Articles

Welcome to this collection of some 40 articles that I’ve written to expand on the ideas around Boosting Energy, Fueling Enthusiasm, Inspiring Insight, and Rekindling Spirit. Feel free to dip into them and share with others.

Topics (Energy, Spirit, Appreciation, Motivation, Insight) are noted in brackets following each title to help you choose those that relate most directly to your area of interest.

Take The Lead – Help Light That Spark (Spirit)

Many things in life start out exciting; but they don’t stay that way forever. Maintaining a spark and a sense of excitement over the long haul can be a huge challenge at work and beyond. Research shows that at any given time a significant number of employees feel less than fully engaged in their lives […]

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Tapping Into Passion: Moving Through Mid Life Malaise (Spirit)

Did you know? That only one third of employees of any age feel fully engaged? That productivity losses due to presenteeism are estimated to be seven times greater than losses from absenteeism? That many more Canadians are working later in life – well into their sixties? What if … people found ways to stay curious […]

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Cultivating Paus-Ativity: Stepping Back To Step Ahead (Energy)

Nonstop action is a dead end strategy for success. When you nix time-outs, you just hit the wall – not the mark. Sometimes you really do have to step back to step ahead. Make the most of the days ahead by building strategic pauses into your everyday experiences. Practise pausing – for renewal, appreciation and […]

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Keep Your Boomers In The Game (Motivation)

A mountain of corporate time and energy is being devoted to attracting, engaging and retaining Millenials – young folks in the early stages of their careers. That’s all well and good. But what about the more experienced folks in your workplace – those who have been around ‘forever’, who have worked hard over the years, […]

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Building A More Appreciative Workplace (Appreciation)

“Three billion people on the face of the earth go to bed hungry every night, but four billion people go to bed every night hungry for a simple word of encouragement and recognition.” – Cavett Robert Is your workplace as appreciative as it could be? This article features three steps to a more appreciative workplace […]

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Live And Learn – Cultivating The Art of Insight (Insight)

“The work will teach you how to do it.” – Estonian Proverb Whether we are aware of it or not, circumstances around us are always in flux. Changes are not always cataclysmic – in your face and impossible to ignore. Changes also sneak up on us as we’re coasting along in ‘same old same old’ […]

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Renewing Energy & Commitment In The Workplace (Energy)

Do you wish your people brought more energy and commitment to their work? Do they seem exhausted and disheartened by the load? After years of struggling to balance expectations and resources in the workplace, we still don’t have it right. This article explores what’s going on, why we need to change and how to make a difference.

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Wondering How to Keep Me Happy? (Motivation)

Dear Boss: You might have noticed that I’m a little less enthusiastic about coming to work these days. Hmm….then again, maybe you haven’t. I’m not the newest recruit on the block, and I’ve got years to go ‘til gold watch status, but just like Harvey, Jimmy Stewart’s six foot tall white rabbit, I’m feeling pretty […]

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Could You Be A More Reassuring Presence? (Appreciation)

Our transatlantic flight was delayed. As it became clear that they were going to miss connections at the other end, many passengers grew agitated and angry. A couple sitting nearby were an exception to the storm of indignance and fury that raged around us. In the calmest of tones, they discussed the facts of the […]

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Let Your People Go (Spirit)

The daily business sections of the newspaper and the monthly business magazines are abuzz with strategies for hanging on to employees. Share the profits. Flex your hours. Woo them with perks. Thank them for coming to work. One strategy for hanging onto something you value is to let it go. It works with loving relationships. […]

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Hidden Value – Finding The Meaning In Everyday Life (Motivation)

Rise in the morning. Climb into your gear. Step into the harness. Plod your way through daily routines. Head back to bed. Rest. Rise. Do it all over again the next day. Sound familiar? Unless you climbed Mount Everest as a youngster with a million dollar book deal in your backpack, you might feel that […]

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Celebrate Your Success (Appreciation)

People are starved for good news about themselves. Our daily busy-ness drives us from one task to another without a breath for reflection. There are clients to please, phone calls to make, children to ferry, and bills to pay. We get so mired in the gaps between where we are and where we had hoped […]

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Are You Fluent In The Language Of Haste? – Calm Your Words … Calm Your Life (Energy)

The work will teach you how to do it." – Estonian Proverb

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Think Again – Five Tough Lessons In Work-Life Balance (Energy)

When you’re striving to improve the balance in your life, sometimes changing your mindset is just as important as changing your habits. Here are five key concepts to help you change your mind and your practice.

