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What Price For Your Inner Calm And Clarity?

“To a mind that is still the whole universe surrenders.” – Lao Tzu.

“It’s just the price you have to pay”.

So said the ‘successful’ business person sitting in front of me.

We were talking about the pervasiveness of busyness in the modern world – or more specifically, the pervasiveness of a busy mind.

I used to believe the same thing.

I don’t any more. I can’t from what I’ve seen with clients and with myself.

The truth is you can be busy in your world BUT have a calm mind. And that makes a world of a difference to everything. Your energy, your clarity, your mood, your communication, your thinking, your creativity and your results.

Will You Take The Clarity Experiment?

“I’m not addicted to reading. I can stop as soon as I finish the next chapter.”

I love learning – particularly new and interesting information that expands my horizons.

But for a long time it was in an unhealthy way.

The truth is that for many years I was an information junkie. In a way, it was to be expected because that is the model of the current educational system in the Western World – learning is consuming and retaining information.

And while I made very positive improvements to my life because of new learnings, I knew I wasn’t applying everything I knew – but I didn’t know why.

Creating Your Impossible

“Nothing is impossible. The word itself says I’m possible!” – Audrey Hepburn

What do you do when you feel stuck?

What do you do when you lose sight of the mountain you’ve been climbing?

One thing you can do is to make space to dig into interesting questions with an open mind:

Here’s one:

“What now is impossible, but if it could happen, it would change everything?”

I got this email from someone over the summer that I hadn’t seen in a while:

The Best Way To Start Your Day

“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“What’s the best way to start your day?”

I’ve been asked this question many times and my honest answer is:

“Whatever gives YOU the best start to your day”

This is because we’re all different and it’s up to you to figure out what really works for you. But I do know that what won’t give you the best start to your day includes:

Getting Around Your Self-Imposed Limitations

“If you don’t change your belief, your life will be like this forever. Is that good news?” – W. Somerset Maugham

“This isn’t going to work for me, I’m just not a numbers person”.

These were the words spoken by a smart entrepreneurial woman who was adamant that she couldn’t understand the financials of her business.

This was a problem because I’d been asked to help her turn the business around from a difficult financial situation. Yet the one area she didn’t want to talk about was the numbers!

Reducing Anxiety Levels

“If you lower anxiety one notch, it’s a better world.” – Murray Bowen, pioneer of family therapy

Anxiety is a word you rarely hear leaders speaking about in relation to themselves, especially men, probably because of perceived negative stigma. Yet it is more prevalent than you might imagine.

Stress, anger, frustration, doubt, insecurity, mental fog and dis-satisfaction are all symptoms of anxiety.

Don’t be fooled by what you see.

It’s very common for outwardly successful people to be inwardly crippled with high levels of anxiety at times – it doesn’t stop them being good at what they do but often it causes major blips in performance and severely hampers their ability to enjoy life.

Watching The Fuel In Your Personal Tank

“The first requisite of success is the ability to apply your physical and mental energies to one problem without growing weary.” – Thomas A. Edison

The talk in Europe for the coming months is all about energy supply and possible restrictions around same. But what about something more important?

Your own energy reserves and your own energy supply. This is actually the critical factor that helps us to better navigate the relentless challenges of business and life.

I was having a rummage around some old notebooks & journals recently recently when I found something that struck a chord – it’s within the realm of Personal Energy Management or PEM.

This graphic conveys it well.

Some Listening That Makes A Difference

“It takes a great person to be a good listener.” – Calvin Coolidge

To change it up a little, and also because I am currently on holidays…:), I thought I’d share some podcast episodes that I think you’ll enjoy if you like what’s on my weekly emails.

First up is an interview I did a few weeks ago with Tamara Howard. Tamara runs a successful strategic marketing and communications company and over the course of an hour she had some interesting very questions that provoked some useful answers that I believe you’ll get value from.

The Irony Of Not Getting A Coach

“The coach doesn’t have to play the sport as well as you do. They have to watch you and get you to be your best.”

Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google

“I just don’t get why business leaders need someone like you.”

This, or a version of it has been said to me many times by business people. Now when I hear it, I have to stop myself laughing so as not to come across as rude.

Re-Invention And The 4th Of July

“Many public school children seem to only know two dates – 1492 and the 4th of July; and as a rule they don’t know what happened on either occasion.” – Mark Twain

“Why would I want to go to America?”, said my son Sam (13) recently.

“Kids get shot there and they all hate each other.”

Perhaps just a tad extreme in his view, but it’s an indication of how young minds are now seeing this global super-power.

I grew up in a time when going to the US was the dream. Indeed many of my ilk spent long, glorious summers on what was then called a J1 Visa. Happy times.