The British University in Dubai

I returned from Dubai two weeks ago and it has just sunk in how good the trip was. It was only 3 years ago when I was still decorating and I put two pictures of Dubai on my Dream Board – they were the Burj Khalifa and Burj Al Arab hotels. These are two of the world’s most iconic hotels, one is the highest in the world and the other is the most expensive.

At the time of putting these pictures on my Dream Board I was in debt and was decorating to pay my bills, and I only had a couple of clients. People laughed at me when I told them that one day I would be in Dubai working with organisations. I could have listened to their negative comments, but I had a deep belief that one day I would be out there.

A wonderful experience

This most recent trip was my fourth to Dubai in 12 months and this was the first time we were flying out specifically to deliver my Mental Resilience masterclass – in this case to the British University in Dubai. What a great experience it was too. I loved every minute of the day with the staff of the University and with Vice Chancellor Professor Abdullah Alshamsi who was very positive about it.

Every single one of the staff who attended it were a joy to work with and they all provided very positive feedback from the day. I will never forget the experience of that day and what a significant impact it had on me. My dream came true, and if they give me permission I would love to feature them in my next book which will be entitled ‘From Decorating to Dubai.’

Great potential

I am now excited to see what other work comes from the UAE. I have had some great meetings with various potential clients including a very positive meeting with Stefanie the HR Director from Hilti Corporation. I have met so many lovely people in Dubai it makes me want to work there more than ever.

I believe that if you focus on something strongly and have faith that it will appear in your life, then you increase the chances of this happening. I visualised myself and my wife Julie in the Burj Khalifa on the 124th floor every day for over two years. As I struggled to pay my bills I kept my faith strong that one day we would be out there. We went to the 124th floor on our first visit 12 months ago.

A great University

The British University in Dubai is an outstanding University and I was very proud that Professor Abdullah Alshamsi commissioned me to deliver my masterclass to the staff. The following is taken from their website:

The British University in Dubai (BUiD) was established in 2003 by Ruler’s Decree of the Emirate of Dubai, as the region’s first, research-based, postgraduate university. BUiD offers a unique not-for-profit brand of higher education with high standards for study and research designed to contribute to the technological innovation and socio-economic development of the Arab world and beyond.

BUiD was established to facilitate access in the Middle East to a British-style of world class education, training and research. At BUiD’s first anniversary celebrations His Excellency, Richard Makepeace, then British Ambassador to the UAE commented that BUiD was one of the most exciting developments in UAE-UK relations we have seen for many years. After a decade, the excitement and commitment is sustained!

The Best of British Education in Dubai

Working in association with leading UK universities BUiD offers cutting-edge education and research in key disciplines. BUiD aspires to the highest, internationally recognized British standards as reflected in its work with the Universities of Edinburgh, Cardiff, Glasgow, and Manchester.

BUiD was established as a ‘not for profit’ university. The Founders of the University are Al Maktoum Foundation, Dubai Development and Investment Authority, the National Bank of Dubai, the British Business Group, and Rolls-Royce.

Confidence for exams

Last Thursday I had the privilege to deliver my Mental Resilience talk to senior students at Cardinal Newman School in Luton. The two separate talks were aimed at building the confidence of the students prior to their exams. The experience of speaking to around 500 students over the two sessions was fantastic! They were fully engaged and the feedback I have received from the students is exceptional.

I have put together a worksheet so they can individually work on the 3-part confidence technique which I have developed, and this has been sent to them via their head of years. They will be working with their form tutors to develop their confidence using this technique.

A great confidence technique

This is all very exciting as I took them through a relaxation and visualisation practical exercise and they really got it. This confidence 3-part process really changed my life many years ago and it is great to be able to share this with young minds to help them build their confidence.

Thoughts for the week:

1. Do you have any dreams you would like to achieve which you have given up on?
2. Are there some things you would really like to do but can’t see yourself ever getting round to?
3. Pick one or two things you would like to do and get a picture of this from the internet.
4. Now imagine yourself having achieved this in your mind. Feel the feelings of achieving this.
5. Believe that you can do this and keep visualising.

Well that’s it for this week. Next week I will be speaking a little more on Academies as I have three schools booked to speak to this coming week which is exciting.

Have a great weekend and stay positive.

Warm regards


Off the Wall – How to Develop World Class Mental Resilience available here

OFF THE WALL – How to develop World Class Mental Resilience

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