I have recently embarked on a programme of training that involves delivering the same course many times over the next year. I love the course and believe in its value but I was concerned about how to keep it “fresh”. As a trainer, if you have to repeat a workshop many times sometimes you get a feeling of deja vu, or a sense of of “here we go again!”. You start to predict the conversations that are going to be had, perhaps then missing out on the real gems from the participants of your current workshop. Its the same in other parts of life, if you are undertaking any activity repeatedly then there is a danger of going on autopilot rather than 100% focus and attention
Thinking about the skills and tools I have to avoid this issue and make sure every workshop was a good as the first it struck me that Mindfulness is the way to go! Taking a mindful approach to every stage of my training ensures that I do my best for my participants, my clients and myself. So how can you build mindfulness into those big tasks you do on a regular basis?
Preparation – As a trainer, even when I have done the workshop before I will do some preparation. I review my materials and make sure I have everything I need for a great event. Before the workshop itself I will ground myself in the moment, focusing on this workshop and these participants.
Starting it right – How you start sets the tone for the whole day. I always set a positive “will do” tone no matter whether participants have chosen or been told to be there. I get to know them as individuals understanding what they need from the day. So get to know your task and the people involved this time. Is anything different, have any of the needs changed. Set your tone for your work.
Undertaking the task – Take nothing for granted . Make sure you listen and question throughout. Keep asking yourself, what is and isn’t working today?
Completing and Reviewing – Don’t rush to the end. How you finish a workshop can have a significant impact on what participants take away from it. Take time to gather and understand feedback. You will not only do it better next time, but it means that every workshop is different because you are developing and growing as a person.
Whilst the context here is delivering a workshop, I hope you can see that the principles work for any activity.
So stop and think, how can you make the work you to today fresh and new to you?
Alison Burgess is a Resilience Expert and Confidence Coach. For more information about building confidence and resilience go to the Limitless for Life website, contact Alison on 07931 556 167 or click here to follow on twitter.