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He survived the surgery, he woke up from his coma which doctors had said would never happen , and he began to read, walk, and then run. This is because JJ knows that our bodies listen to our words at a subtle level. At his bedside, JJ told Grant over and over that this was going to be the best thing that had ever happened to him and he was going to come out of it at percent.

Sure enough, when Grant woke up, he already had the intention of recovering to percent. He never considered the possibility of not being able to walk again. Words are powerful. They set expectations and limits and send messages to our brains and even our bodies about how much we are capable of. Language is a part of your mental software.

Use it consciously and with precision, and you will achieve things you probably never thought you could. Perhaps no one knows the power of words better than Jack Canfield, the man behind Chicken Soup for the Soul , who has sold several hundred million copies of his books and broke a world record when he had seven books on the New York Times bestseller list at one time. In my interview with him, we talked about how language impacts success, and I was surprised to hear that he keeps a list of limiting words that he guides successful people to avoid.

I do this, too. As I used biohacking to upgrade my abilities to focus on and pay attention to my words as they came out of my mouth, I discovered that I often used self-limiting words without even realizing it.

Even when I was in a deep state of consciousness using neurofeedback, I was unknowingly setting intentions by using those limiting words. My subconscious was choosing safe words that made unimportant things feel huge and other words that allowed me wiggle room to avoid doing the big things I wanted to do. Similarly, Jack says that he keeps empty fishbowls in his offices, and if one of his team members uses a weasel word, he or she has to put two dollars into the bowl. This is meant not as punishment but to show that there is a cost to using such words.

Clear speech means clear thinking and clear execution. By listening to and analyzing the words you use on a regular basis, you can learn to stop unconsciously programming yourself to have limited performance. There are four particularly insidious weasel words that you likely use many times a day without even noticing it. It is perhaps the most destructive word you use every day. It robs you of power and crushes innovative thinking. Given enough resources and enough problem-solving creativity, you can do whatever it is.

Yet it is still listening to the words you use. This miscommunication between the two parts of your brain creates confusion and subtle stress. If you start to use words that mean the same thing to both your conscious brain and your unconscious brain, you will be a calmer and more empowered person.

Unconventional methods in international leadership development

And because other people also hear your words on both a conscious and unconscious level, when you choose your words more intentionally, other people will tend to trust you more. This lesson came into action for me as I was writing this book. I was catching a flight to New York to be on The Dr. Oz Show , but I arrived at the airport fifty-nine minutes before takeoff instead of one hour. The United gate agent was adamant that she would not print one for me.

So I asked another, more helpful airline for the cheapest ticket to anywhere and bought it, which provided me with a precious printed boarding pass to get through security and board my original flight. Your parents might have wanted to leave, and you would simply have been cold without a coat. By telling your primitive systems that you need something, you end up turning a desire for something into a straight-up survival issue. Of course, you probably use this word in all sorts of other ways, too. You do not need those things, and lying to your brain about what you need is making you weak.

The harsh reality is that there are few things you actually need: oxygen every minute, water every five days, and food before you starve after a couple months of hunger. You need shelter, and you need a way to stay warm.

The rest are wants, not needs. You want.

The Unconventional Habits of Transformational Leaders | INSEAD Knowledge

You choose. You decide. In a physical state of stress, they would be unable to perform and make wise decisions. You can motivate people to run away from something scary, or you can motivate them to run toward something amazing. What obstacles can I remove for you? What will help us do this?

So stop needing, and start wanting. You will be tempted to use the word as long as you qualify it, but even in those cases it is unlikely to actually be true. What if you were to simply call the store and asked the people there to stay open a few minutes late? There is no approach that breaks barriers, connects across cultural differences, and engages our shared values more than arts and culture.

No art? No social change. No innovation economy.

There is no investment that connects us to each other, moves us to action, and strengthens our ability to make collective choices more than arts and culture. We need the smarts and the power of the people reading this post to increase access to quality arts for every American. What we need is shared leadership that engages the political clout and the power of our voices to shift the normative expectations of our community and to demand art as a necessity, not a nicety.

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And this is where arts and culture are a necessity. To unlock this lever for change, I believe we must do several things: Focus on strategies that foster real collaboration—finding the best ways to leverage existing structures where they help and work around them where they get in the way, and to change them where they truly impede progress.


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Get out of our own way by identifying solutions programs, structures, policies, practices, and financial models that might be outside our comfort zone and require letting go of territory. Learn from ourselves and others—a great deal of thinking and work has been done and has changed the positioning, importance, and funding in many other arenas. Recognize that it will be hard and will take a long-term commitment—this is not a simple or obvious task.

The political challenges, economic constraints, competing interests, priority gaps, and complexities are all real and significant challenges. Check out the collaborators and their work to better mitigate disease outbreaks. Some of the most successful innovations in recent years provide a new approach to the same problem or system.

Organizations can determine how to innovate by identifying a traditional way of doing things that needs an update. In order to register as an organ donor, you have to go to the DMV. Not even mandated by law, this has been the traditional donor registration process since , and it has never been revisited. ORGANIZE is rebuilding the registration process, leveraging new technology that allows people to register as an organ donor quickly and easily over channels like social media.

Learn more about their usage of social media for organ donor registrations. Many think of recess as a minute period where kids release their energy before heading back into the classroom. Because of the injuries or rowdiness that might happen, some schools have banned activities like running or tag, while others have terminated recess altogether. Playworks works to shift this school culture to tap into the power of safe, healthy play everyday to build valuable social and emotional skills. Through their playtime curriculum, the organization aims to create an inclusive space for kids to feel a sense of belonging on the recess field and in the classroom, engage in imaginative play, and learn how to connect with others and resolve conflicts independently.

By , Playworks hopes to enable 3.

The entrepreneurial spirit of curiosity.

Learn more about Playworks and their specialized curriculum. These are just a few examples of how to innovate in your respective field. Do you have any ideas on how organizations can experiment with innovation? Let us know in the comments below! Menu Close.