Life Surfing with Dynamic Risk Assessment

Health and Wellbeing: Malfunction Junction

We live in a Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous  world where change is an only certainty.

To combat this we need situational awareness and agility to determine the most appropriate response at any given moment. When this ability is degraded we face ‘Malfunction Junction’ at an individual and organisational level.

What does this look, sound and feel like?

As an individual we start to notice the taught shoulder muscles, clenched jaw, frontal headaches. When we press the ‘over-ride button’ this ‘ramps up’ to grumbling stomach acid, backache, migraine style ‘bouncing’ headaches. Ignore the leading Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and we meet ‘Malfunction Junction’ head on! Stomach Ulcers, High Blood Pressure, Angina, Heart Attack, Back Structural Failure.

At an organisational level this reveals itself as “only dropping the ball this once “, late deliveries “out-with my control”, minor plant shutdowns, staff last minute ‘sickness’, late payments, minor injury increased frequency. Turning a ‘Nelson’s Eye’ to the KPI’s leads to enhanced Product Quality failures with multiple ‘returns’, Major ‘plant trips’ with substantial Loss, Cash Flow problems. A ‘head-in-the- sand’ approach is stumbling towards catastrophic failure – ‘downsizing efficiencies’,  Branch Closures, major accidents, ‘Administrators’…

Situational awareness at a personal and organisational level begins with each and everyone of us. Individually and collectively we all can make a difference. We all have specific skill sets developed over many years – the problem is that we have, in the urgency of everyday life, forgot to tune into our innate sensing abilities. We can regain this by remembering to  ‘stop and breathe’ as individuals and organisations on a regular basis. Some would call this mindfulness, I call it living in the NOW.

As individuals we can ‘front load’ our day by following an energizing ritual – an example as per below. You know, if you tune in, what works for you, your team, your organisation…

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When I think about ‘Resilience’ a famed speech called “Citizenship in a Republic” springs to mind. Here is an excerpt:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena…

…whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming…

…but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause…

…who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

These profoundly galvanising words by Theodore Roosevelt speak to my heart

It’s so easy to be a naysayer. Too simple to tear the dreamer down. All too common to condemn the visionary.

The credit for all acts of genius and mastery does go to the one in the arena. The one with the guts to hear the naysayers and keep moving ahead. The one who takes the leap and ends up bruised, battered and even bloodied. The one who hears the noisy voices of self-doubt yet trusts something larger and wiser within that encourages them to continue, against all odds.

This is resilience in action. When we have a powerful Vision  driven by our Purpose – courage and tenacity carry us through. Step forward today, tapping into your internal knowledge and wisdom. The world applauds a ‘trier.’

Power of Purpose

Walk into the boardrooms of most companies and ask the board members what the purpose of their organisation is and you are likely to receive as many different answers as there are people in the room. Perceptions of purpose often range from the survival of the organisation in a rampantly competitive world to just making a healthy profit, from providing employment to becoming the biggest player in their industry sector, from serving the customer to creating new and innovative products. With different and often unarticulated perceptions of purpose it’s no wonder that it’s sometimes hard to build mutual understanding and why conflict can arise so easily over the precise direction of the organisation.

Purpose is essentially ‘what we are here to do’ which is obviously vital in order to ‘focus’ energy. A group of people pulling in different directions, with different perspectives of what is important, have not sat down and clarified their collective purpose. This is often because individuals have not done it for themselves because they have not fully understood the importance of living purposefully.

Vagueness around purpose is usually due to an absence of clarity around its meaning. Most often purpose is confused with visions, aims and goals. But purpose is not vision, and it is not many directions, it is one direction, with the possibility of aims and goals along the way. Purpose is not bound by timescales but transcends time. Purpose is what we are here to do and when we try to have many purposes it’s as if we are trying to do too many things at the same time. Confusion, conflict and exhaustion will eventually set in A clear sense of purpose is also one of our most powerful sources of motivation.

