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What Holds us BACK to ACT?

December and the promise of a New Year brings with it a time of reflection. Reflection of what we have achieved in the year gone by (or perhaps postponed or held back on) as well as the resolutions that we make to ourselves for the year ahead… a year full of possibilities and opportunities…

It’s the best time of year to set clear intentions, to reignite a Passion or Vision for the future and to Dream …Dream BIG so that we can make the world awesome!

One thing I chose to do differently this year, just to push myself forward and to make sure that I no longer postpone or put things off, was to honestly ask myself…..

‘What Holds Me back to Act?’

When I reflect, I recognise one valuable distinction I have learnt from a system/typology that I now work with, in that I am driven by a lot of why, a little of what, but absolutely no how. What this means is that when I focus on ‘why’ I want to do something, I have clarity. But when I actually want go and do that something, sometimes I just don’t know how to do it! I can become confused, frustrated and potentially give up! I realise that I actually need to team up with those that know how….

So that is what I have done. I have teamed up with 3 inspirational women on purpose, who have aligned values and vision, so that together we can co-create quality solutions for the future. We share a vision to empower and create influential women of the world and, through Creative Collaboration, we have developed a Cohesive Leadership for Change program designed specifically for women. Launching in March 2015, the program creates the vital challenge and joyful experience of discovering ones purpose and stepping into ones individual and collective values and visions.

By teaming up in this way, I have also been inspired and motivated to finally act and launch my new business ‘Cultivate Connections’ on Friday 30th January 2015.

When I discovered what was holding me back and experienced firsthand what happens when I team up with those that complement my strengths and weaknesses, I thought perhaps I might not be the only one; that others might also benefit from teaming up too and that’s why I created Cultivate Connections – it connects people, services and businesses to ensure we have everything we need to ‘turn our Passions and Visions into Actions’… the What, the Why and the How and even the Where and the When…

So as the New Year approaches, ask yourself…

  • Do you have a Passion you want to enthusiastically pursue with others?
  • Do you have a Vision you want to share?
  • Do you have a Dream you want to make into a Reality?

If so, consider a collaborative venture and team up with those that have aligned values and vision. I can certainly declare that TEAMWORK really does make the DREAMWORK!

It is quite incredible. It’s not to say it’s without its challenges but it brings new meaning to relationships, to passions and visions, to ideas and dreams and to what is possible for our future.

Make a New Year resolution now to come along to a CC Event and watch this space, as booking details is coming soon….Taking networking to the next level, CC Events provides an opportunity to consciously Cultivate Connections and experience Creative Collaboration. For further details check out CC Events.

So as 2014 comes to a close, connect with your PASSION, VISION or DREAM and let’s get you collaborating with the right people in 2015…

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Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Knocking Down the Walls that Separate…

This month of November 2014 marks the 25th Anniversary of when the Berlin Wall fell…

An auspicious occasion to remember and an opportunity to reflect and ask the question; why do we put up Walls?  And why is it important to knock them down and unite with those around us?

When I read about the history of East Berlin, Germany, the Wall is claimed to have been erected to protect its people from fascist elements, views and opinions conspiring to prevent the “will of the people” in building a socialist state. With a lack of trust in their neighbours, the concrete Wall was constructed, along with guard towers, anti-vehicle trenches, “fakir beds” and other defences.

What the Wall did, in actual fact, over the 28 years that it stood tall, was only to imprison and serve to control its people, which caused the demise of an economy. Not to mention separate family and friends, cause unnecessary panic and unrest and the death of those trying to cross the border.

It’s been 25 years since the Wall came down, since the East and West have united, but you can still see the effects of what the Wall, of what ultimately control did to the economy of the East.  In an aerial shot taken by Commander Hadfield from the international space station, you clearly see the West shines with modern fluorescent white lights, compared to those in the East which basks in a yellow glow, reflecting the old sodium lights. (picture courtesy of the British Telegraph)

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On foot, as you walk from the West to the East, you get a further sense of the impact. The West has clearly benefited from the prosperity of the second half of the 20th century and it very much feels like a modern western European city. While in the East, you just have to look at the change in the architecture to know its history. It is filled with square blocks, functional looking buildings that were put up by the communist authorities.  A now unified city, however, with no Wall to control its people and the opportunity to collaborate with its neighbours, progress is being made; East Berlin is now one big building site, with unlimited potential and possibility.

As I reflect on my own life and all the times I have put up Walls due to fear of ‘perceived’ differences, or lack of trust in those around me, I recognise how this was my way of trying to control things. Yet now I see how this, in actual fact, has stopped certain things in my life from evolving; from building friendships, to sharing moments or simply experiencing what life has to offer. Basically the Walls constructed in fear, to ultimately get a sense of control, actually stops the flow of life, the flow of connection, the flow of creation.

And as I translate this into how I collaborate with others at work and in the community, I see how putting up Walls and the need to control a situation limits how we work together, the flow of creativity and negatively impacts the progression of new ideas; of co-creating quality solutions; of ultimately turning passion and vision into actions.

