My Blog

At a crossroads?

Joseph D'Souza - Saturday, May 16, 2015

Competing values, challenging demands, commitment, energy, etc are just the symptoms of a normal life. So is your decision - for it is always a choice, to act or react?

As a first step, here at QuestUniquE, we bring to mind the key questions of The ROQUE Model. We frame our context first with what is our dream for our-Self as Human Being. Second, we bring to  mind our dream for our Relational Self - especially our key relationships. Then we focus on our Professional Self dream - the activity we perform in order to sustain our Relationships which in turn nourishes how we fulfill ourselves as human beings.

There are many guides, suggestions and ideas to help us in managing the daily tasks and more that together make up how we see, do and become in our holistic life's adventure.

The following article: The crossroads of should and must offers some useful moments for reflection. 

Leadership is grounded first in Self Understanding

Joseph D'Souza - Wednesday, April 22, 2015


This is the very first text line in our website's home page:

Leadership is grounded first... in Self Understanding See

Before any coaching program is commenced at QuestUniquE, we recommend the completion of:

The Five Key Anchors or Your True North.

The premise behind the guiding philosophy and values based methodology underpinning QuestUniquE's approach has always been  Our Guiding Values.

We are not alone! Harvard Business Review has just published:

How Philosophy Makes You a Better Leader.

We highly recommend this article and suggest some moments to reflect on your own journey.

The Business Case for Coaching in organizations

Joseph D'Souza - Monday, April 20, 2015

Individual leaders, executives and professionals believe in the value of coaching.

The challenge typically presents itself with:

  • Do we have a culture that is brave enough to explore?
  • Can coaching have an impact on performance?
  • Do we have a budget for coaching?
  • Does coaching a investment need to come from Training, the HR  department, a departmental or divisional budget?
  • Who are the right coaches to help us?

Individuals who have invested in coaching with QuestUniquE say:

  • I never had the opportunity to reflect on my personal journey before i.e. not just role performance, rather,
    1.  to think about myself as a human being
    2. to consciously be aware of my self in the context of my family and key relationships
    3. and yes about my professional life though only as a support of 1 and 2 above
  • I can see how coaching can help others in my team
  • I can see how coaching can help the culture in this organization
  • It is amazing how the pressure of task performance overrides engaging with my colleagues as fellow human beings
  • Leading others is actually easy when you respect others
  • Coaching taught me about my own integrity and the value in others
  • My coaching journey actually enhanced my communications inside and outside the company
  • It is difficult to put into words what this coaching is doing for me - I am a different person, yet it is still me
  • Reflecting of my values, strengths, personality, emotional intelligence, and my holistic self actually gives context, meaning and purpose. Yes these are the key anchors that helped me.
  • Can you believe I discussed, shared and talked about my passions at work... and got respect for it?
  • People say I have changed - become calmer, tolerant, patient and even someone to go to!
  • I used to think I was very busy. In fact, I was well under utilized in terms of my own potential.
  • Getting feedback from the coaching mirror of reflection enables me to give others better value adding feedback
  • The experience of coaching has taught me about the art of separating the problem whilst having the conversation
  • Coaching is not a bad word associated with poor performance. Quite the contrary!
  • There is a safe environment that coaching allows where I can test my thoughts
  • Coaching allowed me to positively identify potential in others even if it means to replace me
  • Coaching taught me that  I am not in competition with others

The Institute of Executive Coaching and Leadership has provided a useful document entitled: The Business Case for Coaching:

Where does your inspiration come from?

Joseph D'Souza - Saturday, November 01, 2014

There is the element of leadership in everything we do. Whether we are leading our selves or leading others.


 What do you do to become inspired? Where do you go for your own inspiration? How do you inspire others to embrace, become motivated, commit and follow you as a leader? How different is this for you when thinking about yourself as a Human Being? How does this make a difference for you in your dreams about your key Relationships? How do you inspire others, your team, your colleagues, your clients, your peers?

Waters of Reflection

Joseph D'Souza - Saturday, August 16, 2014

Waters of Reflection from QuestUniquE and The ROQUE Model

Waters of Reflection

I was just fascinated that even flowing water

Reflects its environment like a mirror

Perhaps reflections are always there

-          Rather, it was I that did not notice.

Or was it because I was in other places

That I did not know to look?


And is this not how we perceive

Or take in information

Even become energized?

Sometimes we are lost within or perhaps mostly

Then also engrossed in the sensorial

And what we experience ends up being how and where

We live from!


Then we notice things

The elements and components of our world

Sometimes the whole world and sometimes just parts of it!


We relate with our heart

We relate with our head

Sometimes both and sometimes

With one more than the other


And then we are

Who we are to ourselves

And even others may see us as we are

Or not!

And so it is with waters of reflection

-          Not just beautiful nature

For everything we experience through our senses

We modify with how we relate

When we relate, what we relate, where we relate

And why we relate even when we

Are just being and not particularly seeking.


Perhaps not just calming waters

Perhaps all around us

Live metaphors for how we live

-          And how we grow and become

And how we take and give

Of our very essence

As our own play into our world.


Joseph D’Souza

Waters of reflection 21  Waters of reflection 38
Waters of reflection 7  Waters of reflection 18

What are you looking at?

Joseph D'Souza - Tuesday, July 29, 2014

And when you look, what do you see? What are you thinking when you look and see in your everyday life?

Risk? Self Confidence? Context?

Joseph D'Souza - Tuesday, July 22, 2014


Are the risks you take conditional? If so, on what? If you knew you were going to succeed would you doubt yourself? If someone else told  you how, would you? If you saw others trod a dangerous path would it make it easier for you to follow? Do you trust in your faith or belief above what some may call common sense?

