Have you ever wanted to know the secret to truly achieving success?
How to create rapport in less than one minute?
What about rethinking your personal brand-everyone has one (you can either be intentional about it or let someone else create it for you)?
What about how to guard against the destructive nature of perfectionism?
This episode with New York Times Bestselling author, speaker, and publisher Dave Burgess is a total game-changer because in our 40 minute conversation, he dropped so much knowledge that I took two pages of notes and I had to listen back to the recording just to squeeze it all out!
Get ready to be inspired! #TLAP #smallactbigimpact #kindsight101
Many people think that they’re not creative. I’m not the “creative type,” is what I’ve often heard my friends say before we embark on a decidedly creative activity like painting, card-making, party planning, or lesson creating.
But, the truth is, all humans by definition are inherently creative. We’re born that way. We’re hardwired to be creative. It’s what sets us apart from the other animals in the world.
Our ability to make meaning of the world through the art we make is what makes us human.
Recently, I stumbled upon one of the most fun personality quizzes I’ve ever seen. Designed by leaders in the the field of creativity, Adobe has released a quiz that gives you an in-depth perspective on your creativity type.
I couldn’t help but do the quiz. My result…adventurer. Within moments, I had a page-long breakdown of my creativity type, strengths, drawbacks, potential pitfalls, and the best types of creatives to cross-pollinate with. Accurate, the sheet highlighted the fact that I like to have my hand in many pots, enjoy staying busy, thrive in making social connections, and that I love to spend a lot of my time creating.
I quickly sent the quiz to a small handful of friends and family members who also had remarkably accurate readings.
Curious? Why not try it yourself. It’s fun…no risk…and might just teach you that you are, in fact, very creative after all.
It turns out being a magician is pretty similar to being a teacher.
In this episode, Brian Miller and I explore tactical ways to create connection with people in such a way that we can serve the world more fully.
Have you ever struggled to remember someone’s name? Brian outlines some really easy way to do so.
Brian tells some incredible stories, one of which highlights the magical nature of inclusion through the unifying power of magic.
Brian talks about his wildly successful TED talk, Book (Three New People), his business, and his podcast.
Brian Miller is a magician, speaker, and author of personal success book Three New People: Make the Most of Your Daily Interactions and Stop Missing Amazing Opportunities. For 12 years he has shared his magic and his message with thousands of audiences in 11 countries across 4 continents. Based in Connecticut, Brian now performs his interactive blend of jaw dropping magic and laugh-out-loud comedy at 200+ events each year.
As a child, Brian suffered from a debilitating social and speech anxiety. He was bullied and mostly friendless through middle school. Though he loved magic tricks, he couldn’t muster the courage to perform for anyone. Brian got a fresh start in a new school for 9th grade, where he met another student who was also into magic. Through magic and friendship, Brian developed self-confidence for the very first time.
Founding his business at the early age of 16, Brian worked as a professional magician while completing a dual Bachelor’s of Science in mathematics and philosophy, achieving a 4.0 in philosophy and receiving two international awards for presenting original work. He was accepted into a PhD program for Philosophy of Language, but turned it down in order to pursue a career in entertainment.
Brian quickly found a following with college students on the national campus activities circuit, earning two nomination’s for “America’s Best Campus Artist” (Campus Activities Magazine) by the age of 24.
As his act evolved, so did the demand for his work. Brian developed a reputation for mixing world class entertainment with an engaging personality and the ability to adapt to any group. He began accepting invitations to entertain at exclusive private events throughout New England, such as bar/bat mitzvahs, weddings, company holiday parties, and corporate events.
Military Entertainment and More
In April of 2016, Brian partnered with Navy Entertainment to bring magic to the American troops and their families stationed overseas on military bases. He has since completed 3 tours for the troops in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. Brian calls these tours the most rewarding work of his career. Read about his most recent tour across Asia here.
Brian’s work has been featured in the Hartford Courant, The Huffington Post, MAGIC Magazine, Genii Magazine, and The Society of American Magicians Magazine. He was also showcased in the 2016 documentary film The Get Together about the legendary Abbott’s Get Together magic convention held annually for the past 80 years in Colon, MI.
Brian’s experience as a magician make him a dynamic and engaging corporate keynote speaker and youth motivational speaker. His TEDx talk “How to Magically Connect with Anyone” has been seen and shared by 3 million people worldwide.
Outside of magic Brian is a passionate musician. He has achieved critical acclaim as a singer, guitarist, and songwriter as half of the group Escher’s Enigma, a unique studio project with his father Russ Miller.
