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Showing posts from 2012

My Journey to the Plan

Our baby is now six months old. Time really flies. It has been a real joy to spend time with her and see her grow daily.
I have received a number of positive comments about my last blog. I am glad you liked it. Let go and let God is a principle that I am learning to embrace. I have read about it a number of times, and I thought I was doing it, but I don't think I had totally released control until recently. How did it happen? So many things happened at the same time that led me realize that I had to let it go. One of them is the experience of my good friend Emmanuel Lopez a.k.a Motivatorman.
About a year ago, I met Emmanuel just to catch up after my summer in Africa. Emmanuel and I have been friends since 2005, and ever since we made a tradition to meet regularly to talk about...life. As we were talking, he shared with me that he was going through one of the toughest moments of his life. From our previous conversations, I knew things were not easy for him, but he always kept a posit…

My Journey to a Week Off

It has been over three years that I post my blog every week. Last week is the only week that I did not do it. It is not that I had forgotten, I did it on purpose. I just wanted to take a week off lol
I was thinking that nobody would notice, until I got an e-mail from my friend Jim asking me: “where is this week's blog?” I guess I have one big fan lol (thanks Jim)
I also met a couple of people this last week-end who congratulated me about the blog saying that they really enjoy reading it. One of them even said to me: “if I were you, I would thank God daily for giving me such talent”. I felt like a million bucks man
About two and a half years ago, I was helping a friend of mine to put together a series of concerts. We did an amazing amount of work and things were going according to the plan. We got a number of sponsors, we had also a lot of support in the community.
As the concert was approaching, something unexpected happened. I lost my USB key on which I had all the work that we had …

My Journey with My Blog

It was with surprise that I learned from my friend Emmanuel that reading my last blog about him really made his day. I was just sharing what has been my experience with him, but I didn't know that it would have a great impact on him.
I started writing my blog on October 16, 2009 (yes, it has been 3 years!!!), and I haven't missed a week ever since. I have been late posting it, but I haven't missed a week. I will take it as a huge accomplishment on my part (standing ovation for me please...)
To tell the truth (not that I was lying before), I did not want to publish my posts at first. What would people think of me? That was my fear. Or, would people even read them? That was another one. It took me several weeks before I could post them on my Facebook page. I have never looked back. I must admit that it took every bit of courage that I had to put myself out there. I had to accept to be vulnerable, and understand that, once the story is out there, it won't belong to me anymo…

My Journey with Emmanuel

I have been friend with Emmanuel for years now. I call him the Movie Guru. He lives and breathes by movies. He even has a blog called “Movies that Motivate/The Adventures of Motivatorman”.
I have a weekly talk with Emmanuel, and very often we share about what we learned through movies. This guy can watch at least ten movies a week. It's hard to keep up with him.
One movie caught my attention last week. It is called “The Change-Up” with Ryan Reynolds and Jason Bateman.
One drunken night, two friends admit that they wish they had the other's life. Mitch (Reynolds) thinks Dave has it all: a beautiful, loving family and a high-paying job at a prestigious law firm. But Dave (Bateman) thinks Mitch's stress-free life without obligation or consequence is the real dream come true. The next morning they wake up, hungover, in each other's bodies, and proceed to freak out! With time not on their side, Mitch and Dave comically struggle to avoid completely destroying each other's l…

My Journey to My Old Passion

For us Basketball fans, we have been enjoying some NBA games, but the intensity is not there yet (I guess we will have to wait until the play offs). I didn't think the Raptors would have a slow start given the fact that they won so many games in pre-season. But again, that was pre-season. Now the serious stuff is happening.
There is also high expectations from the Lakers fans now that they have a bunch of Superstars playing together. Their management doesn't play games though. They just fired the coach after only five games into the season. I was shocked when I heard that. I mean, it is an 82 game season and the coach is fired after only five games!?!! They don't mess around.
A few weeks ago I was doing some homework that my coach Charlie gave me, and I was surprised how coaching basketball was coming back all the times as the one thing I miss the most doing. I have been involved with the game for almost twenty seven years (now you have an idea how old I am), but coaching ha…

