What would you achieve by being limitless?

 

 

 

Welcome to the Limitless Challenge 

 

Monday 23 August – Friday 27 August 2021

 

 

 

Start discovering what it is that you can unlock within you to help you feel limitless in your capacity to achieve the things you want in life and business.

 

 

– Maybe you want to climb to the top of your industry or career?

– Start or scale a business?

– Go for that promotion?

– Earn more?

Or maybe it’s something else but there’s something that seems to hold you back.

 

 

Over the 5 days…

 

We’ll be using the science and evidence based techniques to help you…

– Gain clarity and confidence on what you want to achieve

– Set results you want to achieve and harness your neurobiology to achieve them

– Find and sustain motivation

– Build more self-belief and confidence

– Turn set backs into come backs

– Create consistent habits

– Start making stuff happen

– Be inspired

– Remain accountable in a community of like-minded people

Daily 

Trainings and Live coaching taking place in our private Limitless Challenge Face Book Group – available from 6am each day and for play back. 

Tasks and habits to apply to take consistent action and get results.

Sign up here 

https://bit.ly/Limitless5daychallenge

Is pandemic brain affecting your performance?

 

By Jo Britton, Certified Neurosculpting® practitioner

 

This week I want to talk to you about your poor pandemic brain. Yes, it’s a thing in case you’re not aware. And it’s likely to be affecting your performance.

 

Because if, at times, you’re finding yourself struggling a bit more than you were – perhaps with an inability to focus, you’re getting more easily distracted or overwhelmed or maybe you’re forgetting appointments, not finishing tasks, have brain fog, losing your train of thought mid-sentence or just generally feel like you’re losing the plot, then you may have pandemic brain.

 

Neuroscientists, neurobiologists and neuropsychologists have been investigating how the pandemic may have altered our brains in the last 16 months.

 

This is both physically in those that have received treatment for serious Covid infections. And mentally as a result of the stress, social distancing, unpredictability and uncertainty we’ve been experiencing.

 

They’ve discovered that many of those receiving treatment for serious Covid infections have shown a reduction in grey matter volume. Our grey matter is a major component of our central nervous system which allows us to control movement, memory and emotions.

 

Additionally, research conducted by Barbara Sahakian, professor of neuropsychology at the University of Cambridge on the effects of social isolation and loneliness on people’s brains during the pandemic, has revealed changes in volume seen in the following regions of the brain:

 

– Temporal lobe – creating and preserving both conscious and long term memory
– Frontal lobe – controls cognitive skills such as emotional expression, problem solving, memory, language, judgement and sexual behaviours
– Occipital lobe – visual processing
– Subcortical regions – social functions
– Amgydala – generally regulates emotions such as fear and aggression and is involved in applying emotional meaning to memories
– Hippocampus – storing long term memory

 

This is profound.

 

The unrelenting chronic stress of the pandemic may be at the root of a lot of these changes in the brain.

 

The stress we’ve been experiencing in the form of negative emotions such as fear, anger and frustration for instance all play a role in arousing the sympathetic nervous system.

 

Adrenalin and cortisol (the stress hormone) are pumped around the body. This prepares us for fight or flight. When this happens our pre-frontal cortex (the executive functioning part of the brain involved with problem solving, rational thinking, creativity, compassion and empathy – the bit I nick name our Einstein genius) goes off-line.

 

This would explain those feelings of brain fog, a mental slowing down, overwhelm, inability to focus on things we’d normally be able to focus on.

 

Here’s the thing:

 

We’re not supposed to sustain these levels of stress in the body for prolonged periods. Yet the prolonged nature of the pandemic has been a massive contributor to this.

 

We also know from neuroscience that prolonged exposure to cortisol not only increases risk of things like heart disease as well as anxiety and depression but our cognition is affected too.

 

And chronic stress has been found to kill brain cells and even shrink the size of the prefrontal cortex .

 

What can you take from this and put into action?

Being able to use strategies to down regulate stress are not only important to our performance but also to our long-term health.

 

 

Practise building a more resilient brain.

 

Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity. Resilience in the brain means protecting against stress-induced changes.

 

From a neurobiological perspective, resilience is the ability to modulate and constructively harness the stress response.

 

But resilience is not an on-off switch. And some of us are genetically born with naturally more resilience than others. However, we can learn how to be more resilient.

 

 

How can you build brain resilience?

There are different ways to do this, and research has suggested that meditation and mindfulness practices really help. Studies have shown that meditation over just an 8 week period reduced the inflammation response caused by stress.

 

Neurosculpt brain resilience

 

In light of this, I’m going to introduce you to Neurosculpting® in more detail. It was something that I turned to which helped me so profoundly that I trained and certified in the practice. Now it helps my clients to improve their personal performance.

 

In Neurosculpting® think brain training, rewiring, performance optimisation and flow all within a 5-step guided meditation process.

 

It takes a whole brain approach enabling you to disrupt or release neural patterns that aren’t serving you well (such as stress, fear, anxiety) and script more supportive and empowering ones.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In steps one and two, we calm the fear centre of the brain by focusing on the breath, activate our prefrontal cortex in ways that our PFC likes through curiosity, novelty and humour. This creates  heightened neuroplasticity in the brain (neuroplasticity is the way our brain learns things so we don’t have to relearn them). There a big health benefits of these first two steps too as you down regulate stress and decrease inflammation, bring digestion on-line, slow your heart rate, deepen your breath and relax your muscles.

