Posts Tagged lucky

Sunday Column (504)

There have been a few topics on my mind this week. My wife, including kids, went to visit the MIL and left me alone for the bank holiday weekend. That is fair enough, as I usually organise a cracking weekend with the lads. However, this time around, people are busy, non committal and are still on holidays themselves. Hence the appetite wasn’t there. I ended up working a lot on my podcasts and some content I will publish over the forthcoming weeks and did some training to improve my long distance running.

What I wanted to note was the bachelor life. Similar to above’s reason, I wasn’t out every night, just instead binge watched Amazon’s Bosch every night, and enjoyed good food, great sleep and my own routine. I noticed that dishwashers aren’t made for single households and that shopping delivery seems almost useless given the amount I need. My drinking went right back, as drinking on your own just isn’t the same anymore. I would even go as far as I was lonely. But of course I wasn’t, having had calls from my son, the above podcast recordings, three cats etc., I was busier than I was hoping for to be honest. No complains though.

It’s just different when no one is around, despite the cats. However, it is also a great time for reflection and doing what ever the f* you want, including sleeping in and napping whenever it suits you 🙂 But it is only ever enjoyable knowing the family comes back.

When we went on holidays this year, my wife offered our house to a family to stay. Their renovation overran and they couldn’t stay in their place. Also, they had guests arriving from afar, which didn’t allow for any rescheduling. We didn’t know the family that well, maybe the odd exchange on a kid’s party, and went with trust and gut feeling and let them stay. I remember speaking to my dad about it and he said, that there should be nothing to worry about. Of course one imagines what someone staying at your house could do, but honestly, the majority of people are good. The ones staying in our house were great actually.

Where am I leading with that? The family staying in our house of course lived differently to us. And this is not criticism but pure reflection. Things broke which is normal wear and tear, and things got moved. Things that broke got replaced, and misplaced things got moved back. No big deal. And whilst I might look too much into it, for me it was realising that actually it does not matter where you put your plates and glasses. Or whether someone does things differently. Because in the end of the day everyone does their own thing, their own routine. Similar to when you are home alone, you don’t run the dishwasher that often, fill up the fridge or empty the bin. Or whatever it is.

I enjoyed both. The experience of being solo again and the experience of someone staying at our place. I actually consider the latter again, but only if I find similar great guests again 🙂 We were very lucky and hope to stay in touch and maybe even become friends down the line. Who knows. After all we literally lived in each other’s beds 😉

Expanding your horizon they say, and we did that, and going with your gut, and we did that too. And doing a weekend what you want to do without being considerate to others at all, I did that too 🙂

Enjoy the week ahead and the bank holiday tomorrow, another day off 😉

Volker

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Sunday Column (408)

happy

In life we just need to keep going and keep looking for the positives. We must continue to tell our story to ourselves and focus on what we want to achieve for us and others. Every story is different and some clash, but most of them just move alongside each other in the greater unconscious. Life is there to make the most out of given your ability and desire. It is down to you to achieve what you can and want to achieve, and it is down to you to react to situations in a certain way. Life is simple, embrace it and make it happen. Action it now. Don’t ever wait.

Another strike commute week behind me. Three days of delayed services and reduced services, early mornings without the kids, changed exercise routine. It is interesting to observe how your day is impacted by the commute. But as of last week’s post, there is no point of worrying or getting annoyed about it. I cannot change it. Things just seem to all happen regardless of whether I worry. Let’s look at the bin men. They didn’t collect our bins on Monday because a commuter parked in a way that the bin lorry couldn’t reach our bins. Of course it was the same car that had parked halfway across our driveway entrance before and half on the pavement of our neighbours. People just don’t think. They don’t think of the consequences their actions have on others. Now, in one of my Buddhist podcasts, they explained that the word Karma was invented to explain that every action has a re-action. I truly believe that.

