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coaching, counselling and training in Worthing (UK) and online with Pat Spink

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creativity

Hello! Will we ever shake hands again?

When we went into lockdown we all stopped doing this – some of us had stopped even before that.

It’s something we have tended to do here in the UK – in business and socially.

Maybe it’s a generational thing (I’m in my 60s) and perhaps it’s also more prevalent amongst men than women – although, in my experience, lots of women (in a work context, at least) used to shake hands, too.

A handshake seems like a small gesture, but maybe it represents quite a lot? Continue reading “Hello! Will we ever shake hands again?”

Nuggets of wisdom re jobs, careers and business

Yesterday, in between other meetings, I attended some sessions at the CIPD Festival of Work Conference – online of course, and focusing very much on the current situation, Covid-related.

The keynote address contained some real nuggets that have stuck with me since then – with regard to:

Disrupted lives – what next?

Our lives and our world have been well and truly disrupted by coronavirus and all that it entails.

We have each been living our own ‘temporary normal’ in order to survive and cope.

Many are already talking about what our ‘new normal’ will look like afterwards.

All we do know, for sure, is that no-one is unaffected and that we can’t go back – we can only go forward. Continue reading “Disrupted lives – what next?”

Today is World Introvert Day

This is from an internet search I did yesterday:

It’s my experience that the (Western) world has been shaped mostly by extraverts and that, consequently, those of us who identify more with the traits of introversion, or are on the cusp between the two (ambiverts), can find it a tough place to navigate at times.

In her book ‘Quiet‘ (which I love), Susan Cain talks about the different levels of stimulation required, and able to be tolerated, by introverts and extraverts and the ‘extrovert ideal’. She quotes William White:

“Society is itself an education in the extrovert values,

and rarely has there been a society that has preached them so hard.

No man is an island, but how John Donne would writhe to hear how often, 

and for what reasons,

the thought is so tiresomely repeated.” Continue reading “Today is World Introvert Day”

Black Friday Blues?

What did you do yesterday?black-friday-2901754_1920

Now known internationally as ‘Black Friday’.

Were you out at the shops searching for bargains?

Surfing the web?

Suck(er)ed into buying something you didn’t want or need by a carefully-targeted and tempting enticement from a previously-visited or a favourite website?

Are you experiencing ‘buyer’s remorse’ about any of your purchases?

Whilst the timing of this message is targeted towards those of us who celebrate, mark or ‘suffer’ Christmas as we know it today, it is part of the much wider movement that asks us to each reflect on our consumerism overall and its effect on not only the environment, but also on our own personal finances and happiness – and how what we do affects other people, too.

Whatever you did or didn’t do yesterday, we all have the choice today to do something different(ly) in the run up to Christmas this year, and from hereon in… Continue reading “Black Friday Blues?”

What is a Toy?

I was fascinated this week when I saw a report on BBC Breakfast about a ‘back to basics’ experiment in a UK nursery which, it’s reported, has stimulated creativity and improved communication amongst the children involved (especially the boys, apparently) – and decluttering the rooms in the process. I also found an article about it in the Mail Online (published back in March of this year).

Matt Caldwell, the Head of the nursery was, apparently, inspired by similar schemes in Germany which replaced plastic toys with everyday items and real size objects – so, for example, instead of a miniature/child-size/toy version of a musical instrument, they would have an adult-sized, real one to explore.egg-carton-575692_1280

lavender ovalOther items were day-to-day objects such as kettles, bottle tops, egg boxes, corks, pine cones, conkers, lavender and pots.

The backs were taken off electrical items so the children could see how they were constructed. Continue reading “What is a Toy?”

Success – on whose terms?

I’ve been thinking about this quite a bit lately.

The stories we tell ourselves about our own lives….

What we say, how we ‘report’ our lives, when we speak to people we haven’t seen for a while and they ask us what we’re up to these days…

Does it feel like we have to ‘put on a show’ and that we’re in a competition that we’re losing more often than not..?

For example, what do we say when someone asks “What did you get up to this weekend?” Have you ever been tempted to ‘guild the lily’ a little to appear more active and interesting than you think the truth might sound? I know I have… face-with-tears-of-joy_1f602

And what does success in one area of our life cost us in another?

Hence some of my recent Instagram posts:

success - what did you have to give upstrengths presupposes energy channeled from other areas

Continue reading “Success – on whose terms?”

He took it in his stride – literally!

Lukas Bates completed the London Marathon in a very respectable time this week (3hrs, 54m, 21s) and all whilst wearing a fancy dress costume of the London landmark: the Elizabeth Tower, which houses Big Ben.

What hit the news, though, was that his costume was too tall for him to get underneath the frame at the finish line without some help:

This made me smile for several reasons. Continue reading “He took it in his stride – literally!”

Thinking Inside the Box…?

Most of us are pretty familiar with the phrase ‘think outside the box’ in terms of taking a more creative approach to something. thinking-outside-the-box-33399_1280.png

But there’s an article in today’s Metro which I saw being discussed on the Jeremy Vine show on Channel 5 about a company selling boxes to put over your head and help you think inside the box.

The panel on the show had some boxes similar to those being sold and put them over their heads while they discussed it.

The discussion was pretty light-hearted and did make me smile – and I leave you to form your own views as to the usefulness and pricing of the article in question.

face-with-tears-of-joy_1f602Personally, I have a vivid image in my mind, now, of a person in a the middle of an open plan office with a box on their head covered in rude and funny Post Its from their mischievous colleagues…

But, of course, there’s a serious point here, too – about how we can all benefit from taking a break‘unplugging’ every now and again. Continue reading “Thinking Inside the Box…?”

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