Our ideal work

8 03 2011

‘When we do work we love, we’re growing, thriving, happy, and energised. We are rejuvinated by it. This is our bliss, our Calling, and it nurtures us.”

From ‘Making work work for the highly sensitive person’.

Currently redesigning my life, again.

1 01 2011

I am currently redesigning my life, again.

What’s happened in the past is that I have written all my inspired ideas on pieces of paper and put them in a book. Occasionally I would take out that book and re-inspire myself by looking at the entries.

That’s great and I love doing it but it doesn’t really go anywhere, there’s no forward motion.

Read the rest of this entry »

Do something for you..

1 11 2010

Photo by lincolnian (click for site)

Hi Guys,

If you wake up feeling down the chances are that emotion will rule the rest of your day.

I had a period in my life where I felt my life was being defined by someone other than me, every single day.

I would wake up feeling down, and trudge into work with no personal empowerment whatsoever. I think this happens a lot in this world, especially as the demands of work seem to increase year by year.

Your boss/kids/dog/mother/wife/ does NOT rule your life, YOU do. You may need to attend to their needs soon but who has the right to say you have to do that first.

Read the rest of this entry »

What Ghandi said on Happyness.

24 07 2010

Gandhi said, “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”

Hmm, I like this.

I was considering recently how so many of us hide our true selves. And how this reduces our happyness in life and how much we give to this world and by association, to ourselves.

Our environment is so important in allowing us to express ourselves. Allowing what we think, what we say and what we do to be in harmony.

As most of our day is spent in some form of work, This environment is especially important.

In my job these are definately not in alignment.

I work in a retail shop and have known for a long time, ever since I took my first job in fact, that it wasn’t the right environment for me.

It’s an environment which causes me to be more outgoing than I am comfortable with, working with things I don’t necessarily care about too much and ‘meeting targets which aren’t important to me’. Consequently I feel repressed and that I am ‘less’ than I could be.

Does anyone else feel like this in their workplace?

I am lucky now in that over the last year I have discovered two environments i feel comfortable in.

When I found these environments my soul expanded, my inspiration exploded and my heart soared.

Has anyone else found the same?

Gotta go, am going down to a local bar to talk over (having reminded myself of these environments) my next life/work choices with my partner.

Best wishes


10 ways to live authentically

12 07 2010

Top Ten Ways to Live Authentically

By Ann Ronan AuthenticLifeInstitute.com

1. Know Your Purpose

Are you wandering through life with little direction – hoping that you’ll find happiness, health and prosperity? Identify your life purpose or mission statement and you will have your own unique compass that will lead you to your truth north every time.

2. Know Your Values

What do you value most? Make a list of your top 5 values. Some examples are security, freedom, family, spiritual development, learning. As you set your goals – – check your goals against your values. If the goal doesn’t align with any of your top five values – you may want to reconsider it or revise it.

3. Know Your Needs

Unmet needs can keep you from living authentically. Take care of yourself. Do you have a need to be acknowledged, to be right, to be in control, to be loved? List your top four needs and get them met!

4. Know Your Passions

Honor those things that make your heart sing. Whatever it is, do more of it!

5. Live From the Inside Out

Increase your awareness of your inner wisdom by regularly reflecting in silence. Commune with nature. Breathe deeply to quiet your distracted mind.

6. Honor Your Strengths

What are your positive traits? What special talents do you have? List three – if you get stuck, ask those closest to you to help identify these. Are you imaginative, witty, good with your hands? Find ways to express your authentic self through your strengths.

7. Take Time to Play

Give yourself time to recharge doing things you love to do or by just doing nothing.

8. Be Aware of Your Self-Talk

Are you blocking your potential? Check out your first thoughts when you wake tomorrow. Are they supportive, encouraging or positive? Choose the kind of chatter that’s goes on in your mind. Become aware of the negative messages you give yourself. Gently catch them and turn them into positive affirmations.

9. Surround Yourself with Inspiration

Keep a success journal. Write down your four or five greatest strengths and post them where you can see them. On the last Friday of each month, write down all your accomplishments both big and small.

10. Serve Others

When you live authentically, you may find that you develop an interconnected sense of being. When you are true to who you are, living your purpose and giving of your talents to the world around you, you give back in service what you came to share with others -your spirit – your essence.



Who do you work for and who do you help?

10 06 2010

Help others
Now I thought I wanted to help people. I thought that all I wanted to do was make people happy. Well, I’ve done that and I’m not happy.

Why would I not be happy helping people? Well, perhaps because at the moment I’m not actually helping people at all!

First a bit of background..

I never really wanted to work in retail, it was all a bit scary and busy. But needs must and there I was in my first retail job, in a record store. I found I actually liked helping people, when I was never really interested before.

In the small way that you do in a record store it made me happy to help people. Likewise with the ski instructing, the cabin crewing and the cafe work. But it never took long before the magic went and I needed a change.

Pondering recently, the lessening interest I currently hold in helping others, it stuck me that I actually wasn’t doing it at all. I wasn’t helping them, I wasn’t even helping myself!

To all those who work in retail…….I reckon that we’re all sadly mistaken if we think we are helping the customer. The customer is being helped by the owner of the company and YOU are helping HIM.

That kind’ve threw a dark rug over my bright altruistic thoughts and may explain why in a retail job I tend to last about 5 months feeling bright and happy and then have to find little shafts of light in my work to help prop up my feelings.

Where did this come from?

On a flight back from Turkey the other week I wandered over to give a man some sage advice on how to help his young child stop crying. Never mind that what I thought the boy was crying about wasn’t at all what he was actually crying about! As I got down on one knee next to his seat all the old cabin crew feelings came flooding back. I felt truly altruistic, warm,caring, peaceful and giving. These are the feelings I enjoy and I wasn’t even being paid for it!

Where were all these feelings in the retail stores I worked at? Oh they were there all right. Right up until the point I got my first pay cheque. THEN I remembered what it was all about!

I thought I enjoyed giving help to people but have I actually been doing that? Perhaps being paid by someone to help someone else is not actually helping. Perhaps that’s bribery?

So I feel only feel happy helping people when I am truly giving to them, not getting something in return for it, helping the old lady cross the road so to speak.

Helping yourself

I guess I have believed for a while that the aim of the game is to help ourselves first. I have tried to find the magic inside me and then somehow help others to experience is too. But it’s not just about that now. It’s about my whole life. And I am so much closer to nailing the ‘holy trinity’ of how I want to live:

Who I work for
Environment I want to work in
Type of people I want to work with (and how I do)

The results of this are showing. See my Dilly the Dog and Holly the Daydreamer posts below for the results so far.

Now, would anyone like help with a writing project?


‘Where the needs of the world and your enjoyment intersect, that’s where your work lies.’

Andy’s thought on how to get the best out of employees.

16 05 2010

Andy’s thought on how to get the best out of employees.

image by imapix (click)

Employees work best when they have defined objectives. Ideally a small number of them and ones which change only on an infrequent basis.

Give employees a framework in which to work and allow them to do so. Constantly changing the goalposts is a surefire way to introduce frustration.

The man at Tesco’s packing shelves has a distinct job to do and if we were to require him to run back and forth between the tills and his trolleys at the drop of a hat he should surely get dispirited.

People work best when they have focus, when they know what it is they have to do and what they need to do to get there.

Henry David Thoreau says..

22 04 2010

This, to me, struck a chord:

“Don’t cheat yourself by working primarily for a paycheck. If what you do with your life free-of-charge is so worthless to you that you’d be convinced to do something else in exchange for a little money or fame, you need better hobbies.”

“Sustain yourself by the life you live, not by exchanging your life for money and living off that.”

New ‘About Me’ page text

9 09 2009

My New ‘About Me’ page for this blog

Photo0612Early on in andrew’s life he decided that a non-conformist route would suit him best. Something perhaps to do with a rigid catholic school upbringing, but whatever it was, it has taken him down some interesting routes.

Andrew has been a ski-instructor, psychology teacher, I.T. consultant, car-park atendant, barrista, ski boot fitter, running shoe gait analyser, directory enquiries operator, shop worker. Phew!

What Andrew does for a living is important to him, whatever it happens to be at that time, it’s always something which resonates with his inner life.

“I want to connect with people, help them in some way, but I also feel it’s important to help myself by enjoying the process. Life can be about excitement and that’s what I constantly strive for.”

Writing is a integral part of Andrews life. His words allow him to express thoughts and ideas which otherwise would go unsaid and he wants his primary writing focus- topics of self-help and insight – to be that which will help others on their way. He is also in the process of writing a childrens book about a young girl who daydreams alot!

The way he wishes to help people as well as himself is not something he has fully defined yet but this blog has been a starting point on the road of inspiration. Read his post on ‘Life is like a game of table football’ for the type of writing he loves to do.

For the warriors, remembering who we want to be.

5 09 2009

Recently I have been reading pages upon pages of articles about making money on the internet and of being your own boss.

I am interested in the other side of life, the non-conformist route to living. That route which takes me away from 9-5, takes me away from spending the majority of my waking hours sitting uninspired in front of a computer monitor earning money for someone else.

When we talk about the industrial revolution we talk of poor working conditions, of slavery like pay and hours. We believe its gone away, as if it’s somewhere in the past. Is it really?

Perhaps if you work uninspired behind a computer in a dimly lit, cave-like, office, you might like to think about whether that belief is true.

As I write these words a feeling of shame pervades my system, as if I should take those almost inflamatory words back. But I won’t, as I know that feeling is born of the need to conform, to apologise for the way I am and what I feel.

Well, I won’t do that. And I won’t listen to the people who tell me I should either. They are not my friends.

What I will do is point you towards places and people you can read about and listen to. People who have chosen to leave the ‘new industrial revolution’ to live a life that they themselves dreamt up.

This is fast becoming a passion of mine. And I am not alone.

Here’s a starter for you. Chris Guillebeau has an uncommon perspective on working life as he has never worked a ‘normal’ job. Embracing the possibilities the internet has to offer to communicate with people, he decided to live the way he wanted to, tell people about it and help them to do similarly, but importantly, only if they want to.

He sounds like a great guy, check out his site (subscribe to his blog, it makes some enlightening reading)…oh and download his pdf’s, they’re a great inspiration.

The Art of Non-Conformity


I want the world

1 09 2009
I want the world

I want the world

If I could focus my thoughts.

26 08 2009

There is an argument for having a single focus. If I could capture all my stray thoughts into one venture I could own the world 🙂


Play the circle game (organizing your life)

18 08 2009

Buy a copy of Steve Chandler’s (link) 100 Ways To Motivate Yourself: Change Your Life Forever. For those people who wish for a better life, reading one page a day is a fantastic way of giving yourself a reminder in the morning of the possibilites your life could hold. It’s an inspirational speed-up 🙂

I thought I would share one of the ‘100 ways’ I read this morning. This is Number 67 ‘Play the circle game ‘.

The day to day activities of life will serve to move your focus away from your dreams of a perfect life if you let it. By incorporating this game into your daily habits you can bring your focus back to what you want it to be.

Use this for realising your dreams. By ‘realising’ I mean not only bringing them to fruition but also understanding how they are not something in the far off future but are now, in this day, in every action you take.

Here are my efforts from this morning (excuse the scrawl!).

One of my life goals  (click for larger image)

One of my life goals (click for larger image)

The idea is to draw four circles.

Label the first:

“Lifelong Dream”

Then write something into it.

For simplicity Steve Chandler uses a monetary example.

You want to, say, save half a million dollars for your retirement, write it into your circle.

Label the second “My Year”. Here you write what you need to save this year and every year (remember to include interest), in order to reach your Lifelong Dream target.

Then label the third circle “My Month”. What do you need to save this month in order to meet your yearly target. So now, half a million dollars doesn’t look so scary, you know if you that if you save XX thousands per month and repeat it, you’ll get there automatically.

Now label the fourth circle “My Day”. This is what you need to save today and could repeat every day, in order for it to be a successful month (It’s probably a much smaller number that you would imagine.)

You would need to read the book to get the proper description (and more inspirationally than I can put it over) but you get the idea.

It’s a process of goal setting but by spending 4 minutes a day reviewing this, you will keep your focus on your goals.

I have realised, for one of my lifelong dreams, ‘To be doing inspirational things everyday which will earn me $40,000 per year”, all I need to do is one inspired thing per day. Example, read an uplifting book or rss feed or listen to some great tunes.

From now on, my focus is to do one small inspirational thing per day, one medium sized one per month and one big one per year and I will actually be living an inspired life!!! Hold on, I thought an inspirational life was something I should aspire to. A life is a series of days so, no, I can actually do it right now!

100 Ways To Motivate Yourself: Change Your Life Forever has so many novel ideas for keep your spirit aloft, I love it.

Change of blog title

11 08 2009


For Sue

I have just been reading Pamela Stephenson’s biography on Billy Connolly.

His early life in subtle ways  reminded me of mine. It also reminded me of how much of what I do now really is just shadow play, playing with what I think I can do, rather than what I really can do.

I think in some ways, what I am doing now is a form of re-birth, a form of going back to what I perhaps should have been doing about the age of 17, testing, trying, doing small jobs to figure out who I am. Perhaps it is also a taking time to accept who I am and to understand some of my more obscure thoughts and beliefs.

At any rate, I believe I know who I am inside, but seeing through my thoughts is like coming down from a morning watch in a ships crows nest – seeing the deck, foggy below and needing to scale the complex rigging in order to get to the ground. Scary – but ultimately rewarding.

Dancing around the edges‘.

Is all this western freedom of choice a good thing?

4 08 2009

Wooden Hope

Wooden Hope

An article in the English Sunday Telegraph magazine recently, talked about a famous film and the deeper nature of its story related to todays society. This paragraph hit me as perhaps one of the reasons many people feel frustrated with their lives.

“The key to the appeal…is the way it addresses the fundamental anxieties in American culture. ‘ What the story speaks to is mastering a sense of inadequacy that’s built into the American system. In other words: you’re free to become who you want. Which is terrifying, because you have no support. This sense of can I make it, am I good enough, do I have the right stuff? [the film] is a little capitalist bliss, everything’s perfect, shiny, grand. And I think it speaks about the longing and the feeling – the hope – that we’re all right inside ourselves and can reach that.’ ”

The number one key to success…

1 08 2009

Photo by : <a href=
Photo by: Mel

What disappeared as you grew up? What happened to this as you started to listen to other people’s opinions of you? What went as society started to tell you what you should be doing with your life?

Your imagination!

Einstein said :
“Imagination is more important that knowledge.”

Einstein said that?!

One would have thought Einstein would value things the other way around. But this is from a man who worked at a patent office in order for his mind to imagine the different answers to his questions.

I have admired from afar those who knew what they wanted their life to be like when they grew up. History shows us that many of them were born into adverse circumstances and many had early experience of positive role models, people who inspired them. These people’s role models or circumstances drove them to be more than they were so they effectively imagined their way out of a situation.

“If you can dream it, you can do it.”
-Walt Disney

Inspiration is akin to dreams, the drive (that many of us receive only in brief moments) to DO, the drive to BE. The motivation to improve, to discover, to grow.

This is powerful stuff!

I have spent years looking for the knowledge that would allow me to find the job that I love to do, only to realise that the happiness I seek isn’t outside but within.

But how do I do this, how do I dream my future Andy?

For now, try this.

As you go to sleep at night try to get a picture in your mind of what you would like part of your life to be like. If you can’t picture your home life then try your work life, if you can’t picture your work life then picture what car you would like. Pick the easiest thing to dream about. However small this dream is, it’s a start and you can build on it.

Try that and let me know how you feel inside when you do!

Imagination is more important than knowledge for knowledge is limited to all we now know… Albert Einstein

What if I didn’t own a car?

25 07 2009
1994 1.6cl Excellent condition, 99,200 miles

1994 1.6cl Excellent condition, 99,200 miles

If you didn’t own a car would you feel like a social outcast? Somewhat different from the rest of society?

I am preparing my car for sale, contemplating what it will feel like to be without one for the first time in 15 years. I am, on one hand, looking forward to it and on the other scared.

I suppose I am scared because the car to me is a method of obtaining a slice of personal freedom, or holding some control over my course in life. Not having one might mean I feel cooped up, or have to resort to the sheep like mode of transport that is public.

As with many things in my life, what I believe to be true is actually completely the opposite (thank goodness!) so in reality it will probably mean I will feel free-er than ever and might even improve my fitness levels (bike and walk being the new modes of transport).

Anyway, I secretly enjoy being different to most people. So if you see a cyclist speeding past you in a queue. Only to find him arrive at work at exactly the same time as you (whilst you have been sitting in the normal Monday traffic jam), be assured he is smiling as he locks it to the stand, safe in the knowledge he is not one of the crowd.

More thoughts on jobs me and money

5 12 2007


Why do i find it easier to work for no money than for money. Its like doing it for free makes it more rewarding?

Is it because i feel i am giving of myself benevolently is it that accepting money makes me feel like a prostitute?

I want to feel good when I work, I want to feel that work values my principles, can i get this while earning money as well? Perhaps the issue of earning money butts up against my freedom issue. By giving me money does it make me feel people are tying me in, are they saying here is what you need to live and of you don’t do this, you won’t get it.

Is money then like an addictive drug, as soon as i see it in return for my work i feel enslaved by it. Do I fear not getting it and then get resent ‘they’ are making me feel like this?

A conversation begins in my head between a older man, a stranger, and a young boy….

Would you like some candy little boy..go on, do something I want you to do and i will give you some.

Wow, is that the way i feel about working for money, like a dirt old man is trying with a lure to get me to do something I don’t want to do.

Another imaginary conversation between a employer and an employee….
“yes, this job pays £16,000 a year and your responsibilities are outlined below”
‘You had better work or you don’t get the money’6056203190174-08112-1.jpg

Kind’ve like overbearing parents using guilt to get their kids to do something…a method which I hate and have always rebelled against.

So I go after all these ideas of work I would love to do and get caught up in these internal rebellions because I don’t feel comfortable accepting money for what I do!!?

I want to feel like I have helped someone, how can I do this when I am accepting something in return? The playing field becomes level and I want it to be unbalanced with me at the top having given something to someone.

Ahh, so perhaps its an ego thing. Makes me feel good to give something to someone makes me better than them? By giving me money it means I am not better than them, I am actually the same as every one else and this hurts my fragile ego.

And then my thoughts get on to….
“So if I am going to receive money then I better receive a lot of it because I am worth it goddammit, £5/hour is way below what I deserve”.

Oooh, so we’re coming to the kernel of the issue. It may all be based around my need to feel superior to people (no payment) and issue of not feeling highly valued enough when I am paid, if paid poorly.

What a binding situation, no wonder I have job issues!!!

r002-001.jpgThere is another more positive less reproachful way of looking at it…..perhaps I am just someone who doesn ‘t quite get this whole working for money thing.

Meh! Perhaps I am not born for the capitalist lifestyle, perhaps i would rather work for the greater good than work for myself. Perhaps deep down I know that this isn’t what life’s about.

Perhaps I should go live with the Amazonian tribesmen who trade goods and do things for their community with nothing needed in return. Their houses are made by people who do the same their food is cooked likewise, everyone helps each other.

So is there a resolution to this. Yup, find something I love to do so much that I don’t care how much they pay me. Then the fact I love it will shine through, I will eventually start to earn more money as I am valued more.

So pretty much the same as everyone else then 😀

The trouble with jobs…

28 11 2007


Poem – Where is this all going?

27 11 2007



Full of Fear


Full of fear
I walk towards the light.

Full of fear I seek the truth,
Full of hope I join the fray
Full of wonder I ask for my best
to help myself to pass the test.


Here I go, a journey of smiles,
I will need support to last the miles.
Perhaps it will come in the form of desire

longing to pull me from the mire.
From the mire of fear and self deceipt,
I want to stay here,
I won’t be leaving with a blank receipt.


Full of fear I ask for the choice.
Full of hope I seek my future.
Full of praise for the natural tutor.
Full of wonder I ask for my best.
Full of praise I stand up to this life, the test.

Baby Steps

25 11 2007

Hi, my name is Mark and I am but still young…

Right now I am doing something I don’t have a name for buy grown-ups call it crawling. Apparently in a little while I am expected to do something call walking. I don’t exactly know what that is but it involves using my feet but not my hands. It’s a very strange idea, can’t think of why I should want to do that, this seems perfectly adequate.

Sometime later: Its a few weeks after my last posting and I am getting deep urges to do this two legged thing. Yesterday I gave it a go and fell over straight away, but that’s ok. I shook myself off, it was a shock hitting the ground but I will give it another crack tomorrow.

Tomorrow: Well I gave it a go today but still haven’t cracked it yet. Again tried to just use my feet but fell over once more, will try again tomorrow.

The next day: Ok, so here we are again, I tried it once more today and still no luck, I will be better tomorrow.

Tomorrow: Determined to crack this 2 feet-no hands thing and I realised that by finding support I could hold myself in a kind of 2 feet position, even if I couldn’t do it fully. Wanted to stay there but got tired and fell down. It’s looking good. I will rest a few days and try again next week.

Next week: Well well! I held myself up on 2 feet for longer than before, with the support of my trusty teddy (he’s very big). But what do I do now? Perhaps if I keep doing this I will get there (and at least this is better than where I was last week, I couldn’t even do it then).

The week after: Took one hand off teddy today, fell back down. Well chuffed. Next day: Took both hands off teddy today, many claps from my grown-ups, it made me feel good and I want to do it for longer next time.

Next time: Now I am getting kisses and hugs from my grown-ups…..I did the two feet thing and raised my hands in the air!

Now: I can stand and, ok, it isn’t for a long time before I need my grown-ups to catch me, but they are pleased and that’s good enough for me. Will crack it soon.

End of Diary Entry for Mark, a 35 year old lawyer who dreams of being a singer.

At the Chiropractors

13 11 2007

I was at the chiropractors today…long story…and got chatting to the receptionist. Said that I was looking for a job and she mentioned there was a receptionists role going there.

It would be a lovely job, great people, nice environment, but it wouldn’t pay the money I need to live.

Then I had this light-bulb moment which nutshelled all the thoughts i have had about jobs over the last few years.

Culminating in two camps. It was like a clearing of the waves in my mind……

1 > I would love to work there, but i would get frustrated that i wasn’t able to do anything as I would have no money.

2> working in a business environment would give me the money I need to have a life outside work but it would frustrate me as I would feel constrained by the office environment and hierarchy.

So either I have one, or the other.

[Never think that a period in between work is dead time, on the contrary it is a time to reflect and consider your life.]

A couple of philosophical questions popped up….
1) How can I have both?
2) Would I work at the Chiropractors if they paid me £20000 a year?

Firstly …2)
Yes i believe I would. I would get bored after a while but it would be a lovely place to work.

So how can I have a lovely work environment and earn decent money?
Working for someone else I would need to work my way up an organisation so I could feel I had some measure of responsibility and independence, or, work for myself.

Snow and Rock

Similar thoughts occurred when I was thinking about the Boot Fitting job at Snow and Rock. In that I would really like to do the job but only if it paid more.

I would need something else to do in the evenings to relieve that frustration at being ordered around and anything I want to do requires money. Then I get frustrated about not having money. Then i get frustrated about the job not paying enough money and frustrated from not being able to release myself from the frustration of working for someone else.

Seeing a Careers Counsellor

I went to see a careers counsellor, wow I am so conceited sometimes. I really thought that she wouldn’t tell me anything that I could trust. How could ‘they’ know how I feel about work?

We talked for a while I mentioned a few things I liked and she mentioned the idea of a Tour Guide. Not just any tour guide..and adventure tour guide.

This would certainly fulfil alot of my needs, but what about the money?

She brought up an interesting concept. Faith. She told me to have faith. Choosing something that I would be happy doing will lead to good things.

I mentioned the money situation and she talked about having to go backwards to go forwards. Again, she is so right, “but” I asked “where will it go”.
“Faith” she said.

Where now?

As my previous entry stated I will be going back into IT. Primarily to earn money. It’s the lesser of two evils right now 🙂

The biggest mistake we could ever make in our lives is to think
we work for anybody but ourselves. ~ Brian Tracy

Selfish Behaviour?

12 11 2007

MeThat’s it, working for other people officially sucks.

I have decided to do something for myself for a change.

My jobs over the recent past have been focused on trying to get a balance between helping others and helping myself at the same time (a typical Virgo issue). Or a balance between what I think others think I should do and what I want to do (I wrote that sentence and still had to read it twice to make sense of it!).

Anyway, as yet, life isn’t quite how I want it. So now its all about me.

“It’s a strange thing about life, if you ask for it, you will usually get it. What are you asking for?” ~ unknown

Stuff working for others i want to work for myself, be self directed.

I have tried to find something I can enjoy and which will give me a lifestyle want and I have found many things which were close, but not quite the cigar I was looking for.

It doesn’t help that if someone said to me
“So Andrew, what lifestyle DO you want?”.
I would probably have a million answers.
Hence why I don’t trust what anybody else advises me to do, their advice can’t take into account my ever changing moods, need, wants and desires.

Thinking about it for a mo’ I guess then my answer to the question would be..

“I want life to be a constantly changing experience, one which is different day by day”

..which is really what I AM already doing.

“The important thing is to strive towards a goal which is not immediately visible. That goal is not the concern of the mind, but of the spirit.”

~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Flight to Arras, 1942, translated from French by Lewis Galantière

Anyway, back to work…Work i do during the day for someone else is just to fill in time whilst i develop the other things i enjoy. Day-work for others it is the stuff i do to earn the money i require to live and eat whilst my brain ticks over the other options constantly making plans and inventing ideas.

So, if some bloke wants to pay me good money to sit on a helpdesk and answer phone calls in order that I can a) Paraglide b)Ski c) start my on business d) play guitar etc. then great.

For now, I have decided to go back into IT. I will probably earn about £16,000 as an IT helpdesk bloke, with no particular aspirations to go further than that. But is the absolute minimum I need to live in this country. Then I can go about ordering my life around the pursuit of happiness.

[Edit: I actually didn’t go back into I.T. , I followed my heart and went to work in a Ski shop!  Andy, 2009]

Its what the last 6 years have been about really, finding out what makes me happy.

Back then I may have thought that work alone was meant to make me happy…(and I still am on the pursuit of work which does)…but now have a more balanced view. So I am now going after things outside work which make me happy and lets see if any kind of work comes out of that.

What Work?
For work to make me happy I need to do something which is personally meaningful, which is a self-directed force, an outpouring of my creative ambition, something which is an expression of me. I can put my heart and soul into it, I can focus and give my full self to in the belief that it is where I was meant to be.

Seek out that particular mental attitude which makes
you feel most deeply and vitally alive, along with which
comes the inner voice which says, “This is the real me,”
and when you have found that attitude, follow it
~ W James.

And people, remember…

The biggest mistake we could ever make in our lives is to think we work for anybody but ourselves“. ~ Brian Tracy

Thanks for listening.



22 08 2007

Never changes track

It’s early, real early. I’ve woken up and can’t get to sleep again. Hoards of thoughts and ideas are going through my mind – about people, jobs, situations but more than that, about possibilities.
Then it strikes me, my life has always been about these possibilities. It’s been like that since I was 10 seconds old. Every day I want something new, every time I go out in the evening, every time I meet people, everywhere I go something has to be different. It’s like I crave the ever changing nature of life.
I know I could ever go to a class and be happy doing it every Tuesday at 7:30pm. I don’t think I would ever be content meeting the same people at the same pub at the same time every week regularly, I would get bored.
This anti-neutrality of situation pervades all aspects of my life. You will have noticed it most with my job situation. Or should I say situations.
Change, constant change, variation, lack of sameness, rotation, movement, vibration. All is good.

If the most torturous fate
was a mind, caged,
who would understand?

If you always found life’s elixir
in striving rather than getting,
who would understand?

If you gambled rather than nest-egged
and hit jackopt once of seven,
who would understand?

(from 'The nudist on the late shift' by Po Bronson)

Back at school :)

16 08 2007


(me, in February, chilling as a teacher)

I have been working back at Filton College for 2 weeks now. Previously I worked there as a teacher, 4 months, covering maternity leave. It was a powerful and enjoyable time and I learned many things about myself, what I was capable of, and what I was not.

I badgered a few people before left about working there next academic year and after waiting for a month they offered me some working interviewing students for this year’s intake.

I really enjoy being there, its a relaxed unpressured place with lovely people.

After work today (10am-4pm, bliss!) i went back to staff room where I spent my days from February to June. I hadn’t returned there since leaving 2 months ago.

It was weird. it felt like I was looking at my old desk through someone else’s eyes, like it hadn’t been me teaching there.

Perhaps it had been me, but a different me. An old me, one from a different time.

I can liken the feeling to if you were to return to your junior school, 20 years later. Everything might be the same as you remember it, but it would feel different, like a different life.

I became wistful about the teaching roll, remembering the camaraderie in the staff room, the friendships forged in battles against time and necessity and the relief at having achieved a tall task. But at the same time knowing that no matter how much I missed them, that role wasn’t me, it wasn’t where my true skills lie, close, but no cigar.

Now I am back there I am scouring the college subversively to find a job, any job, which will keep me there. I have my foot in the door and want to get my leg through the crack.


Keep well.


Ghosts and realities – shame and criticisms from my past and how they affect my future

8 05 2007


Dear teachers, early influencers,
and those from my school days,

This goes out to you all. All of you who criticised my actions, laughed at what I was saying, smirked behind my back at the true expressions of myself and those of you who shouted “How dare you?” when I did not understand the consequences of my actions.

You may ask “What did I do wrong?” and I am here to tell you.

You locked away my own truth, you pushed the true me and the actions by which I express myself into a dark corner. You did this both emotionally, with your sarcastic ego trips and physically when you sent me for punishment.

Every time you did this (I don’t know if you noticed this or not) I took it in. I drank your criticism like it was water laced with poison, and then shrunk away like a scolded puppy.

Over time, these retributions for my supposed ‘transgressions’, built walls between ‘me’ and the outward expression of myself. And they now impose a limit on what I am willing to express of myself. They have shamed me into conforming to your rules.

I feel what I now know as shame whenever I express myself. So early in a creative process does this shame kick in. that in many instances I never even get to the first stage of any activity I do. I prefer to hide my dreams away believing somehow that they are pointless or wrong.

I am extremely proud of those things I have achieved those times I have fully seen a project through. More often than not though I have been forced to by other people and criticised because of my actions.

For example:

Under duress I wrote a play for my ‘house’ play competition while at school. This was forced upon me by you emotional bullies who wanted nothing to do with it. From time to time you would come into my room, look at and then criticise what I had written. I remember thinking (note the ironic turn of phrase) “How dare you put down my work when you are just sitting there on your backsides doing nothing but pretending you are more important than me.”

The play really was a painful birth. However, when it was shown it turned out my writing had perfectly captured the attitudes of those emotional bullies playing it and the audience loved it. I will remember for the rest of my life the person (a peer) who came up to me at the end to tell me he thought it was a great play. I will also remember sitting in the gallery watching my peers fall about laughing to what I had written. (I should add that it only last 10 minutes until it was thrown off for “…not being in the spirit of the house play competition”!).

One further example was my ski trip to Canada where I know a number of you [whether ghosts in my memories or people around at the time] were criticising my actions believing it wasn’t going to lead anywhere, it wasn’t going to lead to a ‘proper job’ or ‘it’s just another one of Andy’s dreams’. Well people, it gave me more than a ‘proper job’ could ever have done. It gave me hope, courage, discipline, insight, strength of character and faith in my own abilities. So screw you.


Here we are folks in 2007 and those ghosts and realities have been affecting me all this time. However I forgive you. And I forgive that part of me taking on board what you were saying. You were not doing it intentionally; you may even have been doing it because you believed you were helping.

If you fall into this category and are feeling criticised by all this I would ask you do one thing. Recognise when you are criticising someone else using your beliefs on how the world should be. Recognise that everyone has their own way of doing things which isn’t necessarily wrong. More importantly recognise when you are shooting him or her down for doing their own thing. Then apologise if possible and make a mental not to catch yourself earlier next time.

That’s it. Thanks for reading. I am off down to the framers to get my ‘school play’ poster posthumously mounted and put up in its proper place, on my wall.

Pete Doherty

4 12 2006

As kids we remove ourselves from the world by immersing ourselves in animated movies, kids play (cowboys and indians and the like) basically removing ourselves from a life that is full of nothing, boredom and self reflection.

What make us believe that as adults we are any different?

As adults we have used up all the simple forms of distraction, used them up and thrown them away.
So we naturally move to activities which are more involving. That and the fact we have much more in our lives to get frustrated about, drives us to them.

Most people’s are nights out with friends – drinking and movies , parties and restaurants.
For people who still feel that is boring for people who dont feel they fit in, or don’t WANT to fit in with what everyone else is doing (and I class myself in this category)….what do they do?

Drugs is one. Watching pete tonight in his documentary was like seeing an old friend. one who is so connected somewhere else , being here is so confusing and painful.

Finding something to remove you from all that is like returning to a spiritual home. Your home, an internal sense of freedom, of ease, of contentment, of peace.

To everyone else you look messed up but that’s what you show to the world, inside you are quiet and humble, hopeful and placated – rested.

Coming to, hurts and reminds. Coming to makes you want to go back ‘home’.

Being ‘away’ releases the unusual – the free, the spirit. Everyone else is repressed but you. Everyone else was grey, a straight line, normal- the same – elsewhere.

You were special – unique, within yourself – whole and happy.

To everyone else you look messed up, inside you are you.

The dichotomy kills – needing to be outside but wanting to go home.

Be you pete.

Who are your earliest influenc-ers?

22 07 2006

I dont remember too many happy times at school. Now thats not to say that it was a solely unhappy part of my life and perhaps i only remember the frustrated hard times but when your teachers hit you for doing something you didnt realise was an innapropriate thing to do, it’s going to confuse things a bit.

These days I read books that tell you the parents are the cause of your adult issues, i read books that tell you that you chose the parents you were born to, before you were born (now WHO’s fault is that again? 🙂 ) but lets think about this, has anyone thought about teachers?

Teachers man, they have potential to change you, to build you up or break you. You spend the first 5 years of your life being told what not to do, how to act and how not to, by your parents. And the rest of your 18 years before you leave school, half your day is split with the teachers half with the parents. For the sake of me trying to convince you that i’m right, ignore holidays. Thats 13 of your most important years you spent half the time with teachers. Thus implying that teachers have an equal effect on your upbringing as your parents!

I wasn’t exactly a model child when young. The phrases i remember teachers saying to me the most was “How DARE you do that..” and when i said sorry “I should think so too…” OOOOH that made my blood boil, i dont like apologising to this day. I knew even then that they were insecure power needing idiots. I guess there were nice teachers, but i dont remember them like that. I do remember being quite bored at school, sitting down all the time, listening to stories and writing, i guess i must’ve done these ‘bad’ things to keep it interesting for me. So much so that the headmaster’s/mistress’ office became a second home.

Listening to myself at work I can still see that little guy coming out. Working with kids all day means i can have fun and not sit down in an office (aka school) having people tell me what to do and i can be sarchastic to adults just to get them to smile for the camera, thus taking out my with-adult childhood frustrations vicariously on them. This tells me alot about why i am doing this job 🙂

Teachers…….already i’m done for, and we havent even touched on school friends…..!

‘Making’ the perfect job

12 06 2006

The other week i was thinking, that I have been searching for a perfect job for 5 years now…..

and then it struck me,

What if it’s about making the perfect job?

A light went on inside my head (and i resolved to write this down – you are reading the results of this).

Searching for my perfect job, searching for my perfect job, searching. Am i relying on other’s versions of a job, others who value money over the happyness of an employee in a role? Am i really ever going to be happy with someone elses definition of a job.

– ‘Searching’ suggests that something is missing

– ‘Searching’ is a word coming from a sense of lack – of moving – looking for a better place than i am at right now

– ‘Searching’, searching for a role someone else defines for you.

Wouldn’t I rather work for something I define?

Life Coach’ed’ experiences

9 06 2006

Been doing the life coaching for 3 weeks now. [one session every week]

The best thing i have found happen is that every week i feel motivated to look a little further into things i want to do, rather than saying to myself, nahh, i will think about that/write this stuff down another day, i now no longer have the choice.

So if you want to make a change and are interested in yourself, its all very interesting.

He/she will probably start by getting you to do some exercises/homework by asking you to make list of things that e.g. you like doing, people you like being around. All of which can help remind you of who you are…stuff which you might have ‘forgotten’ or buried along the way.

The next thing on my best things about coaching list it it gives you a mirror to lookat yourself in, the coach is the mirror reflecting who you are by asking questions which get you to question yourself and your logic.

“So this is what you want to do, xxxxxxx”
(she will put it across in a different way than you did to her)
and you will say
“hey i didn’t see it like that”


“no hey, good point, i dont really want to do that”
or “wow yeah, i want it even more”

The last two weeks i have been quite down on myself and not really wanted to go…i was confused about the stuff i was saying and what i really wanted. I called the coach and told him this and he said, “well, lets talk about that then”…oh yeah! Went along and had a good session. 🙂

I have finally realised that i don’t actually want a ‘career’. And I have become much more calm over the last few weeks about my job because i have finally realised what i want work-wise isn’t going to happen with some authority figure telling me what to do. It was my coach who said he saw this in me. I kind of knew this but had no trust in this feeling until he to pointed this out. I consider the stuff i do in my spare time more important now.

To summise all this. If you need someone to

a) bounce ideas off
b) lead you to finding xxxxx (whatever it is you want to find)
c) be a personal cheerleader in your quest

Then life coaching could be for you.