Last Man Standing…

If we pay attention, regardless of nearly being offended or knocked out; we may just be surprised by our fellow-man.

If we pay attention, regardless of nearly being offended or knocked out; we may just be surprised by our fellow-man.

So Black Friday has come and gone and thank goodness for that. See ya Felicia. This annual retail event is feature rich with “deals on deals” and videos of people literally going mad for things that are “cheaper than chips”. These “things” they probably don’t need and simply cannot afford, regardless of the seemingly giveaway price. Hence the madness. With that week behind us, shopping however is still continues.

One week later, on a scorching hot Saturday morning, it was time for shopping to raise its weary head again. Of course the question is why a week later? All the deals have come and gone. This is where my receipt disagrees. 1x pair of Asics Gel Nimbus 20, 1 x pair Asics running tights and a Compress Peak running cap for the same price of the running shoes on any other given day. Thank you Sweatshop Broadacres. But this deal is not what the story is about.

Relocate 5 km to another mall for my wife’s turn with shopping. And this is where I get nervous. Fast forward 20 min and all things are in the basket, checked out and paid for. And on our way we go! Say what! A woman shopping for a baby shower and it’s done and dusted in 20 min? True story!

So apart from being bedazzled by my wife’s new super power and high fiving her for it, the lesson of the day comes in the form of a rebuke. While we were walking to the car all proud of my wife, a noticed a couple with 3 kids. One child is crying and the other two look like they are pressing moms buttons all at once. The woman was buckling in the crying child and blocking our cars driver door. This clearly means, I’m unable to get into the car. I heard the man in a calm voice say to the woman, “we need to hurry as people are trying to get into their car”. The woman did not hesitate to respond with: “they can then wait”. In steps the rebuke! My immediate thought was that she clearly wasn’t aware of how close we were standing and that she was not a happy camper… obviously. Another interesting fact is that I didn’t see the man again. Think she ate him!

As I got into the car thinking about this, I heard a tap-tap  on the window and looked around and saw the same woman tapping on the car window with her nails. I feared for my life! But what she said next blew my mind!

As she leaned half out of her car towards our car window, with heaving breathing, exhausted but so calm said:” I want to say sorry. The kids are driving me mad today and being impossible. Of course I couldn’t bridle myself and said with a smile: “so that’s what I have to look forward too in 5 years time”. She smiled and we had our virtual hugs and kisses and we drove off into the sunset. Her with her rebellious kids, me with my wife and new running shoes already making new year’s running resolutions.

So what’s the point here?

It’s like the Wilder vs Fury boxing this weekend. Absolute chaos over 4 months leading up to the showdown. Fight night arrives and they throw a left, right, left, right, knockdown, get up and carry on. The bell rings and the boxers embrace. What?

Considering this woman; Its trying to understand her ability to transform from a chaotic emotional state to a rational mind in just a few seconds. The virtual left, right, left and right her kids are throwing at her all at once. Which leads me to another thought. How on earth do single mothers raise their kids and still be a functioning and contributing member of society? Consider the deep strength that needs to be drawn on everyday!

This experience can be unpacked & reviewed over and over again but I think we get the point. Being able to face the chaos in life, get knocked down and keep your head is how we get through it. If we can stand tall during the suffering time and again, we will be the last wo-man standing.

To this woman whose name I did not get. To you and all mothers, we salute you. You have taught me that even though life gets tough, don’t forget to display your values and morals in front of your kids. It’s then that we shine the brightest and teach them an unforgettable lesson.

If you find grammatical errors contained within, please assist & correct me to become a better writer.

Your comments and feedback is always welcome!

Milk & Screws

We have all seen that one person stick out head and shoulders above the crowd. Somehow its mesmerising or other times is just a false alarm. Depends what’s on the menu and what catches the eye.

Now, we have also heard, “first impressions last” or make that “first impression count”, Once again, it depends on what side of the impression you are on.

I’ve had the privilege to work with many CEOs & MDs that have positively influenced my life. All of them had many traits in common, one of which, they actually just cared. Nothing rocket science about that. All of that care, as their primary trait; has to a large part contributed to my success: both business and personal. Success in my case is “its ok to make mistakes but soldier forward, having enough money for running shoes and never slapping stupid people.

