This photo is by my mate Lou who is somewhere in France right now.
Talking of France.... I was in Brussels on Friday for Ouishare summit - I love Brussels, I always feel I should be a high speed car chase with Jean Reno and Omar Sharif.
Thursday night I felt rotten, I am not sure why this is, real ill health or psycho semantic depression influenced bollox. I'd give a left kidney to be able to know which is which. If I really am ill fine. If it is some mind fuck drilling my brain to not do anything I'd like to be able to choose to power through - it is hard to judge.
#Supercoolwife saved the day again quickly mapping out how to get from Brussels Midi to the right subway station and the MASSIVE 10 minute walk down one road. I calmed down, still coughing and feeling crap I decided I was going to go.
I got everything ready the night before so all I had to do was get up and walk out the house. I slept for about two hours and was standing at my tube station in London at 05:07am 13 minutes early for the first train.
I was amazed at how packed the first train was, I could not get a seat! I often travel before 7am, and always get a seat. It seems there is an early early rush hour. So then got to St. Pancras international in plenty of time.
The long sandwich
My heart rate subsided and I set off in search of Neil.
I found Neil and went to grab a sandwich which proved to be a 15 minute ordeal - it was worth the wait. If you are in the Eurostar departure lounge don't go to Nero go to the other Sandwich / coffee bar to the left.
Both places had a big line, surely they must be able to predict how busy it will be? I am sure you can see how may seats are left online with Eurostar? I'd like to think that if I knew about 750 people were coming past my shop at a set time I'd make sure to be ready. Actually one of the best things ever has been working in events and catering where you are ready for anything, to be able to work really fast with a good team of people and keep the wait in line really short is a huge buzz.
So Neil (not Neal or kneel) and I get to Brussels after a good chat about "International Collaboration Day", which I have suddenly / recently found myself involved in.
Sitting down with +KindredHQ co-workers, +OuiShare people and +Philip Dodson is so dangerous.....
This is certainly not a complaint, much of this #sharingeconomy journey has taken me out of my comfort and 'conformity' zone into places where I instantly understand and can contribute in my best ways.
The emergency of fitting in
I have long felt un-comfortable, mis-understood, that 'I did not get it', 'surely I can't be the only one that is thinking there is a better way to do this'?
In fact people and places like +OuiShare +Neal Gorenflo +Seth Godin (to name but a few) have made it ok to question the status quo.
Not feeling ok with "sheepwalking" though life... going to school, going to University, get a job, and then get old, all the time please make sure you fit in, is not a result of a learning difficulty or being some special needs syndrome it is a product of being wide awake.
I have discovered so many books and talks over the last 10 years that give an answers to things I disagreed with and had no idea how to articulate how I thought about them.
People like Neal Gorenflo, Lisa Gansky, Simon Sinek, Brene Brown, Mitch Joel, Susan Cain, Malcom Gladwell, Jeremiah Owyang, Gary Vaynerchuk and of course Seth Godin, have made me stop feeling so weird.
Much of this is coming through in my podcast Sharing Economy Radio and (amazingly) as soon as I stopped trying to pretend to being the worlds authority on the #Sharingeconomy the more fun and natural the podcast became.
There is stuff I am really interested in - but don't know how to do - most of this is around economic models, communications and being ourselves. I have found a place for connecting all these topics and I am doing it out loud on this podcast.
Back to this weekend and Friday "Am I a dog that you would come to me with sticks?"
I felt dead most of Friday, if I had not been somewhere so interesting I think I would have fallen asleep in the corner.
I listen to most of Malcom Gladwell's - David and Goliath book on Friday while travelling and this more than makes me think deeply.
You are allowed to disagree with Gladwell - it asks some big questions of how we deal with each other, around dyslexia, English occupation of Northern Ireland and compares how two family's dealt with the murder of their children and what came from each event. Phew!
Alongside feeling like death and coughing up golf balls of phlegm I am totally energised by the Ouishare event, people from all over Europe came together to talk about the Sharing Economy. I still can't get over how many people can "just speak English" when hardly any English speaking people I know can even order a drink another language.
So I zoom home alone on the Eurostar, I get home about 10:30pm and just go to bed, I feel really sleepy. I wake up and spend all day Saturday being sick, it is not fear or depression it is actual "I ate something" or "I am ill" #Supercoolwife and #Babybernie escape to our dear friend Anna's house for the weekend to leave me alone, or rather escape me!
It is hard to tell these days if I am on a downer - which is a totally shit way to spend the weekend with someone - or if I am just "ill". I don't know what was going on, I was run down but not upset.
So I spend all Saturday sleeping, watching Christopher Walken movies and being sick. I did not eat anything and ran out of medicine, by now I am feeling miserable.
This morning (Sunday) I woke up after a restless nights sleep and felt better. I went to the kitchen and made one of those magic Indian "Turmeric, Honey and Lemon" hot drinks, this in my opinion is worth 50 paracetamol tablets and is natural. I thought I'd be sick, I felt better right away, still weak but on the mend.
Spending the day watching movies was not the way to go, I started listening to Susan Cain "The Quiet" which has been lying around in my Audible books for too long and got to cleaning the house.
I took the "Introvert / Extravert test" and came out as a "Strong Introvert" this explains a lot.
I HATE small talk, people sitting around talking about football, shopping, the weather, the bus ride in... makes me want pull out a handgun.
I also LOVE sitting at my laptop and listening to music with no words and writing. LOVE IT. Even better if I am in a #coworking place or cafe.
I have also started to realise that I need time alone to recharge, which is quite hard to find when you have a super enthusiastic #babybernie to hangout with. When he was younger he would sleep for longer, or just hangout on his own on a play mat.
You have to be there with him, even if you are not doing something directly with him he is more likely than even to work out how to plug in a chainsaw or take the lid off the kettle and fill it with chocolate.
Please don't get me wrong, I love being with him and it is vital. In fact an ideal work day would be writing for four hours on my own, having an hour long nap and then spending the rest of the time cooking, walking, Lego or doing art with #babybernie and #supercoolwife ;-)
I am going to have to look at my energy levels this week, I have time to do everything I need both in work and in family life. Somewhere time is leaking and it is taking my energy with it.
I am going to stop there as I feel an EPIC post coming on and need to finish some work for the week - which of course you'll read about tomorrow!
Below is 8 seconds of Ouishare #Sharingeconomy fun! Thanks for reading!