Posts Tagged here and now

Sunday Column (505)

You know, this week saw the beginning of season 2 of my podcast. I really enjoyed recording loads of material over the summer, meeting interesting, successful people and recording their stories. However, I also know that I probably end up having less time doing that moving forward. So this season is similar to season 1 maybe a bit more topical and next year I am planning to potentially shift the podcast a bit into a longer form concept. Let’s see how it goes.

I must say this weekend was fantastic. Life is about creating memories. I managed a 25K run, and it was fun, pleasing somewhat. It was weird, running through fog, cold patches as the sun came up, then warm muggy patches in the woods. I love where I live and whilst discussing Brexit a lot this week, I don’t want to leave. I am sure things will work out. Will I end up running a race after all? Maybe, I still haven’t made a final decision yet.

Then the little one and I enjoyed a fabulous football game in Brighton. It makes for a whole afternoon just to get there and back. And what fun we had. Who would have guessed that I enjoyed football that much, after I had never been to a game until 2 years ago. And now, we got the premier league at our door steps, why wouldn’t we go?

I wrote it before, life is about focus. So when the family disappeared for 10 days and I had some spare time, e.g. a long bank holiday weekend, I decided to crank out lots of content for my podcast and blog (watch this space over the next few weeks). Also, I started clearing out some old stuff. Every now and then I go through old folders, picture albums and decide whether I keep them or not. So this time, a lot more went in the bin than I had anticipated but it is good to discard pictures from 25 years ago, just keeping a few of good friends or special occassions. Clearing your mind, your house and letting go of things is important. As the only thing we can do is live in the now, and be present in the moment. That’s where we create memories, we don’t need pictures of them or post them on social media.

I also wanted to thank you for the positive feedback about my more topical blog posts, including the one around success which includes my podcast. Are we obsessed with success, or am I?

Maybe. And how are we defining it? When joining my fraternity in Germany many years ago, I transitioned into a ‘career driven personal development’ person, developing a sense of ‘always give your best performance to achieve the most possible results’. And of course there are limits for everyone, discussing this recently with a fraternity brother of mine, a mentor for over 20 years, there is always a new boundary to push and a new angle to develop on your personal approach, in order to push yourself further. This could be in a job or outside work, most things are mind games. My running training for instance. You can always improve a bit more. You compete with yourself not others.

I discussed that with an executive coach this week too, trying to find the best approach to get some professional help to push things a bit more. The last couple of years I have invested a lot in self finding, career development and have been battered by redundancies due to industry change. Life is a constant change.
I seem to have this urge to constantly better myself. I know a few people that do not understand that, but I love a great challenge. I strive of the learning I get from new exposure, people and concepts.

So to conclude, as I get deeper into my work and get busier learning new skills and apply my experience, the further I develop and apply focus. Hence my podcast concept will probably change come 2019; as I keep closing chapters, discard of the past in a physical and/or mental sense, I open new doors and opportunities. Exciting times.

As one door opens, another one closes. Or the other way around, as one door closes, another one opens. Similar things, aren’t they. And yet they can be seen differently.
Life is a constant change and I am learning to embrace it, enjoy it and think less about it. But I will be more present in the moment, the now.

Have a good week,
Volker

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Sunday Column (207)

Here we go. Another week.
It started somewhat on Sunday night when I indulged myself in a movie. Killer Elites.

Just the kind of movie I enjoy watching. I haven’t really done that for a while. We watch movies on a regular basis but normally a compromise between what I like to watch and what my wife likes to watch. She did something else on Sunday night, so I had the TV all to myself 🙂

Anyway, I got some relaxing times with the boys last weekend too which was good as the week prior to that had been busy. Monday I started back at work with a conference about mobile marketing. This then triggered a post about the state of the industry which will be published in March. We came a long way in the last three years.

I have then been publishing those motivational quotes and put some on my own website. I am hooked on motivational quotes and videos that push you over the edge. Or at least they should. They should motivate you, show you the real tests in life and motivate you to do what you like to do. Even my wife got one as a background picture on her phone now, and I am thinking of printing a few to put them in the garage. Sad us 😉

As I mentioned on my Monday post, I am in a very lucky position. I do what I always wanted to do, enjoy what I am doing and I am passionate about it too. Probably I am closest to be the luckiest person on the planet. But I am grinding. I cannot stop. I have an inner urge and an inner need to grow. And I will.

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Most of those videos/quotes are about the happiness and purpose of life. About doing what you enjoy most rather than following the honey trap which they call “money”. Money won’t make you happy. It helps but even if you had all the money in the world, you wouldn’t be a better, wiser or more successful person. Neither would you be happy. Don’t get me wrong, I am money motivated but not only. I can see beyond the first attraction.

I guess that is where one struggles. Watching the last episode of “Africa” by Attenborough made me think once again. Africa being the birthplace of mankind, an ever growing population and an ever growing amount of wildlife that gets extinct. The last continent with life as it existed millions of years ago and we are about to destroy it. As we have done it in other parts of the world.

We sometimes have to think of the bigger picture. Is life about a paycheck this month or about what difference I can make to save the world, someone’s life or how I can help the old lady across the road. Again, the paycheck is important. Everyone has to start somewhere. I am not a believer in God myself, despite believing in a spiritual being, but if you are, thank him for every day you got. Make sure you make the most of it and that you are a good human being. That is what it is all about. If alongside that you can found a family, be good to others, put others’ welfare above yours and make some money, make it a career even, join a few charitable organizations, then I’d call that an alright life.

