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Train to the Moon

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What is Babacita?

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: February 21st, 2014 | 0 Comments

Babacita is a heart-centric consulting organization that assists companies and individuals in discovering their core brand or values. Babacita heart, brand and values discovery Once this discovery is complete, the next step is to integrate these values throughout an organization or individual’s life to support who they are and what they stand for – their core brand or values.  Utilizing a variety of techniques and drawing on a vast foundation of experience, Babacita strives to help you or your organization reach their true potential. Babacita Evolve . Connect . Inspire        

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What are your brand power points?

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: September 9th, 2013 | 6 Comments

During my career, which includes a spectrum of roles: marketing strategist and creative director, corporate communications counselor, sales strategist and trainer… my interest in ethics has always been front and center. But over the years I’ve learned that simple ethics aren’t enough. Not enough for business. Not enough for me, personally. Not enough for the world. We can do better. We operate by a set of core values at Babacita.iStock_000002312811Large
  • Service
  • Compassion
  • Organization
  • Accomplishment
It’s these values I use as my own touch and power points to help individuals, departments and organizations Evolve. Connect. Inspire. What are your brand power points?

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Freedom at Work, Fear and the Power Question

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: May 22nd, 2013 | 0 Comments

Last week I was part of WorldBlu LIVE.WorldBluLIVE
WorldBlu LIVE 2013 is the world’s premier gathering on freedom in the workplace. It is designed for individuals and organizations who recognize the power of freedom and democracy as a leading tool for boosting the bottom-line, promoting innovation, attracting top talent and inspiring full engagement. More than just a conference, WorldBlu LIVE is an experience that combines a showcase for democratic innovation, a platform for rule-breakers, and an audience of revolutionaries. This is all wrapped in a unique, stylized environment that will leave you inspired, full of fresh ideas, and connected with a world-class community of leaders.
A lot of which I heard aligned precisely with my current process and thinking, but I also heard some amazing stories about what companies are doing to promote Freedom at Work. Yes, this is touchy/feely stuff… BUT the results are remarkable all the way around from the human capital aspect to productivity and innovation right to the bottom line. The 10 Principles of Workplace Democracy
  1. Purpose and Vision
  2. Transparency
  3. Dialogue & Listening
  4. Fairness & Dignity
  5. Accountability
  6. Individual & Collective
  7. Choice
  8. Integrity
  9. Decentralization
  10. Reflection & Evaluation
Fear vs. freedom One big thing that really hit me last week was fear vs. freedom. Fear is everywhere and has several levels, especially in a work environment. And though you may not even realize it, fear does play a major factor in moral, productivity, creativity and the bottom line. Within a command and control, fear-based organization, personnel experience diminished self-confidence, esteem, value and worth. Basically smothering their spirit. Fear is an emotional response and I took the couple following notes that I felt important:
  • Clear your mind and use logic
  • Accept fear and walk through it
  • Fear doesn’t equal failure
  • Use fear as energy and fuel
  • Have you made the horrifying concession… spending your work life unfulfilled?
The first step is to become aware of the fear. Once you realize it, it then becomes a choice. We all have a choice. One big question, that Traci Fenton, WorldBlu Founder and CEO, labeled The Power Question – What would you do if you weren’t afraid? Think about that in all aspects of your life. For decision making. Powerful, yes? A few years ago I really began a new transformation, which started off as a re-brand of my consulting firm, Babacita, but it ended up a re-discovery of me. Through this discover I found that my values boil down to these 4 things:
  • Service – a sense of doing more for humanity and human rights
  • Compassion – a true sense of giving and helping others
  • Organize – Forethought and planning, systematic, efficient
  • Accomplish – Driven and motivated to accomplishment and providing value
Since then there have been so many changes in my life – all to support these values and the mission of Babacita (and me)… Evolve, Connect and Inspire. I came out of the gate on fire. A new energy and passion with what felt right for the first time in my career. I began writing and living with a heart-centered approach (here’s an example - Incorporating A Heart-Centered Approach to Business). Consciously aware of everything that feeds or deposits me and what I’m about and everything that withdrawals and is negative. But there was one thing that was still holding me back from truly reliving my dream of self-employment. Fear.  The very same fear I mentioned earlier. Would I really be able to put a roof over my head and feed my children? I have no doubt in my skills and the ability to succeed, but it was the fear held me back. And the answer to The Power Question for me is to absolutely leap. But to do it methodically and systematically, and yes, my plans are in motion. Some other just random notes that I took away from WorldBlu LIVE in no particular order that are some good things to think about (please ignore my html formatting issues):
  • Attributes of Tribal Leadership
    • Identity and belonging
    • Learning and teaching
    • Customs
    • Culture
    • Ceremony
    • Folklore (have burial parties to flush out unhelpful stories)
    • Warriors
  • Freedom – create conditions for people to realize their full potential
  • Create the opportunity to live and express true worth, providing a full range of creativity and innovation – empower people in a meaningful way
  • Value of Self
    • You are valuable
    • You have worth
    • You have ideas
  • Values
    • How do you support them?
    • What did you do today that supported your values?
A freedom-centered leadership through values and culture, is what I live and breathe and is what I'm helping others do as well. Babacita draws out the best in individuals and organizations by focusing energy in three ways – evolve, connect and inspire. I then provision my clients with freedom-centered principles, education and communication programs so they reach their true potential by living authentically to their values, while delivering superior results. Let me know if you’d like to learn more of how I can help personally or organizationally evolve, connect and inspire. Let’s play!  