Anyhoo, about 11 years ago I was unemployed and finally got a call from a company for an interview the following Monday. I dressed up in my best suit, 2 sizes to big (i was much thinner back then), polished my shoes and walked shoulders back and chest out. Interview must have gone well (great first impression) as I got a second interview with the MD that Friday. And that’s when things kicked off…

Now for the record, when HR called me for the second interview, i EXPRESSLY asked about dress. Not wearing a dress, but should it be suite and tie or business casual. HR responded with, go casual. Evident to say, casual was not a choice I gave HR. So, playing it safe, business casual was my choice. Nicely snug between formal and casual.

The following events happened in a split second.

Walk into the office. See MD. See MD outfit. See my outfit. See the difference. And freeze.

I started the interview with an apology and throwing HR under the bus. Way to go big guy! The MD was dressed in suite and tie and looked like a million bucks. My outfit that I thought was a million bucks was reduced to R100. Hows that for deflation! I apologised for getting my business casual attire incorrect and the MD responded, relax man. Its cool. I wear suite and tie everyday. He then offered me coffee, I said yes (sheepishly) and then he walked over to the kitchen asking about sugar & milk etc. I said yes and yes and opened the fridge and handed him the milk… and that’s how I landed the job!

Say what???

Handing someone milk got me the job!!!

Turns out that the MD had a different approach to business, people and interviews. Also turns out he owned a carpentry business on the side that did shop fitting for large multinationals. One of his interview techniques for new carpenters was brilliant. He would take them to the workshop floor and stand around a workbench. On the workbench were 20 or so wood screws and he would, with slight of hand knock them all off. If the potential carpenter kneeled down, picked up all the screws and arranged them head-to-toe and handed them back to the MD, they would get the job. If not, the MD would let him know that they didn’t pass the interview, explaining why.

His explanation for this interview technique; the milk and screws, is to verify a person’s ability too “paying attention” when it matters most. That’s it!

Reviewing the interview; the MD always wanted to see if “we” not “he” was going to make the coffee. Turns out and thankfully so, I had my head on that morning and was paying attention. I saw that the coffee job wasn’t going to be complete, unless I handed him the milk. I mean, I was standing right next to the damn fridge. Give a brother some help! And the rest is history.

First impressions are not about beautiful red dresses worn to the ball, the ripped jock and his six pack abs (although that would be awesome) or the best candidate for a job. First impressions is about paying attention on a daily basis and being responsible to the person that chooses you to do great things together.

 

If you find grammatical errors contained within, please assist & correct me to become a better writer.

Your comments and feedback is always welcome!

Check in

Facebook sends us all kinda stats nowadays. Interestingly enough, one of the most liked posts I have received was when I “checked in” somewhere. Can’t actually remember where its was, but the most memorable “check in” experience was not when I checked in on Facebook. Its when I “checked in” to life

I have been fortunate to work with some great business leaders that actually “care” more about their staff than they do about their pockets. From my experience, their pockets take care of themselves when they focus on their staff’s growth, development and daily well being. Though this “care” is firm but fair, I have been on the receiving end of tough conversations that has assisted me with accelerated growth; in all areas in life – especially personal and work relationships. 

Just the other day, I had a “check in” experience with a rockstar CEO. I call him rockstar because of the humility that he carries himself with; regardless of his incredible business success and most certainly the humanness in how he spoke to me… genuinely wanting to guide a young man to focus on things that are responsible and have meaning.

The story goes…

With me turning 41 somehow raised a few questions about life. Not sure if it’s something in the water, or the way the earth rotates around the sun. Anyhoo, in steps Rockstar CEO and I ask for some of his time. He clears his schedule and takes me for a coffee and a toasted sandwich.

Long story short…

He summarised the past 15 years of his life with meticulous detail. But somehow the conversation seemed so short but richly dense with information. Definitely too intense for my life to truly grasp the gravity of his experiences from one sitting. I knew I would be making notes, reviewing, reflecting and then slowly with courage attempting to apply these life lessons. However, his conclusion made me realise that I didn’t have to duplicate everything he did. I just had to remember something, the most important thing while doing what I do on a daily basis. And his conclusion: life is not about what you do, it’s who you do it with?

Speechless!

This is one of those times, you just shut up and sit at the feet of wise counsel. Not his money, not his assets, not his reputation in the business world featured in the conversation. It’s who he did all those things with that matters most. The value that he places on humanity on a daily basis is what gives his live meaning and how he has become successful and maintains it. It’s about the journey with people.

So now what?

Beware of wisdom not earned – Carl Jung.

