Posts Tagged Personal Development

Sunday Column (422)

This week was rather busy. In a good sense. Learning, testing and evaluating. That’s for work and commute. My first full day of commuting and the trains went back to normal on Tuesday. Not sure what normal means anymore. I was late on a couple of days, minutes really, but at least I am now learning which trains I can or cannot use moving forward. Testing the new commute but at least my journey in London is quite predictable as the tube seems more reliable than the bus I used to take over the last 3 years. All change.

It also means I don’t see the kids that much. The youngest is up with me in the morning and we catch up, the oldest I see at night for a chat. It works. It is the life we are living with the decisions we made on commute and where we wanted to settle. A lot of other people in the business are in a similar situation. Yet, I still cannot accept the fact that Southern makes me look like I am late. It is the train πŸ™ It isn’t me, I have no control over it. Anyway.

I was asked this week what my management style is. I believe, in a new job, this is a fair question. I asked my manager. It is very interesting to compare types of companies and different leadership styles and motivations. I so love to be back on the tech side, where people just get on with their work, everyone working towards the greater goal, no time for BS. And I love managing people, in a coaching and consultative style. I want them to do well, to develop and to succeed. I am of the opinion that if people in your team are doing well, you will do well yourself. That doesn’t mean I am not controlling, supervising or checking up. But I wouldn’t want to be micromanaging; why would anyone else wanted to be micromanaged? We are all intelligent and adults, no? Most anyway. It will take some time for the team to figure things out, and for myself, to find the best way of working together and making sure things get done. It is something called ‘trust’, and that builds over time. I always managed to build strong trusting relationships with my managers and my direct reports and teams. But for the time being, we made some organisational decisions this week. Full steam ahead, I am very excited.

Looking at the news this week there were two topics. One was around Brexit. The trigger of article 50 now needs to get parliament approval. I don’t think that changes much but it shows how the Supreme Court is not afraid to step up against the government. This in itself is a good sign as it shows a strong democracy. I personally think this won’t change things, but it might cause further delays. Hopefully I get my citizenship from the Home Office soon. Then my passport. Fingers crossed.

The other news are, and my Facebook feed is full of it, that Trump does want to build this wall to Mexico. The costs are horrendous, just to maintain it they estimate 2bn USD per annum. How many families could you feed with that? We had a wall in Germany for 40 years, and it won’t last and neither should it. You cannot separate people. People are always stronger than barricades, fear and walls for that matter. I am astonished. What is next? Segregation in the USA all over again? Please don’t do that to this world. We must stand together, worldwide, for the USA not to turn into a 4th Reich. We cannot let history repeats itself and must be cautious of populist movements across the globe. I am just a little person in the world, and I know that there are smarter, more influential people seeing this already. Yet, we should not forget and everyone can do a little towards peace, community and humanity.

This video from New York sends me the chills. #alwaysnewyork

Another advantage of my new routine is that I run and exercise a lot in the morning again. I feel fitter, watch what I eat (despite the free snacks in the office) and make sure I walk a lot. It seems to work, 3 weeks into the new year, and my weight is almost where I want it, but overall I just feel better and stronger. I also revisit some of the Anthony Robbins personal development ‘tapes’ and experiment with goal setting and focus exercises. My commute allows for a lot of studying and reading again, so watch this space moving forward. Although, I need to factor more time in to reflect and take it all in. One cannot learn and study all the time without reflecting and putting it into action.

A full packed week and weekend and looking forward it won’t change for a while. I love it. And this weekend… I got my battery in my phone replaced (FOC due to a manufacturing fault); the oldest had a sleep over and the youngest was properly spoiled by my wife and I πŸ™‚ Happy days.

Have a great week ahead and don’t forget to share this blog if you enjoy reading it. Thanks.

Best,
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.

createyourselfquote

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 πŸ˜‰

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 (345)

This was a good and successful week!

Having a purpose in life and finding your identity is a great skill to have. Just this week I finished reading another book on destiny and success. On how to structure your life and thoughts to achieve what you want to achieve. I started writing more seriously on my second book and finished drafts for the first chapter. Onwards and upwards. Nothing like getting things done early morning on the train to set yourself up for the day.

Somewhat I got carried away with a few wine and ale nights, yet again managed to catch up with loads of people and done some great networking. Amazing.

On the opposite side of things I did sign up for a 24 hour run. My challenge in 2016. A team of people to run a relay of 10K for 24 hours. This is going to be my ‘wall’ – Kevin Jorgenson spoke about his free climb record at a conference this year and suggested everyone should have a ‘wall’. 280 days to go.

Q4 is in full swing with lots of different ups and downs, meetings being moved, cancelled and decisions for next year to be made. Yet on top of that I managed to network with great people, spend time having coffee with key influencers and made some significant progress. Things are moving in a very right direction, and I enjoy the buzz of Q4 and the industry as a whole.

