Below The Line https://www.belowtheline.ie Wed, 24 Jun 2020 14:43:16 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.4.2 As If I Needed Reminding: What 12 weeks of “Pressing Pause” on Friday Afternoons Has Taught Me… https://www.belowtheline.ie/as-if-i-needed-reminding-what-12-weeks-of-pressing-pause-on-friday-afternoons-has-taught-me Wed, 24 Jun 2020 14:43:12 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1662 For the past 12 weeks since the introduction of the lockdown in Ireland, we in Below the Line have been hosting a regular Friday “Virtual Press Pause Session” for our clients, colleagues and friends as an opportunity for them to dial in and dial down from the frantic pace of work and home life and…

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For the past 12 weeks since the introduction of the lockdown in Ireland, we in Below the Line have been hosting a regular Friday “Virtual Press Pause Session” for our clients, colleagues and friends as an opportunity for them to dial in and dial down from the frantic pace of work and home life and give them some space to reflect, review and recharge. We keep it deliberately simple – set up a zoom call, send an invite and when we’ve all dialled in, start a conversation that will go wherever it is meant to go but what has emerged from these calls – people, many of whom are strangers to each other sharing their personal experiences, excavating their own stories, and articulating where they currently find themselves in the middle of this health crisis has been nothing short of amazing, inspiring and energising. Reflecting on this I am reminded that while on the one hand it is incredible, on the other it isn’t all that surprising. As human beings, we’re wired for this type of interaction, conversation and discussion, it feeds our soul to do it and gives us energy which helps us on our way through the days and weeks that seem to be stretching into one long blur right now. Among some of the key insights I have taken from this process over the past 2 months are that:

  • If you create the right conditions people will go into and speak from their heart space and they will go there quicker and more easily than you think.
  • It will become a ritual that they will want to be part of and to which they will return on a regular basis.
  • They will use it as a resource from which they take all sorts of other sources of support, energy and inspiration including recommendations on books, podcasts, and practices, etc.
  • They will use the experience to shape how they show up and lead in lots of others areas of their lives and business

We’re not machines, we’re human beings and everything we do is driven and led by “e-motions” i.e. energy in motion and we need to recognise this more than ever. Right now, when the lines between work and home life have never been more fluid and where the natural rhythms of our days have been up-ended, not creating some space to connect with these “below the line” emotions and experiences does not serve us well.

Acknowledging and honouring where we are at as human beings is really important and in my opinion it’s from this source that the answers and solutions to how we pivot ourselves out of the predicament we find ourselves in lie and I feel humbled, privileged and extremely lucky to have been getting a potent and inspiring dose of this every week for the past two months. I thank my colleagues in Below the Line and every single person who has been a part of these sessions for helping to make them so special, helpful and supportive. You’re all amazing!

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Creating a new routine https://www.belowtheline.ie/creating-a-new-routine Thu, 26 Mar 2020 16:23:18 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1411 The post Creating a new routine appeared first on Below The Line.

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Transitioning to working from home can be a challenge for some. The trick to settling into it is creating a new routine that works for you. Creating a daily routine is a mix of figuring out what you need to get done, and when it needs to be done.

Creating a schedule for your daily tasks and activities that you’re able to stick to will help you to develop good habits and not fall into unproductive, mindless habits.

When creating a new routine, including all the elements that make up your day, including meals, exercise, social time, hobbies, make a list of everything that you need to get done daily for both work and home. This is not a to-do list but more of a brain dump to get everything out of your head.

 

Structure

Structure your day in a way that works for you. If you are an early bird or a night owl, build a structure that will work for you. If you are an early bird, you’re most effective before lunchtime, and you are a night owl you are more creative in the evening.

Before working from home, mornings have been about getting ready and getting out the door. Start your morning with tasks that set your day up for success; whether it’s feeding and walking the pets, exercising, meditation or cleaning up the kitchen.

