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Thursday, November 28, 2013

My Journey with James

His name is James Arthur Ray, he is one of the stars of the movie "The Secret".

In 2008, I got a chance to see him live in Las Vegas, and later on in Toronto. I can say that it was two life changing events for me.

In one of his training sessions a few years ago, tragedy happened and people died at his event. It was heartbreaking for me to hear that, and knowing James, I knew this was hard for him too. While watching CNN, I saw him taken to prison, and it was not a nice scene to see. I felt so bad for the families who lost their loved ones, and I felt sorry for James who experienced such a tragic event.

James has been out of prison since, and he just released his first blog. I am on his emailing list, and I received it a few days ago.

I just wanted to share it with you.

Here it is. Click here

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

My Journey with a Difference Maker

I have been reading a few interesting books.

The one I am reading now is Andy Andrews' " The Noticer". What a great book!! I have read the author a number of years ago, and this one cought my attention. Mainly, the book says that there is no such thing as a dead end. It only takes a little "perspective" to recognize the miracles in our moments, the seeds of greatness tucked into our struggles.

The book really makes one think. Here is what I have been thinking about.


Let's say in an imaginary world, you meet someone on the street. He is begging for a few money to pay for his bus fare. You give him $3 (which is nothing for you, really). What you don't know is that, this man is a part time student about to do his final exam, but he has been out of cash because all his money goes to paying for his education

Thanks to you, he finds a way to go to his campus and do his exam (which he passes by the way). The guy ends up being a teacher, a really good one. In one of his lessons, he inspires his students to follow their dreams no matter what.

Let's say that, among his students, one in particular is so passionate about medicine. Thanks to his teacher's inspiration, he decides to follow his dream no matter what. He struggles a lot, but he finally becomes a doctor.

One day, out of the blue, the doctor decides to find the cure for cancer. People around him joke about it, saying that people have tried so many times in vain, there is no way he could do it. But, our doctor, remembering his teacher's advice a long time ago, he decides to believe in his dream.

Twenty years later, he finally succeeds. It took him twenty years of sacrifice, but his discovery ends up saving billions of lives. He is a real difference maker.

Now I have a question for you.

Is he really THE difference maker? Or, maybe we can give the credit to his teacher who inspired him to follow his dream no matter what? Think about that one! Or: is REALLY the teacher who deserves the credit, or is it YOU, who gave "the future teacher" the money he needed to go pass his exam so that he could become a teacher? I am just wondering who deserves the credit.

You see, your $3 ended up finding the cure for cancer many years later.

Oh, I forgot. We were in an imaginary world.

Next time I do a little act of kindness, as little as it may seem, I will know that my act can possibly make a huge difference for the humanity, or not. Who knows. But I will choose to do it anyways.

May you join me in believing that?

Moral of the story? Do you want to be a difference maker? Just check in your poctet and see if there is $3.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

My Journey to a New NBA Season

For Basketball fans, we are so glad the NBA season has started. It's not the high energy Playoffs games yet, but some games are worth watching. How about the double overtime Toronto-Houston? That was a heck of a game.

Some teams have been the surprise of the early season such as Philadelphia (many critics were saying that it would be the worse team of all this year), some of them have made a statement, like the undefeated Indiana Pacers, some others it is just business as usual, I am of course naming the Spurs who are just cruising.

How about Toronto? To tell the truth, I don't know. They have shown some good signs, but for some reasons I am still sceptical. The only positive I can see is the new General Manager. He has proven that he is the real deal. Let's wait and see.

For me, there are a few teams that I will be curious to watch. First there is Houston with Superman as their new Star, Brooklyn with Jason Kidd as a coach and the number of veterans they have now, and of course Miami who will be trying to win three championships in a roll.

For you non Basketball fans, I know that you may be sleeping by now. Be patient with me please, I will make my point very soon.

I think, the team that surprised most of the people was Boston. They got rid of most of all their Superstars and their very experienced coach. They even brough in a College Basketball coach with no NBA experience at all (So sorry Bertrand, your team will suck this year lol).

This is called rebuilding

In fact, they have done it before. After loosing many seasons (mostly for money saving), they brought in two big Superstars,  Ray Allen and Keving Garnett,  to add to the team. The same year they won a championship.

The rebuilding process can be long and painful. Doc Rivers, the coach who went through the first rebuilding a few years ago, did not want to relive the same experience this time. He is now coaching the Los Angeles Clippers. He said tha loosing so many games was so heartbreaking to live.

Don't you think that our lives sometimes need  a "rebuilding" process? As painful and long it could be, most of the times it is a necessary season so that we can be ready for the next "successful" new phase of our lives.

At least, this is the story that I daily tell myself.

Moral of the story? Do you want to start a new phase in your life? Just watch the NBA and you will get life lessons

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman

Thursday, October 31, 2013

My Journey to Halloween

Today is Halloween. I am really amazed by the creativity of some people in creating their costumes. Some of them are really funny. I just came from an office, and the two receptionists welcomed me in a very professional way. One of them was in a fancy and funny costume, and the other seemed to be "normal". That was until I saw her name tag. Her name tag was her "costume". It was written: Kim Kardashian. I thought it was funny.

It has been a quite interesting week.

 Last Friday I sat down with my friend Emmanuel Lopez a.k.a Motivatorman for our weekly meeting. For about more than a year now, every Friday at 10 O'clock we have a call during which I help him with his goals. It has been two weeks now that we have decided to meet in person instead of our Skype meeting. I think it works better for both of us.

Last week was very special. As I was listening to his accomplishments as well as challenges, something inside of me told me that I should tell him mine as well. All this time, it was about him sharing, and I was the listener. This time it was going to be the opposite.

I told him my story, I included very personal things that I haven't shared with anyone. It was a huge relief for me to share with a trusted friend. It was a humbling experience as well.

He patiently listened to me, and he was so suprised to hear some of the stuff. Late that evening, he sent me a text saying that it was so great for him to be that trusted friend, and he thought he could even offer some insights that could help me move forward. I was so thankful.

He then invited me to an event happening this last Tuesday. According to him, something magical would happen at the event. The name of the speaker was Stuart Knight. I had never heard of him. How surprised I was to find out that the place was so packed to capacity. How come I did not know this guy?!!

He spoke about having powerful conversations. He was simply amazing. He was so funny, but what he was talking about was so true and so helpful. At the end of his speech, he shared his personal story, and I was so stunned to hear what he went through. Wow!!

On my way home, I started to think about what I heard, then I reflected on my conversation with Lopez last Friday. It lead me to really think about what I am doing. You see, I have been a coach/speaker for the last few years, I believe we are building some amazing things my partners and I, but something is missing. You know what it is? It is a sincere and open conversation.

Stuart Knight shared with us that a number of years ago, he went through a depression. And, as a "motivational" speaker, he had hard time sharing what he was going through. He did not want to tell the real truth. The day he decided to open up, something magical happened. People started to relate to him differently. They started to open up to him, and his business hasn't been the same.

I really don't know how this is going to affect me, but I am seriously thinking about sharing, really sharing with people, heart to heart on what's going on. And there will be some clean up to do with a number of people that I have let down. That is how I feel.

