When we pick a flower from our garden and put it in a vase, it seems like a great idea at the time, but it may be short-lived compared to leaving it growing in its habitat: with roots and stems and its foundation intact, it can blossom for weeks or months in some cases. This reminded me of how we give feedback. Ideally, it should be more feedforward than feedback. Sharing an observation that brings value to the receiver going forward. In their habitat. Just like giving flowers should be choosing the bouquet that the receiver likes. But just like the flower taken from its habitat, our well-intended feedback can be given out of context. We may think it’s giving a rose, a flower, a gift of insight from us to them. But, that short-lived, picked flower from us needs to make sense and fit into the receiver’s habitat, their roots, their stems, their foundation. Do you recognise how we sometimes throw a comment or “feedback” to someone else as we race into the next meeting? As it leaves our mind and mouth, we’re normally done, then “that’s out of the way”, maybe it even felt good and powerful to … More Didn’t you like the flowers??!! »
Months ago, in (yet another) thunderstorm we lost our electricity (again!) – and the electrical curtains we have up high started beeping, telling us they had lost connection. Well, that noise would stop a normal night’s good sleep, so we pulled out our noise-reduction headphones. They worked a treat for a good night’s sleep – just like they help with their main purpose of easing long-haul-double-flights to Denmark. Having been totally cut off from the surroundings (audibly), made me fascinated the next morning: try noticing what we actually HEAR versus what is a reaction to impact. For example, if you tip-toe up the stairs, I wouldn’t hear it through my blocking-out-sound-equipment. But if you stomped with power and thumping heels, even I still couldn’t HEAR you, I would sense the vibration in the floor and the possible agitation. It made me wonder: what else are we actually only HEARING – vs taking it in via a combination of our senses and emotions? And how does this relate to your business, sales, and leadership?? We’re all cogs in a wheel – it’s all connected. Even if one department put on their mental noise-reduction-headphones and get on with things, their actions and … More Leading with noise-reduction-headphones?? »
Spoken like a 3-year-old. Not wanting help. I can do this on my own. I WANT to do it on my own. I don’t need anybody to help me. Isn’t it fascinating how that’s still our behaviour decades later, as leaders, parents, friends and human beings? Some of us want to prove we can do it ourselves. Others feel embarrassed to ask for help. No matter what, here’s the thing: we CAN do it all ourselves. But letting go of that old pattern and allowing others to add their part might just be worth a try. Personally, I’ll give myself the challenge: to swap “jeg kan selv” with “let’s do it together”. Do you want to join?
Watching myself on a screen. Not since my teen years have I been looking that much at myself. Any of you out there who’ve “had enough of yourself”?? The activities that used to include face-to-face contact – choir, business meetings and networking, soccer matches and team training – were mainly me looking at other people. And not even watching as such, more being present while being aware of others around you. Aware of my physical presence but the focus was on the others! Can you image a soccer match or a choir rehearsal where you sat looking someone in the eye for the whole time? And simultaneously kept staring at your own reflection? Not really. Yet, our reality the last months has meant gallery view reality. Looking at boxes of people, observing them present or tuned out, glancing across gallery windows acknowledging all, making all feel included, being aware of everyone including constantly keeping an eye on my own presence and presentation. One day I realised that I was over it. Done looking at myself, being so aware of my gallery box. As a teenager, the mirror was the constant confidant, checking out my nose, my legs, everything. And before … More I’m so over it »
Do you know this game? Where you create stone stacks of a minimum of 7 stones. I did a few on my bush jog last weekend and it reminded me of how we can become too daring, try stacking too much. Now link it to today being Mother’s Day. Where we give and expect to receive gifts and attention. How is this related, you ask? Well, as I turned to find stones for the third stack, the first one tumbled. Sometimes the stone stacks tumble because of wind. Sometimes because a bird lands on them. It’s very seldom because we push them over ourselves. And here is the thing: you were the one that stacked it. The one that chose the stones to be used. Went back a few steps if you weren’t sure you had made the right decision. And gave full throttle when you were on a roll and it was moving easily and effortlessly. What you’re experiencing right now, whether you’re the observing or receiving part, be it Mother’s Day or your business results: you are the one who stacked the stones to what it looks like right now. Enjoy and accept the choices you’ve made. Be … More Stacking stones »
