Tuesday, July 31, 2018

What are you missing?

As a kid it wasn’t uncommon to look forward to Christmas and birthdays. The main reason we did this as a kid was primarily for the presents. You wanted to see what you would get. You may have had some specific request but most of the time you didn’t know what you were getting until those days actually arrived.

On Christmas you might get up and plop yourself down in front of the tree and stare at all the gifts and wonder which ones were yours. You would be anxiously waiting for everyone to get out of the bed so you could open your gifts. Then as your first gift was handed to you you tore into it like nobody’s business! You finally get the paper off and see that it’s a...... Not what you wanted and you set it to the side and prepared yourself for the next one! It’s finally your turn again and you are handed your next gift and you also tear into it to find..... a pack of socks so you toss it into the unwanted pile! You go a few more times until all the packages have been opened and at the end you may or may not have gotten what you really wanted. You sit there staring at the pile of gifts not really knowing who gave you what so you aren’t sure who to thank if you really even cared to begin with. You try to decide what is the first toy that you’re going to play with only to set it aside 10 minutes later and never really play with it again.

Were you this kid? Are your kids like this now? I’m sure most kids are like this to some extent. They are so focused on the big gift at the back of the tree or the next one in line they really don’t pay attention to the smaller gifts that they’ve just ripped the paper off of and tossed into the pile. They really don’t care about the insignificant smaller toys because they just want to get to their next unopened gift. Kids will be kids and I totally understand that they do this.

Why do we do this same thing though?

“Where is he going with this?” you might be asking because you don’t open gifts like this anymore.

I want to compare this to life and how often times we are so focused and consumed with a goal or a vision that we often overlook the smaller more important things in life. Sure, goals are good to have but sometimes we miss the smaller more significant things in life that we should be thankful for. We often get in such a big hurry that we take everyday life for granted. We are looking for tomorrow so much that we don’t live today and forget the fact that tomorrow may not come for us. 

I know fairly often that I take certain things for granted.  I often get in a hurry and overlook someone’s need or stuggle. I might get so engulfed into something that I can’t see anything else around me and miss something even more important. I often forget how short life can be and that it could all end in the blink of an eye.

How can we improve this?

For starters... sometimes we just need to slow down and actually see and acknowledge what’s going on around us. Is there a friend or family member that’s struggling that we can help? Is there a kid’s event that you should be attending or a game you should be cheering at? Is there a night that you could take off work early to go to dinner with the wife or a Saturday that you could miss to go to the beach? All of these simingly small things can help us in our effort to slow down and stop trying to live life so fast.

Secondly, be thankful for the small things. Be thankful to be able to wake up and breathe and have food to eat. Be thankful that you have a roof over your head and a great family. Just simply be thankful that you’re here and you have these things because there are many that may not have the same luxuries as you and yet they may be thankful for what they do have.

It’s often tough to slow down and be thankful when things may not be going your way....trust me I know. It will take focus and discipline to be able to do it consistently. I still struggle with it myself but I work on it daily. I often have days where things don’t go my way and I fail to be thankful for what has gone right.

Take this lesson from me so that you can be the best you that you can be and the best you that you can be to those around you!

Monday, July 30, 2018

What I witnessed!

Sometimes in life we run across certain people or maybe even witness certain events that we may be astonished by. It may not happen very often but it might from time to time. When that time comes it is hard to forget. Sometimes they are good things and sometimes maybe not so good but unforgettable nonetheless.

I can say that there are only probably a handful of events that I’ve witnessed that left me astonished to the point that I never forgot. Some of those are good and some are bad but are unforgettable to me.

I can say that I just witnessed one of those events this past Sunday that I’m sure I will never forget. I witnessed men and women across the auto industry come together for a common purpose(Not everyone one was from a car lot but may have been friends of some that were). We came together for the one purpose of helping someone in need. 

Often times car salesmen aren’t looked at in a positive light. We are often referred to as vultures that prey on people. We rank right up there with attorneys and politicians as some of the most crooked industries. Are there some bad ones? Yes there are but there also many more good ones.

Having said that....

The purpose of all of us coming together and uniting on a 24 hour Facebook Live-A-Thon was to help one of our friends in need. We came together to give assistance to and raise money for a friend that is beginning a battle of a very serious and life threatening disease. It’s a disease that I don’t even like to mention and yet has affected so many around this world. It is the disease of cancer.

Michelle was diagnosed just about a week ago with stage 3 breast cancer and it basically devistated this family. They are a very strong family that’s very genuine and kind and this disease has infected them. Though only one actually has the disease all are affected. 

With disease comes expenses! The problem they are having is the fact that they are self employed which causes a problem from the insurance aspect since many private insurances are very expensive and at the very least have very high deductibles which may sometimes cause the care to be overwhelmingly expensive to be able to pay for. I’m not sure how much treatments and surgeries would be for something like this but I imagine it’s very high.

So, from the leadership of a few people from the business we started a 24 hour Live-A-Thon that somewhat mimicked the old telethons that you remember as a kid. We took over Facebook for a solid 24 hours holding this event. Around 48 individuals gave up around 30 minutes of their time to go Live from their personal Facebook pages in order to try and help raise awareness, ask for prayers and donations in order to help this family. We started at 12 a.m. on Sunday July 29th and ran 24 hours until 12 a.m. on the 30th. It was a time for each of us to go Live and share our thoughts about the family, that some of us have become friends with and others didn’t even know. It was a time to listen to stories about people that may have possibly gone through something similar. There were many stories of overcoming trials and addictions and many tears shed. There were scripture readings and many prayers said! There were some that sang songs and others danced. It was a time of smiles and laughter and also heartache and pain. There were many that were going Live for the first time and some that do it all the time. 

Why did we do this???

Because we care! Because we saw a need and addressed it! We did it not just because they are our friends and connected to our industry.... we did it because we love them. People that don’t even really know them stepped up and gave what they had in order to help a family in need. It’s hard to give your time and money to people and causes you don’t know but they did it and I’m proud to have been able to witness it and also be a part of it!

Thanks to all who went Live, gave donations and offered prayers! I’m happy to know you guys and girls and I pray that God would bless you for your efforts!

If you would like to read more about Michelle you can go to her Facebook page by going to https://www.facebook.com/michellesri and if you would like to donate please go to https://www.fightwithmichelle.com/ . Thanks for your support!

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Help for a friend!

Many people have bad tastes in their mouths when it comes to car salesmen these days! We are ranked right up there with attorneys and politicians. Some of these feelings have come from experiences of loved ones and friends in the past and some have come from recent situations. Some of them are warranted and some may not be.

There have been a quite a few of us that have been trying to change people’s perceptions of the car business but it has proven to be a daunting and difficult task but we press on! It’s often hard to break down the walls that have been created by past bad experiences but we are trying!

One way to see this is in an effort that is happening as I wrote this. You see, social media has become a very powerful tool. I have met many awesome people around the country and around the world via social media! I have made many friends that I otherwise would have never met and many if not most of them are in the car business or attached to it in someway. 

Two of those people are Chad Morgan and Michelle Sri who are the owners and operators of Quickpage... a video emailing/texting app that is used to send compressed video to clients in order for them to be able to watch and see them easier and better. I have met them online and in person on a number of occasions and both are very caring and genuine people. I have become friends with them and so have many others along this journey over the past year.

I am giving you this short story to tell you that recently they found out that Michelle had stage 3 breast cancer and it is very aggressive. It’s certainly something that nobody wants to have to endure or even at the least even mutter the words “cancer”. They are trying to be strong for their kids and each other but I’m sure it is weighing on their hearts and minds. To go along with this they are self employed which means they have little to no insurance and anyone that knows anything about these medical expenses will know that it’ll be very expensive to treat. 