My Journey to the Movies

It's been a quite interesting week. First, I caught a cold last week, by Wednesday I was doing better, ready to go play Basketball, just to find out that my wife was getting a cold too (I know, I know...it's my fault). Next thing you know, our daughter caught it too. Back to square one....
We are now almost a hundred percent, thanks to a week-end of rest. Yes we did rest. I brought seventeen movies (yes you got it right, 17 is the number) from the library, and now we are down to four movies to go. We have watched comedies, action movies, you name it. I don't remember the last time I watched so many movies. What else could we do? We didn't want to go out there and spread what we got.
Our daughter is almost five months old now. I have learned that it's at that time that babies want their parents full attention. She has been making funny noises just to get our attention, and when we look at her she just smiles. It's hard to watch a movie when she is awake, but she i…

My Journey with Bonnie

Last Friday, our friend Motivatorman came to visit us (special invitation from my wife). We had really good time (that of course included great food). As it was time for him to go home, I decided to walk him out to the Subway station. I didn't know how was the weather outside and I put on a light jacket. Result? I have been under the weather these last two days. My productivity has been close to nothing.
Even though I was not a hundred percent on Saturday, I went to do a 3 hour presentation about networking. The house was packed and we had people following us on video from Ottawa and Sudbury. It was great fun.
I can teach a thing or two about networking, but I have met people who are masters in the matter. One of them is my friend Bonnie Chan. She is a master networker (does this word exist, or I just made it up?)
I met Bonnie last year at a networking event (where else would you meet Bonnie?). Right away the connection was made. She knew me thanks to a mutual friend and she said…

My Journey to A New Season

It's been over ten years now that I am in Canada, but I am always amazed by the season changes. A few weeks ago, I was doing some work cleaning the front of the house (leafs were everywhere). I was proud of my job until, a few minutes later I came back to the place I was cleaning to find out that there were more leaves on the ground than before. What a waste of time!
Everywhere I go, trees are changing colours. It is a beautiful scene, but I know that in a few weeks there will be no leaves at all. Trees will have to wait for months before they can have their leaves back. That is how it is.
I think that, as human beings, we are like trees. We go through seasons. During some seasons, we also lose our leaves. These are pruning seasons. In my opinion, the difference between trees and us is that trees don't complain about season changes the way we do. They wait patiently until next season. During winter, when we look at the trees, they seem to be lifeless. Are they really? There a…

My Journey with Skylar

Once again I have to find an excuse why I did not post my blog yesterday. What can I say? I am thinking of a few reasons why, but the one I am thinking about the most is that our daughter is four months old today (is that a good enough reason?)

I am writing from an Internet café, on my way home from a presentation that I just did at a job fair. I know that by the time I get home, there will be no time on the computer. Our daughter now dictates our schedule lol

Yesterday was one of those days. I had planned my day with a number of items on my to do list, especially people that I would call, then I got a emergency phone call. My wife had to go out to give a hand to a family that needed  help. I had to stay home with Skylar. This had happened in the past, so I was confident I can keep everything under control. Oh boy, little did I know what was coming next.

At first she was calm, nothing to be concerned about, I even promised some people that I would call them shortly. Then she started …

My Journey to A Great Thanksgiving Week End

It is always fun to enjoy a long week-end. For some people it is an opportunity to do things that they did not have time to do, or visit friends and family members that they had not seen for a while.

