26 May 2019 – Who do you work for?
Followers of 3RO will have noticed that I am blogging less frequently this year. I made a difficult decision last year, to focus my energies in another direction. I put 3RO on the back-burner for a while and I have been re-directing life-coaching enquiries to trusted colleagues.
To my surprise, I have had an enjoyable year and so I am going to continue to focus on my government-related contract work for the time-being.
When I originally escaped from corporate employment in 2013, I was thrilled and very proud to at last be my own boss. The last six years has taught me that, regardless of employment status with HMRC or the source of my income, I am always working for myself.
My previous reference to escaping the corporate world was a reflection of my own negative perspective at that time. Since then I have worked longer hours and far harder than ever as the director of 3RO Ltd, but these self-motivated activities have never felt like a chore because they are my choice. Setting up my own company empowered me, broadened my knowledge and enabled me to meet many fascinating people.
For the present, I am enjoying being committed to a contract again, because it is one that enables me to continue to deliver excellent customer service to people who benefit from that service. I am continuing to use and hone my life-coaching muscles, as well as learning new skills and making new connections. Every day brings fresh opportunities to rise to new challenges.
Even in a corporate situation, we can influence our environment for our own satisfaction and happiness, and then share the results with colleagues. Ensuring we benefit holistically (not just financially) from work, enables us to better serve our business and community, and be good company for the people who share our lives.
We can be exquisitely flexible and we can make a change whenever we wish.
So, who do you work for? 🙂
29 March 2019 – Your giant, powerful magnet
Social media and the news media in general often give me a sense of overload. So much depressing news. So many interesting articles, books, videos and pod-casts. I struggle to find the time to read everything that takes my interest.
I have consciously been posting fewer blogs this year. Partly because I’ve a lot going on, but also because I don’t believe in posting simply to raise my profile. As I get older, I am increasingly more comfortable resisting doing the “things I should do”. I focus on what makes me happy.
Many of my friends haven’t made it to 2019 and I am therefore keenly aware that every day brings new possibilities and it’s up to me to make the best choice of what to do with my limited time on this planet.
I know what feeds my energy and makes me content. I make sure that, whatever commitments I have to others, meeting my own needs is also a priority. By looking after myself I am better able to contribute and help others.
Self-care takes dedication, planning, perseverance and resilience. Don’t let anyone tell you it’s selfishness. It’s about survival. It’s necessary.
By choosing what we focus on for our long-term aspirations, we give ourselves purpose and direction in moving towards a goal. An inspirational goal will almost pull you towards it, like a giant, powerful magnet. It could be financially or life-style oriented, or both, but make sure you frame it positively and can monitor your progress.
When you are driving a car, you check the horizon, look at what’s right in front of the vehicle, and check what’s in between. You need to do exactly the same when you are setting and monitoring goals. Don’t miss out on immediate or mid-range opportunities by staring into the future,
Divide BHAGs (“Big Hairy-Arsed Goals”) into smaller, achievable steps, and after you’ve achieved a few of those smaller goals (notice I’m resisting the temptation to calls these SHAGs) you will realise that you are already well on your way to where you’d always dreamed you might be.
Thank you for choosing to spend some of your time today reading this short article. I hope it’s started you thinking about what your own giant powerful magnet of a goal looks like.
Enjoy the journey, it’s just as important as your destination.
25 February 2019 – A blog about a blob.
Regular readers of my blogs will know how much I love being beside the sea. While walking along the edge of the waves at low tide in Gosford Bay recently (in my wellies because this is Scotland) I came across an oval spiny blob (maybe 2 inches by 5 inches) rolling back and forth helplessly in the waves. I stopped to investigate and realised that its tiny spines were waving back and forth at me. It was alive, and trying to find some way to halt the constant movement. (I suspect the gulls, scared off by my approach, must have pulled it out of the mud.)
I gently placed my feet on either side of the small creature to protect it from the motion of the waves. As soon as it stopped moving, I was fascinated to see the small creature start to sink beneath the mud, aided by its many moving spines. Within a few seconds it had completely disappeared from view, safely back beneath the bay.
Google informs me that this was an encounter with a Shore, or Green Urchin. I’ve borrowed a picture of some Green Urchins from the internet to show you. I hope Jennifer Kennedy doesn’t mind. There aren’t many good pictures of them, as they seem to be rather reclusive.
In all my years on Scottish beaches I never come across a Green Urchin before. It makes me feel good to think that I helped one, to live, to fight another day. All I had to do was to give a few moments of my day.
Small opportunities arise constantly for us to make a positive difference in some way.
A small, seemingly insignificant gesture could make a huge difference to someone else’s day – and it makes you feel good too.
28 January 2019 – Which one are you?!
I work with clients from a wide range of situations and circumstances. Some are wealthy, others not so much.
