demons can exert a death grip on our soul. Our demons come in many different forms and no two demons are exactly alike. Your demons may be similar to mine in nature, however, the circumstances (back story) and characteristics of your demons will be vastly different from mine. This also holds true in how we CHOOSE to address them. For most of us, our greatest demons originated in another place in time, yet we have allowed them to travel with us wherever we go. A few of our more common “bed fellows” include the demons around physical, emotional or sexual abuse, body image, intelligence, sense of belonging, success, sexuality, financial loss, abandonment and relationship/marriage dissolution. Our demons from the past often surface and wreak havoc in our most intimate relationships. I can certify that my demons surrounding abandonment would routinely raise their ugly head whenever I found myself beginning to enjoy and place trust in a new, intimate relationship. As soon as the relationship became comfortable, an alarm would go off in my head screaming “danger, get out” and I would commence the slow, deliberate process of sabotaging and ultimately blowing up the relationship long “before my partner could”. Intellectually, it made no sense to “blow things up”, however, my emotional intelligence was not developed enough to quash my demonic thinking. I was finally able to destroy my abandonment demons when I was in my late forties.

For many of us, our demons surrounding abuse are the most difficult to make peace with. Abuse demons feature layer upon layer of scar tissue, often rendering us incapable of trusting anyone, especially ourselves. Many of us have turned to drugs and alcohol as a misguided way of quieting the demonic voices in our head only to wake up one day and find ourselves with an entirely new “bed fellow” to contend with. Demons attract demons!

A friend recently asked me how I have been able to overcome my personal demons and enjoy the happy, prosperous life I live today. My answer seemed to surprise him. I have learned how to manage my demons.

Managing Our DEMONS…

Distance. I have learned to distance myself from the past. I recognize that everything in the present moment is perfect and that ALL of my current pain originates from past events. Many of the sources of my pain and discomfort are no longer alive or living in proximity to me which illustrates the absurdity of hanging onto these programs. This realization and a great deal of daily prayer and self exploration enables me to view my life with a present moment perspective. I can manage the present moment and recognize that I have no control over the past.

Ego. Demons are figments of our imagination, hand delivered by the Ego. The Ego desires for us to stay in pain and readily uses guilt, shame, anger, jealousy, envy and depression to try and hold us hostage. I have learned to counter the darkness of the Ego with the light of compassion and love. I routinely find myself fighting my Ego and there are times when it actually wins a battle. The good news is that I have the awareness and resolve to win the WAR! The most effective way to manage the Ego is to look at everyone and everything from a place of compassionate understanding. We are ALL on our own custom designed journey.

ME. The greatest breakthrough I realized during my process of making peace with the past (demons) was the moment I truly understood that the quality of my life from that moment forward was entirely up to ME. I was “the adult” in charge and remaining a prisoner to my thoughts was INSANE. The quality of my life would be a direct result of the CHOICES I made from that moment forward. As simple as this sounds, taking personal responsibility for ALL of my actions and subsequent outcomes was the single biggest game changer in my process of personal transformation. When it’s about ME there is no room for demons.

Ownership. As long as I AVOIDED addressing and confronting my demons I remained in a state of constant pain. Once I took ownership of my right to CHOOSE what I focused on, my life began to change. Denial guarantees that we will continue experiencing pain. Taking ownership is the first step toward abolishing our demons and living a life of inner peace.

Numbing. When I was under “demonic control” I found myself “numbing” to avoid feeling the pain and disappointments in my life. My numbing included, drugs, alcohol, exercise, thrill seeking, work and travel. Once I made the decision to confront my demons head on, I found myself living my way into a state of moderation and balance. At first this was a bit odd but now I have become quite used to it.

Support. One of the best ways we can manage our demons is by seeking support. Friends, partners, spouses, life coaches and cause specific support groups are excellent resources to help us stay on track. Everyone’s pain is different and as I mentioned earlier, no two people will experience the exact same demonic experience. When we seek support we are sending a clear message to the universe that we are committed to ending our demonic bondage once and for all. Seek and you will find the support you need in the moment you need it.

ALL of us have experienced things we would like to forget. ALL of us have done things we regret. ALL of us have the capacity to offer and accept forgiveness but before that can happen we have to give ourselves permission to FEEL the FEELINGS. Once I made the decision to confront my demons and release my anger I was truly ready to move forward. This is an ongoing process. EVERYDAY I am tested to see how serious I am about managing my demons and living a pain free life. My personal report card indicates that I am a solid B student working toward an A.

As always, I look forward to your thoughts and feedback. Cheers!