The cool part is that the automotive industry is coming together to support these wonderful people! We are doing a Facebook Live Telethon starting at midnight eastern tonight and running for 24 hours. There are many of us throughout the industry that will be doing 30 minute segments on our personal pages primarily to pray and to raise money to assist them in their fight to come. It’s a way for us to help a family in need and that’s part of our automotive community.

I will begin my 30 minute segment beginning at 9:30 a.m. eastern tomorrow which is 8:30 a.m. central. I would like for all of my friends to join me on this Live event in order to pray and raise money. If you can’t make it Live here is the link to donate http://fightwithmichelle.com/
Any and all amounts will be appreciated and no donation is too small so please consider this most important donation if you join me or if you’re not able.

We are an industry of individuals that care about others and try and take care of those we love! Help us in this effort to help some great friends and people I have come to love and respect!

Thank you and God Bless

Friday, July 27, 2018

Where have I been?

To those of your that care and that have missed me you might notice that I have been somewhat absent over the last few days from social media. I have been posting some sold customer pics but no videos for a few days.

I wanted to let you know why...

I had an episode last Saturday after my video in where my heart went into AFib. I have had it for quite some time but really don’t have many serious episodes. That day was one of them. Thankfully my wife is a nurse and knew what to do! Not sure what caused it or might have triggered it but they seem to come when they want. I have been trying to treat it with a CPAP machine when I sleep since the Drs seem to believe that lack of oxygen when sleeping can have a serious effect on the heart and I believe that too. I snore terribly and often stop breathing in my sleep and am hoping this will eventually help as I go through this process.

Why has this caused me to stop doing videos recently and being myself?

I’m not sure really! I have never felt like this for so long of a time. I have been extremely short of breath and tight in the chest since that day. I have went and done test and all signs point to anxiety.. and I hope that’s all it is. I have been worried about my heart but I guess that the episode has sprung me, along with a couple of other things, into a severe anxiety issue. I am now taking meds for it, which I do not like taking, in order to see if that’s indeed what it is and to offer some relief but it takes about 2 weeks for them to fully take effect. 

Anyone that knows me surely knows that I don’t like to complain when something is wrong and that I surely don’t like to take meds for these kind of things but I am trying to find answers. 

My hope in letting you know what is going on is I don’t want people to worry too much, if you’re one of those, and to let you know that it’s okay to not feel well and to let people know what’s going on. If you know something is wrong or doesn’t feel right you need to tell someone. Don’t rely on webmd! It could end up being nothing but in the chance it is something serious maybe it can be caught in time to do something about it.

I’m not certain my issue is anxiety and I never want to rule out more heart issues but I wanted to let everyone know where I have been and what’s been going on. I decided to take a few days away from doing videos to try and get this under control. I’m hoping I can start back next week because I actually like doing my Lives daily. I truly appreciate all the thoughts and prayers! 

I love all of you!... even if you don’t love me!lol

Monday, July 23, 2018

Am I going HOME or am I going home?

As I’m sitting in this chair, awaiting the results of the ekg and blood work, I can’t help but wonder if I’ve got something seriously wrong inside me. I also instantly think about my family and what kind of position I would be leaving them in if I never made it out. I hate to think like that but right now they are going through my mind constantly!

I haven’t exactly lived the most healthy lifestyle. I spent many years partying and staying out late while doing drugs and drinking and that could possibly have attributed to this now I think. It’s easy to look back now and see all the stress I’ve put on my body and yet back then my mentality was...”I’m going to die of something someday so I might as well go while doing something I love to do”. I’ve heard many people say things like that and at this very moment that doesn’t help nor apply to me.

I’m currently thinking that I’m certainly not ready to go yet. Yea I know, life isn’t on my timetable and I wholeheartedly agree but it still doesn’t get any easier when you’re going through something with your health that you’re not use to or you don’t know the extent. Were I to leave today I firmly believe that I would be with my Savior but leaving my family isn’t something I’m prepared to deal with right at this moment and I’m sure they aren’t ready either. I know they would also understand that I would be with Him as well but I’m sure it would devastate them. 

I have gone through the past few years somewhat ignoring issues with my body simply because I don’t want to sound like I’m a big baby. I have had numerous back and neck issues as well as dealing with periodic ankle and knee issues but for the most part you can live with those even though there may be some pain and discomfort. The heart, however, you can’t live without. If something stops working with the heart then you stop working. It’s a scary thought when you really think about it. The heart is relatively small compared to your whole body and yet it, and the brain, have the most responsiblility in your body and can determine your life if either one of them shut down or stop working. So, sitting here waiting for results doesn't make me feel any better.

The funny thing is that anxiety can cause some of the same results or experiences that a heart issue can and you could be worrying for no reason. The body is so fascinating and it is a Godly designed wonder that never stops amazing me. 

However these things end up for me are certainly up to the One that created everything. All I can do is live this life in a way that would honor and glorify Him though I fail at that miserably. 

Have you done all you can today to effect someone else’s tomorrow? Have you been able to show the people that you love how much you indeed love them and not just with words? Have you passed on chances to impact someone that you’ve been around because you don’t feel like you have time? Well, you may not have tomorrow so take the time today to make a difference in someone’s life! What better legacy could you possibly leave than being known as one that took their time that you were given in order to help someone else and possibly change their life for their future?!

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Which boxer are you?

I use to like to watch boxing. I was always amazed at the abuse they took and the dedication it took to be able to handle all that abuse to their bodies. I was also amazed at the amount of training they went through and how that just the training itself would put their bodies to the test.

When you think of boxing you could probably think of a few names of boxers that you may know or have heard of even if you didn’t like boxing. I automatically think of Muhammad Ali, Sugar Ray Leonard, Joe Lewis, George Foreman, maybe Rocky Marciano, Roy Jones JR, Floyd Mayweather and of coarse Mike Tyson and many more. I’m sure you could think of a few as well. 

When I was a younger man I liked to watch Mike Tyson fight. He was a very strong and aggressive fighter that was known for his ferocious knockout power that could end a fight quickly. A few of us would pitch in money just to get the pay per views and we would have a watch party with as many people as we could get over. It was a fun time when Mike was in his early years. The only problems came when the main event finally came and you might walk into the kitchen for some food and drinks and come back and the fight would already be over. We almost felt like we wasted our money just to have many of his fights to end in the 1st or 2nd round but that’s sometimes what happens in that particular sport. 

When I think about boxers I think about 2 types of fighters. Both would be great athletes for the most part but there are basically 2 categories in my mind.

1) The knockout artist. This is the one that has a lot of punching power usually. He may be the one that has a huge uppercut that might take your head off. He will basically come out and try and end the fight quickly by hitting you with one big haymaker. He may be one that is very aggressive in the beginning rounds in order to bully one into dropping his guard and then laying him out. He may not always have the best agility and footwork and may not even have the best stamina because he has the hopes of ending it quickly. Not all may have limited abilities or skills but often times these fighters might be somewhat one dimensional. 

2) The all around fighter. This is the fighter that has a huge arsenal of ammunition. He may be one that has a fantastic jab and hook. He may be fast with heavy hands and throws a bunch of great combos and counter punches. He may have a strong chin and never intimidated. He might have impeccable stamina and agility. He might even have the ability to switch from traditional to southpaw without even trying. This could be one that could change his fight plan or style during the fight just to throw his opponent off his plan. This fighter might have an uncanny desire to win that allows him to take all his opponents the distance just to win a decision. 

 Both fighters are great athletes and very talented otherwise they wouldn’t be in the ring. One depends on one ability that he may be extremely good at in order to win his fight whereas the other has a full tool box of tools that he can use at any time. He may not be great at one particular ability but he may have many that he is really good at that he can use at his disposal to wear down his opponent. 

Which one are you?

What do I mean?

