Doug Smith LiveDoug Smith Live http://dougsmithlive.com Learn. Launch. Lead. Wed, 29 Jul 2015 00:45:05 +0000 en-US hourly 1 3 Steps to Developing the Courage to Own Your Dreams http://dougsmithlive.com/ownyourdreams/ http://dougsmithlive.com/ownyourdreams/#comments Mon, 27 Jul 2015 10:12:30 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15581  “When you stop dismissing what God put in your heart and start taking it seriously, you never know what God will do.” -John Stanko  A few years ago, I had a friend who was on Dr. Oz. I asked her if she was nervous to go on the show. She said, “No! I was born […]

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 “When you stop dismissing what God put in your heart and start taking it seriously, you never know what God will do.” -John Stanko 

A few years ago, I had a friend who was on Dr. Oz. I asked her if she was nervous to go on the show. She said, “No! I was born for this!”

I think about her reply often. She wasn’t being arrogant, she had the courage to own her purpose. For a while, I was envious of her because I knew in my heart that I did not have that same courage in my life.

Why is it so difficult to have the courage to own our dreams? Because we are afraid. We are afraid that we will fail, we are afraid other people will tell us that we’re not called to do what we believe our purpose is, we are afraid of rejection, we are afraid of looking stupid, we are afraid of ______.

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Too often, I’ve let these fears hold me back from owning and pursuing my purpose. Over the past two years, with God’s help and the help of others, I’m slowly gaining the confidence and courage needed to own my purpose. Here are 3 steps I’ve learned that will help you develop the courage to own your dreams:

1.) Realize You Were Born for Something – There is something in your life that you were born to do. Over the past year, when I have opportunities to speak or do other things within my purpose, Laura will look at me and say, “D, you were born for this. This is why God made you!” After hearing that a few times, I am gaining more and more confidence that I was born to do what God’s put in my heart!

2.) Recognize when You are Not Owning Your Dream because of Fear or Insecurity – When I meet with people who know me well, I often ask them this question: “Is there anything you need to call me out on or that you would like to speak into my life?” When I’ve asked that question over the last year, I consistently have gotten responses like this:

  •  “Own your purpose. Everyone else sees you’re capable of this, now you need to!”
  • “You’re the only person holding yourself back from your purpose”
  • “When you share your goals, you always say something condescending afterward in a joking manner. Stop putting yourself down and start taking your goals and dreams seriously.”

As a result of that feedback, I’ve become more and more aware of when I let fear and insecurity take over. The more awareness I have around this, the more I can stop the fear and insecurity and replace it with courage.

3.) Do it Afraid – Seth Godin often says that to say“Here, I made this,” is difficult and frightening.” Seth would tell you to do it anyway. I have found that when I develop the courage to do whatever it is that I am afraid to do, that it never ends up as bad as I imagine it’s going to end up in my mind. In fact, it almost always turns out even better than I could have imagined.

Fear will always be present, but the more you act in the presence of fear, the more you realize that fear never delivers on it promises. Mark Twain once said, “I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”

I dare you to step out and act on a dream that’s been in your heart that you’ve been neglecting due to fear and insecurity.

Write the song, the book, the blog post, call the friend or family member, apply for that job, go back to school, start the business, plant the church, or whatever else is in your heart! Do it now and do it afraid!

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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Episode #65: John Stanko: Finding and Pursuing Your Purpose http://dougsmithlive.com/episode65/ http://dougsmithlive.com/episode65/#comments Sun, 19 Jul 2015 14:28:18 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15516 Welcome to Episode #65 of the Learning to Lead podcast. This podcast episode comes from our breakfast series. At our last breakfast, Dr. John Stanko spoke on finding and pursuing your purpose. It was one of the best messages on purpose that I have heard. I’m really excited for you to listen to it. I met […]

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Welcome to Episode #65 of the Learning to Lead podcast. This podcast episode comes from our breakfast series. At our last breakfast, Dr. John Stanko spoke on finding and pursuing your purpose. It was one of the best messages on purpose that I have heard. I’m really excited for you to listen to it.

