WorkLife Book Of The Week: How To Build Your True Personal Brand Identity

Welcome to WorkLife Book Of The Week. Every week Monday through Sunday I serialise a story from the School of WorkLife book series. I do this each day in under 280 characters, which I post across my social media channels. Then at the end of each week, I bring all 7 daily posts together here as 1 weekly blog post, which I also share on my podcast: WorkLife Book Wisdom.

This week’s WorkLife Book of The Week is: How To Build Your True Personal Brand Identity

This week’s WorkLife Story of The Week is: The Outside In

A collection of short stories of how style can allow identity, personality and uniqueness shine through. 

Monday

Joan was preparing for the interview stages of a significant career change. When she was selecting the clothes she would wear for the various stages of the process she met with a personal dresser who said she has never failed in dressing a client for success at interviews. 

Tuesday

Joan’s dresser went on to say that she was fascinated by identity, by how people, organisations and communities express who they are, and that clothes played an important role in designing their brand identity. The interviews were representative of the very different work environments … 

Wednesday

… across the world, where Joan’s work would take her: from a multi-cultural and community relations perspective. She wanted to be respectful of this, while retaining her own style. Joan’s dresser was true to her word, in helping her to Dress For Success in securing the role. 

Thursday 

Lila wore a pink tutu to her interview. It matched her pink hair. She considered it her lucky colour, and it brought her luck that day, as she got the job. Lila redefined what’s appropriate and goes by her own rules. Her unique style plays an important role in telling her story. 

Friday

The costume designer for The Good Wife spoke about the importance of each actor’s wardrobe in helping them develop their character and their story. He strived to have the wardrobe underscore what each actor was doing to help tell both the overall story and their personal story. 

Saturday

It was important the wardrobe didn’t upstage or detract in any way, while at the same time it needed to get across a sense of who they were, allowing a glimpse into their personality. This is the same for people in their WorkLife today. People want to look the part and want to ..

Sunday

…. be taken seriously, but they also want to allow their identity, personality and uniqueness to shine through. There are no good or bad ways of dressing. It’s about honouring and respecting who you are, it’s about being you, and expressing yourself in a way that’s best for you

That’s a wrap on this week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: The Outside In from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Build Your True Personal Brand Identity.

If you enjoyed this collection of stories, you may also like to learn about their fuller WorkLife stories, and the exercises that helped in building their personal brand identity, in a way that allowed their personality and uniqueness shine through, along with the other stories and assignments in this week’s WorkLife Book of the Week: How To Build Your True Personal Brand Identity.

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

Come back next Sunday for next week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: Why? A Simple Yet Profound Question from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Use Your Voice To Express And Protect Your Identity

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

You can also catch each weekly story as it’s released daily. Just tap the link below to:

The School of WorkLife book series are designed to help you manage your own WorkLife Learning.

Each book tells real WorkLife stories of the successes and challenges people encountered in their WorkLife. Each book also includes the exercises that helped navigate these situations, which are presented as assignments for you to work through.

The stories I share are based on real life WorkLife situations – case studies of the challenges and successes people experienced in navigating the chapters of their WorkLife Story.

I believe stories are a powerful mechanism for teaching, a powerful medium to learn through, and also a powerful way to communicate who you are and what you stand for.

I hope you enjoy the stories and find them helpful in navigating the chapters of your WorkLife story.

To view all the books in the School of WorkLife series and to learn about my Affiliate Programme click the link below: 

WorkLife Book Of The Week: How To Live True To Who You Really Are

Welcome to WorkLife Book Of The Week. Every week Monday through Sunday I serialise a story from the School of WorkLife book series. I do this each day in under 280 characters, which I post across my social media channels. Then at the end of each week, I bring all 7 daily posts together here as 1 weekly blog post, which I also share on my podcast: WorkLife Book Wisdom.

This week’s WorkLife Book Of The Week is: How To Live True To Who You Really Are.

This week’s WorkLife Story of The Week is: A Story Of Hidden Truth.

Mary’s story of keeping who she was outside of work hidden, and how when she finally shared her real truth, she was able to throw away the mask she wore every day

Monday

Mary was ready to move on from her organisation because it no longer inspired her. It was progressive commercially, but her internal fire for this type of organisation had burnt out. She felt she was putting on the mask of Chief Financial Officer, and not living her truth.

Tuesday

To facilitate her move Mary connected with head hunters, all of whom were eager to represent her. They were, however, considering her for organisations similar to the one she wanted to move on from, rather than taking time to understand what she could bring to new industries.

Wednesday

Mary was in part responsible for this. She is private about her life outside of work: her support of English heritage and animals in a voluntary capacity; her work with a small community in remote Africa, helping develop a sustainable business strategy for the community.

Thursday 

Mary began to share her life outside of work with Alex, a head hunter she really connected with, allowing him to see her true potential and understand what was important to her. Once she began to open up, she felt compelled to open the door to her full life – her full truth .

Friday

Alex eagerly put Mary forward for roles in organisations whose values were in line with hers. He recognised this would allow her to follow her purpose and live her truth. Of course, the organisation would benefit greatly by having someone with such great potential come on board. 

Saturday

Mary interviewed, but was pipped at the post for a role in a charity that provided care for donkeys in developing countries. Although disappointed not to secure the role, the experience gave her the belief that she could transition into a sector that had more meaning for her.

Sunday

Mary’s story has a happy ending. She secured a role within English heritage. She has thrown away her mask, and her face is shining through the vibrancy she is feeling from living her truth in her WorkLife every day. You  too can have an unrelenting commitment to your truth.

That’s a wrap on this week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: A Story Of Hidden Truth from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Live True To Who You Really Are.

If you enjoyed Mary’s story, you may also like to learn about her fuller story, and the exercises that helped her in having the courage she needed, in doing what was right for her, in honouring her truth of who she was in all areas of her WorkLife, along with the other stories and assignments in this week’s WorkLife Book of the Week: How To Live True To Who You Really Are.

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

Come back next Sunday for next week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: The Outside In from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Build Your True Personal Brand Identity.

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

You can also catch each weekly story as it’s released daily. Just tap the link below to:

The School of WorkLife book series are designed to help you manage your own WorkLife Learning.

Each book tells real WorkLife stories of the successes and challenges people encountered in their WorkLife. Each book also includes the exercises that helped navigate these situations, which are presented as assignments for you to work through.

The stories I share are based on real life WorkLife situations – case studies of the challenges and successes people experienced in navigating the chapters of their WorkLife Story.

I believe stories are a powerful mechanism for teaching, a powerful medium to learn through, and also a powerful way to communicate who you are and what you stand for.

I hope you enjoy the stories and find them helpful in navigating the chapters of your WorkLife story.

