As i spoke with as many as 60 at-risk students for Project Hope, it took me time to settle in that role.
"I was an Army Scout. I performed numerous missions, saved countless lives..."
Matthew 7:7 NIV "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will opened to you."
Remember the first time you had almost drowned to death? I do.
"See, God, when He created all of us, He gave every last one of us a gift at birth. He never created a soul without endowing them with a gift."
These tips are from Noah Kagan, i figured I would share them with you since they were so good!
Don't you hate it when the momentum train that you are on is building you up, pushing you over that obstacle, enlightening you and then something small derails that train. That something small was the word you didn't want to correct. Okay, it may seem extreme, but that is people feel when your spelling is subpar. It chips away at the very best message you were sending across, even though it may be only one word.
Im sure you have seen posts across Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Imgur, with the edit comments: you're*, they're*, Battlefield Counterstrike* (Long story, I dare you to find it on Imgur) and it is endless. Your message that was being sent across has now become a tangent of internet cats, spelling badly GIFs, and Michael Cera. Crazy, but it happens.
When you look at a post from someone that has a lot of followers or even that multi-billion dollar company, you will see that they spell-check everything, have another editor/person proof-read it, or even put that 5 paragraph message into Microsoft Word and look for all those red lines. You should too. If you want that message to be sent across correctly, igniting that spark between what you write and that person's emotions, grammar is KEY.
After my business went under I fell into a state of depression. Upset at the fact that not only did my first business fail, but that the person I hired was my friend, I couldn't fire him, and he had torn my business to the ground. I lost all that work put in. I lost countless hours of blood, sweat, and tears.
I lost myself.
After that depression stage I found myself unable to pay bills, eviction notices, cell phone blacklisted, utilities getting cut off, the works. then Christmas came around and I struggled to provide presents with little money that I had working side jobs. And the grand daddy of all situations came up. My previous clients put me on blast all over social media. I explained what happened in the background, was still trying to pay people off since then, tried doing everything right..but it didn't matter. It was Christmas Day and the entire year of failures had fallen on it. But after that...
I found peace. True peace. I started getting closer to God and I realized that in order for me to open up to REAL success, the old me had to be broken down. Old me had to live those moments so I could NEVER go through it again. You see, those "failures" I kept talking about were learning experiences. It took me a long while to realize that you do not fail....you learn. It's your decision to take whichever route. Fail or learn.
So you must dust yourself off, you must push forward, you must WIN every day in some form or fashion because at the end of the day, it's you who says "Today I put in an honest day's work." Not the people around you.
Your path is beautiful, albeit its full of trapdoors, deception, people that despise you, people that will try to break you, loss, suffering, debt, pain, sickness...and even with all that...
you still come out victorious. All you have to do is start, and not give up. Sounds easy doesn't it? Sounds easy, looks easy, but it is most definitely in fact not. The pain you will go through will make you want to quit every single time opposition comes, but you must stand firm on your ground. You must keep believing that one day you will achieve everything you want, your debt will be paid off, your cancer will be healed, your family relationships will be cured. You MUST believe that. For if you don't, all those negative experiences i spoke of earlier will continue to happen and you will not only be right back where you started, but worse.
This isn't a path for the average person that thinks everything will come to them. This is a path that must be full of passion. When the money doesn't come in, your passion will take you to your next idea. When the eviction notice gets posted on your door, your passion will help you fight through it and realize small things like this will not break you. When you get publicly humiliated and shamed on Christmas day, your passion will break through that mold of society elevating you to where you need to be. I say these because I have gone through these things within the past year, and those are just "some" of the highlights. Yet I do not regret anything. I have learned so much failing my first business than I have working for a company +8 years. SHIT IS TOUGH. But I got through it, and I am only growing stronger. Ill tell you what I told a class full of veterans,
"Its not a matter of IF I become successful, its a matter of WHEN."
Take. Your. Journey.
Philanthropy is more than just charity, giving large sums of money and donations. What its truly about is the love of humanity. PURE love. Its the act of caring for one another, finding a cause that's so meaningful that nothing stops you until you complete helping someone with their journey. I believe at some point in everyone's life they should engage in some sort of philanthropist-type of giving, and I am not just talking about money.
Let's trade money for the most valuable resource that we do have - time. For time, we cannot create it, we cannot make more of it, we cannot increase it. We can only use it, waste it, spend it wisely. Time is our most valuable asset and what we do with that time determines who we really are in life. The questions that we ask ourselves on a deeper level can be answered through our actions in our history. What have we done before vs. what will we do now, and what will we do to better help people?