Moral of the story?
Do you want to share your story with the world? Just dress up like Kim Kardashian on Halloween.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

My Journey Back to Normal

Hello there

Do I have to remind you that I know that you missed me? I know you did. Your (very competent) representative, Jim, left me a voicemail in a broken French saying that he really missed my blog. I believed him.

The fact is that I was in bed with a nasty cold. It was really bad. Thank God it's back to normal.

However, even though I was under the weather, I managed to do a few things here and there. One of them was to go and see Diallo, a preacher from Calgary Alberta who was here in Toronto for a few days. I have heard of him, we are even connected on Facebook, but I had never seen him live. He is really something.

He was doing a leadership training, and I am glad I was in the audience. The first thing that impressed me the most about him was that, even though he had some notes, he did countless hours of training without reading any of them. He just spoke from his heart. He droped some good nuggets on us. It was really good stuff.

He told us a story that his grandmother told him long time ago when he was very young in his native country. I thought the story was both funny and instructive. The story went like this (and I am paraphrasing):

A young man was very poor, really poor, but he loved to pray. He had only one pair of cloths. It was a shirt and an underwear. Everyday he was praying to God asking Him to send new cloths. He couldn't afford to buy any. Many years passed and there was no sign of new cloths. He still had his old shirt and underwear.

Then, out of desperation, he decided to kill himself. God had been absent all these years, and there was no need of waiting any longer. He was going to die poor. He then took off his underwear and shirt, left his underwear on the ground, climbed a tree to hang himself with his shirt.

As he was about to hand himself, he looked down and what he saw was very surprising. A naked guy came running because he saw the underwear on the ground. He happily took it saying: "Thank you God. You finally heard my prayers. I have been praying for years asking for cloths because I was tired of being naked all the time. Now you just gave me this underwear. Thank you God!!"

Do you think that the guy hung himself? No way! He came down the tree to chase the guy who just took his underwear lol.

I will let you guess the moral of the story lol.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeymnan.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

My Journey to Newfoundland

As I am on the street downtown Toronto, my cellphone beeps. It's an email coming. I stop a bit to check what it is about and find out it is from a Speakers' Bureau I have been working with. Then I think: "This is going to be good stuff" 

The first few sentences get me so excited. An organization in Newfoundland is looking for a speaker next week for an event they are having. I almost jump for joy with a high expectation to travel to Newfoundland, until I find out the meeting will be on....Skype! I really don't like technology lol.

Maybe next time!

Yes, the meeting will be on Skype, but I am still excited even though I won't fly to Newfoundland. I get to do what I love to do. That is what is the most important thing.

Anyways...

Today, I received a quote that I thought was full of wisdom. It is from one of my favourite authors and speakers: Wayne Dyer. It goes like this:

"With everything that has happened to you, you can either feel sorry for yourself or treat what has happened as a gift.
Everything is either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle
to keep you from growing. You get to choose."

It is funny, because I was listening to Tony Robbins yesterday, and he was talking about the same thing. We were given a power that no other species on the planet have. It's called the power of choice. We have absolute power to choose our thoughts. It took me a very long time to realize this: I get to choose the way I think about ANY situation that happens to me.

I can feel sorry for myself, I can blame the whole world, or simply, I can decide that this too shall pass, maybe some time down the road I will come to realize that it was not that bad after all. It was part of a Master Plan that I was not aware of at the time, and only looking back I will be able to connect the dots.

I can also choose to let go of the past, not think much about the future, and simply live in the now. I can choose that. I have that power. I think you have it too. That's the beauty.

Moral of the story? Do you want to live in the now? Just check your email and you will be on Skype.


Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman



Tuesday, October 1, 2013

My Journey to a Radio Show

I just came from a radio show in which I was a guest. It was an invite from a friend that I met at Rogers Centre last month. He wanted me to share some of my stories. It brought back some great, and not so great memories. Stay tuned. I will let you know when the show will be aired.

Can I tell you a secret? Can you promise to keep it to yourself and not tell anybody?

Ok, here it is. It is in a form of a poem. The author is unknown.

It goes like this:

Broken Toys

As children bring their broken toys,
With tears, for us to mend;
I brought my broken dreams to God
because he was my friend.

But then instead of leaving him in peace to work alone,
I hung around and tried to help with ways that were my own.

At last, I snatched them back and cried,
"How could you be so slow?"
"My child," He said, "What could I do?
You never did let go...."




For years, I have been working so hard, with some successes and some failures (many failures actually lol). I have never fully tried to do what the poem suggests: to let go and let God. To fully give up total control and let Him work his magic. That was until recently. Of course I started with baby steps. I can tell you. It is so hard to give up control when you were used to "make things happen".

The results? It has been miracle after miracle. The obstacles are still there, and some of them are huge. But, I can feel that I am on the right track.

The details will be coming soon.

Moral of the story? Do you want to be on a radio show? Just give up control of your life and you will make baby steps.

Always a pleasure.
Patrick
The Journeyman.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

My Journey to the Library

As I am getting to the library to get some work done, just before I start my computer, guess who I see in one of the meeting rooms? My friends Jim and Bonnie doing a presentation. They do not see me, but I am sitting right behind them.

Jim is so focused on the work at hand. So, I decide to text him. The text goes like this: Turn around, I am right behind you. There is no reaction. I just think that he is too focused to notice my text. I start working on my computer. About half an hour later, guess who is now behind me? Jim himself. I guess he saw my text. I knew this one was coming: what's up with your blog? He asks

So here I am. I don't want to be in trouble with Jim.

Thanks a lot for your positive feedback on my last blog. Do not worry. I am doing ok. I think I am even stronger than last week lol.

Yesterday I watched the movie "Pursuit of Hapiness" one more time. Oh boy, the guy went through some serious stuff. Do you remember the scene where he was finally offered the job? That is my favourite one. Will Smith played brilliantly that part.

I had a chance to see the real Chris Gardner speak at an event and he shared that the movie just showed a little portion of what he really went through. I was shocked when I heard that.

Something caught my attention while watching the movie. For those who have seen it, do you remember the part when he met his future boss on the street and he decided to go in the taxi with him? Of course he did not have the money to pay for the cab but he just wanted to have an opportunity for a job interview. He started talking about his skills but the guy was busy playing with a gadget that he found impossible to fix. Do you remember that?

Will Smith decided to stop talking about himself and offered to fix the gadget. His boss told him it was impossible but he did not know that Will has done it hundreds of times before. Before long, the gadget was fixed, to the amazement of his future boss. That "simple" thing got him the job interview that he badly wanted. If he was skilled enough to fix the gadget, doing the job would be a piece of cake.

That part of the movie made me think of so many little things that we know, or things that we have done in the past that can make a huge difference now. Simple things but that can put us above the competition. I remember my first job interview in Canada. I mentioned that I was a Basketball coach (which had nothing to do with the job description), and that alone was a proof that I was a team player. I got the job

Do you want to discover your hidden talents? Things that you have done in the past that can, maybe help you get the job you want? I have a friend who can help you with that. He does an amazing work. His name is Emmanuel Lopez a.k.a Motivatorman.

If you insist, I can hook you up with him.

Moral of the story?
Do you want to discover your hidden talent? Just go to the Library and Jim will stand behind you.

Always a pleasure.
Patrick
The Journeyman
www.umleashedpossibilities.net


 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

My Journey Back to Writing

It has been such a long time since I posted my last blog that I don't even know where to start.

