I am joined on today’s episode by serial entrepreneur and fellow business coach, David Taylor- Klaus, to talk about his newly released book, Mindset Mondays with DTK: 52 Ways to REWIRE Your Thinking and Transform Your Life. He shares the inspiration behind the book, which was a Facebook Live series based on randomly selecting and riffing on one of the inspiring quotes — by authors, artists, coaches, and other visionaries — that were printed on the back of his business cards. At first, he resisted if not dreaded doing the weekly live videos, but soon Mindset Mondays became so popular that it spawned a Facebook group for people to connect and share in between. I absolutely love this lesson in taking an uncomfortable risk that ends up being a game changer! At the end of every chapter, David included an interactive section called REWIRE, with provocative questions, thought experiments, and prompts designed to make readers’ learning stick. As an acronym queen myself, I appreciate that REWIRE stands for Reflect, Experiment, Write, Investigate, Revise, and Expand, a structured yet playful approach that stimulates cognitive flexibility and creates meaningful, lasting change. Why is cognitive flexibility important? Because we see the world as we are and based on our unique set of experiences…and we react accordingly. It takes intentionality and agility to respond in a more creative and open-minded way and, thus, produce the impact we desire as leaders. David and I played with applying these concepts to helping leaders and their teams shift their mindsets about the outcome of the U.S. Presidential election and other factors that are distracting people at work and at home these days. Don’t miss this highly engaging and practical discussion!
Episode 59: Mindset Mondays with David Taylor-Klaus
Shani Magosky: Is your team not performing well? Is morale low and turnover high? Are you falling further behind the competition? I’m here to help. I’m your host Shani and this is The Leadershift Show where business strategy and culture finally meet and we make the long-awaited shift from rhetoric to results. I promise I’m not your typical boring leadership consultant and I will help you get your shift together. Let’s do this.
Hello Leadershifters and welcome to another episode of The Leadershift Show with yours truly, Shani. Today, I am joined by David Taylor-Klaus. He’s dialing in from Hotlanta, Georgia today. David is a fellow coach and leadership guru. As I was getting to know him in advance of having him on the podcast today, we’re not quite identical twins but we have a lot of the same training and theories. You might think to yourself, “Why would you have him on your podcast then?”
Well, because I’m so interested in his take on the world and I’m so interested in learning how other people apply some of the same teaching that we were part of through Co-Active Training Institute and Co-Active Leadership and some of the programs that we have in common and that’s what makes the world go round, right? Is that everybody has their own ideas and their own applications. That is a nice segue to yet another real reason that I wanted to have David on the show which was to educate all of you about his exciting new book which is called Mindset Mondays.
What I just did was demonstrate a mindset shift that maybe you didn’t think about which is “Well, why would you have someone so similar to you on the show?” Well, you could see my mindset is, we might be similar enough but we’re still two different people and lots to learn from each other and for you the leadershift listener. David, welcome to the show.
David Taylor-Klaus: Thank you, Shani. I’m excited for this one. I can’t wait to see where we go.
Shani: I know, round and round and round we go, where we stop, nobody knows. First of all, tell us about Mindset Mondays starting with what gave you the idea for the book and the path to publishing since it maybe wasn’t exact– Nothing in life is a straight line, is it?
David: Ever. Here’s the secret, I didn’t start off to write a book. When I started this whole Mindset Mondays with DTK project, it was I wanted to get more fascicles speaking about any topic through the lens and doing it off the cuff. I hated the idea of doing video. I had all kinds of made-up crap in my head about didn’t want to do videos, it was going to be terrible. I saw so much other video out there that was terrible. I’ve been working with this same marketing person for over 20 years. Jodi knows me really well.
One of the things that I do on the back of all my business cards, they’re like 50 different backs to my cards and each one has a different quote on it. Jodi said– at this point, Facebook was really promoting their Facebook live and over prioritizing it. She said, “Look, pick up one of your cards with a quote on the back, flip on the camera and riff on what comes up for 10-15 minutes.” We said, “Yes, on a Monday morning it’s a great thing to play with mindset.” That’s how that started. Now, Jodi had this whole plan that she was talking about and it could turn into a book, and talks, and events. I just heard blah, blah, blah, because I didn’t want to do the videos.