Use Midday for tasks that don’t require a lot of concentration; answering emails, setting up appointments or running errands. Ensure you have a healthy nutritious lunch and try to get some fresh air.

Evenings can be used for planning for the next day. Set out your work tasks for the next day. Cook your dinner, clean the house. Choose one room every day and give it clean it for 15 minutes.

Your new structure doesn’t have to be rigid. There will be days where you need to go to get groceries or your family need more attention. Use your most productive times for your most important work outputs. Your least productive times can be more fluid.

Test your new routine and make sure it is a good fit for you. Try it out for a week, see how it feels, and if you need to change it, then do. Make adjustments as you go until finding a routine that works well for you.

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How to go about starting your day the healthy way https://www.belowtheline.ie/how-to-go-about-starting-your-day-the-healthy-way Fri, 06 Mar 2020 17:57:24 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1303 The post How to go about starting your day the healthy way appeared first on Below The Line.

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Having a morning routine is a really important way to wake up and greet your new day. It can automatically reduce stress, as it eliminates that morning “rush”, which inevitably leads to a ‘grab and go breakfast’ and sends out a chaotic signal into your energetic field, almost like your chasing a wild horse for the day, yet you never catch the horse!

Having a morning ritual gives you structure, creates a sense of self-care and self-nourishment, and brings calmness and balance into your life.

The energy you wake up in, the emotions you feel, and the mental thoughts you meet the day with, have great power and potential to dictate how your day will run. You either attack your day with vengeance and anger or you greet your day with openness and gratitude.

Creating a peaceful morning ritual aids in creating a peaceful day, which in turn results in a more peaceful life.

 

Below are some useful tips, tools & ideas that you can try to begin to incorporate into your own morning routine.

I have divided them into 3 main sections;

Physical wellness,

Emotional wellness

Mental wellness

 

Try out new rituals and routines, experiment, use your body as a lab and find out what feels good for YOU. We are all unique

and different and beautifully designed that way. Listen to YOUR body and honour its needs.

 

Rituals & routines for Physical Wellness

Begin by setting your alarm 20 – 30 mins earlier than what you normally would. After a few days of rising a little earlier, your body will adapt, and you will no longer feel alien to this “godforsaken new, crazy time”! You will begin to wake with ease naturally.

– Lemon Water:

Upon rising drink a pint-size glass of warm water with lemon. Let this be the first thing that enters your body on rising, and avoid if possible, eating anything for 30 mins after. This kick starts your system for the day. It flushes out toxins that may have been sitting in the GI tract overnight; it aids the digestive process and stimulates the liver to start its detoxifying work. It’s great for the bowels and also fantastic for your skin.

– Movement:

Moving your body is a super way to wake up your system and shake off any tiredness, tension or stress that may be residing in your body. Find something that works best for you. Walking, running, yoga, swimming, attending a gym class or cycling.

Generating movement in the morning releases endorphins and helps boosts your happy hormones, clearing the head from overwhelming noise, and creating focus and clarity for the day ahead.

– Healthy Breakfast

Beginning your day with a breakfast that SUITS you. If of course, breakfast does suit you. The myth that you HAVE to eat breakfast is like telling someone they have to go to bed at 9 pm. We are all different; our bodies are unique, our GIT tracts react differently accordingly. Listen to your body and eat when you are hungry. Honour your bodies needs by tuning into it and listening to its signals. There is wisdom and information in every sensation and signal that our body sends us.

Choose foods that are right for you, not what’s has been recommended by a strict diet plan, or what you may have seen on somebody’s Instagram page – find what suits your body. Experiment with different foods, smoothies and juices and see how your body reacts. Add in superfoods, more green veggies, more fruits. Keep adding in the good stuff, and eventually, this will crowd out the cravings for the processed foods. Giving yourself that extra few minutes in the morning enables you to make that smoothie, to prepare your lunch or simply just allow yourself to sit and enjoy your food. Be mindful and present as you eat, and savour the ritual that breakfast is. You’re breaking the fast from the night before. Enjoy it. Try playing some nice music or lighting a candle. Make your morning an enjoyable precious experience.

