August 28, 2018
Episode #42 – Alan Cahn – Pillars Of Performance
“Pay attention to your intention… make sure there’s a good balance between your head and your heart… practice, practice, practice…” – Alan Cahn
Over the past 40 years Alan Cahn has gained international experience as a manager, entrepreneur, trainer, executive coach and much more. Alan’s track record for being a catalyst in driving success for his clients is extensive and the level of support and coaching he provides is as diverse as his list of clients.
It’s said that the quality of your life is determined by the quality of the questions you ask, along with your willingness to hear answers you may not like. With uncanny precision Alan has a gift for asking questions that get to the heart of the answers for his clients. Whether personally or professionally, individually or in a team environment, Alan is known for driving breakthrough results for the people and teams he works with who are committed to elevating their game.
Alan has a unique talent for facilitating context-shifting interactions, helping him deliver on his commitment to optimize performance for leaders, teams and the professional fulfillment they seek. Along with all of that he brings a great deal of laughter and joy to the process!
- Show Notes
- [01:10] A brief introduction to Alan Cahn – third time charmer!
- [03:50] The interview trifecta: Alan Cahn revisits The Everyday Millionaire by popular demand.
- [05:04] Purpose-Operating System-Intention. Alan keeps it simple: first let’s get to the source of things, then what work is there to do?
- [07:55] Alan and Patrick reflect on the way we look forward at our lives and consider the future, whether we are 28 or 60.
- [10:36] The four pillars: revisiting this conversation from Episode 23, Alan starts by explaining the origin of the pillars upon which he lives his life before he digs in to what they are.
- [12:41] Pillar #1: Human beings are not things with properties. Alan explores how we often identify ourselves as being our thoughts, our views, our feelings, our history and our acquisitions rather than simply being the observer of all these things.
- [19:43] Unattachment to create space for possibility.
- [20:24] Applying Pillar #1 to our lives in a practical way to create possibility and choice.
- [24:23] A summary of Pillar #1 and an invitation to listeners to submit any questions from this podcast to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- [25:50] Pillar #2: Human beings do not have direct access to reality; it’s always filtered through our perceptions.
- [27:29] Alan and Patrick simplify the concept of Pillar #2 to discuss how our belief systems (B.S.), the way we were raised and the values we adopted from others, create that filter through which we perceive reality.
- [29:20] The work of identifying our prejudices and blind spots and how a coach or advisor can help us to see what they are and how they shape our behaviour.
- [31:49] Alan talks about how he operates as a coach and the role of a coach.
- [33:45] Alan’s shares one of his B.S. (belief systems) from a young age and how he created defenses around that.
- [35:05] Patrick and Alan take a look at the responsibility we have to own how we’re showing up and consider what we’re doing to contribute to people perceiving us in a way we’d rather not be perceived.
- [37:44] Alan discusses what he thinks makes a great coach, great.
- [41:10] Alan relates the concept of Pillar #2 for listeners who are in management.
- [43:08] Alan shares a conversation he had which illustrates the importance of releasing our own perspective, so we can embrace a broader perspective to achieve a well-rounded outcome.
- [44:30] Know thyself. The foundation of being the best we can be in all aspects of life.
- [45:56] Final words on Pillar #2: don’t believe everything you think.
- [46:44] Pillar #3: Our brains add a narrative to everything that happens, even when we’re not present to what happened. Alan explains how our brain becmes conditioned to patterns and tells stories about something even when we’re not aware of it.
- [49:21] Patrick revisits work from Dr. Paul Stoltz: C.O.R.E. – Control. Own. Reach. Endurance. How is it running your life or how are you working to master it?
- [51:05] Alan provides an example from his life to further illustrate C.O.R.E. combined with Pillar #3.
- [53:04] Consider learning the way you’re designed, be responsible for it and the results you’re producing so you have more of an influence on your experience of being alive. This may include intergenerational trauma.
- [56:09] The far-reaching ripple effect that occurs when we work on ourselves. Alan advises to slow things down long enough, so we can make a choice to take responsibility for our calling and purpose. What occurs when we start the journey, is more choice.
- [59:25] Alan summarizes this concept by sharing his daily practice around Pillar #3.
- [60:57] Summarizing the first three pillars before moving to #4.
- [61:14] Pillar #4: It’s possible to live life as one’s word. Alan’s word is his calling and his calling is: may all hearts be full, may all beings be enlightened. Being mindful and conscious of being true to who you are.
- [63:06] Patrick shares his revised calling with all his listeners.
- [64:17] Alan addresses this analytical question: how do you know you’ve built your life on these four pillars and you’re really honouring them? Teaser: flow.
- [66:25] Patrick raises another significant question: how do we know when we’re trying to “force a river” and drive an outcome vs. letting it flow?
- [69:21] Alan explains a bit about an upcoming program he is co-leading: The Performance Clinic. Gain tools to impact your own performance and be better able to coach others, to improve their performance.
- [71:26] Digging deeper to relate to yourself from the view that you are the source of your performance and your results.
- [73:21] Alan shares he and his co-leaders’ working definition of performance.
- [75:11] Who would be interested in attending The Performance Clinic? Hint: likely anyone listening to this podcast and others like you!
- [78:01] Recommended reading from Alan Cahn before he heads off for vacation.
- [79:22] Alan’s three gifts of guidance: pay attention to your intention; make sure there’s a good balance between your head and your heart; practice.
- [80:37] Recapping the definition of performance, practically applying intention and adding “heartfulness” alongside mindfulness.
- [82:40] Alan’s gratitude.
Selected Links and People Mentioned from this episode:
The Performance Clinic
Dr. Wayne Dyer
Dr. Paul Stoltz
Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love and Wisdom by Dr. Rick Hanson