Category Archives: Coaching

Step away from the scale

We love the scale…or do we hate the scale?  When was the last time you got on the lb pedestal and measured your degree of chubby to skinny ratio?  Is it a digital scale?  Do you cheat on your analog scale and manipulate the calibration (I know I’m not the only one that’s done that)?  They in your bathrooms and kitchens and bedrooms.  They are a standard appliance in the home…but why?

I seriously doubt that any of us are horribly surprised when we step on a scale unless you’re competing on the Biggest Loser.

Let’s also add to the fact that there no surprises the fact that all pounds are not created equal

It is crazy cold here in the classic city this week and I’ve worn jeans to work every day.  Yesterday I wore my fat jeans. As sure as I am that you have a scale, I’m also positive you have fat jeans.  Whether they are an emergency back up pair or they are your daily wearers because you’ve split your seat in your other britches, I bought these jeans from a thrift store about a year ago because I had gone out to dinner and the jeans I wore did not survive dessert.  They were baggy and a nice cut and served their purpose well.  Yesterday…they swallowed me.

Today I put my skinny jeans on.  The same jeans that didn’t survive the Applebee’s adventure that stimulated buying the fat jeans.  I’m also fairly certain that you have some skinny jeans in your closet somewhere.  You can aaaaaalllllllllllmoooooooooossssssssssstttttttttttt button them, but after you suck it all in, it just doesn’t work well.  They aren’t quite cool enough to be hipster skinny jeans, but you love them and you want to one day slide your donk back in them.  My skinny jeans are now loose.

There is so much I’ve learned since the original fast.  I’ve always heard that the scale is not your only indicator…I just didn’t believe it.  I was chasing that same 10 pounds I’ve gained and lost for the past 5 years (and really it is about 10 pounds I keep losing and 20 pounds I keep gaining).  I’m just living now.  I’m trying to make better choices and be more active.  So go step on the scale…yep waiting…write down the number and then go get on a treadmill or eat a salad or make some juice or lift a weight.  Keep doing it a few weeks and months and then before you get back on the scale go pull out those skinny jeans and see how far you’ve come.

Ciao

SK

3.0 FAQ’s

Tomorrow I will embark on my third 10-day juice fast.  The first one was on a dare and the second one I experimented.  I am totally excited beyond belief for this one.  So on the eve of this fast I figured I’d answer the most asked questions from the first two.  These are simply my opinions and observations from my experiences, your mileage may vary.

Don’t you get hungry?

This was my biggest fear going into the first one.  I was probably knocking back 3000 calories a day with regularity and now I was going to go down to only about 1000 calories and none of them are food.  The first fast we did 8 sixteen ounce juices a day for the first three days.  We wanted to make sure that we had enough coming in so we were “full”.  128 ounces of fruit and vegetable juices combined with at least 128 ounces of water on top of it, kept me more than full.  The hungry side of it was really all in my head and after the second day I never experienced feeling hungry.  The second fast I only had 4 to 6 twelve ounce juices per day.  The residual effects from the first fast was my tummy contracting and my brain getting on board with my body.

What are the withdrawals?

I watched a lot of information and read a lot of information prior to fast 1.0.  The consensus is that the first three days are HORRIBLE.  Mine really weren’t that bad, but I also had weened myself off of caffeine and most sugar and bread prior to starting the fast.  The friends that I’ve had do it with me have had some headaches and lack of energy but mostly it has been mild.  I would seriously recommend easing into a fast by backing off of the bad stuff in your diet.  When I took myself off of caffeine my headaches were horrible and I didn’t sleep well at all for a week before the fog cleared.

Isn’t it expensive?

We budgeted $10/day/person on the first fast and we had three adults participating.  After the fast, when I started making my own juices, I was WAY OVER that amount when doing my first few supplemental juices.  I also had no idea how to buy produce, how long things lasted, and what things I liked together.  The second fast there were two adults participating and we spent about $8/day/person as well.  I anticipate this fast being even more frugal because we have continued juicing and have frozen supplies and fruits in bulk currently.  If you go to your local juice bar, a ten day fast will cost you hundreds of dollars.  If you buy all organic it will quickly increase your investment.  I’m actually tracking my recipes and will be making “how I do it” available for everyone following fast 3.0.

Don’t you stay in the bathroom?