Well, look at your life and look at your profession. Do you resemble fighter #1 and are possibly one dimensional? Do you only have one skill or ability that you are somewhat good at that you usually rely on heavily? Do you only depend on that one ability so heavily that when a problem or an unforeseen situation arises you can’t handle it? Are you so dependent on that one skill that when you can’t use it then you are very uncomfortable? Do you have problems making it out of the 2nd or 3rd round and never able to go the distance?


Are you like fighter #2? Are you pretty good at a few or many different skills? Do you have an overflowing tool box or an ammo box that is full of useful ammunition? Do you have enough ammunition that you can adjust to any situation on the fly and take it the distance? Are you able to outlast your competition simply by making them go further in the fight than they are able because your stamina and endurance is top notch?

Having a few abilities that your good at is better than only having on that you may be great at. The reason I say that is because if you only have one then chances are you are only able to use that one skill in every situation when every situation may not call for your one skill. When something changes or a problem arises then you may not be able to overcome it because you are one dimensional. However, having a few things that you’re really good at and being well rounded can help you whenever things change unexpectedly. When your unforeseen circumstances come up then you’re able to adapt and adjust without even thinking about it. You would have the uncanny ability to switch from traditional to southpaw without even knowing you did so just because the situation called for it. 

Take a look at what you’re good at and see how you can add to your toolbox. Become good at a few things instead of just great at one just in case your situation changes unexpectedly and you have no other tools to fall back on. It’s one thing to have a pair of pliers in your toolbox and never having to use them and it’s another not having pliers in there at all and actually needing them right at that moment.  

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

What’s your key words?

Today, during our morning training, I decided to do something a little different with the salesmen. Instead of training on product or process I wanted to train on some possible personal and life principles that may help them inside and outside of work.

My thought process was to try to give them something that may help them in life and that might even get them to thinking about their future. Most of our salesmen are in their 20s and every once in a while I try to train on something that gets their mind away from work and possibly on something that may be more important and even more beneficial.

So, I handed each one of them a sheet of paper and asked them to fold it in half. At the top of the paper I asked them to write down some key words about themselves. In other words, if someone were to search for you online, what key words would you hope they would use to search for you? Key words are primarily what you would use to make sure that your product or service may show up in an online search. I gave them that example and asked them to write down a few. Some of the results were honest, trustworthy, good father, straightforward and loving and there were many others. These were all key words they came up with that they felt they would want to be searched by and these are ones I would say as well.

Once they were finished I asked them to write at the bottom of the page a description of how they want to be remembered in life or what they want people to be able to say about them if they were gone. It didn’t have to be long at all and might even coincide with the key words that they had already written. Sure enough it turns out that many of their key words they wanted to be searched by were also how they want to be remembered. 

We talked about their responses, if they wanted to share, and then I posed a question to them. I asked them to look at what they wrote and honestly ask themselves if they lived these words out daily. Basically asking them to evaluate themselves to see if their key words actually represented their life. Were their key words a good description of how they are living their life now? Only they know those answers.

The primary reason I asked them to do this is because we often think more about ourselves than we should or someone else might think. Many people can look at the way we are living our lives and pretty much tell what we are all about. We often try to put on a facade just to make people think we are something or someone we are not just to impress. The same goes for us. We often want to look at ourselves in a positive light and in no way are we living like we want to believe we are. It’s sometimes very hard to give ourselves an honest evaluation of our character and therefore end up living a life that is opposite of what we want to be portraying to others. I really wanted to see what they thought about themselves and if they would be honest when they evaluated themselves. I totally agree that no one is going to be perfect and living that standard of life all the time but it’s all about the direction and not necessarily perfection. If you can take an honest evaluation of your own life and character then there is a great chance that you are willing to work at trying to be a better person and actually desire to live up to your key words. 

I know that they possibly weren’t really wanting to be honest at that moment when evaluating themselves because what 20 something year old does right? But what I was hoping might happen is it would get them to thinking about where they are currently in life and maybe even where they might be heading or wanting to go. Sometimes just dropping something for them to ponder and think on a little could maybe just maybe get them started on a better path than they are currently on. 

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Who are your blinkers for?

Have you ever been driving down the road and someone cuts over in front of you really quickly or maybe makes a quick turn right in front of you without using their blinkers? How did it make you feel? Did it scare you or make you angry? Have you ever done it to someone else? I’m betting that if you’re a driver then you’ve done it at some point or another.

Who are your blinkers for? 

Have you ever thought about that? We drive our cars almost everyday and we probably haven’t really even thought about this question. If you really think about it then it is pretty obvious that the blinkers, in your car, aren’t for you. They aren’t for you! Then who are they for? They are for other people that’s outside your vehicle. They are for the people driving other cars. They are for pedestrians possibly riding a bike or walking down the sidewalk to let them know that you may indeed be changing lanes or maybe even turning. 

Though every car has blinkers it’s true that not everyone uses theirs. I mean they probably don’t use them all the time or at least I don’t. I probably use them 90% of the time but I’m definitely not 100%! If the blinkers are on every car and meant to alert other people then why don’t we use them all the time? Wouldn’t it possibly be safer if we used them like we should? Isn’t it probably more considerate of other people if we used them more often? So why wouldn’t we use them all the time? I’ve come up with 2 reasons why someone might not use their blinkers like they should.

1)  We aren’t always considerate of other people. Many times we don’t think about other people even though we may claim to. We often want to make ourselves believe that we are always thinking of others and always considerate but you probably don’t use your blinkers all the time either! I know that not using your blinkers is not the end of the world and doesn’t always mean we are inconsiderate all the time but just stay with me because I am going somewhere with this.

2) We are always in a hurry. We have busy lives and we always seem to be in a hurry to get somewhere or do something. We often are always running late to work, school or an engagement so we don’t have time to slow down much less use our blinkers. I know that we still use our blinkers sometimes when we get in a hurry but it’s probably very likely that we forget to use them as much as we usually do when we aren’t in a hurry.

Regardless if your aren’t considerate of other people or you are always in a hurry using your blinkers are important. We need to be able to let people know where we are going and what we are doing while we are driving. We sometimes probably take the fact that other drivers will know what we are going to do and maybe not use them but any of these could cause an accident and maybe even hurt someone.

Where am I going with this common sense stuff?

How does this fit into our lives and become a life lesson? 

Well, I’m glad you asked!

We walk through life sometimes and take things for granted. We walk by people without acknowledging them or speaking. Sometimes we don’t acknowledge people that may be having a bad day or don’t say “hi” or “how are you doing?”. We sometimes seem to look past people just so we won’t have to say something to them. Have you ever purposely ignored someone or acted like you didn’t see them just so you wouldn’t have to talk to them? I’m sure you have at some point!  

So why do we do this? What makes us act like this towards other people? And how does not using your blinkers become an example of how we treat people?


1) Just like we are inconsiderate for not using our blinkers sometimes we are also inconsiderate of other people we are around everyday. We come into contact with many people every day. We have people we work with, converse with or even see at the gas station or the grocery store and yet, with all those people we see, we go out of our way to ignore and dodge them. I’m not always the most cordial guy either so this applys to me as well. I also understand that not everyone will nod or speak back if you acknowledge them so I get the fact that it can get tiresome trying to be nice to people especially since some, if not most, will reject your friendliness. 

2) We are in such a big hurry in life that we seemingly don’t have time to acknowledge others. We are walking fast past people or maybe just have our head down so that we won’t have to acknowledge others. We always seem to be running too late to speak or say hi to someone. It’s almost like we are in a race and the only participant is us and we are the only one we are concerned about. 

Whether you are inconsiderate to others or even in a big hurry all the time it is important to understand one thing! You never know when something you say or an action you do to someone can effect their day or maybe even their life. You never know how awful of a day someone is having or what has happened in their life recently. So when you are ignoring, being inconsiderate or in too big of a hurry to notice people you may miss the chance to change their day or make a difference. I’m not saying that every time you speak to someone that they will all of a sudden change their outlook on life but it couldn’t hurt. Maybe you are the icing on the cake. Maybe they had been having a terrible time in their life and you just happen to be the final piece to the puzzle. 