Shani: Because you were stuck on, “Oh, shit, I don’t know how to do these video things. If I don’t do it perfect, what does that say about me?”
David: Exactly. All the saboteurs were screaming in my head so she kept talking and I’m like, “Yes, whatever.” I flip on the camera and I put it out to the world that I’m going to do this. I flip it on the first day, all the software crashes, it doesn’t work and I’m like, “Now, this is a terrible idea.” The next week, it’s Groundhog Day. I’m like, “Okay, fine. It’s got to go better than the last one.”
Anyway, I finally get it working. Then over the first several weeks, people start showing up. Then people start interacting and they start interacting and chatting back and forth and commenting in between. It starts a small Facebook group which has been growing. This coming Monday will be episode 141 of this weekly series.
David: I’ve enjoyed the hell out of it. I started learning a ton about mindset and a lot about taking learning and making it real in the world and how we shift our lens and how that shifts our experience. I started learning a lot from the community as they were going through this. I’m in part of a mastermind and everybody’s talking about the book they’re writing and I was like, “Damn it, now I have to pay attention.” It really surfaced the book.
I was in the middle of reading a colleague’s book and the chapters were like 50, 60 pages and it felt like I was slogging through it. It had nothing to do with the content, it’s just I felt like I wasn’t making progress. It was one of these– Then I heard Sam Horn who’s an author and she does a lot of work with folks about getting their book out. She said, “You want to make the chapter short so that people can get a sense of accomplishment as they roll through the book.” I’m like, “I get that.” I was feeling it.
Another CTI coach, Laurie Shiers, helped me get this book out of my bloody head and onto paper. What we did was these chapters are all short, easily digestible and immediately actionable learning. They’re based on the first 52 episodes in the broadcast series. It got really exciting as it started to come together. As we were talking about in the pre-show, I read something that got my stomach to turn over. The Pew Trust in 2015 did some research and said that 41% of people who buy a book, read past chapter one.
Shani: That is so demoralizing for a fellow author.
David: It was crushing. Now, I get it because two of the books that are right here, not to mention how many are over there, I’ve not read yet. I do have some shelfware and I know lots of other people do but I wasn’t going to pour life and heart and energy and money and time into this project for it to be shelfware. I was like, “Okay, just because there’s cool stuff in there, doesn’t mean people are going to do anything with it.”
Laurie and I created the rewire framework which is a mechanism. It’s a six-step process to take the learning from each chapter and actually take it out into their world and use it. Then I started to get really excited about this. Talk about it not being a straight line. Shani, this book was supposed to come out in February, right before– we were going to launch it on Groundhog Day so it would have been a month before lockdown started in the US. Nobody would ever have noticed.
Shani: What’s ironic about that it’s every day has felt like Groundhog’s Day since COVID.
David: Yes, it has.
Shani: That’s what we say, we say it’s Blursday.
David: Right. I’s said Blursday, the 32nd of awful. I have no idea what day it is anymore. Well, other than I do a broadcast on Monday morning so I always know when it’s Monday.
Shani: That’s right.
David: The publisher was not making the process easier. I separated from the publisher, retooled and did this thing self-published. It’s come out in September right when people are at that, “Oh, we’re seeing daylight.” No, we’re not, second wave. It’s been a really wild time. People are really using this book to shift the experience they’re having in the world right now.
Shani: Let’s talk about that. In fact, I was going to do it the opposite way. I was going to say, let’s use a business example, maybe even something from the book and then let’s go real-world COVID but since we’re on real-world COVID now, let’s do that first and then we can move on to some common business examples. How would you recommend to clients or readers to apply the concepts in Mindset Mondays to, oh, I don’t know, let’s just say the biggest election in the history of any of our generations if we’re living and breathing in the United States today?
