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Showing posts from 2014

My Journey to a Change

I haven’t been on this earth long enough to claim that I know a lot, but the little I know has shown me that people do change. Who I am now is not who I used to be. Am I getting better as I age like it is the case for wine? I really don’t know.
I remember many years ago as Paul my business partner and I spoke about what we would like to create in the future, he told me that I would be the front man of our company, and he would work behind the scenes.
He kept his word for a long time. I can assure you that he made me look good on numerous occasions while he did most of the work. My job was to go out and present; I had a very good deal.
That was a few years ago. I guess I did a very good job at presenting our stuff (at least that is what I tell myself). Well guess what happened a little over a year ago? Paul went out and got his coaching certificate and now he is presenting workshops with me and coaching as well. I think I inspired him lol.  He even did an entire presentation th…

My Journey With Richard

You might be wondering who the heck is Richard.
He is a gentleman I met a while ago when I was participating in a training program for coaches. For two days, I was part of a class where we learned how to customize our coaching approach when working with new immigrants to Canada. The training was amazing and I am looking forward to the next part where we will be assigned a person to coach for 6 months.

During the first day of training, they told us they would bring somebody to share a story about how the coaching program had helped him to find his first job in Canada. Richard was the guy.

He was well dressed, he was funny and he was ready to share his story.

Richard has been in Canada for only five months now. He was a very successful professional in his native country and also had experience working in many Asian countries. He was very successful before coming to Canada.

When he started to share his story it didn't take too long to realize that his first days in Canada were very…

My Journey Back to Montreal

I recently returned from a three day trip to Montreal where I hosted an event organized by "Ishaka", a Burundian traditional dance group from Ottawa. This is the second time that these ladies have asked me to be the MC of their event.
The trip was also an opportunity to get away from the usual and get a little bit of rest.  The event was phenomenal. It was close to perfection. The group's preparedness, their professionalism and their excellence made me feel proud to be Burundian. I have hosted many events over the past years, but I have never experienced anything like this. I had the opportunity to work with backstage producers, sound engineers and stage managers...It was a blast!
The beautiful Theatre Outremont was full to capacity and the crowd was really into it. The music and the dances were well performed by the young ladies with their beautiful smiles. I could tell they were having fun.
As I arrived early to the venue for the rehearsals, I was moved to t…

My Journey with Cecilia

It was almost four years ago when I met Cecilia for the first time. I was part of a coaching and training program where Cecilia was one of the three people who were assigned to me for coaching. The program was set to last seven months and included four trips to New York.
By the way, did you realize that I am back to blogging again? Yes Jim, I am back...
Now back to Cecilia.
During the seven months I spent working with Cecilia, I developed a friendship with her that is still there after four years. While I was trying my best to help her, she ended up being the one who inspired me to become a better person and a stronger leader.
A few weeks ago, while speaking to her on the phone, she mentioned to me that her business was thriving and that she was dealing better with life's challenges.  She was in a very good mood and I was happy for her and her business.  What she went on to tell with me during that conversation really surprised me; she told me that my coaching had impacted her li…

My Journey to a Weekend Retreat

Have you ever been in a situation when you feel you want to get away from everything?  A place that is far away from the everyday routine, away from the noise, a place where you can calm down and....listen?


This has been my case for some time, but the opportunity never presented itself until this last weekend.


It was a long weekend here in Ontario last week, so it was perfect timing.


Why did I want to get away? You may ask. Simply because I wanted to get some direction. Without getting into the details, I will tell you that I was so angry last week. It doesn't happen a lot, but when it happens, I can get REALLY upset.‎


I was in a situation in which I felt I was unfairly treated and I was not even given a chance to explain myself (in my opinion). I couldn't understand; It was really unfair and there was nothing I could do.


