Work

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What do you want in life?  It’s an age old question, one which may ask and don’t the answer, or maybe don’t want the answer.

If we take some time to really think about what we want and focus on what we love, we could very easily answer the question of what we want. The problem is we get comfortable where we are at and choose not to push ourselves to more. We choose not to keep going harder and stronger.

But we can.  We can work our butts off and get so far.  It takes leaps of faith, it takes risk, and it takes hard work.

You want to land that dream job?  It takes sacrifice, night classes at your community college and working hard.

You want to get that body you’ve wanted?  It takes discipline, day after day hitting the gym whether you feel like it or not, saying no to junk food even when you want it.

You want that girl/guy?  Go all out, lay down your life, and don’t give up so easily.  Work hard.

Everything worth having takes work.  So work your butt off and get there.  No more excuses.

Simple Things

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I’ve been away from home for over 6 months now. I miss them. I miss home. One thing I’ve really come to appreciate during this time of separation is the small things. It’s those little things that constantly fill my mind with memories. Those little things I get to hear and see that make it all worth it.

6 months ago my wife and prepared for this long temporary time apart. It was very hard saying goodbye, but we knew we’d be back together in 8 months. At the time it seemed incredibly long and now here we are with less than 2 to go. There’s been times when it’s not been easy, but it’s been worth it. We know it’s bringing us to a place that we want for our futures, and we will soon be reunited, and it will make that time together all the more sweeter.

It’s definitely given me a different perspective on a lot of things. It’s given me a much larger respect for those whose jobs take them away from their loved ones, much more respect for those who chase after their dreams, because it takes work.

You read about how people struggle to get through things, but you don’t really understand the struggle, you just focus on the outcome. The outcome is worth the fight. It’s worth the journey. But the journey does take work. It does take sacrifice, and it does take having some ugly days. That’s just part of the process. But those days will pass. They won’t last forever.

I say this as much to myself as to anyone reading this, because it’s something I have to remember. I know without a doubt it will be worth it. So whatever you are striving for, keep going and don’t stop. You will be glad you kept going.

Do What You Say

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There is a lack that needs to be addressed and resolved. It’s the lack of follow through. I think most of us could agree on what types of things are right or wrong and at least have an understanding of what values are. At least in theory.

It’s time to stop saying things with only our words. It’s time we back up our arguments, our beliefs, and our statements with actions that are even bolder.

It can be easy to talk a big game from the safety of social media. There is no one staring you in the face, no friends around to influence you otherwise, no pretense to keep up.

But it is another matter when you are with your family or friends and something happens that tests your beliefs. You don’t really want to stand up for the things you truly believe, it would be easier to just go along with them, or to say nothing at all, the safe way out.

But we need to rise up. We need to go boldly forward with not words, but with actions. Living out our beliefs so that they can be seen.

You probably wouldn’t believe a teacher who was trying to make you believe a subject and he didn’t believe it himself.

So why would others believe us if we aren’t living out that belief?

Start showing and quit talking.

Stop Listening

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Stop listening. That’s right. Stop listening to the doubters, the haters, the naysayers. Stop listening to society who says it’s okay to cheat. Its’ okay to lie. It’s okay to not take care of your body. It’s okay to not discipline your children. It’s okay to look at other women, okay to ignore real world problems. Okay to not step in when you see something wrong. Okay to look the other way.
Stop listening to all these lies, because they are nothing more than that. They are lies, and dangerous ones at that. Start listening to your gut, not what others are trying to shove down your throat. We all know what is truly right, and what is wrong. But that gray area in between seems to get larger and larger, until we no longer even see the right or wrong.
Stop listening to white lies and take charge. Take ownership of your life and the actions you choose and stop letting what is popular or what society deems as satisfactory rule your life, and step up and stop listening.

It’s At Your Fingertips

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Literally the world is truly at your fingertips. We have so much opportunity in this world if we are willing to work hard for it. We can do anything we set our minds to .  We have the capability to learn whatever it is that we want to learn.

Is there that person you haven’t mustered up the courage to talk to?  Call them.  Why not?  Do you want to wonder ‘what if’ forever?

What about that country you’ve always wanted to go to?  Why not?  Get your passport, save some money and go.

Wondering if you could ever get your dream job?  Start finding out what it takes, and don’t stop at no.

Don’t lay down and give up the fight ever.  It’s at your fingertips.

Have you wanted to start that business?  Get a business plan together and go for it.

All great things take risk, they take chances, and they guts.  But you have all the necessary tools.  So go for it and take the plunge.  The world awaits.

You Shouldn’t

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It’s really easy to judge. Really easy. I do it way too much. I’m very opionated so that comes out with thinking other people’s ways of doing things are less than my own sometimes. This theory is very flawed, and judging can lead down a very dark road. If you think about it, bullying is just severe judgement that has gotten so far that it comes out in hateful ways.