To view all the books in the School of WorkLife series and to learn about my Affiliate Programme click the link below: 

WorkLife Book Of The Week: How To Drive Your Vision And Motivated Abilities

Welcome to WorkLife Book Of The Week. Every week Monday through Sunday I serialise a story from the School of WorkLife book series. I do this each day in under 280 characters, which I post across my social media channels. Then at the end of each week, I bring all 7 daily posts together here as 1 weekly blog post, which I also share on my podcast: WorkLife Book Wisdom.

This week’s WorkLife Book Of The Week is: How To Drive Your Vision And Motivated Abilities.

This week’s WorkLife Story of The Week is: Finding His Vision And Motivated Abilities At His Later Stage Of WorkLife

James’s story of creating a Consultancy WorkLife that honoured what was important to him: Intellectual stimulation, travel & giving back.

Monday

As a result of the economic crisis, James’s job was made redundant. He was at a point in his WorkLife where he wasn’t quite ready to retire, but he was ready to begin to wind his work down. He wanted to make more time for what was important to him in his life outside of work. 

Tuesday

To understand his vision and motivated abilities, James took a step back. He examined his skills, knowledge and experience, and considered how these were transferable in supporting him into a new WorkLife in line with his dreams and ambitions, interests, values, and plans.

Wednesday

Financially James was in a good place. He did however have a bucket list of things he wanted to achieve in his life, which included travelling to interesting destinations with his wife. He also wanted to give something back to society, and in some way make a difference. 

Thursday 

It was important for James to remain intellectually stimulated through his work. He enjoyed his work and his industry. He wanted to continue working, just not in the same vein as before. He wanted to retain the social aspect it provided, and he needed it to fund his bucket list.

Friday

James explored and considered ways he could design his work to achieve what he wanted. He had an extensive network with contacts throughout the world, including Russia, one of the destinations he aspired to travel to. Being sociable he began connecting with people and soon ..

Saturday 

Offers began to come through for consultancy work, including work in Russia. To facilitate his plans, James decided to take on assignments that would demand a commitment of several months at a time. Then he would take time off to fulfil something on his bucket list and give back.

Sunday

James has been able to count on his previous employer as a source of work. Bringing people back on board who have organisation and industry knowledge and expertise makes perfect sense – a win/win for everyone. James’s story is true for many who find themselves in his position.

That’s a wrap on this week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: Finding His Vision And Motivated Abilities At His Later Stage Of WorkLife , from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Drive Your Vision And Motivated Abilities.

If you enjoyed James’s story, you may also like to learn about his fuller story, and the exercises that helped him in having the clarity he needed, in doing what was right for him, in honouring his WorkLife vision and motivated abilities, along with the other stories and assignments in this week’s WorkLife Book of The Week: How To Drive Your Vision And Motivated Abilities

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

Come back next Sunday for next week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: A Story Of Hidden Truth from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Live True To Who You Really Are.

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

You can also catch each weekly story as it’s released daily. Just tap the link below to:

The School of WorkLife book series are designed to help you manage your own WorkLife Learning.

Each book tells real WorkLife stories of the successes and challenges people encountered in their WorkLife. Each book also includes the exercises that helped navigate these situations, which are presented as assignments for you to work through.

The stories I share are based on real life WorkLife situations – case studies of the challenges and successes people experienced in navigating the chapters of their WorkLife Story.

I believe stories are a powerful mechanism for teaching, a powerful medium to learn through, and also a powerful way to communicate who you are and what you stand for.

I hope you enjoy the stories and find them helpful in navigating the chapters of your WorkLife story.

To view all the books in the School of WorkLife series and to learn about my Affiliate Programme click the link below: 

WorkLife Book Of The Week: How To Use Your Purpose To Help Others

Welcome to WorkLife Book Of The Week. Every week Monday through Sunday I serialise a story from the School of WorkLife book series. I do this each day in under 280 characters, which I post across my social media channels. Then at the end of each week, I bring all 7 daily posts together here as 1 weekly blog post, which I also share on my podcast: WorkLife Book Wisdom.

This week’s WorkLife Book of The Week is: How To Use Your Purpose To Help Others.

This week’s WorkLife Story of The Week is: Discovering My WorkLife Purpose.

Carmel’s Story of how losing her job led her to a work assignment, which in turn led her to discovering her purpose at a later stage in her WorkLife. 

Monday

Carmel worked in finance for many years, and while she enjoyed it, she never really had a passion for it, and chose to work freelance. So when the bank decided to stop all contract work, and offered her a permanent position, she declined. It was the push she needed to move on.

Tuesday

While Carmel was figuring out what she wanted to do next, her friend asked her to deliver the job-search element of a programme she was teaching. Although she had no experience, her friend persuaded her that she just needed to take a common sense approach to delivering it.

Wednesday

With just two days to develop the course, then make a long journey to deliver it, Carmel barely slept. Although  anxious she did what she always did when she was out of her comfort zone: she over prepared, then she went with the flow. And it went amazingly, but …

Thursday 

While Carmel connected with the people attending. Because their spirit was low, she knew they needed to work through this before working on the practical sessions she had planned. So her plan went, but that was OK, having over prepared, she could  go where the flow took her.

Friday

Carmel got the group talking about their achievements: things forgotten about, or taken for granted, or never considered to be anything special. They all sat in awe listening to the amazing stories being shared, and through this realised how much they had to offer employers. 

Saturday

As Carmel journeyed home, she was buzzing. She somehow knew this was what she was meant to do: to help people manage, develop and transition their WorkLife in line with what was important to them. She wasn’t able to define it exactly as that in that moment, that came in time.

Sunday

There is a purpose within each of us. You may not necessarily have the full vision of your purpose, and that is OK. You just need to take one step and see where it takes you, and then the next. As you walk along your WorkLife path, you will gain clarity around your purpose.

That’s a wrap on this week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: Discovering My WorkLife Purpose, from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Use Your Purpose To Help Others.

If you enjoyed Carmel’ story, you may also like to learn about her fuller story, and the exercises that helped her in having the clarity she needed, in first understanding, then honouring her WorkLife purpose, along with the other stories and assignments in this week’s WorkLife Book of The Week: How To Use Your Purpose To Help Others.

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

Come back next Sunday for next week’s Worklife Story of The Week: Finding His Vision And Motivated Abilities from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Drive Your Vision And Motivated Abilities.

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

You can also catch each weekly story as it’s released daily. Just tap the link below to:

The School of WorkLife book series are designed to help you manage your own WorkLife Learning.

Each book tells real WorkLife stories of the successes and challenges people encountered in their WorkLife. Each book also includes the exercises that helped navigate these situations, which are presented as assignments for you to work through.

The stories I share are based on real life WorkLife situations – case studies of the challenges and successes people experienced in navigating the chapters of their WorkLife Story.

I believe stories are a powerful mechanism for teaching, a powerful medium to learn through, and also a powerful way to communicate who you are and what you stand for.

I hope you enjoy the stories and find them helpful in navigating the chapters of your WorkLife story.

