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I believe

I believe that the natural state of the human being

is to be fully expressed


without doubt or fear

to perform, to learn and to enjoy

a state in which there is access to all the innate resources born to us:


I believe that we are at our best in the company of others

not dependent, nor independent but interdependent.

I hold that such self-actualization

Is seldom, if ever, achieved alone,

but made possible in community

or with the guidance of a gifted other,

one who has the capacity and courage to hold

a different kind of conversation,

a conversation that

lets the your thinking unfold

lets your imagination, intuition and creativity loose

freed from should, must and have to

and, in so doing, to not impose their own beliefs

but rather to let the you come to your own

Such a conversation is a dangerous conversation –

It demands that you step out of your fear and doubt, your shoulds, musts and have to’s,

and into your innate Genius

I believe in Enabling Genius

I believe that through self-expression, self-actualization

we reach interdependence

where self-interest, fear and greed are overcome and community is served

I believe that in any endeavour, learning is most vital when it is in service of performance

Not learning for learning’s sake

I believe that our business organizations can be the hothouses

For this different and dangerous conversation,

Conversations that Enable Genius

In the best interests of employees, leadership and stakeholders

And that this can be a step in changing the quality of conversation on the planet

Genius, identity and excellence

The Enabling Genius Project and the reading and writing that I have been doing around it has effectively put me in an awkward place – I have to apply what I am learning to myself.  And I feel really exposed and vulnerable about that – and now I am writing about it!


One of the things, in Enabling Genius terms, that seems to have some truth to it, although not in all cases, is that people who perform towards the top of their game often have another game at which they excel.  There seems to be a cross-fertilisation in terms discipline, learning, and apart from the joy of being immersed in a different activity.


Many years ago I promised myself that I would take a break, a sabbatical, and play competitive tennis again.  Now in my 53rd year the 55 and over age bracket is on the horizon.  It seems the time has come to prepare!  And synchronicity decided to play a part too – I was introduced to a tennis coach, one Craig Walker, who has an affinity and understanding of inner game principles who is also making a study of what it takes to become a champion – he calls it the ‘Champions Code’.  And he works in West London at Dukes Meadows, 10 minutes from where I live.


On the day before our second session I had a flashback to a tennis match that I played many, many years ago, the final of the Leinster, Ireland under 18’s.  I lost a match that I probably could have won.  What I realized after the flashback was that I had no idea about how to win.  So when as I got on court and Craig asked me what my identity as a tennis player was I got really interested.


This idea parallels on of my ‘maxims in the making’ around ‘Enabling Genius’: Each person’s genius is individual and unique.  So within the discipline of tennis I can develop a unique identity.  With Craig we arrived at a viable proposition about my tennis player identity and then identified what that would look like in action – and then we practiced those sequences of play.


Not many of us know what our unique and individual identity is within our career, craft or discipline.  Even fewer practice and review what ever that is.  And although this way of thinking and behaving demands a certain kind and level of intensity I can only observe that I have seldom had so much fun on the tennis court.

The Enabling Genius Project


The world of coaching is, arguably, in a critical place both growing and also at a point in the development cycle where it is maturing and becoming commoditised.

At the same time there is a wealth of information available around a broad topic of human potential and excellence that is to be found in many diverse places – from psychology, genetics and neuroscience – without much indication of how to practically apply that knowledge


The Project

The Enabling Genius Project will create a body of knowledge encompassing the best research into human potential and excellence and the tools and techniques for it’s effective application in coaching


This will be achieved by bringing together a group of 30 experienced coaches (and perhaps others) who will distil the knowledge and test the tools and techniques over the course of a seven-month period.


The project will result in a book (as a minimum this will be self-published as an ebook – although a significant publisher has expressed real interest) in which each participant will be credited and the profits given to a selected charity.  The book will made up of contributions from the group and will be edited by Myles Downey and Ian Harrison.


The project will be led by Myles Downey and will start in April.


Participants will be selected on the basis of relevant experience, interests and skills.  To register interest and receive an application form contact: myles@mylesdowney.com


The Process

  • Identification of resource/sources (books, papers etc)
  • Identification of research areas
  • Identification of key principles of ‘genius’
  • Identification of key principles of ‘enabling’
  • Identification and development of tools, techniques and approaches of ‘enabling’
  • Working in sub-groups to move from hypothesis to principle
  • Testing tools, techniques and approaches with coaching clients
  • Consolidation


The research approach will be relatively unique using social learning platforms and media and face-to-face events.  The process will be ‘ground up’ using real experience and available literature.  The research process will have input from a known and respected academic who has a deep understanding of research methodologies and a deep understanding of coaching.



