How We See Ourselves…

In the last few blogs that I have posted we have dealt with a few issues that are easily apparent; negativity, balancing our personal lives, and just “becoming” on a new level. Lets address something that has become apparent to me. Looking from the outside at ourselves can be one of the hardest things to do as we tend to overlook the negative aspects. For example we overrate our abilities because it hurts to acknowledge where we fall short. What we have to recognize is that we are only human, to judge ourselves means we are critiquing who we are and it’s difficult.

When we apply for a job. There is usually some type of question whether verbally asked or on some type of form about what our strengths and weaknesses are. Who really wants to answer the weakness portion honestly? Well my friends, it’s time now to achieve great things, by looking inward and answering this question for ourselves. This is primarily the first exercise that I’m looking to try with myself and hopefully you will do the same.

We all have calendars, calendar books, and appointment books and with these we write things like office meetings, sports events, anniversaries, birthdays etc. But for the next week we are going to look at our efficient or non-efficient use of our time. I like this direction because we all will state proudly, that we are magnificent at time management. This may be true in a work context, but what about when we look at our personal lives. I hear consistently “I need to lose weight or I want to be healthier.” Saying this to me, a former Marine, is like saying ‘I’m hungry and I need to eat.” My reply is go to it. Now wait this is where it gets interesting, the answer is usually “Well I don’t have time.” This is a big flag in my book.

Time is all we do have. I will usually respond to the no time answer/excuse with something to the effect of “What’s your favorite t.v. show?” 90% of the time, I get a response. If we gave up our favorite t.v. shows or if your fancy you could record them using some device and made the time when you have to be home to see this amazing entertainment, well you could be at the gym, working on those few pounds you need to lose. I will be the first to state that I could definitely be more attuned to my time management.

Back to business, so for the next week, beginning Monday keep a log of what you do over the course of your next week. Obviously blocks of time will be given to your job, school, children, but what about the off time. I will post the results of this study and then follow up with a resolution and plan of how better to use my time. Now I only use the example of exercising because it comes up quite often at my school that I attend. Lots of my friends ask me how I produce this blog, my work online, or just writing my “books.” I tell them that all I do is sit down and write for a specific amount of time. With writing there are amazing excuses not to write. They are as follows:

Don’t have a computer. Can’t find the time. Don’t know how to start. Can’t concentrate at my desk. Can’t concentrate at the coffee shop. Can’t get in the groove. Don’t want to write something bad. Haven’t got an idea. This list can be endless. So I usually will tell them to shut up and write. It’s not easy for me. Hell, it’s not easy for me to create this blog, but I do it because it makes me feel good and that I’m using my time somewhat wisely instead of playing games on my iPad, fooling around outside, etc… Writers block is real and can only be conquered some of the time. My favorite authors who I won’t list had many different ways of writing. The two that come to mind easily to fight against writers block were; to begin writing about the day, for example: IT was beautiful outside. 67 degrees, the sun was just right. Birds were chirping, bees were buzzing, and then it became quiet. There were moans coming from the back of my townhouse. I ran to the sliding glass door and looked outside and saw ZOMBIES. Number two was to start where you left off the last time you were writing since it’s always difficult to get those processes rolling again. Basically you write half a sentence and then re-read the paragraph before and finish out your thought in that half sentence.

Good luck, happy writing, and get to work on writing out your time logs.



Visions of Grandeur

One thing we need to keep in mind when following our blueprint is that there are important people and tasks in our life that we can’t sacrifice. I write this because we all have people in our corner that are important to who we are as individuals, as parents, and as friends. When we dig deep into what makes us, well us, we have our personalities, but we also have the people around us that make us succeed or fail. The hardest task is to balance these people in our life. Often we get involved in charging into tasks or setting new goals and we can leave people behind without meaning to. This is when we have to share with others what’s going on, that we are taking big steps into making changes in our life and becoming a new person.
Now this leads me to talk about the negative people in our lives and we surely all have them. The non-motivators in our corner can be severe distractions, it’s bad enough we already have the voice leaning in every time we are a bit unsure if we are taking the right steps towards change. That friend of ours who is always so negative and edgy. Always complaining about this or that and expecting us to right the wrongs of their life for them, it’s time to analyze this person and to really ask ourself if they are a positive or negative influence. If we find them to be a negative Nancy in our world, then maybe the time has come to chat with them and to tell them how much we value them as a friend but we can’t fix their lives for them. What I’m definitely not saying is to write these people out of your life. Being honest and sharing with them the positive aspects of life and how much they are a big part of ours can be a change in and of itself to the negative/attention seekers.
Relatively taking the time to be there for our spouse, children, or friends can be a great way to relieve some built up anxiety about our new designs on becoming. If your already taking the right steps it will show and more than likely you will receive some attention benefitting you by seeing that your taking the right steps, and above all the steps your taking are working.
Vision is important, people who succeed have to have strong vision of the final outcome. Often there are plenty of people who can’t see the big picture of what your doing and will be quick to point this out. Using the power of positive thinking and visualizing techniques can reap huge rewards. I could tell you how to use meditation and positive visualizing till the cows come home but there are many professionals out there who can do a better job than I can. But here goes:
Take 15 minutes out of your day and find a quiet place that you can just sit back and invest in yourself for a short amount of time. Think about how the slimmer new you will look. Think about the smile on your face when your closing on the business deal you’ve been working hard on. Imagine shaking the hands, what the conference room will look like, and most importantly imagine being there. Studies have shown that the power of positive thinking is one of the most beneficial tools we have in our briefcase. I’m no expert on the matter but it did save me a bunch of mental pain while I was in Iraq while I was in the Marine Corps. But if you would like more information about this subject I will recommend “The Magic of Thinking Big,” by Dr. David Schwartz.
“I would rather have a life of “oh wells” then a life of what ifs’.”
Joel Brown

