Talking to strangers & The pretty girl with the red plastic headband

When was the last time you socialised with total strangers? You might not remember or you might not be into that kind of sport.

But what more fulfilling than getting to know other people; Extroverts, introverts, weirdos, geeks and smartasses! And occasionally some like minded people to be friends or lovers ;)

I always enjoyed the thrill and chills that my dirtbike was giving me as a youngster. The excitement after every session was worthwhile the trouble.

I see no deference in my adrenaline levels when I’m seeing a person I’d like to meet. And certently it’s equally scaring as being on the bike. Especially if it’s a girl we’re talking about.

Many thoughts are popping up like mushrooms in the wild. What should I say? Is this the right moment? Am I going to be embarrassed in front of other people? Am I going to come out as being creepy?

When it comes to meeting strangers, tricks don’t usually work I’ve learnt. Being authentic and genuine about your intentions would give you the most chances to succeed. In fact more than 13%. Ok I’m joking ;) it’s actually far less :))

Ok, it’s Friday night and I agreed to go out to a place I don’t usually go to. It’s not a place to meet someone really. It’s always packed, the music is loud enough to sing no matter your natural talents and everybody is dressed up as far as it goes. Oh, and more than half are smoking and drinking vodka like orange juice!

But this time it’s different.

Unexpectedly enough, there is this pretty young girl across the bar. She’s tall and with an athletic built. So, different from the rest. She looks simple, curly hair and mild make up. Drinking a red bull instead of vodka and wearing a red plastic headband! I’m hooked! How on earth a girl like this appeared here!

My friends agreed on my observations and in minutes I’m determined to cross over and talk to her! I know I have to act as fast as possible. Being impulsive it’s a must in these situations.

I literarily drag my self over without having a single word in my mouth or mind.

I touch her back politely and say hi;

There is a pause – I still have no clue what I’m going to say.. Probably my friends are watching silently but I don’t really know it. I’m in the zone of boy meets girl and my mind is occupied with fear and excitement.

- I saw you from there and I had to come and talk to you
– Why;
– it’s your red plastic headband that grabbed my attention
– haha, really why;
– look all these women around; they look the same. But you look pretty different! Curly hair, not smoking and not drinking alcohol; And with an awesome red plastic headband!!!

Being original is effective and as simple as sharing your thoughts. Since your thoughts are by default and in a way unique! Note to your self though that if you’re having any naughty thoughts to share then be prepared for nasty outcomes.

But being polite and truthful it’s your best bet. You’ll feel good afterwards no matter the results. And you’d probably be wiser and ready for your next social adventure.

Look around. So many people are waiting to share their feelings and life as friends or loved ones. Don’t be afraid, push your self off your comfort zone and grow your boundaries. Share your experiences and have a laugh about it.

Make friends, love and a live a life worth sharing!

Phew! How I got away of being a TV director; And why that’s good;

First let me clarify. There is nothing wrong of directing TV commercials. And in fact there’re lots of people who would dream a job like the one I used to have.

But eventually it wasn’t for me. I do love to create stuff. And videos are among my favourite tools of self expression and creativity.

But let me take you back a couple of years. Between year 2008 and 2010, when I trained my self intensively in order to become a director. Not a commercial one but the one who makes movies to tell real stories.

As I was planning my breakthrough I thought of many different roots to choose from. Would that be making a short film and submitting it to festivals? Well, not for me. I have the notion that this is for the very artistic and some how cultured people. And that’s not me. I like popular stories.
How about TV commercials? Well that’s not bad. Small projects and every time something different to learn. Mmm that sounded good at the time. And when I checked how much directors can make in my home country Greece, I literally flue to Athens from Reading UK where I was residing at the moment.

I came up with a smart plan. I contacted all the broadcast rental companies in Athens and I let them know that I’m flying to Greece to establish a few partnerships for the jobs I potentially was hoping to get ( Oh, I didn’t mention the potential and hoping part! It was more about certain and I’m good :) ). After being extremely lucky and few months down the road I had already served a major company as a Production Coordinator and met many people locally and internationally.

After a while I was directing spec commercials for major companies and I also made a few for prime time TV viewing. Among the successes I had in this short time was a corporate commercial for Procter and Gamble which was sawn in their 2012 annual event in NY.

But something was quite wrong. It was a hectic disorganised job. All the companies involved wanted to do the bare minimum they were contracted to do. And that’s not me. That’s not creative. That’s a Foxtons’ assembly line.

Everyone seemed stressed. In a way that you’d think that this is the only way to make them selfs feel complete and worthy.

After two years in the job I was wondering for how long I’ll be doing that. The main company I was working with offered me the position of a producer. That’s good money but long hours on the office and more distant to my inner self. So, I declined.

I wanted to produce and direct my own thing.
In the beginning of 2012 my producer called me and told me that he has a script I should read. It was from a major food company. It seemed like my chance to come up with an original idea of how this new product should be communicated. After a few days I got back with a storyboard. Put together with music.
“It’s great Stergios! But we can’t do it!”
Because if we do it everyone else would want a proposal of this standard. And we can’t afford this now! He added.

That was too much to take in. If I continue like that I’d be rich and miserable in no time! And find my self living a life I never dreamed of! In a bad way I should define.

And so I stopped. I took a break to reassemble my self and my goal setting. Working there was good. But good is not good enough for me. I want to live a great life or at least go for it. Be an inspiration to my own self and the ones around me.

Taking a year off and lunching my Tennis project “NTRP 0 to 5 in One year” was among the best things in my life so far. (I plan a post for those who are new here and not familiar with my crazy projects).

It’s the first time I’m doing whatever I want from start to finish.  And be as great or awesome as I want with out jeopardising the insecurities of others.

So, what ever you do, do it with greatness and passion. Shoot for the best you can and I promise everything would feel better.

Today I got my last paycheque from this company. And as I was exiting the building I felt free. No more hectic, paranoid advertisers. No more Casinos and Sugary products wanting me to present them like they’re great. Today, I’m launching my own agency and I’ll be doing videos that come from heart both from me and my clients. (Website will be up early 2014).

I hope you enjoyed this post as I did writing it. I’ll back soon with more adventures to write about..

Till then keep on your smile and do your best!

Going public – why you should;

Hi guys,

It’s been a while since I wrote my last post.
Although my blog seemed silent for the past month everything else has been on the go.

Usually I keep my thoughts and ideas to myself. And let me explain what I mean by that.

When I have a grand idea I get goosebumps! I’m usually over excited about my new idea and I can’t wait to research it’s potential. At the same time I’m battling with my inner self to not spill out a word about it. At least to anyone that has nothing-essential to do for the idea.

It’s not always easy to keep quite but it works wonders for me. Sometimes I give in. I can’t help but open my mouth to my loved ones.

One, might assume that I could get reassurance and a good amount of motivation. Especially if they like the idea. Which is the case most of the times. :)

Giving in, is like letting go, I know deep in me that this idea is over. At least for me. Nothing excites me after I share it. It’s like I’m cashing out all future excitement of achievement before I even start. And that has been a huge problem of mine.

When I started this project I was skeptical about announcing it to the world. Not to mention putting in online.

But then I had a thought of enlightenment. This project is not only about me. Although I have lots of fun playing tennis every morning and not having to work in an office.

This project is about anyone who dreams about something bigger than him or her. Something that no one has done before. Something exciting and uplifting. Something that makes you smile to the people around you.

So I had to share. I began slowly by starting off this blog. I then wrote on a forum. And that was the most awesome thing I’ve done so far. It took me by a storm. In just a couple of days my thread “NTRP 0 to 5 in One year. Is that possible” had already 3000 views! By now it has 200 comments! How amazing? I’m glad I did open up.

A few commenters have drop the idea to me of making a few videos about my progress, diet and rest. Wow! What a terrifying idea? Me, talking about my ideas? Terrifying! Talking in English? Extraterrestrial!

I confess I was also quite amused and flattered by the idea. More than 10 people had brought it up by then and more had agreed.

A few nights after, I came across a quote by Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, “If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough”.

And there I was. With a dream that scared me. I had to try it. I Put myself out there while fighting to fulfill this project and motivating others to start their own projects and beat the odds!

I’m committed to the people who follow this story and because of them I am extremely humbled and motivated to start writing more and producing a series of videos.

Thank you! You’re awesome!