To view all the books in the School of WorkLife series and to learn about my Affiliate Programme click the link below: 

WorkLife Book Of The Week: How To Make Your Values Matter

Welcome to WorkLife Book Of The Week. Every week Monday through Sunday I serialise a story from the School of WorkLife book series. I do this each day in under 280 characters, which I post across my social media channels. Then at the end of each week, I bring all 7 daily posts together here as 1 weekly blog post, which I also share on my podcast: WorkLife Book Wisdom.

This week’s WorkLife Book of The Week is: How To Make Your Values Matter.

This week’s WorkLife Story of The Week is: A WorkLife Change is Needed When Values are Out of Sync:

Ted’s story of going from Nuclear Research Engineer to Urbanisation Planner, in order to live his WorkLife with Passion, purpose and pride.

Monday

Ted worked in nuclear research. There was a lot about his work he enjoyed, except for one fundamental element: ‘nuclear energy’ went against his values.  At first he hadn’t thought about how he felt about environmental issues, but now this was a serious consideration for him. 

Tuesday 

Ted was at the point where he knew a change in his career was necessary to allow him to feel more satisfaction in his work and to have a job that he was proud of. He wanted a career that was progressive. His professional and personal development was important to him. 

Wednesday

Ted’s skills included the project work he had been involved in, the problem solving and the team working that supported the constant exchange of ideas and knowledge. He had developed strong presentation and communication skills, and was comfortable interacting at all levels.

Thursday 

Ted’s research and conversations opened up his thinking to urban planning, and although this was a new area to him, his skills, experience, interests, attributes, motivated abilities and potential were quite a good fit and extremely transferable. And it honoured his values.

Friday

To fulfil his desire to move from Europe to Australia, Ted decided that because he was moving into a new industry it was unlikely that an organisation would sponsor his work visa at the outset, so he chose to travel on a one-year visa, which allowed him to work during his stay.

Saturday

And so Ted set off on his adventure to Australia to establish himself in a new career and a different lifestyle. He has secured an interim role working within urban planning, and I have every confidence this will lead to a full-time position sponsored by the organisation.

Sunday

By staying in tune with your values, through insightful questions and self-feedback, if something goes out of sync, you will be in a position to identify what that is and take the necessary steps to do what is right for you in realigning your WorkLife true to you values.

That’s a wrap on this week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: A WorkLife Change is Needed When Values are Out of Sync, from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Make Your Values Matter.

If you enjoyed Ted’s story, you may also like to learn about his fuller story, and the exercises that helped him in having the clarity he needed, in doing what was right for him, in honouring his WorkLife values, along with the other story and assignments in this week’s Book of the Week: How To Make Your Values Matter

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

Come back next Sunday for next week’s WorkLife Story of The Week: Discovering My WorkLife Purpose from the School Of WorkLife book: How To Use Your Purpose To Help Others.

Click on the above image to see a preview of what’s inside, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these.

You can also catch each weekly story as it’s released daily on Instagram. Just tap the link below to:

The School of WorkLife book series are designed to help you manage your own WorkLife Learning.

Each book tells real WorkLife stories of the successes and challenges people encountered in their WorkLife. Each book also includes the exercises that helped navigate these situations, which are presented as assignments for you to work through.

The stories I share are based on real life WorkLife situations – case studies of the challenges and successes people experienced in navigating the chapters of their WorkLife Story.

I believe stories are a powerful mechanism for teaching, a powerful medium to learn through, and also a powerful way to communicate who you are and what you stand for.

I hope you enjoy the stories and find them helpful in navigating the chapters of your WorkLife story.

To view all the books in the School of WorkLife series and to learn about my Affiliate Programme click the link below:

BLOG UPDATE

Hello, I’m back after a short break with a short announcement.

I needed to take a short break from the WorkLife stories I write and share on my weekly Book Wisdom blog and podcast, to figure out how I will continue.

This is because of something good that has come about because of this work. And that’s, that the weekly stories I’ve written have led me to working with a publisher on a series of books called WorkLife Book Club. The first book in the series will be published in 2021. 

Tap the link below for an insight into the premise behind the idea of this book series:

To write this new book, I need to shift my time and focus to working on it, and that means shifting my time and focus away from working on the weekly WorkLife stories I write.

But the thing is, I enjoy publishing a weekly story here on my blog, and on my podcast. And this is what I’ve been mulling over, trying to figure out how I will be able to continue.

The idea that came to me is that I can still publish a weekly story, just a little different to what I have been doing. 

You see over the last year I’ve written a series of books, called the School Of WorkLife Book Series. These books are designed to help people manage their own WorkLife learning. 

And I’ve begun a WorkLife Book of The Week series. Every week Monday through Sunday I serialise a story from the School Of WorkLife Book Series. I do this each day in under 280 characters, which I post across my social media channels. 

And now we get to my idea, and that’s, that the end of each week, I’ll bring all 7 daily posts together here as 1 weekly blog post, which I also share on my podcast: WorkLife Book Wisdom.

WORKLIFE BOOK OF THE WEEK: FROM SCHOOL OF WORKLIFE

 The stories I’ve written for the School Of WorkLife Book Series, are all based on real life WorkLife situations, case studies of the successes and challenges people experienced in navigating the chapters of their WorkLife story.

The first weekly blog post will be published here on Sunday the 7th February 2021, and weekly every Sunday thereafter.

And that’s my short announcement, I’ll be back very soon with the first blog post. 

I hope you’ll enjoy this new format and find the stories I share, helpful in navigating the chapters of your WorkLife story.   

I believe stories are a powerful mechanism for teaching, a powerful medium to learn through, and also a powerful way to communicate who you are and what you stand for. 

Tap the link below to see a preview of what’s inside each book in the School Of WorkLife Series, along with the main ideas and the meaning behind these:

You can also follow me on Instagram, where you can catch the weekly stories as they’re released daily. Just tap the link below to:

WorkLife Book Of The Week

Welcome to WorkLife Book Of The Week. Every week Monday through Sunday I serialise a story from the School of WorkLife book series. – There are 27 books in the series (so far), comprising of 109 stories. These stories are based on real life WorkLife situations – case studies of the successes and challenges people experienced in navigating the chapters of their WorkLife story.

I do this each day in under 280 characters – which I post across my social media channels – Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook. Then at the end of each week, I bring all 7 posts together here as 1 blog post, which I also share on my podcast: WorkLife Book Wisdom.

I hope you enjoy the stories and find them helpful in navigating the chapters of your WorkLife story.

To view all the books in the School of WorkLife series click below: 

Coming soon: Week 1. Book of the Week: How To Make Your Values Matter from School of WorkLife: Story: A WorkLife Change is Needed when Values are Out of Sync: Ted’s story of going from Nuclear Research Engineer to Urbanisation Planner, in order to live his WorkLife with passion, purpose and pride.