My point to all this is to take time in your life and try and make a difference in someone’s life. It could be a simple “good morning” or maybe just asking how their day is going or if you can help them with something that can change their outlook. Maybe it’s just noticing the fact that they are struggling with something and listening. Somtimes just the mere offering of an ear can make a world of difference to someone’s life. Be courteous, be considerate, stop being in so big of a hurry and acknowledge others because we all live here together so why not at least try to make a difference. 

Though we aren’t going to be perfect at this it only takes 1 to make a difference in someone else’s life!

Monday, July 16, 2018

Do you feel trapped?

Why are we so surprised when a wild animal goes wild? This is the question that I asked on my morning video this morning. The reason I decided to talk about this subject is mainly because of the event that happened over the weekend at a zoo here in the U.S. Apparently a Jaguar got loose in the zoo and killed a few animals. I don't think any people were harmed and I'm not really sure what happened to the Jaguar at this point but I still want to use this as an analogy to get you thinking.

I often hear stories of people getting attacked by wild animals. Many of these animals that are doing the attacking are wild animals that may be in zoos or carnivals or maybe even used for some type of shows but that's not necessarily the only times these attacks happen. I agree that attacks can happen in the wild and with unprovoked animals but the main ones I want to refer to now are the ones that are kept in captivity of some sort.

Think about the people that "train" bears for example, what would we say if the trainers were eventually mauled by a big Grizzly? Or what would we think if someone that trained tigers or lions got attacked and eaten during some training session or during a show? If you heard about some divers that liked to swim with the sharks ended up being attacked by the very sharks they were swimming with what would you say? Or if you happen to hear about an alligator handler putting his head in a gators mouth and ended up getting chomped on what would you think? What about a snake "charmer" that might have gotten bitten by one of the snakes he was trying to charm? What would you say about that?

Though very unfortunate and sad as these may be the very first thing that I think is... "Why are we so shocked when a wild animal acts wild?" Should we be surprised at all when a wild animal uses its natural wild instincts or abilities? Why must it shock us when we hear about someone getting attacked by one of the WILD animals they are in the ring or cage with? Heck, for that matter, I'm not really surprised much when a "domesticated" animal attacks someone much less a "wild" animal. I don't want to see anyone attacked by any animal but I hope you see my point.

And the point is this...

When given the opportunity, a wild animal will try to escape. They will resort back to their natural instincts when threatened or if they desire food. It doesn't really surprise me when I hear of an animal getting out in the zoo by jumping a fence or climbing a wall. Granted, many of the animals that we encounter in the zoos are not dangerous for the most part but for this post I am wanting to point out that most animals, dangerous or not, would possibly try to escape when given the opportunity.

What does this have to do with anything and what does it have to do with me?... you might be asking at this point.

Well, in life we seem to be just the opposite of the wild animals. Instead of desiring to and trying to escape from what seems to be a captive situation we seem to relish in it. We often times talk about how unhappy we are in a job, for example, but instead of doing something about it we just continue to hold on no matter how unhappy we are. Instead of taking a way out we get scared and don’t pursue the opportunity to be free. Unlike the animals that desire to escape, and will when given that opportunity, we seem to be afraid and would rather continue on as we are.

Why is this? I don't really know all the answers but I will offer one.

I think the main reason why we do this is because of FEAR. We are afraid to fail, we are afraid to succeed or we are just plain afraid. We often allow fear to dictate all we do. We get comfortable in a certain situation or maybe a job and because we are comfortable we stay no matter how unhappy we are. We may be content with just getting by even though we might be miserable and though there may be a much better opportunity awaiting us. We may be so familiar with the situation we are in that we don't want to risk anything unnecessarily even though we probably should. Fear is one of the leading causes to us feeling like we are trapped in many of the situations we are in.

How do people get to this point? What makes people have the fear they have? Again, I don't know all the answers but I will give you a couple that I think contribute to this and both of these can actually fall under one category but I will go ahead and lay them out as I have them written down.

1) People make excuses. I am definitely guilty of this one. We tend to make excuses because we are simply afraid to try something or take a chance on something. We start thinking about the things that could happen if we go through with it and the excuses come flowing out. When this happens you tend to give up on whatever idea or plan that you might have had and usually don't even want to think about it or try it again. We allow fear to create excuses and it's usually to make us feel better about the decision that we made.

2) We blame others and play the victim. This is the one you probably witness the most today. When we get afraid we tend to like to blame others for a failure or a missed opportunity in life. We like to point the finger at others when we don't do something that we want to do. When something doesn't go our way we tend to not take that responsibility on ourselves. If we don’t get the promotion or the raise we don’t take responsibility. It’s always someone else’s fault! It’s so easy to blame others for our shortcomings or missed opportunities when many times it is because of us. But it’s so much easier to blame others in order for us to feel better about the situation.

Do you feel like you’re trapped? Do you feel like you’re in a cage and you don’t seem to want to leave? Are you comfortable there or are you just afraid to escape? Are you going to continue to stay there or are you going to be like that wild animal that can’t wait to escape? I know it’s fearful to try new things but letting fear control you can keep you from growing and doing new things in life. You have to stop using excuses and playing the victim! You have to almost get to the point to where you are very much uncomfortable in the situation you’re in to at least attempt to escape. Sometimes you have to climb over the wall, sometimes you have to dig under the fence or you may even need to cut the fence in order to get out just so you can say that you truly have given an effort to accomplish what you think you want to do. You don’t want to go through life with the regret of not at least trying simply because you are afraid. Remember that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side so you may need to research, plan and work harder just to find out what may be the best option for you. 

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Transparent....Not Invisible!

During a recent Facebook Live Jeff Parton and myself decided we would discuss why we are trying to be so transparent on social media and what we hope to accomplish by doing so. Now, when I am talking about being transparent I’m not talking about being invisible nor am I talking about making yourself unseen on social media. It’s really the opposite and it’s very important so let’s discuss a little bit of what we talked about.

In the business we are in, the car business, it is very important to continue to learn and adapt. The old school mentality and way of doing business is basically headed out the door. It’s getting both harder and easier to sell cars. What do I mean? Well, with the expansion of the internet it has created a new culture of buyers. The new buyer does much of their actual research online before they even go to the dealership and now, because of that, they are visiting far fewer dealerships. So why do I say this is a good and a bad thing? Well, the good is the fact that buyers are far more educated and knowledgeable about what they want but the bad is the fact that if they are indeed doing most of their research online then they are also shopping online which in turns causes less actual dealership visits. What this does is gives us fewer chances to physically be in front of customers on the lot but the good thing about that is, though you may have fewer customers on the lot, the ones that actually make it to the lot are probably buyers. 

So, that being said, being transparent online is important and could prove to be beneficial. Why? Well, if people are doing most shopping online then it would be important because if they do happen across your info or social media during their searching then they will be able to see who you really are and see what you’re all about. I’m not saying that you must expose all of your deepest darkest secrets but it’s about sharing your ups and downs. It’s about showing your good times and some of your struggles. It’s much easier to trust people that are open and transparent and that’s part of why it’s important to be so.

I know you’re probably thinking that you don’t want to share things online for everyone to see. I get that and I sometimes have issues giving everyone every single one of my struggles so I try to be selective but I still try to give the ones that I believe may help someone else. One thing I try to remember and that is the fact that here in the near future video is going to be the most rendered result during online searches and if that’s the case you have to be able to be found on video and video is the best way to show people who you really are. Now, I’m not suggesting that everyone needs to run out and start doing videos because not everyone is going to be good at video but there are other ways to be transparent and let people know who you are such as regular written post or maybe even a blog post.