Although our society admires the acquisition of wealth, it’s not money that brings happiness. Wealthy clients have just as many “problems” as ones who are less financially comfortable. It’s the focus of their issues which is different.
Lack of finance can be a relatively easy problem to solve. It’s ultimately a single solution problem. Once an adequate income steam has been established there’s a limitless choice of other issues for us to take up – if we chose to.
Although each client is unique, regardless of financial situation I can generally classify potential clients into one of three groups: Questers; Coasters; and Whingers.
- Questers: Enthusiastic seekers of information, opportunities and their destiny. These are exciting people to work with. Once they have clarified what they want and how they want to move towards it, they are ready to change and develop to make it happen. Questers keep me on my toes as a life-coach. They are like having a tiger by the tail, and I relish spending time in their company.
- Coasters: Individuals who have been persuaded by advertisers and social media that they should be making a change but, really, they are quite content with where they are. Life-coaching Coasters is fun because it’s about awakening their gratitude for the life that they already have and love. It’s ok to be happy as you are. Don’t let marketing departments sucker you into thinking you need to be/do/have something different if you are already happy with your life.
- Whingers: I don’t keep Whingers as clients for long. It soon becomes apparent that, although they say they feel unhappy with their current situation, they are not sufficiently dissatisfied to make a change. There are aspects of their current situation that they enjoy, e.g. perhaps the sympathy/attention they receive as a “victim of circumstance”. One of their favourite phrases is “It’s not my fault.” It is probably possible to keep a Whinger as a client for weeks, months or years because they love to talk about their hardships, but their company drains my energy and I make a point of disconnecting from Whingers as soon as possible.
So, which are you? Are you a Quester, a Coaster or a Whinger?
The good news for Whingers is that change is always possible. The choice is yours. Consider the hurdles that Professor Stephen Hawking overcame to continue his studies, communicate, raise a family, collaborate with colleagues, publish books, give interviews, etc. It’s amazing what’s possible if you work to make it happen.
So, which are you? Are you a Quester, a Coaster or a Whinger?
19 January 2019 – Help!
I woke up this morning with a headache. One of those achy heads that feels like perhaps I’ve a cold coming on. I’ve been very active this week, taking advantage of a well-deserved, scheduled gap in my normal desk-related activities. Instead of giving myself time to chill and relax, I’ve been walking and cycling outdoors as much as possible this week, to maximise use of precious winter daylight hours.
My cycling addiction is such that, even though I wanted to snuggle down and relax this afternoon after a morning of household chores, I put on my cycling togs and hopped onto my bike. It was a bitterly cold afternoon so I knew I wouldn’t go far, but I knew I needed to go.
I am very lucky to live surrounded by many and various cycle routes, so I simply meandered, letting the bike lead the way. After about an hour I decided to head back home with thoughts focused on a warm bowl of soup.
As I followed the path through one of many local business areas, quiet and deserted on a cold Saturday afternoon, I saw a figure waving at me from inside a doorway as I cycled passed. I waved back, thinking “How sweet!”, immediately followed by the recognition that something was wrong. That wasn’t a happy face beside the waving hand.
I cycled back to the door and found a tearful young woman, trapped between the inner and outer door of the building. She’d been there for half and hour trying to catch someone’s attention. She had left her keys and mobile phone inside the building when she had gone into the foyer, and found herself trapped as the inner door locked behind her.
I could just about hear her voice through the glass. After establishing her situation, I called the emergency services (as there were no visible phone numbers on the building) and then I called her husband to let him know what was happening. We chatted as we waited for rescue. She was obviously worried about any consequences from her employer from what had happened, and about any damage that rescuers might cause to release her. I reassured her that it could have happened to anyone and pointed out that it’s a learning opportunity for the building owner/employer to ensure it doesn’t happen again.
Within 10 minutes her husband arrived, closely followed by a bright, shiny, red fire engine, full of lovely fire-persons. I explained the situation and immediately the fire-team took charge, putting the rescuee at ease and organising her rescue. I left them to it, knowing I’d done everything I could and confident that the professionals would quickly set her free and pass her into the care of her concerned husband.
As I cycled home, I couldn’t help but ponder: “What made me go out on this bitterly cold afternoon?”; “What enticed me to cycle down that little path?”; “What made me look right and spy that waving figure?”. It’s possible that if I hadn’t spotted this lady she may have been trapped there for hours, obviously getting more and more distressed as time passed.
Life can be strange and arbitrary. I’m grateful that fate, destiny or whatever, put me in the position to be able to be of assistance today. I’m also so very grateful that we have such fabulous emergency services in the UK, ready to come to our assistance whenever needed.
In 2019 I hope you take all possible opportunities that the universe presents you with to help others.