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Time is what makes us different

I heard what is likely to become one of my top 3 favourite quotes on a podcast on Friday. "Time is the only real democratic asset. We are all awarded the same time, it is what we do with it that distinguishes us". 
Now, I recognise that most of us need to work with survive and that is not democratic throughout. But on an equal opportunity basis, this is an interesting way of putting it. For many years I did not understand why MS thought my resume was so interesting. In fact, they chased me during the entire recruitment process, even though I had no idea of moving to London or Finance. I wanted to be a consultant and stay in Lisbon forever. But traditional consultants in Portugal saw nothing in me, and MS did not let me go. When I started screening resumes and hiring people a couple of years later is when I understood why I was different. TIME. 
I was truly different about what I did with my time. Not necessarily the basics - choice of degree or anything. But really what I did …
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De-cluttering for opportunity

As I binged listened to the Bixchix podcast today (Episode #31 Married with Luggage), I got to meet this entrepreneur who left her life with her husband to go travel the world. No, I am not here to talk about quitting my job and travelling the world near and far (I have 2 children remember?). What called my attention was that as part of this process, she had to de-clutter, sell her stuff, carry a suitcase to another country and at the end leave no house behind. I have recently had a good de-cluttering spree so I relate to it, as I am not quite done yet. There are still bags to be taken to charity downstairs (hidden from the children as they have not seen those with toys) and I know there is more in the house that we can certainly leave without. But this is the extent of my de-cluttering drive right now, stuff.
What I thought this episode brought new perspective was about de-cluttering is about so much more than stuff. Betsy Talbot argues it is actually about de-cluttering from habit…

Haunted by journaling

Journaling is haunting me. In different places, posts, blogs, podcasts, workshops or books, I get brainwashed by the wonders of journaling, what it can do for my morning as part of a morning ritual of meditation.

For many years, I thought if only I would journal, I would have a blog full of life, ideas that never end and a calm relaxed life, with my thoughts off my head every day, not haunting me for fear of being forgotten. I love a good empty page, be it on a book or a screen. To be fair, I even do better on a screen shining back with words filling faster than my hands think they can type and my eyes semi-shut to the wonders that can come by. I don't know what the end game is, I like it to go free. But I don't journal. I can't make up my mind if I want to give it a proper go or not, I don't like the feeling at "failing" some of these initiatives, I don't have much to say every day though I have random thoughts during the day that I which could be recor…

London FintechWeek - Day 1 Reflections

Today, I attended the day 1 of the London Fintech Week. It is exciting to have the opportunity to be part of such an event - personally and professionally.  I have done my formal work debrief so now want to focus on some reflections. 
The first session that called my attention was ‘Is London still the world’s financial center?’. by Nick Murray-Leslie. The speaker was clearly making a case for it but the more he provided the arguments for it, the gloomier I got about the prospects. Talent is key - and the environment is not prone to it as Brexit talks progress. And no, it is not all about Brexit but it certainly does not bode well for people wanting to hire across Europe and for talent looking for exciting opportunities. Moreover, in general terms and outside Brexit, I find that the world will be much less about where you are but rather about where you are connected. In a not so distant future it may not matter if we are based in London or Rome to do many of the jobs that converge in …

The Stigma of #Networking

I went to a good event on Monday, the Blockchain Alternative Investments Conference #baiconf, one of the first ones I attended around Blockchain, but more importantly, focused on institutional investors and banks. Was a bit of a killing that Goldman got mentioned 15 times within an  hour of the start of the conference. I liked it despite that, good content, focused on where I am focused, where will this go to become a ‘boring’ pension fund like type of investment. Good food for thought. 

But today I want to talk about the genesis of many of these conferences - networking. At some point the noise coming from people at the door chatting was so loud that I had trouble focusing on the speakers. Lunch was organised to continue this and off I went thinking how I could minimise it. Don’t get me wrong, I was meant to be networking and finding potential investment opportunities but i) I am not yet entirely comfortable in the space and ii) I was in so much pain and barely able to eat or speak de…

HBS Reunion (a year ahead of time). A world of opportunity

I sit in a Spangler couch. ‘It looks like an  expensive countryside hotel lounge’ my sister said when she first came to visit. It is all that except for the hotel part. Unbelievably comfortable for a solitude moment or a chat around a coffee table. Designed for both. 

I sit inside as Boston weather sticks to its reputation. 26 degrees for the 3rd day but rain has hit amidst the sun. Everyone is quick to reallocate. It is na odd environment, one where I am an outsider. It is not my reunion after all. And amongst all my strong interpersonal skills, I am still an introvert, which most people don’t recognise as truth (incl B really). Large social gatherings with people I don’t know get me exhausted. When I started going out with B, he was already out of the section ‘cult’ and I was full on my own cult. Our friends intersected in the international crowd and that was sufficient. And barely noticeable. But as I am here, with no offence, I belong nowhere. I am not in reunion but I am also not …

Today we lost Belide

Today was a sad day for us at A Little Gesture. We lost Belide. Belide lost his life. 

I was at Pilates at the end of a tough week. After a rough start with a visit to the A&E and a bloody head with the little one, the rest of the meeting was focused on work - meetings, power point slides, initiatives, strategy, KPIs. At ALG, all I can think about are the accounts, getting them done, getting Joana trained so I can sometime start wearing my CEO hat. All mundane, all put in perspective the moment I saw the message coming into my watch. Belide died. 
I felt that was the one thing I could not add to my day, to my week. So much time spent trying to give each child an opportunity, and now this one is lost forever. 

Belide was barely 18 years old and he was part of our HIV day center. He was an orphan. A bright kid, with a touching smile. He feature in our 2015 Xmas Calendar so I can share a bit more about him: 
"Always on time at the HIV Day Care Centre, he plays a lot and he’s finally…