Month: August 2017

Same shit, different year.

Growing up most of my friends thought I would end up dead or in jail by my 21st  birthday. I know that most of this was due to my erratic and rebellious tendencies. I was always a smart, athletic and charming. Where did my problem stem from? My mom and dad both loved me.

 

The answer to this question is harder to answer than one blog post. This story always makes me smile honestly. You see I was a young angry kid with no sense of direction or true sense of community. Growing up extremely stubborn and full of anger I didn’t know how to cope with it.

 

You have no clue what it’s like to move constantly. Sometimes I would switch schools 2 or 3 times a year. I didn’t really recognize it at the time but I was probably acting out. I know one thing, everyone wants to talk about how bad they had it growing up. I believe you. Coming from a smaller city compared to Chicago where I live now, we definitely knew how to make life interesting.

I would fight anytime that I felt threatened. We would fight to defend our neighborhoods. We thought that we were straight out of the “Warriors” movie. NWA and Eminem blaring through the speakers. That was the life that we thought we were destined for. So for me to blame anyone for thinking that I would be dead or in jail by the age of 21 would be ignorant.

 

Now turning 28 later this year I smile and laugh. These days you can find me playing with dolls with my daughter and pretending to be a monster. I’ve traded fights for being beat up by my daughter. Late nights out with my friends, for late nights glued to my computer screen looking for knowledge. It’s not been pretty by any means of the word but I’ve made it longer than anyone expected!

 

What do I do from here? Honestly, it’s same shit different year. Business as usual in my mind. Even though I’m not that rebellious punk I was back then, it still lives in me. Now, it manifests itself in the form of doing what ever it takes to get the job done. Defying odds and doing things my way. If you can’t tell by now I’m not the most politically correct.

 

That’s just me. I do have a passion for providing value and growing as a person. I believe that the only way to truly become successful is to leave the world a better place than you found it. Easier said than done but it is possible. I mean come on, tell me you haven’t tried to drink a gallon of milk just prove that you wouldn’t throw up?.. maybe that was just us, lol.

 

If there are 3 things you can do to re-write your self narrative and start impacting the world here they are to me:

 

  1. Find 5 people you admire & 5 people you despise.
  2. Identify what you like and dislike about both.
  3. Start doing things that are more like the people you admire and eliminate habits that you despise.

These 3 simple steps will help you to identify who you want to be, where you are at the moment, and what you need to do in order to accomplish your goals. Once you have started to change your mindset each day you will reinforce this new lifestyle.

 

They say it takes 21 days to make or break a habit. You will not see immediate results in most cases but stay consistent and believe in the process. It wasn’t until I had my daughter and hit my rock bottom that I realized that what I admired about my role models I had in myself the entire time. I just had to open my eyes and focus on the prize!

 

Did you see that?

 

There’s something about late night working that brings out the best in my brain. I know that many people are resistant to this way of life. In my opinion there’s different strokes for different folks right? Have you ever thought about the idea that everyone has the ability to be great? It’s something that crosses my mind on a daily basis. Why? For most of my life I was being forced into a mold. Something similar to pushing a square peg into a round hole. This “mold” was not meant for me to become successful. How many other people are being left in the strainer of life because of this?

 

So if you noticed the compass at the top of this post you might be thinking what does this have to do with anything? Why does the title say that?

 

The answer is simple. We live in a society suffering from FOMO. Fear of missing out. This is a very real phenomena. Everyday we are tuning into our smartphones, shedding our skin and bones for status updates and memes. We are so wrapped up in creating this persona online of our highlight moments that we aren’t actively living our lives. If we were navigating through life we would be walking in circles, following the media cycle…

 

Why is this so bad? It’s not. It’s not good either. Did you see that? We are becoming sheep to our own brains. With the increasing ease of instant gratification we are going down a slippery slope towards contentment. We are far too comfortable with the freedoms that technology and we often take for granted. Yes there is we idea that we deserve to be able to relax from working so hard. What has happened to wanting to build your dream life though?

 

If anything my problem isn’t with technology or how people spend their time. For me it’s about not settling for a life that you aren’t completely satisfied with. This doesn’t mean divorce your wife, quit your job, or go buy a sports car. What I’m talking about is taking an audit of your life and your choices. List what’s truly benefiting your life and what isn’t. Who is providing value to your existence and who is bringing you down. What your goals and ambitions are as well as what you have put on autopilot. These are the questions that make us uncomfortable.

 

Guess what..uncomfortable is exactly what you want to feel! This is where growth lives. Growth lives in that space inside of you that is calling out for change or clarity. When you seek this knowledge you will create a new file in your database of life. Life is about creating new experiences and growing as a person.  We can not accomplish that by staying on autopilot.

 

Take this as a challenge to step outside of your comfort zone today. You never know what might happen if you take that first step that you’ve been putting off your entire life.

 

Which direction are you going?