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A process of Personal Transformation

December 29, 2013 Leave a comment

I had been aware for some time of my limiting thoughts, emotional blocks and strange behaviours –  these are basically hangovers from our past, our previous learned responses which had outlived their usefulness to the person we might wish to be …. for me they were stopping me taking a leap … however the strange part is that I had the answer within me .. what I needed to do was repeat a process which I had carried out once before –  for when you think about it,  everything in life is a process, in this case to confront these behaviours which were now irrelevant to my life and renew myself … in a way to renounce who and what I was, and allow myself the freedom to introduce myself to what next evolution of me … the same process is available for everyone, from that awareness, we eventually come to the Acceptance that action is needed … then when we are ready we do take action.

Twenty years ago, I went through a period of intense personal change – looking back now, the program was based on the original  12 step program .. this is a proven program, which has been going since 1935 … in my case I am not driven by the need to stop drinking, but by the need to use the Transformational 12 steps program to bring around personal change … to change the way I react – so that basically I don’t .. in fact to change my default response to pause and reflection before I respond – giving me that time to consider the impact of my words and deeds on others, but also our own evolution … in other words to respond from strength, instead of reacting from weakness –   for me the outcome made me whole –  after the completion of the program, I am content, with me … however the work doesn’t stop there, for now on it is also a continual process of self assessment –  in this occasion , I knew it was time, I was committed to change, in fact, I had been looking for a way to make it happen since April … and just before this time, I felt in darkness, always feeling my way forward, metaphorically falling over stuff .. this stuff was my past, my beliefs, my history, my limitations.

Note before starting … you need to be committed to this course of action without any reservation … if you are not committed, it won’t work .. you can’t fake it … you need to follow the steps, some are not easy because they can be a very confronting process –   have the courage and belief in the process to follow where they lead, for if you want your future to be different from your today … it is journey you must take ..  you might use the analogy that the process, is almost a low level reformat of the way we look at life … it is equivalent to a process of clean up and clean out — its worth it,  let me assure you.

I went to a local AA meeting, just to feel the atmosphere .. to meet and talk to the people who had successfully come through the program .. a strength, a compassion, but an overall humbleness from everyone who had completed the program was all I felt … I went ahead with the steps in order, going through each until I was absolutely happy that I was totally committed to it –  for me, as I was so committed to change and my previous experience with the program, it was not as difficult as I imagined, for I had been ready for such a process since the beginning of 2013 … note: –  you have to want to do it .. I might add doesn’t magically rid your personality of these reactions to stimulus, what it does is that it makes you very aware of your personal triggers to make reactions and behaviours and allows you to confront them and once you have there is no fear,  there is just contentment, happiness, love an a strength – a wish to help others –  remember we all have these demons at sometime during our path, our journey.

I believed I needed to become less reactive to stimulus .. to be mindful, present in the moment, to forgive and forget the past hurts and failures .. to bring into the present only the learning, my goal was to live life mindfully, part of which means we need to stay present .. for that is the only place where anything is created … this also means letting go of expectations (investing in them anyway), whatever they are, to be open to real abundance through love –  to be open to the infinity of the Universe through love and abundance.  I came to the realisation that when we invest in expectations we are by the very nature, creating illusions as these events are in the future, they haven’t happened yet, so we are in fact setting ourselves up for disappointment.

It took me a while to write about this, as I completed these steps back in October 2013 … to have the support of your family is a big plus, but one thing is so true, this process is something we have to do for ourselves and by ourselves  … for that is where change must come from … the commitment to the self, and to the future self …. Good Luck!

If you feel the need, from the awareness of self, look at the process, if you need any help … please write … I will help how I can.

Since this, I have had some realizations that came from unblocking my limitations, incredible clarity has come …all this was like breaking through the shell if you like that enclosed my understanding … now I guess I am within a bigger shell … one day I will push through those limitations … Quite soon I will do another post of the process of learning to live mindfully.

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The State of our Paradigm – January 2013

January 7, 2013 2 comments

I have the awareness that the paradigm we are all within is due for a reality check soon, if nothing changes, perhaps in the next few years … unless there is a planet wide epiphany which substantially changes the values that our current culture is based upon, other than that the outcome is inevitable … one can only speculate as the structure of the new paradigm, after the bumpy journey we will take to arrive there.

To me the world we are in is like watching the inevitability of a disaster in slow motion … while we run around looking busy, as if arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic (after it struck the iceberg) … strangely all this is known, predicted even, but no hard decisions are being taken … we are in denial … ineffective … we are in a continual state of stamping out “spot” fires that crop up, as with Greece, Portugal, Ireland, Spain plus, plus and possibly Italy and of course the European Union as a whole and the USA –  and the worldwide spiralling deficit .… . Once we have done all this, it only takes us back to where we were before, we are still in crisis.