 

In step 3 we look at the story (the neural pattern) that has been activating maybe your stress or an unpleasant feeling. There’s also a particular way that we do this so that it change what it does to your body, nervous system and your brain. And we use the two hemispheres of the brain activating in an alternating pattern. This creates more cross talk across the midline of the brain, helping us to either break or change a neural pattern or establish a new one.

 

In step 4, we exercise Hebb’s law of neuroplasticity and use the body creating a motion and tap where you perceive you are releasing that unhelpful pattern

 

In step 5 we give the experience a name to associate a linguistic reference to your experience.

 

Steps 4 and 5 provide for more retrievability inside or outside the Neurosculpting® process in every daily life ie. Tap the body and say the name of your experience in daily life to retrieve the pattern.

 

 

Want to try out the power of Neurosculpting® to improve your performance?

 

It is helping my clients to optimise their performance without holding back and burning out.

 

Contact me 

 

 

Pumped and motivated or overwhelmed and anxious?

 

Whether you’re feeling pumped and motivated because things are going to plan or you’re struggling – maybe with email overwhelm, juggling home and work or you’ve set out to achieve something and you’re holding back –  do you notice your emotions and anything you feel in your body?

 

 

If you’re feeling emotions such as happiness, joy or anxiety, stress or frustration, are you noticing the accompanying sensations in the body? Your face may flush with joy or your heart beat fast or perhaps your palms are sweaty or you have tightness in your chest with stress? This is the lesser known but important sense at work – interoception.

 

 

Why do I mention this?

Because the ability to perceive the internal state of our bodies is central to our thoughts, beliefs, emotions, decision making and sense of self.  It has a big influence on our lives and performance at work.

 

This is because according to Neuroscientist, Author and Professor of Psychology Lisa Feldman Barrett:

Emotions are guesses that your brain constructs in the moment where billions of brain cells are working together. And you have more control over those guesses than you might think.  Because emotions are not built into your brain from birth.

 

And your brain didn’t evolve to react to the world but to predict what’s going to happen to you next.  So the brain is a prediction machine. And predictions are the basis of every experience and action you take, using past experiences – and how you perceived and sensed them – in similar situations to try to make meaning directing your behaviour and actions.

 

Your brain work is working to regulate your internal systems by anticipating needs and preparing to satisfy them before they arise. Interoception is your brain’s representation from your own body.

 

 

What does this mean?

The consequence of this activity is central to everything –  from thought, to emotion, to decision making and your sense of self.

So, mind and body cannot be separated. They’re two sides of the same coin.

What you think and believe influences how you sense this in the body.  And what you sense in the body influences how you think. This is guiding your actions and constructing your experiences in every moment.

 

 

What has this got to do with your personal performance?

Everything! There are amazing benefits of being aware of your prediction scripts. Prediction scripts include your inner stories, beliefs and thought patterns – and interoception.  Awareness helps you to consciously, and with focused attention, do something about them, if they’re inhibiting you and your performance.

 

Because, it’s possible to use the same neuroscience that helped you write and wire those prediction scripts to change them when you know how.  Meaning you’re able to disrupt those unhelpful scripts, stories, beliefs and patterns – the ones that are inhibiting your performance – and create more supportive ones that will influence your behaviour, action and how you feel.

 

This is what my Neurosculpting® and performance coaching practice helps you do. It’s been a real game changer for me and many of my clients.

 

Using this approach one of my clients has generated £50k of sales in her start up business in just four months. Another has just had his first £100k week.

If you’d like to know more about this, reach out to me

 

What I’ve been watching

 

Lisa Feldman Barrett. Neuroscientist, Author and Professor of Psychology

Her Ted Talk ‘You aren’t at the mercy of your emotions. Your brain creates them’  is a fascinating watch.

For the past 25 years, psychology professor Lisa Feldman Barrett has mapped facial expressions, scanned brains and analysed hundreds of physiology studies to understand what emotions really are. She shares the results of her exhaustive research and in this Ted Talk and explains how we may have more control over our emotions than we think.

 

What I’ve been reading

New beliefs, new brain. By Lisa Wimberger

I’ve actually read this book several times now. It’s by Lisa Wimberger and she’s my amazing Neurosculpting® teacher and mentor. It was this book and applying the practices from it, that really helped me to start releasing stress and anxiety and drive change in my brain to improve my own performance and well-being. This book started my journey into the application of neuroscience to help me and others believe more and achieve more. I interviewed Lisa on my podcast about her own story and how she came to develop Neurosculpting®  – a unique whole brain approach to rewiring our brains and bodies.

Episode 20: The one with Lisa Wimberger – how being struck by lightning on her 15th birthday profoundly shaped her life.

 

What I’ve been recording

Neurosculpting® to believe and achieve.

Beliefs are ideas or concepts that we hold to be true in our mind for as long as we believe them. They’re a form of story or prediction script we use to navigate our lives and our work. Sometimes these serve us well. Sometimes not so well – creating uncomfortable emotions, sensations and dysregulation inhibiting us and holding us back.

