Tag: goals

Smart Devices & why I ditched my Apple Watch (kind of)

I have been mulling whether to get the Apple Watch 4, or is it series 5 already, for a few weeks. And my decision has been to not get it. I looked at what I used the watch for, and realised it is all about fitness tracking. Quite frankly, that’s why I got it in the first place. It measures my heart rate, which I hardly check whilst exercising, and it gives me my measure of calories burned.

Now, I can achieve that with a Fitbit (recently bought by Google, what a surprise), and I can achieve that with a smart ring. So instead of ditching my Apple Watch completely, I keep it for my outdoor runs and added a smart ring to my gadget list. The ring measures my steps, my heart rate and my sleep. Actually, my sleep app on my phone is as accurate as the ring, but it never harms to have too many devices measuring the same thing, does it?

My overall aim was to simplify my life, not make it more complicated. Hence, adding a ring instead of a watch, makes my life a little bit easier. Whilst I cannot really charge it overnight, as I want to track my sleep, the charge of 90 minutes two times a week can be done whilst writing a blog post or doing emails for instance.

Then, I will add a new item to my list shortly. That’s a moment pebble, a device that naturally reminds me to be more mindful during the day. Not like the Apple Watch, buzzing me, but naturally just reminds me. Without any additional noise or at moments that are inconvenient for me. No doubt I write more about it in a few weeks time.

For me, any smart devices need to add value. From a mindfulness perspective, it makes sense to disconnect devices and being able to be in the moment. Not checking your emails or alerts but be in the here and now. That’s my ambition whilst still making best use of the technology out there.

When coaching my clients, it is important for me to establish first what they want to achieve, before coming with a big toolbox and show off what all can be done. If a smart device should add value, it is about what you want to achieve. And whilst the Apple Watch is a great piece of tech, to have one just to measure my heart beat and calories, seems a bit too pricey for me, as I need to replace it every 3 years at the latest due to the battery dying.

As with anything, let’s make it work for your needs.

How you can shift your mindset to win!

As I am sitting here just watching Eliud Kipchoge breaking the 2 hour barrier for running a marathon, I am looking back at history and what mankind can achieve when they put their mind to it. It is amazing, isn’t it. When are we landing on Mars?

It is also what gets me up in the morning. The drive to help people achieve the goals they want. Coaching, advising, helping others. That’s my passion.

What is it I am doing? I advice executives and boards on their company, personal life and coach them to change teams, staff and themselves to be better and more productive. That is what I do. For Q4 I still have 3 individual or about 2 company places available. Now is the time to reach out and hatch plans for 2020. The results I have seen with clients so far are amazing. Get in touch on www.ballueder.com.

I also teach mindfulness, meditation and help companies to embrace a better way of working. It’s change management, mindset change. Just like breaking a 2 hour barrier on the marathon. That’s something I have been passionate about for many years, being able to work flexible, take breaks, and bring life and fun back to work. After all we spend most of our time there, don’t we.

This week I edited a podcast which makes me think. My former manager Andy and I had a chat about his life. He was diagnosed with a brain tumour after collapsing in the office in 2016. I remember that day very vividly, and 3 years on, two operations and a virus infection later, he speaks to me about life, and what it means to be successful. The episode goes live later in the year, yet you can just imagine how is outlook on life and death, his goals and objectives, have changed. A fascinating conversation, and I am grateful for him sharing his experience so openly.

I am grateful for being healthy, for being fit. Andy thought he was. And as we close the podcast he is saying that what he worries most about, are the others, and the changes like climate change, bring with them. I guess he is more than right. We, as humans, have managed to drive this planet against the wall. We will be spending lots of the money we made in the first place from destroying the planet, trying to rescue it. Will we survive?

I suppose we will, in one way or another. That’s the nature of our species. That’s where we continuously push boundaries. Humans are fighters. It is a mindset thing! We might be smaller in numbers, maybe living under a dome, under the sea or on another planet. Who knows. Some of us will be alive to witness it, some might not. But we will survive.

From a mindfulness perspective, the here and now is what we should experience and focus on. Only here and now can we influence our life, what we eat, what we do, how we keep fit and how we save the environment. The massive action towards our goals has to be taken now. And here.

Don’t put things off!

Take your action today. Let’s have a chat how I can help you with your mindset, your goals and objectives and how we can break your barrier!

