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Looking for Joy…

Sometimes my first client conversations go deep into the problem, the challenge or the desire my client is bringing to our work together. And sometimes they go high and wide, discussions about the meaning of life that don’t seem to connect to the immediate challenge, and yet explain everything.

My conversation yesterday was the latter. A highly successful professional, a famous name in his field, who felt like he’d lost his way, like his success had peaked and the only track was down. He wanted to recapture some meaning to his life and work, to feel fulfilled, to feel excited about what he was doing. …

Here’s what I’ve noticed (that might be helpful for you…)

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In discussion with a small group yesterday about goal-setting and how to set direction without distraction, we circled, at one stage, around the subject of habits.

I noticed that, as each of us used examples from our own lives about things that we were doing, they fell into two big categories:


This is like my own experience of intermittent fasting. Over the years, especially when I started to work from home and could set my own schedule, I’ve tended to start eating later in the day. It felt more natural to have two meals a day; it wasn’t a prescription, it wasn’t intentional, it just evolved.that …

Or, how to create something from nothing, without doing any work ;-)

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With thanks to Humusak on Pixabay for the image

The Back-Burner Effect

I love bringing groups together because ideas coalesce in new and different ways. This week’s call on procrastination was no exception, and, this in particular seems worth sharing: the seeming paradox of ‘who’ is doing the doing and how come things happen when we don’t do anything.

One of the callers brought this up in relation to a discussion we were having about ‘important’ things, legal matters and so on, and where things appear to be ‘high stakes’.

It isn’t that I don’t do anything, or that I put it off. I’m not scared to look at something, but then I put it down and ideas come to me over the next hours and days. …

Which comes first, the solution or the problem?

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As I started last night’s call I wondered, aloud, with the group whether there was really anything new to say about this word which seems to be everywhere right now-the most in-demand corporate training I read somewhere. What are we really exploring here, when it comes to resilience… and, is it relevant or just in vogue?

…In Relation to Others

It was only right at the end that we moved from looking at what it meant in relation to ourselves, to what it meant in relation to others, and what our organisations could do better.

Organisations need to provide support to help lift people back up. …

Is it the idea? Or is there something else, perhaps not so easily discernible?

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With thanks to aamiraimer on pixabay for the image.

Bold Strategy…

I was reading, earlier this week, a new strategy just released by one of the International NGOs. It was a lot of fine words, in a policy direction I tend to support, ambitious, relatively, in its scope and also in its approach to engagement beyond the current field of players.

All good stuff and I suspect there was quite a bit of ‘work’ that went into the preparation and agreement of this new direction.

But it made me think….

What will it take to bring this to fruition? What kind of leadership is necessary for this not simply to be worthy words on a piece of paper? …

…and how to measure how you’re doing.

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Gratitude to Free-Photos on Pixabay for the image.

How Fast Did We Go?

My husband and I went out on our road bikes yesterday. He likes to know the data when we come back, how far and how fast we went. I have a Garmin, so I track it all (not obsessively mind you ;-)).

We both estimated pretty well the distance but we both under-estimated how fast we were going by a couple of miles per hour. He often has no idea but I usually have a sense of it-I was surprised because it felt as if we were out of condition-fewer rides in the winter, and also because I’d felt the pace to be ‘leisurely’. …

What do do when we need those extra reserves…

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Resilience as a Verb…

It often looks as if there is a ‘thing’ called resilience which we can acquire, or train ourselves into, and we become ‘resilient’. But I like to see it more like a capacity for recovery, just like I have a capacity for healing when I cut my finger. (you probably had to be on the call for this to make sense ;-) ).

If this perspective is true, then life kinda works like this:

  1. we generally do OK and we go about our day-to-day;
  2. life gives us a knock;
  3. it hurts; sometimes a…

Are you scoring an own goal with your goal-setting???

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The Sticky Middle Ground…

I did wonder whether there was much new to be said in the area of vision, goals-setting and why we seem to set one course and take another…

But yes, it turns out this is still a topic that causes confusion, sometimes frustration, and often comes with an unhealthy dose of ‘should’ or ‘have to’, or an unhealthy dose of self-questioning at the mild end, and self-criticism at the more severe end.

On the call yesterday, my own assumption was confirmed-the area where we get most stuck is what I’m calling ‘the middle ground’. I don’t mean those covid kilos settling round my waist, but the place where we think goal-setting takes place, all the work we do at the end of the year to decide what we want and how to get there… yes that. …

Leadership in the New Normal (part three)

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Who am I…

The third of the leadership series took us exploring the question what it means to be authentic-how we can be better and yet still be who we are.

I so appreciate and acknowledge those who come along to these small group conversations for participating fully and honestly, for being willing to share what occupies them, where they are needing to draw on new strengths and how they are adapting. …

Leadership in the New Normal, part two.

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Leaders Lead…

The second of our beautiful conversations exploring leadership in the ‘new normal’ was on the question,

What’s your role as a leader in relation to others?

I often ask a question with clients, and of myself, about where my focus is in any moment, and how much it’s on the task, the ‘work’, and how much it’s on the person in front of me.

At work, it’s usually the case that we’re rewarded for the task end more than the people end. …


Cathy Presland

What if making an impact was part of your everyday? Stories to light up your soul. Read more and free courses:

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