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Life with Great Friends. You, yes you can make Great Friends. The World yearns for someone to be brave and ask someone for a journey to make Great Friends. Learn how to make friends in a busy world
29 minutes | Jan 8, 2014
#27: Learn the Secret Method to Befriend like the Pros: Michael Hyatt, Cliff Ravenscraft, Chris Brogan, Dan Miller and Jared Easley [podcast]
There you are at another conference with that awful feeling that you are alone and everyone else is somehow connected or connecting. Wouldn't it be cool to have a magic wand that would get you instantly connected and known with everyone. I haven't found a magic wand. Instead, I have found that the same skills that connect you in private are the same skills for connecting in public gatherings. It has nothing to do with fame, fortune or special gifting. Anyone can learn and do them (which means yes, you can learn them), because they are universal to all humans. Five people in their own way expressed the skills at a recent conference we attended. (In the audio recording/podcast, we share the full stories of interacting with these 5 people and more application.) 1. Michael Hyatt: Be 100% Present with the Person. Both time that I interacted with Michael, he had a demand upon his time, yet he was 100% present with me. In fact, one time he turned off his phone to talk to me. Classy. 2. Cliff Ravenscraft: Be Authentic and Deeply Care. During a group gathering, Cliff made it a point to connect with us despite the fact that he had many people asking for his attention. He showed that he cared equally for everyone present. 3. Chris Brogan: Be Available. Chris spent many hours in the main hall at the main walkway to connect with whomever. He said he ventured no more than 20 feet the whole time. When we visited with him, he gave us a ton of his time despite others waiting to chat. When the conference was over, he came over to our table and chatted more, instead of going to his hotel room. 4. Dan Miller: Be Honest and Quality of Quantity. During a lunch gathering, we asked Dan Miller about a name for our upcoming parenting podcast. He was graciously honest that it stunk. He also shared that he preferred small private gatherings to the masses. Over the conference, I saw him often at a small table deep in conversation with one or two people. 5. Jared Easley: You can Give what Everyone Wants. One year ago, Jared was unknown. How did he go from unknown to being one of the better known? He gave what
26 minutes | Dec 20, 2013
#25: The #1 Key to Turn a Boring Christmas Party into a Friend Making Machine [podcast]
This past Sunday, we hosted one of our top 5 parties ever. (No this wasn’t our 5th party, more like our 50th plus.) The results: There were 26 people that laughed a ton and left closer. No there wasn’t large quantity alcohol involved with people embarrassing themselves. The 16 kids adopted nicknames. They are plotting the next time I learned that one of the couples had been married before. All sorts of fun and deep things came out, because of one thing. How did this happen: We had a hard agenda with structured activities. (Think the opposite of a random, boring Open House.) We had planned activities that promoted fun and getting to know one another. We had planned activities that they did as teams to win the points and learn more about others. We had planned activities that had them doing active games. We had planned activities that gave a glimpse into who they are. (Do you notice a pattern? Planned activities.) Now if you are like me, you might be saying something like, "Are Planned activities really the key to make friends?" The answer is yes. If you want to get to know people better, you must create the opportunity in a safe place for them to tell their story. The more intentional you are, the quicker you will connect. What do you need to make this happen? 1. Leader: Someone to push through the normal safe boring plan. 2. Agenda: A plan with a schedule for activities 3. Activities: Games to get people having fun and getting to know one another. No games that would even hint of embarrassing others. 4. Home: Any home will do. We had people in our kids bedroom, because our house is small. 5. People: You need at least 8 people. 15 or more is better. No Work people. 6. Laugher: Give people permission to laugh and laugh often. 7. Dinner: Do the 2 questions around your table. Make the meal simple. See Episodes 20 for how to do this. The hardest part are Numbers 1 & 3: Leaders and Activities. Leader: As the leader, you need to decide you can do this and that people will respond. The vast majority of visitors will be very grateful for your effort. Those that don't aren't the type of people you want to be around anyways. Activities: The keys to a good activity are: Fun, Winners, Short, Safe, Active, and at the same level of relationship as the group. My recommendation is 15 minutes maximum per activity. Create a point system for each round. T