Without taking any hard decisions, the outcome is inevitable as deficits grow, we have in place the ideal setting for the death knell of the European Union, the USA and many other countries in the world as we know it.

Please see countries ranked by External Debt here –  Worldwide, we are in a terminal situation …

For me … we are past the time to make those hard decisions –  surely some of these decisions should include abolishing all debt that was directly caused by the meltdown and change the laws so that all people whose illegal behaviour caused it, confiscate their money and let Banks and other institutions that were and still are vulnerable fail, as even today, Big Banks have failed the OCC Risk Tests –  their Corporate governance is terminally flawed, for their is no plan of what to do, and no one is in control anywhere … here is the link to that report concerning risk tests from an American Bank article … and those men and women whose greed caused this catastrophe, and so directly benefited from it, pay for their crimes. It won’t happen of course, but hard decisions are needed, that spread the load of cuts across all … not just focusing on social programs which always seem to be such a easy target –  for a start lets look at Political and bureaucratic sizes, salaries and perks.

The only country that did see the light after the Global Financial meltdown was Iceland. Instead of bailing out the banks and the status quo, they bailed out the people, the citizens and put the bankers into prison … beautiful… the Short Video story of that event is here

However when the system of money itself breaks down, say within the next 5–6 years, definitely within the decade – we will have no defense, we will be leaderless … as Governments which are at best ineffectual … although they would like us to believe otherwise, will not have the answers … because they are all paralysed with fear, whilst the people in Government are clever at manipulation, they are hardly intelligent nor have the taste or the backbones to make the decisions necessary … because the status quo will be chaos, they will ask what to do, because they won’t know, they will do nothing effective, and what they will do, will be to try and maintain the status quo –  which of course is already in transition and so no longer exists –  we may, I believe trend towards a state of anarchy, then at some point after the darkness and the inevitable gross hardships … we will hopefully see the dawn and Humanity will start again.

All those learning experiences we will go through – but will we learn, going on the past, we won’t, because in the future as now, we will say how could that happen to us ….. so because we have no backbone, no ability to see the situation as it really is … all of us are living in a kind of fantasy future … Now we look to a future, in “x” generations from now, we are told we will surface as we come out of the fiscal hole that greed and our leadership have dug for us … meanwhile the Politicians themselves don’t seem to be in any state of hardship …. however the costs of this head in the sand approach will lead to hardship on a untold scale as essential infrastructure breaks down – transport, food, communications …. the only upside is at the end of all this … those of humanity that survive will in effect have a clean slate.

Basically the cause of this tragedy is our own Arrogance, indifference, indecision, ineffectiveness and greed … what will they say of us … it was inevitable, why didn’t they see it coming … when it is so inevitable, why aren’t we doing something about it now ?

The only way we can stop this recurring Groundhog day cycle, so that it doesn’t happen again in the future is to change what we value, and that requires that we educate our children, now and for all time, so that in our arrogance and ignorance in the future, we might say “that was then, this is now, it won’t happen to us” –

But of course it will !

Let’s look soon at how we can minimize the effects of the transition from where we are now … to where we will end up !

~

Veritas Gravitas and the MBA Oath

May 27, 2012 Leave a comment

Here is the website in question the MBA Oath

In my opinion it is window dressing, ethics, values and principles is not something you can swear a voluntary compliance with … it is something that you learn through life, either in essential relationship with your parents and during your childhood or you learn it in the military or in some sort of value driven public service organisation …. that actually does something … to the oath giver .. it is the basis of honour, truth, loyalty …. values which have a profound meaning …

For those that take the oath and it is not part of their soul, it will have no effect on their lives, the whole idea that you can swear a voluntary adherence to leading a  life based on ethics and principles is a nonsense …

It might look good on your PR brochure but it means nothing … as they will always default to the values that they learnt .. usually a reflection of the society as whole that values nothing, create nothing .. and only values consumption and excess.. and money of course.

Only those leaders that have grown up in an ethical and principled based learning environment or those exceptional military leaders that know that the result of their work has to create value for all … such voluntary oaths are of no real value to society .. otherwise this comes back to the essence of society .. that it looks good, sounds good … but means nothing … unless you are swearing compliance with something that has teeth or means something to the oath giver … its just so much spin.

