Now Its About Who You Are

Retirement is not a time to sleep, but a time to become truly awake. To be truly awake is to have a real sense of your past, what is happening now and what might be.

If you have been busy all of your working life you can opt to live a busy active life but are you swopping business for another busyness to drown out the silence?

Once many cultures were mindful of the knowledge an elder had acquired, but now knowledge is instantly available through technology. Retirement means yo are no longer in competition with others, now is the time to distill your wisdom. You don’t have to be like anybody else or worry about what they think of you, only what you think of yourself.

There is no need to retire in the same way as every other soon to to retire or retired person. Retirement is a time to discover who you were meant to be now, because what you did has, or will soon come to an end.  No longer is your identity is based on what you do, now its’ about who you are.

How many sliding doors confronted you up to today?

Which doors did you choose to walk through and why?

What enhanced your identity?

What enhanced your self-esteem?

What have you learnt about yourself?

What do you need to do now?

Do you need some creative space to explore?

How can I help you now?

Getting Coached Around Retirement

My intention towards the end of September is to facilitate a series of group workshops around retirement. It doesn’t seem to be a hot topic unless it’s about financial advice and yet it is a vital part of living one’s life to the fullest.

Growing up as a child the questions are around what you will be. During a career the questions are around what have you become, what do you do, with possible sub-questions around what that involves, and with status around complexity, challenges, status and rewards. That whole structure disappears with retirement, so who then are you?

The questions we ask can be all important. The opportunity to use creative explorations can bring new insights. What will you become?

I have brought together a range of creative tools and techniques to allow discoveries to be made and reflectively marinated to allow new positive approaches life.

As your coach on this journey I look forward to working with you.

The first series of six workshops will be offered for £120.

If you would like to be on the first voyage, or have questions please let me know.

Brain Space

As a child I was frequently told off for “being a dreamer.” As a consultant I would ask managers how busy their diaries were and they would fall over themselves to tell me how busy they were, and laugh when I would ask them what percentage of the week was allocated for thinking. “I don’t have time to think.” When I suggested that they must spend all their time firefighting, they would nod in agreement. Then I would ask where in their job description did say anything about firefighting ? A question then for the bosses as to why all their managers were employed on the wrong contracts.

Problem solving requires space, time and great questions. Innovation requires space, time, great questions and iterations. Art requires space, time, great questions and iterations too.

Keep letting your mind go for spacious explorations.

https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20210319-why-procrastination-can-help-fuel-creativity

Your Outside Resources

The Smithosonian reports that scientists recently re-examining a Moroccan cave, used the latest dating techniques showed that the Homo Sapien remains were from around 300,000 years ago. This means we originated 100,000 years earlier than we thought. That fact makes a good deal of my talks look immediately dated! But not only that, they showed that 300,000 years ago people were trading their resources up to 55 miles away their resources for obsidian, a naturally occuring volcanic glass which was valuable at that time for its sharp edges.

We homo sapiens ( thinking man) have been around for 300,000 years and sharing our resources. Outside of yourself, what are the many resources available to you as you seek to develop?

Resources

  • Family
  • Friendships
  • Acquaintances
  • Network
  • Professional support
  • Coach
  • Therapist
  • Finance
  • Education
  • Qualifications
  • Natural resources
  • Museums
  • IT e.g. internet
  • Libraries
  • T.V. and radio
  • Films
  • Talks
  • Courses
  • Any others?

Beating Your Inner Critic – 1

I want to provide you with four resources to draw upon and help your creativity move forward. This is the first resource, you may simply use it for reflection but much better if you use it to get feedback and then use it for your meditations or support from a coach etc.

One of the biggest issues in our lives is that of crticism. We fear the critcism of others because it feeds our own inner critic. Our own inner critic has a visceral response is triggered by that nano second responder, the amygdela. This primal responder is buried deep in our minds and forms part of our primitive brain, it has no language and is designed to work in an instant, flooding the rest of our brains and our bodies with all the chemicals needed to deal with perceived danger, inducing freeze, flight or fight. To investigate this response and its impact on the vegas nerves I’d refer you to Stephen Porges.

More and more research points towards the extraordinary slowness of our ‘thinking’ brain we think that processes and reflects the signals it receives and can give voice to that information instantly but it really is not the case. That primitive part of our brain has already begun to respond up to 20 seconds before the thinking brain is conscious enough to start checking out, why they feel their body responding in a certain , perhaps familiar way. Or why they just blurted out something they now regret. A good source would be to look at Simon Sinek’s, why, how, what model of the brain.

Creativity is dangerous, it must by definition be about something new, and newness challenges existing patterns of what is acceptable. Things that were not acceptable to early humans could put you outside of the group, being outside of the group is dangerous because early humans were threatened by all manner of predators. There is a lot of evidence in the form of human skulls that have teeth marks from such loveable creatures as sabre toothed tigers to underline that one human on their own was pretty vulnerable.

There is a long history of the threat perceived by groups to people not responding to following the rules, spoken or otherwise. just following the wrong religion could mean a quick or indeed tortuous death, and still societies lock people up who pose no material threat but who dare to be at a tangent. My contention is that there is a deeply conditioned set of responses that can make creativity feel threatening. Which creative person hasn’t prevaricated rather rather than starting work? So, how do we change some patterns of behaviour within us?

Take a small plant in a pot and put it on a window ledge, as the plant grows does it grows it begins to lean towards the window and the available daylight. What I am providing below is about finding what to shine the light upon and to build upon.

Appreciative Inquiry holds that it’s better to work from what works rather than to try working with what doesn’t. Shine the light on what works, strengthen that and then what doesn’t work becomes easier to fix. Problem; if I don’t know what works I can’t overcome what doesn’t!

For most of us we don’t realise what a treasure house of potential we hold and what others would gladly have. To create and become an imagineer requires us to know what we can use to battle against the crisis of confidence, blocks and barriers that come our way.

For many years I have used 4 quadrants to help my coaching clients to start build a new future using the resources available to them. Starting with one of the quadrants we can can eventually bring all four together and build a holistic picture. The four quadrants will show you where you can safely build and by default those areas that may be unsafe foundations from which to try and build.

This is the first top left quadrant, MY STRENGTHS. You may chose to score them yourself, perhaps out of 10. Then without disclosing your marks, ask others to score you (you may want to do this as an exercise with at least two quadrants together when you ask others). I always urge the person being coached to ask an honest partner to feedback to them what they experience of the person being coached, and to score the list. Even better is when the person giving feedback can give examples. Try not to self-justify. Subsequent questions arise as to why all too often the feedback is surprisingly positive in so may areas. We begin to become aware of how others see us, what we can build upon and what can more easily be strengthened.

MY STRENGTHS

  • Sense of values
  • Creativity
  • Curiosity
  • Open-mindedness
  • Love of learning
  • Perspective (wisdom)
  • Bravery
  • Persistence
  • Integrity
  • Vitality
  • Love
  • Kindness
  • Social Intelligence
  • Responsibility
  • Fairness
  • Leadership
  • Forgiveness and mercy
  • Humility/Modesty
  • Prudence
  • Self-regulation/control
  • Appreciation of beauty and excellence
  • Gratitude
  • Hope
  • Patience
  • Transpersonal

Transpersonal by the way is about the spiritual, the soul, the soulful; this may be religious, but equally it can be experiencing the transformative effect of a beautiful view, a piece of music, a work of art etc.etc.

Over the next three posts I will give you the other quadrants so you can gather together Strengths, Skills, Resources and inspirations and grow towards the light.