Where is the Blueprint?

So what’s a blueprint? The real question is how to I set up my blueprint to succeed? First is to find the changes in your life that are the main priorities that need to be classified into 3 groups. Your main priority should overlap all your other groups. Picture that you have a large circle and in that will be your main and most important priorities. Then using other rings that meld into your main one, they should be the rings of reform.
Above all you have to personally figure out what goes into each ring. For me my main priorities are to get though school and into speaking engagements. I believe that the rings will have various other points. Network with Toastmasters in my local area. Building a presentation for my motivational speeches.
Here’s what I’ve come to. Behind this blog is a want to help others to see the power that they have within themselves to make changes in their life. There are plenty of advisors out there to get people off drugs, to quit using alcohol, etc. My main emphasis is to help myself by seeing what works with others by utilizing my own methods that I’m building up on. This has a purpose to help others and myself to completely bring about changes within their lives for the better.
Beyond my Marine Corps entrance and exodus, I have brought on much needed changes for my overall health and wellbeing by getting into the gym. It took quite a push to really get in there day to day, but after working hard for 6 months it becomes a challenge to not get myself into the gym. I am also working on quitting smoking which is a main concern in my life as I am not looking forward to my later years full of emphysema and heart attacks. So by going to the gym and working to rid myself of all cigarettes in my life, these changes will permit newer and better ones to come forth. I will become healthier and have a better physical attachment to my body and feel more self-confident.
Did you know that if your 20 lbs or more over weight you very well could be looking at a loss in raises over the course of your life time to the tune of 15 k per year. In a study I did for my Speech class last spring I did a power point on this subject and basically what it was saying that if your in shape your company will give raises not based on performance but by some sort of health standard. Wouldn’t it be nice to have an extra 15 k to invest.

So I leave you with a new task of forming your Blueprint. This will give you a grand way to have something to look at and to keep track of your progress in time to see if your making ways towards becoming the new you.

My Choice to Become.

As I stated in my last post that I would let you all to know about a choice I had to make in my life that led me onto the path I am currently on. This was actually made for me, but it’s the way I chose to utilize what had been given to me, and checking my own self-doubt in the same instance.

In 2004 I had been a young chef for about 10 years. I had spent my entire high-school years in the back of kitchens, skipping school to work, and honing my techniques. I am not shy to say that I had the skills to pay the bills at that moment in my life. I had traveled both coasts and was working for a top notch restaurant in Seattle. On my way to work I was looking out the window of the truck I was in and the next thing I knew someone was asking me if I was allright.

The truck had flipped on its side with my right (dominant) arm going through the passenger side window. Several minutes went by and I was finally pulled out of the truck. My right arm was bleeding severly and I couldn’t feel my hand. Hours in the E.R. went by and the verdict came that I had almost severed my ulnar nerve. After this came plus the 287 stitches I was quite shaken up.

Fast forward 13 months. I was finally done with extensive therapy and was deemed back at 100%. The first thing I wanted to do was handle my knives. Sadly, the feeling and technique were gone as if I had never picked one of them up in my life. This was my first choice of what to do next…
I knew that my career was over and I could drink my sorrow away or move on. I had a son to take care of and knew as much as I hated it that I had to persevere and to start down a new road.

I enrolled in college with little success. It had been years since I was in school and I was not ready for the discipline I needed. I began to fail miserably and that led to drinking. Choice number two was to find something, anything to get me back on track. Enter my savior, well sort of, my grandfather. A WWII Marine and Guadalcanal Veteran, tough as nails at the spry age of 79. I sat down and chatted with him about his experience in the Marine Corps and was so taken I decided to join.

