Wear Your Scars Proudly

The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places. Ernest Hemingway Kintsugi (which translates to ‘golden joinery’) is a Japanese art form that uses lacquer mixed with gold to repair broken pottery. The idea is not to hide the breakage, but to celebrate it – the restoration becomes part of the history of the object. The …

It’s Not Just A Jacket

In early October 2019, I was one of the lucky 300 to get one of the Batch No.2 Paynter Jackets. It arrived just before Christmas, and has quickly become one of my favourite items of clothing. Anyone who has met me will quickly realise I’m not that interested in ‘fashion’ – but I care deeply about the story behind the …

Resolutions v Habits

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit Will Durant, American author It’s that time of year when many of us start to feel guilty because we’ve already given up on our New Year’s Resolutions. If that sounds like you, then I have a suggestion – try thinking about establishing new habits, rather …

My Best Reads of 2019

I managed at least a book a week again in 2019. In no particular order, here are my favourites: “Meaningful Work” by Shawn Askinosie In addition to making some of the best chocolate in the world, Askinosie have fed over 1 million students in Tanzania and the Philippines by feeding 2500+ students a day, they have drilled wells in remote …

Who Are You Angry With?

For many years now, I have been an avid fan and follower of Seth Godin. His books, podcast, and online courses are all excellent, but it is his daily blog that I find provides the most value. (Which is interesting in itself – he gives away his best ideas for free, every day…) Seth considers himself first and foremost a …

It’s Never Black and White

In 1999, I took part in a cycling trip across Cuba. 26 year old me was 100% certain of himself – convinced he knew everything, and that anyone who saw things differently simply needed to be ‘educated’ with the ‘facts’ [as I saw them], and that if those ‘facts’ didn’t change your mind, then you must be an idiot. [Yeah …

Reaction v Response

After surviving Nazi concentration camps, Viktor Frankl famously talked about the gap between stimulus and response. What he called “the last of the freedoms” is our ability to choose our response to any given situation. I recently came across a variation of this idea in an interview with Harvard professor Sheila Heen, an expert on communication and negotiation. She spoke …

Confident Uncertainty

There is a difference between confidence and certainty. Certainty is when we have 100% confidence – we are utterly convinced that we are right. We’ve done all the research, and all our information is completely correct and undeniable … this 100% confidence shuts down conversation. Certainty closes doors – it stops people disagreeing with you. And it closes you to …