Tomorrow I move back to London after living in New York for 14 years. I'm a big believer that change is good. London is an amazing city and the UK is where I'm from and where my wider family is. Notion is also based in London so I will get to spend much more time with the team and with our companies. So I look forward to this new adventure for myself and my family.
But right now in my final days in New York, I'm feeling very emotional, reflective and nostalgic about the time I have spent in this amazing city.
To me New York is like the world's greatest party. If you're lucky enough to be invited you have to go and you have to make the most of it. Have fun, take advantage of the opportunities and meet as many people as you can.
But I've never felt it will last for ever. I've never felt that this is somewhere I want to lay down my roots and grow old.
I like to think I've make the most of the party. On the business side the US became the biggest market for MessageLabs and we built a fantastic team here in New York.
On a personal level my wife Annabel and I have had three beautiful children and built our dream home in the West Village. I have met so many wonderful friends in New York literally from all over the world which reflects the wonderful melting pot that the city is. We've had so many great times and have enough memories to last us a lifetime.
But I think the thing I will miss the most is the sheer unstoppable excitement of New York. They say it is a city that never sleeps which is so true. New York is a place that looks to the future rather than the past. No-one cares very much about where you have come from. They just want to know what you're doing here and where you're going. It's a wonderfully optimistic and positive place. You really believe that anything is possible.
There is so much excitement in the city. It is stacked full of exciting places to go, dynamic people to meet and opportunities to go after. It's really a big adrenalin rush!
I'm definitely a much better version of myself for being in New York these last 14 years. I'm happier, healthier, more confident and full of an appetite and energy for life that I didn't have before.
Even though i'm leaving New York I hope I will always have a piece of the city burning brightly inside. With that in mind this is the best side of New York that I want to take with me:
*Do it now - don't ponder or wait for the perfect time, just get on and do it.
*Live free - you can be whoever you want to be in the city without fear of being judged or standing out.
*Diversity is wonderful - New York is a melting pot of every different type of person to the point where there is no conventional norm; this gives the city an amazing variety and richness.
*Back talent - talent is talent no matter who you are, where you came from or how old you happen to be. It should be cherished and given a stage to shine on.
*Give before you get - I'm not sure whether it's because it ultimately benefits everybody or because it's a transient place but people are very open to helping newcomers with their support and connections. This creates a kind of self-sustaining, dynamic environment that everyone is invested in.
*At capacity - people seem to run at full capacity in New York. They want to make the most of their time here. There is also a kind of kinetic energy that drives everyone forwards. Plus I think most New Yorkers understand that running at capacity starts with taking care of yourself and having a good attitude to eating well and exercising.
*Demand more - New Yorkers are good at being demanding of others but also of themselves. There is nothing wrong with being demanding as long as you still treat people with respect. You will end up getting more of what you want and what you deserve.
*Celebrate success - New Yorkers are able to celebrate people's success like nowhere else I've ever been. Success is held up proudly as a beacon of what's possible. it inspires people and ultimately creates more success.
*It's morning in New York - this is a Reagan quote and applies to all of America but I think it is especially true of New York. It's such an optimistic place. There is such a strong sense that the future is full of possibilities and that you need to go ahead and grasp them.
Jay-Z said it the best:
"In New York, Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There's nothing you can't do, Now you're in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
Let's hear it for New York, New York, New York"