YourMondayMotivator: Last day of 2012. Now what? ….. Exciting. Plus The 4-Hour Chef.

It’s the last day of 2012, we’re still here, and a new year beckons. Brad Paisley said, “Tomorrow, is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.”

In my opinion every day is like that but the start of a new year, a new 365 days, gives us a starting point to begin anew. Exciting right?

Last year my challenge was to complete 10,000 push-ups by doing 35 each day. To complete it I had to quickly jump down and do 35 before I wrote this.Mission Accomplished! That is very cool, for me. I actually did 10,325.

What did I learn from doing this challenge? That it is very hard to do something everyday you’re not passionate about. I would be doing them just before I went to bed or having to get out of bed to do them. Crazy stuff. But the feeling of completing them everyday was well worth it. I’m going to have a new exercise goal for 2013 and this has given me the confidence I can complete anything.

In 2013 my big challenge is to cook twice a week. For a lot of people that might not seem a big challenge. Let me tell you that for me it is and it’s going to require learning new skills and being very organised.

Tim Ferriss

To help anyone else who might be interested in learning a new skill I have a giveaway for you. My book for the year is The 4-Hour Chef by Tim Ferriss. I like the idea of being an experiment of one and Tim always has new things I can try. Some things stick, others don’t work for me, and that is the idea.

To enter the draw all you have to do is reply to this email with your challenge for 2013. I will then put all those challenge’s on my blog, put everyone’s name in a hat, and draw a winner.

If you’re afraid of having your challenge public I have this advice for you. Putting my push-up challenge out there made me accountable to a lot of people. Being accountable pushed me to do my 35 everyday. Doing 35 push-ups everyday made a difference to my life in ways I hadn’t counted on.

I don’t expect many entries for this because not many people have the guts to be accountable and responsible for their actions these days. I hope you’re one of those that do %%First Name%% and I’m looking forward to reading your challenge and supporting you to complete it.

Write your 2013 Challenge.

Remember it doesn’t have to be big. 35 push-ups a day isn’t a big number. Doing them everyday, e v e r y d a y, is a challenge. But I’ve done it and I’m smiling. What could you be smiling about this time next year??

My best and happy 2013.


YourMondayMotivator: Christmas and Co.

“Maybe Christmas,” the Grinch thought, “doesn’t come from a store.” Dr. Seuss

I probably shouldn’t babysit and write.Although a blanket, trolley and shoes are providing entertainment right now.

So, Christmas and Co.

The Co. part stands for Company. That is the commercial aspect of Christmas which has been with us since the 1880’s. That’s the part the Grinch in me detests because that’s not what Christmas is about, right?

What is motivating / demotivating about Christmas is the thoughts that spring to mind. These are mostly based on past Christmas’ and the ads you’re seeing on TV and in your letterbox. It’s a time when the those who can feel the need to spend. And those you can’t wonder how they will face their kids in the morning.

Santa by Nast

Luckily for New Zealand our Christmas is in Summer and some amazing experiences can be had for free. But do we take advantage of them, or cop out and just buy the presents?

This is the first year in the history of Spike I won’t be manning the phones or doing the work. That is amazing for me. Real progress. I’m actually going to be able to have a break. Uh oh. Now what …..

With that I wish you a Happy Christmas and I trust you can get out there and take advantage of whatever your town, City or Country has to offer.

Have a great week, and, read a book.


Three things that inspired me this week.

11 X-mas Gifts That Can Change Your Life (Or Save Your Ass) – read
Jody Jelas’ personal weight loss tricks – watch [Jody really put herself out there for this one.]
Drift Shifters goes global after CBD skidfest – read [This is HUGE. Kiwi ingenuity well-presented and scalable].

YourMondayMotivator: Nothing-ness

“The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.” Socrates

Should I write about the shooting in the US? The awful loss of innocent lives and the media who amp it up, make the shooter famous, ignore the victims and the internet and social media that allows it to spread so fast. No.


Because what this attrocity (and it is) has proven is that I know nothing. Nothing about a country that somehow breeds such contempt for life. Contempt the country itself condemns in other countries and religions and yet has more loss of life like this in it’s own back yard.

I know some Americans. They are excellent people. Normal people. They don’t all carry guns.

And I definitely can’t get caught up in the Facebook sharing and hysteria. Because only the pretty ones get shared and we are only getting half the story.

Oops I’ve written about it.

So why the subject line nothing-ness … When these things happen I feel a black hole has opened and sucked a bunch of goodness from the world.

Black Hole

But something inspired me this week that will help you fill this black hole just a bit. Watch what happened when some discovered the body of a violin in a dump. A dump where they sort trash to make a living.

It’s inspirational and perfect for this time of the year.

Have a great week.


One big thing that inspired me this week.

The Landfill Orchestra from Paraguay use intruments from rubbish – watch

YourMondayMotivator: What talent do you take for granted or have forgotten you had?

We all have a talent. Something we do that seems so easy to us, and others around us, we take it for granted.

