Tag: friendship

Sunday Column (385)

This week seems to have gone on forever. I found it tiring. Very tiring indeed. Not sure if it was because the weather played up, things were a bit sluggish or just because it was one of those weeks. We had brilliant sunshine, torrential rain, long winded discussions, great decisions, good presentations and awesome chats. We made progress, we won things, we lost things. It was just another week really.

Another week. Another decision. Car ordered. A Skoda. Brand new. The finance deals you are getting these days are just too tempting. If you had told me a year ago I would ever buy a new car, I would have told you that you were crazy. Anyway, I wrote a lot about it and will write about it again when it arrives. I cannot wait. It feels like it completes something. We are back to having a car instead of a functional vehicle to accommodate rear facing car seats that are long gone. As a family, we are growing up.

Skoda Superb

The bathroom is done. I mean to 99%. Still some niggles, some electrics, some parts. Only took 6 weeks 🙁 We might still have to exchange the bath tub, don’t ask. We might have got a faulty item. Happens I suppose. Anyway, the bathroom finishing completes the house renovation. A 4 year project. All rooms have been done now. It is done. Sometimes it seemed forever but it didn’t. And yes there are small things to sort, and things to be redone, and of course, last but not least, my beloved drive way. We put that project back a bit, hopefully autumn, to prioritise family holiday, the car and sanity above all 🙂

Things cannot be rushed yet not happen quickly enough. I am writing this bit as I am sitting on the 8 pm train home because I had a great meeting with someone I really value. Someone I know I am going to be friends with for a long time. And that’s when you don’t mind the longer night. You write your blog as the sun sets when you leave Victoria station. Good things take time. And a drink. Something to seal what you have, right. Something to seal that there is more to come. Our industry is a group of friends, this is so nice.

As I am writing this and getting emotional, I am listening to Jack Savoretti. An artist/singer I recently discovered. I love him. Just the right mix of what I’d call folk and ballads. Lots of guitars, good songs and a great voice. I keep listening to him, and cannot stop listening to him. Something in his songs gives me this feeling back of being young and wild. Riding my motor bike down the country lanes in Ireland, getting caught out by rain, seeing my friend skidding off the road. This is years ago and you longing for that freedom and independence you once had. The lack of responsibility but for yourself. Things changed of course. I am an adult now and don’t need to ask for permission or acceptance. I am responsible for my own action and, yet, I cannot have a motor bike. That’s of course where family responsibility and common sense comes in. That is where my new toy, the family car comes in. And following from that, the mid life crisis Jaguar XK 8 or the Porsche for my 40th birthday. Long time to go and who knows what is going to be then. We don’t even know what’s happening tomorrow.

On that note I got a call from someone this week. I value him very much as a friend and mentor. A great citizen, a fantastic boss, an amazing person. He hasn’t been well and he might just read this post, and I want to give him a shout out that I am thinking of him. And if you aren’t reading it, others will. When your life changes from almost over to full steam ahead within a few weeks, it must be the most awful roller coaster ride you ever had. I wish you well. You will be alright. Don’t ever give up. Your Facebook post touched me, and I wrote this prior to seeing it. Anyway, your story should be a reminder for us to always look forward, to never give up and to always nourish and value what we have. What we don’t appreciate, depreciates. One of my many mantras. For yourself, for anyone, it is always worth trying. We miss you! It was so good to speak to you and we see you soon. Sending wishes, prayers and positive thoughts your way.

never give up

Towards the end of the week I spoke at a conference. Another event to show off the great solutions we are working on. Being on a panel with industry friends from years ago, people that have shaped our industry and pushed boundaries. We are, no question, leading the market. And in the areas we are not, we definitely should. I am going to meet a few guys in HQ over the next couple of weeks to discuss that evolution. To discuss how we can continue to lead that space we are so good at. I am pumped about the opportunities we are facing. Look forward, live the now and make sure things are moving in the right direction. And that is the most important bit. The belief and future looking aspect of where things are moving to.

Below the post is the video.

What else happened. I believe I am transforming a bit. There are changes I am looking at, things I am developing on. One is family. I am putting a lot more focus, particularly weekends to engaging with the boys. The wife ran another half marathon and I looked after the youngest. He went to a party, the oldest was away with Beavers. I was in charge of the team this weekend and enjoyed every moment of it. Yet I noticed when I came home one night and worked all the way home, I was very edgy with them. I will learn. Learn to reflect, and learn to relax. As they are the main focal point of my life. No compromise.

