For those of us who know and remember Del Boy, the lovable rogue character played by the brilliant David Jason in the outstanding British sitcom, Only Fools and Horses, the ‘this time next year Rodney’ phrase always ended with, ‘we’ll be millionaires!’
The ever-deluded, next-big-deal chaser, Del Boy (Derek Edward Trotter) and his cheeky, cockney character has been touching all our hearts since the early 1980’s and the wonderful video clips still available on You Tube continue to delight us today.
Embrace Your Positive
The exaggerated positivity and laissez-faire optimism with which Del Boy lived life and did business was in stark contrast to his despondent half brother Rodney, who could often see beyond Del Boy’s impossible ideas, silly schemes and preposterous plans to make a quick buck. Yet, even the tiny mustard seed sized hope in Rodney’s heart – and perhaps the deep-rooted, emotionally dependent family connection – constrained him from breaking free, as he remained involuntarily engaged with Del Boy’s wild and whacky ways.
The hilarious pitfalls they inevitably encountered as Trotters Independent Trading Co. executed their dodgy, deceptive business deals (from the fictionally named Nelson Mandela House in Peckham, south east London) had audiences screaming with laughter at their television screens. Sometimes we cried tears of empathic sorrow too though, as Del Boy’s ambitious, outlandish antics brought him and the people around him crashing down to earth, as each seemingly brilliant, bold business deal spiralled hilariously out of control time and time again.
Not only were the Trotters often left with much less money than they started with, but they were frequently burdened with ‘rooky’ goods and left with egg on their faces as the endless ducking and diving and wheeling and dealing unravelled.
Yet, of course, the reason we all love and laugh so much at Del Boy (and Rodney) is because those parts in them – Del Boy’s dreams and fantasises about his next big break and his ‘crazy’ ideas for making more than enough money to solve all his problems together with Rodney’s apathy, shame and despondency at the madness of it all – live in all of us. We completely understand how they feel as we try to make our own way in the world, entertaining our passions, dreams and visions for a better life.
Many people are still connected and committed to the dreams that have been placed in their hearts and they actively seek help, support and encouragement from a coach or mentor as they move towards their goals, one step at a time.
Others, however, have long since rejected those hopes, dreams, passions – and often brilliant ideas – for a much better life, opting instead for monotony, the mundane or a passive life that neither nourishes nor inspires them.
So, as I played a couple of the Only Fools and Horses Clips, I mused about the theme tune ‘Why do only fools and horses work?’ It got me thinking. When we’re doing work that we love, work that feels easy for us and comes from our hearts, it really doesn’t feel like work at all!
What if you could make changes in your work-life so that your work doesn’t feel like work?
“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.”Elbert Hubbard
Make Good use of Your Negative
You may feel like life has given you lemons.
Yet, when life gives us lemons, we can always choose to make lemonade. But, we do have to choose to engage with the lemons; to find a decent recipe – and actually make the lemonade!
Yes, we may need to let go of mistakes, disappointments or time lost along our journeys. Yet there is always an opportunity to make something from the experience those lemons have given us and enjoy the fruits of our labour when we do.
Last weekend that I spotted what looked like the original Trotters Independent Traders Co. famous three-wheeled Robin Reliant car, which has obviously inspired this blog. I realised that the question I always ask potential clients is ‘how will you feel this time next year, if your life is exactly as it is now?’
This time next year, Rodney….!
Just seeing that car got me reflecting and laughing at the delights of this superb 1980s comedy, which hopefully, you’ll see from the clips embedded in this blog, hasn’t lost any of its humour or charm. The ever-optimistic Del Boy in all of us and the default despondency we see in Rodney can be like a rolloercoaster ride through our own hearts and lives; day after day, week after week and sometimes year after year!
Rodney repeatedly moved through cycles of cynicism, apathy and negativity onto glimmers of faith, hope and anticipation in his brother’s optimism; that his next new venture might just be ‘The One Big Break’ they both so desperately needed. Always swiftly followed of course, by anger, despair, devastating disappointment and shame at trusting Del Boy again, when he knew from the start that his latest dodgy deal would never work.
But Rodney and Del Boy never gave up hope of ‘making it’, which you’ll see from the video clip below, finally paid off.
And that’s also something that speaks to our hearts as entrepreneurs. I have the pleasure of working with some really inspiring individuals who continually push through huge inner-barriers to overcome doubts, fears and negative self-talk so that they can achieve what they really want to achieve. Pursuing our dreams is not for the faint hearted and neither is it an easy path!
They are busy creating, curating and birthing some fantastic ideas that are changing the world and people’s lives every day.
As small business owners, so many of us experience the highs and lows of ‘trading’, just like Del Boy and Rodney. The joy at overcoming, achieving and making a difference and the struggle, despondency and disappointment at not yet getting to where we want to be.
While I’m pretty sure none of us are aspiring to adopt the Del Boy and Rodney approach to running our businesses, it doesn’t mean we don’t identify with some of the Trotter’s mindset!
“If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got.”Albert Einstein
‘This time next year’ is the phrase clients can use to imagine how their lives could be in the not-so-distant future. It invites them to look ahead instead of looking back on what could have been or only focusing on getting through the days in the present. They get to play with some ideas about how life could be, if they really want it to change.
It’s always a privilege to work with people who dare to share their stories with me; those stories of pain and adventure, of longings and struggle, which may have left them battered and bruised from their inner-critic. Yet, still they are determined to succeed with the right support.
Having that confidential space to at least air these ideas and dreams can be liberating for most; the process itself is often transformative. By sharing their truth and authentic desires, some discover they don’t actually want what they thought they wanted at all, which of course means they are free to let it all go.
Instead, through the process of talking, being listened to and compassionately questioned, they discover other, more deeply held desires which they’ve held back on, disabled or denied until now; sometimes for years, even decades.
Realise that Change is Always Possible
They start to realise that change is possible, even if it doesn’t happen in exactly the ways they first planned or thought it might.
Hope returns. Possibilities are pondered and synchronicity shows itself in surprising new ways as new opportunities open up.
If you’d like to talk through the idea of releasing a path that chose you and consciously – perhaps even tentatively at first – explore a path of your choosing, I’d love to hear from you.
I can’t promise that your coaching experience will end with ‘we’ll be millionaires’ but remember, he who dares Rodney….almost certainly wins…
Remember, Your Authentic Life Matters!
FUN is one of my core values as a coach… While making changes in lour lives can sometimes feel overwhelming, challenging or even difficult, change definitely doesn’t have to be!
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