Work as Play

work as play christine miller

Work as Play - The Heart and Spirit of Business

work as play christine miller It seems that increasing numbers of us are looking for different ways to live in a more balanced and fulfilling way, so that we feel connected with our work.

At the heart of this is the growing desire to have a sense of purpose and a yearning for meaning in how we spend our time and make our living. We want to feel the spirit of what we do – to be inspired.


People who have been working in organisations for many years are now being asked to re-apply for their jobs, unable to take them for granted any more and having to market themselves as the best candidates. This means they are in effect becoming more entrepreneurial in their approach to their positions. And those entering or rejoining the job market need to be very clear and precise about what they offer and how they fit with prospective employers, both for their own sake in finding satisfying work, and in order to attract a suitable opportunity. (See:
The ReSourceful Candidate)

Entrepreneurs, the self-employed, creatives and small business owners already know the importance of  this, but sometimes, running a business or being a freelance feels more like a job that ties you down than an uplifting experience of creativity, wealth and fulfillment. And the dream you started out with becomes a drudgery that leaves you working longer and longer hours just to stand still.
 
I had my most recent experience as an employee in the corporate world over 11 years ago now, and friends and colleagues who’ve known me for years (and even some who haven’t known me for long!) comment on the way I’ve crafted what is essentially the perfect job for me – meeting people and asking them about their current thinking and passions, guiding, coaching and mentoring executives, leaders and business people into the best options for them so that they LOVE what they do, writing, being creative, being playful – and having lots of fun.
 
Most of the time, I can’t distinguish whether I’m working or playing, so that my work becomes play for me…that’s a great joy. It didn’t happen by accident – I did actually deliberately create and craft the ‘playground’ (otherwise known as workspaces!)  in which I operate, and it is a highly productive space. And it evolves all the time, as I develop and learn and share with clients in workshops and individual sessions.
 
Find out more about loving work at www.loveworks.co 

Masques & Roles

masks1

By Popular Demand:

Flourish Through Challenging Times

Christine Miller's Celebrated

'Masques & Roles' Workshop…

masks11

Are you Living your own Life?

Or Following a Life you inherited?

In these troubled times, as much of what has traditionally been upheld as important starts to fall away,
many of us are questioning ourselves about what is really important in life.

There can be no question that knowing ourselves and recognising our strengths is crucial to our progress.
Until we look within, and find the means to self-leadership, love and awareness,
we cannot deal honestly and with integrity with the outer world.

In this workshop, you will experience recognising, acknowledging, and then peeling off your masks,
shedding your assumptions
and opening your eyes to the treasure within you.
You will emerge stronger, clearer and with a greater understanding of
who you truly are.

Then you can live a fulfilled life, regardless of the outside influences you encounter,
because your joy will emanate from your inner strengths,
your sense of self will be unassailable,
and you will experience whole-hearted happiness.

Enjoy a day of nourishment for your spirit, rekindle your joy,
Experience inner calm and peace, and refresh all your senses.
Dates:
Saturday January 29th 2011
Sunday February 13th 2011
Location: London UK
Time: 10.00 – 16.00
Cost: £117.00

 

CONTACT: christine@christinemiller.co

ABOUT CHRISTINE

Christine is dedicated to helping others uncover and fulfil their true potential. She holds a Masters Degree in Psychology and is a poet, author, consultant and speaker at many conferences.
As the Visionary Founder editor of ReSource magazine, she enjoys many opportunities to share thoughts and ideas with world spiritual and personal growth leaders.

 

WHAT OTHERS SAY:

"Christine has a graceful presence, a calmness and a warmth which combined with her in-depth knowledge of her subject, and her dedication to her students' learning, makes her a compelling and inspirational trainer."

Alison Paterson, Kaizen Training

 

"People can feel your commanding energy presence as you walk on stage and they can feel your energy and passion, and know with certainty that you totally believe in what you're delivering."
Steve Ross, MD, Ross Associates, Bristol

"I have had the privilege of knowing Christine for some time, and I have been very blessed to hear her speak, to share her warm and heartfelt, powerful poetry, and to read her marvellous words in her world-class professional magazine. Not only well connected but someone who leads with her heart and soul first.
The word inspirational is over-used, but is entirely apposite here.
Thank you for being a friend.

aloha nui loa (as they say in Hawaii)"

Gary Plunkett, Business Coach

"Christine Miller's workshop was inventive, creative, fun, intimate, validating and insightful. The notion of masks were all useful reminders, to me, of how much we (I) can choose to stay hidden behind any of a number of facades and, worse, convince myself that it is neither my choice nor my responsibility i.e. if I'm hiding my light it's because other people aren't seeing my light!  Yeah. Right!  Thank you Christine."