I met John through a co-worker who told me he was an excellent teacher on the topic of  purpose. I set-up a meeting with him and interviewed him for Episode #45 of the Learning to Lead podcast. After the interview, I took him to coffee and he asked me a lot of questions about my purpose. Through our discussion, John made me realize that fear was holding me back from pursuing my purpose. He helped me gain the courage to overcome fear and act on my dreams. Not long after our time together, we launched Learning to Lead. I am so grateful for John’s influence in my life.
My prayer is that when you listen to this message, you will become excited and intentional about pursuing your purpose and stop letting fear hold you back from pursuing it. Enjoy the lesson.
Episode #65: Dr. John Stanko on Finding and Pursuing Your Purpose 
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John’s Bio: John Stanko was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After graduating from St. Basil’s Prep School in Stamford, Connecticut, he attended Duquesne University where he received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics in 1972 and 1974 respectively. In 1973, he had a life-changing spiritual experience that radically changed his life course and purpose.

Since then, John has served as an administrator, teacher, consultant, author, and pastor in his professional career. He holds a second master’s degree in pastoral ministries, and earned his doctorate in pastoral ministries from Liberty Theological Seminary in Houston, Texas in 1995. He recently completed a Doctor of Ministry degree at Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Pittsburgh.

As executive director of Worship International from 1993-1995, John planned and organized worship conferences for Integrity Music around the world, and later became a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP), the highest distinction awarded in the conference management industry. In the process, he has taught extensively on the topics of time management, life purpose and organization, and has conducted leadership and purpose training sessions throughout the United States and in 25 countries.

Recently his clients have included Integrity Music, Kabul University in Afghanistan, Lippo Bank and Lippo Land in Indonesia, Regent University in Virginia Beach, DHL in southern Africa, Kingdom Bank in Zimbabwe, the South African Regional Poverty Network in Pretoria, Catholic Relief Services in Kenya, the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority, Celebration Ministries International in Zimbabwe and many other churches and nonprofit organizations in the United States and abroad.

John is also certified to administer the DISC and other related personality assessments as well as the Natural Church Development profile for churches. Recently, he earned the privilege to facilitate for The Pacific Institute of Seattle, a leadership and personal development program, and for The Leadership Circle, a provider of cultural and executive 360-degree profiles.

He has authored fifteen books and has written for many publications around the world. John maintains a weekly email update called The Monday Memo and regular Bible studies and a daily devotional on his blog. His website contains many resources and programs devoted to help people find their life purpose.

John founded a personal and leadership development company, called PurposeQuest, in 2001 and today travels the world to speak, consult and inspire leaders and people everywhere. From 2001 to 2008, he spent seven months a year in Africa and still enjoys working on that continent, while maintaining teaching and administrative duties at The Center for Urban Biblical Ministry in his hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. John also serves as an administrative pastor at Allegheny Center Alliance Church on the North Side of Pittsburgh. John has been married for 39 years to Kathryn Scimone Stanko. Their two adult children are pursuing purpose in Arlington, Virginia and Pittsburgh.

Connect with John: 

Links I talked about in the show:

Announcements: 

  • Small Groups – We have small groups that meet the 2nd & 4th Wednesday of every month.  E-mail Doug at  dougsmithlive@gmail.com if you are interested.

How You can help our Podcast: 

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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One of the Greatest Compliments You can Receive http://dougsmithlive.com/greatest-compliments-receive/ http://dougsmithlive.com/greatest-compliments-receive/#comments Wed, 15 Jul 2015 10:11:50 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15456 I recently conducted a decade review. I went through all of my year-end reviews that I did while I was in my 20’s and reflected on how I used that decade. (In case you’re interested in the results of my review, I am currently writing a 2-part podcast episode on the lessons I learned in […]

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I recently conducted a decade review. I went through all of my year-end reviews that I did while I was in my 20’s and reflected on how I used that decade. (In case you’re interested in the results of my review, I am currently writing a 2-part podcast episode on the lessons I learned in my twenties based on my decade review.)

As I was going through my memories, I found a statement that my father-in-law said to me that really blessed me.

When I was 28, my father-in-law said to me, “Doug, you have become the man you have been trying to become over the last ten years. I am proud of you”

When I read that, I started tearing up. Why? Because I remember where I was ten years prior. I remember having a vision for my life of who I wanted to be, what I wanted to do, and what I wanted to have.

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By the grace of God, a lot of people pouring into my life, and by being intentional, a lot of what I envisioned has happened.