Then I helped someone very close with an application and the next step in life. This gives me much satisfaction to actually being able to influence one’s future and helping someone to find their purpose, identify and future. That plus helping with career choice, selling oneself and assisting to go beyond your comfort zone. I enjoy doing that.

I am happy. I enjoy my family and had a great morning this week when my youngest woke up early and didn’t want to go back to bed. So we had breakfast together, lots of cuddles and read a few books. All that before the rest of the family woke up. It was a special morning, a special time and connection. I cherish those moments and I am now able to push work and disturbance aside to truly be with him in the moment.

This is important for me, and it is so important to give kids this undivided attention. I am grateful for being able to do that, and my weekends have changed a lot since I got kids. They are my main priority. They are what my weekends are made of!

Making the progress both at home and at work satisfies me deeply. Building lasting relationship and being approached for a big project make me realise what I read in the recent book: the best time of your career is to come from 40 years onwards, and you reach your prime when you are 50+. Yes, let’s go for it and really ramp it up over the next couple of years to avoid the mid life crisis and make life happen. And, it is happening already!

I am up for it, are you? How far can I push myself? What else can I achieve?

wall

As you might be able to tell, I am buzzing with excitement what life still has to offer. That is without losing focus on what life offers now! I managed my runs this week. I had endless discussions around what is the best thing to do and what I want to achieve with my running. For me this is about fitness, not about running distances, yet I will utilise it for my challenge.

At the weekend we managed to catch up with an old mentor of mine from university. She now lives with her family fairly close by. It was good to see her and catch up on how life has changed over the past 10+ years. We both got married, have kids, established in our jobs etc. Chewing the fat with someone who knows you when your main purpose in life and your identity was different. Changing your identity and belief systems are key to success. Being able to realise that you can influence anything in life and that being fit and healthy can be a life style choice rather than something you think you can never achieve, is a realisation that came to me over the last few years.

I finish the first draft of this post as I pull into Victoria station in London on Friday. It is a gloomy day, but it is Friday and I am looking forward to the weekend and finishing off some key projects at work. It is a day filled with meetings around video and data. Not a boring day at all πŸ˜‰

Hope you had an amazing week yourself!

Stay well,
Volker

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Sunday Column (342)

What I learned this week was a lot actually. I read another personal development book and managed to listen to a few podcasts. I love learning and constantly increasing my input from a variety of sources.

Putting last week’s tiring show into perspective, my job after the merger, I believe we are now getting to the point to move beyond phase one of integration, just in time for Q4. Without wanting to reveal or bore anyone about any work details, the exciting bits are discussed. My US colleagues have been over this week and I am more than excited to pull the throttle to open the floodgates. Rock’n roll!

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Yet, aside work, my wife is still recovering from her accident which happened two weeks ago. Time is a healer. Time, however, is the most precious thing we own. A few weeks ago we were at Littlehampton beach. Whilst the kids were happily playing, and the wife was bathing – yes it was still warm(ish) – I was contemplating about life.

What had I achieved in life so far? Two healthy boys, both now in school, the renovation of the house almost complete, and married to what I believe the best woman in the world. Our 8th wedding anniversary is around the corner. I am happy. Truly happy. Life is treating me well, and I have worked very hard to get where I am.

My life ticks a few boxes of the Tony Robbins’ six Human needs. Yes, sometimes more uncertainty than certainty, and I definitely prefer certainty, but I get significance and love. I could have a bit more significance or responsibility in one or two areas of my life, but nothing I ‘must have‘ at the moment. As of above I am learning and growing, and I am in a position I can and do contribute to others.

I can help others. This for me is one of the greatest gifts I received in life. I am able to help others develop, grow and be part of something bigger. I help clients and sell them a superior product. This is something I genuinely enjoy. And whilst this sounds all like I am a boring person, every now and then I enjoy letting my hair down.

I noticed, particularly when not at home, that I enjoy going out and party. I guess it is because I don’t have the kids’ responsibilities or a wife telling me off πŸ˜‰ It is the balance between hard, very hard work, and play hard attitude. I have been brought up from my early tele-sales days to play hard but to focus even harder at work. When you spend a whole day, meeting after meeting, bringing in the revenue, you need to let steam off somewhere. Have you seen the wolf on wall street? Important is that you deliver.

wolf

Supposedly I am jumping around a bit here. And why am I writing about this? Simple: I have been thinking about this a lot. About the why I love the hard work, and which need it fulfils. And, what the other side fulfils. In times of change, and at work I am going through changes, I like to evaluate. I want to make sure that the change ahead is in line with my needs, values and direction. This is important for me, and I also make sure this is important and there is alignment for my staff.

Life is fantastic. I am not complaining. Things could always be better, but they could always be. The grass is always greener. Yet, it will always be grass. Nothing is ever perfect. And wouldn’t it be boring if it was? Maybe, many years from now, I will be looking back and realising which part of life I was playing at this moment, and looking back at other part of my life just now, boy, I have come some way. Why I made one decision over another. And why we chose one path over the other….life is in life’s hands if you like.

