Tag Archives: Team Building London

Venn diagram showing the elements of ikigai as they merge into a wheel

Use Ikigai to improve your outlook on life and job satisfaction.

 

Many people work at jobs just so they can afford to live, eat and survive. The majority of us also experience some sort of feeling of dread in the hours of Sunday evening all the way through to the start of your work day on the Monday. The Japanese theory of Ikigai suggests that you are only dreading going to work because you haven’t got enough balance in your life. If you were to align all of the elements of Ikigai, then it wouldn’t be such a problem to go into work on Monday morning.

Craftsmen, teachers and farmers seem to have found their Ikigai. They are pursuing a career in the thing they enjoy and are passionate about creatively. Also, a lot of people have become successful in other jobs without ever finding their ikigai.

 

Let’s get started on finding your ikigai. You must first ask yourself these four questions:

  1. What do I love? (Passion)
  2. What am I good at? (Profession)
  3. What can I be paid for? (Vocation)
  4. What does the world need? (Mission)

Here is a visual representation of the concept of Ikigai and how you can fit your own answers into a balanced and happy life for yourself:Venn diagram showing the elements of ikigai as they merge into a wheel

In the book “Ikigai the Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life” by Hector Garcia and Fransesc Miralles, they state the 10 rules to follow when in search for your own Ikigai.

  1. Stay active and don’t retire
  2. Leave urgency behind and adopt a slower pace of life
  3. Only eat until you are 80% fill
  4. Surround yourself with good friends
  5. Get in shape through daily, gentle exercise
  6. Smile and acknowledge people around you
  7. Reconnect with nature
  8. Give thanks to anything that brightens our day and makes us feel alive
  9. Live in the moment
  10. Follow your ikigai

 

Many people feel that Ikigai is the secret to living for longer. This is because whilst japan has their fair share of natural disasters, their life expectancy is among some of the best in the world. Due to this it has become clear that whilst eating healthily and exercising regularly are important factors of living a long life, so it having a clear sense of purpose.

Take Jiro Ono as an example of this. At the age of 92, he is currently the oldest Michelin chef in the world. He has had the passion to create the best sushi for most of his life and each day he seeks to improve on the day before. He believes that he still hasn’t mastered it.

 

calming balanced stones

3 Ways to Calm Yourself

 

When faced with a situation that causes us to become distressed, our first response is often to act irrationally. Tension hinders our mood and our ability to make good choices and take responsible actions, so for the best outcomes we should try and calm ourselves as fast as possible so that we can resurface a steady mind.

calming balanced stones

To follow are 3 ways to which you can relax and calm yourself when something or someone has caused you  an affective level of frustration.

 

  1. Cool Down

A great way to relieve tension is to use the power of cold water.  You can splash cool water on your pressure points including your wrists and behind your ears. By adding the cold water to your pressure points, you ultimately are cooling down your arteries beneath the skin and calming your whole body by reducing the heat going around it.

Another sure way is to plunge your face in a basin of cold water for 30 seconds. By doing this you hold your breath for 30 seconds and trigger a lifesaving reaction in your brain. Your blood vessels narrow, heart rate decreases and oxygen is directed to all your vital organs, the perfect distraction from external stressors.

 

  1. Breathe

Some of the most proven relaxation methods come from the use of breathing exercises. There are many methods you can try to see what works for you, here are some to try next time you become agitated.

The first exercise is to close your eyes and focus on each breath. Exhale for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 7 and then exhale for 8. Repeating this exercise 6 times a day is supposedly able to improve your health whilst calming you and helping your stay positive.

You may also choose to lower your heart rate during stressful situations by slowing down your breaths. Focus on your breathing so that you exhale and inhale for 6 seconds each way for up to two minutes.

  1. Take Some Time

It is completely natural for you to become agitated and disclaimed. If you fear bad outcomes of feeling distressed there is a possibility you may suppress these emotions, which would have significantly worse outcomes than if you let the anger roll.

Our emotions are like waves, or mountains and they rise and fall with a peak in the centre. If we allow ourselves to reach the peak of the emotion we can then allow the emotion to dissipate and reduce to a steady state.

By keeping in and suppressing the emotion and not allowing ourselves to feel it, we are prolonging the peak and therefore increasing the size of it.

 

We can use these ways of thinking to increase the performance of our organisations by allowing ourselves to stay calm and steady-headed, especially when complications arrive that need immediate attention.

 

 

Leadership

Be A Multiplier, Don’t Diminish Your Team.

Leadership

In most businesses, smart leaders are put in jobs to support other smart individuals. Sometimes it is clear that your own intelligence is being put down and potentially drained by a leader, Liz Wiseman in her book ‘Multipliers’ calls these people ‘Diminishers’. In other instances leaders bring out the intelligence and capabilities of their team, Wiseman calls these ‘Multipliers’.