While I am grateful that I have been able to become who I was dreaming of becoming in my twenties, I’m now dreaming of who I’d like to be at the end of my thirties. My prayer is that my father-in-law will be able to say the same thing when I turn 40 that he said when I turned 28.

Why am I sharing this with you? For a two reasons:

1.) To make you realize that you are capable of becoming the man or woman you desire to become – I don’t care who you are or where you are starting out, if you will follow God, be intentional, and surround yourself with the right people, you can do and become anything God wants you to become. God is capable of bringing your further than you could ever imagine. In fact, God can transform your life in such a way that you wouldn’t even recognize the person you used to be.

2.) To get you to think about who you want to be in five to ten years – A lot of people have goals around what they want to accomplish and what they want to do, but few people have goals around who they want to become. I would encourage you to create some “be” goals. Who do you want to be in five to ten years?

Henry Cloud said, “Think in terms of these three categories: one year from now, or more, what do you want to “Be, Do and Have?” 

Take some time over the next few days to dream about who you want to be. Then start putting a plan together of all the steps that you need to take to start becoming that. Then take action on your plan every day!

You may not see yourself growing every day, but in a few months and years, you’ll look back and realize that you’ve come a lot further than you think!

My prayer for you today is that you will become the person you have a vision of becoming.

I hope that one day someone can put their arm around you and say, “You’ve become the man or woman you’ve been trying to become for the last ten years. I am proud of you.”

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

 

 

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Episode #64: Learning to Lead Vision 2015 http://dougsmithlive.com/episode64/ http://dougsmithlive.com/episode64/#comments Sun, 12 Jul 2015 14:53:50 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15421 In this episode of the Learning to Lead podcast, Doug shares the history and vision of Learning to Lead. To learn more about how you can connect with Learning to Lead, check out our website.  How you can help this podcast:  To listen to past interviews, go to our podcast page.  Subscribe to this podcast Rate […]

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In this episode of the Learning to Lead podcast, Doug shares the history and vision of Learning to Lead. To learn more about how you can connect with Learning to Lead, check out our website. 

How you can help this podcast:

If you listen to this and would like to get involved with Learning to Lead, please e-mail me atdougsmithlive@gmail.com or by going to LearningtoLeadpgh.com. 

Accomplishments in our first year:

  • Developed a pretty good network of over 250 young professional
  • We hosted 9 leadership breakfasts
  • 20 Learning to Lead Small Groups
  • 23 podcast episodes
  • Served at 5 local non-profits
  • Developed a website
  • Developed an on-line presence
What’s the vision?

The Vision: To Pittsburgh More Famous for God by developing Godly leaders in all sectors of our society. 

Where did this vision come from? 

Jeremiah 29:5-7  5 “Build homes, and plan to stay. Plant gardens, and eat the food they produce. 6 Marry and have children. Then find spouses for them so that you may have many grandchildren. Multiply! Do not dwindle away! 7 And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.”

Strategy: Learning to Lead
Start gathering people and see what the Holy Spirit does!
Develop World Changing Leaders in Pittsburgh that will infiltrate all sectors of society and grow to their maximum potential.
If you want a better world, composed of better nations, inhabited by better states, filled with better counties, made up of better cities, compromised of better neighborhoods, illuminated by better churches, populated by better families, then you’ll have to start by becoming a better person.” -Tony Evans 

Grow together – Help each other develop to our maximum potential.

Serve our community

Unite the Body of Christ in Pittsburgh to transform the city

Develop lifelong friendships – have some FUN!
What we do and will continue to do: 
  • Learning to Lead Podcast
  • Learning to Lead Breakfast events
  • Learning to Lead Small Group
  • Learning to Lead Service Projects
Where we’re going: 
  • Becoming an official Business
  • Learning to Lead Blog
  • Learning to Lead Social Events
  • Learning to Lead Beach Heads
  • Learning to Lead Mastermind Groups
  • Learning to Lead Young Leader Track
  • Learning to Lead Seminars
  • Learning to Lead Conference
How You Can get Involved: 
  • Come to a breakfast – learningtoleadpgh.com/events
  • Listen to the podcast – growth
  • Join our Mastermind Group
  • Start L2L or a small group in your area
  • Come to a service project
  • Become a L2L Blogger