 

This session helps you to recognise the stories and beliefs that you’re not conscious of but are limiting your progress. And maybe leading you to burn out.

 

It includes a Neurosculpting® exercise guiding you through a 5-step process which enables you to harness your brain’s neuroplasticity and create prediction scripts and beliefs aligned around the results and outcomes you want to achieve. Because unless you have the belief in what you want to achieve, you’ll hold back. Get in touch with me if you’d like to know more about how this can help you.

 

What I’ve been speaking about

How to believe in yourself.

I was invited to talk to Adam Kawalec on his Life Switch Show where I shared my story and how building self-belief helps you earn more and achieve more.

 

 

What can you take from all of this and put into action?

The key theme is emotions and belief. Our brain is a master story-teller. And when it tells us a story, we believe it.  Each action we take or don’t take filters through our beliefs and how we’re perceiving the world.

For example, if I believe the world is a bad place or that everyone always lets me down, or I that I must prove myself in order to succeed or that I’m not good enough/smart enough/old enough etc, then how might these stories and beliefs inform my behaviours, actions and the results I get?

We unknowingly participate in these stories. But we are in control of them if we choose to be. This is so liberating when you. But when you don’t you may find yourself in denial, in a victim mentality or deferring pain. However, with the gift of neuroplasticity (the way our brain learns), we can change these stories and beliefs if they’re not working for us.

And in my work as a performance coach and through all the research I’ve done, I’ve noticed that the biggest contributor to high performers and high achievers’ success is their ability to emotionally regulate and have the self-belief to achieve.

 

Things that you can do to help emotionally regulate and create self-belief:

1.Become aware and notice. If for example you’re procrastinating over something, or reacting emotionally, take a moment to become aware. Notice what you’re thinking and what you’re feeling in the body. Remember you have thoughts but you’re not your thoughts. Take a few calm, deep breaths in through the nose, out through the mouth as if you’re blowing through a straw to calm the stress, anxiety, worry circuits.

 

 

2. Without blame, shame or judgement, ask yourself which unhelpful stories you’re telling yourself that are determining your results. Do you relate to any of the following for example? How are they helping you or not? Which ones would you like to commit to changing?

 

 

I can’t because…

Everyone always lets me down

I am not good enough

I’ll never be able to…

I must prove myself…

I am too old/young….

No pain, no gain….

People like me don’t…..

Etc, Etc

 

 

3. Then write a list of those stories and beliefs that serve you better. These could be aspects of yourself that you are willing to accept. Do you relate to any of the following for example? What could you do to remind yourself of these whenever you’re feeling inhibited or stuck?

 

 

I AM organised

I AM kind

I AM capable

I AM a good listener

I get stuff right almost all of the time

I AM always learning

I AM committed

I AM a problem solver / solution finder

Etc Etc

 

If you’d like any help with this, then please do reach out to me

Are you winning your inner game?

 

How are you doing?  Like really doing?

 

 

I’m hearing so much stuff about people having huge re-thinks following all this stuff that’s gone on over the last 18 months.

People quitting jobs and relationships, starting businesses but feeling frazzled and burned out….yet desperately wanting more from work and life without feeling overwhelmed and stressed.

So I’ve decided to create an e-newsletter to bring you a weekly digest of insights you can put into action so that you can raise the bar on your own personal performance but without burning yourself out – should you choose to of course.

It’s stuff I’ve been researching, watching, reading, listening to AND applying to improve my own personal performance and life. And it’s also been enabling my clients to do the same.

Plus by giving you a precis, I hope that you can put this into action without having to spend too many hours yourself finding this stuff.

If you’d like a copy of my weekly e-newsletter just fill in the contact form here with a messaging saying e-newsletter and I’ll add you to my list https://pacedevelopment.co.uk/contact/

In the meantime here’s some stuff that I’ve found useful and hope you do too:

 

 

What I’ve been watching

Sir Alex Ferguson: Never Give In on Amazon Prime

Winning: ‘It’s all about character, discipline, conviction and believing in yourself… Winning is based on your attitude to failure and treating losing as part of the progress.’

Considered one of the greatest football managers of all time, Ferguson didn’t have the best of starts as Manchester United’s Manager, but he oversaw unprecedented success at the club.  I was so inspired watching this. There’s so much to take personally and professionally from this film as Sir Alex recounts details of his life and career whilst recovering from a brain haemorrhage.  5 stars from me.

 

What I’ve been listening to

The High Performance Podcast with Jake Humphrey and Prof Damian Hughes

A glimpse into the lives of high-achieving and successful individuals from the fields of sport, music, business, arts and entertainment who share their experiences. Plus their non-negotiable behaviours. At the start of each episode, the guest is asked ‘What is high performance?’ Nobody gives the same definition twice.

I’m also excited that I recently interviewed Prof Damian Hughes for my own podcast Mojo Matters and asked him the same question.  Look out for the episode due to be released in the next couple of weeks.

 

What I’ve been reading

Your Brain at Work – Know your Brain, Transform your Performance by co-founder and CEO of the NeuroLeadership Institute, Dr David Rock.

His work has informed much of my own work coaching entrepreneurs, business leaders and professionals to help them achieve a winning mindset and high performance without burning themselves out.