Intrinsic Motivation

We just discussed the hedonic approach, and intrinsic vs. extrinsic motivation – what drives you on? You know, or should know, that your thoughts determine your action. And your brain determines your thoughts. What that means is, that you decide how you are motivated.

I loved the following picture which I stole from this blog (hope that’s ok).

When we grow up and cannot differentiate what motivates us (external/internal), or might be less self-aware (not having a lot of emotional intelligence/EQ), it might be all about ‘being like someone else’. I often mention the Kardashians as an example in my podcast on success. People seem to like what they do and how they set standards of what life looks like. However, they are rich, live an interesting life and might be in a complete different life cycle than yourself. Is that what you want to be, or aiming for?

You can of course aspire to what they do, however the motivation of what you want to be, who you want to be, is down to you, and should be based on your values. That for me is intrinsic motivation. Would you agree?

Hence for my coachees, it is so important to identify their values and goals. One of the first things I establish coaching with my executive and teams. Based on that we want to work on what motivates you. Particularly, working as an executive and productivity coach, I am interested in how your values align to your goals, your career, and then, how you can make things better for you, more productive essentially.

And if you haven’t heard of strengths coaching, then we should talk. Let’s have a chat and see how that can help you or your team to find some hidden potential!

Let me know if that’s something worth chatting about.

Sunday Column (207)

Here we go. Another week.
It started somewhat on Sunday night when I indulged myself in a movie. Killer Elites.

Just the kind of movie I enjoy watching. I haven’t really done that for a while. We watch movies on a regular basis but normally a compromise between what I like to watch and what my wife likes to watch. She did something else on Sunday night, so I had the TV all to myself 🙂

Anyway, I got some relaxing times with the boys last weekend too which was good as the week prior to that had been busy. Monday I started back at work with a conference about mobile marketing. This then triggered a post about the state of the industry which will be published in March. We came a long way in the last three years.

I have then been publishing those motivational quotes and put some on my own website. I am hooked on motivational quotes and videos that push you over the edge. Or at least they should. They should motivate you, show you the real tests in life and motivate you to do what you like to do. Even my wife got one as a background picture on her phone now, and I am thinking of printing a few to put them in the garage. Sad us 😉

As I mentioned on my Monday post, I am in a very lucky position. I do what I always wanted to do, enjoy what I am doing and I am passionate about it too. Probably I am closest to be the luckiest person on the planet. But I am grinding. I cannot stop. I have an inner urge and an inner need to grow. And I will.

stopsaying

Most of those videos/quotes are about the happiness and purpose of life. About doing what you enjoy most rather than following the honey trap which they call “money”. Money won’t make you happy. It helps but even if you had all the money in the world, you wouldn’t be a better, wiser or more successful person. Neither would you be happy. Don’t get me wrong, I am money motivated but not only. I can see beyond the first attraction.

I guess that is where one struggles. Watching the last episode of “Africa” by Attenborough made me think once again. Africa being the birthplace of mankind, an ever growing population and an ever growing amount of wildlife that gets extinct. The last continent with life as it existed millions of years ago and we are about to destroy it. As we have done it in other parts of the world.

We sometimes have to think of the bigger picture. Is life about a paycheck this month or about what difference I can make to save the world, someone’s life or how I can help the old lady across the road. Again, the paycheck is important. Everyone has to start somewhere. I am not a believer in God myself, despite believing in a spiritual being, but if you are, thank him for every day you got. Make sure you make the most of it and that you are a good human being. That is what it is all about. If alongside that you can found a family, be good to others, put others’ welfare above yours and make some money, make it a career even, join a few charitable organizations, then I’d call that an alright life.

noexcuse

Is it asking for too much if I want more than that? I want it all. One step at a time though. Prioritizing is important. If I won the lottery….but I haven’t, and probably I never will. Nevertheless, I want to be awesome, motivated, be coached, coaching, healthy, fit, rich, member of a few groups……wow wow wow. I don’t wanna stop. I want to reach for the stars.

And I will.
A bit at a time.

If you don’t have those (or other) goals, you are not reaching for something. At least not in my opinion. I couldn’t just get up every day, sit at a desk for 7.5 hours, go home watch TV, and do that for the rest of my life. I just couldn’t. You should aim to have three things you want to achieve each day. If that is to make someone smile, win a new piece of business (or a step towards that), or really help someone out – that is up to you.

