From coaching

Keep on Trucking (or not) – Part 2

If you enjoyed yesterday’s post about things suggested by Connie Podesta that you ought to quit doing in order to increase your well-being and material worldly success, here’s five more: Quit depending on others to make you happy– as noted in the previous post, there is no such thing as the perfect partner or for that instance, the perfect anything. According to the positive psychology folks, ‘happiness’ is an elusive concept, a mix of the following, none of which depends on securing the affections of another: Autonomy – ‘I am authentic and enjoy being myself’. Meaningful contribution – ‘I connect with…

The Art of Working to a Common Goal

‘Strike while the iron is hot.’ Traditional Proverb Case study: Staples, the office supplies retailer, had fallen from being a market leader to only 1/3 of the new market leader’s size. In comes the new guy, John Wilson, who had a fantastic reputation for fixing organisational ills. In no time, Wilson ramrodded through much needed change – he was, as one colleague described him, an ‘in-your-face kind of guy’. Initially what Wilson delivered hit the spot and revenues nearly quadrupled over the next four years. Yet, even as Staples continued to grow, profitability dropped. In comes another new guy, Basil…

The Art of Persuasion

For success in any meeting or information exchange, the following four steps are essential: Build trust and rapport with your audience and thus set the scene to your advantage. The quickest and easiest way to build rapport is to assume that you already have it. Simply imagine that the persons with whom you’re speaking are very dear and close old friends. As the result, your body language and attitude will change subtly and without overtly trying, you’ll make your audience feel comfortable and at ease. Smile and make eye contact in a non-threatening and confident manner. The more confidence you…

The Art of Calm

Imagine that you’re about to commence a difficult conversation with a colleague or friend. Are your shoulders starting to tense? Is your stomach knotting up? Do you feel like you’re bracing for a fight? Instead of being at the mercy of your emotions in a stressful situation, why not choose to feel calm? Not only is this possible, but probably easier than you think. It’s all down to moving off auto-pilot and developing the habit of paying attention to what’s going on with your body.  It’s not difficult to notice when you’re in the grip of an extreme emotion like…

The Art of Communication

we can each process only 5-9 chunks or nuggets of information at a time and so we use ‘metaprograms’, or unconscious filters, to ‘select’ them from the shower of stimuli we receive. These patterns run behind the scenes in our brains, so automatic that we usually don’t even realise they’re there

The Benefits of Magical Thinking

21 million Americans suffer from Paraskevidekatriaphobia or fear of Friday the 13th. Yet, according to a 2008 Dutch study, Friday the 13th is statistically safer than other Fridays because people either choose to stay at home or those that do venture out, take more care than usual.      Yesterday, I was privileged to attend a lecture at Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum entitled The Natural Origins of Supernatural Thinking given by Professor Bruce Hood (Bristol University). Hood provided curious anecdotes such as that cited above in a very matter of fact way. As an experimental psychologist specialising in developmental cognitive neuroscience, his major research interests include…

When’s your Mid Life Crisis?

Astrologically, the timing of your mid-life crisis is about as predictable as it gets. After all, they’re generational transits and you’ll share them with many others. But how each of you choose to handle this time differs widely. Some view it as a profound opportunity while others see it as a terrible loss and some, well they don’t know what to make of it at all. There are three different (although possibly overlapping) transits involved during this period and each of them lasts approximately 2-3 years. For most of us, the (1) Pluto square Pluto comes first followed by the…