 

Rituals & routines for Emotional Wellness

– Meditation, silence or Prayer

Meditation helps to burn away the ego’s frantic voice of fear.

When we meditate, we emit different brain waves. We receive information at a much deeper level than we do during normal waking consciousness. When we build it into our daily lives, we emanate vibes. Although invisible, they carry energy.

When we tune into our higher self during meditation, we begin to emit authentic vibes. We begin to reconnect back to our self, to our essence.

When we give ourselves the time and space to stop, be still and listen, we can start to hear all the noise we create in our minds.

It helps us become aware of our thoughts, and enables us to choose which ones we give more energy to wisely. Energy flows where our thoughts go.

As a result, we can begin to see our world differently. It becomes a kinder, more accepting place where we choose to see love instead of anger and peace instead of war.

– Breathing:

Breathwork or pranayama can reduce stress and anxiety, calm the nervous system, create focus and clarity, and recharge your system (mind and body) for the day ahead.

All you need is a pair of healthy lungs, your breath and 10 minutes or less.

 

Sit in an upright position, spine long and straight and begin to Inhale to count of 4, hold…. pause…. then exhale for the count of 4, hold…. pause…. And repeat.

Doing this gentle breathing exercise helps to activate the Parasympathetic nervous system, which triggers the body to rest and digest, calming and grounding the body for the day ahead. The beauty of breathing is that it can be done anywhere and anytime. The car, the shower, the office desk.

Stop, breathe and reconnect.

– Gratitude;

Keeping a gratitude journal is possibly one of the most powerful and immensely rewarding things you can do.

Gratitude is a beautifully empowering force that we can use to expand our happiness, create loving relationships, and even improve our health.

Jot down 3 things each morning you are grateful for. Think about them in your mind and then feel those blessing in your heart.

It is in the fullness of heart that shifts us from limitation and fear of expansion and love. The deeper our appreciation, the more we feel love in our lives. By cultivating a morning ritual of being grateful, we send out a vibration of love into our world, which can allow our life to flow in harmony with the creative power of the universe.

Rituals & routines for Mental Wellbeing

– Morning Pages

The secret to a productive day is a very simple practice. Every morning, take a pen and three blank pages and write down whatever you feel needs to be released. This practice is called “Morning Pages,” which acts as a mind dump to get rid of clutter from the brain. It’s simply a conscious stream of writing from mind to pen, and pen to paper.

There is no wrong way to do Morning Pages. They simply are about anything and everything that crosses your mind, and they are for your eyes only. Do not over-think Morning Pages, just put three pages of anything on the page, and then do three more pages the next day, and so on.

This ritual helps to reduce the feelings of being overwhelmed or panicked. They provoke, clarify, comfort, cajole, prioritise and synchronise the day at hand.

It sets you up for a calmer, clearer and more productive day.

– Visualisation

The daily practice of visualising your dreams as already complete has huge power to rapidly accelerate your achievement of those dreams, goals and ambitions.

On waking – take a few brief moments to visualise how you want your day to go. Visualise how you look, how you walk, how you feel. Visualise yourself smiling, laughing or singing. By visualising what you want, and focusing on what you have as opposed to what you don’t have – you will greatly dictate how your day will run. By developing a morning ritual of visualising a healthy and happy image, you will begin to create a happy and healthy life.

– Self-talk:

What is the story you tell yourself? What are the first thoughts that cross your mind in the morning?

“Oh, no, not the alarm?” “I wish I had 10 more minutes in bed.”

“Oh, crap, it’s raining!”

“Oh, no the traffic is going to be crazy today, it’s a total disaster, I’m going to be so late!”

Sound familiar?

 

The stories we tell ourselves, the thoughts we think and the pictures we create in our minds are the biggest dictators of the life we lead.

You create your own reality by the thoughts you think and the words you say. Choose your words carefully. Consciously say something nice to yourself or a loved one first thing in the morning. Remember, energy flows where your thoughts go.

