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Balance - a simple word, holding in it the promise of peace and equilibrium; sought after by cultures, countries, religions, people of every race and creed.

Do you want it? Do you have it?

Mindfulness is a current trend that holds, as one of its appealing attractions, more “balance”. Looking into mindfulness, I was intrigued to discover that it has been around in mainstream society for years under the rather boring (albeit self explanatory) title of “attention training”.

In an increasingly noisy, distracting world the growing cry for more balance is easy to understand. Be it a work-life balance, or family time/personal time; screen time/outdoor time; exercise/food – we know it is good for us but can seem to be a little elusive. A pot of gold at the bottom of the ever moving rainbow, the elixir of life, the philosophers stone! While I do not have any of those, below are what I have found works (when I apply it!).

Have a look at how you actively create balance in your life, and encourage it in your team and family.

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Be present. Be in the moment. Every moment.

Attentiveness is a gift to yourself and other. There is greater depth and joy with increased attention to the present moment.

Live in the present. It is a gift. We are born to live not just exist. Find out what makes you feel alive and do that often.

Appreciate your blessings. It creates an attitude of gratitude. Be aware and grateful for what you do have rather than all that you don’t have. Living in appreciation makes you happier.

Now is the only moment you absolutely have control of. Live in the now. Make the most of now.

Create the life you want, purposely, with vision, persistence, and care.

Every day has its up’s & downs. Learn. Grow. Enjoy the journey!

Be Attentive, Live Appreciating Now Creatively, Entirely

Process - The Answer To Everything

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Question time finished and after the customary photo I could scarcely wait to call and share my biggest learning with the team – “The answer to everything is process!” Earlier this year I was privileged to hear All Black Ben Smith share some insights on Team Motivation and high performance. My single biggest takeaway is wrapped up in one word “Process.” As we look at the topic of “Flow” with our Learning BITES I felt it was perfect to briefly share my top takeaway.

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Ever looked at something someone in your workplace has done and slapped your hand against your face in absolute frustration? Or burst out in anger and outrage? What were they thinking? Did they even think? From observation in many sessions of our team training, it would seem this is not an unusual state for team members to find themselves in. This week, I was reminded again that observation is not the same as experience, and that theory is best understood in practice.

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The Power of Choice

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I remember the first time I encountered Dale Carnegie’s classic book – How To Win Friends and Influence People. My free-flowing mind had never encountered the idea of choice over its pathway. If it took me to a state of joy, or of anger, or of despair, I had previously thought that I was at the mercy of where ever life and circumstances had led me. The challenge of Carnegie’s book for me was that I have a choice. I can influence the path of my life by the things I choose to think about, focus on and give my time to. So can you.

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Appreciate Your Community

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In the busyness of everyday it can be so easy to get caught up in “our own little world”. We can drive, walk and pass by people and places without even seeing them. How often on your regular run to work have you arrived and had to double check with yourself that you actually drove there - because you really don’t remember it?

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Tough Calls - Reality Check

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How many calls do you get in a day? Ever had one that made you stop and gave you a reality check? We had one this week. Saw a call coming in from Australia and answered thinking it was a work call. It was my in-law's next door neighbour. She told me to sit down and then said that my Mum and Dad in-law had dropped 5 meters off an embankment and had been cut out of their car and taken to hospital in highly critical condition.

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Choose What To Focus On

Travel has a way of bringing the best and worst in people. After the hottest January in NZ history, the month ended with a super moon and February started off with more rain in one day than is expected for the whole month. This great combination caused newsworthy weather and, as happens, caused some flight disruptions.

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The Best and Worst of Meetings

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The best meetings don’t waste people’s time. They add value to businesses and team members by giving them the opportunity to tackle issues collaboratively, and by involving every member. They are action- based, not appearance-based. In other words,their purpose is to get something done which needs to be done. It may be to create a product or form a strategy, or it may be to foster internal connections and an understanding of each team member’s importance in the business. They value the people and the purpose of the meeting. They have a goal, a structure and an outcome. Whether your meetings are regular or spontaneously as required; contribution, acknowledgement and action focus make the best use of the time your people have chosen (or are required) to invest in turning up.

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The key to success is to start before you are ready ~ Marie Forleo

How do you create a successful business; run a marathon; raise happy, healthy children to adulthood; build a community? There is a common element in the success of these widely differing goals – each one requires a start. From flipping burgers, to running the first mile, to looking into the face of your baby, to settling in the place you live – each one is a start of something bigger – a small step in large journey. Start is a verb – a doing word. As we begin this new year, here are a few suggestions on making a START.

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Most Important Client Visit of the Year

Regular client visits have long been a passion topic of mine. The little e-book “Repeat Sales Calls made easy” was written in response to a questions I often get in sales training around ‘what to say when you are seeing a customer several times in a year.’

If you regularly visit key accounts, which visit would you say was the most important?

I would argue that...

Love Your Work

Do you love your work?

How many of us can honestly say that we wake up on a Monday morning, jump out of bed and race to work, excited to get the day started?

Hitting snooze a few times, getting a coffee (or two) and talking about nothing to anyone who would listen, to delay sitting at my desk sounds slightly more accurate for the first few months of this year.

“Choose a job that you love and you will never have to work a day in your life” – Confucious

A million dollar question

Compromise can be the dove of peace or a deadly viper - Mike Clark

What would you do for a million dollars? 
Lie? Cheat? Steal?  How about sell company secrets? Murder someone? 
Many people would tell a lie for a million dollars, some waver on the cheating and stealing and many stop at murder. 

What's Important?

What moments take your breath away? When you stop to reflect on life what is front of mind? Who do you think of and worry about in moments of great anxiety? All of these are indicators of what is important. They make up the parts of your life that...

Counter Intuitive Action

“Sometimes it pays to go against your gut instinct” – Mike Clark

What would you do? You are asked to guess which one of 3 boxes has a large prize in it. You guess box 2...

Try, Try, Try Again!

Think. Decide. Start. Do. Learn. Re-Do. - Repeat - Mike Clark

W.E. Hickson is credited with popularizing the proverb: 'Tis a lesson you should heed: Try, try, try again. If at first you don't succeed, Try, try, try again.

Success is messy. It does not flow as one plans or expects...

So You Want to Change?

I am fascinated with change that is effective, and lasting.  I have to be.  Our very livelihood depends on it.

We offer a triple guarantee. If our training does not work - you don’t pay. With an offer like that - It pays to be absorbed in techniques that work.

How Do You Receive Feedback?

Have you ever heard the words, “I have some constructive feedback” and cringed internally knowing that statement precedes negative feedback? Of course we all know this is meant to be constructive criticism but ….

In a previous blog on 'Feedback and Mindset', I covered how organisations can make receiving feedback easier and a productive element in individual and team development. This week I wanted to speak to you - yes ‘you’ the person reading this. How do you personally receive information that is counter to what you want to hear, and/or what you are currently doing?