Call Me Old Call Me Silly Or Call Me Both

Call Me Old Call Me Silly Or Call Me Both


You may or may not know, a couple of years ago I remarried after ovarian cancer claimed my wife’s life. Well in getting remarried, I inherited an 8 year old step daughter.

As you can imagine, I haven’t had an 8 year old around me for years, decades in fact and it took a little bit of adjusting. Now about 3 years later, all is good and I’m affectionately known as “Steppy” obviously short for step-father.

I do sympathize with my wife Ying though because now she’s got 2 kids to drive her crazy, me and Shania. 🙂

Anyway, on our first Christmas as a family together I literally broke Shania’s heart. It wasn’t deliberate, I’d forgotten how all this Christmas stuff works and of course some things about how it works had actually changed.

Well for a start, I forgot about the stocking thing and the milk and chocolates. Hence, the stocking was empty and the milk and chocolates were still there.

And I forgot to read the “letter to Santa”, you can just imagine when Shania spotted all of this.

The first thing she said was, “I’ve been good, why didn’t Santa come to our house last night?” Got to tell you, she was crying and I was trying not to.

Turns out, she requested a play station among other things on her “wish list” to Father Christmas.

By the way, I didn’t have the play station either and no shops were open, so I was in deep trouble.

Anyway I made a phone call or two and dug myself out of the hole all be it not unscathed and Shania is probably scarred for life and I’ve done my level best to make it up to her.

Here’s the marketing moral to this story…

So what do you want in your Christmas stocking in a business sense this Christmas?

Have you been relying far too much upon the fat guy in the red suit, to solve your business problems metaphorically speaking?

It’s common among those less successful to abdicate responsibility, a comparative few are prepared to “fill their own stocking” and be “their own Santa”.

Most people want someone else to “fill their stocking”. The best way of course to “fill any stocking“ and get anything you want in business is to master marketing.

I suspect if you’re reading this you already get that but it is the first BIG BIG breakthrough, switching from mechanical/technical business owner to marketing entrepreneur.

With 2014 fast approaching, it seems like an opportune time to draw a line in the sand and take responsibility for “filling your own Christmas stocking” in the coming year.

I don’t know who figured this gimmick out, but it’s real neat that you get to start a whole new year with a clean, unblemished, untarnished slate.

With Christmas around the corner and about a few weeks to go to 2014, it’s time to jettison last year’s disappointments, resentments, frustrations, mistakes, unfulfilled goals and only carry over the good stuff.

Whatever’s done is done, committed to history, no point looking back.

When the clock strikes midnight on the 31st of December the starter’s pistol goes off. A whole new 52 weeks are right in front of you.

The trick is to make sure you are not lugging any unnecessary baggage and you have the clearest possible picture of what the finishing line looks like at the end of 2014.

So how do you set goals for the New Year?

The first thing I like to do is to reconsider unfinished business and new items on my “ugly” list. The things that still require completion, the things I like least about my business or life, that perpetually seem to bug me, waste my time and get in the way.

I also like to consider my own behaviour. What can I do better, to be better? What do I need to become better at to achieve my goals in 2014 (“fill my stocking”)?

Can’t build a nest without twigs, grass, leaves and superglue. You need to gather the right stuff in order to get the job done. Figure out what stands in your way and quickly, ruthlessly discard “it” decisively.


It’s no surprise to me that the most disciplined Inner Circle members are generally the most “successful”. By discipline I mean in part organised in thought and action, prepared and held accountable.

Most people are engaged in doing things without a clear picture of what “success” is supposed to be or look like. With no means of holding themselves or others accountable.

You need structure. You need a plan. Try building a house without a clear set of plans and see what happens… a very expensive learning experience.

You behaviour must be congruent to your goals. It’s very important to link goals with behaviour and RIGHT action.

So as you unwind over the next few weeks I’d encourage you to do a few things:

First and foremost… CELEBRATE! We have so much to be thankful for in this wonderful country of ours, we need to take time out to be thankful and celebrate our achievements… so go ahead… party!

Second… spend TIME with those closest and most important to you, your family and friends. A big driver for all of us in business is making ours and our family’s life better, so spend some quality time with those closest to you.

Third… UNWIND and re-charge the batteries, you’ve earned a break. While you’re at it spend some time reflecting on how far you’ve come this year and whether or not you’ve hit your goals.

And… Fourth… PLAN for an even bigger and better 2014. Even if it’s just in your mind… in your quiet time think about what you want to achieve next year and what you will have to do to get there.

The StreetSmart office will be closed from Monday 20th December and re-open Tuesday 7th January.

Once again, Merry Christmas to you and your family from all of us at Streetsmart Marketing and look forward to working with you again to make 2014 your best year yet.

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  1. Thank you! what a concise way to finish the year and cover all the ups and whatever, consign and prepare for the new year, and take forward only what you need. Having fun and enjoying the family. I usually get a little up tight at this time of the year, but you blog was really calming and powerful. This year will be different. Have a great time with your family too!

  2. Dear Mal

    Congratulations with the magic you are doing to strengthen broke Business owners to transition to successful Entrepreneurs, We do not know how lucky we are.

    Thank you for a fantastic 2013, and setting my BIG goals now for 2014.

    Best wishes for Christmas to, Mal, Ying, Shania, and the New Year.

    Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas.

    John Dwyer

  3. Great message Mal. Thanks for taking the time to share it. Merry Christmas to you and the StreetSmart Marketing Team.

  4. What a lovely story and so sorry Mal about your first wife with cancer gee in knowing you over the past ten years you and I each have had tremendous set backs and losses to Misery but to our credits we keep fighting on well done right on xmas to hear this you have cheered me up matey have a nice xmas and safe new year and you would make a lovely dad.

  5. Hello Mal Emery, how are you going? 🙂 Wow, congratulations, your step daughter is gorgeous! 🙂 It is so very true what you said about discipline. It reminds me of that saying: “Those who lack discipline are rewarded only with regret”

    Have a very Merry Christmas to you and your family! 😀

  6. Thanks, Mal. I agree. Family is everything and it’s our duty to look after them in the best way we possibly can. Merry Christmas!

  7. Mal
    There’s a great marketing lesson in this blog – the power of telling a good story!
    You had me keen to keep reading right from the beginning and then you kept leading me down the path you wanted me to go- well done!

  8. This was a lovely message on so many levels 🙂 Thanks for Sharing Mal and you have a Very Merry Christmas as well! PS Dont forget the cookies this year!

  9. Thank you Mal for your support and your inspirational blogs. I really appreciate your efforts, your clarity and most of how much you really care. Regards Jeff Muir Perth

  10. Great story Mal…. well apart from the Christmas mishap 🙂 But the message is there for all to take in. All the best in 2014 and thanks again for the good read.

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