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Amazing Humans

Amazing Humans is BBC Three’s series of profiles dedicated to inspirational individuals across the globe who are making changes in their community, big and small.  From acts of kindness and generosity to defying the odds in all shapes and forms.

Click here to go to BBC Three and choose what interests you.

These are some of our personal favourites:

  • The Falkirk student bringing joy to care home residents (image above)
  • The woman who gives free sanitary products to the homeless
  • The biker who sings to people with dementia
  • The lady who creates henna crown tattoos
  • The British doctors who turn drainpipes into prosthetic limbs

The videos are just 2-3 minutes long but beware, you may want to watch them all!

KineticFuture runs fantastic resilience courses which help your team tackle their own resilience and mental game challenges. We’ve worked successfully with sales teams to CEOs.  Our approach is evidence based, 90% practice and pragmatic.  Do give us a call if you’d like to chat through your situation.

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Recommended Reading: Black Box Thinking

‘Black Box Thinking’ is an incredibly thought provoking book by bestselling author, columnist (and former Olympic table tennis player) Matthew Syed.

In an occasionally far from easy read, he looks at the secrets of high performers and how they deal with mistakes and weaknesses.

The approach in sport of looking for marginal gains and developing a supportive, learning culture can be applied to business and life in general.

Buy the book from Amazon.

Find out more in this BBC article ‘Viewpoint: Should we all be looking for marginal gains?’

And read some reviews on the book below:

“An extraordinary, inspirational book which reveals how great performers and teams are driven by an insatiable curiosity for marginal gains, together with the intellectual courage to challenge their most cherished assumptions” (Dave Brailsford, General Manager, Team Sky)

“Creative breakthroughs always begin with multiple failures. This brilliant book shows how true invention lies in the understanding and overcoming of these failures, which we must learn to embrace” (James Dyson, Designer, Inventor & Entrepreneur)

‘Black Box Thinking’ will forever change the way you think about screwing up’ (Daniel Pink, Author)

KineticFuture runs fantastic resilience courses which help your team tackle their own resilience and mental game challenges. We’ve worked successfully with sales teams to CEOs.  Our approach is evidence based, 90% practice and pragmatic.  Do give us a call if you’d like to chat through your situation.

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Just Swipe Right

This week I thought I’d share with you this inspirational, light-hearted look at milliennials – Simon Sinek’s 2 minute video with amazing animation by Jocie Juritz. It’s fun and insightful. Take a quick break and watch it here.

Simon is absolutely right – we have to:

  • Build their confidence
  • Teach them patience
  • Help them learn social skills and coping mechanisms

For more tips on how to do this, have a look at last week’s blog post ‘Millennial Magic’ or book a course with us.

If you or your team would like to learn practical approaches to ignite millennials around your purpose, do give us a ring. We develop bespoke coaching and training programmes around your own situation.

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Songs For Positivity Playlist Part 5 – Summer 2016

We recently asked you to contribute to our Summer 2016 Positivity Playlist – a list of tracks that boost resilience and positivity. Thank you so much for all the responses – it’s been very uplifting playing all your favourite tracks in the office!

We have enough songs for two playlists so look out for the next one in a week or so. In the meantime, just go to our YouTube channel and hit play all: ‘Songs for Positivity Part 5 – Summer 2016’.

There is something for everyone and you never know, you might find a new favourite song to put you in a good mood…

Here’s a playlist for you (in order of popularity on YouTube):

  • Katy Perry – Roar
  • Ellie Goulding – Burn
  • Can’t Stop the Feeling – Justin Timberlake (chosen by 3 of you!)
  • DJ Fresh ft. Rita Ora – Hot Right Now
  • They Might Be Giants – Birdhouse in Your Soul
  • Stevie Wonder – Living For the City
  • ELO – Mr Blue Sky
  • Ryan Star – Brand New Day
  • The Rolling Stones – Anybody Seen My Baby?
  • Beyond the Wizards Sleeve – Creation
  • Paul Simon – Gone At Last

Thanks again for helping; hopefully you’re feeling like the people in Justin Timberlake’s ‘Can’t Stop The Feeling’ video now!

If you’d like to find out how to create an energised organisation, collaborate better and perform at your peak, talk to us about our Energising Leaders programme.