Without going into the land of TMI, some folks do and some folks don’t.  Juicing 1.0 nothing changed aside from having to pee all the time.  Juicing 2.0 I had to take a laxative about halfway through to get things moving.  I’ve know and heard of some people that make large TP investments during a fast and some folks that have to constantly get things moving.  Your body is very efficient and you should listen to it and take care of it.  If you need to go, go…if you haven’t been going; get it moving.

Do you really just have juice?

Yes that is all the food I consume.  I do chew gum to satiate the need to chew something.  If you have to eat something, it should be raw and unprocessed.  Basically you could snack on the same stuff you’re putting in the juicer if you just have to eat something.  It is only ten days though, if I can do it…anyone can.

Why can’t you just eat the fruits and veggies?

When was the last time you ate half a pineapple, two apples, and a handful of grapes in one sitting…Go ahead, I’ll wait

Yeah, never.

Even if you love fruits and veggies, you can’t consume them in the volume and ease as you can when they are in a juiced form.  I don’t like fruits and veggies, so this is the ultimate in good-for-you fast food.

Do you lose a lot of weight?

The first fast I lost like 13 pounds and the second one I lost about 8.  For 2.0 I purposely didn’t exercise as much, I think that contributed to the slower loss.

I’m so happy that I tried the first fast.  Not only did I lose a lot of weight and really kickstart my working out and health journey that I’m on, but it changed my perspective and relationship with food.  The inbox is open, if you want to know anything else hit me with a comment or email me: stevieking@gmail.com.

Ciao

SK

Are you called?

Typically people are “called”into ministry.  I don’t know if God actually dials their number or if he sends a postcard.  Apparently people wait to get that call to know they are supposed to go into professional religion.

What about the rest of us?

Do fireman get a visit from their heavenly father in a flake retardant suit?

I believe that God gives us all gifts.  Sometimes it’s cool stuff like singing or hitting a baseball and sometimes it’s biting stuff like proofreading and breast feeding.  We don’t ask for these gifts they are just in our DNA.  We see our children and their gifts, but how hard is it to see our own gifts?

The fact is your gift probably isn’t flipping burgers, answering the phone, or digging ditches (if it is, that’s not your only gift), but we all like to eat and sleep indoors.  So for eight plus hours a day we work at non gifted jobs.  I can’t imagine that’s very fulfilling.  I know it’s not enough in my life and I love my job.
Another belief of mine is that the human spirit is “called” to find the body behind the calling voice.  In essence answering the question of what is my thing or what’s my calling?  I think those dreams are what wake us up hard days.  No one oversleep a calling, but we’ll snooze a forklift shift several times.

If you know me, I love to talk.  If you really know me, you know I love to public speak.  If you are inside my brain you know that I believe that’s my calling.  I still don’t know how or when, but one day I’ll be one of those guys on a book cover.

Dream big…You can only jump as high as you set the bar.

Ciao

SK

Flying high!

There are few things quite as awesome as coming off the platform.  Tonight was a good night.  Preparing, practicing, and delivering a good speech is an amazing process.  Sometimes it goes well and sometimes its just ok.  There are no guarantees.  Sometimes an audience gets your humor and sometimes they don’t.  Stories that hot home with one group fall on deaf ears at another locations.  As a science it is inexact at best.

I put the work in though, with no guarantees that it will work out.  Every once in a while though I hit a home run.  So I’ll just enjoy the trip around the bases.  And I’ll try to remember this the next time it’s not too good.

 

Ciao

 

SK

You gotta have heart

Max effort!  As a coach, a manager, a parent, or a partner, one of the best compliments you can get of your leadership is having your people give you maximum effort.  Some inspire us by their effort while others choose to lead with praise and others push your buttons.  Some of us are lucky to always be able to go max effort on everything (that is not me 😉 ).

Going into a sloppy mess with your friends

We opened our football season officially this weekend.  Mother nature was not really cooperating as she sent an absolute monsoon midday that for a period of an hour canceled our game do to the rain and lightning.  But the skies eventually parted and we got back on the schedule.  Because of the rain and lightning our 7:20 game didn’t start until almost 9 and the field was an absolute mud pit.

The team we played was bigger, stronger, and faster than our boys.  The previous year on opening day this same squad manhandled our boys.  What happened in the next hour was simply amazing to watch.

We started great and were up 12-0 very early and absolutely dominating on defense.  The other team was able to find a chink in our armor and climbed back into the game to make it 12-7 at halftime.  We proceeded to slug it out with the in the second half and eventually won by that same 12-7 score.  The remarkable thing about watching this game was the effort those kids gave.  They kept fighting and fighting and fighting.  And every time we needed a play it was someone different selling out and putting their 60 lb bodies on the line.  It was just amazing to see.

