3 Steps Toward Personal #Success

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One day I want to be as wise as James Earl Jones (he provides the voice of Darth Vader in the Star Wars saga).

Or maybe as creative as Clint Eastwood (a film director and musician).

I might even settle for a touch of William Shatner’s curiosity (well known space explorer).

Although these gents are now in their nineties their wisdom, creativity and curiosity were always present.

Having said that, our own unique talents can sometimes lie below the surface of our everyday armour. We can be scared to show others just how talented we are whether we are fifteen, or fifty. We have to decide we can be vulnerable, then get and hold other people’s attention.

So we need to get out of our own way and actively chase after personal success. If we are doing this, our life goals should include:

  • Working to increase the amount of happiness we get from our day
  • Promoting others’ well being
  • Building an intriguing set of memories for others to remember us by

How does that sound to you?

Public Health: What Problems Are #Preventable ?

Cover – Preventable How a Pandemic Changed the World & How to Stop the Next One by Devi Sridhar

Mental health charity Mind says spending time in nature is good for our mental health.

And they are right.

Being outdoors means: slowing down; breathing deep and feeling the sun on your face.

How many office-based headaches, neighbourhood tensions, or bereavement blues could be lessened by some outdoors therapy?

Of course it is privilege to simply take a long walk outdoors, after months of lockdown. But it is a privilege that 174,000 British people can never again enjoy (they are the ones who have died of Coronavirus since March 2020).

There is a story behind each of those deaths, whether they happened at home; in a hospital ward; or in a care setting.

Many deaths will have been preventable, had there been more inspired public health leadership in place, before the pandemic arrived.

No one can say for sure how many lives might have been saved if hospital patients had been tested before returning to their care homes, (or if there had been effective protective rings around those homes).

In her new book (cover shown above) Professor Devi Sridhar does ask some searching public health questions about how society can be reimagined to help reduce the impact on society of future pandemics. Taking action now might reduce the number of parents, friends and neighbours we lose in the next pandemic, whenever it occurs.

Take a look at her book, it is worth your time.

An Award Winner Talks About Anger Management

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Sir Sidney Poitier was a thoughtful, charismatic actor and Academy Award winner.

He was also an activist. He marched on Washington in 1963, as part of the call for equality spearheaded by Dr Martin Luther King.

He could see that channelling his righteous anger could influence millions of people around the world.

His life was celebrated during this year’s Oscars ceremony, alongside others in the entertainment industry who passed away in last twelve months.

The ‘slap that was heard around the World’ might have eclipsed that segment.

I think the only slap which people will remember Mr Poitier giving was the one his character, Virgil Tibbs, gave the racist character Endicott ‘In The Heat Of The Night’ (1967).

That was a bold, justified, and revolutionary act. It is a long way from what happened on film in the sixties to last weekend at the Oscars ceremony in Los Angeles.

Apologies have been offered since then.

Learning is underway too.

Meanwhile, to close here’s a quote from Mr Poitier which puts all that into context:

I have learned that I must find positive outlets for anger, or it will destroy me.

Sidney Poitier: The Measure Of A Man A Spiritual Autobiography

It’s #Timetotalk

Men talking – Picture credit Pexels.com

The hardest part about living with a mental health challenge?

Others can’t see it.

Broken limb?

We wear a plaster cast.

Feeling broken down?

We need to start talking.

Being vulnerable.

Opening up about the hurt.

Inviting someone to support us.

In person, or online.

In confidence.

In our own interests (and for the sake of our loved ones).

It is always a good time to talk.

Merry #Christmas And A Happier New Year

At the end of 2020 I got my wires crossed when answering a friend’s text. She had asked how I was feeling, and she felt my answer didn’t say enough (I wondered if, maybe she was going through something herself).

Anyway, I let her know I was doing okay and would catch up with her after Christmas. I reckoned there would be a break in the lockdown in 2021 and we could meet for a drink or something.  

That didn’t happen.

I don’t know whether my friend was feeling unwell in December 2020 when she texted, but she died with Covid mid-January 2021.

I felt numb when I got the news. Then I cried, because her death was so unfair, given her age.

This Christmas I’m thinking about her family and everyone else who has lost someone in 2021 (due to Covid or not).

I hope they are doing okay this Christmas.

I hope they will find the right words to celebrate their loved one’s life, even though they are absent from the table.

I hope they / we all have a happier new year.