What to Do When Uncertainty is a Certainty. What You Can Learn from Actors and the 3 Rs of Drama: (The Big) Reveal, Realisation and Reaction and How to Manage Your Present While Creating Your Future, by Carmel O’ Reilly

Is part of a series of stories of how people took ownership of their WorkLife to: utilise their skills beyond the scope of their industry; gain confidence in a new skills set; create opportunities outside of their main work; make connections and build relationships; generate an additional income stream; build financial security; spread risk; develop independence; and much, much more.

Words of Wisdom

If the year 2020 taught us anything, it taught us the need for independence, which comes from the ability to be self-reliant, which supports creating our own security, and ultimately our freedom.

What to Do When Uncertainty is a Certainty. What You Can Learn from Actors and the 3 Rs of Drama: (The Big) Reveal, Realisation and Reaction and How to Manage Your Present While Creating Your Future: A Case Study:

Uncertainty is a Certainty

The Big Reveal for Jonny, is that uncertainty is a certainty for actors. He learnt that one great job is no guarantee of another one, and when the job ends there’s no knowing how long it will take to land the next. 

This revelation came to Jonny early into his WorkLife, and gave him the insight into knowing he had to somehow find independence that would allow him to pursue his passion through the tough times – the times of uncertainty. 

So he developed the following criteria of what that needed to be in terms of his WorkLife:

  • Work he undertook needed to be flexible, in allowing him to take time off for auditions (some of which were very last minute), and time off for rehearsals and performances when those auditions were successful;
  • Work he undertook needed to pay the bills, and help to maintain his sanity when those auditions weren’t successful; 
  • Work he undertook needed to provide ways to help him hone his craft, by continuously learning, developing and growing as an actor.

In his search for work that met with this criteria, he came across a gig handing out fliers for a local Italian café. It looked easy, was close by, and most importantly wouldn’t interfere with the rest of his schedule. When he had a schedule, that is, of auditions, rehearsals and performances. 

He was actually quite surprised at how much he enjoyed the work. Beyond the money which helped to pay the bills, which in turn helped his sanity, it also provided ways to help him hone his craft, and to continuously learn, develop and grow as an actor. This is because it gave him the opportunity to perform in a different way: To get people to take fliers, he had to be likeable, energetic and entertaining. His personality, skills and attributes worked well with those requirements. And of course, it gave him the flexibility he needed to attend auditions, rehearsals and performances. So, his criteria was not only met, it was surpassed, because he also got free coffee and a meal at the end of his gig. 

This gig led to another slightly different piece of work. The cafe needed someone bright and bubbly to be their sampler – someone to grab the attention of passers-by and offer them a taste of the delicious coffees that awaited inside. He fitted the bill, complete with a fake Italian accent. Once again, he really enjoyed the work. Once again it fitted in with his criteria that met his wants and needs between acting jobs. Once again, he turned out to be a natural.

Then the cafe offered him a gig at their sister restaurant in another part of town. Because it didn’t meet his criteria of being close by, he suggested a fellow actor fill the gig. His personal recommendation was welcomed because of the good reputation he’d established. Once again, the actor turned out to be a natural, which is when Jonny had his Big Realisation – that creative performers like himself were well suited to this type of work.

Now although Jonny had this Big Realisation, he didn’t act on it immediately. His Big Reaction comes later in his story. This was because he had a Big Acting gig. He had successfully auditioned for a part in a West End production, and was busy rehearsing, ahead of his performance.

Then the pandemic hit, and all theatres closed, bringing his acting gig to an abrupt halt. That same halt affected any café and restaurant gigs he might have fallen back on, as they too were closed.

However, there were a few cafés and restaurants that were able to diversify quickly, and as a result were able to reopen. This was because they began to serve frontline workers with both take outs and deliveries of coffees and meals. Jonny knew it was time for his Big Reaction. These cafes and restaurants needed help in sharing and spreading the word of their new initiative, and Jonny knew he was the right man for the gig.

And it went much further than that, as Jonny began to connect the dots all across London, looking at what he could achieve for himself and his friends. He began to connect cafés and restaurants and his fellow actors, ensuring a win/win for everyone. The cafés’ and restaurants’ initiatives attracted great attention through the creative marketing that the actors brought to their work. Like Jonny they were likeable, energetic and entertaining. And the security of the work allowed the actors to keep the bills paid, and the lights on, during this time of great uncertainty. 

Jonny knew he could go even further with this initiative, because he had another Big Realisation, and that was that recruiting actors in this way was a legitimate business model. He already had the supply chain for businesses who wanted to hire, and he had the workers, or partners, as he preferred to think of them, in his fellow actors.

Needing help in managing his present, while creating his future, he reached for the:

Book Wisdom

Of Mission Possible by Ken Blanchard and Terry Waghorn. The following words from the back cover resonated with Jonny: “Managing your present organisation while you’re creating a world-class future – that’s your mission – should you and your organisation choose to accept it.” The book is written as a parable. 

Sage Wisdom

“The quickest way to increase dignity, meaning and community in a workplace is to involve people in redesigning their work. That is also the shortest route – in the long run – to lower cost, higher quality, and more satisfied customers.” Marvin Weisbord.

These words from the first chapter spoke to Jonny, as did the following thinking from Blanchard and Waghorn: “We think the only way leaders and working people can effectively enter the future is as partners. People who work must become full participants in the process of determining how their working conditions and the nature of their tasks can be improved in the short run (the present) and the long run (the future).”

In the parable, the manager says to the interviewee: “We’ve learnt over the years that most people in the world of work have more creative energy and brain power than they use on the job. If we can tap into and focus some of this discretionary energy on improving our present operation or designing our future, the payoff can be tremendous. Consequently, we say that everyone in our organisation has two jobs. One is his or her ‘day job’ – in some way helping to provide customers with high quality products and services. Second, each person has a ‘transformation job.’ In this capacity you’d be playing on one of two teams. If you join our company, we want to offer you a choice of which of these two teams you wish to join.”

“The first team we call a ‘P Team.’ The P stands for Present. A P Team has the job of revising our present organisation so that we can be more responsive to our customers today. Its focus is on improvement. The second team is an ‘F Team.’ The F stands for Future. The task of an F Team is to create the future by imagining what customers and markets will be like then. Its focus is on innovation. Both teams operate at the same time. We see the work of these two teams as being the only way we can achieve our goal of becoming a world-class organisation. You can help us do that.”

The manager then hands the interviewee a card and says: “To help you decide which team you want to play on, read over this list of questions and see what you think.”

FOCUS QUESTIONS

  • Which has more appeal for you – improving what is or creating what isn’t?
  • Do you see yourself as more of a maintenance engineer or an architect?
  • Are you more interested in doing things right or doing the right things?
  • Would you prefer to tune a carburettor or build a rocket ship?
  • Would you rather implement a direction or determine it?
  • Would you rather produce results now or design how they’ll be produced in the future?

