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Grab it like it’s a horse cock & you’re Catherine The Great!

What? How rude! What does it even mean?


Mike Wagner, AKA Wags, from the hit Showtime TV series Billions is full of witty one liners and this one caught my attention, as it may well have caught yours!


It is not just a crude comment but a clever one with a powerful message. Catherine The Great (1729 - 1796) was the Empress of Russia for over 30 years, the country's longest female ruler and a good example of a successful opportunist.


Catherine was not in line to the throne but married into the line of succession, her Husband Peter III was, however, their marriage was not one which epitomised contentment and happiness, both taking other partners and reportedly fighting and continually playing mind games.

The palace residents told accounts of Peter being petulant and ill-tempered, insisting on ludicrous drills for the servants, whilst Catherine on the contrary would invite the same attendants to her rooms to party until the early hours naturally creating a divisive atmosphere.


Catherine’s memoirs outline her ambition to wear the Crown from the outset of her arrival in Russia, her tumultuous relationship with Peter and his abundance of enemies opened the opportunity for the coup d'état of Peter from power.


Catherine claimed power for herself and went on to lead the country for a long and prosperous reign.


She was deemed generally triumphant in her reign, although not all of her initiatives and ideas worked, she was notably regarded as successful in expanding and maintaining the borders, improving public health and advocating state-wide inoculations against smallpox as well as modernising education.


This all sounds fascinating - but where on earth does the ‘horse cock’ come into it??


Being unapologetically ambitious and successful doesn't always lead to popularity. The notorious story that Catherine died whilst having sexual intercourse with her beloved horse, Dudley, popped up across Europe following her passing.


This is obviously untrue but it did take a firm hold for a long time due to a number of circumstantial factors; Catherine was fairly open with her sexual activity for the time and her position, there was some German literature by Olearius claiming Russians enjoyed bestiality which had been circulating for a while and the story was repeated with frequency, so of course must be true. However, it was indeed just malicious gossip, Catherine died in her home after a stroke.


To summarise...

So , Wags could have said “You see an opportunity like that again, you grab it like it’s a crown and you’re Catherine The Great” but I guess it doesn't have quite the same impact or suit his spicy carefree style.


Either way the message is the same: don't pass an opportunity when you see it, grab it with two hands and make it work to your advantage.


Opportunists can often be regarded as self centred and not serving the greater good. And there is an argument for this, but I am a huge advocate in seeking and seizing opportunities congruent with your life goals. I believe you cannot achieve your aspirations and the successes you desire without taking opportunities when they present themselves, better yet actively create them.


I champion self care and putting yourself first because when you do you can show up for yourself, those you love and those you serve with the best version of yourself.


Taking advantageous opportunities to progress towards your dreams and living your life to your fullest potential is only going to contribute to overall feelings of happiness and success.


When you feel confident, empowered and successful you can give back more to your relationships, projects, hobbies and career, so next time you see an opportunity, you grab it like it's a crown and you're Catherine the Great.



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