It is what it is

“Face reality as it is, not as it was or as you wish it to be.”

That’s a quote from Jack Welch – one of the most renowned business leaders of the 20th and 21st century.

I remember as a kid in high school reading one of Jack’s books and being so inspired by how someone could be so driven and work so hard to achieve what he’d envisioned for his career. He’s definitely worth reading up on.

But back to Jack Welch’s wonderful quote: “Face reality as it is…”

During her MBA study one of my friends told me of one of the strategies that was pivotal to Jack’s success: When Jack Welch was a kid his mom taught him something that he used in business and turns out it served him very well. That lesson was based on the above quote and simply stated: “It is what it is.”

So for instance there would be times when a project or department or division or even person would be failing to deliver at General Electric (where Jack Welch was CEO and later Chairman). If, after doing all he could to make the project, department, division and sometimes staff work- and they still failed, Jack would just say to himself “It is what it is.” He would shut down that project or whatever it was that could not be fixed. And he would move on. He would then focus on investing energies and resources elsewhere.

This is a hard lesson for most of us to learn.

It’s sometimes hard to let go or “shut down” certain things because of how much we’ve invested.

Someone once put it to me like this: “It’s like you’re waiting for the bus. The bus runs late. Then really late. Then really really  late. And you battle with making the decision: Do I wait because I’ve already waited so long – or do I just find another mode of transport? And if I decide to wait – how long might I still wait? Will the bus eventually come? And what if, just as I walk away from the bus stop, the bus comes? How stupid will I feel then? And then all the time I’ve waited was a waste!”

It’s a hard decision to make.

But sometimes walking away is the best decision. Even if you feel silly or stupid for time wasted.

Sometimes we have to write off the investments we made – count them as loss and move on.

I lost thousands on my first investment property. With each month that passed I held onto that property in the hope that I could make up the money I’d poured into it. But I never recovered because each month the hole got deeper and more expensive to crawl out of. And subsequently exiting the horrible deal got more pricey. Eventually a financial advisor told me “Hannah just cut your losses and get out!”

It was a hard decision. But I made it – and got out of the deal. And the losses I’d been incurring for over six years stopped.

Sometimes holding on is really expensive. It costs us more than it’s actually worth.

There comes a time when we have to Face reality as it is, not as it was or as we wish it to be.

This applies to jobs, business ventures, partnerships, romantic relationships, friendships, cars, houses – just about anything that we know in ourselves is probably never going to be fixed.

I do apologise for putting our human interactions on the same line as business – but the truth is not all relationships are beneficial. If need be: Cut them loose! And move on. And invest your energies and resources elsewhere.

There isn’t only one idea out there that can make you money. You are far greater than that!

There isn’t only one person out there who can love you – that’s a lie I dare you to never ever believe. You are far greater than that!

There isn’t only true friend or a group of people out there for you – you are… Yes you are far greater than that!

I remember as a young woman falling madly in love and falling devastatingly apart when a love relationship I’d invested so much in failed. One day my wise mother brought me a map of the world.

“Look at how big the world is Hannah. You cannot tell me that in this huge expanse there isn’t one single other person for you.”

And yet still even though what my mom said made so much logical sense I wept and I cried for the man I loved. I prayed and I pleaded for the relationship to work out.

But when the pain got so intense I almost went numb – when it got so bad I could barely breathe – I knew I had to let go. Something kept telling me over and over I was worth far much more than I was allowing for myself. I prayed that I would let go. And one day I just got up and told myself: “Ok it’s over.” And I moved on.

And Mommy was right. As she’d said I found out that the world was MASSIVE! I came across quite a few other men after that – and eventually decided on one who I’m building my life with every day.

So many times I thank God that all my other romances didn’t work out. Because if they had I wouldn’t have the knight who is now my husband. And my children would not have the awesome father we have in him. It would all have never happened had I not let go and moved on.

The same has happened with some of my jobs – some projects – some business ventures… and yes even some friends – I’m still no expert at letting go – but I have done it enough times to know that sometimes it’s really worth it to shut the door and look for a new door to open.

In all things I have learned this: God is faithful. The things and people that are meant to stay will. And those that fail will never ever prevent you from reaching your dreams and your destiny. Simply because you are greater than external factors. God designed you that way so that no matter who stayed or who left you’d still be able to reach where you needed to go.

I wish you love. I really do. I write this from the depths of me that you may be free. If it’s time – and you know it in your heart: Let Go. You’ll be just fine.