There are no shortcut strategies in life. The space between knowledge and wisdom seems self-evident; just as the difference between being clever and being real is a ‘thing’. These ‘spaces’ critically inform our thinking, speech, choices, eventual behaviours (Pershouse, 2018) and life’s outcomes 

If you don’t understand people, you don’t understand business. People must come first!

Make people a priority in your life. It does matters how you speak with them and treat them. Thats were the most meaning in this life resides.

“Check in” to this life… not just into Facebook.

 

Pershouse, O. (2018). [online] Available at: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/beware-wisdom-earned-owen-pershouse-1/ [Accessed 10 Nov. 2018].

Back to the Future

Dont try change your partner

Back to the Future

1985 was the year that Hollywood frustrated the hell out of every kid with one movie; Back to the Future. I’ll get into the detail of the frustration later. The story is about Marty Mcfly;  a teenager who has a crazy scientist friend; Doc Brown. Travelling backwards and forwards in time over 3 movies.

So why the frustration?

In 1985 I was 8 years of age. You were about (insert age here)

The Nike shoes, the hoverboard, flying cars, fancy smancy everything and while changing things in the past & future. All the things any kid would desire. If I have lost you, you probably were not 8 years old in 1985. So to get up to speed, go and watch the movie to recap.

Anyhoo,

Who wouldn’t want to change things in the past? Imagine what (insert name here) would get up to with a time machine? Don’t even get me started with what I would change!

One thing I would not try and change is… my partner!

I learnt a hard lesson when I was 24 years old. I met a girl on a summer holiday down at the coast. What a party! Came back home and turns out she lived down the road from me. We started dating and the fun was short-lived. I acknowledge it was because of me. Insecurity crept in and what used to be fun… fizzled out like a rainy sunset. Just before it all ended, she asked me a question that becomes a life lesson today. “What happened to the JP I fell in love with?” 

Do you recall the “insecurity” I mentioned earlier?

What I meant to say was… I tried to change my partner? Generally speaking, our insecurities or shortcomings motivate us to change our partners. 

Do you remember when you first met your partner? How you just thought it couldn’t get any better than this!

Prior to meeting your partner, they went through life; shaping their beliefs, creating a value system and certain circumstances (good & bad) influenced their decision making and the way they do things. If they are with you today, all those things “chose you”. Now why on earth, would we want to change our partner?

Change is required where relationship goals need to be achieved. With every effort of value put towards that relationship goal, a sacrifice will indefinitely be the foremost cost. But a small cost in comparison to the outcome of your goals. Apart from that, let our partners grow, learn & flourish. If they are paying attention & thinking through this life, life has a way of being the best teacher.

Let’s be honest… we have all tried changing our partners and failed horribly.

So here is a question!

If you could back into the past; what would you change? But if you choose to change something at the risk of losing your partner; would you?

Leave changing the past to Hollywood while you live in the present!

PS: While I was writing today’s blog I was listening to “La Belle Mixtape – Time Travel”. Coincidence? Nonetheless, worth a listen. Lae Belle – Time Travel

run FATTY run

to be fat or not to be fat…

Look at him run. Just look at him go! All that running effort and it looks like he is standing still. Oh look… he came last… again.

Yip that was me.

Since I can remember, I was the short little fat kid that competed with last place in any and every race. Last to be chosen for a team sport. Always the ugly friend of the good looking boy at school. Even when I played spin the bottle; somehow that damn bottle would miss me everytime and I couldn’t get a kiss from the hottest girl in school.

What a life!

Thankfully that little fat kid has run 3 x 90 km Ultra Marathons and completed a Ironman and still runs for the joy of it… and got to kiss many many HOT girls. Seems like the fat just fell off me since then?

Ever picked up a pair of spandex, held them high and say to yourself… this my only friend at the moment? Whether you have not, it would be assumed that the other 99% of your wardrobe is currently your enemy.  This is large in part to none of your clothes fitting (we have all been there) and hence spandex steps in and fits like a hand in a glove.

A few days ago a girl asked me a question. If your wife had to pick up 20kgs, would you still want to be with her? This makes it the question all the more interesting because the girl is good looking, a health nut, never misses leg day and presents herself like a million dollars. All impressive!

Interesting question considering that 20kg weighs as much as a bag of dog food. Please know that the weight of dog food is not how I would make my decision!

So I slowly responded and said; your question is based on what society thinks of fat people. Not on the basis of values and morality. Of course she was visibly confused but then again who wouldn’t be. Society wants YES or NO answers. Society wants people to make decisions on the basis of personal looks. How they make you feel! How people stare at you when you have a HOT partner etc etc.