David: This is a really good time to be reminded that we have control over the experience we have in the world. Nothing’s going to change what’s going to happen over the next week. There will be an election and there will be some sort of political upheaval over the several days it’s going to take to know who actually won or how it’s going to play out. There’s nothing that we can do to change that. However, what I love about this book, there’s a quote that Carl Jung gets credit for, but it’s really from the Talmud. It’s “We do not see the world as it is. We see the world as we are” The power in that is that when we change our lens, the lens through which we see the world, we change the way we experience it.
We are completely at choice and in control of how we experience these next several days or weeks. Regardless of who wins between election night and inauguration day, there’s going to be some crazy shit going on.
David: How do you want to be in relation to that? Where are you being choiceful about how you frame it? So much of the conversation up until now has been “I hate the other guy.” It doesn’t matter which guy you like, it’s “I hate the other guy.” Even when there were 300 Democrats running for the nomination it was “I hate the other ones. I hate all, but this one.”
What you put your attention on expands. How do you want to frame the conversation? I don’t hear a lot of folk talking about what it is they want to see created, how they want things to be. They talk about how they don’t want it and what they don’t like and that energy is crazy.
Shani: Exactly and what country they’re going to run off to if the wrong person gets elected, “wrong person”.
David: As if any country were taking our passports right now.
David: This is about what is it you want to see created? I started my practice in ‘08 and ‘09 right in the middle of the fiscal readjustment we had. The companies, the leaders that freaked out and went into trench mode, very few of those companies made it. The ones who looked at– I’m not saying they didn’t go into trench mode, but the ones who from that position looked at how do we reinvent, re-engineer, re-imagine ourselves out of this? They’re the ones whose mindset allowed them to see things differently, experience it differently and create more shift. Those are the leaders who understood the shift comes from within.
We don’t have to go back to 1918 to figure out how to deal with this craziness. I mean that’s helpful. We can go back 12 years and look at who are the companies that created shift instead of waiting for the economy to shift? That’s our job right now.
Shani: Absolutely. When people ask me why I named my business The Leadershift Project, it’s pretty much for exactly that reason because we live in a world that is anything but static and a leader who isn’t constantly shifting whether it’s a strategy or a mindset, then they’re going to get lost. Shift feels a lot more intentional than change which feels chaotic and like out of your control. We can be choiceful about how we shift in response to change.
David: We have a choice. We can react to the changing world around us or we can respond.
Shani: That’s right.
David: Reacting is not conscious, it’s not rational, it’s not intentional or choiceful. It’s effectively animalistic response. I mean it’s an animalistic action.
Shani: Right because it’s coming from our amygdala which is the reptile brain.
David: The reptile brain doesn’t have a lot of nuance.
Shani: That’s right. [chuckles]
David: I had a friend who from the 12-step program learned that we’re not responsible for our first thought, but we are responsible for our second. Even when we react initially, we are at choice on how we respond after that. That’s where mindset comes in. It’s being intentional and choiceful about how we choose to respond. Boy are we going to need that in the coming weeks.
Shani: Absolutely. Let’s take it even further. On a personal level, leadershifters, you may or may not be disappointed if not on November 2nd on the 3rd, 4th, 5th, whatever the day all the mail and ballets finally get counted and the various States whose deadlines have been extended, it’s all noise because eventually, we will have an answer as to who’s going to be in the White House come inauguration for another four years.
Your first thought that you’re not responsible for necessarily is the “Oh shit” moment and all of the reactive things that we think and feel when we’re disappointed or we feel threatened or pissed off or whatever, but what is the second thought you want to have about that on a personal level?
Get your shit together on that because if you don’t, what’s the impact you’re going to have on your teams when you show up on the next Zoom call because most of us aren’t going into any physical office right now because undoubtedly, and I’ve actually been having this conversation and, David, maybe you have been too with leaders in organizations who are anticipating chaos this week with people, their employees being like apoplectic, potentially and how they’re going to deal with that.
