My 3 latest epiphanies that will ease your mind and make your life better and less stressful.

As we meander our way through life, we have many thoughts that consume us. Some that worry us. Some we stress over. Some are accurate. MANY are inaccurate……….so how do we stop caring about these things that trouble us?

Most of the these thoughts that involve the BIG 3 (see below) are INACCURATE. The less you think about them, the better off, more at ease, and more stress free you will be.

AWARENESS of these 3 as they cross your mind are important.

  1. Your employer doesn’t care about you that much. Doesn’t mean it’s not a good place to work………just don’t get too wound up in what they think. One of the reasons I feel I have had some success in leading people is that I actually do care about them. I never realized this in my 20’s and 30’s but as I get older and get to know other owners………they don’t really care about their employees that much which is why working for them sucks. 90% of employers are filling a spot. You are in that spot……….unless you are REALLY VALUABLE or you work for the very rare employer who REALLY VALUES people. 3 days after you leave, no one will talk about you. So either find a 1 out of 10 or don’t worry that much if they don’t seem to be in love with you. It doesn’t matter to them. Hard truth: you don’t matter to them.
  2. Most of the drama that surrounds your life by your family and friends has nothing to do with anything that can help you and they are basically filling time for themselves and including you in it. In other words…….most people have very little to do so they kill time by creating a dramatic game in their life to interest them. You are a pawn in it. Get out!! Stop getting involved with drama and wasting your time. Focus on productive issues that make you better. Stop being a sucker.
  3. People you run into who annoy you that you will never see again are not worth getting annoyed over. Most service people suck—valet, servers, cashiers. You can’t blame them; they encounter some angry people throughout the day and most feel like their bosses don’t care about them much. They’re in a position where they’re replaceable. The problem is we have to deal with them. Try to change the narrative if you can. Spend time appreciating their service and if they’re doing something wrong, give them feedback. Be the customer who thanks them for their service.

If you don’t understand this blog, you probably are a working stiff, with a lot of drama in your life, and you put up with a lot of shitty service!!

Happy Sunday.

D.Hall

Alabama won the National Championship and it was the 2nd biggest story of the night for me

My man Nick Saban rolled to his 5th National Title in 9 years and kept the ROLL TIDE dynasty moving with an outstanding win in an unbelievable game.   Some are saying it was the greatest game of the decade.   It was pretty epic.

More than anything I was inspired and moved almost to tears by the actions of one player.  The player that got benched.  The player that had been 25-2 in his career coming into the game.  The player who struggled.

Jalen Hurts.

Prior to the game I didn’t have much feeling for him one way or another.   He was mainly a running QB playing on a team with a great defense and great tradition.

But on this night he didn’t have his best stuff.  And when they went in at halftime down 13-0, he was playing poorly.

Keep in mind Hurts was the PLAYER OF THE YEAR the prior year in the SEC Conference as a true freshman.   He was THE MAN.

But on this night he was benched.  Nick Saban went into the locker room at halftime and told him and his back up (Tua Tagovailoa), “we’re gonna rotate QB’S in the  2ND half and  Tua is gonna start us off”.

Wow.   The National Championship and you’re benched at halftime.  That’s gotta sting.

So how do you respond?

Well folks it was inspiring.  He was the biggest cheerleader for the back up QB in the 2nd half.  He was first off the sideline to congratulate him when he made a great play.  He was totally ENGAGED with him on the sidelines.  Keep in mind his back up was a TRUE FRESHMAN who was playing on a high school football field a year ago.   You think it was helpful to Tua to have last year’s player of the year pushing him forward and encouraging him?   Think it helped his performance?  I think it did.  I think it was a difference maker.

I know 40 year old’s who would have pouted if they got benched.  This kid was in the GAME OF HIS LIFE, and he had the poise and inner strength to not make it about him………he made it about the team.  And I can’t stop thinking about it.

And moreover, how come Jalen Hurts wasn’t rooting for him to not do well so he could get back in like so many other kids would?   After all, Saban said “we’re gonna rotate in the 2nd half”……………  Well I’m not sure but I got the tape queued up so I can show my future children what being a great teammate looks like.   Jalen Hurts showed us.

And it was so epic.

D.Hall

Consideration.

“It’s the greatest path to peace of mind.”    -Jeffrey T. Klein

Klein is a good friend of mine.  When he sent me this in a text, it immediately impacted my overall thinking.

So many of us have our own ideas and thought processes that are hard wired.  Too infrequently do we live in consideration.  Consideration, deep consideration, for others is without a doubt the greatest path to peace of mind.

