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…

images6PXGN18L

“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

colours finish

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.

quotes-1154

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

colours finish

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

colours finish

Living in the Moment

It has become quite obvious to me recently that I have lived most of my life in my head, most likely due to my analytical nature and conscientious mind; preplanning, organising and calculating what I “should” do next for the “best” outcome. I dwell on the past, worry about the future and fantasise about being on holiday. I get so caught up in the expectations of life, people and situations I have the tendency to seldom just go with the flow. My ‘monkey mind’ usually equates to being preoccupied with thinking I have to do something to make things happen and then when I do act, I’m left feeling guilty and full of regret. In business, and in my personal life, this tendency to jump from tree to tree can appear forced and controlled and contributes to high levels of indecisiveness, stress and anxiety, not just for me but for everyone involved.

Every now and then, however, I remember to relax and experience life; usually when I’m looking at something breathtaking, doing something that I really enjoy or experiencing a moment that touches my heart. It’s in these moments, I let go of thought, I feel alive, connected and my life becomes effortless. I allow life to unfold and act only when inspired to do so and when I do act I’m not attached to any specific outcome. Life becomes peaceful and uncomplicated.

So I ask myself, what can I do to balance the scales so my life is constantly in the flow, effortless and peaceful?

And the answer is simple; live in the moment by being mindful and connected.

I remember to observe my thoughts that come and go, without judgement, and at the same time have the courage to connect to everyone and everything that presents itself, especially the smaller things in life. Most importantly, I let go of all expectations and have faith. I offer life, people and every situation my full attention so that when I act, I trust it. Who knows, it may not turn out the way I expected but something else just might transpire instead.

I realise practice makes perfect; that every day is a new day and I’m gentle on myself. With each day, I start again and observe my thoughts, knowing that some days may be harder than others. I cultivate a connection with something I enjoy; walking along the beach, watching the sunrise or sunset, listening to music or dancing to a tune and then expand this to all experiences in life. When it comes to building relationships, both professionally and personally, I have the courage to look people in the eye and practice being present by allowing the situation to unfold without judgement or expectation. It can lead to extraordinary things or at the very least it lends itself to an authentic and stress free and peaceful experience.

I recognise that when I am mindful and connected, I trust life and life trusts me.

“As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live”. Goethe

So take a deep breath, relax and start humming this song ….

 

I leave you with one thought to think each day “Are you living in the moment”?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

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

colours finish

Competition vs Collaboration

Recently in the workplace, and in life, I have been exploring the concept of competition and collaboration. What I have observed is a significantly higher tendency towards competitive behaviour as opposed to collaborative efforts. This left me asking the question why? Is competition really good for business or is it simply a ‘traditional’ way of operating that requires some much needed attention and re-direction?

According to Wikipedia, “Competition occurs naturally between living organisms which co-exist in the same environment. Competition, in biology, ecology, and sociology is a contest between organisms, animals, individuals and groups for territory, a niche, for resources and goods, mates, for prestige, recognition, awards, social status, for leadership. Competition is the opposite of cooperation. It arises whenever at least two parties strive for a goal which cannot be shared or which is desired individually but not in sharing and cooperation”.

In short, we are all born with a natural instinct to compete, but again is this really good for business or life in general? And can we change our habitual nature with emotional intelligence?

“The primary belief that drives competition is that it helps the crème rise to the top, it drives excellence!”

If I think back to my childhood at school, I can see where the idea of ‘excellence’ started with grades, exams, assignments and contests. If you were caught sharing knowledge or collaborating with others, say during an exam or an assignment, this was considered cheating! We were taught from a very young age to compete with one another and to take pride in being the top of the class. And the only way to get there was to know it all…yourself.

Therefore, it’s clear our education has encouraged our natural instinct to compete but again does this really work in life in general? Competition is completely the opposite to most of the aims of building communities, whether as teams, organisations or families. And isn’t this the main driver behind life in general … to build communities?

So while I agree that “competition can help promote curiosity as we see in all the extraordinary innovations in the business, scientific, sport and academic worlds, if unchecked it can also drive a close minded, un-sharing mindset where the focus shifts to defensiveness and protecting what we have”.

What is collaboration?

Collaboration is working with each other to do a task and to achieve shared goals. At the conceptual level, it involves Awareness, Motivation, Participation, Negotiation, Exchange, Reflection and Engagement. Now doesn’t that just feel better!

The aim of collaboration is to produce synergy and coherence, or in other words, cooperation and unity; outcomes that are only possible by working with others. Effective collaboration, however, is hard to achieve, because various businesses, teams and people have different aims, traditions and styles of working. Overcoming differences to create productive collaboration is a key challenge and you can only do this by realising you don’t have all the answers and you don’t need to know it all. As an alternative you recognise the gifts and talents each team player brings and respect that each person has an important part to play in achieving the task at hand or the shared goal. To relate it back to exams, it’s redefining the word cheating into a belief that cheating is in actual fact the act of not sharing! If someone asked you what you thought about a particular question on the exam and you didn’t share your thoughts this would be labelled cheating! Imagine what this belief would create in our society….

So my conclusion is this ….a touch of competition is healthy and can keep us striving towards new discoveries and innovations, yet as they say “two heads are better than one”. And in the sports industry, well, there can only be one winner. However, when it comes to business and life in general, and the type of people you want to work with, be led by and surround yourself with, the world needs more collaboration and team work and less competition and conflict.

So what can you do today to be a better team player?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

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

colours finish