It Is Time To Do Something You Aren’t “Qualified” To Do

Bumped into this quote recently:

“Amateurs built the ark, experts built the titanic.”

Look around you. Some of the most amazing things we have came from people that weren’t “qualified”. Qualification, intelligence, ingenuity, heck even education doesn’t compare to action and the experience that ensues. It is time for you to do. To solidify this point here are people who were not “qualified” by other’s standards when they decided to take action:

  1. Steven Spielberg was rejected twice from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts. Regardless he built an empire that has made over 9 Billion dollars.
  2. Walt Disney was told by his editor that he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.
  3. J.K Rowling was a broke, depressed, divorced single mother simultaneously writing a novel while studying.
  4. Dr. Seuss had his first book rejected by 27 different publishers. Wasn’t qualified to be an author.
  5. Elvis Presley was fired after his first performance at the Grand Ole Opry, The guy actually told him “You ain’t going nowhere son. You ought to go back to driving a truck.”

…and the list goes on and on (Zuck and Facebook, Bill Gates, etc.).

My point: Go for it if you feel it is your destiny. Forget about the stigma of “qualification” – that is just keeping you down or giving you an excuse to not start at all.

Remember, many times we find ourselves more in the journey than the destination. Life is too short not to try. So, do it.

3 People You Need To Fire From Your Life

We all have people in our lives that create challenges for us. I’d even go further to say that people will be one of our biggest struggles in our lives. Many times we allow people into our lives and just assume we are to move forward with the collection of people and relationships that we’ve collected from our past and present. WRONG. 

Some people are part of our history and should stay that way. Solomon once said, “You become the company you keep”. It is true. Successful people (as defined as thriving in all areas of life) don’t just accept who is around them. They intentionally prune unhealthy people and foster healthy relationships. Here are the people you need to prune out of your life:

 

That Negative Person

I’m not talking just the person who says the glass is “half empty”. Having a bit of pessimism is not necessarily a bad thing. I’m talking about the person who just brings everyone down with them. The world is always against them, they are always the victim, “can’t and never” are a big part of their vocabulary. The world is a dark place with little hope and little opportunity. It always feels like they are benefactor of some negative force and it influences everything they do. They just breed negativity whether they realize it or not. It’s poisoned their well.

Positive thinking will let you do everything better than negative thinking will.

The truth to this quote by Zig Ziglar is profound. Negative thinking doesn’t provide any solutions to the problem. It just wallows in them. Positive thinking invites motivation, encouragement, and determination. It seeds action.

 

That Demanding Person

Do you have someone in your life right now that has set conditions on your relationship? Expectations (explicitly or inexplicitly) you have to meet to be a part of their inner circle. For some reason you always feel some uncomfortable emotion like guilt when you don’t do something they expect or feel the need to make excuses when you don’t meet their expectations, standards, etc. TOO MUCH WORK.

It’s almost like you have to earn their relationship in some way. It’s not worth it. Each of us comes to the table in a relationship with who we are- the healthiest exchanges are very equal in nature – you give and get. Sometimes you fill them up and sometimes they fill you up. Not with this person. The reason for their unhealthy approach many times has to do with past relationships in their life. You can’t fix this for them.

 

They need to go or their relationship impact be minimized in our life. They create a lot of emotional wear and tear and impact our entire life – emotionally, relationally, etc. They drain resources from other relationships. Be careful – these are often the most challenging to downshift. These kind of people tend have the hardest time being managed into a healthy relationship.

THAT Person who makes chronic bad choices

I bet by reading that headline a name or two pops in your head. We all have people we know that can’t get it together. And yes we can always help (but not enable) those in need. But how does this person effect my life? There are a lot of ways. Here is a list:

  • They rob you of mental energy and  you away from what and who really matters in your life.
  • They always need resources beyond what they have which have to come from their friends (you).
  • They put you in positions you don’t need to be in.
  • They develop enabled behaviors with those around them that support their bad behavior (even if you don’t realize what they are).
  • They cause interfamily conflict (especially when a sibling).
  • They cause emotional, mental and physical stress and worry about their condition. They will literally “age” you.

