Coaching with POSITIVITY! In life, at work, with teams.

Exploring Active Noticing, Embracing Change, and the Power of Kindness

October 09, 2023 Angelos Derlopas
Coaching with POSITIVITY! In life, at work, with teams.
Exploring Active Noticing, Embracing Change, and the Power of Kindness
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Consider this: What if we treated life like a stop sign, pausing and creating space for new beginnings and fresh perspectives? In this compelling episode, we explore this concept and the beautiful art of active noticing to make room for transformation and growth. We dive deep into the importance of giving others priority and how this humble act is a reflection of our ability to evolve. Stop, look, and listen as we journey through these enriching ideas that could be the catalyst to your journey towards self-improvement.

Change is inevitable, but our response to it is what defines us. In the second segment of this transformative episode, we take you through the process of recognizing your present reality and how acceptance can be your first step towards personal growth. We'll debunk the myth that noticing and collecting data is reserved for the science nerds. Instead, we'll show you how being attentive to your surroundings, no matter how insignificant they may seem, can open a window to understanding the changes around us. We believe that by acknowledging our struggles without judgment, we carve an open path for our growth.

Finally, we circle back to one of the most powerful yet underrated human qualities: kindness. Picture a dandelion, it doesn't force its way into existence but blossoms naturally, spreading its seeds far and wide. That's how we explore the concept of kindness in this discussion. We discuss the idea of spreading kindness through thoughts, ideas, and actions, much like the dandelion, which can create a ripple effect and positively influence not only the receiver but also the giver. Tune in to experience a fresh and enlightening perspective on these concepts which promise to spark a transformative journey of self-awareness and personal growth.

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Before we start, let's do a little bit of a centering exercise. So please sit in your chair or wherever you're sitting and in a way that is that feels comfortable, but in a way that is just bring your attention to how your body is sitting and bring your attention to the texture and the feel of the seat and the temperature, and then focus on your breath and inhale a tune and exhale at four, inhale at two and exhale at four. They bring your attention to something that is very dear to you, perhaps picture of your favorite animal, or picture of one of your beloved people, perhaps child that is laughing, something that is very dear to you and also cheerful. And then let's open up the space for the next 15 minutes that we will be together and let's start from here. Let's start with a poem from David White. It's called Sometimes. Sometimes, if you move carefully through the forest, breathing like the ones in the old stories who would cross a shimmering bed of leaves without a sound, you come to a place whose only task is to trouble you with tiny but frightening requests, conceived out of nowhere but in this place, beginning to lead everywhere. Requests to stop what you're doing right now and to stop what you're becoming while you do it, questions that can make, or are made, alive, questions that have patiently waited for you, questions that have no right to go away. So let me share my screen with a presentation, and we hope that we will produce good questions for ourselves and a small introduction about me that Elizabeth has already done. This is the model that we will be working on today. It's called SNAC, from the words stop, notice, accept, curious and kindness. It's a model based on the work of Dr Nomburg and we will introduce each step and we will try to create some questions that are meaningful, and I would invite you not only to use the chat box, but the company of a paper and a pen. I think that will help you. It will help the questions and the insights to remain with you for a much longer time after the webinar has been completed, and I always say that the road from the mind until the paper is very long. And someone else said we write in order to understand what we are thinking. So, with these two thoughts, I think that you will encourage yourself enough to write down in goodwill and perhaps in your own language and whichever language you feel comfortable with writing, and let's start introducing each step and starting acquiring. What does it mean every step? For us, the first step is stop, and we mean by that to just stop whatever you're doing. Speaking about the coronavirus crisis, we have experienced a big stop, so stopping, by definition, requires us to begin again. We can always begin again. The first step to a new beginning is to stop now. So, in order to begin again, we have to stop now, and I want you to imagine yourself having to stop and think about a metaphor having to stop in a stop sign, meaning when you drive. That means that you have to stop your vehicle, you have to stop your car and wait because someone else will be passing and that someone else has a priority over you. So picture that, bring that into mind having to stop for someone