2014 - Here I come! (7 Habits of Highly Effective Bernie)

Christmas 2013
I really don't enjoy Christmas full stop and I like New Years Eve even less. Every year I try to hold my breath until this time of year is over. So here are 5 reasons why Christmas suck and 7 things on my agenda for 2014.

(I was going to title this Merry £u@king Christmas - Wake me up when it is all over.... but I thought better of it.)

If I had the spare cash I'd buy a small cottage on a mountain somewhere and hide there with #supercoolwife and #babybernie until Christmas all over.
**If you EVER win tickets to stay in a Tibetan monastery with a free vow of silence in December I'll take it off your hands in a second.


Why do you hate Christmas?
I have been writing about this for about two months now and I am going to wait until the dust has settled and I have had time to reflect before I "publish my full thoughts".

Also it is a big problem for 95.8% of the people in my life - fucking LOVE Christmas.
They passionately exclaim  "it's for the children" (Sorry I know the three people that actually read this blog all have children so, lets face it I probably do mean you.)

In previous years when I was trying to get drunk in a corner to sleep for longer people would say "When you have children you'll understand" - well I have children and now and still don't understand - in fact it is even more of a pain in the arse with children and I don't drink alcohol at all now.
My mate Paul keeps saying - "the looks on the children's face's when they open their presents on Christmas day, it's priceless!"
I'd say to him "you have the wrong end of the stick Paul, it's expensive - not priceless, and I bet you could get that reaction any day of the year if you gave them a box with a present in."
He usually walks off.

It is not really a holiday
As I have dived more into the Sharing Economy I have started to be able to put my finger on it, people RANT about Christmas Holidays - they are just fucking hard work.
Holidays are relaxing.

1. Everyone goes mad - people start talking about presents and making plans for next before the snow has melted.
I accidentally watched TV this week and people were buying presents in the sales for next year.
Look up Black Friday Shareable.net where a lady pepper sprayed her way to an Xbox bargain. (If it had been an Apple product I would get it.)

2. Christmas is dominated by Religion, shit media and shit shopping centres. I get the train from Stratford which serves Westfield Shopping Centre - there was less panic as the Titanic went down compared to how people push through here.

3. We have been on Love Film for nearly a decade and when you don't have a TV and then suddenly watch Christmas TV you get how TV shit it is. 
Everything is an offer, East Enders made me want to assassinate my whole family just to save them, I have a HUGE Internet bias anyway - but adverts on and sponsorships on TV are bollox. If I was giving Virgin or Sky the best part of £50 a month I'd want to not have adverts.

4. Back to the religious bit. We are told what the "spirit of Christmas is" by religion and TV and which are both are virtual, supernatural, want your money for no apparent reason.
Everyone is taking their lead from these and thinks that is what it should be like. So if you watch East Enders and go to a Christian Church with a picture of George Bush on the wall you are screwed.
(Just for the record - I am all for faith, prayer and reflection - it is the religion bit that I have an issue with.)

5. All of the above means it is not really a holiday.
You HAVE to be doing all these things, you can't just lie down and chill out.
I am more knackered now than I was just before Christmas and I HAD A GOOD TIME, imagine how you feel if it was crap?

2014 - come on! 
So a the time of writing I am REALLY looking forward to 2014.
2013 was a punch in the face - which turned into a wake up call.
Because of my health I was forced to say no to things, admit defeat and realise at last that some things were just not meant to be.

I am still going to therapy, taking 40mg's of anti-depressants everyday and concerned about how long I have felt like this. Over all I am in a significantly better place than I was this time last year.

January is going to be mega tight for cash flow as all the fun kicks in at the end of the month, I am not looking forward to this element but I am looking at it as a manoeuvre rather than a reason to jump under a train or stick a knife in my arm like I was six months ago.
I learnt to say no and then I learnt to say no right away. I use up too much energy "trying to be nice" and now I just don't play from the beginning. 
I know my projects and people for the first six months of 2014 and unless one of them drops out nothing else is getting in no matter how fantastic it may seem.

Health and well being - 2014

1. Writing more
I recently started using a site called 750 words where you have to write 750 words everyday, it tracks you speed, mood and other things. So I found out I can write 750 words in about 30 minutes, so far I have done 17 days in a row and I have joined their January challenge with confidence.
I make it the first thing I do before I start work. Trust me - it's very healthy.

2. Tracking my health 
I also joined HealthMonth.com (click the link you to see my profile and commitments.)
I am WELL AWARE of what I need to do and what works now, so this will help me track it. The way the site works I find easy to use and most importantly very motivational.
My list is:
Only one cup of coffee a day, exercise (run) twice a week, limit Internet, do something relaxing everyday, make lunch and bring it to work everyday (so no more Jaz specials from the Burger Van outside 90 Mainyard ;-), spend 60 minutes of quality time with #Babybernie & #Supercoolwife every day and there are a few more here.

3. Guarding my time
In mid November and December 2013 I got into a good rhythm of dropping #babybernie off at nursery, zooming 90 Mainyard by 8am, then packing up at 4:30pm to zoom back and pick him up.

This LIMITS my work time and as a result I get more done. I travel lighter as I leave everything at 90 Mainyard and eat better as I take food instead of "yet another fucking Pret sandwich eaten on the run".

Also I walk through the Olympic Park which has no commuters and is a big open space, so I walk along singing David Bowie songs out loud with is very liberating.
If people can't come to meet me we Google Hangout or Skype and most Tuesdays I am in At Work Hubs by Euston to record podcast in person.
As a result of these tiny changes I have more time, I am significantly less rushed and have nearly lost my legendary ability to be late.


4. Cold Hard Exercise 
This is something I never got into in 2014 - the only running I did was for the bus. I made sure I walked a lot, but running and getting in the habit is a MUST for 2013.
I am looking forward to running with "The Godfather" Perkins in the next few days, in the past we have done a few marathons together and one of the best "versions" of "Mitchell and Perkins" is the one where we are running on a regular basis.
I LOVE running and feel 10000000000 times better when I do, so this is something I have to make myself do.

5. More Travel in 2014
I love to travel with #supercoolwife and #Babybernie - the last couple of years this has been tough to do and now #Babybernie is older we have to pay a full seat. (And those British Airways Business Class tickets are not cheap!)
Right now I have no idea how to actually plot it out.
However, between events I am working at in Europe this year, my Podcast and selling places to my On line Blogging Course  being more location independent in 2014 is something to look forward to.


6. Just me and a just a focused me
In 2012 / 13 I tried several ways of working, most of which fell flat on their face. I was either ill, working in the wrong thing or could not see where it was going.
They were all good things with good people just "not quite the one".
I know most of you read this blog so thanks and sorry ;-)
I also tried several ways to outsource things, even though I researched it well it did not work for me either.
Mainly because I was unclear with what needed doing and how to explain it.
For example I am amazing at twitter, but "doing someones twitter feed" is not my thing, so I'd outsource it and then it would be even more crap.

Part of this goes back to saying "NO" and sometimes saying "No, please go away now" and best of all being big enough to say "No, I am crap at that".

I am collaborating on two core projects that are Ouishare and London Bloggers Meet Up but the main games of my podcast and Blog Course are my sole responsibility.

7. Eco System
In 2013 I worked very hard to find my "eco system" so all these projects use only use Wordpress, Google, Facebook, Trello, Meetup.com or Eventbrite.com and ALL of them can be done on an iPad, iPhone or by logging into a computer anywhere.
The biggest challenge is editing and recording podcasts, so this has to be scheduled.
Being based at 90 Mainyard and Atworkhubs - both of which have event spaces - means everything online and offline is synced.

You are welcome to ask me how all these hopes and dreams are going. Just don't ask me what I got for Christmas.