Serve: What we need: 

  • Volunteers – 1 year commitment 
  • Social Event Planner
  • Social Media/E-mails
  • Website
  • Service Project Planner
  • Breakfast/Event planners

“Somebody somewhere is waiting on you to become what you were destined to be! Keep growing forward! -Chris Hogan

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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My Journey to Freedom [Video Sermon] http://dougsmithlive.com/myjourney/ http://dougsmithlive.com/myjourney/#comments Tue, 07 Jul 2015 09:00:32 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15347 This past Sunday, I had the honor and privilege of speaking at my home church, Victory Family Church, for Pastor John and Michelle Nuzzo. My life has been greatly impacted by the teaching, the leadership, and the people that attend this church. You can watch the message and get my notes below. In this message, […]

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This past Sunday, I had the honor and privilege of speaking at my home church, Victory Family Church, for Pastor John and Michelle Nuzzo. My life has been greatly impacted by the teaching, the leadership, and the people that attend this church. You can watch the message and get my notes below.

In this message, I share my testimony along with 5 principles that have enabled me to walk with God for the last 12 years. My prayer is that this message will encourage, challenge, and equip you to go after God with all of your heart. If you are looking for a great church in the area, let me know! I’d love to help you find one. Watch the message here:

A Story of Freedom – 07/05/15 (Doug Smith) from Victory Family Church on Vimeo.

My Notes: 

13 As a result of your ministry, they will give glory to God. For your generosity to them and to all believers will prove that you are obedient to the Good News of Christ. 2 Corinthians 9:13

>> 5 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. -Galatians 5:1 
 
1.) I Learned that My Past Does Not Determine My Future 
17 This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! -2 Corinthians 5:17
God can transform your life in such a way that you don’t even recognize the person you were before!
When you do mess up: Admit it, Quit it, Forget it!
Never elevate your past over what Christ has done for you!

Stop living in the prison of your past and start living in the freedom you have in Christ!
Yesterday ended last night!
2.) I Learned that God can write a better story for my life than I can!
Ephesians 2:10 – For we are God’ masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.
“God wants you to get where God wants you to go more than you want to get where God wants you to go.” ~Mark Batterson
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6 Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. -Proverbs 3:5-6
 
3.) I Learned that Faithfulness is the Key to Unlocking My Potential 
 
“The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’ Matthew 25:23
3 He said to me, “You are my servant, Israel, and you will bring me glory.” 4 I replied, “But my work seems so useless! I have spent my strength for7 nothing and to no purpose.Yet I leave it all in the Lord’s hand; I will trust God for my reward.” -Isaiah 49:3-4
4.) I learned that God is the Architect of My Growth 
 
Prayer: God develop me as quickly and as solidly as possible!

Hebrews 12:5 My child,[e] don’t make light of the Lord’s discipline, and don’t give up when he corrects you. 6 For the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child.”[f7 As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as his own children. Who ever heard of a child who is never disciplined by its father? 8 If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children at all. 9 Since we respected our earthly fathers who disciplined us, shouldn’t we submit even more to the discipline of the Father of our spirits, and live forever?[g]10 For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in his holiness. 11 No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.

5.) I learned that God wants us to be World Changers

“The secret of life is to give your life away.” -Judy Steidel
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. 25 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.  -Mark 16:24-25
“In life, it does’t get any better than having magnificent friends, pursuing a a magnificent vision, for a magnificent God!” -Reid Carpenter

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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How to Lead a Mastermind Group http://dougsmithlive.com/mastermind/ http://dougsmithlive.com/mastermind/#comments Mon, 29 Jun 2015 09:57:33 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15181 When Laura and I started Learning to Lead, we knew we wanted to form Mastermind groups. A Mastermind group is a small group of people who meet consistently to encourage, collaborate, challenge, promote, and resource one another. Our group has been meeting for just under one year. It’s been such a valuable experience. In this […]

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When Laura and I started Learning to Lead, we knew we wanted to form Mastermind groups. A Mastermind group is a small group of people who meet consistently to encourage, collaborate, challenge, promote, and resource one another.

Our group has been meeting for just under one year. It’s been such a valuable experience. In this post, I want to share what we do in our Mastermind group along with how we do it. I hope that you will be challenged to start or join your own Mastermind group. If you are interested in joining our group, e-mail me at dougsmithlive@gmail.com.

