Archive for July, 2013


When two or more are gathered …

Last evening, I met up with fellow trainers from the International Society of  Neuro-Semantics, Singapore chapter. We have met a month before and were keen to bring the group to the next level. Thus began the agenda for the next meeting.

The group dynamics was great as we could gel and had common goals. Each person had a part to play. We fed on each other’s energy and that brought the group to a whole new level. While looking at how to support fellow trainers within the region, we embarked on a new journey of hosting our own training classes, not as individuals but as a group. This is new. It is a collaborative affair with like-minded people. Brainstorming together allowed creative juices to flow and explore new avenues that have never been tread.

Having pulled resources make sense and having work partners would mean the work gets distributed. It’s economics 101 where resources are scarce and making the best use of them saw economies of scale. It is no longer a solo flight but a charted one that brings us to our destination. Together we will soar to greater heights. It would be synergistic where the sum of the parts is far greater than each individual component, having to ensure we had the ego strength to manage things together.

The commitment level of the team members was amazing. What was more awesome were the strengths that each brought with him or her complimented the weaknesses. Someone with a global perspective would be visionary while another who is detailed, got the nitty-gritty done. The doer cum performer amongst us had to ground the creator when far-fetched ideas start to emerge which had to be archived for the future. We knew what we wanted and what to move away from. If you had been there, you would see the rapport and friendly banter confirming the fiery enthusiasm within the group bursting to the brim.

It was a meeting that lasted for 2hours and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Thus when two or more are gathered, we not only get more things done, we grow. I dedicate this article to my two fellow trainers, Michael and Peter who encouraged, motivated and inspired me. Who wouldn’t look forward to more of such meaningful get-together?


Positive Stress

Stress has been a dirty word for a long time. It has negative connotations and people associate stress with high blood pressure, heightened breathing, heart palpitations, panic status, eating disorders, sleeplessness, headaches and the list goes on. At some point in time, we might have experienced any one of these and feel the stress level rising. It is not a good feeling, is it? The stress symptoms signal the red flag.

Not all stress is negative. On the flip side, we do get some positive stress. Can stress be positive, I almost hear you ask. Yes, it can. So what is positive stress? You know, we can get some goodness out of it.

Let me share with you some situations of positive stress. When the opportunity arrives for you to prove yourself, this can be a form of positive stress. It may be something you have expertise of and when a project or assignment comes along where your allow your skills and knowledge to be showcased. In such cases, you are more than happy and tend to work harder filled with excitement to produce something that some one will appreciate.

Deadlines are important in our work life. Without them, we won’t know when to stop, when to submit the work needed for the next phase. Guess it is one of those necessary evils.

Here is an example I can cite personally where an advanced deadline brought on positive stress. In my last training curriculum development, there was a change in training dates and looking at the calendar, the original deadline given by the client was way off. A late submission of the module development work would mean a late approval  from the authorities, pushing back the training delivery. The deadline had to be forwarded and that meant I had to churn out the work sooner. For the first time, I managed to complete the work in record time, much. much faster than the industry practice. The positive stress kicked in resulting in higher productivity through a better working system. With that, it meant future job scope of the same nature can be done with top rate efficiency.

Positive stress puts one in a “high” state  with positively charged energy. The adrenaline that pumps through make ones feel efficient, working at a higher pace or with happiness getting to the end faster. It puts one in-charge and having the feeling of being able to control the situation driving positive results.

So you see, not all stress is negative. There is positive stress which you can strive on, riding on the positive wave, surfing with exhilaration, enjoying the work. Whether a situation is stressful or not, greatly depends on your response to pressure. Handle it correctly, it can serve you well, making the best out of it.


A Working Saturday

The sun beckons me to be outdoors on a glorious winter Saturday. I looked and am tempted. But there is still work to be done and deadlines to meet. Goodness, it’ a Saturday, I told myself.

First things first, review what needs to be done, then prioritise for the day. As it is a Saturday, the aim was to keep the work as light as possible and easy enough, almost like a non-work situation. That cheered me up with my favourite music in the background.

The stuff I embarked on are really preparation work required for my training classes. That included cutting out templates of colour swatches for a visual styling class, looking through the magazines, filing the tear sheets, scanning in pictures and taking photographs of objects. Now that does not sound like work, does it? Yet, they still have to be done.

Guess what? I worked through the few projects with gusto and enjoyed every minute of it, doing what I love most in the creativity department. The sunny day will wait for a while and when I am through, I head for the outdoors.

So working on a sunny Saturday is not that bad after all. Keeping the light stuff for a rainy day, no I mean for a sunny play day. In fact it was therapeutic, working with my hands to complete some tasks and letting the light in to warm up the room.  : )




ImageLast month I had the privilege of attending a much awaited conference for coaches and trainers from the Neuro-Semantics community. It was held in Kuala Lumpur, a stone’s throw from Singapore, where I would be in town for some assignments.

The presentations and workshops were wonderful learning experiences where the speakers shared great insights on various topics. There were many hilarious moments when the talks were kept light hearted but serious in content.

What struck me most was the renewed friendships with fellow trainers and coaches from different parts of the world, many of whom I have not seen for more than five years. It was easy to pick up from where we left off. We could also see how much we have grown from the younger we to present now, enriched by life experiences. It was also a good time to catch up with my Indonesian friends whom I met just a couple of month ago in Bali, always warm in demeanour.

Making new friends was on my agenda, connecting with people I have not met. Some were connected through the friendly social media, Facebook and it was the first time I meet them. Others were names mentioned or listed in the regular eNewsletters sent out and when we live in a virtual community, I now can finally place the name to the face in person.

Then there was the opportunity to connect at a higher level with compatriots from the same country. It has always been a busy, rush-about time that we never stop for a cuppa. Thus being at the conference meant we could share a meal, chat a bit, share information and bounce ideas off each other. Going forward, we could now work more closely to push forward for new frontiers.

One thing that came as a surprise for me at the conference was a number of people who said they knew me when I have never, never met them before. With raised eyebrows, I wondered aloud how that came about. They explained that they have seen my name in the posts of the eNewsletters. That then made sense. I hardly post anything in response to the key message of the newsletters over the years and this year I only posted twice. I had no idea the effect of the post was more far reaching than expected when all I wanted to do was add a positive view to support the original one.

The conference has met its objectives and allowed the people in the community to connect at the deepest level, leveraging on each other’s strengths and expertise. The networking continues beyond the conference with friends linking up through social media and possibly at the next training sessions or in two years’ time, the next conference in HK. It’s a small world after all and I cannot ask for a nicer circle of global friends. I look forward to connecting with these friends again.