Archive for April, 2020

Covid-19 has its own form of ‘vaccine’. And it’s done us all a few ‘flu favours’ as well.

Posted on: April 21st, 2020 by Rob Opie No Comments









I’ve spent my fair share of time commuting on the big orange and green planes in South Africa.

Flying in summer is a pleasure.

Flying in winter is another ball game.

That’s because it’s highly likely that more than 10% of the passengers in winter are infected with some strain of flu – coughing, sneezing and touching in your close proximity.

The risks are fairly high that someone close to you is infectious.

I have always wondered how people can be so inconsiderate to fly – when they are riddled with a heavy bout of flu.

I have asked my pilot friends on how they feel about their own Convid-19 risks – and the normal flu risks in winter.

They say they’re are OK with it –  as they sit in an isolated cockpit, protected by state- of- the -art air filtering systems, which also introduce fresh air into the plane every two to three minutes.

The heightened risk lies with the ‘inconsiderate passengers’ who are sneezing, coughing and touching – in close proximity to others.

Well, thank you Covid -19.

You’ve given us all a crash course in health care – by introducing:


And you’ve done us all a few “ flu favours”.

When we do finally get back to flying again, I’m sure airline passengers – and anyone in close proximity to one another in any situation – WILL NOW BE FAR MORE CONSIDERATE.

Covid-19 has sent our medical industry on a near frantic search to find a vaccine, but the cold reality is that Covid-19 has its own form of vaccine:


(we have all NOW received  THE MESSAGE  loud and clear – to practice better daily hygiene and self-isolate if infected)

And it’s working well, as Covid-19 has educated us all on how to become more human – more considerate of others.

No longer are you allowed into public places if you’re displaying signs of infection.

Covid -19 has introduced a new way of doing things – a new future for healthcare – and taught us all a few old school manners.

Rest assured YOU will feel a new kind of pressure if you somehow get to sneak back onto one of the green or orange planes – sneezing and coughing over the passengers around YOU.

Rest assured that you will be scanned at check points.

Flying has forever changed for the better.

Go Great. Go Well.






Rob shares topical weekly insights, innovation and inspiration on business,sport & life.

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Rob Opie is a Brand Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Author, Performance Coach to Business & Sports Teams – and Life Coach to those on a journey to self-actualisation.

His game- changing THE GAME PLAN METHOD, is helping both teams and individuals throughout South Africa to achieve their greatest potential.



Some inspiration for the Covid-19 fearmongers ………

Posted on: April 19th, 2020 by Rob Opie No Comments








Covid-19 has put us all to the test.

To date we have seen the tragic loss of more than 200 000 lives worldwide.

The media are having a field day with their 24/7 COVERAGE OF SELLING FEAR

…… are the Covid-19 fearmongers.

I’ve heard that the Covid-19 crisis has even been compared to that of the World War 2 crisis.

Let’s get some perspective on scale.

80 million lives were lost over a period of six years during WW2.

10 million lives are lost every year due to cancer.

650 000 lives are lost every year – due to the flu virus.

Yes, we have entered a dark ‘Covid-19 Tunnel’.

It’s a worldwide crisis where lives, jobs and income have been lost, but we are now past the middle of the tunnel.

Rest assured we will emerge shortly – stronger and wiser.

As South Africans, we’ve become near experts on how to navigate these dark tunnels.

We emerged from the “Apartheid Tunnel”.

We emerged from the 2001 New York “Terror Tunnel”

We emerged from the “2008 Financial Tunnel”

We emerged from the protracted “Zuma Tunnel”.

We have both international and local experience on how to do it – we have learnt so much.

Cast your mind back to late 2017, when we began to see a faint light at the end of the “Zuma Tunnel”.

The country was on the brink of total collapse, but there was a flicker of light – and hope.

At the time few of us had any idea how deep state capture had run.

The Gupta Brothers were running amok.

Private company corruption was taking hold.

And it seemed that the Springboks couldn’t even buy a win.

“Adversity is the training ground of champions.”

Enter a new breed of leadership in 2018.

Less than two years later we were crowned RWC Champions.

Thanks must go to Rassie, Siya and his team for showing us just what we are capable of – when united in purpose.

Thanks must go to President Cyril Ramaphosa who skilfully guided us out the ‘Zuma Tunnel”.

It was never going to be easy for him – or us.

Now he has led the nation with distinction+, through the Covid-19 crisis, while other world- wide leaders have floundered.

We have a lot to be thankful for.

We have been through a lot worse – and have prevailed: President Cyril Ramaphosa

As South Africans, we know that we have this unique ability to bounce back from any crisis.

