This week we feature invisible mentor Pauline Crawford. Founder and Chief Executive at Corporate Heart.
To get the most from The Invisible Mentor Interview, while you are reading it, answer the following questions:
- Are their similarities between the interviewee and yourself?
- In what ways can you use the information?
- In what ways would you respond differently from the interviewee?
- What are your five takeaways from the interview?
- After reading the interview, what is one concrete action you can take?
Invisible Mentor: Pauline Crawford
Company Name: Corporate Heart
Avil Beckford: Tell me a little bit about yourself.
Pauline Crawford: I’m an entrepreneur and what I’d like to call a thought leader because I work in the field of developing people to be resoundingly different. My thought leadership is around men and women and how we work in a new way. But I’m also a mother and grandmother and that’s also an important part of being an entrepreneur especially for a woman in today’s world. I thought I’d call myself a business psychologist and emotional economist. I’m very interested in how our behaviours and emotions affect how we work in the world.
Avil Beckford: How do you integrate your personal and professional life?
Pauline Crawford: I seek to learn from situations, so whether it is my personal or business life, I sense everybody as like me, being their best and being a friend. So I continually seek to understand and learn from situations. When situations are uncomfortable, or I feel threatened, I know there is a message in there for me somewhere and that probably other people don’t see me the way I am. I try to be myself, and the best I can be in every situation and be the same and not different in different situations.
Avil Beckford: When you have some down time, how do you spend it?
Pauline Crawford: I love to dance with a partner, but if I’m out with friends dancing around on the floor that is fine too. I have been known to dance on my own in my lounge. I pretend I’m on the stage and I just have a lovely time. I also love the sea, I love being in the water and I love sailing. The third thing I like is to be on my own and write. If I’m not with people, I found one of the aspects that really helps me is writing and I’m now back to writing my first book, so watch this space.
Avil Beckford: What are five life lessons that you have learned so far?
Pauline Crawford: One of the metaphors of my life is a mountain, and I actually walked up a mountain – I walked up Mt. Kenya in Africa. I use that in some of my lessons. When you climb up a mountain, you need to know yourself well because the mountain is not a place you’re used to so.
- The first lesson is you need to know yourself, love yourself unconditionally, and listen to your heart.
- I don’t think anybody in the world intends to be cruel, usually it’s their own insecurity. Have compassion for everybody around you.
- Have the courage to keep going because the higher the altitude on the mountain, the more courage you need, and the more energy you need around that, and in here it’s a good thing to take advice.
- Be a really good observer, sit back and listen, observe, and pause in certain situations. Look at your own inner wisdom before you leap into some new perspective, which may not work for everybody.
- The final has to be letting go because that’s something I’ve practiced. There is a really good lesson in letting go of baggage – material baggage, relationship baggage, anything which you feel is draining you. In that lesson, it’s not just dumping it, it’s not just running away, it’s proactively letting it go, releasing it in a way that is done in love for the other person, but honours yourself.
Avil Beckford: What process do you use to generate great ideas?
Pauline Crawford: I have sparks of ideas in conversations with people, or I get a large sheet of paper out and do mind mapping. I like the Tony Buzan idea of mind mapping because I’m a mathematician and an artist and I have that kind of brain where I see things all over the place. I see them in my mind, and I put them down on paper. I love to see what comes out even if becomes unruly and I cannot read it again. But getting a pen out and colours and putting it on paper I love to do that. So it’s either sparking off with people or literally getting that blank sheet of paper out.
Avil Beckford: What’s your favourite quotation and why?
Pauline Crawford: “The real voyage of discovery consists not of finding new land but seeing the territory with new eyes,” by Marcel Proust. For me it says it all, everything is here, we sometimes don’t see it if we are trying to fit everything into what has been or what could be.
Avil Beckford: How do you define success? And in your opinion what’s the formula for success?
Pauline Crawford: Success for me has to be about peace of mind, happiness and fulfillment, knowing that you’ve been your best, but you’ve affected others for the better, and in that sense you know you’ve been successful when there is a lot of love and laughter around you. I do think that success is about being appreciated for your own natural gifts, and being rewarded for such though it can be part of your material success. When you’re successful, you’ll also have the world that follows, but for me it’s the happiness and fulfillment that creates that so for me the formula for success very much starts with yourself – with myself, loving myself, preparing myself, valuing who I am, and how I interact with other people, observing and fulfilling their needs. And that for me fits the world cycle, if I do that genuinely and I understand my client’s needs and where their needs are fulfilled in their own business then I can help them be successful, and that creates my own wealth, but I need to know myself in that cycle to be able to do that. I hope that makes sense.
Avil Beckford: What are the steps you took to succeed in your field?
Pauline Crawford: I think the steps for me have been I listened to what was going wrong and knowing the skills I could offer, to enable people, my clients in business to help themselves to resolve what they needed to resolve. Although I created frameworks, tools and techniques for them to use, I also made sure that I listened to what their needs were, and I didn’t say, “No you have to have this.” I actually said, “You can use this in a way you need it,” so for me the steps were me honing my skills but also listening to my clients and listening to the market and how men and women work together is a very critical issue at the moment. So it’s important to listen to what’s going on in the marketplace, as well as study the facts and figures and to offer a solution, or a way forward that may be different.