5 Tips for Becoming The “Guru” We Are Seeking…John Page Burton

We live in a society where many of us are searching for a “guru”, someone who can provide us with the proverbial “magic bullet”. We desire our “guru” to readily give us the answers we seek as we travel down our chosen path. Recently, I was introduced by a client as their “guru”. I found myself feeling very uncomfortable with this designation. For the record, I am a peak performance strategist who is on the same journey as everyone else. I am not worried about becoming so enlightened that I one day ascend into the clouds, however, I am a bit concerned with the explaining I may have to do should “judgement day” become my reality. I appreciate the confidence my client has placed in me, however, the “guru” thing has got to go! FYI…WE ALREADY HAVE THE ANSWERS TO MOST OF OUR QUESTIONS.

Some of the words I found when I looked up the definition of “guru” included, master, teacher and guide. As a coach my job is to GUIDE my clients to their own conclusions. In my workshops and seminars I TEACH an array of strategies designed to help my students successfully navigate through life and business. Every time a client or student experiences a breakthrough I have the privilege to also learn a great deal about myself through their process of transformation . Again, MASTERY is not my current reality but certainly something I will continue to strive for.

5 Tips for becoming the “guru” you are seeking…

*TRUST YOUR INTUITION. We ALL have the gift of intuition. It isn’t just available to a select few. All of us have experienced a “gut feeling” telling us something didn’t feel right. Most of us at one time or another have gone forward anyway and later beat ourselves up for not “trusting our gut”. Our “gut feeling” is our intuitive voice. Our Ego is our counter intuitive voice. Our job is to follow our intuitive voice, and quickly discount our Ego voice. “Guru tip”…We ALL have the gift of intuition, USE IT!

*RELEASE THE PAST. Many of my clients hire me to help them design a strategy for making peace with and releasing their past. Everything we have experienced and overcome has been hand delivered to us by God. Why did God provide us with these opportunities? So we can learn, grow and be of greater benefit to others. I encourage my clients to look at events from the past as God scheduled opportunities. When we carry around the past it weighs us down in the present. If we saw someone drowning, most of us would strip off the majority of our clothing before jumping into the water. Why would we instinctively do this? Because we know the extra weight of our clothing will drag us down at a time when we need maximum energy. When we release the past we have more energy to create in the PRESENT. “Guru tip”…Embrace and live in the present moment. The present moment is where the magic happens!

*GET UNCOMFORTABLE. The more uncomfortable we get the more comfortable we will become. What this means is that when we change the way we look at things the things we look at change. Our breakthroughs occur in moments of great discomfort. Discomfort forces us to seek solutions and finding a solution serves to validate the trust we have placed in ourselves. When we stay in our comfort zone we reinforce our belief that we are “not enough”. Once we become comfortable being uncomfortable we have truly tapped into our personal power. “Guru tip”…Get uncomfortable and seek solutions.

*GET OVER YOURSELF. Humility is endearing. There is a big difference between humbly sharing our accomplishments and shameless self promotion. For example, I have a good friend whose son just graduated at the top of his class at a well known university. As she shared his monumental accomplishment, she repeatedly gave credit to all of the people “who had guided him along the way”. I had to remind her that she had also played a significant role in his accomplishment. Conversely, I was recently subjected to a 10 minute “rant” from a neighbor who had just found out that his son had been offered an athletic scholarship to a division I college football program. My neighbor went on and on about the sacrifices he had made for “his boy” and how “other parents were not as dedicated as he had been” blah, blah, blah. “His boy” stood next to him with his eyes diverted to the ground, clearly embarrassed by his dad’s commentary. I congratulated “his boy” for his accomplishment and the young man said “thank you sir”. “Guru tip”…Humility is always within our control.

*LIVE AUTHENTICALLY. First, clearly establish your morals, values, beliefs and personal code of conduct and then strive to live by them in an impeccable manner. These will more than likely change as we mature and grow. For example, when I was in my thirties my personal code of conduct dictated that I could faithfully attend church while engaging in an extra marital affair. My values and beliefs at the time allowed me to justify my bad behavior. I was not living authentically. Today, my values, beliefs and personal code of conduct would not allow for this type of behavior. Living authentically means that our actions are in concert with our thoughts and spoken words. “Guru tip”…BE YOU! LIVE TRUE TO YOUR VALUES, BELIEFS AND PERSONAL CODE OF CONDUCT.

We ALL have the ability to tap into and become the “guru” we are seeking. My hope is that these tips will help you become your own “guru”.

I look forward to your thoughts and feedback.

Learning to play the game of AND…John Page Burton

Most of us grew up and many still live in a world of “either-or”. We have been conditioned to believe that in any given situation we must choose between one thing or another. As children, we may have been given the option of a cookie or a brownie but under no circumstances could we entertain the idea of having both. As adults this conditioning may still be firmly in place. For example, Diana and I enjoy the beauty and lifestyle of the Sonoran Desert in Tucson, Arizona and we equally enjoy the cool pines and the amazing outdoor lifestyle afforded to us in the White Mountains of north eastern Arizona. Several years ago we found ourselves trying to determine which location we would enjoy living in more? The answer was always the same… we enjoyed living in both places. We were left with no other choice but to play the game of AND. In other words, we decided we would seek a SOLUTION that would allow us to enjoy both. Once we became very clear, the universe provided us with the opportunity to purchase a wonderful home in the White Mountains AND at a great price. We successfully played the game of AND.