  • 3 one-day workshops at the beginning, middle and end
  • 4 Webinars; group and sub-groups
  • Communication facilitated through the best social-media platform to allow easy sharing of information (from Fusion-Universal, leading ‘distance learning’ offering)



  • Professional development and learning
  • New tools, techniques and approaches
  • Acknowledged contribution to a book ‘Enabling Genius’
  • Marketing and PR benefit from association with the project
  • Six months working with Myles and inspiring colleagues
  • First access to the IP to use as you wish (IP will be treated on an Open Commons basis)


Project Members

  • Apply and are selected on the basis of relevant experience and anticipated contribution.  The application form is available on application to myles@mylesdowney.com
  • There will be fees of about £120 p/m to cover essential costs.  This sum may come down depending on sponsorship from a well-respected charitable society.


Key Project Dates

  • Submission of application 22 March
  • Launch Webinar 9th April (4.30PM to 6PM)
  • First Workshop 24thth April (Central London)
  • Webinar 2; 21st May
  • Webinar 3; 11th June
  • Second Workshop; 3rd July
  • Webinar 4; 6th August (not ‘obligatory’ – may clash with your holidays!)
  • Webinar 5; 10th September
  • Completion Webinar; 9th October


Webinar will be 4.30PM from till 6PM

Webinars will be recorded so that they can be heard again if a colleague misses one.



Enabling Genius laboratory – unique opportunity

In the next weeks I will be formally announcing the launch of a ground-breaking project: The Enabling Genius Laboratory.  I am waiting for a final commitment from a leading professional coaching body to work in partnership before I can give the full details.  But I want to get a buzz going meanwhile.


The purpose of the ‘Enabling Genius Laboratory’ is to develop a unique body of knowledge on human potential and excellence, including the relevant tools and techniques for coaches to use in their practice.


The heart of the ‘laboratory’ will be a group of thirty people.  Over the period of a year they will work to pull together and consolidate the available research and data, identify existing tools and techniques and develop new ones and then test the approach. The group will meet face-to-face, virtually through webinars and communicate through the most up-to-date social media (Fusion-Universal are partners on another project and are leading providers in this area).


The outputs will include:

–      A unique body of knowledge

–      Related tools and techniques

–      An ‘Enabling Genius’ book (from contributions from the group) including the research and the tools and techniques.  A major publisher has expressed real interest

–      A Two-Day ‘Enabling Genius’ Conference

–      An implicit statement of excellence in the world of coaching

–      The profits from the book will go to a selected charity


The benefits:

–      Professional development and learning

–      First access to the IP; the knowledge and techniques to use as you choose

–      Marketing and sales collateral from being associated with a leading edge project

–      An opportunity to be part of a team facilitating an industry leading conference

–      Acknowledgement as a contributor to the book

–      20 copies of the book to give away or sell.

–      CPD certificates

–      Spend 2013 working closely with Myles Downey, author of Effective Coaching and founder of the School of Coaching

There will be a fee for participation.  This is one of the details awaiting confirmation.

I look forward to revealing the full details very shortly.  Meanwhile please post any question or observations on this site.


We are moving

We are moving over to a sel-hosted wordpress blog. If you currently use the wordpress ‘follow’ facility you will no longer be informed of new posts.

You can keep up with the latest thinking on Enabling Genius at http://www.enabling-genius.com and on our new Linkedin group – Enabling Genius.

Enabling Genius – Maxims in the making

The first ‘Enabling Genius’ was held a couple of weeks ago here in London.  The idea behind EG is to bring together the best research around human potential and how to actualize it and to make that research available and applicable in the form of tools and techniques.  That’s too big a task for me and certain aspects of it do not play to my strengths so the intention is to solicit contribution from anyone who wants to engage and to allow anyone use of the materials (in the 21st Century I think the notion of Intellectual Property is less and less valid, but that’s another story)

However to get the ball rolling, and as a function of my own reading and thinking I created a table that begins to link principles of ‘genius’ with research and then with tools and techniques for ‘enabling.  The table needs some more work after which I will make it available at www.enabling-genius.com

The title ‘Enabling Genius’ is deliberately provocative: surely selected individuals are born with genius, it is not ‘made’ – this is the challenge I hear.  Well the research does not support that idea as I put forward in my previous blog ‘The Heart of the Matter: Learning’.

In the table I labeled the principles ‘Maxims’ – and they are very much Maxims in the Making: not yet the finished article.  I will lay them out here and then in future blogs spell out what I mean for each one.  I hope this will get the mental juices working.

Maxims in the Making:

  • There is genius in all of us
  • Each person’s Genius is unique
  • You can move towards Genius in a given craft or discipline
  • In any activity you can achieve ‘Flow’ – and your best performance
  • Learning (process) is key
  • With permission you can evoke Genius in others

And related but different”

  • True community can only occur through autonomy
  • Fulfillment and Prosperity mean something different to people in the 21st Century
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