Why Some People Hesitate, ‘Fail’, Or Get Stuck in a Rut

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Just before the first COVID-19 lockdown in the UK, having watched an episode of the latest series of the popular BBC cult drama, Death in Paradise, my partner and I decided we wanted to watch some more. It was a strange decision because I had watched a few episodes when the drama first began a few years before and was not too impressed by its overt nod to colonialism. Any reminder of that oppressive period in any 21st century entertainment was not entirely welcomed.

However, the most recent series seemed better produced in numerous ways, and perhaps with the world beginning to reel from a growing pandemic, the key elements of the programme came in handy at this time: like its humour, escapism, apt multicultural cast, cheerful colourful atmosphere, great setting, police inspectors with their varied emotional issues, and the dastardly convoluted and entertaining plots that only the genius inspectors could solve! We both got hooked on this simple, formulaic programme and decided to watch every one of the 66 episodes from then on.

Halfway through Series 6, the very shy and reticent bachelor, Inspector Humphrey Goodman (played by Kris Marshall), met the lovely Martha who bowled him over. For me, as a relationship guru, it was so simple: boy meets girl, they explore possibilities, and get on with it to see what’s possible! But what followed was excruciating to watch as Humphrey’s bumbling, fearful actions threatened to make a mess of it all! The couple clearly loved each other but were afraid to admit their feelings openly, in case the other person did not reciprocate. His attempts at expressing how he felt to her were repeatedly sabotaged by his own fears, which made me want to tear my hair out in exasperation!

But his situation confirmed a Eureka! moment I had already experienced some time back when I realised why some people succeed at whatever they were trying to do, and others repeatedly hit setbacks. Humphrey Goodman was shy, yes, but that was not the key reason for his frustrating actions. The cause of his shyness, like other shy people in real life, could actually be put into a formula to demonstrate why he was shy – a simple formula that revealed the root of all successes and ‘failures’. So, while I was watching that couple in their painful attempts to meaningfully engage each other, my unique and almost fool proof formula for success gradually came to life!

However, before using The Winning Formula for Your Success! to help you appreciate Humphrey Goodman’s dilemma, let’s look at the whole concept of ‘success’ in more detail.


LISTEN FREE! Why Real Friendship and Dating Do Not Go Together

How often have you ended dating with someone and then promised each other to be ‘friends’ afterwards? Is that a good foundation for real friendship, or just to sugar-coat any rejection? Is real friendship possible after any intimacy? This podcast explains why that is a futile hope.

RELATED BOOK7 Steps to Finding, and Keeping, ‘The One’

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LISTEN FREE PODCAST: What is The Biggest Sign of Insecurity?

We all have some kind of insecurity in our lives, but when it dogs our footsteps and even overwhelms us, it becomes unbearable and tends to paralyse our actions. Insecurity affects us when we have very low confidence, and are unsure of ourselves. So what is the biggest giveaway that we’re insecure? 

Elaine reveals what this tell-tale sign is.

RELATED BOOK: The New Theory of Confidence 

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LISTEN FREE! If I Forgive My Spouse Cheating, Does it Mean a Free Pass to Cheat on Him in the Future?

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For whatever reason, many people feel the need to cheat. Yet it can be pretty devastating to the one on the receiving end of that thoughtless and hurtful action. Sometimes it can really destroy trust and even damage lives. So how do you cope with that, and even move on from it?

Elaine gives her thought-provoking answer the question in this podcast.

RELATED BOOK: Cheating & Betrayal: A Handy Guide to Reducing Its Impact

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LISTEN FREE! How Can I Stop Feeling That No One Will Ever Love or Want Me?

Many people who might be single for a long while, or have had hurtful experiences in relationships, tend to believe they will never find the person they seek because nobody seems to want them or find them lovable. But the root of that assumption lies much closer to home than with other people.

This podcast explores the main reason for such fearful beliefs.

RELATED BOOK: 7 Steps to Finding, and Keeping, ‘The One’

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LISTEN FREE! Podcast of the Week – The Power of Words to Affect Others

To many people, words are harmless, not as powerful as physical hurt. But words can be even more powerful than physical pain in their impact because we tend to carry them around in our heads far longer. This podcast explains the hidden power of words.

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What’s The Value Of An Apology? Will Smith Found Out!

Will Smith’s Apology Video

Will Smith recently made a fulsome YouTube apology to Chris Rock for the humiliating slap he meted out to the comedian on the night of the 2022 Academy Awards. That slap eclipsed so many people’s achievements, very few of us would realise what an amazing event it was for women and diverse talent. 

For a start, Jessica Chastain won Best Actress for The Eyes of Tammy Faye. Another woman (Jane Campion) bested the men as Best Director; a groundbreaking, film (CODA), remarkable for its cast of deaf actors, won Best Picture, earning its star, Troy Kotsur, the Best supporting actor gong, too, and a Latina (Ariana Debose) won Best Supporting Actress. However, all those worthy winners faded into the background when the Best Actor, Will Smith, the star of the Williams sisters’ biopic, King Richard,  decided to indulge himself in the most selfish and entitled way, with his assault on Rock. 

