Posted in coaching, Emotional Intelligence, mindfulness, personal impact, Stress management

Sleep the new drug…

Sleep is the new drug in town.  We reach for the pain killers and eventually we might take to our bed.  However what if we saw sleep as a preventative drug.

Matthew Walker is the director at the Centre for Human Sleep Science at the University of California, Berkeley, he has spent the last 20 years studying “sleep”.

“When have you ever seen an NHS poster urging sleep?’ – “when did a Doctor prescribe sleep not sleeping pills, sleep loss costs the UK economy more than £30bn a year in the lost revenue” 

Sleep resets our body and brain by working on the following:-

  • memory
  • emotional stability
  • immune system

When we sleep it is like hitting the save button on your memories.  Studies have also shown that we can learn new facts much better after a good 8 hours.  The Hippocampus in the brain is the memory in-box.   MRI scans of sleep deprived individuals show the lack of activity or using the metaphor of the in-box no new files.

Sleep manages emotional volatility, scans of the brain show the Amygdala has increased activity with sleep deprived individuals.  So for our emotional well being 8 hours sleep a night is the best recovery.

Our physicality is improved with sleep as we have natural killer cells, our immune cells who work during the night.  The World Health Organisation has now identified that shift workers are at risk due to poor sleeping routines.

Sleep resets your body and brain so go out there and reclaim it and make sure it is the full 8 hours.

 

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Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Management, personal impact

Behaviour Vs Attitude…

We can only comment on what we see, not what we think is driving behaviour. So an example would be:-

Alice always appears very unhelpful when people enter the department, she never welcomes anyone.

We could make an assumption that she has a bad attitude. However we must only give feedback on the observable. Our personality is made up of values, skills, beliefs and attitudes we have collated to be our unique self.

Alice needs feedback on just behaviour that we can see:-

Alice I have seen that every time anyone enters the department you never look up, you never make eye contact with them or say anything”

 We would hope that Alice might explain, she hates being at the front desk, she has always been shy, she did not realise it was a requirement or she said sorry and was keen to do it differently.

Think about the balance between a behaviour and an attitude, what is behind and what is driving it. You often notice more when some-ones behaviour is not in sync with their usual demeanor.

A very handy mnemonic to keep you on the right track (“SBI”):-

S – Situation – what can you see happening?

B – Behaviour – what are they doing, only observable?

I – Impact – what do they think could be the impact of this behaviour?

It is always better if an individual can self assess their behaviour, no-one likes to be told where they are going wrong.

Please do get in touch if you would like your team to have a workshop on feedback.

www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

and contact bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

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Posted in Decision Making, Emotional Intelligence, personal impact

To be savvy…

How do you get to hear everything that is going on at your company?  The smokers used to have all the insights, hard to advocate smoking in order to become savvy.  In the US they would use the term the “water cooler chat”, so how do we really find out what the Directors are up to.

The word savvy itself, what does it really mean “shrewdness and practical knowledge; the ability to make good judgements”. So to be shrewd you got to be right place at the right time and then also the ability to filter fact from fiction.  Savvy in my eyes is also quite cool some-one who just gets it.

From a company perspective you need three types of savvy to understand the full picture:-

  • Business savvy – the numbers – what is the profit and loss?
  • Organisational savvy – the people – how do you get things done around here, who do you know in finance, etc..?
  • Contextually savvy – the outside – what is the bigger picture telling you about your own company? competitors, politics, economics etc…

Where they meet in the middle is an individual with their eyes wide open.

By becoming savvy we can begin to have an influence over decisions as we armed with knowledge.

Take a tour of our website to find more nuggets www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk 

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Posted in Bite size learning, Emotional Intelligence, personal impact, Relationships

Getting your message across…

Knowing when to communicate and how to get a message across effectively is a skill in the digital age that we now live in. To cement relationships we need to steer away from the easy option.

The communication needs to be valid and memorable. Therefore we need to plan and prepare as we would with other forms of work.

The story below highlights the need for communication to be personable:-

A man and his wife had been arguing all night, and as bedtime approached neither was speaking to the other. It was not unusual for the pair to continue this war of silence for two or three days, however, on this occasion the man was concerned; he needed to be awake at 4:30am the next morning to catch an important flight, and being a very heavy sleeper he normally relied on his wife to wake him. Cleverly, so he thought, while his wife was in the bathroom, he wrote on a piece of paper: ‘Please wake me at 4:30am – I have an important flight to catch’. He put the note on his wife’s pillow, then turned over and went to sleep.
The man awoke the next morning and looked at the clock. It was 8:00am. Enraged that he’d missed his flight, he was about to go in search of his errant wife to give her a piece of his mind, when he spotted a hand-written note on his bedside cabinet.
The note said: ‘It’s 4:30am – get up.’