So many answers are in the neuroscience. Because, in my view, the biggest limitation and constraint for most of us is our own brain and the way we’ve hardwired our neural connections based on what we’ve seen, heard and experienced.

Once you understand this, you can use the same science to drive change in the brain and improve your own performance and well-being. It’s something I bring to my clients with my Neurosculpting® practice – helping them to rewire their brain for peak performance and success. Reach out to me and ask me how.

 

 

What I’ve been recording

I spoke to the awesome Helen Richardson-Crespo about how when you win your inner game you make big stuff happen.  For me, your inner game is the most important foundation for success. It’s about believing in yourself. Inhibiting all the stuff that will hold you back – that inner voice and chit chat that tells you that you can’t do stuff.  Being able to emotionally regulate and not freak out so that you can navigate obstacles and set backs without holding back. Give it a listen, you’ll find some great tips on here from Helen.

https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/one-where-when-you-start-winning-your-inner-game-you/id1538121561?i=1000527488806

 

 

What I’ve been speaking about

How Frankenstein hijacks your inner Einstein genius and can burn you out when you’re working in a demanding environment like sales and recruitment. Plus how to harness your mojo and motivation to win. I was invited to guest on Steve Guest’s The Guest List Podcast. You can listen here or watch on You Tube here.

 https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/jo-britton-have-you-lost-your-mojo/id1558824907?i=1000527565570

 

 

What can you take from all of this and put into action?

The key theme here is winning. For me winning is a state of mind. It’s about performing consistently to your own highest abilities, overcoming fears and set-backs, pushing through limitations (usually self-imposed ones) and having the courage, confidence, conviction and self-belief to turn your dreams into a reality.

 

 

Things that you can do to win:

1.Get really clear on the outcome and result you’d like to achieve

2.Adopt the belief or beliefs you’ll need to achieve it

  1. Notice when your inner critic or Frankenstein is holding you back
  2. Learn techniques to calm your inner critic and flip it
  3. Take consistent action. Even if it’s just one step at a time.
  4. There’s no such thing as failure. Set-backs are for comebacks. Pick yourself up, learn from it and go again!

 

 

If you’re struggling to find your edge at the moment but know you’re made for big stuff and need some help making it happen, you may want to watch my FREE on demand Masterclass here.

Plus there’s a bonus at the end for you to take advantage of…. So watch it all the way through.

My Mojo Mission

 

By Jo Britton

30 October 2020

 

 

Will you join me on my Mojo Mission?

 

 

As we navigate the unpredictability of these chaotic times, I’ve decided to go on a mission.

 

 

To help people around the world find their mojo and sustain it. It’s an ambitious mission. And if I’m honest, I don’t really know where to begin or whether I’ll achieve it.

 

 

But this really matters to me. A lot. And if there’s one thing I know as a coach, setting a big, hairy, audacious, goal (BHAG) – or a challenge that’s so outside the box (think putting a man on the moon type) helps you open up your thinking and can create a sense of urgency.  And let’s face it, right now that’s the kind of approach the world needs to get out of this pickle.

 

 

Because what we’re seeing as we live through this global pandemic is a global stress response across the world.

 

 

Every day there’s something new or scary we need to cope with or adapt to at a moment’s notice – whether that’s local lock downs happening over night (or the impending anticipation of a national lock down again), or whether we’ll get to experience Christmas with our families.

 

 

Or maybe  we’re experiencing mass changes and restructures in the workplace, the threat or even unfortunate experience of redundancy, the financial worry if our industry has been shut down, the juggling of family and work life, trying to find new ways to generate income for our businessess or protect them from this unpredictable chaos. And for so many trying to cope with long periods of isolation.

 

 

And what’s the effect of this?

 

 

It’s having a profound effect on our nervous systems. Throwing them into an unsustainable state of dysregulation.  And for many of us, it’s affecting our Mojo and we may be staring at the dregs of an empty mojo cup.

 

 

We may be lacking enthusiasm or energy and motivation, maybe our thinking is foggy or perhaps we’re feeling agitated, angry or frustrated.

 

 

And this was me back in March 2020.  You can read more about my experience here and what I did to help myself bounce back.

 

 

So when this happens, neurologically, it becomes impossible to think positively, productively and to find solutions which will help us cope better with daily life and get us out of this global mess.

 

 

And we’re seeing this play out in our society every single day. The trolling on some social media channels (granted this isn’t a new thing but we are seeing this at more heightened levels), tension and exhaustion in work places, arguments in the home, anxiety, worry, withdrawal and depression.

 

 

The politicians appearing to react – not with a sense of thought through logic but with a sense of knee jerk, panic. Sorry I know it’s a really tough job and we’re experiencing something we’ve never experienced in our life time at such large scale but it does feel to me that there’s a lack of listening, connection, collaboration and community. Stuff that’s needed to inform decision-making and solutions right now. And to take people with you.

 

 

And I truly believe that it will be connection, collaboration and community with a tonne of mojo spirit that will help us get through this in a way that will serve us, serve our future generations and our planet for a better future.

 

 

And it’s easy sometimes to sit back and think this is somebody else’s problem to solve.  Or what can I possibly do as one human being on a planet of 7.8bn people?

