AVM

Essays about the future of work, mindful communication, coaching, consulting and storytelling.

240412 The soft life

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THE SOFT LIFE

This week’s The Digest is jam-packed with fascinating reads on mindfulness, luxury fashion, tech and more. As ever, I share a wide range of interesting articles and insights, including how millennial women are breaking the rules in more ways than one, a short history of The Stanley Cup, before ending on a hopeful note with a fabulous TED Radio Hour about how the next generation could be the most sustainable yet. It’s a good one! Read here.

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240328 The three most important podcast episodes you will listen to this year 🎧

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THE THREE MOST IMPORTANT PODCAST EPISODES YOU WILL LISTEN TO THIS YEAR 🎧

I've been trying to take myself on long walks several times a week without my dog. Said dog, Nandi, stops every metre or two to give a good sniff of the ‘pee-mail’ left by other canines. It’s impossible for me to find a steady walking rhythm with him, so we take separate walks. And I need a sustained pace, if not a jog. I’m trying to walk off some extra winter pounds.

Occasionally, I delegate his walks so I get mine fuss-free. I’ve got much hope for our rhythms to eventually synchronise with age. Crossed fingers. 🤞🏼

There’s a second benefit I get from Nandi-free outings: I can focus my attention on an audiobook or podcast. And there have been some extraordinary shows released, some in the last few days. I’ve indulged not just for myself but also on your behalf. Today I feel so strongly about a couple of episodes I decided to forget about the rest of my planned Digest to concentrate on what I boldly call the most important podcast episodes you will listen to this year. I’ve added one of mine for good measure and think it stands its ground next to the others.

So without further ado, I give you my essential listens. Please report back, I’m eager to hear your thoughts.

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240315 Our business-needs-first society, enshittification, and more

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OUR BUSINESS-NEEDS-FIRST SOCIETY, ENSHITTIFICATION, AND MORE

Feeling weary? Join the club. In my latest Digest of personally curated finds, I explore the 'great exhaustion', the downside of our digital world (hello, enshittification!), ways to find balance and a few fascinating trends (arctic vacations, anyone?). As an added bonus, this week I have not one but two insightful podcast episodes on leadership communication and the transformative power of yoga.

Read here

230330 A life worth wanting

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A LIFE WORTH WANTING

That’s not just a simple declarative sentence; it’s the result of an 18-month exchange with 25 ‘everyday people’ in the UK, people also called the ‘persuadables’ - a term meant to indicate that this group (also known as the Conflicted-Future-Fearers) sit in the middle on climate, and doesn’t know what to do with themselves on this topic.

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230330 True luxury is human connection

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TRUE LUXURY IS HUMAN CONNECTION

I offer you another opinion piece, this time written by Daniel Langer, the executive professor of luxury strategy and pricing at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California and CEO of the brand strategy firm ‘Equité’. After several disappointing experiences, with luxury service brands and retailers alike, the esteemed professor establishes the essential foundation currently missing from so many luxury brands: human connection.

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230223 Tal Zur on slow interiors, soft power and the language of crochet

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TAL ZUR ON SLOW INTERIORS, SOFT POWER AND THE LANGUAGE OF CROCHET

My latest guest on Out of the Clouds is Tal Zur, teacher at the Holon Institute of Technology and the co-founder of Iota Project, a Tel Aviv-based design and social enterprise start-up with a goal to create social impact through design. And their technology (or rather technique) powering the project is crochet.

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221223 Arthur Gourounlian on his hero's journey

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ARTHUR GOUROUNLIAN ON HIS HERO'S JOURNEY

I’m thrilled to share my latest interview with Arthur Gourounlian. We met in 2010 when Arthur was creative directing and choreographing a film online platform Fashionair, featuring my then-boss, Christian Louboutin. Arthur taught Christian to tap dance for a dream sequence in the film. We saw each other every day for a week, and everyone left besotted with Arthur’s energy, humour and genuine kindness. Oh, and the film went viral.

His is quite the crazy story...

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221222 Mr Choo's Academy

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MR CHOO'S ACADEMY

Weak ankles are like a curse. First, because I love shoes. Second, because as a result, wearing heels is challenging. And high-platform shoes are an absolute no-go.

And the universe went: ‘And yet, you shall work for Christian Louboutin…’ ha ha ha, I hear with an amused and ominous echo, the universal intelligence giggling, as I tittered around for most of my many years working for the father of the red soles.

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221215 Permission to dial it back

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PERMISSION TO DIAL IT BACK

Have you felt drained lately? Then this series is for you. Whether you want to talk about it with others or learn more about how to deal with it, I hope this serves.

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221215 MINDFULNESS STRAIGHT TO YOUR EARS

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MINDFULNESS STRAIGHT TO YOUR EARS

If you haven’t sampled any of my mindfulness or Loving Kindness practices, perhaps because you weren’t keen to sign up on the Insight Timer App (that could be me, so I get it), I am bringing you a new format. Discover Out of the Clouds Waking Heart, my new podcast channel dedicated to contemplative practice. Expect weekly uploads and a good dose of benefits like relaxation, better sleep, increased self-compassion and a stronger sense of social connection if you practice with me regularly. Don’t wait; subscribe on Simplecast, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts or on Spotify.

