Monday, 18 June 2018

Leadership and the Triflex

This week I share some of my own qualitative research. Through interviews with senior leaders in large public sector organisations I explored the ways in which they fulfilled their leadership roles and experienced organisational politics - all through the lens of psychological flexibility.

Psychological flexibility is something that Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) aims to strengthen. It's made up of six processes. In this podcast I represent those processes with the triflex.

Click here to listen.

[Harris, 2009]

I thought it might be fun to share the experiences of my research subjects to show how the processes can show up at work and help you spot them in your own behaviour.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Body and Breath Exercise

The podcast is a bit different this week. I've had a few requests for a mindfulness practice recording - so here it is - just under 8 minutes - a guided meditation of the body and the breath. 

Click here to listen and have a go! I'd love to know how you get on.

Sunday, 3 June 2018

A thousand words

In this episode I use behavioural science to explore the decline in my sketching and cartooning activity and give some top tips on how to apply the same techniques to work and life in general. I commit to publishing a sketch or cartoon every day for the next 30 days on instagram and twitter - so you can follow my progress.

Click here to listen to Episode 10 on soundcloud.

The key questions I recommend to use to explore something that you've stopped doing at work that matters to you are as follows:

1. What's important to me about X or Y? Why does it matter to me?

2. What's my mind saying about X or Y?

Episode Notes

The song by David Gates is called 'If' and you can watch a live performance here.

You can check out the work of the brilliant Christoph Neimann here and his instagram feed is here.

And the book by Tom Gallwey is called - The Inner Game of Tennis.

Other Links to people soup




Sunday, 20 May 2018

Noticing the cave dweller

After a week off - spent in the glorious city of Valencia in Spain - you can now listen to episode 9 of People Soup podcast. In this - I draw upon my experience of bike rental in Spain - using it to illustrate our cave dweller mind - our minds often produce content which isn't helpful to us - but can have a significant impact on our behaviour. Our minds aren't broken - they're doing what they're designed to do. I describe the three key features of our cave dweller mind as:

  • Danger, Lookout!
  • Belong!
  • More, more, more.

By noticing our cave dweller mind we can choose to take a route that is perhaps more helpful to moving towards what matters to us.

Listen to Episode 9 by clicking here!

Photos by Helen P.

Episode notes:

You can find People Soup on many podcast providers - including




Metaphors for Life podcast

I've also discovered a podcast that relates closely to mine - it's produced by James Hardie - up in Edinburgh and it's called metaphors for life - well worth a listen

You can find it on itunes here - metaphors for life podcast

Monday, 7 May 2018

Two gears of the mind

In Episode 8 of People Soup - I aim to strengthen the case for practicing present moment awareness or mindfulness.

I present the two modes of mind - or two gears of the mind - the thinking gear and the sensing gear. Learn about the difference and how to access the, sometimes unfamiliar, sensing gear.

The following diagram is referred to in the podcast.

Click here to listen

Episode Notes

Check out the #365daysofcompassion on twitter and facebook - brilliantly curated by Chris Winson (@chisi_98) 

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Depression (Segal, Williams and Teasdale, 2013)
Mindfulness: Finding Peace in a Frantic World (Williams & Penman, 2011)
Search inside yourself (Tan, Goleman and Kabbat-Zinn,  2014)

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Flexibility in work relationships

This week's podcast introduces practical techniques for you to have a go at changing a work relationship. By presenting some examples and introducing some skills based in psychology - I aim to enable you to reflect on a tricky work relationship and have a go at changing the way you interact with this person.

You can listen here on soundcloud

And we're also available on i-tunes, stitcher and other podcast providers.

In the podcast I talk through four steps to help consider a work relationship - the framework below sets out these steps. You could print this off to make your own notes as you go along.



Saturday, 21 April 2018

Getting Unplugged

In this weeks episode of the People Soup Podcast - I draw upon research exploring work recovery by Professor Sabine Sonnentag and share 4 top ingredients for an effective recovery activity. You can also consider what your personal values are in relation to your leisure time to provide motivation and direction.

You can listen to the podcast here on SoundCloud

Click here to listen on i-tunes

Click here to listen on Stitcher

Those references I mention for activities that enhance relaxation are a walk in the countryside (Hartig et al, 2003), meditation (Grossman et al, 2004), listening to music (Pelletier, 2004) or even a long hot bath (Bourne, 2000).