I have had time to think recently about the progress I have made over the past 8 years and how throughout my life I have had doubts about my ability to succeed in various careers.
On 3 occasions I have been made redundant from various jobs and each time I was out of work for over 6 months. I definitely had doubts about my ability then.
Marriage is another area I have had doubts about my ability to have a successful marriage. I have been divorced twice in my life and after the second failed marriage I had doubts that I could ever have a successful marriage.
Finance is another area where I failed over and over again and I have been in deep debt for most of my life. My view was that it would all work out in the end and I can have a great time and spend, spend, spend, believing that I could earn more money to pay for the lifestyle I was living.
Just 8 years ago I was living with my mum, I was £40,000 in debt and painting and decorating for a living scraping by month by month. I was 60 years of age, and I was single with no hope for the future. I definitely had doubts about my ability to succeed in life.
I remember thinking ‘I will just about survive; I will never have another holiday as long as I live then I will die.’
Around 25 years ago I was made personally bankrupt and the shame of that has been hard to bear. I had run up such huge debts that I was advised to file for bankruptcy. I wish I hadn’t gone bankrupt and that I had set up a payment plan then pay it all back – but back then I didn’t understand finance like I do now.
I most certainly had doubts about my ability to succeed in almost anything then.
What I am very proud of is that 13 years ago I was faced with another situation where bankruptcy was a way out of the huge debts I had built up again. However, this time I went to a debt charity which helped me put a payment plan together and I have been paying that debt off for 13 years.
I met the love of my life
8 years ago, I met my wife Julie who taught me about finance. I now understand the principles of saving and budgeting and everything has changed financially. This week we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary, and I can tell you that my doubts have gone about my ability to have a wonderful marriage. Thank you Julie!
At the same time, I discovered some amazing mental resilience techniques to help me perform better under pressure, to bounce back when knocked down and to believe that I can succeed again.
Over the past 8 years I have built my international speaking, training and coaching business, I have written two books and I am having a wonderful time helping people to change their lives for the better.
Soon to be completely debt free
I am extremely close to being completely debt free for the first time in 50 years. Our home is mortgage free; our cars are paid for, and I only have a tiny amount of debt to clear from this payment plan.
When this happens, I will be celebrating in a very special way with Julie. The peace I now have with money saved in various bank accounts and the ability to help people financially when the need arises is a wonderful way to live. I have set up a foundation which allows me to help people financially and this gives me great joy.
What an amazing week
This week Julie and I spent our wedding anniversary together as we travelled to Sheffield then the Lake District to deliver my Keynote talk and Masterclass. The first was on behalf of Live and Learn to 190 students from Stocksbridge High School and the second was to Lake District Estates in Cumbria.
Both were fantastic events, and we had a lovely time together. David Little the CEO of Lake District Estates (who is standing next to me in the photo) had seen me speak at a Vistage event run by Peter Hills and he booked me on the back of that.
What a wonderful gesture
What blew us away is that they put us up in a luxury apartment in a Marina and when we arrived there was a bottle of wine and beer in the fridge, flowers with a card and breakfast things. The boats in the marina were lovely. David offered us free accommodation for 4 nights – what a wonderful gesture.
The feedback from all the staff was so positive that it has made me realise that if you keep going when you are knocked down you just don’t know what you can achieve in life.
I am living a wonderful life with an amazing wife and phenomenal business, and I know that when doubts come along, and they may, that I can overcome them and succeed again.
Thoughts for the week.
- Do you have doubts about your ability?
- Do you think that you will never succeed in certain areas?
- This week think about all the things I have overcome to be in the position I am now and believe that you can do the same.
Well that’s it for this week have a wonderful weekend and keep believing.