So, I have touched a little about why I try to be transparent online but let me go a little further.

The fact is that people buy from who they like, know and trust. Just a few years ago customers would come to a business or dealership and that’s how they got to know you. Now, they can know about you and your business beforehand and decide if they want to even visit you or not while sitting behind a computer or phone. So, if that’s the case, you not only want to have online presence but you also want to be real. The more real you are then the more people can get to know you. Again, I’m not saying to expose all of your past transgressions necessarily but you must be real nonetheless. 

Having said all of that, there are basically 2 reasons why I want to be transparent to some extent online.

1) I do it so people can get to know me and possibly like and trust me. If most people are searching and shopping online and most people buy from people they like, know and trust then it only makes sense to help them during that process. First, if you have no online presence at all you will probably struggle in the future but second, if you aren’t open and transparent then people may think you’re fake. It doesn’t help that most people have a negative view of car salesmen anyway so why must we continue to confirm what they already believe and act like we have things to hide. Often times if they see you being upfront and transparent about possible struggles in your life then it may be a little easier for the customer to actually believe what you’re telling them during a buying transaction.

2) I try to be transparent in order to help others. Ultimately this is the one that I think of most of the time. I think about who I can help with what I say or do. If I am sharing a struggle or tough time in my life it is usually because I think there may be someone else out there with a similar struggle that might can relate and maybe what I have to say may help them. Also, if I have something positive or uplifting that I think may help someone then I share that as well. This could be anything from motivation, a certain way to do something or helping a customer buy a car. I try to have a wide range of videos and avenues in order to get information out that may can help others. 

Again, I am not saying that everyone needs to run out and do videos and to share all of your deepest darkest secrets. I am simply sharing the reasons I do it and how it may help. If you’re in sales then videos and online presence will be helpful but I totally understand that not everyone is comfortable doing them and posting them but you must find another way to get a presence online and let people know who you are and what you’re about and in doing so it is very important to let people see who you really are because no one likes a fake person. If they see you as fake they definitely won’t like, know or trust you. 

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Walking uphill both ways?

Today as I was coming up with my topic I thought of an old saying that some older people use to say. It went something like, "When I was your age I use to walk to work/school uphill both ways in the snow, backwards and with no shoes on" or something like that. Okay, so I added one or 2 things but it still makes sense and is relevant to my topic for today.

Does it feel like this sometimes in life? Does it sometimes feel like you're walking uphill both ways and that you never seem to be able to reach the top? Does it feel like you're struggling when you have no real reason to feel that way? Often times we feel this way and yet don't even know why. We all of sudden one day just start feeling like the world is on our shoulders and can't explain it or why it is happening.

I did come up with a few reasons why this may happen and I would like to share them with you.

1) Sometimes the reason we feel like this is self-inflicted. Sometimes this feeling comes on us because we are naturally negative and always assume the worst. We sometimes get in these moods where we believe nothing will go right for us. On the other hand, sometimes we end up feeling like this because maybe we've made a poor decision or maybe even multiple poor decisions. Either way we are the one that causes us to feel this way and maybe the ones to blame.

2) Maybe something happened in your life that brought you down. We often go through things in life that could cause us to feel like the world is on us and maybe it was something that is uncontrollable like some health issues or maybe even a death. There may have been some abuse in a relationship that's caused the uphill struggles that you can't seem to get over. Sometimes this category is the hardest to fight through.

3) Maybe there was a decision at work that was made that wasn't in your favor. I know it's easy to say to not let work get to you but sometimes this can be a hard task especially if you spend most of your time there. It is especially true if you actually care about what you do and who you work for. If there are decisions made that are outside your control it's true that we shouldn't worry about it but sometimes that's easier said than done especially if it affects you financially. 

4) Maybe there have been some changes at work or maybe some restructuring. Maybe the declining culture where you work has brought you down to the point where you see no way out. There may have been some new rules or guidelines that you see as impossible and that has caused you to become a little down in the dumps where it seems impossible to come out of. 

5)Maybe the people you're around on a daily basis don't seem to care and you think there is no reason for you to care either since they don't. This one is easy to let get to you since it's the one that seems one of the most common. Though I don't expect everyone to care I do expect some to. When this is a common thought process I can assure you that it will rub off on you.

Can you relate to any of these? I'm willing to bet you can relate to at least one if not multiples!

Why am I going over this? Well, in an effort to be transparent and show you that even some of the most known or maybe even most successful people go through times when they are struggling and I wanted to share that right now is one of these times for me. I can't explain why really but it has been going on for a little bit now. I haven't been having any issues at home.... which is the most important thing to me. I have had some issues at work that may have contributed to this feeling but nothing that should drive me to unhappiness. I know we all go through things but not everyone shares what they go through in order to help someone else which is what I am trying to do.

Now the question might come up as to what am I doing about it? What am I doing to try and get out of this funk that I am in? Well, there are 4 things that I think help me and may help someone else in this predicament. Not that these are going to work for everyone or that everyone cares but these are the ones that I rely on.

1) Keeping my faith in the One that gives me all things and also prayer. Neither one of these are easy and neither one am I perfect at. I try and stay strong but it's often times easier said than done. The hardest thing to remember is that He is in control and knows more than I do. He knows what He's doing and I don't and I have to try to understand that, though it is a very difficult and daunting task.

2) I try to remember that there have been struggles before and that I have come out of them okay. Though every situation is different I try to remember that there may be a light at the end of the tunnel even though the tunnel looks extra long sometimes.

3) I try and continue to do things that keeps my mind engaged and clear. The mind is probably the most powerful and yet the most dangerous thing we possess. The mind, if allowed to, can determine so many things that you do or don't do in life. It has that kind of power! So I try and continue being positive, jovial and outgoing even though I don't want to sometimes. I try to still shoot my videos and make my posts even though sometimes I'm not posting exactly what I want or how I actually feel. 

4) I try to make sure I have people that I trust in my corner. It helps to have friends that will tell you the truth and not necessarily what you want to hear. It helps to have people surrounding you that can and will listen and actually give you good advice and it also helps if they have been through something similar as you in which they can relate.

I don't tell you these things because I want some kind of sympathy or anything like that. I don't even claim that I have a handle on life because clearly I don't. I'm not even saying that I'm able to overcome every obstacle that comes in front of me because I can’t and don’t. I am not even offering you the way out of every situation because what may work for me may not work for you at all. I am simply wanting you to see that many people struggle with things that may not bother someone else at all. I just want to show you that it's okay to be transparent and to show people that you are indeed vulnerable. I want you to see that sometimes showing your weaknesses may be of great benefit to someone that you may not even know and yet can help them during a tough time in their life. I surely don't have all the answers, no one does, but I'm hoping that my struggles up this steep never ending hill may help someone else top theirs!

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Are you missing something?

As I pulled up to the light on my way to work I noticed that there had just recently been a car accident. There were two vehicles that looked to be disabled on either side of the intersection but no one appeared to be injured. It looked like the suv may have slammed into the back of the compact car while it was sitting at the light. By the looks of it there were no airbags deployed but the front of one and the rear of the other were smashed in pretty good.

As I drove by, it appeared that no one was hurt as the emergency vehicles I’m sure were on the way to the scene. While I was driving I started wondering what might have happened and how I could use that situation in a video and blog post. 

The first thing I thought of was all of the reasons or excuses that someone may give when involved in an accident like that. The sun blinded me, I couldn’t see their brake lights, I spilled coffee on myself, I was yelling at the kids in the backseat, I was playing with the radio or I was texting on my phone were all excuses that I thought may be used.

Often times I think many people are in a huge hurry to get to their destination and many times are distracted. Maybe they are running late and they think they have to drive fast to get to their destination even though they would still be late no matter how fast they drove. 

