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Going Full Tilt

We are all off balance. The question is, are you simply off balance in response to your world, struggling to keep up with the demands placed upon you? Or, are you off balance, on purpose, moving through life in a way that is intentional, deliberate, and fueled by a sense of meaning?

This is the central point in the Off Balance On Purpose philosophy, and my book of the same title. I believe that it is incumbent upon each of us to adopt an orientation, or “life posture” that is BOTH in alignment with a sense of purpose AND leaning forward toward our greatest desires.

Towards, Not Away From

Notice I said, “leaning forward towards our greatest desires.” This is important. The human mind naturally seeks what you tell it to find. Beyond that, our focused thoughts make us keenly aware of the people and opportunities that are congruent with our intentions. You and I literally become and experience what we think.

Therefore, you are focused “away from” negative influences or behaviors, this will confuse your built in “seek and find” system. For example:

One of the questions that I frequently hear from my clients is “How do we avoid employee burnout (or disengagement, or disinterest)? The first problem, you see, is in the phrasing of the question. The orientation of the question is about moving away from an undesirable condition “burnout,” which, then becomes the subject of your focus. You simply cannot make forward progress until you have a forward focused objective. That’s why I approach it differently.

I help my clients design and operate a workplace that supports energized, engaged, accountable employees.

Do you see how this second statement immediately shifts the thought process and orientation? Now, in our conversations and plans, we are leaning forward towards something purposeful and compelling (engaged, capable, responsible employees), instead of trying to avoid a negative condition (burnout).

Need more examples? No problem. As you focus your efforts to make changes, which approach would be more useful?

Away from unhealthy food or towards a healthy lifestyle

Away from financial crisis or towards financial discipline

Away from negative self-talk or towards confidence and independence

Away from past events and hardships or towards a promising future

Away from broken relationships or towards transformed relationships

Away from a suffering spirit or towards spiritual growth

When you Go Full Tilt

It is a question of being focused, aimed, and pointed in the direction of what you most want. This is an exciting prospect, so I encourage you to aim high and lean boldly toward your desires. A hesitant step in the right direction won’t provide the commitment or excitement you will need to continue.

That’s why I suggest that you go “Full Tilt,” meaning that you should lean forward with conviction and make the kinds of choices and promises that make you a bit uncomfortable. That’s the posture from which transformation is born, flourishes, and sustains itself over a long period of time.

Into Action

  1. Identify your most important, urgent, consuming issues.
  2. Perform an “orientation check.” Are you positioned to move “away from” a negative circumstance or “toward” something positive, exciting, and compelling?
  3. Adjust your life posture, your orientation, so that you emphasize the positive aspects and results you are moving towards.
  4. Increase your lean, going full tilt towards what you are seeking. You might do this by sharing your plan with someone, enlisting assistance or accountability, or simply increasing your personal commitment. Lean forward until you feel excited and a bit uncomfortable.
  5. Sharpen your focus and clarity. Don’t pick “fuzzy goals” or general improvements. Get specific, so that you will recognize opportunities when they materialize.

Until next month, I’m wishing you an exciting and wonderful journey towards what you most want – personally and professionally. Keep leaning forward!


  • Ken Asay says:


    Your commentary is well worth the effort to “lean forward”…into. You are on target with the message of posture. Thanks!!!

  • Jan Oistad says:

    Once again, your reminder of a positive attitude in facing each obsticle we are encountering in our lives everyday in the workplace, as well as outside of the workplace is uplifting! Thanks.

  • Janet Cary says:


    Thank you thank you thank you !!!!!
    I wanted you to know that I attended the seminar at NAA last week and I was truly touched. I was so in tune with everything you were talking about.
    I am a Regional Supervisor with several properties in the Houston Texas area, so that alone is chaotic. I was diagnosed with some pretty serious health issues this last January and started treatments. My husband is in Iraq and has been for three years. I have two sons in the United States Army as well. As a soldiers mom and wife I want to personally thank you for all the praising and support that you offer to them. I recently started working out again and I can proudly say that I have not missed one single day of working out for at least an hour, I MAKE the time. I have lost 16 inches and I am more tone and in shape now at 40 than I was at 20. I learned so much from you last week and was truly inspired. Thank you for being you and I am trying to get off balance so I can find the time to go and buy your book.

    Thank you again

    Janet Cary
    Mosaic Residential

  • Lisa Lewis says:

    Yudda Man Dan!!!

    I share your positive messages with my peers at the bank where I work. We all enjoy the great motivation that is felt when you read and get inspired from your offerings. Thanks again and keep them coming.

  • Teri says:

    Back on track! You’re a terrific guide, Dan. Especially now when I find my confusion increase each day with the news on the economy, endless bickering in DC, and the never ending oil gush affecting our natural ecology and so many people’s lives and sense of self. Have you addressed these trials anyplace?

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