Sunday Column (277)

When one travels, the little things become important. Getting to the airport, having the same (or similar really) bacon baguette you had since flying in 2006. For over 8 years I travel for work on a regular basis. Knowing the little treats on the way is what makes the journeys more pleasant. The bar in Dusseldorf just before you board for instance is a treat. I have spent many hours discussing the world with industry peers and friends. The moment you go through security and catch the train in time to be home for the bed time story.

I often think about the greater good, about what happens in life and when and why. Looking back, why you met people you did and how some of them turn up in your life again and again. Is there a reason, a bigger purpose? I discussed human design with my wife the other day – how can evolution have created something so special. Is it carved over time? Is anything improving over time or is that a human thing? Ants have been on the planet a lot longer than humans and they never had any ambition to destroy the planet. I suppose never did we – at least not intentionally.

When you stop in your tracks and look around you and realise what you do, others do, and where you sit in relation. When you stop and think, like I do just now. What do you realise? Essentially we are all the same, very similar yet individuals. Not a new revelation. Everyone looks at life a bit different. That’s what makes us individual. I am not sure which point I am trying to make but it helps a lot if you just sometimes stop and put life into perspective. To look around and see what’s happening around you and realising you are as normal as everyone else. And to realise life is what it is, best lived in every moment.

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Looking at personal development and reading an interesting coaching book again, it seems that some people are far too focused on their environment and what others might think of them. Others are the other extreme. They don’t care whatsoever. Whilst you might have social differences, the essence is that you are in the driver’s seat to move the needle in your life to make progress, determine what you like to do and represent and do with your life. No one can make you feel a certain way, it is up to you how you feel. As any feeling created within you is down to you, no one creates a feeling for you. Does that make sense?

If you get angry at the holiday travellers going slowly through security, then this is a feeling you created not them. You decide if you want to feel angry or just let go, focus on other things. The person shouting at you because you squeeze on the tube doesn’t create a bad feeling inside you because that is what they want but that’s the way you react. And it is down to you to change your very inner behaviour.

This attitude, staying positive and accepting that you cannot change a situation, helped me this week again. Three hours delay, lack of information, taking off when the airport was about to close to arrive with little time to spare to make one of every 30 minute trains home. Made it. Just. And meeting fellow travellers, those people that touch your life, share stories of their children. One was travelling alone with four children between 2 months and 10 years from Japan to Europe a few years ago. The traveller that had an almost unnoticeable German accent living very close to me and has been in the UK for almost 20 years.

All those stories, experience and people touch our lives one way or another before they disappear. You might remember them in the future, telling a story about the delay, yet overall what are the chances of ever seeing and meeting these people again? What makes them touch you? Did I manage to make a difference this week? I would hope so, holding the queue to the airplane for two mothers to board before everyone else did. Normal, no heroism. Yet, I hope I touched a life in a positive way this week.

Life is too short to worry. I am learning to be more positive and proactive, following my gut. I am getting there. Nothing ever happens over night.

Bring it on.

Have an awesome week,
Volker