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When you lose your creative mojo…

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: February 28th, 2013 | 0 Comments

Mine was recently lost... for some time it sparkwas nowhere to be found. I won't lie, it worried me. What if it didn't come back? Then I remembered to trust. It's in me. It's always been there and maybe it wasn't the right time. My energies were needed elsewhere. But what worried me was the fact that it is such a big part of who I am and that fire had just vanished. Recently though there have been sparks. And those sparks have been increasing as the days go on. It's coming back. So I pose a question to you. When such an integral part of who you are suddenly vanishes what do you do to help get that back? Do you do anything or simply trust?

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Chaos to Clarity, Journey to One’s Authentic Self

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: February 2nd, 2013 | 0 Comments

When we grow, truly grow, it can feel like sheer chaos. But with belief in one’s Self, chaos transforms into clarity. Every time. chaos to clairty Through this evolution of mine I keep coming back to the same question. Is being authentically you, not the greatest gift you can give yourself, those around you and the whole of us? Part of the problem is really getting to that authentic Self. We are marred by “should.” What we “should” do. How we “should” act. These are imposed by our parents, relationships, environment and society, and after years and years those become the reality of us. Then, in essence, you lose your Self. That’s the journey I’ve been on over the past 2 years or so. Beginning with evaluating and reinventing Babacita, my consulting business. But in reality it didn’t take me long to realize that I was evaluating my Self. Discovering my Self. Looking through all the “should” influence, eliminating the haze and clouds and really discovering me. Who was I? What makes me tick? How do I make this world better? Getting back to my authentic Self. Evolve, connect and inspire. Those three little words is John in the most general terms. And through this journey, which is far from over, there has been much reflection and pain, but also such brilliance. A rebirth of me. Getting back to my childlike innocence and Self that had been lost, but also now with new life experiences that only add to the beauty. It’s an amazing feeling. My authentic Self is alive and thriving like never before. Stay tuned. This is just the beginning.

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A Time of Transition

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: December 2nd, 2012 | 0 Comments

I apologize that it’s been a long while since I’ve been here. Mayan CalendarBut as the title suggests, it’s been a time of major transition for me personally while I continue my journey. Perhaps this is all leading up to December 21, 2012 where the Mayan calendar suggests a transition of worlds. One world ending and another beginning. A new world of consciousness, harmony and balance. This would definitely fall in line with my past (almost) two years of rediscovering my authentic Self and really putting into perspective what it means to live a heart-centered life. And though this journey hasn’t been even close to easy, I’d like to thank everyone who has had a role of encouragement, support and love. There are too many to list, but you know who you are. But specifically, I’d like to mention two people specifically that have made a huge impact on me as well as a direct alignment of my own personal and professional direction. Craig Gray of Ronin Empowerment Group and Traci Fenton of WorldBlu. I won’t go into specifics now, but both with Craig, Traci and their organizations, Babacita has some exciting plans in the works for 2013. I feel like I’m slowly coming out of my hole with a new fire and passion for change. As my tagline suggests – Evolve, Connect, Inspire – that is my direction and who I am. Have a safe and happy holiday season, John

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Ethics and the Ethical Warrior

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: September 17th, 2012 | 0 Comments

