Simon Ekin

For a year like no other, please read this.

“Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.”
(Sign hanging in Albert Einstein’s office at Princeton.)

It’s that time of year when many of us tend to wrap up one year and plan for the next.

This article covers:

  1. Why we do it
  2. Where it comes from
  3. My process of reviewing one year and planning the next.
  4. An invitation for you to join me in making next year a great one for you.

Why we do it now, at the end, and beginning of each year:

It turns out that New Year’s resolutions were first used by the Babylonians more than 4,000 years ago to please and win the favour of the gods. It seems logical, doesn’t it? “Please give me Y if I pledge to do X this year because last year I didn’t do so well and was a big jerk.”

It’s interesting that these resolutions were founded on agreements and promises to others – something that is missing from modern day ‘resolutions.’ Resolute means admirably purposeful, determined, and unwavering. Not much of that in most New Year’s resolutions, you may agree.

Why even bother reviewing and planning?

Doesn’t it often feel like we are living in an ever more volatile, uncertain, chaotic, and ambiguous (VUCA) world? We have NO idea what we will wake up to, or what will happen, on any given day and the list of those VUCA moments sometimes feels endless.

What is it then about us human beings that we keep planning, hoping, praying, striving, doing, living, breathing, and believing, in the face of this VUCA-ness?

We are meaning seeking and making beings. We have been making things up, inventing things, envisioning, and telling stories for the past 80,000 years. It’s what we do, regardless of war, famine, and societal collapse.

My journey and process – from New Year’s resolutions.

These looked like losing weight, getting fit, getting a great job or making more money. I did this between the ages of 16-30. This would come to me about 23h59 on New Year’s Eve, and would disappear by about mid-day the next day, the first day of the year, like a dream.

It wasn’t all so bad. At least I thought about it and had an intention, however loose, about what I wanted. Like Einstein’s quote, above, there was much that could not be measured in this. Who’s to say that because of thinking about getting fit, it didn’t eventually materialise into the svelte (slender and elegant;) person I am today!?

Next up was the yearly review of the previous year and the plan for the upcoming year.

The natural progression then was to be more deliberate about the process, something I have done for the last 25 years, which I call my yearly review and plan, which has taken on different shapes but has broadly looked like this:

  1. Set goals, break them down and have a plan of action
  2. Then at the end of year, review: What were my greatest successes, and what did I learn from them? What were my biggest failures, and what did I learn from them?
  3. What worked, didn’t work and what am I going to do differently?

It was all pretty logical and well, dull. Each time I reviewed my list I felt quite disappointed, and that was mostly at the end of the year, when it was all done!

And then, in the last couple of years, I have done things differently and with a lot more success, making allowance for the mystical; the unpredictable, and the ‘chance meeting.’ It has allowed me to go with the flow more, whilst at the same time, have sufficient structure.

A note on success.

How successful have I been? What is success? I think this is a good definition by Deepak Chopra:

The realisation of worthy goals and the
continued expansion of happiness.

Whilst I have not been as ‘successful’ as I would like – when are we ever? – I acknowledge that I am successful per the above definition, and I hope you can feel that too.

What came next?

This year I read up about a slightly different approach by Tim Ferriss, of 4-Hour Work-Week book fame, who suggests a yearly review by simply going through your calendar, week by week or month by month, and identifying your list of loves and loathes for the year, those meetings, encounters, experiences that were highs and lows, and then scheduling more of those loves and avoid more of the loathes.

Whatever you do it, it’s always only and ever about the-present-moment.

All these approaches are useful to some degree, but if you take a closer look, you’ll notice a focus on the past and the future and nothing on the PRESENT, the NOW.

Which leads me to this year and my invitation to you:

My honest reflection has been that whilst I do a lot right, the missing piece is being held accountable; something I do in several areas, but not in my yearly planning, until now. Accountability works.

It’s why we have lessons, get homework assignments that get marked, it’s why we have a coach or personal trainer, a running partner, a financial planner, a wife! It’s much easier to just do it on our own, but as the saying goes, easy choices, hard life, hard choices, easy life.  