All of these things are very much realistic as to the excuses some may use if they get into an accident but none of which are good excuses especially if you are the one responsible for the accident.

How can I relate having an accident to living life?

Well, first of all, as I tell you this just know that I am talking to myself since this is a lesson that I must learn too. Second of all I think this lesson is one that many can relate to.

Often times in life we get in a hurry. We get in hurry to go somewhere or get something done because we think we will miss something. Maybe we put an unnecessary time limit on something we want to do or a level we want to reach and in doing so we get in a hurry and blow by everyone and everything else in our path.

My point is this.... when we get in too big of a hurry in life we seem to get distracted. When we get distracted we tend to miss the more important things in life. It’s very easy to get distracted with our busy lives and in turn miss those moments we can’t get back. We miss opportunities and events that may never be replayed. 

So, what are we learning from the accident?

Well, when you get in a hurry while driving a car you could get distracted and possibly cause and accident and maybe even hurt someone in the process. When we get in a hurry in our day to day lives we may also get distracted and miss something and possibly hurt someone in the process.

What can be done to make sure this doesn’t happen? It sounds simple but may not be all that easy to accomplish but I will tell you what I think. 

You have to slow down, keep your hands on the wheel and focus on the road ahead of you! If you focus on the most important things in life then you’re less likely to become distracted and therefore maybe you won’t miss those moments you won’t get back! Don’t go through life in a hurry and miss the more important things in life. Don’t be the one that looks back on your life and wonders why you missed so much because I am still relatively young and I already wonder that very same thing myself!

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

How much dirt is under your rug?

Saturdays at our dealership we are furnished lunch so that way we can make sure that we are here and available to assist customers. Well, this past Saturday we had fried chicken which is something we have about once a month or so. Each time we have it there is quite the mess left on the table. Well, everything was cleaned up before we left and all seemed to be in order. Today, as we prepared to have the morning meeting, I pulled out a chair and there were the remnants of the lunch from Saturday in the way of fried chicken skin in the seat. How gross and disgusting! I can’t imagine what some visitors may have thought had they seen that!

Finding these dirty chairs got me to thinking about how this is very similar to seeing someone sweep dirt under the rug on some of the old cartoons that I use to watch. Often times there would be a character that was responsible for cleaning the floor but instead of scooping up the trash and putting it in the can they simply lifted up the corner of the rug and swept it under there. 

It started me thinking to why someone might actually do that and how could I relate this to life.

First, why would someone sweep the dirt under the rug because if you did that enough the rug wouldn’t lay flat? Second, wouldn’t it be simpler to go ahead and scoop up the trash now instead of having to deal with it later on down the road? These should be obvious but what would make someone want to do this? 

1) Maybe they are lazy and they feel like this is the quickest and easiest way to get by.
2) Maybe they are in a huge hurry and that’s the fastest way to get it out of the way.

3) Maybe they just don’t want to deal with the dirt!
All of these could be a reason why but none are good enough reasons really because it would be more work down the road if you were to keep putting it off. 

So, how does this effect you and what could possibly happen if you continued to sweep your dirt under the rug and hide it?

1) It ultimately becomes a bigger mess than it would’ve been had you cleaned it up when you first were sweeping! If you had just taken a little extra time to scoop it up there wouldn’t be a huge lump on the rug where the trash has been accumulating! Instead of being able to get the dirt up with one small scoop with the dust pan now you may have to make multiple trips.

2) It usually becomes harder to deal with! With a bigger mess comes bigger problems. When you allow the dirt to pile up instead of dealing with it you will get to the point where it’s hard to deal with at all and you won’t want to. You may let it get to the point to where you feel there is no way out. 

3) Someone else will find it! Think about this as a kid cleaning their room. You ask them to clean it and they say they do but then you start wondering how they cleaned it so fast so you decide to check. You open up the closet door and an avalanche of stuff comes down on you. This is what happens when you consistently allow your dirt to pile up! It piles up until someone else finds it and now there is no way to hide it and more than likely you will be much more embarrassed than you would’ve had you cleaned the dirt up when you swept.

How does this apply to life?

Simple! We often times don’t want to deal with the dirt we have in our lives! Maybe it’s dirt we created or maybe it’s the result of someone else but either way we don’t deal with it. We keep letting it build and build until it becomes a bigger mess than it would’ve had we acknowledge it and dealt with it from the beginning! It is much harder to deal with as you sweep it under the rug or pile it in the closet and you get to the point where you think it’s gone or you forget about it until someone opens the closet or lifts the rug and sees all the dirt you didn’t want to deal with. Now you have a harder time and a longer road ahead of you to clean up the mess. 

The moral of this analogy is that it is much better to own up to and deal with the mess you make early on because you don’t want it to become too big of a mess to clean up. Though you seem to be hiding the dirt and it does seem to be hidden well in the beginning eventually the carpet won’t lay flat and the closet door won’t close and it will be visible to everyone at that point so doesn’t it make sense to deal with your dirt early on? Don’t wait until someone else finds it before you want to deal with it because then it may be too late!

Monday, July 9, 2018

Your friends bleeding you?

At some point in your life I’m sure you’ve washed clothes if you’re old enough to do so. In doing so I’m sure that at some point you’ve washed some that’s bled on others in the wash. It’s very frustrating for this to happen especially if it’s happened on more than one occasion!

As a young man, as I was learning life, I had this happen on a number of occasions. Most of the times it either involved darker towels that bled on each other or even jeans that bled on other clothes. It’s definitely a costly lesson to learn. It’s a little frustrating to pull out what was suppose to be a white towel or T-shirt that is now pink or or blue or black. 

Why did this happen though? Well, in my case, I was usually a little lazy and just threw everything into one load and the new towels would bleed onto whatever else was in there. So the problem lies in the fact that I didn’t separate the clothes. Sometimes it’s necessary to separate the lights and the darks or the clothes from the towels to make sure nothing is ruined during the wash cycle. 

What could happen when you don’t separate the clothes before you put them in the wash? Well, for starters it could cost you money. Often times once your clothes got stained or bled on by other colors you would either trash them or they turned into yard working clothes or something like that. The second thing that might happen is you might feel a little heartbroken if your favorite shirt or pair of pants became discolored while in the washing machine. You might often also end up throwing them away. One thing is certain though and that is if you were to have these things happen then you would likely learn your lesson and not let it happen again because it could become costly. 

What does separating clothes have to do with anything?

It’s a simple analogy actually!

Let’s apply it to life in which I think many of you will be able to relate!

Have you often times had to fight many battles that you thought might be unnecessary? Have you been in constant struggles that you feel there is no way out from? Have you been placed in difficult situations which required difficult decisions? Have you possibly had problems trusting people or maybe even landing the job you want? 

If you have then you may need to evaluate the people you are around or hang around on a regular basis!

The reason I say that is the fact that often times, though you don’t intend it, the people you hang around have a tremendous effect on you and many times it isn’t a good effect! Often times they are bad influences whether it’s a friend, family member or even a coworker. It could even be someone you grew up with or maybe even a mentor that has been a bad influence on you and because you were close to them you couldn’t see it.

I want to submit to you why I think that you must separate yourself from those same bad influences and what may happen if you stay in their company.

1) They can hurt your reputation because often times we are guilty by association. Somebody may see us with a certain individual and just assume we are doing the same bad things they are. It’s unfair seemingly but it definitely could happen! So, the next time you miss a promotion or don’t get the job you wanted you need to look at your center of influence and see if there is someone there that is affecting your reputation and contributing to the downfalls or shortcomings in your life!

2) They could be costing you money! Ever seem to go through your paycheck faster than you thought? Ever run out of money after the first weekend after you got paid? Do you seemingly support someone else’s habit?   Do you end up paying every time you and your best friend go out? Yes?! Then chances are you have someone in your life that is taking advantage of you and costing you money!  I’m not saying this happens in every case but in my case this was a big indicator. You may need to have a separation!

