You are currently browsing the monthly archive for July 2021.

The future is difficult to predict, especially in these strange times.

It’s challenging to plan too far ahead.

A few times, we’ve thought about attempting to book holidays, but everything seems so erratic, that it seems pointless.

It seems stifling, frustrating, out of control.

But while the future is fickle and the past is in the rear view mirror, we still have today.

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A boxer has someone in their corner.

They will bark instructions and provide coaching.

They will remind them of the pre-fight strategy.

They will be an extra set of eyes, giving a different perspective on the progress of the fight and the perceived weaknesses of the opponent.

They will do their best to stop the bleeding if the claret starts pouring.

And alas, they will protect them by throwing in the towel the beating is getting too unsafe.

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At lunchtime today, I had a choice.

I’m working from home at the moment and the kids had just returned to school, so after completing a few chores, I could have sat on the couch and watched some Olympics events or I could take Dusty for a walk.

Dusty could tell that I had a dilemma, so she helped me make a decision by wagging her tail enthusiastically.

“OK, girl, let’s go.”

I grabbed my warmest jacket and braced myself for the wintery day.

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Behind every Olympic gold medal, there’s an unwritten tale.

Same with every successful business person.

And every famous artist.

And virtually every person that we revere and respect.

We see the evidence of their greatness and admire their obvious talents.

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I watched with great interest as Kristian Blummenfelt won the Olympic triathlon today.

It was an extraordinary effort from the Norwegian and the moment he crossed the finish line, he fell to his knees and was in obvious discomfort.

It was hard to watch as he vomited all over the ground, but to me it made his win even more impressive.

He won by a reasonable margin in the end, but to do so, he pushed himself to the very limits of his capability.

Far beyond what was comfortable.

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What a wonderful celebration of humanity.

All nations represented.

Athletes of all shapes and sizes.

Flags waving proudly.

People smiling and dancing.

Everyone delighted to be there.

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Yesterday, I had the great joy of watching the Milwaukee Bucks win the NBA Championship, led by the extraordinary Giannis Antetokounmpo.

My oldest son is a big Bucks and Giannis fan, so to share this experience with him was very special.

Giannis is an amazing young man, having been brought up in Greece the son of Nigerian immigrants and the way he has remained humble and family oriented throughout his burgeoning career is inspirational and impressive.

As a basketball fan, I have watched his game develop to an incredible level due to his work ethic and drive, and he is to be congratulated for his remarkable achievements.

But what can we learn from a 6’10” athletic beast who just managed to score 50 points along with 14 rebounds and 5 blocks to win the NBA title?

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Most days, I take our golden retriever, Dusty, for a walk along a track through the bush out the back of our place.

It’s a pleasant walk and having a forest only a couple of minutes away is amazing, but at this time of year, it looks very drab.

There’s a lot of grey and brown and muted green.

Mud and rock and bare tree trunks.

Nothing too bright.

Nothing too cheery.

But if you look closely enough, you can see a splash of yellow.

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That pen is made for writing.

That lamp is made to light up the room.

That car is made to get us from A to B.

That oven is made to heat up our food.

That mop is made to clean the floor.

And you were made with wonderful talents for a glorious purpose.

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I recently stumbled upon the work of musician and story teller, Morgan Harper Nichols, and am so glad that I did.

One particular quote stood out to me, especially after a range of conversations with family and colleagues.

When you start to feel like things should have been better this year, remember the mountains and valleys that got you here.

They are not accidents, and those moments weren’t in vain.

You are not the same.

You have grown and you are growing.

You are breathing, you are living, you are wrapped in endless, boundless grace.

And things will get better.

There is more to you than yesterday.

I don’t know how this year is going for you so far.

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