Ethics are a funny thing. Defined as 1) moral principles that govern a person’s behavior or the conducting of an activity; and 2) the branch of knowledge that deals with moral principles. Huh? Still not sure what that means. A couple weekends ago I got the privilege to attend a workshop by Ronin Empowerment Group that featured Jack Hoban of Resolution Group International (RGI) on the subject of the Ethical Warrior. Jack served as a US Marine Corps officer and is a long time practitioner of martial arts. He assisted in the creation of the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program and remains a subject matter expert for the program. He has led more than 500 workshops and seminars around the world addressing universities, government and private organizations on ethics and martial arts, including the FBI and the NYPD. A good reminder for all of us and Jack's definitions definitely outline a clear understanding of the hierarchy of values. Values - "Things that have an intrinsic worth in usefulness or importance to the possessor," or "principles, standards, or qualities considered worthwhile or desirable." • Relative values - Values shared by some people, some of the time (sporting team fans). • Life value - Shared by everyone - life (the first inalienable right). • Moral values - Moral values are relative values that support life and respect the Dual Life Value of self and (all) others. (honor, courage, commitment, love, integrity, justice, charity, truth, freedom, dependability, knowledge, unselfishness, loyalty) To be moral, the relative value must respect the Life value of self and (all) others. The Life value of self and others is the "true north" of the moral compass. We can orient ourselves using the Life value during times of moral confusion. Most people already have a sense of morality, but sometimes morals can be obscured or trumped by our emotions and/or strong relative values. Rather than "taught," morality can be clarified then "activated" through: lessons in context, values stores, shared adversity and leadership. Ethics are moral values in action. A person who knows the difference between right and wrong – and chooses the right – is moral. A person whose morality is reflected in their willingness to do the right thing – even if it is hard or dangerous – is ethical. Think of the bully on the playground. Where does your compass point you? Each one of us are faced with moral and ethical dilemmas each and every day, ranging in scale, but nonetheless important. Keep in mind that ethics are moral values in action, which always support the universal life value. To learn more about values, morals and ethics, pick up a copy of Jack's book, The Ethical Warrior. It's a great read and an model for all of us to Evolve, Connect and Inspire. Where does your compass point?

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Upcoming Babacita Endorsed Events

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: June 27th, 2012 | 0 Comments

Some great events coming up that you won't want to miss: Jack Hoban Seminar Sat. Aug. 25th, 2012, Grand Rapids, Michigan Ronin Martial Arts is proud to bring in Jack Hoban for a great day of martial arts and tactical training. Jack is not only a 10th degree black belt Shidoshi Senior Instructor in the Bujinkan Budo Taijustu and Togakure Ryu Ninjutsu system under Grand Master Masaaki Hatsumi in Japan, he was also a student of the late Robert Humphrey, a noted conflict resolution specialist for the State Department during the Cold War. Jack assisted in the creation of the US Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP) & remains subject expert (SME) for the program. Jack's approach to teaching martial arts in context of universal human values is unique in the U.S. He has three published books & four videos on martial arts and has written numerous articles for international magazines, as well as law enforcement and military periodicals. He is a highly sought after defensive tactics instructor in many countries throughout the world. Countless civilian, law enforcement and military personnel have benefited from his instruction. This seminar will focus on defensive tactics, warriorship, & protecting others. We will address numerous types of unarmed and armed situations. This isn’t sport fighting! You’ll learn combative concepts and tactical maneuvering. You'll hear inspiring stories. You'll feel connected to something larger than yourself as you activate the Ethical Warrior inside each of us. Registration BluCamp October 16-20, 2012, Lebanon, Missouri The purpose of BluCamp is to take top executives through a transformational leadership journey that combines experiential learning with a cutting-edge curriculum in organizational democracy and freedom-centered leadership. Residing together on a beautiful 800-acre campus, BluCamp participants will leave behind predictable ballroom seminars and stuffy lecture halls to immerse themselves in an unforgettable high-impact adventure experience that equips them with the democratic leadership acumen, interpersonal skills, cutting-edge tools, freedom-centered mind-set and overall confidence needed to successfully build and grow their own democratic workplaces. While pursuing experiential learning with other high-caliber executives from around the world, participants will be inspired by diverse cultures and new friendships that define the BluCamp experience. More information WorldBlu LIVE May 15–16, 2013, Denver, Colorado WorldBlu LIVE 2013 is the world’s premier gathering on freedom in the workplace. It is designed for individuals and organizations who recognize the power of freedom and democracy as a leading tool for boosting the bottom-line, promoting innovation, attracting top talent and inspiring full engagement. More than just a conference, WorldBlu LIVE is an experience that combines a showcase for democratic innovation, a platform for rule-breakers, and an audience of revolutionaries. This is all wrapped in a unique, stylized environment that will leave you inspired, full of fresh ideas, and connected with a world-class community of leaders. More information Let me know if you have questions on any of the above. Also, in the works is a Babacita/PeaceWalker Project workshop... stay tuned for details.

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A Heart-Centered Approach to Business and Life

Posted by:John Kowalski | Posted on: June 1st, 2012 | 0 Comments

An article I wrote, published on Evolving Beings. Throughout my career, predominantly made up of marketing agencies, corporate communications and consulting, the primary driver of ethics was always front and center. But over the years I’ve learned that simple ethics aren’t enough. Not enough for business. Not enough for me personally. Not enough for the world. We can do better. I heard this said the other day after an injustice “It’s just business, Kelly… It’s just business.” Bullshit. Businesses running with that mindset are dinosaurs. Those days are long gone and if they aren’t evolving (quickly), they will be left behind. We are entering the democratic age and business now is shifting to the heart. Loyalty, productivity, talent attraction and retention, creativity and innovation, customer preference, community and the bottom line. It’s the right thing to do on every level. Complete article. What are your thoughts or examples of how you incorporate your heart into business or life?

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