Tuesday 28 October 2014

Self Sabotaging Beliefs

We've spoken about Self Sabotaging Beliefs and their capacity to stop you from:
§       Enjoying what you are doing
§       Developing and trying something else
§       Stop doing something that you know you shouldn't be doing but continue to through existing habits and Self Sabotage.

 This section of our work gives you some approaches and tools with which to challenge Self Sabotage and we’ll work our way through each of the “Not So Magnificent Seven” discussed previously

Self Sabotaging Belief
Try This
Notice This
#1 When I think about what I'm doing I tend to focus on what isn't working rather than what is

Stop-set yourself some short-term “wins” and write them down/put them on your phone/tablet and when you've hit your win just mark it off. Now here’s the next bit-put your achievements into a sentence and read it out. Preferably loud, failing that a bit of “quiet self-talk “is okay too.
How recording and recognising what’s been done makes a real contribution to your energy and sense of purpose.
How the next step is so much easier once you've taken the first one(s)
How the “doing and noticing” prevents procrastination.
You've achieved something-enjoy it!
#2 I am apprehensive about the future

Recognise that a little apprehension is okay. “Take ten deep breaths and hope for the best” isn't much of a strategy. Then look at your apprehension as friendly questions so, “I'm scared of delivering this presentation tomorrow,” changes to. “When I give this presentation, what’s the best way to introduce the theme, what do I really want people to know and how shall I wrap it up?”
How will I get some feedback?
And remember this; “There are only two days over which I have no control; yesterday and tomorrow”  It honestly pays you not to over-plan
When you've got an outline you are immediately in a stronger place.
Notice how you start to develop alternatives and other supportive ideas
Notice how you can shift the way you feel about the whole process. We’re turning a barrier into a scalable obstacle and an obstacle into a challenge. Next step? Turn that challenge into a success then write down how it feels.
Notice the way you receive and address feedback

#3 I tend to devalue myself and my achievements

I’d like you to think of something you achieved and write it down. Now, I honestly don’t mind if this is a list, a spider diagram or a mind map-anything-just write it down.
Then write what happened that was positive because of your achievement. Who was it important to and why? What did it mean to them, how did it make them feel?
The achievements we take for granted or devalue often have huge positive impacts on others and, if we just let them, they will do the same for us. Sometimes considering the powerful and lasting impact of a single act of kindness helps us to understand our significance and meaning “beyond the event” and that our achievements can have a massive impact on others
#4 I find that I too often compare myself to others

Consider this. Whatever field we think about there are going to be countless people who are better or worse than you.  Now, you can either use this knowledge to “big yourself up or beat yourself down” and I promise you that no-one outside of yourself and your loved one’s will notice.
Be realistic and without being complacent, be kind to yourself: try to hold on to this thought: comparison works well when we see strength and adapt it or recognise something we wouldn’t want to repeat and therefore avoid it. Also please understand: we’re not going to get it right every time! Honest.
Notice that when we chose to use comparison as a positive contributor to our behaviour it changes our relationship with ourselves.
Notice that relatively small adaptations have a big impact and that when you take ownership of them you begin to make them your own.
Notice how finishing “I could…” sentences about what you want to achieve soon turns from a thought, to an intention and then into an action,
Notice too the context in which other people succeed and be generous in the way in which you acknowledge their success,

#5 I find it hard to hold on to my gains and my achievements

Develop a “feedback friendship” with someone you trust and value. Ask this person to listen to you for 20 minutes twice a week and invite them to ask you questions. In your conversation, tell them about a gain, an achievement that really matters to you. Tell them how it has made you feel, tell them where it fits in to a bigger picture, tell them why you want more
Notice that the more you discuss what you’ve achieved in positive terms, the more it means to you.
Notice that your gains and achievements have values “beyond the immediate”.
Notice their impacts on others.
#6 I shy away from relationships

A big part of feeling more confident about relating to others is the health of your relationship with yourself. Some of the techniques and approaches we’ve talked about here and in previous areas of our work are focussed on improving the way we see ourselves. As you grow others will see your increased confidence, your kindness, your intentions and actions. They will recognise your authenticity and development, Relationships can’t be forced, they need time, space and consideration to develop. Our approaches will provide you with a great “starter kit” so that you might feel more confident in your abilities to be both giving to and receptive of relationships with others at all levels.
Notice how other people respond to you as you reach out and grow in confidence.
Notice how you feel about yourself and ask yourself “What’s different?”
Practice strong “self talk” where you express your feelings with purpose and clarity. Give examples to yourself. “I did x well because Steve and I had a really good feedback session and I can now understand…….” (You get the picture).
#7 Sometimes I feel there is no real purpose
Here are  things to do
1.      Watch the film “It’s a Wonderful Life”
2.      Make a quick list of the small kindnesses you have given today
3.      Make a quick list of the small kindnesses you have received today
4.      Get in touch with someone you haven’t spoken to for a while and tell them that they crossed your mind and you thought you’d get in touch
5.      Deliberately increase your recognition of gratitude
1.        Make sure you get the message from the film: everyone matters!
2.        You will notice that you probably gave more than you thought
3.        You will notice that you probably received more than you thought
4.        Notice the response of the person you have reached out to. Notice the strength of your feelings and try to name them
5.        Gratitude is a strong element of emotional well being. Notice how it helps your appreciation of yourself and others.