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Help! Dealing with Stage Fright

You may not be a ‘quirky folk singer-songwriter’, dealing with nerves before an open mic performance in front of an audience of twenty (like Joe Kowan in his funny Ted talk, ‘How I beat stage fright’).

But what I took away from his talk is that facing his fear of performing in public was the best thing he could do to make it easier the next time. Starting with a light hearted song that he knew well helped too!

Presenting is a skill that you can learn. The more you do it, the easier it will get. And it’s okay to admit that you find it scary; Joe’s openness about his fear put the audience at ease.

Here are some of the tips you sent in on how you prepare before walking on stage:

  • Prepare a strong opening sentence or two to learn really well.
  • Equally, don’t forget to rehearse a strong, confident finish to end on which clearly refers back to your opening remarks, bringing the presentation full circle.
  • Visualisation – run through your presentation in your head before you go on – sportspeople do the same thing; visualising a race from start to finish so that they can make the outcome they seek ‘real’.
  • Repetition – practice is key, know your stuff back to front.
  • Glass of water – always good to keep one handy when you present.
  • Power posing – put your body into an open, confident pose for two minutes. Your cortisol level, which is a stress marker, will drop. Keep breathing. Walk around confidently if it helps.
  • Find a friendly face in the middle of the audience to come back to.

Are your leaders super presenters?

Our presentation courses are evidence based and 80% physical practice. We blend brain science, positive psychology and advanced communications skills to help leaders become exceptional communicators.  You can work with us one to one or in groups.
Call us today to find out how we can help your leaders become exceptional communicators.

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Is Anyone Listening?

Celeste Headlee is the granddaughter of a famous African-American composer, a writer, radio host and professional opera singer. And she has some great tips on how to have a better conversation in this truly captivating Ted talk, ’10 ways to have a better conversation’.

If you have ten minutes spare today it’s really worth a watch – it made us think about how we have conversations; not just in a professional setting but also with friends, family and people we have just met.

It’s incredibly relevant in the modern world where teenagers are much more likely to text friends than talk face to face, and where there are endless distractions competing for our attention.

Above all, remember to go into each conversation with your mind open and prepared to be amazed.

“Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.” (Bill Nye).

Here is a summary of our favourite tips from Celeste’s talk. She says if we could choose just one of them and master it, we will be better at this interpersonal skill – which would you like to improve on?

  • Listen – it takes effort and energy to pay attention, but if you don’t do it, you’re not in a conversation. Stephen Covey said, “Most of us don’t listen with the intent to understand, we listen with the intent to reply.” So true!
  • Don’t multi-task – be present, be in the moment, put down your iPad, turn off the TV
  • Don’t pontificate – enter every conversation assuming you have something new to learn
  • Use open-ended questions, starting with who, what, when, why and how – for a more interesting response – “How did that feel?” “What was that like?”
  • Go with the flow – let thoughts come and go; don’t insist on telling them that story you’re dying to add when it has nothing to do with what they are saying!
  • Don’t equate your experience with theirs – it is not about you; conversations are not a promotional opportunity

KineticFuture specializes in the communications aspects of leadership development. Do contact us to find out more, we promise to listen to you.

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Ruby Wax Launches Mindfulness for the Frazzled

Ruby Wax has recently launched her new book – a fun, accessible guide to what this mindfulness ‘stuff’ is all about and the neuroscience evidence behind it. I particularly like her quote:

“If we don’t advance our more human qualities then we’re doomed evolution-wise to become cyborgs, with an imprint of an ‘Apple’ where our hearts used to be.”

Buy ‘A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled’ from Amazon here.

For more help on mindfulness in moments of stress (perhaps when you are about to give an important presentation or attend a critical meeting), here’s a link to a very practical tool.  It’s incredibly simple, only takes a moment (actually just one minute), and could help you find both the composure and the energy you need to give a great presentation.

The One-Moment Meditation (OMM) app by author Martin Boroson, says:

“OMM is based on a very simple but powerful principle: you really can make a significant change in your state of mind quickly.  Just take a minute to tune in… and bring your mind back to the moment.

You can use the OMM app to reduce stress, improve focus, or boost your productivity and health.  With its one simple exercise, which just gets better over time, you’ll be able to recharge your batteries and find a bright, calm, and clear state of mind—anytime, anywhere.  You will see how taking just a brief pause to restore your attention can help you do everything better.”

