Refocussing for 2022

A lot of us start the new year with resolutions for change. However, it can be really tough to get these to stick. Höchli et al (2019) suggests this is because often these goals are often broad and abstract, requiring sustained behavioural change. In this blog I’m curious about setting and adhering to New Year’s resolutions in the context of the ongoing pandemic, and I’m going to explore some ideas and research to help navigate through this.  Firstly, in order to stick a goal has to matter to us.  Neale et al (2011) explain this by distinguishing between our values, our beliefs and our attitudes, [...]

By |2022-01-28T11:05:35+00:00January 28th, 2022|General, Personal development, Productivity, Wellbeing|0 Comments

Focusing on your values as a pathway to success

What are values?   Our values are absolutely key to who we are.  Values are deeply embedded ideas about how things should work, what matters, and as such they shape the decisions that we make and our behaviours.  Take for example my bugbear about selfish drivers.  I get irate about selfishness in general as I have a deep-seated expectation that social interaction should be based on people respecting each other.  I feel that consideration for each other is a kind of glue that keeps us all knitted together and functional as a society.  If someone cuts me up whilst driving, for [...]

By |2022-01-28T11:08:01+00:00January 28th, 2022|General, Personal development, Wellbeing|0 Comments

Funding bids: Who do you need to convince and what are they looking for?

In this blog I discuss the importance of connecting with different audiences when writing funding bids, based on my previous experience as a funding manager at the UK Research Councils. To get practical support, feedback and experience to help you develop your bid-writing skills please join our forthcoming ‘Putting the buzz in your research bids’ workshop, Friday 28th January, 11.30 – 13.30 (GMT). BOOK HERE Developing convincing arguments to successfully secure research funding is a real skill, and bid writing differs substantially from other types of academic writing that you typically get more experience with during the earlier phases [...]

Giving ourselves permission to rest

As I write this blog, we are in the run up to the Winter break at Universities.  I wanted to focus on this break particularly, because many of us have a manic autumn term, and the break is our chance to rest and recuperate.  Except, actually, it becomes a time to cram in all those other things we just didn’t manage to fit in during the term.  Vitae’s ‘Impact of COVID-19 on Researchers’ survey (Feb-Mar 2021) showed that 58% of those surveyed found it impossible to do the research they had planned during COVID, and so now, many of [...]

By |2021-12-16T15:41:06+00:00December 10th, 2021|Academic Life, General, Personal development, Wellbeing|0 Comments

Stand tall: Academic Authenticity

What is authenticity? The other week I found myself telling my class a familiar anecdote about submitting my PhD for what must have been the seventieth time in 7 years (this is not an exaggeration: 10 classes per year x 7 years).  I’ve always used anecdotes as a way to try to connect to students and coachees, as I believe they express something authentic about attitudes, values, or motivations.  Yet I found that I had reused the anecdote to the point that I felt the phrasing speak for me, and I wondered then if the story was still truly [...]

By |2021-12-16T15:40:24+00:00November 12th, 2021|Academic Life, Personal development, Wellbeing|0 Comments

How to say ‘No’: Moving from ‘default yes’ to ‘considered response’

'No' - such a little word, but so difficult to say One of the things I hear most frequently in one-to-one coaching sessions with academic clients is ‘I need to say no more’. Whilst that it is easy to say and to know in theory, it is a whole lot harder to translate that into practice. No is such a tiny word, but the reality is, it is often very hard to say! Why is that?! From my discussions with clients over the years it is evident that there are a variety of genuine reasons why ‘No’ does not [...]

By |2021-12-16T15:40:07+00:00November 9th, 2021|Academic Life, Personal development, Productivity|0 Comments

Managing the ‘Imposter Gremlin’

Why do 'Imposter' thoughts show up? Right now I’m in the middle of making a bunch of exciting (and scary) changes to my business. Starting to blog, launching a new look website and new coaching programmes, planning a podcast, and taking on a new employee! It’s all great stuff, but with all this ‘newness’ comes a ferocious comeback of my Imposter Syndrome, aka the ‘Imposter Gremlin’. (Yes, coaches suffer with it too, even though we are supposed to know what to do with it!). Imposter syndrome is estimated to affect at least 70% of us at some point in [...]

By |2021-12-16T14:14:46+00:00October 21st, 2021|Academic Life, Personal development, Wellbeing|0 Comments

Responding to change

As I write this piece, our world is in the midst of COVID-19, which has seen us having to rapidly respond to one of the most major global changes in generations. Whilst this change is unprecedented, the range of responses we are experiencing ourselves and witnessing in our colleagues, friends and family are natural human reactions to change. As a cognitive species, we are often (consciously or subconsciously) resistant to change, wanting to do everything in our power to maintain stability, fearful of the uncertainty that accompanies change. Our own and others’ emotional responses to change can often be [...]

By |2021-12-16T14:18:23+00:00October 21st, 2021|Personal development, Wellbeing|0 Comments
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