Changing your story will change your day. Changing your days will change your life.

Each morning brings about a new day. A day in which you have never ever lived before. Each and every day has infinite possibilities and opportunities. Miracles are waiting to be unfolded if we just allow ourselves to see the beauty and the wonder both in ourselves and all around us.

Creating a morning ritual brings you into the present moment, the present day, which is all we ever have.

This “present” day is the greatest gift of all.

Embrace it …. the healthy way.

 

Love, light and blessings,

Miriam 💕

 

Written b Miriam Kerins, Integrated Health and Wellness coach, Pharmacist and Yoga teacher

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Using emotional intelligence to be a high-performance leader https://www.belowtheline.ie/using-emotional-intelligence-to-be-a-high-performance-leader Fri, 07 Feb 2020 14:02:34 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1111 The post Using emotional intelligence to be a high-performance leader appeared first on Below The Line.

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Emotional intelligence, EQ is a soft skill that employees need to possess to thrive in a team or workplace.  But what exactly is EQ and how does it impact your role as a leader?

Emotional intelligence refers to how you perceive, understand and manage feelings and emotions. And it breaks down in five core components; self-awareness, self-regulation, intrinsic motivation, empathy and social skills.

 

EQ as a Leader

Whether you manage a small team or a whole organisation, as a leader you use emotional intelligence every day. You may not see your team every day, but you are their example of EQ. Leaders need to be aware of how their communication style and behaviours can impact those around them and how it sets the tone for team members to communicate and behave with each other.

 

Leading meetings

While leading a meeting, you need to be constantly reading the body language and facial cues of the room. As the leader you will need to maintain focus of everyone in the room or controlling more assertive employees in the meeting. You need to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to be heard and contribute, particularly the introverted attendees.

 

Attending the meeting

It is not just the leader’s job to ensure that everyone is heard. As an attendee you will also need to tap into your EQ. You may notice a shy employee who has been highly engaged throughout the entire meeting but hasn’t spoken yet. You may find a soft way of introducing that person into the conversation. You might just ask “what do you think?”. And it may be the invitation that the employee needs.

 

Performance review or feedback

People with high emotional intelligence understand what they are good at and what they need help with. They also understand and welcome feedback and criticism and they don’t focus on the negative. They look at it as a learning opportunity and they use it to better themselves.

 

The Below the Line High Performance Leadership is an open programme for up to 10 participants from a variety of backgrounds and sectors that offers a unique experience to engage in an action learning process with contributors from the world of business, high performance sport and adventure.

The High-Performance Leadership Programme will introduce you to thinking from the worlds of business, elite sport and adventure that will help you to tap into your own resources and strengthen your ability to lead yourself and those around you.

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Continuous Improvement can improve your team’s culture https://www.belowtheline.ie/continuous-improvement-team-culture Thu, 30 Jan 2020 14:51:17 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1104 The post Continuous Improvement can improve your team’s culture appeared first on Below The Line.

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When it comes to your team’s performance, how often are you putting out the same fires?

How often do the same problems occur?

 

Often we are so busy putting out fires, that we forget to look at how to improve our processes, performance and team dynamics. There is so much going on day to day in organisations that it can be exhausting for managers and team members alike. Going through the motions means the team is performing adequately to get by.

High-performance teams, however, are committed to continuous improvement. Continuous improvement defines how they approach performance management, learning and innovation. They’re looking at how to be more productive every day in every task so that they are getting better at what they do and require less effort to do it.

 

Continuous improvement can improve team culture

Have you ever felt that every week at work blends into the next? An endless cycle of the same thing. Continuous improvement breathes new life into work and brings relief to the monotony of simple tasks.

As you strive for improvement, things change. You might work smarter; you might invest in more sophisticated tools or software which allows you and your team to develop new skills. And this can motivate team members who want to progress and broaden their career prospects.