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221209 Pippa Small on the luxury of made by hand, clean gold and being in love with the world

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PIPPA SMALL ON THE LUXURY OF MADE BY HAND, CLEAN GOLD AND BEING IN LOVE WITH THE WORLD

I am delighted to bring you a new interview with the wonderful Pippa Smallpippasmall.com. Pippa is a responsible jeweller based in London’s Westbourne Grove and she is considered to be one of the most inspirational leaders in the jewellery industry. Awarded an MBE by Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II in 2013, named ambassador of the human rights organisation Survival International and Winner of both the Ethical Jeweller of the Year and the Corporate Social Responsibility awards in 2016, and was also winner of the Green Sustainability Award by Town and Country magazine.

In this interview, Pippa tells me how she fell in love with travel as a young child, following her widowed mother who took her children to exotic places. She became attracted to stones very early on, and she explains how through stones, she keeps a connection to the places and people that each are linked to, and also finds a sense of protection from them.

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221202 PIPPA SMALL CELEBRATES COLOMBIA WITH CLEAN GOLD COLLECTION 'TOGETHER FOREVER'

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PIPPA SMALL CELEBRATES COLOMBIA WITH CLEAN GOLD COLLECTION 'TOGETHER FOREVER'

Responsible jeweller Pippa Small has been looking to find a source of clean gold for many years. After reading an article in the Independent (a mind-blowing read), she was understandably shocked to learn that for a single gold band to be made, 30 tons of toxic waste is left behind. Recently, Pippa was introduced to a new (well old in tradition) ethically and environmentally clean gold source in the region of Choco, Colombia, which started her on the journey to create her new collection, Together Forever. 

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221201 Talking sustainability and brand content as documentary with Scott Wimsett

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TALKING SUSTAINABILITY AND BRAND CONTENT AS DOCUMENTARY WITH SCOTT WIMSETT

I take joy in every interview for Out of the Clouds, and it’s an extra special treat when my guest loves to entertain good conversations as much as I do! Scott Wimsett is such a person.

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221105 Food is more than what you think it is

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FOOD IS MORE THAN WHAT YOU THINK IT IS

I’d heard from a naturopath (or an enthusiast, I cannot remember) that your supermarket can be your pharmacy if you choose wisely. 

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221028 Nada Ghazal creates jewellery to connect

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NADA GHAZAL CREATES JEWELLERY TO CONNECT

I’ve got another inspiring guest interview to share with you — this one with Nada Ghazal, a jewellery designer and entrepreneur based in Beirut, Lebanon. She shares with me how she’s always been creative and fascinated by adorning herself, which, as a child, led to her making her own jewellery and shoes with the help of local artisans.
Without the option of studying fashion or jewellery, Nada built a career in graphic design. But she left her fancy agency on her 30th birthday and returned to her hometown, Beirut, to start her fine jewellery company. Her focus has been on timeless jewellery that can be worn day to night — not be left in a safe.

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221028 Technologically sublime sutras

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TECHNOLOGICALLY SUBLIME SUTRAS

When mindfulness (or rather Buddhist chanting) meets an experimental theatre company in Hong Kong, the result is the Hua-yen Buddhaverse.

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221019 Kim Walls on regenerative beauty and trusting the power of nature

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KIM WALLS ON REGENERATIVE BEAUTY AND TRUSTING THE POWER OF NATURE

Season three of Out of the Clouds kicks off with Kim Walls, a fourth-generation entrepreneur and second-generation health & wellness expert. She’s widely viewed as a clean beauty pioneer, especially given her latest project, Furtuna Skin, the luxury skincare brand she co-founded and where she serves as the CEO.

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221006 Connecting to your joy

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CONNECTING TO YOUR JOY

I can’t remember how I found this sweet article a few days ago, but it’s one of those uplifting pieces that landed just right when I came across it.

How present is joy in your life? I’m feeling lucky right now, joy-wise. Puppy and kittens will do that to you (when you forget about potty training incidents, of course).

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220929 An ode to books

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AN ODE TO BOOKS

I love books. That’s not a secret, and it is a notable trait of my personality. I realise now that way before I had the opportunity to embrace my precious global nomad lifestyle, my readings gave me a sense of connection to the world beyond what I knew, and it powered an early sense of being more than my individual identity. Given how much I value reading, I was shocked to discover the banned books campaign unfolding in certain American schools and touching several million students. as Stephen King put it, "a uniquely portable magic" – and “the portable part is as important as the magic”.

Shouldn't we all have access to that magic?

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220915 Three fresh podcast episodes

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THREE FRESH PODCAST EPISODES

If you are back at work - and perhaps commuting to the office - I’m happy to bring you three fresh interviews on the Out of the Clouds podcast, released over the summer.

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220728 For your ears only

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FOR YOUR EARS ONLY

Early on in working on my podcast, I decided to select some questions which I’d ask every guest at the end of each interview. My favorite question is ‘what brings you happiness?’ and my second favorite is probably ‘what song best represents you?’

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220727 Abigail James on skincare, self-care and ageing well

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ABIGAIL JAMES ON SKINCARE, SELF-CARE AND AGEING WELL

Abigail James, London’s famed A-list facialist who’s been crowned ‘the queen of skin’ and ‘priestess of facial massage’, is also a well-being expert, yoga teacher, author, and single mother. In her absorbing interview with Anne, Abigail discusses her winding path to where she is now, the art of facial massage and power of positive touch, as well as the life philosophy she practices to keep going.

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220623 Who do you want to be?

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WHO DO YOU WANT TO BE?

