This podcast series is for anyone interested in the nuts and bolts of real-life collaboration, especially collaboration among creative, intelligent, free-thinking individuals who are geographically dispersed.
The interviews go well beyond the obvious, as metaphor master Judy Rees explores the hidden thinking that inspires collaboration that works.
Judy: Hello and welcome to the collaboration dynamics podcast. I’m Judy Rees and with me today is David Saville. Hello, David!
David: Hello Judy!
Judy: Would you like to introduce yourself and say a little about what you do in relation to collaboration?
David: Sure. I’m David Saville. After 17 years working in the same location, for the same people, having the same journey to work I have created a life where I coach people in their lives and their businesses. I essentially help people to achieve the impossible, which is going for things that seem way beyond what they think they are capable (of), and living a life that is fulfilling and complete. And that’s what I love to do.
Interestingly, the collaboration piece – when you mentioned that, for me it didn’t click. I had to think about it. I don’t really collaborate – I have a friend Rosie Allen, who I do events with. We’ve got a Facebook page called ‘Life Not As You Know It’, and we run monthly events. So I collaborate with her. But that’s quite a small part of what I do compared to the rest of my life.
But then I thought about it. If I remove the word ‘collaboration’, if I think of connection and co-creation, that’s pretty much everything that I do. When I’m doing a one-on-one of coaching, when I’m coaching groups, when I’m giving talks – everything is a co-creation. In fact, in my life with my friends, my family – every moment of every day when I’m speaking to someone it is a co-creation or as you call it – a collaboration – in that moment. That’s what I think when it comes to collaboration.
Judy: Let’s use your word then. When you are co-creating at your best, you are like what?
David: I’m like a dancer. I’m taking a step towards and inviting them to dance with me. And they take a step towards me, then we step onto that dance floor. Then as we continue to speak and connect, we get to spin and create some magic on that floor.
Judy: What kind of dancer are you?
David: Probably, this is related to the fact I’ve been doing ceroc. In my mind, I’m thinking ballroom dancing. It’s the way the metaphor feels with me, the flowing metaphor. There’s also a gliding beauty in that when it’s done on a very high level.
Judy: So ballroom dancing, a gliding beauty like that. And you’re taking a step towards them. Is there anything else about that step?
David: It’s a small step. I extend a hand and I invite them to take my hand. If they don’t take my hand, it’s okay. There’ll be someone else I will invite to dance.
Judy: And when they take your hand, what happens next?
David: Well then we feel a connection between us. There needs to be some sort of push/pull when they are not sure and I am not sure, and we’re getting to know each other. I pull them onto the dance floor. Then together we can create that flow.
Judy: And what kind of dance floor is that dance floor?
David: It’s wooden, it’s shining. It’s like an old solid wood that’s been there for a very, very long time. And it’s beautiful.
Judy: It’s a dance floor that’s old solid wood and it’s been there a long time, and it’s beautiful. You and the other person are on the dance floor. Whereabouts on the dance floor?
David: We begin at the edge of the dance floor. As we’re taking steps towards each other, and as we are getting to know each other, as we’re moving, we move to the centre. And when it’s flowing at its best, we control the whole dance floor.
Judy: Is there anything else about ‘when it’s flowing at its best’ like that?
David: There’s an energy between us – it’s like a spark between us. And the spark grows and flows. And the energy rises between us.
Judy: And you control the dance floor?
David: Yeah, we own that dance floor.
Judy: What kind of own like that?
David: The kind of own, where everyone in the room, in the audience can just see what we’re doing and they want to be part of it. It’s almost like creating a gravitational pull. And when people are drawn to us and flowing with us.
Judy: What kind of people are drawn to you?
David: People like us. Our kind of people. But not everyone’s for us. Just the ones that resonate with us. The ones that, if we were to change partners and would be dancing would also be able to create that flow, because we’re on the same level.
Judy: When it’s like that and the energy rises between you, and you own the dance floor, and it’s flowing like that, is there anything else about dancing like that?
David: There is eye-contact. It is very important. There is eye-contact. And we’re smiling and as we are moving and our bodies are continually connected even when we move apart, the feeling, just gently touching the arm. The feeling gets to something. We’re in constant connection and flow.
Judy: Is there anything else about that connection?
David: Electric. And breath – comes to mind too. Deep flowing breath. And almost breathing in synch.
Judy: So that’s what it’s like when you’re co-creating at your best. What needs to happen for dancing like that?
David: In the beginning, it needs to be the right person. It needs to be my person at the beginning. And he can’t know that, but I think that would make me [inaudible 07:39] to find those people. And then once we begin dancing, what needs to happen is that we learn from each other. We’re present with each other. In fact, for that dance no one else exists and nothing else exists between us. It’s just us and the dance floor.
Judy: So, no one else exists. It’s just you and the dance floor, and that’s it.