Until this person really, truly accepts responsibility for themselves and their actions there is little you can do. Don’t let them rob anything from healthy relationships in your life.

The big question is, what any of these kind of people are family? (many times they are). The answer I’ve found that works for me is “controlled space or tactical separation”. In this you create a buffer between you and the unhealthy people in your family but allow times of interaction (as long as they are on your terms) to love on them. It could be scheduling time to meet them for dinner over the course of 2-3 hours,etc. The goals is to have a plan in and a plan out on your terms. If it goes sideways, you have simple way to exit. I’ve found that many times this strategy actually makes the time feel more valuable and brings joy to relationships that didn’t have any before. Planned visits tend to have a kind of fun anticipation.

 

3 final things to chew on:

  1. You have full control of the relationships you allow ongoing in your life.
  2. You become the sum of those closest to you.
  3. If you want to be better in an area of your life, adding a healthy relationship with someone who is strong in that area pays huge dividends.

 

 

3 Important Things I Learned Forgiving Someone Who Didn’t Deserve It

Ahhh forgiveness. We’ve all wrestled with this concept and we are sure to wrestle with it many more times in our lives. Sometimes forgiveness is easier – someone did something deceitful that inconvenienced you but there wasn’t much impact – and sometimes it is very, very hard – someone did something that hurt you so deeply that it changed your life. Either way – it still creates a boatload of emotions that you have to fight through. If we understand a few true principles of forgiveness, it can change the way we handle it and that in itself can have BIG repercussions in our life.

I chose to forgive someone who frankly didn’t deserve AND it didn’t happen right away.

A few years ago I stepped aboard a failing online startup. It was ugly – the developer partner was sleeping in the office, stacks of bills, almost no income. When I came on board there were two founding partners but one of the partners wasn’t involved and completely out of the picture. Myself and the main founding partner decided we were going to give it one last hard push to try and salvage the business. I had no idea how much it would require of me and if I had I probably wouldn’t have even started. We worked our butts off – non stop we poured in hours, sweat, blood and tears.

After a couple years the business still wasn’t making that much income. In being on the team, I took a massive pay cut from what I could earn in the job market. I built the business on the back of my family and it really took a lot out of us. We lived off very, very little and it was a struggle to keep it going. Living like this was so exhausting and we had a new baby right in the middle of it. There were times where my wife had to calm a crying baby at home because we were out of formula, didn’t have a working car (broke down) and I didn’t have any way to get it to her quickly. Just miserable.

3 years into the business we got an offer to sell and it was beyond anything we could have imaged. Finally, my family could potentially breathe a sigh of relief. Finally, there was light at the end of the tunnel. Finally, there was tangible hope. Finally…. enter partner number 3.

This individual walked in on all our hard work, our long hours, our deferred income and threatened to throw the deal if he didn’t get what he wanted- what he demanded. And part of that was to be compensated beyond me even though he hadn’t done anything. He was willing to take all we had done and throw it away. Selfish. He hadn’t had to comfort his wife when there was zero dollars and things you needed, he didn’t have to borrow money from family just to get dinner, he didn’t know what it felt like to fight the heavy weight of daily depression and uncertainty knowing that you were taking small steps towards something you believed in but couldn’t see. He didn’t know jack.

I can’t explain the feelings I felt because I’ve never felt them before in my life. I felt defeated, angry, betrayed, enraged, hurt, depressed, pissed and many, many more. I swallowed all this and we let him walk away with his demands and a fat check. We had to sell – I couldn’t go on grinding it out at that level and neither could my family.