Do you know what you’d like your future self to look like? Sound like? Feel like? This very interesting article by Medium-made success, writer Benjamin Hardy, for HBR, leans on academic research papers to make the point that we need to choose what we want to be, in order to become that future self. He also points to the skill sets that can support this approach, including psychological flexibility, a topic I tackled before and that you can listen to in depth in my interview with Jonathan Kaplan.

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220622 Guess what? Journaling works

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GUESS WHAT? JOURNALING WORKS

NY Mag’s The Cut has a new series, which I discovered thanks to the Scribbling Buddha newsletter, written by author April Dàvila, an early guest of the podcast. The proposition is simple: ‘I tried it’ is meant to put some daily mindfulness tactics to the test, with the goal of reporting back.

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220621 Dr Jonathan Kaplan on urban mindfulness, psychological flexibility and living from our values

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DR JONATHAN KAPLAN ON URBAN MINDFULNESS, PSYCHOLOGICAL FLEXIBILITY AND LIVING FROM OUR VALUES

In the latest Out of the Clouds episode, I interview licensed clinical psychologist, author and teacher Dr Jonathan Kaplan Ph.D. He is an Acceptance and Commitment Therapy practitioner, expert in cognitive behavioural therapy and works with the application of mindfulness and meditation in psychotherapy. He runs the Soho CBT Therapy + Mindfulness Center in New York.
You may even remember that thanks to Dr Kaplan's lecture, I'd written a blog post about why I want a flexible brain! Well, I emailed him to let me know and here we are :)

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220520 Corporate Courage a la Brené Brown

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CORPORATE COURAGE A LA BRENé BROWN

You may not think of Brené Brown as someone very corporate, yet this exceptionally successful lady is at the helm of a decent team and a number of big projects. Between books, podcasts, appearances, her own research and the Netflix special, to say she has her hands full is probably a wild understatement.

I was bewildered and rather in awe when she emailed her subscribers last week to share that she and her whole team were going on break. While I was writing my own version of I need space, I appreciated reading her words, another proof or reassurance that by preparing to take some time off, I too was making the right decision...

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220520 Thought work

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THOUGHT WORK

Part of coaching training (and I assume therapy) is ‘thought work’. Examining the veracity, the charge of our thoughts, and working things like cognitive defusion, aka taking a step back from believing the stickier things in our minds that may stop us from growth, happiness, etc.

The master of thought work is one Byron Katie. Discover her interview with Oprah, who ends up exploring her own sticky thoughts on friends and family wanting to borrow money. Fascinating. Listen here.

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220421 Discussing community, inclusion and neurodiversity with Wesley Faulkner

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DISCUSSING COMMUNITY, INCLUSION AND NEURODIVERSITY WITH WESLEY FAULKNER

In this new episode of Out of the Clouds, I am delighted to share my interview with Wesley Faulkner. Wesley is a first-generation American, public speaker, and podcaster, and he currently works as a Head of Community at SingleStore, and much more.

A tech enthusiast since his teens, Wesley first trained as an electrical and computer engineer (despite growing up without owning a personal computer himself). He shares with me the arc of his multipronged career, from hardware to software, and how being an early adopter of Twitter led him to social media management and later to ‘dev rel’ (or developer relations), and how he managed it despite a late diagnosis of ADHD and dyslexia - and why he is now an advocate for workplace inclusion for neurodiverse populations.

A very passionate, in-depth and honest conversation. Happy listening!

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220421 Though shalt not ghost

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THOUGH SHALT NOT GHOST

I am both a communications person and someone interested in what is happening in the world. I'm also a person who has occasionally moved on abruptly from friendships (not proudly may I add) and who was sadly once blocked and ghosted by someone who I cared about greatly, marking the end of what was a meaningful relationship.

So, of course, I felt compelled to write a short post to highlight this powerful piece by Jonathan Li, political journalist and commentator who’s written for the Guardian and the Washington Post among others.

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220421 Work, Together, returns April 22

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WORK, TOGETHER, RETURNS APRIL 22

I am thrilled to be hosting our second collective coaching session this Friday 22 April at 5 pm CET (11 am EST).

If you weren’t able to attend last time and would like to see the recording, well, I’m blushing behind my computer, I must admit that I forgot to press the record button on Zoom. Oops!

For this session, I chose the topics of Resisting vs Allowing, or how we better manage stresses and frustrations, whether personal or professional, and yes, it’s linked to this week’s Looking Forward post.

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220408 Susan Cain, longing and serendipity

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SUSAN CAIN, LONGING AND SERENDIPITY

Serendipity. Such an exciting word. Only days ago, I saw a first email from TED to recommend this talk by Susan Cain, from 2019, called ‘The hidden power of sad songs and rainy days.’ The ex-lawyer, turned writer looked familiar (she should be, I love her earlier talk on introverts!) And then I got an email from Brené Brown who said she’d interviewed her, and then Tim Ferriss. By the third notice, I decided to watch the talk (saving me time, 20 min vs 2h commitment) and boy was that a well spent 20 minutes.

Do yourself a favour, listen, watch and read anything with Susan Cain, so you too can explore how experiencing both the beauty and the sorrow in life can be our greatest superpower and how melancholy makes us whole.

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220404 Scaling intimacy with Jenny Sauer-Klein

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SCALING INTIMACY WITH JENNY SAUER-KLEIN

In the latest Out of the Clouds episode, I speak with consultant and experience design specialist Jenny Sauer-Klein.

