Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Stress management

The resilient Athlete…

One of my Clients sponsored Natalie Miller the Co Captain of the indoor netball team otherwise known as Nets.

The team went into the World Cup as reigning champions which is always a hard place to start as the expectation of a result is heavy on the teams shoulders.

We have closely followed the team’s progress and worked with them before they left on having a great mind set and adopting winning behaviour.

The team missed out on a medal, however the journey and the values they shared are winning in the minds of many.  I interviewed Natalie recently to get an insight as to how an athlete returns to life after a tournament with the memories of highs and lows.

Leading up to a tournament there is the training and the abstinence from partying and alcohol and the missing out on family events.  The discipline of being constantly in training is tough.

Natalie explained that when she returned it is hard to make that transition.  Mentally it is tough to understand what has just happened.  Knowing that it is over and you have worked for a year and half and been so focused.  The recovery is slow as the emotions run high.  The reality of a gear change takes a while to adjust to.

Freddie Flintoff’s podcast was something Natalie could relate to, he talks about how it feels to return home after tournament.  The harshest part is knowing that you will never play with that team again.  The combination of players is very hard to replicate.

Natalie explained that the team have not seen each other since the World Cup, however this feels natural as everyone needs space after such an experience.

The team experienced a tremendous high when they won against New Zealand and personally very special to Natalie as her parents witnessed the victory.  This match showcased the team, they all came together and there was total cohesion.

Another special moment was one team member was not going to play again and understandably was feeling sad, so as the Captain, Natalie asked “What would really make you happy?”.  At the time of asking the team were in an ice bath, and heroically Natalie offered to dive head first into the ice bath.  The reaction after the dive is something the team will never forget.

Everyone has a contribution and that is why being part of a team is so special.

The high of being part of a team to represent your country and being Captain cannot be minimised.  Natalie took advantage of going to South Africa by having a holiday afterwards with her parents who went out to support her.  This time was very precious being one of four to have exclusivity with her parents was a wonderful reward.

Natalie’s story continues…she has been promoted at the school she works at.  She is now the Head of Netball, Seaford College.  She brings her passion of the sport and shares that with the children.  She is playing for Sussex Thunder as the Captain and has her heart and eyes set on the Masters World Indoor Championships in 2020.

The sponsor invested in Natalie as they had shared values and the journey to the World Cup has only highlighted and exaggerated how relevant they are.

  • Resilience
  • Leadership
  • Passion
  • Teamplayer

Values are your anchor in life and you will always be a winner if you stay true to them.

Congratulations to all the Nets team and to Natalie for being a part of the World Cup and for sharing their story.

 

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, motivation, Stress management, Time management

Procrastinating…

Procrastinating something we are guilty of.

What actually is it?   In a nutshell it is self regulating failure.

We all have too many distractions so it is very easy to procrastinate.  We need more than just will power.  Some of the reasons we find it so easy to avoid tasks is that we can have a dip in our overall motivation.  We might be feeling anxious, or we simply hate the task in hand and will try every aversion tactic possible.

We can also affect a task by just how we talk about it “I have to or I need to…”  This is all reactive language and does not put you in a positive mindset.  If we used proactive language around the task we would feel more positive.  “I choose to or I would like to…”

Some top tips to prevent procrastination:-

  • Set up your environment with minimal distractions, just one screen on your desk
  • Ensure that your phone is on silent.
  • Set your own deadline, if the end point is too far away you might put it off
  • Ensure you are not overwhelmed by a task, break it into smaller chunks
  • List your tasks and actions – What gets written gets done…
  • Identify your best time in the day and ensure that is when you work on the tough stuff
  • Committ to a time limit with a break built in, and reward yourself so that you still feel motivated
  • Visualise how you will feel once you have completed the task

Please do get in touch for a 90 minute Time Management workshop bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

The photo is courtesy of:-

@KrishantiPhoto_commercial

@KrishanthiPhoto

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

Being kind to yourself…

We are responsible for our actions and our decisions and ultimately how kind we decide to be to ourselves.

My day had a bumpy start, I was about to board a train when I remembered I had not put a pen in my bag.  I did a very bad Mum run to WH Smiths at the station and managed to make the train.  Felt quite smug that I had turned things around.

The desperate need for the pen was to make notes on a book on my kindle.  Sat back and retrieved the kindle to find it was out of charge.  Still not deterred used my iPhone to create the kindle app, but failed to remember my amazon password.  I wasted most of the journey with failed attempts and the ultimate lock out message.

When I arrived at Waterloo I decided to walk to my meeting as I needed to be kind to myself, after my rather unproductive train journey. The walk in the sunshine and along the South Bank in London was great for putting me in a lovely mood for my meeting.

When something goes wrong think of a way to be kind to yourself by doing something you will enjoy.

Of course you don’t have to be kind to yourself when something goes wrong, just make it a habit everyday.  Write down when you have been kind to yourself as focusing on ourselves does have restorative effect for the rest of life.

Please do get in touch if you are looking for a business coach bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

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

Write your happy thoughts down…

A study in the British Journal of Health Psychology claimed there was a significant reduction in stress and anxiety when people wrote about their positive emotions.