It has been quite a month.

First, this gig at the Rogers Centre Stadium where I was speaking to entrepreneurs before Toronto vs Montreal football game, then being contacted by a website host asking me to write stories to his 200,000 readers per month, add to that a few invitations to TV shows in October, plus a potential work with a very respectable institution, it's been quite a month.

You might be thinking that I am a Superstar or something, and that things are going so great for me. Oh no. When you least expect it, life throw some punches at you that it is so hard to get up. I am so thankful for what I have, I will never take it for granted, but man!!!!

Do you know what is helping me keep my sanity? Something called Youtube. Whoever invented this stuff deserves a Nobel Prize. I have been watching hundreds of videos of Bishop TD Jakes sermons. This guy knows how to speak to me when I am down. How come every time I listen to him, he seems to be talking to me? How does he know what I am going through? Did someone called him to let him know? lol

I guess he, himself went through tough moments in his life that he can now relate to all of us.

What I am learning is that we won't stop learning. As TD Jakes says, every new level brings new devils. I thought this was a funny one

So, don't worry, I am back. I know that you missed me, but that is life lol

Moral of the story? Do you want to go to a new level in your life? Just watch Youtube and you will defeat new devils

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman.

Monday, August 26, 2013

My Journey with The Coach

Hello there

Jim, thanks AGAIN for your reminder to post my blog today. You are officially in charge of holding me accountable. I hope I did good today lol.

It's been such a joy raising our daughter. Everyday she surprises us with new stuff. Now she is speaking one word. She started two days ago. Do you know what that word is? I was glad when I heard it. She learned to say "Thank you". Whenever you give her something, she makes sure to say thank you (it's exactly what I always do when people invite me to...eat).

I was talking about it with my wife yesterday, and we came up with the same conclusion. It is not by chance that Skylar is saying the words thank you. You see, a couple of months ago, my wife came up with this brilliant idea. Everyday, before going to sleep, each one of us has to say what we are thankful for. At first it seemed to be redundant, as we were coming up with the same list day in day out, but after a while it became deeper and deeper. I have to confess. Two days ago, I even broke into tears when I remembered what we had to overcome and where we are today. I can guarantee you, we don't take things for granted anymore.

I heard someone say that energy flows where attention goes. Our attention has been focussed on what we are thankful for, and each day there is something good happening. Of course there are times that we bump into challenges, but we do not give them energy. No wonder Skylar's new word is...Thank you. I am really looking forward to the day she is going to say "Thank You God".

Anyway...

I just finished reading Phil Jackson's new book "Eleven Rings..". For non Basketball fans, Phil Jackson is the coach who won 11 NBA championships, 6 with Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls, and 5 with Kobe Bryant's Los Angeles Lakers. He holds the record of the most championships as a coach.

I have been following the NBA for many years (my wife just forbidden me to write how many years...It's just crazy). Most of the things Phil was talking about were not strange to me. But it was so great to learn what was happening behind the scenes, and how he was able to manage big egos like Jordan, Kobe, Shaq..., and especially how he dealt with, let just say, unpredictable players such as Dennis Rodman and Ron Artest aka Metta World Peace.

I learned so much from the coach mostly about leadership and selflessness. There is a part in the book where he mentioned that a young Kobe Bryant asked him to make him the team co-captain. He just looked him in the eyes and told him that no one can be a leader when nobody wants to follow him. Kobe had to change a lot before Phil could trust him to be a leader.

I also learned from him what he did to master his emotions. This guy is incredible. The world could be upside down, everything crumbling around him, he never panics. That's why they called him "The Zen Master". Basically, what he said is that anything that can potentially affect us emotionally is simple a test. Are we willing to pass the test and keep our cool no matter what? That is what I am learning. Would you join me in this journey? I hope so.

Moral of the story? Do you want to learn from a great coach? Just say thank you and you will read a great book.

Always a pleasure
Patrick
The Jouneyman.
www.unleashedpossibilities.net
 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My Journey to a Football Game

When Jim told me that there would be a lot of people at The Taste of the Danforth Greek Food festival, I thought he was joking. I thought the entire city was at the festival. It was fun, it was hot and the food was....You know me. In matters of food, only the quantity matters. Unfortunately we had to leave early as Skylar could not handle the heat. We had fun though.

Talking about Jim, last week he called me and asked me this question: Do you know a guy named Mitch? I had to admit that it was the first time hearing that name. Jim then told me that Mitch called him to ask if he knew a guy named Patrick Bizindavyi. Of course Jim knows me. As it turned out, Mitch works for the Toronto Argonauts. For those of you who have no clue of what I am talking about, the Toronto Argonauts are the 2012-2013 champions of the Canadian Football League (I am talking about American Football).

Long story short, the Argonauts are putting together an event for entrepreneurs on September 3rd at their stadium just before their game against Montreal, and they were looking for 3 speakers for the event. Guess what! I am speaking at the event. I am REALLY looking forward to the opportunity.
The only question I had for Jim was to know how Mitch knew my name. As it turned out, he is working with Lawrence (another friend of mine) who had invited me several months ago to speak at his event in Newmarket. I guess I made a good impression on Lawrence. This is really good stuff.

This whole experience reminded me of my Basketball coaching years. In 1999, we won our first championship (after trying for many years). The way the championship came together is an event that will stay forever in my memory.

We won every single game except against the reigning champions. That defeat was crucial for us. We knew there was no other team that could beat them. On the last day of the season, we were playing a quite inferior team and we knew we would beat them. It was just a formality to finish the season, knowing that the championship had escaped us.

Towards the end of the game, we heard a huge commotion coming from the other side of the court. We had to stop the game to figure out what was going on. To our surprise, it was several people who were coming from another game happening at another court. We didn't know that there was another game that day. Guess what! The team that was supposed to win the championship that season was playing against an inferior team, and.....they lost. Are you kidding me!? Their defeat made us the automatic champions for that season. They thought they would be cruising to victory. Surprise surprise! They lost.

We had worked so hard for years, we deserved to win the championship, but there was no hope for us. Guess what! It ain't over until it's over. We won the championship that year, and the next 2 years as well.

Why am I telling you this story? Just to let you know that, when you have worked so hard and don't seem to go to the next level, just keep the faith. There is something happening at a level that you don't see yet (like the game that was happening at another court that resulted in us winning the championship). At the right time, things will come together for you. I was minding my own business without knowing that the Argonauts were looking for a speaker and that my name was in discussion. What did I do to deserve this? Nothing except that Lawrence was looking for a speaker  several months ago in Newmarket and I showed up. The rest is history.

Moral of the story? Do you want to speak at a stadium? Just coach Basketball and you will eat at a Greek food festival.

Always a pleasure
Patrick
The Journeyman

 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

My Journey to Our Wedding Anniversary

It's hard to believe it's been two years that I am married. Time went REALLY fast.

Yes, today is our wedding anniversary, and in a few hours, it will be my wife's birthday. How can you celebrate all of that? As I was thinking about it, my friend Jim called me to invite us to the Taste of the Danforth Food Festival. Did you mention food? I am all in

I am also celebrating 200 posts with my blog. Actually, this is my 201st one. It's been a fun ride, even though I must admit, sometimes it was hard to write anything. I tried to keep the course most of the time, and when I missed a week or two, I had friends (and I am not mentioning you Jim) who reminded me of my commitment.