Michael Mallows; author, trainer, coach

 

"Christine Miller’s workshop was truly excellent."

Hugh L’Estrange, Director, SEAL (Society for Effective Affective Learning)

"Christine is a wonderful and inspiring spirit, her natural gift to heal with her words and with her hands is tangible as you stand within her presence.
I am delighted to know Christine and have safely shared my personal story with her.
I highly recommend that you experience Christine's beautiful and calming energy to create harmony in your life."
Pauline Crawford, Founder, Corporate Heart

"Christine has not only quality in her work but every ounce of her being is designed to make human potential increase. Very few people have this gift.  One in a million."
Nigel Risner, CEO, Nigel Risner

 

"I spent an inspiring afternoon with Christine recently, and her magic for me is that her guidance appears effortless – to the point I felt that I was coming up with all these wonderful visions on my own. In fact, it was Christine's caring and intuitive guidance gently taking me to a place I would never have reached without her. Those who know Christine already will understand me when I say that with Christine's help I have seen a realistic vision of my own future. Thanks Christine – and I look forward to working with you for a long time to come."
Richard Flewitt, Business Video Producer, New Edge

 

 

 

Votes from a Small Island

Three Contenders

Three Contenders

Three Contenders

The Public Debates

Three men stand together, facing not only unrelenting lights and cameras, but also an uncompromising (yet apparently unconvinced) electorate on national television, and a select studio audience primed with unknown awkward questions.  Each man is hopeful, yet desperate; passionate in his way, yet somehow desolate; committed to leading a nation and its people to better times, wanting and needing to be trusted. They are reminiscent in some ways of Moses leading his people to the Promised Land; and if chosen, face a task of similar proportions, given Great Britain’s current financial predicament.

So can we determine who has the power not only to part the metaphorical Red Sea of troubles facing whichever party may win the election, but also has the courage and conviction to lead us to the beckoning shores of safe recovery?

Societal Symbols

The suits are well-cut, the grooming immaculate – the outer face of British political leadership perhaps differentiated only by the colour of a tie and the type of knot with which it is carefully arranged…and I can’t help feeling those ties in some way stifle the true being that is striving to bring his message  to the British people.  Do these silky symbols of belonging to a certain sector of society actually cut off the connection between their heads and their hearts? Are they really feeling what the people want – or are they too ‘prepped’ and primped, too slickly coached and chivvied into being what their advisors and publicity teams think the public wants?

Would we have preferred to see the debates as a ‘loosen the tie, roll up the sleeves and let’s get to work and tackle the challenges we’re facing’ honest to goodness, humble attempt to offer solutions, in contrast to the interminable point scoring put-downs that, frankly, have left me bored and irritated that not one of them came across  as being a totally worthy contender?  Although the polls give it to Cameron for last night’s debate, there’s still a very mixed response out there.

Understanding Change

I wanted David Cameron to be what I’ve seen and heard him do in the past. I was at the CBI conference in 2006 when he delivered a powerful speech that won over the 1,000-strong audience of top business leaders. He had a bold, clear message that won hearts and minds – and the leadership of his party.  In 2008 at Leaders in London he again delivered a moving speech. Articulate, humorous, flowing naturally and comfortable in his skin – he was truly convincing. Now of course, there’s more at stake – there’s more at stake for all of us – it’s a time when a clear bold plan and a big heart can win the day.

David, are you listening? At Leaders in London you said – “don’t try and be something that you’re not”. Look at these words again – “politics is about understanding what’s happening in your country… politicians don’t win just because they’ve got the best slogans… winning in politics is about understanding the forces of change and responding to that problem.” Do you still hold that as true?

