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September 2015




What is your Motivation to Create?

"The power of imagination created the illusion that my vision went much farther than the naked eye could actually see.”

… Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) South African Statesman

This month, I will continue our journey to establish some foundational values based on the four questions I posed in the last e-zine:

  1. Ontological FoundationsWhat is at the heart of how you want to experience life?
  2. What is most important to you about what you want to create in life?
  3. What is central to how you want to approach life given an uncertain future?
  4. What is the basis of how you want to relate to others?

In the last e-zine we looked at the question, "what is at the heart of how I want to experience life?" My response to that was "Gratitude". What did you come up with?

This month we will explore the question, "What is most important to you about what you want to create in life?"

The context for this question relates to our attitude about what we seek to create in the world. It could be about things such as a lot of money, a career of some sort, the quality of important relationships or our own way of being. However the question does not relate to what we create but the motivation behind what we create.

My instinct in responding to this question relates to concepts such as success or a sense of achievement. Having said that, I suspect that answer stems more from what I hold my answer should be based on social norms rather than what is actually a motivation for me.

I have never seen myself as a high achiever. Indeed when I look at people who are high achievers I often see people who are somewhat obsessive and have quite a narrow focus. It seems like many of them are driven to achieve for more basic reasons often associated with their sense of self. That was not for me. I am not a 'win at all costs' type of guy.

As I explored this question more, the answer that came to me was "balance". I wanted to be successful at what I sought to create in the world but I wanted it to be a broad sense of success. I wanted to achieve good things in my work, my play, my finances, my relationships and in my sense of myself. However, I did not want to sacrifice certain aspects of my life to focus almost exclusively on another. I have seen too many suffer when they have spent time doing stuff that was not really related to what they said was important to them. This was not for me, so my answer to the question, "What is most important to you about what you want to create in life?" is "Balance".

How about you? What is important to you in what you seek to achieve in life? Is it a feeling of success or achievement? Does it relate to a level of excellence? Do you want to make a difference with others?

As with the first question, there is no right or wrong answer, just your answer. Indeed it is the process that you go through to come to your answer that is most important for it is how you start to give meaning to your answer and therein lays the key.

Next month, I will focus on the question, "What is central to how you want to approach life given an uncertain future?"

We invite you to explore more in the articles section of our web site.


Mind Health Matters

Some thoughts from Jacqui Chaplin

“Drive slow and enjoy the scenery -- drive fast and join the scenery.”

... Doug Horton

Chivvied For Speed

When was the last time you were chivvied for speed?

What does it mean to be chivvied for speed?

To be chivvied is to be urged, pestered, harassed, badgered, hassled, pressured or pushed.

In today’s ‘blink and you’ll miss it’ world of social media and memes, advertising bombardments and snappy sound bites are we distracting ourselves into a technological corner of terror and angst? Our hands hold the device we once thought of as a brilliant little time-saver as we crane our necks and pinch the screen to enlarge the image, the text, that next message or wacky piece of hilarity so we can see it more easily. Those of the smaller thumbs type with two digit delight, while the rest of us tap away, one stodgy finger at a time. And time is the operative word. That supposedly time saving device can sap our motivation, redirect our attention and whittle away our minutes and hours, metaphorically and sometimes literally, doing nothing at all. And then we wonder why we are chivvied for speed…

Apply brakes here.

When the smoke settles from your Dukes of Hazzard application of your power assisted stopping device, take a moment to consider how you feel when chivvied. If you are anything like me the words of an old flame come to mind, “ease to five”. In naval speak that means to slow right down and just crawl along in a cruisy kind of way. Chivvying can lead to increased anxiety, dys-stress and sometimes a complete dummy spitting shut down.

This is when mindfulness matters.

Attending to the present moment. Tuning into what matters to you in the here and now. Sometimes it might be stopping to take three deep breaths or counting to ten. Developing your own personal ways to slow things down before you feel forced into a screaming burn out is important. It might be taking regular breaks. Or it could involve taking a short walk when the tension starts to build in your shoulders. You might choose to monitor your thoughts and see whether they are more positive or more negative. If they’re leaning in a direction you don’t like what can you do to have things be different?

