Randy Siegel builds the people who build organizations.

Organizations hire Randy to transform high-potential employees into a new generation of leaders. Randy gives them the leadership and communications skills they need to rise through the organization.

CEOs hire Randy to help them become more charismatic leaders, spokespeople, and ambassadors for the organizations they serve.

His work is based upon a proprietary process that facilitates self-discovery to clarify personal perspective, true purpose, and professional image.

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One of my favorite words in the English language is the word “awe,” and it best describes my feelings about the breathtaking scenery I experienced on a recent vacation out West. I have always loved the West and try to visit the region at least once a year.

We began in New Mexico, visiting Santa Fe, Taos, and the surrounding area, and then we ventured into Colorado and visited Pagota Springs and Durango.

The landscape in the West is so different from the landscape in the East; each has its unique character and beauty. I have always felt the East represented the feminine, and the West, the masculine.

In the West, I am bowled over by the rocky mountains, arid desert, and clear light; the wide expanses of land open me up to all the possibilities of life. At home, the rounded mountains, rich soil, and lush landscape of the East ground me.

Our recent vacation once again reminded me of the importance of embracing both the ying and the yang, acknowledging the polarity of life. My friend Ruth says it best when she talks about being “both-and” in an “either-or” world.

Before sharing this month’s message, allow me to make several brief announcements:

I am now scheduling two-day personal retreats in Asheville, North Carolina, for the spring and summer for those individuals ready to take their career and life to the next level. Please contact me for information, fees, and availability.

I am also forming a Power Up group for people living in Asheville. Click here for more information.

Don’t forget to check out the Thought for the Week. Every Monday, you’ll find a new tip, thought, or rant posted on the home page of my website,

Finally, I’ve added a new worksheet that you may find helpful if this month’s message resonates with you.

This month, we’ll examine the power of being present.  

On Being Present

All right, I confess; I am one of the 1.5 million people worldwide who downloaded Oprah Winfrey’s online book group on Eckhart Tolle’s latest book A New Earth.  I was curious about the technology and even more interested in the subject. For those of you who don’t know, Eckhart Tolle writes about the importance of being present.

We hear a lot these days about being present, but what does it really mean? Perhaps you already know the "fully present" person. When you’re with him, he makes you feel like talking to you is the single, most important thing in the world. You feel seen, heard, understood, and, yes, loved.

I bet you also know people who aren’t so present. You’re talking, and they’re looking around, have that glazed look on their face, or nodding their heads impatiently waiting for you to pause so they can interject a point.

I don’t know anyone who is present all the time, but I have run across a few who are present most of the time. They are wildly attractive. People with presence are charming, charismatic, and considered excellent communicators.

Chances are you’ve been present before, although you may not have known it. You know you are present when you are in the present and not thinking about the future and past. You know you are present when your head, heart, and gut are united in the moment, and time slows down or stops all together. You know you are present when you feel energized and alive, yet you also feel centered and calm. And finally, you know you are present when you aren’t fearful. You may experience love when you are present; I feel the presence of God.

While I don’t profess to be an expert on presence, I am working to be present more in my life. Here are five practices I’ve found particularly helpful in becoming more present.

  1. Stop what you are doing and fully focus on the task at hand. You cannot multitask and be present.
  1. Look at the other person. If she has that glazed look, the chances are you are not present. When your attention wanders, so will hers.
  1. When your mind wanders, gently bring it back and redirect it to the present moment.

The good news is that the moment you are aware that you are not present, you are

Ignore stray thoughts that flit across your mind and try to distract you. If you don’t pay them attention they won’t hook you. Consider these thoughts as passing clouds.

  1. Become extrasensory. What do you smell?  Hear?  Taste?  Take a slow, deep breath and come back into your body. What do you feel right now?
  1. Practice presence:
    1. Observe. If you’re in a meeting, become an observer-participant. Observe what is taking place as if you were watching a movie.
    2. Meditate, even if only for a few minutes each day.
    3. Do an everyday activity and give it your full attention. 

We are born with presence. As babies our heads weren’t yet filled with thoughts. As babies, we only knew how to deal with what was right in front of us at the moment.

Watch what happens when a newborn baby is brought into a room. Everyone's attention shifts to the baby. People smile and forget about their problems if only for a few minutes. The baby isn’t doing anything special--just being there--yet everyone feels a little better in his or her presence.

When you are present you are like that baby, you don’t have to do or say anything; people just feel better in your presence.


Copyright Randy Siegel 2007. All rights reserved.