How much more time do you need to not visit the regret stage and spend time with your family? How many minutes will be lost to just give that extra person a hand on the side of the road? How much more value can you add to your life just because you helped someone else?
I am slowly realizing that in order to become wealthy, TRULY wealthy, it is to help every single person that comes into my path. Jim Rohn said "If you help everyone with what they want, you can have everything you want." So I encourage you to help every single person you meet. Don't worry about the outcome, don't worry about how much time you will lose or being late, worry about this person that comes into your life as if it is the last time you will ever see them.
I lived in the Philippine jungles. Literally. I remember what it was like to wake up to my own mother bringing ocean snails just for us to eat. I remember not having power and at night my grandmother would walk me outside with a candle and I would see BILLIONS of stars because there was no light pollution whatsoever. I even remember the beer bottle caps i collected because we didn't have enough money for toys. I remember all of that.
Its interesting because where I came from people would see it as a third-world country, non-escapable, poor, never once being able to become successful kind of lifestyle. And for a long time, I agreed with that. I agreed with the fact that I should be grateful with what I have, and that I should stick with it. I should stick with everything in front of me and hold onto it so tight so that I will never go back to where I was. We all do that don't we?
But the greatest risk you will ever take is taking no risk at all. My favorite movie quote is from the movie God's not dead and it goes
"Sometimes the devil allows people to live a life free of trouble because he doesn't want them turning to God. Their sin is like a jail cell, except it is all nice and comfy and there doesn't seem to be any reason to leave. The door's wide open. Till one day, time runs out, and the cell door slams shut, and suddenly it's too late.
This has been one of the most applicable lines in my life, and I didn't realize it until I watched the movie! Its unbelievably crazy how we can get so comfortable where we are thinking everything will be perfectly fine (I'm not saying this to stress you out or panic you), and never prepare for that moment. Because we are all going to have a moment, trial, mountain, or storm that will prepare us someday down the line. We will not go through this life unscarred nor unscathed. Right now, your life has been molded by society. That's right. You have absolutely been programmed from the get go to be a cog in a wheel, a worker ant to follow orders, a slave to society.
Today must be the day you break that. Today must be the day you break through!! Today must be the day you say to yourself, "NEVER AGAIN!" But i must warn you that it is NOT easy. It is difficult, it is tough, it is stressful, and you may even lose a limb from it... But its worth it. A life well lived is a life worth fighting for, a life without a single risk turns you into grain of sand on the beach.
Remember when I told you to be grateful for everything in life, let's focus on that.
Today was one of those days, everything went absolutely perfect. Started the day off with an individual who is normally negative. Now I don't know her personally, but she was a cashier at a gas station and she always had this vibe to her. You know, the "I don't want to be here vibe, so don't ask." But each day I saw her I had always attempted to at least try and make that day better such as saying "Yay, its Friday, almost time for you to enjoy your weekend."
Well today I realized why she was in such a down position for the longest time. It was something serious, but I knew that God had something better for her. So there I was, in my uniform, where we are not encouraged to express our faith. But God told me to pray for her. Scratch that, He told me to pray WITH her. So i did, and the expression of gratitude from her was something I would never forget. There is a beautiful saying that goes "Sometimes, you are the only Bible people will ever read." How true that really is.
You see, sometimes its not enough to do "drive-by" prayers. Its not enough to tell someone, "I will pray for you later." To truly be the vessel for God, you have to pray WITH the people that need it most. People that are struggling, people that are hurting, people that are bound by chains, and you are the person to help set them free. And all it takes is saying "Yes" to that whispering voice inside you.
For some reason, after this moment, the rest of this day was perfect. Nothing but peace, INCREDIBLE accomplishments and breakthroughs, and trust in God. So I urge you to LIVE every day. So often we find ourselves distracted with life, distracted by the pain, the sorrow, the suffering, and we forget to LIVE. We get caught in the routine of working for hours on end, then coming home being tired and not spending time with our family, and we forget how to truly live life. Most of us save for a vacation 1 time during the year. Your vacation is every day, you should be living it. You should be loving what you are doing as long as you have a purpose, and if you don't, its time to figure out what that purpose is, or....you are literally walking 'dead.'
"Take a step back. "
Was what I said to my wife when things seemed daunting. This is what it will feel like when you are pursuing what you truly want out of life, what your spirit wants, what you truly desire. I told her to take a step back and evaluate everything she was doing. Because some days you will get writers block. Some days you will question what you're doing, some days you will wish you never even pursued your dream...
