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Stuart Lennon

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Progress Report

 

Glass of Sherry

Much underestimated; sherry.

I have been quiet recently. Progress has been slow. Unusually for me, I have been working.

I wrote before about setting simple goals this year. As January draws to a close, this is a progress report.

Progress

I haven’t lost two stone, or published a novel. I have bought a company though. Look at that. January not yet finished, and I have one of the year’s three goals in the bag. How’s that for progress?

I have signed the contract for the deal, but I can’t reveal what it is for a couple of days yet, not until I have paid for it. They can be funny like that; vendors.

My last venture was in partnership with a great friend, and this one is no different. However, this time, I am the senior partner. Allow me to introduce my Chief Operations Officer, Tamodan Midnight Sun, or Nero as he is more commonly known.

Nero, COO of pocketnotebooks

Nero Assessing Progress

CV

This is his first real management position, but he is off to a flying start. We have had several management meetings, and he is never short of an apposite bark or dismissive sniff.

We have secured ourselves a very desirable office on the Castledown Business Park, and tomorrow we collect the keys.

Exciting times.

A word from King Barry

Stuart is away this week.

I, King Barry, Snow White’s father, will provide you with an update.

Stuart is, thus far, doing OK on all goals for 2017:

  1. Talks continue with a few potential business acquisitions.
  2. The fitbit indicates that he is keeping his nose ahead of his friends group. (Just. That Ger woman is pushing hard.)
  3. A whole kilogram has been lost, no seriously, a whole kilo.
  4. Every day has been a writing day.

Naturally, the highlight of the winter for Stuart has been the opportunity to play me, King Barry, in the Abbotts Ann village pantomime. The production was a roaring success, playing four sold-out performances in early-December. The show was put on by the Abbotts Ann players, a group with sufficient talent to produce a good show, even when hampered by novices like the big boy.

A friend attended the opening night, and did not go to the pub until AFTER the show had ended. His comment was telling;

“I think that it’s great you live in a village that still does things like this. It’s brilliant.”

It’s unusual for any acquaintance of Stuart to utter anything halfway sensible, but I suppose the exception proves the rule.  People are quick to rue the loss of their local pub, or corner shop, and they moan about how the street, estate, neighbourhood, ‘never does anything’ any more. Yet, it is this very same people that drove past their village shop to get to the supermarket. The same people who don’t attend the fireworks night, because they are busy. The same people who don’t use the pub, don’t attend community meetings etc…

I, King Barry of the Kingdom of Elate (on the nice side of the A38), leave you with this, my regal thought. YOU are your community. YOU can make it thrive. Stuart tells me that it’s also, really good fun.

And remember…

“You are my first, my last, my everything…”  Barry White, the Walrus of Love. 1974.

Dry January Goal

“Goal: Dry January,” you say?

Let me stop you there.

No.

That is that nonsense out of the way.

January the first is my Mum’s birthday. Happy Birthday Mum!

Soon she will join us here for lunch. As I type, my fantastic wife is cooking up a storm in the kitchen. Beef Wellington, accompanied by this sumptuous, velvety Rioja from Muga. This is a beautiful wine. Buy some and enjoy it. In February, if you must.

Last year I wrote about my goals and how I was filling notebooks with them. I had goals, objectives, sub-goals, milestones, action plans, all sorts of things intended to keep me focused and ‘on mission’.

How did I do?

Well, regrettably, I am not 4 stone lighter. For a while, I was a stone lighter at one point but now I’m probably a pound lighter. Not a dazzling success. Must do better.

Single-figure handicap golfer? Nope. Not yet. Playing off 12, which is an improvement. Good progress.

Publishing third novel? Nope. Not published the debut yet. Unacceptable.

I could go on for pages. Overall, I did reach several of my goals, but I did so at the expense of the core ones, the ones that I really wanted to achieve.

There is danger in over-complicating things, or being too ambitious. The older I get, the more I learn that multi-tasking is a word that means “doing lots of things poorly”.

This year – I’m not filling notebooks with goals, milestones, measures etc. This year I’m keeping it simple and I’m going public.

  1. Publish a novel.
  2. Lose 2 stone.
  3. Buy a company.

What are your goals for 2017?