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The Leadercast Podcast
The Leadercast Podcast

Episode · 3 years ago

38. Kim Ades on The Power of Thinking

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

A person's thinking has a greater impact on their outcomes than any other contributing factor.

 

Emotional resilience makes someone much more likely to succeed — no matter what industry, no matter what job.

 

On this episode, I interview Kim Ades, president and founder of Frame of Mind Coaching, about our topic of the month — exploration:

 

What we talked about:

  • Emotional resilience equals success
  • How our thinking impacts others (only 7% of communication is verbal)
  • Ways to change our thinking
  • 2 questions to ask yourself to challenge your beliefs


Check out the full podcast with Kim Ades by clicking here, and you can find every episode of The Leadercast Podcast at this link.

This is the leader cast podcast, helping you be a leader worth following. Welcome and thank you for tuning in to this episode of the leader cast podcast. I am Haley Panagatus. All right, I'd like to begin with a question. What comes to mind when you think of the word exploration? Maybe you think of Lewis and Clark and their expedition across the western part of the United States, or perhaps your mind goes to Neil Armstrong in the space mission that led him to become the first man to walk on the moon. While these are great stories of incredible expeditions, in reality, exploration happens are beyond history books. The spirit of exploration lives in US as leaders, whether we're pursuing a new idea or guiding our teams to make strides toward a path we've never been down before. This month leader cast is focused on the theme of, Yep, you guessed it, exploration. Joining the leader cast podcast to talk further about this topic is Kim add us, president and founder of Frame of Mind Coaching and journal Engine Software. Him is an author, Speaker, entrepreneur, coach and Mama Five, with fifteen years of experience coaching many of North America's most respected leaders. In this episode we discuss the influence our thinking has on whether or not we achieve our goals, why empathy really isn't something leaders should strive for, what to do when our ideas are met with resistance, parenting secrets and much more. Will dive into all of this, but first a quick message about a leader cast now, where you can learn insights on the challenges you face daily as a leader from experts like the one you here on our podcasts. Leader cast now is an online resource for your leadership...

...development. Get the solutions to your leadership challenges on any device at the moment. You need it. To learn more, go to now doubt leader castcom. Okay, let's dive in. Here is my conversation with him at US him. Welcome. Thank you so much for joining us on the show. We're so excited to have you. Thank you. I'm excited to be here and I appreciate the opportunity to talk. Yeah, so you are. Like I said, you're President of frame of mind coaching, which, in my research about it, it's rooted in the idea that a person's thinking has a greater impact on their outcomes than any other contributing factor. So can you start by telling us a little bit about this idea and how frame of mind coaching came to fruition? Wow, I like the fact that you did your research. That's exciting. So here's the story. Years and years ago, I used to own a software company and we used to build saw simulation based assessments to help companies make better hiring decisions. We're testing for all kinds of things. We're testing for IQ, personality, traits, intelligence, all of that stuff. And what we discovered one very interesting finding based on the data that, over and above all other measurable data points, there was one that stood out, and that is that if a person has a high level of emotional resilience, they're going to be much more likely to succeed, no matter what industry, no matter what job. M That's interesting right. Yeah. So after I ended up selling that company and I got hired by Coaching Company and I thought, Oh my God, this is going to be amazing, because their mandate is to help people live extraordinary lives. That is for me. I went to work there and I'm an entrepreneur. I'm not very good at working for others, so I lasked it about eight and a half months, but I got a chance to observe how traditional coaching is done and in their...

...case it was very successful coaching company. They worked with business people and what they would do is they would create a plan of action to help people reach their goals and then they would hold their clients accountable to all the parts in that plan. And that sounds reasonable, right, hmm it except that I felt like, wait a minute, some things off here, because I think people know how to create plans but they don't do what's on the plan. They're not taking action. The question is, why? What's actually stopping them from reaching their goals? It has to do with the way they think. It has to do with their emotional resilience. Some things getting in the way, something's blocking them, and if I could remove that barrier and line up a person's thinking with their goals, then I could literally be putting them on on the runway for them to just take off. So that's where frame of mine coaching was born and I thought, man, I think I could do this differently. I think I could do this better, and the way that I want to do it is by really understanding how people think and how they're thinking impacts the outcomes they're getting in their lives, because what we find is that if a person's thinking isn't lined up with their goals, then no matter how much action they take, they still won't reach their goals. HMM. So not only does thinking impact whether or not you take action, but thinking impacts the success of the action itself. Yeah, well, I love that. You saw need and filled it, much like an entrepreneur. So how should leaders think? And now that's probably a very big question. Yeah, comes everything you do. But how should a later think? Well, the words should is very interesting to me. So that I mean to me. Leaders think in all kinds of ways. At the end of the day, what we're really looking for is not, you know, specifically how they should think, but they should pay attention to whether or not they're thinking lines up with their goals or desires. So you have a leader, right, and maybe they're starting a business or maybe they've been in business for a long time...

