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40+FAB Blog

I remember back in my secondary school days when certain trouble makers, who had more talk than action, were challenged to take it outside, they would come out with a group of friends who were there to save them by holding back both parties from actually kicking it off. You see, the troublesome one had figured out that they needed an intervention to keep them from being beat up when they had taken on a little bit more than they could handle.

From time to time in life we do take on more than we can handle, and without timely intervention we can get beat up, and sometimes really badly too. A few years back I struggled on a new job I got, and for weeks I did not bring up my issues with a mentor that could help me because I was trying to figure it out on my own. When I eventually spoke to him, he had loads of advise that could have saved me days of agonising over a very difficult situation, but I never sought the intervention in good enough time.

What are you facing now that is threating to swallow you up? It might be your health, a relationship, a business, a course of study, your finances or some other future plan. You need to reach out to your circle of friends and family who are able to hold you, and keep that situation at bay long enough for you to come out of it unscathed. Never let yourself be too far away from who and where you can get an intervention.

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40+FAB Blog

Just recently, I had the unpleasant experience of having to deal with a company that provided a quote to fix my central heating in my property. The process to engage them was smooth, and the engineer came out as expected. However, when he analysed the problem, he pointed out several things that were wrong and gave a quote of over £2000 to fix the fault.

As the price was way more that expected I sought a second company to quote on the job. They came out, analysed the problem in minutes and charged only £300 to get the new part to repair the one thing that was broken. The first company then sent an invoice and they decided to charge me £250 for coming out to assess the problem as opposed to the £99 advertised on thier website.

I felt robbed in this situation and taken advantage of by this company who were less than honest in any part of thier value proposition to thier customers. They wielded this power like a weapon because they provide a service that the customer could never carry out for themselves. As I seethed in anger, it crossed my mind to think about ways that I might have been a work-robber rather than a workman with the skills I have to offer to my clients, employers or even family and friends.

It is true that our skills, knowledge, expertise, and experience to solve a problem for others can indeed become the very tools that we use to short-change them. I can’t do much about how this company has robbed me, but it has made me more determined to show up with my skill as a genuine workman and not a work-robber.

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40+FAB Blog

When we started to discover ourselves, there were family or friends back then who would always pick on some quirk we had, and use it to make fun of us. This usually led us to hide those aspects of ourselves and put on masks to prevent ourselves from being mocked.

There is always the tendency to never let down our guard in environments we do not feel comfortable, or among people we do not trust. We are mostly truly ourselves when we are in the safe space of our home, so, we frequently go out there leaving a part of ourselves at home.

Have you noticed that you enjoy people a lot more when you get to know who they really are? Or, you do your best work when you are not feeling conscious about yourself?

Think about the benefits of creating a safe space for people to be themselves around you. It could just be what you need to deepen a friendship, get greater corporation on a project or business venture, or, get some really meaningful advice on what to do next.

Practise bringing your whole self with you wherever you go and maybe you might just inspire others to do the same.

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40+FAB Blog

It’s amazing how children are quick to label others as bad when they learn the concept of being good or bad. If you have been around children, you would be used to conversations where you have been brought in as an arbitrator, similar to the ones I have with my sons. “Daddy, my brother is bad.” When I ask why, the answer would be, “He did not allow me to play with his computer game”.

Have you ever been in a situation where you have been labelled as the bad person because someone didn’t like your style or way of doing things? Or, maybe they just had a difference of opinion with you over an issue. Maybe you are actually the one who has labelled others as bad due to similar reasons.

It takes maturity to not brand people we don’t agree with as bad, and it is something that we must constantly remind ourselves about. Differences with others is not a disaster, in fact, it helps us to consider things we never would have and subsequently come up with a more robust approach to handling life.

Resist the temptation to quickly stereotype others knowing that you also are not a bad person for the different views that you hold.

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40+FAB Blog

It is true that time waits for no one and in spite of what happens to you to prevent you from ‘making hay while the sun shines’, time will just keep moving on. When we have a good grasp of the concept of time, it helps us to plan and do all we can, when we can, to become all we are meant to be.

When life happens, as it normally would, we find ourselves struggling with burdens that disconnect us from moving as time moves. It could be a sickness, an injury, the death of a loved one, disappointment, depression, discouragement, natural disasters, a pandemic, and the list could go on. Time never says it understands and waits for you, it just keeps going.

One thing to note however is that time is a measure which has relevance because of people. If humans had no needs or purpose, then time would not be important to us. If we did not need to eat, then the farming seasons and cycles would not be important, or the time it takes to bake a great pie. If there was no purpose to build a just society, then the time to learn communication, leadership or strategy would make no sense.