David: Me, the other person, and the dance floor – yes. And not even the dance floor actually. I’m only aware of the dance floor at that point. It’s just us, between us that connection, the eye contact, flow, physical connection, the electricity. That’s it. Just us.
Judy: Just you, David, and the other person, and the electricity, the connection between you, the eye contact. And it’s just you. What needs to happen for it to be just you like that?
David: Focus. As I make the invitation, as we dance, I bring my full focus to that person. And everything else drops away. And that invites the person to do the same. And they get drawn in, too. Then it’s just us and the world around us.
Judy: I’m curious about that process of making the invitation. What happens just before you make that invitation?
David: I see an energy in the person, some energy there. Actually it’s a mixture of seeing and feeling. It’s like I see and connect. Actually, the eye contact comes first. Before I reach out, I can sense the energy. And if the energy feel like there’s a potential spark there, then I’ll walk over and reach my hand out. And then I’m continually looking for that connection from the beginning – it has to be there. And we kind of feel into that connection as it builds and [inaudible].
Judy: It’s the eye contact first, and then you’re looking for that potential connection.
David: Yeah, the eye contact and the feeling that comes with that. There has to be that good feeling. It feels good, and if it’s good, I take a step forward.
Judy: Where about does it feel good?
David: In my chest, in my stomach, in my head, in my throat, in my eyes, too. Actually, as I’m thinking about it, it expands out through my body. Into the very fingertips [inaudible].
Judy: That Feel Good just expands out – in your chest, in your stomach, in your head, in your eyes and all of that – it expands out.
David: Yes, it’s like as I breathe in, it expands out through my entire being.
Judy: And that happens just after the eye contact, and just before you reach out your hand?
David: Yes. It does. The eye contact happens, Feel Good happens, I breathe, it expands, I reach out – yeah.
Judy: What happens just before the eye contact?
David: I’m thinking about it. Just before the eye contact, I’m feeling in my body – a sort of feeling comes before the eye contact as well – like I’m drawn to someone in that way. It’s actually like I’m walking through world always with that feeling and looking towards feeling good or not. If it’s not good, then I’ll move on. If it’s good, then I will invite and see. And if I’m inviting and seeing, and it feels bad again, then I withdraw the hand and move on to find someone else who [inaudible] with me.
Judy: So you are walking through the world always with that feeling and checking whether it feels good.
David: Yeah. Only certain number of people in the world can be my people. I am continually feeling for those people.
Judy: Is there anything else about those people where it feels good? I’m curious about how do you know where to make the eye contact? I’m talking a bit uncleanly about “How would I do that if I was…” What lets you know? Is it literally just the feeling just before the eye contact that lets you know that that’s a person to make eye contact with?
David: Sometimes yes and sometimes no. Sometimes I just make the eye contact and that could be the start. It varies actually. Sometimes I just look and the eye contact is the beginning. And sometimes there is a feeling before the eye contact.
But either way, that feeling is everything. Every communication, every exchange – that feeling is it. That shows whether we are going to be co-creating together, or whether I’m trying to force it, or whether there’s some uneasiness. Whatever it may be, that feeling – I’m really getting more and more into that sense of the feeling of Feel Good.
Judy: Feeling that co-creating.
David: The feeling is everything. My body, my intuition, whatever you may call it, knows. If I’m in tune with that, then it’s easy, effortless. Without judgement either. Because just because you don’t feel good with someone, that’s okay – they are just not my people. It’s their people for them and it’s my people for me. I don’t waste energy with those kind of people.
Judy: That’s how it begins. Can I shift attention then to how it ends? You make the invitation, they take your hand, you’re on the dance floor. Then when you’re dancing, there’s just you and them, and the energy between, the connection between. What happens at the end?
David: It’s funny, because there is no end. If we’re dancing on that dance floor, and it’s flowing, there is no end. There might be other people join the dance, and we’re dancing together. We exchange partners, but the connection remains. If you imagine in terms of ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ or something, you’ve got multiple partners and they are all dancing together, and exchanging partners and connecting. And it’s like a whole and it expands and expands and expands without limit. And without stopping. That’s the beauty of it. Once you get that connection, it doesn’t ever end.
Judy: There’s multiple partners and you are just changing partners, and it expands and expands and expands. That’s where the other people are drawn to you.
David: Yeah. The other people are drawn from the beginning. Once the two of us are on that dance floor, owning that dance floor, the others are drawn in. Then we share connections and it spirals out. It’s like the whole world becomes the dance floor, and never ending beautiful dance.
Judy: And the connection remains between you and the original partner?
Judy: What happens with the connection between the new partners?
David: It sparks and it grows. The connection remains, and the connection grows and spirals between us, too. This is the beautiful thing – we’re connected. And when I introduce them to the person I was dancing before, and they dance together. It’s continually growing and spiralling out.
