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The shifts we'll have to make

2014-06-09 13:51

Here’s another really helpful book for you to think about! Especially if you are at a bit of a crossroads right now.

I think this is really important.

It’s called ‘The Shift: the future of work is already here’, by Professor Lynda Gratton. It’s all about how work is going to be different over the next few decades and how we can use the knowledge of these trends to SHIFT into a working life that suits us.

She identifies five forces that will shape our futures

  • Technology– powerful technology is getting cheaper and more accessible; we will become more connected and the ‘wise crowd’ will develop further; there will be far more opportunities for ‘micro-entrepreneurs’
  • Globalisation– we have a 24/7, always on world; China, India, South America will emerge strongly as markets; urbanisation will increase
  • Demography and longevity– the Baby Boomers will soon be retired whilst Generation Y, the first to grow up with established computing; longevity will increase whilst work opportunities will change; global migration for jobs and education will increase
  • Society– family patterns will continue to change; people will think more deeply about what they really want; happiness may decline since increases in consumption beyond a certain point do not improve happiness; leisure time may increase and we will want positive ways to use it.
  • Natural resources– as energy prices increase, so transport may have to decrease; there may be more environmental catastrophes and people will have to migrate; sustainability will be an increasing necessity.

Lynda then provides a series of stories about possible futures based on this analysis – the first she refers to as ‘the dark side of the future’ and it is chilling – particularly the thought of ‘fragmentation’ of our time, when because we are ‘always on’ we never relax deeply  and do not engage fully with our lives.  However, she then goes on to imagine how we might ‘craft’ a better future, based on reflection on these five forces.

So what can we do ?

Lynda describes three fundamental shiftsin our thinking, leading to the right changes that we will have to make.

  • From ‘shallow generalist’ to ‘serial master’; it will no longer be useful to know a little about everything – we will need ‘deep mastery’ and competences. We might have more than one career over a lifetime, where we ‘slide or morph’ into related areas.
  • From ‘isolated competitor’ to ‘innovative connector’; building a group of people around you, based on trust, reciprocity and expertise. This will probably be mostly virtual, but we will also need a ‘regenerative community’ or real people where you can have deep relationships that sustain you.
  • From ‘voracious consumer’ to ‘impassioned producer’; we cannot continue to produce and consume more and more – we will need work that is creative and meaningful and is not based solely on the money we make.

You can buy the book here and see more on her website , where you can sign up for regular updates and resources.

So can you take some time to consider these issues and think, how do I want my work and life to be in five, ten, fifteen years?

You can contact me on the number at the top of the page or go to my Facebook page. I’d love to hear what you come up with.

Are you Anxiety Aware?

2014-05-12 09:21

That is, do you struggle with anxiety yourself, or know someone who does? Most of us will be troubled by anxiety at one time or another. It's often unpleasant and can be debilitating. 

So this week The Mental Health Foundation is campaigning to raise awareness of anxiety - what it is, how to deal with and how to live with it. Go here for lots of help and advice. 

There are clear links with wellbeing here so I think it's a good time to remind you of a few things you can do to increase your level of well being. That is - Connect, Learn, Give, Exercise and Notice. 

What can you do this week in each of those areas? Could you

  • speak to a neighbour that you don't usually have much to do with
  • start reading an interesting book about a topic new to you
  • send flowers to a friend
  • go for a walk every day
  • just sit for a few minutes and notice the beauty of the world around you?

Remember - there's pretty much always something you can do to make a difference, however small. 

I'm off to get started on particle physics now.....

Each Next Thing

2014-04-23 18:48

You may recall that I am recovering from surgery and undergoing some treatment at present so I'm not currently doing any face to face work. You can still access all my online programmes in their self coach versions, and I will respond to email and social media contact. 

But I am still very much here personally, and thinking about you all, and so I would like to keep sharing useful things with you, some from my own current personal journey. 

This little phrase ' Each Next Thing' keeps popping into my mind. To quote the film 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind', I thought to myself, This must mean something!

I'm usually very busy, fully occupied and always Doing Useful Things - a great many Useful Things in fact. At the moment I just can't, and I have slowed down and accepted this. And I find this to be a blessing all of its own. I notice things more, now that I am not whizzing past at the speed of light. It's like getting out of your great big fast car and ambling along by the roadside instead - or even better, riding your bike and getting fit as well, as my cyclist husband would say. 

Nevertheless there still seem to be many Things To Do. How to manage them all? Well, it seems simple, even perhaps trivial, yet I have found that if I just think, where am I now and what is the Next Thing, and just do that, then there is a sort of peace, which I fully intend to keep with me when I am able to be busy again. 

So I go, Ah! I am awake! Right. Have a cup of tea. Get showered and dressed. Do my prayers and mindfulness. Go and get breakfast. See to the laundry. Think what we'll have for dinner. See if I need to contact anyone. Practice my recorder scales and that really hard arrangement of Bach's Second Violin Partita.....Each of these things is done slowly and with presence. If I don't know what Each Next Thing is, I just sit there and 'be' until I do know. Sometimes there not being a next thing IS actually the next thing and so I sit some more. 

Each Next Thing.

What's your Next Thing, in this moment? 

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