I’m working on my first cup of coffee this morning and I’ve decided to use today’s post to have a bit of fun…
People often forget that business should be fun.
So much of what’s written online today lacks any sense of personal connection. Most people are simply afraid to REALLY be themselves.
This includes myself, big time.
So instead, I’ve always tried to act “professional” in order to be seen as trustworthy, so a lot of what I write about comes out dry and dull.
Not pretty and oh so boring. I know, I get it. I REALLY do.
So let’s put away the impersonator and the water-down version of myself and see the real, 100% human, me. Imperfect, flawed, and quirky, with a healthy dose of sarcasm.
So in order to prove that I’m not a robot that stays tucked away in his home office all day, I’ve decided to share 24 of my own quirks, habits, and closely guarded secrets…hey, people want authenticity.
24 Things You Don’t Know About Me
1. I LOVE coffee. Like most, I used to hate the taste but then in my last year of high school – BAMP! I was a true convert. I used to berate my mother for drinking it when I was a teenager thinking it was unhealthy. Turns out, my mother was known for her bad coffee; it was sooooooo weak. It looked more like tea! Barf.
2. My favourite ice cream flavours are mint chocolate chip, strawberry, black cherry and pistachio. I HATE all things chocolate ice cream, and DO NOT get me started on the banana flavoured shite – namaste.
3. I love fires and I’m known for fire-building skills, well, among of few of my friends. Those who’ve travelled with me where our rentals had fireplaces or at the cottage, I’m know for my mad fire skills. Staring at a fire is one of the most relaxing things in the world (and no, I don’t have any desire to burn things down 🙂 ).
4. Maybe it’s my age but I prefer using a notepad and pen. I know it’s not as convenient has having a tablet or using my phone and yes, paper makes waste, but I like writing things down (yup, I know cursive, a.k.a. script or longhand). BUT, I don’t like making mistakes and then scratching things out. Messy :(.
5. I must have been a cat in one of my previous lives. I loved playing in boxes when I was little. I also loved to build massive forts with bed sheets, either in my basement or my friends; complete small desk lamps for lighting! No flashlights for me, I needed comfort.
6. I’m an introvert. Nowadays it’s not seen as a bad thing (or am I kidding myself?) but growing up, it wasn’t fun. I was called ‘shy’ or nagged to be more outgoing – not cool. As an introvert, I like to go inside my head, reflect, and process internally. To the uninitiated, it seems like I’m not interested or aloof. Trust, you’ll know…
7. Fear is my greatest friend. No really. Whenever I’m afraid to do something new – afraid to go outside of my comfort zone – I know I’m about to breakthrough to a new level in my life or in my business. There’s a reason for the adage “growth starts at the edge of your comfort zone”. This is where you need to be stretched, to increase your capacity and I’m glad that I’ve concurred many of my fears – the next fear/hurdle? (dare I say starting a Podcast?).
8. Apparently I have a resting bitch face. If you haven’t met me, you wouldn’t know this. Not sure if I do or not (well sorta) but rest assured, it’s not you, it’s me :).
9. I feel happiest when I’m living in my passion. This is true for most people. The key is to find your passion and live it. If it can be turned into a business or a way to support yourself, even better. Regardless, find your passion(s) and find a way to incorporate it into your life. You won’t regret it. Two of my passions are health and learning (leveraging both of those accounts for a chunk of my income – ya!).
10. I went to three different universities before figuring out what I wanted to do. I went to the University of Waterloo for Kinesiology and was kicked out after my first year for getting a failing grade of 48 in physics and 52 in calculus. I then switched majors and went to Trent University for biology, and then changed schools again and continued to study biology at the University of Toronto.
The funny thing (well I can laugh about it now) is that I spent most of my time at Waterloo reading nutrition textbooks that I bought at the campus bookstore (that were not part of my course work) instead of working on my ever-so compelling physics and math homework.
Hello! Earth to Doug. The writing was on the wall.
Well you know how the rest turned out. I paid my dues and did my undergrad at Ryerson University, my post-grad clinical internship at St Michael’s Hospital and grad school at the University of Toronto…now look at me, I’m a regulated licensed health professional.
11. If I could get rid of just one thing – it would be the need for sleep. I’m always wishing for more hours in the day.
12. I’m a jeans and t-shirt kind of guy. I do love the look of a well-style dude and part of me would love that for myself but truth be told, I HATE shopping and when I’m rich and famous, will hire a personal stylist and shopper :). #bensherman #fredperry #penguin
13. Even though I wish I didn’t have to sleep, I do. So, with that said, I LOVE my sleep. If I have to do it, it had better be golden. If there’s one thing that irritates me, it’s anything or anyone that f-cks with my sleep. Best recent gift to myself? My Casper mattress.
14. I’m not a very patient person. I think my alleged resting bitch face is more like this owl’s. Some say I don’t suffer fools (but that’s OK, because I doubt they suffer me).
I’m not sure where it comes from but it’s a projection of my own frustration with myself. Equally not sure where the idea of needing to be perfect came from but I’m waaaaaaay better than I was when I was in my 20s #insufferable. So now, I am a lot more patient with others as I’ve become more patient with myself.
As the saying goes “If you look for perfection, you’ll never be content” – Leo Tolstoy
15. If I’m on plane, it’s an aisle seat.
16. I guard my emotions like a hawk. It’s incredibly hard to break through my shell, I know and I’m sorry. But I’m eternally grateful to the people who have. Again, it’s not that I’m holding back and waiting for others to prove themselves worthy of seeing my vulnerable under-belly, it’s about my need for safety.
17. I LOVE all things HORROR and SCIENCE FICTION.
18. I’m a cat person, no wait, I’m a dog person. Dang, cats are cuddly and awesomely independent but dogs are lovable and playful. I’ll likely remain conflicted for the rest of my life.
19. A part of me wishes I had learned to play an instrument beyond the clarinet in junior high. I’ve always envied those who can play the piano, cello or violin. While I’m at it, my secret fantasy would be able to sing. I think I’d be a tenor if I could carry a note.
20. Some early traumatic experiences in my late teens resulted in me being closed off to the world. I attribute to being ‘saved’ from that to falling in love with an equally guarded Yorkie who I had the honour of being with when he left this world.
21. I’m not a big team sport kinda of guy. But I do love tennis, swimming and cycling. Cycling, like speed skating, is a super slick looking sport. I find both very graceful to watch.
22. I grew up in a quintessentially WASP family where being open about our feelings wasn’t our strength. Despite this, I know I was loved and that love was shown in a quiet, unassuming, yet unmistakably way where I never doubted it.
23. I like mushy textures and joke that I’m gonna ‘rock’ being an elderly version of myself. Bring on the rice and tapioca pudding, cottage cheese, custards and puddings.
24. I think ‘Being Yourself’ is one of the biggest keys to business and life.
Okay… I’m headed back to the stacks of research papers – as a hardcore introvert, all this human stuff is wearing me out.
But I’d love to hear a bit about you! Feel free to post in the comments with your own quirks 🙂
Doug Cook RDN is a Toronto based integrative and functional nutritionist and dietitian with a focus on digestive, gut, mental health. Follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.