No such thing as a bully

Bullies have been on my mind lately.  A few weeks ago we had the headline in the Guardian about a ‘bullying culture’ in universities.  I work in this sector, so the story was both interesting and familiar and prompted me to a direct marketing campaign – I can help employers with this kind of problem. Next I conducted a mediation where both parties were complaining about being bullied by the other.  This isn’t as unusual as it sounds.  My job (successful in this case) was to help each party hear [...]

How hard it is to run when you’re in a bad mood

I run.  Not fast and not very far, but frequently enough to notice how sometimes it feels effortless (dare I say enjoyable) and sometimes it feels as if the oxygen’s been sucked out of the air and it’s up hill there and back. There will be no difference in the set up; my diet remains pretty much constant, I’m hydrated, I’ve had the same amount of sleep, I’m not injured, the route is the identical, and the weather doesn’t really affect me (so long as it’s not boiling hot). Spoiler [...]

Why’s that boy wearing my jacket?

I heard a programme on the Radio 4 recently about humiliation.  It told the story of a boy who grew up poor.  His mum had found a fabulous jacket in a jumble sale, which the boy adored.  All his friends wanted to know where he'd got it, so he'd made up a story about a rich uncle in the States.  Then one day, fetching a ball from neighbouring flats, a kid shouted out why's that boy wearing my jacket?  The kid's mother yelled back that she'd donated it to a [...]

2018-09-25T10:43:52+00:0025 September 2018|coaching, Ego, humiliation, mistake, misunderstanding|0 Comments

Why one bad thing leads to more bad things (and what you can do about it)

Something bad happens and before you’ve even thought of picking yourself up a ton of disasters tumble down on top of the first, as if they’ve been waiting round the corner for the go ahead.  Recognise that? Shakespeare (of course) summed it up nicely: When sorrows come, they come not single spies but in battalions. Indeed they jolly well do. It’s as if the Universe is … well … taking the piss.  If you found yourself in the pub with the Universe, you’d give it a wide berth on the grounds that [...]

2018-09-13T12:45:48+00:007 September 2018|coaching, Hope, mindfulness, negativity, positive outlook|0 Comments

Talking too loudly on the bus

I am on a trip down the west coast of the US, taking in a few large cities and some smaller places.  It’s easy coming to the States, apart from the money.  Or not so much the money, but the tick I’ve developed whereby I can’t help comparing the notes to Monopoly.  It’s boring for anyone in the vicinity and I’m dealing with it.  The language is by and large the same; the culture is familiar from films and TV; America’s  political news was the world’s news even before Trump [...]

The wrong film

Last night I went to the wrong film.  A lapse of concentration at the ticket office meant that I saw a film call Won’t You Be My Neighbour instead of Three Identical Strangers.  Kind of linked in broad idea, I guess, (if I am being kind to myself).  Both documentaries, so at least the same genre.  It's not as if I set of to see PS I love you and ended up in Mad Max Fury Road. I realised the mistake about ten minutes in.  I felt disappointment and a [...]

2018-08-21T22:29:07+00:0021 August 2018|coaching, Hope, meaning making, mistake, serendipity|0 Comments

Eckhart Tolle A New Earth

A few years ago my sister gave me Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth.  I started reading it, thought it was pretty interesting, and got about half way through. About a week ago, his name having come up again in a number of important conversations, I picked it up again.  This time I couldn’t put the book down.  If I were to go against the rule I set myself in the last post, I’d make some trite comment that sometimes things arrive at a time when you can’t really process them, [...]

2018-09-25T16:13:01+00:0021 August 2018|coaching, Eckhart Tolle, Ego|0 Comments

On not making meaning

Since I lost all my previous blog posts, I’ve been having difficulty building the stock up.  I’m stuck.  They call this writers’ block, that’s the generic name anyway.  The specific problem goes something like this: I have a small idea, something that’s occurred to me during the day.  I start to write about it and then I get to the part where I have to bring it all together and wrap it up with some kind of pithy observation.  Then I dry up, banality getting the better of me.  I [...]

2018-08-21T20:32:17+00:0021 August 2018|coaching, meaning making, meaningfulness|0 Comments

My Excellent Memory

I am proud of my excellent memory.  I know exactly what people said, what they wore, how the behaved, years back.  No one queries it, which is how I know I’m right. I am currently visiting the apartment in Aix en Provence that I first visited as a fifteen year old.  It’s not unusual to visit places you came to as a child, often you visit periodically over your life.  I guess it’s slightly less usual to have had a forty year gap. Several things have struck me.  First, I’d [...]

2018-08-21T19:50:49+00:0021 August 2018|coaching, memory, misunderstanding, Uncategorised|0 Comments