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Kirsten drives continuous improvement culture within large organizations with her company Bloomscript based out of Calgary, AB. Kirsten has a few exciting side hustles from puzzles for good over to her first book so make sure you connect with her on social and stay up to date!
My new favorite pass time activity is Kirsten’s version of crazy carpeting! This involves hiking up Moose Mountain with a backpack which holds your crazy carpet and lunch. Pro tip: your lunch slides within the inner circle of the crazy carpet to stay safe and un-squishy! Also, be sure to tell the skiers to move over when you fly past them and make sure you show them you are having more fun when you blow by.
Over-thinking vacation in the past leads us into the first great piece of information you can use in your day. Kirsten and her husband learned to shed the expectations of over-planning vacation with a spin the bottle routine; the direction the bottle stops is where you drive! This releases all of the expectation with a planned vacation and allows you to truly live in the moment. If you find a place you love you spend a few more days. If it rains you move on. We plan which creates expectations and we then do which creates reality. When reality and expectations deviate we get into mental trouble, and you can trust these two will rarely match up! Go in with no expectation and you will be fully present, experiencing what it really is and not what you thought it would be.
Fear is generated from the unknown and not having control or ability to fully predict the situation which lies ahead. Instead of trying to determine the “what” and “how” of the upcoming situation you should instead think about how you want to feel during the experience. Give yourself permission to be open to the path ahead and work towards the feeling you are hoping to generate. Remember that fear can come along for the road-trip, it just has to sit in the backseat and gets no say in direction or what the radio is set to! Embrace fear and remember that a slight fear (not a hungry bear in your sight kind of fear) in your stomach means that it must really be worth something to you. If you are not fearful you are in your comfort zone. Action used to be Kirstens default mode of operation. After sitting down with a coach friend Kirsten realized that instead of jumping to action right away she should take time to explore situations. This simple move from action to exploration has brought much joy to her life and certainly will yours. Some days as we go through life we become so focused on the task ahead that we become completely blinded by the beauty and opportunity all around us.
Kirsten lives for and loves the topic of personal exploration. If she was to fundamentally pick 1 reason why we are on this planet it is to find out more about ourselves and help others find more about themselves. This frames life situations, even tough ones, with: what did I learn from that? Instead of drowning yourself out in the negatives. You are the only thing you have entirely though your life and having an intimate relationship with yourself is very important.
I initially met Kirsten networking and was impressed by her ability to connect like minded people. She immediately honed in on questions to understand more about who I was and what I was all about. This was because Kirsten focuses on connecting two people who can add value to each-other when networking. This approach came after a friend made a great introduction to her. There is little better feeling than having someone nail an mutually beneficial introduction in your life. This falls under the Life Through The Eyes Of A Smile category of finding people your type of crazy! There is something fundamental about a tribe and quality of life. How though do we find and add these people to our lives? Go out to networking events and go in with the mindset of meeting people in order to introduce them to others in your life. Think: Who here is interesting? What are they looking for and who can I connect them to?
Social media allows us to connect with 1000s of people but how many people can we have deep meaningful relationships with? Our brain can only store about 50 close people and Kirsten is working on her defining her 50 with questions that uncover who these people really are and why are they in her inner circle. Some prefer dinner, some coffee, some people are looking to grow their networks and are looking for introductions. Start defining your inner 50 by knowing what is going on in their lives and think how you can add value to them.
You never know who you will meet at a networking event and just remember, many people are in the same shoes as you: feeling as if they are out of place. Kirsten went to a new technology start-up event to learn about the innovation ecosystem in Calgary. Kirsten has no background in programming or technology however, she still went to the event. She sat down beside an older gentlemen and simply asked: What brings you out tonight? It turns out he was out for the same reason: to explore the innovation ecosystem in Calgary. Coffee then lead to monthly dinners and now their relationship has changed from friendship to mentorship. When going to events remember people are just people, they are just as afraid and out of place as you at that event. They also do not know what they are going to talk to strangers about. If you can be the first to open conversation they are grateful to you for making it easy.
On the topic of “fear of success” comes a favorite quote: “Who are we not to shine? We give permission to others to shine by shining ourselves.” Be successful, be the first person to do something. Risk, it is ok. I have personally struggled with fear of success in the past and holding myself back from truly shining, what advice do you have for getting out of this fear Kirsten? Two things to uncover why you should be grateful. One being a learning jar and the second being a shine journal. The learning jar is where you place one success and learning from every day. When January 1 comes around you sit down and review the entire lot! Secondly populate your shine journal by posting a question to FB asking for single words that people would use to describe you. Write down all of these words in a journal and you now have a shine journal! All of these words are how people see you not, how you see you. Come back to this journal in moments of fear or self-doubt when you forget that the world sees you in a different way than you do.
Finding success in your morning routine will set you up for success in your day, what sort of morning routine do you have Kirsten? Kirsten looks at the most important thing she wants to work on at that time in her life and does that in the morning. At 4-5am no one else has that time, so use it to your best benefit. Right now the most important thing to Kirsten is finishing her book and mornings are spent writing 670 words; stay tuned for a September release. Know your peak energy times to slot in creative work and do not force it unless it is absolutely necessary. When needing a Recharge Kirsten recommends using a yoga strip!
What has brought the biggest smile to your face this past week? Sharing time with others. If she is feeling down she schedules time in with others. Connection is everything! I cannot agree more Kirsten!
What does your weapon of mass happiness shoot? It shoots personal awareness. You are the only person you have the whole way through your life. External sources of happiness can be taken away however internal sources of happiness can never be taken away. Having an expectation that outer things are your sources of happiness puts a lot of expectation on others. If you are the one who has the source of happiness you bring a lot of energy to a conversation.
Life Through The Eyes Of A Smile is the only life worth pursuing – Calvin