Books, books, books

Recently we’ve been reading a lot and sharing what we’ve discovered.

This got us thinking, what are you reading at the moment?

And if you love what you’re reading let us know why and we will add it to our list.

“Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape”
Nora Ephron

 

Neets, Carol & Neena
Collaborators
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Telomeres – helping me extend my health span

I constantly seek research and findings that effectively and meaningfully link academia and the real world. This week’s example that sparked my imagination was discovering the works of Elizabeth Blackburn a Nobel prize winning, molecular biologist.

In a world that constantly seeks to improve well-being she focuses on the positive application of theory and science to open the world to Telomeres and how they influence your health span.

Studying mental ill health, I have become increasingly and uncomfortably familiar with the negative vocabulary that currently prevails in the literature. “The Telomere Effect“ offers a refreshingly positive vocabulary and vibe as it presents a strong scientific representation of the effects of stress on one’s body and health span. The book powerfully articulates the levels of control we can exert on our own and others health by focusing on our Telomeres.

Quick definition required here, Telomeres are the caps at the end of our DNA strands, they offer a protective sheath often likened to that at the end of a shoe lace. It prevents damage to our DNA strands and protects the chromosome.

Chronic stress and negative thoughts can shorten your Telomeres whilst meditation has been shown to strengthen them. As an advocate of the power of empathy, self-awareness and mindfulness her book has given me a novel scientific narrative to translate research into reality.

An excellent preface, or substitute if time is of the essence, to the book is her TED talk, it offers an invaluable bite size insight to Telomeres and her work.

You have the power to change your well-being, explore the possibilities. I am!

Neena Speding
Chartered MCIPD, BSc (Hons) HRM, PGCE
Emotional Intelligence Thought Leader & Collaborator
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Your journey in 2018

  • What do you want to see and experience along the way?
  • Who is travelling with you?
  • What are you really looking forward to?
  • How do you want to feel?

I have decided wherever my road takes me, the journey is going to be an easy one. Easy is my word for 2018.

After all it’s easy if I think it is.

Neets
Coach, Communicator & Collaborator
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A question…

What are you buying yourself for Christmas?

Gifts are a sign of love, affection and thoughtfulness and we shop with everyone else in mind.

So what about us?

Our fun idea – add your name to your Christmas present list and think about what you would like, buy it, wrap it and put it under the tree and enjoy on Christmas day – after all you’re just as important as everyone else in your life.

Have a fantastic Christmas and see you online in 2018.

We’re off to the shops!

Neets, Carol & Neena
Collaborators
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Learning to expect the unexpected

We spend our lives trying to be prepared for whatever may come our way.

We like being in control.

We want to know what’s going to happen and when & we think we know what’s going to happen and when too.

We’re holding on so tightly that we’re scared to let go.

There is no room for the unexpected.

And then for some reason if the unexpected does happen we’re thrown off course; physically, mentally and emotionally.

My question is what if we let go? what if we expect the unexpected?

I’ve being learning to ‘expect the unexpected’ everyday for the past five weeks since I attended Dr. Joe Dispenza’s Progressive Workshop. It has taken effort, awareness, slowing down and a lot of catching my thoughts (I have had some thoughts make a run for it and escape lol).

I realised at the workshop that I was living my life on repeat, doing the same things, living within the rules I’d created to keep me safe (also know as ‘I know what I like’) and it was time to change, to fire new neural pathways, meet new people, try new things and just NOT KNOW.

So far, in the unexpected for me there has been fun, play, surprise, opportunity, love, vulnerability, a different perspective, spontaneity, support, possibility, awareness and lots of laughter.

I think I may be finally ready for Game of Thrones!

Who would you like to join me in my quest to expect the unexpected?

 

Neets
Coach, Communicator & Collaborator
eight circles

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Make time to listen

This week I’m recommending a wonderful book I’ve been reading by Nancy Kline called Time to Think in which she talks about the importance of creating a thinking environment because ‘the quality of our attention determines the quality of other people’s thinking.’ It’s powerful and reminds me what a super skill listening is.

As a coach and trainer I’m often told I’m a great listener. And, yes it’s true I am pretty good at it, but reading the book I have become aware how often I forget to listen when I’m hanging out with my friends and family. Many times I catch myself falling short – like when I realise I’m multi-tasking on the phone to my friend, diving in with my advice on her problem or interrupting my husband to share my story about the time that thing he’s describing happened to me too.

This results in a situation where they tell me that ‘no you don’t understand’ or ‘I just need you to listen’ and they’re right – I feel the same way too on receiving unwanted advice. These are the people I care about the most and I want to give them the respect and space they deserve by really listening.

Do you catch yourself listening to answer or add your comments too?

I have noticed that when I let go of the impulse to jump in and talk, conversations are more relaxed. I’m learning fascinating new things about people just by being present and paying attention. They feel heard, sometimes that’s all that was needed and often they find their own answer in the process.

When was the last time you really listened to someone when they were speaking? Challenge yourself to listen to their story, listen to their emotions and really hear them. Be prepared to be surprised.

 

Carol Conway CPCC
Coach & Collaborator
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It’s not about perfection – it’s about correction

Is my new favourite personal mantra especially when I’m learning something new or focusing on improving something in my life.

I’ve realised that perfection is overrated, it’s the enemy of getting things done and more than that it stops us living fully and enjoying life.

I’m embarrassed to say that I was one of those people who gave ‘being a perfectionist’ as my flaw in interviews back in the 80’s thinking I sounded cool and hard working.

Eventually I woke up to how limiting and joyless striving for perfection is. And still, under stress, I default to trying too hard to get it right – hence this mantra is on a yellow sticky note above my desk.

This phrase keeps me going because it gives me permission to do the new thing less than perfectly and to expect to fail a few times before I start to get the hang of it. I have learnt that any change that matters requires me to get out of my comfort zone – to actually do something differently, and that always feels uncomfortable.

It reminds me that making mistakes is part of the process of learning because only by experiencing what doesn’t work and making a correction do I grow and improve.

Awareness is everything and when I notice I’m off course, I’m kinder to myself and by not wasting time on self judgment I can correct what’s not working and move on.

Life seems less serious too, lighter and more fun – like a series of personal experiments by my crazy inner scientist!

Try it out for yourself.

What mantra will you create to help you move forward this week?

“You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.” Sir Richard Branson

Carol Conway CPCC
Coach & Collaborator
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A guide to mental ill-health at work

I came across this guide earlier today.

It’s a very practical and pragmatic guide to creating mentally healthy workplaces.

On reading this guide I was shocked by this statistic…

“One in six people experience the symptoms of a mental health problem in any given week in England”

The Mental Health Foundation website lots of resources available, please use them to raise awareness and make a difference to people you work with.

 

Neena Speding
Chartered MCIPD, BSc (Hons) HRM, PGCE
Emotional Intelligence Thought Leader & Collaborator
eight circles