Categories
Authenticity Humanity Learning Life Self awareness

What you can learn from snowflakes

It’s March.

The Maldives are long gone and a distant but unforgettable memory.

Spring seems to be in the air. The weather is not precisely spring-like.

I’m traveling to Belgium for a meeting, and our plane needs to be de-iced. 

Wind and snow circle the plane as I deliberate what I will write about on my way to Brussels.… Read the rest

Categories
Courage Experimentation Growth Learning Life

Why life is an Unforgiving Laboratory

“Life is an unforgiving laboratory.”

Interesting quote from the book “Be Exceptional” by Joe Navarro.

He mentions it tongue and cheek as he talks passionately about self-mastery. No further elaboration on why he thinks so, but I picked up on the term, and I love it.

My ‘curious and observational me’ did its job (again).
Read the rest
Categories
Asking Questions Curiosity Learning Qualities Self awareness

Curiosity is a superpower. 18 qualities of curious leaders.

Should I ask this as a question or make a statement out of it?

That’s the question I’m asking myself, pondering the title for this insight. 

If I’m true to my point about curiosity, I should write it as a question. 

Why is curiosity a superpower?

But today, I prefer a statement.… Read the rest

Categories
Curiosity Feedback Learning Reflection Self awareness

What are you pretending not to know?

We all have blind spots.

Blind spots are gaps in awareness we have about ourselves that other people are aware of.

Let me give you an example.

When I was younger and had just started my career, I thought it was cool, appropriate, and necessary to voice my opinion regularly. 

I was proud of my Dutch ‘directness.’
Read the rest
Categories
Curiosity Learning Life Reflection Trust

No title! Here’s why.

It’s a Thursday, shortly after noon.

I planned to write for one hour before I headed out for a massage.

I’m now thirty-six minutes into my hour of writing, and these are the first sentences I’m writing.

The words are not coming to me.

I scanned through my list of open topics, I have about twenty available at any time, but none inspires me.… Read the rest

Categories
Discipline Execution Growth Learning Writing

Learn from the best!

Consistency is key.

When you want to progress in life, you need to show up and deliver what you set out to deliver.

That’s what I’ve shown with my writing in 2022. 

52 weeks. Two stories per week, every Tuesday and Friday morning. One hundred four accomplished. 

Not a single week was missed. 
Read the rest
Categories
Growth Habits Learning Mindset Purpose

Five Years! Really?

A friend of mine asked me recently whether I was happy with my progress over the past five years. 

For some weird reason, my mind went to Lenin and his New Economic Policy (NEP) in 1921.

I don’t remember many things from my primary education, but I remember the NEP from Lenin.… Read the rest

Categories
Choices Execution Learning Mindset Reflection

Just another Friday

There are days you will not soon forget in your life.

Last Friday was a day I rather forget, but that’s probably not going to happen.

You’re reading this post today, the following Friday. A lot has happened in between, so the news is old.

But the memory is still very fresh.
Read the rest
Categories
Choices Growth Learning Mindset Reflection

Why turning points matter

Tonight, Friday the ninth of December, the Netherlands plays Argentina in the World Cup.

You know me.

I sometimes link my insights to sports, yet I keep them relevant to personal, leadership, and team growth. 

A lot has been said about this World Cup in Qatar, and I’d like to add my perspective. … Read the rest

Categories
Leading Self Learning Mindset Reflection Self awareness Uncategorized

No easy way out

The sh#t they never taught us in school.

That’s the title of a nineteen-hour audiobook I completed last week. Nineteen hours I spent while traveling abroad, driving around Prague, or at home when I didn’t feel like reading from a book.

The authors, two passionate Aussies, read through 100+ books, noted the most important lessons, and made an entertaining book out of it.… Read the rest

Categories
Learning Presence Purpose Reflection Self awareness

Are you a myth?

What do you want to be known for?

That’s how I ended my previous post, which addressed the legacy of the late Queen of England.

I argued that it’s worthwhile to think through how you come across it.

The Queen was known for never elaborating on the conversations she was having with all sorts of influential people around the world.… Read the rest

Categories
Change Getting better Learning Mindset Self awareness

I’m a piece of work. So are you.

I’m a piece of work.

People who know me well would agree — opinionated, not afraid to challenge, little patience with stupidity, occasionally moody.

But… I’m also honest, caring, helpful, generous, and a good listener.

Here’s the thing.

You’re also a piece of work. We all are.

We’re a piece of work from the moment we’re born.… Read the rest

Categories
Courage Growth Learning Mindset Psychological Safety

You become what you pay attention to

You need a breather.

Seriously, when was the last time you consciously paid attention to your breathing?

When was the last time you sat with your breathing and paid full attention to you filling your lungs with air and then releasing the air from your lungs?

Most people get through their day without even once being aware of the fact that they’re breathing.
Read the rest
Categories
Growth Learning Mindset Reflection Self awareness

Maximizer or Satisficer?

There are areas in my life where I want the very best.

Food is such an area. I love going to a good restaurant (I’m not writing expensive) and enjoying a good meal with a great conversation.

Food and conversation go excellently together. Food, to me, is emotional beyond the functional role of providing your body with nutrition and energy.… Read the rest

Categories
Asking Questions Change Coaching Dialogue Learning

Change starts with a conversation

I’m a certified facilitator in Fierce Conversations.

That’s not a joke.

If you thought it was, you’re probably wondering why something like training in conversations exists in the first place.

Well …

Because many of us do not know how to have a skillful conversation.

We don’t listen well.

We don’t articulate well.… Read the rest

Categories
Habits Learning Self awareness

I made a mistake

I made a mistake last weekend.

I didn’t realize it until Monday early morning when I was getting ready to write my insight for that week.

I sat down behind my laptop, ready to start writing, but there was nothing. No idea what to write about. No immediate inspiration. No funny things jumped into my mind.… Read the rest

Categories
Change Learning Mindset Self awareness

Why change always comes from within

Steve Jobs ended his famous Stanford Commencement speech with this tip for the graduating students:

“Stay hungry. Stay foolish.”

Steve Jobs

My interpretation:

Always look for opportunities to make ‘things’ better, starting with yourself. Always be curious about yourself and the world around you.

Curiosity and change are the fun parts of being alive and growing as a human being and leader.… Read the rest

Categories
Coaching Learning Self awareness Strategy

How to be a good coach. Also for leaders

I follow quite a few business coaches for a number of reasons.

My primary purpose is to learn.

Some coaches create great content.

Some are excellent at marketing themselves and their services.

Some know how to leverage data and technology to the maximum.

Some are not good, and these also provide learning.… Read the rest

Categories
Experimentation Learning Self awareness

Five lessons I learned from my webinar

Last week Thursday, I hosted a webinar on personal growth. My ambition is to do more online, so this was an intentional experiment.

Without experiments, life would be boring.

The only way to find out whether something works is by doing it. You can’t make a difference and change the world on paper.… Read the rest

Categories
Courage Growth Learning Mindset

Are you living up to your potential?

Yesterday I hosted a webinar on personal growth.

It was a fun learning experience talking about personal growth, and I also took the opportunity to introduce a brand-new training I’m planning to record soon.

Personal growth matters to me a lot, so much you know by now. But perhaps you never knew exactly why.… Read the rest