To calm her confusion, I said that being fat is not an issue of being HOT or NOT. It’s a matter of physical and mental health. Without a doubt, when people get into a relationship, we tend to get a little lazy because we are very cozy. I completely get that. However, becoming overweight because you are lazy is a health risk and will definitely place strain on your relationship.

The strangest thing is that just this past weekend my wife and I discussed the issue of weight. I explained to her that should we become overweight, ultimately our health is at risk. It’s got nothing to do with whether I want to still be with her or not. Physically, everything gets harder to do. Walking to the car, walking up stairs and even walking to make natures finest coffee in the morning. Because our physical bodies are taking so much strain, mentally, our brains become lazy too and we start lacking the motivation to do the normal everyday things.

All of this starts impacting the relationship. Woman naturally start avoiding friends and social gatherings. Summer becomes the worst time of year. Going to the beach is considered more like visiting nuclear disaster site. It just won’t happen. From a guys perspective, we just lean back and say: I invested a lot of money in this stomach. A stomach so big that we ask our friends if our zipper is up because we can’t see what’s happening down there.

I would assume (research according to a knee jerk response) that 60% of people never wake up and go: “Yay, today I’m going to eat kale, raw spinach, celery and lick the dew off the leaf of a avocado tree and tomorrow I’ll have lost 5 kgs” Nope, most of the time people make the change because of health scares and sometimes it’s to late.

My wife wouldn’t pick up 20kgs is the correct response. My wife chooses to be a blessing to me and her family through healthy decisions made daily. She considers her health as a priority and understands that poor health decisions become a burden on our relationship… short and long term.

Now we know.

It’s all about healthy decisions and not about being HOT or NOT! Spandex should be your friend in health… not because of health scares.

So just get out there and run FATTY run. And laugh about it! Always laugh!

PS: no one was fat shamed or poked with a stick during the writing of this blog

 

sweet sweet smell of green grass

The grass is always greener on the other side…

Every time my oldest brother (let’s be clear that he is older) visits South Africa from the UK, he has this habit of taking off his shoes and walking onto green grass barefoot. His “bright as the sun” white feet and nik nak toes extend much like a centipede, curling and pinching the grass with relief all the while staring for a moment into the distance. I have come to accept without any understanding that this is his thing. His spiritual process. Connecting with the world. His “feng shui” moment of connecting with a world that he acknowledges is bigger than him.

Feng Shui – (in Chinese thought) a system of laws considered to govern spatial arrangement and orientation in relation to the flow of energy (chi)

So where does the “sweet sweet smell of green grass” come from? What does my brothers feet and his thousand yard stare have to do with it? Is there a link with the girl or boy next door? I personally have a love for green manicured lawns but hate mowing the grass.

Ever heard the saying. “The grass is always greener on the other side”?

And it’s true in context to this blog! Normally if not always, our neighbours grass is greener. There is always people that are prettier, sexier, more handsome, better legs, bigger chest, richer, more luxurious homes etc etc etc and this is getting boring, in this world.

Now that we have that out the way…  and my brothers feet, lets get started with this weeks blog.

Let’s create a everyday scenario:

There is without a doubt; everyday for some, or on certain occasion for others, we see or specifically notice and engage with the opposite sex that really gets our attention. Naturally we don’t vocalise this, as all the urges and chemistry happen internally, yet our bodies respond. Our bodies for an unknown reason feel a surge or inexplicable connection to the other person for which there was not motivation or intention from ourselves. This logically is not the issue. There is always this form of unseen, unknown, where the hell does this deep chemistry & connection come from… happen in us. Building off this, with all the decorum and guard that we are able to muster to ensure that that is where it stays… just a surge or inexplicable connection, often people let something like be their guide and reason for responding & viola… “i ruined my marriage” is the outcome.

We cannot go around letting our “feelings” guide us to plot a course for life. If that was the case, no one would have meaningful and purposeful relationships. Feelings either feel good or feel bad. Right and wrong cannot be linked to either. Most days I feel like slapping the stupid… my feelings are strongly in support of this. However, the outcome would be devastating. Right & wrong should be based on moral living, seeking for moral outcomes.

Long story short, your neighbor’s grass is always going to be greener and so is his neighbours grass greener still. Looking over your neighbours fence can become dangerous over time as you never know who is looking back with the same interest.

Cultivate your relationships to shine bright and be an example to anyone looking in. Let it shine so bright that that individual would desire the same for their relationship.