The manager goes on to say: “If you prefer the first choice in each question, you would probably want to join a P Team, but if the second choice is more enticing, membership on an F Team might be more attractive. Both teams are vital to our organisation. You can only be on one team, though, so take some time to think it over. If you decide to join us, I’ll need your answer within a few days.”

Epilogue

This is exactly the approach Jonny took in building his team. Drawing from the wisdom, learning and knowledge he gleaned from the book, he posed these questions to his fellow actors, asking them to allow the self-feedback they received through the answers to inform them whether they wanted to join the P Team or the F Team, in their quest to manage their present and create a world-class future together, in navigating the uncertainty, that is a certainty for actors.

Today’s book of the blog is: Mission Possible by Ken Blanchard and Terry Waghorn.

Disclosure: I participate in the Amazon Associate Programme. This means if you click through and make a purchase through my referral links, I’ll be compensated. Using the links won’t cost you anything extra, and it helps to keep the blog. Thank you.

WorkLife Book Wisdom 

The intention of this blog is to inspire you through people’s stories of their WorkLife experiences. Through these stories you will learn about people’s dreams and ambitions, along with the challenges, obstacles and successes they encountered along the road of their WorkLife journey. And how they used the power of book wisdom to help them find the inspiration and guidance to navigate their path to live their WorkLife with passion, purpose and pride. 

You can learn more about Jonny’s story in How To Self Coach Direct and Lead Effectively by Carmel O’Reilly, along with the other stories featured in the book. This book is part of the:

School of WorkLife Series of Books

In each book I tell stories which are based on real WorkLife situations. I share the exercises that helped the people in the stories work through their challenging situations to resolve their dilemmas. I present these as assignments for you to work through to create your unique stories. 

Each book is available from Amazon in Kindle Format and from SendOwl in PDF Format.

Click the link below to find out more about School of WorkLife Books & Affiliate Programme:

Look to the Future with Confidence and Optimism By Taking Control of Your Own WorkLife Learning, Growth and Development Through Personal Off-Sites, and a Joie De Vivre List of Places To Go, People to Be With, and Things to Do, by Carmel O’ Reilly

On a cold snowy night at the beginning of January, Aisling boarded the Night Riviera sleeper train at Paddington, London, on her way to St. Ives in Cornwall. It was exactly one year since her original intended trip. One she had planned to go on with her closest friend Norma; but sadly and unexpectedly, Norma passed away a few weeks before their trip. Feeling unable to take the trip without her dear friend, so soon after her death, Aisling vowed to take it in her memory, and to do the things they’d planned to do by way of remembering and celebrating the joy that Norma brought to life, her own and other people’s. Norma had a joy of living, and indeed had a Joie De Vivre list of places she wanted to go to, people she wanted to be with, and things she wanted to do. Aisling also had a list, and they’d cross reference joys they both wanted to experience, then plan and scheme to make them happen.

Together with remembering and celebrating the joy that Norma brought to life, Aisling was also going to take time on her trip to think about what she wanted in her future. Her intention was to create space to think long term about what really matters in the greater scheme of things, then work backwards from that to make it happen.  She was embarking on the first of what she planned would be ongoing quarterly off-sites with herself. Time and space to work on her Go, Be, Do list, her Joie De Vivre for all areas of her WorkLife. 

Look to the Future with Confidence and Optimism by Taking Control of Your Own WorkLife Learning, Growth and Development Through Personal Off-Sites, and a Joie De Vivre List of Places to Go, People to Be With, and Things to Do. A Case Study:

Look To The Future With Confidence

Book Wisdom

Aisling had brought the book Your WorkLife Your Way: Make Your WorkLife Work For You by Carmel O’ Reilly on her trip to work through.

Having already completed Part I: Getting To Know Yourself and Part II: Your Superpowers, Aisling picked up at Part III: Setting Your Intentions, and began from where she’d left off on Chapter 10: Creating Your Shorter and Longer Term WorkLife Plan.

Words of Wisdom

“You can’t predict. You can prepare.” Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance.

Because of everything that happened over the previous year, first losing her friend Norma, then the pandemic hitting, and the impact that had to Aisling’s WorkLife and way of living, this quote at the beginning of the chapter resonated with her. And it reminded her of the:

Sage Wisdom

You live only once, but if you do it right, once is enough.” Joe Lewis

Aisling started with the Creating Your Longer Term WorkLife Assignment by beginning to think about her dreams and aspirations. She did this by asking herself: What she will be doing at the pinnacle of her WorkLife – when she’s feeling challenged, engaged and not wanting anything else. 

Her answer was that she wanted to be making a living from her writing, and she wanted to achieve this by following her dream: “To spread the power of WorkLives lived with Passion, Purpose and Pride by creating continuous WorkLife learning, development and growth programmes that are accessible to everyone, everywhere, at all times.”  As well as the books and online programmes she wrote, she also had ideas for films and TV shows she wanted to write. This is what she believed would give her the sense of feeling challenged, engaged and not wanting anything else.

To help her understand her dream, her aspirations, her bigger picture, she asked herself:

What size company do I imagine working for?

There was a time when Aisling thought she would grow her business into something big, but that had changed over time. She now knew she wanted to keep it small, to work independently, and to collaborate as needed with other independent workers or small businesses in their fields. It wasn’t that Aisling was against working with big companies, she just didn’t want to grow her own company big. And she wanted to create books and programmes that were accessible to individuals who managed their own learning, development and growth, which of course companies of all sizes could offer to the individuals that made up their workforce. The key was to keep her products – books, and services – online courses, and in time (hopefully) live-streaming films and TV shows, affordable. So that even in the hardest of times, through downturns in the economy, individuals could still afford to access them, and companies could still offer them to their individual employees, without draining their learning and development budgets, because they were still affordable.

What industry do I want to be in?

That was easy – Education.

Do I want to be in a very individual contributor type role or a management-type role?

Definitely a very individual contributor-type role. That was the role Aisling had always navigated towards. In recent years her work had demanded a more management-type role in some aspects, and Aisling really didn’t like it. It wasn’t that she couldn’t do it, or that she was bad at it, she simply didn’t enjoy it, and it would at times cause her to be slightly anxious at best, and totally stressed out at worst. However, she did enjoy collaborating with people on various aspects of her work – just as long as they self-managed their work.

Aisling then moved on to the next assignment: Create Your WorkLife Action Plan

As directed, as she went about her daily WorkLife, she continued to reflect on what all of this means through the self-feedback she gave herself. She began her outline from the key points she’d gleaned from answering these questions, then she took whatever clarity that came to her over the remaining days of her short-break, her off-site with herself to add more details to her outline. 

