This week, we go behind the mask with Brent Lindeque, founder of Good Things Guy.
Brent Lindeque, founder of Good Things Guy
1. So, tell us, what’s really behind your mask (literally and/or figuratively speaking).
I’m more commonly known as the ‘good things guy’, a good news site that was officially launched on 1 August 2015 in order to only promote good news, inspirational stories and positive, upbeat media centred on South Africa. Good Things Guy is a global, multi-platform media company that distils unique content across multiple media platforms.
2. Where are you locked down?
3. How are you finding working from home or physical distancing at the office / how has your way of working changed?
I’ve been working from home for five years already, so this is my normal.
4. Describe a typical workday, if such a thing exists.
I wake up at 5:30am, have coffee and head to my studio in my house. I’ll spend the day in there and oscillate between my writing and radio work. At some point, I’ll try to get some fitness in but will be in my studio until 6pm at night.
5. How do you maintain a good rapport with your teammates/clients?
Communication is key… You need to always be aware that tone can get lost in emails or WhatsApps, so a good phone call is often needed!
6. How do you socialise these days?
On Zoom and House Party. We have weekly sessions with friends, which usually go late into the night.
7. What do you do to keep fit/healthy and/or sane (physically/mentally)?
I run and also workout daily. I moved an entire bedroom suite out of a room in our house and use it as a home gym now.
8. What new apps would we find if we scrolled through your phone?
TikTok… and stop judging. I am a ‘TikTokker’ now. Lol!
9. Share your favourite Covid-19/lockdown-related meme/gif with us.
10. What is the first thing you plan to do when the lockdown lifts?
Travel! I had planned to go to New York, Amsterdam and Portugal this year but cancelled all travelling plans when Covid-19 hit.
11. Describe your career and if/how the pandemic/lockdown has affected its course.
Good Things Guy has grown massively during the lockdown, I guess because people are actively searching for good news now!
12. Any companies/brands that you feel have responded particularly well to the crisis and/or Covid-19-related campaigns that stand out to you, and why?
I guess Virgin Active who immediately froze payments, without any questions.
13. What are you working on right now?
More good news. We publish up to 15 articles every day! We have also launched Good Things Live – a live-streamed show on the Skyroom platform, featuring guests like The Kiffness, Riaan Manser and Mike Sharman. We want to profile South Africans in the business, entertainment and leisure industries providing both entertainment and inspiration to all South Africans during the lockdown and into the future.
14. What does the ‘new normal’ look like to you?
Masks, lots of masks…
15. What are some of the buzzwords floating around at the moment, and some of the catchphrases you utter yourself?
Coronacoaster. The ups and downs of your mood during the pandemic. You’re loving lockdown one minute but suddenly weepy with anxiety the next. It truly is “an emotional coronacoaster”.
16. What advice would you give to other industry folk during this time?
Stop reading the news so much. News stories are overwhelmingly about things you cannot influence. The daily repetition of news about things we can’t act upon makes us passive. It grinds us down until we adopt a worldview that is pessimistic, desensitised, sarcastic and fatalistic. The scientific term is ‘learned helplessness’. News is bad for your health. It leads to fear and aggression and hinders your creativity and ability to think deeply. The solution? Stop consuming it altogether. Also, get off social media. Yup, same thing! Research shows that limiting your exposure to social media reduces anxiety and depression. Get off Facebook or Twitter or Instagram… and spend some time in the real world, maybe soaking up the sun?But if you must… Follow Lindeque on Twitter, Facebook and/or Instagram and/or visit his website at GoodThingsGuy.com.
*Interviewed by Jessica Tennant.