You just have to see the before and after pictures of Berlin to know this to be true and to witness the transformation that takes place when we come together, without Walls, and unite….

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Like Berlin, it’s time to knock down the Walls, to let go of control and Unite.

Let’s Connect, Collaborate and Co-create a better and brighter future together.

Who’s with me?

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(Pictures courtesy of the ABC)

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Working Together

Growing up I loved the story of Dorothy, her faithful dog Toto, the unknown magic of her ruby slippers and the journey along the yellow brick road to the Wizard of Oz, with her trustworthy companions. I think in some way, shape or form I can relate to one or each of the characters at any given time and the underlying messages of this children’s adventurous fable.

The opening scenes depict Dorothy in the midst of a horrifying storm where she finds herself alone, scared and in an unfamiliar place and all she wants to do is to go home. She is handed a pair of ruby slippers and told to follow the yellow brick road towards the Wizard of Oz, the man that can make any wish come true. As she faithfully follows the yellow brick road she meets a scarecrow, and all he wants is a brain so he can think of ways to scare off the crows. Dorothy tells him about the Wizard, so he joins her on the journey. Soon enough they both stumble across a Tin man, who only wants a heart to feel love once again. And it was then that two became three. As they walk merrily along the yellow brick road, excited to be travelling together, a Lion jumps out with a huge roar! Within seconds he is in tears and admits that all he wants is courage to be brave. So another joins them in their quest and they continue, together, with one goal in mind – to meet the Wizard of Oz and ask for their wishes to come true.

As they journey along the yellow brick road they face some tough challenges, a wicked witch and a near death experience. And then when they finally do get through and make it to the Wizard of Oz, he turns out to be a fraud! They are absolutely devastated and disappointed….Until he, the mere mortal man, reminds them that together they have actually already made their wishes come true. He asks them to remember that when they needed to cross a river, it was the scarecrow who thought of an idea to build a raft. When they needed to jump from the raft to the nearby bank, the Lion told them to get on his back despite how scared he was and carried them safely across. When Dorothy nearly died from falling asleep to the intoxicating poppies, the Tin Man genuinely had heartfelt tears. And he uncovers the truth that if Dorothy truly wants to go home, all she has to do is tap her ruby slippers and think of home.

Through making the choice to experience the journey together they had the power to make their collective and individual wishes come true. Only through working together as a team, with those that share the same goal and the commitment to overcome any challenges, did they realize they, in actual fact, had everything they needed within.

When you come together, stay together and work together for the purpose of a collective vision you have an opportunity to share your gifts, you realise each other’s value and you can make any wish come true…

That’s the power of Team. That’s the power of working together.

So tell me, do you work in a team with a collective vision?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Coming Together…

As we move from the generation of builders to baby boomers to generation X, Y and now Z our ‘cultural’ roles in society shift with new perception. As a result, there can be a tendency to be left feeling like we don’t know our ‘place’ in the world or that we have to do it all ourselves…. and we all know that doing it on our own can be hard work!

With any type of change comes an initial lack of clarity or uneasiness as we move outside of our comfort zone and when it relates to our role within society we can perhaps forget that we are actually here to come together, play together and work together. Because while we might think we have to do it all ourselves, the reality is that we are, in actual fact, built on collaboration. You just have to look at family. We are born into a ‘team’; we connect and collaborate with other ‘teams’ through marriage; and we procreate our own ‘team’. And we all know that finding the right team is when the magic begins….

So what makes a team work and create lasting magic? In my opinion it is absolutely, without a doubt, in the knowing of ourselves and the understanding of our role in the team and the role of others. So that we can realize, recognize and respect one another (warts and all!). But rather than connecting primarily with our roles from a ‘cultural’ perspective, which as we know can change quite quickly as the years pass by, I highly recommend that we instead focus on connecting with our role in accordance with our identity. That is, our role from a purpose driven perspective. Our core identity does not change; it only becomes clearer as time passes by (so long as we do the work!). This in itself would then ground us with a knowing of who we are, what we are here to give and what we can contribute as member of a team, any type or size of a team, be it personally or professionally. We would have clarity on our personal values and vision and team up with those that have aligned values and/or vision. And herein is the secret ingredient of a team that works and creates lasting magic – aligned values and/or vision. Even in times of stress or creative conflict, which will happen even with the best of teams, this is the glue that keeps you together. Who knows, perhaps society may even start to be influenced by this new perception of knowing ourselves, connecting and building aligned teams….

So who are you? What are your strengths, your gifts to the world?

