Thank you, Mom.

Thank you, Mom, for everything you have done for me thus far in life. You taught me how to live a life filled with love and adventure. To smile when things are tough and to welcome challenges into my life with open arms. You showed me how to step up when others wouldn’t and how to find joy in serving others. You showed me that I could be myself without fear and that it was okay to make mistakes because we are human and everyone does.

Thank you for keeping me grounded in reality by teaching me about the real world, but allowing me to dream big and understand that achieving my dreams requires hard work. Thank you for sharing so much of your time with me when I needed you most. For listening to my joy, sadness, anger, and misunderstanding when you had a busy schedule that day but knew I needed a little extra time that day. Thank you for picking up the phone and talking with me every day you have five minutes, as I’ve grown older our conversations have helped me through many challenges and kept our bond strong.

I feel the same as Abraham Lincoln when he spoke this about his mother, “All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.”. I am very fortunate to have the mother I do, she accepted me as a child and gave me opportunities when others might have held me back. She inspired me to step up and become independent by facing challenges that haunted my early years, she told me no when I needed to hear it, and encouraged me to try one more time to see if I could tie my own shoes this time.

My Mom is everything to me, because of her I have a foundation in love that can never be shaken. She took in four children, gave us opportunity and love, taught us about love and guided us through life with love every step of the way. I am forever grateful to my mother, the greatest woman I have ever known.

Happy Mothers Day to all the mothers out there.

One Step At A Time.

I’m taking a math class online this summer, I have been pleasantly surprised at everything I remember and slightly disappointed by the things I have forgotten. Maths and I have never had a good relationship primarily due to me and my disgust for the processes required that I have struggled to understand. I don’t understand why math has been a long term struggle for me, I am attempting to change my outlook on the subject and my ability to succeed as a math student one step at a time.

One step in my plan to change my outlook is to spend time each day working on a series of problems and assignments. I know that for some this seems pretty natural to do, it’s never been a part of my process as a math student. I have never been able to sit down for longer than thirty minutes at a time without giving up and closing the book for a night or two. This behavior has sprouted a strong disconnect between my desire to learn math and my ability to learn the processes.

For this class, I have decided to rewire my mindset toward mathematics one day at a time. I have worked for the past few months to change my attitude toward my abilities as a math student. I believe I can learn the processes if I invest time each day to work problems from start to finish. Another reason I believe I can rewire my mindset is that I have confidence in the program that I will be using to learn the various steps to complete the variety of questions I need to answer.

Doing these things genuinely seems like something I should have learned when I was younger, I only learned to fear and hate math. This attitude I’m working toward will change the world of problem-solving for me if I can stick with the belief that my mindset toward mathematics can be rewritten one day and one step at a time.

Doubt and putting in the work.

What does your inner voice say to you when you set off towards reaching a new goal. Is the voice you hear a cheerleader? A voice that is filled with belief and confidence in your ability to accomplish your goal? Does the voice enable you to push onward through challenges to reach your destination without a doubt on your quest?

Do you have a inner voice like mine that tends to distract you from your desired outcome? A voice that causes you to doubt your abilities and motivation? That provides you with endless excuses and alternative “opportunities” to test out as you go. I have a voice that does all of those things builds me up, tears me down, welcomes doubt into the conversation, then leaves me filled with questions and thoughts about all the potential outcomes that could happen. Unfortunately, this voice of mine usually focuses on the high probability of failure.

I spend too much time thinking about what might happen if I fail and not enough time working towards my goal. I recognize that sounds a lot easier than it really is to just not think about all the various “What if” scenarios playing through our minds. It is just as easy though to do the work, it takes just as much time and is much more productive than battling with your doubts.

This month I have pushed myself more than I have previously on my e-commerce store, I have worked to get more items online, better selections of items, and a greater reach to potential customers via smarter marketing tactics. It seems to be working so far this month but we are only eight days into the month.

I also have made great steps forward with my podcast. I’ve ordered the equipment, worked out the first five episodes with guests and have a excellent plan to market to as large of an audience as I can. I’m committing to making this project work no matter how rough the first episodes might be I’ll push through and make this project reach it fullest potential one episode at a time.

I can’t wait to show you all.

Leveling Up.

A quick follow up from yesterdays post, today I went on an spontaneous adventure with my friend to the desert three hours to the east. It was a great time searching out petroglyphs and walking through dry canyon washes looking at the sandstone features with our dogs. Just a follow up that saying yes a little more pays off, it made all the difference in how today turned out.

I listen to a number of podcasts that vary in topic from personal growth/development, business tactics/processes, food/restaurant development/managment and regular life stories that have a motivational tune to them. Most of them have a common theme about leveling up and doing better at what you do. The people sharing these messages are usually extremely dedicated to one or two things and have become world-class at using those skills to make money from them.

