those sticky labels!”
recently bought a villa in Cyprus. She’s beautiful;
three bedrooms, three bathrooms, large plot with a lush
green, tropical garden and a large pool. Cost somewhere
in the region of $500 000 (worth a nice fat wedge more
Now, I don’t know if you’ve
ever bought property 'off plan' but the notable problem
I’d overlooked was when I took delivery, I’d
forgotten that it had to be furnished! For some reason,
I had it in my head that we’d arrive and everything
would be laid out and perfect – it was, apart from
I bought the tea but forget the cups and
sugar; I bought the sugar but forgot the bowl … and
so it went on…
My long suffering family and I spent the
first three weeks of our initial visit out there buying
furniture and all the essentials … hell of a job
but someone’s got to do it!
Now the Cypriots have this habit whereby,
if there’s a space for it, they put a label on it!
They’re bloody everywhere and stick
like shit to a blanket – they not only put them on
the packaging but on every item in the box also; if you’ve
got six cups, you’ll get six labels.
So there we were, in our new villa, unpacking
all our new stuff, moaning about the ubiquitous ‘Sticky
Labels’, which were an absolute bugger to get off. “Goddamn
wretched things, why do they have to bang these on everything
we unpack? … not another one!!! More labels??? Frig
me, there’s even one on every fork … bloody
I was moaning to my wife for all I was
worth … Then it hit me – Look where you are
Mr Money King, look at what you’re doing! Sat in
a place most people only dream about and still having a
So you see, the
thing about trying to achieve perfect harmony is that
you can’t, it’s an unnatural state - you’re
never truly content. Situations change and life
gets better, but we’re only human and now matter
how much you achieve, you still experience the ups and
downs life throws at you.
The good thing is, that the things that
bug you, sticky labels on everything in a villa full of
new furnishings, are not in the same league as “how
am I going to feed my family next week?” And
if you stay grounded, you remain the same person you were
when you started out on your journey towards Total
Personal and Financial Freedom.
Incidentally, it’s Tuesday at the
new villa (a normal working day for most!), 9.30 in the
morning and the kids are to be heard laughing in the pool.
I’m sat writing this in bed on the laptop having
just had a nice cuppa tea brought to me by the missus.
I’m looking out the patio doors over the clear blue
sea which forms ‘Golden Bay’; I’m watching
the fishing boats chug by as they make their way up the
coast towards Aphrodite’s rocks – the place
legend has it where she emerged from the surf. Just beyond
the foothills sweep up to the amazing pine forests of the
If I turn round and look out of the window
behind me there’s the wild and untouched Akamas National
In a short while, when I feel like it,
I’ll wander down the Turkish marble stairs and have
breakfast by the pool, and when I feel like it, I’ll
jump into the cool, clear water for my morning swim … later
I’ll pop to the beach taverna (on the beach just
a few hundred yards away) for a cool beer. On the way I’ll
look over the Akamas trying to search out an ideal plot
for the new larger villa I intend to build … when
I find the perfect spot that is!
I returned to my main home a few days
later where I'm updated this section to the web. My wife
has just walked in from a shopping trip loaded with a new
wardrobe of shorts, shoes and T-shirts for me to replace
the bagfuls I took out and left at the villa paid for
with Internet cash!
What are you doing?
And that’s not a “look
at me Mr Big Shot Guru” comment; it’s
designed to point out what you are doing and establish
what you’d like to be doing. It’s also designed
to show you what life you’re working towards.
Free? Pretty much!
Still got things to moan about? Of course!
Of course it’s easy to convince
yourself that you’re happy with your lot ... anyone
can settle for mediocrity - that’s
Nothing is out of reach ... nothing!
Do not let any doctrine, lecture, mentor,
peer or religion tell you different.
Yes, it's bloody depressing when things
go wrong - it's a chemical safeguard to stop us doing wrong
things over and over - but don't confuse it with
a safeguard for not failing at anything ever again! ... just
don't keep making the same mistakes!!!
You can have anything you desire if you
set your mind to it.
If you are religious, which the majority
are, then think about this: Many
of the world’s richest people believe in a God or
Gods, therefore, how do they come to terms with breaking
those deadly sins on a daily basis?
