Running Bare Foot

Yesterday morning I did my morning run a different way than normal. I ran without shoes. I had heard a little about barefoot running and wondered what it was all about. It was an interesting experience. At the start it was a very strange feeling and then after a little bit it become a very relaxed feeling. I was enjoying the run. However that relaxing feeling did not last as I developed some blisters….

There is much writing online about the pros and cons of barefoot running or minimalist running. I am not going to get into the benefits or the disadvantages of barefoot running as it is not my personal area of expertise, however I will say it was a new experience and it did have me running differently.

My experience of barefoot running had me thinking about many of my new experiences… At the start a new experience can feel awkward and very uncomfortable. However over time we get more comfortable with the experience and over time the experience can seem the norm. I encourage you to explore your curiosity…


  • What is something you are curious about?
  • What is holding you back from exploring your curiosity?
  • What can you do this week to start your exploration?



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Life is not Fair

I often hear my children say that “that is not fair”. Often this statement follows me asking them to do something. My comment back is normally “Life is not fair”. To some this is against what they think and belief. Many people seem to think that the world should be fair and that they should have equal treatment. I have a different point of view about this topic…

I do believe that we all need to be the best person that we can become. I also believe it is our responsibility to be the best person we can be. I do not believe that I am entitled to anything, instead it is my responsibility to serve and be the best me. In fact summed up, I think that life is like a game of cards, every person is dealt a different hand and it is up to them to play their hand the best way possible.

We all have different talents, skills and knowledge. We are all born into a different situation…. I think it is not about balancing these across the board, but instead it is about how we each can use our situation and talents to create a better world…


  • Do you believe that the world should be fair?
  • How well are you playing your cards that you have been dealt?



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Ever feel like you’re the odd one out?


Last weekend while at Floriade, Canberra’s annual Flower Show…. The biggest flower show in the Southern Hemisphere. I saw this yellow flower among all the white ones. It got me thinking… How did this yellow tulip get in among the white ones? Was it planted there by mistake? Was it placed there on purpose to make a talking point? Was the bulb mixed up prior to planting?

Whatever the reason, it was out of the control of the yellow tulip. The yellow tulip was just where it ended up. The yellow tulip has decided to bloom either way and to be beautiful. It does not matter that the yellow tulip seems it is in the wrong flower bed. The yellow tulip has come out and is beautiful.

What do you do when you are the odd one out? I know I am often the odd one out. When I am the odd one out, I can get down about being different or I can choose to celebrate my differences. Though not everyone appreciates my differences, like the yellow tulip I can choose to bloom, no matter where I am planted.


  • So do you ever feel like you’re the odd one out?
  • Do you celebrate your differences? or

    Do you get down about your differences?


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Structure or Free Flowing?


Today I attended a business meet up in Canberra. The meetup is one that I have been a part of for a while and have seen it change and adapt over time. The current organiser of the group, Cheug Yu, has really built the feeling of community in the group. Though meeting numbers are up and down over time, the group is a great place for business owners and developing business owners can come together. We support each other and learn from each other’s experiences.

One of the questions that the group continues to go back and further on is whether the meetings should be structured with an agenda or whether the meetings should be more free flowing. Currently the group after introductions tends to free flow…. This may seem to some people as a very disorganised way to operate. However in reality it seems to work best for this group.

The free flowing approaches allows the group without limitations to go deep on topics that would otherwise be glanced over. The free flowing approach also allows the group to be creative…. So all in all this group benefits from a free flowing approach. This is not to say that a free flowing approach works in all situations. But sometimes we need to allow for a free flowing approach….


  • What is one situation that you would benefit from a free flowing approach rather than a more structured approach?
  • How can you create a creative forum through a more free flowing approach?



Purpose & Curiosity

I have often said that a sense of purpose provides direction in one’s life and also can provide direction for a team. When we have a personal sense of purpose, we have a decision making framework and also a internal drive to achieve that purpose. Without purpose we can be lost, go around in circles and lack traction in what we do.

In an organisation a sense of purpose can be linked to an organisation’s mission, vision and values. In an organisation with a strong culture embedded by an organisation’s mission, vision and values, this same sense of purpose for the team can be achieved. The team has a framework for what the organisation beliefs and hence has common ground to work together.


  • But what happens if you are lacking a sense of purpose?


This can be a scary time. Without a solid sense of purpose one can feel alone and indecisive. If you are lacking a solid sense of purpose I would encourage you to be curious. Curiosity is about exploration, investigation and learning. To be curious we need to get out of our comfort zone. To be curious also means that we are going to develop ourselves. But being curious will also help us to discover in ourselves what may be our purpose and what is not our purpose…


No Phone Ringer


  • What would you do if your phone stopped ringing?
  • What if the notifications stopped telling you when you got a phone call or message?


