Richard Branson

You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by falling over.

Through dealing with toxic people I have learned that seeking peace is ironically often a fight. Watching Bobby Kennedy give his speech I recognised he was actually engaged in a battle. The weapons were truth, humility and courage. My ways of presenting my truth are generally unconventional. Now my youngsters are older I am gradually learning from them more and more of my mistakes. My sense of humour for example is probably not always funny. (Sorry family no spiders don’t only bite you if you are up to mischief. Also I note here I am the only one who has been bitten by a spider and unfortunately there had been no mischief involved. )

As a bit of an aside, I have a beef with a certain fast food chain who decided to give away these motion-sensing toys one year. This had helped make one Christmas Eve particularly challenging. Santa had had to make two trips. The first one had been to remove the sensors, designed to catch him in the act.

When I was taught to teach we were encouraged not to give answers. This is very much part of my make up. I just present questions and try to speak my truth. People who have all the answers get up my nose more than just about anybody. If I ever slip into doing this I apologise. What I do best is to make mistakes. As I tell my youngsters I may get lost all the time but I have been lost more places than most people have ever been. I remember being taught in teacher training how viewing a page full of mistakes from a student can be much more informative than examining a page full of right answers.

History is littered with pages of our past mistakes. Perhaps it is time to examine them closely, understand our thinking and at least try not to continue making the same ones.

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