3) They could cause you to have trust issues! This could come from family or friends that’s maybe taken advantage of you or hurt you in someway. In many ways this one will hurt more of your future relationships than any of the others and is often times the hardest one to fix or get over. If you constantly have someone in your life that is taking advantage of you, lying to you or maybe even hurting you in some way then it may be that you need to separate from that friend or family member.

4) They could be keeping you surrounded by the temptations that you are trying to get away from! This one is also tough and dangerous. It could be a variety of things that this one covers from drugs to theft but whatever the vice or addiction it doesn’t help to stay around the people that possibly helped you start your habit in the first place and these are also the ones that are usually enticing you continuously! You need to separate yourself and not allow them to dictate the direction of your life through temptations!

All 4 of these things come down to the fact that often times these people that are causing these things in your life are really just trying to hold you down and hold you back. Many times they aren’t going anywhere in life and they just want company. They are usually the ones complaining that they have no money and no one will give them a job. They are often the same ones asking you to front them some money or wanting you to take them out so you can pay. It’s easy to see them if you’re looking for them! I didn’t use to be able to see them when I liked their company! 

If you are constantly struggling in certain aspects in life then you may need to evaluate your company. It may not always be the people you’re hanging around but definitely could be. If it turns out that you have bad influencers in your life then it may be time to separate the laundry so they don’t bleed you anymore!

Friday, July 6, 2018

Are you taking risks?

This morning, as I’m sitting in my couch, I have to admit that I’m a little nervous. I guess anxious may be a better way to explain this feeling. In a few hours my wife and I will be signing the papers to close on the land we are purchasing and this is a new venture for us.

This started just a couple of months ago once we decided to stay put in the area we are in. My wife started telling me that she thought it would be a good idea to build a venue where you could have weddings and parties and such. While she was telling me this I could see the excitement in her eyes. She is a very talented woman and I knew by just the way she was telling me this that she had some great ideas. The next day I really started thinking on it and let her know that I also thought it would be a good idea. 

Once the decision was made to move forward with it we said that we should also build a house. My father in law helped us find some land which he bought some too in order to build. We are going to build an event barn and a home on the same acreage that we decided to purchase. At this point it’s very hard for me to see the entire vision of what’s going to happen very soon but I trust my wife’s creativity and ability to see everything set up and I will go along with that. She has the ability to see something before it’s done. She makes stuff for people and it’s amazing to see her mold them into a final masterpiece so I see this as being no different. 

Why am I telling this story?

Well, since we are on the verge of taking a huge leap in our life I want you to know that I am a little afraid. I am afraid of the unknown. I am afraid of what happens if all this doesn’t work out like we want. I am afraid of what happens if something goes wrong. I’m afraid to think of what happens if one of us is not able to work or perform to the top of our abilities. I’m afraid of things that haven’t happened yet and that may not ever happen.

Why is this something that I’m willing to reveal?

Simple! I want you to know that it’s okay to be afraid. It’s okay to have concern or doubt. It’s okay to wonder what the future holds. These are all normal feelings when you take big risks. Make no mistake about it,  I do want this to happen and can somewhat see the vision but when taking a risk of this sort it gets a little scary. One thing is for certain, this I want you to know, and that is the fact that in order to find out what will actually happen you must take risks! If you never take a risk you will never know what you’re capable of or know your potential. Taking a risk is the only real way to see what you’re made of. So whether it’s moving to take a new job or building a new home when you don’t necessarily know what your future holds there will always be a risk taken. 

I want this to happen for my wife and I’m willing to do anything to help her realize this dream. I know this is a big risk but I want her dreams to come true and I want to support her. I haven’t exactly realized my dreams in life since I’m not sure that I’ve really had any real ones but this one that she has I feel will become a reality but it’s a fearful thing nonetheless. 

Remember this if you don’t remember anything I said in this post...

If you want to realize your dreams there must be risks involved! Sometimes it may involve an investment of money or maybe just time but it’s a risk nonetheless. It’s very hard to know your full potential if there are never any risks in life. Will things always work out like you want them to? No, but how will you know if you don’t try at all?

 I’ve played it safe my whole life and now it’s time to risk something in order to gain something! 

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Who keeps pooping on the porch?

If you are an adult then chances are at some point in your life you had a dog as a pet. In many instances you got the dog as a puppy and took the liberty of raising it and nurturing it as it became a part of the family to some aspect. It probably ended up sleeping with you or very near you and even stayed by your side while you were walking around your house. One thing is for sure and that is that the relationship probabaly didn’t start off too grand!

When you get a new puppy it seems to be so sweet! It is so cute and cuddly! It has the cutest little bark and even has nice puppy breath. You love on it and squeeze it and all is fantastic.... until you have to house train it! The first time you have to pick up puppy poop or step in it you realize that this may not have been a good idea. You start trying to train it but you realize that this little animal is a pooping and peeing machine and no matter how much you take it out there always seems to be more to come!

We were always taught to rub it’s nose in it or close to it and pop it’s butt and put it outside in order to train it to not go in the house. You have to make sure you get up in the middle of the night to let it out so you don’t end up stepping in something on your way to the bathroom. You have to make sure you take it out multiple times during the day to make sure it doesn’t go in the house. Taking care of a puppy is almost as tiring as taking care of an infant. 

Well, let’s say that your puppy gets a little older and has learned to scratch at the door to go out and you think it has finally learned. Then you let it out and instead of going to the yard to use the bathroom it goes on the porch. So now you have to spend time trying to get it to actually make it to the yard to finish its business. It almost seems like there is no end in sight.

Then the dog gets older and for some reason or another  the dog always wants to poop in the house or on the porch and you’re thinking to yourself ‘What am I doing wrong?’ So, you decide to find a different owner since you’ve stepped in its poop for the last time. Though it’s hard to do, it may be necessary because possibly the dog doesn’t like you or the circumstance it lives in or quite frankly maybe it’s just very stubborn and likes to make you mad. Either way you have to make a tough decision and let it go. 

What is my angle here and what does this have to do with anything?

Who keeps pooping on the porch?

Do you have someone at work that you work with or supervise that for some reason or another likes to always poop on your porch?

Chances are that you either have one currently that you work with or supervise or without much effort you can think of one from the past.

What’s does pooping on the porch mean before you answer that?

Well, do you have someone, that you work with, that’s always negative and loves talking about people. Do they often talk about fellow employees in a negative light? Is there someone that talks about your place of business or the people they work with negatively in public?  Are they quick to point out all the the faults and negative things about the people or the business and rarely, or if at all, speak of anything positively? If so, you may have one that likes to poop on the porch!

How do you deal with one that does so?

 Well, first you have to be able to see how this affects the people and the business. Chances are that this type of attitude is a huge distraction and more than likely causes others to be negative as well. If this type of behavior continues it could actually be a disease that infects all involved and may possibly decay the workplace from within.

Is there anything that can be done? Sure, if someone likes to poop on the porch like this then it can be a couple of things. 1st, maybe there is a training issue. Maybe this particular person is so negative because they weren’t trained properly and seems to think that they deserve more.(Not that negative behavior is ever a good thing and should ever be tolerated).
2nd, maybe this person is just bitter. Maybe they are just mad at life in general and don’t see anything in a positive light. Maybe they had a hard life and like to take it out on everyone else. They are the one that wouldn’t take extra training or positive feedback as a good thing. This is the one that you’ll probably recognize and see the most. They are the negative Nancy that can’t ever see the good or positive in anything and yet are the same ones that don’t seem to want to help do anything or help change things to make them better. They would rather complain and make everyone around them as miserable as they are.

Both of these are legitimate reasons that someone might continually poop on the porch but neither should be tolerated because it could take a detrimental effect on the workplace and the other people that work there. Should one person’s views and negative behavior be able to influence everyone else? I think not!