34 minutes | Dec 5, 2013
#21: Michael Hyatt’s Secrets to Making Great Friends. (hint: You can do exactly what he did.) [podcast]
Okay. Our respect for Michael Hyatt shot through the roof with this interview! Michael Hyatt, former CEO for Thomas Nelson Publishing, which is the 7th largest publisher in America, now has one of the largest audiences on the web through his blog and podcast. Why do I respect Michael so highly? For one thing, he is very intentional about everything he does in life--including friendships! Even more than that, he expressed his genuine care for others. In this interview, he shares his authentic journey in regards to friendship. It was during a coaching session years ago that he was surprised to be challenged regarding his friendships, alongside other areas of his life. Since that time, he has experienced the joy of intentional friendships. You'll learn what his Supper Club is and how they function. He answers the question, "What is stopping us from making Great Friends?" You'll learn the value of friends, and gain a road map for this journey. Here are some of the interview highlights: Learn how a business failure grew him closer to his friends, not farther. Learn when and why Michael got intentional about making Great Friends. Hear what Michael thinks most of us have backwards in regard to friendship. Hear his golden key to unlocking Great Friends. It is the same as Seth Godin's. It is the same thing we advocate for. Learn why Michael's Supper Club is a safe place to share hurts, fears, and victories without concern of gossip or being shamed. Learn a necessary action step to make time for friends. He answers these questions: Can your great friends be from your workplace? How did he find his great friends? What is his Supper Club like? How did it help him? What is the key mindset needed to make Great Friends? We loved his advice on making friends: Sit down a write out the ideal friend, and then go BE that friend! I recommend you listen to Michael's podcast and join his Platform University. Here is a link to his Podcast. Here is the link to Platform University. Here is the link to the group that helped
29 minutes | Nov 20, 2013
#18: Try this Method to Resolve Conflict Well–It’s Working for Millions, part 2 [podcast & video]
Have you ever had that experience where you are stuck in a conflict? You think you know how you got there, yet you don’t know how to get out, and you surely don’t know how to quench the fire that is raging! I, Doug, am a master at getting myself stuck. Yet, even I have learned the skills to get unstuck and resolve the conflict in a healthy way. You can too. This is the second part of the proven conflict resolution method. (You can listen to/read Episode #17 for part one.) How does this apply to Great Friends? If you are human and your friend is human, you will have conflict at some point. How you resolve that conflict will decide if the friendship deepens or weakens. Having the skills to resolve the conflict will also give you the confidence to engage more deeply with others. When you find yourself in the middle of a conflict or in need of resolving a sticky situation, here are 8 questions to ask yourself: Here is a link to a video about these questions. VIDEO 1. What is the only thing I can control? You are in control of only one thing—You. We often want to make this about the other person. We dwell on the other person's need to acknowledge how wrong they are in this situation. Yet, you can only effect you, not them. So, focus on what you are going to do to resolve this. 2. Am I for them or for myself? This question often haunts me. It is amazing how quickly, I switch from wanting to do what is best for them to what I want. Notice within yourself if you are giving towards them or working to manipulate things to your desires. 3. Do I see how I negatively contributed? If you are willing to admit that you contributed in any minor way to the problem, then you are well on your way to resolving the conflict. It can be very hard to do this, yet very powerful. Remember you are not owning up to the whole problem, you are acknowledging your contribution. I have seen large conflicts resolve with a simple, “I am wrong for _____________.” 4. Why would a rational, caring person do _____________? Ask yourself this question and notice which words you don’t believe-"rational" or "caring" about the other person. We love to see them as an ugly uncaring person, when in actuality there is something that caused them fear or to fight the situation. It may just be a plain old misunderstanding! Find it, and you'll find resolution to the conflict. 5. What do I REALLY
27 minutes | Nov 13, 2013
#017: Try this Method to Resolve Conflict Well–It’s Working for Millions [podcast & video]
Have you ever felt stuck in a friendship, because you had an unpleasant conflict and didn’t know what to do about it? Here is the method that has, and is, helping millions learn how to have those difficult conversations. One of the key ingredients ...