Which it seems all our society is about …

Its gets more political as we move forward .. it is about how it looks, how it sounds rather than how it actually is…

Marketing, Relationships and Social Media

January 3, 2012 1 comment

I am either going to post a series here on Marketing and Social Media or write a book or perhaps both.

We need to address some basic questions first, very superficially and briefly here.

Social Media is a disruptive concept, it is essentially an engaged interactive relationship, or it should be, as well it is a Marketing and Relationship creator, nurturer and building tool, all to add to the perception of your brand.

In Marketing, you need to define exactly, what is the market for your specific product or service, then you as the provider, the seller, create and build the relationship, which generally works by providing content that engages with your market. All of this work and content, is to build a relationship, a separate entity so to speak, which is feed and nurtured by both sides, in the case of the company, at some time, a option will be provided to further build the brand relationship and give the customer the option to leverage or in fact contribute to the relationship by perhaps engaging with the Companies content, quizzes for example, this has the effect of deepening the relationship.

Note this is important: Social Media is not a direct Sales Path

1. What is the function of the Internet?

Simplistically, lets start by looking at what the Internet is good at, besides the obvious world wide connectivity issues … access to almost any type of information at any time (with some of it actually true) and the ability to allow for quick and easy access to all sorts of information, and the ability to connect with people, products and services worldwide. One thing though, the internet is just an communication platform, an enabler if you like. It facilitates spontaneous and interactive communication in real time.

Primarily where the internet has come into its own, is in its ability to form communities … and allow for the connection of family, friends, interest groups and commerce, to in fact act as the global replacement for the town square, the meeting point, the notice board, the coffee shop, where people can easily connect for a wide variety of reasons, such as to stay in contact with as well as to develop and maintain relationships with family, friends, special items of interest, education, news and their community just for brief example.

2. What is Social Media ?

Firstly, Social Media is a truly disruptive concept, which can markedly change how you company is viewed and interacted with in your area, or globally, depending on your footprint.

Social Media allows using the infrastructure of the internet the potential to build a relationship, which will allow (if properly setup) for social communications between at least two parties in a commercial sense. It allows for the exchange of ideas, ideologies and user generated content of a a huge number of diverse types and interests. In simple terms it provides the technology which can allow the parties to create, nurture and build a relationship, in human terms.

Very few organizations have any idea what they are doing!. The other day I was speaking to a friend of mine and he said to me … Organizations try to use Social Media as a sales path, which it isn’t, as well Social Media’s main function from a business point of view is to allow the formation and maintenance of relationships, by providing the information, tools and engaging content to build credibility, as part of the fostering the brand relationship and by this, support a relationship between the two parties. At some point, it may be possible to leverage the relationship at the choice of the customer, by requesting involvement from the customer is some form, while still investing in the relationship

Too often, for organizations Social Media is used to try and close a sale, customers on the other hand want a relationship, so this is what is wrong with most people involved with Social Media, they try to close, this is flawed, but similar with many other types of ego driven entitled relationships from adolescent boys onwards.

There is a huge amount of content to cover here .. these are some of the items that I will need to look at..

  • What Social Media is, and what social media isn’t
  • All business is relationship driven
  • How to heal the disconnect between companies and their customers
  • Engagement Strategies
  • The disconnect between Companies and customers
  • The de-personalisation of the customers, and the flawed paradigm that underlines the MBA programs
  • Customers want a relationship, they want to be valued, they want their voice to be heard, it you don’t .. your company will appear only in the history books
  • I know it is an old adage, but you really want to give a customer what they want .. if you want your company to grow and survive.
  • Listen and consult with your customers in anything that will change the customers experience of your product or service.
  • Social Media Platforms such as Twitter & FaceBook, their strengths a weaknesses
  • Klout and PeerIndex .. why are they needed, what function do they fill
  • The Social Media relationship paradigm +++++++

One thing you must remember however, is to ask yourself the question, why is so much of the Internet and Social Media free ?  The answer is simple, because you are the product that these platforms are leveraging, at the end of the day, they care only about how you can help them, they have little regard for you as a individual or the safety of your information, they will use and leverage your presence and your information is anyway they can to legal and otherwise for their own benefit … so beware.

In my view this kind of attitude is the very antithesis of what Social Media is … but there is an underlying mismatch between management styles here, as although the market segment they are working in is Social Media, they bring all the baggage from worst parts of old media and old business to this new sector, this is why it doesn’t mix well.

My view is that those companies, including legacy companies from the transport and communications sector that do not change the way they relate to the customers will by the end of the decade be found only in history books.

Peace is possible

December 28, 2011 Leave a comment

If this comment irritates some, spur them into action, perhaps even deep penetrating thought instead of some predictable knee jerk response, then I believe it will have done its job.