Leaders, we absolutely need to get more mindful and intentional about our own reaction as well as how we want to show up and influence the folks in our sphere of everyday work to make sure that we’re not getting stuck. It’s like, okay, let’s process what happened and now, let’s choose how we’re going to respond to what happened.
David: Also making space for it. The last election was– The last campaign season and election season was toxic. I’m not saying that this one isn’t. During the last one, many leaders said, we don’t talk about politics here. We don’t have that luxury, that privilege anymore. The energy from the campaign and the election results and whatever happens in between, is already leaking into the workspace, especially now that we’re working from home and it’s staining conversations.
If we pretend it’s not there and we pretend over the next several days that people aren’t distracted, upset, celebrating, whoever they are, if we don’t attend to that and create space for that, then we’re treating our people as less than the human beings they are. People need room to be with what happens, celebration or mourning, irritation or excitement. If we don’t give space for it, it will fester until it reaches the surface.
Shani: Yes. Like giving space to individuals to process depending on which camp they’re in and also setting a tone of inclusion and that like just because you don’t agree with the other camp, doesn’t mean we can’t still work together effectively. Let’s look at it as we would any other difference where the energy in the collective has been for more diversity, more inclusion, more equity, not making people wrong, leaving room for diverse opinions, even on politics, folks.
David: We used to be able to disagree without being disagreeable.
Shani: That’s right.
David: Now is the time to bring that mindset back, how do we be civil with each other, especially when we don’t agree? In order to have the conversations that we need to be having around diversity, around equity, around inclusion, around belongingness, we can’t do that from a mindset of, “I’m right, you’re wrong, only when you agree with me, will you be okay, until then, you’re just an idiot.” That kind of approach doesn’t work.
The cool things is one of the things we got to learn through the leadership program was that idea of alignment versus agreement. That is a mindset shift that’s core when we start with agreement. Have you shared this with the Leadershifters yet?
Shani: I teach this concept. I’m not sure I’ve actually talked about it on a podcast yet. Go for it.
David: Awesomesauce. No, because I think this is a cool one for leaders because so often, leaders are looking to try to get everybody to agree. When you’re trying to get everybody to agree, the tone of the conversation tends to lean towards convincing. It’s really coming from that place of, once you agree with me, you’ll be right too. Until then, you’re dumb.
It’s terrible. The example I used to use was, Pelosi and Boehner when they were leading, everything was about convincing, everything was seeking agreement, nothing got done. Whether you like Ron Reagan and Tip O’Neill, way back, they didn’t like each other. They didn’t agree on a lot, but they started with alignment. They aligned around what was important. They were aligned about what they thought was important for the country, what they wanted for.
They were able to come to an understanding. They could understand the differences in their approaches, their background and the desired outcomes and they could have the conversation there. Then, they were able to get to agreement on what was to be done, but by starting with alignment, they could get to agreement. When you start with agreement, there is no understanding, there is no alignment, there’s no movement, there’s no progress. We have the same shitty situation we have right now.
Shani: Yes. For sure because you’re right, agreement has the energy of there’s a right and there’s a wrong, versus alignment has we’re going in the same general direction. That feels much better than like this push and pull of negotiating and trying to force agreement. What came up for me as I was hearing you explain the topic, because I just love– It’s a nuance and people will be like “Aren’t they synonyms.” Not really because I think it’s easy to illustrate with a metaphor or an analogy.
I can never remember which one’s which, but I’m a rock climber and a mountaineer. Some of these big peaks like Fourteeners in Colorado, mountains that are over 14,000 feet tall are big hairy audacious goals for hiking. If I’m with a group of people who all want to hike this mountain and I’m trying to get everyone to agree to start at the same time, end at the same time, take the exact same path with the exact same backpack and the exact same amount of water and the exact same snacks, because my snacks are right and your snacks are wrong, we’re never going to hike this mountain and achieve this goal.