When it comes to achieving goals, consider this:

  1. You are 10% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down and review them regularly
  2. You are 50% less likely to achieve your goals if you share with people, with no accountability, because your brain has tricked you into believing you have already done it!
  3. You are 80% more likely to achieve your goals if you are rigorously held accountable for them and you commit to the process for a year and you take consistent action
  4. You are 95% more likely to achieve your goals if you are held accountable and you commit to doing the difficult s***, that makes all the difference; the stuff you don’t feel like doing, but you know makes the biggest impact, e.g. that call, that run in the cold, that next page of your book

Here is my invitation to you:

What it is:

Join me and just 10 others from my community who want to win in 2023 like never before, day by day, moment by moment, and have this year be an extraordinary one. It’s a 365-day challenge/ marathon.

Why it exists and how you benefit:

Because without this kind of structure – unless you are ultra-disciplined and even then, you are still human – you will not achieve the result of the satisfaction that you know is possible.

With a structure around you and peers to support you, it becomes more difficult to not produce the results you want that are important to you.

How it works:

  • Send me an email to with 1-3 sentences explaining WHY you want to do this. I need to check that you are serious about this, and you will stand the test and be counted on, right up to the end. Once I hear from you, I’ll give you a call
  • Once you are in, I’ll send you a payment link: it’s a monthly payment of ZAR2500 (approx. £125 or $147 as at December 2022)
  • I will send you a link to a Google Document, which your Goal sheet, outlining your purpose, vision, goals, and strategy. You will be sharing this with others, and you will see other’s sheets too. We will be a very tight outfit
  • At the end of each week, we will submit our results and actions for the following week.
  • Every two weeks we will have a Zoom check in on progress, victories, challenges, reflections, and insights, and provide tools, process, and insights to assist us on our journeys
  • You’ll be assigned an ‘accountability buddy’
  • You will receive email and WhatsApp reminders from me
  • We will touch base personally with each other at least twice per month
  • The offer closes at midnight on 31st January 2023, however we will start when you are ready from 16th Jan, and start officially from 1st Feb until 15th Dec
  • Note you will get 16th-30th Jan as a complimentary test-drive
  • Again, the next step is to send me an email here: sharing your reason WHY you would like to do this, and I will be in touch with you.

Finally, I just received this from a dear friend and the timing was perfect! It’s a great reminder that yes, all of the above is relevant, but so too is this!

No, 2023 won’t be the best year yet.
Nor will it be the worst.
You see, a year is a mosaic of absolutely everything.
Joy, fear, heartache, loss, beauty, pain, love.
Failure, learning, friendship, misery, exhilaration.
Each day, each moment even, is a tiny shard of glass in this beautiful, confusing creation.
2023 will be another mosaic to add to your wall of art.
A wall that shows the life, you are continuously gifted.
A wall that shows you are human.
A wall of survival.
I wish you many broken pieces of glass this year, my friends.
Because this is living.
And before you march on into another year of “everything”, pause to look back, at the work you have created thus far.
It is quite something.
You are quite something.
Now onwards we go, my friends.
Onwards we go.

Donna Ashworth

Good luck and here’s wishing you a great year ahead!

Mojestically yours,


5 Proactive tips to end suffering in silence

I have it on good authority that what frustrates women most about us men is our ‘suffering in silence.’

We can all relate, I am sure. You know when something is up for someone, you can see it – the change in face, body, and tone of voice. And then we ask, “what’s up?” Answer: “Nothing.”

Whilst I focus on working with men, I believe that we are ‘human first;’ for example, the trait of ‘suffering in silence’ is known to people, old and young.

Why do we men particularly do this? I can only rely on my experience accurately, but I am sure some of what I say will resonate with you:

  • I saw my dad do this and I modelled it
  • I was told to shut up, not cry and be a man
  • There is so much evidence to be strong and dependable, think the strong silent type?!

