How You and Your Kids Can Live Significant and Successful Lives with Aaron Walker – RFL031

How You and Your Kids Can Live Significant and Successful Lives – Episode Overview

Many people call self-help, shelf-help – books that stay on the shelves but don’t really make that much of an impact. So today we talk about PRACTICAL personal development and growth. We know that as we discover, develop and live what is best in us – something that takes practice and learning – we live a greater version of ourselves. This does two amazing things. First it helps us become better parents, and secondly, we see the value in personal development so we can then guide, support and coach our kids into THEIR greater development.

Attention and Intention

This week, my attention is on what it takes to be a great parent. My intention is to share that developing ourselves is the key to becoming our best in all we do – particularly in our parenting – is the key to teaching our kids how to live significant and successful lives.

Meet our guest Aaron Walker

Aaron Walker on successful livesAaron T Walker, founder of View From the Top, is a guide who helps men discover and develop lives of success and significance through coaching, masterminds and resources that focus on their business, personal and spiritual lives. Over many years Aaron has written hundreds of blog posts, has interviewed and been interviewed by some of today’s smartest talent and has created powerful products to help you with your productivity, understanding yourself and directing your life in ways that truly matter.

IMPORTANT Free Offer from Aaron for you!

successful lives and the view from the topAaron has created a landing page for our listeners and on it has given you free access to three of his great resources:

  1.    Your personal assessment
  2.    What do I want (how to live intentionally)
  3.    Steps to a productive day

As someone who regularly inspires others to discover and live what is best in them, these resources will help you grow in your development and be clearer about what it means to live a successful and significant life. Click here for the link to the landing page or paste this link ( into your browser. Thank you Aaron!

Episode’s Key TakeAWays

  1. Significance is about seeing more than just yourself – it is about spending energy looking out more than in.
  2. Leadership values that drive leadership behaviors are: Excellence, Integrity, Resilience and Service. Being successful and significant in life comes from developing these values in ourselves and in our kids. We can’t help but show up successful and significant in life when we develop a focus on excellence, integrity, resilience and service.
  3. Parents can learn from coaches – to encourage, inspire and lift up our kids to tap into their inner abilities and use them to make their impact and mark on the world.
  4. The world has us convinced that success comes from having more possessions.
  5. The key to success – everywhere – is the development of relationships. Regularly check in on your kids – and others – just to show your interest. This helps them feel valuable and significant. As they learn this behavior from you, they then can do it for others.
  6. Aaron shares a great story of the present parent who really tunes in and listens to his son, takes the time to answer his question and really connects. Few things have such a great impact on our kids and on the quality of our parenting as our commitment to be present and responsive to our kids.
  7. We are unique, talented and amazing people independent of our parenting. It is important for us, to be great parents, to keep working on being a great person – being the best version of ourselves.
  8. Stop telling, start asking – spend more time asking than telling your kids. As you ask, you activate their growth and thinking. You help them tune in, learn and tap into their greatest abilities. This helps them determine how to be successful in today’s world.

Some question for parents:

  1. What message do you share with your kids about what success and significance means? How are you their go-to source to help them define this than to use what the world defines?
  2. How are you intentionally supporting and uplifting your kids – what things are you doing to ensure your kids always feel significant?
  3. When was the last time you spent time on developing yourself – of ensuring you are always learning and growing – to be sure you are living a life of success and significance?
  4. When was the last time you asked your kids how you are doing as a parent – not about giving them things – but about showing them that they are valuable, important and precious to you?

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Stop and Notice Challenge

Each week we ask you to stop and notice – to develop your skill of tuning in to you and your world. This week’s stop and notice challenge is:

  1. Stop and Notice how you make your kids feel significant in your life. What needs improving?
  2. Stop and Notice what you do in your own learning and growing to help you feel significant in your own life. What investment do you make in yourself to be your best – to be able to be the best parent you can be?
  3. Stop and Notice what lessons you are sharing with your kids on how to be successful and significant in life. What values are you teaching your kids that help them focus outward as well as inward to have a balanced life?

We are our kids’ guides, support and coaches – to help them learn about themselves, learn about their world and how to build a life of success and significance. What matters most to them is feeling important, valuable and significant in our lives. Make time for them. Guide them and what they learn from you, they will use to build their lives of success and significance.

Suggested Resource:

The Path To Purpose – Helping Our Kids Find Their Calling In Life – by William Damon

Successful Lives and The Path To Purpose(Outstanding book!) Drawing on the revelatory results of a landmark study, William Damon — one of the country’s leading writers on the lives of young people, whose book Greater Expectations won the Parents’ Choice Award — brilliantly investigates the most pressing issue in the lives of youth today: why so many young people are “failing to launch” — living at home longer, lacking career motivation, struggling to make a timely transition into adulthood, and not yet finding a life pursuit that inspires them.

