Dive Deeper Development
Dive Deeper into Personal Development
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Life By Design Blog

Stuff to help you live your life by design

Proving your critics wrong or proving your fans right?

Fitspo' quotes. Do you love them or hate them? 

I love seeing quotes and memes on social media. Mostly on weight loss or fitness pages. I'm intrigued to see if I can tell what a person's motivations are. I think a lot of people post these quotes and memes to show how positive they are but they probably aren't aware that they are revealing more negativity than they realise. 

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Business Book Club: Alive at Work

This month I’ve been reading Alive at Work: The Neuroscience of Helping Your People Love What They Do by Daniel M Cable. The book largely focuses on a part of the brain called the ‘seeking system’. Our seeking system is the part of the brain that creates the impulse to explore our world and learn about our environment. But what has this got to do with feeling alive at work?

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"Arghhh I can't believe I did that" OR knee-jerk reactions

A man came to see me recently because he's not happy with his body.

He's so desperate he wants to do whatever will get the weight off quickly. When someone is in this state I know they aren't very open to taking a long term view. They make a choice which relieves the 'eurghhh' feeling but this is rarely a choice that feels good or is right for them in the medium or long term. My prediction is that unless he sees weight come off and can get into a state where he is thinking more clearly, he will give up before he even gets going. Most people do this. 

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Business Book Club: Get the Truth

This month I’ve been reading Get The Truth. Getting someone to tell the truth is an essential skill that most people would love to have but very few people possess. Former CIA agents and professional interrogators Philip Houston, Mike Floyd, and Susan Carnicero are among the world's best at detecting deceptive behaviour. Not only can they convince people to share things they don’t want to tell but often the subjects of their interrogations thank them for the opportunity afterwards!!!

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Volunteers Week: why helping others helps me

I was asked to share my experience of volunteering as a mentor for The Albert Kennedy Trust with some employees of a bank recently. I wasn't sure where to begin so I found myself sharing the story of how I got into volunteering. As it's Volunteers week I thought I'd share my journey with you here, why I started and how helping others helps me.

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Michelle PrattComment
Business Book Club: Emotional Intelligence

I've set myself a goal to read one self-development book per month.This month I’ve been reading Emotional Intelligence: Why it can matter more than IQ by Daniel Goleman

This book has been sat unread in my office for years. Literally years, I can’t even remember how many. All I can say is that the topic was fairly new when I was given it and I guess it wasn’t top of my reading list. Now that I’ve read it I’m wondering how I’ve lived my life without the information contained within it.

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Business Book Club: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F***

I've set myself a goal to read one self-development book per month. To make sure I really reflect on what I'm reading I'm going to extract the wisdom from the best business and personal development books and share it with you.

This month I’ve been reading The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*** By Mark Manson

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Men and women in the workplace: same language, different styles

It took less than 5 minutes for my tweet to be rubbished by a male associate of mine. My idea wasn’t perfect but it obviously had merit, so why point out small and irrelevant downsides when the overall suggestion was helpful? Why had this guy been so mean about it?  A few days later I listened to a fantastic podcast about the linguistic rituals men and women use in the workplace. It made me think. Perhaps my Twitter friend hadn't been so mean after all!

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Business Book Club: Predictably Irrational

I've set myself a goal to read one self-development book per month. To make sure I really reflect on what I'm reading I'm going to extract the wisdom from the best business and personal development books and share it with you.

This month I’ve been reading Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions By Dan Ariely

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Are you putting off a difficult conversation? Start by taking yourself out of it.

Relationships, public speaking, performing a song for Simon Cowell. All things you should put as much of yourself as you can into. A lion's den, a pair of hotpants 2 sizes too small and difficult conversations-all things you absolutely take yourself out of. I don’t mean don’t have difficult conversations but, as far as possible, we should take ourselves out of them.

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The truth about meetings

Throughout last week I was asking for your thoughts on meetings on social meeting. Having spent the week delving into the good, the bad and the just plain infuriating, I thought I’d share what I learnt.

The first thing I discovered is that pretty much everyone knows what good practice looks like in a meeting and absolutely everyone knows what makes a bad meeting. So, if we know what makes a meeting run like clockwork and what drives our colleagues crazy, why don’t we actually do all the good stuff?

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Michelle PrattComment
Business Book Club: Entrepreneurial You

Being self-employed I was naturally drawn to this book when I saw it.  Of course, I’d like to monetise my expertise and build a solid business creating my own products but is it really as achievable as we are led to believe? The internet is awash with people showing you how to build a business online, most of whom I’m more than a little suspicious of, so it was nice to pick up a practical book from a reputable authority on the subject. Perhaps it can be done after all….

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When does expending effort energise you?

Have you ever noticed that when you are doing something you love, no matter how physically demanding it is, you often feel like you could keep it up all day? Yet, when you are doing something mind-numbingly dull you find it tiring to the point where you could very easily fall asleep?

Why is this and how can we find ways to get more of that energised feeling?

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Business Book Club: Happy-Why More or Less Everything is Absolutely Fine

It was the best of years it was the worst of years. No I'm not attempting some awful reboot of Charles Dickens (what's with the reboot trend anyway?)  It’s a description of my 2017. It's featured the lowest lows and also the highest highs life can bestow upon a person. Perhaps that's why I pre-ordered Derren Brown's Happy: Why Everything Is More or Less Absolutely Fine. 

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A problem shared: Why Jeremy Kyles Guests might just be on to something 

I've never been one to admit "I'm struggling". I don't like to bother people or bring them down with my woes and no one likes a moaner. I've never had much time for Jeremy Kyle 'guests' who air their dirty laundry in public either. In fact, I admit I've been quite judgemental about them. However, I have come to learn that both professionally and personally, talking about your problems with people is actually a bloody good idea.  

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"Arghhh I can't believe I did that": knee-jerk reactions

A man came to see me recently because he's not happy with his body.

He's so desperate he wants to do whatever will get the weight off quickly. When someone is in this state I know they aren't very open to taking a long term view. They make a choice which relieves the 'eurghhh' feeling but this is rarely a choice that feels good or is right for them in the medium or long term. My prediction is that unless he sees weight come off and can get into a state where he is thinking more clearly, he will give up before he even gets going. Most people do this. 

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