Getting Headspace

I’ve been finding it increasingly difficult to arrange my thoughts recently. I don’t have a consistent office space (moving between the home office, my outpost in Cardiff, that I only visit when I need to access internal systems *shiver*, and HQ in London), thus I’m constantly on the move, the extra travelling is creating many a late night/early morning combo, I’m working across a couple of huge projects whose teams are equally disbursed across the country, I have a work mobile that is appearing to be bigger distraction that I had hoped and some other reasons too.

What this is not, is a cry for help. I’m loving the challenge of work; juggling the different demands, helping shape big changes in how justice will be experienced by its users and preaching about those pesky users who have all these needs that we are striving to meet in better and new ways so that public services are no longer hidden.

But what this is, is a realisation. I need to deploy some new tactics. I need to help myself make sense of whats going on. I need to keep track of why myself, and the team, are here. I need to make space to think.

I came across this article about writing ‘Morning papers’, an exercise that one carries out each morning writing three sides of paper about what is going on in their head. On reading this, straight away I wanted to give it a go. The benefits of it appeared to be great. But just like that cricket bat I bought one summer the idea was left to gather dust in the cupboard. I’m not a huge fan of writing, especially for three sides. My mornings are unpredictable so I don’t always have the perfect time spare in which to carry out this exercise. But given my realisation last week that I needed a mechanism to keep myself a sane I was reminded of this article. So I’ve adapted it to meet my needs, I’m going to do weekly ‘Morning Papers’, on a Monday, to help me digest what happened in the previous week and then set out goals for the forthcoming week that I will endeavour to meet. We can review how good I was on the following Monday.

This idea is also stolen somewhat from my time working with Jukesie (aka Matt Jukes) who instilled a principle of writing ‘weeknotes’ every Friday, short paragraphs stating what you had done. I always enjoyed this exercise, it showed to me how much I had achieved in a week. it illustrated just how much the team had achieved in a week and it helped Matt keep track of all the wonderful things we were doing.

So here we go, my first Monday Morning Weeknote Papers, (that title needs some work).

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