WTF Just Happened?

How to make better decisions by asking yourself better questions

By: Martin Goodyer


Or purchase digital products from our partners:


Products specifications
Attribute name Attribute value
Size: 200 x 200mm
Pages : 240
ISBN : 9781785830310
Format: Paperback
Published: October 2016

How great would it be to learn from other people’s mistakes rather than having to make our own? In WTF Just Happened? Martin Goodyer presents a hilarious compilation of catastrophes to help readers do just this. Drawing on his experience as a psychologist and taking the perspective of a behavioural change coach, Martin offers insights into people’s often irrational behaviour and suggests ways to avoid such behaviour ourselves. Reading this book won’t stop bad things from happening – but it can prevent you from making it worse if they do.

This is not a self-help book. The self-help bit is up to you. Here’s why: self-help books are OK, but many are not great. They normally tell you to do this or that and then you’ll be fine – but real life isn’t usually that simple and good advice is only useful if you can remember to use it. Stories, on the other hand, stick with you, and these cautionary tales could help you avoid your own WTF moments. Your empathy for these unfortunate characters might just help you to see things differently and respond in a more positive way the next time life throws something unexpected at you.

We all have WTF moments but, unfortunately, few of us respond well. We say and do things that we regret, and in hindsight we know we could have reacted so much better. This collection of cringeworthy stories explains why this happens and offers practical advice to prevent it happening to you.Topics covered include: how to avoid missing the point; how to avoid being embarrassed by being overheard; how to avoid being ‘good’ but not great; how to avoid getting fired; how to avoid unpleasant romantic ‘surprises’; how to avoid your darling children turning into teenage monsters; how to avoid letting yourself go; how to avoid tying the knot with the wrong person; how to avoid losing your way, and be successful despite the odds; how to avoid crushing debt; how to avoid losing your confidence and self-esteem; how to avoid letting life pass you by; how to avoid misinterpretations, mistakes and misunderstandings; how to avoid getting taken for a ride; how to avoid getting dumped all the time; how to avoid losing out at work; how to avoid getting fat; how to avoid losing when you should have won; how to avoid dealing with a bad situation badly; how to avoid getting scammed; how to avoid ‘losing it’ during a panic; how to avoid being too late; how to avoid losing your friends; how to avoid putting up with unhappiness; how to avoid saying ‘what if’ and ‘if only’; how to avoid leaving your best behind; how to avoid buying into the wrong thing; how to avoid missing an open door; how to avoid being steamrollered by circumstance; how to avoid missing out; how to avoid wishing you hadn’t given up; and finally … how to avoid being a loser.

An ideal book for anyone interested in human behaviour, personal development or avoiding mistakes by learning from others’. If you only buy one book to help you handle life’s challenges, then make it this one.

Picture for author Martin Goodyer

Martin Goodyer

Currently researching a PhD, psychologist Martin Goodyer has a fascinating and unique background. As well as managing international hotels, coaching executives in global boardrooms and writing books and papers on coaching, Martin has appeared on ITV's Jack Osbourne: Adrenaline Junkie, Channel 4's The Fit Farm and BBC radio in between.

Click here to listen in to Martin on The Extraordinary Business Book Club podcast.


  1. Everyone faces shock moments in their life when they are suddenly left asking themselves "What the f...just happened?" From political upsets like Brexit and Trump, to personal relationship trauma, to business catastrophes, these unexpected events can very easily leave us upset and unproductive.

    When you're starting out in business, however, your professional and personal life are inevitably intertwined, so it is more important than ever to have the resilience to bounce back from unfortunate surprises.

    This interesting book takes an irreverent and pragmatic look at the troubles that most people will experience at some point in their life, and aims to give you the tools to cope and respond well. It draws on scientific research into human behaviour, offering readers insights into the reasons why people often behave irrationally and providing suggestions as to how to avoid such behaviour themselves.

    Of course this book will not stop bad things happening to your business - suppliers will go bust, markets will crash, regulations will change - but it will help prevent you reacting badly if they do.