If for any reason we ever fall out of sync with timing and get left behind, all is not lost, and we must resist the temptation to isolate from others, instead, we should cry out to people around us who will stop for us, care for us, and help us get back into purpose as they support our needs while we hurt.

Time waits for no one, but people do.

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40+FAB Blog

If you have ever gone from being an employee to an entrepreneur, you will be aware of the difference between what you consider to be someone else’s and what is yours. In a job, you can choose to switch off at your contractual end of day time. In your own venture however, there is a tendency to work almost at all hours around the clock.

The key thing in both scenarios is not whether you are employed by someone else or employed by yourself, it is all about how you see your ownership of what you are doing. It is a great attitude to always own what has been given to you to do. This is a great secret of progress because the level of care and attention you give to what you own will ensure you give it your best effort.

When you constantly give your best, people are bound to take notice whether it is your employers or your customers. Committed excellent service will always lead to a promotion in one way or another. Try taking this approach of owning things no matter how small and see what difference it makes.

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40+FAB Blog

It is a great misconception to think that a successful relationship is all about the good feelings that are associated with love and friendship. Feelings can be fleeting and those that have reached the pinnacle in thier area of endeavour will be able to give you enough stories of when feelings had to be put aside in order to attain greater heights that beckoned.

We are used to the duty that a wife needs to perform in a marriage and all that she must give up, including her name, in order to be one with her husband. Sometimes, it almost seems like everything goes the man’s way, however, we find an excellent example of the love and duty that is required from a man also in the relationship between Her majesty, Queen Elizabeth of England and Prince Philip, who sadly passed away today.

We pay tribute to him and his great example, showing us that love requires giving up some things we long for, in order to show devotion, care, and support for the one we love. It is a great reminder that we do not only marry a person, but everything that they are and represent, and we have a responsibility, a duty, to let them fulfil that.

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40+FAB Blog

Have you ever thought about the fact that someone or something being late is a sign that help is needed? This is quite obvious especially for those known to have an impeccable record of punctuality. Late could mean they have a serious emergency, or are ill, or maybe hurt, or worse deceased. Even for the ardent late comer, there could be underlying issues causing thier lateness that have never been addressed.

Why not try delving a little deeper into the issue of lateness with yourself, but also with others on a personal and a professional level. Would you find procrastination, fear, lack of knowledge or awareness, illness, emotional turmoil, faulty business processes, having to do more than is possible, overwork, boredom, and much more to be the underlying issues?

If lateness is a sign that help is needed, then we should never be too late ourselves to help the ones we are judging for being late.

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40+FAB Blog

There is a process that has been taught to us all through our lives which sometimes is not recognised until it is called out. You notice it with babies where they are able to cry to get thier mothers attention. You may think that they are just being babies, but in reality they have learned to use what they have to get what they want.

I remember years ago when I had to take care of my nephew who was a few months old, as his mum left for work in the morning, he would cry a little and once she was out of sight he would calm down and spend the rest of the day with me quite content. I then noticed over a few days that as soon as he heard the key in the door, around the time his mum usually got home, he would burst out crying in dramatic fashion as if he had been in that state all day.

I soon realised that this child was reading the situation, reacting to it as appropriate and reaping the results he wanted. We are taught this principle in school, read the question, react with an answer, then you get a result, pass or fail. Where else have you identified that you apply this process?

It sounds simplistic, but it holds a lot of practical wisdom for our day to day lives when we learn to read, react and get a result.

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40+FAB Blog

Several stories, poems and songs have romanticised the message in a bottle. This was a letter written and placed in a water tight container and thrown into the sea in the hope that it would get across the shores and into the hands of someone who could respond to it. That message typically was a distress call for help, or details of an expedition, or even a collection of poetic writings.

As great and secure as a message is in a bottle, the message actually has no meaning in the bottle. Its relevance becomes apparent when it gets into the hands of people.

Have you ever considered yourself to be like that bottle which contains messages that need to be communicated to your world? There is much in you which has been carefully crafted and when revealed will give much meaning to the lives of others. It is worth noting that unlike the bottle at sea which is dependent on others finding it, you can be intentional about finding and releasing your message to those who need it.

Are you allowing yourself to just drift by on the seas of life, keeping your message to yourself? Or, have you realised that what is in you is meant to be expressed to your world? Have you studied the art of effective communication to release your message?

Always remember that the good you can do is never beneficial to others if you don’t make it available to them.

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