I think peace is possible, but first we must ask what sort of peace …. but for the right kind of peace, much within us has to change. But think of how better life would be worldwide if we created instead of taking the easy way to destroy.

I look at the mess we are in, and I wonder will there ever be change short of a peaceful revolution, but even that would be misdirected, because the real problem with our society is that we value the wrong things – for me the only way we can change the future is to change what we teach our children to value. I cannot see any long-term change until we start to do this … how about we start with the basic principle of Socrates http://bit.ly/qW3zgk , further let’s look at Gandhi 7 dangers to Human Virtue http://bit.ly/mOZAoS  we as a world, don’t comply with one item on either list .. Robert Louis Stevenson said “Everybody, sooner or later, sits down to a banquet of consequences” – I think we will choke when our time comes, as it inevitably will.

Countries make friends and reach understanding when they start to Trade, in other words when they form relationships, we need to seek to understand others.  A dream of mine is why not lets all of us, reach out to someone more often as not to make a new friend … pretty soon the whole world would be a friend or a friend of a friend, then we would have an understanding and perhaps the start on the road to peace. Once we can relate to another person, regardless of their race, creed, religion, place as a person. Then perhaps we will have some insight to see the world through their eyes, then and only then will the world begin to change.

By and large our leaders (poor choice of words I know) have no values or moral operating compass. Change will only come about by the will of the most, to force our servants (???), the politicians to listen. We do however have the “Leadership” we deserve, due to our apathy. The trouble with Politicians, they are expedient in their thinking, something that breeds, amoral thinking. I have never thought that Politicians were worth much, as real people, most aren’t, they are weak, morally bankrupt, corrupt, or just not to bright – but you shout to me “they are bright” well if that is true and this is the best they can do … goodness I can only lament for the future of the human race, as we really are participants in our own destruction.

Currently we have few options as the same current flawed thinking exists of both sides of the electoral ballot paper. So what is our response? Systemic change is needed, how do you think we should move forward?  There is nothing wrong with change as it has always has been the only constant, but change must be for the better, not just change for its own sake.

Sustainable systemic Change that improves the lives long-term for of all of humanity is good, change or revolution for its own sake will not work, as violence just breeds violence. Then we have anarchy, and dark times for all.

Mind you non-violence worked for Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr … perhaps it will work again for us, for humanity. The establishment will try desperately to maintain control until that fateful moment, when perhaps a Policeman or a credible person, says no, then change will happen and it will come in a heartbeat.

Whilst the Euro zone is heading for the biggest financial correction in history, some of the ideology behind it is admirable, perhaps we should apply it to the whole of humanity, where everyone has an equal voice, and no one has a veto. This is why the UN doesn’t work.

Perhaps we should follow those profound words in the US Constitution … “All men (and women of course) are created equal …” these are admirable thoughts which I thoroughly agree with,  but to me some men seem more equal than others … what’s with that by the way ?

The only time we seem to pull together as a species when it is a global threat, then when we all have our backs to the wall, side by side, when we are there very soon, look around and you will see that the enemy, as we are the enemy.

Everyone knows, or should know that Politicians and vested interests are there to stay in power to perpetuate the now or as President Ronald Reagan said “Status quo, you know, is Latin for ‘the mess we’re in”

Further, we don’t learn from history, everything we are doing now, has been done before, recently, the Nazi’s, Pol Pot and the killing fields of Cambodia,  the British Empire, Serbia, Israel, Palestine, NATO, the Friends alliance in Afghanistan no doubt more to come plus innumerable others I have not mentioned, took the decision to kills millions of people for only one reason (labels), because they were different, they thought differently, they believed in something different, it happened yesterday in Nigeria because of flawed fundamentalism – no loving God believes in killing. By and large these forces of death should no longer exist, but we now have new evils, Washington / NATO, and the military industrial machine, that need wars and death so they can survive and pay dividends in more death, so they are really no different from what has come before … they kill innocents and spin it as acceptable collateral damage … they kill, using drones, piloted by some x-box toting functionary 1000 of miles away. Really does Washington, London and Brussels think that they are immune from the consequences of their actions, because if they do, get real, look outside at the world you are creating as a result of your beliefs and you attitudes. I really believe that these evil doers believe it doesn’t apply to them. We have to stop thinking that the end-game for any negotiation where we don’t get our way is to pick up a gun.