Teams that are focused on improvement have a culture where people can speak up, share ideas and feel supported. As team members share ideas and see them being implemented; it will boost confidence and morale. And more ideas will come, more improvements will come. As ideas flow in, engagement, enthusiasm and more will improve. And now your team is performing at its peak.

 

 

The Below the Line High Performance Leadership is an open programme for up to 10 participants from a variety of backgrounds and sectors that offers a unique experience to engage in an action learning process with contributors from the world of business, high performance sport and adventure.

The High Performance Leadership Programme will introduce you to thinking from the worlds of business, elite sport and adventure that will help you to tap into your own resources and strengthen your ability to lead yourself and those around you.

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High-performance communication skills https://www.belowtheline.ie/high-performance-communication-skills Fri, 24 Jan 2020 15:31:01 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1095 The post High-performance communication skills appeared first on Below The Line.

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Communication and teamwork are two of the most important soft skills an employee can have. Soft skills like communication and teamwork are necessary for maximising team performance and a more effective working relationship. Improving your communication skills can greatly improve your team’s performance.

The way communicate is complex. Miscommunication arises from these complexities. Tone, language, body language, word choice, and silence can impact how communication is interpreted. Communication becomes an issue for team performance when subtle forms of communication are misinterpreted, which can lead to conflict or stress.

High performance team focus on open, authentic and clear communication. Clarity and conciseness is key. As with all skills, improving your communication skills can boost both productivity and employee wellbeing.

 

Communication skills

Develop your communication skills

This includes active listening, self-awareness of communication style and acknowledgement of personal barriers (including inherent attitudes, values and beliefs).

 

Learn to ask questions

The more questions you ask, the more information your brain has to draw from, mitigating chances of miscommunication. Asking questions is also a good way to not only clarify information but also to practice active listening.

 

Check your understanding

Use your questioning skills to ‘check in’ with others’ before making assumptions about their behaviour. This is particularly important where virtual communication is used as the non-verbal cues are limited.

 

Create engaging conversations

When team members need to partake in the discussion, rather being told to do something, the team members will be enabled to refine and retain information.

 

Practice self-reflection

Understanding not only your own communication style but also other’s communication styles will minimise miscommunication. Take time to particularly understand your non-verbal reactive cues and how they might be interpreted by others.

 

Developing a high-performance team takes work, and the best way to start crafting the best team you can is to get them engaged with one another. Check out our High-Performance Leadership Programme to ignite your team momentum.

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Building a high-performance culture https://www.belowtheline.ie/building-a-high-performance-culture Thu, 16 Jan 2020 17:51:21 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1087 The post Building a high-performance culture appeared first on Below The Line.

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Creating high-performance teams is a challenge. High performing teams don’t just happen; it takes a lot of hard work, trust and culture for a high-performance team to emerge.

 

A high-performance culture is a set of behaviours and norms that lead to an organisation achieving superior results. Company culture is how and why things get done in an organisation. There is a link between organisational culture and high performance, innovation and growth.

You are looking at the team’s natural energy and creativity, its overall behavioural dynamics, and how that adds to task performance and decision making. If you have a team with a negative culture, it will impact the social health of the team. Measuring the social health and team dynamics will identify how to improve the culture and create a better working environment for the whole team.

 

To make cultural tangible and real, we use analytics to find critical behaviours that must adapt to deliver on your key projects, strategies and goals. Every organisation is different, but there are eight performance dynamics that every business unit, department and organisation share.

 

We regularly see examples of organisations, business units and teams that are not fully maximising the talents, skills and abilities of their people. It’s so common that many of our clients are at a point where they’re willing to accept that this is the way things are.

 

Using the Growth PitStop methodology allows people in teams to engage in a process known as ‘cognitive reframing’. It enables them to begin challenging that idea at both a personal and team level. It also has a way of analysing the potential savings to be realised by cutting unnecessary internal meetings and other forms of collaboration waste.

 

Developing a high-performance team takes work, and the best way to start crafting the best team you can is to get them engaged with one another. Check out our High-Performance Leadership Programme to ignite your team momentum.