What Our Mastermind Group Does 

We Encourage Each Other – I believe that encouragement can change everything for someone! Sometimes, people need encouraged that they are doing better than they think they are. Sometimes people need encouraged to go after the dreams in their heart. As a group, we are committed to consistently encouraging one another.

11659473_975505303038_6214874583816754721_nWe Hold Each Other Accountable – Since we share our goals with each other, it allows us to hold each other accountable to making progress on our goals! We usually don’t need accountability on goals we know we are going to achieve. However, we all need accountability on the goals that have been on our goal list for a long time that we keep putting off because of fear.

We Collaborate with Each Other – As much as we can, we collaborate. We give each other advice, help each other dream bigger, and share our networks with each other. We try to show-up to each other’s events, help promote each other’s dreams, connect people with our network, etc.

We Help Each Other Go Further, Faster – One member of our group recently started a LLC. He said he’s been wanting to do it forever, but never pulled the trigger. However, as a result of being in our group, he started it! I know for me personally, I’ve grown immensely by being a part of this group. I think all the members of our group would tell you the same thing about their experience.

We do Life Together – When we started our group, I thought we’d meet for 9 months and then encourage everyone in the group to start their own groups in order to mentor other leaders. However, I’m finding that a lot of young professionals my age are looking for a consistent group of people to do life with. They don’t want to start new groups every 9 months. That being the case, I’m noticing that our group is becoming more and more like  family than it is a small group. We pray together, laugh together, make memories together, and go after our dreams together.

How We Run Our Mastermind Group

Our group meets twice a month. Although we’ve continued to change and adapt the way we format our meetings, here are the elements we currently include in every meeting:

  • Wins – We go around and quickly share if we’ve had any wins since we last met that were significant. We celebrate with each other.
  • The Hot Seat – Each week, one member of the group is on the hot seat. They are to come with a goal that they are focused on and need help with. They inform the group about their goal, what they are doing to achieve it, and then ask the group questions in order to solicit feedback. Then the group helps brainstorm ideas to help them. The next time the person is on the hot seat, they have to update us on what action steps they took, how it turned out, etc.
  • Leadership Challenges – We ask anyone if they have a specific leadership challenge they are facing now that they want discussed. If there is, we discuss it.
  • Leadership Resource Discussion – For each group, we have everyone read a book or an article, watch a TED talk, or listen to a podcast and then we discuss it.
  • Goal Reviews – Once a quarter, we review our progress with our goals for the year with the group. This helps people stay accountable and reminds everyone in the group of what each person’s goals are so they can help them achieve them.
  • Prayer Requests – We go through the group and see how we can pray for each other.

Questions: 

  • Do you have a Mastermind group? If so, how do you format your meetings? 
  • Do you have a group of people you’re doing life with? If not, find one!

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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3 Steps to Taking Action on Your Dreams http://dougsmithlive.com/act-dreams/ http://dougsmithlive.com/act-dreams/#comments Tue, 23 Jun 2015 10:37:38 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15089 Just under one year ago, Laura and I gathered leaders on Mt. Washington to share our vision of developing young leaders into the men and women God called them to be. Leading up to the event, I was a nervous wreck! What if nobody shows up? What if nobody thinks what we’re doing is legitimate? […]

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Just under one year ago, Laura and I gathered leaders on Mt. Washington to share our vision of developing young leaders into the men and women God called them to be. Leading up to the event, I was a nervous wreck! What if nobody shows up? What if nobody thinks what we’re doing is legitimate? What if.. What if… What if?

My father in law looked at me and said, “Doug, you’re going to look back on this day and laugh. This is just the beginning. You’re going to remember this day with great joy because you started something.”

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Nearly a year later, I can tell you that my father-in-law was correct. We are so glad we had the courage to step out on something that was in our hearts. We’ve had so much fun leading this for the past year. We’ve made some great friends and memories and have gotten to see a lot of leaders grow and launch dreams that have been in their hearts for a long time.

