Quix Tip: Dust For Prints

snow-2589838_1280In old detective movies, the police would dust for fingerprints. Here’s your chance to dust your own:

1. Dust for prints from your memory – Think of some examples of when you have had a positive impact on the lives of those around you. Each of these is a clue to uncovering your strengths.

2. Dust for prints by having a ‘strengths conversation’ with someone who knows you fairly well. Ask them what about you has really helped or inspired them recently.

3. Tell your people something about them that has inspired you.

Learn more:

StrengthsFinder - Gallup’s online assessment of unique top five strengths. Learn your team’s strengths and learn how to put them into action.

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Quix Tip: Soundtrack

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Think of a project that you’re going to work on today or this week that you’d like to energize.

Picture yourself in action, completing the hard work as if you were in a movie.

What kind of music would you like to hear playing if you were the director? What songs best fit this dramatic, exciting scene?

Play that song list, album or radio station that will help you perform at your best.

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Good Hours by Robert Frost (Pocket Poem)

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 Good Hours by Robert Frost

I had for my winter evening walk—
No one at all with whom to talk,
But I had the cottages in a row
Up to their shining eyes in snow.

And I thought I had the folk within:
I had the sound of a violin;
I had a glimpse through curtain laces
Of youthful forms and youthful faces.

I had such company outward bound.
I went till there were no cottages found.
I turned and repented, but coming back
I saw no window but that was black.

Over the snow my creaking feet
Disturbed the slumbering village street
Like profanation, by your leave,
At ten o’clock of a winter eve.

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Quix Tip: Top Ten Songs You Can Play Along With on Your C Harmonica

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If you have a harmonica in the key of C you can play along with recordings of these songs. Pick your spot on the harmonica and try drawing air in, or blowing air out. It’s fun and easy too!

  1. Piano Man by Billy Joel – Play out more than in, melody is in the middle, starting on Hole Six, Blow out.
  2. Love Me Do by the Beatles – Draw in first on the bottom three holes and then when the chord changes, blow out on the bottom three holes. Repeat. Or try playing the single note melody on the middle of the harmonica. The first note is Hole Five, draw in.
  3. Come Together by the Beatles – This very easy melody can be played almost entirely on Holes Four and Five, drawing in. Start on Hole Five, drawing in.
  4. Early in the Morning by Louis Jordan – Draw in first on the bottom three holes and then when the chord changes, blow out on the bottom three holes to play this blues rumba. Repeat. In the one spot of the song that sounds different, draw in on Hole One only.
  5. Ode to Joy by Pete Seeger (This lovely version of Beethoven’s melody from the Ninth Symphony is on Pete’s album simply titled Pete) Play out more than in. Melody is in the middle. Start on Hole Five – blow out.
  6. Rawhide by Frankie Laine (yes, this is the same classic Rawhide that the Blues Brothers did) – Play the melody only. The first phrase moves back and forth on Hole Two, blow out and then Hole Three, blow out, starting on Hole Two. The second phrase moves back and forth on Hole Two, draw in and then Hole Three, draw in and moves up from there.
  7. Can’t Help Falling In Love by Elvis Presley (His version on Aloha From Hawaii begins in the key of C) – Play the melody, the first three notes are Hole Four, blow out; Hole Six, blow out; Hole Four, blow out.
  8. These Boots Are Made For Walkin’ by Nancy Sinatra – Play the melody starting (and staying on for a while) Hole Five, Blow out.
  9. We Shall Overcome, Nobody Knows the Trouble I’ve Seen, and Swing Low Sweet Chariot (all recordings by Charlie Haden and Hank Jones on their beautiful album of spirituals Steal Away) – Try playing the melodies on the middle of the harmonica.
  10. Batman (the original wacky 60s TV show theme) – Draw in first on the bottom three holes and then when the chord changes blow out on the bottom three holes. Then repeat. In the one spot of the song that sounds different, draw in on Hole One only. Don’t forget to also add the ‘Bat-man’ vocal part!

*The melodies of any simple folk songs, most Americana songs (Shenandoah, Amazing Grace, etc.) can be played, also spirituals and nursery rhymes. You don’t need a recording, just try to find the melody in the middle of the harmonica.

Where to get a C harmonica – If you’re a graduate of our Play the Blues program you are already the owner of a C harmonica. If you’re not, it’s time to get your team in tune and give us a call! If you want to try these songs on your own before then, go to a music store and ask for a harmonica in the key of C. Or here on Amazon.

Where to get recordings of these songs – The iTunes store, the library or your favorite local music store.

Learn more:

Play the Blues - Learn to play the blues harmonica in just two hours! Each team member will receive their own harmonica, a copy of Blues Harmonica for Beginners book and play-a-long CD. Within minutes you will be playing a real blues song together. The grand finale features your team as the stars performing an original blues song that you have created together!

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Quest Story: Buddy Guy’s Chicago Blues Quest

Born in 1936, Buddy Guy grew up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. As a teenager he discovered his quest – playing the blues guitar. When he was 21 years old, he left Louisiana to seek his fortune in Chicago, where such legends as Muddy Waters, Howling Wolf and Little Walter were at the peak of their powers. Almost painfully shy and self-critical, his money ran out. He didn’t have any gigs and he started thinking about heading back home. His luck changed when he was invited to audition at the famous 708 club, where Muddy Waters heard him.