It’s in our DNA too, it is argued that nature is a more powerful force than nurture, although the jury’s out. In the days of being in the cave – which wasn’t nearly as long ago as the thousands of years might indicate! – our job as men was to go and hunt and protect. Our wiring is still there, have you noticed? Remember what happened when someone last cut in the traffic or started an argument with you?

Back then, there were no excuses. We come back with meat, and we got the rewards. No meat and we’ll soon be ousted from the tribe. What’s the point in talking and sharing feelings in that world? Anyway, they are messy, complicated and a complete minefield. Women seem to be so natural at it, let’s just leave it to them!

So, these pointers, background, and influences, don’t help us much, in a world that is changing – really, really changing – before our eyes.

“I am fine…don’t worry about me…and nothing’s wrong,” are recipes for decay, divorce and worse. The biggest killer of men is suicide, by the way.

But the answer is closer, far closer, than we think:

Access our feminine side. (“Oh God, here we go,” I can almost hear you say, because I say it to myself too!)

We are complex creatures, and we know so little about ourselves, but consider this: within all of us, even the most macho, resides masculine and feminine elements, and by embracing, exploring, and discovering these elements, we really get to the good stuff and become far happier and more balanced.

Still not sure? Consider these ideas around positive masculine and feminine traits. You can join the dots with the negative ones:

Positive masculine traits: leadership, strength, and courage

Positive feminine traits: nurturing, compassion and caring

Perhaps you would agree at first glance, but sometimes some of those traits are reversed, for example in relationships. In mine, because I express my emotions more readily, I sometimes feel more ‘feminine’. My wife is often, far more grounded and calmer, except when any perceived danger to the children comes about!

In my experience, women are often far more courageous than men, whilst some men show great compassion. The 80/20 rule though, generally applies, I think. Most men are like ‘that’, most women are like ‘that’, as a guideline. The worst is when men and women step out of their power and try to be something they are not, something forced, something that ‘society expects.’

Here are my top 5 benefits of embracing and exploring our feminine side, hard as **** as it might sometimes feel, gents!

  1. We get the benefit of the women in our lives, who are gifted with extraordinary wisdom, intelligence, and compassion.
  2. We get to connect emotionally, physically, and intimately with them, because women love it when we express ourselves and our vulnerabilities. (Make friends with that word or be forever limited.)
  3. You’ll have far more balance, ease, joy, and grace. You’ll be like a bird that can fly, instead of a bird on the ground with a flapping, redundant wing.
  4. You’ll be able to go with the flow more, and allow life to unfold, without feeling like you must fight it or fix it.
  5. You’ll look after yourself more and probably live longer, have more fun and experience more satisfaction. You’ll feel far better than you often do.

How the hell do you do this? It’s a new skill and it takes work and sometimes it’s hard. I had a conversation with an associate recently a very wise woman, who suggested that the highest power of the feminine is pleasure and the highest power of the masculine is humour. Pretty cool, wouldn’t you say?

I hope those pointers are useful: focus on pleasure and humour and see what unfolds.

What do you think? Why not drop me a line: I always love hearing from people.

Remember, don’t take care, take a risk!

‘Mojestically’ yours,


Helping men get their Mojo back!
#Success #Life #Men

3 Ways to overcome a negative mindset

Have you ever experienced ritual humiliation?

As a young man aged 19, I was going through military training to become an officer the royal Military Academy Sandhurst. We were new cadets, and the first six weeks was all about breaking us down to build us up so we engaged in a lot in some mind-numbing activities like, ‘bulling’ boots – polishing to a glass-like shine – ironing, and cleaning lavatories with toothbrushes late into the night and being deprived of sleep so that they could test our decision-making, tenacity and resilience.

One evening we were bulling boots and the instructor, a Colour Sergeant in the Scots Guards, with the walrus moustache and a similar attitude to match said to me, “Mr. Ekin, how can you be so f***ing ugly with just one head?”

It caught me surprise. I had never considered myself to be ugly! My mum even used to call me “my good-looking son,” and after that, I started to doubt whether she even meant it or was just saying it to be nice, when in fact I looked like Quasimodo!

However, it hurt. I think he was quite a nasty man, and a bully, but that’s history. Such is the power of those we place power in, who can so easily abuse it. I expected to be ‘broken down.’ I didn’t expect to be humiliated.

It still catches me occasionally in my moments of self-doubt but what I’m able to recognize now is to consciously separate out what happened – a bunch of gas, pressure, vibrating vocal cords and saliva, and the workings of along muscle called the tongue – from the meaning, or story that I added, that I was ugly.

Here’s what I learned/ reflected on:

  • Monkey Mind: Pay attention to the voice in your head – otherwise known as Monkey Mind or Internal Dialogue – and observe how, like leaves that rustle with the wind, they never stop. Just watch them flying by!
  • The Facts: It’s useful to look at what was said and then the meaning, or interpretation we had, otherwise it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Imagine if I had believed what he said, ongoingly. We are not very good at these as human beings, because emotions, unchecked, are very, very powerful. Remember, emotion trumps logic every time, unless we are aware of it. (Ever been into a shop with no intention of buying something, or not even having the money for it, and came out with something you didn’t even need or want? That’s emotion for you!)
  • Watch catastrophisation: Often we tend to escalate those thoughts and repeat, which is called ‘catastrophisation.’ What to do? Speak to someone. A problem shared is a problem halved. Just getting it out of our heads and speaking it, can have a very positive impact on the problem itself.

Does this trigger any memories for you? Anything you want to share? Why not drop me a line: I always love hearing from people.

Remember, don’t take care, take a risk!

‘Mojestically’ yours,


Helping men get their Mojo back!
#Success #Life #Men

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. Is this true?

Fear is the number one mojo blocker, no question. The acronym fear can stand for forget everything and run or false expectations appearing real! I think the latter is more useful!

Take a moment to think about something you really want to do in your heart completely free self expressed anything is possible. Got something? Could be a conversation you wanna have a ticket you want to buy a thing you want to do dance riotous on the top of a hill in the wind and the rain.

Now notice how quickly fear kicks in it’s too hard I’ve tried before what will people think I don’t have the money it’s not the right time you know how it works.

But here’s a different angle on fear it’s not a bad thing in fact it’s a very good thing it’s there to protect us but the trouble is it’s a survival mechanism that kicked in hundreds of thousands of years ago to protect us from Saber tooth tigers and marauding tribes folk it doesn’t equip us very well and gets in the way when we ask someone out on a date or do a presentation or just have some fun.

Think about fear in two ways there are two types the first is appropriate fear which is you’re staring down the barrel of something life threatening you’re about to be run over by a car you got caught in a riptide sucking you out to sea or…

Those are appropriate fears. Inappropriate fears which is probably what we love about 99.99% of our lives in our fears that we think are as real as our survival but in fact or not think about again doing a presentation asking someone out on a date asking for a pay rise ending a relationship starting a relationship the trouble is our brains collapse the two and they think it’s the same thing

So here’s my suggestion to you over the next few weeks during the holidays and the start of another year ask yourself when you get an idea of something you really want to do ask yourself is this an appropriate fear or an inappropriate fear if it’s appropriate don’t do it if it’s inappropriate do it

There’s a famous book and now a famous saying called feel the fear and do it anyway by Susan Jeffers it’s an absolute blinder. And the real nugget for me in the book was when she talked about our deepest fear as human beings not fear of death fear of loss fear of failing fear of spiders all those things we normally think of she says that our biggest fear as human beings is I won’t be able to handle it.

But you know we always handle it or if we don’t well we learn the lessons and we go on to the next lesson but either way we handle it even in death we handle it because guess what we die.

I hope this has been helpful let me know what you think.

Remember, don’t take care, take a risk!

‘Mojestically’ yours,


Helping men get their Mojo back!
#Success #Life #Men