For many people the first thought on awakening in the morning is often, “Oh not another day… I have to get up and go to work”. Some people awaken with a different energy, more of a “YES fantastic, another day, another adventure”. One is a ‘have to’ attitude and the other is a ‘want to’ attitude. But for everyone there is usually at least one day a year which is a definite YES day, and our energy is filled with enthusiasm. It’s the day we go on holiday. For the next two weeks we have consciously chosen the direction of our life. We have made a major commitment to ourselves to go and have fun, so the focus for our energy is absolutely pin point. And of course this is the day/week we are most highly motivated. Purpose is one of our deepest motivators.

It is not so difficult to generate and use a short term purpose to motivate ourselves for a few days or even weeks. But an overarching purpose for all the days of our life is not quite so simple to create, or to see, or to detect, or to discern!

This is where a powerful VISION ‘comes into  its own:

Zest Focus Mapping

 ‘Zest Focus Mapping’ is an empowerment process. Learn this method well, execute it daily and you will generate zegendary progress in your thinking, productivity, performance, prosperity and service to the world.

The protocol is simple: like all great tools. You ‘Waymap’  the remainder of your year. Set your compass – recording your key performance indicators (Waypoints) and the deliverables needed to get it done by the 31st December to make your year zegendary.

The power lives in the Zest Focus Mapping process which shifts your subconscious mind at its deepest core. It’s about our Mindset  – it’s our personal story about our potential that determines whether we live it. This is  what Prof. Steve Peters explores in the  Chimp Paradox.

Why? Because if you don’t think you can change or be world-class, then you won’t take the steps needed to  be zegendary – we never rise higher than our personal story that can be so very self-limiting. (The Chimp of self-doubt)

Step 1. Do Your Big 3.

These are the five outcomes that absolutely must get done for 2017 to become the best year of your life. Writing these down instills clarity and trains your brain to strip out distractions and get centred around core priorities.

Step 2: Note Your Top 4 Values.

Few things diminish our energy than self-betrayal. We all have a wise witness deep within us, watching every move we make. I believe our heart records every experience we have, every place we go and every act we do. Until our daily behaviour reflects our deepest values, we will never have the firepower to fly. Getting these onto paper ‘tattoos the brain’ for daily action and ‘self-witness’ – allowing our creative juices to flow with finite clarity.

Step 3: Write Your Quarterly 7.

Pretty straightforward: deconstruct and then reverse sequence your Big 3 into 7 tinier goals that you will nail over the next 6 months. Yes, you’ve heard it many time, and deep in your heart you know it – “The devil is in the detail.” It’s the Japanese  Kaizen principle of small daily steps for momentous propulsion.

Step 4: List Your Daily Rituals.

The quality of your performance comes down to the calibre of your habits. List the routines you commit to running each day so that they become automatic like breathing e.g. that early morning workout; meditation to re-set the ‘inner clock’ and refresh our amazing brain; the daily Victory Review process, being the detached observer on the great things that happened to you during the day –  this acts as fuel to the ‘flywheel’ as it gains momentum. The Plan, Do, Think 20:20:20 Ritual for the ‘Golden Hour….

Step 5: Create Your Stop Doing List.

Average performers have a To-Do List. Zest Leaders sharpen their focus with Stop Doing lists. Note down all the activities you intend to stop doing over the remainder of the year. Examples include: complaining, gossiping, procrastinating, missing workouts, stagnating at work and coasting through life instead of making the new choices that will make your life brilliantly better.

Step 6: Set Your Growth Tool.

The Zest way to double your income and impact, triple your investment in your personal development and professional education. Why? Because as you build a stronger mindset and a braver internal core, the fears that limited your success will vanish. You’ll believe in possibilities you previously didn’t feel you could do. You’ll see opportunities average producers miss. And you’ll rise to mastery in your field. Now, without hesitation, note down your learning and growth commitments for the next 18 months – then The Plan to get them done.

Step 7: Build Your Circle of Amazons.

You will become your associations. Lots of good new science confirms that you unconsciously adopt the thinking, emotions, behaviours and lifestyles of the people you spend most of your time with. If you’re the most successful person you know, I strongly encourage you to make this the the day you step forward with a welcome hand and introduce yourself to your new enigmatic friend.