Covid-19 has presented us with yet another opportunity to show the world.

We have seen our politicians, business, trade and sport coming together in a time of an urgent common concern.



To the fearmongers.……….less FEAR please.


The light will shine again.

We will soon be out the tunnel if we continue to do the right things.

Let’s continue to unite as South Africans, as post Covid-19 the podiums will be empty and waiting for the winners to stand up.

Opportunity beckons.



Go Great.


For those that are interested in some more inspiration, here’s a link to my weekly newsletter which I sent out on 9th March 2018 – way before we were crowned RWC champions.

Cyril and Rassie. Engineering the biggest comeback since Apollo 13.CLICK HERE TO READ


Rob shares topical weekly insights, innovation and inspiration on business,sport & life.

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Rob Opie is a Brand Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Author, Performance Coach to Business & Sports Teams – and Life Coach to those on a journey to self-actualisation.

His game- changing THE GAME PLAN METHOD, is helping both teams and individuals throughout South Africa to achieve their greatest potential.



Posted on: April 10th, 2020 by Rob Opie No Comments


The most important thing I have learnt in life is to focus my energy on what’s important in life“: Bill Gates 



Welcome to STEP #2 on our Covid-19 e-Learning journey.

When it comes to doing Brand Diagnostics on your personal brand , there are two key questions to be asked:

#1. What’s currently working for you?
#2 What’s currently not working for you?

We all have finite energy levels, which make it paramount for us to focus on what’s currently working for us.

And rewire what’s currently not working for us.

I like to refer to this as the 90/10 RULE, as it’s near impossible to run away from everything that’s not working for you.

The aim is to invest 90 % of your energy into what’s working for you – the right stuff.

Don’t sweat the other 10 %, unless that 10 % is on a growth path, and starting to place increasing constraints on either your personal and professional life.

Eli Goldratt wrote a brilliant management orientated novel: THE GOAL, which explores:

“The Theory of Constraints”

His book delves into constraints (bottlenecks) – how to alleviate them – and applications of these concepts in real life scenarios.

He describes how a chain is only as strong as its weakest link

If one part is weak – it then jeopardizes the integrity, the quality, and the effectiveness of the whole.

It’s the same in real life

It’s important to identify what’s not working for you – are there any constraints?

Constraints must either be removed, or ring-fenced as part of your 10 % planning.

How is this best achieved?

The smart thing to do is a FIVE POINT BRAND DIAGNOSTIC CHECK – on the key success (or failure) drivers in life, namely:

Mindset * Knowledge * Health *Support * Game Plan

Let’s take a closer look at these key drivers – and how people can either get them right or wrong.

#1: THE RIGHT MINDSET: The power of human choice.  

 The game responds to hard work and the right mindset:  Virat Kohli : Indian Cricket captain                                                                                        

In order to win consistently in life, you’ve to SET UP RIGHT.

Setting up right means adopting the right mindset.

Many people believe that this is all about maintaining a positive outlook on life, as opposed to a negative one.

This is not what it’s really about– as we all live in an optimally balanced two – sided universe.

Consider that there is positive vs. negative; win vs. lose; right vs. wrong; love vs. hate; challenge vs. support; joy vs.sad; pleasure vs. pain; day vs. night; hot vs. cold; criticism vs. praise and on and on.

If you believe that you must be ‘positive’ all the time – then you’re setting up wrong.

What you are doing is creating unrealistic expectations for yourself.

We must accept that we will face negativity in life.

It’s part and parcel of the game of life.

The right MINDSET is something different.

It’s about making the right choice between playing:

Victor of Victim

A victim mindset is the #1 constraint that holds most people back in life – those who see life as an everyday rollercoaster ride.

Nothing seems to go right for them and they constantly wondering when the rollercoaster ride will come to an end?

Here’s the key point:

One’s best made plans – one’s strategies and tactics in life – will prove meaningless unless you adopt the right mindset.

It’s important as one’s mindset, habits and internal dialogue are vital ingredients on one’s path to human greatness.

Check your inner voice from time to time – as there is no middle ground in the VICTOR or VICTIM choice.

Mindset matters most.

 Never confuse the most important part of you – your subconscious mind. You cannot have thoughts of victory and defeat in your mind at the same time. The subconscious mind has the power to send sabotaging messages to your body. All it takes is one kernel of doubt : David Becker: Mind Coach


#2.  THE RIGHT KNOWLEDGE. The Power of Human Awareness.

When we know better, we can do better: Mayo Angelou

With Covid-19, we have all seen the proliferation of toxic ‘fake’ news.

Having the wrong knowledge is more dangerous that having no knowledge at all.

People, who operate with the wrong knowledge – or insufficient knowledge, will often adopt a defensive fighting approach.

People who have the right knowledge – sufficient knowledge – will remain calm and go on to conquer any ‘mountain’ which they may be facing.

Covid-19 included.

The great Everest explorers will tell you that there exists a massive difference in approach – and its leads to massive difference in outcome.

Those who seek to fight the mountain, often never return to base camp.

Those who seek to conquer the mountain, often summit, and return safely to base camp.

Knowledge empowers you.

I came. I saw. I conquered : Julius Caesar 47BC


#3.  THE RIGHT HEALTH. The Power of Human Balance.

 Note: This section includes extracts from my eBook: “No Health. No Wealth”. If you would like a complimentary copy, email me at        

This health diagnostic check point is even more prevalent, given Covid-19.

The cold reality is that without one’s health, there is no wealth – and there can be little chance of ever achieving one’s greatest potential in life.

There is no greater constraint, than the loss of one’s health.

Here are a few top line insights from my eBook, to help you to optimize your health.

Here goes.

In health and life, the human body is designed to operate in a state of balance – and it functions optimally as a harmonious, synchronised unit.

When the mind, body and spirit are all in harmony, an optimal state of life balance exists – a state of ease.

This state of ease – our wellbeing – is therefore determined and dictated by how well we maintain balance in all three realms of health in our lives.

We must seek to adhere to one of the most powerful universal principles of health and life:

Too much or too little of anything for too long – will create of a state of imbalance; a state of dis-ease

Balance creates wellness.

Imbalance creates illness.

When we unwittingly or habitually get this universal equation wrong, we will soon find ourselves in some kind of trouble.

It can be anything from a niggling health issues right through to life threatening states of disease.

Be sure to take care of yourself in all three realms.

The physical and chemical realms are fairly easy to manage, given the advances made in medical science, but it’s in the emotional realm where people often run into troubles.

Human emotion is the ultimate resource – the ultimate force : Anthony Robbins

When it comes to the emotion realm, you will need to avoid the ‘Big Five’ emotional toxins / constraints, as they can take your life away:

Here they are, and they may surprise you:

Resentment * Hate * Guilt * Criticism * Futility

Now you know.

Power knowledge shared with YOU on this e-Learning journey.

Very few people have any idea of the powerful role that emotions play in maintaining or destroying our health and our wealth.

You can read more on how long term held resentment fuels cancer at my non-profit cancer resource site at

Now that you know about ‘THE BIG FIVE’ destructors, it’s good to know ‘THE BIG FIVE’ emotional constructors.

They are the building blocks for sustained success and significance in life.

They are ‘the energisers’ which create and maintain health, wealth and happiness, and fortunately for all of us, they are far more powerful than the negative draining ones.

Here they are:


Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, and confusion into clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow: Melody Beattie

When it comes to our wellbeing, we need to ensure that we do not tax the human body with constraints from the physical, chemical – and most importantly the emotional realm.

#4.  THE RIGHT SUPPORT. The Power of the Human Collective.

Nothing great was ever achieved alone : John. C. Maxwell

Covid-19 has seen most of the world pulling together in times of an urgent common concern.

The power of the human collective is always impressive to see.

In cycling, it’s common for cyclists to ride in a peloton – ride in formation.

It’s the power of leverage.

Leverage the ability to do more with less       

Scientists have proven that the effect of the peloton, can be as much as a 40 % energy saving.

In life – when people ride in the peloton and support each other – it’s largely the same.

But, in real life, there will always be someone who will not want to ride in the peloton.

That person becomes the constraint.

It’s important to guard against this type of constraint in your own real life situation.

Be sure to pick your inner circle carefully.

Be sure to pick those with similar values – and a similar vision.

Ensure that they are not your constraint.

Those who are not riding in your peloton will drain your finite energy levels.

Choose wisely. 

#5.  THE RIGHT GAME PLAN. The Power of Human Focus.

Every game has a winner – every winner has a game plan       

Covid-19 has already tested our metal.

Many of the people I speak to, talk about having one or two melt down days in lock down.

That’s just part of being human.

The best way to avoid these feelings is to have your game plan firmly in place: BRAND YOU.

We will soon be out the Covid-19 tunnel, and new opportunities will abound.

Be ready to grab those.

Next week we will look at your BRAND GAME PLAN – and how to optimally align your Purpose – your Priorities- and your Performance Goals.

The 3 P’s of Branding are the backbone of every great champion’s high level game plan which is:

Made of The Right Stuff

Post Covid19, the podiums will be empty and waiting for the winners to stand up.

Till next week…

Go Great .Go Well.


In this week’s inspiration video story  – ” If you’re gonna play the game , boy…… “

Every week on the course I would like to share an inspirational video with you – and have some fun too .

This week’s video story we go way back to 1978 , when Kenny Rogers shared some sage advice about life.



If you’re gonna play the game , boy. You gotta learn how to play it right ; You’ve got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em……

Enjoy the video below


Rob shares topical weekly insights, innovation and inspiration on business,sport & life.

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Rob Opie is a Brand Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Author, Performance Coach to Business & Sports Teams – and Life Coach to those on a journey to self-actualisation.

His game- changing THE GAME PLAN METHOD, is helping both teams and individuals throughout South Africa to achieve their greatest potential.





Posted on: April 6th, 2020 by Rob Opie No Comments



“It was the best of times; it was the worst of times”: Charles Dickens. A Tale of Two Cities.


Welcome to STEP ONE on our Covid-19 lockdown e-Learning journey.

Great to have you onboard…….

The purpose of this programme is to share with YOU insights, innovation and inspiration to help YOU to navigate YOUR way through the ‘Covid-19 tunnel” and come out the other side stronger – with a new higher level GAME PLAN to help you to:

Do Life Better

Robin Sharma summed it up wisely with this perspective on Covid-19:

Covid-19 is a period of enforced quiet – in a world which was driven by busyness. We have been asked by the world to shift from being human doings to be human beings again.

American author Bob Bulford’s words echo the same philosophical approach to Covid-19.

The great champions of life recognize that self-interest is central to one’s human design, but count the greatest gain as the goodwill of fellow human kind.

Undoubtedly, Covid-19 has brought about sudden transformation in our world – for all of us.

I’m sure you will have also noticed that people have far more time for you in times of an urgent common concern.

Indeed, Covid-19 is first and foremost a humanitarian challenge – and an economic one second.

When we look back, post Covid-19, we will have seen that the Charles Dickens’s quote at the beginning of this STEP ONE, is a call for us all to slow down and :

Reflect, Re-imagine, Re-Position and Re-boot.

In lockdown, we have been given the gift of time – to learn, to grow and to emerge stronger as human beings – not human doings.

Many moons back, whilst attending a Wits Business Institute programme, I listened as Professor Nick Bindell, described champions as ‘REALISTIC OPTIMISTS’.

He had it spot on, as neither outright optimism, nor outright pessimism, will serve you well in times of crisis.

In times of crisis, it’s wise to avoid polarised beliefs and maintain a balanced perspective, in order to have the opportunity to turn adversity into your advantage.

Adversity is the training ground of champions.

The podiums are now empty and waiting for the winners to step up.



Okay, let’s now focus on how these insights can benefit YOU?

How can you emerge from the ‘Covid-19 Tunnel’stronger and ready to be your own ‘World Champion‘

Let’s take a closer look at how the great champions of life leverage the power of PERSONAL BRANDING – especially in times of crisis?

Personal Branding can best be defined as:

Creating and leveraging your outer IMAGE and inner IDENTITY.

There are two components – outer and inner branding.

Outing branding (IMAGE) is the flashy part – the part that other people see.

Inner branding (IDENTITY) is the important part – the part that other people do not see.

Think of Personal Branding as an ice-berg.

The big important chunk of the ice berg which lies below the water line – is your inner IDENTITY.

This is where we will place the primary focus for this e-Learning Programme.

We will do this by sharing with YOU – learnings, insights, optimum performance techniques and case studies garnered from more than two decades of researching and studying accomplished champions of business, sport and life.

First up, CHAMPIONS are continually asking themselves the three BRAND REALITY CHECK questions:

#1.Where do I come from?

#2.Where am I now?

#3.Where do I want to be in the foreseeable future?

Covid-19 has given us all time to ask these invaluable questions, and if one wants to emerge from the ‘tunnel’ with a higher level game plan, it’s wise to set up right by asking these questions of yourself.

Let’s begin the journey to a more powerful PERSONAL BRAND – BRAND YOU.

The BRAND Reality Check:

It’s important to know where you stand right NOW, by giving yourself a perceived score our ‘BRAND BAROMETER’ as pictured below.

Consider both your personal and professional life.

Give your own current GAME PLAN– your current BRAND YOU – a perceived score out of TEN.


At this early point, it’s just your perceived score, but by the end of the programme you will know exactly where you stand – the objective of this programme being to get you firmly on the path from Good (LEVEL: 7) to Great (LEVEL: 8) to Greater (LEVEL: 9).


All the great champions of life operate their lives consistently at LEVEL: 9.

They go on to achieve SUSTAINED SUCCESS & SIGNIFICANCE – these being the 3S’s which determine human greatness.

Let’s look at just three examples:

As a country great, Nelson Mandela scored at a consistent LEVEL: 9.5.

As a business great, Bill Gates scores at a consistent LEVEL: 9.5.

As a sporting great, Roger Federer scores at a consistent LEVEL: 9.5.

Roger Federer, on recently donating one million dollars to helping those most vulnerable in Switzerland – had the following words to say:

These are challenging times for everybody and nobody should be left behind. Our contribution is just a start and we hope that others join in supporting families in need. Together we can overcome this crisis: Roger Federer in a joint statement with his wife.

Sport, even in its on-field absence, is proving to be a shining light in unprecedented global times, as the greats open up to donate and educate via their extensive social media  networks.

That’s LEVEL: 9 – and it’s never easy to maintain this level.

However, in my consulting & coaching roles, I commonly see South Africans scoring themselves around LEVEL: 6, sometimes even closer to LEVEL: 5.

It’s my firm belief that we as South Africans hopelessly underrate ourselves.

We need to change that because we are doing ourselves a massive disservice.

Just look at what Rassie, Siya and the Boks achieved as Rugby World Champions.

Just look at how President Cyril Ramaphosa has led with distinction through the Covid-19 crisis.

We, as South Africans together, should all strive to be on the path Good (7) to Great (8) to Greater (9).

Hence this e-Learning programme has a lot to do with an initiative I started a few years back with Cell C called: ‘Growing South Africans Great’.

Unfortunately, I also commonly do see the other side of the human great equation – which is called human implosion.

This is when ones GAME PLAN level drops below LEVEL: 5 and stays there for a protracted period of time.

What happens then?

With Covid-19 – this is important to know – as your GAME PLAN score also has a direct correlation with how your immune system functions.

In other words, the higher your game plan level – the better your immune system functions.

And the lower you game plan level – the more your immune system malfunctions – leaving you at risk of contracting all types of disease.

Once your score drops below LEVEL: 5 – your life is certain to change.

You’ll find yourself having more visits to the pharmacy – and to your doctor.

If your level remains below LEVEL: 5 for any protracted period of time you will have effectively moved your mind and body from:

A state-of -EASE into a state-of- DIS-EASE.

It’s here when one is likely to risk encountering what I term: “The Big Five”, namely:

Cancer, Heart Disease, Motor Neuron Disease, Depression/Addiction and any one of the multiple Auto-Immune diseases.

These insights are even more relevant when it comes to the current Covid-19 pandemic situation. Those with a high level game plan score – a strong immune function –  are far more likely to shake off  the effects of  Covid-19 if contracted, than those who have a low level game plan score – a low immune function.

They are the ones who are sadly facing up to a life /death scenario with Covid -19.

Covid-19 deaths are not ONLY about age, but also about your current level of immune function.

(PS: If you are interested to know more on the subject of  health, you are welcome to visit my non-profit cancer resource site at – or email me and I will send you a complimentary copy of my eBook : NO HEALTH.NO WEALTH– how to optimise your health and happiness.

Okay, let’s wrap it up for STEP ONE on your BRAND REALITY CHECK.

  1. Be sure that you know where you come from, so that you can take full advantage of your heritage and culture. That’s if it’s all positive – or make changes for the better.
  2. Be sure to know exactly where you stand now with your current GAME PLAN LEVEL.Covid-19 presents the perfect opportunity to power up your GAME PLAN.
  3. Be sure to create a vision of where you want to be, when you emerge from the COVID-19 tunnel. Covid-19 is an opportunity to life better.

Next Tuesday 14/4, I will be sending out STEP 2: BRAND DIAGNOSTICS (what’s currently working for you – what’s not currently working for you?).

And then it will be all systems go next the next  Tuesday 21/4 , when we power up your game plan with STEP 3:  BRAND GAME PLAN – PERSONAL BRAND.

Exciting power stuff coming your way.

Till then, #StayHomeKeepSafe

Go Great. Go Well.




an inspirational poem we penned together at THE GAME PLAN.





Rob shares topical weekly insights, innovation and inspiration on business,sport & life.

Subscribers get plenty of free offers from THE GAME PLAN

Don’t miss out. Subscribe today.

It’s 100% Mahala. FREE.


Signup to our newsletter!

Rob Opie is a Brand Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Author, Performance Coach to Business & Sports Teams – and Life Coach to those on a journey to self-actualisation.

His game- changing THE GAME PLAN METHOD, is helping both teams and individuals throughout South Africa to achieve their greatest potential.