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Courage: High Performance Habit

Image Above: My Brother Michael Moore, 1950-1995

“A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is brave five minutes longer.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Courage isn’t just something we muster up when we’re called on to slay dragons or play the hero. Our courage is tasked every day, and how we answer its call (or don’t) is a powerful reflection of our character.

How much courage does it take to step outside your comfort zone and change the way you think about something? How much courage is required to tell your boss or a co-worker that you disagree with the way they handled a situation? When was the last time you had a courageous conversation with someone? When was the last time you had the courage to stop playing small and step into your full, brilliant self? These are the real dragons; self-doubt, habit, and fear of the unknown.

The challenges we face come calling without much notice, and the choices we’re asked to make on the fly and in the moment...

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Influence: High Performance Habit

High performance; everyone talks about it, but what does it really look like in practice? Here is my story of Habit #5, Influence:

No man or woman is an island, though we might occasionally wish we were!   When the action or inactions of those around us frustrate us, we’re tempted to imagine that life would be easier if we were in total control - but that’s a fallacy. We need one another to accomplish our dreams – and how we influence others and are ourselves influenced is what makes our dreams reality.

            Most of us have been lucky enough to cross paths with at least one great influencer in our lives – a person whose example helped us to become better than we were before we met them. Sometimes it’s a parent or a teacher, or a great boss or a mentor who goes out of his or her way to listen and advise. But often the most powerful influencers in our lives are those who lead by example;...

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High Performance Habits 1.0

High performance; everyone talks about it, but what does it really look like in practice?

            To me, high performance can’t just be an on again/off again thing where I hit that mark, then settle back down to where I was. I need to sustain that high-functioning vibrancy over time. It doesn’t come naturally – at least, not to most people, myself included – but it can be learned, in the same way Olympic athletes build high performance habits that sustain them through grueling competition. How do High Performers train to bring their best all day, every day, to whatever they’re doing? In other words, how do they stay in the zone?

            My training with my coach Brendon Burchard taught me there are five keys to creating and maintaining high performance. In this piece, I’ll dig into the first two: Clarity and Energy.

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Notes from DC

Image above: Brian Blase, Special Assistant to the President on Healthcare Policy         

   I was in Washington D.C. recently for the winter meeting of members of the National Partnership for Hospice Innovation group. A vibrant lineup of speakers was there to share their insights on the current state of healthcare and hospice.

            One surprise speaker was Brian Blase, Special Assistant to the President on Healthcare Policy. I admit it – I was initially skeptical of this young person who I assumed could not possibly have any meaningful insights about our work of caring for the frail and dying citizens. That’s what happens sometimes when we are “experts” in our field; too often, we’re not open to new ideas or others’ points of view, because, after all, we’re the ones with the years of experience and/or education and...

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Remembering Mary

 Image above: Mary J. Labyak at the NHPCO Gala 2009

MARY J. LABYAK

August 27, 1948 - February 4, 2012

"I think hospice is the greatest single honor that has ever occurred in my life. To have the opportunity to be a part of building something that makes such a difference to society. And I think what is really important is that hospice is a dream that’s come true, and a dream that’s grown beyond all of our expectations.

In terms of values, it’s a dream that didn’t come out of academia, it didn’t come out of research, it didn’t come out of organized medicine. It was the dream of people themselves that had lost a loved one and simply wanted to reach out and see if they could make that path different for others. And it was above all about human dignity, no matter how long life was.

And I think it has grown so much not because we were smart in building it, but because we had the capacity to listen to what our patients and communities needed and to...

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Cutting the Cord

  Image above: Dr. Bill Thomas and Patti Moore

What if most of what we know about the process of growing older is wrong? What if we could free ourselves from our presumptions about aging’s inevitable decline, and by doing so come to a new, richer understanding of what our late-life years could and should be?

Visionaries are those who see how tied they are to all we “know” – all the conventional assumptions we mostly accept without examination - and choose to cut that cord, to untether themselves from those limitations, and imagine a better world. From among them spring the innovators – the mavericks who kick-start revolutions and movements that change the world. Our aging society desperately needs its visionaries and innovators to lead the way, because so much of what we accept now is simply unacceptable – especially for those of us in the Baby Boomer generation who aren’t willing to settle for less from life than we’ve had in the...

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7 Ways to Be an Exemplary Leader in 2018

 

Whether or not we make New Year’s resolutions, most of us find ourselves looking for ways to improve as the new year arrives. If your goal for 2018 is to become an exemplary leader, here are some ideas to help you get there.

1. Support your staff: Hospice work can take its toll.  When a staff member has had several deaths in a week, it has an emotional impact. Supporting one another is vital to maintaining emotional stamina. We must treat each other as we treat the patients and families we care for; with great respect, understanding and kindness. Most of all CARE.  Care about the human beings offering the service you market, and care from your heart.

2. Get out of your office and interact with staff and patients and families: I get it – there aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything you have to do as a leader. But unless you have a ground-level view of how things are working (or not) in your organization, how can you manage effectively? The...

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Finish Strong

As 2017 draws to its close most of us are going to find ourselves reflecting on the year that’s passing, and taking stock of our personal balance sheet to see how we did. Did we squander our capital – our time, our health, our relationships – or did we build on it, by following through with our good intentions and doing just a little better in some of those spheres than we had in previous years?

           Making this kind of personal reckoning can be frustrating, because our intentions so often outstrip our actions. We all want to be more mindful and more intentional – I certainly do! – but life has other plans and we’re so often caught up in dealing with what’s coming at us in the moment that we lose the clarity that the long view brings. The holidays are difficult for people, I think, because they shine a bright light on how we’ve used our time on earth in that last 365 days,...

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5 Trends to Watch in Hospice in 2018

Time to warm up the crystal ball, and kick off the annual roundup of trends to watch in hospice for 2018. Some of them are encouraging; others we’re just going to have to grin and bear. Hopefully all of them will support us in the vital work we do as a new generation of people with different needs and expectations around the end of life experience become our patients.

Here’s what I and others see coming down the pike:

 1.  How we die – and where – will continue to change. The people we served in hospice used to be (and to some extent, still are) the Greatest Generation. But now the first wave of Baby Boomers are approaching the end of life, and their needs and wants are very different than those of their generally more stoic and matter of fact parents. We’ll see increasing demand for support for living – and dying – in place, as well as experimental and alternative therapies, spirituality, and new kinds of communities as the...

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Thanks-Giving

In honor of the beautiful holiday of Thanksgiving I want to share a story about saying "thank you". Have you ever had a friend that simply made you want to be a better person just by knowing them?  Laura Carmichael was that person for me.  Ms. Laura was my role model for living a purposeful life, enjoying each day, giving back in small and large ways and always saying “Thank You”.

Laura had the corner market on writing “thank you” notes.  Her notes were legendary, no sooner had the gift been delivered, than she was at the post office with her thank you note ready to mail.  Ms. Laura probably had heavenly choirs singing each time her delicate fingers hit the typewriter keys.  She penned her notes until her hands had such a tremor that at age 101 she couldn’t write legibly so used the trusty Royal. 

For over 60 years Ms. Laura clipped the good news from the local newspaper, accomplishments by ordinary people, and sent them a...

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