 

 

But what I do know is that so many of the most amazing things that we have today, the fantastic experiences that we’ve been so used to having and that we take for granted have started with one person on the planet.

 

 

One person with passion, purpose, energy, enthusiasm. One person who has faced challenges and obstacles but kept going.  One person that overcame set backs and that found ways to motivate themselves when they just felt like giving up. One person that encapsulates what mojo spirit means to me.

 

 

So what is your mojo? Why does it matter? How do you find it? How do you keep it? And if you’ve lost it, how do you get it back? Mojo sounds a really frivolous term doesn’t it?

 

 

I always used to giggle when I heard the mojo. You may too if you’ve watched the Austin Powers movies. Afterall, mojo is what gives him his legendary sexual prowess.

 

 

If you google the term, you’ll find loads of different definitions. A magical charm or spell, slang for your libido, your power to attract people. So let’s clear up a few definitions.

 

 

My definition of mojo is your energy, your enthusiasm, your motivation, your confidence and your ability to bounce back from set backs. So that you can take productive action, calmly, consistently and persistently without freaking out and burning out.

 

 

Mojo is the state I believe we need to be living in right now (despite how horrible it is) so that we can navigate this storm constructively and productively.

 

 

So I’m starting from this premise.

 

 

I’ve decided I want to do my bit and help as many people as I can to navigate this chaos in a more calm and productive way. I want people to find their mojo. I want this to be my legacy.

 

 

Because we get so little time on this planet. I’ve been running my Find your Mojo in 14 Days Challenge and it’s been getting game changing and life changing results for many. But that’s not enough. I need to do more. And to a bigger scale.

 

 

So, this is day one of my mojo mission.

 

 

I’ve decided to keep myself accountable by documenting the journey on social media platforms. And I mainly hang out on Instagram @jobritton.mojo if you want to follow along and join me in my mission to create a movement that will help the world be a better place both now and in the years to come.

 

 

Or if you’d prefer to start by Find your Mojo, you can join me and others in my Find your Mojo in 14 Days Challenge starting again soon.

 

More details here 

Turning stress into success in just 14 days

 

Turning stress into success in just 14 days

By Jo Britton

 

When the pandemic struck Artist and founder of CreativeH, Helen Dowley, decided to use the time to do more of what she loves – creating art. With a love of colour and a passion for how colour can affect mind and mood, she started to explore new styles and a variety of subjects including everyday objects, childhood memories and landscapes.  She also created a new line of greetings cards as a lock down project with her eldest son.

Whilst Helen had started to sell more of her art, she had always wanted to make more money from it but self-doubt and nerves held her back.  She joined the Find your Mojo in 14 Days Challenge and just 10 days into the challenge, she turned a new  idea of painting personalised house portraits into reality and started getting commissions.

 

 

 

 

I developed the Find your Mojo Challenge after experiencing extreme fear and anxiety at the start of lock down, when most of my regular corporate client work disappeared overnight. I used the toolkit I had as a coach to get moving and take action.

 

Feeling more buoyant and calm, I then used these learnings to innovate and develop the MOJO Method, which aims to help people and organisations navigate the chaos and disruption brought about by the pandemic so that they can bounce back productively, effectively and healthily.

 

It uses a four-part framework that helps people find their Motivation and focus and helps them to sustain it; Overcome obstacles – those internal and external obstacles that prevent you from taking action; Joyful possibilities – enabling you to move from negativity to possibility and positivity and Oomph – finding your energy to become a consistent action taker.

 

Says Helen: ‘I was interested in the Mojo Challenge but thought I just didn’t have the time. But I took a leap of faith. And I’m glad I did. I’d been nervous about selling and making money from my art.  I’d had an idea to paint portraits of peoples houses and to turn these into personalised Christmas Cards. I used the challenge to give me the confidence and momentum to just do it. I followed the MOJO method and the trainings. From day one of the challenge I could not believe how much better, clearer, organised and fired up I felt. I was amazed at how by being aware of the things that were holding me back and making a few little changes,what a difference it made. That was a gamechanger. I now feel like a different person with so much more energy, confidence and positivity. I feel that I can take on many more challenges that I would have previously shied away from.’

 

Others to benefit from the Mojo Challenge include Diane Moore, an events coordinator. Her company wanted to support staff during the pandemic and funded her place.

 

Says Diane, ‘Like many I’ve been juggling working from home with family life through the pandemic and it’s not been easy. I’ve always been a keen runner. Before the pandemic, I used to be able to run 15k on most days. I’ve run a marathon without stopping and went on to run an ultra…. but recently I’d lost my energy and motivation. I struggled to run a mile without stopping.   Just a few days into the Mojo Challenge I ran 4.5k non-stop and by the end of the 14 days I’d managed 10k.  All with a positive mindset and getting rid of that little voice inside of my head that kept telling me to stop.  One of my friends said she’d noticed I’d got my Mojo back.  I also feel better organised around daily life and despite some recent difficult personal circumstances, I’m getting better at being optimistic and positive each day’

 

 

Julie Sinclair, an HR professional who works for a global supply chain and logistics company describes the mojo challenge as ‘life changing’.  Working in HR and in supply chain logistics during the pandemic has meant long hours for those businesses and the people that work in them.  Says Julie: ‘It’s been an exhausting time for our industry, our people and the HR profession.  The Mojo Challenge has given me the tools to help me navigate and cope with the day to day pressures and challenges of this pandemic. I’ve recommended it to others.’