else because someone else has a priority, and perhaps it gets even better. You don't know who that person is and you don't know if that person will cross in front of you, but you have to stop and you have to give the priority to some other person. As I was reflecting about that, interestingly enough, I noticed that in the Greek language, sometimes we use the word meet someone in relation to answer. So when you're meeting someone. When you expect someone to cross the street because you're on a stop sign and you have to allow that the other person to pass because the other person has the priority, it's like meeting with that other person and that is an answer to something. And I wonder this answer is surfacing because you have a question and the question is what is bringing you to the stop sign? Now, the stop sign is something which does not last for long, but how about the red sign? When you really have to stop and wait for a certain amount of time? And that means usually when we are in a routine where we are inside our heads, inside our daily routine, going for our work or coming back, or going from one work to another or whatever is in the list of to-do of every day, then you have to pull the handbrake, perhaps, and change the station on the radio or do something else. So can you bring that back into mind? When you are stopping and you know that you will be stopped for 20, 30 seconds, depending on the red light, and you don't really have anything to do there and you're not really very happy usually to having to stop because you are so busy and sometimes you become more nervous, or sometimes you take advantage of that and you take advantage and do for a few seconds something that you could not do while you were on the move. And then what do you usually do? Which one of those persons are you usually when you are in the red, when you have to stop on the red side? Angelos, do you see that question in the chat? Yes, now, I do. Some of us do. But do we really need to go through full stop in order to embrace and begin? Can we just continue on a different path? Well, that's a good question and I wonder how can we ask? But I realize that this is a very important question for you. That probably implies that you would rather not stop in order to embrace a new beginning. But you know, stop is an awareness. Stop stopping something is the beginning of an awareness, or is it is a beginning of a new beginning, or it's stopping is a change? It could also be. It could also mean stop your movement, or it could also mean stop waiting. Stop waiting, it could. It could mean change what you're doing, change your routine, stop waiting. Let's imagine yourself being in a waiting line and then, at some point, you can stop waiting and it could be that perhaps you can go to the next queue that has just opened who is shorter, or you can move in front and to the front desk of the waiting line that's waiting and be served or something else. But it means that I think the question here is how, how, how flexible we are, how where we are, how we do we are to any kind of change, how, which could imply both stopping stopping the movement or could imply stopping the waiting as well. Can he bring into your mind situations where you had to stop, and not just with the analogies that I offer anything in work or in life where you have to stop? Sometimes, if you don't stop, you will be missing something. Yes, thank you so far. So far says that that's more clear to me. If stopping is also the moment of the change, then it means a lot, means a lot to us. Yes, stop what you do in order to either do something else or in order to consider or reflect or do in the next step, which is to take notice what is happening within and what is happening around you and then start collecting the data. And we're talking about the data. We're not talking about rationalizing or reasoning about what is happening, because we usually would do that automatically, like I don't know. Do you like it here? No, I don't like it here because that's too much people or it's too noisy, or you know, we're rationalized and we're just talking about data, noticing the data. Even if no information arises. That is still data and it will be helpful to be attentive to your not disability how, how artful you are in how you notice things and how you collect data, and it's um, it's just come to my attention from early on and I noticed, with the help of one of my teachers, that if you take into account, if you think about the things that you do as a routine each day, for example, taking the bus to go to work, or so, that means you pass from the state from the same side of the street, um, each day, and you pass from the other side of the street each day, and what do you do? Do you notice what is happening around? Do you look out for the information? That might not be what you are searching for, but it are the information that is available and, um, the change of the information from day to day means that something has changed in that road, in your environment, in your community, something has changed and the first step to start processing is to notice data and I think if, if we hold the skill of noticing, we are becoming better and better. And uh, if, uh, I show most of the people here are coaches. So noticing and be attentive to our not disability is very important as well. It could be