It All Comes Down To This

May 20, 2016

WILD & CRAZY GUYS

For over a year I worked as a personality at Wild 106, a hip hop radio station that was #1 on the FM dial in the State of New Mexico. Each morning there were over 50,000 listeners who would tune in and listen to the crazy antics of Mr. Clean, AV, Erika, Darlene, Traffic Troy, DJ Cut, Big Worm, Danny G, and yours truly… Meezel. (AV mispronounced my last name during my live on-air interview, and the new nickname stuck for over a decade.)

The show was a blast. We interviewed celebrities, hosted concerts, and AV and I were dubbed the “Wild & Crazy Guys” as we would frequently hit the streets conducting silly stunts to entertain our listening audience.

As soon as each show ended at 10am, I would head to the University of New Mexico where I would bump into friends who would comment on a daily basis of having heard me on the air earlier that day.

 

FORGET ABOUT IT

To test whether they actually did listen and weren’t just blowing smoke to make me feel good, I’d often ask them what their favorite part of the show was.

For months, their answer would surprise me: “I don’t remember. But it was funny.”

I would skeptically ask, “Which part was funny?”

“I’m not sure. The whole thing.”

While initially I thought maybe they were lying because they hadn’t actually heard the show, I soon discovered that people really were listening to the show, but they really didn’t recall what I had talked about on-air.

I didn’t know which was worse: having people lie to me about hearing me talk on the radio, or having people hear me on the radio and completely forget what I talked about.

After a while, I began to understand the fact that it wasn’t my fault that others didn’t recall the details of the show—it’s simply human nature.

The truth is, people forget about 90% of what they hear. It might be a higher percentage, but I don’t remember where I heard it or who said it. 😉

Point is—people forget a lot.

 

IT’S NOT JUST RADIO LISTENERS

Years after I left Wild 106 I became a Student Pastor. Quite a change in scenery, am I right?!

As a pastor, I would spend hours each week preparing and crafting my sermons that I would deliver to students. On occasion I would ask students or other leaders what I taught on in a recent sermon, and they would ashamedly scramble and desperately try to recall any sort of information I had taught to provide any shred of proof that they actually were listening during my sermon.

The sad truth is the fact I usually couldn’t recall what I taught on a week before either!

Maybe I have surrounded myself with like-minded people who have memory problems, or maybe people just tend to forget stuff.

Because I believe the latter option is likely more realistic, my hope with this blog to provide small, bite-sized action steps you can implement today without the need to remember a bunch of stuff.

 

ONE STEP AT A TIME

There may be times that I provide you with a fire hose of information, but my hope is to help you become a stronger leader one step at a time.

To do that, I challenge you to intentionally seek out my bottom line in each blog post. Think of it as an intellectual Easter egg hunt.

Andy Stanley wrote in his book Communicating For a Change, “[Effective preaching] isn’t three points or four points. It’s really one point that is somehow connected to a passage and it is connected to a life.”

Andy creates a pretty compelling argument that pastors should not teach multi-point messages nor teach in an exegetical style, but instead be able to narrow down the focus of their entire message into one easy-to-remember bottom line that inspires a person to take action.

I have the same goal for this blog. I want you to take action.

 

THE PURSUIT OF KNOWLEDGE WISDOM

If you accept the challenge to take action in one small step at a time, it’s less about remembering information and more about creating muscle memory. By choosing to DO something with information you hear, you have a much greater chance of remembering that information.

Don’t get me wrong—I’m not encouraging you to DO something in order to remember something. I’m encouraging you to DO something for the sake of becoming a better leader one step at a time.

People oftentimes believe the lie that knowledge is power. Knowledge is NOT power. The implementation of knowledge is power. This is the difference between knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge turns into wisdom only after the knowledge is applied. In other words, wisdom is knowledge acted out.

The Bible makes 125 references to the pursuit of wisdom, whereas there are only 45 references regarding the pursuit of knowledge. Over half of the references to wisdom were written by Solomon, understandably so considering he is widely regarded as one of the wisest men to ever live.

If you read a handful of those verses, you will quickly see for yourself that the application of knowledge is much more important than the acquisition of knowledge.

I listen to podcasts and audio books nearly every time I go on a run. While I am grateful to learn, grow and become smarter all during an exercise I consider to be mundane and boring, I also get frustrated at the fact that a great podcast or book is so filled with great information that it winds up being way too much to process.

As I’m running, I’ll oftentimes think, “Oh that’s great information—I need to write that down.”

But I can’t. Because I’m running. I do make a mental note to write it down as soon as I stop.

But then there’s another great point that I want to write down. And another. And another. And by the end of my run, there were 32 great points and action steps I COULD take, but because there were too many to remember and I didn’t have a way to write them down and because I simply don’t have time to re-listen to the podcast or book all over again… I instead do nothing.

I apply none of the 32 amazing action steps I just learned, because that many steps were just way too many.

 

BECOMING THE LEADER WORTH FOLLOWING

My goal is to help you become a leader worth following. Maybe you already are. There’s always room for improvement, and I will forever be a student in the art of leadership. I hope you choose the same.

Each blog post I write is intended to give you one, clear, practical bottom line that you can apply today to become a better leader wherever God has placed you in leadership. Maybe that’s in your business, your ministry, your family, or your ________________. It really doesn’t matter where, because leaders permeate every industry and facet of life.

But to become a leader worth following, you must also be a leader who is growing. If you’re not growing, you’re not leading.

 

THE BOTTOM LINE

Everything I write about in any given blog post will all point back to one main bottom line for that post.

If I include a story in a post, realize that I included the story as a tool for you to remember the bottom line. The point I want to make is likely never the story itself, but the step you can take based on the principles you can learn from the story.

If I include an analogy, I’m providing a similar example of the bottom line to help strengthen your memory. If I include a quote, it’s intended to back up the main point from someone else’s voice. All other content in any given post will all back up the one main point I hope you catch.

There will always be a challenge. Always something to apply. Always a risk. Always a realization. Always a change. Always something that you can DO.

So should you continue to read on through more of my blog posts and as you grow as a leader who’s worth following, please know in advance that with each post you read, there is some sort of choice you can make to take action.

The author from the Book of James said, “Do not merely listen to the Word and so deceive yourselves. Do what is says.”

Make the choice today to be someone willing and ready to take action.

(Pssst. ^^ In case you missed it, that last sentence was today’s bottom line. 😉 )

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