Tuesday, 24 April 2018


OK everyone. Please listen up. There are a few things that you need to know about introverts. So here goes:

1. Just because an introvert doesn't want to spend every minute of every day with you, it doesn't me that he or she doesn't love you. It just means that they need space. They need alone time. What is wrong with that?

2. If you accept an introvert for who they are, they will love you and you will never have anyone who is as loyal as an introvert. You will find that some extroverts have "hundreds" of friends whereas introverts have a handful but they are loyal to them all.

3. If you are in an introvert's life you must be pretty special to him or her. Don't forget that. Introverts don't let many people into their lives.

4. I know that I hate confrontation and introverts hate confrontation so don't expect any results by forcing an introvert to answer. They will clam up, believe me.

5. Introverts are known as great listeners (although in saying that, I am probably not so great at it) so remember to give them the same courtesy. If you do this, you might learn something about your introverted friend that you have never heard before.

6. Introverts energise by being alone. Always, always, always remember that. They need that alone time and don't take it as an insult because it is not. You trying to get an introvert to hang out is the insult.

7. Introverts are extremely loyal when they LOVE someone. They will do anything for you and they expect that same loyalty in return. If you question or take that loyalty for granted then you will create and enemy and that is never good.

If you remember these seven things, you will have an introvert as a friend for life and we can always have one more friend, right?

Monday, 23 April 2018


Watch the above video. Go ahead. I'll wait until you finish. Come on, push that play button. What are you scared of?

What did you think? Can you relate? I'm willing to bet that there are two types of people out there.

Which one are you?

Are you the one who wants to stick all the orders in the middle of the table and share it or are you the one (Smithy) who likes to eat what he ordered?

I'll tell you which one I am, I with Smithy on this one.

Lets forget about the size of Smithy's order for a couple of minutes. That's irrelevant to this scene. What I see however is someone who has thought about what he wants to eat and he has ordered. Probably, a couple of the items on that menu are unusual.

Unusual? I hear you ask. Yes, unusual. Most people when they order takeaway food like this are not very creative and they are not into taking risks so they will order the same thing, time and time again. Then they see that someone has ordered something that is not usual and they are curious, they want it. No risk, right? They will take it and I'll tell you from experience, it really pisses you off. Well it pissed me off time and time again.

I'll give you an example. When I was growing up, the New Zealand example of the above scene was fish and chips.

As the name would suggest, fish and chips is deep fried fish and French fries. You can see it in the above photo. Also on the menu were hot dogs and later on they started offering hamburgers. You know typical kiwi hamburgers with beetroot in them. My favourite was the egg burger.

One of the interesting menu items was donuts. At that time in New Zealand donuts were spelt doughnuts and looked like the following:

Mmmmmmmmmm, DELICIOUS.

However at the fish and chip shop they sold donuts which looked like this:

These were quite unusual in New Zealand at the time so when I ordered one people would want some because it wan't very popular and they wanted to try it which as you can imagine annoyed the hell out of me because I wanted to eat it which is why I ordered it.

I think the Smithy scene is relevant to not only ordering Indian or Chinese or whatever food. We just do the same thing over and over again. Why? Because it is comfortable. We think, better the devil we know rather than branching out and risking looking like an idiot and believe it or not applies to ordering donuts from the fish and chip shop.

How many times have you gone to a Thai restaurant (I'm amazed westerners started going to Thai restaurants in the first place) and ordered the same thing that you had last time. I know that I do which is sometimes I will trust the other person to order for me because then I will get something that  I have never tried before. It is like a culinary adventure.

If you want to try something different or you want to try and do something different, go ahead and do it. Get out of that funk you are it. Who knows, you might change you life, just by ordering a donut as opposed to two pieces of fish because that is what you always do.

I'll leave you with a photo of a hot dog. MMMMMMM. Is it lunch time yet?

Sunday, 22 April 2018


This is a very interesting article:


For those of you who are not so enthusiastic to read this article let me summarise it.

New Zealand television host Hayley Holt tells us that she was an alcoholic and has now been sober for more than three years.

Why did she decide to drink so much?

Because she thought that was the way to fit in with her social group. She said that she was shy, self-conscious and maybe even a little introverted. So to fit in, she said that she drank so that she could be part of that group.

One of the most interesting parts of that article was she said that all of her friends were cool and popular.

I would argue that some, if not all of them probably had self-esteem issues and like Hayley they may have hidden it, not through alcohol but by acting.

We all have our insecurities. We all have our little things that worry us but at the end of the day it is how we cope with these things. How we get over them is what counts.

Hayley Holt said that she used alcohol. She used the old Dutch courage to get over it which is not the best thing to do. The good thing is that she realised it and stopped and that takes a lot of guts and who knows, only she does, she might have lost a few friends because of it which suggests that they weren't her real friends anyway.

It's almost become a bit of a cliche but you are not going to find answers at the bottom of a bottle or glass.

