‘Attitudes are more important than facts’

A colleague at work once told me a story about his mother. She was in a care home at the time and was getting a bit confused, possibly in part because of the drugs she was on, but she didn’t always know what was happening. He went to visit her regularly and, on this oneContinue reading “‘Attitudes are more important than facts’”

The importance of substance

I used to work for a small marketing consultancy run by an entrepreneur called Tony. The man had a confidence quite out of proportion to his ability and had an ego that needed constant feeding. “Do you remember the conference I went to the other day?” he told his fellow director, Philip. “They loved me.Continue reading “The importance of substance”

Making the effort

Sometimes you have to do things you don’t want to. Sometimes the reward you get from forcing yourself to do something you don’t want to is all the greater precisely because you didn’t want to do it. On this particular Sunday, it had been raining all day. Relentlessly. I had been planning to go forContinue reading “Making the effort”

Off gridders

I am a big fan of these ‘escape the modern world’ programmes. I admire people who turn their backs on the conveniences of modern living to pursue a simpler life and get closer to nature. They give up their televisions, the central heating, the internet, supermarkets etc to live a near subsistence life ‘off grid’.Continue reading “Off gridders”

Feedback

My former boss, Tony, had been reading the online reviews of his company on Glassdoor (an online site for employees to leave feedback on their employer). The reviews were not very flattering. Some of them were downright rude. They did not create a good impression for prospective recruits, Tony had decided, so he’d started addingContinue reading “Feedback”

Underthinking

Some of us suffer from overthinking. We think long and hard about things, blow them up out of all proportion until they become impossibly complicated, to the point of overwhelming us, sometimes before we’ve even got started. There is a lot written on the topic and many people freely admit to struggling against this badContinue reading “Underthinking”

Shy decorator

Some time ago I got a firm in to decorate a couple of rooms that needed sprucing up. The decorator himself was a shy, very quiet little Irishman. He hardly spoke a word and answered my questions in mumbled monosyllables. But he was a great decorator. He was obsessive and perfectionist, making every effort toContinue reading “Shy decorator”

Nice guys finish last

We have all heard the expression ‘Nice guys finish last’. Well, I guess that could be right (although some dispute it), but there are two parts to that equation – ‘where we finish’ and ‘being nice’, and, in life, we get ‘points’ for both those things. So, we should all try to finish as highContinue reading “Nice guys finish last”

The Serenity Prayer

I am not an alcoholic, nor a Christian, but I love the Serenity Prayer. “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.” It was written by the American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr in the 1930s and later adopted byContinue reading “The Serenity Prayer”

Assertiveness

I recently came across a study on assertiveness. Its objective was to explore the issue of people being overly assertive, notably in the workplace. The study was wide-ranging and complex, but also very thorough. It was maybe 20 pages long, with densely packed text in tiny font, and went into enormous detail on the backgroundContinue reading “Assertiveness”