To tell the truth, I did not think that this blog would last four years. I thought I would lack the inspiration. Amazingly enough, here I am, over 200 post later, still writing.

Sometimes, the inspiration came to me in a very unusual way. This is the case of this week. Do you want to know what happened? I will tell you if you insist.

Have you ever let your bedroom get messy a bit? It doesn't happen overnight, but after a while it becomes unbearable (maybe this is TMI lol).
That what happened last week. I had to do something.

As I started to work, I had first to turn everything upside down before I could arrange the room again. If someone would have come in the room, he would have given me a slap in the face for the big mess I caused. However, half an our later, the room was spotless (I got a standing ovation from my wife).

That is when it hit me. I said to myself: "I got the idea for my next blog". Do you want to hear the idea? Here it is:

Sometimes, it happens that we see something we need to change in our lives (the room being a little bit messy). Then comes a time when we have enough. Something got to be done (clean the room). Once we start working on it, it gets worse at first (the room being upside down) before the real change happens (the room being spotless).

Don't you think that this is a good story? Please agree with me, otherwise I would be really disappointed if you didn't.

So, if your life seems to be upside down, don't worry. It is a sign that there is work that is being done, very soon you will be spotless. Just keep the faith.

That is my two cents..

Moral of the story? Do you want to have real change in your life? Just clean your room and you will be invited at a food festival

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

My Journey to a Great Month

Yes I know, I know. You missed me last week. I must admit. I miss my blog too (am I narcissist?). Jim, here I am. I cannot afford another reminder from you. I know you were thinking about how you were going to punish me if I didn't post my blog this week.

For many years, great things have happened to me in the month of August. It is then safe to say that I am expecting great things this upcoming month. I don't know what it will be this time, but the expectation is so high. By far, the month of August has been the best month of my life so far. And if nothing special happens, at least I will celebrate a few days. August 6 is our wedding anniversary, August 7 is my wife birthday, August 8 is my eleventh year in Canada and five years as a Canadian citizen, August 15 is my birthday and my younger brother is getting married on August 30. How about that!?

The month of July has been a great month as well. It's been a very busy month but I cannot complain at all. I did a few presentations here and there, a lot of meetings and a lot of great surprises. How about this testimonial from a lady who attended my presentation last week: Check this out:

"Before the seminar, I did not know what to expect.  I thought that probably the information presented would be whatever I can find on the internet about productivity.  Boy I was wrong.  Not only was your presentation entertaining, but also it was inspirational.  Your passion was very infectious, the only reason you can deliver the speech without your Powerpoint is because you were powered by passion and purpose.  Everything you talked came straight from your heart.  You do not need to memorize the speech, the message just flows.  

I was impressed by your courage to pursue your dream.  I would never be able to do what you did, worked free just because you loved the work even when you were broke.

In comparison to you, I am at a much better situation...... 

So thank you for giving inspiration to keep walking on my journey and enjoy it along the way."

I won't share with you the entire message she sent me for confidential reasons, but I must tell you, her message was worth every struggle I went through. I now understand that everything we go through is for us to share with others once we are on the other side. As I heard someone say, there is no testimony without tests.

I am glad I was able to inspire my audience, my hope is to do more of these presentations.

Moral of the story? Do you want to get inspired? Just send me your gift on my birthday on August 15, and your will get a great message on your e-mail

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman.

Monday, July 15, 2013

My Journey to a Legacy


It is almost midnight on Sunday and I am putting the baby to sleep after a long day at the beach. She is exhausted, and so am I.

You might be thinking how am I able to put the baby to sleep and write at the same time. It is simple. After a long time of trials and errors, I have found the secret. Do you want to know what it is? I will tell it to you and it is free of charge: Music

When my daughter hears music, everything changes. Life becomes easy for me. However, lately I have discovered that, even though she likes music, there is one particular artist that does the job the best: Bob Marley. When she hears Bob Marley, she just stands still. Nothing can disturb her. All she wants to hear is the reggae song. As soon as the music starts, she widely smiles and she wants to dance.

Guess what CD i play the most? You guessed it right; Bob Marley. She could be crying but, as soon she hears "little darling, still it up", she just stops crying. It is so amazing.

The other day I played the entire CD and my wife couldn't help notice that I was singing everyone of Bob Marley's songs (I think I know almost 99% of his entire repertoire). She was pretty much impressed (not by my voice though).

What she doesn't know is that I spent my childhood listening to Bob Marley songs all day long (without even understanding what he was singing about). Later on when I could speak English, I kept a book which had all Bob Marley's lyrics.

Isn't it funny that many years later (and I won't tell you how many), my daughter goes to sleep  listening to the same music to which I grew up listening.

Just two days ago, I was discussing with a great friend about the legacy we would like to leave for our children. I think it is safe to say that Bob Marley got that covered. Over thirty years after his death, his music is still alive, and we still love it. Isn't that beautiful?

What legacy would you like to leave to your family? Better yet, what legacy would you like to leave to the world?

It is something that I am now seriously thinking about, and my hope is that, even years after I will have passed on, generations would still remember me for the contribution I would have given to the world. That's my prayer.

Moral of the story? Do you want to leave a great legacy? Just listen to Bob Marley songs and you will fall asleep.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

My Journey to the Patio Power Event

My friend Jim has been promoting his annual event called Patio Power, it finally happened tonight. I was one of the speakers last year, I am glad he invited me again this year. I just came from there. Wow!

Things happen for a reason. I had planned to write my blog yesterday, and then the flood happened in Toronto. Wow! I have never seen anything like this. My Internet went down (I guess the server crushed) , so I could not publish anything. And here I am now, talking about the Patio Power.

I knew that I was going to be one of the speakers a long time ago, but Jim never gave me my topic. We had a conference call yesterday and he went: "Figure it out. You are the Journeyman". So, I had to figure out what I was going to speak about. To add to the pressure, Jim put me first. I was going to start the event.

I was given 8 minutes to speak, I was done in 5. To tell the truth, I was more interested by other speakers' presentations. I don't know how he does it, Jim knows how to find great speakers (other than myself of course).

Man, I was so inspired. I have never heard most of the speakers who came out tonight. They almost moved me to tears by their stories.

To tell the truth (not that I was lying before), sometimes I have doubts and fears. I question myself, I loose faith and I get discouraged. But, being in events such as the one I just came from put me back in the game. Hearing people who went through real hell and overcame stuff against all odds is really inspiring. They showed me that I am on the right path regardless of what's going on now.

It has a lot to do with my environment. I have to hang around with positive people a lot more. They shape my thinking, they challenge me, they push me to grow, and above all, they inspire me to keep going, to keep believing.

I have a question for you. How is your environment? Do you feel inspired whenever you leave people you have been talking with? If not, maybe it would be wise to mix up a little bit with people who will inspire you and challenge you to grow. That was my experience today.

Moral of the story? Do you want to be inspired? Just get invited to speak, and you will write your blog on Tuesday.

Always a pleasure.

Patrick
The Journeyman.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

My Journey to a Triple Celebration

Yesterday was Canada Day and celebrations were going on all over the place.

