Category Archives: Personal development

Happiness

How is your self-motivation and wellness?

As the pandemic becomes endemic, self-motivation and wellness has emerged as a key leadership trend for 2022 – for us as individuals, and as leaders. This topic is linked to last month’s article: Skills and mindset for the future world of work.

For this month, we focus on what you can do about your own self-motivation and wellness. Next month, we’ll revisit the topic through the lens of a leader.

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Skills and mindset for the future world of work

Skills and mindset for the future world of work

What skills and mindset will you and your people need for the future world of work?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is likely to replace many basic cognitive skills, while the need for other skills will grow, such as those relating to technology, social and emotional intelligence, and higher cognitive abilities – this is what separates us from the robots.

McKinsey did a survey last year to explore this topic. They studied 18,000 people in 15 countries to help governments around the world identify what skills would ensure their citizens become employable, and remain that way.

This article covers what you can learn from their findings so you know what to focus on, both for you as an individual and as the leader of a team or organisation.

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Face your flaws

Face your flaws so you don’t fail

Imagine you’re at the start of your career and you make a big mistake in your first role. You will probably lose your job.

Now imagine you’re the CEO of a large organisation and you make a big mistake. Chances are, everyone loses their job.

When you’re a leader, your actions have high impact. There can be a lot at stake when things go wrong.

Having said that, we’re all human. We all have our own strengths and flaws. By raising our awareness and working on ourselves, we can make a choice about how we want to show up in the organisation, and optimise our positive impact.

This newsletter explores how flaws are made, three common flaws, and how to address them. It’s just one way of looking at this topic, and I hope it gives you food for thought.

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Aging well

Aging well

AgeWith advances in medicine and technology, we are typically living longer than we did 100 years ago. Even as recently as 1960, the average life expectancy in the UK was 71; today it is 81. That’s a lot of life to live and make the most of, and around half of those years may involve being in work.

When we reach our 50s and 60s, we might have made some choices about the work we do. We may be considering retirement, or planning for it. We still have a lot of energy, but also have wisdom and maturity. We may be more comfortable in our skin than we were in our 20s and 30s. Any children may have left home, and we may be more financially stable, giving us more freedom.

I have a lot of clients in this age group. Some are wondering if they want to ‘keep playing the game’, particularly if they are going through yet another round of reorganisation. Yet, those who can afford to give up work might not want to. They still want to use their brain, play a part in society and be part of social networks – work is one way of doing this (and our identity is often closely linked to our work).

“Age only matters if you are a cheese”

We can’t prevent aging, so how do we age well? This article looks at how to make the most of the age we are and the body we’re in.

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Procrastination

Addressing procrastination

Do you find yourself reluctant to get started on certain things? Do you regularly miss deadlines? Or work long hours because you waste too much time?

This month, we look at what procrastination is, analysing why we do it and what we can do about it. If procrastinating affects your productivity, it’s worth thinking about. But procrastination isn’t always bad, so we also explore the benefits.

Procrastination: the action of delaying or postponing something

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Emotional courage

Emotional courage

The pandemic has forced many of us to slow down and take time to think. Whilst there are many benefits to this, it can also be quite scary; our usual busyness can shield us from facing important topics.

Last month’s article was about reconnecting with your purpose. This month, we talk about emotional courage – what it is, why people avoid it, and some practical guidance to help make it easier.

For example, if you have come to believe that you’re in the wrong profession, it will take emotional courage to admit that you want to change your career path and start something new. If your new plans are radically different, you could feel overwhelmed. You might face an initial drop in salary. It can also be hard to tell your family and friends, especially if they encouraged you down your original path. But – if it’s what your heart wants – it’s worth doing.

Another example could be when facing a difficult conversation. We can often feel nervous about potential conflict, or worry that the other person might become angry, or fear we’ll react in an overly defensive way.

A key mindset is to know that things are always going on which are outside anyone’s control. How do you sit with that uncertainty? What emotions does it bring?

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relay

How to reconnect to your purpose

During the last six months, many of us have had more time to sit and think about our life pattern than we have before.

Connecting to your purpose helps you navigate through scary times; it keeps you grounded to who you are and what you want to be in the world, and helps reduce any panic or fear you might be feeling because you focus on your direction instead.

This article includes ideas to help you reconnect to your purpose. To inspire you to think what you want your legacy to be so you can live that now.

When you consider the idea of leaving a legacy, many people jump to the conclusion that it means leaving money for your family, friends or charity. But what is the legacy you want to leave the world? How have you lived your life to help others and leave the world a better place?

Whatever you do (or don’t do) in life, you are making a difference, paying it forward and handing it over to the next generation.

“We all die. The goal isn’t to live forever. The goal is to create something that will.“
Chuck Palahniuk

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mind

How to empty your busy mind

Our lives are so busy these days that it can be hard to find quiet time to rest, reflect and plan. In fact, being busy is praised rather than considered to be a problem. Many of us suffer from ‘busy mind syndrome’, where we get stressed and caught up in our thinking. As a result, we can’t easily make a decision about the best way forward. All this has a negative effect on our mental health.

Rather than giving you practical tips that are even more things to add to your ‘to do’ list, this article talks about a different way of being. It describes a philosophy of life that involves thinking less, so you can be more.

As you read it, concentrate on feeling how you respond. In a way, it’s about heart, not head. In line with the philosophy itself, you don’t need to think about it for hours and days and weeks and months afterwards. But – if the content soaks in and resonates with you – you might find this approach instantly or eventually reframes how you approach life and work events, and so reduces your stress and increases your mental health.

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Bus stop

Using language to influence behaviour

Shelle Rose Charvet has recently updated her bestselling book about the language of influence, Words that Change Minds. It is based on research across more than 30 countries since the mid-1990s, and was recently picked by Forbes as one of their best management books for entrepreneurs and executives.

The book helps you understand where people focus their attention by listening to the patterns of language they use. You can then adapt your own language accordingly, to collaborate and/or lead, and get the results that work for everyone.

To get people to go somewhere with you, you have to meet them where they are… Go to their bus-stop, and from their bus-stop, invite them to let the bus take them where you want them to be.

This article explores some of the concepts that might be useful when you are:

  • Trying to motivate and influence people
  • Considering who to have on your team, and the optimal mix of approach/style
  • Developing your team members
  • Leading your team, and embracing the strengths, diversity and needs of each individual to achieve great outcomes
  • Deciding how best to allocate work between people
  • Determining the best way to manage change

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