Pride is excessive belief
in one's own abilities, that interferes with the individual's
recognition of the grace of God. It has been called the
sin from which all others arise. Pride is also known as
Envy is the desire for
others' traits, status, abilities, or situation.
Gluttony is an inordinate
desire to consume more than that which one requires.
Lust is an inordinate
craving for the pleasures of the body.
Wrath is manifested in
the individual who spurns love and opts instead for fury.
It is also known as Anger.
Greed is the desire for
material wealth or gain, ignoring the realm of the spiritual.
It is also called Avarice or Covetousness.
Sloth is the avoidance
of physical or spiritual work.
I truly believe it is impossible to cultivate
success and not indulge in a little lust, envy or greed.
From my limited education I believe that most religions
teach some form of denial along the lines of 'achievement
is a sin'.
I suppose the ubiquitous answer to transgressing
and attaining wealth is that "God works in mysterious
I don't apologize for my cynicism, these
are my opinions - read them - make your own judgments - but
don't ever judge me.
have always been against religions as you know, partly
(maybe naively) because from what I've seen, most leaders
preach that it is 'the right thing' to have very little
in personal possessions, to be subservient and be humble;
to do as ordered, without question and that "if
I say you've sinned, you've darn well sinned" regardless
of whether your very life is endangered by obeying. (reference
to contraception and HIV). All whilst the preachers live
very comfortably, thank you very much ... have you seen
inside Vatican City lately?
See through the
smoke and mirrors and embrace your new religion. Omniscience teaches
that it is a wholly good thing to have Pride in one's
It is fine to look at others possessions
and want the same for yourself.
There is nothing wrong in consumption
- after all, if you go back to basics, man only 'requires'
food, water and a bed!!! So why are all the places of worship
so extraordinarily extravagant?
Enjoying the 'pleasures of the body' is
And get angry, it's the fuel of ambition
... and the 'desire for material wealth' is the whole point
And do not, under any circumstances, confuse
sloth with the freedom to do what you want, whenever you
the greatest sin of all.
I read the ‘Little Green Book’ by
Wallace D. Wattles, a bible for an impressive list of breathtakingly
wealthy, self-made people. Mr Wattles has a pretty open
mind when it comes to understanding his faith and what
is required from him to stay in good favor - I have noticed
that people interpret their bibles in many different ways
- The Khoran being a case in point in this modern world
and the Christian bible has been twisted to justify a whole
host of thoroughly despicable causes.
Wallace goes on to say: 'Do
not covert another man’s possessions for you
can have anything you want for yourself.
Get rid of the idea that God wants you
to sacrifice yourself for others, that you can secure his
favor by doing so. God requires nothing of the kind.
What he wants is that you should make
the most of yourself - for yourself and for others.
And, you can help others more by making the most of yourself than in any other
You can make the most of yourself
only by getting rich. Thus, it is right and
praiseworthy that you should give your first and best
thought to the work of acquiring wealth.’
Now that’s the kind of religious
talk I like!
Not the double standards dished out by
millionaire prophets: "Yes, give up yourself and
all your worldly belongings to my God and as a thank you
he’ll not throw you in a pit of hellfire, dammed
for all eternity when you die."
There is nothing quite like living in
poverty when those who preach it and leach off others,
live as kings. I have yet to see a vicar living on the
breadline on the 12th floor of a tenement block. Vicarages
are, on the whole, pretty desirable properties.
If there is a God, I promise,
he would be more than happy for you to get rich. Wealth,
drive and ambition are not sins and anyway how many worldly
possessions do you have to have before you’re considered
Is there a specific dividing line between
where avarice (my translation for which is ambition) begins
and wanting to be comfortable ends?
As far back as I can remember I have carried
with me a very vivid picture, it’s a dread that spurred
me on to become a high achiever. Maybe if you are in a
rut, if an ever-decreasing comfort zone is still strangling
you, think about this:
During a study of old folk ‘waiting
for God’ a question was put to them:
"Is there anything you regret doing
in your life?"
99% of them answered: ‘No!’
Then, delving a little deeper it emerged
the pensioners, without exception conceded:
It was not the things they had
done that tormented them ... it
was the things they HADN’T done!