Mindfulness is a key to resilient living. Simple strategies to start with can take you a long way. Remember that resilience is like a muscle. You have to attend to it, use it, and strengthen it to get the benefits you might seek. It makes me think about the Buddhist monks in high Nepalese mountain passes dedicating their lives to mindfulness. Imagine what their resilience levels might be like… How are yours?  Mindfulness is just one of the many research based strategies for strengthening your resilience muscle! It’s amazing what a little attention every day can make.

Double Header Book Launch of the Century

If you've been reading the back end of these newsletters or have been on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram this year you'll have heard the news! I’ve written a book (or two) and European Publishing House Mill House publishers & Whyte Tracks aPs have picked up the international distribution rights for both books.

This is your chance to get yourself on the invite-only exclusive guest list to attend the Double Header Book Launch of the Century on Saturday 7 November 2015 from 1-3 pm at the coolest hotspot in South Melbourne.

If you can't make the Launch but want to know how to purchase the books on their release, add your details HERE.

I'll be travelling the country like the Leyland Brothers talking about the lived experience of mood disorders and how to build resilience! Hook up any way you prefer to keep yourself informed of the latest news... drop me an email to find out how. Or follow the news at my website or sign up to Talking About's  monthly, complimentary  e-zine.

But right now... don't do anything else until you've clicked here to reserve your personal invitation to be at the Double Header Book Launch of the Century. 

You never know who you'll see there!

'But I Feel Good' Radio Show

Radio ShowRemember to tune in to ‘But I Feel Good’ ...talking pink elephants and black dogs at its new home broadcasting across Melbourne at 94.1fm 3WBC, on your fav smart phone app or streaming live at www.3wbc.org.au every Monday 12-1pmAET or listen on demand at www.jacquichaplin.com/bifgondemand

‘But I Feel Good’ will still be heard via syndication in central Victoria on 94.9 MAINfm Mondays 1-2pmAET.

I’d love to hear your ideas for mind health topics you’d like to hear about and any mind health resources you’ve found helpful. Email me at butifeelgood@jacquichaplin.com

If you’d like me to speak about mind health matters and resilience at your conference or to your organisation please contact me at jacqui@jacquichaplin.com or +61 (0)412 741 531

We invite you to read Jacqui's blog here

More on Mind Health Matters next month!

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”

... Winston Churchill (1874-1965) English Prime Minister

The Monthly Diversion

This one came my way via a Facebook post

One day a father of a very wealthy family took his son on a trip to the country with the firm purpose of showing his son how poor people live. They spent a couple of days and nights on the farm of what would be considered a very poor family.

On their return from their trip, the father asked his son,

"How was the trip?"

"It was great, Dad."

"Did you see how poor people live?" the father asked.

"Oh yeah!" said the son.

"So what did you learn from the trip?" asked the father.

The son answered, "I saw that we have one dog and they had four. We have a pool that reaches to the middle of our garden and they have a creek that has no end. We have imported lanterns in our garden and they have the stars at night. Our patio reaches to the front yard and they have the whole horizon. We have a small piece of land to live on and they have fields that go beyond our sight. We have servants who serve us, but they serve others. We buy our food, but they grow theirs. We have walls around our property to protect us, they have friends to protect them."

With this the boy's father was speechless. Then his son added, "Thanks, dad, for showing me how poor we are."

Too many times we forget what we have and concentrate on what we don't have. What is one's person's worthless object is another's prize possession. It is all based on one's perspective.

Makes you wonder what would happen if we all gave thanks for all the bounty we have instead of worrying about wanting more. Take joy and appreciate every single thing you have, especially your friends.

"Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony."

… Thomas Merton (1915-1968) US Author

Join Us Online

LinkedInDo you want to explore some of these ideas in more depth? Then, we invite you to join our LinkedIn Group and share any insights you may have. As others have done, we also invite to offer your own thoughts and conversations if they relate to the ontological approach. You can find us on LinkedIn by clicking here.

Want to Read More?

Since the formation of Talking About in 2005, we have published our e-zine every month. Before that, Chris wrote regular newsletters and e-zines with Gaia Consulting Group dating back to 1995. If you would like to explore more of Chris' ideas then you can access our e-zine archive and view any newsletter written since 2005 by clicking here or to look at all the articles Chris has written over the years simply click here.

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