By all means, go out but only if you WANT to. That's the key. Don't think that you have to be a boozer. Don't think that you have to have hundreds of friends. Don't think that you have to drink to be friends.

Your true friends will respect your true self. Your true friends will respect that you don't want to imbibe alcohol on that particular day.

I say well done to Hayley Holt for coming out and telling her story.

Be true to yourself and don't drink alcohol if you don't want to.

Saturday, 21 April 2018

Shigeo Nagashima and Sadaharu Oh

Today I met a former professional baseball player here in Japan. He played 16 seasons for various teams and is now a coach in one of the organisations in Japanese professional baseball. I don't think I have ever met a professional baseball player before although I might be wrong.

That got me thinking about some of the best players in the history of Japanese professional player and two names came to mind. No, not Hideki Matsui and Ichiro Suzuki. I thought of Shigeo Nagashima and Sadaharu Oh. These guys are two of the legendary players in this part of the world.

Of the two, Nagashima was more popular. Why? Apparently he played in a carefree manner which was the antithesis of Japanese society where everyone knew their place and you should follow the rules and that old chestnut, the nail that sticks out should get hammered down.

Of the two, Oh was undoubtedly more talented. I have see videos of interviews of Major League Baseball players and they all mentioned Sadaharu Oh as one of the all time greats and very rarely do I hear the name Nagashima even though his career batting average is over .300 and he hit 444 home runs. Not a bad career even when looked at by this amateur baseball enthusiast.

Sadaharu Oh played for longer than Nagashima and he also batted over .300 and hit 868 home runs in  his career which I think is a record in any professional baseball league anywhere in the world.

I find it interesting that Nagashima was more popular than Oh.

Why was he more popular?

As I said before, he was carefree. He made some silly errors but that seemed to make him human in the eyes of the fans.

I read Sadaharu Oh's autobiography a few years ago and although it was an interesting read he did come across as a little robotic although in saying that we can not argue with his statistics. Also, unfortunately, Oh's Chinese background may have not have endeared him to some members of the public.

What is the point of this post today?

Well, sometimes you have to stand out and sometimes you have to make yourself look like a fool to get what you want or to catch attention. Nagashima was more popular because of making those mistakes.

Of course you have to practice and you have to be serious about your craft and you will get the results like Oh. Maybe not 868 home runs though. But sometimes you have to stand out. You have to do things that might leave you with egg on your face but when that kind of thing comes off, wow, people will remember it.

Friday, 20 April 2018


It's Friday evening. What have you got planned for the weekend? Do you have a big night planned tonight? Are you going out with your friends and are you going to get absolutely sloshed? Will you be leaving town for the weekend?


It's Friday evening. Are you going home to relax? What are you going to cook for yourself and your significant other? Do you have your Netflix playlist sorted out? Have you got any books on the shelf that have been unread for the longest time?

Whatever you do, make sure you own it. 

I know that a lot of introverted people do get pressured by their extroverted friends to go out and it can be annoying.  Believe me from experience.

I have learned recently that if you are going to say something, it is not what you say exactly, it is how you say it and if you say that you don't want to go to a noisy, smoky (if you are in Japan) bar and you say it with passion and not a wishy washy way then you are not going to get any resistance. You have to be strong that is the key. As soon as you show any weakness the peer pressure will become unbearable. It's true.

If you want to relax at home after a long week, don't succumb to the pressure say that you don't want to go. You might get the anti-social argument but you know otherwise. You are being true to yourself and true to how you energise.

Enjoy that time at home by yourself or with your significant other. Enjoy the food. Enjoy the movies and maybe even Netflix and Chill.

Be true to yourself. 

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, 19 April 2018


When you a go to a networking event or even on a first date do know what a lot of people do? You have probably been guilty of it. I know I have.

You ask question after question after question after question until the person says, "This is like a job interview." (Believe me, I have had that experience.)

So what do you do?

Conversations are a two way street. It isn't just question, answer, question, answer and so on. If you are asking the questions, you need to veer off the script on occasions. You need to talk about your own experiences.

Lets see if I can come up with an example:

You: So, where did you go to college?

Them: I went to Billabong State. I was an interesting school.

You: Really? I've heard some interesting things about that school. What did you major in there?

Them: I majored in psychology. It was a very interesting course and I would recommend it to anyone.

You: Wow! I have always been interested in psychology. I did the Myers Briggs test the other day and it was an interesting test. I learned things about myself that I would have never known. Have you done it?

See? You not just checking off a check box. Asked that question? Check. Asked that question? Check. No you are sounding enthusiastic about their answers and are giving some of your experience too.

Remember, life is not a list as Heath Ledger said once:

"Everyone you meet always asks if you have a career, are married or own a house as if life was some kind of grocery list. But nobody ever asks if you are happy."

Act enthusiastic. Ask interesting questions and share your experiences. You can't lose.

Wednesday, 18 April 2018


"Whatever you do, strive to do it so well that no man living and no man dead and no man yet to be born could do it better." - Benjamin Elijah Mays

You have got to be number one. Why not become the best in the world?