1. The Present
Eckhart Tolle refers to living in the now, which means being able to see and feel what your life is in the present moment.
The present-day buzzword for this is to be mindful by practicing mindfulness.
Standing in a beautiful park, by a calming body of water, or attending your child’s school play or other family event, and actually seeing the trees, feeling the flow and energy of the water, enjoying the play or event while feeling joy instead of being lost in your thoughts (which are taking you elsewhere) is experiencing the now, the present moment, being mindful of that very moment.
Thoughts can propel you into an entirely different location even if you are not there physically. It seems odd that we do not just naturally live in the now. After all, almost everyone would agree that the present moment, the now, is all we have.
When you are able to live in the day life becomes more relaxed and enjoyable. You empower yourself by influencing what you can influence.
This becomes a powerful technique to step out of stress.
This is not to say you should never think of the future and plan to reach your goals and avoid pitfalls.
It is more about how this is done. Keep your energy where it is needed - in the day.
Examine your present-day reality and determine what is working and what is not working.
Explore what you can influence and what not.
Miscommunication can happen in any relationship, whether it’s personal or professional. And when it does, it’s important that we step back and acknowledge how we can communicatemore clearly going forward. This is a topic we discuss in our book, Your Time to Thrive, where we use science, storytelling, ancient wisdom, and practical advice, to help readers improve their health, happiness, and sense of purpose.
We asked our Thrive community to share with us the words and phrases that help them communicate more effectively and mindfully. Which of these phrases will you start using?
“Tell me more.”
“I have learned to use appreciative inquiry to gain trust and open communication in personal and professional relationships. Phrases like, ‘Tell me more…’ or ‘What are you trying to achieve and how can I help you?’ create the feeling of inclusion and partnership to facilitate a two-way communication.”
—Isabelle Bart, social entrepreneur and coach, Orange County, CA
“Help me understand.”
“I find that everything is more effective when presented as an offer. This is especially helpful when presenting an opposing view. For example, I’ll say, ‘I’d offer that it’s more important to hire based on who is the best fit for the team than on experience. The reason is….’ I’ve also found that when people are nervous to speak in meetings or presentations, this simple opening helps because offering feels better than trying to prove yourself.”
—Pam Reece, leadership and wellness consultant, New York, N.Y.
“Do you want me to simply listen?”
“To encourage empathy and clarity in my conversations, I often find myself asking, ‘Can I share something about that with you or did you just want me to listen?’ Sometimes, people just want to be heard and are not looking for feedback, so this helps to gauge if they would like another perspective or not, and leaves the person feeling heard and cared for either way.”
—Julie Demsey, hypnotherapist, coach, author, Sydney, Australia
Many people grow up pretty confused about their emotions and how they work. So, understandably, they tend to simply avoid what feels bad and hold onto what feels good.
The problem is…
Making decisions based on how you feel is a recipe for both failure and unhappiness.
On the other hand, emotionally sophisticated people have a more nuanced understanding of how emotions work. And the better you understand your emotions, the easier it is to work with them in a healthy way.
Emotional sophistication means having a deep understanding of how your emotions actually work.
If you want to cultivate a healthier understanding of your emotions, these 6 habits are a good place to start.
1. They’re Curious About Their Own Mind
If you’re stuck tossing and turning once your head hits the pillow, these tips can help.
There are few things more frustrating than getting in bed after a long, tiring day only to realize your brain isn’t ready for sleep. You know those nights: Despite how exhausted you feel, your mind is off ruminating on tomorrow’s to-do list, your uncertainties about the pandemic, or whatever other worries are real for you in that moment. While you’re in the heat of tossing and turning, sleep can feel like a hopeless reality — but fortunately, that’s rarely the case. There are plenty of in-the-moment strategies that can help us kick our worries out the door so we can get the rest we need and deserve.
We asked our Thrive community to share their go-to strategies that help them fall asleep when they’re stuck tossing and turning. Which of these tips will you turn to the next time you can’t sleep?
by Thomas Oppong
The world’s greatest thinkers problem-solvers and decision-makers rely on a set of principles, shortcuts, frameworks and smart tools to cut through complexity, difficult decisions and life-changing obstacles.
These are a few of my thinking principles. I use them to improve and upgrade my intellectual life. All of them will help you think better, and I hope they inspire your own intellectual curiosity. Each thinking model offers a different framework that you can use to look at life.
by Suzie Doscher, Executive Coach and Life Coach for Personal Development, Self-Help Author
How can companies best support their employees during these difficult and challenging covid related times?.
Working from home has added some extra issues to deal with.