Start of Smith’s apology video

Oscar night 2022 should have been Smith’s crowning glory. He had never won the accolade, despite some notable acting in various films, and on the night he was to be honoured he clearly lost his head, deciding that displaying a kind of macho arrogance and selfishness was much better. A choice that took no account of the prestigious event, or anyone else in the room. Yet, for every nominee, it was their moment, too, and they had to watch helplessly as Smith made it all about himself. Puffed up with false pride and self-righteousness, with one foolish slap, Smith changed his victorious night into a shameful display of masculine toxicity and moral defeat.  

Graffiti of Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars 2022 by Eme Freethinker at Mauerpark in Berlin, Germany. by Singlespeedfahrer . Credit Wikimedia Commons

Fast forward to the present time, when he has been banned for 10 years from the Academy, and Rock has used the moment to his advantage in his shows. Smith has been apologising a lot since that night, the latest being a lengthy video in which he tried to show his sincerity and regret. But Rock will not be engaged, and refuses to even acknowledge it. 

In essence, the value of an apology can be highly overrated, because, unless it is spontaneous and heartfelt, it simply becomes an excuse for excusing, and perpetuating, bad behaviour. Making an apology after an act seems to take the place of restraining one’s self from such actions in the first place.  Yet, only Chris Rock knew how he felt being on the receiving end  of Smith’s humiliating action, which was done for maximum effect in front of a global audience. 

Quite clearly, an apology doesn’t cut it for Rock, or compensate for his hurt and pain. It has little value after the unexpectedly cruel fact.

Today’s Thought: Pretence in Relationships

When we like someone, we are so keen for them to like us, too, we might even do things we would not normally do, like sharing their activities, even though they might not give us much pleasure. The desire to impress is so strong, we suppress our own individuality to be accepted, then find, later down the line, that the pretence cannot be sustained.

If you have met someone new, are you really being YOU?

LISTEN FREE: Podcast of The Day – Manager Favourite!

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What kind of leader do you strive to be? One that is liked and approved by everyone, or one that is keen on doing a job that is perceived well? Do you prefer to be a friend tosomeone, or a colleague to all?

This podcast explains the difference.

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What Can I Do if I Believe No One Truly Cares About Me?

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You start by caring about yourself!

However, before I go into that aspect, your belief is likely to be your PERCEPTION of your situation, and not the actual reality. In our life, we always have at least one person who cares about us: whether parent, relative, friend or stranger. There is usually someone there for us. However, we tend to judge everyone as uncaring when we have been hurt, especially by someone we love, then it doesn’t matter who cares about us, because it is likely to make little difference to our feelings.

That is why the answer to your question lies inside you. There is one undeniable fact of life: We tend to get treated exactly how we treat others. If people generally do not seem to care about you, it could be because they perceive you in any of the following ways:

  1. To be a taker rather than a giver.
  2. To know people only when you want something from them.
  3. To be mean with praise, appreciation and gratitude.
  4. To be reluctant to help where necessary.
  5. To be insincere or hypocritical in your actions
  6. To be unreliable in your promises and care for others.
  7. Regarded as perhaps uncaring and selfish.

Do any of those apply to you, and your interaction with others? That is not the way to win friends and influence people, least of all to get them to care about you.

Some people will take advantage of us and our kindness, but there is a direct correlation between how we treat another person and how they view us. However, the way we perceive others has its roots in how we view ourselves. It means that if you do not love and appreciate who you are, you are unlikely to be able to love and appreciate others, too, because you cannot give away what you haven’t got!

The simplest step to remedy your situation is to start caring about yourself, instead of just trying to please others, to fawn over them, or to be mean and insincere to them. Sometimes this is not an easy thing to do after years of acting in a certain way. But it all starts with how you treat yourself, and appreciate the unique person you are, before others can begin to really value you too.

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What Are the Pros and Cons of Dating Apps?

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It is difficult to give any concrete advice regarding dating apps, because seeking a date is a highly personal activity, with too many factors to take into account, as regards personal success. Thus only you can decide whether a dating app is worth it for you, no one else can make that judgement, especially for the following reasons:

  1. A dating app like, Tinder or Bumble, offers a service, which either suits the users, or doesn’t. But only individual experience can help users decide if they are really benefiting from that service. Human beings being different, it is likely that every user has his/her own unique experience, with varying levels of satisfaction.
  2. There are millions of people using dating apps now because the old ways and means of finding partners are no longer there. If you don’t use apps, you could be losing access to tons of other daters. So the best thing is to learn to use them, find out why they might not be working as well for you, and hang in there. Patience often pays off. But you have to know what you’re seeking, and what actions will improve your chances.
  3. You are likely to meet someone on a dating app much quicker than anywhere else. But another good, underrated vehicle for meeting potential dates are the local MeetUp groups. In fact they are much better because they are mainly about socialising, they are also face to face, and there is no pressure to impress anyone, as you are mainly going to mingle and be entertained. If you happen to like someone, hurray. If not, it doesn’t matter. There’s always the next event and new people. That’s how I met my current partner seven years ago, through a MeetUp club I organised, and I can’t praise it enough.
  4. It is easy to believe that dating apps are not worth it, if you are having little reaction. But there are lots of reasons for that, too, and only educating yourself on how to get the best from dating apps would change your situation. For example, try other dating apps than the ones you’re familiar with, and compare the outcomes. That comparison could give you a better idea of what suits you best rather than seeing any particular dating app as defective.

RELATED BOOKThe Pleasures and Pitfalls of Online Dating!