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Wrapping up the week, and no one washes a hire car...

Uncategorized Jul 30, 2016
Things are certainly getting pretty hectic as we prepare for the International Maxwell Certification event in a few weeks’ time in Orlando Florida. There will certainly be lots of great stories shared over the 5 days. No one is better at crafting stories than John Maxwell of course!

I hope you have enjoyed this week’s stories, I’ve tried to give you a bit of a mix, so that no matter who your target market is, hopefully you’ll find something that helps you dig out your own stories.

Yesterday’s story was Smile, you’re in training – this is really a basic personal development point that is universally applicable – it’s ok to make mistakes! In fact, you have to!

Wednesday’s story was specific to speaking – Get your kids speaking – but it was getting good at speaking through the process of growth – which is applicable to everyone, isn’t it? The process of growth is pretty much the same for everyone and...
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Smile .. you're in training

Uncategorized Jul 28, 2016
Here's today's story ..
In one of my very first jobs I was charged with a project to roll out about 70 new computers to the London head office of a Swedish Pension company. It was very important that it went well and there were no hiccups, downtime or outages I was told!

There’s so many different permutations and combinations with computers - different hardware, software, networking, printing, modems, games! And this was in the old days before everything was far, far more automatic.

It was a daunting task, there were literally hundreds of things that could go wrong that I could think of, and thousands more that I couldn’t think of.

One day while trying to get my head around it all, I was discussing the project with Stevie from the Treasury department. ‘Well if you want to use me as a guinea pig’ he said, ‘iron out some of the kinks before you do it for real, I’d be happy to help.’

‘That’s a great idea, I’ll take...
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Get your kids speaking!

Uncategorized Jul 27, 2016
Here's today's story ..
‘Who’s going to introduce you?’ Susan asked me.

‘I’m not sure, who do you think?’

‘What about Amelie?’

Having our daughter introduce me seemed like a wonderful idea, but she was only 8 years old.

‘Would you like to do it Amelie?’

‘Yep!!’ she said with a beaming smile, full of confidence.

So that was that.

When Amelie walked into the ball room with our Nanny, Hatti, and looked at all the tables of people, spread out across the room as far as the eye could see, it was not quite what she had in mind when she said yes!

She looked up to Hatti for reassurance. Hatti’s face was filled with terror. ‘Oh my gosh!’ Hatti said as she scanned the room, wide eyed.

Susan looked down at Amelie and said ‘Let’s go up to the front, and get ready’

The ambience of the room as 750 people talked excitedly in the decadently laid out ball room would have...
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Step forward into growth ..

Uncategorized Jul 26, 2016
Here's today's story ..
A good few years ago, we were having a two story extension added to our house, and for some unknown reason, I decided it would be a good idea if I tiled the roof myself! It was summer, it was hot, I thought a little here a little there, and it would be done in no time.

I’d never done anything like that before. I had no idea why that didn’t put me off, but it didn’t.

Now, if you watch 'proper roofers' (as Susan likes to call them!) at work, the first thing that happens is steel or aluminium scaffolding is put up, by professionals. This allows the roofers to work safely at height.

After some thought, I decided I wouldn’t get professional scaffolding put up .. I had a much better idea. I would do it myself. And no need to use metal scaffolding, I would make my own out of wood!

(Important note: I can now say that this is not a good idea. Don’t try this at home. It is not safe.)

Well, surprise surprise!  It was much harder than...
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Don't forget to dream big...

Uncategorized Jul 25, 2016
Here's today's story ..
I remember doing some filming with Les Brown in Orlando in February 2014. Both our birthdays are around the same date and so we thought it would be fun to do a few informal videos.

‘Susan, hit a brother up with some mascara would ya?’ We were filming in our suite and Les wanted to borrow some of Susan’s mascara for his touch-up – some of you will know what that means, if not, that’s another story for another day!
A few minutes later and we were ready to go. The filming was completely unprepared, unrehearsed and even un discussed. We just launched straight in to it.

As soon as the camera came on, the Les Brown we all love and know came on too, radiating out life in every direction. ‘Hi I’m Les Brown and I’m here with my good friend Roddy ..’

After we cracked a few jokes about birthdays and my incredibly white legs, Les asked me a question ‘Share with everyone what is the most important...
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Stories are everywhere / Are you creating a storm or a calm?

Uncategorized Jul 22, 2016
Happy Friday Everyone, hope you’ve had a great week and are excited about the weekend!

Before we get to today’s story, how are you finding the stories so far, are they helpful?

My goal is for you to see that you have stories all around you, once you start seeing the world that way. And you have a rich history of learning through experiences, all of which are potential stories.

STORY TIP #7: The BEST stories are often the ones where you, either at the time or thinking about it since, had a GENUINE personal ah-ha!

To jog your memory, here’s what we’ve looked at this week (to read them in full you peruse this blog if you want):

Monday’s story: A special story for a special girl
It was Eliza’s birthday, so this is a story about Eliza. But it’s also a story about unconditional love. It’s a story about everyone is perfectly imperfect, just as they are. And it’s a story about accepting yourself as you are. Depending on...
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Too busy to listen?

Uncategorized Jul 21, 2016
Here's todays story .. I apologise in advance for this story :) 
You know those days when you’re just too busy for interruptions, whatever they may be? Well, this was one of those days. Susan says, ‘There’s something wrong with the hot water, it smelt funny when I filled the bath up.’

Frustrated and inconvenienced and with no gracefulness whatsoever, I tutted, stopped what I was doing, and marched over to the hot water tap in the kitchen. I turned it on and let it run for 30 seconds.

‘It’s fine!’ I said unable to smell anything.

Later that day, Susan was running the tap in the kitchen ‘Come and have a look at this’ she said ‘There’s little black specs coming out of the tap’

I looked and saw the tiniest of bits of fluff or something. ‘It’s fine’ I said impatiently ‘just let it run for a bit'.

A few days later Susan came marching down the stairs wrapped in a towel with a...
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Swimming lessons

Uncategorized Jul 20, 2016
One of the things that you’re never really prepared for as a parent is the sheer amount of time you spend on the school run. And that doesn't include the constant ferrying around to all the various after-school clubs!

We have four children in three different schools, which is challenging enough. But add in guitar, piano, golf, chess, swimming, mad science .. not to mention school assemblies, school plays, parents evenings, family assemblies .. and that’s without birthday parties of practically all the class mates of each child .. and then play dates on top!

I think it's easy for parents to slide inexorably into becoming bad tempered taxi drivers! 

One day I had taken Amelie and Leon to their swimming class and to try and make some use of the dead time, I decided to swim myself while I was waiting.

I had been trying to become a better swimmer for some time but just couldn’t get it right. I was fit and so I could put a lot of power into my strokes, but I...
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Uncategorized Jul 19, 2016
In 1975,  I was 6 years old. I had just learned to snorkel and was incredibly proud of myself. I practiced with my new mask and snorkel in the bath and was amazed how easy it was. And how freeing it was, I could swim anywhere now, it didn’t matter if I couldn’t touch the bottom because I could put my head down and breathe!

That summer we went on a family holiday to Punta Mongo in Spain. My sister is 3 years older than me, so she was already a good swimmer and a good snorkeller; but having just learned, I was full of that kind of confidence and arrogance and naivety that people have when they first pick up something they like.

We were on holiday with some family friends who had rented a speed boat for the duration of the holiday. We explored along the coastline and then ventured further afield to this island a mile or two off shore. We anchored in a beautiful bay with turquoise water everywhere around us – it was quite literally picture-postcard-perfect!

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A special story for a special girl

Uncategorized Jul 18, 2016
I hope you had a fantastic weekend.  The sun is shining in England, and it's a very special day, so I wanted to share a special story with you today.

When our first child was born in 2005, we thought we were the luckiest people on the planet! The experience was perfect, she was perfect, the natural, drug free, home delivery was perfect.

I cut the cord and then Susan cuddled and bonded with this tiny new life for an hour or so. Then I got in the birthing pool (we had it installed in the sitting room in front of the fire) and Susan passed me this brand new little person. We played together in the warm water for ages.

It was a magical night. The world truly did change forever that day.

When our second child was born less than two years later, we expected it to be the same magical experience. It wasn’t. We were in the same room of our house. We had the same birthing pool. We had the same attitude. But it wasn’t the same at all.

From the moment Eliza was...
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