 That is what happened to us this last Saturday. A friend of mine had extended an invitation to us a few weeks ago to go to see him and his family and stay overnight. We did not know that he had done the same with some other families as well. It was a great surprise when we got there. After a while, other guests started to come, before we knew, the house was packed. It was so great

I don't know where the tradition came from, but I think that whoever thought about having a Thanksgiving day was right. In my opinion it should be a daily thing to be thankful. However, most of the times, it is easier said than done. Facing daily challenges can take away the focus on the blessings. I heard someone saying that energy flows where attention goes. Whatever we give energy to, grows. If we focus…

My Journey to Niagara Falls

A few weeks ago I received a call from my friend Courtney asking me if I would be available on September 28 (which was this last Friday) to attend a conference at which he would be speaking. Courtney is such an inspirational speaker that I wouldn't miss this opportunity. So I said yes. My friend Jim (a.k.a Mister Connector) would be there as well.

It was a two day conference, but I was there just to listen to Courtney (who by the way just published his first book) speaking about his favorite topic which is Financial Fitness. He did a great job and I learned so much from him. He was the last speaker. After that, it was time for fun. The conference organizers knew a thing or two about having fun. A huge bus was waiting for us downstairs. Destination: Niagara Falls

 About twenty four of us got into the bus. They had told us that they would be playing a movie on our way and we were excited about it. Do you know why? It was Mr. Bean! For those of you who have watched Mr. Bean, you kno…

My Journey to A Great Lesson

It has been quite an eventful week. Actually it started last week when a friend of mine invited us to visit him and his family. That was the first time we actually went out, the three of us, other than to the doctors' appointment. It was a blast. Of course there was great food involved.

 I have started working with a coach. Her name is Charlie. It has been a few weeks now that I am working with her, and I have started seeing the results. The first result is actually is something intangible, but yet essential. She helped me define exactly what I want and in details. It was challenging at times, because there are things that I hadn't thought about yet, but I am glad I did.

 Two days ago, I received a call from a longtime friend of mine. Actually, he is one of my best friends. He lives in England. We do not talk as often as we used to (he is a father of 3 kids, and I have one...), but when we get a chance to talk, we can talk for hours just to catch up. As I was sharing with hi…

My Journey to Our Daughter's Three Month Birthday

Time really runs so fast.It's been three months that our baby was born. It seems like it was yesterday.

Before that, the only time I held a baby in my arms for more than five minutes was 31 years ago when my younger brother was born (this is to show how ready I was to be a father...). The first week after our daughter was born, I looked like a zombie. After six sleepless nights, I knew something had to change. We needed to find a system that could work for both my wife and I.

I can tell you one thing. My wife is a trooper. Being a newcomer in Canada is quite a big challenge by itself (trust me.I worked with newcomers to Canada for over 7 years. I know a little thing or two about what they face). Add to that carrying a baby and all the fun stuff of being a wife and living for the first time in her life away from her (wonderful) family. It's not an easy thing to do. You can also add teaching her husband how to cook stuff other than pasta. She was exhausted too.

Now, three months la…

My Journey To Toronto International Film Festival

This is a premiere for me. I am posting my blog straight to the blog website without editing it. And I know that you were waiting for this one yesterday. My bad. I don't know if in some parts of the world it is still Monday (for me to justify that I am not late posting this blog).

I am in fact writing from a computer provided for the Industry delegates at the Toronto International Film Festival. Yes I am one of them as an Assistant Producer of a movie that is about to be shot in South Africa. How I got in here is another story.

Being part of the festival is something special. I just met great movie producers, and as they were mentioning the projects they have been working on in the past, I am just amazed to even being part of the discussion. I am talking about Oscar winning movies. It's crazy. My only hope was to meet Will Smith, but I guess that will have to be for another day lol

Funny enough, as I was doing my homework yesterday given to me by Charlie my new coach, she asked m…

My Journey to a busy long week-end

Back to back this week-end I went to bed almost at dawn. Thankfully it was a long week-end, I was able to catch up with my sleep today. A friend of mine had asked me to host his wedding reception as the Master of Ceremonies and I said yes. It was this week-end and we all had fun. At the wedding I met people that I haven't seen in over ten years. It was so great.