This week I experienced this situation. My phone, which is an iPhone 3 with a cracked screen, stopped ringing when people called me…. It was a weird to have a phone that was really only good to make calls. I was missing all calls people made to me due to the phone not ringing. Then in trying to fix the ring I turned off the notifications of text messages as well.

Can you imagine what it is like to not be notified of incoming calls and messages? It was a little surreal to start with, however I started to get used to it. It enabled me to concentrate better on the task at hand, as I was not distracted by my phone. After all did I get the phone to be on call all the time to business, work and friends? Or did I get a mobile phone to be able to make phone calls? A bit of both, however this week I got a lesson in ensuring that I control the technology and not let the technology control me.


  • Do you control your technology or does it control you?
  • What do you do to control your technology?



Sleeping out for a Cause


I live in Canberra, Australia…. One of the most affluent cities in Australia. For the most part this is a good thing. Unfortunately there is another side to the city. Affluences means that housing is expensive and this results in Canberra having one of the highest rates of homelessness in Australia. This impacts many Canberrans.

When we mention homelessness most people think about the person sleeping rough on the street. This is only part of the story. There are the families that are having a challenge paying the mortgage or rent. Families that cannot afford to pay the bills and the rent….. Then there is the person, often with children, that is avoiding a violent partner and is sleeping on a friends sofa. The stories go on…

Through my work with Communities@Work, I have been fortunate to work with St Vincent de Paul Canberra/Goulburn to be organising the Canberra Community Sleepout on the 14 November 2014. The aim of the event is to raise money and awareness of the homelessness issue in Canberra. I have also registered to attend the event with some of my family to raise money for these two great organisations.

So, this is where I ask for your help…. Would you help with our fundraising by donating to our teams efforts. Money raised goes to both Communities@Work and St Vincent de Paul Canberra/Goulburn.

Donate to the team at or suport my daughter’s fundraising by clicking on Angela or Anna….

Thank you for your support….


Customer Service Revisited


After writing about my experiences with customer service a few days ago and mentioning how good customer service is lacking, I had the most awesome customer service experience last night at the Dendy Cinema in Canberra. I purchased tickets for the movie “The Equalizer”, however I screwed up. Here is the story….

On arriving at the cinema and seeing the line was out the door, I decided to go straight through to the Premium Lounge. Afterall I purchased premium tickets and just had to pick them up. On arriving at the premium lounge, I asked if they could issue my tickets. The first young man said “no”, however a young lady said “yes”… After giving her my booking number we sat down to organise what we wanted from the menu…

Then the fun started…. The lady came over to say that my tickets are for Wednesday night, not Saturday night. Oppps I have screwed this one up… She was quick to let us know that they hold two seats for such occurrences, so relax and get ready to place an order. What can I say, great customer service…. But the story does not end there, it gets better…

When going up to the counter to order our food and drinks, we were informed that two seats are broken in the cinema, so we no longer have our two seats…. The lady informed us that we can either take the two broken seats, come back on Wednesday or get a refund and watch the movie in the normal theatre…. What great customer service…. I screwed up and instead of the staff telling me so, they treated me like a VIP.


  • What is a great customer service experience that you have had?




How to Avoid Regret


“Well, I guess if a person never quit when the going got tough, they wouldn’t have anything to regret for the rest of their life. Well good luck to you Peter. I’m sure this decision won’t haunt you forever.” (Lance Armstrong, Dodgeball Movie)

Watching Dodgeball again last night had me in stitches. It is one of those movies that you can sit back and be entertained. It is so silly and unrealistic that it is funny. It was a great way to unwind on a Friday night.

Towards the end of the movie as Peter La Fleur is sitting at the bar and had decided to quit, Lance Armstrong came over and said the above quote. It was enough to get Peter La Fleur back into the game, however I think there is something in the quote for me to think about. If I try something I may fail. If I do not try something then I may live in regret. Which decision is going to haunt me more?

I think back over my life at the times I have failed and also at the times I failed to try. I think it is the times that I failed to try that haunt me most…. It is the times that I did not even try something. I think to myself “what would have happened if I had tried?”


  • What haunts you more, failing or failing to try?
  • What is something that you are avoiding at the moment that if you do not try will end in regret?
  • What is something that you are thinking of quitting that will end in regret if you quit?



It is the Little Things


I am a believer in good customer service. Unfortunately I do not see good customer service regularly. It seems that many retail outlets and hospitality outlets have forgotten what it means to deliver good customer service. However the other week while buying a pair of shoes from the Athlete’s Foot in Tuggeranong I was impressed with the level of service I received.

From the moment I walked in the door I was treat as a VIP customer. The shop assistant acknowledged me, though he was serving a customer, I was welcomed and asked to take a seat. The staff were with me asap. They measured me up and got a few options for me to try. Nothing was too hard for them. It was great to experience great customer service. It was the little things that made a difference, the personal touch.


  • When is the last time you experience good customer service?
  • What made the experience special?




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