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The 4 mes

August 23, 2015 — Leave a comment

Untitled designIt’s been said that we all have several versions of us. The four people we are made up of are described as

  • the secret you
  • the private you
  • the personal you and
  • the public you.

When I read this I wondered how I would describe the four Wyns!


The secret Wyn 

The only person who ever gets to meet Secret Wyn is Wyn. Other people might think they know Secret Wyn but they don’t. Secret Wyn is me at my most authentic, raw and unfiltered; it’s when nobody’s watching Wyn. Secret Wyn is the person I live with 24/7 and not always someone I like. In fact, sometimes Secret Wyn drives me nuts; often as a result of my over-thinking, feelings of inadequacy and failure. God knows the secret Wyn, and that’s ok with me. It’s ok that certain things, maybe secrets, are only known by Wyn and God.


The private Wyn

Typically, only a select few get to meet Private Wyn.More often than not, it’s only one person at any given time and in most cases, that person is Angharad, my wife. The person who gets to know private Wyn is privileged, because I am showing great trust and allowing myself to be vulnerable. This is both terrifying and exhilarating. Private Wyn looks for connection, communication and intimacy (be that physical, emotional or both) and unless I live in a bubble, there’s every chance that private Wyn will have his heart ripped out at some stage. Sadly, it happens.

The personal Wyn


My friends and family typically have access to this version of me.  Personal Wyn is generally quite likable but also more calculating, discerning and measured in conversation and interaction than private Wyn. Personal Wyn is still authentic and honest but only to the point where I believe my authenticity and honesty will be respected and appreciated. In Personal Wyn mode, it’s often what I don’t say (rather than what I do) that reveals the most about me.


The public Wyn

The public Wyn is sometimes referred to as the Wyn Show. Someone who looks like Wyn but quite often, isn’t. We all have a public ‘switch’ that flicks on in certain situations, conversations and environments. While Public Wyn might be somewhat self-conscious, nervous and even awkward at times, there are also times when Public Wyn is funny, interesting, generous, courageous and kind.

For some people, their public persona is a total fraud; an illusion designed to create some kind of impression, statement or distraction. I hope this does not describe me. This role-playing happens for a range of reasons, but invariably it comes down to fear, insecurity and a desire to be liked, loved and wanted.

So who is the real Wyn? I thought at first that it was probably the private Wyn. However in reality I believe its probably a healthy mix of all four!

How would you summarise the 4 yous?

As I reflect on over 35 years of running a business that specialises in giving Independent Financial Advice, I am reminded of how important attending the annual Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) meeting has been to me. MDRT is the Premier Association for Financial Professionals and I write this note as I sit in Heathrow Terminal 5 on my way to the 2015 annual meeting.

The conference is jam packed with sessions and seminars led by some of the world’s top speakers, authors and leaders. Listening to innovative thinkers, successful practitioners and inspirational achievers gives me new and global perspectives, ideas to implement and motivation to improve and develop. Attending these meetings is an investment that has given me direction, kept me future focused and fueled me to keep going during times that were so tough I could have given in.

Once again I am looking forward to learning from the best in their feelings being a part of a multicultural crowd of 10,000 others who have chosen to invest in their personal development. My hope is that I will return a better person with improved skills, greater knowledge and a better understanding of the next steps to take. My goal is that this will all cascade down to making the iPlanning team that I work with better able to serve our growing client bank.

It’s a privilege to attend these meetings and a quote from Jim Rohn comes to mind.

“The greatest gift you can give to somebody is your own personal development. I used to say, ‘If you will take care of me, I will take care of you.’ Now I say, ‘I will take care of me for you if you will take care of you for me.’”

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Real People

January 16, 2015 — Leave a comment

In my recent reading of mind stretching books, the kind that I hope makes me a better student of people and a better leader, I came across a quote that I found very helpful.

 “The key is to think less about the ideal behaviour of imaginary people and more about the actual behaviour of real people. Real people are much more unpredictable.”

I sometimes wish regulators and writers of examination papers recognised this. I have sat many an examination where part of the paper contained what we describe as case studies. A so called typical scenario is painted and questions then asked about the advice that should be delivered. In other words we have to move into an imaginary world, with ideal clients and give textbook answers.

I have spent far more time over the last 35 years sitting in front of clients or perspective clients, some of whom no examiner, no matter how much he or she would use their imagination could create a case study from!

The actual needs, behaviour and responses of clients are often very removed from textbook case studies and the minds of pen pushing people. People removed from the furnace of client meetings where solutions are forged.

The remark in the quote that real people are much more unpredictable, brought a smile to my face and also reminded me about why what we do is so exiting and varied.

If the world was filled with imaginary people behaving ideally and reacting predictably, then there would be no need for people like me. Everyone’s needs could be met by flowcharts, but we know that they can’t be.


December 12, 2014 — Leave a comment

I was treated to a masterclass in networking on my way home from Toronto. I’ve read books and listened to world class speakers and experts on networking but learnt more in an hour of seeing a master at work in Terminal 5 at Heathrow airport. Surprisingly for a modern, international, state of the art airport the facilities to charge laptops and mobile devices are woeful. Nevertheless I found a charging station and sat down to take my turn to give my iPhone a boost, only 3 sockets and two USB slots that were not working.

As I sat waiting, I noticed a tall gentleman engaging in conversation with someone to my right. He would get up to check the progress of charge on his mobile device and when he saw others trying to use the USB slots he gently informed them that they didn’t work. He would then offer them a chance to boost their device batteries by letting them use his adapter. During this hour or so he had engaged many people in conversation, learned something about them, made a note of their email addresses or exchanged business cards.

I was one of those people with whom he had struck up a conversation. He wanted to know which book I was reading and then after a very short period of time we knew a lot about one another and both felt enriched from having had the conversation. I reflected on what I’d observed and experienced during that hour and note the following.

  • He took the initiative in starting the conversation.
  • He took a genuine interest in the people he engaged.
  • He made the most of an opportunity to help others.
  • He asked for contact details to keep in touch.
  • He had a notebook at hand to record those details.

By the time I left that charging station I was helping people charge their phones by letting them use my adapter, I was engaging with people who I would not otherwise have engaged. During the final conversation I had with Ramesh, another lady and a movie maker, we realised that in that small group of people

  • we knew someone who knew Einstein
  • one of us would be attending a party hosted by Michael Jordan
  • one of us knew the hero of another and
  • one of us had had a conversation with someone whose friend had dated the founder of Google!

All because of Ramesh a master of networking at work. Watching Ramesh at work was an eyeopener and an encounter that I learnt so much from. Thanks Ramesh

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Ant Lessons

September 17, 2014 — Leave a comment

Image by Jarrod Scott.

As I was typing a short quote in my twitter box, I couldn’t help hearing Jim Rohn sharing the lessons we can learn from the ant! Those lessons are too long for tweeting – hence the blog!

The tweet that triggered the voice of Jim Rohn in my mind was:

“Dig your well before you need the water”

Jim Rohn believed we could learn four important lessons from the ant. They are:

1. Ants never quit. That’s a good philosophy. If they’re headed somewhere and you try to stop them, they’ll look for another way.

They’ll climb over, they’ll climb under, and they’ll climb around. They keep looking for another way. Big lesson! To never quit looking for a way to get where you’re supposed to go.

2. Ants think winter all summer. That’s an important perspective. You can’t be so naive as to think summer will last forever. So ants are gathering their winter food in the middle of summer.

An ancient story says, “Don’t build your house on the sand in the summer.” Why do we need that advice? Because it is important to be realistic. In the summer, you’ve got to think storm. You’ve got to think rocks as you enjoy the sand and sun. Think ahead.

3. Ants think summer all winter. That is so important. During the winter, ants remind themselves, “This won’t last long; we’ll soon be out of here.” And the first warm day, the ants are out. If it turns cold again, they’ll dive back down, but then they come out the first warm day. They can’t wait to get out.They don’t lose hope because they know as sure as day follows night that spring and summer follow winter.

4. Ants do all they possibly can when they can. How much will an ant gather during the summer to prepare for the winter? All he possibly can. What an incredible work ethic, the “all-you-possibly-can” plan.

Learning these lessons from the ant could help businesses survive recessions, families cope with difficult times and all of us achieve more than we would if we ignored these lessons!

So, go on, re read the lessons, write them on a card so you can refer to them often and let them inspire you to –“Dig your well before you need the water”.


July 5, 2011 — Leave a comment


Why do we spend so much time agreeing definitions at Pedalion? Why bother with the term Redefine? The  definition of definition is:

“a concise explanation of the meaning of a word or phrase or symbol“.

What happens over time is that definitions become less concise or less precise. So two people can use the same word, but the word has a completely different meaning for each person. This can lead to meaningless conversations becoming or may cause unnecessary misunderstandings because although the same term is used, different meanings are attached. Therefore, for a meaningful discussion, it is important to agree on the meaning of key words or terms. However there comes a time when certain words need redefining. Their use has changed over time so the old association with a word needs to be broken. The pictures painted at the mention of the word need changing. At Pedalion, some of the words we redefine include Balance, Retirement, Wealth, Work etc. When we redefine the word balance in the context of life/work balance our clients can think and act differently and not feel pressured and guilty by the way it was previously defined. When Retirement is redefined and explained differently you can see pressure lift and a more relaxed and chilled way of thinking and planning descends on our clients! A big part of our work is to help people see situations in a different light in order that they can become more fulfilled and increase their chance of achieving their potential. Redefining is part of that process.


During thousands of conversations over the last few decades, I have come across person after person, parent after parent, business person after business person who consistently admit that they need a Pedalion in their lives if they are to maintain their desired direction as they journey through life. Many wished they’d had a Pedalion in their lives many years ago so that they wouldn’t have been blown off course, or worse still shipwrecked, by the time they’d met us.

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