Judging is something that causes us to look down on other people. None of us have the right nor the authority to look down on anyone. Looking down on others causes us to begin to lose compassion for other people. We lose the ability to see the situation they are in, we lose the ability to empathize with them, and soon when we do that enough we become desensitized to the feelings of others.

This desensitization leads to us no longer caring what we say or think about another individual.

Another form of judging comes through comparison. Normally if we do something wrong we compare it with what someone else has done and we make ourselves feel better by telling ourselves what we did is not as bad as what someone else did. This quickly leads to judgement because again, all we are doing in this is saying we are better than someone else to make ourselves feel better.

So the next time you feel like judging, think about the slippery slope it leads down and steer clear of it. Replace judgement with a sense of compassion and ask yourself how you can relate to the person more rather than judge them.

Be True

 

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Have you ever felt like you have to prove yourself to someone else.  You feel as if they are controlling your life more than you are. Like they have some kind of say as to what is good enough and what isn’t?

Allowing others to control our decisions and actions can be very dangerous because in the process we lose ourselves. We lose our character, and what makes us unique.

Stay original, stay true to who you are.  We can take others viewpoints, and see if there is anything we can learn from it ,but we shouldn’t just take what others say at face value without questioning their motives or whether or not they are looking out for you or themselves.

Those who truly care about you will encourage you in your pursuits, and they will ask questions that make you think rather than degrade what you are doing.

So examine those around you and cut ties with friends who may try to bring you down.

Stay true to you.

Make It Count

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Every day matters. Every minute matters. I know this is a hard concept to grasp.  It is for me I know.

But every minute does matter. Now I know we have responsibilities and things we have to do. We have to provide for our families, get our education and so forth.

But our attitude and our actions can all either propel us towards making a difference or it can keep us stuck.

We have to see what difference we can make in our every day life.  How can you impact your family?  How can you impact your coworkers or your customers?  How can you impact your class-mates?

There is a way that you can make a difference in everyone’s life you come in contact with.  It may be as simple as asking questions, or maybe it consists of lending a helping hand to someone you know is in need.

Regardless of what it is, change your perspective, change your attitude and look for ways to make a difference all around you.

Those seemingly little things are not little and will lead you to making a bigger difference.

Challenge Each Other

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I have a tendency to struggle with friendships.  The reason is I don’t easily allow myself to get close to people.  It’s an issue I have that I am trying to get over. One of those things where you get hurt when you are younger and so you think the best thing is just to not care anymore.

But that’s the worst thing.  It’s taken me awhile but I am realizing the importance and value of friends.  The Bible states that iron sharpens iron, and so it should be in friendship.

Now there are definitely times when you need to cut out certain friends because they are influencing you in a way you don’t need to be influenced.

But quality friends should encourage one another, should challenge each other. Should ask the tough questions.

Even Jesus had his close 12 friends. He confided in them, challenged them, and encouraged them.

So if you are afraid like me of friendship, don’t be. Healthy friends can really help grow you as a person.

 

Love…What Is it?

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As we approach another valentines day love is in the air, or at least in the advertisements.  Whether you are a hopeless romantic or don’t believe in love, chances are you are being bombarded with the million ads and stereotypical shoulds and shouldn’ts.

But one thing we often fail to see is what love actually is.  It’s not flowers, it’s not sappy feelings, or even physical attraction.

You see, there are certain feelings and attraction that draw people together, but inevitable those things fade with time.  It’s a normal part of life that the emotional high will hit an all time low.  It happens….but that is not the end of the story.

In fact, it’s just the beginning.  Love is an interesting thing.  There is a reason on your wedding day you stand and make a covenant before God and other people. Why? You already know you love the person right?

You make that commitment because when you do hit those times that are “for worse,” and “in sickness” love is not a feeling anymore, it’s a decision, those vows help us to remember that.

There are times in your relationship you won’t feel like loving who you are with.  There will be things that you do to each other to hurt each other, unintentional as they may be, they will still hurt.

But choose to love.  Through the good, and through the bad.  Through the smooth days, and the lightning storms.  You will find that by choosing to love, even when it is really hard, you will become closer and even more in love.

Love is sacrificial, it’s not all about you. It’s not about feeling good all the time. Sometimes you will feel like crap, but still strive to love.  It’s not about you, make the other person feel like they are the only person in the world.  Regardless of whether it is easy.

Remember that no one is perfect, think of the screw ups you have done.  Offer grace.

I think one of the biggest pitfalls we get into is thinking that we would just be happy if we were with someone else.  Then we find that once we are with that person, we are back to being miserable again.  This is because the problem isn’t someone else, the problem is in ourselves.  We have a lot of selfishness and wants that in order to experience true and lasting love, we have to let go of our wants sometimes.

Love may not always be fireworks like the media and advertisements may try to fool you into thinking, but it can be more rewarding than anything you’ve ever known.