Proof, as if it were actually needed, that social media really can live up to its name, came as Emma recently got a hefty dose of positive energy when she put our questionnaire to Facebook friend and transformational coach Cynthia Moore.
24 fingers: Hi Cynthia.
Cynthia: Hi, how are you?
24 fingers: I’m all right. Cynthia’s really brave and she’s going to be our, well not that brave, because my questions aren’t that difficult or tricky, but she’s going to be answering our 24 questions today. I met Cynthia through my Facebook group, 24 Piggies, that I run with the lovely Kathy Ennis, and I put a call out to say, I’ve got some gaps and slots for interviews and Cynthia kindly put her hand up so, thank you Cynthia, I really appreciate your time. Shall we begin?
Cynthia: Yes, let’s do it.
24 fingers: Okay so, without any preparation, what’s your favourite word?
24 fingers: I like that. What gets you up in the morning?
Cynthia: The possibilities that a new day brings. I love that, I’m excited about that.
24 fingers: This is all becoming very positive Cynthia, this is inspiring at half past four, on what is it, Wednesday afternoon? This is amazing. Tell us, what do you truly, honestly think of social media?
Cynthia: I used to love social media, but now, it feels so much more involved. And some of the platforms are starting to feel a little bit disingenuous, but I still like it, I still use it, in fact, I’m on it about 10 hours a day so.
24 fingers: Just the 10 then? Lightweight. Kindles or books?
Cynthia: Books but in reality it’s a Kindle.
24 fingers: Yeah, I can’t get to grips, I’ve got to feel the paper myself, I don’t feel like I’m truly relaxing, unless I’ve got a bit of paper between my hands in the bath. Plus I would never take my Kindle in the bath.
Cynthia: No, well this is it, I do love books, I prefer books, but the Kindle is convenient.
24 fingers: It’s easier. So, what do you think is the biggest challenge in your industry right now? You’re a coach aren’t you? What’s the industry looking like nowadays?
Cynthia: I really love what I do, but I think the biggest challenge, is around maintaining quality. Coaching is a real trendy hip word, the minute it gets bandied about a lot, and not always in the right way. There are standards, so coaching is not a regulated industry at the moment, but there are standards that coaches adhere to, and work towards, and not everyone is sort of aligned to that, so there’s a quality issue that I’d love to raise. Yeah.
24 fingers: You can see me nodding, by the fact that I could not agree with you more, and it’s something that Kathy and I talk about a lot, in terms of being qualified to give advice, whether you’ve done it yourself, whether you’ve got the experience, and whether you’ve got the kind of theory as well, and all of that combined, could be a really great package. But when you’re only picking little bits out of things, that you’ve read somewhere, or someone else has told you; I couldn’t agree with you more. People spend a lot of money on this stuff as well.
Cynthia: Yes, and I think it gets really confusing because a lot of people that call themselves coach, but they are actually consultants. But coaching is the hip, trendy word so it gets really confused, and people don’t get confused about what coaching actually brings them. Coaching doesn’t give them the answers, coaching helps them find the answers for themselves.
24 fingers: You heard it here first, I love that definition Cynthia. What did you want to be when you were growing up?
Cynthia: Oh god, a million and one things but, definitely a historian, so that didn’t quite work out, and I was very inspired by Wall Street, and maybe Dallas, and I thought I could be be a big successful business woman, with big shoulder pads and a little briefcase.
24 fingers: Alexis Carrington?
Cynthia: Yeah, I don’t know what I’d be doing, but that was what I was wearing.
24 fingers: You’d just be walking around, you’d be having lunch with all your minions. So your favourite word was yes, could you use it in a sentence?
Cynthia: Yes, I can.
24 fingers: I knew you were going to say that. Can you make it rhyme?
Cynthia: Yes I can, let’s make a plan, hot off the press, let’s say yes.
24 fingers: My god, it goes on, this is brilliant, you’re the first person that’s done a four-line rhyme, that’s brilliant. What advice would you give to your younger self?
Cynthia: I would definitely tell my younger self to stop worrying so much, you know. It’s a waste of your time and your energy, you’re actually fine, your legs aren’t falling off, your arms aren’t falling off, you’re okay. Stop worrying. Just do the next thing.
24 fingers: Tell us the best thing anyone’s ever done for you?
Cynthia: Shown me this great kindness by observing something that I did, that was good about me, that I did well, and actually pointing it out, and saying it out loud. We’re so quick to always just criticise, and this person actually just pointed out, she observed something that was really positive, and pointed it out and to me, that opened up a whole new world of possibilities, it was amazing, the impact a split second comment had.
