Tag Archives: life

Quit Stalling! : Re-define success and regain your momentum

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb

When we were growing up, we were always asked “What do you wanna be when you’re an adult?” A fireman, an astronaut, the President, an Army guy…we would come up with the most amazing dreams. We could easily visualize ourselves achieving these great feats when we were children. So, let me ask you, what are you now?

If your answer is different from what you remember dreaming about as a kid, this could be due to several reasons:

  1. Your interests have changed
  2. You don’t believe you can do it
  3. You let others talk you out of it
  4. You are no longer your priority
  5. You gave up

Yeah, I know that sounds rough, but it’s ok. I wanted to share these thoughts because, for a while, I felt the same way too. However, from spending so much time helping others grow, I realized that I needed to take a step back and give myself a hard look. I had to ask myself again, “What do I want to be when I grow up?” When I realized that I was no longer moving toward any of my previous goals, or toward any goal for that matter, I had to ask myself, why? After some hard self assessment, these are some of the answers I came up with, and at first glance, it seems I have failed to reach any level of success – but I was wrong.

Friends, for quite some time I have spent hours studying, analyzing, and discussing with others, what exactly qualifies as success? How do we get there? Here are some things that I have learned that have fired me up, and have put me back on the right path.

First, no great person achieved anything by merely thinking about it. Nor, is there such a thing as an overnight success. As with everything great in life, hard work is the answer. I remember telling my son that we should never be hungry for immediate gratification for what we do. The greatest achievements in life are earned through years of dedication, and devotion to ones passion. I used the example given by Thomas A. Edison when discussing the amount of time it took him to invent the light bulb. He stated,

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

Would we say that he was unsuccessful?

Author, and former power lifter Chris Moore uses music to further explain this. In one of his podcast’s (check out the Barbell Buddha Podcast), he mentions that we often spend too much time focusing on the ending, the point of gratification. This would be the same as attending a concert, or listening to a song, just to hear the ending – it makes no sense! It is the sweet melodies, the notes, the rises and falls that make music beautiful, and exciting. Why would we not look at life this way? My interpretation of success made it easy for me so feel as if I had failed, when in fact, I had only scratched the surface. When I would see this failure, the desire to quit entirely would often become overwhelming, and I know this is the case for many others.

So, why do we fail to reach success?

One of the main reasons we fail to reach success is because, as I stated before, we treat it as an ending, instead of a process. Just because I’m not the President of my company today, doesn’t mean I won’t be there eventually. As long as I live each individual day to the fullest, keep the end in mind, but work and live in the present, I have succeeded that day! This, my friends, is progress.

Like I mentioned in our last post, you climb a mountain one step at a time. If you try to look up at the tippy-top the entire time, you can grow dizzy, and faint; but if you focus, and take one hard step at a time, you will eventually get to the top. Times will get hard, and you may lose ground from time to time, this is OK. Remember,

“Yesterday ended last night” – John C. Maxwell

When you get a chance at a new day, tackle it with more intensity, and focus – that will make it a successful day. In the future, those days will be viewed by others as your lifetime, so treat each one as if it were special.


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Guidelines on Character, and tips to help teach Character

 

What is Character?

 

Character is the essence of a person, their inner truth, what they they actually are. A person’s character is based on their mental and moral qualities – who they are behind closed doors. A person can be successful in many areas in their life but without sound character, much like a home which has a cracked foundation, you will eventually crumble from the stresses of everyday life.

Character is not something that happens, it is something which is developed over a lifetime. To develop this in ourselves and our families, we have to take an honest look at what motivates us. Is it our values and beliefs or is it our desire to live up to a certain reputation? On that note, lets talk about the difference of character, and reputation. Abraham Lincoln gives a fitting example for this, “Character is like a tree, and reputation like a shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing”. We should make sure that what we truly value in life, our core beliefs, are what guide us in our decision making process and not reputation – reputation is merely a product of our character.

Reputation is what men say about you on your tombstone; character is what the angels say about you before the throne of God.” – William Hersey Davis

 

Here are some helpful guidelines on character that I have recently read about and had a brief discussion about with my sons. Now, I can confidently say that I am a man of moral character; however, it is important to me that I continue to approach life with an open mind and to continue to improve myself as well as my family.

 

Have integrity

Things like common decency are not as common as we’d like them to be. The lack of integrity in today’s world is a crutch that we must remove. But what is integrity? Integrity is being honest to others, being honest to and about yourself, both inside, and outside.

