The Chimp Paradox, My time in Radio and love of music

Why The Chimp?

As we begin 2024, I am pleased to be able to launch my new brand identity – and it’s quite a shift from the old one!

In September 2023 I decided to bite the bullet and commit to working with someone to develop a membership community for business owners. As part of this process, I had a two-day intensive branding package to ensure my brand reflects who I am.

I was asked a number of questions, including “What is your favourite animal?” My response was a chimp. But why a chimp?

There are a number of reasons for this and so I wanted to highlight these to avoid any misunderstanding.

Our Chimp Brain

Having read The Chimp Paradox, a book by Steve Peters that explores the power of understanding and managing our inner chimp, I’ve used it to help coach clients who are often held back by their ‘chimp brain’ – their emotions.

As a business owner, you may experience a range of challenging emotions that can be likened to the “chimp brain” metaphor, which refers to the more primal, emotional part of the brain. These emotions often stem from stress, uncertainty and the high demands of running a business. Common negative ‘chimp brain’ emotions that business owners might encounter include:

  1. Anxiety and Fear: Concerns about the future, financial stability, and the overall success of the business can lead to feelings of anxiety and fear.
  2. Frustration and Anger: These emotions can arise from dealing with difficult situations, such as unmet goals, uncooperative team members, or challenging market conditions.
  3. Overwhelm and Stress: The sheer volume of tasks and responsibilities associated with managing a business can lead to feelings of overwhelm and stress.
  4. Doubt and Insecurity: Self-doubt and feelings of inadequacy might surface, especially when faced with tough decisions or in comparing oneself to competitors.
  5. Burnout: Prolonged stress and overworking can lead to burnout, a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion.
  6. Loneliness: The unique challenges of being solopreneur can sometimes lead to a sense of isolation or loneliness.

Understanding and acknowledging these emotions is crucial for me as a coach. It allows me to work with clients to navigate what often feels like the emotional roller coaster of running a business and business ownership in general.

Playful antics and boundless energy

Chimps have always fascinated me; their playful antics and boundless energy mirrors the spirit of those who dare to challenge the status quo and pursue unconventional paths. I vividly recall watching Tarzan, (played by the Olympic Swimming Champion Johnny Weissmuller), as a child, and being captivated by the relationship between the human and his chimp companion, Cheetah.

Here was a bond between two creatures, united by a shared sense of adventure and untamed spirit (I’d like to think I’m Cheetah to many of my clients!).

A Symbol of Playful Mischief, Emotional Intelligence, and Business Success

When I consider my own personality from a business perspective, I think about innovation, resilience, and adaptability. For me, the chimp embodies the mischievous, fun-loving, and energetic spirit that drives me, both as a coach and as business owner. It also reflects my deep-seated belief that by understanding and managing our inner chimp, we can cultivate the emotional intelligence and resilience necessary to succeed in an ever-changing world.

Chimp Wisdom: Harnessing Our Inner Chimp for Business Excellence

The chimp, however, is not just about unbridled mischief and uninhibited joy. It also represents the inherent duality of human nature, the constant battle between our rational, strategic minds and our impulsive, emotional chimp brains. This internal conflict is beautifully captured in the Chimp Paradox.

You see, our chimp brain, driven by fear, anger, and the pursuit of immediate gratification, can often sabotage our best intentions. It’s the voice that tells us to avoid challenges, to play it safe, and to let our emotions dictate our decisions. However, by learning to tame our chimp, to harness its energy and passion while controlling its impulsiveness, we can unlock our full potential for success.

Emotional Intelligence: The Key to Chimp-Taming and Business Excellence

Taming our inner chimp requires emotional intelligence, the ability to understand and manage our own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. This is not always easy, as our chimp brains are naturally wired to react instinctively, often without conscious thought. However, by developing emotional intelligence, we can learn to step back from our emotions, to assess situations rationally, and to make decisions based on long-term goals rather than short-term impulses.

In business, emotional intelligence is a critical asset. It allows us to build strong relationships with clients and colleagues, to navigate complex negotiations with confidence, and to cope with the inevitable setbacks that come with running a business. By taming our chimp brains and cultivating emotional intelligence, we can transform into more effective, resilient, and successful business owners.

The Headphones

The headphones are a nod to my career in commercial radio and my love of music (especially vinyl!).

During my time in the sector, I was responsible for generating more than £75m in revenue, generated from both local and national advertisers, both direct and through their agencies. I started at Sales Executive level, before holding positions including Commercial Director, Sales and Marketing Director, Managing Director and Group Managing Director.

During my time in radio, my passion was to help local advertisers, both to identify their core strengths, as well as the primary benefits that each target market would value.

This journey started with me developing a new memberships community (more about this later in the year), however the rebrand allows me to be authentic and work with people that are as individual as I am and want to create a business that reflects who they are. After all, birds of a feather do flock together.

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