a part of the active listening noticing, noticing what is happening, even if you don't think that is important for you. You will never know until you notice. And, on the other hand, if you have a bias, that this is not not what I am looking for, so I don't really have to take notice of anything here. That means that you will have a big it you would have. You will encourage the per a daily loss of data. So that means you will be gradually disengaged from your reality when you don't notice what is happening and things are happening. Things are happening in front of you when you're looking for something else, and it's sometimes they are happening because you don't notice, and sometimes things change for you and you and these things affect you because you don't notice, and the thing is that this is getting better the more you. This is a skill that can be acquired, and this is a skill that can be developed. So the more you notice, the more you will make yourself able to start noticing more. And what else is there in noticing? What do you have to notice, or what is your best way for you to notice? What turns you better in order to notice, to really notice what is happening, and how many things can you can alert you? How many things can can you miss when you're not observing, or when you're looking but you're not seeing? Can you tell us the difference between looking and seeing? Chris has wrote something great in the chat. He says my father-in-law talks of going back to the bridge. It's a place with a great view, but you usually hurry past it. Yeah, yeah. So sometimes you, yeah. I remember at some point a few months ago a friend of mine was making a metaphor and he made that comparison between him and the way that he stares when she sees something that's important with a dog, and she said I like to look like a dog too. I mean, look like a dog. Have you noticed how dogs are looking when they see something or when they're searching for something? How long can they look? So when you go to a bridge you are. I think that's very good from some day. Thank you, nihao. I hope I'm saying your name correctly and I think that, yeah, going to a bridge, which means that you have picked up a magnificent spot so you can look, you know, from a high point of view and you can have many degrees, a wide view of what is happening, and usually there are a lot of boats passing, so there is a lot to see. There is a lot to see on the bridge, on the bus, at work. There is a lot to notice and sometimes there is a lot of clutter and perhaps you're missing, perhaps you're living in an environment that has many, many pieces of information and what you're trying, what you want to notice or what might be, you know, valuable for you. You might, you may need to take a good look, as we say, and yes, as Zaukar said, seeing involves some interpretation of what we are looking at Exactly. So what am I looking at? Have you ever said that to yourself? So what am I looking at? How, what is the you know, the meaning making, or what is important, or what has changed? And so, if something has changed, what does it mean? There are some signs, there are some posters here, some things are said, some information is still valid, for example, for events that are for the future and some for events that happened in the past, and everything means something. Maybe if you have a lot of posters of events for the past, that means that there's not much is going on in this, in this area. So there are signs that are saying something and there are signs that are writing something but don't really say anything, because not all of us speak, have a voice, or they may not have a voice for you, or that voice may not reach your ear, your ears, if your ears are closed or tuned to something else or your focus is somewhere else. Not all of us speak, have a voice, and I wonder where do I find my voice and speak it out loud? Where do you found your voice? Where can you find your voice and speak it out loud? What have you noticed? Where is the best place for you to find your voice? Yes, stopping the morning routine to sit to meditate. Yes, for sure, that's. That's a perfect, that's a perfect discipline to start becoming more aware of your notizability. Yes, you could be looking, but not paying attention. Seeing involves paying attention, exactly. So we need to stop and then notice, because if you don't stop, you won't be able to notice. Does that make sense? So far, I cannot see your lowly faces, but I can reach your comments. So yes, he says yes, okay, so great. Now let's move to the next one. The next step is about acceptance, and now this is a tricky one, of course, because acceptance does not mean liking, does not mean wanting, choosing or supporting. What we're talking about here is accept whatever you're struggling with. Accept whatever you're struggling with. That could be time that you don't have. That could be the kids and the noise. That could be the sleepiness. That could be your frustration staying at home, especially this day with the lockdown. Acknowledge it for what it is and without judgment. And we say a phrase is a little bit cliche this data's been called, it is what it is. So this is what we're talking about. The acceptance is not about something that we were happy with. It's about accepting the fact that this is real, but this is our reality, like accepting