Through participating in the Living Attributes program “Know yourself, discover your purpose”, facilitated by Elizabeth Ellames, I have revealed that my gift is courage (from the Latin word ‘cor’ meaning heart: to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart) and I love to connect people by sharing knowledge. I am a Collaborator, Facilitator and Rock Star Connector. And in gaining clarity, I have come together with three amazing women, Elizabeth Ellames from Living Attributes, Cherie Rowett from Heart Choice Enterprise and Lisa McAskill from Lisa McAskill Presenting; all three women living on purpose. We all share a vision of ‘Creating Influential Women’ ™ and are working together to develop a Cohesive Leadership for Change™ program. I’ve never felt more alive and fulfilled than when I’m acting on purpose and collaborating with others that have an aligned vision, and this is having a ripple effect throughout my entire life.

So IMAGINE…. discovering or honouring your purpose, values and vision…. connecting with the right team …. and realising your dreams….

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Connect with me today and let’s get you collaborating with the right team…

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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A Sense of Balance

 

Every now and then I struggle to find the time to do all the things I want to do in life because of all the things I can do and because of all the things I think I have to do instead! And after a while, my life ends up a little off balance… and I end up feeling stressed, anxious and unfulfilled.

So I asked the question why and through conversation discovered what I can do to bring myself back to centre.

The answer was clear and simple. Come back to your values and re-align your priorities. It’s a great exercise to do every now and then. It will certainly influence what you spend your time on and remind you of what you need to do in order to be happy and fulfilled in life.

After doing this simple exercise, my next challenge that I faced was having more than one passion and priority in life… the building of my business and my love of dancing. But what transpired was the realisation that they complimented each other and when I let go and just went with the flow, it all just fell into place and time seemed in abundance.

A sense of balance can certainly be achieved through connecting to all parts of your life and staying present in the face of changes; the only constant in life.

Let it come, let it go, let it flow…

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“And that’s all I have to say about that…”

Do you live a balanced life?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Letting Go…

Last month I blogged about Emotional Intelligence and how this can change your relationships and change your life. After referring to the to infamous book written by Daniel Goleman, I have since realised that the one thing that was lacking in the book was heart, raw emotion and story telling. While the concepts ring true it was difficult to stay connected and re-read the book from start to finish.

What I have discovered is the power of story telling. Especially the insight gained when you share your own life journey, written in the third person. A powerful, powerful process. As you write, read and share the experiences that miraculously find themselves on a page, you re-live the emotions connected to those experiences. You realise what you have been holding on to, the reason why you behave in a certain way and most importantly what you have learnt and the gifts you can share with the world, both at home and in your vocation.

In my opinion, story is a key step in finding your purpose in life and discovering who you were born to be. Facilitated by Elizabeth Ellames, the writing and sharing of your personal hero’s journey is transformational and rewards you with a higher level of emotional intelligence. To find out more, check out Elizabeth and Living Attributes here: www.livingattributestemple.wordpress.com Living Attributes is a typology (tool) that helps you to identify the value of your unique story; your brand.

As I come to the completion of writing and sharing my story, I take a deep breath in and  hold the clear intention to let go of all that no longer serves me, on every level. I accept, with grace and with no desire to change things, all that has happened, is happening and is yet to happen. In honour and respect of my hero’s journey, I experience unconditional love and forgiveness and recognise my gifts and true value.

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What is it that you can accept and let go of in your story?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Emotional Intelligence

Does Emotional Intelligence matter more than IQ?

At school and university I was diligent and disciplined and graduated with straight A’s and high distinctions. At work I consistently deliver beyond expectations. Yet all through my life, I can honestly say there is one thing that consistently challenges me and, at times, holds me back from true success – the ability to manage my emotions and my relationships, especially in times of high stress.

Emotions play such a large role in thought, decision making and individual success yet at school or work we are never encouraged to talk about them or learn how best to manage them. Perhaps it is assumed, we will learn all we need to know from our environment growing up. But what if this is not always the case…. What then?

Are we left with our lot in life? Left being labelled the impulsive one, the shy one, the loud one, the sensitive one, the calm one, the angry one, the argumentative one, the aggressive one or the highly emotional one, which is ironic because we are all highly emotional – it’s just what we do with them that counts!

What if we acknowledged emotions, learn to understand emotions and harness them in such a way that it makes our life even better?

I recently attended a presentation based on the contents of the book ‘Emotional Intelligence’ by Daniel Goleman and I was relieved when I discovered the Amygdala hijack! Finally here was an explanation to my instinctive ‘fight or flight ’response and the guilt and shame of past behaviour was somewhat lessened; not only because there was an explanation but there were strategies you could put in place to manage it too; it would just take discipline. In short, when the amygdala, located in the primitive or reptilian part of the brain, perceives a threat, it can lead that person to react irrationally and destructively, without thinking. And it’s in these situations, self-control and effective strategies are crucial. Whether you’re the person being hijacked or witnessing a hijack, being present and showing empathy will get you to the other side, and hopefully without any casualties or near death experiences!

As Daniel would say, ‘Emotional intelligence can be nurtured and strengthened in all of us. It involves self-awareness and impulse control, social awareness and empathy’. Just like learning a new skill or new talent or building a muscle, being disciplined around your emotions will change your relationships and change your life.

What are your emotions telling you right now?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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