...and they see a competitor coming, if they think, wow, we're never going to be able to compete or we're never going to be able to overcome this competitive threat. Game over right. So that thought, that belief doesn't line up with a goal of success. It clashes. That makes sense. Yeah, and so what we want to do is we want to make sure leaders are thinking in ways that allow them to easily reach their goals. So in this case, I'm going back to this example, when you think, Oh man, we're never going to be able to do it, you're focused on the problem, you're focused on the difficulty, you're not focused on the solution and you can't solve a problem when you're focused on the problem. Can only solve a problem when you're focused on the solution. Right. So what we do is we like to see how people, how leaders, how they're thinking is oriented, rather than how should they think? What is there? What is the orientation of their thinking? If the orientation is based on the problems, the difficulties, the things that aren't working, the things that are annoying, problematic, troublesome, it's going to be hard for them to reach their goals if they don't believe that they have the ability to reach their goals, either personally or their team or the resources or whatever. Again, it's a nonstarter, right. Yeah, and I know for lads it's really hard not to think about the problems because it's so obviously in front of you and to keep your eyes on the solution. So I love that. Right, he said that. So I know it's really easy to see how we think would affect US personally, but how about those around us? How does the way we think impact our teams? Well, the way we think impacts the way we communicate, the way and that impacts our teams. Right. So when you know, and I'm not just talking about the words that come out of our mouth, I'm talking about more than that. So I don't know if you're aware, there was a study conducted at Ucla and that study revealed that thirty eight percent of our communication happens through our voice and through our towne...

...fifty five percent happens through body language and like our actions, and only seven percent is conducted through the words we use. So the way we think affects how we show up, how we behave, how we interact, how we communicate, and that has a profound effect on our teams. So even if we're having a rough morning and we come in and we're just grumbly right or we're our heads are down, we're not smiling and saying hello, that impacts the environment, and that's just the tip of the iceberg. But our how to Tude towards everything gets transmitted and absorbed, and the people around us are watching what we're doing and not only paying attention and being affected, they're also mimicking very much how we do everything, and that comes from our thinking. Ah, so honestly gears a little bit. I know that empathy is a big buzzword in the leadership's face, and you're laughing because I yeah, I know I'm going to ask a most of us would say that great leaders have empathy, but I know that you have a different view on this. So I would love for you to share your thoughts on this with her audience. I Bet your audience is bristling already. What do you mean? So so let's define empathy, because I think empathy is one of the most misunderstood words on the planet. So what is empathy? Empathy is putting yourself in the shoes of someone else and feeling their emotional state. I feel what you feel. So empathy is not an action, it's an emotion. Empathy is something you feel a so so let's imagine you're walking by a park and you see someone drowning in a pool. How do they feel? They're drowning, they're scared there, they don't know what to do. They need to find how to save themselves right, right. So they're panic, they're breathless, they're desperate. And if I have empathy and I feel panic, desperate and breathless immediately, I disqualify myself from being able to help immediately. So having empathy in a situation like this is useless. What I need to do is notice...

