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Archive for the ‘Coaching’ Category

You are Awesome because? – Exercise

Monday, February 11th, 2013


I was chatting to a random stranger on the train last night (as you do!) and we both commented on how often we don’t take advantage of the amazing things on our door step…that we take them for granted and sometimes even forget they are there.


For example lots people who live in Edinburgh have never been to the ‘Edinburgh tattoo’…It’s something ‘tourists’ do. I’m from Falkirk and I’ve only JUST been to the ‘Falkirk Wheel! (it’s pretty good btw:-))


Brian and I have just finished a two day NLP Practitioner refresher course in Inverary for Argyle & Bute Council. (Big shout to the A&B posse!)



Even though I’ve been there several times now the beauty of the surroundings still blows me away! I always forget and take for granted how beautiful Scotland is.



Check out the photo of the view from our breakfast room…Amazing!






How often do we do this with ourselves. It’s so easy to take your own talents for granted.


I don’t know about you but it was always driven into me from a young age ‘not to boast’. I can still hear my Dad saying “No-one likes a boaster son!” :-)


While it’s obviously not particularly attractive to go around telling people how amazing you are every minute of the day, I do think we internalize this way too much. We take our own ‘awesomeness’ for granted.


So I’d like to flip this round a bit…There is absolutely nothing wrong with boasting!…provided it’s done on the inside.


In fact, a lot of the time, the more you recognise your value on the inside the more you don’t necessarily need to validate it on the outside.


Here’s a quick game I like to play…It’s called ‘I am Awesome because?’


It’s a really simple game…Take a piece of paper and a pen (Or your I-Pad!) and write down – ‘I am awesome because?’


Allow the question to resonate inside…see where it takes your attention and let it sink deep…then, when answers start to naturally come, write them down.


Let it come more from your heart than your head and keep asking it for at least ten minutes…you might be surprised by some of the answers and by how absolutely awesome you feel after doing it :-)


Because……..You are awesome…what is not taking yourself for granted really like?


All the best


Peeling Back the Layers of Fear…

Monday, February 11th, 2013


One of the most commonly asked questions in Personal Development has to be “What would you do if you couldn’t fail?”


It’s a pretty decent question and, when you fully consider it, it does open your mind up to new possibilities.


For some reason though, I’ve never really been that keen on it. I’ve asked myself the question countless times and always seem to come up with daft answers like ‘World domination!’ or ‘Befriend Hugh Hefner and get free access to the playboy mansion’ (joke:-)).


I’ve never really found it that useful though…It’s possibly because I know how essential ‘Failure’ is to learning and growing that I don’t particularly see it as a something you have to ignore or hide from.


I MUCH prefer the question – “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”


For a start I love imagining a place without unnecessary fear. It makes me feel a feeling of serenity I can’t quite describe.


Above all though, it just seems to have a way of helping me quickly tap into ‘The Real Me’. The one that sometimes hides behind the curtain of fear.


The one that taps me on the shoulder every now and again and says – “Emm…excuse me but why don’t you take me out more often? We have such fun when you do!”


Fear definitely affects our sense of clarity about who we are and I think it’s really important to re-connect as much as possible with this ‘Real you’. I think the question is a great way to start the process.


So tell me “What WOULD you do if you weren’t afraid?”


What’s behind the curtain?…go on, pull it back and take a look. I know you’ll be pleasantly surprised. :-)


Take Care



What is your Super Power?

Thursday, January 17th, 2013


My friend Julz once said to me that everyone, by virtue of their life experiences and genetic make-up, are set up in a way to be a genius in something.


To do something or learn to do something with such exquisite skill and beauty that people believe it to be a god given talent. Some find this early in life and nurture it, some later on while many either don’t realise they do it or allow it to sit dormant in the background going to waste.


I love this idea and totally subscribe to it. It makes complete sense to me. We are all unique organisms in the world after all so it makes utter sense to me that we all possess a ‘special talent’ that no-one else does.


I’m on Netflix now and I’ve become a bit of a ‘TV Series’ junky. One of my favourites is ‘Heroes’. The 2nd and 3rd series were a big disappointment but the 1st was, for me, sublime story heroes_casttelling.


If you’ve never seen it, the premise is fairly simple.


A group of apparently un-connected people all of a sudden start displaying mysterious super natural talents. Some have super strength, others can hack into computers and some can fly.


As the series goes on they all start to realise that they are, in fact, connected and have their own special part to play in saving New York from a nuclear explosion and impending post-apocalyptic doom.


You’ll probably laugh at this but when I first watched Heroes, for some reason, it touched me deep inside. It resonated in ways I can’t quite describe. Initially I thought it was just amazing TV but then I realised it was much more than that.


It affected me at a level way beyond entertainment.


Then I realised what it was…


I realise that it was the premise the show was based on…


The premise that, as humans we all have a hidden unique gift that no-one else has that can make a difference to the world…one that makes us ‘special’ and ‘remarkable’.


You don’t have to be a Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg and change the world through innovations like the internet or Facebook, you just have to tap into and nurture your own special, unique talent.


Seeing that told with such finesse in Heroes was seriously enough to nearly move me to tears.


You might not even know what your unique talent is yet but I’m sure you feel it. It’s there at some level buried deep inside. It might seem illusive but I know at some level you can sense it.


You may even have a pretty good idea what it is and have already started developing it consciously. It can often be one of those things where, you’re not exactly sure why you do it and other people might not understand, but it just feels so damn good and fits with your personality that you can’t stop.


Perhaps it even feels like a bit of an obsession but it’s a wonderful one.