Individuals benefit from support dealing with:
(Coaching is not a substitute for counseling, psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, mental health care or substance abuse treatment)
Life is a great teacher — but no one gets a complete set of rules they’ll need for a better life or career.
Somehow you’re just supposed to know that building better and meaningful relationships can do more for your health and help you live a happier life.
Albert Einstein once said, “Wisdom is not a product of schooling but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.”
There are no universal truths in life but there are fundamental skills that can help every functioning adult thrive in life. Those skills can be acquires with experience and time. Success is subjective but whatever your definition of success is, these essential skills can help you achieve it faster.
When to trust your gut and when to double-check with your rational mindAlbert Einstein has been widely quoted as saying, “The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.”
Ever been asked to say a few things about yourself? Perhaps you said you’re a good communicator, attentive to details, or a team player. The point being, we all define ourselves in a certain way.
Here’s the paradox, though; It’s not what you say that is an accurate representation of who you are, but rather what you show yourself to be. That’s how people judge you. They respond to the image you project. As such, it’s critical to focus on what you do rather than what you say.
If you want to sell yourself to the world in an authentic way, focus on these four really small things because they say a lot about you. This way, you’re guaranteed to make a lasting impression and command respect from people.
By Caroline Bologna
There's research to suggest some genres of music are better for productivity than others. As many of us continue to work from home amid the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve seen big shifts in the way we conduct business.
Without the background noise of the traditional office setting, many people have implemented music into their work days to fill the sound void and break up the monotony. Others have turned to music to help drown out the chaos of their home lives while they work.
Music can help stimulate the senses and get the creative juices flowing. A 2005 study linked listening to music while working with quicker and higher-quality results. But research has also shown that some kinds are better for different work contexts than others.
By Suzie Doscher, Executive Coach & Life Coach focusing on Personal Development,
When a company focuses solely on reaching targets and continually pushes employees to reach these goals, the side effects often result in a high turnover and burnout rate.
Ironically, this can cause the company NOT to achieve its targets in the desired timeframe. Pushing too hard in one direction results in an inevitable push back from the opposite direction. This is a law of nature that applies to the business world as well.
Stressed employees trying to reach sometimes unrealistic or unnecessary targets tend to operate at half of their capacity. They start to make mistakes and lose track of the details amid their overwhelming work schedules. They tend to suffer physically exhaustion as well. All of this hurts productivity, the very thing the company is trying to increase.
By Karen Bridbord, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist and Organizational Consultant
When I wrote about the inflection of workplace culture back in May, I was expecting the pandemic to be a distant memory by now. Remember when we all thought it was going to last three weeks? Yet today, six months into the most significant global health crisis of our lifetime, we find ourselves still grappling with uncertainty.
Instead of creating new rituals to uplift and ground us as we find ourselves, as I recommended in the beginning of the pandemic, we now must find a way to sustain ourselves. We’re collectively exhausted. This pandemic is a marathon, not a sprint, and we need to act accordingly. This includes adjusting our company values and how they’re operationalized in our organizational cultures.
by Suzie Doscher, Executive Coach and Life Coaching focusing on Personal Development, Self-Help Author: Balance - A Practical Handbook for Life's Difficult Moments
Coaching your team? Add this skill to your coaching style – being non-judgmental.
There is an abundance of articles on being a coach to your people. I enjoy reading the quality information provided by the Harvard Business Review.
The desire to increase, enhance or maintain the quality of work, and in some cases even the quality of life at work, is evident.
The article in the HBR: Most Managers Don’t Know How to Coach. But They Can Learn, offers wonderful insights on what coaching is all about and aims to achieve.
Your responsibilities include leading, motivating, inspiring and with your coaching you hope to further their growth, development and enhance their skills.
Learning how to respond to a situation rather than just reacting to it brings huge rewards. Needless to say, it is one of those behaviour changes that is easier said than done. However it can be achieved.
Responding rather than reacting means you will have taken time to consider the situation and which response and consequent outcome best suits you.
The difference between reacting and responding:
To react means you are not able to influence your emotions and you act emotionally rather than from a place of clarity.
What you can gain by stopping knee-jerk reactions is a sense of strength, achievement, power to influence, calmness, plus an increase in your self-esteem. The rewards will be felt not only in your private life, but also at work.
By Marcel Schwantes at Inc.
In 2016, the World Economic Forum released its fascinating Future of Jobs Report, where they asked chief human resources officers from global companies what they saw as the top 10 job skills required for workers to thrive by 2020.
One skill projected for success in 2020 that didn’t even crack the top 10 list in 2015 was — you guessed it — emotional intelligence.