Today, I want to challenge you to act on your dreams. Here are 3 principles that helped us launch our dream, I hope they do the same for you:

Put a Date on the Calendar – I’ve had a vision for Learning to Lead since 2007. I didn’t act on it until 2014! Why? Because I was afraid! What caused me to finally act? Laura MAKING me put a date on the calendar! We picked a date, created an event, and started inviting people. At that point, I couldn’t back down. She forced me to ship! While it made me a nervous wreck for 2 months, looking back, that was a moment that changed my life. It taught me that I can do what is in my heart regardless of what fears are holding me back. I just have to do it afraid!

Don’t Worry about Who Will Show Up – A few months before we started Learning to Lead, I had coffee with my friend, Paul. I was telling him the fears I had: What if nobody shows up? What if people do show up? What if people think it’s stupid? What if nobody cares? Paul looked at me and simply said, “Doug, some will, some won’t, so what?”

When he said that, I felt immediately at ease. The reality is, regardless of what you’re starting, some people will love what you’re doing, they’ll read what you write, listen to what you produce, and some people won’t. So what? 

When I was sharing my vision with one leader, he said, “Doug, you have to ask yourself, “What will happen if you don’t this? Who will miss out? Whose life will never be changed as a result of you not going after what’s in your heart? More importantly, what will happen if you do, do this? Whose life will be changed forever because you cared enough to start this?”

The reality is, you never know the impact of you acting on your dreams can have. It could change someones life forever!

Recognize The Real Reason You Should Act –  Jim Rohn once said, “The ultimate reason for setting goals is to entice you to become the person it takes to achieve them.”

Too many people go through life and never take one step toward the dreams in their hearts because they are afraid to fail or they are afraid of what people think. One of the main reasons you should act is to combat those fears.

When you act in spite of being afraid, you become courageous. You become more like the person you were created to be. Mark Twain one said, “I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”

I can relate to that. Every time we put on an event for Learning to Lead, I get bombarded with thoughts that cause me to fear and worry. However, once the events are over, I am filled with the joy of not letting my fears and worries overcome me. Things always turn out much better than I think they will!

Even if you step out and fail, you will learn that failure isn’t fatal! Thomas Edison said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” If you fail, you’ve just discovered one way that won’t work. Try another way! The important thing is to keep trying, keep shipping, keep overcoming your fears.

The world is waiting on you to act on your dreams! Act now!

  • What dream do you have in your heart that you need to set a date on the calendar for? 
  • What fears are holding you back? 
  • How could what you want to do change someone’s life forever? What if you never do that? What if you do? 
  • Who could you become if you develop the courage to act on your dreams? 

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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Episode #63: John Nuzzo, Pastor of Victory Family Church http://dougsmithlive.com/episode63/ http://dougsmithlive.com/episode63/#comments Sat, 20 Jun 2015 19:05:04 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=15071 Episode Overview: Welcome everyone to episode #63 of the Learning to Lead podcast! I now have an intro for this podcast, let me know what you think of it.  I’ve wanted to do that for a while and finally did using Fiver, which is a website where you can hire people to do jobs for you […]

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Episode Overview:

Welcome everyone to episode #63 of the Learning to Lead podcast! I now have an intro for this podcast, let me know what you think of it.  I’ve wanted to do that for a while and finally did using Fiver, which is a website where you can hire people to do jobs for you starting at $5 per job! It’s a great resource for you to check out.

This episode is from our breakfast series. Our speaker this month was Pastor John Nuzzo, Pastor of Victory Family Church in Cranberry Twp., PA. Pastor John has been one of the most influential leaders in my life. It was an honor for me to have him speak at our breakfast. His talk was excellent. Get your pen and paper ready to take some serious notes!
To learn more about our upcoming breakfasts, go here. If you’d like to sign-up for emails to update you on what’s happening with Learning to Lead, there is a link in the show notes to subscribe. Enjoy this episode!

Episode #63: John Nuzzo, Pastor of Victory Family Church

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Bio:

John Nuzzo is the senior pastor of Victory Family Church located in Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania. Pastor John and his wife Michelle founded the church in 1993. Under their leadership, the church has grown into a body of believers possessing the same vision—to reveal the love of God for all mankind. Their belief is that an individual’s understanding of the depths of God’s love will cause every man, woman and child to rise above their circumstances, have an eternal perspective in life, and be moved beyond their own needs to the needs of humanity. Pastor John’s teaching is delivered in a way that is relevant to the life and heart of every believer. Pastor John and Michelle’s desire is to see people experience God in everyday life.