Think how often you communicate with people during the day.  You write emails, create reports, prepare presentations, debate with your colleagues and chair meetings.  We spend an entire day communicating. To provide clear messages and ensure they are received use the 7 C’s as a checklist:-

  1. Clear – ensure you have included all the relevant information
  2. Concise – stick to the point
  3. Concrete – does your message land – does it convey passion
  4. Correct – no spoilers, good messages can be ruined by grammatical errors
  5. Coherent – logical flow
  6. Complete – call to action, what is next…?
  7. Courteous – friendly, open and honest

Please do contact nuggets for a Communication Toolkit workshop www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk 

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Emotional Intelligence, mindfulness, personal impact, Stress management

Managing “You”

Have you ever heard the voices in your head as you reach for the doughnut.  One is clearly saying go for it, you deserve it, the other is saying do not eat it.

Dr Steve Peters the author of the Chimp Paradox explains who the voices are and how to keep on top of them.  We have the Chimp speaking from our limbic brain, with its basic reactive response and its short term view.  The other voice is our Human mind is the prefrontal area which is thinking of consequences and evidence and taking a long term view. The other area of the mind which will guide both of them is the computer, where memories are stored.  This will let you know how good the doughnut tasted last time, and equally how guilty you felt afterwards.

The Chimp only provides suggestions and we must remember these are not actions to follow.  The key is to always manage the Chimp.

The book provides 4 strategies for doing so:-

  1. Exercise it – let your emotions out with someone you trust
  2. Reward it – give your Chimp a banana, if I get this done we will do this (eg. eat the doughnut)
  3. Box it – use your Human brain to work with the Chimp, evaluate suggestions
  4. Distracting it – count to 10 backwards, this prevents the Chimp being reactive it pauses it

There are many mind management systems out there to manage your emotions however not many have such successes attributed to them.  Dr Steve Peters worked with the British cyclists Sir Chris Hoy, Sir Bradley Wiggins and Victoria Pendleton.

For more help on working out your responses please do work with nuggets as a personal coach or delivering a 90 minute course to your team.

http://www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, Emotional Intelligence, mindfulness, personal impact

What is being assertive…?

There are only four behaviours and yet we find it so hard to locate the assertive voice within us.

We know that it is being true to ourself and saying what we genuinely mean, however we find it hard to articulate.

The other behaviours that get in the way are:-

  • Aggressive – too strong as a voice
  • Passive- too weak
  • Passive/Aggressive – not really our voice

Behaviour is contagious so if some-one raises the voice they unlock within us an equally aggressive tone.  We need to instigate the pause button to release the assertive behaviour which is very simplistically, “Say what you mean and mean what you say”.

Adam Galinsky explains that speaking out is all about finding a your own personal range, the voice that works for you.   Being sure of the perspective you see in front of you.  He tells the story of a bank raid where the banking clerk just asked why the amount was so specific.  The bank robber explained it was the rent his friend owed in order to prevent eviction.  She calmly suggested that they chat through a bank loan rather than proceed with the raid.  The calmness and empathetic approach of this bank clerk prevented what could have been a very catastrophic situation.

Being sure of the perspective you see in front of you is all about being assertive.  In the book “Getting to Yes” by Roger Fisher and William Ury they repeat that the best negotiating is always to look behind the position and ask why it matters.

We can deliver an Assertion workshop in 90 minutes at your workplace, please do visit our website to find out more http://www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, personal impact

Brand “you”

Knowing and understanding your own personal brand is all about asking yourself the right questions, uncovering what you are about.  What is underneath the packaging, who YOU really are.

There is a lot written about authenticity and being genuine.  A strong foundation that is based on truth will be the way to secure a true brand.

“The most exhausting thing in life, I have discovered, is being insincere.” – Anne Morrow Lindbergh author of “Gift from the Sea”

Being some-one you are not is hard work, think about Actors playing characters, often twice a day for a matinee and evening performance they are exhausted.  If you are not true to yourself you run the risk of eventually being found out, famously in the 1990s was a pop duo Milli Vanilli.  Their first album earned them a Grammy for Best New Artist.  It materialised the duo could not sing and had been lip synching to the music.  Their Grammy was revoked and no-one heard from them until sadly the tragic accidental death in 1998 of one of the pair.  This is an extreme example of not being who YOU really are.

The path to a true brand starts with key questions:-

7 questions – from the Personal Branding Guru – William Arruda

1. What do you do better than anyone else?
2. What are your top values?
3. What do people frequently give you praise for?
4. What is that people come to you for?
5. What adjectives do people use to describe you?
6. How do you do what you do?
7. What energises you?
This is the starting point to brand YOU.
Please do take a look at our website as to how you can work with nuggets on personal branding www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk