Category Archives: Insight

From Weakling to Warrior

A wounded Leonidas (GERARD BUTLER) roars his defiance at the Persian invaders in Warner Bros. Pictures’, Legendary Pictures’ and Virtual Studios’ action drama “300,” distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. PHOTOGRAPHS TO BE USED SOLELY FOR ADVERTISING, PROMOTION, PUBLICITY OR REVIEWS OF THIS SPECIFIC MOTION PICTURE AND TO REMAIN THE PROPERTY OF THE STUDIO. NOT FOR SALE OR REDISTRIBUTION

Dear Jack ~ One cannot defend middle ground.  Commit yourself.  You are either progressing or you are withering.  You must approach life with a hard-charging no holds barred attitude.  Know that each day that ticks by, we are either getting closer to our goals or regressing.  The choice is yours.

When times get tough I implore you to dig your heels in and fight the good fight of faith.  We often don’t understand why things occur or, more likely, the order in which they happen.  But what I do know is that pain is never wasted and presents us ample opportunity to learn and grow; prosperity most often follows.

The battle is won before it is ever fought, the masterful Sun Tzu teaches us.  Study the great.  Understand how their minds operate; what motivates them.  Surround yourself with fellow warriors and all the forces of darkness cannot stop you.


Own Your Fear

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Dear Jack  ~ Fear is most often experienced when we are inactive and thinking about the future.  When we fully engaged, putting our heart and soul into something, fear is replaced by the rush of pure excitement.

Fear is an illusion; simply a figment of our imagination.  It’s a symptom of living in the future.  Embrace the now.  Live in this moment for that is the only component we can control.  The rest is fabrication followed by paralysis.

Do the hard things first.  Do what others are unwilling to do and you will live in the realm of world class.  Truly epic performers harness the concept fear and use it as a tool.  Own it.


Contribute Daily

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Dear Jack ~ We are meant to contribute.  I don’t mean financially, what I’m speaking of is a soul broadening, dedication to helping others and helping yourself.

Be the man that opens the door.  Be the man that allows traffic in.  Be the man who goes above and beyond for his neighbors.  Why do it?  Because it’s the right thing to do and this world has achieved greatness on the backs of contributors.

Granted, the holiday season gives ample opportunity to engage others and contribute life-giving food for others’ souls.  Why do we wait for Thanksgiving to give thanks and Christmas to give gifts?  It’s the norm in society to follow the lead; I, my son, am asking you to blaze trails.

You need to fall squarely in the asset column of life and in doing so, you will seal your fortunate fate.

 


The Country Wave

Country-road

Dear Jack ~ Out in the sticks we do things a little differently.  You’ll notice different modes of transportation, certain types of dress and unique phrases only reserved for God’s flyover states.  But one thing you will find in common, is the country wave.

Out on rural roads, anytime of the day, you will notice that all drivers give one another a polite “hi” gesture when driving by.  I think this signifies something a little larger than suggests on the surface.

It’s an optimistic, enthusiastic, and emphatic way of life.  While I don’t know my fellow driver, I do share a kindred bond.  Trust.  I trust that they are safe to drive and operate machinery.  I trust that they won’t swerve and hit me head on.  And I trust they respect and honor my prescious cargo on board.  It’s a small sign of approval and for this I am grateful.

If you’ve never tried the country wave, I suggest you do so.  Signal your pleasantries and notice a brighter day and lighter steps.  Say hello and watch the world (and others) open up.


The $10mm Man

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Dear Jack ~ A young man dreamed of being an actor, but in the early 1980s, he wasn’t getting the big parts he wanted.  Broke and discouraged, he drove his beat-up old car to the top of a hill overlooking the city of Los Angeles and did something unusual.  He wrote himself a check for ten millions dollars for “Acting services rendered.”

This young man had grown up so poor his family lived in a Volkswagen van at one time.  He put that check in his wallet and kept it there.  When things got tough, he’d pull it out and look at it to remind himself of his dream.

A dozen years later, that same young man, the comedian Jim Carrey, was making fifteen million to twenty-five million a movie.

Studies tell us that we move toward what we consistently see.  You should keep something in front of you, even if it’s symbolic, to remind you of what you are believing for.


Let Peace Be Your Umpire

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Dear Jack ~ We all have a still small voice inside us.  Yield to your uneasiness and life will begin to take shape.  Ignore it, and your almost guaranteed and tumultuous ride.  9 times out of 10, it’s right.

It speaks to us quietly.  It’s not going to boom down lightning to get your attention. It’s going to be subtle. If you’re going to hear a whisper you’ve got to get close, it’s got to be a priority.  You’re not anointed to be everywhere…

You’ve got to be a risk taker but you also must always take heed to that miniscule feeling in your gut.  If the though is reasonable and right, DO IT.  For it’s this voice, that will take you from the back to the front and unprecedented, abundant, far and above favor.

When you don’t know what to do, slow down and get quiet.  For it’s this silence that will posess your answer.  Careful and calculated reflection triumphs the day.  Perhaps it’s in your favorite chair over a cup of coffee, or maybe it’s underneath your favorite tree outside.  No matter what it is, the solution has to be a priority and you have to yield to that still small voice; and be open for the answer.

Man won’t always be around to help.  For it’s these types of personal decisions that cause you to rise up, achieve greatness and seperate the men from the chaff.  Now put your shoulders back; aim high, shoot straight and your world will begin to take shape.


Last Words…

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Dear Jack ~ Life is short.  This concept isn’t designed to be negative, dreary or driven by despair.  On the contrary, it is meant to be inspiring, mindful and uplifting.  Your Aunt (my sister) works at the Hospice House which gives her a unique perspective into the final moments and thoughts of folks that are leaving this earthly world.  Below are the last words of one of this world’s most “successful” human beings (notice the quotes); successful by society’s standards.  This advice is timeless, practical and these final thoughts are worth reflecting on repeatedly.  Leave a legacy…

“I reached the pinnacle of success in the business world.

In other’s eyes, my life is an epitome of success.

However, aside from work, I have little joy.  In the end, wealth is only a fact of life that I am accustomed to.

At this moment, lying on a sick bed and recalling my whole life, I realize that all the recognition and wealth that I took so much pride in, have paled and become meaningless in the face of impending death.

In the darkness, I look at the green lights from the life supporting machines and hear the humming mechanical sounds, I can feel the breath of God drawing closer…

Now I know, when we have accumulated sufficient wealth to last our lifetime, we should pursue other matters that are unrelated to wealth…

Should be something that is more important:

Perhaps relationships, perhaps art, perhaps a dream from younger days…

Non-stop pursuing of wealth will only turn a person intwo a twisted being, just like me.

God gave us the senses to let us feel the love in everyone’s heart, not the illusions brought about by wealth.

The wealth I have won in my life I cannot bring with me.

What I can bring is only the memories precipitated by love.

That’s the true riches which will follow you, accompany you, giving you strength and light to go on.

Love can travel a thousand miles.  Life has not limit.  Go where you want to go.  Reach the height you want to reach.  It’s all in your heart and in your hands.

What is the most expensive bend in the world?  The sick bed.

You can employ smeone to drive the car for you, make money for you but you cannot have someone to bear the sickness for you.

Material things lost can be found.  But there is one thing that can never be found when it is lost.  Life.

When a person goes into the operating room, he will realize there is one bok that he has yet to finish reading.  The book of Healthy Life.

Whichever state in life we are at right now, with time, we will face the day when the curtain comes down.

Treasure love for your family, love for your spouse, and love for your friends.

Treat yourself well.  Cherish others.”


Be Positive or Be Quiet

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Keep your thoughts positive because your thoughts become your words.  Keep your words positive because your words become your behavior.  Keep your behavior positive because your behavior becomes your habits.  Keep your habits positive because your habits become your values.  Keep your values positive because your values become your destiny.

– Mahatma Gandhi

Dear Jack ~ Stop being afraid of what could go wrong and start being positive about what could go right.  We are what we think about.  It’s ever-so-easy to catch ourselves in mental conversations throughout the day.  The key, is they need to be constructive, deliberate, and positive tones.  Our attitude towards life determines life’s attitude towards us.

Our thoughts lead to actions and our actions lead to progress.  Eternal, battle hardened progress.  They say the average person has about 30,000 internal conversations per day.  Let’s make it positive and uplifting dialogue.  Below are some simple strategies for staying the course:

  1. Wait to worry – count to 10.
  2. Keep an attitude of gratitude – write it down.
  3. Your health is your wealth – no replacement for health and wellness.
  4. Enjoy the serious benefits of a belly laugh – laugh, out loud.
  5. Joy boomerangs – what comes around goes around.
  6. Losing the fight?  Write. – see this blog.
  7. Keep the faith, baby – never, ever give in.
  8. Lean to say “no” graciously – no, means yes.
  9. Understand the power of discipline – discipline = destiny.

We must rid ourselves of the I can’t do it, it’s too hard, and it’s not the right time mentality.  Instead, let’s replace it with I can do all things, this too shall pass and a now or never spirit.  This is no doubt easier said than done.  But practice does make perfect and with effort and vigor we can conquer any and all negative self talk.  Let’s shift from a victim to victor mindset and watch doors open that were previously slam shut, our horizon will open up and you’ll go from the back to the front with one touch of favor.

Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.  And never forget that a negative mind will never give you a positive life.


7 Things Every Child Needs to Hear

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You speak.  I listen.  We dance.  Your life ignites.

– Steve Hardison

Dear Jack ~ What separates world class from the average is the quality of questions we ask.  But sometimes, what’s needed is a statement.  A powerful, opportunistic and epic statement.  What follows are small, yet mighty, ideas that can be spoken over any child, anytime, anywhere.

It is my hope you hear these cross my tongue on a routine and frequent basis.  I was raised by a single mother and grew up a maverick; she instilled many of these phrases in me but truthfully, most of these fell on deaf ears.  I wasn’t ready, willing, or able.  It is also my aspiration that, as you age, you begin to understand the true meaning of these phrases for they are not lip service.  Within each of these is the power to heal, enhance and encourage.

  • I love you.
  • I’m proud of you.
  • I’m sorry.
  • I forgive you.
  • I’m listening.
  • This is your responsibility.
  • You’ve got what it takes.

CAUTION:  These phrases are potent.  Do not use them recklessly.  Use them wisely and watch doors open, relationships blossom and your world shift.  Apply them to your life and not only will you inspire others but, in doing so, your world will open up.  You’ll savor flavors never experienced, notice joy in the smallest of places, and begin to uncover life’s true meaning.  Remember, a blessing isn’t a blessing until it’s spoken so speak freely, from your heart, and your life will ignite and change forever.


Back to the Future

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It is not what you do for your children, but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them succesful human beings.

– Ann Landers

Dear Jack ~ Great Scott, where has the time gone.  Lest we not forget, the only level playing field and formidable currency in life is time.  Seize it and your world will literally change forever.  Dismiss it, and you are destined for an existence of mediocrity, normalcy, and boredom.

If there is one idea I can pass onto you, it’s not to take your days, hours, and minutes for granted.  The sands in the hourglass will continue to fall, whether we like it or not, but it is up to you to use them effectively, efficiently, and appropriately.  Own your day, or the day will end up owning you.

There will come a day, I cannot tell you when it will be, but you will look back on these days.  You will view them through a unique lens, one which only you posess, and you will judge how you spent your moments.  Was it worth it?

Living like you are dying is common nomenclature in today’s fast paced world but it can be an effective strategy when deciding how to spend your day.  Remember the number of your days, He will fulfill.  Fuel your flux capacitor and approach your days with vigor and zeal and the rest, as they say, is history.


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