24 fingers: I love that. Kathy and our good friend Myra, we were talking yesterday about the power of women working or collaborating together, where you can genuinely say to the other person, “do you know what, you’re amazing at that, I really admire that about you”, rather than that constant kind of comparison or kind of bitching behind the scenes. When you’ve got that true genuine, admiration, for someone else’s qualities yes, tell them, because it makes such a difference. As you say, we’re so quick to either criticise ourselves, or kind of judge others that when you don’t do that, like you know, life’s great isn’t it?
Cynthia: Absolutely. It just made, at the time, it just made me realise, and this is the impact that we can all have on someone else, what you are actually capable of, which is amazing, yeah.
24 fingers: Well I’m gonna kick off then by saying, I think your Zoom background’s brilliant, and I like your positivity, so there’s two, that’s covered for me for today and tomorrow. You might not have had it yet, but tell us what’s been your career-defining moment?
Cynthia: Oh that’s a tricky one, I’m not sure it’s happened yet. I had a corporate career for many years, and I did well with that, you know, it was good. It was hard work, and I didn’t feel like it was the right thing for me, in terms of making the impact that I wanted to make. And we actually, my husband and I, we actually ended up selling everything we owned, we quit our corporate careers, and we actually travelled around Europe for a little while.
In fact, that’s where we were, that’s what we were doing in March when, you know, things changed, so now we’re back in the UK. But really I think, for me, the big pivotal moment was when I finally took the plunge and started my own business, working for myself.
24 fingers: Well watch this space about what comes next, but I love that story, and about actually going, do you know what I’m not making a big enough impact, in what I’m doing, I’m not serving enough people actually, or I wanna change, so I really admire your bravery there. Tell us, if you won a big award of some kind, who would you thank?
Cynthia: I’d have to thank my husband, for being my absolute rock. I know, he’s a really good guy and he really works, he’ll do anything to help me, so he’s an amazing support, I’m really lucky there. I would also thank my parents, they spent years and years and years working really hard, to give me and my brother, the best opportunities possible, they wanted a different life for us and that was their real goal, and they did that, so that was awesome. And my Aunty as well, who instilled in me a real sense of can do and independence. Yeah.
24 fingers: Can you give us a time saver of the day? Is there something that you use to manage your time?
Cynthia: There’s a few things actually, but the biggest thing you can do to help yourself, no matter what theoretical techniques you’d like to use, is to actually focus on what you can do right now and drop all the busy thoughts of what you should be doing, and all this, drop all the busy thinking, and do what you actually can do now.
24 fingers: Well that’s okay, we’ll have to adopt that one. Where do you see your industry in 24 months, I know we spoke about more regulation and more quality, do you see that changing in the next two years?
Cynthia: I don’t realistically, just because it hasn’t for many years, so realistically, I’m not sure that that will change, but what I do see, and this is really exciting, is that there’s a real global movement of using coaching to raise awareness, person by person, and company by company.
I was listening to someone speak this last week, and what she was saying is we’ve tried governments, the religious institutions have lost their clout, if you like. What we see is really, where we can make the change, raise the awareness in companies and in people, so there’s a real movement of levelling up that way. Which I think is exciting.
24 fingers: Interesting. Where were you 24 months ago?
Cynthia: So, this time of year, is actually my parents’ birthday, and I’m from the Netherlands, originally, so I was in the Netherlands, two years ago. I was not working, and we were travelling mostly, so that was it.
24 fingers: Tell us an interesting fact about your company?
Cynthia: I find it really hard to look at myself and my business as a company, because it feels more like a cool place I hang out, with people I care about. I love spending time in it as well so, you know, I am excited when I get up in the morning and much to my husband’s annoyance, I find it hard to stop in the evenings because I’m just loving it.
24 fingers: What’s an interesting fact about you?
Cynthia: I think, I don’t know, one of the most interesting things is just that, we took that leap, to really simplify our lives, and give up all, because you know, we didn’t have children, we had two careers, we gave it all up, and we just really stripped everything out of our lives, that wasn’t really essential to us. So, the things that turned out were important to us, was going out for the odd cup of coffee, with a bit of cake and, other than that, I think life is good you know, you don’t need a lot to be happy.
24 fingers: Me and my son live really simply and we don’t need a lot of stuff, do you know what I mean? And it takes the pressure off. So if you can have a 24-minute Skype chat with anybody, or Zoom call, I might change that question now, who would it be?