 

 

Maureen Hutchinson, a single mum with an 8 year old son, a busy job in the NHS and a carer to her parents joined the Mojo Challenge because she wanted to be able to better manage home and work life, be more organised and improve her sleep patterns. She described how at times she felt like she wasn’t doing enough or being enough at work and home.  Says Maureen: ‘I’ve really enjoyed the challenge. I’ve learned some really interesting, easy and simple tools that have helped me feel better by making slight changes to my routine. I’ve learned how I don’t need to put pressure on myself and that I’m doing the best I can at such an odd time.  The mojo challenge has made me think differently and I realise I am doing enough and I deserve time out for me too.’

 

 

 

The Find your Mojo Challenge has attracted people from around the world with participants from South Africa, Singapore, Australia as well the UK.  They include single, working mums, busy executives and those who have recently been made redundant as a result of the pandemic.

 

 

The Mojo Challenge is brilliant for those people who are tired of worrying , whether that’s because their business has been struggling, they’ve been made redundant or they’re simply exhausted by keeping too many plates spinning.   When you sign up you will meet others in the Mojo Tribe who are in a similar position.   With me as a guide, we will work together to set the result you want to achieve by the end of the 14 days.  You’ll also take part in fun daily tasks designed to lift you and refill your mojo cup. The Mojo Tribe that you’ll be part of will provide encouragement and help keep you accountable.

 

The 14-day challenge involves daily trainings, coaching and practices in a private on online community.

 

To find out more or sign up for the next 14-day Mojo Challenge starting Monday 26 October 2020, please visit https://bit.ly/mojochallenge14 or email me jo@pacedevelopment.co.uk

 

Why tomatoes can help you get more stuff done

 

By Jo Britton

 

Why tomatoes can help you get more stuff done.

The 4Ps to help you be more productive and get stuff done without the stress and overwhelm

 

 

Ever felt that you’ve got too much to do and not enough time to do it? Perhaps you long for more hours in the day? Or that you were just better at managing your time? If this sounds familiar, join the club. The thing is this. We all have the same number of seconds in a day – 86,400 – to be precise.  So, we can’t manage time, but we can manage what we do with it.  Many us confuse busyness with productivity and effectiveness. And this can cause overwhelm, frustration and stress. Aside from some simple housekeeping tips such as clearing the clutter from your work space, scheduling time in your diary, turning off distractions (such as emails, your phone etc) and keeping yourself organised, here are a more few tips to help you get stuff done with less overwhelm and stress.

 

 

  1. Parkinson’s law – use it to your advantage

There’s a law called Parkinson’s Law.  It says work expands to fill the time you have. For example, if you have a task which should realistically take 25 minutes to do, but you have an a hour available in your schedule, you’re likely to take an hour to complete it. Thus you fill the time you have available to do it. So here’s the tip. Use Parkinson’s law to your advantage to boost your motivation and productivity. How? Set yourself a chunk of time and a deadline within which to complete the task, however small that task is. You’ll be amazed at what you’ll be able to achieve.

 

 

2 Pareto Principle – the 80/20 rule 

 

You know the 80/20 rule don’t you? Originally, the Pareto Principle referred to the observation that 80% of Italy’s wealth belonged to only 20% of the population. Nowadays the principle tends to be applied more generally to suggest that things in life are not evenly distributed.  For instance 80% of your business income may come from 20% of your customers or 80% of your output comes from 20% of the effort.

 

The point is this, the 80/20 rule enables you to maximise your efforts so that you can let go of the tasks that are time and energy sapping and that don’t yield results. When you spend so much time working on tasks that don’t produce significant results, over time you’ll feel stressed or overwhelmed.

 

So focus your time and energy on tasks that generate a bigger result. Do fewer of them and do them better and to completion without over promising and overcommitting yourself. How? Identify the few critical tasks that give you the biggest impact rather than spending time on all the trivial many. Then focus on the urgent first followed by the ones that yield the biggest results.

 

3. Pomodoro Technique – why tomatoes are your best friend

 

Originated by Francesco Cirillo in the1980s, the pomodoro technique uses a timer to break down work into intervals, usually of 25 minutes in length, with short breaks in between. Each interval is known as a pomodoro (the Italian word for tomato and named after the tomato-shaped kitchen time).

 

How you do it? Decide on what task you are going to do. Set your timer for 25 minutes. When the timer goes off, mark a cross on a piece of paper to denote the first 25 minute interval. Then start the timer again. If you complete the task with less than four pomodoro intervals take a short 2-3 minute break.

 

Four pomodoro intervals make a set. Then take a slightly longer break of 15-30 minutes. The idea is to be able focus with concentration and without distraction.  There are few different variations of this technique in terms of the number of minutes in an interval. For instance some people feel they can work a little longer between intervals before taking a break.

 

I’ve found this method to be super helpful when I’ve got a long list of stuff to do and I really just want to get it done! I’ve actually been using this technique to write this piece and have got it done in super quick time. It’s interesting how much can be done and that the short breaks help me feel much more productive for the next task.

