Posts Tagged connecting the dots

Sunday Column (439)

Hello friends. I noticed that, if I am awake early on Mondays, that this is good writing time. So I am on another flight. Just about 16 hours after I disembarked my last. Yet the last one was for fun. My wife took me to Edinburgh for the weekend. It was amazing. Not only did you not have to worry about the kids but could do all the grown up things kids are not interested in. Culture, sight seeing, castles and whisky tastings. Plus, my wife took me to a restaurant, allegedly the best one in Scotland, the Witchery, where I ate the best steak I ever had in my life (and I had a lot), and I discovered the most interesting and tasting Italian blue cheese I ever had too. What a great weekend. Thank you again.

Later in the week I got a belated birthday present. Two actually. One was the picture of a Buddha my youngest drew. I love it. I even got two copies, one for each office. How sweet is that? The other a book of pictures and quotes collected by my wife from my closest friends. It was very emotional to read the impact I can have on lifes. I love you too guys, and this is only the beginning. 40 is the time you turn up the heat, put your foot down and enjoy the wind in your hair. Because you can. Because you don’t know how much longer you can do it either.

So as I wander through the airport on Monday morning, I am tired. Of course I am. The cold I had is still lingering around. Maybe it is more of a hay fever. The weekend was exhausting. I am happy though and that’s what matters. I am trying to think how we best plan our holidays over the next year(s). Also, I am listening to my podcasts again. This time it is all about passion. That someone should not necessarily want to be like someone else, but everyone is an individual. Realising you don’t want to be Steve Jobs or Anthony Robbins is the first step to realise that you are not like them. As I have learned over the years, it is about what you can take from any of those individuals and how you can put it together to form your self. The podcast guest suggested that you shouldn’t quit your job and start working on your passion. A passion is still what you do in your own time. And if that takes off from a side project, so will be it. Those podcast paired with the book I am reading about evolutionary coaching just make a lot of things come together. What an amazing life we are living, and slowly it all seems to make sense. The dots are connecting more than ever before. Wow.

Discovering your passion as something like ‘helping others’ and ‘developing others’ is great. That’s what I did. And if you as a reader of this blog or someone reading my productivity book is interested in what my opinions are, then please share and get engaged. I am just someone with some strong opinions on certain topics. I believe I know how to set up a productive work life scenario and work efficiently for others. I believe I am mentally strong and have a good working routine. A routine that allows me to cope with the workload and life load. And whilst doing all that, I still have a lot of fun. I cannot see myself being the Jim Rohn or Darren Hardy or Anthony Robbins but I can envisage to offer seminars for lifes’ little tricks in years to come. Not in my 40ies though 😉 And one of the reasons is that once I stopped university, I started learning. Life experience, personal development books and so on. Experience of others that helps me to go through life. And that experience is something I’d like to pass on. But I am far from perfect and yet have many years of (life’s) training to come. Embracing this makes it even so exciting. Evolution at its best.

Bad news this week are coming from Manchester. A terrorist attack killed teenagers and hurt a lot of people. Terror at a ’teenager event’. 22 people died. A 22 year old was named by the police. I am speechless. Those kids had their whole life ahead of them. A 22 year old, someone who just started out in life, what did he know? Was it hatred or religious reasons or just someone being confused. At time of writing I am not sure, but in the end it doesn’t matter. It is awful. My thoughts go out to those affected. And it impacts things in London. Fear of attacks, disruption and anger. United we stand. We will get through this, terror will never win.

In other news, as I still recovered from the weekend, I took it easy this week. A lot of work to catch up on, not too crazy tbh, and I managed to even fit in two saunas. I got a haircut in Hamburg (never as good as home) and caught up on a lot of catch up TV. I haven’t done that for a while, so a relaxing and very productive trip at the same time. Some me time to catch up on important things, testing my new Asics trainers which aren’t as good as the Nike. My pain creep back up running in the Asics but not in the Nike trainers. The weight of the shoes, the way I run in them etc. So the Asics are going back. I might still try some Ultraboost, but at least I am getting back on track. I even managed my first 10K in ages on Friday. Somewhat I haven’t been in a good place with running and the 24 hour race is coming closer with only eight weeks to go. So I better find the right trainers and the right mojo to make it. It’s going to be epic. It must be. Another wall to climb, to break through and move forward from.

When waiting for my plane on Wednesday I was wondering why those trips are so draining. And my conclusion is that you cannot do both of your jobs 100%. I am not sure if that makes sense, but I enjoy what I do. I chose my job to make it successful and be there fully, giving my best and make sure I have an impact. But by doing two jobs, it seems as if I do one or the other, and both only 90%. That is just not satisfying to be not as good as you could be because of restrictions you cannot change. Not sure that makes sense. Nevertheless the support from my boss, HR, colleagues is overwhelming. A great place to work. And so much more to learn and walls to climb. I definitely put my ladder on the right wall here.