2 years later I was able forgive him. Before then I couldn’t think about it because it would open up a dark place that threatened to poison and swallow me up in bitterness. Here are the three things I learned:

 

Forgiveness frees us

When I forgave this person, something unexpected happened. I felt unattached from the situation and all the bitterness. When I really forgave him from deep inside, all the emotions that normally stirred no longer existed. By forgiving him I let myself off the hook and was able to walk away. I gave myself permission to not let it bother me anymore.

 

Forgiveness isn’t trust

One fallacy of forgiveness is that it resets everything and everyone starts where they left off. Nope. Trust is something that is built overtime and takes time and effort. Even though I forgave this person I don’t trust them and that is ok. It would be poor judgement to trust someone who doesn’t deserve it.

 

Forgiveness matures our character

I thought for a while that I would never be able to forgive this person for taking advantage of the situation. What they did just felt so wrong. When I finally worked through it all and was able to genuinely forgive them, my complete outlook of them changed. Before I had seen him as a complete jerk who had no regard for anyone other than himself (and a handful of other choice words). After I chose to forgive him, I saw an insecure, sad scared person who had no real hope in their life. My new perspective allowed me to have compassion for him – something I never, ever thought in a million years would happen. I feel sorry for the guy. In addition, I feel like working through this and moving to forgive was the hardest thing to do but it strengthened my character. I feel like I’m able to forgive more readily because of all this.

This experience has changed my life. Letting go and moving forward has allowed me to move into bigger, better things that I could have never grabbed holding on to the past. Forgiveness isn’t for them, it’s for us. 

 

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3 Lies We Keep Believing About Money

1.Having Money, wealth or being rich is Bad (Or Evil)

 

Money – being the physical good- isn’t good or bad. It is just a piece of paper or metal. It is the character of the individual holding it that determines the outcome of its impact. I heard someone once say money is like a microscope, it reveals the Character DNA of the person who has it.

Do people with weak character, no purpose and self esteem issues blow it, waste it and destroy their lives? Yes. It is not the money that caused this to happen – it was their ego running unchecked.

Do people with great character use it to change the lives of others around the world in big, meaningful ways? Yes.

 

2.Money corupts

 

Money, again, isn’t the corrupting agent. Think of how rust works. Iron and oxygen won’t form rust unless water is present. You have to have a corruptible character to be corrupted. What we see play out in the world of politics – for example – is individuals with weak character being exposed in high places. They would have been exposed in low places too.

The second most common lie in this concept is that people with wealth or great income must be responsible since they earned the money. NOPE. A lot of people have gifts that lend them to great financial gain but aren’t responsible whatsoever. How many professional athletes completely blow it? We think “wow they have money and still can’t get their act together?”. They found themselves in wealth and we expect that sound judgement was part of that process – it definitely wasn’t.

At the age of 22 I found myself in the right place at the right time with the right set of skills. It wasn’t me – it was the timing of the economy, demand and opportunity. Growing up in a lower middle class family I had no concept of how to handle more money than what was needed to “get by”. All of the sudden I found myself in the middle of earning in a way I never knew possible and I completely blew it. Everyone was blowing it. Just burning money all over town. I was young and naive and had no depth to my character at that point and I was around a ton of people who, though being older, were no wiser than I was. My income was more than my character could handle.

 

3.Money can solve all our problems

 

During one of my more challenging seasons of life where we were completely broke, I developed this toxic thought process that was purely focused on “my ship coming in”. If I could only get more money, I’d be fine. If we only had more income, all our problems will be solved. When the money comes in, then we will be fine. This lie is especially harmful because it keeps you trapped in waiting – not in taking action. If money is the only solution, then that is what you should focus on, right? No, no, no. Plus like the rap lyric says “Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems”.

Now, hear me out. Having money is not bad and it certainly does relieve stress, strain and get that monkey off our back. But it isn’t the magic bullet that will solve ALL our problems and shouldn’t be glorified as such.