In our household, it was triple celebration. I am from Burundi, my wife is from Rwanda (both having July 1st as their Independence day), and our daughter was born Canadian. Can you imagine some years down the road, our daughter saying " Hi, my name is Skylar, my father is from Burundi, my mother is from Rwanda, but I am Canadian..". I think she should call herself United Nations. How about that?

Talking about Skylar, her new thing now is giving high fives when she is eating. It is so funny. By the time she finishes her food, we are down to about twenty high fives. My wife says Skylar is eating like her father. I think it is a compliment for our daughter.

We stayed home on the weekend watching movies. We watched all kinds of movies, but the one that was the most interesting was Sacha Baron Cohen's "The Dictator". It is so hilarious. Even now we are still laughing when we remember some of the scenes.

The long weekend came really handy after intense weeks of work. I have been working on a project that is taking all the energy that I have. It is an uphill climb, hopefully I will be able to pull it off soon. It is not easy to stay motivated and keep the course when life is throwing punches at you. I guess the secret is to punch back and get up every time we fall down.

While working hard on our success, I think it is good to celebrate the success of others. That is the case of my friend Jim who just started his own radio show, and Jamaal for his book launch this coming Thursday. Congrats my men. You both deserve all the success that is coming to you.

So, like me, if you are working on something that is challenging you, please do remember to take some time off and have fun while celebrating the success of your fellows.

Moral of the story? Do you want to have fun while working on your project? Just give high fives while eating your food and you will have a radio show.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

My Journey Back to Normal

I finally went to the doctors last week to check what was going on with my chest pain. I knew there was no danger of anything, but I couldn't let any other day pass by with so much pain.

The doctor asked me to do some X-Rays, and in the meantime he prescribed some pills to ease the pain. He warned me though. No alcohol (that was already covered), no driving (also covered), and I had to eat a lot before taking the pills (and I was like, lucky me...). Long story short, them pills would make me dizzy.

That was an understatement. Even though the pain was almost gone the next day, I felt like a zombie. I wanted to go to sleep all the time, and this lasted an entire week. It was crazy. The only thing that kept me awake was Green making those three pointers (what a performance!!). Of course, the non Basketball fans won't get this one....Go Spurs.

I am back to normal. The pain is gone

What else? Oh yes. It was fathers' day this weekend. I received a gift from Skylar who was also celebrating her first birthday! Time really flies. Our daughter is now 1 year old!

I cannot tell you how it has been a year full of surprises. As a father, it was all about learning by doing. Now I do everything almost my eyes closed. My training was over a long time ago. Time for a second one (hope my wife won't read this one).

Coming back to Basketball, I hope the Spurs win tonight, even though it would mean no Basketball until November (my wife is actually excited about this). Can I give you a homework? Check out what Danny Green, the San Antonio Spurs now superstar went through to get to where he is now. It is really a very inspiring story. You can check it out here


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

My Journey to an Amazing Weekend in Ottawa

A few weeks ago, I received an e-mail inviting me to host an event in Ottawa as the Master of Ceremonies. "Ishaka" is the name of the group that put together the event that they called "Beautiful Africa". It was a showcase of African dance and art. I was really looking forward to it.

We left Toronto early in the morning on Saturday. Our predictions were that we would be in Ottawa by 2pm the latest. We had a GPS with Snoop Lion voice as our guide. It was so funny to hear him say "woo, woo, slow down man!"

By 2.30 we were still on the road. We could not understand why we were not in Ottawa yet. Our GPS was showing exists that we could not understand, and we thought it was going crazy. You can't trust the machine all the time, right? We thought Snoop was high lol. Guess what! He was right. We had missed our exit. Do you know how we figured out that we were lost? We saw a sign saying "Bienvenue au Québec" (Welcome to Québec). We were in Montreal!!!!

A quick phone call to the hosts of the event, and we were back on the road again. We arrived at 5.30 (and the show was starting at 7pm !!!).

The ladies at "Ishaka" were ready. I was treated like a VIP man. They had a package ready for me with all the information I needed, they had a lodge for me, a professional producer and stage manager I was going to work with, some snacks and soft drinks (I guess they knew about my passion for food). In about 30 minutes, I was ready to go.

What a show!! It was breathtaking. I have never been in something like that in my ten years as an MC. Never! Ishaka is top notch. I was speechless. It was a sold out event and many who came late couldn't get in. The venue was awesome! I cannot say enough about these people. I was simply amazed.

All this time, something was nagging me. A few weeks ago, I injured myself playing Basketball (I took a sharp elbow in my chest). I was almost healed, but for some reasons, on Saturday I was hurting again. Just before the event, my chest was hurting so bad that I thought that there would be no way I could do the job. It was so bad. I could hardly breath.

But.

As soon as I hit the stage, the pain was gone. Absolutely gone. For two hours, I felt nothing. Even two hours after the event, I was still good. And then...BAM. The pain came again. Even now as I am writing this blog, my chest is hurting so bad. I am about to go to the doctor's. I have spent three straight sleepless nights because of it.

As I was sharing yesterday with a friend of mine how the pain was gone when I was on stage, he simply went: "It's because you were doing what you love to do". As simple as that, he was right.

When I do things I love to do, time stops. I am simply in the moment and it is like I am on another planet (I guess I become high like Snoop on our GPS). That is true man. Passion is the cure of everything. You don't think about any other thing. You don't worry about your bills or anything.  The "now" is the only thing that matters. It is an amazing experience.

My hope for you is that you find something you are so passionate about. Something that you feel like you were born to do. It is a great experience once you are in the zone, when nothing seems to bother you any more.

I have to warn you though. Most of the time, living your passion comes with a price tag. Are you willing to pay the full price? I hope so.

A big thank you to Ishaka. Thank you for letting me be part of this amazing event. I will be forever grateful

Moral of the story? Do you want to get rid of your chest pain? Just do what you love to do and you will miss your exit.

Always a pleasure
Patrick
The Journeyman

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

My Journey to A Thankful Day

I know it's Tuesday and I know you were stuck on your computer all day yesterday waiting for this one to come out. I really apologize. But once I explain to you why I did not post my blog yesterday, maybe you will understand.

There are people who have an extraordinary art of containing their pain. My wife is one of them. But when she asked me to call 911 last Thursday, I knew something was up. I got to tell you. That was the first time in my life to call 911.

So, we rushed to the hospital. Thank God Skylar was at the daycare, otherwise it would have been hard to manage. A few hours later, we walked home, and I thought it was over. Later in the evening, we called a taxi. Back to the hospital...again. This time she stayed overnight.

Five o'clock in the morning, she was back home. Finally this was over. So I thought. Guess what! At eleven O'clock we were back to the hospital (this time you maybe thinking that I am making this all up..). Later in the evening, we came back home. By this time I was so exhausted, so was my wife.

Saturday was calm, then came Sunday. My wife was so in pain. She started to pray. Minutes later, we were back to the hospital... But this time, something was different. It was as if she knew her prayers were heard. She just looked straight in my eyes and said. This is my last trip to the hospital. I won't come back again. This is it. I am going to be healed today.

Guess what! She was right. It was our last trip to the hospital. She came from there singing (I thought she was drunk or something lol).