Remember, the grass is always greener where you water it. The outcome, is the sweet sweet smell of green grass!

PS: no grass was harmed or smoked during this blog!

PPS: if there are significant grammatical errors, please let me know! It’s the only way I can improve!

I ruined my marriage…

What is in a name?

There is a story doing the rounds, not sure how true it is, but it has an incredible moral lesson in it for us all. Let me tell it with less accuracy and more drama & humour. I’ll be sure to keep the moral compass flying high.

When Alexander the Great ruled, he was feared among nations. One day, when he was not conquering the known world and driving fear into his neighbours, he was in his castle resting. By resting, he had a drinking problem (this is fact) and probably kicking back on the couch watching Netflix – Love Island. While he just got into the series, he was interrupted by one of his guards. His guards walked into this lounge (picture that if you will) with a sentry in hand, who was caught sleeping while on the job. The sentry was thrown to the floor and visibly shaken from what his fate may be. Alexander the Great was known as a man for little time when it comes to excuses and failure.

With anger, Alexander the Great asked his guard why he would dare interrupt him watching season 1 episode 3 of Love Island? The guard responded with fear and great apology that his sentry was found sleeping at his post, while he was responsible for guarding the castle. After picking up the remote and pressing pause to ensure he missed nothing, Alexander the Great turned his attention to a man on the floor, stood up and never came close to towering over him. This is largely due to Alexander the Great being shorter than your average man (this is fact). He leaned over and asked the sentry; what is your name? The sentry with a fear filled tone answered, my name is Alexander. Your name is what? The sentry replied again, my name is Alexander. The other Alexander, the Great one was filled with rage and picked the sentry off the floor, stood him to his feet and yelled out… either change your name or change your conduct!

What is in a name?

Why do certain names have importance, while others get lost in history?

Why should people care about your name?

What in the world do names, Alexander the Great and a weeping soldier have to do with this?

Your name is linked to everything you say, think and do i.e. your behaviour & character or as Alexander the Great put it… your conduct! Hence, the “importance” is tied to some names, and “lost in history” for others.

Men with an ounce of ambition, walk through life with the purpose of leaving a legacy. This is a good thing. Legacy is broken down into various categories but you get the just of it. All of this is pointless, if you have achieved eternal riches, mega mansions, drive the fastest car’s, have the hottest blondes or brunettes as wives etc… but lost your soul along the way i.e. lost your name i.e. behaviour and character along the way!

Inheriting the world is a fool’s goal. Seek to inherit your partners heart and trust in your lifetime. Start there and the rest generally falls into place.

Be a leader of your relationship, day in and day out. Guide, nurture and make changes for the empowerment of both parties. Never give up developing good long lasting character, and behaviour that your name will live in the annals of history. Even if you are just remembered on a Facebook or twitter post for being the most incredible “NAME” someone had the blessing of spending time with.

Your name is important. Live up to it regardless of the challenge!

In conclusion, it is not as easy as it sounds, but living up to your name on a daily basis is easier than this one sentence. I ruined my marriage because I did not live up to my name!

Further watching on leadership:

Want to sound like a leader? Start by saying your name right by Laura Sicola

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=02EJ1IdC6tE

Happy Birthday Tommy

Highlighting people’s shortcomings in public is bang out of order!

Let’s call him Tommy. His real name is a little cooler than that, but that is not the point.

Happy 21st Birthday son, I heard his father say through tear filled eyes. All the while Tommy’s childhood photos played in the background on PowerPoint autoplay which totally messed with my OCD. I couldn’t watch the presentation as my frustration with the layout pushed my OCD through the roof for 2 reasons. 1) the photos weren’t even resized and centered (like normal people do) & 2) Tommy was very naked in most of the photos. Guys don’t look at guys regardless of how far back these photos were taken.

Apart from looking the other way, I was paying attention to his father’s speech. Tommy’s father was holding back his tears while toilet paper was the choice to wipe away the father son highs & lows over the past 21 years. The highs were elaborated and the crowd cheered and laughed and the lows were made highlighted but no details provided. To be honest, not knowing what these lows were that Tommy’s father was alluding too, they could easily be imagined as even the guests tone & vibe changed. Upon completion of the birthday speech, Tommy father gave him a 21st key that his father gave him so many years ago and then they hugged. And this is todays issue. It ended better than it started.

Having some insights of the family setup; parents are divorced, father has a new missus and the mom a new husband; while Tommy’s sister turned out to be a sweet 14 year old-ish and so what! This is an all too common occurrence and sadly a family’s journey ends different to how it all got started. Welcome to life.

