Heart | Smarts | Spine | Soul - Part 2

April 2, 2020 - Pastor Bill Mitchell

Heart | Smarts | Spine | Soul - Part 2

Pastor Bill Mitchell
April 2, 2020

As we say every month, BocaLead exists to raise the bar of character and ethics throughout South Florida, and we believe this is an especially important time for that. People are looking to their leaders now more than ever. Before we get into the meat of the content today, we want to thank our leaders for what they’re doing – from the Mayor of Boca Raton, Scott Singer, to our County Commissioners, our Governor, and our President. Leaders at all levels have some difficult decisions to make right now, and we want to encourage all of you to lift them up in your thoughts and prayers.

The COVID-19 pandemic spreading around the world has given us a really incredible opportunity to link arms with people on every continent and in every nation. We at BocaLead ask you to first follow the directions your government and health officials have given you to stay safe. Help them do their job by listening to them. In addition, many of us here in the United States will be receiving a stimulus check soon. If you’re wondering about the best way to use it, we have some ideas.

First, if you need the money you’re given to pay bills, rent, feed your family, etc., please use it for that purpose. If those needs are taken care of, however, and you don’t need the stimulus check to provide for yourself, we would encourage you to give it to those who do. If we in the business community took some of the funds we’ve been given and used it to give back to those around us who are suffering, we could have such an incredible impact.  We may not all be able to help physically while still following social distancing restrictions, but some of us, at least, can help financially.  Wouldn’t it be great, if a year from now, as we’re looking back on this crisis, people would be able to say the South Florida business community rose up and supported those in need at such a crucial time?


Recently, we started a new BocaLead series called, “Heart, Smarts, Spine, Soul.” Last month, we covered the topic of “Heart” and having compassion, which is important right now. This month, we’re talking about “Smarts”, which means thinking and working through issues, like, how are you going to run your business or nonprofit during a health and economic crisis, manage your family, or teach your kids who are now learning from home?

A Leader Has to Live in Three Time Zones

Having smarts as a leader means living in three different modes of time if you want to be successful.

1. The Past

Thinking in the past means having hindsight. It is crucial to be able to look at where we’ve been in order to learn and gain the experience necessary for where we’re going. Understanding the past gives understanding and builds discernment for the future.

2. The Present

Turning our past experience into insight that assists in every-day activities builds confidence about our current status and direction.

3. The Future

Thinking in the future means having foresight, which isn’t so easy these days. This means having the vision we need to see where we need to go and how take our people there. Your employees and vendors are a little nervous right now about what the future may hold. As leaders, we need to have confidence and discernment to steer our businesses and nonprofits through the series of crises that is occurring.

Thinking in Context


There are a lot of words around thinking, leading and creativity that are often misunderstood. At BocaLead today, we want to give you four of these words and phrases, and explain them.

1. Criticizing

While we may think it’s our job to criticize, criticism separates people from ideas and divides people. To an extent, we should tell people what we think about what they’re doing, but there’s a right way and a wrong way to do so.

2. Critical Spirit

Having a critical spirit separates you from yourself. It’s the negativity that’s in you where you’re criticizing to the point that you become personally toxic. If this is you, we at BocaLead would encourage you to first have the self - awareness to realize that, and second, to focus more on the things for which you’re grateful, rather than the things that are going wrong.

3. Critique

Critiquing is separating the issues in a clarifying way. It begins the thinking process and allows you to think more creatively. Be careful that it is done in a positive rather than negative way.

4. Critical Thinking

Critical thinking begins to connect the dots between individual people, ideas, events, and your own knowledge and self-awareness. Where criticism pushes everyone away, critical thinking brings everyone together.

The Thinking Pyramid


In learning to think critically, there are several different levels to go through, which are outlined in the “Thinking Pyramid” below.

Bottom Level: Unconscious Incompetent

You have low self-awareness and you don’t know much, but you don’t know what you don’t know.

Second Level: Conscious Incompetent

You know what you don’t know, but not how to change that. You may need training or re-assignment.

Third Level: Unconscious Competent

You don’t know what you know. In other words, someone may be really good at what they do, but they aren’t aware of their true potential for growth. This is where you, as a good leader can come in and take someone far beyond where they think they can go by challenging them with new projects and responsibilities. It’s been said that on our own, we only go to about 65% of our abilities. You as an outsider can push them to reach the other 35%. Can you imagine in this crisis, if we could do 35% more than what we think we can do, the kind of impact that would have on our community?

Top Level: Conscious Competent

This is where we all want to be. At this level, we have great self-awareness. We know what we’re doing, why we are doing it, and what we want the results to be.

With COVID-19, the rules are changing quickly. In order to get through the upheaval happening around us, we must use the gifts, talents skillsets and financial assets we have for the good. We must take care of ourselves and our families first, and then expand upon that and grow our reach. Using the “smarts” and critical thinking skills we’ve taught here in this BocaLead session can help you know how to act and when.

We pray you have a great month, in spite of, or perhaps because of, everything that is happening in our world. Take advantage of the increased time with family. Our kids and grandkids will remember this differently than we will. Make this an opportunity to grow closer to each other, and to build community with others around you, even if it’s through a phone screen, or from across the street.


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