Jenny is passionate about how we get together as groups and how we learn, and she regularly consults for organisations like Google, Airbnb, and Dropbox. She is a wonderful facilitator who has spent her life creating lasting experiences for many different audiences and is a frequent speaker at international conferences. She's also been featured in The New York Times, Forbes, Fast Company, and Inc., as well as Tim Ferriss’ book “Tools of Titans”.

Together we dig into the principles that have made her title program - Scaling Intimacy, which I took last year - so powerful and how it helps people make a crowd of 100 people feel like a gathering of 10. She also offers guidance as to how we can create safe containers for our events and how she and her team brought inclusivity to the forefront of her Scaling Intimacy program.

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220330 Let's talk personal style

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LET'S TALK PERSONAL STYLE

I both love to talk, and I’m a bit shy. But you wouldn’t know that from listening to my interview with Dr Andrea Wojnicki on the Talk about Talk podcast. Andrea was working with a couple of clients on their personal brand (which she likes to explain is not scary, it's just ‘what people say when you are not in the room’) when the subject of style came up. My own dress style has had its moments, some great, some less than, so it felt like a topic worth exploring. My tip: don’t dress for the job you want, dress for who you want to be and how you want to feel, in the job you want.

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220329 Compassion is the greatest thing you never knew you needed

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COMPASSION IS THE GREATEST THING YOU NEVER KNEW YOU NEEDED

And you do need it!

Another connection to the concept of tone! In this episode of the Dan Harris podcast, Dr Paul Gilbert OBE, a professor of psychology at the University of Derby, founder and president of The Compassionate Mind Foundation, the founder of Compassion Focused Therapy, talks about how wisdom and courage are the keys to cultivating compassion.

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220222 Cameron Silver talks circular fashion, retail and vulnerability on Out of the Clouds

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CAMERON SILVER TALKS CIRCULAR FASHION, RETAIL AND VULNERABILITY ON OUT OF THE CLOUDS

My latest guest on the podcast is known as the impresario of vintage couture and owner of Decades Inc, Cameron Silver.

Cameron and I were introduced to each other while he was pursuing a pair of neon pink flat lace-ups (I think this was 2006) and our wonderful common friend Melissa made the connection. Months later I was off to LA to visit Mel, and Cameron invited me to a whirlwind evening around Melrose and Beverly Hills. I’ve been a fan of his ever since.

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220222 Fashion trends and the forever wardrobe

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FASHION TRENDS AND THE FOREVER WARDROBE

I remember the days when I used to run to H&M for something new. Anything, really. I’ve had some seriously bad outfits over the years, particularly as I discovered, along with the rest of the world, the (sometimes silly) options afforded to us by fast fashion. This wasn’t a lasting love affair. I became pretty disgruntled with the way most of my favourite clothes would fall apart, with the occasional exception of course (I’m talking about you, a-line green leather skirt), when I could exclaim to someone paying me a compliment: “This? Oh, I’ve had it for ages, and it’s from …”

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220207 Work and the polymath playbook

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WORK AND THE POLYMATH PLAYBOOK

Lucky me. As I was doing some reading and research for this newsletter, I landed by chance (for once reading someone else’s newsletter) on this fantastic essay by polymath Salman Ansari (startup founder, CTO, engineer, teacher, writer, illustrator etc), aka 🦊 Quick Brown Fox.

Reflecting my theme of adaptability, he carefully makes the point of the polymath’s advantage, and the resilience that comes with becoming expert in different or even diverging fields. He thoughtfully brings up the fact that the term itself, polymath, is not one that is easily adopted, and comes to use instead the word ‘generalist’ which also relaxed me a little when I read it (and considered my own identity around my multi-pronged expertise).

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220204 When a catalytic event changes our sense of self

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WHEN A CATALYTIC EVENT CHANGES OUR SENSE OF SELF

There was a time when everyone I knew would introduce me as ‘Anne from Louboutin’. Internally, I was ‘Anne from London’ for 13 years which earned me the nickname ‘the queen of England’ by Jlenia, our head of production. When I decided to step out of the long tenure I’d had there, there was a major change of identity to deal with as I was no longer either of these personas that I’d inhabited. At first, I was worried that my value would suddenly disappear, having gone from a big title in a company that (finally) most people knew of, to no title in my own little company. Who'd want to give me the time of day? Turns out, most people did. My sense of self was certainly altered, I was lucky, I didn’t get stuck in ‘identity paralysis’ (probably because I threw myself into some online courses).

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220203 A superpower we all need: resilience

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A SUPERPOWER WE ALL NEED: RESILIENCE

This past week, I’ve been on the receiving end of some bad news. Someone close to me has gone through a big loss and after months of not doing great, has now sunk into a pit of dark depression. I felt devastated when I heard the extent of the self-destructive patterns which have enveloped him and pulled him far away from friends and loved ones.

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211221 Looking back on 2021

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LOOKING BACK ON 2021

'I don’t know where I’m going from here, but I promise it won’t be boring.' - David Bowie

Below, in no particular order you will find the topics, articles, books, podcasts, collaborations, etc, that stood out to me when looking back over the past twelve months.

In case you’ve not read every email I sent you - how dare you! - this will catch you up. Plus, I’ve added a couple of extra nuggets further below for you. Enjoy!