...that a person is drowning, have caring compassion and say, my God, that person needs help. But I'm not going to jump into the pool and drown beside them. I'm going to stand solidly on the outside of the pool, reach in and pull them out. In order for me to be able to do that, I need to have strength of my own. I need to have a vision that I have the ability, the capacity to pull them out. If I jump in with them, we're both drowning. Yeah, you have an example of a time where an executive, you know they're trying to be the empathetic leader and you had to change their course and say now let's be a compassionate leader. About how many leaders keep people on way longer than there, than their time right. So they keep people on because they're fraid to let them go when clearly these people, you know, aren't performing or they may even be toxic to the environment. But they're terrified of letting them go. They don't want to hurt their families, they don't want to hurt them, they don't want to, you know, signal anything bad to the rest of the organization and they stay in a situation that's terrible and harmful to the company way longer than necessary. They see that all the time, all the time. You know, there's countless examples of that. Yeah, so since you bring that up, what advice would you give to the leader that's in that situation where they're reluctant and hesitant, scared to let someone go, but, you know, it's what's what they have to do. I really am a big believer in equipping leaders with, you know, very basic coaching skills, and so, as a coach, I have a coach, I am a cheerleader. I am on the side of my clients in all situations. Okay, so, if you were my employee, I'm on your side. What that means is I want your well being inside or outside of my organization. So that means that if this is not the right place for you, it's my responsibility, as my duty, to help you move to a better place. Does that make sense? HMM. So, therefore,...

...if this is not the right fit, then I'm okay to create a system that gives them enough time and buffer to move them out in a way that keeps our relationship preserved and has them know that I'm on their side and on their team. HMM. But this is not necessarily the right place for everybody, and it's it's you know, I have a sense of responsibility to the company, but also from a coaching standpoint. If I can get behind you as my employee and understand that this is not the place where you're thriving and I can open a door for you to go find that place, then I'm actually serving you. HMM. Yeah, that leads me into my next question. That kind of ties into the theme of exploration, which is our theme of the month here at later past. So goal setting as a big part of exploration. If you're going to find any kind of direction for where you're hutting, obviously you have to set a goal and we've talked about goal setting a little bit already, but in your experience coaching leaders, what would you say is the biggest thing that gets in the way of goal setting? So, you know, goal setting is one thing. Okay, I can set a goal. Here's my goal from the question is what gets in the way of goal atating right. So setting a goal and attaining our goal or two completely different things. And I would say to you that unequivocally. The beliefs we have, the way we think, is really what prevents people from reaching their goals, period. That's it. So a lot of people think, well, it's not just that, it's you know, my situation prevents me from reaching goals. You know I'm working hard. I can't really stop what I'm doing and then maybe jump into starting a business because I can't risk in not getting an income and all that is a reflection of a person's beliefs. HMM. Some people may say, well, it takes money to start money and I don't have money, and that's also a reflection of their beliefs. Because there's an unlimited amount of resources available to each of us. The question is, how do we tap into it? That's also a reflection of our...

...beliefs. So what stops us from reaching our goals hundred percent? Are Thinking in our beliefs right now. I Know The frame mine coaching works with a lot of different companies and a pink, Byctoria, secret and several other big names like that. Do you have an example, not to use their name, but example of how this change and thinking completely transformed a lad and it's business? I have many. I'll tell you one story without using a so I was working with an executive who was like the EVP, executive vice president of a large, large retail chain, and when she came to me she was very frustrated because at the time she was the acting president for that company. HMM, and she had been in that role for two years, and not only that, if we looked at her revenue and profitability status, they exceeded any other year. And when she came to me, she said I just discovered that they're looking outside of the organization to hire a full time president. I can't believe it. I'm just devastated. Why didn't they think of me? Why did they ask me to step into that role? I'm clearly, you know, doing the job and I'm doing a good job. Why was I overlooked and I asked her or one question. I said, did you ask for the job? Did you let them know you wanted it? And she went silent because she didn't, because her beliefs were that they should know. Her beliefs were that it's not really polite to kind of stand up and wave your hand and say pick me right, and so that concept permeated everything she did. So she was a hard worker, she was intelligence smart, strategic driven. You know, she proved her way from when she was young all the way up to this high position, and then she reached the ceiling, and that's because she held herself small. She thought there's some things I shouldn't do in this world, which is make a claim, put my...