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How to be a better leader in 2020 https://www.belowtheline.ie/how-to-be-a-better-leader-in-2020 Thu, 09 Jan 2020 20:01:05 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1081 The post How to be a better leader in 2020 appeared first on Below The Line.

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Have you taken some time to reflect on 2019 and look at how you can level up in 2020? As leaders, we’re constantly balancing many responsibilities, and it can be easy for us to become overwhelmed or burned out. And it can be harder and harder to get the motivation back and maintain stable performance.

We see it time and time again with our clients.

 

So here are our top ways to improve your leadership skills in 2020

Physical Health

It’s so easy to make excuses when it comes to your physical health. There wasn’t enough time to get lunch, to exercise, to get a break or to meditate. When you neglect your physical health, you are compounding the problem, your energy levels and overall health suffer. And this can impact how you feel mentally too.
Create a daily routine that incorporates some exercise, healthy eating, breaks and meditation and your body and mind will love you for it. When we feel better, we can perform better.

 

Retrain your habits

We all have destructive or self-sabotaging habits. Some of us are aware of the impacts of these habits, and others aren’t. Start by noticing patterns in your daily or weekly routines. And without judgement, start at looking at how you might change that habit. Maybe through visualisation, being mindful or just making a conscious effort to change the habit one day at a time.

 

Mindset

Starting each day with the right mindset will set you up for success. Think about how you want to show up as a leader each day. Do you want to come in high energy, feeling fresh and ready to take on the day? Mindset is a choice; you can be the decisive, inspirational leader or you can let negativity take over. Whenever you feel like you are feeling low energy, take a break, take time off or find somewhere quiet to breathe or meditate so you can reset and realign.

 

Time management

There are only 24 hours in a day, and you only have so much energy to spend. As a leader, you need to play your time effectively. And you need to remove unnecessary activities from your day. Planning your day for work and home will help you prioritise or delegate tasks; either way, it frees you up to do what you do best.

 

Tap into your Passion

We all need a passion. Without passion, we’re just going through the motions. Passion means that you’re doing what you love. As a leader, focus on the parts of your role that you are passionate about, and how you can bring that passion to others each day. There’s always going to be tasks that don’t inspire you but taping to that passion will create energy and enthusiasm that will get you through the more mundane tasks and help you achieve your goals.

 

Goals and Action plans

You can read endless blogs and books on goals and action plans. Ultimately, you want to set up goals that will get you to your long-term vision by setting up short term targets. Break down the big picture into more achievable actions so that you can create a plan that will help you achieve them.

 

Get support

We’re not islands. We need support. Having supportive relationships, whether it’s at home, a mentor or supporters who act as sounding boards, will help you get to your goal quicker. Other people can provide insights and advice, or they can give you a new direction that you never thought of. Develop a support system in both your personal and professional life.

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Top tips to reduce stress https://www.belowtheline.ie/top-tips-to-reduce-stress Fri, 20 Dec 2019 16:54:26 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1073 The post Top tips to reduce stress appeared first on Below The Line.

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This Winter has been particularly harsh. The bitter cold winds & long dark nights can play havoc with our bodies & minds. During this time we want to ensure we balance our internal environment with whatever the external environment throws at us! For late Winter, it is recommended that you allow extra TLC for body, mind & spirit.

 

1. Exercise & Movement – Movement is vital to help release emotions out of the body (the word emotion means ‘e-motive’, energy in motion) It also produces endorphins which are your body’s natural internal morphine. It helps reduce pain, release trapped emotions and release tension and stress both physically and emotionally.

2. Food & Nutrition – eat wholesome, real food, reduce processed chemically artificial packaged products. Reduce stimulants such as sugar, coffee and alcohol as they increase nervous tension and anxiety.

3. Breathing -Take 5 deep belly breaths regularly throughout the day. Set triggers to remind yourself. E.g. Take 5 deep breaths before starting your car, before opening your laptop, while waiting for the kettle to boil, while waiting at traffic lights etc. This is a powerful way to reduce stress and anxiety.

