You don’t want to start. Your heart goes faster. You and your thoughts move quicker. You start to pace. You’re in a mild panic. Because you panic, you want to take on many things at once. You look at the beginning, and you look at the end, and you try to start in the middle […]

There is something in most people that annoys me. Today, lying by the pool, a group of guys playing loud music and cackling like donkeys annoyed me. People who spit on the streets here in Bangkok and act like they own the pavement annoy me. Loud groups of tourists who leave rubbish around annoy me. […]

I’ve been criticised for most of my life. Mostly, these centre around being ‘too quiet,’ ‘boring,’ ‘serious,’ ‘morose,’’sleepy,’’like I’ve just woken up,’and ‘angry.’ I’m pretty introverted, have slitty eyes, and it can look like I’m sleepy and grumpy a lot of the time. Of course, being criticised doesn’t make me unique or a special case. […]

“A sale is made when your conviction about something is stronger than the potential buyer’s.” This is something I recently read in a book on selling. A large part of the art of selling anything — products, services, ourselves — is about our ability to communicate belief. If we can show that we believe in what we’re selling, buyers […]

Sometimes, I wish I were a tortoise. Or a horse. Or a lizard. To be human is to be cursed. No other creature can make a mistake,and turn it into a hundred. How silly. To put more into concealing my strangeness,than displaying my coloured wings. To work me up into a hot mess of nerves,Because […]

Do you want the absolute best for yourself? I know this has not always been true for me. What if your personal problems — yes, the ones you’re dealing with right now — the anxiety, the character flaws, the struggles with money, the nervous blushing — what if… What if the reason you think of them as problems and continue to […]

Jean-Paul Sartre said that “hell is other people.” When I’m surrounded by people with whom I seem to have nothing in common, I’d be quick to agree. All my life, other people have brought me tremendous amounts of stress. They have confused me, irritated me, and stirred up visceral anger in me. When I was […]

You feel miserable. Life is hard. Everyone sucks. Nobody pays attention to you. Nobody respects you enough. You feel low. Your anxiety is surging. You try all the cures. They tell you to take pills. You take them, but they only mask your deeper ‘problems.’ Ultimately they make you feel even worse with all those side-effects. […]

E.L. Doctorow once said: “Writing is an exploration. You start from nothing, and learn as you go.” As my daily writing experiments have shown, he is right. Writing can reveal a lot about the world and ourselves. The sheer act of writing unlocks that which is deep within the dusty libraries of my mind. Until recently, I treated writing as a […]

My name is Alex, and I’m a self-conscious wreck. At least, I used to be more of the time. Self-consciousness stops us enjoying the beauty of interacting with others and delivering our truth. We can end up in a spiral of doubt, poor performance and further doubt. It can be crippling. I’ve been there many […]