Aisling did this alongside remembering and celebrating the life of her dear friend Norma. She had re-booked Carbis Bay Hotel for her stay, which Norma had recommended one year earlier, because it was her favourite hotel (https://www.carbisbayhotel.co.uk). She had re-booked lunch at Porthminster Beach Cafe, another recommendation and favourite of Norma’s (https://www.porthminstercafe.co.uk), and everyday she walked along the beaches of St. Ives and explored the galleries, museums and shops of the town, discovering cafes and pubs along the way. Everything she would have done with Norma, she did in her memory, to which she raised a cup or a glass at every watering hole she stopped at, before she caught the Night Rivera sleeper train back to London (https://bit.ly/38may5j) ready to look the future with confidence and optimism, determined to continue to take control of her own WorkLife learning, development and growth. She was already planning her next quarterly personal off-site, and until then she had her Joie De Vivre List of Places To Go, People To Be With, and Things To Do, to work (and play) through.

Epilogue

To remind her of what she wanted to achieve, and how she wanted to go about achieving this, every day Aisling recited the poem:

Don’t Just

Don’t just learn, experience.

Don’t just read, absorb.

Don’t just change, transform.

Don’t just relate, advocate.

Don’t just promise, prove.

Don’t just criticise, encourage.

Don’t just think, ponder.

Don’t just take, give.

Don’t just see, feel.

Don’t just dream, do. 

Don’t just hear, listen.

Don’t just talk, act.

Don’t just tell, show.

Don’t just exist, live.

Roy T. Bennett

Today’s book of the blog is: Your WorkLife Your Way: Make Your WorkLife Work For You by Carmel O’ Reilly.

Disclosure: I participate in the Amazon Associate Programme. This means if you click through and make a purchase through my referral links, I’ll be compensated. Using the links won’t cost you anything extra, and it helps to keep the blog. Thank you.

WorkLife Book Wisdom 

The intention of this blog is to inspire you through people’s stories of their WorkLife experiences. Through these stories you will learn about people’s dreams and ambitions, along with the challenges, obstacles and successes they encountered along the road of their WorkLife journey. And how they used the power of book wisdom to help them find the inspiration and guidance to navigate their path to live their WorkLife with passion, purpose and pride. 

New Years Eve Tales: Stories of Acts of Kindness that Led to Building a Community of Caring and Connectivity & The Book Wisdom Book Club, By Carmel O’ Reilly

A New Year is almost here

A new life chapter about to begin

A time to raise a glass and cheer

Shared stories that warm our hearts within 

Stories of simple acts of kindness 

That showed people really cared

Acts that took away the loneliness 

At a time when people were feeling scared

New Year’s Eve Tales: Stories of Acts of Kindness That Led to Building a Community of Caring and Connectivity & The Book Wisdom Book Club: A Case Study

Kindness & Community

It was the lull before the New Year’s Eve celebrations would begin. Together with the rest of the team, Aisling had spent the afternoon preparing the warehouse for a night of partying and fireworks. As they sat around the table, they each raised a glass in celebration of the friendships that had come about in response to coming together to help rebuild their community, following the impact of the pandemic on people’s lives and the community businesses. They each started to share their story of how they had been connected through acts of kindness.

Aisling began by telling how an act of kindness by Lulu had connected them. Living alone in a studio flat, in a house that didn’t have a garden or outdoor space of any kind, throughout the lockdown Aisling made it a priority to visit a nearby garden at the end of each afternoon, and sit and read awhile. The garden was located in the grounds of a churchyard, and Aisling always navigated towards a bench that nestled in the shade of a grove of trees. Most days Lulu would arrive and sit on the other end of the same bench. They began to acknowledge each other, first with a nod and a smile, then a greeting, followed by a longer exchange, and onto a conversation. One day the conversation led to lockdown birthdays, when Aisling shared that she had a birthday coming up in a few days’ time. When Lulu asked what she would miss most in her lockdown birthday, Aisling shared how she had lost her closest friend, Norma, at the end of the previous year, and how she would miss seeing her arrive to spend time together, as they did on their respective birthdays. Norma would always call out to Aisling as she arrived, smiling and waving, arms full of flowers, because she knew how much Aisling loved having fresh flowers in her home. 

Aisling thought no more about the conversation, until her birthday, when sitting on her  favourite park bench she heard her name being called, and looking up she saw Lulu smiling and waving, her arms full of flowers. Aisling said she was blown away by both Lulu’s act of kindness, and the beauty of the flowers Lulu had arranged.

Lulu shared how she believed flowers had saved her life. She’d had lots of ups and downs in her life. Growing up with strict parents, she’d run away from home in her teens, she’d lived in a squat before becoming homeless and at times had slept rough. She’d neglected her health and as a result developed chronic fatigue. Her friend, Adam, offered her a room in his home to recover and convalesce. Adam worked as a cleaner at the local hospital, and everyday he’d arrive home with flowers – flowers that patients had left behind when they’d left the hospital, flowers that had a few more days of life in them.

With the little energy she had, Lulu began to arrange the flowers in her room. She did so in an amazingly beautiful way, and it soon became apparent that she had a wonderful flair with flowers. In a matter of days her room had become a sanctuary, and this is where Lulu believed flowers had saved her life. She felt that the few days of life remaining in each new daily bunch of flowers that Adam brought had, gave her more strength and as a result restored her life. She felt flowers had deep inner-healing properties. Gradually Lulu regained more strength, but her chronic fatigue never fully left her, and she had to be mindful in taking care of herself, particularly around keeping hydrated, because dehydration would bring about dizziness and cause her to feel faint.

As she went about her daily WorkLife, she would always make time for people she knew to be homeless. She had been there herself, and without knowing people’s individual stories, Lulu could relate to their circumstances. She got to know Charlie who sold the Big Issue outside her local underground station, she bought a copy from him every week. In between times, she always had a kind word for him, would buy him a sandwich or a drink, or whatever she could do to help. 

Then one day as Lulu was walking past Charlie, she collapsed. Because of Covid-19, she’d been avoiding public transport, and was walking everywhere instead. It was a sweltering hot day, and she’d become dehydrated because she hadn’t drunk enough water, causing her to feel dizzy, and then to faint. Charlie came running towards her, and before she lost consciousness she remembered him grabbing her bag, then running away. Lulu’s bag had been robbed before, and she remembered thinking, oh no, Charlie, please not my bag, it’s got my life in it. But she didn’t have the energy to talk or react. The next thing she remembered on gaining consciousness, was seeing Charlie together with a police officer and a couple of medical people who were standing over her. Charlie held out a big bottle of water to her, and then handed her back her bag. He had run to the supermarket and bought her a bottle of water. Along the way he had stopped to tell a police officer what had happened, and he had asked him to call an ambulance. He had taken her bag, because he knew she had her life in it, and was afraid someone would rob her when he left her alone. Lulu said Charlie’s quick thinking and act of kindness had helped save her, and had also restored her belief that there were really good people in the world.

Charlie shared how he had become homeless. An investment banker, he had lost his job a couple of years earlier. He had been living a life outside of his means and had incurred significant debt, partly due to his extravagant lifestyle and partly due to his addiction to gambling. He had hid all of this both at work and at home from his wife, but when his debtors caught up with him, his home, car and everything he owned was repossessed. Because he worked in banking, his employers were notified because of the credit checks they randomly carried out on all employees, and as a result he lost his job. His wife had wanted to stand by him, but he said the shame he felt had led him to a downward spiral of constant drinking, which in turn had caused him to push her away. Over time, with the help of Big Issue, Charlie was slowly beginning to rebuild his life.

Then when Covid-19 struck, Charlie was forced to leave his pitch. He was accommodated in a local hotel, which had opened its doors to both frontline workers and rough sleepers. He had access to health support, daily welfare and food deliveries. Gary, who was in charge of the food deliveries and managed all of the volunteers, asked Charlie if he could help out. Gary demonstrated to Charlie what he needed to do, which was to pack each of the lunch bags, ready for the volunteers delivering to pick up. He in effect gave Charlie responsibility and then trusted him to do it. Gary also asked Charlie to add anyone he knew who would benefit from a nutritious lunch to their list of deliveries. Charlie mentioned a few of the men who slept at the hotel, who he met every afternoon at the churchyard garden, and asked if he could bring them their lunch at the end of his shift. Gary said yes. Having been shown such kindness, and then been given the gift of trust, made Charlie feel like a human being again. It had been a long time since he felt that. It had been a long time since someone had shown trust in him.

Gary told the story of how he had become involved in the food deliveries and managing the volunteers. As owner of a local restaurant, they closed their doors at the beginning of the pandemic, but very quickly reopened them. At first the team began to prepare lunch packs for staff at the local hospital. Very quickly they came to realise that they could do a lot more. As a local business owner, Gary knew his fellow business owners, in particular the hotel owners and managers who were opening their doors to both key workers and homeless people. Gary suggested he and his team prepare and drop off lunch packs at the hotels each day, to be distributed among those staying, and that was how that got underway. He then became aware of people living in the community who were self-isolating, who would also benefit from a healthy lunch. There was more demand than he and his team could meet, so he approached fellow restaurant owners to join in and help out. They were more than happy to do so, and to meet the growing demand of deliveries, Gary began to recruit more volunteers to help pack and deliver. 

One day as Gary was driving past the churchyard gardens, he dropped Charlie off with the lunch packs for his friends. On noticing there were tennis courts within the gardens, Gary parked up and got out to walk around and explore. Tennis was a passion Gary shared with his wife, Catherine, who had passed away five years earlier. Grief-stricken Gary had thrown himself into his restaurant, leaving no time for anything but work. As Gary approached the courts a familiar voice called out to him. It was Marco, the manager at one of the hotels Gary was working with on the lunch packs distribution. Tennis being one of the initial games people were allowed to play during lockdown, Marco suggested they meet to play. Gary declined, saying he was too busy. But Marco wasn’t one to give up, so he booked a court anyway, turned up at Gary’s restaurant the next day, with rackets in hand, and wouldn’t leave until Gary went upstairs to his apartment, put on his sportswear and came with him. Marco also didn’t stop at one game. He signed them both up as doubles partners to play in the summer tournament about to begin, turning up ahead of each game to pick him up, so Gary couldn’t cancel or back out. When he lost Catherine, he had cut everything and everybody out of his life, throwing himself into his restaurant and his work, and then when the pandemic hit, and he could no longer do that, he threw himself into the lunch initiative and helping others. He also needed help, but he would never have asked for it. He knew that Marco knew that, and while he wasn’t explicit in saying he was doing this to help Gary, that was exactly what he was doing. Gary shared that Marco’s insistence and persistence, and not giving up on him, was the act of kindness he needed.

Born in Milan, Marco had moved to London seven years earlier. Having studied hotel management in Italy, after five years of working at a leading hotel chain in London, two years earlier he had become manager at the boutique hotel he was currently with in Shoreditch. He enjoyed living and working in Shoreditch, and life was good.

Then at the beginning of the pandemic, he lost both of his grandparents. They were in their eighties, and were among the thousands of Italy’s relatively older population that succumbed to the virus before people realised what was happening. Marco loved his grandparents dearly. He was saddened and shocked, he hadn’t had time to say goodbye to them, and then the Italian government introduced lockdown, which meant Marco couldn’t travel home to attend their funerals. Actually, none of his family could, not even those living close by, because funerals were banned in Italy, robbing his family of the chance to say a final goodbye. His family felt that the pandemic had killed twice, first his grandparents were isolated from those they loved before they died, then it didn’t allow anyone to get closure. 

Marco looked on with the rest of the world in shock as the number of deaths grew day on day in Italy. Nobody had thought this could happen in Europe, but of course a few weeks later, and the UK was seeing the same numbers. Feeling helpless, Marco had thrown himself into his work, then when the hotel faced closure because of the pandemic, he immediately opened it up to both frontline workers and rough sleepers. He had to keep busy, and helping other people was the only way he knew how. Throughout this time he ran every day. It was another thing that allowed him to cope, and then as soon as the government announced people could pay tennis, he went along to book a court. He wanted and needed something else, something that was interactive, that was away from work. Seeing Gary at the court, he immediately saw in him what he was experiencing himself: a loneliness, which is why he insisted and persisted and didn’t give up on him. 

It was a few months later when Marco met Giulia. When he hadn’t a tennis game, he had taken to coming and sitting in the garden alone with his thoughts. Giulia, recognising he was Italian, on greeting, sat next to him to drink her coffee, and began to chat. In her seventies, she had been isolating and was just coming out of lockdown. She had felt quite lonely, having not been able to see her children and grandchildren, even though they lived close by. She was counting the days until they could meet again. Giulia asked Marco about his family, and he opened up to her about having lost his grandparents, and the pain he had felt. Being Italian, Giulia understood more deeply than perhaps even Marco’s closest friends did. All of his friends had been really supportive, but there was something about Italians, Italian families and Italian funerals that only Italian people really understood. 

Giulia, sitting quietly just listening, gave Marco the space to talk, to really talk and to open up and to share everything he had been bottling up inside of him. And then he began to cry. He began to release the deep sadness he had been carrying around. And it felt good. As they left the garden together, Giulia asked if they could stay in touch, maybe have a coffee together some time. She said it would help with her from feeling so lonely. Marco knew this was true, and he also knew she was doing this not only for her own loneliness but for his loneliness too. Marco said Giulia’s act of kindness in giving him the space he needed to open up about his grandparents, and to release the deep sadness he had been holding inside of him, and then caring enough not to leave him alone with his loneliness was what he needed, even though he didn’t admit to needing it.