But I enjoy what I am doing. Even I have limitations: for instance I couldn’t exercise this week due to shin pain. I have a cold. My MIL is around. I got more lie ins. The kids didn’t sleep. I didn’t sleep much at night. I had too much drink.

I am alive though. My heart is beating and telling me that I move forward. My head made huge progress on a project this week, and I had a fantastic catch up with some folk this week too. Actually if I try to put all the things where I think I made a step forward on one side of the scale, then there is no way the negative things will weigh it up at all. They just wouldn’t. And, somewhat I believe they never will.

But maybe that is for another time. Another sentimental post. Time to go back and play with the kids. It got cold outside. Our fridge broke. Our hoover broke. But that all doesn’t matter as this moment I will turn off the computer and spend time with my boys. No matter what.

Get onto your dreams. Don’t waste time.
Carpe Diem. Simple.

Best wishes,
Volker

Inspirational Thought: Motivation

Life takes on meaning when you become motivated, set goals and charge after them in an unstoppable manner. ~ Les Brown

Some people might disagree but I am always pushing for new things in life. More learning. More success. This drives me on.

This doesn’t have to be materialistic. This can be “mental” satisfaction or progress of others.

I need goals, objectives, things to work towards to in order to be motivated. Actions. Results.

And once you created this momentum you experience the upward spiral, things go better and better, faster and faster. Life is good.

Jump on the happy bandwagon, make the most of it.

Life it too short to worry about certain things.

Best wishes,
Volker

Inspirational Thought: Goals

Your goals are the road maps that guide you and show you what is possible for your life. ~ Les Brown

This is simple isn’t it?

Set your goals. Think about what you want to achieve. And those goals will be the sign-posts on the way to master your life.

In coaching we call these stepping stones. Little achievements to master life and achieve your dreams.

Carry on.

Best wishes,
Volker

Sunday Column (157)

Some weeks it seems like a chore to write this column but most nights I really enjoy just to relax, have a sip of wine and write down my thoughts.

A fantastically short week lies behind me. I was off on Monday and Tuesday to celebrate my wife’s birthday. Now all my 2011 holidays are used up 🙁

This week was another “non healthy” week: too much drink for which I blame my days off. But also the fraternity meeting on Thursday night. It was the first time in 3 years, 5 years after I recovered the “Wappen” of the Angelsachsen from the old local pub, that I joined a “Stammtisch”/meeting in London. And we had a lot of fun. It was just like meeting relatives/family that you haven’t seen for a while. A nice way to meet new faces, new comers to London and people with similar attitudes. Although I am not as much involved any more it is still fantastic to see that where ever you are, in which ever city you live, you find some people with the same roots. I would go as far and say that the bond is stronger than any other membership clubs I know about.

The main thing this week was time with the kids. Very simple. March will see me travelling quite a lot, so I enjoyed it even more to spend time with the kids in the aquarium in London on Tuesday, then the Hopfarm this weekend. They grow up so quickly and are so enjoyable despite all the hard work 🙂 Sometimes I just cannot get enough when they both try to jump on me, trying to tackle me. At least for the time being I am still the winner. But for how long?

One of the next things I need to tackle are diet, drink and sleep as well as fitness. Have you heard that before? I guess every so often I get fed up of my life style. With me now working less in the UK market I should get a break from too many lunches and with increased travel should drink less. However, I am far from gaining a sleeping or fitness routine. Sleeping gets a lot better and we had a few nights now that Rohan slept through. But Colin is very unsettled and comes to stay in our bed often. Now will that all change with the new house?

The coming week will be critical for the house buy. There are some unresolved issues we need to tackle but we are confident to make progress and push for a completion date before end of April. I don’t think it will all happen before Easter, but it could. We keep you posted.

I met a few interesting people this week. You remember that you “meet people for a reason“? Last week was one of them. I met a few people I hadn’t spoken to for a while. Some new people who I knew through other people that made an impact on me a long time ago. It is weird that those things just happen. You are thinking of someone and “bang” they are there: in your face, in your life for a reason. Then they are gone and a connection to them or they themselves will one day resurface again.

I love life.
I love living.

Have a good week,
Volker

Sunday Column (103)

It has been 10 days. 10 days since our latest addition, Rohan, came to us. And it has changed our life once again. Not only do we need a 4×4 pram, we also have another sleeping rhythm, or no sleep at all. Whilst it is not too bad for daddy, as Jen is breast feeding, I still wake up and mummy doesn’t sleep at all. The wee man is very hungry, wants milk all day and all night, so I am hopeful that he won’t look that skinny soon. However, the lack of sleep is causing strain of course.

