Monthly Archives: November 2020

Learning to Achieve your Vision

It’s stunning to me what kind of impact even one person can have if they have the right passion, perspective and are able to align the interest of a great team.
-Steve Case

When Moses caught his vision of a promised land and then aligned the masses to join him, he had to lead them across the desert. Metaphorically, this story illustrates the four stages of the Transformational Map. The promised land is the vision, the followers of Moses aligned with his vision, the desert refers to the learning agenda required to achieve their vision, and the arrival at the promised land is the final stage when we embed the vision into the culture.

Our worldview, skill sets, and life experiences will provide invaluable guidance and support, but the vision will demand personal learning from us. You have to ensure that those who are helping to achieve the vision are able to learn whatever is necessary to do so.

Self-Reflection Questions

● What do you personally need to learn in order to realize your new vision?

● Specifically, what skills, information, and new habits must you learn in order to achieve your vision?

● In order for others to share your vision, what must they know? Interview others, and then craft a learning agenda for achieving your vision in the world.


Learn more: Transformational Leadership: A Framework to End Poverty ~ By Scott C. Miller

To learn more about Scott Miller, please see his website here.

Poverty Management vs Poverty Reduction

Our communities are organized to manage growing poverty. They are not organized to reduce poverty.

Every community spends a lot of money to help people manage crises . A mayor in a Utah community once told me that 90% of the 911 calls came from a relatively small but heavily concentrated area of people in poverty. Rather than investing in understanding the problems of poverty and solutions, we often just keep investing as much money as we can in reacting to it.

State and federal agencies spend billions on programs aimed to stabilize people in poverty: SNAP, HUD, TANF, Medicaid, childcare assistance, to name a few of the big ones. These programs are not organized to help people out of poverty. If they were, there would not be the problem known as the cliff effect in which people lose more assistance than the increase in pay that comes from getting a new job, taking more hours, and/or getting a raise. According to, more than 40% of the residents in my home state of New Mexico receive Medicaid. Government spending is $18.2 billion in our state. Medicaid expenses are 30.3% of total government spending.

WOW. More than $5.5 billion for Medicaid in our relatively small population of just less than 2.1 million. How much would be saved by fixing the cliff effect? See our website for the most recent report regarding the cliff effect problem and what is being done about it.

Employers in New Mexico and numerous other communities served by Circles USA are complaining they cannot find enough qualified workers to fill jobs and expand their businesses. The economy depends on having people who can consistently show up for work and get their jobs done.

Poverty Reduction

Poverty reduction requires that teams of organizations work together to support a targeted number of households through the entire process of economic mobility noted in these five stages:

● Crisis intervention
● Stabilization
● Readiness for the workforce
● Placement into jobs
● Advancement to a good-paying job


Poverty reduction requires that federal, state, and local funders recognize they are rewarding poverty management when they pay for units of services that do not connect the dots between these stages of the process. They inadvertently contribute to increasing poverty and reducing economic vitality. Managing poverty generates that “phantom workforce”—people who should work, want to work, could work, but won’t or can’t because of the cliff effect and the lack of comprehensive programs that support people through the entire process.

Poverty reduction systems will change our nation. We currently tolerate far too much poverty, given the immense resources, talent, and innovation we possess. The old model of paying for random units of services to manage poverty will one day give way to a more powerful approach.

In the meantime, Circles USA is cultivating a national community of transformational leaders who are building the new model that will truly address poverty. You can learn more about the poverty reduction labs in my book, Transformational Leadership, a Framework for Ending Poverty.

From the book: Enough Money, Meaning & Friends ~ By Scott C. Miller

To learn more about Scott Miller, please see his website here.

Aligning with the Right People for Change

It’s stunning to me what kind of impact even one person can have if they have the right passion, perspective and are able to align the interest of a great team.
-Steve Case


I have led Circles USA through a series of multiple-year Transformational Cycles. Although I continue to lead Circles USA for now, I have an even deeper emerging vision of what must be transformed in the world:

The world must experience a revolution that is as deep and powerful as the industrial revolution was in shaping our collective behavior. At the center of this revolution will be people who embrace high ideals of what it is to be human: loving, caring, wise, respectful, peaceful, and happy. With these qualities, people can move mountains.