The substitution of habitual thoughts is key.  And you have to be aware of your thoughts to make this happen.   Instead of getting incredibly frustrated with that dumbass in the meeting or your family member who makes the worst decisions, consider why they are who they are.  What are THEY going through?  Why do they conduct themselves the way they do? Or even….what is it about them you find so frustrating? Why is that? Is it something they’re doing or is it how you were raised?

Think about how often it happens to you in life.  Inevitably, you experience thoughts that lack consideration multiple times throughout your day or week.  I do, too.   The waiter not going fast enough for you.  The lady at the checkout counter a little spacey.  You don’t like how the guy negotiating the deal with you is going about things.  How were THEY raised?  What values were THEY taught at a young age that are in conflict with yours?  Think about what they may be going through or maybe the advantages you have had that they have not.

CONSIDERATION.  There is no other way to live.  And maybe you’ll make them (and yourself) a little better in the process.

Think about something you are terrible at.  Now imagine if you had to perform doing it without much practice….or guidance.  That might be what someone else is going through right in front of your eyes. Maybe they have never had someone step up to show them a different way.

Every day you likely meet with friends, family, and coworkers you don’t always appreciate or get along with. This week, I challenge you to reflect on why that is.

Is there anything more important than peace of mind?   You can control it more starting tomorrow by implementing consideration.

Happy Sunday Morning. Have a beautiful week considering and make it a noteworthy one.

D.Hall

3 more tips that are binge worthy after binge eating for 3 days.

Happy Holidays to all and hopefully everyone had a wonderful long weekend.  Two years ago, and then again last year, I shared some tips on how to make yourself more productive after a multi-day eating binge!!   This year we’ve come up with 3 new ones.  They are fresh.  Get em while they’re hot!!  And act on them.   Maybe today!!

1. Cliché as it sounds, hit the gym. Don’t wait until the new year. Get back in your routine today or it will be that much harder come 2018. Haven’t been working out? Start today. There’s no rule saying you have to start your 2018 goals in 2018; start them now. Takes at least two weeks to make a change into a habitual routine. Why not get ahead?

2. Find people who share your same 2018 goals, reconnect with them and hold each other accountable. Stronger together.

3. Go through all your toiletries and lotions and hair products and bag up everything you won’t use or haven’t used and take it to the local shelter. People less fortunate need it.

Have a great Tuesday and here’s to a great 2018!

D.Hall

PS as an update for 3 apps to download to help with productivity:

1. Waze—we don’t talk about traffic and you shouldn’t either.

2. Weather bug—don’t let the weather rain on your parade.

3. Voice recorder—best way to send yourself a note, record it.

The greatest 4 gifts you can give people you lead and people you love

Leadership is something that comes in all forms.  I’ve seen good, I’ve seen bad, I’ve seen indifferent.   There is nothing more important to an organization or to a young person’s career than great leadership.   Some of the best I’ve been able to work with did phenomenal things to help me get better.   Often it came with a little push, a lot of love, and at times a great sit down talk to get through to my hard head.

I think there are 4 essential things a great leader needs to do and I think if you want to be a good leader you can learn how to do these.

  • Love your people.   We all have a choice every day to find something right or wrong with the people we lead and love.  Choosing to figure out what you love about them, will help you make them better as you can start from a firm base and get on same page with their strengths.
  •  Believe in what your people can do.  Did you know a lot of people in our world have NEVER had anyone tell them they believe in them?  It’s crazy but it’s true.  One of my business mentor’s Steve Piazza was the absolute best at believing in the people on his team when I worked with him.   He believed in PEOPLE.   Didn’t matter really who you were, if you were on his team, he thought you could be great.   It’s a skill to think this way,  and believe me developing this skill is critical to becoming a great leader.
  • Inspire a love of learning.  If you can teach people to love learning, you will go far.   There is nothing more powerful than helping someone expand their mind.  I think I read somewhere that “knowledge is power”.   Inspire people to love to learn.
  • Challenge your peeps to grow themselves every day.   Most people need a push to get “out of the box” or “out of their comfort zone”.  Have the awareness to recognize other’s tendencies and help them see things they can’t see for themselves.   I think that truly caring about people involves pushing them to new heights.

If you follow these 4 steps you will not only be known as a great leader but you will also see your team succeed and achieve new heights.   Knowing you have a hand in that success is one of the best feelings, nurture it.

D.Hall

BYOG, Yoga, Alcohol, Tactics, Thanksgiving, you instead of I, and 9 months of marital bliss

thankful

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!  What a great day to reflect and give thanks for all we have and to be alive!!  This year’s annual Thanksgiving Day blog will be shorter on fluff and longer on real TACTICS!!  Wow, what a preview.