4. Meditation, mindfulness, prayer, gratitude – All of these are powerful tools to help gain more clarity, focus and calmness in your life.

5. Fresh Air – Nature – Natural healing therapy take place when you spend time in the outdoors. Make time to get fresh air every day. Get out of the office and walk around the block on your lunch break. Oxygenate the cells, and this will help re-energise both mind and body.

6. Writing / Journaling – A great way to release nervous tension, anxiety or stress. Put pen to paper and allow the busy mind and mental overloaded thoughts to be released through the act of writing. Burn it or tear it up afterwards if you wish. It acts as a brain dump for your mental thoughts.

7. Open communication – talk it out, cry it out – release the emotion through communicating with a trusted person or a trained professional.

8. Sleep – Apply the 3,2,1 rule. Have your last meal 3 hrs before bedtime. Avoid anything taxing 2 hrs before bedtime. Unplug from all technology 1 hr before bedtime. Try a cup of camomile tea at night.

9. Self – care routines – Spirituality. Spend a few minutes daily in stillness, silence or nature and simply breathe and be. Unplug from the busyness of the world. Refrain from the urgency “to do” and try “Just be”. The presence of connecting with self and others on a real human level, heart to heart is where real healing and happiness occurs.

10. Rest, Recovery and reflection

11. Get organised – create your CODE, your Calendar Of Daily Events. These are your nonnegotiables. Create morning routines or nigh time rituals that are specific to you to help you be at your best.

12. Ask for help – Allow yourself to be real and human and vulnerable. A problem shared is a problem halved.

 

If you are looking for more tips for late winter head here. 

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Boosting your cross-functional alignment https://www.belowtheline.ie/boosting-your-cross-functional-alignment Fri, 13 Dec 2019 16:35:00 +0000 https://www.belowtheline.ie/?p=1063 The post Boosting your cross-functional alignment appeared first on Below The Line.

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Traditionally, organisations worked in siloed functions, which was clunky and challenging, cross-functional alignment was difficult to achieve. But when a team works together, they can accomplish remarkable things.

A team that is perfectly aligned gives an organisation a real boost. A team that works together can adopt change quickly; they can work in a fast-paced environment. And as we know, change is inevitable.

If there is cross-functional misalignment or your alignment is off, you could find yourself slipping off course. With rigid functional lines, your team can quickly lose sight of the overall priorities and strategic agenda. Key projects and priorities may be impacted.

 

Breaking out of silos

Cross-functional alignment doesn’t necessarily refer to projects. We are looking at how people from different functions like sales, marketing, HR, engineering or finance can work together on a day to day basis to achieve the same objective.

Unfortunately, corporate culture separates different functions into teams or silos. Getting people to break out of the silos is necessary to create a culture of alignment. It’s not an easy process; teams have very different responsibilities and procedures. They may have conflicting priorities. And collaboration may not come quickly to them.  

To bring the teams closer together; share upcoming work, have learning opportunities for each team. Do team demonstrations where each team gets to show the others their work.

Constant and consistent communication is critical to breaking out of silos. Look at how you communicate internally with other functions. Do you meet with them regularly or do you communicate via email? Using a more collaborative communication style will allow people from different functions to work together.

 

We regularly see examples of organisations, business units and teams that are not fully maximising the talents, skills and abilities of their people. This is so common that many of our clients are at a point where they are willing to accept that this is the way things are.

Yet we see that using the Growth Pit Stop methodology allows people in teams to engage in a process known as ‘cognitive reframing’ that allows them to begin challenging that idea at both a personal and team level. It also has a way of analysing the potential savings to be realised by cutting unnecessary internal meetings and other forms of collaboration waste.

Measuring these three areas and learning where you can improve will have an impact on performance, innovation and growth of your business. It will also have an effect on engagement, growth and well-being of the individuals.

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