According to many experts in the field, emotional intelligence has become an important predictor of job success for nearly two decades, even surpassing technical ability.
In one noteworthy CareerBuilder survey of more than 2,600 U.S. hiring managers and human resources professionals, it was found that “fifty-nine percent of employers would not hire someone who has a high IQ but low [emotional intelligence].”
In fact, 75 percent of survey respondents said they’re more likely to promote someone with high emotional intelligence over someone with high IQ.
Companies are placing a high value on workers with emotional intelligence for several reasons. In my own studies and observations over the years as a leadership coach, here are six that really stand out...
By Marina Khidekel, Head of Content Development at Thrive Global
We all have our own ways of getting our creative juices flowing. While some of us feel inspired after taking a walk in nature, others might get our biggest bursts of inspiration in the shower, or while sitting in total stillness.
We asked our Thrive community to share the specific rituals that spark creativity and inspire their best ideas. Which of these will you try the next time you need a creative boost?
Establish a creative morning ritual
“I start most days with a small creative ritual. Before the rest of the house wakes up, I drink my coffee, grab my art supplies and journal, and proceed to paint, collage, write, and just create something each day. For me, the key is keeping the ritual tied to a well-established habit – my morning drink — and keeping my supplies organized and visible near my kitchen table. I find that on days I take this time, I’m much happier and less stressed.”
—Jill Elliott, founder of The Color Kind, Dallas, TX
By Charlotte Wiseman, Wellbeing and Leadership Consultant & Trainer MAPPCP at Charlotte Wiseman Consultants
Recent challenges have triggered much interest in the “epidemic” of employee burnout. Articles and podcasts highlight that 76% of employees will experience burnout at some point in time, offering leaders tips to support their team’s well-being and prevent such ends. However, as is too often the case, such studies fail to address that leaders, too, have limited resources. In fact, the last study into leadership burnout indicated that 96% of leaders will experience burnout at some point in their career. In the light of the unpredictable and unprecedented months ahead, burnout in leaders is as a risk that needs to be addressed.
I have spent the last six months speaking to CEOs who have experienced a crisis of well-being, asking them for their advice for fellow leaders.
Here are their top tips:....
By Jessica Hicks, Associate Multimedia Editor at Thrive Global
Managing people is tough — but managing people as they work from home during a global pandemic, well, that’s another story. Whether you’re a first-time manager or have been leading people for years, the coronavirus crisis has likely pushed you into uncharted territory. On top of overseeing day-to-day workflow, problem-solving, and paying attention to the bottom line and deliverables, there’s another big task on your plate: helping to take care of the human capital on your team when you don’t see them every day.
“It is difficult to know what demands each individual is facing — whether it be navigating health issues, a partner that is a frontline responder, children in need of care, extended family members that are isolated,” Ashley Hardin, Ph.D., a professor of organizational behavior at Washington University in St. Louis, tells Thrive. “Many employees are balancing many roles and enacting those roles simultaneously for the first time.”
By Suzie Doscher, Executive Coach and Life Coaching focusing on Personal Development, Self-Help Author
You have a goal but are worried you will not achieve it. So many issues popping up that need dealing with, obstacles and other unexpected ‘stuff’ keeps interfering with your daily plan and / or overall daily structure. Stress kicks in, which means focusing is harder, less is achieved … sound familiar?
All of these thoughts and mind chatter do not have to result in you getting off track, or even losing sight of your goal.
The trick at this point is to take charge of your thinking and push the ‘reset’ button.
By this I mean, ‘reset’ the moment, not the direction you are heading in or goal you intend to achieve.
Resetting the moment means handling whatever is causing you stress. Stress is an emotional issue and will not vanish with the flick of a switch in your brain. Unless of course you already ...
Not every company can afford to completely halt their hiring plans, and for some industries, hiring is absolutely essential right now. Virtual recruiting and onboarding is a new way forward.
by RENATO PROFICO
The exponential growth of the coronavirus outbreak is terrifying, wreaking havoc on the health and safety of millions of people around the world. Job growth is feeling the pain too, with a growing number of American companies clamping down on their hiring, budgets, and growth plans overall. Moody’s Analytics estimates nearly 80 million jobs in the U.S. economy are at high or moderate risk right now.
Not every company can afford to completely halt their hiring plans, as certain roles may be essential to sustaining and growing the business amidst these uncertain times. And for some industries, hiring is absolutely essential right now. Amazon, for example, plans to hire an additional 100,000 warehouse and delivery workers to keep up with the surge in online orders amid the coronavirus outbreak.
For Amazon and others, virtual recruiting will be a new way forward.
