Tuesday, 23 November 2010


I was wondering why I was in such an extremely good mood. It’s not the news - a mining disaster in New Zealand, the catastrophe of Haiti and the humiliation of the Irish (as the Times put it.)

At first I put it down to the impending ho, ho, ho of Christmas – the first time in years I’ve felt that surge of goodwill (is it flu? No it’s goodwill – an acute case of it.) It could be the effect of young grandchildren and great nieces but there’s more to it than children’s sense of wonder.

I genuinely believe if we set our minds to it we can be a lot more cheerful, productive and effective. Being in a good mood is as much up to us as it is to outside events. As Jack Welch put it (former head of GE) “determine your own destiny or someone else will.”

Which takes us back to the Irish for whom I feel a genuine affection and sympathy – they’ve been stuffed by the speculators as so many of us have been in the past. Do not confuse speculation with entrepreneurialism. The latter is about making calculated adventurous moves – like a new product launch – the former about betting the house and all your neighbour’s houses on red.

There’s only one way out – a dose of austerity which I’m afraid will taste like a powerful Bloody Mary – and a decision to laugh in the face of the doom mongers. As the recently spanked Lord Young said “honestly, you’ve never had it so good” Naughty Lord! The truth is that the way we really feel is in the mind not in the wallet.

And right now I’m feeling great. Positive, on song and up for it.

And they say it might even snow later this week.

Happy Christmas.

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