That evening, she asked me to come next to her (and I was like, "I hope it's for a kiss"....just kidding). She just said: "All of this has been a wake up call for me. I have been complaining a lot lately, now it's over. Starting from now, I am going to be thankful of everything. I know life can be short, it's time I start living it fully. Whenever you catch me complaining about anything, just remind me of this day and I will stop".

I was speechless (and of course I forgot about the kiss...).

My wife is a different person now. I learned a lot from her this weekend.

My shout out to all the friends who stepped up to give us a hand. We are so blessed with true friends, and I was so overwhelmed by their help. Thank you so much guys (you all know who you are..)

Back to the blog. As I was about to write this one yesterday, all the stuff we went trough over the weekend made me so tired that I was about to fall asleep in front of my computer. I couldn't write anything. Add to that the defeat of the Indiana Pacers, there is no way I could concentrate and write anything. But I am glad the Spurs are sweeping the Heat (I know I am getting into trouble with some heat fans).

Moral of the story? Do you want to be thankful in everything? Just go to the hospital a couple of times and you will fall asleep in front of your computer.

Always a pleasure

Patrick

The Journeyman.

Monday, May 27, 2013

My Journey with Kids


I had quite an interesting week.

It has been a few months that I work with a Speakers Bureau and, they call me up when they have speaking gigs for me. Last Friday, I was booked to speak at a school in Toronto. I had a contact person there who discussed with me about the theme and topic of my presentation. I was ready

There is a first in everything. Guess who was in my audience? Kids from grade one to grade six. I must admit. I have spoken numerous times in from of hundreds of people, but grade one students? Never.
How about 400 of them? The room was packed!

Most of my talk was about Basketball. I had really fun. As I was mentioning names of great basketball players, I talked about Michael Jordan and the kids were like “Michael who?”.One of the kids just shouted: “I think he is retired”. How about Lebron James? Now we are talking... I am really old.

I loved speaking with kids, and was so much amazed by the incredible work of the teachers and the staff. I was so inspired.

On the next day, I was invited by my friend Jim to speak to his guests about my experience with bloging. Can you talk about comfort zone? Now I was in my element.


I said that I had quite an interesting week. That is true.

A good friend of mine called me up a few days ago, but we couldn't talk much as I was putting Skylar to sleep. The next day, we spoke a bit and we agreed to meet. Do you know what was the meeting about? He just wanted to know how I was doing and if I needed any help in whatever I was doing! To tell you the truth, it is so rare that somebody asks me such a question. I was so moved by his gesture. He is just a great friend.

We spent almost two hours. As we were about to say goodbye, I just went. I talked so much about me, what about you? He told me a little bit about his plans, and as it turned out, I had a great contact for him. Somebody who could be of great help. Isn't that funny? He wanted to help me, and he got the help he needed as well (is it sowing and reaping or what?)

Do you have friends who may be in need? Giving them a hand would mean helping yourself as well. That was my experience.

Moral of the story? Do you want to speak to kids? Make sure you talk about Lebron and you will gt help from a friend.




Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman


Monday, May 13, 2013

My Journey To A Proof

Too bad I am writing this blog after the Toronto Maple Leafs hockey game. It was really a heartbreaking loss. The only victory in the series for me is that they made me watch hockey for the second time in almost 11 years in Canada (the first time being in the last Vancouver Olympics). I think it's a great game.

Anyways...

Have you been in a situation when people tell you things about you that you don't see yourself? It has been the case with my wife telling me that I snore when I sleep. I kept denying it until yesterday. Now she had the proof. Do you know what she did? She recorded me while sleeping last Saturday. When she played the recording, I couldn't believe what I heard. I thought it was a train or something. The only thing I could say was: “you caught me on a day I played Basketball. I was just exhausted...” I think my wife should be in the CSI movie series.

Anyways...

Today, I went to support my good friend Motivatorman at a workshop he was presenting for entrepreneurs. It was a real slam dunk. Very well done. As I got there just a few minutes before the presentation, he asked me if I could take a few videos of him doing his stuff. I agreed. So, I had to sit on the front seat to get a good view. Guess who was there next to me? Charlie my former coach.

It has been a while since I talked to Charlie. After the presentation, we had an opportunity to talk some more, and of course, with her usual (soft) way, she suggested some stuff to me which were so scary. Do you know why? Because they put me way off my comfort zone. I agreed to take on this project. So stay tune, I will keep you posted.

That is the thing with good coaches. They know how to push the right button to make us want to do more and be more. Once we respond to these requests, even though they are uncomfortable, they make us grow. Discomfort is a good thing. I have learned to embrace it, even though they are most often a tough pill to follow.

So, if you are now in an uncomfortable and difficult situation. It's time to cheer up. Do you know why? It's growth time. Something to think about.

Moral of the story? Do you want to take advantage of your coach? Just snore when you sleep and you will be recorded.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman


Monday, May 6, 2013

My Journey To M-Bridge

Her name is Sophie. We have been friends for over four years now. We met in a very unusual way. I was asked to be part of a team designed to produce a DVD to be handed to new immigrants to Ontario. A year later, we were called to watch the DVD and see if it had all the elements we had discussed. Guess what! Sophie was in the movie. I saw her , and in my mind I was like “I know this lady but I don't know where”. As it turned out, I was in the same class with her in a course I was taking at that time.

The same evening I went to my class. Guess who I met in the elevator? Sophie! I told her that I saw her in a movie. She went: “What movie?” We have been friends ever since.

As I came to know Sophie more, she shared with me a project she had started. Her dream was to help professional newcomers to integrate the Canadian society. She had created an organization called M-Bridge. It is a volunteer operated federally-registered non-profit organization providing educational services on Canadian workplace and social culture.

I have been one of the M-Bridge speakers for years now, and I am also part of their advisors. For almost two years though, I have not been available to do any workshop for them, but I made sure to promote the organization to different speakers who gladly accepted to give a hand.

Last week, I was back to M-Bridge again. After my presentation, I sat down with Sophie who gave me an update. They have now over eight hundred members, they operate on two locations in Toronto, they are frequently featured in the media, and this past weekend, they were invited to Ottawa to visit the Federal Parliament. What a success! Things are really falling into place for them.

You may be thinking that it has been a smooth road for Sophie, Alex, Pauline, May, and other faithful volunteers at M-Bridge. Far from the truth. When Sophie told me what she personally went through in her life the last few years, I couldn't believe what I heard. This lady is a true warrior. She had overcome hardship that very few of us can endure. I was blown away. It was like a movie. I told her that when she writes her first book, I will be the first one to buy it. WOW!

That's the thing with dreamers. They go through so much hardship without losing the focus of their dreams. Why that? In the words of Paulo Coelho, author of “The Alchemist”.

We who fight for our dream, suffer far more when it doesn't work out, because we cannot fall back on the old excuse:”Oh, well, I didn't really want it anyway.” We do want it and know that we have staked everything on it and that the path of the personal calling is no easier than any other path, except that our whole heart is in this journey. Then, we warriors of light must be prepared to have patience in difficult times and to know that the Universe is conspiring in our favor, even though we may not understand how.”

Well said sir.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman

Monday, April 29, 2013

My Journey To An Early Morning Schedule

As Friday was winding down, my wife and I were planning the next day. We knew Saturday would be busy, so we decided we would wake up early. Knowing my wife so well, I knew it would not be an easy task. You see, my wife can go to sleep at 3 AM, it won't bother her. Waking up early? That is not her thing. She operates on a schedule so different from mine.