Over the weekend I had a conversation about a software programme that had been written by a friend. After I was told about it my reaction was not the awe of the other person. It was that I wouldn’t have expected anything less from that person.

That thought occured to me and we discussed it some more. I realised I wouldn’t have expected anything less because that is what that person is really great at. If they had done something far ouside the scope of their talents I would have been saying whoa!

The other thing I thought about is software is something I deal with every day. Programmers and developers are a part of my life so writing a programme isn’t a big deal.


But. That’s not right. It really is a big deal. To get to a point where someone can make writing a software programme look easy takes a lot of practice. Years in fact.

This week I’m going to be more mindful of what I and others make look simple and I recommend you do the same. Being mindful of others will make your “hidden” talent stand out. Make a note so you remember what it is.

Remember we all have a talent we often don’t recognise in ourselves because we take it for granted. And once you recognise again it you might find the passion for it returns. And that is when your day will get a lot better.

Have a great week.


One person that inspired me this week.


YourMondayMotivator: Keep it simple …

Confucius says, “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.”

I reflect a lot on how I act. Even when I’m being unsociable I take notice of the way I am acting and decide whether or not it suits my purposes.

As an aside, sometimes when emotions take over it’s very hard to stop being unsociable. Its very interesting. I sometimes reframe that as being passionate and it works well to calm the situation / me quickly.

Life is simple. But that can be boring. So as Kurt Vonnegut says in the article I link to below we seek drama in our lives. The drama gives us the highs and lows we think we need. In my opinion some people actively seek to cause drama to give themselves something to do. A challenge to think about and unravel.

More often that not life then gets complicated as the balls you are juggling start to hit the ground. Not everyone can forgive you for being a numpty.

Two people talking

Keeping things simple in how you act, what you say and what you do, will take a huge load off your mind. Why? Because you won’t have to remember what you said to this person, what you did to cause that in that person and who you have to be on eggshells around.

However, that’s easier said than done because we have generally been here for some time and have caused a whole heap of drama already. And there are those who will still see you as the person who caused the drama years after you have learned the lesson and moved on. They will keep reminding you about it.

Life is simple, yeah right. But it is fun and if you can be mindful of keeping it simple you will be a lot lighter and deal with a lot less drama.

Have a great week.


Three things that inspired me this week.

18 Year old Alex Stoddard’s photography. Look

Bugatti Head of Design’s Personal 911 Project. Watch

Kurt Vonnegut explains drama. Read

YourMondayMotivator: Who do you talk to?

“The reason I talk to myself is that I’m the only one whose answers I accept.” George Carlin

Who do you talk to? I’ve had the thought that if you don’t have someone to talk to things build up inside until you explode. And that’s not nice for the person on the receiving end and probably not a nice experience for you.

If you don’t have someone who will listen without judging or adding their stuff you have a mountain of resentment inside you.

Two people talking

Find someone you trust to talk to and have a chat from time to time. Computers and technology will never take the place of human contact.

Have a great week.


One thing I’ve found super inspiring this week.

Self-taught African Teen Wows M.I.T. Watch

YourMondayMotivator: What do you know? How do I know you know that?

“It doesn’t matter how much we know. It matters how clearly others can understand what we know.” Simon Sinek

Late today. And the later it gets the more distractions I have. So writing becomes a real challenge. Great fun.

Over the last few weeks we have been working on how we get people to know what we know in a very short time and in a simple format. It’s hard. We know a lot about email / database marketing and have a lot of information we could talk about. And I sometimes do … up until eyes glaze over.

Working out what is the most important thing to talk about is a matter of asking for lots of feedback, trying out different angles, tweaking an angle, presenting it back and asking for more feedback. The results for us are more clients with a clear understanding of how we can help them.

Rocket Man

What would the results be for you if people clearly understood you? Huge right?

This applies to all areas of your life. On the sports field the best players are generally the best communicators. In business people will follow you if you have a clear sense of purpose and a plan – on paper. Not just in your head. In your personal life the difference between being understood could be the difference between resentment, divorce and a life time of happiness.

You know a lot . A lot more than you might be able to elucidate right now. This week pick one thing you can work on to be clearly understood about. Put it out there, get feedback, were you understood. Tweak the message some more etc.

Next week pick on more thing, work on it. Treat it as a challenge. A challenge that will make you a better communicator in all areas of your life. Repeat.

That will make a visible difference to your life because people love learning. They not only love being being understood but understanding something they never undstood before. When the lightbulb goes off a smile always follows. Make lots of smiles.

Have a great week.


Three things I’ve found inspiring this week.

Ben Horowitz on being a CEO and Courage. Watch
(Todays pic) Kiwi rocket trials new form of propulsion Watch
Classic video. BRE Datsun vs Alfa Romeo. Watch

Photo credit

YourMondayMotivator: The dumbest idea ever?

Doppler effect:  The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.  ~Author unknown

How many dumb ideas have you had? If you’re near my age the number will be less than you might think.

Why? Because the older we get the more time we have had to lock in the positive, or negative, memories of our past. A great trick our mind uses to filter all the stuff coming rapidly at us so we can learn new things and not bring back the 1000’s of time we last did something. It’s is now proven that we do this automatically. Which to me has an interesting outcome …

You can create your life.

Sonic Boom

Not in an airy fairy pie-in-the-sky way. But in a concrete, scientifically proven way. By choosing the memories you continue to think about, add meaning too, and spend time on, you lock in place the story of your life.

Charles Donoghue talks about memories being like a bunch of grapes. The first time something happens you create one grape, or a neural pathway. The next time another and so on and so on. Adding grapes to the bunch so that in the end you have a big bunch of grapes that is either a posivitive memory or a negative.

The next bit is interesting. Depending on how much thought you give to this memory it will either become locked in place or wither away. You have control over this.

In fact you have complete control over this. Which means that you have complete control over the memories that make up the story of your life.

You don’t have to go to the lengths psychopaths go to convince themselves they are sane. But you could take it to the limit that people use to fool lie detectors with. I’m not advocating lying. I am pushing for you to give energy to positive memories. Because if it is for good and helps you create a better life for yourself and those around you it is definitely worth hacking your brain to do it.

Have a great week.


Three things I’ve found inspiring this week.

Dan Pink on motivation. Watch
Cookie Time cookies now on Air NZ flights. Read
Tim Ferriss – How to write a best seller. Watch

YourMondayMotivator: Lord, give me credit.

“If you want to give a man credit, put it in writing. If you want to give him hell, do it on the phone.” Charles Beacham

I own an SME. Spike is one of the 97.4% of New Zealand businesses that have 19 or less employees. In my opinion, and contrary to what the media and Government might espouse, I believe Small to Medium Enterprise is the backbone of this country. It’s where the innovation and ideas come from. It’s an “I could do that better” attitude that leads us to go out on our own. It’s also an attitude I think is hurting this country but that’s for another missive.

Today I’m going to have a rant about credit and how we pay each other, or don’t. I really love to pay my bills on time. It is something I have worked hard towards from a time when I couldn’t. A time when it seeemed I had no financial intelligence at all. I learned a lot from that time.


I believe paying bills on time shows respect for the person or company who’s services you used. When I couldn’t do this simple thing it affected not only my credit but my reputation and business. It’s that important.

It seems to me we are a nation of business owners who on the whole think that 20th of the month following is a given. And sometimes just a target.

It’s not. It’s a dumb way of doing business that by limiting cashflow can have disastrous effects. And it does. The history of New Zealand is littered with businesses that could have been great but didn’t survive the first two years.

Here’s three things I think can help New Zealand businesses when it comes to credit:

1. Team. You need a good accounts person. One who is available every day of the week. Outsource it. There are plenty of great bookkeepers who work from home and work around their kids timetable.

2. Communication. Call the person you owe money too and let them know what’s going on and what you are going to do about it. Once the rules are set in place everyone feels a weight has lifted off their shoulders.

3. Get help. We need to admit we don’t know what we are doing earlier than we generally do. Business is not meant to be hard. There are rules, and people, who can tell you how you could kick arse. Find them. Find a coach who believes in you and what you are doing and listen. You might be barking up the wrong tree and knowing that sooner rather than later can save a lot of heartache. It can also show that with a few tweaks you could be world class.

I’m very passionate about business in New Zealand and the difference SME’s could make to the economy and well-being of this country. I hope today’s MondayMotivator prompts some action in you because I know you can make a difference.

Have a great week.


Three things I’ve found inspiring this week.

Elon Musk. The future of sustainable energy and living on Mars. Watch
Chris Sacca on TWiST. Watch
Jody Jelas – Three ways to smash through your comfort zone. Watch

YourMondayMotivator: Porsche Passion

Magnus Walker has got a passion for Porsches. ‘Porsche Passion’ he says in an awesome video I have watched twice now.

I can relate. I love cars. Someone asked me recently which ones I liked. My answer was all of them – except ones that in my opinion are rubbish. My website is a testament to that.

But what this video got me thinking about was the passion Magnus had for everything in his life. He appeared to put his butt on the line for things he believed in and just go for for it. It’s how he started his clothing line which lead to him being able to afford his first Porsche 911.

Magnus Walker

Passion is sometimes hard to explain and can sometimes lead you down the completely wrong path if it isn’t tempered with awareness. Awareness of what is socially acceptable. What won’t be offensive or harmful to others.

Passion is what got you to where you are now. Passion is what others admire and respect in you.

You might not know that . Someone right now is admiring your passion. They might not say so directly to you. You might not even know who they are. But as I have discovered lately people are watching all the time and taking note.

Have a think about where you show your passion and be mindful of it so you recognise it when you do. It might surprise you what you are passionate about and what you stand for.

Have a great week.


Three things I’ve found inspiring this week.

Magnus Walker – Urban Outlaw. Video
Jonathan Barnbrook National Radio Interview. Listen
Steve Jobs lost speech from 1983. Read and Listen