His groundbreaking study shows that about one-fifth of youth today are thriving — highly engaged in activities they love and developing a clear sense of what they want to do with their lives — but approximately one-fourth are still rudderless, at serious risk of never fulfilling their potential. The largest portion are teetering on the brink, in need of guidance to help them move forward: some are “dabblers” who pursue strings of disconnected interests with no real commitment; others, “dreamers” who have no realistic plans or understanding of what success will require.

What makes the difference? Damon shows that the key ingredient for the highly engaged is that they have developed a clear sense of purpose in their lives that motivates them and gives them direction. Based on in-depth interviews, he takes readers inside the minds of the disengaged and drifting kids and exposes their confusion and anxiety about what they should do with their lives. He then offers compelling portraits of the young people who are thriving and identifies the nine key factors that have made the difference for them, presenting simple but powerful methods that parents and all adults can and must employ in order to cultivate that energized sense of purpose in young people that will launch them on the path to a deeply satisfying and productive life.


Get your Kids Ready for College and Beyond with Devon Bandison, RFL017

Get your Kids Ready For College and Beyond – Episode Overview

For many parents, we are counting the moments until we can release our kids from the house and out to their own lives. It doesn’t mean we don’t love them or don’t want to spend time with them – we just know it is time that they fly. All kids need this. They need to spread their wings, find their place and move forward in their lives. And getting them to this place is a great focus of parents and the reason for this podcast.

Attention and Intention

This week, our attention is on how to prepare our kids to leave home with the intention that, when they do, they show up successful, happy and responsible in today’s world – in whatever comes next for them.

Meet our guest Devon Bandison

Devin Bandison talks about getting your kids ready for collegeDevon Bandison is a speaker, author, podcaster and inspiring figure for dads to step bolding into their roles and to show up as the leaders in their own lives. He holds a Masters in Public Administration and, over the past 15 years, has created and delivered nationally recognized community programs providing professionals, fathers, youth and families with the tools to become more effective leaders. He is known as the connector – the person who can help others connect the dots to find their way through challenges to a meaningful and purposeful life.

He is a high performance coach and speaker who is committed to individuals and organizations that want to maximize their potential in areas of leadership, productivity, fatherhood, and work-life satisfaction. Devon’s signature talk “The Most Important Question A Father Can Ask Himself” has gained national recognition and was a featured TED Talk at TEDx Boca Raton in March 2015. He is the host of the Father is Leadership Podcast.

Guest Links:

Episode’s Key TakeAWays – to help your kids be ready to move out and on with life

  1. Spend both collective and individual time with your kids to better know them. Do things as a family (collective) and make time for the all-important one-one-one (individual) time. Both share significant information about who your kids are and what they are thinking.
  2. Set up family rituals – these create grounding for kids. It also helps them see the value of creating rituals in their own lives. Rituals are more important in homes where the parents are no longer together.
  3. Modeling success behaviors is critical to help kids learn how to be when they are out and on their own – for the day or permanently away. Identify the behaviors that matter and live them. ”Your audio should match your video.”
  4. Kids who have been introduced to serving and caring for others as kids, develop a stronger and more inclusive mindset when living out on their own. Help your kids see the value of community and family service.
  5. Values of life leaders are excellence, integrity and service.
  6. Help your kids find their unique thing – their purpose, their gifts, their spark; It is up to parents to create an environment for kids to discover who they really are. This is one of the most significant things we can do for our kids – it helps them courageously move into the real world.
  7. When parents regularly acknowledge and validate their kids, they help their kids develop confidence, self-esteem and a personal sense of value.
  8. Great parents are the “guide from the side, not the sage on the stage.” Support your kids to make their own decisions, not to repeat back yours. This helps them find and appreciate their unique voice.

Some question for parents:

  1. What do your kids seem to stop and notice – what interests do they have?
  2. How do you connect with your kids to find out what they know and how are they making decisions?
  3. In what ways can you shift as a parent to being the “guide from the side” not the sage on the stage?
  4. What family rituals do you create to help your kids feel grounded and safe, so that they can develop similar rituals

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Stop and Notice Challenge

Each week we ask you to stop and notice – to develop your skill of tuning in to you and your world. This week’s stop and notice challenge is:

  1.    Stop and Notice who your child has become. They grow up quickly – have you noticed who they are now as young adults?
  2.    Stop and Notice what gets your kids fired up and inspired. Are they connecting to these areas as they move out and move on with life or to go to college?
  3.    Stop and Notice the frequency and type of contact you have once your kids have move on in life. Is it done in a way that is meaningful for both of you?
  4.    Stop and Notice the wisdom you want your kids to have when they move out and are on their own. Do they have it?

Helping our kids be ready to move on to college or into life is our primary objective – to release them to the world to find their fit and go do amazing things with and in their lives. Celebrate their movement forward. Then, fill your life with new adventures with the space their departure creates.