the fact that we're living in the coronavirus crisis days and the data is this and that, and we accept that, and we know how important acceptance is for for a coaching process. If you go back to the coaching curve that based on the bill. Now, the first thing to do before in order to start your commitment into designing actions for your goal, is to accept the situation as it is, accept that this is how it is and, regardless of whether I like it or not, I had to accept it first in order to start creating new behaviors, start designing actions, start make, start making the choices, start making decisions that will help me move forward to my future, or my side future, or start doing something or take responsibility. So, in order to take responsibility which I think is so quintessential to coaching is first, is that the first thing that we have to do is to accept. Accept the situation as it is, accept the conditions that we are living in, accept, and it starts from here, start from number one. I have to accept me, and not in an artistic way, but accept me. Usually, the paradox of change is that I accept myself with all my other things that are not working very well right now. Accepting my weaknesses, accepting my, my failures, accepting what is when I have been very consistent in not achieving for a long period of time. Accepting is about is about managing the difficult. The difficult seems accepting something that is we're talking about here, accepting something that it's somehow very difficult to do. We're talking about accepting something which is, you know, very hard to swallow. As we say, accept something for an analogy here, the analogy of the snowball. You know, this is the souvenirs that you have from different cities that you're going as a tourist and they have, you know, in a little Crystal ball, you, the head of that snow, they have buildings from the city and then it has no, that is falling and you have to. Or if you Move a little bit, there is this is boldest, noble then you will see the snow moving around and you will, you will have to wait until it falls down. I think by accepting is enabling the snow fall down so we can see the Clear picture. I think, before becoming able to accept, it's like watching all the snow, which means we're seeing something which is not very clear and we have to clear the picture out. And the first step to do that is to accept and ask yourself who do you want to accept today and perhaps that's a good way to start and Sharing on the chat box what would you like to accept, what is hard for you to accept at this point today for you, but has to do with you, has to do with your world, but has to do with who you want to be in the world. Neha says that could you please share some thoughts about accepting a repetitive action of a love, one that makes one angry, despite discussions about not repeating that action? Yes, yes, thank you, neha. I think the best way to deal with that is to focus on ourselves and acts and focus on what is the implication. How does the other person behavior is making us feel? How am I feeling because of that sometimes? Sometimes I'm feeling something that is a little bit Very hard to accept. Sometimes it's sometimes we notice in ourselves the effect of what the other person is doing, and I don't know if that makes sense for you. Sometimes I say, okay, so the other person is doing their own stuff, but look at how that affects me and I don't like, I don't like me and I don't like. I don't like that when, when I'm becoming that person, because it could be that I am being manipulated or it could be that I'm being just, you know, deranged because because of how react to what the other person is doing. So accepting is more Like, you know the difficult acceptance right now we have is about. So the other person let's say, let's make a couple hypothesis the other person may do that forever and may never stop or may never cheat can accept that and stop reacting the way that I react can accept that. This is regardless of whether I like the other behavior of the other person or I don't probably obviously I don't. But if the power of acceptance here is that when I accept that this will be, it will be my reality, I know that I don't like it, but how do I want to go on with my life? I don't want to go on with my. Do I want to be angry or sad or annoyed or disturbed or whatever a negative thing because the other person is doing like that? Why do I see this connection? You say, despite discussions about no repeating that an action. So you have made some kind of discussions with the other person. Perhaps the other person Okay, I got you, you're right, I'm wrong, I will stop doing that. And then he or she will continue in doing that because ABC theories, and then you are with yourself and then one thing that you will make good room for you, you know, is when you accept that okay. So this is what is happening. How do I want to be while this is what is happening, except what I have? No, not control. Yes, thank you very much. Ever reply that said what I have not control of and Elizabeth said I'm accepting a lot of unknown about what the future holds, because you know it's the future. Which is a no, and if you look at it from a different lens, yes, it makes sense. Future is unknown and I'm my accepting. That is like making the pieces. Not I'm not fighting with. It's