“I was going on my third day without eating in Chicago, trying to borrow a dime to call my mom to get back to Louisiana. And Muddy Waters bought me a salami sandwich and put me in the back of his 1958 Chevy station wagon. He said, ‘You’re hungry, and I know it.’ And talking to Muddy Waters, I wasn’t hungry anymore; I was full just for him to say, ‘Hey.’ I was so overjoyed about it, my stomach wasn’t cramping anymore. I told him that, and Muddy said, ‘Get in the car.”

He competed in guitar battles, where he emulated the showmanship of his childhood hero Guitar Slim. “I just walked out there with this 150-foot cord, and it was snowing, and I just went straight on out the door. The next day the news media was there, wanting to know who I was.” His performance at a competition in 1958 battling with guitar legends Magic Sam and Otis Rush earned him his first recording contract.

Buddy Guy’s fiery, exuberant and at times anarchic guitar playing and singing has entertained audiences around the world, from his early days backing up Muddy Waters and playing with the great harmonica player Junior Wells, to his highly successful solo career. His club, Buddy Guy’s Legends, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in ‘Sweet Home Chicago.’

Learn more:

Play the Blues - Learn to play the blues harmonica in just two hours! Each team member will receive their own harmonica, a copy of Blues Harmonica for Beginners book and play-a-long CD. Within minutes you will be playing a real blues song together. The grand finale features your team as the stars performing an original blues song that you have created together!

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What do you want to see in 2020?

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In 1968, Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke dreamed up the film and the book 2001: A Space Odyssey.

George Orwell published his dystopian novel 1984 in 1949.

It’s 2018. The next number with meaning is the year 2020. That is now about 100 weeks away.

Numbers like these are tools to help us think bigger.

What do you want to see 2020?

What do you want to see clearly 100 weeks from now?

The time to start on what you want is now. Today. There is no need to look back when you hit 2020 and wish you had worked on something else more important for the last two years.

There is something in you, something about you that is unique to you. Some change you want to make and help the world with. What is it now? How will you be the change you want to see in the world when you can see clearly – 20/20?

 

Learn more:

How to Lead Change -  Learn how to be an effective change leader and lead positive change that lasts.

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Strategic or Tactical?

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There is a tension between thinking strategically and tactically. We tend to just live tactically. We humans don’t do well with tension and tend to just go to one side or the other.

And the daily grind is where we usually go. It’s the path of least resistance.

Carl Jung said the sign of a true adult is to be able to live in the tension of the two opposites.

You have 100 weeks. What do you want to see 100 weeks now from now 2020?

What’s your tension between now and then? Today is day one of not giving up.

Today is the day to happily rest in the tension.

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What are your New Year’s Curiosities??

DA4C7E19-84A7-4E30-ACDC-11CAC53440C1We’ve been making New Year’s resolutions all our lives.

They usually don’t work out too well. 60% of those resolutions are toast by July.

And they never end the way we wish they would. These intentions always end up differently. It’s hard to gather enthusiasm, isn’t it?

Let’s try New Year’s curiosities instead. Curiosity recognizes that when we step forward, we step into the unknown. We don’t know the ending yet, we haven’t lived it. And curiosity keeps us in our frontal cortex, the smartest, wisest part of the brain.

Here are some curiosities:

What important projects will we finish this year?

What projects won’t we finish?

What will we begin?

How much kindness will we give – to ourselves and anyone we meet along the way?

How brave will we be with the hard, emotional work – the real work?

How well and long will we sleep?

What and who will inspire us?

What and who will no longer inspire us?

What change will we make in the world?

How will we make things better?

What is the path ahead like – 365 days of unknown – and where will we travel on it?

What’s our quest this year?

 

What are your 2018 New Year’s curiosities?

 

Learn more: 

40 Days to Change For Good - Don’t just manage change, lead it. Create a successful forty-day blueprint to lead a change that lasts.

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Quix Tip: At Your Best – Back to the Future

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Think about your life in the future.  Imagine that everything has gone as well as it possibly could.  You have worked hard and succeeded at accomplishing all of your life goals.  Think of this as the realization of all your life dreams.  Now, write about what you imagined.”

(From the work of psychologist Laura King, this positive view of your goals has been shown to improve goal clarification, give a sense of control and boost psychological well-being.)

Set aside 20 minutes for this.  If you’d like, repeat the following day.

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Recalling Joy: An Appreciation

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“Find out where joy resides, and give it a voice far beyond singing. For to miss the joy is to miss all. We have heard, perhaps, too much of lesser matters. Here is the door. Here is the open air.” -Robert Louis Stevenson

Research shows us that the most effective way to positively influence scary, upsetting life moments is to tap into a feeling of appreciation for something in your life that brings you a deep sense of joy.

  1. Pause, allow your mind to rest a moment and follow your breath.
  2. Think of one thing that brings you a full sense of joy. It may be a child, a life partner, the bud on a tree, a warm cup of tea, a good friend, something you’ve done for yourself, a pet, a special place.
  3. Call to mind as many of the details of this as possible. Make the image as real as possible in your mind.
  4. Allow the most joy you’ll allow yourself to feel about this to flood through you.
  5. Make this process a daily practice for awhile to train your brain. It helps to do this in calm moments.
  6. The next time your emotional mind gets triggered into fear or anger, recall the sense of appreciation you have cultivated. Allow both the unpleasant feeling and the sense of appreciation to be true, to sit side by side inside you.
  7. This recalling of a joy will help keep you in control of a situation and will help you positively influence the outcome.
  8. It may help you to carry some small physical reminder of what brings you so much joy. In that way, you can physically touch it or look at it when you feel your pulse racing.
  9. The more times you allow this recalled joy into low and high-stakes situations, the more quickly and easily you’ll be able to allow it in the next time you really need it.

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