Hannah Viviers is founder of Hannah Viviers Business Training and Author of

You’re welcome to leave a comment or email Hannah directly at

The wait…

Most times the wait is an excuse.

It’s an excuse to not step out.

Waiting pacifies the fear of failure.

Waiting shelves what could be for the deception of security.

You have something bubbling inside you. I know it.

You’ve tried to ignore it – but it just won’t go away.

Sometimes it keeps you up at night – swirling around your head like a big juicy ice-cream on a scorching day – and you think: “Oh I wish I could just do it!”

You can.

And you can start today. Right now.

Don’t let the “wait” cheat you out of what is rightfully yours.

Hannah Viviers is founder of Hannah Viviers Business Training and Author of

You’re welcome to leave a comment or email Hannah directly at


Yesterday I was talking to one of the loves of my life: my dear and wise friend Mercy.

We were, as we do almost everyday, sharing the happenings of life over the phone.

One of the things I shared with her was this: Lately I feel as though I’ve been going through one battle after another. As I hobble away from one  battlefield – before I can even get a sip of water – another barrage befalls me.

It’s draining. Sometimes I feel I’m being put through a mill. One that grinds in the most brutal way.

And as my dear friend and I talked it clicked in my head – yes I was exhausted from fighting – but the particular battle I was engaged in yesterday was merely a distraction. A distraction from my life. A distraction from doing what I love. A distraction from buckling down and doing what I believe in my heart has been set before me to do.

As we spoke Mercy said: “I really believe you’ve been called Hannah.”

Like most people on similar journeys – I’m still working out what that “call” is about.

But as I battle I’m learning there are perhaps three main categories of fight:

– Some fights are meant to strengthen us and/or teach us things we didn’t know.

– Some fights are meant to distract us from the goal. Because as long as we’re fighting them and focusing all our energies in those fights we have little or no energy to do what we’ve been “called” to do.

– Some fights are just petty – real time wasters that must be ignored. Immediately.

King David in The Scriptures once prayed this to God: “Teach my hands to war.”

It’s important to know how to war. Sometimes I find myself hands flailing, bruised and beaten very near to death – but despite all my energies in the end all I am is tired and defeated.

But when you know how to war – oh well it’s one of those things that truly is a beautiful thing. And yet still, chances are that even the most skilled warriors will be bruised. Will get wounded. Will bleed- a lot. But in the end they are victorious.

It’s worthwhile investing in knowing how to war. On this I think roping God in like King David did is a wise move.

But even before you engage in battle it’s vital to know which fights to take up and which to not waste time on.

The fights that are merely a distraction can sometimes be the big ones. Sometimes they are the ones that steal your sleep – rob your peace and either cause you to starve from loss of appetite or cause you to binge on food in an attempt to numb the anxiety. Or you might use so many other things to distract you from the distraction.

What to do? Especially when the distraction must be dealt with and cannot be ignored or left unattended? You give it as little time as possible. And more than that you determine in your heart to not allow it to steal your joy. And then you continue to focus on what really matters.

Life happens. All the time. And usually when we say that we say it when the chips are down and we’re getting the bedonkers knocked out of us.

But life happening is a good thing. In fact it’s a wonderful thing.

How many people die not having had grabbed the opportunity to make a change? You are not one of those people. Simply because you are STILL here.

Life has happened to you – the choice is to embrace life or choose death. Everything that steals from you is death. Death of a dream. Death of passion. Death of hope… Dear friend I urge you to choose life.


The battles will all come. All three kinds. But you can be victorious. It’s completely out of place that you wouldn’t be.

Life has been set before you. Living it means focusing on its purpose in you.

Life awaits – will you embrace it?


Hannah Viviers is founder of Hannah Viviers Business Training and Author of

You’re welcome to leave a comment or email Hannah directly at

The Love Connection: Ladies meeting – for Men only!

2012 has been something!

My husband and I started our business seminars for entrepreneurs in May this year. 

Personally it’s been quite a journey for me to get to the place where I’m doing something I truly love.

This journey is giving me the courage to quit what doesn’t matter – and every day it nags me to focus on what does.

At our first business breakfast earlier this year I spoke about partnerships. I spoke about how choosing our life partner was perhaps the most important decision we would ever make in business.

With each seminar or project we’ve tackled this year I’ve found myself asking my husband: “Are you proud of me?”

For me that question also asks: Do you truly believe in what I’m doing? Do you care? And how much of your support do I have in this?

I may have TONS of support from so many others – but the “so many others” are not the ones I go home to…

This year I found out that happiness is truly underestimated.

I also found out that if love and passion are not the foundation upon which we build- we ultimately fail.

So it’s this very topic we hope to get our teeth into at our first meeting on February 9, 2013: Love and Passion. 

Our speakers for this event will lead us into discussion about:

Connecting with your own true love – in short we’ll be delving into what you’re really passionate about and how connecting with that can catapult your business or even non-profit to a whole new level

Partnering with the right people who can help you get to where you want to go. 

The power of agreement between life partners and how that power can fuel your business ventures to incredible heights.

The power of whole families: True success is when we take our families along the journey with us. Success is empty when we find ourselves alone at the end of all we’ve worked so hard for.

We look forward to spending February 9 with you.

Feb is the month of love. We hope this seminar will ignite and/or re-ignite something spectacular in you.


Warmest Regards,

Hannah Viviers

Hannah Viviers is founder of Hannah Viviers Business Training and Author of

You’re welcome to leave a comment or email Hannah directly at


The giggling customer

In previous posts I mentioned a fantastic book I’m reading on how to handle our children’s toddler years. It’s called Happiest Toddler on the Book by Dr Harvey Karp. I highly recommend it.

Anyway we’re at a place with our fifteen month old where it feels like a constant battle of wills.

To deal with tantrums one of the things the author recommends is to pay our child more attention, to genuinely seem interested in what he gets up to and to engage in dedicated fun time with him. Sounds easy enough but it’s not always easy – and boy can it be time consuming.

Most of my days are filled with the following pleas to my son: “Please stop that!” or “No you can’t put that in your mouth!” or “Get off there you’ll hurt yourself!” or “Seriously you’re going to do that now!” “Pick that up!” “Put that down!” Someone help!!!!!

But I tried Dr Karp’s advice. And instead of the usual war of wills with my little guy I experienced a calmer child who genuinely seemed happier.

And in a nutshell I guess this confirmed to me what most of us already know: the need for validation is vital.

I don’t know about other parents but being mom, while right at the top of my priority list, isn’t my only role. I have a gazillion other things calling for my attention. There are times when my son has to accept that he cannot have my complete attention all the time. And that does not make me a bad mom.

But even in those moments when my attention is turned toward something else – it’s vital my son know, beyond a shadow of doubt, that I love him. And it’s vital he also know that my time away from him is temporary. Soon I’ll be back chasing him around the house – playing all sorts of games that make him giggle with glee.

And so my friends here’s how this translates to how we do business – it’s not possible to constantly pamper our customers – to give them undivided attention at all times – business is such that there are other demands on our time.

But it’s what we do when we have the opportunity to wow our customers that matters. We can choose to make them feel loved and cared for and that they really do matter.

In those opportunities we have to make them giggle with glee we need to throw ourselves in whole heartedly. Just like a child knows when we’re not being honest, our customers know when we’re faking it.

There’s a child in all of us that never ever grows up. C’mon you know what I’m talking about.

I’m almost certain we’ve all seen grown folks, both men and women (some even grey) throw tantrums so violent you can barely make out what they’re saying they’re so mad – all because of poor customer service. 

We all have that child in us who wants to be validated and shown she’s cared about.

At times that child needs undivided attention. She needs her concerns to be handled with genuine interest and for crying out loud she needs to be engaged in a bit of fun every now and then!

It’s amazing what life lessons raising our children bless us with. The wise entrepreneur does well to take note and when we can, we need to love our customers in the way the child inside us wants to be loved.

It is time consuming. But it sure is worth it. 

A happy customer might be back. But a giggling one is our best advertising. They’ll be back – with friends and family and colleagues and acquaintances… 


To purchase Happiest Toddler on the Blockclick here

Hannah Viviers is founder of Hannah Viviers Business Training. She’s also author of

You’re welcome to follow this blog, leave a comment or email Hannah directly at




Who are you? Especially when we’re not looking? And especially when you can get away with it?

That is a question I’m learning to ask myself daily – be it at home – outside when I interact with people – how I handle my business… the list is endless.

I recently had a meeting with a young, dynamic and highly influential business woman who’s father died due to negligence during a public sector strike.

She was black. I had to mention this because often I’ve found that debates get sorely heated and instead of arguing the issues at hand they become racial battles. I don’t intend for that here.

Having had first hand experience of what life savers going on strike meant for her family she felt the honour of the profession had been lost. Simply put she felt there were some in the medical field who no longer became health care givers because in their hearts they wanted to help people- they did it for the pay. And I say some.

But it’s not just some individuals in the medical profession – it’s some individuals in just about every profession you can think of.

This conversation has been nagging at me for weeks now. Often when I come across stories like these I am compelled to look at my own life and question my standing on the matter: What is honour? Do I practice it?

I’ve been wanting to write this post for a really long time now – but for some reason the words would not come – perhaps because like one writer said “It’s impossible to lie when you write.” So maybe for me the trepidation with which I approach this subject was a signal for me to check my own self.

Being a mom has changed me. It’s made me scrutinise the world with the burden of raising my child in it.

Before my son I was compelled to accept most things as moving with the times. But now I see the life I hope for my son and question why I can’t want a better world not just for my son but for me too?

Why should honour be a thing of the past?

I would love to do business with people who keep their word.

I’d love to buy from stores that deliver on the promises they make.

I’d love to work with people who are doing the work because they want to – because they love it – because they know that no matter what their doing or how insignificant it may seem – it matters.

I remember a lady named Sophie at a company I once worked. She was old and so radiant it was impossible to be bawled over by her sheer beauty.

She always had a smile on her face.

During her last days at the company, though, she opened up to me about how sad she was to be leaving her job.

“Oh I love it here!” She told me. “I love my job and I love the people. And every single day I pray and I ask God to help me love my job. Because I know if I don’t love my job I won’t do it properly.”

Here was a woman who was working a job most of us would consider  menial – and yet she was so proud of her work. And she cared about it so much that on a daily basis she laid it before God and asked Him to give her the right attitude toward it. Honourable.

During my waitressing days – I did my best to be good at my job.

If you’ve ever waitered before you know it can be a humbling experience. Sometimes it’s great – but often times you get people who treat you like you have the IQ of dishwashing liquid. And still I chose to be proud of my work.

There was a time being a waitress was my full time job – at the time I didn’t have many other options. So I totally get doing a job not because you love it but because you either do it or starve. And yet even in that… oh well I think I’ve made my point.

So anyway there came a time I waitressed with my friend Faith.

The two of us would do work none of the other waiters wanted to do; but we knew that doing those seemingly horrible chores made a difference to our customers. And we took such pride in that.

We were never thanked for it: The other waiters benefited but never thanked us – the customers never saw it – the managers didn’t really seem to care – but we did those chores not because it was part of our job description – but because it felt good to do something that was right even if we got no reward for it.

To this day, almost ten years later, Faith is one of the few people I know I would trust whole heartedly to do business with – because I saw her heart when we worked together. I saw how she did chores no one wanted to – or thanked her for. But she did them because she knew those little things made a difference. Honourable.

Each one of us yearns to be honoured.

We want companies we work with to treat us as though we matter. That’s why we get angry at being under appreciated.

We want businesses we purchase from to keep their promises to us. That’s why hellopeter is so successful.

We want individuals to go that extra mile even when it’s not pleasant because it will make our day. That’s why we keep going back to places that provide us with wonderful service.

If that’s what we hope for ourselves – I reckon it makes sense that we choose to keep our word to others too. I reckon it makes sense to deliver on promises we make.

It’s easy to get out of not doing what we should. But is that really the reputation we want to build?

Sometimes putting our hearts into what we do, even when the conditions compel us to harden ourselves, is something to be admired.

What we do might not be as grand as saving lives – but each one of us does something remarkable. It might be something as overlooked as Sophie’s job – but let me tell you when you get to work and your office is in a mess – you’ll miss Sophie. And when you do have someone who does the work but grunts and complains through it – isn’t that just miserable?

But having Sophie – what a blessing. She gives when no one’s looking. She takes extra care in all she does because her heart is filled with goodness and gratitude that can only come from an honourable heart.

I believe Sophie will look back on her years of service and remember the people who grew to love her because of her awesome character. She will remember those who were smart enough to notice her work and thank her – and all her life she will know that her work mattered. Even if no one ever told her how amazing she was – she knew it. And she was proud of it. And she knows she did make a difference.

Honour. It’s a BIG word packed with much demand.

As I write this I know I have work to do in this part of my life.

Honour calls. Will you answer?


Hannah Viviers is Founder of Hannah Viviers Business Training. She’s also the author of

You’re welcome to leave a comment or email Hannah directly at