The other issue is one of misquoting these lows. Far to often we all take lows out of context and make it seem that that was the turning point in everyone’s life and why things went wrong. Really? 

Talking about misquoting. I heard an incredible quote by Ernest Hemingway the other day. “The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.” Very powerful hey! Turns out that this has been horribly misquoted over the years. Key paragraphs before and after were left out. Go check out https://whatwouldbaledo.com/2015/07/10/six-things-hemingway-never-said/ Which is typical of famous quotes or father son speeches.

So lets get on with it and set the scene; a crowd of people sitting and standing all over a banquet hall while listening to the speaker and looking at the object. While the object sits in the most exposed area of the hall, the object is praised for past achievements, while the lows that are spewed out and steal away from their successes. So defeatist! Imagine if your life’s low’s (failures) were published on the front page of every major newspaper?

I personally don’t agree with family or friends highlighting or alluding to anyone’s past lows; with or without context. Providing or not providing detail. As if your or their life is so superior and without flaw? Logically I cannot deduce why people do that? It’s just foreign to me? Why use the one opportunity to lift up a son, daughter or partner and then allude to their lows and past failures? Flying fruitcakes people. Have we lost our minds. How is that going to allow them to enjoy the rest of the evening? Is this our best thinking when we have a speech to prepare for?

“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.” Thanks for this Ernest. I personally think that “the world” Ernest was talking of is “us”. In other words, “we break everyone”.

If we are not using every opportunity to be kind in word to those around us, especially on special occasions… “we break everyone”. Life is hard enough as it is. Children need to hear their parents say that they are always proud of them, not excusing past mistakes, but not highlighting them either. Here is a life lesson. Discipline, but discipline with love. This is true for anyone, even those in a relationship.

Enough ranting.

Back to Tommy.

In context, I do believe that Tommy’s father never meant any malice or public rebuke of his sons lows. It was just an unprepared speech and the words: right or wrong rolled off his tongue. Personally, Tommy was fed several shooters before his father started his speech. Several during and many more after that. If Tommy heard anything that anyone said, his 21st was the first sober one in history.

Coldplay produced a great song called “Fix You” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4V3Mo61fJM&list=RDMMdfnCAmr569k&index=7). Sometimes people don’t need to be fixed. People just need a hug that engages the “autofix” function within ourselves. What could possibly be better than to know that we are cared for, supported and loved, regardless of the past!

Lean over and hug someone today. You’ll be blown away by the power, comfort and healing of a loving hug.

Being right… then being wrong

Don’t be a “dick” about being right when your partner makes a mistake!

All of us has gotten ourselves into a situation that deservedly required a scolding from a friend or loved one.

For guys its generally coming home at an ungodly hour, looking unsightly at that same time while placing the blame on their best mate. At this point, woman have erupted & gone supernova with a raging temper, taking off with new heights; making a Mars landing seem possible.

For girls, it generally (but not always) leans towards spending money on a item of clothing or shoes with the justification that the R2000 spent was all on sale. Men at this point, are left breathless with confusion as how many pairs of shoes can a woman wear? Right now all of us are smiling because we have all done this at one stage or another.

The response from our partners would generally be a negative to say the least. Both men & women tend to highlight the obvious wrongful behaviour and slowly start character assassinating their partners. This would carry on for the reminder of the day; screaming & shouting and lip syncing the most horrible words to the person we say we love. Once both parties reconnect, so much was said, that neither of them remember what the argument was about, while the damage remains.

And that… is why being right can make you wrong!

Let me explain…

Fundamentally, people forget that the only things we can take responsibility for is: 1) for what we say, 2) and for what we do. Far too often I hear people say; “yeah but they made me do so and so” or “because he/she said that, what else could I respond with”. These responses seem plausible but utterly misguided and have ruined many relationships.

Consider this… a sober person was arguing with a drunk. Who is the fool?

When we as humans start considering more about how we speak to one another than how we deliver a justified message, the world will be a better place. Far too often partners are justified in their message but they make themselves wrong through the delivery of that same message!

Is it really necessary to state the obvious through screaming and shouting and then  we character assassinate our partners when they are wrong? Of course it isn’t! But then why do we keep doing it? Our partners are just as prone to mistakes as ourselves. Making a mistake for anyone is hard enough, so why keep piling on the pressure? Im not saying to gloss over your partner’s poor behaviour, but don’t be a “dick” about it!