Will the Lions win?  Will the Cowboys lose?  How many times will they show me Jerry Jones in his private suite?   Will you eat too much?

Ok, enough fluff.

This year I decided we need to get down to business.  I have 5 SURE FIRE tactics for you to improve your days, life, productivity, outlook, and perspective.  Get your calendar ready cause here we go.

  1.  Copy and paste BYOG link (my man Dabo Swinney below) to the 1st of every month in your calendar for all of 2018 to watch.  It will get you pumped up, make you laugh, and give you a bolt of energy.  It’s like a 5-hour energy shot that doesn’t slowly kill you from the garbage they put into energy drinks.   And it lasts much longer than 5 hours.
  2. Make it a point to drink less.  Most of us drink way too much.  My simple tactic is to cut and paste this into your calendar RIGHT NOW for Sundays at 7pm: “Look at calendar for the week and cancel a night of meeting people for drinks and replace it with yoga”.   You’ll thank me later.  It’s better for you and most of us don’t invest in ourselves enough.  Every hour at yoga is an investment in yourself. Don’t want to do yoga? Meditate.
  3. Cut and paste this into your calendar for every Wednesday morning at 730am: “Send 1 email or text to someone I care about in this world and tell them why.” That WHY is very important.
  4. Cut and paste this into your calendar for every Friday at 8am: “Start every sentence for the next hour with ‘you’ instead of ‘I’.”   So many people start every interaction with I, I, I, I.    It gets really old for the listener. Start focusing on the other person involved in the conversation.
  5. Invest in the people you love.   After 9 months of marriage, I’m loving this married life.   My wife is awesome and I’m really lucky.  I know I’m the “newlywed guy”………but there is nothing that says you can’t recalibrate your relationships by putting something in your calendar 2 times a week to “feed the meter” or “water what I love”. In my experience the more you feed or invest in the things that are important to you, the better they get.   And there’s no shame in reminding yourself to be creative weekly in your calendar.   I personally have absolutely no choice as The Guinness Book of World Records is coming to see me soon for “all time marrying up”.   I gotta mind my business big time cause I’m terribly overmatched.

That’s all. Five very easy things to do and incorporate into your routine to be more productive and happier tomorrow than you were yesterday.

Happy Thanksgiving.

D.Hall

Reason 154 to choose where you work based on THE LEADERSHIP, not the money

fired

This past week in the news Capital One put out a press release, announcing they are shutting down the mortgage division of their company because “it’s too competitive”.  That’s literally what the leadership said.  It’s too competitive.  Wowza.

So I took a step back and sort of thought about that.  I can’t imagine telling my team that I just decided we’re done ’cause it’s “too tough”.

There’s a lot of risk when starting any company or a new division to a company. There are a lot of challenges involved, responsibilities to people, their families and the team in general.  For me, it was a lifelong goal to have my own business and focus more on the client experience and deliver on a promise of something better than all the “me too” mortgage nonsense going on in the world.  It was so glaringly obvious that the consumer needed a company that was focused on them. So that conversation turned into a dozen people……. and a year later we started to pick up some steam. We’re still growing at Hall Financial and that’s a big endeavor each and every day.  As we continued to grow our business we have had to make choices.  One of our early big decisions was do we stay small or do we expand?

We expanded.

It might be my name on the front door, but it’s far from just me making the decisions.  In fact it’s a highly collaborative effort amongst the team.

I like to build consensus and make decisions as a team.

Back to Capital One………1100 people lost their jobs. That’s a big deal.  And the leaders told the world it’s because they thought it was too hard.  You would think they might say something like, “It makes more sense for the company as a whole if we focus on our previous endeavors and will be relocating these employees to the credit card division because we value them.”  But they didn’t.  In fact it wasn’t even close to that.  Sort of a head scratcher.

I think leadership has a lot to do with a willingness to do what’s tough when things get tough.  And more importantly…….. keeping a keen focus on developing people to see them hit their “ceiling”.  So they can develop into their “best self”.  I’m pretty sure that’s not how Capital One thinks about the world.

Man, the credit card business must be a lot easier than I thought.

I am asking former Capital One employees to reach out to me.  I want to hear more about this story.  And if you also have an “unusual ambition and hunger to succeed” (our saying at Hall Financial) then we want to hire you so you can join us in our mission to become really great.  Even if it is hard.

So which type of leader are you?  Or do you want to work for?

Have a great Sunday.