The only two things that you can do is to try to help them by training them or let them go to a new home. 

The1st is training them. If you decide to train them then you would have to do so with positive reinforcement and feedback. They need to know why you are doing it and what you’re trying to accomplish. This may be difficult with a very long term employee. They may not understand why the necessity of this new training and feel like they are being singled out. They are being singled out in a way but it’s only because they shined the light in themselves!

The 2nd thing is you have to give them away to a good home! Much like the dog may need a new home to strive, the negative person may need to be let go to show how much their demeanor has effected everyone to the point that they are let go. I know this can be hard but sometimes in order for them or the other people that are employed there to grow then sometimes you have to prune away the dead or fruitless limbs. Sometimes, in order for them to change, they must see the seriousness of their actions and sometimes merely words are not enough.

If this is you and you find yourself constantly being negative and being a bad influence in the workplace then maybe you need to go somewhere else before you are made to go. On the other hand, if this is you and you want to continue where you are then maybe you just need to ask for help and see if there are ways to help you get some training to stop pooping in the porch!

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Have your plans changed unexpectedly?

When planning a big trip or vacation you might often make plans. You probably pack certain things well in advance to make sure that you bring all your important items. You would definitely fill up your gas tank in most cases if you are driving to your destination or maybe even to the airport. You might plan your route even though today's navigation systems are pretty good about getting us to the right place. You might even need to plan a time that you and your family need to get up by so that you might leave at the appropriate time. All of these might be in your planning and might be in addition to the months of planning that you may have done in picking the right spot, possibly booking and paying for a room and maybe even buying your airline tickets if where you are wanting to go is too far to drive.

So, as you can see, planning is pretty important and can take weeks or even months but what happens if on the way to your airport you run across some unexpected road construction that may keep you at a stand still for a while or maybe even take you on a detour? What if you were driving along and all of a sudden you get a flat tire and have to stop and change it and because you don't want to drive very far on a temporary you stop at a tire repair shop and get a new one put on that might take a couple of hours? You may even have to stop for an unexpected bathroom stop or two because the kids got sick in the car or maybe possibly there was an accident up ahead on the highway that slows traffic down to a stand still. All of these things, that I mentioned, are often times unexpected and unforeseen and could possibly make you late for a flight or an important meeting.

Even with these unforeseen circumstances trying to hinder your trip you can't and won't give up the fight because many times you may have paid money in advance that is non-refundable. If you don't make the flight or try and cancel your hotel room, in many case, will result in a financial penalty of some sort if not changed or canceled early enough. So, you will fight to make your destinations on time.

In life we also come across some unexpected circumstances that may keep us from a possible goal or dream. There may be an unforeseen financial situation that keeps you from starting a new business venture or maybe an illness that may slow down plans that you might have. Much like the unforeseen circumstances can slow down or hinder your plans for a trip they may also slow down or hinder your goals or dreams. The question comes up of what can be done to possibly plan or prepare for these unforeseen circumstance?

Though many things are very much uncontrollable, I have 3 points that may help you overcome the unexpected in life.

The 1st is that you have to plan for the unexpected. You have to be ready to address any unforeseen circumstance that may arise by being prepared for it already. You must be ready to combat whatever may come about. There will be detours and roadblocks that may come between you and your goal but if you are prepared to fight already then it won't be much of a deterrent. If you know, for example, that a new venture has many risks and what they are then you won't be surprised by them when they show their faces. If you know that you will have to encounter a tough opponent in a new business venture then it isn't as scary as it would be if it just popped up out of nowhere. Being prepared for the unexpected won't be easy because there are many things that could try and hinder your new dream.

The 2nd is that you have to learn how to adapt and react quickly. Often times, even when prepared, there comes about a curveball that maybe you weren't exactly ready for that takes you by surprise. It catches you off guard but you don't let it take you completely off course. You have to have the ability to possibly take a quick and short detour to stay on course or possibly slow down the pace to allow the ball to go past you and then pick up the speed again once it passes. As you learn how to adapt and react you will start being more and more prepared and less and less frightened about what may come at you next. Once you master this then your fear level will begin to diminish since you can overcome any new obstacle.

The 3rd is that you can't give up on reaching your goal or dream. When unforeseen circumstances come up they often times cause us to lose focus and desire. Once we lose those then the dream doesn't seem attainable anymore and we decide to give up. If you give up then it is very hard to start again especially if you think that you are a failure. Are we going to miss marks and goals from time to time? Absolutely we are but that doesn't mean to give up because often times those same failures become our own fuel to reach the next step or level. You have to use the obstacles as fire to fuel the desire to succeed. If you can become one that is able to not allow circumstances to keep you down then that is a success in itself.

I hope this helps someone that may be struggling to make a hard decision or one that constantly struggles with chasing goals and dreams. Realize that sometimes you might make a bad decision or fail to reach a goal but today is a new day and it's okay to make a better decision today and set a new goal for the future and stop dwelling on the past since it is now over!

Monday, July 2, 2018

Have you changed the play?

The quarterback is one of the most important and yet most scrutinized positions in football. The quarterback is generally responsible for running the offense, reading the defense, or even changing the plays on the fly. The quarterback is often also the most criticized position as well. If you are the quarterback of a team you can best believe that you have eyes on you at all times since often times you are viewed as the leader of the whole team.

Many times there is a play signaled in from the sidelines and it is the quarterback's responsibility to make sure that it is called correctly in the huddle and to make sure the rest of the offense are on the same page. If the play isn't called correctly or maybe the signal is read wrong there could be some serious mix up with the rest of the offensive players and it turns into a broken play. But what if the quarterback told the team the correct play that was called in by the coach and then broke the huddle but instead of running that play he decided to run a different play without telling the rest of the players? What would happen? Well, many times, it ends up in a sack of the quarterback, possibly a costly turnover but could even lead up to a possible injury because maybe there was an unblocked defensive player that comes through without being touched and gets a clean hit.

As I said before, the quarterback is looked at as messing up the plays often times but if he were to run a play without telling everyone else what he is doing then he could actually cause damage.

So, what does this have to do with anything? We know about football! What are you getting at?... you might ask!

I'm glad you asked!

Much like a quarterback could effect the outcome of a game by changing the play without telling the team you might effect those around you if you don't do what you say you are going to do. Often times in life we don't do what we say we are going to do or promise to do and seemingly we move on without even worrying about how that might effect someone that we may be close to or possibly even a person that we might supervise as a manager. Having said that, I want to give a couple of reasons why you should do what you say you're going to do by giving you a couple of ways you could effect those same people.

The first, and probably most important one, is the fact that you could hurt someone. Hurting someone, especially a child or spouse, is the hardest one to overcome and rebound from. If you tell a child something, for example, they usually don't forget it and will often times be devastated if you don't follow through on a promise. I have been guilty of this in the past but have been trying my best to follow through with what I say but still come up short.

The second is the fact that if you don't do what you say that you could have people lose respect for you and in turn you could lose credibility and be known as someone that's untrustworthy. This could happen if you were a manager or a leader in the workplace or it could also be something that could happen in the home with the lack of trust from a loved one. Either way, much like the quarterback taking most of the scrutiny of a lost game as one that can't perform in crunch time, you could be viewed in the same light as being one that isn't capable of following through with a promise.

If you indeed care how your loved ones and maybe even employees view you then you need to follow through with what you say you are going to do. The unfortunate thing is that if you only messed this up one time it could have an everlasting effect on your relationships with them. That's a hard one to swallow but it's true. It's about like doing a million things right and no one notices until you do one thing wrong and that's what people always remember. You definitely want to be the one people remember for doing what you say you are going to do so don't mess it up by missing out on a promise that you gave.

Don't be known as the quarterback that lost the big game because those are never forgotten.... and not for a good reason either!