On not rushing through transitions (part 1)

There was a moment, sitting nervously high up on the edge of the gantry from which I was to jump, when I realised I couldn’t reach the trapeze. I had to launch myself forwards, focused on the bar, and anticipate catching it, quite literally letting go of the safe and familiar to leap forward, confident(ish) […]

On dreamspace

Some things can’t be rushed. We know this. The maturation of a wine, the build of a three hour NFL game or a five day test match towards its denouement, the germination and development of ideas, the growth of a forest or the development of a child. But today’s world seems to have been gaining speed […]

On transitions and loss (part II)

Transitional periods are a mix of both letting go of the old and experimenting with the new. Relationships, habits, patterns, behaviours, identities, ideas… It is not simply the case that a transition is a clean switch between two known states, the before and the after. Usually the after can’t be known. It arrives after a […]

On the markers of distance travelled

There’s a phenomenon when you take a new journey whereby the journey out seems to take forever compared to the homeward leg. It seems to be true however you’re travelling, so long as the route home is the same as the route out. I remember as a kid being surprised how quickly we seemed to […]

On why less is often more

The challenges of working productively from home are especially acute during Covid19. What might we do to enable us to work more effectively? What is working from home doing for our own well-being and productivity? Let’s start with some of the challenges.  It’s tough to follow my mantra of curating your workspace to suit the […]

On shadow work and bandwidth

The promise of going paperless is one I’ve been chasing one the last three years, digitising much of my world and opting out of being sent bills and correspondence in hard copy for environmental reasons as well as an attempt to simplify my life. I’ve scanned, recycled. Yet paperless is not synonymous with simple, uncluttered […]

On creating new habits

Campaigns to get us more fit and healthy are the norm these days – it can feel like there is barely a month without one. Did you make it to the end of Stoptober without a cigarette? Or manage to Go Sober for October? Time to start with a confession: I often get home tired […]

On designing for ease

Arriving at Berlin’s Hauptbahnhof the first thing you realise it that it really is a thing of beauty. Designed and opened in time for the 2006 soccer world cup it is a gleaming multi-layered intersection of shops, escalators, lifts and platforms. Lots of platforms. Some for trains, of course, others for the S-Bahn, still more […]

On the need for clear language

I remember when the challenges of talking a common language across public services was first brought home to me. I was talking to our Strategic Partnership of public sector agencies about the council’s upcoming CPA inspection and how the Audit Commission would want to talk to partners. To me it was obvious that I meant […]

On paying attention

Multitasking is a myth – handling interruptions at work actually requires rapid task-switching, which can bear a cost to our health. “Choice of attention – to pay attention to this and ignore that – is to the inner life what choice of action is to the outer. In both cases, a man is responsible for […]

On diverse opinions

In 2016 the voice of those feeling socially disenfranchised and economically side-lined was heard. Even if you consider the fact that others might hold a diametrically opposed view to you, it can be difficult to understand why they might do so. Understanding why requires a different perspective, looking at the world through new eyes, imagining […]