...spork in the ground and say, you know, here's what I want, because that's not polite. That's not what women do right. And so those were beliefs that kept her playing a marginal role instead of really the rule that she was designed for, incapable of. What ended up happening was she was so kind of upset by this situation she ended up, after twenty five years with this company, leaving to start our own company. Oh Wow, well, I love that you bring up this example because it seems like a woman in leadership thing. That's something that a lot of women in leadership deal with, is putting themselves out there, putting their voice out there, making themselves known that they have a seat at the table. So does the change and thinkings? Is that change how we approach our thinking and this transformation that we see where they're thinking? Does it look any differently for women in leadership? No, no, it doesn't look different. The way we change our thinking is first by becoming aware of what is, let's say, unconscious to us. So we live our whole lives with this set of beliefs that we've either adopted or those beliefs have been transposed to us from our parents, are environments, etc. But we live with a set of beliefs that we are unaware of, and that unawareness we just live with it, right, and we don't understand why we struggle. We don't understand why we're having our time. We don't understand why some people have it easier and we're, you know, always working so hard. Why does it come so hard to us? And that has to do with our beliefs. And there's no difference between a man and a woman. Give you another completely different example, this time a man. So one of the things we do when we work with our clients as we ask them to journal in an online journal. And so what happens is we give them a journaling question at the beginning of the week and they journal and every time they journal, their journal goes back to their coach and their coach reads and Response to the Journal. I'm working with a gentleman right now and he journals about the fact that he is an introvert. And so I asked him a question and I said, well, how do you know? Like, who told you you were an interview introvert? He said, well, I became one when I went to junior high. Like, wait a...

...minute, you just suddenly became an introvert. How did that work? Right, so I'm asking questions, trying to understand the storyline that he's living with, or rather the beliefs he has. So his fundamental belief is I'm an introvert, and so he starts telling me the story about how he went to junior high and you know, he was he was sporty and so he was kind of a job but then he was Geeky. So he's kind of Geeky, but he didn't really like he sat on the fence and I'm like, who sits on the fence of something like that? That's a weird thing to sit on the fence with. And then he continues right and he tells me that in university there was one course he had to take where fifteen percent of the mark was based on participation. So he went up to the teacher and he said, I just want you to know right now I will not be participating, but I'll get eighty five percent, like I'll do a hundred percent of the rest, but I'm not participating. So what I discover was that his introversion was a way of playing smaller, was a way of keeping himself safe, was a way of not committing a hundred percent. Hmm Right. Who Decides at the beginning of the class are going to get zero on a part of the exam because they're just not going to try because I'm labeled an introvert. So that's not a thing I do like hut right. So what we see is that we all, each one of us, me too, we all have beliefs that were unaware of that we wrap our arms around for some reason read even unconsciously. That affect us. Sometimes they affect US positively, but a lot of times they don't. They affects US negatively. If we don't bring them to light, we just continue living in that unconscious state. But the minute we become aware of that thing we're doing to ourselves, we're able to change it. We can't change what we're not aware of. Right, right. Yeah, it's funny. I label myself an introverse and I'm sitting here like, oh shoot, what am I not putting myself out there for, because I label myself an introvert? Well, but, but here's what I want to tell you, and this probably applies to you. I went back to this guy. He's a business owner, he runs meetings,...

...he's a leader, and so, if you know, how does he do all that and be an introvert? Right, so, why grab this label? What use does it have? And here you are, your podcast host and some fit with being an introvert. So why are you labeling yourself that, I when it actually does nothing for you in a positive way. Yeah, it's very good point. So I know that you coach leaders through the road bumps that occur on their path to achieving a goal. So what's the key to a quick recovery when the unexpected steers those off course? So you know, what we're really talking about is emotional resilience. So emotional resilience is this whole idea of bouncing back from adversity. But how is one person able to bounce back and another person struggles a lot more and stays down a lot longer? What's the difference? It's in the interpretation of the event. So have you ever watched American idol, for example? Okay, so you know, like at the end, I don't exactly know the logistics, but at the end they're like ten last contestants. We know nine are going to lose, right, we know that, and so what we see is that each of these nine are having the same basic experience. They're losing. But for one person it was like the greatest experience of their lives and their careers just launched and now there are somebody. For another person it's a devastating loss and they're crying and it's like the most hurtful experience ever. So why? What's the difference? Is Because of the way we think about this experience and the meaning we attribute to it. So for one person they think about it as the beginning of a great career, that American idol put them on stage and now they have some notoriety. Another person looks at it as a complete failure. I lost. That interpretation will affect our ability to bounce back. And we're interpreting everything we do and everything that happens to us and we're we're...