47 minutes | Nov 6, 2013
#015: How to Stop Running Ragged and Start Making Friends. Interview with Joel Boggess [podcast]
Have you ever had this experience when you met someone? You say, “Hello, John, how are you?” John replies, “Busy. Crazy busy. You know with all the stuff of life. But it sure beats the option of being bored.” You reply, “Yeah. Life is busy. I am super busy and tonight we have 3 activities to juggle. Good chatting.” How often do we check email? Do you ever check your email on your phone right before you go to sleep? Don’t we expect people to answer our email in less than 4 hours? How do we get off the busyness merry go round?
31 minutes | Oct 30, 2013
#013: Learn How to Find Friends Right Where You Live, Work & Play [podcast]
Once there was a man who walked down to the corner store every morning to get his newspaper. He found the people on the walk to be grumpy and rude. The kids at the bus stop never said "hi." The lady, who walked her dog at the same time, never even looked his way. The clerk at the corner store never asked how he was doing. One day this man’s wife got tired of him complaining about everyone else and told him to wave and say "hi!" to each and every person he met on his walk. By the second week, the man was taking 4 times as long on his walks. The kids would give him a high-five and joke with him, the dog-walker asked how the doctor appointment went, and the clerk wanted to debate the latest NFL scores with him. What changed? Did the people get nicer? No, the man decided to reach out first. Did he go find new friends? No, he simply interacted with those already around him. Did he walk a new route? No, same place. This story illustrates the value of intentional interaction right where we are today, not some false daydream for some future day. Today, you have the opportunity to create friendships with those you live near, work with, and play around. Here are some concrete ways find friends where you live, work & play: 1. Make a list of people you know today that MIGHT be a friend. Use this one page exercise to see what potential friends you already know. The key is to list as many names as come to mind. Do it in pencil so you can erase. 2. Now add to that list the people you would like to be friends with. These might be people you barely even know. 3. What do you enjoy or value? Use the "What I Care About Page" to define what you care about. This will help shape what kind of friends you are likely to enjoy. 4. Ask yourself, “Why do I want to be friends with this person?” and “What is motivating me to want to be their friend?” If your motives line up with what you wrote about values, enjoyment and favorite activities--great! If not, beware of the extra work you will have to expend to sustain a friendship long-term. 5. Location, location and location. Where you GO and where you LIVE play a huge part in finding friends. Seeing people on a regular basis is very important. Gatherings like knitting clubs, church, regular golf outings, MOPS or walking in your neighborhood are important to maintaining friendshi
33 minutes | Oct 24, 2013
#012: 10 Ways to Sabotage Your Friendship Search [podcast]
Gary was asking me about friendship and finally got to his real question, “I hate meeting strangers. I am an introvert. What would you say to someone like me who isn’t going to reach out to others?” My answer was, “There is not magic pill that will solve the need for you to reach out first. Even extroverts struggle at times to make new friends.” Here is the good news for you. Introvert or extrovert, we all have the same friend-finding advantage. Here it is. Look around you. There are plenty of people right now that you are in contact with that want your friendship. There are many practical tips that will help you find friends, yet my experience is that the real issues are internal. You could have the best tips on making friends, yet what you say internally will decide if it moves forward or not. Below, we list common sabotages to friendships before they even have a chance, and a healthy replacement. Here is the list of ways we Sabotage our friendship before they have a chance to start. The Counter Attack to that Sabotage is provided, so you can kill the wrong and replace it with the right way. 1. Sabotage: I don’t want to seem pushy by reaching out first. Counter Attack: You reach out first. It is unlikely that someone will reach out to you--we are all waiting. 2. Sabotage: Some day in the future, when work, kids, debt, and the remodel is finished, then just like in college, my friends will magically appear. Counter Attack: Where you are today is the best place to find friends. You might need them MORE today when things are tough and busy. 3. Sabotage: No one is interested in me Counter Attack: They are interested in you. It just looks like they aren’t interested because they are thinking the same thing, or are afraid to start a friendship. 4. Sabotage: Everyone it too busy Counter Attack: Let others decide if they are too busy. Quality people will adjust and make time for others. Those are the type of friends you want. 5. Sabotage: Their husband is odd and that bothers me. Counter Attack: Get to know him a bit more. Some of my closest friends started out as someone I thought strange and bothered me. 6. Sabotage: I am not good enough at ______. Counter Attack: You can love and care, which is what they really care about. Our son’s friend came over unexpectedly. As he saw the mess in the house, he said. “I am glad to see your house is mess like ours. We alw
25 minutes | Oct 10, 2013
#010: The Key Skill to Listening That No One Told Us, Here it Is (Part 2) [Podcast]
You are either gaining or losing in your friendships based on how well you listen. Listening is like a bonus check you deposit in the bank. Lack of listening is withdrawing from the account, if you go negative, they close the account. In this podcast, we talk about how you can determine your beliefs about the outcomes from listening.