not that I like it, it's not that I'm not interested in fighting out. Is that I'm not fighting with that? I'm not in a fight with the annual. I'm not fight with what the annual provokes in me. Accepting time, it says, accepting that, despite this being being read on reasonable, the six and nine am limitation on being allowed to exercise, run or walking outside during lockdown, making social distancing even more challenging, as everyone is now on the street at the same time, and you had to accept that. That you are perhaps okay. So you are perhaps compliant if I'm getting your time and you're complying. But I will thought about people are not compliant and yes, yes, I think that I can relate to that, because that's more or less the situation here. So it's not just about you and the regulations, about what the other people are doing. And then you said, okay, so I don't like it, but I mean that does not help me in that conversation that I have with myself. So I accept that this is what it is and because I accept that and I think that, going back to the work, to the couple of words that we had with Elizabeth in the beginning, it's a positivity, is about. This is the situation. I don't like it, but what would be best for me is to look at what I can do with that situation and that helps me distance myself from the negative emotions and a little bit down on that road there are some new and positive emotions are surfacing because I'm engaging and focusing to what I want to create versus what I want, to what I want, to what I hate about what is happening. And so focusing is where you focus. As we can remember the work of the copyright with the pressuring recovery. He was saying that where we put our focus is where reality has been created. So when we put our focus what we want to create, then usually positive feelings are starting to emerge and see as the next step. Everyone is welcome. Everyone is welcome. So I'm not sure, accepting that I do best. So, of course, accepting that I do the best I can to assist my dear mother who is in a lockdown, the elderly protected village she lives, accepting that I do my best, yes, also, yes, yes, I think that accepting that as well is, I assume, that this is very important for you and you have found that this is very helpful, that you have to accept that sometimes, in that sense, accepting that is make peace with that, make peace with that which. Making peace finds serenity. And then this comes to mind serenity versus calmness, because serenity is something it's, it's an inner condition and calm is an outer condition. So serenity is about making peace with what is happening, is accepting the situation. It's not about surrendering, it's about accepting, and the acceptance is necessary in order to move forward. And let's move to the next step, which is become curious, and this is central to coaching course curiosity, genuine curiosity and constructive curiosity. Now let's ground yourself, questions about your experience and environment what am I feeling? Why do I do right now? And curiosity is a quality that is related to inclusive thinking, such as exploration, investigation and learning, and becoming curious. And going back to the data that we have collected on the step of notice, because we discussed the second step was notice, so that's the state, that the step where we were collecting data. And now curious, becoming curious. And let's talk a little bit about curiosity, because am I so this? These are the data. Are these what is behind this data and what else can I understand? And where, where else can I get data? And these can really be very cautious about what I think, because sometimes what I think is so, or data, thoughts and interpretations are so embedded in data, and sometimes we are. We are informed, let's say, by journalists about things or by friends, and we are mixing up data with interpretation. For example, a very simple example, the weather today is good. Is that data or interpretation? I'm curious. The weather is good today is, of course, interpretation, because the weather is good or bad depending on where you are and what do you like and how you would like the weather to be. The weather is rainy, all the weather is cloudy, all the weather is sunny. Now, that is data. Whether it's hot or the weather is cold, that is interpretation, because hot for you might mean change, or it might mean and I'm talking about Celsius or it could be 18 or it could be 35, and depends on what am I accustomed to, or how do I like the weather to be, the temperature and or the stock market. That was a bad day for the stock market. Well, who says that? Depending on your portfolio, it could be a good day or it could be a bad day. I don't know right, but I think if you become curious, you can go to a different direction which is more intriguing. And let's think about how easy it is for you to have access to data. Sometimes we okay, now the movies are not playing, the theaters are closed, perhaps in most of the countries. But when you're going through the movies guide and you're trying to find out which is a good new movie to see, you don't really get to form your own opinion, because the information itself is being embedded with interpretation of the journalist or the movie critic or whoever is writing an article, and before even you realize or you get the information of who