I live by the value of forgiveness. When anyone, regardless of fault, says “I am sorry”, I forgive them. It releases me from any anger & helps them back onto their feet to try again. Basically, reaching out a hand to help them get up, while touching their hearts to keep standing!

Next time our partners let us down, be kind in word, be sensitive in the tone and remember the purpose is to lift them up afterwards! The delivery of the message is always more important than how justified the message you is to you!

You are worth more than a golden egg…

5 min before writing this blog, I read a post on LinkedIn (https://www.thriveglobal.com/stories/30056-i-quit-my-job) which confirms the many issues people have… realising “Worth”. Specifically, their own invaluable “Self Worth. Sadly too many people suffer through this life because their job, house, car, relationships, friends etc take preference over there self worth.

I’ve had the privilege of mentoring a candidate attorney for several months now. She is young, spirited, hard-working and easy on the eye. To be honest… her character far out shines her looks. She recently started working for a firm to commence her articles in order to finalise her degree to become an attorney. I still remember the day she let me know; I got an opportunity to start my articles. Her excitement was unforgettable.

Until…

It wasn’t long until she informed me her boss was purposefully looking her up & down, while making crued and highly unprofessional sexual innuendos. It seems that at this point she got the opportunity at this legal firm to be a “playmate”. A tool for her enjoyment. (read my blog – A man says to a prostitute)

Long story short…

She was absolutely gutted by how her desire to push ahead with achieving her degree may come at a high price… giving into the boss? It was evident that with not giving into his daily remarks, her life became a living hell in the office. To such a degree that tears became a custom throughout the day just to deal with the rude awakening of poor leadership and potentially her broken dreams.

After hours of discussions between her & I, I constantly highlighted the concept of worth. How much are your dreams worth? What would you sacrifice to achieve becoming an attorney? Your body, your career, your self-worth?

Thankfully yesterday all our conversations provided her with enough courage to resign. In her resignation she stated that his leadership & sexual advances were highly unprofessional. His response to her was once again evidence of that!

The moral of this story is that her self-worth means more than a degree. She dared not give up on the beauty that resides in who she really is… a priceless human being that wont be bought by favour to get ahead. There is always another way to achieve becoming an attorney and she has already put her Plan B in place.

Never ever ever ever… sacrifice your self-worth to get ahead in this life.

Your worth more than all the golden eggs in the world… please remember that!

Man says to a prostitute…

I doubt very much that men have any meaningful words to say to a prostitute… and visa versa.

This is commonly known as a simple transaction… an engage of goods for monetary compensation. Considering this, a man says to a prostitute, I don’t want you, I just want your body!

Be rest assured that this isn’t much different in today’s relationships. Two people are together for various reasons that can be described as a day-to-day “transaction”.

The problem with individuals today, is that we are becoming too lazy to influence a meaningful and rewarding relationship to activate… SEX! Sex in itself is the outcome of communication. I’ll write a blog about this at a later stage but if you not convinced… read “Sex Begins in the Kitchen”: Creating Intimacy to Make Your Marriage Sizzle by Kevin Leman. Furthermore, just consider one night stands or having friends with benefits… fun right? These individuals want the benefits of a relationship but not the responsibility!

Why do you think cheating is so popular? Both individuals dress up, put on their best perfume and use the most choice words. This done over time, with right tone and use of words can only result in one thing… SEX. It’s the process of being on your best behaviour to the opposite sex on a daily basis; in all aspects of your life that has the same result… SEX!

When a man says to their partner (or visa versa), I’m only interested in your good looks, your curvy tight body and skin-tight jeans, he is ultimately using their partner as a tool; Something he can use to get the job down and then let her go on her merry way.

Im a runner, tennis player and other fun things. But never have I taken my sporting equipment (a tool) to bed with me. Tools are used for a period of time and put away. Your partner is a human being, a physical and priceless being that deserves to be treated with absolute worth. Not to be treated as a tool for your release!

 

Next time you want to get all fresh and kinky with your partner… let it be because of it starting in the kitchen.

Crack Happy Dentist

Life lesson from a dentist

Crack comes in different forms… depending on which side of the fence your brain is.

In this case (mine) crack is a good thing. Crack Happy means… when a person experiences another’s person’s happiness in an environment that generally is understood not have a happiness factor!

So what was my experience?

