Friday, March 22, 2019

The Happiness Formula

In the Year of the Pig (“Happy as a pig in xxxx” springs to mind), I’m moving on from my Brexit rant as promised.  There’s a movement sweeping the globe – from academic institutions, management consultants, think-tanks and media commentators – The Happiness Movement.  Of course all these people are obsessed with counting it, measuring it, and developing metrics and league tables for it – which takes away some of the Happiness as far as I’m concerned.

Maybe you’ve already seen where your nation, town, company ranks in its particular league table or maybe you haven’t.  Either way, this isn’t about measuring Happiness.  It’s about doing it.

Some tips to make you happier:
·       Spend more time with Family, friends and most importantly on You.
·       Life Life Slow.  Live in the now, not yesterday, not tomorrow.  Focus on living in the moment.
·       Live Life, Love Life.  Be grateful for what you’ve got, not what you’ve not.
·       Finish work early – and don’t tell anyone.  Nip out at 1pm Wednesday for a decadent lunch with friends – and don’t think about work.
·       Wear trainers every day for work and play.
·       Listen to The Beatles – their early, happy-go-lucky stuff – Sgt Pepper and before.
·       Write something physically with a pen – a letter, a poem, a song, a blog.
·       Go somewhere new.
·       Give someone you care for something they’d never have bought themselves.
·       Go for a solo walk by the sea, or in the woods – off season.
·       Binge on an entire series of your favourite guilty pleasure TV show.
·       Watch Guardiola’s Manchester City at The Etihad.
·       Smile!


Monday, March 18, 2019

From eldest son Ben

In Darkness comes light. Through adversity comes strength.
Through pain, comes change.
The tragedy that New Zealand suffered has been one of total shock, out of the blue and incomprehensible.
A nation mourns. Yet the nation rebuilds. There is no division, there is only unity. And Jacinda Ardern leads that unity and is redefining leadership.
With more than 5 million kiwis globally, they all feel the pain and the grief that the incident caused.
Actions are already been take on gun control, donations have already reached record levels, today Hakas are popping up all the over the country.
This is how a nation stands strong in adversity. Together and as one.
The country is a different place to one it was this this time last week.
But it will be a stronger one soon.
God defend New Zealand.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Christchurch 15 March 2019

Friday, March 15, 2019

BREXIT – An abject failure of Leadership

I’ve resisted the temptation to rant for so long.  Too long.
It’s David Cameron’s fault.  He should be locked up in his writing shed until it’s all resolved.
·       His arrogance in calling a referendum – a dereliction of duty.
·       His decision to step down and avoid the calamity he wrought on an unsuspecting nation – an act of supreme petulance.
·       His naivete in setting the bar at 51.49 instead of the US model of 66.30 – almost criminal.

I am just so pissed off.

So sorry.

End of rant.

Normal service (Radical Optimism) will be resumed next week.


Sunday, March 10, 2019

Stand Up and Fight

Liverpool poet, member of The Scaffold, founder of The Mersey Sound, President of The Poetry Society, CBE and a Freeman of the City of Liverpool, Roger McGough is performing his new book ‘joinedupwriting’ at one of my places of work (Lancaster University) on Saturday 30th March with his band LiTTLeMACHiNe.

This’ll be the first performance of the new book, at 81 years young – his 75th published book.  (Come on you slackers – get writing!!!)  Roger says it’s his first performance of the new book and he’ll be reading some poems for the first time.  About death, politics and serious stuff – but mainly like they’re funny!!

One of Britain’s best loved poets.

My favourite.

A hero since I was 15.

Check out and  Read Summer with Monika.  And here’s three verses from a favourite:


O Lord, let me be a burden on my children
For long they've been a burden upon me.
May they fetch and carry, clean and scrub
And do so cheerfully.

Let them take it in turns at putting me up
Nice sunny rooms at the top of the stairs
With a walk-in bath and lift installed
At great expense.....Theirs.
It's been a blessing watching them develop
The parental pride we felt as each one grew.
But Lord, let me be a burden on my children
And on my children's children too.


Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Theodore Roosevelt

Son in law Mark Rolland (ex Saatchi & Saatchi, now Facebook) reminded me of this wonderful quote.  From a time when World Leaders actually led!

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”
         Theodore Roosevelt

Lest We Forget!