And Now?

Think about which, if any of the above statements apply to you, work on the one you feel can want to change and PLEASE notice the differences. I’d like you to remember that none of us acquired our Self Sabotaging Beliefs over night and they’re not going to disappear overnight either! Take your time, be good to yourself and (once more) NOTICE what’s happening to you and others.

Good Luck!

Contact us:
0121 602 7191

Wednesday 22 October 2014

A Second Chance: Convicted Paedophile working in Jamie Oliver's Restaurant.

The Daily Mail reported this on Thursday 16th October:

To summarise the key points, David Mason was convicted of raping a 12-year old girl in 2010. He was sentenced to four years in a young offenders’ institution. He served two, and did two years probationary work. He is now six weeks into a year-long apprenticeship scheme in Jamie Oliver’s central London restaurant, Fifteen. This became public knowledge when he posted a photo of himself with Oliver on Facebook, with a caption that read “Top of the pile where I belong.”

This article was shared by a friend of a friend on Facebook, and there were the usual vitriolic comments: the sentence wasn’t long enough, what they would do to Mason should they ever meet him, and outrage at the number of disadvantaged people desperate for this opportunity that has been handed to a paedophile.

It is on the latter point that I note that it is not that simple.

I’m not defending Mason. I agree that what he did was unforgivable, I wouldn’t want to socialise with him and I certainly wouldn’t entertain his presence around any child I was responsible for. Few would argue the deplorable nature of his crime.

However, at what point do we let this arbitrarily control the rest of his life? Mason now has to make a living for himself. How will he have the chance to do that if the chances are not there? There are few enough opportunities for people who have been in prison; why not do an apprenticeship at a restaurant?

There is currently a prominent culture that people released from prison are almost unemployable. Jobs are hard enough to come by even without a criminal record, and convicted criminals struggle to find employment after they’ve served their sentence. At the risk of romanticising or defending criminals, some have little choice but to go back in to crime – either out of desperation or because it is all they know.

If Mason wasn’t doing this apprenticeship, what would he be doing now? Likely he’d be claiming jobseekers allowance, applying for jobs he has little hope of getting because of his background – and a significant portion of the taxpayers in the UK would be quick to point out their contribution to this. He might even, out of desperation or desire, relapse back into crime; this would help nobody.

I do not suggest that Mason will never relapse or re-offend because he has this opportunity. And his Facebook post was a mistake: what goes on Facebook is public and out of your control; something you’d be advised to keep in mind if you have an embarrassing history. But he has a chance to make a life for himself; a decent job and a career. What he does with that chance is up to him – but he has it. Many do not.

The Daily Mail – thriving on its sense of righteous indignation it feels is generated by people who think they’re doing the right thing by agreeing with its controversial points – asks: Why has Mason, a convicted paedophile, been given this opportunity when there are many other disadvantaged youths desperate for a similar position? The comments below the article suggest a lot of people agree with this ideal. Many have stated that Oliver’s judgement was poor in taking Mason on and they would boycott all future TV programmes/publications/restaurants. But there is a more balanced way of viewing this:

There are many ways young people can be disadvantaged; having a criminal record is one of them. If the scheme helps those young people who have made some poor decisions when they were younger to make a life for themselves, it is no bad thing. It might even be argued that people without criminal records have opportunities elsewhere that those with records do not.

There is no evidence to suggest that Fifteen, Jamie Oliver or his management acted irresponsibly in giving Mason the apprenticeship; quite the contrary. They will have checked his background to make sure he is no threat to anybody. His job means he is unlikely to come in to direct contact with children. He will be ‘behind the scenes,’ and if he hadn’t posted the photo it is unlikely that his apprenticeship would be common knowledge.

David Mason is a convicted criminal who has done his time. He has a chance to turn his life around, whether he deserves it or not, and he his not a threat to anybody in the course of his work. I offer the opinion that it is no bad thing that David Mason is now an apprentice at the Fifteen restaurant.

- Matt

Wednesday 15 October 2014

An Awful Reminder of The Need To Look Further Than Ticks In Boxes -Or Registers


This article is a painful reminder of the folly of a “one size fits all” approach. What works for general and low-level non attendance is unlikely to work when non-attendance is the manifestation of a deeper, complex and more troubled situation. 

It’s not that long ago that during an attendance review we spotted an erratic attendance pattern in a bright Year 10 pupil. This at a time where Education Social Workers were a vital link between school and other agencies; their role looked at engagement, development and assistance: these vital areas were never the servant of compliance, Our bright Year 10 pupil took time off when he believed that his dad a perpetrator of domestic violence, was likely to assault his mom. His dad wouldn’t carry out the assaults when his son was around. Our Education Social Worker found this out, organised a multi-agency strategy meeting with a series of “Who does what” outcomes. Result? Perpetrator out of the house and banned from the area, Mom gets some assistance with enabling her to understand what has happened to her and how to move forward, Year 10 pupil attends regularly and grades improve.