Last Friday, my friend Emmanuel Lopez a.k.a Motivatorman came to visit me at my place. It was for work, but he also wanted to see our daughter (now she is what people want to see...Am I jealous of her? Lol). Then we decided to have a walk at the park. We sat there for almost an hour talking about different subjects, including our favorite one: Movies. It's funny how two people can watch the same movie and each gets a complete different perspective.

The movie that came into the discussion was Kevin Costner's “Field of Dreams”. It is a fantastic movie about an Iowa corn farmer (Costner), hearing voices, interprets th…

My Journey With Paul

It was almost 9 years ago. I was on my way home after a long day. While on a Subway platform waiting for my train, about ten feet away, I saw a gentleman in a blue jacket and decided to talk to him. I didn't know how to start the conversation. I simply went: “Nice Jacket!”

That little sentence has lead to 9 years of great friendship with Paul my business partner. We have been through a lot together. I remember him helping me register my first business. I was so excited that day that I couldn't contain my joy. I looked Paul in the eyes and said: “Just watch. We are going to change the world”. After these many years, I don't think we have changed the world yet. Just the other day, I was laughing with Paul saying that before changing the world, our job has been to change...us. Lol

With all we have been through together, one story is still stuck in my mind. It was in 2004, and there was nothing to show for after months of hard work. Paul, being a huge soccer fan (and average pla…

My Journey To a Networking Event.

A few months ago, I received an invitation to a big networking event here in Toronto. I said yes right away but I wasn't a hundred percent sure that I would be there, the reason being that it would be on my birthday. But after all, I thought that it was not a big enough reason for me not to show up as I was not going to celebrate my birthday anyway.

So, last week, with hundreds of other business owners, we were gathered at the Ontario Place for a networking bash. It was a great event. I told Jennifer, the organizer, that she did all of that just to celebrate my birthday. She laughed, but, in a way I did celebrate with all those wonderful people (especially when there is food involved).

As I was standing at our table, a gentleman came over from a corner, as if he had something important to tell me. He asked me to join him where he was. I immediately went to him. His face looked familiar but I couldn't remember where I met him. He looked in my eyes and just said: I don't know …

My Journey To Sudbury

The month of August is so full of celebrations that I would need a special software to manage them all lol.

Let's see. August 6 was our one year wedding anniversary, August 7 was my wife's birthday, August 8 was both my 10 year anniversary in Canada and 4 years as a Canadian citizen, and this coming August 15 is my birthday (and of course I won't tell you my age, but I am expecting your gifts).

How do you celebrate all of that? How about a trip? That wouldn't be bad at all.

Four times in July I was asked to conduct a series of workshops for French speaking professionals. It was so much fun. When they told me that I would do the same thing in Sudbury, I immediately said yes. So, this last week, it was both work and pleasure as I took my family with me to Sudbury Ontario. It was fun.

Up to the last minute we did not know if we would drive, take the train or fly to Sudbury. We were at Toronto Airport when we were told we would drive after all. Thank God we did. We had so muc…

My Journey To The Olympics

Yes I know it's past midnight and I am late posting my blog. But in some parts of the world it's still early. Then I am not late after all (that is my story and I will stick to it).

I also know that, by reading the title of this blog you may think that I am writing from London where the Olympics are happening. I wish.

I am enjoying the Olympics like many of you on TV and Internet. But it is really fun to see how athletes are showcasing their talents on the world stage. How about Usain Bolt and Phelps? We are witnessing historic figures. That is my opinion.

As you may have guessed, my main thing is Basketball. It was funny to see players from Tunisia asking Kobe for an autograph after the game. It looked like they were just happy to be there. Forget about winning the game. Poor Nigeria! They were really swept by Team USA. Melo scored 37 points in just 14 minutes. Team USA broke all the records in that game. The US coach was so pleased that he gave his team a day off before their …

My Journey to A Great Story

As I am browsing through my library looking for the next book to read (yes, a little inspiration can always help), I pick up a few books for the next few days. I have read them all in the past, but I wouldn't mind reading them again.