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But maybe I am sweating the small stuff here, or actually I am not. At least not as much as I used to. 9 years ago it would have been different. Just in time for half term and the arrival of our new bed and mattress, we had our 9th wedding anniversary. There is much to say about that. To be honest, looking back to when we first moved in together, to where we are at now, times have changed so much. To an extend that I don’t even remember my wife not being part of my childhood. The arrival of the little ones, 7 and 5 years ago respectively. Our first house, first pets, first decisions on how to arrange the garden. First time I paid for the full rent in a month when my wife didn’t have a job. That was before we were engaged. Then again she worked when I was still at uni. So many happy and sad memories, we always made and always will make it work. And 9 years on, I love this woman more than I ever have. Could not imagine a day without her. Couldn’t imagine not being with her, not having her as a companion in life, helping me to master the challenges, and to share the joy. I love you wifey! And I believe I am the luckiest man in the world to have you around me.

In line with above, and me being a happy person, I was asked this week whether I will be the next German Anthony Robbins. What a compliment yet I am far from being him, and don’t think I will ever be like him. I might be able to help in a similar way to how he does, giving my studies and background, but in a much smaller scale. Who knows and even that isn’t happening yet. However….I read an amazing quote this week: LIFE IS NOT ABOUT FINDING YOURSELF. LIFE IS ABOUT CREATING YOURSELF. Got it. Simple words, and as my Freedom Fastland podcast put it the other day, you are the one in control of changing the future of your family. You can change the standard path. You are the one creating the new opportunity and become the entrepreneur that changes the income and outlook for family generations to come.

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That’s if you want to be like that. I don’t. I am not born to change the life of thousands by creating a product I can sell. I am not. I love being where I am, changing a life and improving a situation at a time. As someone said to me, you might not become rich with what you are doing but it is going to be fun. And that’s important. I created myself. I didn’t find myself. The “ballueder brand” is being build but I am not creating a new Robbins or Burchard. I am creating a person that is enjoying living my life, having a lot of fun on the way and create a future for my family. The things, the small stuff above, is what we create. And I like to just get on with my job, do it bloody well, and go home to be a good dad. In between I enjoy developing my kids, my friends and colleagues. I love helping and giving. About two years ago I managed a very successful transformation of attitude and it scared me a bit how successful you can be by putting enough energy and change management into a person and process. Great learning. Nothing is impossible and everything is possible. But stop searching for something that someone else wants you to be or you think you want to represent. You won’t find the answers. Life is about creation not copying.

Sometimes those personal development quotes just hit you. They all say the same and someone said the other day, that the ones sharing them, are the ones that least live them and are least successful. I tend to disagree. Each to their own and I personally enjoy a bit of self help banter. However, this is just one way of expressing your emotions, fears and thoughts. No results without massive action. That’s a quote from Anthony, and he is right 😉

And as I progress towards the end of Bruce Springsteen’s book there is more that resonates. The stuff you learn from your kids. They make you see the world differently, make you understand the world. And as you grow up you learn how much you don’t learn and how often you just make things up as a parent as you go along. I love my boys, and similar to the wife above, I couldn’t be happier.

As I reflect on this week, having been fairly busy, yet had some challenges to overcome, life is good. I am happy. Content. I arrived.

Have a great week.
From my little corner of the world, I send you lot of love and happiness,
Volker

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Sunday Column (363)

This week was far from slow going. It started with the little one’s nativity play in which he was a donkey. I loved his outfit, yet his role was all but sitting around doing nothing. He loves acting and in years to come I see him taking on more prominent roles. Just the opposite from what his brother is like when it comes to performing.

On Tuesday I went to a meeting outside London for a big presentation, to come back to our official Christmas party. I stayed over in London, in one of the posher hotels, which didn’t fail to disappoint. It is a shame how hotels in London get away with being so tourist oriented and less service oriented. Not good advertising for the tourists that come over.

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Never mind, we had a great night out at one of Gordon Ramsey’s restaurants, amazing food and fantastic chats. It is always a pleasure to meet the founder of the company and talking shop. Having said that, it is nice to also not talk shop but about experience, family, and life overall. Working for smaller companies and start ups is great as there is a real connection between the top and the bottom. Not that I consider myself the latter, but speaking about it in a general sense 😉

Not to say it was a rather calm night, but I was on my best behaviour. Some bug is pestering me for a while, and I have been ‘under the weather’ really. So Wednesday passed quickly and Thursday saw another Christmas play. This time it was the eldest play which I truly enjoyed. Off to work, a few meetings, lots of things to take care of and finishing off with a rather busy Friday. Wow.