BUT, it is most important to NEVER STOP DREAMING. Never stop pursuing what you want in life, because we all get stuck in life's traps. Traps of never moving forward, of being told the lies that we can't move forward. So often I speak with people that think this is their final form in life. That they are meant to only take care of their family and then say "I lived a good life, right now I'd be happy if I died." If I were to tell them that they had more in them than they think they do, I would always be given the look of surprise. The same goes with you. You have more in you than you can imagine! Do something crazy!
Go out on the town and sing your head off in a bar in front of a hundred people you don't know, make an appointment today to go skydiving this weekend, go to an animal shelter and hug every single puppy you see, high five every person you see as you walk down a crowded street. DO SOMETHING AMAZING! We have enough negative people in this world, we need more dreamers, scholars, architects, inventors, innovators, people that sing, people that make hilarious jokes, people who build relationships instead of burn them, people that are worth living for.
People nowadays are so believing in the "I would die for this" mentality. As if that's it, their life would end and nothing else would happen except a 1 hour long funeral. How about we LIVE for something? How about we pursue something so daring that documentaries are created about us, how about we create paths and trails for the little ones behind us so they can step in every footprint we make and say "I'm honored to follow in those steps."
Stop trying to die for something and start living for something. Keep dreaming and pursuing that dream, because in the end, that's what you really want.
"If you could pursue anything you want in life without the worry of money, what would you pursue?
Do THAT. The money will eventually come." -Unknown
Some wise words I heard through a broadcast one day..
Today is an important day. Let me walk you through it
-Morning drive to work - Pray to God and ask for victory, greatness, and chains being broken.
-Get to work and have one of the biggest heart to hearts with someone and them telling me that I have more potential in me than I realize and they already know I will become successful. (2nd person to say this within 1 month).
-Get home and reevaluate my life.
-Quit my second job.
I had realized one thing, I was straying away from my path!!! I was straying away and focusing on something that wasn't as important as my dream. I lost my hours of being able to spend time with my family, I lost my relationship with God, I lost every weekend imaginable, and I lost myself. Every single night I would come home distraught and angry that I was living this kind of life. That I KNOW there is something better out there for me, that if I keep settling like I am now, there will NEVER be an accomplishment of my dream. I wasn't hustling, I was working for someone else, and yes there IS a difference.
What is the point of working for someone when they don't see the value in you that YOU see?! What's the point of adding value to a company when they don't add value back, when they say they will do certain things to build you up, but go back on their word. I say this with confidence and not ego, I am worth more than what people think of me, I am worth more than what companies think of me, I am worth more than what my boss thinks of me. I have GREATNESS within me and not only that, but you do too!! You have potential within you waiting to be released and the best/worst thing about it is that it is just sitting there. Its waiting ever so patiently for you to knock and nits door and say "Im ready."
Matthew 17:20 states "Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."
Tell your mountain to move. Demand it.
You will fail.
Did you want to hear that everything was going to be 100% perfect? Did you want to hear that everyone you meet is going to praise you and congratulate you? Did you want to hear that you will never make a single mistake? Well too fucking bad.
You will fail. I guarantee it. People that say that they have never failed are lying to you and to themselves, they just want you to see the highlights of their life and not their defeats. They want everyone to see this perfect unblemished person when really they are no better than you.
The second you said " I will accomplish my dreams." Where you physically felt something within you rise up and are willing to take action towards a better you, that is when life became determined to make your existence a living hell.
Now that you understand that you will fail it is absolutely important to know that you must get back up. It's your responsibility, your obligation, your fucking future on the line decision to get back up. Because if you fail and get knocked down and then stay down, you will continue to do this for the rest of your life. So dust yourself off, wipe off your tears, laugh it off and then stare fear in the face and say "I'm coming for you."
"If you only shoot for your limits, then that is where you will always be."
I always speak about conquering the mountain, defeating your struggles, your obstacles, your adversity, beating your mountain.
Then it just hit me that you could be that same exact mountain. Instead of going out searching for mountains to conquer, people are looking to conquer you. You are not only valuable in strength, but you are valuable when the hard times hit, when everyone panics and you are unshakeable. You are not only a massive rock that people look up to, but you are something legends are made out of. People pass away, history is rewritten, and goals are remade, but you as a mountain will always be there. Something that people will marvel at just because they are passing by.
Strength defines you.
Its crazy to think that this whole time i was thinking about going out and conquering whatever hardships and mountains come. But i remembered Sean Whalen’s Lighthouse over Tugboat philosophy and for some reason the mountain stuck out more to me. I want to be that fucking mountain! Never afraid, never shaken by the outcomes of life, never becoming someone’s doormat. That is what being a mountain means to me.