And here we were, Saturday morning. As usual, I woke up very early. I knew it was a difficult task to wake my wife up. At 8.30, I thought it would be time for her to wake up. I tried and tried, but she would not even open one eye. At one time I even wanted to throw cold water on her face for her to wake up. It came down to that. But nothing could help. She was coming up with excuses not to wake up. At one point she said to me: “Please don't keep on waking me up. I am already up. I am just praying!” Her “prayer” went on for forty five more minutes. God must be really pleased with her lol. I told you. Any excuse would do for her to sleep some more. The funny thing is that she doesn't even remember telling me all of that. I guess her prayer was very private lol.

Our sleeping habits are not the only thing that we don't share. Her TV watching habits used to drive me nuts. Talk about multitasking. My wife can watch three shows at the same time, text with her sister while sharing with me how her day went. How in the world can you do that? When I am watching a movie, that is the only thing I do. I cannot talk to anybody. I want to hear everything. How about watching NBA? Not only that is not her thing (at least for now! Lol), but every time there is a time out, she changes the channel and I just want to shout: bring back my game please!!!! To which she says: “What's the deal! They are not playing now!” It takes me a while to explain to her that it is only a twenty second time out.

In almost three years of marriage, I came to understand one thing. My wife and I think and do things differently. There is nothing wrong with that. We are just different. But I learned it the hard way. At first, I wanted her to be like me. Guess what! It cannot work. That is the truth with everyone of us. Each one of us is unique. That's the beauty. But for us to understand each other, we have first to acknowledge that we are created in such a way that each one of us has his or her own way of doing things. Once we understand that, and give others the space to be themselves, life becomes easy. It is hard to do at once (our own ego being in the way) but it is fun once it is fully working. Something to think about.

Moral of the story? Do you want to have more sleep in your life? Just pray for forty five minutes and you will change the channel on your TV


Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman


Monday, April 22, 2013

My Journey To Ten Months of Parenthood

I know that you missed me last week. Don't worry, I am back now.

It has been a very busy week. I have learned that once I became a parent, I don't own my schedule any more. I got to be flexible, otherwise it would be hard for me to keep up with everything..

Last Tuesday was the ten month birthday of our daughter. We did not celebrate the occasion (my wife suggested we wait two more months). Skylar has grown a lot. But, being with her almost twenty four hours, I cannot see her growth until I see some of the pictures we took several months ago. Isn't funny how we do not see our own progression, until we take a look at our past? I learned that from a baby.

It has bee ten months of total blessings (even though the word “rest” is now out of my dictionary).

A few weeks ago, Skylar was sleeping next to me, and I couldn't help but notice how peaceful she was. A few minutes passed, and she woke up. She did not see that I was there, just next to her. Do you know the first thing I saw when she woke up? Her smile. She smiles all the time, and for no reason at all. I guess she was happy to wake up. Then she saw me. Her smile became bigger. I was like “I wish I could wake up everyday like this...”Smiling for no reason at all. I learned that from a baby.

It has been a few weeks now that our baby is in a daycare. The first days were so hard for me to let go. I would leave her at the daycare and, right away I wanted to go back and take her back. I was missing her already. I took a while for me to get used to her absence. I couldn't wait for five o'clock so that I could go and see her again. Even though it was hard to let go, I knew it was necessary as she is learning so much being around other kids and with child care professionals. Sometimes it has necessary to let go of what we have so that we can receive more. I learned that from a baby.

The list can go on. I learned so much in the last ten months. Am I ready for a second one? (let me stop here. My wife is looking at me with a look that says “shut up!”).

Moral of the story? Do you want to learn lessons from a baby? Just smile with no reason and you will have a busy schedule


Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman


Monday, April 8, 2013

My Journey To A Great Event

Some strange, yet interesting stuff have been happening the last few weeks.
I have started a habit of writing down a number of people that I would like to talk to during the week, and instead of me calling them, for some reason, it's them calling me. Have you ever had that experience? You are thinking about someone, and all of sudden, the phone rings, and it is exactly that person who is calling you? It is really cool.


It happened to me again on Thursday. I was thinking about a lady friend of mine, and before I knew it, I received a text from her, inviting me to an event she was putting together this weekend. I told her that I would come, and before saying goodbye, I simply asked her: “Do you need an MC for your event? I can certainly help”.


That is how I found myself on the stage this Sunday, hosting an event that, a few hours prior I had no idea it was going to happen. To tell the truth, I leaned about the organization when I arrived at the event. I had no idea what I got myself into.


As it turned out, it was an organization that started in Montreal, then expanded to other places in the US and Haiti. Now, they are launching their chapter in Ontario. I was really impressed by their vision. They want to positively impact the world by recruiting volunteers to work on projects on education, environment and fight against poverty. Their goal? To recruit one million volunteers!! How about that?


It was pure joy for me to be part of this celebration. As I was listening to the different speakers, I couldn't help but thinking about how it would be fun to join this movement. A million people? That is a great dream. I have no doubt they will make it happen.


I remember a long time ago, I heard someone say that if we want to have a big dream, all we have to do is be around dreamers. How true is that! That is why it is so key to be in a positive environment, around people who encourage us instead of putting us down whenever we have great ideas. Something to think about.


Moral of the story? Do you want to be part of a million people movement? Just write down the names of the people you want to meet this week and I will give you a call.


Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman


Monday, April 1, 2013

My Journey With Chris

hope you all enjoyed the long weekend as I did.

While I was thinking about what I was going to write about today, I received a call from Chris, a good friend of mine. We have been trying to connect for months but for some reason we couldn't until today. It was truly great to hear from him.

Chris is a very successful salesperson and speaker. Several months ago, he told me that he felt the need to change his target market. He felt he was called to speak to the youth. Why? Well, Chris successful career did not come without facing and overcoming a number of challenges himself when he was younger. He now believes that his story can bring hope and help change the lives of young people, especially students.

While speaking with Chris today, he shared with me what had happen to him in the last few months. It was mind blowing. He managed to connect with the right people, some of them were longtime friends of his, who happen to be working with young people (is that a coincidence?)

Chris has travelled throughout Toronto speaking to students with a passion and energy that those who know him have all come to love.  His career is really taking off and going in an entirely new direction.  After spending time with Chris while in our Mastermind group, as well as sharing time as a friend, I have no doubt in saying that he will surely make a difference. His story is truly stunning!

I think Chris' story is typical of those who find their calling, or purpose in life. Once we connect to what we are really called to do, things fall into place like magic. We still face challenges but from these challenges we learn lessons which strengthen and empower us to go to the next level. Sometimes it's hard to understand life's tragedies, but they become diamonds when we share with others how we overcame them. These diamonds of victories can be seen all throughout Chris' life and it is these lessons that he now shares with young people everywhere.  Gongrats my man. You rock!!
 
Moral of the story? Do you want to find your purpose, just call me in the morning and I will write about you in my blog.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman

Monday, March 25, 2013

My Journey To The Raptors Game

I received two great gifts last week, among which a ticket to the Raptors game. In fact, I had an option to bring a friend. However, it was on a short notice that, the few friends I talked to were not able to make it. So, I went alone.