Suggested Resource – Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be By Frank Bruni

Resource - BruniOver the last few decades, Americans have turned college admissions into a terrifying and occasionally devastating process, preceded by test prep, tutors, all kinds of rankings, and a conviction among too many young people that their futures will be determined and their worth established by which schools say yes and which say no.

That belief is wrong. It’s cruel. And in WHERE YOU GO IS NOT WHO YOU’LL BE, Frank Bruni explains why, giving students and their parents a new perspective on this brutal, deeply flawed competition and a path out of the anxiety that it provokes.

Bruni, a bestselling author and a columnist for the New York Times (and one of my favorite authors), shows that the Ivy League has no monopoly on corner offices, governors’ mansions, or the most prestigious academic and scientific grants. Through statistics, surveys, and the stories of hugely successful people who didn’t attend the most exclusive schools, he demonstrates that many kinds of colleges-large public universities, tiny hideaways in the hinterlands-serve as ideal springboards. And he illuminates how to make the most of them. What matters in the end are a student’s efforts in and out of the classroom, not the gleam of his or her diploma.

Where you go isn’t who you’ll be. Americans need to hear that-and this indispensable manifesto says it with eloquence and respect for the real promise of higher education.

Be The Leader of Your Own Life, with John Spence, RFL12

Be The Leader of Your Own Life – Episode Overview

In this episode we get great leadership advice from nationally ranked leadership thought leader, speaker and author John Spence. John helps us understand what it means to be the leader of our own lives, and how we might be able to guide, support and coach our kids to be the leaders of their lives. We talk about how to develop and trust our own internal leadership voice, how to define and live our values daily. Leadership is not about a title – leadership is about behaviors. We all have the ability and capacity to act as the leaders of our own lives – if we choose to.

Attention and Intention

In this episode our attention is on leadership – what is it, why is it important and who is a good leader. Our intention with this conversation is define the attributes of life leaders and to help us develop these attributes in ourselves and in our kids.

Photo of John Spence in the episode "Be The Leader Of Your Own" LifeMeet our Guest John Spence

His middle name should be “leadership” because he is in the top 100 Leadership Speakers, top 100 Business Thought Leaders in America, top 500 Leadership Development Experts in the World and several other exceptional accolades. He is a trusted advisor, speaker, consultant, strategist and author who has the knack for make complex things awesomely simple. As an avid reader and learner, John is always sharing the best of what he knows to help others learn how to show up to their worlds wisely, professionally and successfully.

Guest Links:

LifeLeader behaviors:

  1.    Leaders are self-aware. They commit the time to learn what they are good at, passionate about and what matters to them. They commit to live authentically – to trust their own voice and not be pulled and distracted by what everyone else does.
  2.    Leaders know their values. They are clear what they believe and that there are accountable to live their values and bring their best to all that they do. They then know what they stand for and can remain constant when pressured by others for behaviors not in line with their values.
  3.    Leaders are focused. They know where they are headed and regularly ask themselves this question, “Is what I am going to do right now, going to take me one step closer to my focus or direction?” They are adaptable to modify their plans for change when needed and to stay on course.

How to help your kids be the leaders of their lives:

  1.    Be the leader of YOUR life to model the behavior; our kids learn more from what we do than what we say.
  2.    Hold your kids accountable for their actions, behaviors and impact.
  3.    Regularly discuss leadership (plenty of examples in the news each day); learn from those who are both excellent and poor leadership examples.
  4.    Encourage them to journal about what they want in their lives. This helps them to focus, be self-aware and be clear of their values to lead their lives in the directions that they want.

There are great leaders among us – most of them never have the title of leader, but their actions prove they are. Find them to learn from them. Then, become a leader of your own life.

Stop and Notice Challenge

Each week we ask you to stop and notice – to develop your skill of tuning in to you and your world. This week’s stop and notice challenge is:

  1. Stop and notice 2 of your leadership abilities. How are you using them on a daily basis?
  2. Stop and notice 2 places that need you to show up, step up and speak up as a leader – at work, in the community, at school or at home.
  3. Stop and notice 2 people who model excellent life leader abilities – who are they and what abilities do you notice??

Get in the habit of stopping and noticing – and your world opens for you and your kids. The information you need to be successful and happy in life is always in front of you – you just have to stop and notice.

Suggested Resource

True Success – A New Philosophy of Excellence by Tom Morris, PH.D.

Be The Leader Episode Recommended Book One of the books that belongs in every family’s library, True Success is a roadmap of how to become successful in life by living as a leader of one’s life. Though the 7Cs of success, Tom Morris presents a formula for us to learn how to show up successfully to the moments of our lives. Said another way, he shares how to show up as a leader in the moments of our lives. Loaded with practical stories, examples and meaningful steps, True Success helps us all understand how to focus on and achieve the things that really matter to us – not to chase after the wrong things. And in the process, we learn how to own our lives and live as the leaders in our lives.

Share it with someone. We all need help learning to discover and achieve true success.