Tag: life

Sunday Column (1)

Hello Readers,

After a long weekend, or should I say I am still in it as I am off work tomorrow, I decided to write a Sunday Column. Just really a personal update, some thoughts and some ideas on life, work and anything I feel speaking/writing about.

Am I well? Yes, I think I am. Have been back to the gym, exaggerating it and feeling rather knackered for a week or so. Also, had two shows over the last 2 weeks which drained a lot of energy out of me. However, being off really helps and the blackberry is off and I haven’t checked my emails.

This weekend we went for a meal. I will write more in detail about it but I am still wondering about the horrendous prices for going out in the UK. With or without wine you hardly get away with less than Β£50, or if you really go for something fancy it easily adds up to Β£100 or more. So mark up prices in the UK are still the norm and sometimes I ask myself why to support it? Probably because I really fancy doing it and I (still) can. Once our little baby boy arrives we won’t be able to go out at all or not as often as we do now. Guess that is where the savings come from when you have a baby and pay for diapers/nappies.

My wife is nesting. She is painting the hall is not resting at all. Hansel, our ginger tom cat, got neutralised on Friday and today he got outside again. Lucky us! The cat litter started to smell already, wonder how we managed with two kittens for almost 5 months! Guess it starts all over again in June.

Living in London is a funny thing. After 5 years there are still things I need to get used to. Public transport is one, the other one is the permanent stress and buzz level. There are always people out there, always noise, always someone in your way. The tube is full, you are annoyed, had a stressful day and only want to get home. But too many people in my way.

Sure I pick up more things about London as we go along. Luckily we live outside London, 5 streets to be exact, and enjoy the quiet suburban live. I keep you updated as we go along, e.g. soon I want to start growing my own veggies and getting rid of the mould outside on the bottom of our outside kitchen wall. There are always things to do around the house.

What else is about London? Career – that really drove me “down” here in the first place. I could, if I wanted to, change my job tomorrow. Whilst it is not the aim of the game, but it allows for flexibility. Also, you can easily sell to people as all companies are down here too. E.g. you mix and match easier in a bigger, metropolitan city – that is true for business as well as private.

On that note maybe, in case you never been to London, don’t move here if you don’t have an accent πŸ™‚ Because everyone seems to have one here and me with my mixture of Scottish, American, allegedly Irish and of course German twang I really don’t stick out too much, do I?

So, maybe that should be all for my first Sunday column. Guess it summarises my thoughts in general a bit and I will make sure to speak about more stuff next week. After a nice massage this afternoon, I will now cook a nice Cajun Garlic Chicken for my wife, with Spinach, Potatoes and Mushrooms. Yummy.

The curious case of…

…Benjamin Button.

It has been a few days since I watched the movie, however it was a great movie to watch.

“Button” line is that someone is born but looks like he is old and with the years grows younger. Falls in love with a woman that grows old and they meet in the middle for a few years.

Whoever has seen the movie, you know what I mean.

I find it fascinating. Imagine you look better from day to day. Less grey hair, more women that run after you (if you look like Brad Pitt anyway) and you feeling better too. However, what is worse?

Thinking of going through puberty backwards and starting to wet the bed or growing old and wetting the bed and stop remembering what happened. It is an interesting thought to see how things could be different, if time runs backwards.

But, is it not all in our head? Isn’t it our mind which tells us what to think, how young to feel, and how to deal with life? Is it not our perception and life experience that makes it more worthwhile every day? If Brad Pitt had started with the experience and age but became younger and less experienced, e.g. a real backward journey, would the movie still have the same effect?

I don’t want to spoil the end – however life is similar on both ends, isn’t it? And, you are never to old to start all over again and make things happen. Really!

Yes you can – anyone can if you are ready and motivated. Whatever you can achieve, go for it!

Have a great night,

New blog … new life?


Thanks for all the feedback so far on my blog.

Yes, I have moved my blog to my own domain, following the example of several of my friend. This way I have more control about widgets, add-ons and can add projects like cb consulting to this site also.

I assume that I will move balamadana to wordpress too.

However, it will be a learning process of how to use WordPress as a CMS, how to use Google Analytics, how to use Adsense properly and so on. Twitter is now integrated and you should be able to tweet this post and to see what I am up to as well. Please follow me.

Also, I might delete my old blogs on wordpress.com and blogger to avoid duplicate content and anyone not finding me. I should soon rank highest for “volker ballueder”, once Google has indexed my site
πŸ™‚ Ok, not that difficult.

New Life? Not really. Some things are in constant change, the baby is growing and the kittens are growing up too. I am desperate for spring to get some warmer weather, start planting my vegetables and enjoy a nice wheat beer in the sun. I am still in London, assuming for another 2-3 years for sure. But, you will never know.

Other than that, I started my first Tai Chi class last week. It helps me to relax and focus. Like a slow meditation. I will post about it some other time.