As I was riding on the train going home with my daughter, with my mind wandering all over the place, this guy came near the door where I was standing; he was…

My Journey to a Few Days Off

One of the things that I enjoy a lot (other than good food) is to go to sleep when I am completely exhausted. I like when I go to bed so sleepy that in a few seconds I am snoring (apparently I do).
That was the case this weekend. I was so busy last week that by Friday I looked like a zombie. For more than two years, my daughter has pretty much dictated my schedule (especially in terms of the amount of sleep I get daily), but this last week it was the opposite. Since I commute daily to outside of the city, I woke up very early each morning, dropped my daughter at the daycare and immediately after proceeded to my final destination.
When I went to pick her up at the daycare, they told me that Skylar was sleepy all day long. Needless to say that by Friday, my daughter and I were in the same situation. The only time we did not sleep was when we attended church on Sunday. We slept every other time during the weekend.  My wife could not believe the number of hours we spent sleeping. She sai…

My Journey to a Few Questions

I have had a few questions in my mind. I am glad it’s only a few questions unlike the Brazilian soccer team that was crushed by Germany (are you kidding me??).
As the questions kept popping in my mind, I did what I always do in search of inspiration; I went back to the texts that changed my life a few years ago. Every time I read it, I learn something new. It never gets old.  I am sure you will enjoy it as well. I know many of you have read it before, but I have no doubt that it will inspire you as if you are reading it for the first time. It said that the author is unknown, but whoever wrote it, he/she was really inspired
Here it is "Everything Happens for a Reason" Sometimes people come into your life and you know right away that they were meant to be there, to serve some sort of purpose, teach you a lesson, or to help you figure out who you are or who you want to become.  You never know who these people may be (possibly your roommate, neighbor, teacher, fraternal brother or s…

My Journey to a great training session

Once again I am writing this blog using my phone. It is not the most convenient way to do it, but what can you do? We are at the mercy of technology now.
I am on my way to help a couple that I am very close to who are in the process of moving into their new home. It has been a long-time dream of theirs, and I am so happy for them.
A few days ago, I attended a leadership training at my church, and I am so glad I did. It was one of those moments when you are in need of motivation and you happen to be at the right place at the right time. I went home with a new sense of purpose and ready to serve whenever I can.
By the way, I am listening to the radio on my phone and this particular channel decided to play tunes from the eighties. Now I am listening to UB40's "red red wine". Do you remember that one?
Anyways, back to my leadership training.
The trainer, who has become a very good friend of mine, had a very interesting definition of servanthood. He said that it is like when …

My Journey to the Left

I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to write this blog and forgot what I was going to write. I can count at least three times that the idea came into my mind and ten minutes later I couldn't even remember the idea.
Maybe it had to do with me being consumed by the victory of the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA finals. What a show! I have never seen such a selfless team demolish an adversary with such ease. It was an amazing show. Sorry Heat fans; maybe next time.
Now back to my story. The idea came to me (numerous times) while I was feeding my daughter. It seems like she doesn't need my help anymore. It felt like she was telling me  “give me this stupid spoon so I can feed myself”. Of course she did not say these exact words, but that is how I felt.
Being a proud father with a potential legacy of a daughter who enjoys food as much as her dad, I couldn't resist giving her the spoon.
While she fed herself, I noticed that she used her left hand. I thought I was mistaken. I tried…

My Journey to the Daycare

As we prepare to celebrate our daughter’s second birthday, I am amazed at how quickly she is growing up. Since she was born, I have taken pictures and videos of her (I think I now have hundreds of them).
While on the subway on our way to her daycare, whenever I want her to keep quiet, I would give her my phone so that she can watch her own videos. I am amazed how, at almost two years old, she knows how to use a phone. She knows where to find the videos; if she does not like one of them, she knows how to switch to the next one. It’s simply incredible. She can do stuff with the phone that even I don’t know how to do.
If she is not using the phone, she simply starts to sing. She sings so loudly that people on the subway can't help but watch and laugh  (I think she is the next Celine Dion). As soon as we get off the train, she begins greeting everybody that we meet with a high five while continuing to sing. It’s quite a journey; and what I have shared with you is only what happens durin…

