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Homelessness and Sales….

Every Thursday morning at 7:00 I start my day with a rollicking, yet professional meeting with the Think Referrals Business Network. We have our breakfast, present our 60 second updates, maybe watch a presentation and/or discuss some of our business challenges. And, we have fun.

Some of the challenges that emerged today related to sales.

Sales. A scary word that conjures up plaid jacketed, smoking, slick used car salesmen and buyer’s remorse. EEK… But, this word is what we all do, all the time. Ask Daniel H. Pink! His newly released book “To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others” addresses this very issue. I love Dan Pink’s books (“A Whole New Mind” “Drive”) and this one is another goody. I recommend reading all three.

Pink discusses how we all work in sales, “whether we’re employees pitching colleagues on a new idea, entrepreneurs enticing funders to invest, or parents and teachers cajoling children to study, we spend our days trying to move others.”

Or a homeless person asking for help. Read more

Priority to Play….

First of all, congratulations to the small but mighty group of keen explorers of the “Think Referrals Business Networking” group who embraced a Buffoonery Teambuilding Workshop recently.  Rainer Shmoll, CEO of Think Referrals;  Rhiannon Foster,  Realtor extraordinaire for Royal LePage; Jason Scott, of Fitness Town & the fabulous Power Plate;  Margarete Vinke , Independent Associate of Legal Shield; Marlise Mellett,  Marketing, Sales & Promotions Manager for Doolin’s Pub & properties; Dr. Dilyana Nestorova, Acupuncturist & Herbologist with Vista Wellness and Gary Chomyn, The SalesMD.

These people recognize that play is just as important as a fitness workout, eating correctly, and any self-development educating learning. I commend them for getting curious about what a Buffoonery Workshop could offer them.

Telling your partner’s story… creating a safe place

The word “buffoonery”, the English definition of the tricky technique for this team-building process based on the French “Bouffon”…

…can startle people and give an impression of “not serious”, “silly”, “un-productive playing”, and cause them either to laugh, and want to know more, or smile while thinking “this is not for me, and much too foolish”.

Some of that is true. Yes, it’s silly. Yes, it’s not serious. Yes, it’s foolish. But, according to many studies, play proves to be a crucial element for effectively maneuvering in this world and most definitely NOT unproductive! Acclaimed writers Daniel H. Pink, Stuart Brown M.D., and Jonah Lehrer all address the importance of play.

I asked some of the group if they had any impressions after the workshop they would like to share.

“What I took away as a precious gift from you, Trilby, as you led us in a safe and trustworthy environment, was that I became aware of letting my energy (emotions) flow; then I started to feel and connect with what is really important to me on my journey in life. The biggest reflection from the workshop in my mind is “connecting with me through the eyes of others”.

Margarete Vinke

We enjoyed your unbridled laughing, Margarete!

“Brilliant experience: for self-growth, for therapy, for discovering yourself and of course for FUN!!! Truly honoured and happy to have the chance to be a Buffoon! Thank you sincerely, Trilby!” Dr. Dilyana Nestorova

Getting into our bodies!

Knowing your trepidation for “performing”, Dilyana, it was fun to see you dive in!

“I loved doing the buffoonery session so if I were to say something about it – I would have to say how much I enjoyed getting out of my shell. It really loosened me up around a group of people that I try to be more business-like around and realized that it’s more fun to relax and be yourself.” Marlise Mellett

You work in a playful environment, Marlise. I appreciate that you wanted to explore that further!

“I gained personal insight and awareness.” Rhiannon Foster

As an already wonderfully expressive person, Rhiannon, it was great to see you play more, and also aid in giving permission to the others to play. Thank you!

Everyone helps you to find your ‘Bouffon’!

“Taking the time to search deep into my Buffoon was a truly amazing experience. You took control, you knew exactly how to make me open up, perform, and relax, but most of all have FUN!!!

I’d never felt, or seen myself through other people’s behaviour, mimicking me, not in a bad way, but to see myself through other people in the group, from their movement.

I really am a confident individual, and through your workshop, I feel even more confident in a different way. My business is of a serious nature, and my personality can reflect that.  However, with just a few little tweaks from you, getting me out of my comfort zone was really a huge achievement.”

Jason Scott

As someone in the Fitness business, Jason, you realize how important it is to connect with our bodies. When we are in tuned with what are bodies are doing, it can be enlightening, and helpful to our every day. Thank you, for boldly taking it a step further.

A few of the bouffons!

It is always a joy for me to witness each individual’s personality pop out in a safe, free environment. I can’t think of a better mission in life.

Is play a priority in your life?

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Laughter.. how could it not be good for you?!

I was so happy to stumble upon the following article thanks to the fabulous Daniel Pink‘s tweet.

Any study that promotes laughter as a good thing makes me happy. I grew up with a good sense of humour, and lots of giggling as a result. I am grateful I was “easily amused” as was told many times by friends. (I didn’t care as I had way more fun than them, anyway!). Unfortunately, a lot of us lose our easy humour as we grow older. (not everyone) So… going out of your way to re-discover those laughs is a good thing! Buffoonery anyone? Haha!

Would love to know what makes you laugh? And how often do you laugh?

An irresistable bouffon!

An irresistable bouffon! (photo by Chara Berk Photography)

Scientists Hint at Why Laughter Feels So Good

Laughter is regularly promoted as a source of health and well being, but it has been hard to pin down exactly why laughing until it hurts feels so good.

The answer, reports Robin Dunbar, an evolutionary psychologist at Oxford, is not the intellectual pleasure of cerebral humor, but the physical act of laughing. The simple muscular exertions involved in producing the familiar ha, ha, ha, he said, trigger an increase in endorphins, the brain chemicals known for their feel-good effect.

His results build on a long history of scientific attempts to understand a deceptively simple and universal behavior. “Laughter is very weird stuff, actually,” Dr. Dunbar said. “That’s why we got interested in it.” And the findings fit well with a growing sense that laughter contributes to group bonding and may have been important in the evolution of highly social humans.

Read rest of the article by James Gorman

On Motivation…

What motivates YOU? I would really like to know. Really… it’s not a rhetorical question. I ask myself this question a few times a day, subconsciously, and sometimes consciously.

Occasionally I have a specific answer. But, mainly, anything that spurs my creativity seems to inspire me out of bed in the morning. Or fear *said with a higher tone*. But, fear doesn’t feel good. And fear doesn’t really produce rewarding results.

This evening as I was driving home, I was thinking about the several bartering moments I have been enjoying, and imagined a world without money. I came to a conclusion that money wasn’t enough of a motivator for me.

Daniel Pink, a favourite author of mine, explains so wonderfully the myth of motivation, and what truly makes us rise to our potential. It’s NOT money. When businesses and organizations finally realize this, and implement the ideas, Pink offers, they should witness some positive changes.

I highly recommend his book on motivation “Drive” – an enlightening read.

In the meantime, settle in for an 18 minute TED talk by Daniel Pink and learn what motivates us.