Although I’m certain that the bean counters who have authored the current raft of compliance that floats on a sea of manure mean no harm, it is clear that they cause harm or are a part of harm being caused. Whereas it’s true, they didn’t bully the boy to death it is unavoidably clear that they are an unnecessary function of a bizarre culture that insists on measuring the wrong things for the wrong reasons, producing a flawed “devil take the hindmost” culture is so doing.

This child-yes child-is dead through no fault of his own. He is the victim of bullying, aided and abetted by a system that seems to have forgotten how to care and why it should.

Monday 13 October 2014

Safeguarding and Child Protection. It Needs To Be Taught, Not Caught!

DY 3Solutions is pleased to announce that we are developing a separate identity to deliver our work that addresses many facets of Safeguarding. This will be delivered under the trading heading of URIncluded. But for now, here's a write up some training we delivered last week. There's a mixture of really positive outcomes and a few serious concerns about how and when training is accessed.

Safeguarding Related issues seem to be bubbling close to the surface again in Birmingham. We recently delivered our standard “Awareness Raising” programme to a group of enthusiastic and committed teachers within a Primary Training Partnership.
Here’s the feedback.

First, the group was asked to comments on how well we had met the Learning Objectives for the session

Second, the group was asked to comment on how we had contributed to Competencies

In each area 84% "Excellent", 16% "Good"

Here are some of the evaluation comments received on the day:

In dealing with the issue

  • Dealt with issues in a ‘nice’ manner.
  • In detail, approachable with a difficult subject.
  • Very professional and friendly manner used to approach a difficult subject.
  • Good content/approach to difficult topic

Taking back to the working environment

  • I feel confident about my role in School and what I should expect from the School.
  • I can leave with a much clearer understanding of safeguarding in schools and peoples responsibilities and duties regarding children.
  • Feel a lot more confident about what we should look out for in a classroom situation.
  • Confidence to trust instincts
  • Gave so many hints and tips I can use in the classroom – links to the curriculum.
  • All relevant to schools and settings we work in.

General safeguarding

  • The ‘signs’ of problems and what I can do about it are clearer.
  • Great insight into the role of safeguarding.
  • An eye-opener as to how easily child abuse can slip through the net.
  • Highlighted main issues/areas for concern.
  • Gave us very clear indicators to look out for.

Case Study

  • Case study was particularly important to me.
  • Case study was interesting
  • Good use of case studies to highlight areas of concern.
  • Good case study activity.
  • Case studies to look at – to pick apart the signs.
  • [The case study] makes you think of warning signs and then in discussion what you can do about them.
  • Case study really interesting!
  • Case study – being able to pick up signs for ourselves.


  • Informative
  • Very informative lesson.
  • Very straight to the point and full of a lot of good information.
  • Information about the process you should follow and what should be done.
  • Informative – what we can do, where we can go – process.
  • Do and Don’t on how to keep your notes very helpful.
  • Do’s and Don'ts about notes.
  • Great information on policies, signs, what to do if you spot signs etc.
  • Good content – essential information.
  • Extremely useful information.
  • A full-on experience, really informative.
  • Very informative.


  • Enjoyed being referred to as ‘colleagues’ and included in lecture as opposed to just being spoken to/at.
  • Good information delivery.
  • Delivery of the lesson
  • Good pace to the afternoon.
  • Good slides
  • Engaging speaker.
  • Lots of information presented well and clearly.
  • Really good afternoon. J
  • Well explained
  • Presented himself well, [and I can] clearly see his passion for teaching and learning.
  • Interactive.
  • Engaging
  • Clear Objectives
  • Clear Instructions.
  • Key information presented well and clearly.
  • Educational
  • Really highlights the importance but not in a statistical boring way.
  • Eye opening.

Improvements for next year

  • Safeguarding updates would be useful around the year.
  • Heavy session. Maybe break up part 1?
  • Longer time spent working on this area.
  • Maybe have him teach other sessions.
  • Longer session – maybe on when we should be concerned – difference between attitudes of children.

The programme was delivered over 3 hours.  I was supported by an experienced co-facilitator and we helped 19 people who are beginning their journey in the teaching profession to understand a few key points. Here they are:

  • Front line workers are the “eyes and ears” of Safeguarding
  • Children and young people will talk to people who they feel are “safe and can be trusted”, this could be anyone on the school community.
  • How to deal with disclosure-what to do/what not to do
  • How Child Abuse cuts across socio-economic, ethnic and cultural boundaries
  • Healthy organisations accept that “It can happen here”
  • Policies are one thing, knowing how to implement them is another
  • There are clear protocols for reporting suspected abuse and there’s no excuse for not following them
  • Abusers hide in plain sight.

There were 19 people in our group that day: this was the first exposure they have had to Safeguarding Training,  We both reflected with incredulity, sadness and anger that this vital area should be "Taught Not Caught" prior to members of our the Education Workforce entering the classroom in any capacity.