It got me to thinking if the team I work with has that same kind of heart.  Is everyone selling out every day to make something happen?  Now of course work is a lot different from playing a kids game.  And it is for 40 hours a week and not 3 hours on a Saturday.  But  I know that I could get a little closer to my kids effort than the effort that I give on a random Tuesday.

That's a great group of kidsSo now we are 1-0.  Now I am thinking about if I can be win tomorrow at work.  Just as a test what if I give the same effort that our QB gave last night and a test to see what it would be like if my team at work was as excited about a sale or a service call as the kids were last night for getting a first down.  It is a little naive to look at work the same way I look at a pee wee football game…or is it?

Ciao

SK

Content is King!

I love watching speeches!

I watch comedians perform and I’m laughing but I am enjoying a speech.  I watch the news thinking about how they are delivering their message.  I listen at elementary school functions to the facilitator and think about how we they can make it better.  I think about the post game speech I make to my son’s football team and how I can communicate more effectively to them.

Delivery is important.

Phrasing is vital.

Content is king.

If you don’t have something to say, it doesn’t matter how well you say it.  As much as we pick apart the skill a speaker may have at the end of the day it is very subjective.  Many of the biggest name speakers in the world have a style that I don’t care for and I would like them to change but I still sit and listen to their messages because of what they have to say.  And that is why most of us listen to a speaker.

The parents of the kids on my team don’t really care about body language, vocal variety, and phrasing.  They want to know what time practice is and what equipment they need to purchase for their kids.  Even if we can’t agree on President Obama’s politics, he is universally considered a polished speaker and communicator.  But as a citizen, we are much more concerned with his content.  It is important to work on your delivery and help your audience by not distracting them with poor mechanics, but at the end of the day you must have good content.

So over the next few weeks I am going to focus on content.  How I generate it; how I interpret it, and what you can do to generate better content.  Hopefully this process will help me focus on finding better content for programs I am working on.  More importantly I hope that you will be able to have better content for your discussions with your children and the presentation you have to deliver to a big client.

So here is a quick preview of generating content…

The group you are speaking to is the end-user of your content, NOT YOU

Your target audience doesn’t really care about how your speech is going to effect your life. They are interested in how what you have to say will affect them.  So just because you like your speech doesn’t mean it will have any effect on your target audience.  Think about how THEY can use your information and how you can give something from you to them that will help improve your life.

Build your content to help your end-user!

Ciao

SK

Contest Season

Now that football is over with, I can move my sporting interests on to the other big thing in my life…

World Championship of Public Speaking

or

The 2010 Toastmaster’s International Speech Contest

The road has started to the international convention in August where one person will be crowned as the best for this year. Now this year I will not be competing, so I will be watching this years contest from the coaches seat.

I have the pleasure of working with a good friend that helped me a lot last year as he winds his way through the season. He delivered a very topical, humorous, and touching speech about our addiction to texting, tweeting, and smartphones in general. Now I know that non of you have ever texted in church, updated your Facebook status in the potty, or tweeted while waiting in line at the grocery but the fact is many Americans do and the art of communication is being lost.

Watching the contest from this seat is totally different. In some ways it is better and in some it is MUCH worse. One of the greatest things about being a toastmaster is learning to give effective evaluation of speeches. To my knowledge I feel as though it is the best way for someone to learn how to give feedback on someones presentation and it is a skill that an active attendee of meetings could get a chance to do on a monthly basis.

That evaluation practice is the foundation for coaching. Now, if you google “speech coach” you will find countless websites, blogs, products, videos, and face men for what basically stacks up to being people who are giving evaluations of speeches and oral presentations. I have several friends that are part of this google search and they are very skilled at what they do.

  • They can polish an accomplished speaker
  • They can help ceo’s craft stockholder presentations
  • They can help ministers improve and expand their ability to reach their congregation
  • They can help a virtual novice overcome jitters as they deliver their first proposal
  • They can help a sales manager perfect her ability to demo a product

It is a cool job!

So now I get to play “pretend speech coach” and try to help my friend get as far or farther than I did last year.  So how am I going to do it.

One of the biggest lessons I learned last year is to be myself.  I am not an expert in grammar, staging, speech writing, or visual aids.  What I am is that I am as good as anyone I have ever seen with vocal variety and pretty good with my use of body language.  Now, I have some skill in all the other areas but when it comes down to how I can help him the most is to help refine his already strong natural abilities in my two areas of expertise.

