Pivot

pivot
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After some thought I’ve decided that I’m making a change in my blogging. There’s a lot that goes into this change, but the short version is this. I have 2 main topics that I want to blog about and I have not been able to make them fit onto one blog in a way that really works for me.

First, I want to blog about things that I spend time thinking about: faith; leaving a legacy; and becoming successful, however you define it.

Second, I have wanted to blog more about fitness and food. Admittedly there’s going to be some overlap. I want this blog to bring in some of my personality and that will inevitably bring in my thoughts I mentioned above.

However, when I think about helping people with food and fitness, I do not think those people necessarily want to hear what I think about otherwise. Maybe they do, but I don’t think they will.

So I’ve started developing a second blog called Meal Prep Dad. That blog is going to be focused on food and fitness and I will specifically be trying to build that into a side business. Blogging is a decidedly difficult way to start a business. The content itself is what you’re trying to use to bring an audience and then try to make money by offering useful products through affiliate links. Eventually, if you can build an audience, you can start selling your time (as a coach or consultant) or by creating something they want. In any case, that’s the goal right now for Meal Prep Dad.

This blog doesn’t have those kinds of expectations. I’m going to treat this as a personal blog. There may be zero people that read this, and I’m actually ok with that. The process of writing in itself is going to be helpful for me. At this moment I plan on having these 2 categories: faith and personal development. I’m sure this will change over time, but it’s a good starting point.

A bittersweet reminder to live large

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In my day-to-day life it’s really easy for me to forget just how fragile it is. I’m not surrounded by death very much but when it rears it dark head it always brings the same fact into sharp focus.  Life is short and you don’t get a do-over.

It was two people that I had known years ago that had passed. Even though it had been more than 10–maybe 15–years since I had seen them, I still had to stop and reflect on the fact that they were gone.  My girls were there playing in the same room and I couldn’t help but think about the kind of life I was modeling to them.

Introspection is kind of my jam, though.  I do it a lot.

The catch in all of this, however, is not to forget that life is short; to remember each day, whether adventurous or mundane, is a gift.

So that’s what I’m thinking about today.  How do you make the most of life? How do you avoid deathbed regrets? How can you leave behind an important and impactful legacy?

If you have ideas: please share in the comments!

Solutions need to be simple

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Life naturally gets complicated.  We don’t have to try very hard for that to happen.

We’re also really good at creating complicated plans to solve our problems.  But the problem is that those intricate master plans usually fail sooner or later because they’re too hard to carry out.  The best plans are those that are very simple.

This isn’t news to you; but the problem is that ‘simple’ isn’t easy.  Simple solutions take a lot of work up front because you have to sort through and cut out all the crap. Once you’re there, though, those plans are straightforward and understandable.

Don’t make your life too hard.  Seek simplicity in your life.  It’ll take some effort at first, but it will pay off in the long run.

 

How the right people help you become awesome

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“Walk with the wise and become wise…” ~Pr 13:20

I’ve heard the saying that your income will be the average of the income of the 5 people you spend the most time with. For years I thought that was just a nice rule of thumb, a platitude to encourage you to choose your friends wisely. But I’m starting to think that it’s more than just a nice sounding quote. I am finding who you spend time with really will influence you–not just your income, but so many things about you. Your fitness, your productivity, your generosity, your goodness, your stress levels, and probably a hundred things more, could be impacted.

Why’s that, you ask?

Simply put, high performers raise your standard of achievement. Your expectations rise and, eventually, your own performance will rise as well.

When I began working out at a Crossfit gym, I encountered an entirely new level of fitness standards. Their warm ups were more intense than the workouts that I did by myself. I saw people able to perform in ways that really put my lack of fitness into perspective. I went from a kind of neutral ‘I need to workout more‘ to a desperate ‘Oh my good Lord, I am completely out of shape!‘ My standard was raised and I have adopted and adapted to that standard.

As it were, my gym’s tag line is “Raise Your Standard.” Not just a coincidence.

What if my friends are lame?

I think this also applies to information you put in your head.  Maybe you don’t have any high achieving friends, but that doesn’t mean you you’re out of luck.  First, you are so lucky–no, no, no, you’re blessed–to live in an age where information can be shared instantly across the globe.  If you have internet access you can listen to podcasts, watch videos on YouTube, read blogs, take online courses,  or even buy ebooks (if you learn well through reading).  There’s also libraries across the nation that have great information, too, for basically zero dollars.

Get that information in your hands, carve out some time, turn off your TV, and start learning.

But what if I’m not born to be a high achiever?

I would say you’re (maybe unintentionally) making excuses. Check out this interview with General Stanley McChrystal and hear him talk about whether elite special forces soldiers are made or born.  He found that average soldiers could perform at elite levels when they were placed in an elite unit and, conversely, elite soldiers could perform at lower levels if they were placed in regular units.  Fascinating.

So, yes, I’m saying there’s a chance you can do great things. Just start surrounding yourself with the right people and information.  Plot a vision for what you want to have happen and then start hustling. That’s exactly what I’m doing now.

When have you experienced a raised standard that drove you to perform better? Comment below!

 

 

What this blog is about

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The short answer is that this blog is about conquering the pain of wasting your life.

I am a fairly ordinary guy but I have always had big dreams and ideas for my life. They were dreams of what I did for work, where I lived, where I traveled and who I would become. However, I learned the hard way that our big hopes and dreams do not become a reality on their own. We have to intentionally pursue them to make them happen.

In my case, it took me a few decades for this lesson to really sink in. Even though I’ve had some other amazing things happen—I got married, had kids, bought a house, etc—there’s a lot of potential in my life that I’ve left on the table. Achieving those things when you have other super-important commitments is no easy task and the “average” life happens almost automatically if you don’t intentionally try to change it. Change can be very hard.

But I’m convinced it’s very possible.

So I’m starting this blog to show just how possible change is and to invite others to join me. I’ve already learned so much and I know there’s so much more to learn.

So here’s what I’m up to:

I am going to change my fitness.

In short, I want to get into the best shape of my life and let that be a foundation of health for the rest of my life. I’ve watched the aging process wreak havoc on family members and I know there are things I can do now to avoid some of those pitfalls. My focus here is on nutrition and exercise. I want to be active and available for my family and able to take care of them—and myself—for a long time.

I am going to start a business

I actually love my job right now, but I have had a dream of creating a business that will support my family and give me some freedom with my time. I’m realistic about this, though. An entrepreneur’s journey is not as rosy a picture as some people make it out to be, but I’m very much interested in taking control of what I make and what I do and what I earn.

I am going to make a positive impact

I spent a lot of years being so inwardly focused that I probably made zero impact on those around me. I was just getting by and I’ve become sick and tired of it. I believe a life that serves others is a life worth living. I want to create a legacy with those around me that will hopefully even outlast me.

So that’s my blog in a nutshell. I hope you’ll join me on the adventure. Please consider joining my mailing list to connect to the conversation. Together I’m sure we’ll do great things!

What dreams do you want to accomplish? I’d love to here in the comments below.