Have you ever read a book or seen a movie for the second or third time and it seems as if it was the first time? You see details that you did not see the first time you read it? That happened to me when I picked Dr. Wayne Dyer's book “Your Sacred Self”. The first time I read the book was in 2004. I read it again a couple of times a few years later, but this time it was like the first time I ever picked it up.

Do you know why I bought the book in the first place? Because of a story written on the very first page of the book. Do you want me to share it with you? Are you sure you want to read it? I hope Wayne won't mind me sharing it with you. It made such a huge impact in my life.

Get ready. Here it comes. It goes like this:

“Imagine this scene if…

My Journey back to 2004

This is one of those late blogs. I know you were anxious to read it. Yes, I kept my Monday promise (aren't you glad I did?).

The last few weeks have been really crazy. I can't lie and say that I was not challenged. It came down to one thing: rest. Yes, if I wanted to remain sane, I had to rest. So, for three and half days, I was away from everything: phone, Internet, work, friends...Otherwise, I couldn't come to my senses.

It was also a time to reflect about where I am and where I want to be (yes, challenges seem to change me into a philosopher...). I slept a lot, but sometimes the baby did not allow me to do it the way I wanted. I now have a lot of catching up to do as I broke some promises about things I was going to do, but didn't. Hope you will understand.

Back to my reflection. Over the week-end, I was thinking about what I was able to accomplish, as well as my challenges. I have to say that 2004 was my most challenging year. As, Napoleon Hill said, every adversity b…

My Journey to A Month of Fatherhood

Our daughter is today one month old. We celebrated it by the regular doctor's check up. Once again she is fine, she gained weight and she is still beautiful (and I am not bias lol)

It's been a month of numerous adjustments in our lives my wife and I. The first week was crazy. After five days of three hours sleep a night, I thought I was going nuts, so was my wife. We had to adjust and we found a system that works for us. It's good that I work from home most of the times, otherwise it would be hard for my wife to manage it all. Now I really do have an incredible respect for single moms.

Yesterday was one of those nights when my wife couldn't sleep. In the morning, it was my turn to take care of the baby so that my wife could sleep a little. As I was putting the baby to sleep, I couldn't keep my eyes off of her. It will take a while before it sinks in that I am a father.

After spending a month with the baby, I can tell when she is hungry, when she needs sleep, when it…

My Journey to a Dream Come True

I had quite a busy week-end but it was really worth it. I had really fun doing what I love to do, maybe too much, as I came home rushing to give a hand to my wife. She was really exhausted. My absence at home this week-end was felt.

In less than a month from now (on August 8 to be exact), it will be ten years that I am in Canada. What a journey! As Steve Jobs said once, it is when we look back that we are able to connect the dots. Now when I look back, I can see how everything that I went through had lead to this moment. It hasn't been easy at all, but it was worth it.

Ten years ago, I thought I was Superman. I am telling you, I was very confident and full of pride ( it was my way or the highway). If you were me, you would feel the same.

Let's see.

At the end of my high school I said that I wanted to study English at University: check. I did that. Before the end of University, I said I would be an English teacher at my former high school:check, I did that. I wanted to work in th…

My Journey to a Film Festival

Very hard to focus on my writing while watching Tom and Jerry on TV. I have to wait until they go to the commercial break for me to proceed writing. It's a hilarious show and it never gets old.

A few weeks ago, my friend in Montreal put me in touch with a movie script writer who just won an award for her movie script. Unfortunately she could not be in Toronto to receive it (she is in Asia for the moment) and she asked me if I could represent her at the movie festival. I said yes, and that's where I was on Friday. It was quite an experience. A group of young actors were reading the script as I was capturing everything on a computer hooked to the Internet so that my friend could follow the event live on Skype. I love technology.

After the festival, I had a couple of places I had to go to before going home. It took me the whole day before I could head home. Almost every ten minutes I would call my wife saying that I am on my way and asking how was the baby doing (oh yes, now I am …