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As I am approaching the end of the year, like many of you, I find myself trying to combine all the activities on my to-do list with preparation for Christmas and balancing a very busy time of year.   I have a couple of my clients to finish work with, a few pieces of work for the charities I am a Trustee of and even 2 networking events (which are not my favourite thing to do but now necessary in my new work world!). Also for the first year ever we have the majority of my partners’ family coming for Christmas so recipes and online shopping are surrounding me in abundance!  Trust me there are lists everywhere.

This made me think about if there was ever a “winding down period” or if life today is so busy for everyone that it’s a continuous loop. 
I know when I was a leader in the corporate word the racetrack of budget preparation, performance management, talent review, goal setting and objective agreement all seemed to blend into one and we were back at budgets at the blink of an eye. I also know that taking a two week holiday required days of preparation beforehand and frantic catch up for weeks after.  It all felt a little relentless and not that rewarding or joyful. Although I do have to admit to missing writing my end of year message to my old team – it was a time for recognition and being grateful for the great people I worked with and the successes of the year – even if the next one was just around the corner!

The belief that people have the endless stamina, ideas, and skills it takes to deliver success year after year is         a fallacy of the past. Thus, resilience, the ability to bounce back, cope, renew, and revitalise has become more of a focus for me and I’m trying to work with clients on wellbeing of themselves and the people they work and live with.  Now working for myself where there is so much more control of what I do I still appear to be able to create myself a busy world and I have come to the conclusion that learning to be resilient never stops.

If people are to enjoy continued success I think that we need to understand two related issues with regard to resilience. First, passion for excellence can take us only so far; we will burn out if our physical, emotional and mental limitations are ignored. Second, organisational or personal changes are not a one off single event and need continued focus to ensure future success and happiness.

I read something ages ago that mentioned four key elements of resilience as part of an underlying support structure for successful leadership development, coaching, and growth and I have shared these previously but my current thinking made me search out my ramblings as I thought they would be worth sharing again. These elements are personal mastery, awareness, emotional intelligence and wellbeing.  As I re-read the details it made me smile as somehow the services I now offer in anything is possible pretty much try to address or expand on these – perhaps I had a premonition  or perhaps some things just haven’t changed!  Let’s take a look:

  • Personal Mastery: To know your own strengths and limitations. In addition, it is to know who in your network or complements your capabilities, thus enabling you to be a more masterful leader or member through teamwork.
  • Awareness: To understand the context of the challenges you face and to know what resources you will need to build and sustain the required solutions. Awareness comes from experiential learning, consciousness about the degree of change required, and empathy. Self-awareness is realising what you are experiencing and responding in kind with both body and
  • Emotional intelligence: To realise the personal impact you have on others and to understand how that connection creates and maintains relationships for influencing and leading with authentic character and intent. Emotional intelligence when used with awareness increases effectiveness and credibility.
  • Wellbeing: In order to achieve and engage work and life at all levels possible, we all must strive to maintain optimal physical, mental/emotional and spiritual well-being.

Meeting the on-going challenges of today’s work-world and frantic family life minimally requires competency, stamina, and perseverance. The ultimate goal is to bring these and other factors into play in order to realise and maximise sustained achievement.  If we don’t do this life outside of work suffers and we as individuals struggle.

If you care for some free advice I would look carefully at any work related development plan you may have for 2016 and suggest you perhaps look at it in a slightly different light. Clearly we all would want to be successful and continue to grow but take a look at what you are planning for the coming year and consider the four elements above and honestly see how these can ensure you have the right focus from both a business perspective but also a personal point of view.  What are YOU going to DO next year to help these elements light up your life?

As for all my blogs I’d welcome your thoughts either as comments on this blog site, or via LinkedIn or, as some of you have chosen to in the past emailed privately to me at  You can subscribe to my blogs from my web site and I am always happy to take requests on what you’d like me to write about.

Once again many thanks for taking the time to join me virtually.



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