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211104 Meta plans

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META PLANS

He did it. James Corden did it. His Late Late Night ‘News’ section is all the news I need. At least today! He provided me with the metaverse updates I hadn’t read about, with an added layer of humour. The first news is Microsoft Teams plan to introduce avatars in online meetings. It sounds hilarious, and also, I want to say preposterous. Then again, I don’t use Teams. I wonder what Zoom will come up with?

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211102 Trending down

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TRENDING DOWN

Work less, get poorer and stop climate change. I’m serious! That’s the suggestion offered by writer Simon Kuper in the FT Magazine. A four-day working week could be one of the most effective means to cut our carbon emissions. Well documented, this article opens up many interesting avenues for us to consider what our current life trends are doing for us/to us and the planet

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211101 Talking Bento with Yancey Strickler, the father of Bentoism

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TALKING BENTO WITH YANCEY STRICKLER, THE FATHER OF BENTOISM

I am a 'quickstart'; that's what I discovered when I took the Kolbe Index. It felt reassuring when I got the results because they felt like me. My' action style' is jumping into things with the understanding that I'll figure things out on the way. That's how as a toddler, I tried to jump into an orange and black inflatable boat (and fell into the lake, oops - not a foolproof method clearly).

That's also how I met Yancey Strickler, author, entrepreneur, co-founder of Kickstarter and father of Bentoism.

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211030 Anticipating next year's resolutions

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ANTICIPATING NEXT YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS

Interested in getting into a mindfulness practice? Perhaps you want to anticipate your January resolutions or get yourself a spacious mindset ahead of the end of year and holidays?

I am delighted to announce that I will be hosting several weekend workshops on mindfulness and meditation in the coming weeks (in person!), in Geneva’s old town. Online workshops will follow for those not in Switzerland and you can sign up for details here.

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211029 Let's talk waste!

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LET'S TALK WASTE!

In last week’s Looking Forward, titled ‘Fashion as Self-Care’, I edited out a short paragraph in which I mentioned how visions of landfills have impacted me and my behavior towards clothes. It didn’t quite fit into the narrative of the story, which annoyed me, but I did feel able to bring it up in the conclusion at least : my Loving Kindness message to fashion. Thankfully, a new exhibition gives me an excuse to bring the subject up again.

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211028 mind matters

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MIND MATTERS

Attention is a subject worthy of an entire newsletter alone (perhaps something for another time). Dr Amishi Jha is a specialist in the matter: the professor in psychology at University of Miami and Director of Contemplative Neuroscience for the Mindful Research has just released her new book, Peak Mind. Expect strategies to learn how to focus, train your mind and perform at your elite-level best, all borrowed from mindfulness but thoroughly established in rigorous scientific studies. To give you a taste, listen to her in conversation with Lewis Howes on his podcast, the School of Greatness. She emphatically says towards the end (I even scribbled it down to repeat to you):

‘What you pay attention to IS your life’.

So I wonder, what do you pay attention to?

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211021 Screenwriting techniques, story and UX

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SCREENWRITING TECHNIQUES, STORY AND UX

I am putting the finishing touches to an interview with Yancey Strickler, ex CEO of Kickstarter and Bento creator. In listening back I was interested to notice that he chose to storyboard his book, 'This Could Be Our Future'. In doing so, he found the right metaphor (the Bento) to convey the message and concepts he'd been exploring.

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211016 Why coaching is good when you feel that 'meh' feeling

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WHY COACHING IS GOOD WHEN YOU FEEL THAT 'MEH' FEELING

That 'meh' feeling isn’t gone, at least not for me. So I couldn’t help but want to share this account of Guardian writer Joel Golby trying out life coaching. Because, well, you know what I’m doing, right? [NB I am on my way to being a certified coach!]

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211016 Is Facebook the Tobacco Industry of the 21st century?

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IS FACEBOOK THE TOBACCO INDUSTRY OF THE 21ST CENTURY?

Fascinating essay, whose title will no doubt grab your attention as it grabbed mine: is Facebook the tobacco industry of the 21st century? Message me to discuss!

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211015 Dr Tim Lomas on finding happiness through untranslatable words, and men, meditation, and mental health

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DR TIM LOMAS ON FINDING HAPPINESS THROUGH UNTRANSLATABLE WORDS, AND MEN, MEDITATION, AND MENTAL HEALTH

I’ve been mulling over a project called ‘We need a new word’ for just about four years now. So one day, when I came across an article about positive lexicography, I jumped on it and ended up reaching out to the author and professor Dr Tim Lomas. After lightly pursuing him on LinkedIn, he kindly agreed to be a guest on the podcast. Dr Lomas is a researcher on wellbeing, a lecturer in positive psychology and used to be in a ska band in London. For a few years, he has been exploring what he calls ‘untranslatable words’ that can help us expand our understanding of wellbeing, an approach which he considers both universal and inclusive. We also chat about the importance of balance and harmony, what eudaimonia means and lots more. Enjoy!

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211014 Radical self-care

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RADICAL SELF-CARE

I do a great job of dodging newsletters. I subscribe, then every morning, I enjoy a session of swiping left on my iPhone before I get a nice and clean inbox. Occasionally, an email slips through, and I read it. That’s how I got to this excellent article about sustainable self-care.

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211013 What is erotic ecology and how can it help us save the world?

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WHAT IS EROTIC ECOLOGY AND HOW CAN IT HELP US SAVE THE WORLD?