  2. We all have moments in life where the rug is spectacularly pulled out from beneath us.

    You lose your job, you discover your child is ill or your partner leaves you - and most of us don't cope well.

    The author offers advice and tips for those pivotal WTF moments that happen and the strategies are interesting, funny and informative.

    Martin Goodyer spent 20 years as a psychologist and has also managed hotels - so he's seen a lot in his time. It's a great read - after all, you never know what might happen.
  3. This is an interesting book. First up, it's a great cover, and that's not always a given, so good marks for that. Next is the question of if learning from other people's f@@kups is necessarily the best way to proceed. There are some useful insights, horror stories, and silly things that people did that messed up things for themselves. You can draw some useful insights from some of the things that people did, and aim to apply that wisdom to your own decisions. For some people this could be a really useful book.

    Personally the longer I read it, the more it felt like a slightly negative way of doing things. Goodyer does offer the caveat "This is not a self-help book. The self-help bit is up to you. Here is why: self-help books are OK, but many are not great. They normally tell you to do this or that and then you ll be fine but real life isn t usually that simple and good advice is only useful if you can remember to use it. Stories, on the other hand, stick with you, and these cautionary tales could help you avoid your own WTF moments." Thing is, I begun to wonder if living by a series of 'don't do this or that' lists might be a bit of a fearful and negative way to live. In some of the evaluations of the people who did 'WTF' things, you did wonder if some scores were being settled in relation to the characters described too -> but maybe that's the privilege you get if you write the book!

    Goodyer might be right though, perhaps it takes a horror story to burn the lesson into your memory. We've all encountered those rude, brash, horrible people too, so if this book helps to enable some of them to realise they are about to encounter their own WTF moment, then perhaps the book will have helped someone at the right time.

    Click here to read the review on their website.

  4. A very unique perspective on self-development: a fun book to read, littered with pointers and suggestions about 'how not to do it'. Martin's approach is refreshing and the memorable stories he shares empower you to take action to combat common mistakes, unhelpful behaviours and limiting beliefs - hopefully preventing a WTF moment of your own!

  5. This is one of those annoying books - annoying in a good way! I found myself relating to so many chapters and my annoyance was that I wished I had read the book before I had experienced many of the WTF moments Martin has highlighted. A thoroughly enjoyable read which I found very relatable - frustratingly relatable at times. Martin offers advice that I could have used during my career as a professional sportsman, in my personal life and also in facing the challenges that life after sport often brings. Although I am not naive enough to think that I won't experience any further WTF moments in my life because I have read this book, I do feel like I am far better placed to face any that may creep up on me in the future, so thank you, Martin.

  6. As we go through life, ducking and diving the slings and arrows that fire in our direction, we face many WTF moments. Undoubtedly, some of these moments are joyful, ones to cherish and rejoice in. All too often, they are not. These moments, be they of great magnitude or not, can leave us scarred, scared, sad and sceptical. It's how we react to, deal with and move on from these WTF challenges that really counts. Sadly, for some, 'moving on' and learning positively from those experiences, or even avoiding them in the first place, isn't easy. Many will battle on through life (or, tragically, not) lugging all those WTF moments behind them like excess baggage. Enter life coach and psychologist Martin Goodyer.

    This is not, he maintains, a self-help book. Heaven knows there are enough of those around. No, writes Goodyer, the self-help bit is up to you. He does, however, draw on a myriad, sometimes complex, range of life stories, with something for everyone to relate to at some point. These stories range from how to avoid putting up with unhappiness, how to avoid saying 'what if' and 'if only', how to avoid missing an open door, how to avoid missing out on life to, finally, the conclusion; how to avoid being a loser.

    Take note: the stories, drawn from Goodyer's years of life coaching, are not sugarcoated. The stories, with subsequent suggested actions and strategies, make it possible to alter the course of your own life, move on from the WTF moments and avoid too many WTFs in the future.

    This is a practical, common-sense, no-nonsense, easy-to-read work. Goodyer writes with empathy but is plain-speaking, offering strength, encouragement, strategy and reflection in equal measure. It's a sensible toolkit to aid you in altering the course of your life and dealing with those slings and arrows.

Write your own review