My Journey of Two Years

Basketball fans, are you ready for the NBA finals? I am so excited to see the Spurs have revenge over Miami (I know I am getting into trouble here from the Heat fans).
The San Antonio team has been on the top of the game for almost two decades. I can’t help but admire the way they do things. If you are only a regular fan of the game, you must admit that they play beautifully, though less flashy. It is going to be a great series. Wait and see.
In just a few days, our daughter is going to celebrate her second birthday. It has been pure joy seeing her grow and take on her own personality. In fact, she is into singing all the songs she has been learning at the daycare. Although she understands everything we tell her, she is only able to speak a few words.  Her favourite word is “mine!!” I guess she heard me so many times using it to refer to my food lol
The other day I was changing her diapers (yes, it is something I have learned to do) and she didn't want me to change her. She only …

My Journey with Heather

y Journey with Heather I recently spent the last few days in Ottawa with some amazing leaders. I was there for a conference, and it was an opportunity to meet some of my old friends that I haven’t seen for a while. It was also a well needed change of scenery which came at the right time for me. She was one of my mentors about twelve years ago when I came to Canada. Heather and the other mentors I had took the young boy I was and turned him into a man. I admired Heather so much for her tough skin and her “whatever it takes” attitude. She was an inspiration to me. In 2009, we lost track of each other and we did not keep in touch. Years had past without knowing Heather’s whereabouts. So it was a pleasant surprise when earlier this year I received an e-mail from her asking me if we could meet up. I immediately agreed. I was really looking forward to meeting her after so many years without seeing each other. We had a lot of things to catch up on. Our first meeting was a delight. We laughed so …

The Journey of an Elephant

It’s been quite an interesting week in many ways. More downs than ups, but everything is a matter of perspective. Don’t worry, the sequel is over. This is not another new perspective story.
My body is still hurting a bit from the physical effort of last Saturday's Basketball game. I guess the age is catching up. We won with a huge margin; hopefully the San Antonio Spurs will do the same.
Hey Jim, yes the Journeyman is back. Thanks for your enthusiasm. I realize that after my little vacation you are way out front in the page views competition; that being said I will catch up to you very soon. So watch out!
I heard a story of a small ant which was on the  back of a big elephant. As the elephant was riding along, it came across a small bridge. The ant was still on his back. Unfortunately, the bridge was not strong enough to hold the weight of the elephant, so it collapsed. The good news is that the bridge was not high enough so the elephant was not hurt with the collapse.
The ant wh…

My Journey to A New Perspective: Part 3

Hollywood has its own sequels, and I am creating mine called "My Journey to A New Perspective". Don't you think that I got the timing right as the new Spiderman is out at the same time as my sequel? I hope my new sequel will have the same success as Spiderman at the box office. I am writing this blog on my way to a wedding where I am Master of Ceremonies. I hope I am finish by the time I get there; especially now that I am trying to get use to my new phone. Yes, I have a new phone. The phone company told me that they are no longer using old models like my phone.  I had to get a new one. The good news is that the new phone comes with two months of free service. I like good deals. I don't know if you had the chance to hear it but I so enjoyed the speech Kevin Durant, of the Oklahoma City Thunder, gave when he well deservedly received the award for Most Valuable Player of the Basketball season. It was a very emotional speech that made many people cry. I have to admit that…

My Journey to A New Perspective: Part 2

Didn’t I tell you that I would be back? Well here I am; I have kept my word.
Now I am going to share something with you on the topic of keeping my word.....actually, I will return to that so stay tune.
First of all, I am still recovering from the heart breaking defeat of the Toronto Raptors in Game 7 of the NBA Playoffs. What a series! I have been watching the NBA for many years (of course I won’t tell you how many years, because you will get a hint on my age), and every Playoff series is always better than the previous one. The Raptors put the City on the map with their performance, but the fans were off the charts with their show of support. Cold, rain, traffic, nothing could stop them from coming to celebrate their team in the streets of Toronto. It was simply unbelievable. Now my eyes are on the San Antonio Spurs, my favourite team to win it all.
Wait and see.
Now let's return to the topic of keeping my word.
A few years ago, I completed an intensive training programat one of …