 

 

4. Procrastination – the enemy of progress

 

One of the big reasons we don’t get stuff done is because we procrastinate. We put things off and often this can become an habitual pattern. The word procrastination comes from the Latin verb procrastinare – to put off until tomorrow.  It’s also derived from the ancient Greek word akrasia – doing something against our better judgement.

 

So contrary to what many think, the tendency to procrastinate isn’t because we’re lazy or that we’re bad at managing our time. According to numerous psychologists, there are two reasons we tend to procrastinate. The first is that some people are thrill seekers.  They put things off right until the last minute because they get that ‘thrill’ of working under pressure when a deadline is looming.

 

However, this isn’t the case for most people.  The biggest reason most people tend to procrastinate is because it is a way of coping with unpleasant or challenging emotions or negative moods brought about by certain tasks – things like self-doubt, frustration or fear. Sometimes the unpleasant emotion may be induced by the task itself such as cleaning a dirty toilet! But often procrastination is an effect of low self-esteem, self-doubt or because of something we fear.

 

For example, I may procrastinate all day, every day about picking up the phone to make sales calls – I’d even find a reason to clean that dirty toilet! Why am I procrastinating? If I’m honest, it’s because I have a fear of rejection. ‘What if I make this sales call and they say no and I feel rejected?’ That doesn’t feel good so I avoid the task. Whilst I feel immediate relief in that moment, the more I avoid the task, the stronger the cycle of procrastination becomes and so for me I may start to feel guilty and stressed over time.

 

The procrastination cycle over this task becomes harder to break and I feel worse and worse about doing it. It goes something like: I know I should do the task, it feels unpleasant, I avoid it, I get a short term reward of feeling better in that moment I don’t do it, then I feel bad and stressed and the cycle starts again.

 

So what can you do to win the game of procrastination? First become aware of the cause of your procrastination in the first place and then work on that. So if it’s a fear of being judged or rejected or a fear of failing, that’s the thing to work on first. In short, procrastination is a freeze behaviour and the stress response kicks in. So if you focus on the cause of your procrastination then you’ll remove your tendency to procrastinate. I cover more of these techniques in my Find your Mojo coaching programme.

 

Second, envisage the benefit and reward of doing the task and all the pleasant emotions and feelings that come along with that benefit and keep focused on that. Third take your first action step towards achieving the task. Say to yourself, ‘I know you don’t feel like it, so just do a little bit.’

 

By doing a little bit, you’ll get a little shot of dopamine – the feel good, reward hormone.  Then just do a little bit more and a little bit more. Before you know it, you’ve made great progress and you’ll find you’ve started to build your confidence in getting that particular task done, so it will get a little bit easier next time around.

 

 

Ready to take things to the next level and achieve the results you deserve to achieve without the overwhelm and self-doubt?

Find out more about my Find Your Mojo Challenge or 1:1 coaching programmes.

 

 

A tale of 2 photos

A tale of 2 photos 

 

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. Or maybe that’s the other way round.

 

These 2 photos tell my recent story.

 

The worst of times

I’ve been reluctant to share the first photo. But I’m keeping this real because so often so many of us show up at work or with friends or on social media platforms with our ‘best’ face on.  On the surface we may look like we have everything together. The reality may be quite different.

This first photo was taken a week into lock down back in March 2020. To say I’d lost my mojo was an understatement.

 

 

 

My business had been hit hard by the pandemic. I had no money coming in. I was worried about paying my mortgage and bills. I didn’t qualify for any of the government support schemes. I was worried about my the health of my family.  I worried about EVERYTHING.

 

I was paralysed by fear. Anxiety through the roof. Couldn’t eat. Couldn’t sleep. Couldn’t get out of bed. Panic attack after panic attack. I was stuck. I couldn’t think clearly.

 

I watched people around me who appeared to be effortlessly adapting to the pandemic which was sweeping the world.

 

Health workers were fighting the battle on the front line with extraordinary courage and strength.  Scientists were working around the clock to discover treatments and create a vaccine. Engineers were pivoting their businesses and manufacturers re-purposing their factories to make essential health care equipment that was in critical short supply. Key workers in public services, food, transport and logistics were keeping the country going.   Parents with busy jobs were working, home schooling their kids, joining in with Joe ‘The Body Coach’ Wicks’ daily PE lessons and baking banana bread.

 

Here I was sitting at home, completely paralysed.  I was doing my best hippo impression, wallowing in a mud of fear and anxiety. I lacked energy and motivation. My confidence took a huge knock.

 

I just couldn’t understand what was happening to me.  This really wasn’t me was it? To be afraid and wallow in the face of change and challenge when times got tough? It’s not something I’d ever been like before.  Throughout my career, I’d never been afraid of change or challenge. I thrived on it. In fact, I actively sought it. So why was I feeling paralysed? I was horrified and I was stuck. Sitting at home, feeling helpless and dare I say worthless.

 

For goodness sake, I was a coach.  Why wasn’t I able to function? I felt guilty about all of this.

 

My mental and physical health were really suffering.  I needed help.  Understandably it was a challenge to access the health system. It had much bigger priorities.

