Category Archives: Lois Carson Hunter

Leadership Dilemma- Feeling Stuck?

Lois Carson Hunter

Lois Carson Hunter


What’s Holding You Back?

Yesterday, I heard someone say something very profound – “We are the ‘lid’ on what’s possible for others.” This was in the context of inviting someone to do something, presenting an opportunity to them. People often hold back from asking others to do things because they have thoughts, stories or judgments about someone else – what they might want to do, what they “should” do, what they won’t do etc. This influences what we invite them to do, what possibilities we present to them, what opportunities we don’t even give them a chance to choose yes or no.

So, my questions for you:

  • What’s holding you back?
  • Where are you stuck?
  • Are you putting a “lid” on yourself about what’s possible for you, what opportunities you might want to try?
  • What stories, misperceptions, negative thoughts or judgments do you have about yourself that holds you back?

If you ask yourself these questions, you’ll see that many of them are fear based. Fear gets its power from the future. People are often fearful about outcomes. Doubt and certainty take hold and people get stuck. They put a “lid” on themselves and their opportunities. This can become a dilemma for leaders.

Getting Unstuck

  • Get into action in the present moment (remember fear is future based, it can’t exist in the present moment). Take a deep breath and begin. Just do it!
  • Let go of your attachment to the outcome. Be open to the possibility of a different or better outcome. Trust the outcome will be in your best interest.
  • When doubt or uncertainties hold you back, this negative energy projects in your thoughts, words and actions. Ask yourself what would a confident, doubt free day look like for you.       Be willing to see things differently.
  • Visualize you are holding a fist full of helium balloons. Written on each one is the name of one of your fears, worries or doubts. Now see yourself letting go of the balloons, one by one, thus releasing each of these things that are keeping you stuck and holding you back from being the great leader you are meant to be!

Author:  Lois Carson Hunter, Executive Coaches of Orange County,


Lois Carson Hunter

Lois Carson Hunter




One of the key steps in being an amazing and powerful leader is to lead yourself. What do I mean by that? We all have that “inner voice” that talks to us. One way to empower yourself and unleash the amazing leader within is to recognize and manage your inner voice.

Step One – Create awareness. Be an observer of yourself. Listen to what thoughts are in your mind and the words coming out of your mouth. Often people have “limiting beliefs”, old tapes that keep us locked into old behaviors. Examples, I’m not good enough. I’m not smart enough. I don’t have the credentials to be…..or do…. etc. Make a list of your limiting beliefs. If fearful thoughts come up, feel them, let them go and move beyond them.

Step TwoTurn off the critical or limiting “tape” and create a new empowering or “limitless” belief for yourself. For each limiting belief, re-write it into a powerful statement or affirmation. An affirmation is a positive statement or meditation that helps us envision ourselves in more powerful ways. A characteristic of an effective leader is the ability to be innovative, see possibilities and make wise choices. Do this for yourself. What empowering words will you choose for yourself? Focus on what you want, not what you don’t want. Example, I am an influential leader. I’m confidently and enthusiastically leading my team toward our company goals. I am smart and good at what I do.

Step Three – Daily repetition. Read and state your positive affirmations every morning. Visualize yourself being this way. Smile and be proud of yourself! This creates positive energy to powerfully take you through the day as a leader.

To be an amazing leader, first lead yourself! Each day, let go of your limiting beliefs and replace them with empowering beliefs that better serve you and who you choose to be.

Author:  Lois Carson Hunter, Executive Coaches of Orange County,

Success Strategy: The Gift of Accountability

Lois Carson Hunter

Lois Carson Hunter


Do you have a “To Do” list that contains some things that never get checked off? I’m sure we’ve all been there, done that! What’s the true impact of this?

One of the classes I took for my coach training referred to these things as “tolerations”. These are things that people don’t deal with and they just keep “hanging” around in your life, mostly taking up space in your head. You’re “tolerating” them and not doing anything about them. They are a form of “clutter”. This can be in the form of physical clutter, such as, the clothes you never mended, the files you’ve never filed, or the book you never finished, the fence in need of repair, etc. They can also be mental clutter, such as, not doing something because you are fearful, the person you’ve never forgiven, the diet you started and went off course, the conversation you’ve been putting off, the new career you want to pursue but aren’t doing what you need to do about it, etc. Sometimes, physical and mental clutter gets intertwined into quite complex tolerations!

Tolerations zap your energy! Having tolerations are like trying to fill a cup full of holes with water. You keep putting water (your energy) in and it just goes right out the holes, so you’re never full. When you start “plugging the holes” by addressing these tolerations or being accountable for what you say you’ll do, you’ll begin to notice you have more “energy”. You actually start being more motivated and productive vs. spinning your wheels with tolerations. You also become “proud” of yourself which increases your self confidence.

Give yourself the Gift of Accountability. Make a list of things you’re tolerating. Each day, select one thing and do it. If it can’t be completed in one day, you have at least begun. Beginning is half done! Continue. Step back and give yourself a pat on the back. Sometimes it helps to have an accountability partner or a coach. ECofOC provides coaches to nonprofit leaders at no charge. You can get more information and sign up for a coach at Give yourself the gift of accountability!

Author:  Lois Carson Hunter, Executive Coaches of Orange County,

Motivational Leadership

Lois Carson Hunter

Lois Carson Hunter


One of the biggest leadership challenges is motivating employees. As a leader, wouldn’t you love a team that is motivated, committed, empowered!

Let’s take a look from the employee perspective as to what motivates them.

People need to know they matter!

When employees are unhappy and you ask them what’s missing, the most common response is that they don’t feel appreciated. People want to be appreciated, respected and acknowledged. For some this is even more important than money, power, prestige or fame.

Appreciation and acknowledgement often go hand in hand. Appreciation is to recognize, admire, and be grateful or thankful for something someone did. While acknowledgment is more about recognizing and being grateful for how they are being. An example would be: “Thanks for getting your report to me in time for my meeting. I acknowledge you for putting in the extra effort to make this happen.”

Start noticing what your employees are doing that’s working and let them know. Some leaders struggle with this because they think, “It’s their job and they should be doing x,y,z. I don’t need to recognize them for that.” Often, no words are spoken unless the “boss” is not happy with something. Then, they start speaking about what they don’t want. This is the fastest way to get what you “don’t want”. Have you ever heard when one tells a child, “Don’t walk into the street!” they hear “Walk into the street.”? Choose your words carefully!

Motivational leaders know how to motivate their employees without negativity, fear and intimidation. Employees who have to operate in this environment are less motivated and effective because they are spending time on protecting and defending themselves. People respond much better to positive reinforcement (appreciation and acknowledgement) then they do to negative criticism. They are more empowered, committed, motivated and productive.

It’s time to make a commitment to start sharing your acknowledgments freely. Turn up the volume on appreciation, acknowledgement and recognition and turn the volume down on negativity, criticism and complaints. Stand back and watch the miracle occur!

Author: Lois Carson Hunter, Executive Coaches of Orange County,