The real actions I’ve taken are to talk to people, network, interact, put people together, try things out, research ideas and make sure that I’ve got feedback from my clients to know that it has been successful for them. For the work I do, it’s not as straightforward as selling somebody an off-the-shelf product, they will know it when they get to a place where they feel successful, and sometimes that’s not where they think they were going to go in the first place.
Avil Beckford: If trusted friends could introduce you to five people that you’ve always wanted to meet, who would you choose? And what would you say to them?
I’ve seen the Dalai Lama in conference, but I would definitely like to have a personal conversation with him, and the same for Oprah Winfrey and Nelson Mandela. But I’d also like to meet Melinda Gates because she is a woman of influence, and the last one is George Clooney partly because I think he is a gorgeous man, but also because he seems to be making films with a message and a social context. What I’d like to ask them is, “How can we use all these different forms of communications – media, TV, money, philanthropy – join the dots and accelerate the process of transforming the world because they are all doing things in different ways that people would listen to, and they’ve got more clout than me.
Avil Beckford: Which one book had a profound impact on your life? What was it about this book that impacted you so deeply?
Pauline Crawford: I read so many books, but I came to the conclusion that it was The Art of Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition: A Handbook for Living by the Dalai Lama. And the reason I liked it was because when I read it, it was so simplistic in a way and common sense, and it was so unbiased about the world, and he was very much about not everybody is the same, so that doesn’t matter, what we need to do is honour each other. He obviously has a lot of ability to honour and have compassion for all sorts of people in this world, and he appears not to take sides, and that book had a profound influence on me because I thought that’s what I believe so it’s fantastic that such a great man believes the same things, so let’s all do it.
Avil Beckford: You are one of the 10 finalists on the reality show, So, How Would You Spend Your Time? Each finalist is placed on separate deserted islands for two years. You have a basic hut on the island and all the tools for survival; you just have to be imaginative and inventive when using them. You are allowed to take five books, one movie and one music CD, and whatever else you take has to fit in one suitcase and a travel on case. What would you take with you and how would you spend the two years? T he prize is worth your while and at this stage in the game there really aren’t any losers among the 10 finalists, since each are guaranteed at least $2 million?
Pauline Crawford: My books would be mostly inspirational and spiritual books.
I would be very creative, so in my suitcase I would take as many colourful sarongs as I could find and lots of colourful vests. As a child I did dressmaking as a hobby, so I would have fun making clothes for myself using what I had taken, and stuff from the foliage, leaves and bark and things like that. I would also take some large artist pads and writing pads and pencils and I would spend the time creating lots of plans, writing stories and illustrating them. I would take a camera so I could take pictures, so even if I couldn’t print tem, at the end of two years I would be able to come back and tell the story of my experience. Though I love people, I think it would be an exciting experience, and I could be quite inventive. In that space I could create my most famous novel.
- Conversations With God (The Complete Conversations with God), Neale Donald Walsch
- Resisting Your Soul: A Handbook for Inspired Entrepreneurs: 101 Powerful Tips to Free Your Inspiration, Nick Williams – it’s the kind of book that would stop me from getting down, if I did during the two years, it would help me to understand my resistance.
- Tao Te Ching: A New Translation and Commentary, Translation by Ralph Alan Dale – it’s from the Tao great book of integrity and it’s a philosophy that I follow and I really like that.
- The Tao of Pooh, by Benjamin Hoff and it’s a version of Christopher Robin and Winnie the Pooh, and again it’s one of those books that has amusing metaphors I like.
- How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci: Seven Steps to Genius Every Day, Michael Gelb – it’s one of those books you can dip in and out of and do exercises from.
One Film and Music CD
The movie I decided to take is Bridget Jones Diary because it’s about a woman and it’s a happy ending. It’s very cheesy, but it would make me laugh at all the right places. The music I would take is West Side Story because it’s very dramatic, and it would inspire me to dance, and it would make me cry and all those things.
Bridget Jones’s Diary Trailer (To purchase film Bridget Jones’s Diary)
West Side Story Soundtrack Track 07 America (To purchase soundtrack West Side Story (Original Soundtrack Recording))
Avil Beckford: What excites you about life?
Pauline Crawford: The fact that I have all this time to find out new things and possibilities, and that’s really exciting. I know some people who get to my age and they start thinking about retiring and settling down and I’m going the other way. I like the idea that I don’t know what I might be doing in three or five years time. I might have my TV show. I might be traveling the world or I might be sitting in the United Nations discussing this and that. And all that is possible and that’s what excites me.
Avil Beckford: How do you nurture your soul?
Pauline Crawford: I mentioned that I loved to dance before, and I love five rhythms dancing and it is more about meditation in dance. I think I nurture my soul in events like that, where I’m either meditating or dance meditating. I like to read angel cards and very spiritual books about universal things. I study astrology as a part-time hobby, and I like to understand the cycles of the moon and what’s happening to us, all those things along with my wise friends who are very spiritual. I’ve just joined a group which is talking about consciousness in the world so that is very nurturing for my soul as well.
Avil Beckford: If you had a personal genie and she gave you one wish, what would you wish for?
Pauline Crawford: I don’t have a personal partner at the moment, and I would ask my personal genie to attract to me my soul partner who would be wanting to journey with me on my journey of social transformation and spiritual fulfillment and education in the world and helping people to fulfill their potential.
Avil Beckford: Complete the following, I am happy when…..
Pauline Crawford: I’m engaged in magical conversations like this one, and I’m happy when I’m part of a conversation that gives back to the community.
Please let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.
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