And then again, without seeing the whole picture, the full scenario, the 'other' and 'normal' way in that circumstance, would you make your assessment and therefore assumptions just on the extracted information? Would you believe only what you can see?

A very good friend of ours Jan came into our lives at mutually interesting times of change. Up to that point, I was more of a city and suburban person. Now with a lifestyle 'tree change' there was much to learn. Jan had five young teenage boys - Stewart, Pete, Matt, Trevor and John. The boys were weaned not only on rural life but even for their ages were most experienced in timber yard and forestry skills. Before these lads, thoughts of chainsaws just conjured up scary images. They taught me with great patience and magnanimity new skills and now with practice, I always think of how they converted a fear, a risk in me into productive labour on the property. With them I learned confidence in tractor driving. After all if they could make quad bikes fly, why couldn't I drive a tractor! Through the lads I saw the wider context of living and working on a rural property as lifestyle - not just chore. Through them I learned about contractors and earth moving equipment - and how I could leverage those services instead of being overwhelmed by size of execution. This allowed me to dream bigger.

Indeed, risk, self-confidence and context are keys to executing on a quest no matter the scale. Have you taken risks or is risk aversion a preferred strategy? Do you have self confidence in all you do? Do you position challenges and stepping stones in their wider contexts? If yes or no, how is that working for you? So what will you do next?

Then Jan shared this video clip on social media dedicated to her boys!

How often do you need to shift your paradigm?

Joseph D'Souza - Saturday, July 12, 2014

In a world of pre-occupied minds, I would argue that we project and filter so much of daily experience we miss the reality now of simply being. We see, do and get unconsciously - because of our conditioning. And we see do and get consciously so as to fit in. Oh, there may be moments when we proudly go against the crowd yet in the majority of our very being and perceptions, we are still identified with the crowd.

In some sense, if we have an open and uncluttered mind and therefore mental outlook, every experience is new. We can then deal with it on merit. Or can we? What would be our reference points? Back to that conditioning?

Perhaps the perception of the image above: A cat reaching to ring the bell can be a metaphor. It may say: You may think you are just a cat. But you do have mental agility, the senses and motor skills to explore. The cat is obviously very high up - for that is usually the place for a hanging bell. That altitude is both a perspective and a reach across horizons. And that is a different attitude.

Or the cat reached up to get closer to a bird, or the frayed rope end whisked by the wind attracts its curiosity. Whatever, the cat is not showing signs of being uncomfortable!

When confronted with an experience or by arriving at some unplanned scenario, can we shift our paradigms to see differently, and therefore do differently and then get something different?

That is why I love this concept of coaching. A coach is nothing more than a mirror of reflection. We use mirrors to provide feedback. We adjust, we confirm, we reaffirm. And a coach can look at you and see your potential that may be different from what your own perception is at that particular moment. If you get to "AHA!" - then you made it worked for you. Then you are the cat and you do ring the human made bell hung from a lofty tower from which horizons have no end and a lot of little things are in perspective.

                                      REALITY Now

What is the reality of your dream?

Joseph D'Souza - Friday, July 11, 2014

A Facebook friend of mine Kovács Jocó  shares some very good posts. In fact the wisdom and fun he is generous with makes me always want to look out for him in my news feed. Today he shared this picture:

Now I am sure most of us would like to say we either aspired to the same dream when we were young, or at least reflect on that innocent yearn the older we got. Is this really possible?

 When we are babies, we are totally dependent on our parents. Genetically, our journeys have some determination. Even as growing children we are conditioned by the environment of our family - parents values, psychological outlook, social circumstances, economic dictates, cultural perspectives, school ethos and subjects taught by various teachers, political climate, literature, arts, life's experiences, witnessing other peoples lives, the natural world, media influences. How do we know who we are? Who is it that is differentiating between the me and that which observes the me?

It seems to me that the quest in life for most of us as individual human beings is to discover who we really are ourselves, for ourselves. Perhaps the journey is one of dis-covery, that is, removing the 'veils of deception' to really get to know ourselves. Even as adults we struggle to say: "I know who I am" without the paradigm of whatever our mental conditioning is. Mystics and sages fill the world with glimmers for seekers on this path.


 No matter where we are on our journey, perhaps a first step is to reflect on where we are now. With The ROQUE Model, it is suggested that three categories of who we are may be relevant.

  1. Your SELF as Human Being
  2. Your RELATIONAL Self - for even as we are an individual, we are connected by family, friend or other relationships.
  3. Your PROFESSIONAL Self - that is whatever we do to sustain our participation in that relational world.
Perhaps we can ask this question another way. Now that we are grown up, who are we?

What anchors you even as change is the norm?

Joseph D'Souza - Wednesday, July 09, 2014

"Change happens every single time a person’s expectations are disrupted both in our professional and personal lives"...."The most important skill we need to develop for the 21st century is our ability to build strong partnerships". Says Ayelet Baron. Yes we agree.

And how do we develop strong relationships? Why, by firstly a good degree of self understanding. It is in the act, the realization, the knowing, however pedestrian, however small, that we begin to adopt humility and magnanimity. If you can genuinely respect, consider and even value that others are just as entitled to their own unique perspectives, then change is nothing more than a change in perspective!

At QuestUniquE we encourage all individual, teams be in in the workplace or domestic or social life to start their journey of self understanding by considering FIVE KEY ANCHORS which extend to YOUR TRUE NORTH. It is indeed amazing how when every challenge of change is examined through these filters,that strategies for leveraging already available competencies and individual resources emerge!


A little more on The FIVE KEY ANCHORS and YOUR TRUE NORTH.


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