The other thing I learned last year was really how to listen to a speech.  Those that were around me will tell you that I listened to countless speeches.  In the beginning I just put them into the good or bad territory.  Which basically was, do I like it or don’t I.  As the year progressed I became a more critical listener.  Looking for both strength and weakness in every presentation I watched.  As I became more critical I also became more open to the grey area that existed between good and bad and eventually worked to a point where I filed everything I heard in the box of “good and how can I learn from it?”.

I hope the results tonight are in our favor and I can keep learning how to coach someone.  And even if it doesn’t I’ll still go to the contests and still watch as people get better and better.  And maybe, just maybe, one day I’ll pull a Brett Farve and unretire and put my hat back into the contest circle.

Ciao

SK

“A perfect opportunity”

MonaVie

Quixtar

Ingnite

The national company

Q:  What do these things all have in common?

A:  Someone has offered me all these “opportunities” in the last calendar year.

For those of you that know me you know that I like to talk.  And with that talking comes a lot of friends.  I know a lot of people from all over the place and I love meeting new ones.  People are FASCINATING!  One of the byproducts of my natural “chatty-cathy doll” syndrome is I am often a target for network marketers (and life insurance companies too).  I have the one resource that network marketers covet and that is friends and I would really like to keep these people as my friends and not make every contact a “sales call”.  But the latest offer got me to thinking about my opportunity and my resources.

Being that I am still searching for full-time work, getting a lot of “no-fee” speaking engagements, and generally not contributing much to the gross national product, I lose sight sometimes of the opportunities that I have.  Lemons and lemonade get old after a while, but it is always a combination that works.

Because of the time that I had after loosing my job I was able to really focus on the speech contest-Lemonade

Because I am flexible with my time I get to get my son off the bus from school-Lemonade

Because I have developed an ability on the platform I am getting invited to do more speaking-Lemonade

These are all opportunities that have presented themselves BECAUSE I don’t have a “normal” job.  Opportunities exist everywhere, everyday.  And a lot of those opportunities are there because of something that does not appear to be positive.  We all have opportunities around us that are not being realized and utilized.

The earth is overflowing with natural resources and so are you.  In my world I have faith, a supportive and loving family, my natural gift of gab, and 1100 Facebook friends. Just like mother nature provides the fuels and food to keep this amazing planet spinning, my resources keep my tank on full and keep me moving forward.  My grandmother used to always tell me to count my blessings and in the world, in this economy we should all take a minute to do so more often than we do.

I am sure that in the next three or four months, someone will offer me another “perfect opportunity”.  I always let the marketer finish their phone call before I politely let them know that I am not interested.  But in the time between here and there I need to take a close look at the “perfect opportunity” that already exists in my own back yard.  I am blessed beyond words, I just have to follow granny’s advise more often to realize it.

Ciao

SK

It’s the journey right?

I want

I need

I deserve

I earned

I won

All solutions and answers based on the efforts that you have put in.  These are the rewards for studying for a test, preparing for a race, or working on an assignment.  As Americans, though, we really want the prize.

When our neighbor gets a new TV, we are happy but secretly jealous.

When your rival wins the game, you respect it but secretly feel like you gave it away

We want the reward and sometimes we forget about the work that it took to even be considered for the reward.

In the last week I have given three speeches.  I have never given that many different speeches ever.  From everything I have read and everything I have heard, this is how it all starts.  But I want the reward; and I wouldn’t mind having it now.  I want someone to “hire” me rather than “invite” me to do a speech.  But then I stop and think about the speeches and see why I have to walk through the valley in order to reach the summit.

Speech 1

I was asked to speak in honor of my high school band director.  He was more than a teacher to me and was really a father figure and a huge influence on my life.  I was honored to be invited and even more honored to be asked to speak.  I had never been asked to do something like this and it was hard.  Talking about someone you really care about challenges your abilities as a speaker to maintain control but still show the emotions you feel.  The first few drafts of the speech were soaked in tears, I just couldn’t deliver it.  I asked some advice from another speaker and he helped me tremendously.  In the end, the speech went off well.  I was a little too loud on my top end volume but it was funny, people enjoyed it, and it honored my friend.