Let us rejoice in the beauty of life.
Its challenges and its sorrows.

Let us celebrate life to move beyond where we are today. Let us grow and be great.
Let’s get shit done! GSD.

Have a fantastic week.
V

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Dream

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Sunday Column (223)

Today is Fathers’ Day. And, I had the first full and good night sleep in a long time. So today was a good day!

In the The Secret Daily Teachings newsletter I came across the following:
You can limit yourself by the story you have created about you. Here are some simple examples of how the story we have created about ourselves can limit us:
I am no good at math. I have never been able to dance. I am not a very good writer. I am very stubborn. I don’t sleep well. I am very moody. I struggle with my weight. My English is not good. ….

And so on, you probably find many of those examples in your daily life. It is suggested to identify those limitations and change them. You know how hard that is? Self consciousness is difficult to change, mantras, ever so small, are difficult to change. “I am getting old“, I used to say. I changed this to “I am young, I am alive.” In NLP you call that reframing or re conditioning.

Actually, little changes like self limiting believes are easy to overcome. With the help of a good friend, partner or coach, you can use a variety of techniques to change your mantras to be positive and helpful. The deeper question would be along the lines of why you had those limiting believes in the first place. Why think to be old or fat. Why would you think to not being able to lose weight? Because it is easier and gives you comfort. You wouldn’t need to face torture of finding out that you don’t get into a habit of going to the gym to lose weight, or embarrassment of giving up smoking for the 100th time. So why try in the first place?

Breaking out of your habit has to do with belief. A belief in yourself. Your will power. Your confidence about it all. You would need to get started and try to go to the gym on a regular basis over and over again until you will succeed. Starting everyday again until it might become a routine. And you will. If you really want it – you will. So start changing your life today and identify those “comfortable mantras”, because they are holding you back!

Centre Point London

Centre Point London

Maybe an unusual start for my Sunday column but I didn’t want to write another weekly summary. Despite this week I met a few really interesting people. My cousin was over for Colin’s 4th birthday party and we had a good time preparing the party, having the party (16 kids to visit and their mums) despite the rain, and had a huge amount of Indian food on Wednesday night to wind down. Good times, a mini holiday really. It is good to see that my cousin becomes friends with my wife and the family growing closer together, also of course my cousin being close to the kids. And even I enjoyed the party a bit yet I was very exhausted afterwards. Staying on top of all those kids, playing all over the place, is a real challenge.

But as of the intro challenges are there to be conquered. I identify them weekly and make sure I work on them. I enjoy personal development challenges as they make me grow, both as a person and in terms of portfolio for coaching and/or managing others. But you probably heard that in my first video blog on Friday.

I mentioned before that job hunting is a full time job. And it is. Travelling back and forth to them, following up, learning for it, improving for next time and eliminating job opportunities you wouldn’t have looked at if you were still in employment. All of that whilst having the nagging voice in your head that you need to find a job, well knowing you actually aren’t in a rush. The world is what you make of it, how you play it, what you believe. What are the limitations and what are the things you do really well? Your gifts. And interesting enough there are opportunities that stick out and are “potentials”. Let’s see what the next few weeks bring.

As a former manager once said, I’d rather spend money on Volker making him better in what he does than improving areas he isn’t as good in. I know what he meant. This week I was asked to explain how cookies sync online between exchanges, bidders, publishers and ad servers. I knew it more or less but to be honest, this is not my main area of expertise. I can explain the whole ecosystem but the technical details aren’t for me. I could explain most of them to someone, and I could learn it very quickly, but I won’t take a job in ad operations πŸ˜‰ However, I know it well enough to explain it to someone, and selling ad operations, I could do. Technical enough for that. And what I realise is that it seems to be the most important skill in my area: knowing of technology, know how it works and being able to explain it to others. Not knowing what the algorithm or black box underneath really is though. And, to be honest, there are too many people out there, that wouldn’t even understand some of the basics. And they are in positions that are much higher than mine. Never mind ;-(

That’s really it before I go on a rant. A good week overall. Good catch ups and great conversations. Great family time and a four year old that was so excited to have his birthday, it was fantastic. Life is good. Excitement on children’s faces and them stuffing their face with sausages and cake, dancing in the living room. That is what I will remember mostly from this week. I will forget about my small hangover, the interviews and discussions. I remember the love, the sharing and the fun those little people had. I was glad to be part of it.

And I will remember the movie I watched on Saturday night: YOU GOTTA DREAM, YOU GOTTA PROTECT IT. You wanna get something, you go and get it. Period. (Good mantras btw.)

Have a wonderful week.
Follow your dreams and believe!
Volker

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4 rules to change

I have been busy putting different content together lately but this is another presentation on change management and personal development. Enjoy.

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The Secret – Are you making the most of your life?

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5 keys to thrive

Another Anthony Robbin’s related deck on motivational keys to improve your personal development.

Enjoy!

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Six Human Needs

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