A bit of escapism

I Love to daydream. It takes me to a happy place, when I am feeling a little fed up.

Most days foggy makes an appearance as I have mentioned before. That on the whole is fine, I have come to accept him and his negativity, he is me after all. Some days the things he says are more painful than others, and I find it a little harder to be passive and not try to suppress what he is saying. This is normally when he is highlighting my shortcomings. Paradoxically in the long run him shining a light and exaggerating these failings is useful as it spurs me into action, to at least go some way to addressing them. That is no doubt why they are more painful.

To help me handle the discomfort I will often reach for my music to help distract me, to take me to another world. If I am feeling sad a melancholic I might go through my back catalogue of sad songs to allow me to wallow and enjoy the misery of self pity. Now self pity is a comfortable state to be in as it requires no action. The thing is I want action, I don’t want these shortcomings to be shortcomings I want to turn them into actions. I need to be forward thinking.

I still reach for my music, music creates emotions and changes the way I feel. When I want to be positive and forward thinking I listen to new music, music I have never heard before, sometimes it is brilliant, sometimes it is ok and sometimes it is awful. It is always exciting and creative and optimistic. It makes me feel creative, optimistic and forward thinking.

Now I will not address all my shortcomings because I listened to Father John Misty’s latest song but I might just start working towards some of those neglected goals and remind myself of all the things I have achieved over the last week.

We all find our ways to pull us out of our funk, just remember do the thing that makes you happy and creates optimism, not what you think you should do, or what makes other people happy.

Writing this blog always makes me happy. Sharing playlists makes me happy.

So here’s both my blog, and below is a playlist. An Apple Music one this time. If you want it on Spotify let me know otherwise enjoy my little bit of escapism this month.

My New Music Escapism Playlist

If you want to discuss how you can create an optimistic future for yourself get in touch via Facebook, Twitter or this blog.

Have a great rest of the week and remember we have a rough times, it’s what we do with them that counts.

Memories of my School Days

In a couple weeks I am meeting up with some friends from school.

We try to meet up at least once a year. It’s wonderful to have that connection with the past, and also our or present and future.

We normally meet up in a pub in Chester, have a meal, then sit round getting drunk and generally have a fabulous time. The night always goes too quick and before we know it we are going out separate ways for another year.

This year we decided to do something different, something that lasted longer. So we are walking up Snowdon and spending the weekend in cottage.

I cannot wait, it will be great to see everyone and to have more time to catch up.

In my excitement I started thinking about our time in 6th Form 30 years ago. You know what I found it quite difficult to remember much. What I did remember was the music I was listening to, and that triggered memories of parties, gigs and nights out.

So being predictable and a lover I put together a playlist. It was great fun to put together. My initial playlist was 5 hours long though. I have managed to get it down to just over an hour and half.

It is a bit of a mix of rock, indie and pop, each song though triggered a memory and transported me back to the late 80s, happy times.

Give it a listen if you wish.

Memories of My School Days

Have a Hug on Me

Everybody needs a hug, some of us more often than others.

The restorative powers of a good heartfelt hug are amazing. If you are feeling out of sorts or mentally and physically drained, a proper hug will leave with a spring in your step and a song in your heart.

A hug reminds you that you are appreciated and people do care. A hug lets you know that someone thinks you are great and they are interested in how you feel.

Now I love giving out hugs, because I think most people deserve a hug and that most people are pretty amazing. The thing is I understand that there are a lot of people who feel uncomfortable being in close contact with people they hardly know. I think that is strange but I respect their choice, the last thing I want is to make people feel uncomfortable. The whole point of my hugs are to make people feel empowered.

So with that in mind and the fact that I can’t hug you all, I thought I would offer you all a virtual hug. A hug for your ears and your soul. A musical hug. In fact a heartfelt musical hug.

This morning I lovingly put together a playlist of songs that make feel warm and fuzzy, hoping that at least some of you with feel the same.

Why not share this hug with your loved ones or make your own musical hug. Just imagine what our world would be like if we shared our hugs rather than our hate.

So hear accept it with my love.

Gizza Cuddle

Being a Coachee, Supervisee, and Coach

Last Monday I had my own coaching session. It has been a while since I was last coached. I have a new coach who is quite brilliant, just like my previous coach. Obviously I choose well.

Monday was our contracting meeting. I set out my expectations of what I wanted from my coaching and set out an overarching goal for myself. We identified my inhibiting and enabling behaviours and values, and even managed to set a couple of short term actions. It was an excellent coaching session, and then direction it took really surprised me. I discovered the route of some of my inhibitors and managing to work out some strategies I will try to counter them. My coach gave me the space to explore these ideas providing the correct amount of challenge. I must admit at times I found it a little uncomfortable but necessary for me to articulate my goal and what the risks to not achieving it are. As with all great coaching sessions the coaching continues beyond the session. Some questions the coach poses do not find their target until after the session creating more ideas and questions long after the coach has left. When you are coached by someone that is invested in you, it is truly powerful. Thank you coach.

Nearly 2 weeks ago now I had my first supervision session in quite a while. Supervision is when a group of us coaches meet up with a supervisor of coaches and discuss parts of our coaching practice, that we may need help, support or clarification with. I discussed a coaching relationship I found it incredibly helpful in raising my own awareness of the role I was playing, and like the coaching session the supervision continued beyond the session, with me thinking about the impact my questions and responses to the client have on the client. I also found talking about relationships with clients quite exposing, for me. Being challenged about your responses is very exposing as it can reveal a lot about how work as a coach and what motivates you.

On Wednesday I met a client for our follow up coaching session following our contracting meeting. Having been coached and supervised I was conscious of the impact I may have on the client. The key is to be led by the client, but to ensure the session moves forward and does not stick in the storytelling stage. Once the client had a clear goal I encouraged them to look at possibilities by asking a series of questions. This then kept the agenda theirs but kept the momentum in the session, generating possibilities that can be turned into actions.

I find that a productive coaching session for the client energises and motivated me as much as the client.

Coaching is such a powerful experience for both the coach and coachee. I implore you all to get yourselves a coach whether formally or informally.