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Articles    H4'ed 1/12/10

Change Your Stories, Change Your Life

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Everyday heroes don't let life's challenges bring them down.

Instead, they stay positive and find a way to overcome their obstacles.

Everyday heroes don't always succeed, but they consistently act on the belief that they can do something to improve their situations and those of the people around them.

The way you think ├ éČ" what I call your stories ├ éČ" can lead you to be an everyday hero. The stories you tell can make your life

positive, hopeful, and empowering or bitter, miserable, and hopeless. You can choose your response to everyday events that might disappoint, frustrate, or anger you ├ éČ" to react in a way that casts off the victim mentality and enables you to act with a hero's resolve.

Your stories determine your happiness and success. When you think like an everyday hero, you open the door to new possibilities.

When you work in a company of heroes, communication increases, silos break down, and creative ideas multiply.

You experience greater camaraderie, openness to new ideas, and receptivity to change.

Telling hero stories does more than change your state of mind. These stories lead to actions that produce:

Career success
Improved relationships
More effective conflict resolution
Increased adaptability to change
Stronger leadership
Reduced stress
Greater happiness

These outcomes arise from telling hero stories, and we can all tell hero stories. I have divided these stories into three types:

People stories.
Heroes choose to feel others' pain and seek to understand their actions. Victims focus on their own pain and blame the people around them.

Situation stories.
Heroes see the best in their lives and appreciate what they have. Victims focus on what is wrong in their lives.

Self stories.
Heroes believe they can influence their lives and choose to take action. Victims believe nothing can be done to improve their lives.

No one tells hero stories all the time. We all lapse into victim mentality occasionally. Part of being an everyday hero is recognizing those lapses and shifting back to hero stories.

The techniques and strategies presented in this book come out of my years of corporate coaching and consulting, helping everyone from senior executives to line workers to entrepreneurs achieve greater success and peace of mind at the same time. These strategies also come from my personal experiences as an employee, manager, business owner, husband, and father.

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