( Photo by Any Lane from Pexels )

Helping Ourselves On #WorldMentalHealthDay

Solving Problems Is Easier When We Act Together. (Picture credit Photo by August de Richelieu from Pexels )

Today, of all days, it is worth saying that life without good mental health is hard.

From my experience, in the developed world, it can still feel dark, stressful, and overwhelming to struggle on alone.

In developed and developing nations stigma about mental health conditions can affect outcomes. In some countries and cultures mental health taboos can leave those issues to silently fester in the dark. People affected can hide their illness. It can feel their secret shame to bear alone.

Left untreated their illness can become more significant than it needed to be. That is bad news for their loved ones, their colleagues and everyone else affected.

So, to change those outcomes, wherever we live, tackling mental health issues needs to involve:

  • Recognising something is making our life more complicated than it needs be
  • Reaching out to professionals who are able to help
  • Staying in touch with good listeners amongst our family network and friendship circle
  • Being kind to ourselves

What has worked for you, or people you know?

Always worth remembering, wherever in the World we find ourselves, and whatever else is important in our lives, struggling alone is not a solution.

We are stronger together.

Making Change Happen – Personal #Goals In 2021

What Needs To Change? (Picture credit SHVETS Productions via Pexels.com)

So, what has September felt like to you? 

Post-pandemic is it business as usual, once again?  

Or, is it more like something from a science fiction film, complete with rapid testing and face coverings? 

Happiness involves choice.

Making change happen starts with moving towards a goal.

Everyone choosing to follow a different path after lockdown has had to plan their way forward. Maybe that is something you want to do? If so there’s plenty of information in the posts here to get you started.

Check out the download section too, if you want some ideas on where to focus your attention.

The first step is to ask yourself, what do I want to change by the end of next month?

Then figure out what your next step looks like. 

Then take it.

Leave a reply and let everyone know how you get on!

#Business As #Usual ?

Now We Can Work Together Much More Should We? – Photo From Fauxels From Pexels

Step 4 in the Covid-19 recovery process means fewer restrictions. 

Step 4 doesn’t mean everything is back to business as usual, workwise.

In fact, it could take a while for ‘usual’ to emerge.

Blended Working: Pros and Cons

How does a blended approach of 50:50 working from home and an office sound?

The Pros are obvious:

  • Less hours commuting
  • More creative contact with diverse colleagues

The Cons are less obvious:

  • Quiet pressure to work just a bit more (early morning / in the evening / on the weekend)
  • More exposure to any toxicity in the workplace and the potential to get into disruptive relationships

What We Choose Affects Our Happiness

Our choices will affect our happiness.

A well-thought through choice will help build job satisfaction.

A casual one could cause damage.

So, it is worth taking time to figure out what we want from the work we do.

That reflection will help us form new work goals which help us deliver better results.

Why not have your say. What will you do differently, when you go back to work?

Photo by fauxels from Pexels

3 #Leadership Lessons From 3 Lions

Last week, like 30 million others, I watched the Euro 2020 final between England and Italy.

England’s confident, diverse team had reached a major final after more than 50 years.

At the end of extra time, I watched 19-year-old Bukayo Saka step up.

His penalty would make the difference.

It did.

His shot was saved.

That result was painful, but Gareth Southgate and the rest of the team held each other up.

But some ‘supporters’ tried to tear them down.

Cue a wave of online racism.

Monkey Emojis.

The N word.

The usual crap.

Not the kind of thing anyone should ignore, whether it is obvious who is creating it, or hidden behind a screenname.

And that’s why Saka, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, and their teammates take the knee. Despite the boos.

  • Because leaders set the tone for their teams.
  • Because drawing attention to a problem isn’t ‘gesture politics’.
  • Because the process of change is uncomfortable.

A Few Thoughts For #Carersweek

Taking Care Of Someone Else Means Taking Care Of Yourself First – Picture credit Madison Inouye on Pexels.com

It has been another tough year.

The Coronavirus is still knocking people for six.  

Relatives and friends looking after loved ones are feeling invisible and under-valued.

For instance, research shows more than 7 out 10 UK carers haven’t practiced self-care and had a break in 12 months (a link to the report is below).

Which mean thousands of people are exhausted. Which means tired relatives struggling to focus on caring for a loved one. Which leaves the cared for person with less than the full support they need.

Vaccination is making a difference. Society may look different before too long.

Hopefully, by June 2022, better support will be offered to carers and carers will be more visible and valued. If so, the cared for will feel the benefit.

‘Breaks or breakdown’, Carers Week 2021 report – Carers UK

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