You have the Personal Power to let go of the past, dramatically grow your inner zest and be on fire to make  2017 your zegendary year.

To Explore the principles of Zest Values Led Leadership please click below:


Mindfulness Moments

Most of us are of sound mind, but many of us have trouble maintaining a note of harmony and peace. Most of us know how to think, but few of us are able to control our thoughts. We all have the capacity to be creative, to image new ideas, but few of us are able to do it together and co-create in harmony with each other at home and in business.  We could all do with some mental training so that we may use the most powerful energy in the universe, the mind, which is always at our instant disposal.

We can begin with mindfulness. It’s a simple way to gently help our mind go where it is best to go, do what is the best thing to do. It begins by simply being fully aware of what we are doing. Mostly we are not fully aware, as our minds wander into the past and then into possible futures. We spend most of our time watching others and so rarely fully focus on what we are actually doing ourselves.

Next time you sit down to a meal, watch your self. Be aware of only what you are eating. Every time your mind wants to wander, bring it gently back to the action and sensation of eating. Then do the same when cleaning, when writing, when working, when exercising.  The more we do it – the stronger and more focused and more rational will be our concentration. The more natural will be our actions, the more peaceful we will feel, and the more relaxed we will be – no matter what we are doing

Brain Tattoos From Billionaires








Billionaire research has revealed the following brain tattoos:

  • Don’t Do it if it’s not fun
  • Be your own competition
  • Seek Forgiveness vs. Ask Permission
  • Innovate versus Impersonate
  • Leave your ego at the door
  • Master you entire business
  • Have a ‘Dream Cottage’
  • Take lots of pictures
  • Become clutter free
  • Do it for the art, not the money

From this – what ‘steps’ will you do today??

Learning More to Achieve More

To double your income, triple your rate of learning. I coach this idea from the Boardroom to the Boardwalk. Zegendary performance is less about natural talent and more about out-studying, our-practicing, and our-learning everyone around you. Almost nothing yields the return on investment that investing in workshops, conference, on-line courses, audiobooks/books and coaching does. Follow your Passionthe learning will naturally flow.

Leadership Insights


Let’s distil some practical insights on leadership that helps people do great things:

The Job of a Leader is to Grow more Leaders – if you are not building more Leaders the you’re not leading, you’re following. Your job, whether you have this title or not, is to help people do work they never dreamed they could do.Your job is to inspire people to own their talents, their gifts and do their very best work. This is part of what it means to lead.

Nothing Happens until the First Step – Start small, dream big,  start today. nothing happens until  you take massive action. Procrastination is a defence mechanism by unsure people.  If we did our goals and acted our visions we would become ultra successful. Spectacular success brings responsibility – that frightens many of us  and we put off getting great things done.

Our Behaviours Reveals our Beliefs –   we tell the world what you believe by how we behave. If we complain all day long we reveal a deeply ingrained set of beliefs that we are powerless. when we present work that has typos and poor wording we express a belief that average is okay with us. Mistreat others and you reveal that you’re selfish and disconnected from the beautiful humanity that surrounds us. Great news is that when we wire in the beliefs of leadership (versus victimhood) our behaviour changes automatically.

Who can you Grow today?

Within your work, family or community…..

seed heart

The Power of Why

Many people and organisations become focussed on ‘What’ requires to be done in the coming year – setting Stretch Targets/Goals for themselves and their Teams.

My research has shown, whilst this has merit, we find that ‘life happens’ and our circumstances can change on exposure to our dynamic world.

High Reliability organisations focus on the ‘Why’ first – this allows the strategic Purpose/Values to assist problem solving in our volatile world. It’s like the Disaster Response team’s Head Chef saying to his crew “We are in the Motivation Business (Why) not the cooking one (What). He explained that in the middle of all the devastation the Disaster Team and Volunteers were looking for an ‘oasis’ in the  middle of the maelstrom. Their job was to maintain and build their emotional resilience by the quality of food and the welcoming environment they were providing. All crew members on dynamic problem solving knew exactly where their priority lay.

Do you know Why you do what you do?