 

I had a choice. Stay this way or take action. I chose the latter. And to help myself.

 

I prioritised investment in myself so that I had the navigation tools to cope with this continuous disruption healthily and productively. I knew we were in it for the long haul.  We just can’t be  certain of how things will pan out.

 

I created a daily regimen combining brain boosting nutrition and neuro literacy. And I used all the tools and experience I had under my belt as a certified coach using evidence based techniques.

 

The best of times

The second photo. This was taken mid April 2020

The result? I’d found my Mojo.  I felt calmer, healthier and became a productive action taker. I pivoted my business to get results quicker than ever before.  And crucially without freaking out and burning out.  You might say that I’d turned my stress into success.

 

 

 

 

 

 

However bad things get, I always try to find an opportunity. The pandemic has been my opportunity to really find my sense of contribution and purpose in the world.

 

My experience helped me to innovate a new method – the MOJO method.  And I can’t wait to share this with others to help them too.  I have a mission. To help millions of people around the world find their mojo. Because this pandemic has been exhausting for many and it is having a profound effect on mental health.

 

Too many of us are living in a continuing state of fight, flight or freeze. Not only can this lower our immune systems – something we don’t want when the virus is around –  it can also affect our confidence and motivation.  Living in this fear response long-term can also set us up for more serious health conditions.  That’s why it’s so important that everyone has access to tools that can help mind and body cope with the on-going disruption and chaos of the pandemic. And this is what my MOJO method is designed to do.

 

It’s a four-part framework that starts with Motivation – finding focus and motivation -and sustaining it; Overcoming Obstacles – finding those internal and external obstacles that stops you from taking action; Joyful Possibilities – enabling you to move from negativity bias to plausibility and Oomph – finding your energy to become a sustained action taker.

 

I’m introducing it to the world with a Mojo Challenge –  a 14-day taster that can help you bounce back from the chaos and uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.  It will involve webinars, daily practices to improve stress and emotional regulation and support from others in the Mojo Tribe.

 

The Mojo Challenge is brilliant for you if you’re tired of worrying , whether that’s because your business has been struggling, you’ve been made redundant or you’re simply exhausted by keeping too many plates spinning.

 

When you sign up you will meet others in the Mojo Tribe who are in a similar position.   With me as a guide, we will work together to set the result you want to achieve by the end of the 14 days.

 

You’ll also take part in fun daily tasks designed to lift you and refill your mojo cup. The Mojo Tribe that you’ll be part of will provide encouragement and help keep you accountable.

 

The 14-day challenge involves a live webinar or daily practice challenge and live coaching in an online community, before ending with a celebration event and guidance on the next steps.

 

More details or to sign up for the 14-day Mojo Challenge from Monday 26 October please visit https://bit.ly/mojochallenge14

 

 

 

Are you willing to give up being a caterpillar?

 

By Jo Britton

 

People usually hire me as their coach when they want to make some changes in their life or in their business.

For that change to happen, something needs to change. And usually that’s ourselves.

 

We may need to let got of something, work on our mindset, change beliefs that limit us, upgrade our emotional skills, learn new things, start new habits or give something up that’s not serving us well.

 

During lockdown, we’ve all been experiencing huge change. I’ll admit, it’s been hard going for me.

But one of the benefits of being at home is that I’ve been lucky enough to spend more time in my garden.

Here I’ve been taking inspiration from nature, particularly the graceful butterflies.

The butterfly’s metamorphosis ha been a great reminder for me.

 

If you want to fly, you’ve got to be willing to give up being a caterpillar. And that means change.

 

Change requires growth for which we need fuel.  Just like the caterpillar fills up on leaves to make its transition, we can fuel up by upgrading our emotional management skills and knowledge.

 

Change is uncomfortable. We may struggle. But strength comes from struggle.  The butterfly’s struggle to break through its cocoon is necessary to strengthen its wings in order to fly.

 

I love this excerpt from ‘Hope for the Flowers’ by Trina Paulus which seems to sum this up so well:

When she heard the word butterfly, her whole insides leapt.  ”But what is a butterfly?”

The cocooned caterpillar explained: ”It’s what you are meant to become.”

‘Yellow’ was intrigued, but a bit defiant.

”How can I believe there’s a butterfly inside you or me, when I all see is a fuzzy worm?”

On further reflection she pensively asked,

”How does one become a butterfly?”

”You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.”

”It’s what you’re meant to become.”

 

If you’re yearning to become the butterfly you’re meant to be and need a bit of extra support, find out more about how our coaching programmes can help.

 


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How to slow down to speed up

 

By Jo Britton

 

As a coach, I work with many leaders who are exhausted or in danger of burn out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of my clients said she felt like she was pulling a truck with square wheels.

 

She was so busy taking action that she’d confused busyness with productivity and effectiveness. And had missed a great idea which would make life much easier.

 

Sometimes we just need to slow down to speed up.

 

If you struggle to take time to pause for thought, set an alarm on your phone every hour to remind you.

 

Spend a couple of minutes taking a few calm, deep breaths to relax and enjoy being in the present moment.

 

The more you practice this, the more this will become a great habit

 

You’ll be amazed at how much more productive and effective you will become.

 

Want to achieve even more in less time and with confidence and impact?