Connect with Pastor John:

Key Takeaways:

  • Biblical leadership is about who you lift and what you build for other people to live in after you’re gone
  • Superficial success is attractive because it boosts our egos, but it will ruin your life.
  • Success and failure are not secrets
  • Don’t want to be anything other than what God wants you to be
  • Live by principle, not pressure
  • The pressure you feel is not going away, in fact, the further you go in your purpose, the more pressure there is.
  • We can’t create God in our own image
  • God’s all about getting His resources for His purposes to His people who are doing His purposes!
  • It’s ok to be messed up, but it’s not ok to stay that way
  • Leaders don’t grow because they don’t deal with their unhealthiness & inadequacies
  • Never ever ever ever discuss what you don’t like laterally or down, talk to the people above you or else you’ll divide an organization

Announcements:

  • Learning to Lead Vision and Prayer Night – Join us on Mt. Washington on Wednesday, July 18th at 7 p.m. at the Carnegie Library. We will be sharing what is on our hearts for the next year of Learning to Lead and praying over the city of Pittsburgh. Afterward, we will all go to dinner! Register here!
  • July Leadership Breakfast: Our next breakfast will be on Saturday, July 18th with Dr. John Stanko. To learn more about this event and to register, go here!

How You Can Help this Podcast:

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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Episode #62: Mark Whitacre, The Informant http://dougsmithlive.com/episode62/ http://dougsmithlive.com/episode62/#comments Tue, 09 Jun 2015 10:18:34 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=14642 In this episode, I interviewed Mark Whitacre, the highest-ranked executive of any Fortune 500 company to become a whistleblower in US history. In the interview Mark shares his story which is so fascinating that Hollywood made a movie about it called The Informant, starring Matt Damon (playing Mark Whitacre). In Mark’s story you’ll hear about how […]

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In this episode, I interviewed Mark Whitacre, the highest-ranked executive of any Fortune 500 company to become a whistleblower in US history. In the interview Mark shares his story which is so fascinating that Hollywood made a movie about it called The Informant, starring Matt Damon (playing Mark Whitacre).

In Mark’s story you’ll hear about how he went from being a 32 years old executive in one of the largest companies in the world with a corporate jet available to him and a house with an 8 car garage, to becoming an informant for the FBI, where he had to wear a recorder to work every day for 3 years.

You’ll hear him tell the story how he went to federal prison for eight and a half years, and how God met him there and changed his life forever.

Mark’s story will challenge you and inspire you at the same time. There are so many lessons within his story. I can’t encourage you enough to listen to this!

You can find the questions that I asked, my key takeaways, ways to connect with Mark below in the show notes. I know that this interview will add value to your life! Enjoy!

To listen to other interviews, go to our Learning to Lead podcast page. To learn more about what we’re doing through Learning to Lead, sign-up for our e-mail newsletter here. To learn about and register for upcoming events, go to our Learning to Lead events page.

Episode #62: Mark Whitacre, The Informant

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Mark’s Bio:

Mark Edward Whitacre (born May 1, 1957) came to public attention in 1995 when, as president of the BioProducts Division at Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) based in Decatur, Illinois, he was the highest-level corporate executive in U.S. history to become a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) whistleblower. For three years (1992–1995), Whitacre acted as an informant for the FBI, which was investigating ADM for price fixing.

In apparent retaliation for his role as an informant, ADM investigated Whitacre’s activities and, upon discovering suspicious activity, requested the FBI investigate Whitacre for embezzlement. As a result of US$9.5 million in various frauds, Whitacre lost his whistleblower’s immunity, and consequently spent eight-and-a-half years in federal prison. He was released in December 2006. Whitacre is currently the chief operating officer and President of Operations at Cypress Systems, a California biotechnology firm.

Connect with Mark:

Questions:

  • How do you lead differently now that you are out of prison?
  • What advice do you wish someone would have told you when you started out your career?
  • At one point in your life, you thought you had it made and had no need for God, that all changed when you went to prison. What advice do you have for people who think they are living the dream and don’t need God?
  • What advice would you give yourself about family if you could go back to the beginning of your career?
  • How do you live out your faith in the workplace?
  • What do you want your legacy to be?