Diminishers will often generate less effective teams, whereas the effect of a Multiplier can be significantly great.

Liz Wiseman explains that the differentiating traits between diminishers and multipliers aren’t all that many, but they are incredibly important. She explains that there are specific actions you may not even realise you do that are effecting the effectiveness of your team.

1. Environment

Multipliers create an environment that allows for flexibility. Your employees have different flexibility and creative needs and they need to be offered the opportunity to express this in order to fulfil their full intelligence.
Diminishers will create a work environment which is highly controlled and limits resources and creativity, therefore suppressing the intelligence of their employees. They limit the flexibility and encourage order because they believe success will come from them, not from creating an environment in which each individual employee can flourish.

2. Challenges

Diminishers will believe they are the driving success for their team and will push their teams in the direction they want to go in.
Multipliers will get to know their employees and their specific skills and tailor challenges to their teams that will challenge them to improve as an individual and as a team. They also provide as many opportunities for their staff as possible, believing in constant improvement and development.

3. Decisions

The way you make decisions around the office can determine whether you are a multiplier or a dimimisher.
A multiplier would include the whole group in discussions around decisions that need to be made, whereas a diminisher will make decisions solely, with little debate or input from others, dimishing team insight.

 

There are many other insights that Liz Wiseman explains in her books, and you can get much more details from reading those, but take a moment to reflect on your practices and asses where you think you fall. Most people lie somewhere in between the two, the hard part is assessing where you stand objectively and then making the changes to become more of a ‘multiplier’.

 

 

Blog1

Being The Boss: What Does It Really Take?

Up until now it has been assumed that an intelligent leader is a good leader. But new research into IQ and leadership suggests that being too intelligent in relation to your employees could have negative effects on how they perceive you.

Continue reading

Team Building For Everyone

Team Building Can Work For You And Your Team

There are a whole host of team building activities available but finding one for a large corporation can be a challenge.

Team Building For Everyone The reason for this is because larger teams have more personality types to cater for – Activists will want to run about while Reflectors will rather just observe. Pragmatics will more than likely ask ‘what’s the point?’ whereas Theorists might prefer to study or solve a complex puzzle.

Here at Team Building London, we have developed a team building activity for everyone to get involved and use their skills, combining a wide range of competitive team building challenges so that every member can showcase their style and skill. Demonstrating everyone’s differences can be the source of success within a team.

Teams of 6 are able to use their wit to solve problems and a number of practical team challenges. During each challenge teams will compete against one another before they move onto another conundrum. Bonus points are earned throughout by those who successfully complete these puzzles which require both analytical and lateral thinking.

There are also opportunities for physical challenges which are selected to suit the location and the participants – many of our tasks can be performed indoors and out.

It is important to think about everyone’s skills and strengths because their varied learning skills will affect their input into the team building activity. By incorporating fun into a number of exercises, everyone has the chance to excel without needing to be the fittest or cleverest.

If you would like to learn more about our team building activities and how we can make sure everyone gets involved, contact us at Team Building London today.

Conference Meeting Room

8 Rules To Make Meetings Great

Meetings can easily fall into the trap of being unproductive and a waste of time, but there are ways to make sure this doesn’t happen to your meetings.

Conference Meeting Room

Make Meetings Great

We first saw these meeting ground rules in a conference room of a Japanese car company, and have been using and recommending them ever since.

The next time you decide to hold a meeting, try and enforce these meeting rules and see what difference it makes:

1.   Make sure you start and finish on time Continue reading

Firing an employee

Should They Stay Or Should They Go?

Most managers face a number of tricky situations in the workplace on a daily basis – one of the toughest is having to decide whether to fire an under-performing team member or not.

Firing an employee

Firing an employee

If you’re faced with this task, here are 5 considerations to ease the decision:

1.       Does good past performance justify a weak future performance?

Just because team members were once strong, it may not necessarily mean they will be as strong in the future. Weak team members may reflect badly on other staff, suggesting that under-performance is okay. Continue reading

Pearlfisher's ball pit

We Say ‘Balls’ To Team Meetings

Here at Team Building London we are always trying to promote creativity within the workplace, so thought it would be worth highlighting a company on the right track!

Pearlfisher's ball pit

Pearlfisher’s ball pit

Pearlfisher, in Hammersmith, West London created a meeting environment reminiscent of a children’s ball play area – only this is for around 30 adults.

The reason for this was to create a place to help companies stimulate new ideas and creativity, which is something that can easily get lost in a normal daily meeting within the workplace. This type of environment is great to bounce ideas around and to have fun at work. Continue reading