It’s also something that can often be indescribable. It can be the kind of thing that, when you attempt to define it, it doesn’t do it any justice. As soon as you do it seems to lose a bit of its true essence.


I knew a guy many years ago who, in hindsight, I now recognise had serious social problems and was most likely somewhere on the autism scale.


Put any kind of machinery in front of him, though, and he could strip it down tell you what each of the parts did and then build it back up again without any assistance, training or drawings.


To my knowledge he now works for Mercedes building Aeroplane engines. Apparently he’s a genius, the best at what he does…just don’t ask him to talk to anyone.


We can’t be brilliant at everything but I’m convinced we all have ‘a genius’.


What’s yours? What’s your Super Power?ChampTheSuperHero


Even if you can’t quite describe it, I’m sure it’s been gnawing away at you for a while now.


If I were you I’d let it sink its teeth into you. Embrace it. Let it engulf you.


Maybe even someone else remarked on it when you felt you were just ‘doing what you do’.


Your close friends and family can sometimes be more perceptive than you when it comes to recognising your talents and gifts.


After all we are the heroes of our own journey and every hero must learn to recognise and nurture their own unique talent.


In most myths and stories the heroes who do not will perish…the ones who do overcome the challenges and trials to claim the golden Elixir.


Take Care



Are you an overweight Fitness Coach teaching Zumba who can’t dance?

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012


There’s a terrific book written by Daniel Goleman that you may have heard of called Emotional Intelligence – why it can matter more than IQ. In his book he argues that our emotions play a far greater role in thought, decision making and individual success than is commonly acknowledged.

Daniel tells of a powerful experience he had whilst travelling on a bus up Madison Avenue. As he stepped onto the bus he was startled by the driver, a middle-aged black man with an enthusiastic smile, who welcomed him with a friendly, “Hi! How you doing?”

As he walked further down the bus he noticed that the driver welcomed each of the passengers with a similar enthusiastic greeting. The passengers appeared to be just as startled as Daniel but, as they were so locked into the morose of the day, didn’t return the greeting.

As the bus began its journey up Madison Avenue a slow, magical transformation started to happen. The driver started to give a running monologue for the passenger’s benefit…A lively and entertaining commentary on the passing scene around them. His enthusiasm and delight for the cities attractions started to become infectious. By the time the people got off the bus they had shaken off their solemn demeanour and when the driver shouted “So long, have a great day!” they all, one by one, gave him an enthusiastic, smiling response.
You see the driver knew a thing or two about influence. He knew that if you want to influence someone you have to go out of your way to make them feel good.

He knew that if you want people to change and transform it’s no good just telling them…you have to make an impact on the way they feel. Above all though, he knew that this process starts with yourself.

If you want someone to go somewhere you have to go there first.


If you want someone to experience happiness, you’re going to struggle if most days you can’t even raise a smile…If you want someone to get off their but and do something it’s going to be pretty difficult if there’s no energy or enthusiasm about you. At the end of the day no-one wants to hire a depressed happiness coach…


No one wants an overweight fitness instructor who teaches Zumba and can’t dance.

You don’t have to be perfect but you do have to possess a certain amount of the thing you want to influence.

When I was 18 I went on an outward bound course in the North of Scotland and we were ‘encouraged’ to get up at 05:30 in the morning and go for a run and a dip in a nearby river before breakfast. Apparently (or so they said) this was one of the most refreshing and invigorating ways to start the day. The fact it was the middle of November and the temperature was a lovely comfortable 2 degrees though, meant that most of us weren’t exactly convinced.

The one thing our instructor didn’t do though was come out in the same emotional place as us.

He came striding out looking as if he was ready to climb Mount Everest! You could literally see the enthusiasm and motivation emanating from him.
Now I’ve got to be honest and say that, at first, I found this a bit irritating. Then, bit by bit, his enthusiasm began to wear off on me until eventually I was finding it very difficult to protest.
He knew that if you want someone to go somewhere you have to go there first.

A more dramatic example of this happened during the Vietnam War. An American platoon was situated down in some rice paddies in the heat of a fire fight with the Vietcong when, All of a sudden, a line of six monks started walking in between the gun fire. They didn’t look right or left towards either of the soldiers they just walked calmly and peacefully across the battle field. One of the American soldiers recalled the incident as “incredibly strange, because nobody shot at them. And after they walked past suddenly all the fight was out of me. It didn’t feel like I wanted to do this any more, at least not that day. It must have been that way for everyone, because everybody quit. We just stopped fighting”

The monks ability to be able to pacify the soldiers in the heat of the battle is probably one of the more dramatic and courageous examples of how contagious emotions can be. On a more subtle level, though, emotional exchange occurs in practically every conversation we engage.

Think for a moment about a person in your life that generally has a happy, upbeat, positive attitude. How do you feel when you’re with that person? Do they lift your mood? Do you like being around them?

Now think of someone who complains constantly about life…Someone who bitches, moans and constantly brings people down. How do you feel around them? Do they affect you negatively?

The real question though is this – Which part do you play in this emotional exchange? Are you the emotional vampire that sucks the life out of people or are you a shining ray of light that makes others feel good in a way that they can’t quite explain?

What are you projecting? How are you influencing without even realising it?.


It’s true that if you want someone to go somewhere you have to go there first but it’s also true that you are always ‘somewhere’ and that ‘somewhere’ doesn’t just stay in you…it affects the people around you…it changes how they feel, how they think. It’s a big responsibility I know but it’s yours whether you like it or not…you have it by default.


Like I say, you don’t have to be perfect…not by a long shot. Just don’t be an overweight fitness coach teaching Zumba who can’t dance…



All the best


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