If we just say, “Listen we’re all aligning that our goal is to top out this Fourteener.” We’re all responsible adults to bring the approach that works for us to move towards goal, and that’s oversimplifying a little bit. I think it helps people realize sometimes the stupidity or the insignificance of the things that they’re trying to agree on anyway like snacks.
David: Yet the arguments can become pretty fierce.
David: Right, because it takes the judging and the voting out of it. Not political voting. It takes that right wrong judgment out of it and it becomes what is it that’s important, how are each of us going to get there in a way that works? That’s a very different mindset particularly when we’re back to how are these folk going to work together in the coming days, weeks and months as all of this hullabaloo sifts out? If we go from the mindset of whether it’s you didn’t vote or you did vote, and then if you did vote how you voted, and it gets into judging and voting, forget agreement. People are just haranguing each other. That’s not going to help working together, but what is it that we’re aligned around?
That’s the goal of the leader anyway. One of the first responsibilities of the leader is to set and communicate the vision across the entire organization. That’s not the– Martin Luther King speech was not the I have a plan speech. The leader’s job is to get people aligned around what the goal is. There are people serving that organization below the leader that are creating the plans so that her goal is reached, so that vision is manifested. That image has to be created. That vision has to be created and communicated and that’s around that feeds into the alignment, not agreement.
Shani: Yes. I love it, and so is there a chapter in the book that we can take as example number two in terms of contextually using a mindset shift to get from A to B.
David: Many, many, many.
Shani: Thank you for asking. [laughs]
David: Thank you. There’s one that I love. It’s chapter is called Rise Up. It’s based off the quote– each of the chapters has a quote that was used for the broadcast and it’s all riffed off of. This one is Suzanne Wien. It’s, “Your life is an occasion, rise to it”. One of the concepts that comes up from that is done beats perfect. That’s a huge shift for organizations. I’ll give you a great example. In my last company, we did a lot of overthinking and over perfecting and spent a ludicrous amount of money building a content management platform.
It was a web development company, internet strategy. We faffed about trying to get it just perfect and really mistimed the market. Instead of getting it done to a point we could put it in front of the market and let the market respond and let us shift accordingly, we tried to make it perfect before we released it. Several major competitors hit before we did. It was a viable product and it worked and it gave us great runway for several years, but it was a tenth of the impact it could have had, because we were so effing focused on perfect, we didn’t get it done.
Shani: It’s a minimum viable product to write the term monology in the text space not a minimally or a maximally perfect product to put out here to test.
David: Yes. Because you can do that– you can massage it to try to make it perfect for so long that it never gets out there.
Shani: Exactly, and then the other thing is perfect for whom? Nothing can be perfect for a 100% of the people. [laughs]
David: that’s the piece. I talked about this book. I tried to focus on what it was that I wanted for the reader. There are folks– so this also goes to my practice as well. The idea that if all your goals are around how do I get better at doing what I do? There’s a functional limit to your personal and professional success because it’s all focused on the doing aspect of it. We all reach a point– let’s just say you can bludgeon your way through corporate only so far constantly getting better at doing what you do, there’s a level of professional success that requires the next leap, is you getting better at being who you be, who you are at your core.
What excites me about the book is really tailoring it for people who begin to understand that my next leap is coming from getting better at being me. The doing aspect is a natural cascade of getting better at being who you are, being who you be, you do get better at doing what you do because it’s more natural expression of who you are authentically. That’s who this book is really for. The folks who understand that by getting better at being who I am, clearing away the clutter of what’s not true in me is where my growth is coming from.
Shani: Yes. I love that as well as I don’t even know if you’ve noticed your own play on words that you were tailoring the experience too.
David: [laughs] Yes. I totally missed that. [laughter]
Shani: If you joined late, folks, we are talking with David Taylor-Klaus. The first part of his hyphen last name, Taylor, and that’s what I love about homonyms.
David: I love it.
Shani: I pick up on them all the time and I love plays on words.
