What about your strengths?

In my life, I have been chosen because I was cheap. Because I was young. Because they would get a grant for taking me on. Because I spoke 4 languages. Because of my skills. Because I had done the job before.

And because I know how to manipulate interviews.

I was never hired because of my creativity, love of learning, social intelligence, or sense of perspective.

And yet, these particular strengths I possess are key to figuring out how to get the most from me. I firmly believe that when I am in an environment where I get to use these strengths daily, the output and results will be strongest.

Still today, most job advertisements simply list duties, skills, and general traits. CVs reflect this and are a listing of duties, skills, and general traits.

As if that was enough to discover personality, individual strengths, values, and passions.

In 2017, a field study by CIPD UK (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) checked ‘what difference strengths-based performance conversations can make in the UK public sector.’

The report concluded that ‘that a one-off half-day training workshop for line managers has an impact on employee performance; and an impact on employee learning and development seems to require a more extensive, holistic intervention that includes further training, communication, and practical guidance and a change in policy on performance management.’

Source: https://www.cipd.ie/news-resources/reports/strengths-based-performance

Imagine making your strengths part of your job pitch. Sharing them on your documents, profiles, and in conversations.

Imagine making this an integral part of the recruitment process.

Imagine making it part of the review process.

Imagine doing a job you like working from your strengths.

Imagine a workforce that combines their individual strengths in your department, company, or organisation?

What difference would this make to you?

For more info or a chat with Patrick Email patrick@theintentionalacademy.ie or WhatsApp 00 353 (0)83 3008963

I got this blog from a chat in a bar during a United-Liverpool game!

In our ‘free’ time many of us use screens to watch sports, gawk at reality TV, or flick through 1000’s social media posts.

And when we do so, we often worry and/or get angry.

Worry that our favourite will get voted off the island. Worry our team will not make the Top 4. Worry about how the droughts in other countries we see on Twitter and Facebook will affect us here.

Anger when the ‘wrong’ person gets booted out. Anger at the referee, manager, and players for making the ‘wrong’ decisions. Anger about the feeling of helplessness we get from what we see on social media.

I was sitting in a bar on Monday night. Most people in the bar were fixated on the Manchester United v Liverpool game. I was one of the only ones not creaking my neck toward one of the many TV screens. It was hard though to ignore the ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ and ‘ah for F%^k sake ref’ and ‘jaysis he’s useless’ shouts. There was worry, anger, excitement, trepidations, stress, and abusive language. It was very distracting. A few groups of tourists had one drink and left, no doubt seeking quieter environs.

‘Are you also not from here?’. The man, in his early 30’s, sitting to my right asked me suddenly. I noticed his meticulously groomed beard and his distinct eastern coast American accent. ‘Well, I’m from Brussels yet I’m living here a long time.’, I replied enthusiastically. I was hankering for a nice chat.

He said he asked the question as he observed I wasn’t watching the game. I explained I prefer to attend games and experience them rather than watch them on a screen and that I mostly don’t care who wins anyway. It’s all about the live experience. He thought about it for a second and said: ‘It’s a bit like food’. I probably frowned in a querying way, so he immediately added: ‘You can see it being made on a screen, you can taste it, or you can make it yourself and taste it. They are 3 different things. Like watching a game on a screen, watching a game live, or playing the game yourself.’

Wise words.

Think about it if you like. How much of your life is spent on screens? How much is spent observing others and trying to belong? And how much of it is spent experiencing things you truly love in the present moment?

Cooking that meal from scratch at home. Finding a passion and immersing yourself in it. Going for that walk on the beach even though it is raining. Going to the salsa dancing class just because you feel like it. Sitting on a bench in a park just for the sake of sitting there and letting the world go by. Even for just 15 minutes. Playing hopscotch with your children in the playground.

How would doing these fun activities as often as you can impact your quality of life?

How would knowing that you can do this at short notice affect how you react to stressful situations in life?

How do you feel about experiencing more in life? Living in the present more often? Having a life rather than always just making a living?

Being in the moment and having fun stimulates creativity. Creativity leads to mastery.

Spending time experiencing life creates energy and leads to higher productivity at work or in business.

Living your real life leads to more happy moments and has a positive effect on the quality of your relationships.

Do you feel like having more pleasant experiences in life? More fun? Increased creativity?

Higher productivity? Better relationships?

In the ‘Having A Life While Making A Living’ program I guide people through the 4 pillars and 8 areas of their life from finance, to work/business, to fun and family time, and so much more.

Together we team up to create a life in balance that will allow you to experience more and worry less.

For more info email patrick@theintentionalacademy.ie or WhatsApp (00 353) 083 3008963.

1 short sentence and then…

I just sat there. I could not move. My mind had just been blanked out. I had just read 1 sentence that had struck me so deep it perplexed me into non-movement and non-thought.

It happened sometime last year.

The sentence?

‘You are Life realising itself’.

I just had to sit with that. It resonated. What made it so valid for me? What made this one simple sentence ruffle my feathers that much? I was stunned into deep reflection.

Questions. All kinds of questions popped into my being!

Eventually, I came around to isolating one. It just appeared to me as I sat in silence.

What if life is just something to play at? Not to be taken seriously, just to be played at. And that this play is all there needs to be.

What if life is not reaching towards some goal, instead life itself is the goal. And so, life is without real purpose other than to play at it. And it is meant to be without purpose. It is not evolving towards some ultimate destination or raison d’être; in this very moment, here and now, life is always ultimate.  

And only the person who masters the playful nature of this lack of purpose can make valid plans for the future knowing these plans are entirely fluid and adaptable.

As I sat there contemplating all this, I saw a sign appear. No, not a spiritual one this time. The sign appeared from memory. The one I saw a few years ago on a trip to LA in the Universal Studio theme park.

‘We don’t stop playing because we get old. We get old because we stop playing.’

I decided to try and start playing at most things. Instead of goals, I created clear intentions of how I wanted to play at life, work, business, relationships, family, and exercise. Everything.

And I discovered that you could ‘Have A Life While Making A Living’ this way. That you can remove a lot of worries, stresses, and anxieties by simply not taking life so seriously but instead having fun doing what you intend to.

Looks like life, work, business, and relationships; like music and dance and sport; are best done in a flowing movement of fun and passion. Who knew?

Do you feel like playing more often? Do you want more fun and intention in your life? Do you want to ‘Have A Life While Making A Living’?

#JustAsk on WhatsApp 083-3008963 or email patrick@theintentionalacademy.ie and we’ll set up a chat to get you playing!

“Not all those who wander are lost.” – J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring.

Patrick xxx