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Between personal and professional

exploring work life balance

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Personal

On the front foot

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While on leave this week I’ve been contemplating a couple of work/life decisions in preparation for the implications. It’s the ultimate personal/professional dilemma.

They say never go back but I’ve had a niggling regret for 27 years that I never got a half century when I last played cricket. I fell short by 3 runs. So this year I’m reigning back on the golf clubs and taking up cricket again to try and get that elusive 50.

Many things have changed in 27 years and a recent reminder made me realise this isn’t something to be taken as likely as it once was. So I’ve invested in some proper equipment and this time bought a helmet. It’s not particularly comfortable but necessary, and peace of mind for those I care for and who care for me.

Continue reading “On the front foot”

Life’s what you make it

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I’ve recently been nominated for a lifetime achievement award for services to communications. Reading the kind words someone had taken time to craft into a 100 word summary, in effect covering my working life so far, was quite moving but also a bit unnerving.

So firstly, thanks Kate for nominating me. I’m honoured to be in the company of other nominees and previous winners. They do some great things. Continue reading “Life’s what you make it”

Respect in how we share

It wasn’t the trip we’d planned. It wasn’t the Friday night the majority of people had planned. We were lucky; a forgotten set of keys and what might have been.

We were in Paris the weekend of the terrorist attacks. Whilst deeply saddened, shocked and since troubled by it; we came home. Hugged by friends and relatives and helped through the weeks after at work by colleagues, we thank everyone for their concern. Others weren’t so lucky.  Continue reading “Respect in how we share”

In the eye of the beholder

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There are many sculptures in Opatija, Croatia where I spent my summer break. Most of them portray people who have influenced its history. One however has created its own history and captured my imagination. The maiden with the seagull by sculptor Zvonko Car.

I passed it many times whilst walking along the promenade into town, often sitting and wondering who it was, why it was there and how many others had seen it. I imagined she came alive at night and sat on the benches for a rest and talked through people’s problems with them. Continue reading “In the eye of the beholder”

Here for the dancing?

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Sometimes you just happen to be somewhere at the right moment to witness something you probably wouldn’t have purposely decided to go and see.

First year students of the BPA (Hons) degree in contemporary dance at the Northern School of Contemporary Dance were performing choreography inspired by the historic architecture and gardens at Harewood House and I happened to walk right into the middle of it.

“Are you here for the dancing?” the girl said.

“You asking?” I replied, guessing by her age that my response might be lost

“Funny” was the reply. With a smile. Obviously

So I watched; obviously. Continue reading “Here for the dancing?”

The grey area of disruption – a breakthrough from #agecamp

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Like fog, grey areas can be places where it is difficult to see what is going on and where sight of the bigger picture can be lost. Continue reading “The grey area of disruption – a breakthrough from #agecamp”

Half way there

Not long now then til I hit 50. Time for that not a mid-life crisis but questioning my purpose more than any other time before, and thinking about what might come next” moment.

Looking after my wellbeing, will be important. I’ve coped with stress quite well so far and recognise the signs when I’m up against it but before things get silly. I’m also increasingly aware to look out for it in others as society seems more in your face and demanding than it used to be,.That seems to be the case for all ages.

Continue reading “Half way there”

The personal touch

IMG_20130826_181316As usual, the seasonal break has been a time of contemplation and self reflection. I’ve been considering what’s happening and changing in my area of work, around where I live and at home as myself, colleagues, family and friends prepare to move on to the next chapters of our lives.

It’s made me consider and appreciate what I have. I’ve also read far more than I usually do and I’ll share some of that shortly.

The family was reunited as firstborn returned from Russia before heading off on his travels again in February. Russia is a communication culture we’ve recently learnt about by experience. It’s not as easy to access folk in Russia in some ways but compared to how things were when I was studying away from home it’s a lot easier. We did however Skype him every week and perhaps spoke more often than when he was at university in the UK. It was good to actually see him talking with us. It certainly narrowed the distance but it’s been really nice to have him home.

Continue reading “The personal touch”

It started with a conversation

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Last Thursday was a good day and a bad day.

It was good because an idea that made things happen was recognised with an award. The award was ‘Best Communication for Change’ at the Comms2point0 Unawards. The folk behind the awards and those in that network are top people. The Un is quite befitting in the context of why it won and I’ll come back to this later.

The idea was a real simple one. What if we explored what a more sociable place to work might be and then did stuff to make it that way? So things like what if we made it easier to find people, connect and share? What if where I worked was a more sociable organisation that helped make a more sociable place to live, work and play? Continue reading “It started with a conversation”

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