I regularly listen to Ten Percent Happier, the mindfulness podcast by ABC news anchor Dan Harris. I couldn’t resist the tantalising title of this new episode with guest Andreas Weber, named ‘An erotic approach to the climate crisis’. The philosopher, also author of books like ‘Matter & Desire: An Erotic Ecology’ makes clever points about the importance of relating to the world around us through sensuality (aka our senses), and argues that a greater intimacy with nature will foster a love relationship between us and the environment. One that could help us curb climate change. Dan Harris shows his skills as an interviewer, making this fascinating philosophical stance far easier to understand. I enjoyed it!

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211007 Fashion's hottest collab ever: Balenciaga x The Simpsons

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FASHION'S HOTTEST COLLAB EVER: BALENCIAGA X THE SIMPSONS

I’ve only just written about Balenciaga’s Fortnite collab and yet I had to mention this phenomenal break from the traditional catwalk show. A coup! That’s what it was. Demna Gvasalia surprised everyone when he revealed the new collection via a hilarious 10-minute exclusive episode of the Simpsons. The BOF even called it ‘fashion’s favourite collaboration EVER’. Marge's debut on the catwalk was epic. And is it me or is Homer looking hot? Discover all the looks and watch the episode here.

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210929 Andrew Barry on Transformational Online Courses

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ANDREW BARRY ON TRANSFORMATIONAL ONLINE COURSES

Tell me, are you like me and have you taken an online course recently? Was it good? bad? or maybe transformational?
If the last word sounds intriguing, let me ask you this: have you ever heard the words ‘transformational online courses'?

Well, look no further, my latest guest on the podcast is going to answer that for you (or rather, for us!). Andrew Barry is an online teacher extraordinaire, even known as 'the course guy'. I was lucky to meet him earlier this year when he lead a cohort of 150 of us in an intense learning program called ODCC, aka On Deck Course Creators.

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210910 Anne Lamott talks about her inner critic

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ANNE LAMOTT TALKS ABOUT HER INNER CRITIC

I was standing with a sea of tourists at Mykonos port, waiting to be herded onto a gigantic ferry, in boiling heat of the midday sun, when I listened to this interview by Tim Ferriss of writer Anne Lamott.
That morning, I’d managed to injure my left calf while attempting to catch a ball (read playing tennis), so I was also limping while pushing my suitcases around. You’ll agree that these are not optimal conditions for any listening experience, yet I fell in love with Anne Lamott right then and there while breathing in the ferry fumes.

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210909 Writer's burnout

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WRITER'S BURNOUT

I felt really lucky when a friend shared this article with me. The headline and feature image grabbed me: ‘Climate reporter burns out’ I’d never heard of Emily Atkin, a prominent climate journalist in the US, author, founder of Heated and contributor to MSNBC. Her story is short, powerful, and essential, full of parallels to the subject she covers:

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210715 Dr Nadine Kelly on yoga, creativity and serving wise women

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DR NADINE KELLY ON YOGA, CREATIVITY AND SERVING WISE WOMEN

It’s a delight to make new friends via the wonderful medium that is a podcast. Reflecting on it with a few others the other day, I was remembering that there is something intimate about hearing conversations, directly in your ears (or ear buds). Nadine Kelly, of Yogi MD - aka my new friend - is a fellow Akimbo alumni. That's how we met, during the Podcasting Fellowship which I took in early 2020.

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210709 Boundaries are the future of work

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BOUNDARIES ARE THE FUTURE OF WORK

My exploration of the importance of boundaries at work, which you may have read about in previous articles, expanded thanks to the research I gleaned from this article in the NYT. Changing our scheduling practices, knowing when to put ourselves offline are important tools for sanity and productivity in the blended or hybrid world, because: ‘When our work is interrupted by a digital distraction like a message, it takes 23 minutes on average to return to the original task, according to one study.’

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210703 Helen Baynes on customer centricity and the power of listening

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HELEN BAYNES ON CUSTOMER CENTRICITY AND THE POWER OF LISTENING

"If you have a long-term ambition for your business, take your customers on the journey with you." says Helen Baynes, this week’s guest on Out of the Clouds. The Customer Experience Consultant and Strategic Advisor, spent her career in the fashion and online retail world, via Harrods, Net-a-porter and Cult Beauty where she deployed her talents in customer centricity. Helen is now pioneering the digitalisation of traditional retail service values to meet the rapidly changing needs of increasingly digital consumers.

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210702 Roman dreams

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ROMAN DREAMS

Returning to the eternal city for a visit is a dream I am contemplating. A new colourful exhibition at Maxxi Museum in Rome is celebrating the vision of futurist painter Giacomo Balla makes my dream even more enticing.

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210701 Is Polywork the future of work?

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IS POLYWORK THE FUTURE OF WORK?

POLYWORK is the name of an upcoming professional social network targeted towards Gen Z and millennials where one can share the varied projects they are working on. Why? Because a single job or life is so pre-pandemic, as Digiday offers. I could not agree more. As a consultant, mindfulness teacher, podcast host and writer, I've been living the "polyworker" for a few years and it's not always easy to explain it. If that's you too, get yourself on the waitlist for Polywork and read more here.

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210617 Go on, write a thank you note!

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GO ON, WRITE A THANK YOU NOTE!