David: When my wife and I got married, I grew up as a Klaus, and she grew up as a Taylor. Lumping them together, it’s amazing. I’m sure that she’s run across that before. I totally missed that until now. Thank you.
Shani: Good stuff. I also wanted to chat with you about the philosophy that you have in terms of how you work or how you even select clients to work with. Because I think that it’s a powerful– it’s also a mindset, it’s also something that I think leadershifters can think about in their own worlds. You don’t have to be a coach for the cascade effect to be relevant. If you could explain to us what is the cascade effect? How do you apply it, and then let’s banter about how others might apply it.
David: Sweet. I have no illusions about the impact footprint that I can have and I realize that there are only so many hours in the day and only so many months or years that I’ll be doing this and so much time that I have here on this planet. It doesn’t matter how driven I am by what I want to get done, I have to look for ways to make that impact footprint bigger if I want to get done what I’m here to do.
One of them is I love the one-to-one coaching and I love coaching the teams that those leaders lead. There’s only so much I can do. I’m super selective about working with people who where the impact that I have on them or the impact they create through the coaching, they’re going to bring to the folks that they lead, an organization they lead, a country they lead, it doesn’t matter that I’m always choosing to work with folk who have a cascade impact so that my impact can cascade.
When I design whether it’s this book, whether it’s a presentation, whether it’s a workshop, it’s always designed not just to be compelling for the people that are in the room in the space or holding the book, but so that they can take what they learn and bring it out to their world and pass that along.
David: That cascade is a huge value of mine.
Shani: I love that and the other thing it says to me is abundance. The things that you and your clients talk about in a coaching conversation, there’s no like, “Oh, no you can’t use that on your people, that’s mine, that’s our conversation.” It’s like, “No, please take this question that you found so powerful and caused you so much reflection and to reach an aha moment and please copy it and use it with your people.” Whatever it is that they’re paying forward in.
David: Absolutely and I work with leaders, it’s opening up the questions about– it’s not the– I get that the word legacy is thrown about all the time but I don’t think people really consider what their legacy is. We live in a country where the first nations had a concept of seventh generation consideration where you are considering the impact of every action and every decision on the seventh generation ahead of you or the seventh generation into the future. The average tenure of a CEO in the US right now is between three and five years.
We have developed this myopic quarter over quarter performance basis view and it’s terrible and it’s not about the environment. This is about leadership writ large that we’re not considering our impact cascade. We barely consider our impact wake and that’s an important thing, that’s a huge shift that’s available for leaders, is to begin to be clear about and work to get clear about what the shift is you’re here to create.
As a human on this planet in this time, what’s the shift you’re here to create. Every company, every entrepreneur, every individual has a shift they’re here to create and the reason that it’s critical for leaders to understand the shift they’re here to create– there are several, here’s the most important one, that especially with what’s coming up over the next several days, weeks, months, when you know what the shift is you’re here to create, then it’s easier to be responsive to upheaval that happens. If we play it out in the language of say Simon Sinek start with why. When your why is big enough and clear enough, you can overcome any how that comes up.
We’re about to have some serious shift required energetically, emotionally in terms of business, in terms of the economy, in terms of how we interact and interrelate with people on our team. When you’re clear on what the shift is you’re here to create, you can better lead those that you lead. You can better serve those that you lead and you can better architect the shift that needs to be done on a day to day basis.
Shani: Right and even the day to day decisions are made in alignment –to go back to one of our previous conversations– with the longer term. It may not be seven generations but it’s certainly going to be more than just the next Wall Street earnings report.
Shani: Which believe me it’s one of the many reasons I left Wall Street because that’s the industry I called home for the first half of my career and–
David: I shouldn’t say, “trigger warning” before I went there
Shani: It’s not a good way to run the business with quarterly hoops to jump through in terms of– and some of the CEO’s who haven’t bought into that mindset like the former CEO of Costco comes to mind. I remember.
