2012 started with working with a couple of thousand nurses sharing with them ideas to improve their ‘patient experience’ and build their confidence.
Most of our nurses are amazing, some could be a lot better. Yes the ones who were great wanted more the ones who needed it didn’t want to know. Interesting.
I wrote a few articles for MyFamilyClub.com – nice people.
I had a ball speaking at The Master Inn Holders Conference – the first of lots of great keynotes this year. Keynote speaking is the best bit of my job!
I also met a legend of service – Danny Mayer.
Our first international job was in Amsterdam. It was Christine’s first visit and she was really shocked by the seedier parts. It’s such a beautiful city with a sad side to it.
The early part of the year also featured many interviews with people for The Edge. Deadlines were already looming.
We went to one of the live Got to Dance finals. Seeing dancing on TV is amazing but live it’s something else. More support for young people in the performing arts please!
In February Christine, Sarah & I staged The Spectacle for the Emma Newton Fund. It featured many pairs of famous spectacles each with a story to tell. It ended up on the BBC & ITV news and hundreds of people came to see it.
March & April were consumed with speaking and writing with a little treat on April 3rd when we saw Kylie at the Hammersmith Apollo.
May & June were very busy and spent a lot of time in London which was great as the Queens Jubilee was all happening around then. Was this a sign of how good the Olympics would be.
On June 8th at 11am I achieved 20 year goal and managed to get tickets for the Olympic Opening Ceremony. You can read how I did it here. Needless to say I was buzzing!
On the 16th June my friend Nigel Cook carried the flame in my old home town. The Olympic Flame relay made everyone sit up and take note that the greatest show on earth was coming to Great Britain – and I cooked the perfect sausage at the party afterwards.
We did loads of traveling in the first few months of 2012 and I gave thanks every day that I work and travel with wife. We’re together 24/7. I know that would drive many people nuts but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
At the End of June I spent three days in the recording studio finally doing an unabridged Audio Version of How to Be Brilliant, my first book and The Edge (due out a few months later). By day three I could hardly speak but I set a goal and knew I could finish it. It was only at the end when my engineer told me that most people take 3 days to record one book and I’d done two that I realized I’d been a bit daft. Still I did it and the results are great.
July was the ultimate rollercoaster month. We were in Florence when we received the call from my brother to say my niece had taken an overdose of paracetamol and was in a critical condition. We flew home on the next flight, she had a liver transplant and the next few weeks and even months were touch and go. The NHS were at their best. All the Brits reading this I hope you’ll never need the care she received but it’s reassuring to know that we have the best public health care in the world.
On Friday 27th July 2012 my 20 year goal was achieved and with Christine I was one of a lucky group of people who witnessed the greatest show on earth – the London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony. It was perfect and the launch to an amazing Olympic and Paralympic Games. I posted some pics and things here.
And just over a week later we were there again for the Mens 100 Metres final. I’ve never felt an atmosphere like it at a sporting event and I’m not quite sure what could top it.
The next day we flew to Ibiza for the rest of the summer. Our first week was staying in Ushuaia where we watched and danced to David Guetta, Swedish House Mafia, Deadmou5, Avicii etc. The best bit? The party lasts from 6pm til midnight – perfect for the older clubber!
In September our daughter Sarah went to Uni and for the first time since we were married Christine & I were on our own (Michael Jnr left home years ago). We celebrated this new found freedom by having early nights and a trip to see Lady Ga Ga. What would you do?
My latest book The Edge how the best get
better was published by Hodder on October 1st. Seeing it on the shelves and WH Smith Travel making it a book of the month made all the work worth it. When you write a book you usually have some idea what people will think of it.The Edge was a new idea and I had no inkling as to what readers would think. The good news, the majority really liked it. There’s one or two who didn’t and took pride in sharing their opinion on Amazon but that’s all good. Oh yes it was my first book to be published for Kindle too!
October & November are big months for keynote speakers as lots of conferences take place then. As always ours was a busy one and this year included a TEDx event and bunch of diverse talks from The Edge, Flip It, How to Be Brilliant & Five Star Service and a very special graduation ceremony in Lichfield Cathedral.
I also stated to practice Yoga at this time and after a few months I wonder how I ever did without it. I’m having weekly lessons with a brilliant teacher called Gilly. Watch this space and by this time next year I’ll be meditating six inches from the ground.
In December I ticked a big goal from my bucket list when I performed stand up comedy at the world famous Comedy Store in London. What ever anyone tells you about doing stand up, it’s harder and scarier than you can imagine.
That’s me doing my 1st & last stand up gig.
The world didn’t end, which is just as well as life has so much to offer. In 2012 I visited several countries and dozens of cities where I met hundreds of interesting people and presented to over 30,000 people. Who knows what 2013 will bring!
Thank you for reading this rambling review of my year.
Here’s to you and yours and making 2013 brilliant.