Pause, Reflect, Listen

This week we saw the rawness of Gordon Brown as he (inadvertently) publicly expressed his private sense of discomfiture at Gillian Duffy’s comments and questions – that was an honest, visceral , if shocking response – and in the true sense of the word ‘bigot’, (Spectator)  he may have had a point. It was careless, it seemed hypocritical, it displayed lack of understanding – it was an unfortunate insight into the concerns that constant media pressure and polls place on leaders. The most important thing in that moment was not the voter, nor the woman, but the irritation of being faced with a sensitive issue – immigration – and how the encounter might influence the overall outcome.  Maybe Gillian Duffy’s comments, outside the arena of political correctness, expressed a side of public opinion that is not politically or publicly acceptable, but is it pervasive in private? Is it pervasive in Lancashire, a Labour heartland and my own home county. A Rochdale pensioner’s concern about the extra stress placed on already scarce resources by increases in population might have hit a raw nerve, and may even be representative of floating voter’s opinions – who knows?  Brown was flustered and discomfited, and that’s not statesmanlike behaviour.

It was a big diference from the time in late 2008 when I heard and saw him speak to an audience  of committed innovative social entrepreneurs and activists at the Chain Reaction event, pledging help and support for new business  – again, now there’s more at stake, events have unfolded which have undermined those positive commitments and the excitement of his young ambassadors telling their stories.

Gordon needs to learn to pause, reflect, listen – carefully – and not react – Gordon, are you listening?

Crucial Floating Voters

As for Nick Clegg, his policies and views might well represent a new way, a different outcome, ‘real’ change – but to me it seems like there is game playing, and the boyish charm which is undoubtedly appealing perhaps doesn’t present the mature gravitas that needs to be there for those crucial floating voters to be really convinced. I’ve more experience of hearing Vince Cable  who is the epitome of informed enthusiasm and passion for a fairer economy and society – tempered by wisdom and his being ‘seasoned’.

Statesmanlike Qualities

I don’t really want a ‘politician’ as the country’s leader; I want a Statesman.  Someone with dignity, composure, common sense and intelligence – and the intellectual and compassionate, emotional capacity to understand how important it is to stay connected to their people’s needs and wants.

As voters, we’re all small islands who can come together to make change happen – who is going to convince us that their qualities and vision, and their practical abilities to take action, will get us safely to the distant yet achievable shore of sustainable growth and mutual benefit?

What will be the outcome for votes from a Small Island, votes for a Small Island next week?

It’s in our hands…so what kind of leader do we deserve?

(acknowledgement to Bill Bryson and his brilliant ‘Notes from a Small Island‘)

How to Increase Your Business Success with Mind Maps – Tony Buzan

Tony Buzan, author of 100 best-selling books

Tony Buzan, author of 100 best-selling books

Tony Buzan, Inventor of Mind Maps and author of 100 best-selling books

Chris Griffiths CEO of Think Buzan

Chris Griffiths CEO of Think Buzan

Mind Maps for Business

We’ve used Mind Maps at ReSource since the very beginning – our first edition contained a hand drawn map of the contents, and Tony Buzan has been a regular contributor covering areas from business to creativity and poetry.  In a brief preliminary interview for an upcoming  ReSource feature, I asked Mind Maps® inventor Tony Buzan about his latest book, ‘Mind Maps for Business’, written with Chris Griffiths,   CEO of Think Buzan.

“Tony, what’s different about this book ‘Mind Maps for Business’? What differentiates it from ‘Mind Maps at Work’, for example?”

“There is a comprehensive difference – ‘Mind Maps at Work’ was a play on the word ‘work’ – it was a way of showing Mind Maps working, and how they are effective in people’s lives in a broad range of contexts, not just at work. It also served as an introductory text for people in any working situation, not only in business, which is completely different.  In a way, it was a gentle preamble to Mind Maps for Business, and it certainly generated demand for the business book. People had read Mind Maps at Work, and other books, and this led to many requests for a book totally dedicated to the business world.

“The Mind Maps for Business Book has copious illustrations, there is full colour throughout, and there are inspiring stories and case studies  gathered from around the world from major players using Mind Maps. Some examples are Nicky Oppenheimer, Chairman of de Beers diamond mines in South Africa, who describes Mind Maps as an ‘indispensable tool’, which he used to steer his senior management team during a time of refocusing to capture the essence of the organisation – where it had been and where it was heading.”