One of the most constant things you hear is taking the next step, leveling up in one way or another and using that momentum to maximize your opportunities to grow your business, brand, portfolio, or influence. After you level up once and you master your new level you seek out new opportunities to level up again. It’s a constant series of leveling up and extended growth so you can reach your ultimate level. The ultimate level might be wealth, successful businesses, or life balance.

For each of us, the end goal is different. We all want different things this is why our paths vary, the way we earn and spend money varies, and the way we look at life is slightly different from the people we spend the most time with. What I have deduced from each of these podcasts and their mentors and guests is that you need to deduce what you want to become and jump feet first into whatever you decide to pursue and become the best you can be at it.   

Try to say yes a little more often.

Anyone else ever find themselves quick to say no and hesitant to saying yes? Many of us seem to have the thought to think things through extremely quickly and say no just as fast out of reluctance to change in our comfort zone. When saying yes to something might stretch you a little thin, or put you a little outside of your comfort zone it may also set you up for new opportunities with open doors.

Lately, I’ve been trying to say yes more often. I’ve been trying to invest my days trying new things and utilizing offers that are extended my way. Some of these yes moments have been at work taking different opportunities extended by leadership for maximum growth opportunities within the company I currently work for. Taking time to apply for travel opportunities and personal growth within the company has helped me to be more invested in my time spent there weekly and my performance as a whole. Other yes moments have been with friends and family, taking opportunities to live a little more when spontaneous offers are extended to get out and do more of what I love doing.

I can admit that historically I have been up for almost any adventure as long as it worked around my schedule and caused limited interference with my schedule. This has limited my adventures by distance and people whom I adventure with by nearly half. I have limited my opportunities based on my inability to readjust my personal schedule.

This has been a struggle for me and for my friends as I often want my friends to jump for adventure when I am ready and it’s convenient to me and can be hesitant and say no more often than I’d like to admit when my friends reach out to me to get out and do different things.

In the end, it’s worth it to say yes a little more than you normally would. Am I saying be a yes man? No, I’m just saying try saying yes a few more times a month and see where that can take you on a personal and professional level.

One Page At A Time.

As a writer, you scribble words on a page for others to read. You hope the words you write flow together in a series that makes sense to those who might read them and relate to you just enough they keep reading. Your stories and messages may not always be perfect at all times but be perfect for certain seasons of life when the reader can relate to the writer and their thoughts put to written words.

As a reader, you are reading into the mind and soul of the writer. The way that they see life, their interpretation of it, and their hopes for it. For some readers, the ability to immerse yourself in a book for hours on end might come easier than for others. Personally, I read one page at a time. I set reading goals based around the time I set aside each day to read. I set a specific time aside each day due to the schedule I have and the ease of distractions that can consume my day.

I enjoy reading slowly to best understand the material the author has taken the time to organize and present. I know there are many who have the ability to read fast and retain knowledge, I am not one of those people. I can obviously skim pages and retain a few key points but the overall message of the text is often missed if I speed read. If you’re like me one page at a time is the best way to read a good book.

No matter your reading level you can set a few minutes aside each day and read a little but. No matter what you like to read a newspaper, a magazine, a story, or something educational reading is reading and you’ll be better for it. I try reading around lunchtime on my lunch break, it is a good way to refresh myself and disconnect from work for a short time. Whenever you can schedule in a few minutes to read daily and see how your world changes one page at a time.

Enthusiasm vs Endurance

I saw a quote posted by a friend today quoting Angela Duckworth that stated the following:  

“ Enthusiasm is common.
 Endurance is rare.  “

That hit me pretty well after my confession yesterday about making excuses, falling short of my intended goal for this project,  and falling short in many different aspects of life. I say this not to post a sign that says “pity this guy” but more as an acknowledgment that we are the biggest reason why we don’t see a goal from concept to completion. It’s something more of us could benefit from doing, admitting our own faults and weaknesses as we review our list of in-completed wishes and aspirations.

Getting back to the quote I felt I am extremely enthusiastic about so many things that I begin. I really dive into the motions of becoming fully engrossed in the activity until some sort of unexpected twist joins my journey, then derails my forward motion and enthusiasm for the new project. Something that could cause me to derail might be a change at work, increased homework from my university studies, or a challenge I’d rather not face up to at the present time.

When the forward motion is slowed or stopped it is a challenge to start again and regain the momentum you previously had; for me at least. I think this is where pacing yourself might come in handy. I know that I have written about how we should look at things with a sprint vs marathon mindset in the past and I try to live that practice daily but it can be hard to do all the time. Many around the world might share this sentiment, “It would be nice if there was a faster way to…”. For some things yes, there are shortcuts, for others, there are only steps to take in a specific process to attain the desired outcome.

This is where learning endurance comes to play, one step at a time with a mindset that somethings can take a long time to see to completion. We need to teach ourselves how to endure better through the challenges we experience for the long run. Learning endurance is not an easy process at all but it’s one that will help us the most if we are to learn. Learn a little more each day, read a little longer, study a little better, run a little farther, be a little more confident each day, and eventually, you’ve become a marathon runner and learned to endure more than you thought you could.