As life would have it, it was the annual dental check up. Never a happy day for anyone. But as I would have it, I made the most of it. Upon walking into the dentists room, this senior aged, moustache, father looking figure was waiting for me with the biggest of smiles and a warm greeting. At that point I was more freaked out than ever before. The thought of a happy dentist was something that comes from Hollywood in the form of a horror movie. Of course at this stage my paranoia kicked in. I said to myself run but his handshake, (which dentists shakes their patience hand) was too firm to break loose. My eyes we darting left & right for an alternative escape route but all that caused was calm. What? Calm?

Turns out the happy looking moustache looking dentist father; had a family… and might I had very beautiful daughters. Funny that I would notice the daughters. From that point on, my perception regarding dentists are that they are not from Hollywood horror shows and that woman love them and give them daughters. Or is that all just a cover???

Lest skip the drama about sitting down i nthe chair and the dentist telling me about my teeth… blah blah blah.

As I was about to leave, I noticed he had 2 daughters standing next to their husbands. Considering his happiness and the perception of his family’s stability, I asked him if I may ask a personal question? With his moustache standing stationary while smailing… he said sure.

I asked… what did you tell your daughters about choosing a husband? His answer… is truly unforgettable!

The happy dentist responded: I didn’t need to tell them anything about choosing a husband. The way my wife & I raised our daughters, prepared them to make good choices throughout life, and choosing a husband was one of them.

I walked out willing to pay twice as much just for the family story he shared.

The power of raising not just children, but friends & our partners is no different to this life lesson. The way we speak, touch and think about our partners will prepare them for any challenge life has to offer. So today, speak kindly & lovelingy and prepare your partner for success.

Lets all put our hands together for the Crack Happy Dentist!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can’t squeeze a green tomato ripe!

What in the world type of statement is that?

If you have not read – An apple is an apple… then you should. However, lets just be sure to mention that not all relationship insights & quirks will have fruit in them!

Lets get started!

Remember that time you met him or her or both? The first thing you realised is that you couldn’t help but feel the chemistry (which will be another blog later on). From this surge of good feelings coursing through your veins, you somehow just knew this was the one! With some cosmic alignment of the stars or the moon was full, you ran home to mum & dad and shared your new found life partner.

Lets fast forward 3 months later… if you havent tried to change them (read the apple blog) , somehow you just cant seem to win them over entirely. By this I mean you have them enjoying you & the time you both spend together… as love is so far from the 3 month mark.

At this point you start pining, over analysing everything about what they say, the messages they send and/or looking at your phone constantly for the next update… basically your mind is completely saturated with the thought of them… all the time.

This my friend is proof that you cannot squeeze a green tomato ripe. Everyone needs time to adjust to a new found friend. It takes time to cultivate a long lasting & meaningful relationship. This time is nature’s way of either preparing you or them for what the next season holds. Don’t take it to seriously if it doesn’t work out. Really, don’t. Its no harder for you to lose at love than it is for anyone else. Be honest & kind to yourself to acknowledge when this person won’t fall inline to your timing of things.

Most of the time, if you leave and let things take their rightful course… it will be right for the picking!

 

An apple is an apple

Several years ago, I was visiting my parents on their farm. It was a particularly beautiful day & visiting them just made it so much better.

My dad was in the kitchen washing dishes. He & mom made a life long arrangement, that he will keep washing the dishes if my mother keeps cooking her delicious food. The agreement still stands to this day.

At the time of this visit, I was single. Happy or not about being single, I always had an interest in people & we connect. At this point, I asked my dad a question that gave rise to many great ideas… like this blog.

Dad, what is the secret to you & mum’s 32 years of marriage? Dad casually responded; ” I never tried to change your mother’. The response left me a little surprised as I must admit I expected the usual cliche… love, love, love. Nevertheless, we continued talking and about 15min, i found my mum in the bedroom, going about her daily chores. While mum was changing the bed linen, I raised the same question; what is the secret to you & dad’s 32 years of marriage? Mum had a little more to say but her response was unbelievable. Mum said that dad may be a little bit difficult at times (which man isnt) but she respected him… and never tried to change him!

What? How is it that 2 people, 2 different rooms can have the same answer?

Throughout my life, my folks were perfectly individual. In other words, they always worked hard to the become the best version of themselves… not a version of their partner. 32 Years of a successful marriage is evidence of this.

Almost always, when boy meets girl and visa versa, people try to change the things of the other person, for no apparent reason. The problem with this is that we ruin a perfect opportunity to meet some special… being perfect because of their imperfections.

Want a relationship for longer than 3 months… don’t try to change the other person. Let them be the best version of themselves!

In other words… let the apple be the apple!

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Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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