D.Hall

The 3 stages of adulthood you need to get thru to know you are ok.

Last week I turned 47 (seems unreal with my boyish good looks), and it’s a great time for self-reflection. For one, it’s impossible that I’m closer to 60 than I am to 35. Just crazy. But I sort of love it. Cause the goal of life should be to enjoy, grow old, compete, have fun, love as hard as you can love, and contribute to society. Not necessarily in that order. 

So you start to think back about things………and I remember as a kid hearing an “old man” (at the time, my age now) tell me that the sure sign of maturity was when you’d “choose Napa over Vegas” as a vacation. Bingo!! Stage 1 of adulthood…….there it is. Passed that one at age 37. 

It’s been a while.

Then in recent years, I started thinking a lot about my own mortality. Deeply. And sort of somberly. But a lot of good came from it. Cause I realized that attacking life with boundless enthusiasm was my gift and most folks either don’t know how or don’t want to. And it’s a differentiator. BINGO!! Stage 2 of adulthood: use your gifts. They are yours and being you is the most important thing you can be once you realize who you are and who you want to be.

Lastly, stage 3 has been something I’ve been considering for quite a while: social media. What does it mean and why does it exist and why do we read it and who really cares? BINGO………Stage 3 hit me as I was cooking dinner with my wife—my life is good. When you realize no one else’s life is better than yours, no matter how hard people try to portray theirs as better, you’ve grown up. 

It’s important to remember that everyone needs to make these “discoveries” on their own. No one can be told “this is how it goes so just believe me”. It seems we all need to go thru our own struggles to “figure it out” on our own.

So in conclusion……………..

3 stages of adulthood:

  1. Napa is better than Vegas
  2. Be you
  3. Social media is a mirage of nonsense, and most people’s lives aren’t as glamourous as they make it out to be. They are “marketing” their lives to you. You’re good. 

Have a great week!!

D.Hall

Cleaning Laundry.


Have you ever really listened to this song? We all know the lyrics, we all sing along. But have you paid attention to what it’s about? 

This week I turned one year closer to the big 5-0 but I can honestly say I don’t feel old. I don’t even feel close to it. I feel young, like I’m always in my best years and I can attribute a lot of that to the people I surround myself with: wife, friends, family, coworkers. I make a conscious effort of not wasting my time with people who bring me down because anybody who knows me knows I’ve got big dreams. I don’t settle. It’s the one thing I’m very clear about educating my team on: be a goal digger. Be a battery charger. Surround yourself with the right people.

Ok, so maybe that’s three things. 

To me, this song is all about surrounding yourself with the right people. There will always be that one person who craves drama and gossip and who will try to bring you down to make themselves feel good, to make themselves look better. Don’t get sucked in. Don’t contribute to the gossip. Don’t go smelling other people’s laundry. Just make sure to keep your own clean.  The only one you should be competing with is who you were yesterday. 

This week, make a conscious effort to clean your laundry. Surround yourself with those who will support you, push you to chase your goals, pump you up, and leave your dirty laundry alone. 

After all, success doesn’t come from poor attitudes. It comes from a positive mindset. 

D.Hall

DRAMA

Some people flock towards it and some avoid it all costs. I personally have seen many people ruin their relationships, careers, friendships, and more by the lure of drama. I choose to move AWAY from drama. I like reality and normalcy cause I know it gives me my best chance for peak performance.

As I grow older and wiser I realize some truisms of this short tenure we have here called life. Getting to bed at 9pm makes a ton of sense. Getting up early and getting your body warmed up makes a ton of sense. Spreading goodness to everyone you can makes a ton of sense. Encouraging others to be their best makes a ton of sense. Realizing you will make mistakes and trying to learn from them makes a ton of sense.

Then there are things that don’t make sense: drinking yourself silly, taking drugs, talking shit about other people, being in the wrong place by choice at 1 in the morning, fighting, being in the middle of a dispute where you have nothing to gain by winning.

I think people who move towards drama are generally bored with their own personal existence and they need a “new game” in their life to play. Staying out of drama takes focus and work.

Avoiding drama takes will power. 

Building your future is tough and takes a full, concentrated effort. I can’t think of many things more rewarding than being the one to build that foundation, the one holding that responsibility.

And as I told my team at Hall Financial earlier this week, I can’t think of many things more rewarding than being on the front of this story we are building. It’s really fun and really rewarding. It gets me pumped to go to bed by 9pm, wake up early, and encourage others to invest in their own futures.

Choose to build yourself and your future. 

Don’t choose drama. Drama sucks.

D.Hall