Mind Maps for Business

Mind Maps for Business

Packed with Stories and Pictures

It’s true the book is packed with accounts of success in using Mind Maps for business from many different people.  Stephen Lundin, author of the 5 million copy best selling  FISH! says:

‘Mind Mapping uses the brain in the way it was designed, saves time, improves results and is fun. How can any business person be without this powerful tool?’

Masanori Kanda is known as one of the most influential entrepreneurs in Japan today. He was named the top marketer in the November issue of GQ Japan (2006) and speaking of the radical reorganisation of his company to respond to change, says: ‘Mind mapping can play a pivotal role in the process of developing a sustainable organisation that is adaptable to rapid changes today. With open and transparent cross-functional communications in all directions, the organisation grows to become more fair, resilient and effective.’

The introduction in 2006 of iMindMap, the Buzan technology for computer generated Mind Maps, developed in conjunction with Chris Griffiths, has also given rise to many more business applications. Major corporations, including Boeing, have used the methodology to envision and manage the multiple stages of complex projects from conception to delivery.

Says Mike Stanley, of the Boeing Corporation, USA:
“The use of Mind Mapping is an integral part of my Quality Improvement Project at Boeing. This has provided savings of over $10 million for my organisation.”

iMindMap Running a Meeting example

iMindMap Running a Meeting example

Timely and Comprehensive Guide

Now is the time when this book from Tony and Chris is most needed – we live in a fiercely competitive world, where global choice is greater than ever before, and customers and clients have broader options and market intelligence readily (and instantly!) available through the Internet. Agility in spotting trends, organising and managing multiple ideas and strategies, and smart implementation are key to success, something to which the use of Mind Maps is eminently well-suited.  They can help you sell, negotiate, plan, brainstorm, manage – and do so more effectively, saving you time and money.

Several people I’ve interviewed recently for ReSource (including top US business coach Marshall Goldsmith and New York Times bestselling author and consultant Marcus Buckingham) have suggested that ‘we’re all entrepreneurs now’. One unexpected current example in the UK is within the public sector, in tertiary education, where funding cuts are changing the landscape dramatically. Situations are arising where employees, some of whom have been in their jobs for ten or fifteen years, are now obliged to re-apply for their existing posts – and are consequently required to ‘sell’ themselves again as the best possible candidate for the job. This requires the skill of knowing how to best position yourself, not something most public sector employees have previously had to consider. The ability to identify and promote your key assets, talents and expertise as benefits to your organisation thus become critical to successful job retention, and Mind Mapping can also assist with this.

Transforming Business and Life

In this age of the changing world of work, when everyone, whether employed or running their own business, needs to adopt a more intelligently entrepreneurial mindset, ‘Mind Maps for Business’ helps fill a need for ways to develop clarity of thinking and effective methods to manage complexity and diversity. Mind Maps have been proven to achieve this –  over many years, across innumerable disciplines, and ‘Mind Maps for Business’ is an essential addition to the library of books we return to time and again for practical applications and guidance on being better in the business world – especially in the business of living productively and well.

You can get the book easily now at Amazon & WHSmith

Look out for a full article in the next edition of ReSource

New ReSource hot off the press

ReSource Edition 17


It’s been a busy few weeks getting this edition of ReSource off to print, and there are some really great interviews and articles which I’ve really enjoyed preparing.

I also relished designing the fresh summer cover -

ReSource Edition 17

ReSource Edition 17

Some snippets

‘Generation Y’ has featured  strongly, it wasn’t an intentional thing, simply that it was topical amongst the people I was speaking to.

Generalisation about any group is not ideal, and can be dangerous, and we acknowlede that there are always exceptions, yet Don Tapscott, Marshall Goldsmith, Kate Sweetman and Marcus Buckingham are all talking about the differences between this group of 16 – 31 year olds and the ‘boomers’ – the message is that they are flexible, value-driven and aren’t impressed by materialism in the way previous generations have been – they won’t compromise their ideals.

Kate Sweetman talks about the fact that Gen Y ‘s values, needs and wants are very similar to those that women have traditionally upheld –

“I predict that companies that can solve the C-level gender gap will also win the Talent war for the best and the brightest in Gen Y.  What women have always wanted and what Gen Y demands are virtually the same things.”