It is a diary this week really. Not wanting to get into politics but this Donald Trump guy .. anyway, don’t get me started.

More amusing, or not, is a video of myself. My old search agency I used to work for 8 odd years ago, asked me to talk about programmatic, about TV data and made the following video about me:

Volker talking TV Data.
Let me know what you think. I believe I need to work on my eyebrows and my paleness a bit 😉

Saturday closed with a lovely Christmas party we hosted for a few of our friends. However, we went for a ‘Santa Run’ in the morning which really was a 400 m run for the kids and they loved doing it and getting a medal. Having done my 20K this week (2x10K to be precise) on the treadmill, and the treadmill needing a repair, I took it easy at the weekend and didn’t join further running. We went ice skating though, and luckily to our earlier attempt last week which was more a lido than an ice rink, it was really good!

We are getting closer to Christmas. Most presents are bought, most things organised. Work is still very busy and will be for a while, but come the 24th, I cannot wait to sit back, raise a good glass of red and cheer to a very successful year. I consider myself lucky. I consider myself happy.

Happy Holiday Season,
Volker

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Sunday Column (264)

Giving thanks and feeling sorry for others, or focusing on your own miserable self. That’s a question I asked myself this week. It of course was Monday and I contemplated to work from home. I try to go to the sauna on a Monday night and decided to have a meeting in town, yet leave on time to get home in time.

Being at Victoria station early I followed a friend’s advice to jump on the first fast train to Haywards Heath. Stuck outside Victoria station for 30 minutes we eventually got back and sent on a different train. The train broke down and the later, direct train, overtook us whilst we pulled back. The one we all went on then got stuck at Battersea station for about 30 minutes. By now I should have been home for about 30 minutes. A broken down train and two persons hit by a train in one night. Pot luck.

It was my choice to move to the countryside and pay £4,500 a year for my train travel. I chose to live a more balanced life. Yet, I didn’t sign up for a crappy train service, no value for money which comes up with bad excuses why things don’t work, or why there are delays.

And just as I write my anger off my chest I look around me. People with heavy suitcases on the way to Gatwick airport. People with light luggage on their phones trying to change planes. Mothers with children, elderly totally lost. No internet, no twitter to air desperation. They are worse off. Some might have more time yet need more help and lack of information makes people short wired. Latter is very typical for Southern trains, who don’t even respond on Twitter anymore.

Emotions are high on these journeys. I should be thankful. I made it home that night to a warm place. No, I didn’t go to the sauna, and yes, I had a glass of wine. I am lucky really. That all happened on the same day people found out that the Malaysian airline was definitely lost. One puts life into perspective.

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One has to be thankful for what one created and what has been given to someone. It is not about money. It is not about health. Sometimes it is about accepting that your situation cannot be changed and that you need to get on with it.

Life sometimes throws these big rocks in your path. You just need to get on with it and move them. Or you go around them. Or you find another solution. Either way, no point of worrying about it. Trust things work out in the future. Trust, as Steve Jobs said, that the dots connect moving forward.

Enough philosophy. Enough moaning. Life is good. Actually life is quite good and I am working through a few things that should even improve things further. We are getting there. Always things to improve 😉 Always pushing boundaries.

On Friday I set off to a stag weekend to Edinburgh. I panicked when the flight which was announced as delayed on my app wasn’t announced delayed at the airport. I left late, got there in time, had food, and actually – whilst missing the family – also enjoyed some piece and quiet. My first trip away which wasn’t work related in a long time.

And if life was plain sailing, it would be boring wouldn’t it be? We wouldn’t even know what to do with half of our time. So let’s be thankful for what we have. And let’s give those that are less fortunate than us a helping hand.

In the meantime, enjoy your week,
Volker.

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