Have you ever wondered how we go about making changes in our lives? What factors motivate us and which deter us?  Of the motivating factors why and how do they motivate us and the same question can be asked about the barriers or deterrents for making these changes. I have found that the best starting place  is when I am given a contextual framework or model that helps me understand where I am currently, provides me with valuable, practical information that will enhance my understanding of my current position and paints me a picture that resonates and therefore reflects where I want to be.

Let me start by providing you with a perfect example of how a contextual framework or model can illuminate your path to where you may want to go.  Steve Lowell is the Master of Models,  with the qualifications and experience that elevates him into a Category of One, or The One (& only one) to guide you on your path to enhancing your reputation in your field or business.

Speaking all over the world, including New Zealand, Singapore, Canada and the United States about the model he’s created called “The Repumeter”. The Repumeter takes you from being one of many within your field or business to the one person or service who must be seen when it comes to x – you can fill in the blanks.

For my business x would equal, the one business in financial services to consult when you receive an inheritance and/or if you want to have an impact within your community or the world at large by directing some of your money to charitable gifts and philanthropy.

Steve’s Repumeter resonates because his model helps guide you through a process that provides you with information whereby you can see exactly where you are, where you want to be and how to get there.

Who doesn’t want to be The One Business Coach or Speaker or Financial Advisor to address a particular need or to provide the solution to a real or perceived problem.

For example, Steve identifies that when anyone starts out in their business they are in what he calls the competitive space, whereby you are one of many and haven’t yet distinguished yourself in any particular way in order to stand out in the crowd. The competitive space is very crowded, not a great place to be and we all start there.  We can then move on to beginning to distinguish ourselves from others by building our brand, providing exemplary service so we start to stand out in the crowd.  In order to move all the way over to the best place possible when it comes to the reputation you are building in your business Steve, as your Guide walks you through how to get there and stay there. If you want to learn more I would encourage you to go to his website www.stevelowell.mykajabi.com or check out the combined expertise of Jayne and Steve here www.sjtrainingsolutions.com I can guarantee you, you’ll be glad you did.

There is another concept that goes hand in hand with using a model to help us understand where we currently reside in our businesses (this can also apply to us personally), the challenges we are facing (the problems we are encountering) and how best to address these hurdles.  Going through this process takes us to a whole new place that is enormously beneficial, for both us and the people we are serving.

This concept was developed by Dr. William Miller and I have used his model throughout my 40 year career in helping others make changes in their lives. This model for change recognizes 2 key factors that may come as a surprise to you and yet resonate profoundly.

One is that there is always a certain amount of ambivalence when it comes to making changes in our lives, including within our businesses! This mindset must be addressed in a way that encourages & supports us while recognizing and addressing the thoughts that are getting in the way of making these changes.

Dr. Miller’s model looks at change from the perspective of ultimately taking action or engaging in a behaviour that you are seeking that will ultimately support you in your life or work goals.

Let’s look at this concept within Steve’s Reputmeter! Ultimately as a business owner we want to be in a place where we are being sought out for our expertise and expert insights, rising above the pact if you will.  Part of this process requires knowing what steps we need to take in order to get there.

As with most models labels help.

Dr. Miller’s motivational model for change starts with precontemplation (simply put, “haven’t thought about it”), contemplation (either have thought about it or are thinking about it now) followed by action, ie. engaging in the activities or behaviours that support you in what you are wanting to achieve.

Back to Steve’s Reputmeter model, he acknowledges we are all in the pre contemplation stage, how do I know that? Because we haven’t really thought about our reputation, where or how we’re positioned in our respective fields, unless of course we’ve seen Steve’s Repumeter presentation. By providing us with valuable insights Steve guides us from pre contemplation to contemplation (whereby we are now thinking about our reputation) and this creates our desire to take action, as we want to become The One.

Here’s the key to successfully making change in our lives. According to Dr. Miller’s motivational model, different strategies and approaches are needed depending on what stage you’re in. With the pre contemplation stage most of us simply need information that will help motivate us to start thinking about or contemplating our current perspective or behaviours.

The most exciting part of this model for me, as an agent of change and a Leader in Philanthropic and Inheritance Planning,  are the strategies that will take you from contemplation to action.

Let’s review an earlier comment that recognizes most of us are inherently ambivalent about taking action. In other words, there are incentives and barriers to us taking any action. What is required is the insight and ability to identify and address 2 things. One is the barriers to making changes and the other is the change seeking side of the equation.  It’s like a scale (see below).

What we need to do is; identify and come up with strategies to take weights off the barrier/challenges side of the scale while putting more weights on the change seeking side with strategies that can activate, support and encourage us to take these next steps for change to occur.

I find this particularly illuminating as too often when we are thinking about making a change we either forget or hope to simply jump over the barriers and it’s really not that simple. We need to identify and address the challenges that are getting in the way of us taking action.

This model or contextual framework helps us recognize the importance of the stages we go through and the need for different approaches or strategies based on the stage we’re in.

Like Steve Lowell’s model The Repumeter, he guides us through the stages of precontemplation (have you thought about; your reputation within your own field and business, how your business is positioned and how to “stand out” above the crowd?) to contemplation (have you also considered the mindset and skills necessary to begin addressing the barriers so you can be outstanding in your field? What about how you can capitalize on the expert insights you’ve garnered over the years?) and finally what steps do you need to take in order to be The One?!

Without a model or conceptual framework we can be left floundering around without a clear vision for ourselves, and our businesses. With a model we can even consider how we want to change the world for the better, the impact we’d like to have, which can be a part of our legacy.

Rather than getting stuck in either precontemplation or contemplation, we now have valuable tools that will address how you can make changes in your life and business, taking you from one place to another.

Having a model for change can absolutely positively impact you and your life. I will show you how, in my next article.


Key Points to Consider:

  1. When it comes to motivation there are factors that support us in taking action and other factors that get in the way of us taking action
  2. Contextual Frameworks or a Model can help us understand where we are and where we want to be
  3. Within a specific framework we can map out our plan to get from Point A to Point B and address the barriers that can get in our way, on this journey
  4. A certain amount of ambivalence is a given and this mindset can be explored with specifically designed strategies
  5. Different approaches and strategies are needed depending on what stage you’re at when it comes to your thinking
  6. Having never or rarely thought about how charitable giving or philanthropy would fit into your life is an example of the first stage. The second one is, you have thought about it and haven’t yet done anything about it. These two stages, when the appropriate strategies are used will lead to taking action – ultimately the goal is to have a giving plan that fits with your life, values and overall financial and life goals.

Questions to Ponder:

  1. Where you are in these stages – haven’t thought about it (HTAI), thought about it (TAI), or have already taken some action when it comes to charitable & philanthropic giving?
  2. What are the factors that both motivate and keep you from making any type of change in your life – ie taking action? What tends to get in the way of you making those changes, what has gone wrong in the past and how might you address that barrier/challenge?
  3. How does your mindset (ie the stories you tell yourself) factor into this process? What aspects of your mindset support you and which deter you?
  4. What charities do you particularly like and why? Which ones don’t you like and why not?
  5. What thought have you given to what you want your legacy to be – how do you want to be remembered?

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