Some of my favourite writers of all time, such as Martha Beck and Julia Cameron, advise that we keep a record of thank yous, testimonials and any written forms of gratitude and congratulations and re-read them regularly.
I procrastinated on that until recently, when I created a note just for that purpose on my iPhone. There, I copied and pasted any new thanks and congrats coming through. I must say, it was worth the minimal effort of setting this up. Every time I open it, it warms my heart.

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210604 The happiness track

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THE HAPPINESS TRACK

A few days ago, I started following Ted Speaker and author, Emma Seppälä PHD, whose excellent IG account offer great learnings which she further develops on her website. Her field of study is happiness. A light subject one might think? Not always, but she has accessible tools, techniques and yes, mindfulness tips, which can help all of us in our daily lives.
DISCOVER HERE

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210521 Mindful Discernment

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MINDFUL DISCERNMENT

Yesterday, I enjoyed a lengthy conversation with my Bento Society weekly group about the meaning and importance of discernment, or the ability to judge well. We concluded amongst ourselves that discernment takes practice, it’s a skill that is honed over time. Author April Davila’s post on honing artistic discernment feels like a great supplemental read, and useful whether you are a writer or not.

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210520 lego says 'everyone is awesome' with LGBTQ+ Set

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LEGO SAYS 'EVERYONE IS AWESOME' WITH LGBTQ+ SET

Lego says 'Everyone is awesome' as they launch their first LGBTQ+ set, inspired by Danish toy maker's designer, Matthew Ashton, who initially designed the set for his own desk.

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210507 is the doughnut the future?

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IS THE DOUGHNUT THE FUTURE?

Have you heard of the only doughnut that will ever be good for you? Kate Raworth, Oxford University economist discusses on the Intelligence Squared podcast what she calls Doughnut Economics, an idea she came up with to help humanity deal with the challenges we face today.

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210429 Yoga teacher Chris Magee on movement, introspection and holding space

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YOGA TEACHER CHRIS MAGEE ON MOVEMENT, INTROSPECTION AND HOLDING SPACE

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure to talk to Chris Magee, aka Mageesy. Co-head of yoga at Psycle London, Chris also runs training and retreats worldwide (in normal times) when he is not offering what is marketed to be the toughest yoga class in London, aptly named OMFG.

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210428 Keris Marsden on naturopathy, self care and following her gut

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KERIS MARSDEN ON NATUROPATHY, SELF CARE AND FOLLOWING HER GUT

A friend pointed me in the direction of Keris Marsden last year. I was always fascinated by naturopathy and had been assured that Keris is the best. The naturopathic nutritional therapist who lectures at the College of Naturopathic Medicine kindly accepted my invitation to be a guest on the podcast and to say I loved this interview is a major understatement.

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210418 The future of work? Caring leadership

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THE FUTURE OF WORK? CARING LEADERSHIP

Why should organisations need to develop caring leadership? Not something I would have expected to read in Forbes a few years ago, yet this resonates very powerfully with me.

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210417 Nina runsdorf on being true to herself

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NINA RUNSDORF ON BEING TRUE TO HERSELF

A new episode of Out of the Clouds is out with the wonderful Nina Runsdorf. A treat for me, even though we have known each other for a long time, Nina talks to me about her journey into fashion and jewelry design, how inspired and grounded she is thanks to her parents and upbringing.

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210416 The one where Anne Muhlethaler talks mindful communication with Dr Andrea Wojnicki

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THE ONE WHERE ANNE MUHLETHALER TALKS MINDFUL COMMUNICATION WITH DR ANDREA WOJNICKI

A few weeks back I was happy to be a guest of the Talk about Talk podcast with the wonderful Dr Andrea Wojnicki, so for those of you who are interested in me being interviewed about intention and how mindfulness can elevate our communication. To note, I am a big fan of Andrea's podcast, she is a passionate teacher and her learning platform offers wonderful resources. Check it out here if you, like me, want to better or master new communication techniques.

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210416 Decision making and mindfulness

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DECISION MAKING AND MINDFULNESS

As mentioned in my intro and in the post below, this week's article on the myths surrounding the decision-making process by Cheryl Strauss Einhorn not only offers clearly distilled and practical knowledge, the author also speaks from personal experience. You can check out her Ted Talk about what lies your inner voice could be telling you.

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210409 Bottega Veneta goes live with digital publication

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BOTTEGA VENETA GOES LIVE WITH DIGITAL PUBLICATION

Bravo Bottega on delivering a surprising and exciting first issue of your new digital magazine, and on the smooth delivery to my Imbox. Question I'd love to ask or see answered: why no words (apart from a few handwritten on a page)?

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210402 FAVORITE NEWSLETTERS OF LATE

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FAVORITE NEWSLETTERS OF LATE

This week, I am concerning myself with the evolution of our emails and the why behind our messaging. Mindful communication is on my mind so it feels like a subject that will be coming back to tease me on a regular basis. Given that some of you (in Europe in particular) are likely to have some time on your hands, I have also curated a selection of emails I find worth reading for this week's digest, a springboard of sorts to ask you to share with me what you enjoy reading regularly.

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210326 Looking In: The future of work

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LOOKING IN: THE FUTURE OF WORK

It may be obvious by now that I have a fondness for HBR. Also I am fascinated - and was too pre-COVID - about the future of work.