30 minutes | Oct 3, 2013
#009: The Key Skill to Listening That No One Told Us, Here it Is [Podcast]
What does Sam Palmisano, former CEO of IBM, Tom Peters, author of In Search of Excellence, your mother, your wife, your kids and your friends all want from you? One thing that takes relationships to a new level. One skill that can turn you from unwanted to wanted. Most of the advice on this one skill is not helpful, because it overlooks the one thing that will define your ability to be successful. It will stunt your ability to grow relationally.
30 minutes | Sep 26, 2013
#008: Here is the Method That Finally Freed Me from Being an Offensive Advice Giver [Podcast]
I was a master at giving Offensive Advice. I had the ability to get them mad and walk away. Isn’t it true that the wounds of a friend are better than the kisses of an enemy? Aren’t we being helpful by pointing out the other person’s mistakes, so they won’t make them again? What could be more loving than giving them advice for them to grow? Yeah. I have felt the “love” of unsolicited advice and learned it is not loving. Below is what cured my Offensive Advice problem.
22 minutes | Sep 19, 2013
#007: What Everyone Needs to Know About Guilt in the BFF Business [Podcast]
She held half of the BFF heart necklace in her hand. The other half belong to Julie. Julie hadn’t called in over 7 years and the last time she did she had 5 minutes to chat. She wants to rid her life of the BFF necklace, but the guilt is too great. What if Julie calls? What if Julie stops by some day and reminisces about the good old days and the day she gave the BFF necklace? Then her thoughts turned to guilt. She hadn’t called Julie. She hadn’t sent a birthday card in years. More guilt.
41 minutes | Sep 12, 2013
#006: You Have a Voice that Needs to Be Heard, Plus Two Key Steps to Make Great Friends from an Interview with Joel Boggess [Podcast]
You have a voice. It is voice the world needs to hear. No, it is another American Idol voice. It what makes you unique and is a blessing to others. We will explore how to find your voice in this podcast. On today’s Podcast, we interview Joel Boggess, author of Finding Your Voice. In his book, Joel is real and vulnerable, and his advice is applicable to making Great Friends. During our interview, he brings up two key elements to creating Great Friends: Believe you have something to offer others. Be Vulnerable. Share your past.
33 minutes | Sep 4, 2013
#005: The Phone is Your Friend to Make Great Friends, How to Make Friends in Our Busy Life [Podcast]
In an age of electronic connections, we can forget the power of person-to-person/voice-to-voice connections. There is a recent University of Michigan study that confirms we need person to person connections. Here is a link to that article: University of Michigan Research.
39 minutes | Aug 29, 2013
#004: Basic Skills for Being a Friend [Podcast]
Many people use the excuse that they don't know how to be a friend. Andrea and Doug have found that most do have the skills. In this episode, we talk through some of the basic skills for being a friend. We hope you realize, "I have those skills and more. I can do this."
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