However, I enjoy things as I used to. It is a cracking challenge, lots of fun with some really great people and amazing tech. Things are good, and I am not complaining. I am just tired this week, that’s allowed sometimes too I suppose. As the week moved on, my tiredness turns sleepless due to the heat. I am up most nights at 4:30. So I fit in the above 10K, a cheeky 5K and time with the boys before school. Challenging at times, but hey, isn’t that fun. 40 – life is only just beginning. Only now got I the tools to break through those walls. Keep them coming.

From my corner of the world, have a great week ahead. Enjoy the bank holiday weekend! Sun. Summer is almost here. BBQ. Family!

What else to live for?
Volker

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Sunday Column (347)

What a relaxing week lies behind me, or does it? It was half term and I was off from Friday until Friday, e.g. back to work on a Friday. Why wouldn’t you? The main reason for that was that I am off on a business trip Monday and wanted to catch up on things prior to that. Plus a biggish presentation that day too. From Thursday of course, to make sure I am on top of things and hit a few deadlines, I was catching up already…life doesn’t stop. I guess that is a good thing, or is it?

My parents were over to visit over the first weekend of half term. It was nice to catch up and do things together as a family. My kids really enjoyed having the grandparents over! So did we. Looking back at what happened in my childhood, looking forward to what might come for us in life moving forward. And, life is far from over of course! But it helps to look back and take stock every now and then. It still is difficult to understand life as a whole and the journey we are on.

A song that stroke a chord with me this week, particularly in that respect, was Adele’s new album’s pre-release ‘Hello’.

It brings back some memories of starting over, changing things, forgetting things, doing things for the sake of pleasing people etc. To look back. To take stock. I cannot wait to listen to the whole album which I pre-ordered. Her voice is amazing. Her storytelling, at least in this song and older songs, is amazing. When you start to settle down, to root yourself, you start coping with your past. In a good and bad way of course, coping could just mean to forget, but it can also mean to cherish. Once you moved on, you moved on. The past is gone. The now is here. Anyway, let’s not get too sentimental. We are only 1/3 into the post 🙂

Also, I made an investment this week. An investment into a new jacket that should keep me dry and warm from the elements. If I think back when I got my (cheapish) rain jacket 6 or 8 years ago, I thought it will last me forever, and at a bargain. I also thought that my good old Barbour would last me forever. Latter still does yet at a price of being heavy. Former gave up on me in the latest storm. So a new GoreTex Berghaus jacket should last me at least 10 years – remind me then, column 850 – yet I am hopeful. I am not sure if the weather got worse or if it just that I am more used to go out in the wild, into the wet, now that I live in the country side? I enjoy being out there, exposed, yet warm and dry underneath my outer layer. Maybe a bit odd to bring up so much love for a jacket, but given the colder, windier times ahead, this is what I need 🙂

Halloween happened too – I am not the biggest fan – but enjoyed the trick or treat round in Hassocks plus the party in the neighbourhood, getting together with people. The foggy air and wine did the rest to make it a spooky night. The kids of course, and if you follow my wife on social media, loved it! My wife even did a dressed up 5K run. Well done!

connecting-the-dots-steve-jobs

We also had the fire on a few times this week. It measured 30 degrees in the living room in front of the wood burner. The best investment yet. Similar to the jacket, it keeps us warm regardless of the elements, regardless whether the heating is working or not. And it saves on the gas bill too 🙂 The reason why I bring this up are manifold, yet one is really that I feel at home, cosy and warm – it is good to have those roots, this base.

Then it comes down to a fundamental thought of being self sufficient. The old hippy way. To have warm water, a warm shelter and a roof over your head to keep you from the elements. A place to bring up a family, a place that is safe, a place that is home. And that is what I have been thinking a lot about this week. The lucky position we are in. The situation we have chosen, the love we have been given. And to share that out to the world in return. We have been given an awful lot of ‘old’ stuff this week for very little in return, and when we used that (cloths, books, toys), we will pass it on. A generational contract, without written words, that tie in with the old stories of above. A circle of life really. We can now get a bit more sentimental coming to the end of the post 😉

This week for me is about closing the loop. To accept that there is no beginning and no end but an ongoing loop of love, sharing and happiness. We all play a part in the overall theme. Some of us more, some less. Everyone plays it differently. Everyone is different. That is what life is all about for me. It is not about hoarding for a rainy day, but more to be prepared for a rainy day. Whether that is in form of a jacket, shelter or a simple smile and hug, a few pennies in the bank, is up to you. Life is of what you make of it and how you connect the dots for your own past, your now and how you might connect them moving forward.

Life is amazing.

Close the loop and enjoy the ride!
Happy November,
Volker

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