Ignore Your Gut Feel at Your Peril

Wow what a busy week last week with a trip to London to run a workshop, a couple of coaching sessions, a new potential client meeting, finalising my book and sending it to print, and a great networking event.

The London trip was an experience to say the least! The workshop itself was for a national organisation who help the underprivileged and it was a fantastic experience with great feedback. However the 24 hours leading up to it was not as positive.

All going wrong

Have you ever had a day where everything seems to go wrong for no obvious reason – well this was one of those days. I had so many deadlines to hit in the morning that by the time I set off for the train station I was cutting it fine. However I knew that the car park I always use was a 5 minute walk from the train station so all would be fine. Being a sensible business owner I always book specific train times as the savings are enormous.

When I got to the car park it was full! My inner chimp almost freaked out but I quickly re-framed my thinking and thought of another car park. I drove to it and fortunately for me the car park had some spaces left. I parked my car and made it to the station with a few minutes to spare. So I settled into my seat and worked away on my way to London. My overnight case was very heavy as I it contained a backup projector, speakers, deflated basketballs and cables.

 A journey to forget

To save some money for the company who had booked me for this workshop I found a hotel about 40 mins by tube out of London at a very good rate which at the time I thought was a sensible idea. Not such a good idea when the reality hit me regarding the number of stairs I would have to climb changing tube trains as I made my way to the hotel. I never thought that a tube journey could be so complicated and long!!

When I finally got to the tube station near the hotel I realised that I would need to get a taxi so I finally found a taxi phone number and after a long wait the taxi arrived and took me to the hotel. I duly checked in exhausted. I then found a café nearby and worked until about 6pm then went for my evening meal.

Things can go wrong

When I got back to my room I started putting some final touches to a leaflet I had produced to give someone who was representing me at a conference of private schools. So I spent the evening working with my designer to finish this off and send it to the printer. We finished this about 10pm and all was good. So I got ready for bed and reached for my I Phone to set my alarm to wake up in the morning. To my surprise the phone was dead, so I put the charger in and nothing! I tried a different socket and even after 10 mins nothing!

Then the realisation hit me that without the phone I wouldn’t have an alarm so I couldn’t go to sleep. I racked my brain to think what I could do and decided that it was too dangerous to fall asleep because I could sleep way past my wake up time and be late for the workshop. So I stayed awake. At 1am I suddenly thought maybe the reception downstairs would have a spare charger and I could try that one.

Staying positive

I always stay at a Premier Inn whenever I can as I love the beds and the quality of the hotels. They don’t however have phones in the rooms so I went downstairs to enquire if they had a charger. The guy on the desk said that they didn’t have one but that he could wake me up with a knock on my door. So I agreed to a 5am knock and went back to my room.

When I got into my room I thought about the guy who had written my room number on a scrap piece of paper and considered the fact that he may forget. So I was back to the situation of not going to sleep at all. Then another thought hit me and I realised that I had a USB charger for my phone in my case so I connected it to my laptop and waited. Suddenly the phone burst into life and I could finally go to sleep which I did at 2am.

Keeping a cool head

Three hours sleep wasn’t great but was better than nothing and I got up and had my regular one hour time of motivation reading. I then had breakfast and caught the taxi back to the tube station for another gruelling trip to London City for my workshop delivery. Finally arriving at a coffee shop next to the venue for the training I had time to sort a few things out before meeting my client at 9am.

10 minutes before I was due to leave for the workshop I emailed the printing company to check that all was good to print the leaflets which had to be printed that day. I then called them to confirm they would be printed that day to be informed that they had an engineer working on the printer and it should be fixed by late afternoon – I wasn’t’ comfortable with that response!

The leaflets had to be printed that day to hit the deadline so using the re-frame technique again I kept calm and I checked if another printing company I sometimes use could print them and within 10 minutes I had received a quote and emailed the artwork to them. I then set off to meet the client on time.

A lesson learned. 

One thing I have learned from this experience regarding the alarm clock is to listen to my gut feeling. On several occasions I have unpacked my suitcase and thought about getting a backup alarm clock just in case I sleep through my alarm calls on my phone. But I never got round to it – then this happens. If I hadn’t had the spare lead in my bag I wouldn’t have had any sleep at all and that leads to health problems.

I have a chapter on sleep in my new book ‘Off the Wall’ and it gives full details of the health issues related to lack of sleep. So you won’t be surprised to hear that I am buying myself a couple of travel alarms to make sure this never happens again.

So have a think about anything you feel you should do but haven’t done yet, as this could be your gut feeling warning you about things to come.

Until next week have a great weekend and stay positive.

Warm regards


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