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Are You Prone To Suffer From The "Chef" Personality?

by John Flynn

As a chef I have a unique perspective on anger.

In my time I have worked with the greatest in the finest kitchens of Europe. And I know what the pressure of the cooking kitchen is.

I have seen the casualties and the conflicts - the ruined lives and the personal heartache of those who could only cope by indulging in drink, drugs, sex or gambling.

You're probably familiar with the stereotype of the mad chef. You've seen it on TV in programmes like the aptly named Hell's Kitchen with Gordon Ramsey.

I too once was an original chef from hell. I know what the pressure of the cooking kitchen is - and I have survived the trauma.

For many people, anger simply seems to take over their lives. The chances are that you - or someone you know - have difficulty dealing with anger. It seems to come out of nowhere. The least little thing can set you off and ruin your life. Unrestrained anger can lead to loss of control, concentration and sleep. It can also cause problems with decision making, not to mention severely damaging relationships.

Chefs know more about life than most people because they are intimately involved in the most basic of human needs - the hunger for food.

It is from this most basic demand that all life springs, from drops of water on the tongue in a Third World country to goblets of champagne on the banquet table of the sophisticated power brokers, the human need is the same: the need to eat, live and survive.

As a chef I was thus uniquely placed to observe people at their most basic, whatever the veneer of wealth, influence or power; an unnoticed observer of human behaviour, however dressed up in the latest food fashions.

In fact the kitchen is a form of hell with the atmosphere of a pressure cooker. The sheer nerve jingling journey of a days work can cause sweat, blood and tears to flow. And too many chefs take solace in the emptiness at the end of the night, when the diners have departed, the tables are littered with the remains of a great meal and the kitchen cools to a place akin to imprisonment.

Then it has to start all over again tomorrow! The highs and lows are constant and the chef at the centre of the creative roller coaster is often overlooked his role reduced to a cook; a waiting watcher of ovens, a microwave of mere mediocrity. So in the sunset hours, in the last free moments as those whom he serves celebrates he is alone in a used kitchen, his creativity sapped by the sophistication of those dining on his reputation.

Ask any chef. He will tell you the awful reality of colleagues turning to drink and drugs and all sorts of false props to survive the constant and unending pressure of the cooking kitchen!

Today I have emerged from the white hot heat of the kitchen and from the nightmare of drink, drugs and gambling, to chart a way forward for myself and others as a chef life coach to help them recognise the warning signs of stress anger.

Believe Me! I have been exactly where you are, and come out on the other side, thanks to Life Coaching… So can you!

John Flynn has created a unique model for mastering emotional fears, and is a recognized expert on the subject of anger management. John is the founder of the groundbreaking Me, Myself and I, Catering for life from the inside out. This is designed to help you achieve improved well being and increased capabilities in all areas of your personal and business life. For more information visit: or email:

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