Previous studies have shown that writing about negative emotions is also good for your mental well being getting stuff “off your chest”.  However not much has been written about the positive emotions.

Writing about positive experiences for 20 minutes a day for 3 consecutive days improved people’s mood and led to fewer visits to the Doctor.  Even writing as little as 2 minutes a day was a positive experience and reduced stress levels.

For the study the 20 minutes of  writing covered areas where people had been moved by a good book, painting, a piece of music or just a good interaction.

There were 71 healthy participants, aged 19 to 77 and randomly allocated into two groups.  The first group was asked to write about the most wonderful experiences (as described above) of their life for 20 minutes for 3 consecutive days.  The other group just covered neutral topics, such as their plans for the rest of the day etc..

At the end of the study the groups answered questionnaires to measure their levels of anxiety and the group that had documented the positive emotions were in much better place than the neutral group.

Write your happy thoughts down to reduce your anxiety levels, get into a routine of reviewing the day ensuring you highlight the positive.

Please do get in touch for a workshop on positivity bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

 

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

You matter…

In Denmark mattering is part of the school curriculum.  During a weekly hour called Klassen Time, students come together to discuss problems and help one another.  Danish children do this every week from age six until they leave senior school.   To make the ordeal easier a different student each week brings cake.  When the children present their problems they feel they are listened to and the others who provide guidance feel they are making a difference.

The children learn empathy by hearing other perspectives and reflecting on how their behaviour affects those around them.  The emphasis is “how do others feel? and how do my actions make them feel?”

I am often saying the strongest leadership skill you can have is listening.  People feel valued if they are given a “damn good listening to”.

People who listen then understand your situation and you feel that you matter.

Make time for those around you, whether it be at work or home and ensure that they feel that they matter.  Look after yourself and also find some-one who will listen to you as remember “you matter”.

Please do get in touch bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

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

Press the button…

What does “press the button” actually mean?

In classic experiments on stress, people performed tasks that required concentration, like solving puzzles, whilst being blasted at random intervals with uncomfortably loud sounds.  The individuals started sweating and their heart rates and blood pressure climbed.   They struggled to concentrate and made mistakes and many just gave up.  Searching for a way to reduce the anxiety, researchers gave the participants an escape.  If the noise became too unpleasant they could press a button and make the noise stop.  The button allowed them to stay calmer and make fewer mistakes.  The most surprising result was that no-one pressed the button.  Knowing they could stop the noise gave them a sense of control and allowed them to endure the stress.

This story comes from the book Option B by Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant.  In the book they put the button into another context.  Grant  a lecturer sadly had a student who committed suicide and he regretted he had not spotted the signs of stress earlier.  He struggled for a long time to overcome any guilt.  To move forward he started every lecture by ensuring his mobile number was clearly displayed in the class, in effect this was the button.

Do you provide a button to your team, do they know that support is there.  Think how you can instigate the button within your organisation.  Coaching and mentoring being formalised could provide buttons.  Buddy schemes for new recruits, and always ensuring your team members have a line manager who conducts regular 1:1 meetings. Larger organisations have well being help lines and by ensuring the number is displayed provides the button security.

At home we now all have our mobile numbers, however do we provide a “button’ service in other ways.  How often do you sit around a table and ensure you really listen to each other?  This is the best “button” you can ever provide.

Please do get in touch for a workshop on Resilience bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, personal impact, Relationships, Stress management

What does social media do for our confidence…?

We bring our children up to believe they can have everything.  In schools we now give medals for partcipating, so the shock of hard work and results in the world of work are a surprise. What has eroded confidence before we enter business…?

Many of our children are gaming and constantly interacting with social media.  We know that the addictive dopamine keeps their interest and whilst they compete for results they are rarely shared.   In order to feel good instead of face to face feedback they are counting the number of likes on a post.  Turning to a device instead of a person, means they lack the ability to form deep meaningful relationships.  The approval of their peers to grow self esteem is coming from an electronic perspective and not a human.

In order to believe in ourselves we have to be happy in real life and not on our social media platforms.

Genuine praise and recognition takes time and is not an instant when we are in the work place.  The younger generation have not learnt the ability to wait for anything, everything can be obtained immediately.  You don’t even have to wait for the next episode you can download the whole box set.  Instant gratification rather than waiting for a reward which would give us pleasure and contentment.

Job satisfaction is arduous, you have to work hard and build new relationships, you have to have patience.  We find a lot of the younger generation want to quit straightaway as they have never had to wait before.

To survive in work we need a good self image and lots of feedback to grow our self esteem.  This needs to be authentic and genuine.

Corporates are not helping to create the right environment for this generation.  Companies are still very number orientated and there is very little investment in helping people to build confidence.  We lack good leaders taking time to guide their direct reports.  We need to  develop social skills by role modelling, the little innocuous comments that make all the difference. “How’s your Dad?”  Through these little asides trust is formed.

Social media plays with our confidence across all generations, watching your friends and family having a lovely life on a screen rather than being with them.  We are social beasts, put down the phone and go and have lunch with a colleague.

Please do get in touch with nuggets on developing confidence “Fearless motivation” bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk