Stories

Apr 2017

Day 1. Fly Brisbane to Launceston. My lovely daughter dropped me at the airport. I guess she does owe me a few taxi trips. I was feeling a bit blue because Katey had left the day before to fly to Singapore for her best friends 40th. I missed her and

I would say that identifying why you might be feeling meh about things is not an easy thing to do. There are many possible reasons, and some may even need specialist help if its more than just feeling generally uninspired or unexcited about life.

It might be your work, your

Recently I've had an experience at work that reminded me that physical walls result in mental walls, and once the physical ones are removed, we can still think and behave as if they're still there.

I work in a very structured and hierarchial enveronment. There are good reasons for that, mostly

The person that comes up with a way of working out if it's in your best interest to push through with something like study or work will be a millionaire. Sure there's thousands of books on pursuing your passion, life coaches, friends and family, careers consultants and other professionals that

Being like every other parent on the planet, I want to provide the best possible foundation for my kids to succeed in life. We all know education is important, and it's natural to think that sending your child to a private school is the wise thing to do.

So I did

Mar 2017

Do you ever wonder what people are really thinking, what struggles they are having? Those very same people can be the ones that seem invincible, brave and like it's all a piece of cake. Let me give an example, and perhaps you have had a similar experience?

Recently I won a

I am fascinated with how we form beliefs. This could be because I was raised with many rules that were part of the religion I was born into. I'm not going to bag the religion, but am going to talk about some of the beliefs I formed. Some were inherited,

Lately I have been been surprised to find myself questioning why I'm doing things. Don't get me wrong, I have a lot of exciting things on the go and everything is going great. I have a great partner who I adore, kids that I love, a job promotion, two dogs

Recently I ran a trial personal development program over three months. It was broken up into four groups, with each group getting various parts of a program that I have developed over the last four years.

I was interested to see what combination worked best for people. Most of us know

I've been watching a tv series called living with the enemy. Two people with opposing views on all sorts of things live together for ten days. For example one of the episodes was on Sudanese refugees living in Australia where Abe is a refugee and Nick an aspiring politician who

As a father of three, I have observed a few things about parenting and that's what I'm writing about here; specifically the emotions you feel when they make choices you don't agree with.

The first thing is that it's easy to forget that we were young once and probably

Feb 2017

There's information all around with instructions on how to have the life of your dreams, so I wanted to do different. I'm going to write about all the things I did that helped me stay stuck. Think of it as the blueprint for drudgery. I had a well paid corporate

What can you do in thirty minutes? Watch a TV show or troll Facebook perhaps? I'm a father of three, my youngest is fourteen, so I thought I knew it all about raising kids. My oldest two were done at school, but my youngest wasn't doing so well. I admit

Jan 2017

Everyone tells us it's smart to buy a house, but for me and many others I'm sure it becomes a weight around our ankles and locks us in to a certain lifestyle. We budget around the house as that becomes our biggest expense, and then become entirety dependent on our

Dec 2016

One of the good things to come from a long career in corporate IT is a good understanding of the value in doing root cause analysis of problems. This is where problems are looked at wholistically rather than just fixing all the knock-on problems in isolation. For example,

Nov 2016

We all know that the having a job pays the bills, but we also know that it stands for Just Over Broke. We're hardwired to live to our means so the more we earn the more we spend. In fact, if we're in a job that brings little satisfaction we

If ever you're wondering why you're so busy working to make ends meet, you're not alone. In fact, you're probably too busy to read this, but if you do then it might shed some light on why you feel that way. The thing is, busy doesn't give you much time

I remember in year nine we had to write an essay on winning and why we thought that we focus on that as a society. I thought it was an interesting topic, and it's only now that I'm in my forties that I can see how much it can affect

This is unedited, taken straight from facebook while I underwent flight screening for ADF pilot selection. This was one of the most mentally challenging experiences of my life. My brain wouldn't turn off so I couldn't sleep much, around three hours a night. I had wanted the experience to be

Oct 2016

Have you ever thought you need to do something extravagant to have some sort of epiphany? Or maybe just because others have? Perhaps something like travel the world or volunteer in a third world country. Have you ever listened to someone tell of their amazing adventures only to feel like

I used to think I needed a full time job and that was that. I had this idea that a part time job would give me more free time but I worried I would miss the money too much.

I was ridiculously busy, I would leave home at 7am and

This article is written for anyone that has realised how much a big home loan is affecting their quality of life. In 1865 the US abolished slavery. In those times there were chains, but today the chains are much more subtle. We can be chained to our home loan, trudging

Relationships can be tricky things. We all know that couple that have morphed into a single entity. You know, the ones that have joint social media accounts. While this is  clear cut case of losing your self identity, sometimes it happens much more subtly.

I know this from experience. I had been

Sep 2016

My first experience with action planning was before I even heard of it in the self-development context that is so prevalent now. I was familiar with project plans from my corporate job, but didn't understand that the same principles could be so useful in my personal life.

I had always wanted

When I started on my self development journey around seven years ago, I started to hear about visualisation. I learned of the US fighter pilot George Hall using it to practice golf while in a POW camp. I heard of the experiments where basketballers were broken into three groups. One

Something struck me recently about how we can get into the habit of putting things off, telling ourselves we have heaps of time and we'll do it one day. We makes excuses, blame our situation or others, but what if that day never comes? What would we give to be

Aug 2016

As parents we want the best for our kids so we pile on the pressure to do well at school so they can get into uni. In year 12 they get handed a book and asked to pick a course. What if they don't know what to choose though?

Chances

The last stage of Australian Defence Force pilot selection is a two week job interview. There is flying, group activities, leadership assessment and a four person panel interview. They assess candidates for the potential to be an officer and also a ADF pilot. I arrived Sunday afternoon and met two

Jul 2016

Sometimes, waiting for something important is really distracting. Anyone that's ever applied for a job and waiting to hear the outcome knows what I'm talking about. It occupies your thoughts most of the time. If the outcome could mean a relocation, and time away from family then it's even worse.

So

Don't you find it fascinating how our minds work overtime, with random thoughts popping in all day long? Apparently most people have around 50,000 to 70,000 thoughts per day. Have you ever noticed it only takes one negative one to change you mood and your outlook?

You'll find hundreds, if not

I'm forty-five years old and have three kids between thirteen and twenty. I worked in corporate IT for around fourteen years and had a few other jobs before that, including electrician, medic, sales and telecommunications.
My childhood dream was to be a military pilot, but then I found myself married with

Jun 2016


As anyone who's in the job hunting market knows, it can be a horrible experience. I have been in my current role for just over a year while I explore other options. In that time I've put in for a few different jobs there. Some went no further than putting

I used to earn three times more than I am now. I don't say this to brag, but it has given me a fresh perspective on finances. I currently pay a tiny fraction of what I used to pay in tax. In real terms I'm not much worse off than

I want to share some experiences I've had recently that have shown me the value of persistence and maintaining professionalism in the face of failure or adversity.

Some time ago I was in the midst of one of the most disappointing experiences of my professional life.  I had just had my

May 2016

Comfort pain doesn't even make sense right, how can you have comfort and pain, and what is growth pain?  Something happened to me recently which gave me a whole new understanding of the word pain, and it wasn't either of these, it was a physical pain but it got me

Have you ever noticed how some people seem to have a special quality that allows them to bounce back from anything? Almost like a super hero.  Have you ever been curious what it is? Maybe when you stop to think about it for a while you'll recognise it.

I'm talking about

To be let down in love is one of the most painful experiences, I don't need to tell you that. We can fall into the trap of believing we need someone else to love us to be happy. To make your happiness dependent on someone else puts you in a vulnerable position though,

If you're like me you think there's more to life than just going to work, paying bills and weekends, with weekends being the only highlight. I used to think there was something wrong with me for daring to think this. Everyone else seemed happy enough with this.

What I've

You would have been to a seminar like this or at least heard of them. You know the ones. You conquer some fear or walk on fire, or perhaps one proclaiming that you can turn your passion into a million dollar business. It draws you in right? Did it change

I love data because it helps us quantify things, but I will talk more about this later.  I am part way through raising a family. Previously I was married and had a fairly normal sized mortgage. I say normal because it made me feel better at the time.  It was



I went through high school around twenty-eight years ago.  School was great for learning to read and write, learning some history,  making friends and lots of other really useful stuff. What it didn't help with is learning about myself; self awareness. I think it's a little different now and that's

I was stuck in a way of living and didn't even know how stuck I was. I had been in the same type of job for about twenty years and I needed it to provide for my family.  I have three kids. They are expensive after all. I needed to

You're may be over seeing the motivational quotes about the power of our mind, but I know how real it is, positive and negative. Our mind controls everything and it's a topic that's so close to home that I named my business after it. We, or someone else may put

After my wife and I separated, the next five years would turn out to be challenging in many ways,  but one of them was managing blended families. I was clear with what I was looking for in a partner, as I didn't want to go through separation again, especially with



Before having kids people tell us how much they'll change our life. I had no idea, although I thought I did.  When they are young we discover it for ourselves first hand.  Then those with older kids tell us to wait until their teenagers, then it really gets interesting.

 We quietly

I like to think of a goal as being the bridge between now and then. You see where you are now and where you want to be, so a goal is what can get you there. Sure, you can try and swim across the river but then you at the

I first heard this story a few years ago and it's stuck with me, so I wanted to share.

During the years when diamonds were first being discovered in Africa, a farmer was intrigued by the promise of great wealth. Only one thing stood in his way. His farm had

Mental toughness is possibly one of the best indicators of future success. Just consult anyone that you consider successful in anything, and ask them if their path has been easy or tough. Most likely they will talk about things like persistence, not giving up, overcoming failure and determination. All of

One of my biggest fears was waking up one day when my kids were all grown up and I was about to retire, and then realise the last twenty years where a whirlwind of work, chores and stressing about keeping my head above water while swimming in a sea of

Motivation is a fascinating thing. When we tap into it we can do extraordinary things. My first profound experience with it was in year ten at high school. I was dwelling in the bottom group of my maths class, but then I decided what I wanted to be when

The words are etched in my mind. I think they caused me to stay trapped for a long time. They may have been said in jest but if so there was still a tone of seriousness behind them. They came from my dad. We were on a holiday and

Is there anything in the way you react to some things, how you feel in certain situations or anything at all to do with your character traits that ever cause you angst? I know there has been with me. The thing is, they can become such an intrinsic part of

Some things make me incredibly anxious. I think this is totally normal although I have no way of knowing if I experience it any more or less severely than anyone else. Unfortunately there's no universal standard or meter that displays it, so I can only really talk about how it

It goes without saying that as a parent we want the best for our kids. Somewhere along the line though this can lead to sacrificing our own dreams and happiness in the false belief that we can't be a good parent if we continue to be true to ourselves and

For a long time, I found myself in an empty relationship. I had three kids, and my life consisted of long days at work before coming home to my family. Don't get me wrong, my world revolved around my family. It took up most of my time away from work

At school I was never the star athlete, I always finished mid pack. I didn't really have any special abilities, I was alright but nothing special. I always had something in me though that made me want to exercise, and I believe it's had a lot to do with my

Recently I came across a gem of a tool called the Clifton Strengths Finder 2.0. I can't even remember how I discovered it but I'm glad I did. If you're like me, you have probably done various personality and aptitude assessments in your time, and probably found some more useful

I want to share a couple of experiences I had with my son today. The first was at his soccer game. He was excited about it. The game started and he was substituted off towards the end of the second half. His body language told me he was frustrated and

Apr 2016

A trap I'd fallen into once my career had stalled was waiting for a redundancy. It was possible that I'd get one, and my thinking was that a redundancy payout was an entitlement not to be missed out on, that I deserved it, and that it would be financial suicide

It seems from my personal experience and from talking with others that job satisfaction is an anomaly rather than the norm. How inspiring is though when someone loves what they do. That's one reason why shows like MKR are so popular. We get to watch people do what they

I remember it fairly clearly so the memory must have some special significance. I was at school and had just written an essay and needed to take a side and clearly state my position. I couldn't. I could see both sides equally. This was something I continue to observe about

It's impossible to avoid comparison in life. My first memory of this was at our primary school athletics carnival. It's a race to see who's the fastest. Being the fastest means something good apparently, and it's hard not to attach a sense of self worth with the outcome of such

My first memory of fear
My first experience with fear that I can remember was learning to swim. I must’ve been around five. I made it known to everyone who was at the pool that day just how much I hated it. I screamed my lungs out. It must’ve been very

Dec 2015

One of the critical differences between life coaching and sports or other types of coaching is where the knowledge come from. In traditional sports coaching for example, the coach is usually someone who has played the sport for a long time and knows the technical aspects and training methods and

Have you ever done something and then thought to yourself why didn't I try that sooner? Have you ever heard someone else say it?

There was a reason you didn't do it though. It seemed valid at the time, but afterwards maybe it didn't seem quite as convincing. Maybe it

Nov 2015

We all have fears, and they're different for everyone. Tony Robbins says it stands for False Evidence Appearing Real. He says this to make a point that it is just an emotion, like sadness, hurt, anger and so on. I have been intrigued by those that face their fears and

One question has been sitting with me for a while. Why do we quit something that at some point we thought we really wanted?


My conclusion was that there are four reasons why this would happen and I've written about them before. If you haven't read that article,

The story has been around for a long time, and as far as I know no actual frogs were harmed in the making of it. One day, a frog finds himself in a pot of water. That's fine, frogs like water. Very slowly however, the water temperature increases. It increases

Some googling on Australian companies and reading about their vision, mission and values gives a good insight into what they're trying to achieve, but how many of their employees actually know what they are?

When I was training with my teammates during one of the many early morning training sessions in

Along the Brisbane River, near the botanic gardens, you can see corporate offices, and you can also see boats moored in the river next to the gardens. You couldn't have two more different ways of living. The boaties live minimally, with the freedom to pack up and sail to wherever

You may have a job, you may even have a great job, one that you love. What happens when that is taken away? What do you do next?


Picture this scenario. I find specific examples are always helpful. John (not his real name) has just been made redundant. He is

Oct 2015

There is a growing awareness in self development about the power of purpose, or about knowing why you do the work that you do. It is a worthwhile question to ask yourself.


A recent survey by Deloitte found that eighty percent of workers were planning to stay in

Resistance isn't pleasant. It's so much better when things are easy. There is a silver lining though, as difficulty, resistance or tough times do make you stronger and you may be about to have a breakthrough sooner than you think. Let me give some analogies on resistance that we see

One thing has stuck with me from my many years in the corporate world. It was the last day for a long term employee of the company I worked for. We had a morning tea, he gave a speech and when asked what he was going to do

There's a lot of talk in self development circles about mental barriers and limiting beliefs. They do have a purpose, to protect us and stop us from getting hurt, basically a survival mechanism, but they can impede our growth.

So what if there's stuff you want to do, and you have

Anxiety is something to be avoided at all costs, right? It's uncomfortable and not a nice feeling not knowing what's on the other side, the unknown. We like predictability and security. Security is one of our fundamental needs as humans.

Have you ever noticed how motivating it is though? Isn't

The mind is our most powerful asset, but can be our own worst enemy as well. Success can be earned and learned. Unfortunately too many see it as something that happens to someone else. The chosen ones, the gifted ones or the lucky ones. The problem with this

We beat ourselves up for many things, and one of them is failure. What's worse is that it can cause us to give up on something completely.

Here I will explain the four most common reasons why we quit on things. I hope it gives you a better understanding of some


One of the issues I struggled with for a long time is knowing if I should leave my job, or stay. It seems that the longer I stayed, the harder it was to leave.

The problem was that every day I had a feeling I was missing out

One of the best happiness and growth inhibitors is to tell yourself I can't do something, or I'm not good enough.

Anything can be learned and developed. I love the example of Temple Grandin. She grew up with autism and had all kinds of problems understanding the nuances of human

I listen to a lot of different speakers, and one analogy which really resonates with me is something Denis Waitley says. He describes failure as being like fertiliser.

When he explains it, he describes it being like when your neighbour fertilises their lawn with a pungent, organic type of fertiliser.

If you watch the news sites or television, you will see the stories that entice. The stories proclaiming how someone became an overnight success, the entrepreneurs who took a chance and it paid off, how someone else has the dream job.

For anyone in business, or who has had

Do you struggle with negativity when implementing change?

One thing I observed in my many years in the Corporate World was how often any any proposed changes would be negatively received.  Yes there were some who embraced it, but this was rarely the case.

Let me use an example of two different types

Sep 2015

You know that feeling. You’re doing something you enjoy and it seems effortless.  Time seems to stand still and you’re in that zone.

Now think about your working day. Do you have that same feeling?  If not, then there is hope and it may just mean you’re not in the right

Around six years ago,  I realised I wanted more out of life. Surely there was more to it than catching the same train every day to the same unfulfilling job .  I realised that a lot of the things that are so freely available to us like technology and TV

Have you ever heard anyone use the phrase, 'and I even get paid for it" when talking about their career? It's a sure sign they are doing what they love, and feel fulfilled. They would do it for free if they had to, so the pay is just a bonus.
I

When I worked in a corporate environment, a common saying among my colleagues was that they felt like they had a pair of golden handcuffs on.
We were all well paid, but there was little sense of accomplishment or achievement in our daily work. So what they meant by this was that

We all have those days, you know when you wake and you're just not feeling that great. Something's missing and you may not even even know what. I have something here that you're welcome to try for the next 30 days to see if it helps you.
The first thing to understand with this is

Jan 2015



I took my eleven year old son on a bush walk on Sunday. We arrived at the mountain and the top was in the clouds. It looked daunting. We started the climb. The start is always the hardest as your body adjusts to the effort. With a bit of

Nov 2014

Sep 2014

I had a chat with Col, who sailed in the Clipper Around the World Yacht Race in 2013/2014. He sailed the legs from Rio de Janeiro to Cape Town, to Albany and then Sydney. For the first time all Clipper yachts (purpose build 70 ‘s) then competed in the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, starting on boxing day, before finishing the leg in

Aug 2014

So you’re in a job that brings you little satisfaction, and may even leave you feeling empty. To leave a job is not a decision to be taken lightly though. You were always told to suck it up, and just do what you have to. Is that the right thing

1. Once you were diagnosed, what were your immediate thoughts?

That first sign of blood! It’s more the shock, the suddenness, the split second you know something is seriously not right. You know your life is about to change, big time. But there was no panic. It’s not over till the

So why is change management such a big part of ICT and business? There are two main reasons. The first is that there is always change, and there has to be. There are fixes to apply, configurations to change, upgrades, and business requirements change. That’s just how it is, as



1. What inspired you to build a boat of that size, what was the moment that made you decide I'm going to do that, and what was your plan once it was finished?

Before moving to Townsville I had spent some time in Brisbane and used to frequent the boatyards around

The week before a race always invokes a lot of emotions. Excitement, nervousness, confidence, fear and doubt. You know the sport is dangerous, and every meeting there are crashes, so it’s just a part of the sport that you need to be aware of. The night before the race is

Jul 2014

I have to share an experience I had while coaching someone recently. One session I do involves questioning the client to fully understand their core values. One way to do this is to focus on their main goal at the time, and to ask questions in a certain way to

I was in my late thirties when I separated from my wife. My kids were thirteen, eleven and six. It wasn’t something I wanted, but we don’t always get what we want just like Mick Jagger says. I was lucky in the sense that I still got to see my

It’s tempting to take Monday easy. It’s the first working day of the week, so it’s nice to ‘ease’ into it rather than take it by the scruff of the neck and say ‘bring it on’. I learned to embrace a hard Monday workouts during my time in the military.

My first flight, or Trial Instruction Flight (TIF), got me hooked on flying. I had wanted to be a pilot at various stages since grade five. I was obsessed with the Roulettes, which is the RAAF aerobatics team. I would go and watch them whenever they came to my

I had worked in the same IT job for around thirteen years. It paid well and I worked with great people. To be honest though, that was the only part of the job that I still liked, the people. On July four this year, my team leader asked me for

Have you ever thought of packing up and moving the family to a small town? I sure have. I can truly see the appeal. This article is about a friend that moved his family to a small town called Wallangarra, right on the Queensland NSW border about one hundred kilometers

Let me give you a personal experience of what it was like for me doing a freediving course. I had always been curious about it, but to be honest the thought of holding my breath while underwater did make me feel quite anxious. Just a word of warning that this

I want to share an experience I had recently. It's to do with disappointment. For the last ten years, I had wanted to be a Navy Diver. I was working full-time, and wanted to stay with my family and not relocate them as they were settled in school and had their group

Dean Merlo is the founder of Merlo Coffee. I asked him five questions about his recent participation in the Vinnies CEO sleepout in Brisbane last month, where he raised $42 996 for the homeless. See here for more information on the Merlo story.



1. What was the most profound thing that happened to you as

Having goals and a sense of purpose are important, but let me give an example of what happens when we pursue a goal, as it's not only about the goal, it's about the journey to the goal. Let me explain more. Say someone has a goal to freedive down to

Geoff Rodgers is chairman and founder of Rowland Consulting, and I asked him five questions about his participation in the Vinnies CEO sleepout in Brisbane last month, where he raised $41 370 for the homeless. He is actively involved in many other organisations as well, see here for more

Anyone who's got kids, and especially if you're a single parent, will know the demands that come with juggling work, finances, kids, chores and some time for yourself. One massive lesson for me has been that all my kids are different. I have 3 and they all need to be

May 2014

So here I was, bike on a trailer and going to a race track. I had done a few track days and one race weekend by now, and was comfortable with my level of skill to race with other riders. Still, I was incredibly nervous. It is a dangerous sport, but

I had always been curious about freediving, but could only hold my breath for about 40 seconds. Anyway, I finally decided to do a course. It was a small group, only 4 of us. The instructor was super friendly and very relaxed, but the first thing he told us is

I had done several static line jumps where the shute opens automatically. Now it was time for the one where I freefall, hopefully have my body in the right position, then pull the cord.  I had heard several jumpers tell of when they weren't in the right position and lines then

Wake at 5.30, try and eat brekky even though you know u could be bringing it back up soon.start at 7. Set up and check all the dive gear by 7.30. Morning pushups and parade at 7.45. Game of touch footy 8-9.  A quick shower and into wetsuits ready for

2