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Do You Know Where Your Off Switch Is? (Energy)

Having been engaged to deliver an after dinner keynote, I share the evening meal with the coordinators of the Staff Retreat. The table is set – rolls, salads, water, china and cutlery. And at each place, resting right next to the dessert, a Blackberry (not the edible kind), placed with loving care by the occupant […]

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Overload Cues & Triggers For Action (Energy)

Although workplace overload may not be a disease, there’s no doubt it is a malady – a condition or situation that’s problematic and requires a remedy. Early detection and treatment are essential for healthy employees and organizations.

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Stop, Drop & Roll! – The Paus-able Cure For A World On Fire (Energy)

When I first started speaking about ‘permission to pause’ I noticed something peculiar in the response of my audiences. Inevitably, they stopped what they were doing. They stopped fidgeting. They stopped writing. They focused on my words and the phrase itself. Then, they dropped their shoulders – literally – from up around their ears back […]

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Maximize Your Vacation Pause (Energy)

Ten tips to help you make the most of your vacation time. Don’ts: Don’t say you’re too busy to take a vacation. You can’t afford not to take a break. Your body, your mind, and your spirit need you to make the investment in renewal. The chances of your getting ahead of the work are […]

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Loose Ends (Energy)

Aggravating games of telephone tag play daily across the world. They leave a trail of unresolved messages in their wake. ‘New improved’ phone features (like call waiting) let you abandon one person in mid sentence to attend to a new call. You place the second caller on hold while you switch back to the first […]

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More Than A Black Hole – Pausing Defined (Energy)

What really is a pause? Is it always a complete, dead, full stop? An emptiness? A void? A total absence of action and thought? Although from time to time a pause may be just that, more often than not, a pause is so much more than nothing. A pause is a refocusing of action – […]

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Permission To Pause™ – 9 Benefits Of Time Off The Treadmill (Energy)

You’re climbing a mountain. It’s a tough, dirty, exhausting challenge. The higher you climb, the quicker you tire. Still, you plod on. Never stopping. Swiping the sweat from your brow. Eyes fixed firmly on the path ahead. Focused. Determined. Single mindedly on task. You finally reach the summit only to find there’s yet another higher […]

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Celebration Log (Appreciation)

2006 marked my twentieth year in business. To commemorate the occasion, my friend and colleague, Maggie, gave me a wall stencil with the word ‘Celebrate’. I affixed that to the wall in my office and declared the year 2006 to be a year of celebration. In 2006 I celebrated my 54th birthday and my 32nd […]

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Way To Go There! (Appreciation)

Done anything worthy of recognition this week? Did anybody notice? You can be sure that if you occasionally feel taken for granted at work, so do those around you – employees, colleagues and supervisors. Workloads are heavy, the number of helping hands is shrinking, and pay increases are hard to come by. The fact that […]

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Who’s Got The Button? (Motivation)

So there you are. Right in the middle of a noisy chaotic workspace. You’ve just been asked to carry out a long string of tasks … no errors … top speed! Sounds like everyday life, doesn’t it? This was the challenge posed in a research study conducted by D.C. Glass. Half of the subjects were […]

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In The Swim: Learning Lessons From The Waterfront (Insight)

I was raised on a farm in rural Saskatchewan. We didn’t take many family holidays – aside from the odd side trip to Manitou Lake. The mineral waters of Manitou are buoyant enough that you don’t really need any skill at all to bob happily around the lake. This was good, because I grew up […]

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Workload Streamlining Techniques (Energy)

Too much to do? Too little time? Here’s how to identify some of those tasks that might be streamlined out of existence. Evaluate tasks that are delegated to you or that you assign to others over the next few months. Keep a journal of observations and questions. What really matters? What looks like busy work? […]

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Take The Lead In Work Life Balance – Ease The Pressure – Lighten The Load (Motivation)