 

Here is a big takeaway: WE KEEP BEING WARNED ABOUT MONEY. IT IS NOT ABOUT THE MONEY. IT IS ABOUT OUR CHARACTER. If we focus on building good character internally, positive products come out of that and when we find ourselves with resources (time, talent, treasure) we can then contribute those to the world in a unique way only we can. We will be prepared to handle money or any other resources accordingly and responsibly. Isn’t that what the world needs more of afterall? 

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4 Ways To Overcome Feeling Defeated

 

Feeling defeated – or depressed – is the dumps. In this life of emotional ups and downs, we all at some point are going to get the blues -some more than others. I know it really affects me big time. I’ve suffered from big highs and low lows my entire life- probably more than the “average” person. If you live in an area where you have seasons of darker weather – rain, snow, etc, it can actually trigger it further. For me living in Southern California actually does a lot for me in this regard – sunshine has such a positive effect on my psyche.

So what if you find yourself feeling defeated? What can you do to help better your situation? I’ve come up with some tactics that always help me recover and get me started moving in a positive direction.

Orchestrate Your Perspective

It always feels the darkest when there seems to be no end, no hope. There are certainly situations that are more dire than others but most of the time what we are feeling is about a temporary situation. It will come and it will go. Everything in life happens in cycles and seasons. I remember what it was like with my first son – he didn’t sleep for 9 months. In those moments of dire sleeplessness I felt swallowed up by the thought that there was no end in sight. It just made me really, really negative. For my second son, we took the perspective that things were going to happen in seasons or waves. Seasons of less sleep, season of more sleep – any issues we encountered were mostly temporary. What a difference that was! We actually enjoyed it lol.

Meditate on an inspirational quote or bible verse

Sometimes we need to take our mind off the present and refocus on something positive. I used to have this desk calendar what had a quote a day. Every day I’d rally around the day’s inspirational quote. I’ve done this with the bible as well. What a game changer this tactic is for me. This mental nourishment shifts our gears and allows us to stop thinking about our own situation and think about other situations and scenarios – it gives our minds something to apply and run with. Plus when you do this early in the day you get it when your mind is most supple and rested and less influenced by other distractions. I can tell you intentionally feeding my mind positive wisdom has def changed my life. Super powerful.

Do something you enjoy – to invoke joy and happiness into your life.

What gives you joy and excites you? Trying a new food? Going to the park? Listening to music? Dancing? Exercise? – Whatever it is, make time to do it. By doing something we truly enjoy and get joy out of we are triggering positive healthy emotions (plus probably dopamine for our brains). Healthy positive emotions are the least draining and most rewarding emotions that directly counteract the feelings of depression. You can’t frown and smile at the same time right?

I love, love, love this tactic. I do it ALL the time. My routine usually involves music – something uplifting and fun, maybe 80’s classic rock or some good modern pop. Spotify even has mood playlists – so it is super easy to dial into what you want. I’ll blast it loud and go for a drive or I will throw it in earbuds and go for a walk. Some days it’s getting out by myself and getting sushi or getting a massage or running errands. Do whatever works for you. And by just getting out and doing something, you will feel a little better.

Do something for someone else

Nothing will shift your emotions and feelings like helping someone else. There is such an aligning of perspective and priorities when you leave a warm house with a full fridge to help feed someone who is sleeping outside in the cold with nothing to eat. Maybe volunteering at your local church, helping at your local shelter, taking a meal to a sick friend- wherever you feel you’d like to plugin. The opportunities are endless – a lot of needs in the world.

My wife loves to cook so for her she really enjoys making meals for people. Giving people a good warm meal while they are going through turbulent times is one way we like to love on them. We do it for others yet it does something so awesome for us to be able to be of service. It gives us a purpose and reminds us to be thankful. Sometimes that is what we need to pull us out of the dumps.

 

All in all, remember you have the power to take action. You don’t control what gets thrown at you in this life but you have full control of how you react and adapt. It isn’t the absence of negative life experiences that make a person positive- it is the daily decisions they make in dealing with those things.

 

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