You’re either one of two people. You’re either someone who stands still or someone who is moving.
The person that stands still, hates their life. They complain, they bitch, they moan, they hate everything that is happening in their life because they feel like nothing will change and they accept that.
Now if you’re the person that is moving, good for you. Constantly moving is a good thing, you end up dodging things that try to hold you down in situations in which the guy who stands still, accepts. Now the key is that whether you are moving forwards or backwards, you must love it. You must love the ups and downs, the valleys and the mountains, the births and the deaths. You must love every single part of it and know that you are experiencing everything more than the guy that is standing still. That failures and successes actually are part of the process of true happiness. Progress is happiness.
We need progress. We need to be constantly moving through the struggles, so we can learn from it enough to not go through it again. This is growth, this is what we must go through whether its good or bad. It sucks to be the person to go through the same problem over and over again never learning from it. I can attest to that. Some struggles I have gone through multiple times until it took an even more painful experience to realize that i must change.
So whatever good or bad, push through it. Move forward. Dream and then live that dream. Bring it into reality until your dreams come to fruition every single time.
A New Years Resolution will stay just that if proper precautions aren’t put in place. You want to be able to accomplish that goal, that big dream, instead of putting it on the back burner and say you could have done it. So here are some easy tips to help you finally win.
First and foremost, don’t make some simple stupid resolution that seems more like a task on your things to do list. Your resolution shouldn’t be: to work out more, to make more money, to be more famous. Everyone has those on their list.
Your resolution needs to be something that feels impossible.
You must adopt the mind like those in our history of flying to the moon and back, of obtaining the Nobel Peace Prize, of going to the olympics to compete, and not just watch it. Dream big of something so big that is attached to fear and doubt because that is what is going to attach passion to what you want to do.
Make it a Daily Habit
This is no easy task. And you must treat it as such! Write post it notes, wake up to it as your alarm clock, whatever it takes to see it every day for you to realize that this isn’t a 1 day accomplishment. It could take weeks, years, or even become your next New Years resolutions. So now that you understand what it takes, you must also understand that every single day you decide trying not to battle this, procrastinating and putting it off is just another day the resolution is winning over you. Pray on it every day, battle it every day, each fight that you win is another fight closer to saying “I finally completed my resolution:______.”
Having a mentor is probably the best way to complete this. Someone that has either gone through what you want, or someone that has faced great adversity and beat it. But getting a mentor is not as easy as Googling “My nearest Mentor” and “renting” someone. Acquiring a mentor must be natural and often times the word mentor doesn’t even pop up. You just realize you are in the moment of having someone teach you to complete what you want most. Now this doesn’t have to be someone that physically knows you, with the technology we have now, there are mentors everywhere you go. Periscope, Podcasts, Blogs of Gary Vaynerchuck, Andy Frisella, Mark Cuban, etc. and any type of video or audio that you can listen to and be inspired from is considered being mentor material.
I wish you the best in completing your resolution and that these tips helped. What a great year 2016 will be. I have faith in you and i know you will accomplish so much more this year than you have last year because this is a new you. Here is to success!!!
Psalm 1:1 "Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of the sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers;"
The pursuit of success does not and will not accept deceit. It requires doing the right thing not at just the right time but EVERY time. What you do in the dark when nobody is watching, is what you will be doing in the light when everybody is watching. Its like those old cartoons where the angel stood on one shoulder and the devil stood on the other; the angel guiding you towards doing the right thing, and the devil obviously steering you towards another.
It is a battle with every decision.
That’s right not just every day, but every decision. Integrity is a DAILY activity constantly testing you like an old teacher, hoping for you to step towards the right direction. Every step you take towards the right direction will keep you on the correct path towards your dream.
So as you are washing those dishes, set them aside, and then review your work. You find a small mark, less than half an inch, if anything it could be a millimeter. Something so small and insignificant, something most people would say “Its okay, Im not worried about it.” That decision alone has set a catastrophic avalanche of pursuing laziness, slothfulness, and procrastination. Though you may do 100 right things, that one wrong thing will set you back and have everyone looking at you in dismay disappointed at what you have done. One wrong thing can ruin a thousand rights. Its interesting isn’t it.
There was this great demonstration of Christine Caine with a white poster board and a dot in the middle. This 3 foot by 3 foot board with a 1 inch black dot in the very center and she asked this “What do you see?” Everyone said they saw the black dot. Of course they did, because it ruined everything. The purity and perfection of the white was to resemble God and the black dot was to resemble the imperfection. Then she said “How come noone else notices the white blessings and only the black dot?”
Interesting isn’t it?