Water. Fresh air. Electricity. Social contact. We’ve had quite some challenges during the last half-year. Which restrictions challenged me the most? Some pretty strong contenders right there. And to be honest: even if I miss you all terribly, the lack of fresh air during the months of the bush fires comes out as number one. Then electricity comes second – because even if I love simple living, even a short week without it in our neighbourhood this summer was a challenge. And all of us working from home currently across the globe wouldn’t be feasible either without electricity. Isn’t it classic how we only realise how much we value something when it’s gone or not accessible? Until then, we take it for granted. Therefore, I’m embracing two thoughts: 1) gratitude for ALL I have in my life, natural, emotional and man-made conveniences and treasures and 2) a renewed focus on efficiency in our businesses and lives – based on the definition of getting the results we want in the smartest possible way and with the LEAST use of resources. How can you apply that to your business and life? Acceptance and gratitude for what we have – and being efficient … More Fresh air or social contact? »
This may be a good time to rest. To allow all disappointment, resentment, anger, sorry and emptiness. To allow it to surface. To let it be. To rest the mind and body. To take that extra nap. We’ve had so much change. We’re having so many restrictions. We may still have so many demands – and all the unmet expectations for ourselves. Let it all go. I’m resting. I think you should, too.
The good old question which the whole world is living right now. We just didn’t know to plan for it and – like in the real deserted island scenario – we’re therefore left with whatever we had on hand when the ship hit the ground. The harsh reality hits: you may not enjoy the company of the family members or the flatmates you are stuck with currently. You may not even like your own company for such an extended period of time!? You may be fed up with your dwelling or the surroundings of your home. You may not be satisfied with the activities at hand. Or you may be really grateful and content! With how your deserted island is looking right now. There is a lot of deep appreciation happening currently – with the partners you love and live with, with your kids and how they tackle the situation, with the kindness and generosity of your neighbours and community even from afar. Our situations right now – for better or for worse – is a snapshot in time. It’s the current, busy lives we were each living being frozen in time. Repeated. Like in a movie or in a … More What would you bring on a deserted island??!! »
In times of crisis, we get the opportunity to step up. To focus on the most important things, to share overview and direction, to be even calmer and to support others in doing the same. The opposite is initiating, fuelling or being part of creating confusion, story, more worry or drama. Around the world, we have the chance to evaluate ourselves and our businesses in this light at the moment. The point is not that there IS a global event happening. The point is how we tackle it the best way possible, not only caring for ourselves but for those around us and where we can, help to impact others to lead themselves and others even more resourcefully. We all have a certain ‘setting’, a certain balance of certainty vs variety that we prefer. There is no right or wrong, some people are thrill-seekers and others prefer predictability. No matter your usual setting, there is probably a bit more uncertainty at the moment than what you prefer. Therefore, the best we can do for each other, our teams and our businesses is to give certainty. Make clear decisions and deliver clear communication. Accept the things we can’t do or change … More Shine that torch! »
Who here has been trained in time management systems and – after weeks of implementation (and good intentions) – decided to go back to the basic systems you used before? This week in workshops and client conversations it’s been a theme that the best results often don’t come from big systems, but instead from applying one or two key principles to how we approach tasks and time. My favourite combination is this: What’s the outcome? Use 20-minute time pockets to deliver The first will become a welcomed habit: before any call, meeting or task, ask yourself which outcome you would like. Jumping heedlessly into your email inbox vs deciding the outcome of the next 20 minutes of email focus means everything for your productivity. The same goes for conversations. Many different schools of thought, like the Pomodoro method, use this second principle because it’s hard to keep focus and concentration for longer than 20 minutes at a time. Therefore, we help our wellbeing and efficiency by planning for windows of time with specific outcomes – and enjoy a stretch, a glance out the window or a tea before you dive dedicatedly into the next window of time. Would you like … More Not another system?! »