The vision that I carried with me during
my former years and what propelled me into action was this:
could see myself several decades in the future waiting
to die. I would be sat in front of a small fire, in a not
too comfortable room, in a not too desirable house, feeling
not too contented.
The grandchildren would be gathered close
by and as I drew on my old pipe one of them asked: "Tell
us the story of your life, Grandpa" …
Silence – nothing!
I had no stories, no adventures, and no
escapades to share. Not a single great moment to tell.
The children looked up expectantly as a tear welled in
my eye ... PHHHUUUUUURRRRRRRR!!!
Get that thought out of my head now!
And that’s it!
That vision scared the pants off me. It
haunted me for years, and even explained a re-occurring
nightmare I had as a child. I would be screaming intensely,
dwarfed in a large cave as fluid boulders floated all around.
The feeling of pure, cold panic that accompanied
the dream, I later discovered, was the fear of being a
nobody, of never being noticed, of not achieving a thing.
I have made damn certain that in several
decades time, when the grandchildren gather in my comfortable
room, in my comfortable house; when I’m feeling full
of beans and I pipe up: "OK, who wants to hear
about my adventures?", those kids are going to
groan: "Blimey Grandpa, not another one - give
us some peace?"
I am going to fight with every cell that
is me, with every joule of energy I possess. I am going
to ensure that I have the best life I can carve; the best
life I can achieve. I am going to look back in years to
come and smile to myself content in the knowledge that
my only one regret is, that I couldn't
pack more in!
If I could ask you to do just one thing
in your life, just one, it would be this:
Please, please, please ensure you do the
one thing you most want to do.
Just do it, and do it as soon as you can!
No excuses, no procrastination, just do
that one thing you have always wanted to do, for tomorrow
you could be wiped from the face of this beautiful place … life
is so short and how sad it would be if you never did that
one single thing.
it’s achieved, everything else afterwards is a bonus.
I had done most of the crazy, wild things
I wanted to do by the time I was 25.
Everything I do now is a bonus.
I have seen the mountains, the deserts,
and the oceans. Once you’ve seen a perfect beach,
jaded water lapping upon mother of pearl sand, framed by
emerald palms, beaches don’t get any better - just
A beautiful lake, is a beautiful lake,
is a beautiful lake!
Once you’ve bathed in one and enjoyed
its magnificence, all the others are a bonus. Once you’ve
swum with whales and dolphins, the next time is just a
bonus. Once you seen a West End show the others are a bonus.
Once you’ve had a great relationship the rest aren’t
any better - just different.
But ensure you do it first time round;
do the one thing you most desire today and you’ll
have no regrets tomorrow.
"When I have loads of money I’ll..."
How many times have you said or heard
that? ... What if you fall ill before you become rich?
How many times have you seen or have known
of someone working a whole life, planning and waiting for
the day they retire, only to keel over the day before they
were due to collect their pension?
Please, if you truly want to be free,
commit to it with body and soul now, today, for tomorrow
may never come.
Yes, we are building a future where happiness
is a constant companion - we are most definitely not sacrificing
the present to do so.
Would you work a formula which promotes
that if you work your fingers to the bone and remain poor
and miserable for ten years you'll attain ten years of
The rub is that there is no guarantee
that you'll survive the twenty years!
The Machine’s formula
is more like: Be miserable for 50
years and enjoy 10 (if you’re lucky!!!)
And then there's the life plan subscribed
to by millions: Be poor and humble for a lifetime
and you'll be rewarded when you die (maybe, only the dead
Be happy with your God if you have one
but don't get sucked in by all the worldly bullshit that
mortals contaminate that solace with.
Work for a lifetime contributing
to the good of the nation and whichever policy happens
to be pulling in the votes; work for a lifetime living
just above the poverty line. Work for forty years ravaged
with discontentment, and as a reward you will be able to
live happily ever after on a state pension (which even
this they are trying to take away!)
Stay in the job if you need the income … for
the short term.
But use it as a stepping-stone. Look upon
it as a short-term solution to a much bigger, vivid, extensive
There is no excuse for underachievement.
No one is stuck in a rut,
because ruts have walls.
It’s up to the individual to choose when to climb out!
Achieve freedom and only
happiness can surely follow.