All of us experience change of some sort during a 12 month period. Some unexpected, some saw it coming and some of us may have not yet felt the impact. I too, had a contract come to what felt an abrupt end when Covid appeared. Although I permitted myself some downtime, here’s 4 reasons why having a portfolio career, on balance made this past year quite fun.
2020 was a funny year for most of us. Let's face it. Regardless of whether you are risk averse or not, chances are you saw people a lot less than 'normal' this particular year. So who did you spend the most time with?
As I look back on 2020 and plan for 2021, I’ve identified the 5 top habits that I’ve formed this year, largely as a result of lockdown though some were high on the list anyway. In no particular order:
I suppose it was inevitable that with the change of season, there would be some differences. It’s also inevitable that change happens as time goes by no matter how subtle. In this article, I reflect on 4 ways my portfolio evolved in November 2020 against earlier in the year.
Where the summer was about being out in the garden, this season has been more indoor in focus and painting featured quite a lot. Once again, a meditative activity - and definitely one I was glad of on occasion when certain people annoyed me! With a little help from someone that was in our bubble, we have a freshly painted downstairs!
I’m still cooking and for reasons that will be mentioned later, less so...that’s not to say it hasn’t led to more pairings and the latest article can be found here - Inspiration Diwali Menu - Food and Fizz | Glass Of Bubbly
I put myself on a business accelerator in the summer and admittedly, I’ve not been that great at doing my homework. That said, I can feel that I’m getting on with things and am more focused at my own pace.
In addition, I’ve started reading again consistently which has been a great way to decompress just before bed.
My role in Toastmasters is a notable time commitment and to that end that is currently and until at least the middle of next year. There is something very real about contribution - and how that opens up more unexpected opportunities as a result. And in a serendipitous turn of events…
I have started a new business relationship in this new lockdown with someone I met via Toastmasters. In early 2021, a book called The Exceptional Sales Career will be released and I’m working on this project with the author. When you start something new or take on a new client, it is almost a given that it can be all-consuming in the first month or so while you figure out what’s what.
So there we have it, there are some constants in life however evolution and change are also a natural part of life. What does your portfolio look like? How has it evolved in the last few months?
Let us know!
Rupa Datta is passionate about unlocking portfolio careers. Get in touch to find out more!
Want to speak well in public? Learn from Santa!
If you’d like to ‘sleigh’ your audience and shower them with your gifts, you can learn a lot from Santa. Here are his reindeers’ tinsel tips.
Dasher: Just like Santa, listen well. By listening Santa gets to know people and what they want and need. Then he gets to work to create something that makes people happy.
Dancer: Santa has found that the three P’s are key - Planning Preparation and Practice. All the serious work is done ahead of the big day. Santa’s workshop is busy all through the year planning and preparing for that one special event to be confident that everyone receives something special.
Prancer: Santa says it’s important to have fun. After all the hard work in advance, delivering on the big day is then easy and enjoyable – for him and his public. As he relishes the ride and offers gifts to everyone with smiles and joy, the people are happy and beaming.
Vixen: Santa always likes to surprise people with something they aren’t expecting. Something novel, eye-catching or funny rather than just another set of socks.
Comet: Santa always dresses for the job. He wouldn’t make the rounds in blue jeans and a plaid shirt, but insists on looking good – only his red suit with white fur trim will do.
Cupid: Santa’s motto is ‘Sm-eye-ile’: smile plus eye contact. When he smiles and looks warmly into people’s eyes he makes them feel noticed and valued.
Donner: Santa developed his memorable phrase” Ho, Ho, Ho’ so that he, and what he stands for, is remembered even in the middle of July. He repeats his ‘Ho, Ho, Ho’ message and everyone knows what it represents.
Blitzen: Santa’s gifts are always generous but he still leaves people wanting a little more.
Rudolph: Santa is Santa. He believes in just being himself, round belly and all. As a result, everyone loves him for who he is and what he offers. Merry Christmas!
Glen Savage - www.purplespeaking.com
The world has lived the C19 dream for six months now, it is interesting to look back at who we have become as a society. There are some interesting trends and behaviours that have come to fruition; some positive and many not so positive. My goal in this post is to look back at this time in my life and see how my routine and habits have changed (and hopefully evolved) given the environment constraints that have been bestowed upon me.
Life as we know it….
First some background on my journey as it is quite unique. I plan to post a more elaborate blog on my journey however let me summarise briefly. My last two work trips in early March were to Spain and France respectively. Both countries at the time were experiencing a large increase in C19 cases. Once back at home I spent the majority of my time at home with my wife venturing out for our one hour walks and trips to the grocery store. Interestingly enough in the first three months of lockdown we cooked each and every meal at home. We didn’t engage in any take away/home delivery service during that time.
Yet things always change ….
Unfortunately in late June my family suffered multiple medical issues and I made the difficult decision to fly back home to Australia. Part of the journey to Australia required me to undertake two weeks of mandatory hotel quarantine. Once completed, I finally arrived in Brisbane to support my family. My time in Australia was just shy of two months. Furthermore, I only flew back to the United Kingdom at the end of August. Fortunately I am now back into some sort of normal routine. Yet getting back to previously established habits along with the learnings in this post have been an interesting experience and worth sharing.
For those who know me well know I am a routine guy. I like to schedule and block time and believe in the concept of habit stacking (read James Clear’s book Atomic Habits for additional information including my book review). Yet when one makes a significant change to their environment it is challenging to maintain existing habits and routine. For examples, I could not access a gym for two full weeks given I was confined to a small hotel room. I also didn’t have access to kitchen facilities therefore I only ate what was left at the front door of my hotel room three times a day. Once free from quarantine I was living with my parents again thereby aligning to their timing and routine. Again, I had to adjust as best I could during that time. I worked at times very long hours given time zones (think UK and US) as well as balancing the support I was providing to the family.
The most interesting observation for me was the degradation of routine and habits due to lack of physical compartmentalising. When in hotel quarantine, I had to eat, exercise, relax, sleep in the same place. At home and in my normal routine I would work in the office, eat at the kitchen table, relax on the couch in the living room and exercise at the gym. Each day in the hotel became harder given this reason. I found it harder and harder to focus on the specific tasks at hand given lack of compartmentalising.
What’s the learning?
I’m now back in London, aligned with British Summer Time, with my wife and in my own home. My routine is back to where it was in early July but with many learnings. One learning was the purchase of a TRX, chin-up bar and gym rings so that I can exercise in pretty much any location that has a door frame.
1. Habit Stacking
There is no turn key solution to resolve the environment issue. What one can do is to habit stack to help alleviate the friction of habits and routine. For example, leaving your gym clothes next to your bed at night. Therefore in the morning you remove the friction of deciding what to do/wear. Instead put on your clothes and go to the gym without thinking about it.
2. Rigorous Scheduling
The second aspect is to be rigorous with scheduling your time. This can be challenging for couples and families. In my situation I would block out time in the hotel to workout, to eat, to relax. That way I could conceptually compartmentalise my time and establish a routine a little differently. I used the same approach with my family – schedule my critical times and let them know when I’m available. I’m not advocating you schedule your entire day. Instead the key habits and routine so you don’t miss a habit more than once. This is a good rule to live by.
Everybody has different environments, constraints, personalities and commitments. It is important to step back and think carefully about the long-term. Life in C19 can be restrictive and will not let up for a long time. Furthermore society and how we live will never be the same as pre-C19. Being able to adjust life/environment efficiently yet maintain our routine and habits will be critical to ensure progress and momentum is being made.
Brad Revell is in #permanentbeta - blog first published on his personal site in September 2020 - https://www.bradrevell.com/