Speech 2

This was a toastmasters club speech.  This is also the first speech I have given in 2009 that wasn’t in preparation for a contest.  I had to dig deep to even find a manual I could work from.  Because I had spent time working on speech 1, I was late in preparing for speech 2.  I found myself stuck between speeches that were too difficult to prepare for and projects I really didn’t want to do (I thought about just delivering speech 1, but I wanted a challenge).  I eventually ended up working from the entertaining speaker manual and doing project 3 “Make them laugh”.  Most of my speeches have elements of humor in them, but when being forced to be funny it is quite a challenge.  I ended up crafting a speech about the church I grew up in and some of the silly things that I saw as a child.  It required me to be very vivid in my descriptions without running through all the details too fast.  It also required me to take some risks of being a little edgy without offending anyone.  The end result was funny.  It really felt good to achieve my task and at the end of the speech I made sure to leave them with something to chew on other than just jokes.

Speech 3

I have been asked to participate in a speakers group to promote the school district that my son is in and the district that I grew up in.  Yet again another great honor.  We will get to be out in the community and give highlights of our childhood and let people know about the good things that are going on in the community.  For this week, the districts PR director wanted to see what we were going to say.  I really didn’t prepare much for this at all.  I had made some notes and thought about some stories I wanted to share, but I had gone through it only a couple of times a few weeks prior.  My fellow speakers were very prepared and had typewritten and well organized presentations.  I had a story about my son saying the “F” word and playing off that one incident.  One thing I have found over the last three years is that all my speeches have a lot of emotion.  This was no different.  In an audience of three I could see the tears developing and the smiles immediately after.  I again walked the edge with some of my content, but I’m learning that is my style.  I have to challenge your thinking and maybe even make you worry about where I’m going before I give you the reward.  It was also good to be able to speak to people that had never heard me speak and still be able to connect with them.

So of course I hope that I have an email in my inbox right now asking me to come speak at someone’s conference and asking what my fee is.  But I didn’t join toastmasters and I don’t like speaking just because one day I may make a living at it.  I like that process of putting together a speech.  I like practicing it in my living room in front of my dogs.  I like the fact that my son comes around the corner to see what I’m talking about.  I like looking into people’s eyes and knowing that they understand.  It is all those things and more.  At some point I’ll get paid (or at least I hope so) but that won’t add or subtract from the joy that I feel in doing the one thing that I do best.

Journey-1

vs

Destination-0

SK

What do you love?

Let’s assume the obvious.   We all love:

Family

Friends

Puppies

Vacation

Babies

and

Big Macs

Now that we have pulled back the obvious list, what’s left?

What really gets inside your heart and moves you to action?

What makes you smile?

For me, one of the things I really love is being a youth coach.  And when my son started playing sports I had no desire to coach.  I wanted to be involved.  I wanted to be at every practice but I never wanted to be the guy.  It started with helping with baseball.

I grew up playing baseball and Seaver seemed to have some natural ability in the sport and t-ball is like cat herding, you need a lot of hands to keep them under control.  Somewhere in the middle of that season, I fell in love with those kids.  I loved watching them get better, I loved being there when they did something new,  and I just loved being a big kid with them.  It was awesome.

As fun as baseball was, is, and will continue to be; for me it pails in comparison to football.

Last summer Seaver mentioned that he wanted to play football and I was concerned.  I thought he was too little and too young.  We knew he had an opportunity to play football with some of his friends and decided to give it a shot.  The first few weeks was very difficult.  But about a week before the first game, it started to get fun.  And the more fun it got for him, the more involved I became.  I never really was a formal “coach” last season, but I was at almost every practice, was on the sidelines, and got to know all those kids and watch them grow and get better.

This year I was much more involved with baseball and I have the pleasure of being the head coach for our football team this year.  And it is far from an easy task.  One parent sent me an email recently thanking me for my involvement and dedication to the kids.  As I was reading it all I could think about was, “What else would I be doing?”.  Most of my great male role models growing up were my coaches.  I am lucky that all my kids have fathers involved in their lives but I learned first hand last year how influential a coach can be on a  young child and I take that responsibility seriously.

As much as I want to win, that is not what is important.  I get the privilege of teaching these young men a great game and watching them grow up before my eyes.  They learn respect, teamwork, discipline, and how to deal with adversity.  Football teaches so many life lessons for both them and me.

Find something you love.  Coaching, needlepoint, serving the homeless, landscaping, or surfing.

Find something that lights your fire and that you can’t wait for the next time you can do it

Find something that you can tell your friends and family about and it lights you up every time you talk about it.

Find something you love and pour your heart into it.

And don’t forget when you find that something, you also need to pour that same kind of love into the list of things that we all love.

Ciao

SK