...assigning meaning to absolutely everything, and some of the meaning we assign right is is like almost were abusing ourselves. Right, yeah, yeah, so this might be something that steers a leader. Of course. What do we do when new ideas or goals are met with resistance, whether it be from shareholders or our team members? So I'll tell you my own story. So I own this business and my business partner is my husband, and I'm the person who comes up with all the ideas and wants to experiment with absolutely everything, and I'm the pusher, I'm the mover ahead or right, it's not a word, but it isn't improve and my husband is the resistor. Okay, so he's the one who wants to make sure that we're not wasting money, that we're not making a mistake, that we're not going into another new project, a new idea that's just going to drain us and and take us off course. So I have to be honest and say that when I know what's coming, like I know how it's going to go down, I come to him with full level of excitement and he's like, it feels like he's bursting my bubble. That's how it feels, right. I hate the feeling of his resistance. It doesn't feel good. And so what it does is it slows me down a bit. Slows me down to think it through a little bit more, to thought my eyes and cross my teeth, and so it forces me to really think through whether or not this project is a good one and, if so, what needs to be in place for it to be successful. So I have learned over the years. Yes, I kind of expect his resistance, but I also learned that the outcome I will get as a result of that resistance in the long run will be much more effective successful than it would be if I just ran without looking, which is my tendency. So what do we do with the resistors? We try to understand why they're resisting. What is the perspective that causes them fear, worry, discomfort.

Let's address that is if we can address it, then we're coming out more powerfully. We have a better plan, it's more solid, we thought things through. So that's my perspective, and so it took me a while to learn that because at first so I don would just feel defeated. But if we can understand, even expect resistance and welcome it to really be able to understand, you know, how to create something that's a lot more fool proof, then we're executing something that's much more thought through, thought out. Hmm, I feel like a lot of resistance will come when it surrounds anything that's for Ski Right, and I know that risk taking as a big part of exploration or innovation. So how can leaders get more comfortable taking risks? And is there every time when a risk should not be taken? So let me tell you about leaders. We think that leaders are risk takers, but they're actually very risk averse and they don't like taking risks and in all cases, really extraordinary leaders like to mitigate their risk. They like to reduce risk as much as possible, humanly possible. So one of the things they do to reduce risk is they imagine failure, and I'm sure you're saying really, I thought they imagine success. What they do is they imagine failure and then they say, well, how will I recover from this failure? And they imagine recovery. And once they imagine recovery and say okay, I see how I can do that, then they go ahead, because that's part of mitigating risk, is imagining bouncing back from that failure. If I can, if I can picture myself coming back and doing it fairly comfortably, then I feel more comfortable taking that risk. HMM. Right, so it's it's not about jumping into risk blindly. Is Actually about decreasing risk and taking comfortable risk. Yeah, okay, so may leave you a little uncomfortable, but taking the...

...risk because you have the sense that even if this doesn't work out, I'm I have the capacity to recover. HMM. How would you say? Leaders can be better explorers or, to use a more broadly used term, innovators. So I love running pilots, I love experimenting with things at small scale. So you know, if I'm thinking of a partnership, I like to date before I get married. I like to try things out and so you know, over time. I'm all for experiments, but experiment at a scale where then you can expand it. So start small, see what it's like, get some results, get some data, make decisions with the data and then move forward. A lot of people like to experiment and they just jump in right like. They put everything in and it like it's literally they have a blindfold on and they're diving off a cliff. And what I always suggest is, well, how can we try this out without, you know, jumping into a dark abyss? How do we test it out and gather more data to make more and more intelligent decisions? It's kind of like take a look at digital marketing, you know advertising. I mean you could sink a whole bunch of money into digital advertising and not get a single result. So now how do you do it in a way where you're learning and then adding and then learning and adding? So you start at a much smaller budget and you grow it with the more and more information data that you have. So as you get, you know, experience a success, you put a little more money into it and then you grow that way. So I like the idea of learning and then growing, and learning and then growing. Yeah, I love that so I know that you are a mother of five kids. Yeah, I am one of five children. So, wow, this is this is going to be fun. I would be remiss not to ask you your secret for raising five kids and founding two companies. How do you do it? Well, okay, so you know, whenever anyone says how you...