Thanks again for visiting and watch this space!

work life balance

I think the last time I wrote about work life balance was regarding the entrepreneur and intrepreneur.

A thought I had was when I have been working from home, which happens occasionally, whether I have a better or worse work-life-balance.

And, the answer is difficult. I remember that studying for my MBA we discussed that if you work from home, you should get your own room/desk and area in the house. This way you could “go home” after work and relax, e.g. getting your life.

However, for me as an occasional “working from home” person, it is not that easy. A small house with only one proper desk, it is like you are in your living room all day.

Often, when I discuss that with clients, I get the answer of “I would get too distracted at home” – I agree, some people can. For me it is usually the other way around:

I get up my usual time and sit on the laptop about one hour earlier than I usually do. Then, from a lunch point of view, I eat whatever is around and never really feel hungry, ergo do not have a proper break until the late afternoon. Which is, when I go back to my desk and deal with some work over in the US and end up shutting down the laptop around 7 or 8 pm.

Wow, that makes it a full 11 hour day (only noticed that now). And, my way home is quick. I just sit on the other side of the table and end up being home πŸ™‚

Now, there are two sides to that:
I personally get more distracted by work than by home, e.g. I enjoy working and what I do, so end up working more at home but cannot really escape work physically. But, I have enough confidence to turn things off if it is getting too much.

Finding the right balance is important. And, as long as you enjoy the work you are doing, working from home occassionally is fine. However, I actually enjoy being in the office too – even if I am alone in the office. Just to get away from home πŸ™ Is that double minded?

I read “big brother’s” comment about life-life balance. There are so many discussions about what is right or wrong and I believe nothing is right or wrong as long as it works for you (and ultimately for the person you work for). If you cannot turn off the laptop when it’s time and you cannot turn off your blackberry when needed, then you do need to work on your priorities. You need to enjoy what you are doing, that is really the key.

Some more Buddhist thoughst on life-life balance can be found at balamadana.

Enjoy a relaxing weekend.

New Life

Hello All,

Facebook – after publishing my new status “starting a new life, everyday now” I got a few requests about what I am up to?

No, I am not getting a divorce or change my job. Everything is fine and I am more than happy with both! However….there is always a BUT.

Really, the last 4 weeks with us moving into the new place, the job being more than busy and me having little time to un-wind, lead me to have a good think over the weekend. Never have I been so worn out, tired and exhausted for such a long time.

So, I will change my life, a bit everyday. Planning in some “me time”, “exercise”, “knowledge”, “fun”, “friends”, “family” etc. – just to consciously making life more live-able. Making sure I enjoy what I am doing and have the work life balance or life-life balance.

No rocket science really but I think that I haven’t really had time lately to focus on the nice things in life. And if I had the time I did not use it. So all I do is a re-cap and a more conscious living.

Thanks, Volker

Weekend – or what happened this week

I would like to draw your attention to last week.

It helps to look back: Monday was just another Monday with a good conversation at work, driving things forward in the right direction. Also, I managed to get something important done on my private side of things.

Tuesday. It was a long day at Internetworld, a few drinks at night. Was it a good day? A slow day but work wise very valuable. I had a long conversation with a friend I bumped into who I haven’t seen for about 3 years. Coincidence? I do not think so! We stay in touch X.

Wednesday was my first interview and another seminar talk on SEO and Blogging for WebCertain. My colleague and I really impressed a few people there. And, interesting enough the seminar theatre was packed and about 40% said they have a multilingual website and another 40% said they will soon. That means there are so many people out there realising that the internet gives you a global reach. All you need to do is to get out there and be found! Ok, enough advertisement, just join us at our Summit.

Thursday, last day of Internetworld, was very slow going. I am surprised that CMP organises 2 big shows in the same half of the year. Why not have one, TFM&A in spring and the other, Internetworld, in autumn. Hey, there is some competition out there but I believe there is a market for it too! Not my decision, I moved away from exhibitions. Met up with my old manager though and realised that things have changed….
The rest of Thursday I spent driving my wife to a party and back – what a boring bloke but a loving husband I am πŸ™‚

Friday was a long day in the office. Catching up on the show, having one phone conference after another. It was good. Spoke to someone I consider a good friend in Detmold with whom I believe the relationship just started. Spoke to a friend I helped a little to find and settle in Munich too! Good Luck Marco!

The night I spent with some nurses drinking beer ,-) That was fun!

Was that all?
You might have noticed I forgot my birthday. Yes, in all that week I had to fit in a birthday I almost forgot myself. And, the biggest memory of my birthday, besides that my wife got me a nice present and work did too, is that I spoke to a good friend and mentor who’s life is, although much more progressed, in parallel. You see the entry below.

What a week. Time for a long weekend. Enjoy and get some rest ,-)

Oh, it is Saturday today. Marcelo posted the first entry on balamadana. And I go and get pampered now – off for a nice sports massage.

Volker Ballueder