August 21, 2010

The power of group

I am involved with organizing a conference for November.
The experience is reminding me about the power of group energy.  We are a team of people working to make it happen.  Everyone brings something different to the group.  Most folks I didn't know very well or even at all before this project.  We haven't put a lot of constraints in place around who is on the team; if you are passionate, committed to the project and have something to contribute, we welcome you.
It is amazing to see the energy we are generating so far.  It is a great reminder for me of the power of group, and also the power of something organic.  Magic is possible if you don't try to control everything, and instead allow something to develop naturally.

The conference is on Open Government, and we will be continuing to post information here about it as it unfolds.

August 11, 2010

One simple way to be more productive

My mood impacts my effectiveness.  I would prefer to be one of those stalwart, and possibly completely fictional, characters who soldier on at high capacity regardless of emotional state of mind.  However, instead I occasionally wallow in despair, frustration, sadness or fear, and my productivity and effectiveness suffer too.
Most of the time, I feel compelled to be as productive as possible.  So I have come up with some techniques to shift my mood and fast. Here's my favourite one to share with you.  It's simple.
Get thankful.
Spending a few moments feeling thankful is a great way to boost your mood.  Make time every day to get in touch with what you are thankful for. It doesn't take very long and like exercising a muscle, it gets easier the more you do it.  It's about noon as I write this and I can easily rattle off several things I am thankful for so far today:  my orchid blooming right now, living in a beautiful part of the world, being a Canadian, free wifi, the friendly barista who made my great cup of coffee, the opportunity to spend time with bright people who are up to something with their lives....you get the picture.  By the end of the day, my list will be long and rich with the special things that I am thankful for.
The impact on my state is an immediate connection to what matters and why I love being alive.  How can I possibly be anxious, fearful, sad, upset, or angry in the face of that? And it's something I don't need anyone or anything else to make happen.
The next time you notice your mood is low, try this.  See what it brings you.  

August 5, 2010

How to repair a relationship in one simple step

Are there people in your life who you care about and you don't talk to anymore?
Maybe words were said, or something hurtful happened, or a commitment wasn't kept.  Or you didn't call when you were going to, and as months or years went by it seemed more and more difficult to get in touch.  At some point, you become embarrassed because so much time has passed.  You don't know how you would start a conversation.
Have you ever thought about what it would take to repair the relationship?  Consider for a moment that it could be repaired with one simple action on your part.
It can begin with one phone call.  Or even a letter, if a call seems too hard.  You could apologize for your part in the conflict, if there was one.  Or apologize for being out of touch. You can let them know that they are important to you.  That you miss having them in your life.
It is possible that taking an action such as this would make no difference.  If that is the case, you are no further ahead or behind in that relationship than you are right now.  And you would know that you have taken an action to resolve something that was important to you.
Who could you get in touch with who matters to you?  Will you give them a call? I would love to hear how it goes for you.