In short the theory says…I can enjoy this AND I can also enjoy that. Mine happens to be a real estate example, however, the AND theory works for everything. For example, a person can be married AND still be their own person or a person can be employed as a forensic scientist AND moonlight as a stand up comedian.

This summer Diana and I found ourselves in a new discussion. We both love the Sonoran Desert, especially in the winter months and we absolutely love hiking, mountain biking and skiing in the tall pines of the White Mountains. We also desire to spend a couple of months a year in our favorite beach community in San Diego. With out going into great detail, we have created and executed a plan to bring this reality into the fold. Hello San Diego, 50 yards from the beach!!!

***It is important to note that long before any of this could become our reality, we first had to visualize the specific lifestyle we desired to create. Next we determined the amount of income we needed to create to fund this lifestyle AND we created a business model that would allow us to generate income working from wherever our physical location happened to be. Because we are open to playing the game of AND the above lifestyle has become our reality. AND everyday we express our GRATITUDE for the lifestyle and relationship we have been BLESSED with.

Designing and playing YOUR game of AND.

ACTION. We must be willing to take the action steps necessary to walk away from the either-or mindset. We must quiet the voices that say it is impractical to have a “convertible sports car” instead of the “Soccer Mom Mobil”. When you play the game of AND you will figure out a way to enjoy them both. If you are starting a business you will be faced with a plethora of what appear to be either-or financial decisions. Prioritize the ones that will earn you the greatest potential ROI and then figure out how to appropriate the funds to build your business using the concept of AND. Dieting doesn’t have to be the either-or starvation scenario that it is often portrayed to be. We can still eat fun food, just less of it! Thanks Jenny! Taking the right actions are the key to making the game of AND work for you.

NOW. It’s NOW O’ ClOCK, are you living an either-or mindset or are you willing to engage in a healthy game of AND? NOW is the time to determine the town/city where you desire to live, the car you drive, the neighborhood you reside, the school your children attend, the friends you include in your circle, the career you choose, the adventures you desire to embark on and most importantly who you desire to become in the process. “I have to be an accountant because it pays the bills” doesn’t work in the game of AND. “I am going to take some night courses and follow my dream while I serve my accounting clients during the day” is an example of playing the game of AND. NOW is the time to leave the either-or mindset behind.

DECISIONS. Decide what you desire your lifestyle to look like and make the conscious decision to take the ACTION to make it happen. Most people who live lives of quiet desperation are POOR decision makers. Remember, NO decision is a decision. If you struggle with making decisions, now may be a GREAT time to start sharpening your saw. I have a friend who defers every decision to his wife. Besides being a very weak masculine trait, it speaks volumes about his fear of making the “wrong decision”. He would rather “throw her under the bus” than be “wrong”. Practice making small decisions and moving up to bigger ones. The more confident we become in our decision making ability the sooner we can leave the confines of an either-or world and begin playing a big game of AND.

We can truly have the lifestyle we desire. We don’t have to remain stuck in an either-or mindset but we will have to get very clear on what we desire our life to look like. There should never be guilt attached to living well. The key is that we are equally generous with what we have been blessed with. Some call this tithing others describe it as paying it forward, regardless of terminology it is safe to say that givers GAIN!

Here’s to your game of AND!

The 6 Truths of C.H.A.N.G.E. John Page Burton

We have all heard it said that someone “has really changed” or that someone “really needs to change”. Maybe we have been accused of “resisting change” or have been encouraged to “be the change” we wish to see in the world. I once heard it said that the only person who truly embraces change is a baby with a dirty diaper! Change is inevitable. Let’s take a closer look at what happens to us once we embrace the concept of CHANGE.

CHANGE…

Choice. Change is a choice. We can CHOOSE to stay in our current circumstances or we can CHOOSE to change them. I have a client who “hates living in California”. They cite traffic, cost of living, taxes, lack of water, smog, angry drivers, ineffective government, left wing crazies and the surge of illegal immigrants as some of their reasons for wanting to leave the state. I couldn’t help but ask them why on earth they would ever desire to leave such a lovely sounding place? Their answer says it all…”from what I hear, everywhere else is just as bad”. I rest my case…CHANGE is a CHOICE!

Habit. Whenever we begin to change something in our lives, we also begin creating a new habit. The fastest way to change a bad habit is to replace it with a good habit. For example, when I quit smoking I knew I would have to make some immediate changes if I was going to be successful. I bought a bike. Every time I had a strong craving I jumped on my bike and pedaled through the craving. I have not had a cigarette in 14 years and I cycle an average of 3,000 miles per year. Bye, bye, bad habit, hello good habit.

Action. Change begins in thought but is realized through ACTION. For a change to become permanent it must be accompanied by consistent ACTION. Again, using my smoking example, their are millions of people who are thinking about giving up cigarettes, however, most are unwilling to take and maintain the ACTION necessary to become a non smoker. The 3 actions to stop smoking are…1) DON’T BUY THEM! If you do break down and buy them… 2) DO NOT LIGHT THEM and if you break down and light one…3) DO NOT TAKE A PUFF. Anyone who takes and maintains these three actions WILL quit smoking and remain a non smoker. I know this strategy works because I followed it and quit. ***One of the hardest things I have ever done but well worth the short term pain it took to free myself from the bondage of nicotine.

New. When we make a change it becomes our new way of being. Anyone who has faced and conquered “the battle of the bulge” understands the power of change. In order to lose weight we must become committed to a new food plan and exercise routine. Our commitment to these fundamental changes will determine whether or not we release our unwanted pounds and if we are able to KEEP THEM OFF! Once a change becomes our new way of being, we no longer have to worry about going back to the way things were.

Growth. For most of us, our greatest personal growth occurs during periods of significant change. When the world around us begins to change, we have two choices; resist the change (reactive) or embrace the change and begin the process of adapting to our new reality (proactive). For example, I held a death grip on my CD player before finally embracing the world of MP-3. When I found myself experiencing a health challenge (Valley Fever) I found myself going through both emotional and physical changes. My ability to embrace and accept change was a key factor in maintaining my mental and emotional health while I recovered. When we view change as an opportunity to learn and grow it becomes much easier to embrace it.

Example. Our willingness to change can serve as an example for others to follow. A good friend of mine battled a prescription drug addiction for several years. One day his emotional pain became so great that he found himself reaching out to a local spiritual leader to help him end his dependence on prescription drugs. Over time, my friend was able to overcome his addiction and today he speaks to groups across the country about the dangers of prescription drugs. His willingness to make this significant life change has undoubtedly led to countless people being more mindful of the dangers associated with prescription drug use and we will never know how many lives he has saved.

Change happens! Our ability to accept it and use it as a stepping stone toward a more compelling future is the key. I look forward to your thoughts and feedback.

Power Focus 90…Take your coaching/consulting business to the next level! John Page Burton

Greetings,

Is your coaching/consulting business producing the results you desire? What types of clients are you attracting to your business? Are you attracting committed, accountable, paying clients or are you “giving away” your knowledge and expertise? Many of us have participated in “high dollar” certification programs only to be encouraged to pay more “high dollars” for additional certifications and training. Much like the “professional student” who uses continuing education as a way to avoid looking for a job, many coaches & consultants use “advanced certifications” as a distraction to avoid the task of building their business. Others are excited and committed to building their business but have never been presented with an effective road map for attracting clients and establishing a profitable business model. Countless others have determined their niche but are struggling to take their business to the next level. Wherever you fall on the scale, PF 90 will provide you with game changing strategies and tools to move your business forward.

For the past 3 years I have facilitated Power Focus 90. Power focus 90 is designed for individuals who are serious about building a ROCK SOLID, profitable, business foundation. Some of the people I have had the privilege to work with include; authors, traditional business owners, doctors, lawyers, athletes, entertainers, developers, teachers, project managers, network marketers and spiritual leaders. Over the last year I have seen a surge in the number of coaches and consultants who are interested in learning how to structure their practice. (several have hired me to work one on one with them) PF 90 is the perfect forum to teach you how to build a foundation for a successful coaching/consulting business. All of the strategies and techniques taught during the 12 week PF 90 course will be very applicable as you build your coaching/consulting practice. Check out the course outline by visiting http://www.johnpageburton.com
Click Power Focus 90 tab.

Details….

PF 90 is facilitated in a very intimate setting. I limit the class to 12 participants. (this is due in part to the 6 hours of private coaching each participant receives) Your investment in PF 90 is $497. Our next 12 week course begins on Wednesday, September 10th, 2014 at 6pm PST. *Once you are registered you will receive the call in #, and other pertinent course information. You will also be able to select a desired time for your weekly coaching call with me.

Investment options…

1. A $100 deposit by Friday, August 8th will hold your space. Balance of $397 is due by September 5th, 2014

2. SAVE $100! Pay in full by Friday, August 15th, 2014 and your course investment is only $397.

Payments can be made by visiting http://www.johnpageburton.com and clicking the Pay Pal link on the left hand side of the home page.

Questions?

Email John @ jpburtongroup@hotmail.com or feel free to call 520-873-8624. *Your call will be returned within 4 business hours.

I look forward to spending 12 weeks with you!

John