As Noam Chomsky said  “Everyone’s worried about stopping terrorism. Well, there’s really an easy way: Stop participating in it”

Truly, I think that the leadership of the world needs a true shakeup, as we transition from the decaying structures and failing systems – We will have to do more with less, and in my view I believe the world would be in far safer hands if we were led  by the feminine of the species, women, but by women I don’t mean testosterone in a skirt …

I truly wonder if the human race will ever grow up, to me we still act as young children at playtime recess.  One day Gaea may  decide enough is enough, let’s be done with this flawed experiment that is the human race and try again … but then she has all the time in the world, whilst we do not.

How to build influence without seeming to

November 4, 2011 2 comments

I have watched with interest how organisations that operate in the Social Media sector .. and I have some observations about how to define your strategy

Lets start with the function of Social Media ….

Social Media is not a direct influence or sales path …. it is a tool to build a contact .. to build a relationship and ultimately to add to an experience of your brand from which you can then leverage, while you continue to add value to the overall experience.

Social Media is the Internet’s replacement in this insular world for your sphere of influence … your community, your friends, and those organisations that you are interested in engaging with.

Social Media has been hyped up to the point where people are living their life in this cyber space instead of the real world … please take note … Social Media is not your life, and the most important people in your life, are not on Twitter!, well they shouldn’t be (if they are, it’s something to think about) – professionally speaking I believe many mature bricks and mortar organisations would be more successful especially on Facebook if they de-activated their account – their strategy is all one sided, and is all about providing the information that they believe is important – which is not how you build a relationship .. One thing, numbers of Facebook does not means that they are actually listening to you … but on Twitter … I believe they are more engaged and therefore interested and note, the un-follow button on Twitter is a heart beat away.

In the early days, very early days on Twitter, on another account I did an experiment with that exact scenario .. and then changed the nature of the feed .. the response was immediate … that feed lost a large number of followers .. and note people remember … that … if you don’t value them .. well enough said

Now lets look at how to build influence

It is built by engagement and valuing the people you connect with, but you MUST speak with your own voice and from your own values …. if you do not offer up something of yourself then what makes you different than the thousands of voices of the Internet .. that say .. buy this .. do this .. see here … your strategy must be to enhance the experience of your followers … their world expands, perhaps made somehow brighter by following you on Twitter or any other Social Media channel, in other words you provide something they want in their life.

I have seen worthy organisations who are so focused on getting their message across, without seeing the other side of the picture …. you need to involve people in your world on a more personal basis or should I say your persona …. which on the Internet is not the same thing .. well it shouldn’t be. Also if you are speaking as the voice of a organisation, you need to follow strict protocols of how you engage … what you say .. and how you say it … bring your personal views of what they did, or how they have treated you is counter-productive and will lose you followers.

There are specific processes and strategies to interest, to engage, involve the customer / follower, to retain them and use that connection as a leverage to a wider audience … but so many are missing the mark here …. to start look at your own interests and those sites you follow and ask yourself, why am I interested in this information, and how do they retain my interest and how do they interest me enough, that I want to re-tweeted my message to my followers … this is a critical point … to a large extent I choose the people I follow and likewise unless I believe the overall experience of my feed will be enhanced and will add something to my message … I will not engage … so I this is how I value them by not devaluing our relationship –  and therefore I will only re-tweet a message and content that I can relate to … and I believe my “friends” for want of a better world will find of value …. basically because I do.

At the end of the day … you need to remember on thing .. this is Social Media … it is not a one way passive “relationship” as in Mass Media, it is or at least it should be a engaged interactive relationship, that value and engage with your people … to build a joint experience, and note joint means together …. do not make the mistake of seeing your followers as a means to an end .. as the equivalent of email fodder … value them, respect them and you will succeed … don’t .. well we know what happens if you don’t.

Gandhi and the 7 Dangers to Human Virtue

October 3, 2011 2 comments

Recently I wrote about Socrates Fundamental Principles – a point of view; see them here – http://bit.ly/qW3zgk

Here I am writing about Gandhi and his

7 Dangers to Human Virtue

  1. Wealth without work
  2. Pleasure without conscience
  3. Knowledge without character
  4. Business without ethics
  5. Science without humanity
  6. Religion without sacrifice
  7. Politics without Principle

We as a culture and a society fail in every single count. We need change in our society.. because we are not living in harmony, we are living, or trying to live alone … I coined the term “Social Intelligence” — a crowd sourced consciousness and intelligence

If we can somehow live the life for others, which of course means that others live their life for us .. what is wrong with that or we could encapsulate it by saying “If we all lived for others – sounds so great, as remember that means that others are living their life for you”

Remember what Martin Luther King Jr. said in 1955 … “Christ gave us the goals and Mahatma Gandhi the tactics.”

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