Also then something incredible happens, too. Even if I’m dancing with people, and they are all my people, it doesn’t mean they are each other’s people either. But what it might mean is that we’ve got different sections of the dance floor where they’ve got people who are their people dancing together. And I mingle and go between them. For me, they are all my people and I’m dancing and it’s flowing and it’s spiralling, and it’s beautiful. But they may not resonate with each other, and that’s okay too. We are able to connect and co-create in that space still in a very beautiful way.
Judy: When all of that, what happens to the energy?
David: It grows, it rises, it expands out. If you are looking from above, it would be like a blinding light, a vibrating blinding light which we could just power the universe from. That’s what happens to the energy – it’s continually growing and expanding. And this is why it’s so important that the only dancers are my people and that they dance with their people – because then the energy is always shared and grown. Whereas when there’s a disconnect, they let the energy drain out and it messes up the dance.
Judy: When there’s a disconnect, the energy drains out. Is there anything else about when it’s a disconnect?
David: It’s like you’re not even creating anything together. It’s almost like you’re butting heads in a way. Or like one person could be dragging the other along. You know, like expending all their energy trying to get them to do something that they don’t really want to do.
And this is when the head gets in a way, which is why the Feel Good feeling is so important. The head is saying, “No, rationally this should work”. But the actual body is saying, “No, it isn’t right”. If you listen to the body, there is no disconnect. If there is a disconnect, you just move on. But if actually when you listen to the head too much, that’s where the disconnect comes and it just drains energy. It makes you harder to connect with others too. Because then you go up the pattern of disconnecting, disconnecting, disconnecting. It gets [inaudible] to bring you back to the Feel Good.
Judy: When you have that Feel Good, and you have all those people dancing, and the different areas of the dance floor, and you can mingle between them, but they don’t necessarily mingle with each other, and the energy is like vibrating blinding light as it spirals out, and it’s easy and effortless, and the whole world becomes a dance floor, and it never ends.
David: Yeah, it just grows. Because those spirals of people dancing, who are not connected to each other, but I get to mingle between, they get to their people, and their people, and their people. It spirals, and spirals, and spirals out. Even though, though I began it, there may be people on the fringes of it who are not my people, that’s okay. Because they are co-creating themselves, and their energy is just buzzing, flying and creating. It’s beautiful.
Judy: Thank you for sharing all of that. Is there anything else about all of that that you haven’t already mentioned that I should have asked you about?
David: I think the main thing for me is just not having a problem with it not working. Obviously there may be people that you can’t dance with. And that’s okay – and they can’t dance with you. And that’s okay. Just being okay with that not happening as opposed to then that being a problem, and which can affect the dance of a lot of people. Just to let you know it’s okay, and to listen to your body feelings and intuition.
Judy: Grand. I’m curious – did you know all of that before we started talking?
David: No. I think I knew about the energy, the feeling, because that’s what I came to. It’s about feeling when you are with someone. I hadn’t expanded it to any kind of metaphor like that, definitely not.
Judy: And what difference does knowing all that make?
David: It’s awesome. It’s more exciting actually. It actually expands of what I already know, which makes it make a lot more sense as to why that’s so important. I share this stuff all the time – I do a talk on Deep Connections on how to connect deeply with people. That is just a beautiful metaphor that I can now bring into that. It will actually make more sense to other people too. Thank you for that. You’re actually a really great ride.
Judy: I shall look forward to hearing that talk sometime. You’ve mentioned that you do coaching, you do talks, you have this group with your colleague. If people want to contact you, who should contact you and how they can find you?
David: What I’m loving at the moment is working with small business owners, entrepreneurs particularly, on how to create more a successful business based on integrity. I work with people making more money, but it has to be built on what they love most. It’s creating a life and building a beautiful business around that life. People who may be already successful, but are plateauing or are not (dis)satisfied with their whole life, but doing stuff they don’t really want to be doing – I help them make that beautiful and fulfilling. Those are the real kind of people I want to work with more and more.
To connect with me – Facebook is beautiful. I share everything on that – probably too much – about my personal life, about my dancing, gymnastics that I’m doing. I’m also sharing insights on selling, on how to live with integrity, and just stuff that makes a difference to people. Facebook is awesome to do that.
My website is davidsaville.co.uk It doesn’t look pretty, but I still share things on there that can make a difference. And you can get any insight into the coaching relationship. Because it’s the most profound experience. And again this is why finding your coach for you is the most important. When it resonates, what you can create from that state is incredible.
Just one more thing – I do Life Not As You Know It, which is a Facebook page of my friend Rosie Allen. We do videos three times a week. We share insights and ask questions people have about life and business. And we run monthly events where we get people to do crazy stuff in London – social challenges combined with some secret event that we have. Everything that we do on the day is always secret. But it’s always based on making a difference to people. And they go away changed forever from that. That’s what our mission is. So yes, you can connect with me on those spaces.
Judy: Interesting stuff. I shall look forward to looking up more of that myself. Thank you very much indeed for being part of the podcast. Glad you enjoyed it.
David: I did. Thank you so much for inviting me. It’s been a lot of fun.