Don Tapscott advocates listening to young people and acting on their input. He says of the Net Generation:

“they are the first ever global generation, and they are defined by these eight norms. If you are designing a company, a brand, a marketing programme, or a government, it doesn’t matter what it is, these eight norms need to be at the centre of it.”

Marcus Buckingham (in London next week – check out his June 10 event here – ReSource will be there as a media partner) noted:

“All the research that I have seen shows that Gen Y is a ‘volunteerist’ generation, and an optimistic generation, but they are clueless about what it takes to perform”

Marshall Goldmsith has some great advice:

“For young people, my advice is that the world you are growing up in is a much more competitive world than the world I grew up in. Make sure you love what you do, or you are going to be living in what I call ‘New Age Professional Hell’“.

These are just a selection from the host of valuable, great articles covering a range of topics from business leadership and personal success to spirituality and well-being – check out www.resourcemagazine.co.uk and subscribe so you don’t miss out on a truly great ReSource!


Five Tips for Living in Peace with Your Teens

teenage expression

How to be a calm, sane parent and
help your teenagers grow resilient

teenage expression

teenage expression


  1. Listen - very carefully. Difficult and scary as it may be, try to give your teens a place where they can express their thoughts and needs. Their world is different; be eager to understand and be curious about it and don’t condemn, judge or assume. If you want to make a comment, use their own words back to them – e.g. ‘So let me check I’m understanding you, what you’re saying is….’ (that’s why it’s listen very carefully…) They won’t argue with their own stuff…well, not too often anyway.
  2. Set firm but realistic boundaries – it’s better for everyone. It shows you care. Rules can be good news – it gives your teens a very valuable let-out when peer pressure is being applied. If they can assert with total confidence that something’s not allowed, it bolsters their strength to resist temptations to reckless behaviour.
  3. Give them space, respect, responsibility, and the benefit of the doubt. Then shut up. Really. Knowing when to bite your tongue is a key part of this. Once you’ve negotiated what’s acceptable, don’t be peering over their shoulders or prying. Trust their judgement. It’s like paying out a rope or casting a fishing line – do it bit by bit, and you can always renegotiate and reel in a little if your teen seems to demonstrate there’s too much slack.
  4. Accept there may be mistakes. Nobody’s perfect. If your mum (or dad) had known all you got up to as a teenager…would she/he have approved? Hmmm, thought not….So don’t blame, don’t make comparisons with friends or siblings, be supportive, let your teen know their unique value and that you do and always will love them. Even if it’s tough love – and especially if their behaviour is currently causing you concern or creating waves in the family. Make it a learning experience for both of you – try to see the gift in whatever’s happened, painful as it may seem in the moment.
  5. Know your place. Teens can tend to think they’ve discovered everything for the first time ever – and that as an adult and their parent you really know – nothing. Get over it. Give it a few years. Keep a wry smile handy in your repertoire. Remember the old quote from one of the ancient Greek Philosophers -

“When I was 18 my father was completely ignorant, but by the time I was 25,
it was amazing how much he’d learnt.”
Too True!


BONUS TIP 6:

Laugh. Find some common ground in humour, satire, irony – maybe through a TV programme or film. It may make you throw your hands up in horror, but ‘The Simpsons’ has some prize moments of sheer comic dis-functionality in which most of us can see a little something of ourselves, if we’re really honest. After all it’s been around for 20 years and now has its own stamp collection…..

happy, confident teens

happy, confident teens

But dads (and mums) be warned – telling bad ‘dad jokes‘ (and it seems that all dad jokes are bad jokes, even if they’re good…..) creates embarrassed looks, groans of ‘Ohhh Daaad’, rolling eyes and shrugged shoulders – you have to decide if you want to experience that. On the other hand, if you don’t do generic ‘dad jokes’, maybe your teen will miss out on being able to share horror stories with their mates…..And sharing the experience is part of growing up.

As parents, that’s what we’re there for – silent witness, loud supporter, soft shoulder or sharp wit – you’ll need all of that and more along the way. Is it worth it?  Completely - it’s one of life’s richest treasures.

For more resources and articles on personal growth and development, leadership,  education, creativity and change visit www.resourcemagazine.co.uk