Key Takeaways:

  • Selfish leadership comes with a huge price
  • Greed blinds
  • The power of servant leadership
  • Always do the right thing
  • If you’re moving up fast and it involves any kind of unethical behavior, it’s not worth it
  • Sometimes the quick way is not the right way
  • Money, possessions, and promotions will never fulfill you… you’ll never have enough. It always becomes, “What’s next?”
  • Success is impacting your family first THEN impacting the world
  • 92% of Jesus public appearances were in the marketplace, not the temple or the synagogue
  • People are in need all around us

How You Can Help this Podcast:

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please recommend it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

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A City Famous for God http://dougsmithlive.com/city-famous-god/ http://dougsmithlive.com/city-famous-god/#comments Wed, 03 Jun 2015 10:24:34 +0000 Doug Smith http://dougsmithlive.com/?p=14321 A few years ago, I started learning about a vision for our city. The vision is that one day, Pittsburgh will  be more famous for God than anything else. Every time I would hear that vision, my heart would be filled with passion and a fire to do something to help that vision happen. Since then, […]

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A few years ago, I started learning about a vision for our city. The vision is that one day, Pittsburgh will  be more famous for God than anything else. Every time I would hear that vision, my heart would be filled with passion and a fire to do something to help that vision happen.

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Since then, I’ve been asking God to show me what a city famous for God looks like and how Laura and I can be a small part in making that happen. Here are a few things I’ve learned so far:

What a city famous for God looks like: 

Saleem Ghubril, Executive Director of the Pittsburgh Promise recently shared this scripture with us, which is how he defines a city famous for God:

Zechariah 8:4-5 says, “This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies says: Once again old men and women will walk Jerusalem’s streets with their canes and will sit together in the city squares. And the streets of the city will be filled with boys and girls at play.

A city for God is a place that is safe for everyone, both young and old. It’s a city that’s flourishing. I’d imagine that:

  • A city famous for God doesn’t have anyone that doesn’t know Him in it
  • A city famous for God doesn’t homeless men, women, and children in it
  • A city famous for God doesn’t have crime
  • A city famous for God doesn’t have human trafficking
  • A city famous for God doesn’t have people who are at a disadvantage in it
  • A city famous for God doesn’t have any sick people in it
  • A city famous for God doesn’t have any corruption in it
  • A city famous for God ________________ (fill in the blank)

We all have a part in making our cities famous for God 

If that is what a city famous for God looks like, then we all play a part in helping make that happen. So what is your part in making your city famous for God?

Jeremiah 29:5-7 says, “Build homes, and plan to stay. Plant gardens, and eat the food they produce.  Marry and have children. Then find spouses for them so that you may have many grandchildren. Multiply! Do not dwindle away! And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.” 

Your part in making your city famous for God is simply doing what God tells you to do every day. Yesterday, I blogged about how everything God asks you to do is a big deal. Here are a few examples of how you can play your part:

  • When you live for God, you’re helping make your city famous for God
  • When you raise Godly children and grandchildren, you’re helping make your city famous for God
  • When you pray and work for the prosperity of your city, you’re making it famous for God
  • When you live a life of integrity, you’re helping make your city famous for God
  • When you serve those in need, you’re helping make your city famous for God
  • When you share the Gospel with those who haven’t heard it, you’re helping making your city famous for God
  • When you plant a church, start a business or a non-profit that God puts on your heart, you’re making your city famous for God.
  • When you do anything that God leads you do to, you’re helping make your city famous for Him.

Tony Evans often says, “If you want a better world, composed of better nations, inhabited by better states, filled with better counties, made up of better cities, compromised of better neighborhoods, illuminated by better churches, populated by better families, then you’ll have to start by becoming a better person.”

Making your city famous for God starts with you pursuing God and becoming the men and women He created you to be. Then it’s simply doing what He tells you to do!

I’m committed to helping my city become famous for God, are you? Let’s all do our best everyday to make this happen!

What can you do today to help your city take one step closer to being famous for God? 

If this post helped you and you believe it could help others, please “like” and share it on Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, and the other social media sites listed below. Also, I would love to hear your thoughts on this post. Leave a comment below! Thank you!

I would also encourage you to subscribe to this blog via RSS feed or e-mail! You can sign-up for e-mail by typing your e-mail address in the box on the left hand side of this site that says “E-mail updates”.

 

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