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210311 The bad othering

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210311 Hustle and the art of negotiating

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210309 A bright red soled future

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210305 ACTIVIST ART

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210305 Looking In personal history

210227 AZ Factory and Alber Elbaz make my heart sing

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210226 Looking In: communication

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210226 TED radio hour

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210224 Vogue China's multi-hyphenate new editor in chief

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210223 Psychology

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210222 TECH: SPOTIFY REINVENTED

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210219 Top of the list is young designer, Hannah Fielder

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210219 Leadership with Harvard Business Review

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210219 Looking forward: YOUR VOICE, YOUR STORY

210212 BENTO SOCIETY - SET SOME GOALS WITH ME THIS SUNDAY

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210212 Looking Forward: I Believe In a Thing Called Love

210204 Looking Forward: The Case for Chasing the New

210129 Looking in WITH A LENS OF MINDFULNESS

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210128 Looking Forward Make someone's day today

201212 gOOOders: gratitude is a little bit magic

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201203 Lupe Puerta - how tech is creating tools to improve the customer experience

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201203 Today's customer is the future of your business

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201202 Why customers should be the hero of any business story

201120 Hanna Fiedler weaves her magic

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HANNA FIEDLER WEAVES HER MAGIC

Designer Hanna Fiedler has a way of being crafty around luxury, which in itself is a gift: during times of pandemic, creative thinking has been the saving grace for a number of companies. First, Fiedler prepared a very clever "box" in order to present her collection, Chapter II, to the UK press, which was appreciated by some of the most important names in the business. The young designer has also taken on sustainable fashion with a sense of verve and excitement that is inspiring. I caught up with her this week to discuss her latest project - a fabulous range of accessories made out of leftover silk scraps.

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201118 Fashion’s new business models: farm to closet and pre-order

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201111 This week, Anne loves

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201103 Rajesh Ramani invites us to build resilient minds

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201027 Brad Pitt narrates Frank Lloyd Wright Film

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201012 Out of the Clouds #-07 is live with Paolo Ferrarini

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OUT OF THE CLOUDS #-07 IS LIVE WITH PAOLO FERRARINI

Journalist, curator and professor, Paolo Ferrarini is my guest for the seventh episode of Out of the Clouds, a podcast at the crossroads between business and mindfulness.

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201005 Thom Browne's 2132 Olympics

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201002 hermes fine jewerly like a second skin

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201001 Moschino's enchanting fashion-puppet-show

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200928 Our magic phones

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OUR MAGIC PHONES

I don’t mind admitting my symbiotic relationship to my phone. Who else is like me? Go on, just raise your hand. 😂

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200927 Daniel Roseberry is the name on everyone's lips

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200921 Toshi, the last mile delivery business service

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200916 TedWomen goes digital for 2020 edition

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200915 Dapper Lou is guest number five on the Out of the Clouds podcast

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200914 Everyday Kindness

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EVERYDAY KINDNESS

For those of you who listened to my podcast with Clementine Desseaux (@bonjourclem), you will have picked up on the fact that kindness is important to me. So this short and to the point article about how everyday acts of kindness have a big impact feels like something any of us could use on a Monday morning. Less doom scrolling, more empathy, that kind of thing. So why not take the lead?

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200911 Connected: Made Together Apart

CONNECTED: MADE TOGETHER APART

Nine international designers were challenged to create a table and seating that suit their new ways of working from and living at home, recording their creative journeys to give us an insight into their approach during these challenging times. Each designer was paired with a craftsman at Benchmark’s workshop in Berkshire, relying solely on digital communication to develop their pieces and bring their visions to life remotely. This project, led by The American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC), Benchmark Furniture and the Design Museum, certainly proves that a global pandemic doesn't get in the way of creativity and creation.

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200910 Lebanese brand Bokja mends good damaged in Beirut explosion

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200909 gOOOders launches the gOOOd tour with Audi and Vanity Fair Italia

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200907 Indistractable: a new book and an ideal?

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200904 Podcast grail: Tim Ferriss and Rabbi Sacks

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200828 Remote working?

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200826 About virtual meetings & psychological safety

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200824 Giuliva Heritage collaborate with H&M

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200817 Get some Seth in your inbox

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200814 Smart phone security apps you'll want to download immediately

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200810 Building a culture of connection

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200810 AI meets doodling with this new app

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200809 "The High Improvisations" A double vinyl album, ode to runner's high

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200801 Out of the Clouds - teacher Rajesh Ramani on Emotional Resilience

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200729 Personal data, how are you protecting yours?

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200727 Wall&deco's Tactile's Explorations

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200720 Meet gOOOders' Founder, Eva Geraldine

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200619 Out of the Clouds, the podcast, is live!

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OUT OF THE CLOUDS, THE PODCAST, IS LIVE!

A real labor of love, my new podcast, Out of the Clouds, is now available for streaming on Apple Podcast, Spotify and generally where you find your podcasts.

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200617 London During Lockdown

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Mindful writing is a thing

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Looking In REVITALISE

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Don’t think, just be: HBR’s mindful advice for anxious times

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DON’T THINK, JUST BE: HBR’S MINDFUL ADVICE FOR ANXIOUS TIMES

With anxiety being so widespread given our current climate of global turbulence, this Harvard‘s Business Review article on mindful tips to help us cope with big changes, whether at work or at home, seems pretty spot on. Easy, clear, applicable advice.Right on the back of that read, I got into this equally fitting piece in the New York Times' Well section, about simple stress resets. Both spot on.

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