My office is next door to Pleased To Meet You, a Gin Bar in the centre of Newcastle.

Yesterday, when I walked past at about 6.30am there was a man cleaning the inside of the windows.

He was concentrating hard, frowning and focusing at the exact spot on the inside of the window that his chamois leather was wiping.

The thing I noticed most though was, his tongue was out. His glare didn’t shift from the movement of the leather. And as he wiped left, then right, then left again – his tongue wiped in the air too.

Left, right. Left, right. His pointy tongue swept in time with his hand.

It was funny. I am glad I noticed it. It really made me smile.

Notice

What I didn’t notice yesterday (even though I imagine they were there – they’re always there) were half eaten kebabs next to bins instead of in them, selfishly parked cars without parking tickets, nice (but forgetful) people’s cars with parking tickets and maybe even a discarded empty purse or two, stolen then discarded by last night’s pickpocket.

I didn’t notice them because, yesterday, I wasn’t looking for them.

Where all this is leading is to a very short but very poignant thing that I read recently. You have probably read it too. I just wanted to point out that, well, it’s true.

It is:

Whatever you look for – you will find.

Opportunity. Dead ends. Kindness. Cruelty. Flowers. Dog shit.

Look closely enough. And of course – you’ll find it eventually.

Choose

Today, I will notice what I notice. And I will choose wisely.

I’ll listen to the people I meet as well. I will listen whether they choose to tell me about the last thing they complained about in a coffee shop, or a funny man with a wipey tongue in a bar window.

I will notice what you notice. And other will, too.

6 Comments

  1. This story made me chuckle out loud. Twice. What a lovely way to start a Friday by uncontrollably chuckling like a child 😀

    I like the message too. I shall notice what I want to notice today too.

  2. Michael, I am smiling from ear to ear after reading this lovely entry. I share the belief that what we are looking for we will find. I can apply this to all sorts of situations from working in mental health, in my life as an adventurous mental health coach and as a sufferer of the condition known as ‘being human’. We all carry a story. It influences the lense through which we view ourselves & the world and it directly impacts our ability to have more, be more and do more! So… going forward this wonderful Friday… I will be looking out for the flowers not the dog shit! You?

    • Michael Owen
      Michael Owen Reply

      Me? I found a nice wee flower this morning. It was good to meet you.

      Have a great weekend x

  3. Quite incredible how mindset can affect how your day, week or even years go by. That get out of bed ready to take on the world, enjoy every moment attitude can be one that’s hard to find.

    I’ve found mine, maybe being 50 next year, wanting to control where I go from here and realising that you can get such a kick out of everything with that attitude has helped me see the sunny side of things.

    Well right now I’m sat by a swimming pool, G&T in one hand, iPad the other…. no dog shi* here, no dogs either…. but TBH I think I’m that chilled I’d miss it if there was..

    • Michael Owen
      Michael Owen Reply

      I am glad you’re having a good day. It sounds better than mine. But that’s great! Have a lovely time.

      Stuart, can you post the link here please to the fundraiser you are doing? I’ll drop a few quid in and others may too.

      Thank you

      Michael

  4. Thanks for enabling me to place this here Michael.

    Well TBH the moment I stopped seeing the Dog Shi* was also at the point when I decided that I was going to become an athlete! Or at least a runner trying to be one…

    So for anyone who does read this, knows someone who’s suffered from this illness or maybe has just had a really tough time at some point. Any support you can give will help others who will likely be of a negative mindset and just looking for something good to come along…

    If there was ever a story that went well with seeing the dog Shi* this is it!

    Stu. x

    https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/mans-80-tablets-day-battle-14544327

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