Have You Lost Your Mojo?

We’ve all experienced those moments when the planets aligned, everything went our way, and we were on top of the world.  Even if it’s been a while, you probably remember what it felt like.

It’s a Mojo moment, and when you’re in it, it feels magnificent.

Executive coach Marshall Goldsmith says, “Mojo is a moment when we do something purposeful and powerful, and the rest of the world recognizes it.”

Whether it’s scoring the winning goal, landing the big job, or having that conversation with your teenager when you handle everything just right and you watch them become a more mature, kinder, more enlightened person before your very eyes, it’s magic.

The challenge is that we don’t usually experience Mojo moments as often as we’d like, and if you’re going through a tough time, it can feel like your Mojo has literally been sucked out of you.

So how do you get it back?

Do you wait around until the world delivers you another helping of internal java juice?

In his new book, Mojo: How to Get It, How To Keep It, How To Get It Back if You Lose It (Hyperion), Goldsmith writes, “Mojo is that positive spirit – toward what we are doing – now – that starts from the inside and radiates out.”

The operative elements of that sentence are “what you’re doing now” and “radiating from the inside out.”  Said another way, you can’t create Mojo by pining for the past or putting your happiness on hold until some future date.  And you can’t expect to get it from something outside of you; you have to create it within.

Goldsmith, who coaches hundreds of top performers and is a leading authority in helping people make lasting behavior changes, says that our professional and personal Mojo is impacted by four key factors:

1. Identity: Who do you think you are?

2. Achievement: What have you done lately?

3. Reputation: Who do people think you are – and what have you done lately?

4. Acceptance: What can you change – and when do you need to let it go?

During our recent interview, Goldsmith ( said that often one of the reasons people lose their Mojo is because they can’t let go of a failure.   “Failure is a Mojo killer,”  he says, “because we become so identified with the failure that we can’t let it go.”

An inability to let go of past mistakes affects your identity, your sense of achievement, your perception of your reputation, and your ability to accept change, all four of the factors that contribute to Mojo.

Going out into the world without your Mojo isn’t fun for anyone.  So if you’ve lost yours, you really owe it to yourself to try to get it back.

But there’s another reason to be proactive about firing up your Mojo – for the people you care about.

Goldsmith writes, “When you show up with no Mojo, you give people the message you don’t care about them.  You say loud and clear, “I wish I were not here today; I would rather be doing almost anything than working with you or in this company.”

Goldsmith has asked thousands of people all around the world to complete this simple sentence: “When my children grow up I want them to be. . .”

The overwhelming answer –  “Happy.”

Who doesn’t want the people they love to be happy?

But here’s the catch:  you have to go first.

Lisa Earle McLeod is an author, columnist, keynote speaker and business consultant. The founder and principal of McLeod & More, Inc, she specializes in sales and leadership training. Her newest book, The Triangle of Truth, has been cited as the blueprint for “how smart people can get better at everything.”  Visit for a short video intro.
© Copyright 2010, by Lisa Earle McLeod.  All rights reserved.