Partner massive workloads with high-speed expectations and you’ve got a recipe for disaster. Remove any sense of control and toss a lack of appreciation on the pile, and the mix grows downright explosive. If you find yourself leading a group through high-pressured times, here are ten ways you can ease the pressure on yourself, your […]

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You’ve Got Mail (Energy)

You’ve got mail…and mail…and mail! Forget the printed variety that your postal carrier delivers. We’re talking about that beeping, blinking, buzzing messenger on your computer screen. The one that signals someone has you in their sights and is hoping to nab your attention. Electronic mail can be a wonderful tool. Using it well takes skill. […]

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The Trials Of An Im-Paus-able Day – There’s No Better Time To Be Here Now! (Energy)

Alarm clock goes off – jump out of bed – trip over pile of clothes on the floor. No time to hang them up last night. Maybe tomorrow. Jump in shower – knob comes off in your hand – jam it back on. Have been doing this for 3 months. No time to call the […]

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Speed Matters — Or Does It? (Energy)

A colleague arrived at work full of fury. Other drivers had cut in front of him all the way. When pressed as to why it mattered so much, he muttered, “They’ll get there before I do.” A near fist-fight broke out in the express line at the grocery store. A customer in the ‘9 items […]

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Paused On Purpose Or Stuck On Hold? – There Is A Difference (Energy)

How do you know whether you are experiencing a temporary pause or a permanent hold? Pauses and holds look the same on the outside. In both cases, it appears to others that you’re doing absolutely nothing. But they are experienced very differently from the inside out. Holding patterns are sometimes inflicted by external forces. A […]

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What’s The Message In Your Model? – Is It Helping Or Harming? (Motivation)

Does any of this sound familiar? You come in early to get a jump on the day’s work. You take no breaks and schedule working lunches every day. You stay late to finish up the paperwork before heading out to an evening meeting. You move fast. You talk fast. You take calls as you stride […]

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Strategic Signals – 10 Key Cues That Call For A Pause (Energy)

How do you know when it’s time to stop or step away from the action? Ideally, you want to do this before you get into trouble or roll into overload. Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to identify those recurring experiences in daily life that could trigger a pause. Here are ten examples. Between phone calls and […]

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Can’t Stop … Gotta Run! – Overcoming Resistance To Pause (Energy)

When I encourage people to give themselves permission to pause™, reactions vary. Some folks embrace the idea with enthusiasm. It fits with their view of life and their everyday practice. Others resist with every bone in their body. An acquaintance acknowledged that he had heard about the weekly PAUSE newsletter, but that he didn’t have […]

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Surviving the OO’s — Sane & Satisfied (Energy)

Overload and overwhelm are two of the biggest Oh-Oh challenges that workplaces face in these first few years of the 21st century. Given the way things have been going, ‘OO’ could end up being a very appropriate description for this decade without a name. Overload refers to exploding expectations in the face of limited time, […]

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Restoring The Rhythm of Renewal – Press Pause … Press On (Energy)

Give and take. Back and forth. Wax and wane. There’s a natural rhythm to life and work. When you are in the groove … in the flow … you move forward with confidence. When you ignore the cycle of ebb and flow, life grows tough and nothing comes easy. Think of this rhythm as a […]

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Getting Real About Workload (Energy)

“Too many tasks, not enough time. I’m just not getting to the important stuff. We need more people.” Complaints about job overload are common in today’s workplaces. Whining aside, the effects of overload show up in more subtle ways, too. Growing overtime. Frequent sick days. Widespread stress leaves. Resignations. Unfortunately, one of the most common […]

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Living In The Moment – 10 Ways To Pause When You’ve No Time To Spare (Energy)

As much as it may feel that you’ve no time to spare, there are ways of going about your everyday business that will help you be more present to the moment and less frenzied about the future. Here are ten ideas to get you started. 1. Give one simple mundane task your complete attention. Hang […]

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The Pause Starved Month From Hell – A Case In Point (Energy)

It’s December, 1996. I am a wife of one, mother of two, sister of five, aunt of eight, daughter, friend, volunteer, and neighbour. I own an active speaking and training business, and for the first time in over two decades, I am, once again, a student. Having stepped into a Masters program earlier in the […]

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