Last but not least, and maybe insignificant to you but for me it’s a big thing 😉 The Gatwick Express trains that I use, changed, at least on Thursday night. Instead of sitting on an old 1950 refurb comfy train coach with sofa like seats, we got the new hard seated commuter trains. All change. We are arriving in the 21st century with WIFI on the train, cleaner trains, that make us, England, look very modern to visitors. The tables seem to be very far away from the seats, making it awkward to work on, but maybe we will be getting used to it. And we must avoid the temptation to work just because we got wifi. And we got plugs for mobile phone chargers. And the lights are bright. It is a bit nicer really. Yet, there have been some strikes, some delays and cancellation. New trains won’t change that I suppose. I almost missed the event I was speaking at. Never mind, made it in the end.

I made it to Friday too. I enjoyed the weekend. And I am back on it tomorrow. 3 weeks of travelling ahead.
I am loving it. I am winning.

Love and Kindness from my corner of the world,
Volker

Sunday Column (346)

Starting the week with a day trip, whether to Paris or anywhere really, sets you up for the week. A little bit like a 5am routine for the day, a day trip to Europe is for your week. You feel energised and ready to take on the world. It is that feeling of accomplishment, the feeling of achievement. That’s why I enjoy doing what I am doing. That’s why I enjoy productivity, sales and leadership. Because you know you are the one moving the needle.

Of course, given it was a 15 hour day, it was tiring too 🙂 Yet it was a successful trip, and it is what I enjoy really.

So the rest of the week flew past. No punt intended. I noticed my 12K from the weekend, some early training for my Dawn Wall (see last week for context) exhausted me a bit more than anticipated. However, and this isn’t a moan about the man flu, but there are a few bugs going around. So far I have avoided to be off work or feel bad, but something seems to be lingering around for a few weeks. I am certain it all comes out, literally, given recent stories at school, when we break for half term tomorrow. Yet, with some more nice weather on the way, I am eager to do more training outside. Just difficult at 5 am as it is a bit dark still, so my 7.5K on Thursday on the treadmill was a pleasant ‘walk in the park’. Again, a feeling of achievement to be able to do your run first thing.

Another mile stone this week was our 8 year anniversary. Sometimes hard to believe that you can spend over 10 beautiful years together with as little fights as my wife and I have. Who would have guessed anyone would ever be able to cope with me for such a long period of time 😉 I guess that makes her extra special. My wife is a very special person and we have experienced so much together, ups and downs, yet it has been a wonderful time so far. And I am more than certain there are many more years to come. I love you Jenny.

cat

On that note, one sometimes wonders if there is a higher force that sorts out your partner. We know people come into your life for a reason and people leave it for a reason, I mean not dying but entering your life, you learn/laugh/chat together, then they disappear forever. Some stay and some are your life time partner. Is that all down to chance? Why do some never find a perfect match?

I guess this is a philosophical question, similar to who do you meet at university and where do you find your first job. This can determine your whole career and 50 years ahead. The small things in life, the piece of chance, luck or destiny that shape your life. Fascinating, isn’t it?

Let’s not get sentimental…yet the picture above shows our new family partner. We picked him up on Friday – not really a replacement for Rosie, and it never can be, but my wife always had cats, and the last cat we had to re-home because of the dog. I am sure he will settle in fine, and the kids will love him.

The end of the week marked the start of half term. I was actually off from Friday! The kids needing the time off. So do I to be honest. It has been a long time since my last break with lots of changes since. So just before we really hit Q4 I am taking a week off. My parents arrived with lots of wine, filling up the shelves. Plus it gave us an opportunity, my wife and I, to celebrate mentioned anniversary. They are staying for a few days which gives the kids and us a great chance to spend some quality family time together.

As I grow older family time becomes more important. Not that work becomes less important, it is more that other things take priority. I am still working on my career, probably always will, but being able to see my kid’s harvest festival performance, being there when they need someone to talk to or just reading about the ‘burgling cat’ before going to work. Those precious moments are never there to return.