I know the Raptors are now out of the Playoffs picture, but an NBA game is still fun to watch live. They were playing Carmelo Antony's New York Knicks. This guy can score at will. He is really impressive.

Getting to the Air Canada Centre, I couldn't help but remember many years ago in Burundi watching the game on TV with friends late night (I mean, really late), and now I can see it...live in person. It's mind blowing.

Every year in June, we knew it was the NBA Finals. In my network of friends only my friend Kennedy had access to NBA games. So, ten, sometimes fifteen of us would gather at his house (and this happened for years) at least three times a week to watch the games. Kennedy was so used to us coming that he had food ready, even a bed for those who wanted to sleep before the games came on TV. I am talking 1 am or 3 am depending on the game. Kennedy was (and still is) an awesome guy.

I remember going to Kennedy's with my friend Kijanya. He went to sleep a few hours before the game and asked us to wake him up when the game starts. So we did. But he was so deep in his sleep that he requested to wake him up later at half time. So we did. This time he just said: please wake me up when they are in overtime!!! How in the world did he know the game would go to overtime? Long story short, he never watched the game. He slept all the way.

Sometimes the game would end at 6 am, and we had to go to work at 7.30 in the morning. At that time my friend Ziaddy and I were high school teachers and it was during exams. Can you imagine us standing for hours while waiting for the students to finish their exams knowing that we did not sleep at all at night? It was challenging man! But we did it.

That is what happens when you have passion for something. Time doesn't matter. Sleep? What's that? Everything seems to stop when you know you're doing what you love to do. I would leave work at 1.30 pm, and I was on the Basketball court from 2.30 to 6 pm, them at 7 pm, I was at my other job at the radio station...I remember my manager coming to me to remind me that I had to take my vacations otherwise I would loose them. The word “vacation” was not in my vocabulary because I was doing stuff I loved to do that it did not seem I was working.

What's your passion? What it is that you would do, even for free, and still have fun (and sleepless nights). It is a good question to ask ourselves. Once we find an answer for that, life will never be the same.

Moral of the story? Do you want to find your passion? Go to an NBA game and you will spend sleepless nights.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman


Monday, March 18, 2013

My Journey to Saint Patrick Weekend

The entire world has been celebrating me as a Saint this last weekend. Every year I try to keep low profile, but what can you do? I can't help it. The party must go on. (I wish)

A few years ago, I think it was in 2009, I was walking downtown Toronto with two great friends of mine. At that time I was looking for an apartment to move in. As we were walking down Dundas Street West, we came across Saint Patrick Street. I knew there was Saint Patrick Subway Station, but it was my first time to see Saint Patrick Street. Then, I said to my friends: wouldn't be nice for me to live on Saint Patrick Street? It would be great to live on a street named after me.

Guess what! Two weeks later I moved to 80 Saint Patrick Street. How crazy is that? I lived there for two years.

A few weeks after my move to Saint Patrick street, I received a flyer in my mail promoting a Sushi restaurant down the street. I am huge Sushi fan. I could eat Sushi three times a day I wouldn't mind. I opened the flyer just to see that there was a Sushi menu called Saint Patrick. What are the odds? So, I decided to give it a try. I called the number on the flyer.

Here is how the conversation went:

Lady on the phone: Restaurant so and so, my name is so and so, how can I help you?
Me: Hello, I would like to order the Saint Patrick please!
Lady on the phone: Ok, what's your address please?
Me: I am on 80 Saint Patrick Street
Lady on the phone: (slightly laughing). All right. What is your name sir?
Me: My name is Patrick
Lady on the phone: (loudly laughing): Ok Mr. Patrick, the Saint Patrick will be delivered at 80 Saint
Patrick Street in half an hour.

She thought I was making things up. I thought it was funny. The Saint Patrick Sushi was amazing (and I am not bias).

So, let come back to last week Saint Patrick's day. Six weeks prior to Saint Patrick's day, our daughter started sneezing a bit. Before you knew, she had high fever. I went to buy some Tylenol and she felt better a bit. Then, on Thursday, on my way home, I received a call from my wife saying that Skylar was very weak and the temperature was so high. We had to bring her to the hospital. So, from 9 pm to 7 am we were at the Emergency Room at the Sick Kids Hospital. Yes. We spent the night at the hospital.

They took good care of her. The fever went down and we were expecting her to fully recover maybe the next day. Not at all. Three days later she was still heavily coughing. We did not sleep for three days (including Saint Patrick's day).

Today, we were so exhausted. My wife and I looked like zombies. Nothing seemed to cheers us up. That was until we heard some good news (that I won't mention here lol). We jumped to the roof. Half an hour later, another good news! This time we were so high lol. Long story short, today, we heard four good news that made us forget that tough week we had last week.

So, if you are facing tough times, just know that it is for a season. Good news are on the way. Don't loose hope.

Moral of the story? Do you want to hear some good news? Just eat some Sushi and you will move to Saint Patrick Street

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

My Journey to An Amazing Connection

Have you read my last blog? I hope you did.

Kobe Bryant just confirmed what I said last week. Have you seen how he has been playing lately? (poor Raptors). His team has its back against the wall and he is performing at a high level. It's do or die basically for the Lakers. Wow! Really impressing.

Enough with Basketball. If you don't stop me, I can go on and on with this sport. It is really a school of life. You see, I can't stop!.

Last week, we were celebrating the International Women's day. If you ask my opinion, we should celebrate the woman everyday. Here is why:

This coming March 16, our daughter will be nine months old. Time really flies. It has been one of the best nine months of my life.It is really a joy. I spend so much time with her that, every time that I go out, I can't wait to be home (don't get me wrong, I feel the same way about my wife as well lol).

Skylar is an early morning person like myself. As soon as she wakes up, I go in the room to get her so that my wife can get some extra sleep. I play with her, I feed her, I change her, and I make sure to turn on her favourite TV channel (yes, like her mom, she is a huge TV fan). I can see that she is really having fun until....her mom wakes up.

I don't know how these things work. As soon as she sees her mom, I quickly become a second thought for her (I don't think she even remembers that I am her dad). Her face shines with a wide smile, she is so excited that she cannot hold her emotions. She jumps up and down and she cannot wait to be in her mom's arm. And I am like: what about me girl? I have been playing with you for the last hour or so, now I mean nothing to you? My wife cannot even go in the other room. Skylar cries right away while I am holding her in my arms. Can you believe that?!

There is such an amazing connection between these two ladies that no matter what I do, I don't think I will reach this level with Skylar. Maybe time will tell. It is really a good thing to see.

That is why women should be respected, celebrated, loved and venerated daily. God gave them the power to create another human being (with our little help) and establish a connection with him or her that is really deep. And this goes both ways. The way my wife loves Skylar is out of this world. I am now number two in her life. Skylar comes first. It is a place that I have learned to embrace lol (like my old days on the bench in Basketball lol).

This reminds me that I have to call my mom lol

Way to go girls. You rock. As one of my favourite songs says, this is a man's world, but it wouldn't be nothing without a woman or a girl (I agree with you James Brown).

Moral of the story?
Do you want to have an amazing connection with the ladies in your life. Just wake up early to be with them and you will be forgotten as soon as they see their moms.

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman.