May 2010Vol 3, Issue 5
Creative Coaching Group
 the Creative Coaching Group newsletter


Jan CarleySuccess - what does it mean to you? Money, fame, gold medals, happiness, recognition, peace?  For me, it has been a month of "success", if I am to use any of my previously-held definitions. 
There was a successful keynote speech at a conference, an exciting month of client growth, a first place finish for both the quartet I coached (Over the Moon), and the small chorus I coached (Alberta Heartland) at the Western Canada a cappella singing competition, and for me personally, another gold medal singing with and coaching Vancouver's Lions Gate Chorus. 
As the ribbons were being handed out at the singing competition, and on the heels of a conference that got me questioning my previous views of success, I began to reflect. Surely every person who spent the time and effort to be on that stage was as successful as those receiving the blue ribbons? Did success mean winning? Could it mean something else? What were the true measures of success?  I discuss this further in my blog. I welcome your comments!
Here's to redefining success for ourselves!
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Jan Carley,
Certified Executive Coach and CEO of Creative Coaching Group
Feature Article: 5 Keys to Redefine your Meaning of Success
Rocky Mountain backdrop I was recently keynote speaker and emcee at the Western Canada Professional Coaching Conference in beautiful Canmore, AB with the Rocky Mountains providing an incredibly inspirational backdrop. The theme of the conference was "Redefining Success".

My very old dog-eared orange Winston Canadian dictionary with "pictures" beside some of the words describes success as being "the favourable end or result of an undertaking: the gaining of wealth, fame etc." Somehow, my 1960 Winston dictionary definition felt oddly outdated.  

Although all of the speakers at the conference provocatively challenged our ideas of what success meant, closing keynote speaker Robert Holden brought the most compelling arguments to the table. In his book "Success Intelligence", he digs to the heart of how to enjoy real, soulful success while living in this manically busy world of overwhelm. He describes his philosophy: "If your definition of success does not include love, get another definition.  Success is not about driving yourself harder; it is about letting go of what blocks your heart."  


Fueled by the ultra-pure Rocky Mountain air, I pondered his words and began to brainstorm and redefine my own new dictionary definition of success. What could happen if you began to redefine success for yourself starting from the place of  what is real for you, what is important and what you love? How might the focus of your life change? 






Robert Holden says that "success starts with showing up."   Rather than referring to your physical presence being somewhere, I am pretty sure he was talking about being mentally, emotionally and spiritually present. Being in the moment. Living the now.    



Self-knowledge and self-awareness is key to discovering authentic success.  Focus on the "BEING". Most of us spend our lives DOING, because we think that if we DO, then we will HAVE and then we will BE (happy, peaceful, whatever). Notice what happens when you reverse the order, and instead, you simply BE, then you will DO, then you will HAVE.  Start with yourself - be clear, focused, present and always yourself. Master the BE of success. Success is the art of being who you already are.
What are your strengths, your gifts? What do you bring to this world?  What qualities do you love most about yourself? How do you enjoy using those qualities as you interact in the world?
Instead of thinking about a specific job, or your mind to think on a larger scale.  Do you like to use your gifts to teach people?  Inspire them? Support them? Make them laugh? Help them?  Your answers will be your big clue to what success means for you.  

Holden talks about the block of "busyness"...and our new illness of "competitive busyness". For example, you got 109 emails after being out of the office for a day,  I got 175.  You wonder what is wrong with you - why did you only get 109 emails?  The purpose of your life is not to be as busy as possible. Busyness isn't success, it is not our purpose, it has no value.  A moving target never gets hit. What might happen if busyness ceased to be a measure of success? If you stopped your relentless busyness? If you just said stop?

A gratitude attitude gives direct access to your success, and are big clues to discovering what success in your life means to you.  Start giving thanks today - make it your favourite new habit. "Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peach for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow." - Melodie Beattie  

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Lightbulb of the Month
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Ask yourself:  "Am I the sort of person who lights up a room more when I walk in, or when I walk out?" -  Anonymous
What kind of bird are you?

Harmony from the Inside Out - Creating and Living your book coverPerformance Potential      

by Jan Carley
I tell the story in chapter 3 "Why Not? Eliminating your Limiting Beliefs", of how all of the students in my grade one class were labeled and put into groups according to how well we sang  - you were either a canary, a robin or a crow. In a recent speaking engagement, I asked the audience to self-label what bird they were according to their singing ability. In that group, there were no canaries, a handful of robins, and the rest were crows. By the end of my speech, even the crows were all singing like canaries in 4-part harmony. The positive energy felt by risking, and stepping outside the box, was transformational for many.  Our self-imposed limitations are just that, self-imposed. Imagine the possibilities that can open up for us when we take a risk.
Read Harmony from the Inside Out for practical concepts and exercises to really enhance your life potential.  Is this book just for singers? Absolutely not!  The content of the book and the exercises are easily applied principles to create key shifts and fulfillment in any part of your life.
About Jan Carley

Jan is a leader, speaker and writer and a certified executive coach credentialed with the International Coach Federation. Her com­pany, Creative Coaching Group, specializes in working with highly motivated individuals and high-achieving teams to expand their possibilities and focus their energies to achieve a leading edge of excellence. Jan's signature "harmony from the inside out" approach has shifted perspectives, and opened up possibilities for hundreds of choral singers in North America. Jan's book, Harmony from the Inside Out, encourages readers to create and live their full performance potential. Her book is on sale at 


Jan lives in Vancouver, B.C., Canada and is available for individual coaching, group coaching, workshops and speaking engagements worldwide. Call or email Jan for a complimentary phone consultation to find out how coaching could open up your life possibilities.


email: 604 873-1763



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