That is life. And I really loving it. I love to be in the middle of it, falling on my back, like a dog in the mud, and really enjoy life for the reason of love and friendships.

Buddha bless,
Volker

Inspirational Thought: mind the past

In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don’t bring up the past. ~ Dalai Lama

A nice little quote. When you fight with loved ones, the ones that you really love like your partner, parents, children and closest friends, don’t speak about the past.

You do not fight with them or disagree with them to hurt them. You do disagree in order to bring something up that bothers you. Hence try to focus on that current position. Try to not hurt them.

Digging in the past makes them feel worse. Additional this will only cause a further disagreement, and a bigger rift.

Share the love!
Volker

Sunday Column (91)

This week passed very very quickly. But it was a good week looking back.

After 8 days of wait my replacement laptop arrived and it only took a few hours to have my life back, reinstalling everything. And, at night, I met a friend of mine I haven’t seen for a long time. She is German, used to live in London but seemed to have found her happiness back home again. It was good to exchange ideas, life thoughts and expectations. Sometimes people own things they aren’t aware of. And, if you read this, you know that you are actually much much happier than many other people. Embrace it!

Tuesday was my normal Tai Chi night. I am debating whether I should continue in the new year. I enjoy it very much, but it almost seems, with the upcoming second child, that I might not have time. And I think I could use the time more useful but would I? It is my night (me time) after all, and I should try to keep it that way. Really need to think that through.

Now Wednesday the team from mexad went for one drink. Maybe two. It is great to work with such nice colleagues and I am very excited about the opportunities and growth that lies ahead for 2011. Really enjoy working with you guys! Not that you’d read it 🙂

Thursday was a long awaited night in the whiskey bar of the Athenaeum Hotel. Whilst pricey I had a great night amongst other whiskey drinkers and friends. I tried my first Japanese Whiskey (although my wife said I tried one years ago….), some new Islay Whiskies and had a genuine great night. Sorry I couldn’t stay longer, but there is always next time. Thanks, Adam, for organising it.

Now, the highlight was really the weekend. Not only did I hit 1000 followers on Twitter, but my parents came to visit. I got the new Reinhard Mey CD “Mairegen”. Although, listening to it on Friday night over a glass of wine, I didn’t enjoy it as much as the older stuff he did.

However, we had a fantastic weekend. I really enjoyed family time. Three generation and two cultures together for a weekend. It really makes me think how far I would move away or how much I would miss my roots in Germany if I was further away. Does it matter? How far are my roots still in Germany, Scotland, England, Britain or Europe. I often wonder where life will take me.

Ballueder Coat of ArmsMy parents have helped a lot lately to look into our past, e.g. to research the family history. Bottom line is that we still don’t know where we are coming from. Most likely not from France which is nice to know 😉 but it now makes it more difficult to find out. “Balluer” seems to be a real variation of our last name. So we are curious if we ever find out. Funny or coincidently there is a dance called the “Braes of Balluder” in Scotland. So maybe my roots are further grown in Scotland than I had ever imagined. Who knows, definitely something to research. And most my family where farm workers, interesting.

Anyway, it was a fantastic weekend. Despite Colin’s and my cold, we managed to spend great quality time together. I have the feeling that the next 4 weeks to Christmas will be very busy and passing very quickly. So any time I can spend with my wee man, I really enjoy. He is growing so quickly, discovering and learning. Only when you realise how much children mean to you and how much joy they bring, you realise how little important so many other things are. It is all about the greater good. And children make you greater.

Love and Happiness to all of you.

Volker

what makes us happy

what does make us happy – i was wondering tonight when i got an email from a dear friend, that no matter how stressed we seem, how wonderful work can be, how awful life could be…if you are touched by a friend, his/her story, his/her love – that really takes the pressure off and you feel happy.

if you have a good friend, a boy/girl friend, a partner/wife/husband, children, pets and they “touch” you, e.g they hug you or send you their love, that is what makes you happy. they send you positive energy.

real love, the purpose of life, not money or material goods make us happy!

It is the inner peace and the strengths that comes from within that makes you happy and perform. The love that radiates from your heart or your friends’ hearts into yours. That is what makes you happy and in return ready to perform the tasks you need to do.

Thank you for touching me tonight.

your friend!