Reach Out to Grab Opportunities

What I like most about this video is what you can see happening in the last metre:

~ First and 2nd place slow down, presumably thinking they’re so close to their goal that they can casually jog through. Yes, they’re still going pretty damn fast, but just watch their movements, you’ll notice they are slowing down.

~ Wottle, coming from last place, jumps to 3rd — then steals the lead and winning because he refuses to give in, refuses to slow down, he runs around those thinking winning place is theirs.

That’s a metaphor.

Start thinking with your feet.

Don’t let anyone or anything stop you, not your age, not lack of knowledge, not time nor distance. Not even heartache or loss. Take a chance, start again, keep moving forward, find a goal and target. Opportunities are yours if you reach out and grab them.
It’s that simple.

Oh, and be prepared – for both failure and success. Don’t be scared of either outcome. Failures are learning opportunities. Successes are not the end of the journey, they are usually the beginning of the next one.

Get moving, or your next journey will begin with you at the back of the pack..

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Speaking on Behalf of your Business

Whenever you speak, remember that you speak on behalf of both yourself and for the business you work within.

Here’s my story of proof.

About 10 years ago one morning I was traveling on a train from home into Adelaide city for my day job.
At one station a guy got on with his bike. Normally nothing would be said – but it was the express train. Bikes are not permitted. But most people on my train were already too tired, or had work on their mind already, or simply didn’t care – so let it slide. But it wasn’t going to be that simple.

He rolled his bike on, looked at me and a group of ladies sitting in seats that flip away to reveal a space normally reserved for bikes. He stood near us for a short while before turning to us and saying “Please move.”

All of the ladies, looked at him, then ignored him. They were in conversation and hadn’t anticipated this. After all, this was the peak-hour train. They’d never had to stand before that day – and rightly so.
He tried again, this time loudly and aggressively. I was at the far end of the 4 seats, so felt no immediate threat. But his tone got menacing, so I stood up and told him he shouldn’t have his bike on the express train, and that we were within our rights to sit there. He then pushed me backwards, and I fell to the floor.

I reckon the train driver saw and heard the whole conversation – the train slightly shook, then resumed speed before stopping at the next station.

At that point the train driver and two station guards were seen walking outside our carriage. One of the ladies beside said to the offensive man – “Oh look, your mummy is here.” That got a laugh out of a few of us. I had sat back on my seat, and my attacker stood at his bike. No apologies came forth.

The driver pointed at me, then at him. As they walked passed me (as they had come onto the carriage at the other door), I was nodded at. They walked up to him – and he went off at the guards, yelling about his rights. Wearing his flashy suit, metal ankle braclet to protect his pants, bright helmet and gloves. A spectacle to behold.

They ‘advised‘ him to get off the train, but just as he stepped off, one guard stopped and asked me if I’d like to press charges.

Some might say I made the wrong choice.

“No, but I’d like to ask him one question.”

“Umm… sure…” I don’t think they hear that often.

Train guards don’t touch people, they corral. I have seen it often enough. So the man moved in an odd way back onto the train without his bike.

“What?” He tried to too look angry, but his eyes said terror.

I smiled weakly and asked “Where do you work? That’s a nice suit.”
He clearly didn’t understand what I just did.

“I WORK FOR ____! THEY ARE GOING TO HEAR ABOUT THIS!”

That’s right, he told the whole carriage. The three ladies were smiling now.

“Good for you. You are right, they are going to hear about this. I can only hope you are not the ambassador for that business – because your attitude and behaviour today is totally NON-professsional. Seeya.”

Even the train guard understood what just happened. They again advised him to get off, with his shiny bike. As this wa the closest station to the city, he’d probably get to work sooner than us.

As the doors closed, there was an audible sigh, a slight laugh, and a few people applauded. I was shaking with both fear and exhilaration. I’d never done that before. I never wanted to ever again.

As I got off the train, three passengers quietly approached me and thanked me. The train guards nodded at me. The driver would have logged the incident.

And his business probably may have received a LOT of phone calls that day.
We never saw him on the train again.

Why tell you this story? I am constantly reminded of it when people I know work in amazing businesses decide to berate me on social media. What do you think I am going to do next? 

Well, I actually prefer not to do anything. I rarely delete social media unless it’s a conversation that should have been had offline. Instead your wonderful comments can stay for ALL my friends to read. Think about that for a second or two.

The Answer to the Penultimate Question! 

Being a parent has taught me some amazing life lessons, one of which contradicts what I have always believed.

So I am producing a informative tongue-in-cheek video that will reveal my answer to the most important question of all time. 

What is the question? Aha, no! That too will be revealed! To see the video late next week, subscribe to my channel: 

https://www.youtube.com/user/stephentrepreneur
If it doesn’t make you laugh, it will make you groan!

Not Everybody’s Cup of Tshirts

As a part-time hobby I design artwork for tshirts for a whole range of amazing clients.

Usually they send me a drawing or a screen-dump of something they’d like to see printed on a Tshirt. Unfortunately some I have to reject because of ‘Intellectual Property‘ laws, or it’s a blatant ripoff. Satirical pieces I have done, but more often I redesign an idea into something completely new.

Some people might take offense to words in some of my tshirt designs. Maybe they grew up in an era where sexual thoughts and offensive language were not made public let alone printed on tshirts. Or on a coffee mug. Or on leggings.

At the very least I look at client ideas, and think to myself:If I was to reject your idea because I don’t like the message, or the lifestyle it promotes, or how some religious zealots may react, what am I really saying? That I am putting others’ beliefs above my client’s gender or life-choice? That someone else runs my business? That I can or will only do artwork with the approval of ALL the people in my life? Of course not, that would be silly. No, I won’t do that.

So occasionally I design a few tshirts that are going to offend a few people. Well, that’s easy: Don’t look. If you see the tshirt in the street, talk to that person – they paid for it. Or turn away. It’s like watching TV: If the channel is showing something you don’t like, change the channel.

To date nobody has complained or commented on my artwork – yet by publishing this, they may now.

When a client or a follower wants a design, I show them three examples of my design of their idea. Because they are rarely on commission, I show them how to purchase online via Redbubble.com. It’s really easy, you can pick from a whole lot of different colors, tshirt styles, and other merchandise you might like to see it on.

Checkout the following merchandise designed for various friends over the last ten years.

If you like any of them, you should be wearing them. Don’t let anyone stop you from being what you were born and who you are. Each image links back to my redbubble tshirt gallery where you can choose which best suits you.

  

   

 

PostScript: I finally designed an unusual request from a few years ago earlier this week. It’s actually nothing new, but they wanted to see how I would approach the design. Yes, the client is a lesbian – get over it. I know them, they are a beautiful person, and their lifestyle has no impact on you or me. In her words … “Even if you were my type, you’ll never know. Those that are my type, often know before I do.” That’s how all relationships should be. Look out for this tshirt-design, it will be online very soon … and I imagine it will be more popular than the ones above!

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Learn Something New Every Day

Whilst my 2yo son cried for no apparent reason this morning, I quietly said to him … “You have been alive for less than 750 days. That’s 1/50th, a mere 2%, of your potential life. Today is just one day. Tomorrow is another. Let’s put this nappy on, and take another breath.”

It’s easy to forget that every day is a gift.

So often we tell ourselves It’s OK, I will fix/become/change/join/upgrade/update/learn/do it tomorrow – and tomorrow remains tomorrow, the day after the last day, the eighth day we dream of but never see. We keeping putting stuff off, thinking we are safe, that one day that day will come.

And this is despite, thanks to the proximity of everyone on the internet, we see every day that life is NOT forever. We hear and see violence in the middle east, terrorists in stadiums, unfortunate fatal gunshots by children. Despite this knowledge, we think our distance from these activities makes us safe from harm.

So now you know that you have approximately 36,500 days of life: What are you doing with your time?

I say this to myself daily. I have to. I am a Daddy. My two young sons are the horizon that reminds me that it’s worth the journey, and I am their rock to climb, to aspire to, to learn from, to become men themselves.

My 2yo son clearly didn’t understand much of the words I said. Yet he heard the the sombre tone in Daddy’s reassuring voice, and slowly calmed down. After a dry nappy was attached, warm clothes adorned, and tears wiped away … we hugged me and said in his beautiful little voice “Thank you Daddy” … and he waddled off to play with toys. I smiled, yet I knew he was mimicking either myself, Mummy, or even his older brother. It’s the best way to teach them – by example.