Brian lives in Connecticut with his wife Lindsey.
It turns out that belonging is a greater predictor of life-expectancy, well-being, happiness, and fulfillment than heart health, poverty, smoking, or obesity.
We can all affect the environments in which we live through our actions, because of the contagiousness of our behaviour.
Due to our nature as community-seeking beings, we were wired to seek out belonging through our connections to others. The mirror neurons in our bodies are designed to help us react and mimic the behaviours of those around us so that we will belong more easily.
In an attempt to improve their organization in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Louisiana-based Oschner Health System tried an out-of-the-box experiment. In his best-selling book “Before Happiness,” author Shawn Achor writes about the hospital’s decision to try to “raise levels of happiness first.” Oschner Health looked outside the usual medical literature and found a secret ingredient used by Ritz-Carlton hotels.
The 10/5 way “turns out to be the perfect example of how to transform an organization through positive inception. The 10/5 way involves just a few simple behavioral rules that all staff are trained to follow. If a guest walks by a Ritz employee within ten feet, the employee should make eye contact and smile. If that guest walks by within five feet, the employee should say, ‘Hello.'”
Despite initial skepticism, this deceptively simple technique “completely transformed the shared reality at the hospital. Not only did this improve patients’ satisfaction with care, it improved outcomes for the hospital,” Achor explained. He urges his readers to “try implementing the 10/5 way in your office or household.”
Just try it out. Look at someone in the eyes and give them a big smile. Chances are, they’ll smile right back at you. Our neuro-receptors release oxytocin (the love/belonging hormone) when someone smiles at us and when we smile. Smiling, because of our mirror neurons, has the power to change our brain chemistry. When we witness someone smiling or laughing, our brain responds as though we were laughing and smiling. So, just being around happy, joyous people can change the way we feel.
How can you contribute to your workplace, learning space, or community in such a way that you ignite a culture of belonging? What action can you take to help someone feel seen, heard, and valued, today?
I recently had the amazing Allie Apels of @joysofkinderon my podcast to discuss the transformative power of her brainchild “Kindness Ninjas” Social Emotional Learning (SEL) program in her kindergarten class (#kindnessninjas).
Essentially, a few years ago, when Allie was faced with one of the most challenging groups of children she had ever taught, she and her teaching partner (yes, there were two teachers allocated to one class due to the high level of needs), came up with a brilliant way to encourage the development of a kind and supportive classroom. They introduced a kindness ambassador: the kindness ninja. Every day, leading up to Christmas break, Allie and her class would be greeted by the kindness ninja who would leave them notes and various random acts of kindness missions.
She explained that the experience was completely transformative. The class came together as a team and that year wound up becoming one of Allie’s favourite years as a teacher.
All About Our 15-Day Kindness Ninja Video Challenge Synergy
Not long after our conversation went live, we got the best idea ever and now…it’s about to go live!
This October, Allie and I are collaborating to bring your classroom an exciting synergy between the 21-Day-Kindness-Challenge and the Kindness Ninjas.
Every day, staring October 7th, 2019, we will be posting on our Instagram accounts 15 school-days worth of kindness ninja challenges to complete with your class. Our little kindness ninja will speak to your children through video using the chatterpix app.
We debated sharing the challenges ahead of time (we love a surprise), and decided to do so in order to give you amazing educators a head-start in your planning. Also, we will be posting the videos eventually to YouTube so that you can follow along on your own timeline at a later time!
What you will need: Gently loved books (one from the class or one from each student), wrapping paper (make, use newsprint, or purchase), notes explaining who it’s for and what it’s for. Check out Mrs. Mac’s example.
Day nine: Write or trace notes of appreciation for the staff members of your school. Place the notes in their mailboxes or on their vehicle windshields.
Day ten: Create a kindness cart to deliver cold beverages and snacks to teachers in your school (or set up the staff room for a special surprise treat day before lunch or recess):
What you’ll need: beverages (large containers of iced tea/lemonade/tea/sparkling water and coffee) or individual cans. Also, cookies/crackers and cheese/and homemade treats are always appreciated.
Students can make small posters or cards expressing their gratitude for those who serve the school.
Day fourteen: Write special letters to people in your family thanking them for all that they do for you. Use fancy paper and envelopes to make it extra special.
Day fifteen: Make a kindness big-book to gift to another class, to inspire them to be kind within your school. Each person can make a page to tell one way to be a kindness ninja. You could even send it to another school to spread the ripples of kindness throughout your community.