David: Absolutely great [crosstalk]
Shani: He used to piss off wall street analysts to no end. If he negotiated savings with a supplier of one of their products, he would pass that savings along to the customer, not to the shareholder and investors were pissed off and he’s like, “No, in the long run, I want to create raving loyal, fans, shoppers who are going to shop here for the rest of their lives.”
David: He did.
Shani: He did and they’ve been successful.
David: They don’t spend money on advertising, they put all that money into caring for their employees and it makes a huge difference, right? There’s a mindset there and he’s so clear that when you take care of your team, your team takes care of the customers. He held that from the beginning till his last day. He was aware of the cascade effect, whether it was consciously or not, that’s a brilliant example of it. I think when we get too focused on the short-term harpies on the sidelines screaming about what they want, we lose track of the bigger goal and that’s the wrong kind of shift.
Shani: I don’t know if this quote has been in any of your Mindset Monday recordings or is in the book but the one that I may not get it exactly right but it’s, if you try to please everyone, you’ll please no one and so figuring out who are you trying to please and over what time period are you trying to please them? What’s the key measure for success because you’re not going to nail all of them.
David: Well and that’s chapter 24. It talks about the point of view and it’s having a point of view is critical because if you don’t and yours morphs with every influence that comes up, we see companies that you try to chart their direction and they move on a different direction with every CEO, they move on a different different direction with every filing, every earnings report and it’s exhausting. I’m not saying it’s easy when you hold a vision and nothing will change, but not knowing your point of view leaves you at the whim of the economic winds.
Shani: Having a conviction about what you as a leader are here to accomplish and what the mission and vision of the organization are over the long term, not just for each product or every service or in this quarterly period.
The last thing I want to ask you about David, is to get a little more specific about your rewire framework as part of the book. You’ve got the mindset shifts and then as I understand it, at the end of every chapter, it’s like okay well our mindsets have been wired first for decades many of us and so how do you unwire that or rewire that? You’ve got some steps to help people really retrain.
David: Rewire is actually an acronym because I’m a a word nerd. It’s an acronym for reflect, experiment, write, investigate, revise and expand. The concept is, if we want to embed the learning, there are certain tools that we use to do that, excuse me. The first one is, to bloody sit still. Each chapter, the first step, the first prompt is reflect and we have different prompts that will help you go through giving yourself the time and the space to breathe and reflect on the experience of reading that chapter, and being with that mindset, right?
Then to experiment with it, to play with a new idea or a new concept and notice what’s resonating, what’s dissonant, where are you indifferent, where are you leaning in, where are you freaking out and then try to apply that in your world. Well the next step is, Brene Brown says, it’s different when you’re writing by hand. I think the way she said is, the experience goes from head to heart to hand to paper and writing is different than typing.
I was raised by a physician. My handwriting’s atrocious. I sometimes have trouble reading my own handwriting and there’s something different when I capture it by hand as I process it and let it out. The writing piece is, ditch the computer, I’ve put a journaling page at the end of each chapter-
David: -so that people will actually be more likely to use it. I can’t give you a pen get your own, but there’s a space for you to actually use it in the book, to capture everything. We use prompt– the right prompt is in there with some specific ways for them to play with each chapter. Then investigate, really go deep, look at what’s come up and what you’ve written and really go deeper and explore what worked and what didn’t. A sober assessment without the judgment and look at what you want to do more of and less of and differently in the future.
Then revise your experiment and take it back out into the world. Again, play with it and see where the differences are, see what works, see what didn’t. Then expanding it is where it gets really real because it’s now expanding past this area that you’re playing with it and experiment with it in other areas of your life. Take that learning that you applied here and take it into other arenas of your life.
When I was in school, for instance in math, you used to do three chapters before you had a test, but then the test was on chapter one. Then you do another chapter and the test then was on two because you were then using what you learned as you did the next chapters so that you were applying it before you were tested on it. It wasn’t about rote memory. It wasn’t that memorizing crap. It was about using it and applying it, so the questions were tied to your learning of it through application. This is the same way. It’s letting you do something with it so that it sticks or is more likely to stick. [chuckles]
Shani: For sure, and of course people have to have the right mindset to go through those things because if they’re just going through the rewire checklist as a to-do list item rather than truly as a learner, reflector, et cetera, then, garbage in garbage out, right?