...raise five kids, I think of raising as like you raise animals. Right. I don't raise them right, they just kind of grow up. So, interestingly enough, I'm actually in the process of working on a Ted tap talk right now on the subject of parenting, and I'll tell you a few kind of little secrets. From the get go, we believe that our job is to manage our kids so that they come out right, right, like. We believe that that's what we need to do, and so what we do with our days, in our time is we watch what they're doing. We're constantly giving them instruction, we're telling them what to do all day and all night. Go Brush your teeth, go to bed, set up straight, do your homework, go call your grandmother, don't hit your brother, and it's endless. Right, we're doing this all day and all night. And what I tell parents, and I think this is really my guiding framework is your job is not to manage your kids. Your job is to manage yourself while your kids are growing up doing their thing, and that completely changes the dynamic. It says I am responsible for me and my job with you is not to manage you, but to coach you, teach you, share with you my wisdom and and to be on hand when you get into trouble, to know that I am there for you no matter what. And so what that allows me to do is invite them to grow and learn from their experiences and to suffer what we would say call natural consequences, not parental consequences or parental punishment. There's enough out there in the world for them to learn from. I don't need to add to it right and there's one more piece, and you know we alluded to this before, is that we have this voice that happens in our brains, that that's constantly talking to us. A lot of times that voice isn't very encouraging. It kind of sounds like this, Oh, you don't have enough experience, you don't know what you're doing, you're not old enough, you're not smart enough, you don't have the education, and that voice constantly feeds us with self doubt. As parents.

I don't need to add to that voice. I need to battle that voice for my children. MMM Right, so when I give myself the role of manager, I am becoming worse than the voice. That's not what I want to do as a parent. Right. Those are great tips and I have a one year old now. So making a mental note of all of this and I'm looking forward to your seeing your type. Yeah, why, you got a little sneak preview. I departed from my content there for a minute, but it's generally that welcome. I don't want to keep you too too long. I really appreciate you taking the time. was there anything that I miss while you have our audience of leaders, that you think you know that we didn't cover that we should have covered? Well, a lot of people ask me like, what's the one thing I can do to become much more aware of the beliefs I have that are getting in my way? And what I like to do is recommend an exercise. Is that okay with you? Yeah, so, guys, grab a piece of paper and a pen and write down two questions. First question is, what is it that I really, really want more than anything, and I put two reallys in there on purpose because I want you to think about what you want, not what is expected of you, not what someone else wants for you, not what you think you should want, but what do you really really want down deep inside? Write it down. It could be more than one thing. Write them all down. And then the second question is, what is stopping me from having what I really really want right now? Write down all the reasons and then look at those reasons and understand that those reasons reflect your beliefs and start looking at those reasons and asking yourself, are those reasons really true? Is there a way I could look at this differently? Is there a way I can challenge some of those reasons? So that's a really powerful exercise that I encourage everybody to do. Yeah, well, thank you for sharing that, Kim, and we really appreciate you again taking the time to speak with our audience today and share your insights. I know that we've covered so much and I know that there's a lot for our audience to learn. So thank you so much for joining us. Thank you, thank you for the opportunity.

It was really fun talking to you listeners. Thank you for tuning in today. You can connect with Kim on Linkedin or follow her on twitter at him at it's you can learn more about frame of mind coaching at frame of mind coachingcom and while you're there, him invites you to sign up for a complementary coaching call that Kim says will completely knock your socks off, so check it out. You can find more content on the topic of exploration and much more through leadercast blogs, newsletters, webinars and more. visit leadercastcom to find more of our content that you won't want to miss. Again. This episode is brought to you by leadercast now. Visit leadercast nowcom to learn how you can access hundreds of short videos from leadership experts, here's and speakers from our world famous leadercast events. Please share, rate and review this podcast so leaders like yourself can join in the learning. If you liked what you heard today, check out our previous episodes and subscribe so you never miss the latest and we will see you again next time for another episode of the leadercast podcast. Thanks for tuning in to the leader cast podcast. To ensure that you never miss an episode, subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player.

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