I hadn’t told anyone about this new choice (3) that I was about to make. I was 25 and truth be told had made many attempts at starting something but I was always let them peter out or just gave up, I knew if I enlisted in the Marine Corps, there was no getting out of that. I enlisted on the Marine Corps Birthday and went home to tell my folks. In the parking lot I realized I had finally made a choice of my own to do something good for myself and my country. I still let out a yell wondering what the hell I had just done.

Mom and dad were for me with hints of apprehension. Best friend and brother told me I wasn’t young enough or tough enough to become a Marine. Choice 5 became to prove them wrong. This wasn’t an easy choice and let me tell you the Marine Corps will make you strong both physically and mentally. You face a long drive towards Parris Island, it’s filled with anxiety, dread, and dreams. You know now that you have got to come home a United States Marine or you will have failed everyone, parents, friends, church, you name it even the postman. I say the postman because after the first letter I sent home, he hand delivered them straight to my parents instead of putting them in the mailbox.

It’s now been almost 2 years since I left the Corps. I was a grunt in the infantry and was in a famed unit the 2/2 G Co Raiders. It was the best choice I have made in my life. The self-motivating factor is prize enough to have been given through that experience. The greatest thing I learned is that I had that self-motivation within me. The trials and tribulations you experience through boot camp only reinforce what was already there.

So now we have two pieces to Becoming. We can say we need only our own self-motivation and the choosing of where we want to take our path and to leave self-doubt buried six feet underground. Where are you going to go? It’s up to you. You will believe in yourself, will motivate yourself, and you will make the right choice in taking that first of many steps into your next endeavor. Once you begin to start the desires you have will seem inconsequential, as they will come to you because of the direction your taking. All because you realized you have got what it takes, you can be that Marine, that pilot, that lawyer, or that gal with two homes.

It all begins with realizing you have potential within and the choice to use it.

The Choice We Have To Face

So we have lots of questions to fish out for ourselves. Perhaps we have to first look at desire and determine what desire really means. I’m not talking about a wikipedia answer here. But the question begins with- Is desire linker to our wants and needs? Are our desires ever satisfied or do we go from desire filled to another that has been awakened?

What lies behind our desires, our wants, our needs? What are our motivations behind them? Then we have to ask ourselves, how often do I fulfill these desires?

We want better jobs, nicer cars, vacation homes, but we drown ourselves with questions about what we need to sacrifice to get there to these wants. Inspiration comes to us in various forms: brainstorming, daydreams, quiet drives in our car, or sometimes we get reflections from our worst moments. We step back and from the steps we need to take to get our start, we build up steam, and then shortly fall flat the minute self-doubt shows itself in our hearts and minds.

Self-doubt is our own worst enemy, especially when we have choice as our back-up plan. We have been taught that there are two voices or angels sitting on top of our shoulders, the good and the bad. We listened to the good many times, but then the bad (voice) steps in, letting itself be known. “I can’t do this, it will take to much time to get…fill this in with self-doubt. This is when we realize the first step in getting further in our desires takes a choice.

We face so many choices everyday. But when do we sit down with ourselves and say “What happens if I don’t make this choice to change?” When do we ask ourselves what will happen if we don’t make the right choice? What keeps us from taking advantage of today? Self-doubt. The choice’s can be made for us perhaps by a judge or a doctor, but when left to our own decision it is so much easier to tell ourselves why we shouldn’t make the hard choices.

So I challenge you to make the first great choice. The one that will take you a step closer to your desires and the minute our friend self-doubt raises his voice take a minute to assess what is really happening. Realize that making that first choice in the right direction is easy, but TAKING that first step is always the hardest. Imagine what lies for you at the end, rather then thinking about everything that is going to happen in between.

I will give you a situation that I changed for myself in my next post.

 The first step on a long trip is always the hardest. 

Hello world!

Hello and welcome to Motivation to Become. As this is my first post of many to come in the next 3 months we shall begin a process of trying to figure out Motivation to Become. By educating myself I hope to share with you a new stretch in my capabilities. This has been a challenge thrown out by someone who dares us to challenge what we don’t know and to make it a business.

What business you ask? Well in essence it could be one of many, however for this contest we are regulated to something we haven’t done before for. So for me that kind of narrows a few things. Also I have to find something that doesn’t require lots of licensing, ie.. a lawyer or doctor. Although if this works out well enough, I do think I have what’s already required to have a Doctorate in Motivation. More to come on that tomorrow. For now, this is just an introduction to what I will be accomplishing.

So tomorrow I will begin to detail what I’m going to do for you, the reader and what you can do for me. For now, think of what you want to become and what is stopping you from getting there? Fear, the courage to try something new, lack of resources, don’t know how to start? Don’t worry I will help you eat those stopping points and will begin change those into motivational points.


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