David: Yes. I’ve been the box checker before. I’m doing it because it’s performative and this is one where you’ll actually sit still and play with it. You maybe frustrated and it’s awesome.
Shani: It strikes me as a great way to embed any kind of learning, not just learning about mindset shift. It could be learning new skills also, like what you said, you can do all of these steps for anything that’s truly new and different and not completely final. A process or a new product, et cetera, because that’s daily anymore. Now I feel like the term VUCA is overused.
David: We underestimated what VUCA looked like.
Shani: For sure. It’s almost like VUCA isn’t VUCA anymore. It’s the normal. [laughs]
David: Yes, we’re in the new abnormal.
Shani: There’s never going to be a how-to book or a 101 books about leadership in this day and age and so it is more about getting comfortable being uncomfortable and experimenting in little steps. This is almost taking us back to a recap because some of the notes I took earlier on were around things being short and easily digestible and taking big projects and breaking them down into smaller steps and this is yet another contextual way to do that.
David: Back to something else we talked about pre-show. Look, everybody in our house is ADHD, so we’ve learned a lot about systems and structures that help keep you accountable to something to which you want to be held accountable. By the way, that’s the key. You have to have motivation attached to it because it doesn’t matter what system or structure you use, if you’re not motivated or can’t find a motivation to attach to it, good luck. That’s a lot of the work of parenting kids with ADHD is helping them learn to find the motivation.
Guess what? If you’re choosing to spend time doing these exercises and doing these prompts and going through this book, clearly there’s some motivation to create a shift. Let’s assume that’s there, I created the Mindset Mondays Accelerator so that it’s an online system that helps keep you prompted and fueled as you go through this. It gives you links to the original videos and it gives you some additional content, and a playground in a private Facebook group to communicate with the other folks that are going through it along with you. The Mindset Mondays Accelerator is an online experience that helps you keep going with the book.
Shani: I love it.
David: Because the world gets busy. I need reminders.
Shani: We get busy and it’s just too comfortable to slip back into old habits so we do need the accelerators and the reminders and the accountability partners and all the things.
David: It’s because key movement is very powerful. We used to joke about it. We would send our team out for this brilliant three-day off-site and everybody was excited and everything was going to be totally different and everybody was pumped. Then Monday morning everybody goes back into the office, the emails start, the phone starts, you forget everything. You go back to the day-to-day because that’s what was familiar.
David: Give yourself the structures so that you can create the conditions for success. All right, wrap away.
Shani: I love it. I was just going to say, so for those of you who are feeling really compelled by the book and mindset shifts and how you can make anything new stick with the rewire framework and so forth, how can they reach you, David?
David: The easiest way is Mindset Mondays with DTK. That URL, it’ll give you information about the book. You can download the rewire framework. There are links in the top to find out more about me and what I do, and once you’ve got the book, there are also links in there to the Mindset Mondays Accelerator, so try to keep it super simple.
Shani: Excellent. I love it. Leadershifters, you know what a fan I am of shifting mindsets so Mindset Mondays sounds like a great tool for you to explore and check out and experiment with as part of your personal journeys to shifting whatever it is in your life that you’re looking to shift. Whether it’s your team, whether it’s in your family or even in your own life purpose. Of course, work with many of you who are looking to reinvent themselves and even completely shift, makeover what you’re doing in the world.
This time has caused a lot of contemplation about what the hell am I doing when we actually have that opportunity to pause. I really thank you for joining us on the show today, David. I think the conversation we had is going to be useful to a lot of listeners and watchers so thank you so much.
David: Beautiful. So enjoyed it. Thanks for letting me play with you.
Shani: My pleasure. Leadershifters, thanks again for joining us. Until next time.