Notes for the Curious: Edition #52


Another week, another adventure. This time it was a return to the stage at the Families In Global Transition Conference in the Hague. With my #RedefiningCommunities partner in crime, Naomi Hattaway, we spoke to a room of nearly 100 attendees about how they could lead the change they wanted to see in the world. After telling our stories and the stories of other people who saw a gap in the world and stepped in to fix it, we invited our attendees to participate in an exercise which moved them from that tiny tap on the shoulder which signals that something has to change towards taking the first small action steps to start to fix it. 

We were very fortunate that our friend Stephanie was in the room and recorded the first part of our talk on Facebook. You can watch it on her page.

I rushed home straight after the conference to submit the application for the Facebook Community Leaders Program and with that done, it felt like "real" life could start again. 

This week has been a very welcome return to normal, balancing home life with running Amsterdam Mamas and working with my small business clients to help them grow businesses which create impact in the world. After the busiest of starts to the year I have loved getting back behind the scenes on other people's projects to help them get clear, get focused and take action on how they are going to change the world. Do you have a big dream for how your business could shake up your industry and change people's lives? If you do, we should talk.

In the meantime, let's get on with the Notes...

1) Build habits instead of setting goals

Mark Mason believes we should be building habits instead of setting goals if we want to make fundamental changes in our lives. He also outlines six habits he thinks everyone should be building and how to do it. This is a long read but absolutely worth it.

2) How to send email that people read

Do you know how many search results there are on Google for the phrase "declutter your inbox"? I do, it's 1,900,000. Go ahead and check, I'll wait... That's 1,900,000 ways that people are trying to keep your email out of their inboxes. Whomp whomp. Which is why it is more important than it has ever been to craft emails that people actually want to read. Over at ConvertKit they have done the analysis and and broken down the anatomy of the perfect email. What do you think? Would you read more email if it was better constructed?

3) Give a Breathtaking talk

I know that public speaking is not right for everyone, believe me, it definitely wasn't my favourite thing when I first started doing it. But if you are interested in starting or improving your public speaking skills this is a handy little infographic (and supporting article) from the experts at SpeakerHub.

4) What Would Happen if You took a Break from Facebook?

This woman says that doing so changed her life. I think that for me, having run Amsterdam Mamas for so long on Facebook I have definitely been through the phase where it was all consuming as a platform. Rather than turning it off completely, which would have been impossible without making significant changes to how Amsterdam Mamas operates, I developed strategies to help make my time on social media more intentional. These days I feel I have a good balance between the time I spend on there professionally and personally and the time I spend off social media doing things in the "real" world. What approach do you want to take with social media, ban it or balance it?

5) Leading the way

As Naomi and I have been diving deeper into our work on redefining community we have inevitably reached the point where we need to explore the concept of community leadership. As is our way, we start by looking at the definitions which are already out there before distilling them right down to their essential values. When we studied our favourite leadership quotes we found that they all contained one or more combinations of four distinct values. What really got us excited though was seeing that those values mimic the framework of community evolution that we've been working on. Don't you just love it when everything aligns to show you that you are absolutely on the right path? I do. You can check out the first part of our explorations, How We Define Leadership: A Collection, on our Medium page (which has also had a little bit of a makeover). 

Me, elsewhere...

Stephanie and I have released the third episode of BusinessUNVARNISHED. In this episode we talk about why we think "small is beautiful" when it comes to business. Let us know in the comments of the video what your thoughts are on keeping your business intentionally small. 

It's time, female entrepreneurs living in Europe, Spark Women 2018 in Amsterdam is just days away now. I will be moderating a panel discussion on the Winding Path of Entrepreneurship featuring some whip-smart women who know what it takes to start a business, grow a business and take it further. If you haven't got your ticket yet then use the code: SPARKFRIEND to get a discount on the full ticket price.

Until the next Notes,


P.S. I almost forget, two of my articles have been included in recent editions of Business Fit magazine (subscription only). It's always fun seeing your words used in different formats.