On our presentation coaching courses, we blend brain science, positive psychology and advanced communications skills to help leaders become exceptional communicators.  You can work with us one to one or in groups. Contact us to find out more.

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Headline Grabbing Commons Speech

We thought we’d share with you these interesting clips we found on the BBC, comparing Shadow Foreign Secretary, Hilary Benn’s speech last week with his late father’s in 1998.

Watch the clips here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-35005135

Obviously very different views on war but a similar manner and way of presenting don’t you think?

How did you find Hilary Benn’s headline grabbing Commons speech? Do you think it was “one of the truly great speeches in parliamentary history”? Why?

We’d love to hear your views on this – thank you!

PS Did you spot Jeremy Corbyn in both videos?

You can be this good. It is absolutely possible. On our presentation coaching courses, we blend brain science, positive psychology and advanced communications skills to help leaders make this a reality.  You can work with us one to one or in groups. Contact us to find out more.

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‘Mel’s Bowels Swing Into Action’

I don’t often read autobiographies but couldn’t resist Sue Perkins’ new book ‘Spectacles’ – I love her sense of humour and was keen to find out more about her life and how she got into comedy. I’m now half way through and I’m so glad I did – I’m a sucker for an eye-catching cover and her writing style is incredibly readable and funny.

One of my favourite chapters in the book so far is when Sue meets her comic partner, Mel Giedroyc. She talks about their worst four performances at the start of their partnership, back in the 1990s; a long time before they started saying “Bake!” on our screens.

The tales are hilarious (in their awfulness at least!) This is partly due to the types of audiences they performed to and partly due to the description of what happens to Mel when they are about to go on stage and she has to deal with her nerves. Sue says,

“It is exactly at that point, on the cusp of starting a show, that Mel’s bowels swing into action.”

Not 5 minutes before, when they had time to prepare (and were near the toilets!), but at the exact point when they are being called to go on stage. Good timing!

It could be just the same when you are about to present at work – how do you deal with your nerves? Do you prepare yourself for how your anxiety will affect you? Or do you leave it until the last minute like Mel?! We have put together a ‘Manage Your Presentation Nerves’ checklist as part of our Big Checklist Series – with some essential tips on how to manage your nerves when you present – click here for the PDF.

I hope you find these tips useful. Enjoy your presenting, and maybe put Sue’s book ‘Spectacles’ on your Christmas list?! I’m personally looking forward to one of the final chapters, ‘I Am Become Cake, the Destroyer of Midriffs’! Buy the book on Amazon here.

On our presentation coaching courses, we blend brain science, positive psychology and advanced communications skills to help leaders make this a reality.  You can work with us one to one or in groups. Contact us to find out more.

 

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Songs For Positivity Playlist Part 4

I really hope you have enjoyed listening to our Positivity Playlists over the summer.  Sadly, this is our last one but we’ll leave them on our YouTube channel so that you can listen whenever you need a boost.
Just click here, sit back and enjoy.

Here are some of the comments contributors made about their favourite energising song:

“It makes me smile and dance around the room”
“Energy, great musicianship and fabulous, upbeat lyrics”
“The ultimate exercise class track, dance track or just to get the blood pumping and the face smiling!”
“It makes me look on the world kindly”
“Gets you fired up for stage every time!”
“Jolly, uplifting and groovy. As soon as I hear the intro I can’t sit still!”

And here’s the final playlist (in order of general popularity on YouTube, most played first):

1.Mark Ronson– ‘Uptown Funk’ ft. Bruno Mars
2.Maroon 5 – ‘Moves Like Jagger’
3.Jason Derulo – ‘Trumpets’
4. Billy Joel – ‘Uptown Girl’
5.Mungo Jerry – ‘In the Summertime’
6.Sergio Mendes ft. Black Eyed Peas – ‘Masque Nada’
7.Curtis Mayfield – ‘Superfly’
8.Josh Groban – ‘You Raise Me Up’
9.The Dandy Warhols – ‘Bohemian Like You’
10.Lyrics Born – ‘Don’t Change’
11.Gloria Gaynor – ‘I Will Survive’

A big thank you again to anyone who sent in songs for our positivity playlists; we really appreciate it and always love to hear from you!

If you’d like to find out how to create an energised organisation, collaborate better and perform at your peak do talk to us about our Energising Leaders programme.