4 Ways to Up Your Elvis

February 27, 2018 / TAKE A STAND

4 Ways to Up Your Elvis

February 27, 2018

Chris Baréz-Brown Founder, Upping Your Elvis

Chris Baréz-Brown is a best selling author, speaker and founder of Upping Your Elvis; helping businesses reach their creative potential. He writes for Fast CompanyThe Guardian and has a monthly column at GQ.

This life is accelerating fast. The demands on time and attention are growing by the day and trust me, it's not going to slowdown. People seem more confused today than ever before. With so much stimulus, and so many new things to grab our attention it's getting harder to know who we are and how to make every day count.

At Upping Your Elvis, we do a few things that help us and we hope they may help you too.

Start it right
When we wake up in the morning there is a wonderful moment where we can't remember who we are. As we search our room and indeed our memories the picture slowly comes back to us. But whilst we are in this zone we have an unusual connectivity that can help bounce us into the day.

Before reaching for your phone and getting caught up in the routine of the morning, head outside and sit quietly for 10 minutes. Breathe deeply and sit straight with a smile on your face and allow yourself to connect with who you are, the world in which you live and what it is about today that is going to be extraordinary.

We know that business will kick in and we will spend large chunks of our day on autopilot, but by setting a clear intention at the start of the day, we have a much greater chance to stay on our journey whilst enjoying the ride.

If it doesn't feel right, stop
So often people get trapped in careers that aren't right, relationships that are all wrong and in mind-sets that debilitate rather than amplify. Our primal nature doesn't like to change no matter how groovy we think we are today. If we leave it to autopilot we will always do what we've always done. Our brains instinct is to create habits and routines, it saves us energy from having to learn everything from first principles, but due to the over stimulated nature of our lives, that natural instinct kicks in far too often. Before long we stop questioning the world around us and become a weak representation of what essentially should be a very bright self.

A simple way to break out of this prison is to pay more attention to how you feel.

At Elvis, if we are doing anything that feels tough or boring, we change it. We may change the brief, the room in which we are working, the people we are working with, the approach to the work. We may go outside, we may take a break, we may do 20 press ups, we may take a guitar off the wall and hack out some ropey old chords.

What we choose to do is less important than the discipline of doing it.

Some things work a treat, others do not. If the action fails, just try again.

Next time you are in a meeting and you're looking around the room at people who are disengaged, passive and just taking up space, change whatever you think you need to make them feel alive.

Standards, standards, standards
At Upping your Elvis, we are always early and never let a phone or a computer be visible whilst we are interacting with others. These are standards that we hold in all our work because we know that they are powerful.

By being early we send a clear signal that whatever we're doing is important to us and that whoever we are working with is valued. It means that we start in the right energetic state which gives us a chance to finish in it too. Lateness is sloppy and delivers sloppy work. We won't let that happen.

When we get people in a room whether it's a one-on-one or a large event, the moment is precious. If we allow ourselves to be distracted by anything digital then we give permission for everyone else to do the same. Not on our watch.

These are our standards as we know they are valuable to the specific expertise that we have and the work that we deliver, but we also know that you need yours. Spend some time thinking what standards, if you hold them to a high level, will make your unique talents resonate even more every day.

Not wishes or 'I should', but things that are part of who you are, that just need acknowledging.

Be the experiment
Life is so unpredictable the only way to win is to constantly try new things and see what works and what doesn't. The old leadership paradigms of being able to get things right all the time is a fairy-tale and nonsense. It's impossible to deliver. Getting things wrong makes us human.

We all make mistakes and I am delighted that we do. My biggest mistakes have always delivered my biggest breakthroughs. Therefore, in order to get more break-throughs I must put myself at risk of creating more mistakes.

We should always have at least three experiments on the go. Things that we have a hunch could pay off and that we would be incredibly excited if they did so. These experiments could be potential game changers and they should be what we lie in bed at night fantasising about.

The key to great experimentation is to do it quickly, cheaply and learn constantly. Demand feedback every day and those experiments can only give you value.

Life is a lab, don't try and make it perfect; it's your space for creation.

We all have some Elvis within us, embrace these four principles and feel your swagger grow.

 

Read more by Chris Barez-Brown

Chris Baréz-Brown Founder, Upping Your Elvis

Chris Baréz-Brown is a best selling author, speaker and founder of Upping Your Elvis; helping businesses reach their creative potential. He writes for Fast CompanyThe Guardian and has a monthly column at GQ.

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