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Is it asking for too much if I want more than that? I want it all. One step at a time though. Prioritizing is important. If I won the lottery….but I haven’t, and probably I never will. Nevertheless, I want to be awesome, motivated, be coached, coaching, healthy, fit, rich, member of a few groups……wow wow wow. I don’t wanna stop. I want to reach for the stars.

And I will.
A bit at a time.

If you don’t have those (or other) goals, you are not reaching for something. At least not in my opinion. I couldn’t just get up every day, sit at a desk for 7.5 hours, go home watch TV, and do that for the rest of my life. I just couldn’t. You should aim to have three things you want to achieve each day. If that is to make someone smile, win a new piece of business (or a step towards that), or really help someone out – that is up to you.

But I enjoy what I am doing. Even I have limitations: for instance I couldn’t exercise this week due to shin pain. I have a cold. My MIL is around. I got more lie ins. The kids didn’t sleep. I didn’t sleep much at night. I had too much drink.

I am alive though. My heart is beating and telling me that I move forward. My head made huge progress on a project this week, and I had a fantastic catch up with some folk this week too. Actually if I try to put all the things where I think I made a step forward on one side of the scale, then there is no way the negative things will weigh it up at all. They just wouldn’t. And, somewhat I believe they never will.

But maybe that is for another time. Another sentimental post. Time to go back and play with the kids. It got cold outside. Our fridge broke. Our hoover broke. But that all doesn’t matter as this moment I will turn off the computer and spend time with my boys. No matter what.

Get onto your dreams. Don’t waste time.
Carpe Diem. Simple.

Best wishes,
Volker

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Sunday Column (178)

The Olympics have arrived. I cannot believe it has been four years coming for London to plan this event. At work we still haven’t figured out whether people will work from home, more flexible or not at all. Will the tubes run, how full will public transport be….I guess we find out tomorrow.

20120727-191710.jpgMy wife reminded me on Friday that we said, when London was announced to host the 2012 Olympics, that we won’t be living in London anymore by the time they’d be happening. I guess we were somewhat right.

But London, as a Olympic town, has a fantastic USP (Unique Selling Point). In last week’s FT magazine, it was suggested that only in London you get a true melting pot of nations. I never thought about it but it probably is correct. No ghettos, lots of accents, skin colours and mixed races. Our kids are, our office has above 60% international employees and I haven’t had a take away from the chipper lately. Latter might be due to the fact that my wife doesn’t like fish but you get my point I am sure. London is multicultural at it’s best. We are loving it.

The weather. Would you believe it? High twenties, even above thirty degrees in July in London. I am glad my new commuter train actually has an air conditioning. So will our new office which we plan to move into by the end of next month.

Life couldn’t get much better. I get the evening sun in the garden despite it being a North facing garden. The universe is good to me. I better be good to the universe too.

This week I started another habit. You know when you say older people are stuck in their way, I am doing exactly that. Trying out the best routine and habit to get stuck in. And one, besides the weight lifting, is going to bed at 10 pm in order to get 7 hours sleep. Being an owl and enjoying to stay up all night, I am also a lark enjoying the early morning for both my sports but also for thinking and working.

So yes, the more I read about the energy household, the more I think I need to have 7 hours of sleep, probably cutting it down to 6 in the future. Even this week I realised that I seem more awake after 6 than 7 hours of sleep. You probably noticed that I have been posting info on cancer and cancer research. Luckily I don’t know anyone who has cancer but this is still a disease we haven’t mastered. Prevention is still the best medicine for it. And enough sleep and exercise is just one factor of it.

I like studying topics outside my work expertise to broaden my horizon. Cancer is one, personal development the other. Intellectual stimulation. And a lot of those learning can be applied to my daily life, killing two birds with one stone really.

You know how I keep saying I am so thankful and happy. I am. Seriously, I am in a stage of my life where I like to just enjoy what I have. Just to carry on. And enjoy. That is great. There are challenges ahead, more to learn, more to gain, more growth and all. And not that I don’t look left or right. But for now I just like to live and work, come home on a Friday, kick back a few glasses of red grape juice and enjoy where I am. The here and now. Now. Nowhere else. You never know how long you can hold on to those good times.

20120727-191018.jpgThinking back to the week I made a lot of progress at work. I have a bunch of really good people working for me. We are making loads of progress on all ends and I am confident to hit the targets I set myself, and the ones that were set for me. On the other hand we have some bad rumours circulating from people that left the company. It bugs me but I am trying to ignore it. This industry is very small. Anyway, only the one who knows knows. Onwards and upwards, still lots to come. Ignore those jealous unthankful people.

The weekend I spend with the family. I had a lot of catching up to do with the boys. I miss them, during the week but guess this is another thing I just need to accept.

Our old neighbours came to visit and we spend a nice day visiting some windmills in the South downs. You probably saw the pictures. It is great to see that we keep in touch with our good friends. I would love to have them as neighbours again. Having said that our new neighbours are lovely too. We have been lucky. The universe is good to us.

That is it really. Another week, and the Olympics are upon of us.

Let’s be excited, let’s take on the challenge.

Best,
Volker

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Inspirational Thought: Present Moment

Don’t let a mad world tell you that success is anything other than a successful present moment. ~ Eckhart Tolle

Living in the moment is not a new concept.
Wanting success is not a new concept. Most people are “trained” by their parents and by society to be “high achievers”. I was.

However, the true success of man is to cherish this very moment. It is not about the past or the future but the here and now whether you are successful or not. If you make this moment successful, and the next, and the next…..you are on your way.

Have a great day,
Volker

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