Then we got a new gadget. A humidifier: it is nice to have more humidity in the room, use it to vaporize lavender incense, and the room seems to heat up quicker too. So all around another a nice gadget for the Ballueder family.

I have used the past couple of days to relax. But unfortunately there has been some work I needed to do, and get out of the way. Some things cannot be left alone. I also tried to get on top of my private todo list and worked on some productivity decks, some theories and tried to catch up with reading. But I got far less done than anticipated.

However, the main focus is around Rohan. Of course we don’t neglect his brother, but Rohan has the main priority. Every time I look at him, I must think of the movie “Benjamin Button”. Not only is Rohan a lot skinnier than his brother was, he also looks very old. Like an old man. When I look into his eyes I wonder how many years he has been here. Maybe just a Buddhist dream to think where his mind might have come from? He looks experienced. Knowledgable. As if he has lived many lives before. That cannot be as the body is new but I wonder where he is coming from. And where he is going to, of course.

But he also gives daddy a new challenge: time. I have been saying once RW is here, I go back to the gym, work less hours and help my wife. At least at the beginning. Will I keep it? Maybe not. I need to find a place and time to work on myself, both physically but also mentally. But I also want to find the time to spend with the boys. This is often before I go to work with Colin, but with Rohan it will be easier at the beginning to see him at night. Once he gets older, there is the greater challenge.

Hence my plan is to integrate my gym sessions into my working hours. I could have done that previously but never really thought I find the time or the space. But with new staff and another reason to stay fit, I think it is time to do that now. It will also increase productivity. So that is on my agenda.

I also would like to use the commute more effectively in terms or reading, brain storming and working on my self development goals.

These are the first 2 steps of some more serious long-term goals. Easy steps, baby steps and stepping stoned. Exercise and breaks at work and more productivity on the commute.

Whilst of course this isn’t all triggered by the newest addition, RW give me another great motivation to get going.

I am back at work this week Wednesday, so the quiet times are over.

Love and Kindness,
Volker

Turn your dreams into reality

If there is a dream, there is reality!

But let’s start at the beginning: Coaching is based on 3 supports.

1) Beliefs – challenge your limiting beliefs and reinforce supportive/positive ones!
2) Values – know your values and live them.
3) Goals – what do you want to achieve and how do you want to achieve it?

People say that goals are dreams with legs – they go somewhere. Or, you can put it differently, if you are dreaming to achieve something, then you can support this dream with actions and turn this dream into a reality, a goal. This goal becomes achievable when you are putting your efforts and beliefs behind it.

Coaching is based around goals. We all start in the here and now and have a reality check of our current life. What is our present state and what do we like or dislike about our current life. This could be the job, the love life, the amount of exercise we do etc. Check for the wheel of life to identify what you might want to change.

From there you define your goals and the desired state. This state is now your aim, your goal, something you need to put your mind to. As we say in NLP, now imagine you are already at your desired state and look back to your present state, how did you get there?

That might sound complicated, but if you want to cross a river, you can either think of building a bridge or you can imagine that you already crossed the river and look at the problem from the other side. You might discover a new way across, something you cannot see from your current perspective.

bridge

NLP uses that technique quite a lot. Put yourself in the corner of the room and watch yourself having this conversation or interview and evaluate yourself whilst doing so. Also, you can then watch the reaction of your opposite conversation partner and act / amend your conversation accordingly. This enables you to build stronger rapport and more effective conversations, communications and connections.

In regards to goal setting, always set positive goals. Move towards a positive goal rather than away from something negative. You don’t want to loose weight, as you focus on the weight. Focus on the healthy aspect and formulate your goal “I want to be fit and healthy”.

Also, be specific about your goals. That means it has to be measurable and reward yourself by achieving part of the goal. stepping stones are important. These stepping stones will provide you with the right feedback and you can see whether you are on track for your big goal.

And, whilst pursuing any dream, any goal, any stepping stone, think of the 3 coaching supports. Be true to your beliefs and values. Be cautious what some actions might mean to you and your environment. What costs are involved, what time etc.

By making an action plan and making sure that you have a can-do approach, you eventually will achieve your goals. If you need help defining them or setting stepping stones to reach your goals and turn your dreams into reality, please give Coach Volker a call.