I’ve given up biting my nails.
Onychophagy (or onychophagia, apparently) – the desire to use the mouth when not speaking,
Over 45% of teenagers suffer from it. And although the numbers drop off in adulthood, I’ve chewed these poor claws of mine for as long as I can remember – out of nervousness, anxiety, boredom… sometimes just to wind up my poor, pained special lady friend Clare. (I’ll pay for that)
It’s a grim habit, but now I’ve stopped.
My main motivation came from a wise man by the name of Greg Stenzhorn. The father of a dear friend, he recently came to stay with us for the weekend with his full brood in tow. Over one of several grape-infused drinks that were consumed over the weekend, he said something that made me think:
“Fooks, you cannot meet world leaders with fingernails like that”.
Now, I’m not in the position where world leaders are inclined to meet me that often. Neither do I really have anything useful to contribute to world peace, or shutting up troublesome little Trumplestiltskin. But it did strike a chord.
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. And when you have a new business, initial meetings and introductions are vital. Not caring what people think, or assuming that you can charm with style over substance, are precarious plays.
So I am an ex-nail biter for now – probably not the best time to give up, what with being stretched for time, money and family time and all – but there we go. As Gordon Brown (a fellow nail-biter) once said: “You have to live in the future, not the past ”. Maybe one day I’ll meet him and he will comment on the robust, shining talons in front of him.