When we embark on a new creative venture, what often begins as a feeling of excitement can quickly transform into overwhelm.
Too often, when we express ourselves through art, take creative risks, or engage in work that challenges the status quo, self-destructive voices audibly whisper two of the following shame-fuelled messages:
“You’re not good enough.”
“Who the hell do you think you are?”
Those two powerful messages can stop us in our tracks, preventing us from sharing our story or our art with those who desperately need to hear it.
Fear masquerades as perfectionism and procrastination.
It’s a blessing to remind fellow creatives of their inherent value to the world.
Your pain points.
No one sees the world quite like you.
To be able to share your unique perspective with others is a gift.
I was recently listening to Oprah Winfrey’s Supersoul Conversations Podcast (which is amazing, BTW) and stumbled upon a conversation with Byron Katie about a really fascinating way that we can elongate the space between stimulus and response (a Viktor Frankel reference about the way that we can have more ownership and agency over the way we react to the challenges that life hands us).
She has a great 4-question framework that has done wonders in terms of re-thinking the worst-case scenario narratives that often start ramping up when things go sideways. I wanted to share them with YOU!
Imagine you’ve made plans with someone and you just can’t seem to get ahold of them. Perhaps, you start thinking that they are trying to avoid you or, worse, you think that something terrible has happened to them. Whatever your thought cycle, here’s a framework that can help you to dig yourself out:
Is it true? Can I absolutely know that this is TRUTH? This is likely a story I am telling myself about what might have happened.
How can I check that this is true? I could call. I could think back to past behaviours to see what might be in line with who this person usually is.
How do I react when I believe this to be true? Unkind? Vengeful? Tearful? Guilty? Mind attack? Certainty-seeking? Imagining the worst?
Who would you be without that thought? Peaceful. Trusting. Worthy. Enough. Faith-filled.
Here is a list of the 7 most important questions that enable you to evaluate whether your work is a good fit for you. These questions can help you to determine your overall job satisfaction and fulfilment. These can also help a teacher to think empathetically through the eyes of her students, when we swap the word “school” for “work” :
Do I know what’s expected of me at work?
Do I have the materials and the equipments I need to do my work right?
Do I have the opportunity to do that I do best every day?
In the last 7 days, have I received recognition or praise for good work?
Does my supervisor or someone at work seem to care about me as a person?
Is there someone at work who encourages my development?
What matters to me most about work and is that aligned with my duties?
When you’ve answered these questions, it’s important to evaluate how much you have within your sphere of control to change through your actions or by simply changing your mindset. Sometimes, questions like these can also be clarifying when it comes to checking whether or not your current employment is aligned with the direction you want your life to take.
Dan Buchner is an award winning designer, entrepreneur, educator, and leadership facilitator and the ceo of Praktikel.
He designed and delivered custom Innovation Leadership programs for leading organizations such as Baxter Healthcare, Eaton Corporation, McDonalds, General Motors and Robert Woods Johnson Foundation. Dan is a sought-after international keynote speaker and facilitator on innovation practices and organizational strategies. Thousands of people around the world have had their thinking shifted and been inspired to action by his practical perspective on innovation, leadership and organizational change.
I wanted to have Dan Buchner onto KindSight 101 to talk about the ways that innovation, leadership and learning interconnect within this global world and the ways that edcuators can foster environments that encourage creative thinking vs. compliance.
Everything is figureoutable.
In this episode, you’ll learn the step-by-step formula for figuring anything out. You’ll learn the one thing that every student needs for success in the real world and how you can be the one to help them acquire it.
– You’ll learn how to balance the need for organization and the drive for creativity.
– You’ll learn how balancing the need for creativity is like balancing your investment portfolio.
– You’ll learn the most important skill and trait a teacher needs to have to be effective.
Deborah Le Frank believes that inside every person – is a collection of stories and memories. Her job is to draw them out of her clients creating a visually engaging Visual Life Story that is deeply meaningful and creates a legacy and connection between generations.
With the recent popularity of sketchnoting in schools, I wanted to have her on the show to talk about the different ways that we can use visuals to tell a compelling story about ourselves and our students. We learn the three life lessons that can help us live a fuller life and to help our students to do the same for themselves.
– We learn the significant moment in Deborah’s life that made her change the way she looked at the way we create and hang on to our memories.
– Some practical ways to invite sketch-noting into our lives.
– Compelling reasons to record a story from your life every month!
– The power of sketch-noting as a method to enable learners to capture their connections and realizations in a more full way.
You can find out more about her at [Visual Life Stories]