Cynthia: That’s a tricky one, I think professionally, right now, it would be Michael Neill. I’m really interested in what he says and how he says it, he’s an amazing coach, so I’d love to have 24 minutes with him, and in fact, I’m pretty sure, I will have a lot more time than that in the future, because it’s one of my goals. Personally, I’m intrigued by Kate Middleton, I’d love to have a 24-minute conversation with her.
24 fingers: Really, what are you intrigued about?
Cynthia: Well, I think that she comes across so perfect. I don’t know if you feel that, she always looks amazing.
24 fingers: Very poised.
Cynthia: I really want to just talk to her because, it must feel like a lot of pressure in the public eye, in this strange role in the Royal family, and I would love to know how she copes and manages with that.
24 fingers: You might get her on a call, and she might get completely drunk and go: “this is how I cope”. I doubt it, but she might. What is one word you’d like people to describe you with?
Cynthia: Oh that’s tricky. Impactful, that’s one of my key drivers, making a positive impact so, I would have to say impactful.
24 fingers: Million percent agree with that. Would you mind taking a selfie for us, if you smile, I will take a screen grab? Brilliant, done. What’s your favourite Twitter handle, or social media campaign? Have you got somebody that you like to follow, or somebody that you recommend we all follow?
Cynthia: I really like the Be Kind Twitter hashtag campaign that goes on. I do wonder you know, if we’ve collectively as a society, have forgotten what that really means. Where we’re a bit wrapped up in ourselves, and being kind a real difficult thing, and especially in this time, you can see it all around, there’s so much opinion and judgement, that there’s no conversation possible, so I think the Be Kind campaign, is one that I wholeheartedly support.
24 fingers: Because for me, it’s that person to person isn’t it? It’s that human, heart to heart bonds, that’s how we make a difference, and then that kind of ripples out. What’s one quote that defines your work ethic?
Cynthia: I think it has to be the one that I’ve got plastered all over my front page on my website, which is that your mind is the biggest obstacle you ever have to overcome, and once you overcome that, you can do anything. By Les Brown, I believe.
24 fingers: I was talking to again, Myra, I was talking to her about shifting mindset and, I’ve made some changes in my life fairly recently, that I’d never thought was possible, and it only took one little switch in the brain, to go no, actually, you don’t need to think that, and you don’t need to behave like that.
Suddenly life’s like, all right okay, and that was like, 10, 20,30,40-year habits that have been ingrained, so again, I agree. I literally agree with everything you’ve said on this call, Cynthia. We’ll have to do a sequel, and find out more that we agree on. So, what’s been the best part of your day so far?
Cynthia: Well actually this, is really good fun.
24 fingers: Thank you.
Cynthia: I love all the questions, this is awesome, I absolutely enjoy this, and also before this, I had an awesome client call with a great lady and that was awesome as well, so yeah.
24 fingers: Thank you very much. Finally, anything to plug?
Cynthia: I think what I would say on that actually is, I’ve spent the last two months or so, doing a lot of pro bono work with small businesses and entrepreneurs to try and keep the lights on, keep the motivation and the momentum going, keep them in the game, keep their heads in the game, and now, it feels like we can sort of see the light at the need of tunnel, whether that’s a real light or just, or not, I don’t know, but people are starting to look ahead again, which is exciting.
A lot of people, I’ve noticed, have used this time of enforced quiet, to be inspired with ideas, having a lot less noise in their heads, to come up with some really great ideas, and I’ve started working with people on creating, making those ideas a reality and creating whatever it is that they want. So if anyone is interested, if anyone has had some ideas like this, or any inspiration and you kind of want to get started with it, but maybe you’re getting in your own way, or you think you can’t, get in touch, let’s have a chat. No strings attached at all, let’s just have a chat and explore it and we’ll see what we can do.
24 fingers: How do people find you Cynthia?
Cynthia: I am on Facebook, I have my website, I’m also on Instagram. You can contact me on all those channels, I have e-mail facilities, message facilities on the website, as well as Facebook Messenger on the website, and on Facebook and messaging on Instagram as well.
24 fingers: I think we’ve got everything covered for you, which every good coach should. So, thank you Cynthia, it’s an absolute pleasure, and I’ve learned a lot on this call from you. Thank you very much and you’ve definitely inspired me.
Cynthia: Thank you so much for having me Emma, I’ve really enjoyed it, thank you.