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Sowing Idea Seeds

I had an idea. Seeing examples of what didn’t work at various jobs, a thought germinated. I wanted to nurture a kinder, gentler world. But how could I take such an esoteric concept and make it tangible? I had to figure out what kindness looked like first.

Sprout

I started with “what if” scenarios and decided on “what if you created a workplace with kindness as the main currency of business instead of profits?” Immediately, my saboteurs clamoured for attention with reasons why it was a crazy idea. Despite the noise, I chose to align myself with my Leader Within instead and let my idea resonate internally.

Seedling

To find examples of kindness, I looked in many places such as Jacinda Ahern’s well-being budget that measures well-being not wealth or economic growth.

Remembering my project management job where I implemented employee recognition programs, I thought of the ways companies recognize and reward employees for practising their values.

I remembered the friend who unexpectedly dropped off flowers and jujubes last winter – that’s kindness in action.

Vegetate

Then I brainstormed ideas on how to achieve this future state. I would hire kind candidates, develop an organizational structure that reinforced kindness, and create business tools that acknowledged kindness every day.

Bud

I considered the barrage of unhealthy behaviours and attitudes today. They weaken the quality of human connections. The results show up daily – narcissism, anxiety, depression. I wanted to nip them “in the bud” with this new vision of kindness.

Flower

I ended up creating a Kindness Blueprint that I used in my final HR role and that I apply today in a different context as a career coach.

Ripen

Ideas appear as uniquely as people. Each of you use preferred neural pathways in the brain based on how you think. I get my best ideas by walking, reading, and writing. Stop for a moment to consider when and where you get your best ideas. Steven Spielberg gets them driving on the freeway. Will Arnett gets them in the shower (this one is surprisingly common!).

You may wonder how to get in the right state of mind for an idea to pop up. My recommendation is boredom. Yes, you read that right!

In Pay Attention, I talked about the inability to focus because of shortened attention spans. Jumping from task to task does the same function. By distracting yourself, not only do you prevent focusing but you also avoid reflection. Telling yourself you don’t reflect because you don’t have the time for it, you end up feeling frazzled instead of centred.

Letting Ideas Take Root

Boredom is a great cure. When you’re bored or on autopilot, the mind relaxes and starts making connections it wouldn’t otherwise. That’s what reading potboilers, driving on freeways, and taking showers share in common. Give yourself time to do mindless tasks or, even better, nothing. That’s where ideas take root.

Ideas change the world. Without Bill Gates’s idea of a computer in every home, you would not be reading this online newsletter today. While you may think ideas are for “those” people, lofty individuals like Bill Gates, recognize that outsourcing idea-making to the chosen few is just avoidance. The truth is simpler. You have a creative spark within you waiting to be lit.

What are you waiting for? No one will light your spark for you. It’s up to you. I believe you’re reading this today because you want to make a difference. It all starts with one idea. Sow your seed.

Header Photo by Joshua Lanzarini on Unsplash, Bud Photo by Kiara Martin on Unsplash, Shower Photo by Andrea Davis on Unsplash, Sparking an Idea Photo by Kristopher Roller on Unsplash

Sprout. Seedling. Vegetate. Bud. Flower. Ripen.

You have to be open minded in order to grow. The coaching that Laura gave me opened my eyes to what and how I was doing things and allowed me to see the bigger picture. I am not done yet but I already see the changes in my everyday life.

MM

I think coaching is a great way to help you clear your mind when you get stuck with overwhelming situations or when stepping into changes in your life.

MO

Coaching is life changing. It pushes you outside your comfort zone and challenges your perspectives.  It is highly motivating and the exercises and techniques used are both fun and informative.  I think the main benefits of coaching are to see yourself, others and the world more clearly.  I think coaching is valuable to anyone regardless of where you are in your life or career.

LE

I honestly never thought I’d need a coach. I thought coaching was for CEOs and industry VIPs. I didn’t think it was for the “little guys” (i.e. me). Now, I’m of the belief that everyone – yes, EVERYONE – needs a coach. Coaching has really benefitted me and I’m so grateful to have had that time with Laura. It’s changed my life!

VB

Laura is very patient. She took the time to understand what was causing me to be stuck where I am today and help me build a better vision so I can continue to grow.

MM

I think Laura’s coaching was what I had been waiting for. Laura was so approachable, kind, and open. Her willingness to help and support made a difference for me. I found in her coaching new strategies, ideas, and perspectives that I could incorporate into my goals and objectives that I didn’t see before.

MO

Laura is an incredibly intuitive, positive and caring coach. Her techniques helped me recognize both my strengths and areas I might want to explore as I embark on the next chapter of my career. The exercises she employed were instrumental in providing self perspective and challenging my frames of reference.

LE

Laura is a natural coach. Her probing and compassionate questions helped me learn about myself: my value system, interests, goals and strengths.

LM

Coaching sessions with Laura gave me new perspectives on how to process specific feelings and situations in life.  She showed me how to sit with my emotions, acknowledge them, and then use visualization strategies to move through them.  I now feel more confident and in control of how I choose to walk through life.

CP

From the beginning, Laura put me at ease, creating a safe, open space for me to talk and share freely without fear of judgement. I loved the variety of approaches she used depending on the topic we were working on and it was fun being able to try out things I wouldn’t have considered before! With Laura’s coaching, I substantially grew my confidence in the workplace, overcame fears, dealt with issues I’d been carrying around for many years and, most importantly, learned to value myself and define a path forward into the future.

AG

Laura’s coaching was a breath of fresh air and EXACTLY what I needed at that point of my life. I didn’t realize how impactful coaching was going to be, but by the end of the sessions together, I left feeling refreshed, inspired and genuinely curious about what my future held for me. Because of Laura and her coaching, I believe I became a better person – someone who is more open-minded, someone with a clearer focus, and someone who is willing to explore opportunities and possibilities far more than I ever did before.

VB

I engaged Laura for coaching as I took on an expanded role leading an asset management company in Canada. As a female, I knew I would be a role model and had high expectations of myself. I was feeling overwhelmed and anxious.

In our first few coaching sessions we worked through exercises that allowed me to reflect on my purpose, leadership style and what mattered most to me. I continue to be grounded by the clarity I achieve in my coaching sessions – allowing me to be resilient and confident when challenges came my way.

OS