Through Circles USA, I will continue to support our strategies to bring Circles to 10% of all US Counties (300), and equip them to support a reduction of poverty by at least 10% over a decade. However, I am also going to support transformational leaders within our Circles work and on other complementary agendas using the Your Heart is Calling Program. The emerging vision requires aligning myself with a team of allies who understand marketing, distribution, business plans, workshops, books, etc. This new calling requires me to update my conversation with current allies, and cultivate new allies who will support me in fulfilling my new vision.

As we aspire to be the change we want to see happen in the world, we must identify and release internal resistance and procrastination patterns that will inevitably arise to protect the status quo. This may require letting go of our denial about the current conditions in the world and having enough courage to change what we can within our own lives to affect lasting change in the world around us. To effect meaningful changes on a larger stage, we must give ourselves an unusual amount of support.

Whatever we want to change in the world will require an equal change within ourselves. It is natural that our inner resistance to change will come to the surface and generate a certain amount of fear, frustration, helplessness, and a sense of ennui. Below is a common delay pattern that most of us must confront one way or the other.

The pattern will keep looping until we decide to interrupt it and choose another behavior. Rather than perpetually running this pattern through our minds and emotions, we can turn towards allies and begin talking about our vision with as much passion as possible. The more passion and enthusiasm we generate, the more energy we have available to pursue our vision. Taking action is what signals to ourselves, others, and life itself that we are serious about moving forward.

From the book: Your Heart Is Calling ~ By Scott C. Miller

To learn more about Scott Miller, please see his website here.


Tapping into your Vision for Change

In order to carry a positive action, we must develop here a positive vision.

-Dalai Lama


Perhaps you have never taken the time to write down or record on video exactly how you want to live your life. It can be an immensely powerful and satisfying process. Your vision is your through-line to the future you want. When you articulate your vision in detail you will have an easier time recognizing and seizing opportunities to manifest it.

You might think of it [sustainability] as extending the Golden Rule through time, so that you do unto future generations…as you would have them do unto you.

-Robert Gilman


Vision is informed by our soul’s primary purpose in being here. Each of us can tap into a deeper understanding about what we are to do next in life. When we are acting on our inner vision, it is normal to feel both anxious and excited at the same time; our awareness quickened by possibility. As we continue to affirm our vision and take steps towards it, we will feel more at ease, clearer about our purpose, and more confident in our ability to handle challenges. Enthusiasm and peace of mind are markers that assure us we are on the right path to fulfilling our unique calling.

Whether we have articulated it or not, each of us has a personal vision for the world we want. If we take the time to articulate it, we can then choose to act on it and enjoy the benefits of living a purposeful life. Once we are able to share our vision in both a detailed one-hour presentation as well as in a two-three-minute elevator speech, we can then align ourselves with others who share our vision and are willing to join us in bringing it to fruition. Achieving the vision requires learning whatever is necessary to embed the change into the culture.

From the book: Your Heart Is Calling ~ By Scott C. Miller

To learn more about Scott Miller, please see his website here.


Seasons of Transformation

The future enters into us, in order to transform itself in us, long before it happens.

-Rainer Maria Rilke

Moving through the Transformational Cycle is a natural process that each of us is always engaged in, whether we see it or not. Consciously and mindfully engaging in the cycle yields better and more profound results. We can use the metaphor of a garden and the four seasons to illustrate how the cycle operates.

Winter: A vision emerges from within us while in the resting stage of winter. We articulate it during this quieter season.

Spring: We look for fertile ground to plant the seeds of our vision with others. We align our lives to our new vision; preparing ourselves to tend to our transformational garden.

Summer: We are now deeply involved with the nurturing of our garden; weeding out what we don’t want and watering what we do. We are learning from fellow gardeners and from our own trials and errors.

Autumn: We persist and now harvest the fruits of our labor. We have embedded our vision into reality and the world has been changed.


From the book: Your Heart Is Calling ~ By Scott C. Miller

To learn more about Scott Miller, please see his website here.