Onboarding is different because it’s the first official impression of a company and typically ....
By Elizabeth Yuko, Ph.D., Bioethicist and writer
From early on — usually before we’ve even started our careers — we’re told about a magical thing called “work-life balance.” Essentially, this myth amounts to the idea that if we do everything right, we will somehow be able to achieve the elusive equilibrium of having a fulfilling and meaningful career, while keeping up an active social life, and being the ideal partner and family member. In reality, though, this perfect “balance” is nearly impossible to achieve.
That’s why at Thrive, we’re all about what our CEO and founder Arianna Huffington calls “work-life integration” — an approach focused on preserving your health and well-being and recognizing that there is no secret formula to “having it all.” In fact, the pressure we put on ourselves, and the stress that results from when we’re feeling as though we’re falling short in one or more aspects of our lives, can be a cause of burnout — precisely the thing that work-life “balance” is supposedly designed to avoid. Here are three small steps to help you aim for your own version of work-life integration: ...
By Patrick Lencioni
I’m a big believer in reminders. Samuel Johnson, the 18th-century author, once said that “people need to be reminded more than they need to be instructed.” I’ve learned this in the context of managing my own life, in the parenting of my children, and even in consulting to CEOs and other leaders. Which is why I wasn’t all that surprised when a long time client recently asked us the question, “as a CEO, I’m not sure how I should be spending my time every day.”
Here was a guy who has been using the organizational health concepts from The Advantage in his company for years, but who had lost sight of how those concepts should relate to the prioritization of his daily activities. Basically, he needed a reminder, which prompted me to write this essay.
The simplest answer to his question is this: “A CEO should spend most of his or her time doing the things that only he or she can do. Anything else can be delegated, and should be whenever possible.” There are a few responsibilities that leaders of an organization, whether they are CEOs, division presidents, school principals or pastors, cannot delegate. A large part of those responsibilities relates to what we call organizational health. They include:
By Jen Fisher, Chief Well-being Officer at Deloitte
We do a really good job protecting our things: We lock our homes. We lock our cars. We put up gates to safeguard what matters to us. But while we are great at setting physical boundaries, we’re often much worse at setting boundaries that protect our physical and emotional health.
And yet these boundaries are crucial: They give you the time and space to take care of yourself. What’s more, upholding your boundaries sets the tone of what you allow and expect from others.
There are certain boundaries in my life that I am very good about keeping. I habitually protect time and space for exercise and sleep — it’s a core part of who I am and how I live my life. For me, these are non-negotiable. And if I let those boundaries down, I know that over a period of time I’ll feel exhausted and I won’t show up as the person I want to be.
By Leo Babauta, Creator of Zen Habits. Vegan, dad, husband.
For the last dozen years, I’ve been living a (relatively) simple life. At times, the complexity of my life grows, and I renew my commitment to living simply.
Living a simple life is about paring back, so that you have space to breathe. It’s about doing more with less, because you realize that having more and doing more doesn’t lead to happiness. It’s about finding joys in the simple things, and being content with solitude, quiet, contemplation and savoring the moment.
I’ve learned some key lessons for living a simple life, and I thought I’d share a few with you. ...
By Marina Khidekel, Editorial Director at Thrive Global
From a young age, we’re conditioned to look for physical warning signs. If we feel a cold coming on or spot a rash, we schedule an appointment with a doctor to get it checked out.
But we’re not nearly as attuned to warning signs when it comes to our mental health — and that has serious consequences on our lives, new Thrive research shows.
Ninety-one percent of Americans say ignoring or not knowing their warning signs of overstress has had a negative impact on their lives, according to a new nationally representative survey of more than 2,000 people between the ages of 18 and 85. The areas that respondents said suffered most when they waited too long to address their stress are major contributors to our overall happiness and well-being: relationships with friends and family, mental health, physical health, and finances.
By Marcel Schwantes
Ever wonder if you're true leadership material? Perhaps you've been told you are, but the question is, by what standard? Thousands of leadership books are written each year, many of them with marketing agendas to rehash and repackage what has been talked about for decades.
What is true about leadership that will remain unchanged through the centuries is this: It's about people and relationships. And that requires that leaders have a natural bent for both. If you're not into either, you're not a leader.
And you can start with the proven fact that great leaders aspire to lead by serving the needs of their people. You don't need flavor-of-the-month books and expensive formal training to learn this concept.
But you do need to develop and measure yourself against the standards of great leadership (which I strongly propose to be servant leadership). Here are four top leadership characteristics I have witnessed that float to the top. Do any describe you?
Raise your self-awareness with this: