Life of a Family Man

After 10 years of regular columns, I am now back to more regular personal updates and personal development advice. I work as a trusted advisor, executive coach, and business consultant; this includes mindfulness trainings. I also host a podcast on success, wrote a book on success...oh and I have written a book on productivity too. Feel free to follow the links on the left-hand side, or reach out to me directly!

Train your Brain 6/9 and 7/9

Making your own luck Alder talks about Serendipity – a word I had to look up to be honest. It is about noticing the unnoticeable. About having experience in different fields and ambiguity to find a new way of doing things. Question anything unusual. And, come up with the great idea on how to make life more worthwhile or earn millions of pounds. Whatever might be your goal? Getting into a creative state of mind Without wanting to rush, chapter 6 was only a few pages but great examples! Now, back to creativity. Change your self-belief and stimulate your mind. You need to relax, to might want to bounce ideas off other people’s thought/ideas, you like to talk about a problem, draw or write it down…. – do a self-appraisal and find out when you did what and why you were creative. You might have to change your current situation or routine to get into the state of mind you really want. Alder offers help on “changing a belief”. Identify the disempowering belief Decide on an empowering replacement belief Choose three supportive behaviours Mentally rehearse your new behaviours Alder then offers more help on changing beliefs, behaviour, relaxation and refers

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There are only 9 chapters not 21

Feel a little stupid. I summarize the chapters of Alders book and realise there are only 9 chapters. His programme is over 21 days at the end of the book, ergo you really would need to buy it to get the most of it. However, the chapter summaries and techniques and thoughts are here. Anyone buys me that T-Shirt?! cb consulting – enhancing performance from within

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Train your brain 5/9

I hope I do not bore the audience but Alder has really valid points in his book. Whilst some think it is nothing new and more of a guru talk I really think that Alder has a nice guideline into everyday life with things that really work. The next chapter is about: Turning Stress into Success The first headline is that people perform better under stress up to a level they cannot cope. This of course is a different level for each individual. So, how do we turn pressure into peak performance? And, please do not confuse pressure and stress, as pressure is something you definitely want to get rid of. I remember a good friend saying “my stress is all positive stress” – sure, if you start re-framing it (NLP technique), surely it can work as a motivator rather than limiting you. Who does not know those days in the office where you really need to get things done? You create pressure on yourself, artificial stress, and just work your things off to go home at 5. Human flight and fight response I suppose. Harry Alder has a great graph on the level of pressure in his book. I

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Train your brain 3/9 and 4/9

We moving quickly: Two-Sided Thinking In this chapter it is all about the left brain (convergent thinking) and right brain (divergent thinking). Convergent looking for a single solution, divergent opens up possibilities. There is vertical and lateral thinking. Is the latter one “out of the box” thinking? de Bono wrote an interesting book about lateral thinking. This chapter I found quite poor, touching on thinking processes, feelings and thinking spectrum. Nothing new that we have two sides of the brain that work differently and can be used for different purposes. Supposedly the right side is less used and one can train brain activity for creativity. When I studied I had my desk, wall and room cluttered with so many different coloured things, sparking my brain with new inputs all the time. That worked really well for me. I tried finding a picture but did not. A shame….(maybe better ,-)) Live Changing Lessons In Creativity This chapter talks about intuition and that you take a break in order to re-cap things and think them over again. It suggest after GIGO (garbage in – garbage out) to really get involved in different things. Extend your hobbies, interests and develop a richer lifestyle.

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Train your brain 2/9

World Changing Creativity In this chapter it is all about taking your mind off things to come up with the answer to a question that you already know in your unconscious. Musicians, actors, entrepreneurs, scientists and so on have experienced it. Everyone of us has experienced it. But there does not seem to be a how and why? What I would be interested in is how do you spark your creativity? How do you think outside the box? Einstein who “sat on light beam”. On my homepage I have Alan Alda’s quote: Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative is the place where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. You can’t get there by bus, only by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you’re doing. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover will be yourself. Going into the wilderness of intuition and on the other hand Alder says take your mind off. Going for a walk, sleeping on the sofa, doing something different. Was it not proven that people who go outside for a cigarette

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C.G. Jung

What a dream – this book by C.G. Jung “Memories, Dreams, Reflections”! When I bought it weeks ago it was a very slow reading but now. Just through almost half of the book when Jung says “This dream represented my situation at the time (pg. 224). … This dream brought with it a sense of finality. I saw that here the goal had been revealed. One could not go beyond the centre. The centre is the goal, and everything is directed towards that centre. Through this dream I understood that the self is the principle and archetype of orientation and meaning. Therein lies its healing function. For me, this insight signified an approach to the centre and therefore to the goal. Out of it emerged a first inkling of my personal myth….” Wow. Is Jung saying that the truth of oneself is laying inside us. Similar to what Buddhism says? It was the time when he drew a lot of mandalas. When he was trying to find himself. As far as I am aware it was before he studied life in India and different religions but the mandalas suggest otherwise. Does it matter. The truth, the inner truth, is revealed

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Train your brain 1/9

Now I found the ultimate book by Dr. Harry Alder in my shelf for this blog: Train your brain: The ultimate 21 day mental skills programme for peak performance The synopsis reads as: Scientific breakthroughs in neurobiological research have identified how extraordinary feats of creativity can be achieved, and how we can all reach this inspired state. This is a discussion of what it means to operate in a state of “flow”, or peak performance, when anything and everything seems possible. Alder shows readers how to identify, achieve and “capture” this heightened state, so that they can experience peak performance at will and take the hit-and-miss element out of personal achievement. The chapters cover: the mind-body experience; right and left brain thinking; achieving a creative state of mind; developing and trusting intuition and insights; creating creativity; turning pressure into peak performance; and creative problem solving. There are also simple practical exercises and examples of what may be achieved when a person is in a state of “flow”. I am flabbergasted. This book needs to be a guideline for the next 21 days – or as often as I can. Let me aim to get this book’s ideas across by the

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Happiness

Sitting at home tonight I was thinking what would be my ideal life? How many of you have thought about that? I did what I usually do, I looked up Wikipedia and found this. Also, Google Image Search gave me the picture to the left. Did you notice that if you look for happiness (literally) then you do find “Sehnsucht” – a feeling that is described by longing for something. Drugs were used to create the same feeling -advertisement for alcohol and cigarettes were playing with those feelings. Are we all longing for happiness? Also I found the World Database of Happiness, describing happiness as: Happiness is defined as ‘the degree to which an individual judges the overall quality of her/his life as-a-whole favorably’. In other words: how much s/he likes the life he leads. I did not know that so many people talk about happiness and find definitions of it. How do I define happiness, how do you define happiness? What about “We are happy when for everything inside us there is a corresponding something outside us“, William Butler Yeats. When all outside forces have an inside force and the system is in a neutral situation. Something that reminds

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Hellinger

Hello Everyone! It has been a week. Mainly because I was away with work in Germany and met interesting people again. I will be away most of following weeks, so apologies for any delay in publishing things. I still wanted to make a note on Hellinger. Why? First of all I had a family constellation with Hellinger’s therapy back in 2000; and in 2001 I wrote an essay about it. It showed me why I did certain things and acted in certain ways, being influenced not only by my parents but also by my “Urfamilie” which means the family since the start of existence of the family. I found a strong link to my dead grand-father who died 6 years before I was born. Is that coincidence, can that be real? Hellinger states that people could get neurosis by either identification and moving towards a dead person in the family or by moving towards a living person which then is not available, e.g. an ill mother in hospital that cannot be visited. Both situations can lead to a feeling of being neglected. Hellinger uses Transactional Analysis (TA) and visualisation of constellations to change the group situation. In a “live group

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Another Sunday

Sad but only on Sundays I find time to post at the moment. This week was very hectic and stressful and the next few weeks I am going to be away. I am thinking a lot about the book from Hillmann about the idea that, as Plato already said in the Antique, all humans have an inner voice, the soul, spirit, guardian angel – the information of our life are already incorporated. No matter what we do we become what we are meant to be. Similar to a seed of a tree which has all the information of that tree inside the seed. Here are the original back cover notes of Hillmann’s book: Synopsis A Jungian analyst explores the fundamental question of human existence and identity, discussing such topics as fate, character, motivation, intuition, vision, impulse, and calling. From the Back Cover Plato and the Greeks called it ‘daimon‘, the Romans ‘genius’, the Christians ‘Guardian Angel’ – and today we use terms such as ‘heart’, ‘spirit’ and ‘soul’. For James Hillman it is the central and guiding force of his utterly unique and compelling ‘acorn theory’ which proposes that each life is formed by a particular image, an image that

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