Week 5 of posts to inspire you in your leadership journey and through the week.
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.”
Maya Angelou ‘Caged bird’
Full version here
Tips for Emerging Leaders Well I hope you’re ready for some podcasts. I put a call out last week and have heard from leaders far and wide, all throughout Australia and beyond. You can expect the podcasts to be online from Wednesday 9 September so stay tuned.
Living your values This week has been significant for Evolve Network in that we’ve employed our first Relationship Manager, Cressida Usher (you’ll meet Cressida soon) and we’ve also further developed the role of our Operations Manager, Nicki Clarke (yes, you’ll meet Nicki soon too). Both ladies bring a wealth of experience to Evolve Network and our clients and I’m so excited to welcome them to the team.
Our first team meeting (Friday) enabled us to have a solid conversation about our values and how they intersect with the values that the organisation exemplifies. It’s so good to bring consciousness to the things that we value and I’m very proud of the values that guide Evolve Network.
But it wasn’t all lip service, we’ve already put some rigour behind some of our core values: Health – we agreed to step away from our desks each lunchtime, and hold each other to account around this. Family – We have a flexible work environment and an understanding that family comes first. This includes planning travel around family time and also designing spaces for kids to be at the office if the need arises. (Actually, my kids are at the office regularly and have been using it as a means to develop their entrepreneurial pursuits – another story).
There’s a lot more to this story and I’ll blog about it as it unfolds.
Point being, this week I got to see myself as the leader I truly want to be with the right team to support that reality. And it feels amazing to work with people who share the same values.
Health is a constant in my list of things that matter most to me. One way that I really wanted to address my health in 2015 was to change my relationship with alcohol. Not because I’m a raving drunk but because I just don’t want to be held to ransom by a habit – even if it’s deemed as socially acceptable or ‘not that bad’. I wrote about that here
As my alcohol free August challenge draws to a close I noticed I’d been thinking a lot about what wine to order and what to get my hands on first. I started to think really hard then about the notion of being ‘away’ motivated or ‘toward’ motivated.
This is why… After I ask someone about what matters most to them, the next question is ‘what will you do about it’? More often than not the statement is about what will be avoided – lose weight, drink less, work less etc. But I’m not entirely sure that can ever work well, going without or NOT doing something always leaves a gap of some sort.
So I started to wonder if in honouring that my health matters to me, rather than NOT drinking could I instead focus on some healthy things I’d love to do?? Eat vegetables five days per week, exercise every day, go for a walk with my walking buddy five days per week, indulge in a treat once each week etc. etc. I think you get the point – creating a sense of abundance in things that support your ‘what matters’ as opposed to a mandate to avoid the things that take you away from it.
Anyway, change is more fun with the support of others so perhaps you’d like to join me, and 103 other habit change-makers for Sublime September JOIN US HERE
See more ‘what matters’ statements here
Our planning day leads me to the next big bit of news, a new adaptation of our Kickstart Leadership program designed specifically for people who want to make change in community.
Who are the movers and shakers of change in community? I believe the role of the person may vary, however one thing remains the same. That is, they are sick of talking and ready for action.
That is who we work alongside.
You might be a passionate resident, work for a non government organisation or the local Council, perhaps an Aboriginal Corporation or Local Aboriginal Land Council, a school, or a voluntary organisation. It really doesn’t matter – if you want to DO, make sure you stay posted.
Here are a few upcoming opportunities:
Kickstart My Community – a free online group offering you access to a 30 day action challenge, a task per day to build your community. Register for free HERE
Kickstart My Community – taster program: want to experience the format of the new program? Join us between 16 November and 11 December. Coaching, a blueprint for action, ongoing support – want more? Register NOW
Last Sunday I took about 3hrs to setup some new baselines in my planning. I identified:
(1) the types of tasks I’d like to be doing each day of the week
(2) the absolute non-negotiable times I’d like to be spending on the things that matter most to me and
(3) how that balances out with current client and business development needs
Then I pulled out my diary and created a neat schedule for each day ensuring everything (I mean EVERY THING) happened. As I closed the diary at 11pm on Sunday night with a smug smile on my dial I thought to myself “nothing can bring this unstuck except sick kids”.
Ha ! Be careful what you put out there. Yep, the superbug launched itself upon the family. My son spent most of the week in bed, the youngest had 2 days at home and my darling tween amped up the attitude so as not to be left out.
But something marvelous happened. No, things didn’t work as my carefully planned diary had noted. However, everything did happen anyway. I wondered why and here are the few things that became quite clear:
* I set intentions for my personal life, work life and family life, and the intentions manifested – it’s not ‘spooky’, quite simply I brought the things I really wanted to happen into my consciousness and focused on letting them happen rather than focusing on the things that I didn’t need to.
* I respected my time: phone over getting in the car (in regional Australia where the distances can be enormous this is important), getting up a little earlier so that I have just a little more time in the morning to clear my mind, exercise and write. I was also careful with the time I spent on thinking through things – Monday I took some time to think through a problem that I’ve been having with my computer and actually fixed it (rather than taking additional time to put a bandaid on it over and over again)
* I had more health and fitness activities in my week, clearer mind, healthier body, life is just easier.
So much more on this but let me tell you, one week on I’m still feeling pretty good about my schedule and even more so now that I can see how flexible it can be.
Intentions for the week ahead:
I brought my focus on exercise, eating and my thoughts. Each day I got up just half an hour earlier to exercise. What a difference that makes. I was tempted to sleep in a few times but really enjoying the persistence now.
I realised I’d been considering eating on a day to day basis but decided to look at it over a whole week instead. Made a big difference, and also that cheese platter on Friday night fall into balance.
I also realised that I’d been spending a lot of time on negative ‘what if’ thinking – troubleshooting is a good skill but not when it’s in every waking moment. I designated some time to problems and aside of that focused my thoughts on the positive. I can feel the results of this through my entire being.
August adventures: My 31 days without alcohol will conclude this week. I will probably celebrate with a champers on Tuesday afternoon but it certainly isn’t a daily habit that I intend to relaunch into. Make sure you check out SUBLIME SEPTEMBER if you want to join me in building new, healthy habits.
Kickstart energiser: Needing some support to move into action? This is the one for you. Join me from Tuesday 1 September. MORE HERE
Have a great week, stay in touch.
PS what does this post have to do with 20 flying pigs? It’s a simple note to myself about anything being possible, about the importance of reflection and taking the time to notice. It’s about writing for pleasure and bringing even more joy to work. Finally it’s about exploring beyond what is possible, challenging my (and your) beliefs and uniting change.