Teaching integrity to our kids is best done by setting the example. However, there will come a time where you must sit your kids down, and have a long discussion on the subject. Author John C. Maxwell provides us with good questions to help measure your integrity. Ask yourself (or your kids):

1. How well do I treat people from whom I can gain nothing?

2. Do I role-play based on the person(s) I am with?

3. Do I quickly admit wrongdoing without being pressed to do so?

4. When I have something to say about people, do I talk to them or about them?

Using these questions could help you guide your discussion with your child. Recently, I had an evaluation of my own integrity. These questions brought to light several things which I would like to work on, and which I would like to share with my children.

 

Be accountable for your actions (character)

It is important that we understand that your actions, your integrity, and your character should not be guided by your circumstances. No matter what walk of life we come from, we have the freedom to make the decision whether we want to do right by others, or do wrong by others.

 

“Your circumstances are responsible for your character as a mirror is for your looks”. -John C Maxwell

 

Pay your dues by helping others

Sir Wilfred T. Grenfell said it best, “The service we render to others is really the rent we pay for room on this earth.” The bottom line is this: if we are not ready to render service to others, why should anyone (life itself) render service to us. The more positive effort we put forth in our life, the more likely we will experience positive outcomes.

Do what you should before you do what you want!

Part of being a person with sound character is having a good work ethic. Often times, we get caught up in the daily grind we call life. You’ll find that if you put first things first, you will achieve success in life. Zig Ziglar had a good outlook on this topic, “When you do the things you have to do when you have to do them, the day will come when you can do the things you want to do when you want to do them.”

In our earlier posts, we discussed how to improve focus, and minimize distractions so we can improve our quality of life. Part of this is making sure that we prioritize our lives, and make sure we take care of the needs first, so that we can fully enjoy our wants!

We hope that this information has been insightful. If you would like more posts like this, leave us a comment! We’d be happy to share anything that we can with you!

 

Some material from this post can also be found in the book: Becoming a Person of Influence by John C. Maxwell & Jim Dornan. Maxwell Motivation Inc., California (1997). 

 

 

Make the effort, do your part, fight to make your family better. This is what we’re all about.

Fight on Friends! – The Warrior Family

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Being Unafraid

Every journey in life, no matter how great the distance, will always begin with one step. Recently, I have found myself energized, and inspired by men who have courageously made the decision to dedicate their lives to the pursuit of helping others. I wonder, what am I waiting for?

For the past two years I have spent countless hours making an impact on the lives of young recruits going through Basic Combat Training here in Fort Benning, GA. I have always had a passion for leading others, but the opportunity to serve as a Drill Sergeant meant doing so on a much larger scale. I went from being responsible for 8-12 Soldiers, to indoctrinating, transforming, and empowering around 60 Civilians turned Soldier over the course of nine weeks. There were times when I was overly stressed, and my family would get to see me about once a week. However, as time passed, I grew more effective in my mentorship, but more importantly, my time, stress, and focus management.

By my second year “on the trail” (how we refer to the time spent as a Drill Sergeant), I was a full time student taking online courses, I had adjusted my goals to better serve my family, and had strengthened my relationship with my wife and two sons; particularly my youngest son, Mateo.

So I ask myself, what’s the next step? Recently my hobby has been learning how the human body is supposed to function so I can optimize my performance. One of the men I look up to in this Genetic Potential movement is Brian Mackenzie, the author of Power Speed Endurance. When he speaks of running, he mentions that running is falling forward, shifting supports, and keeping your forward momentum, letting gravity do most of the work. He talks about being unafraid of falling, and how that has guided him on the path toward writing his book. Well, it’s time that I be unafraid.

This project that I am starting, The Warrior Family, will be a network of people who, first of all, are awesome, and have taken a no excuses attitude toward giving their families their own identity, while empowering them to become the best that they could be. I often hear people complain about the generation that social media and technology is producing…last I checked, there are no robots changing diapers in my house! I plan to develop a common place where families that I know are successful, have a passion for progress, and promote fitness, can visit to provide support for families of “our” generation, or even younger. Why shouldn’t your kids be smart, fit, and freaking awesome? Maybe, if we can share lessons learned, exchange ideas of what worked and what didn’t, we can help other get strong, smart, so that they too can help others!