Giulia had found self-isolating hard, not being able to see her children and grandchildren was really hard. She found the days long and lonely. Although she walked every day, it was lonely, she was alone. London was a lonely place, and Shoreditch felt particularly lonely. Being in her seventies, she felt invisible. On her daily walks nobody ever acknowledged or engaged with her. She missed her family so much, she missed being around people who saw her, and who took time to talk to her. She would prolong her walks by stopping in the church garden, and sit and just people watch. Nobody ever engaged with her. Once again she felt invisible, she felt lonely, but at least it meant less time home alone. Even though people didn’t talk to her, she was among people.

Then one day as she was finishing her walk and heading towards the church garden, she came across a cafe that was selling takeout coffee. Joining the queue, the woman next to her turned and smiled and said hello. It was the first time in weeks Giulia had interacted with anyone. Giulia ordered her coffee and the woman said, “let me get that”, and she paid for it. She then introduced herself. Her name was Aisling. They chatted a little more and discovered they both lived in Shoreditch. As they walked together towards the church garden, Aisling mentioned she visited there most afternoons, but today she needed to get home to finish something she was working on. Giulia said she hoped they’d meet again for a coffee, and Aisling said she’d like that.

It was Aisling smiling and talking to Giulia that prompted Giulia to smile and talk to Marco. The simple but profound ripple effect of a smile. Giulia said Aisling’s act of kindness in first turning and smiling at her, then talking to her, and then buying her coffee, made her feel visible again; and discovering they both lived in Shoreditch made her feel a little less lonely. She said these simple acts had a really profound impact on her. 

And those were their stories of how they had been connected through acts of kindness. This connectiveness developed into friendships as they came together to build a community of caring and connectivity in a place that wasn’t known for caring and connectivity. 

Epilogue

The group had formed a book club. The reasons were two-fold:

  1. For social interaction and connectivity, coming together over a shared interest of reading;
  2. To apply learning from literature to everyday work and life

Each of them took turns to suggest a book. They still had a little time before people would arrive for the New Year’s Eve party, and so they took a few moments to discuss the:

Book Wisdom

They had taken from The Inner Game of Tennis by Timothy Gallwey, which Gary had suggested reading. 

Gary said he suggested the book because tennis had helped him rebuild his life, and that because the tennis courts were connected to the churchyard garden, which was the connection they all shared, that there seemed to him to be importance in that too. Because their connectivity had brought them together with a purpose of rebuilding the lives of people and businesses in their community

He went on to share what he believed were:

Words of Wisdom

On The Inner Game of Tennis: “It is much more than an approach to tennis: it is a whole philosophy of life.” Maurice Yaffe, Psychology Today.

Aisling said because of her work in helping people learn, develop and grow in their WorkLife, she had always been fascinated how people’s inner talk, their inner voices led to them sabotaging themselves. And that she thought Gallwey’s search for practical ways to overcome mental obstacles that prevent maximum performance was really interesting.

Charlie said he recognised the game he was playing in his own mind, against its own bad habits. He spoke about how Gary showing trust in him to get on with the work that was needed in getting the lunch packs ready had given him back confidence in himself, which he had lost. The book allowed him to recognise that his lack of confidence was an elusive opponent, and that he had other elusive opponents, such as low self-esteem. He said he was using this self-awareness together with asking himself questions from the book, for example: How good can I get? Then reflecting on that, and through self-feedback, which in effect are new voices in his head, to use this to guide him in knowing the answer. He said he was learning that he can get good at things, and for now that was good enough.

Lulu said the elusive opponents also resonated with her. She recognised hers to be nervousness, self-doubt and lapses of concentration. She knew the importance of maintaining good health and well-being, and in particular ensuring she was always hydrated, because that helped with her concentration. She spoke about how the work she’d been involved in with the community was helping her self-doubt. She had never felt she had anything to offer in her WorkLife. She didn’t consider herself to have any skills. But the demand for her flower arranging in the community workplaces and at events was disproving her self-doubt, and working with flowers was alleviating her nervousness. Her belief that flowers had deep inner healing properties was being reinforced.

Giulia said the book served to reinforce for her what she had learnt from her first interactions with Aisling and Marco, and that was she needed to let go of self-judgements. She had judged herself to be invisible because of her age, she had judged London and in particular Shoreditch to be a lonely place, but she recognised she had in fact contributed to that invisibility and loneliness because she herself hadn’t interacted with people. She said the ripple effect of a simple smile remains one of the most profound things she had taken from everything that had happened in the last year, and that the learning she had taken from the book had reinforced that. 

Marco recognised that almost every human activity involves both the outer and inner games talked about in the book. He recognised there are always external obstacles between us and our external goals, whether we are seeking to spend time with those we love, but our work demands too much of our time to allow that, or we’re struck by a pandemic that we hadn’t seen coming. And the inner obstacles are always there too: regret for not visiting his grandparents more often was causing difficulties for him from within. He recognised he had to let go of judging himself, in the knowledge that he had his grandparents for a long time and they’d shared wonderful times together. With this same knowledge he knew he would never again allow work demands to stop him from spending time with those he loved.

Aisling shared what she believed was:

Sage Wisdom

That there is a need to ask different questions to get to new places. Questions to help people see themselves in a new light, to tell their story, to help them pivot.

She suggested as a group that this is something they could take away from this book club meeting, and from the stories they had shared of how they had been connected through acts of kindness. Something they could each ponder on, and from the self-feedback that came from that, they could share their thoughts when they next met. She suggested they could do this by way of beginning to think about how they can use the discoveries they’re making about themselves, together with the wisdom they’re gaining from the books they’re reading and the stories they’re sharing, that will help them to help their community. That ripple effect that Giulia spoke about of connecting, whether that’s through a smile, a kind word, a conversation or the sharing of learning, experiences, knowledge and stories. 

Today’s book of the blog is: The Inner Game of Tennis by Timothy Gallwey

Disclosure: I participate in the Amazon Associate Programme. This means if you click through and make a purchase through my referral links, I’ll be compensated. Using the links won’t cost you anything extra, and it helps to keep the blog. Thank you.

WorkLife Book Wisdom 

The intention of this blog is to inspire you through people’s stories of their WorkLife experiences. Through these stories you will learn about people’s dreams and ambitions, along with the challenges, obstacles and successes they encountered along the road of their WorkLife journey. And how they used the power of book wisdom to help them find the inspiration and guidance to navigate their path to live their WorkLife with passion, purpose and pride. 

You can learn more about the WorkLife Book Club community member’s stories in How To Use Turning Points To Start Something Different And Better by Carmel O’Reilly, along with the other stories featured in the book. This book is part of the:

School of WorkLife Series of Books

In each book I tell stories which are based on real WorkLife situations. I share the exercises that helped the people in the stories work through their challenging situations to resolve their dilemmas. I present these as assignments for you to work through to create your unique stories. 

Each book is available from Amazon in Kindle Format and from SendOwl in PDF Format.

Click the link below to find out more about School of WorkLife Books & Affiliate Programme: