My must have phone apps that motivate me

We all have apps on our smartphones, we have all blogged about them and how good they are. My top 5 apps, 5 apps you must have, 5 apps that means you are sad if you don’t have them! You get the idea, for me……

These are 5 apps that motivate me, help keep me focused and moving towards the target. They are not your typical life changing, lifestyle apps. Just ones that I use the most and I think they are pretty damn great.

So here we go……..

If you can not see this image please check your settings

For me  this app is a god send, it has allowed me to see where my improvements are. I know what distance I am running, there is no excuse to stop short on a run. It gives you feedback and you can set it to motivate you by message.

If you can not see this image please check your settings

This app as well as the brand, has basically changed my life. This brand has reprogrammed my thinking about food and health, for all our family. It has enabled me to lose over 3 stone in weight. The app has a food search function and has 1000s of different foods on there, as well as recipes. I can’t say enough good things about this app.

If you can not see this image please check your settings

I love apps that help you focus, and this has done just that. I deal with cash all day and sometimes it can be hard to keep a track of your earnings. Until I got this 4 weeks ago (suggested by my daughter who is 11 no less, she is also on the verge of becoming a blogger) I didn’t know to the penny how much I was earning. This app has shocked me and shown me, how much I actually have left. So much so we are actually going on holiday soon.

If you can not see this image please check your settings

Another money app, I am so happy now that we are in a technological climate that we can keep in touch with our finances. This has made it possible to keep on top of everything and stay in control, and lessen the worry. Apps like these can actually help you to have more in your pocket, keeping the charges at bay and the arrears of any payments. I for one am certainly learning this fact.

If you can not see this image please check your settings

I may well be a self employed taxi driver, but with some things i do have a bad memory (ask the other half with regards to shopping lists). That’s where this app comes in, this has the ability to store passwords, bank card number and such like. This app has been  god send to me in the past. All details are encrypted, and you can back up its content.

These apps make my life easy and motivate me to keep going-believe it or not-they keep me on track with financial goals and give me a sense of focus. So these are my apps that keep me focused, and motivated.

What apps motivate you? What apps keep you focused? Lets have some ideas in the comments for apps that make our life simple’

If you can not see this image please check your settings


How to start the morning positively


Many of us wake up groggy with the lack of sleep still lingering. We want peace and quiet but we just can’t get it, if you live in a big city the hum of the traffic just does not stop. We all have morning habits that seem to get us going, coffee being one of them for most people. But is it the coffee? Or the idea of having the coffee? Our minds become filled with the day to day hustle and bustle tasks. That’s why it appears as though time goes quickly, we become distracted and then start to focus on the negative. Start worrying about the bills, where the money is coming from to pay them so we miss the sweet smell of life and what we have. Focus on the good and we tend to see more of what we focus on, a bit like studying for an exam.


Being thankful for something in your life is always a plus, you feel good about having that in your life. Imagine if you will the dishes, doing the dishes and letting your partner do them. Most people do in fact like to make other people feel good, being grateful for your partner doing the dishes makes them feel good because they made you feel good. I’m not just saying just be thankful “thanks for doing the washing up sweet”. No I mean grateful really thankful, you then go on to reciprocate the action. To reinforce this write down what you are grateful for, the brain recognises the pen strokes and the action of you FOCUSING on the good. We all should say thank you more, how many times do you put your hand up to another driver when they let you pass? Makes you feel good when someone does it to you doesn’t it?

Please check your setting if you are unable to view this image
My Gratitude journal


So here are a few things that get me in a positive vibe for the day ahead, and I do them everyday mostly in the morning before I even start getting ready for work.

  1. I keep a gratitude journal, I have a goal and I use it as an affirmation and I write it at the top of the page everyday. I then list 10 things that I am grateful for either from the day before, the hours I have been awake already (a cuddle from the wife as you leave the bed) or the things that I know I have coming up.
  2. Now, I have a book a favourite book that I read a section of everyday. I was introduced to it a few years ago and it keeps me positive THINK AND GROW RICH: Napoleon Hill. It is about keeping the mind positive and having faith in yourself, something some of us just don’t have and we are all actually quite amazing in our own way.
  3. Excercise is important you can’t have a healthy mind if you don’t have a heathy vessel in which to keep that mind. It keeps you alert and in many cases stops you from getting tired. You can quite literally obtain more energy from expelling some energy.


We all work hard everyday, we are all working towards something no matter how big or small that may be. So we all need a bit of time out and we need to spoil ourselves, let ourselves realise how special we are. Eliminate the bad thoughts and encourage to good thoughts. Take time to chill out in the morning, waking up late and being disorganised quite often determines the sort of day you are going to have. We all deserve to make time for ourselves and appreciate ourselves, if we can’t learn that then how can we learn to appreciate others. Each and every one of us deserve to have the best that we can in our lives, every positive thing that brings good things has to be the right decision right? Believe it or not the list of things that I have put down here, actually does make you feel good does make you feel that positive vibe. I was sceptical when I first started trying it, but it does actually work. There are many expensive gratitude journals out there that you can buy, but I don’t think you need to. Me? I just bought a cheap note book and placed a cover on it with a design that I liked, to me it was more personal it meant more. It would encourage me to continue with the habit on a more permenenat basis, once the habit becomes ingrained you do it without thinking.


Try out this small list of tips, try it for a couple of weeks. Even better try if for a month, see what happens and what benefits it may and can bring you. Remember this blog and after if you take up the challenge, come back comment and let me know how you go.

Tony Martin brainfood

STARBUCKS Vs COSTA: Who wins you decide.

What is there to say about STARBUCKS? What is there to say about Costa? Well, quite a lot I reckon and I like one of them SO much. Think now and decide which one YOU think I like, don’t cheat don’t scroll to the bottom. Read this post decide which one you like and see if we match. So…….here we go:
STARBUCKS (for me) is the pink little bunny sitting in the corner, doe eyed waiting for you to notice him. His holding a bouncy ball waiting for you to come and play. This is the coffee shop that is fun, it knows about adult stuff but it still likes sucking on chuppa chups. The coffee is good (really good) but again it is fun they are fun flavours, my favourite being the White chocolate mocha. This takes me back to when I was a kid, not that I touched coffee when I was a kid I would have been bouncing off the walls at that age. It reminds me of the cowboy with the glasses, the pure white innocence of THE MILKY BAR. Not so innocent if you look at the CALORIE COUNT, (just a little tip, ask it to be skinny and add sugar free syrup for a healthier option)  but all coffees from these kind of places are like that, it IS an indulgence it is a treat. Almost every STARBUCKS I have been in it’s hustle and bustle, and sometimes that isn’t a bad thing it wakes you up its vibrant, energetic and welcoming. Started in 1971 they have far exceeded themselves…. TAX, TAX, TAX, I can almost hear people shouting. MP’s expense scandal I shout back holding my placard with obscenities on it. Starbucks as I said is a fun place a place to take gran, you even have a lady grinning excitedly at you from every cup you look at.

And then you have COSTA! Costa is the big boy, wearing a pair of DM’s but with a suit to match. Costa wants to wake you up but he wants to wake you up with a shake, a shout in the ear and a word of motivation to get your ass out of bed. Costa wants to get things done he is the business man in a field full of clowns. The cups are almost regal in presentation no cheeky gimmicks……’your in Costa ya having a coffee and ere is one of our cups to prove it’. Their brand is what it says on the tin or in this case……what it says on the cup. The Costa joints that I have been in are reserved in comparison, no one talks loud it’s peaceful and you can get work done. I actually have a thermal cup from Costa and it goes everywhere with me. My favourite drink? Caramel latte and as the Barista told me the other day the milk has to be bang on 140 degrees, no more no less. My 2nd choice (as with Starbucks) is the CAFE MOCHA a slightly serious coffee, that stares across the table from under its brow mocking you with the sweetness of chocolate ‘ go on, go on I dare you to sprinkle!’
Say what you like about both these place….over priced, over rated just for a coffee. I don’t think so because you see, you’re not just paying for the coffee. Your paying for the ambience your paying for the welcome, the training that the person has put in to making you a ‘damn fine coffee’ (a scene reminiscent of ‘ Twin Peaks). In both places your paying for lounging about (if you can get one) on a big soft sofa whilst you take a break from the rushing around. Go ahead you deserve it and why not, afterwards you feel spoilt and don’t tell me you don’t.
Let’s not get into the whole tax evasion thing we could go on for days but, according to THE GUARDIAN NEWSPAPER :

Starbucks has made a small profit for the first time in the UK in 17 years with 791 outlets including franchised owned, the pre-tax profit was £1.05m.  Not a figure to be sniffed at and then we come to COSTA once again: Sales at Costa owned by Whitbread rose 17.2% in the first quarter of 2015 with profits estimated as early as April at £1.4bn.
These figures indicate who is the major player in the annihilation of a coffee bean placed in a grinder. Whichever way you look at it and despite the figures personally and almost privately we all have our favourite escape.
Yep you guessed it I FRICKING LOVE COSTA! Give me a Costa now…..give me a Costa at night, morning, now, now and then some more now………I could go on but you get the general idea.
Comment below with what is your favourite chain, and the 1st choice of drink. Give me some ideas and tastes to try. Happy caffine-ating people.


Tony Martin

TIME WAITS FOR NO MAN!…….oh and woman.

I have taken time out from this blog recently and have not posted as much as I used to or indeed as much as I should I guess. I have had other things personally to contend with, and other media platforms that I have been concentrating on. I always feel that people who have blogs, ‘vlog’ channels or otherwise always feel forced to do something interesting that they wouldn’t normally do, just so they have something to say. I don’t! I will only blog and ‘vlog’ if what is on my mind dictates me to, that said I am now gearing towards the feeling that I want to do it everyday. But is there enough time in the day to do that? Creativity comes in many forms and just as other things can, being creative can tire you out. Is my life really that exciting that I blog and ‘vlog’ everyday?  Does it become a factor of quantity rather than quality?

Earl nightingale once stated that ‘he doesn’t manage time he manages tasks’. You create a list of things you need to do during the day and slowly but surely you work through them until they are all crossed off. Time in itself, as we know it is man made it is a way to explain away the period of the day the change of light into dark. It is something of a programme that we use to enable our body and soul to rest.


It doesn’t say to you, I’ll wait just until you have done that because that is really important you MUST get that done as soon as. I do sometimes have to force myself to get things done, as there are distractions that come along on a daily basis. THERE ARE 86,400 seconds in a day, and we should be making everyone of these count. Or should we? What is regarded as a waste of time by others may well be deemed as a lifetime achievement by the one taking part in the process. I was once told ‘ it is never a waste of time if you love what you are doing’. We are always seeing nowadays these ‘amazing’ people fitting so much into their day that some of us wish we had a life like that and go out purposefully to fit in amazing things. Things we don’t ordinarily do, even if we like them or not we do them because someone else might find it interesting to watch. Our lifetime can sometimes pass in the blink of an eye, have you heard people or even yourself say “blimey this week has gone so quick”. You look round and realise in your own opinion, you really haven’t got much done in the way of tasks. Again time isn’t going to wait for you the voice of time will speak up and rear its head sometimes “I’m on my way mate you better get yourself sorted”. We all live life to the best that we think it is and no one should be making judgments as to what we should and shouldn’t be doing. Time gone by can quite often be apparent on the visual effects of someone’s face, but each line and wrinkle is a story. Most things have a deadline and quite often these deadlines bring stress in the form of illness when they cannot always be met, and we beat ourselves up over it. And this shouldn’t be the case, I’m not saying it doesn’t happen and deadlines are not important. What I am saying is time is simply a motion that we can’t control, so why not control what we do in the time that we have. Planning is a great weapon for that, a lot can be said for pre-planning your day.

I have experimented with this, I recently started to write out a list of what I had to do the next day and every time I managed to get everything done. I have to say they were days that were completely  full, I was focused on the task in hand rather than FOCUSING on the fact that time was my enemy. Having now said that I really need to take up this practice and run with it. Don’t focus on time with regards to loved ones, quite often you will see close friends and family together doing this. When holidays ar days out are in full swing often you will hear the comment “come one we have only got a couple of hours”. The quality of what you are doing sometimes then gets blurred and you miss things out. Breathe deeply, sigh and feel blessed by the ones that you are in company with. Sometime when things are done in a relaxed pace you may well find that you get more done.


But in the race of life there isn’t no way I’m  going to come second.




Home at last, as always Friday night has had its fair share of trials and tribulations, from sleepers to screamers.

Good Samaritans are few and far between, but when they pop up their head it is worth the wait. A young lady comes up to me outside the club (I’m a taxi driver in another life by the way), asking if she can put a girl in the back.

Someone she does not even know I might add, along with the young guy in tow also keen to lend a helping hand. And after giving me a phone number of the drunk girls mother in law, taken from her phone we start to find out where she lives.

The young girl now in the back on being asked where she lives then decides to spurt out drivel along the lines of conflicting post code and street name however, by means of deduction and deciphering the muttered code beneath the alcohol induced slur we manage to work out where she lives…… off we go, me driving and the girl slumped in the back, fast asleep.

We eventually pull into a very dark country lane with houses on both sides, I make the call to the mother in law, drunk girl holding onto my arm we walk up a grassy bank, she is not in a good way. Finally we find the house, key in hand she manages to get in saying thank you for getting her home.

The sad thing, she must have been no more than 18-19 years old and in a very vulnerable position on her own and abandoned by friends, at this time of night in my trade, this is the order of the day. I’m thanked on the phone by the in-law and told that I am a gentlemen. I have a daughter of my own (still young) and I dread the day when history repeats itself and it is the turn of my lil angel to repeat this process.

Although a fairly quiet night tonight there were other couples who got in that, if they made anymore noise I would have burst ear drums by now. For a society that is set in the paradigm of repeating the words ‘we have no money there is not much of it about’ they seem to do well by going out. Which is good because it keep things moving and keeps the likes of me out of trouble.

All too well do we know of someone getting attacked whilst walking home one their own damn, I have even given lady’s a lift home for free cause they have run out of money, and the mere thought of something happening to them scares the life out of me. As sure as the sky is blue, low and behold on the road out of town before coming home, there are a group of lads standing around a guy on the floor, passed out, knocked out, I have no idea. Two police cars come screaming by me towards them, and the effluent tanker driver in front of me doubles back around the roundabout and back into town. No doubt he wants a cheeky look at what’s going on, good or bad I’ll let you decide, but not a type of voyerism I want to take part in to be honest, my bed is calling.

Many of us go out to chat, mingle and even relax. I know me and my partner do, I don’t really drink that much anymore to be honest. The thought of waking up in the morning with a hangover does not come high on my list of pleasures to be honest, there comes a stage even after the jokes where the statement “I’m getting to old for this” finally becomes true!