is playing and what's the genre and what is the plot and what's the director and so on, you immediately, and sometimes upfultrously, you'll really have an idea of whether that movie is good or bad. So we do that every day when we're selecting movies, when we're selecting products in a supermarket or even for politicians, it's all been pre-selected and the interpretation is embedded in the information itself. So we're living in a time of fast food and we're also living in a time of fast thought. So we don't really get the opportunity or we don't really get to be very much trained into deliver our own thinking. Be the owners of our thoughts. We consume thoughts that are ready made Fast thought. This is the era of the fast thinking. We live over our heads. We're really we're really. We're living out of our heads. We're living in somebody else's head. We don't really get to use our head to make a decision for the movie that we make. Sometimes we don't really get a decision to say that movie was good or bad, even after we see the movie. Can you think about that? We said God ran me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Yes, the curious text box back looks up again and okay, we will look at all the model again at the end. Thank you very much for that, chris. Yes, that's a very good quote. That's helping a lot. Thank you very much. How does one make peace with something that embodies fear? It's the same routine on Neha, with trying to find out how, what, what exactly is happening out there that triggers that fear. And fear is about avoiding something. And what are you avoiding exactly? And it's it's not the thing that can be addressed in five, 10 minutes, but for sure it's about looking at the eye of what makes you fearful. They say talking about movies. They say that art and movies, the art, is a window to our soul. So how do you, how do you look at they are as a window to your soul, how aware you are that when you go to the movies or when you start to dialogue with any piece of art, any kind of art that you're actually, you are actually opening up a window to your own soul. So you see not the world outside, but the world inside. That's what you're seeing. You can use art as a process of self-awareness. Now the last step is kindness. We need, we want to respond to ourselves and others with our mistakes and all with kindness and observe how that helps things get back on track. Now, kindness is a behavior marked by ethical characteristics. It is a pleasant disposition and concern and consideration for others. It is considered a virtue and is recognized as a value in many cultures and sometimes in many religions as well. So what can you notice about kindness and how you know in which degree is kindness embedded in your own life? There are so many things and many ways to start. Like you, look all these little rocks, little stones. You can see these different kind of messages and as coaches and we will love the change. And the thing is how, where are we and how are we dressed up? All in kindness, with the right intention, with kindness or intention, and what we're doing. Are we doing that with kindness? And I I worry that quote. Well, I just had changed that a little bit from a Dr Goliano Am I not what I do in order to change who I am? Lelano said we are what we do. You know we are what we do in order to change who we are. So it makes sense. The way that you're trying to achieve the things that you want to achieve defines you. Are you doing that kindness? And can you notice how many people are seeking human kindness? We're talking about how much humanity, how open you are to stop a notice and accept with curiosity what is happening and who and what is calling your inner kindness, your inner shulun kindness, and what does that kindness can make you feel? And what does that kindness can make others feel? And I selected the dandelion because you cannot force it. Perhaps you can blow, but dandelion goes wherever it wants, sometimes uninvited, in whichever direction, and chooses its own pace. So have you ever thought about thoughts, ideas, actions of kindness that are being spread, are being diffused, are being in a very wide angle around you and can travel very far and can have a lesson effect? And sometimes you don't notice that, but you're carrying a little piece of a dandelion. How about that? How about your human kindness acting like a dandelion? And I like it to close a picture and hold a picture with you as something that you care and as something that you're given, given the gift. And we, I think we should also be mindful that when you're given a gift, you're also receiving it here, because it's the energy and the positive emotions going back to positivity, the positive emotions that you're creating for your own self as well, for everybody. Cam and Kristen says love the metaphor of a dandelion to kindness. Yes, thank you very much. I find that very moving. And yes, kindness, you don't have to force you. You cannot force your kindness. You can offer your kindness right and you you can offer that to whatever you do. Do that out of kindness. Kindness breeds, kindness says that. Yes, sir, thank you very much.

Embracing Change's Importance
Importance of Noticing and Collecting Data
Finding Personal Truth Through Observation
Accepting Difficulties and Embracing Curiosity
The Power of Human Kindness