I thought a nice touch would be to regularly have a “5 Minutes With…” section where we ask inspirational people from all walks of life a few questions to not only find out a few bits about them, but also to offer advice and inspiration to others.
I have known Steve for over a year when he first approached me to freely offer me some business advice after he’d seen my work for Divine By Design online. I was very sceptical at first as to why would someone want to offer me advice for free, but I can happily report that Steve and his Fiancée Julie have become incredibly close family friends. All of the Social Media, Website, Business & Blogging Advice etc that Steve has given me for free is now available also to you for free, on his new blog SteveGrady.org!
5 Minutes With….Steve Grady
What Motivates You?
I guess that the answer to this changes every few years, if you’d have asked me this when I was 20 I’d have said money, at 30 I’d have said measurable success, at 40 I’d have said insatiable curiosity and today I’d perhaps say the pursuit of happiness.
I realise that in giving that answer I perhaps sound like a beauty pageant contestant but it’s perhaps the best way of expressing my motivation.
Having had many motivations over the years dictated in part by various needs and desires and having realised many goals in the process, I think I’m old enough now to appreciate that happiness is more than having a nice watch and a flash motor. I entered the world of business as a teenager and as such, in order to be taken seriously I took out my ear piercing, cut my hair, dressed smart and even bought a Jag so that people would think of me as a serious businessman instead of a young guy. If we analyse our actions we tend to find that we spend a great deal of our lives fitting in, wearing a suit to impress, driving the right car, living in the right postcode area and generally presenting ourselves to the world in a proper and correct manner regardless of if we sometimes feel like a square peg in a round hole.
I spent many years from a young age as an employer and company director and as such I suppose I was conscious that I should play the role in a stereo typical way.
To make a conscious decision to just think, sod it, I’m going to be me, and then to actually pull that off and be comfortable with it is the first step in pursuing happiness. I don’t wear a suit these days, I choose what to wear because it’s comfortable (usually black T shirt, jeans and tan shoes) I rarely wear a watch as it’s just something else to lose /break / damage and I drive a particular brand of car because it makes me smile rather than choosing a car because it gives the right image to my clients or staff.
So in summary, my motivation these days is just having the confidence to be me, I’m no longer motivated by money, I’m motivated by feeling good, that costs nothing, it usually involves making others feel good too which is a bonus. I suppose it’s a having a very Buddhist approach to life and it’s intoxicating. Ask me the same question when I’m 50 and it’ll no doubt have changed again!
If You Could Have A Dinner Party With Absolutely Anyone, Living Or Passed, Who Would You Invite?
Oooh, how many chairs do we have?
Ok, here goes, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Penelope Cruz, Eddie Izzard, Valentino Rossi, Enzo Ferrari, Henry VIII, Austin Powers 🙂
Who Inspires You?
Tough question, many people inspire me for different reasons, sometimes these are famous people, sometimes clients or friends. If pressed to pinpoint someone who inspired me the most I’d have to say a friend that I have who lives in France, He was once a major player in the music industry but he made a conscious decision to change his life as he simply wasn’t happy. He parked his Aston Martin up at his office in LA, bought a Winnebago motorhome and decided to drive around Mexico for a month or so, He ended up touring Mexico for 10 years! He now lives on an island in the middle of a river in France, he leads a very simple and happy life, a complete contrast to his previous life in LA.
What’s The Last Product That You Bought?
Rechargeable batteries for my Apple mouse.
What’s Your Favourite Tipple?
Depends on the occasion, summer in the garden it would have to be Rekorderlig Pear Cider, otherwise Jack Daniels or Jim Beam.
Favourite wine – Cantine Due Palme Pillastro Primitivo Puglia
What Words Of Wisdom Or Nuggets Of Advice Would You Offer To My Readers?
You expected me to Google this one didn’t you? 🙂 This is a hard one to answer really without sounding patronising, advice should only be given when asked for as none of us are truly qualified to just dispense it willy nilly. I suppose it’s slightly cliché but perhaps the best nugget I could offer is something as simple as “be nice”
That may sound lame and I’m sure that you perhaps would have expected some deep philosophical quote but in reality, the one over riding thing that I’d advise anyone, is to be nice as often as they can be. This applies to every facet of life, be nice to your partner, your children, your clients, even your competitors.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve made lots of poor decisions over the years, both personal and professional. Often these decisions have been driven by greed, personal gain, vanity, or ego. Whilst they may have produced a short term gain, long term, they were poor decisions, as I’ve perhaps already hinted at, I believe very much in Karma, there’s no religious slant to this belief just one of experience. Our actions, every single one affects not just us but others around us. We’re all responsible, or at least should be for our actions and they by their very nature have lasting rippling effects.
This doesn’t mean that you should allow yourself to be walked over, that’s not what I’m suggesting, I’m just saying that you should be fair, smile often and be honest, see things from other perspectives before judging. Accept others opinions, consider them before disagreeing and don’t intentionally cause harm of any kind. Be nice! 😉
Steve’s new blog is live now and offers amazing free business, website and social media advice. Why not amble on over and subscribe for his updates xNx