Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Life Without Lies

Life Without Lies

Deception is such a waste of time. It doesn't matter what area you might be talking about - deception or lying never proves to be a positive move. EVER!

Just think of all of the times we have all watched people (many times politicians) try to hide things in their lives only to be found out. And, usually, it cost them their dignity, their families and their jobs.

For what reason?

The same is true with the tendency to lie to ourselves as we have been discussing in the last two entries. What good does it do? What has it done for you so far?


Not so good, huh?

Instead of feeling better about yourself (which was the reason for the lie in the first place) you now actually feel worse than you could ever have imagined.

When you wake up to drink from the cup of HONESTY you find that you have done nothing but hurt yourself - and maybe others - in the process.

How so?

You have hurt yourself in that, not only have you not made progress but you have actually taken several steps backwards. You may have hurt others IF your desire of your goals was to improve the life of not only you, but your family. How has this helped them now?

Have I been too rough on you this week? Hey friend, if were were honest with ourselves and were disciplined enough to kick our own butts from time then you wouldn't need to have it done by someone else.


So, here's the deal - WHAT NOW?

It is totally up to you. The next step depends 100% on you!

It always has and it always will.

I will tell you this, though. Breaking away from a life of deception is not easy! You will likely need some help from someone that you trust and that CAN and WILL help hold you to some accountability. And, even at that, you can easily tell them to go take a hike when they call you on your deceptions.

But, you CAN do it and, if you really desire it, you WILL do it.

We'll talk more about that process in tomorrow's entry.

Until then...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Lies Prevent Progress

Lies Prevent Progress

We began the weeks' thoughts yesterday by talking about the tendency we have to lie to ourselves about all kinds of things.

Sometimes we do so in order to make others think a certain way about us and, many times, we do so in order to try to make us feel better about ourselves.

Here's the bottom line TRUTH of the matter: As long as you continue to lie to yourself about your progress (or lack of it), you will NEVER make progress!

We can convince ourselves that we really are doing all we can when, in TRUTH, we know that we really aren't! We can line up a whole list of "reasons" (cover up for EXCUSES) as to why we "can't" do this or that when, in TRUTH we know that it just isn't so.

So - how's that working for you?

I ended the podcast for this topic by observing that we usually lie to ourselves to try to make us feel better when, in reality - IF we are really serious about making progress - we feel anything BUT better about ourselves when we do this.

Are you sick of it yet?

Until you DO get sick of the lies you will continue to wallow around in the lies and stay right where you are - in that mud pit.

It's up to you!

Tomorrow we'll continue this discussion a little further --- please be thinking and getting REAL with yourself in this area!

And, as you do so...yes, you CAN still...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Monday, June 28, 2010

Can You Handle the Truth?

Can You Handle the Truth?

I'm sure that one of the first things that comes to your mind is that famous line from that movie where the statement is made, "You can't handle the truth!", right?

But, in all honesty (truth?) we must be willing to ask that of ourselves - can we (can YOU) handle the truth when it comes to yourself?

In many areas of our lives it is VITAL that we be honest with ourselves ABOUT ourselves. My guess is that you could talk to an psychiatrist and they'd tell you that one of the main causes of a lot of people's emotional problems is this very thing --- not being able to be honest with themselves.

I would also guess that if you were to ask those that work with people having financial problems you'd find the same thing - people that are unwilling to be HONEST with themselves about their situation.


That's why one of the first and most important steps with ANY sort of addiction is the realization and admitting that one does, indeed, actually have a problem! One of the problems has been DENIAL of a problem and, many times, there has also been a problem of some sort of denial with a family member or family members.

You can likely sit down and think about this and MAYBE admit that, in your own life, this is a struggle for you in several different areas whether it be financial, health and weight loss and/or a myriad of other areas as well.

So, here it is, bottom line: in the area of self-improvement or just the thought of making progress in your desire to reach your goals and dreams - ARE YOU BEING HONEST WITH YOURSELF about your EFFORT and your ACTION?

The truth is that many -if not most - are not.

Go back and visit all of the excuses that are usually disguised as reasons.

We'll be talking about this all week and I hope you 'll join me on this journey to "get real" with ourselves and begin to finally FACE THE TRUTH about who we are and what we are doing.

WARNING: This will not likely be easy or pleasant.

But, it IS necessary.

And, yes, even as you consider these thoughts, you have the ability to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Rut Repellent

Rut Repellent

You know, if I could figure out a way to actually produce and market the items you see pictured above, I could rest easy knowing that I would NEVER have to worry about money again! (Be sure to listen to my "mock commercial" for these two amazing products on today's podcast).

But, you can look all you want - you won't find these products in any store, on any website or on any television "infomercial".

But wouldn't it be great if we COULD just go buy a can of this stuff and not have to worry about our tendencies to get into ruts ever again? Wouldn't it be great to also be able to spray some of this stuff on and not have to worry about falling BACK into ruts?

Even if it existed it still wouldn't do us any good until we got it out of the can. Just buying it and having it in our ownership would not do a thing for us in the way of "rut protection". I know you can agree on that fact, right?

Yet, how many of us - myself included at times - have "rut protection" in our ownership but fail to apply it (get it out of the can)?

What do I mean? Things like these blogs and podcasts along with the many others that exist out there by such greats as Jim Rohn (have you checked out his materials via the products tab on my website?). Things like the FREE access to that I have mentioned over and over again as well as the opportunity to subscribe to the actual magazine. The many books, blogs and articles that are available to us that would help us get out of a rut and STAY out of a rut.

But, although they are available and we may even have some of these in our ownership or possession - many of us do nothing with them... we never "get it out of the can".

So, here we go again, right? It all comes back to YOU.

That's right. It's up to YOU to apply the "rut repellent" that is available to each and every one of us on a daily basis.

Jesus even stressed how important it was to DO something when He said something along the lines of, "But be DOERS and not just HEARERS...".

Good point!

So, yeah, make sure you READ! Make sure you LISTEN!

But, even more importantly - don't forget to DO SOMETHING with what you have acquired from your reading and listening.

Otherwise, you might as well leave the "rut repellent" on the store shelf - it will do you just as much good there as it will sitting on your own shelf unused.

Something to think about, isn't it?

One sure way to repel ruts is to do what I encourage you to do each and every day...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Kickin' Some Rut-Butt!

Kickin' Some Rut-Butt!

"Rut-Butt", you ask?

Yes, "Rut-Butt" - that which needs to be KICKED in order for you to get your butt out of that rut! Catchy, right?

Yesterday I shared two different articles with you that gave some advice on what to do in order to get out of a rut. Both of them are very good and give a lot of wonderful advice! I really love the line (the bottom of page 2) in the article from that says, "Stop training for the 100-meter dash and start training to be a long-distance runner if you want to get out of a rut."

Sometimes the fact that someone tells us that it's not going to be easy and/or (like the above quote) that it's not going to be an easy and/or quick fix might cause us to decide to stay where we are - in our "rut room". Hey, it's COMFORTABLE in our little "rut room".


Do you REALLY want to stay there? Do you REALLY feel that this is what your life is meant to be? Do you REALLY find peace, happiness and fulfillment there?

If you've got a pulse and the desire to LIVE and not just EXIST then your answer to those questions should be "NO!"

So, bottom line (this blog is going to be short - listen to the podcast) is this: isn't it time for you to get serious about this rut thing and get busy and KICK SOME RUT BUTT!

Only YOU can do it! Only YOU can decide that it's time to quit talking about it and that it's time to start "kickin' some rut butt" and taking names. (You didn't know that ruts have names? Sure they do - we give them all kinds of names - think about that and see if you can figure that one out).

So, begin by understanding and realizing that you are in a rut or have come up against a roadblock, figure out how/why you ended up here and then DO something to change it!

Go ahead. Stop waiting. Stop allowing yourself to be so "comfortable" in your "rut room" and begin the process of taking action TODAY!

Oh, and as you do that...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

No Pity Party in the Rut Room!

No Pity Party in the Rut Room!

"What's a 'rut room' " you ask? That's where you are if you decide that you don't want to do anything to get out of your rut!

Yeah, and it's pretty nice, too! I mean, you've got it all set up with all of the comforts of home because - after all - you plan to stay here for a while if not forever!

It's great. Kind of. Sort of. But not really.


Because you're there all alone in your "rut room". So you decide to throw a party to see what happens! Yeah, you decide to throw a "pity party" in your "rut room".

But, another problem - no one else comes to your "pity party".

Why? Because too many other people are already involved in their own pity party and, anyway, a pity party is usually celebrated alone!

Not so great after all, huh?



Yeah, I'm talking to myself here, too. Sometimes I even need to give myself a swift kick in the pants - even though I've not figured out a way to do that physically!

So, as a quick review let's take a quick look and see that - first and foremost - you have to understand that you are in a rut or that you've come up against a roadblock. But, even then, you still have a choice to make in that you can either just accept it and do nothing about it OR you can decide that you don't want to stay in that rut or that you will NOT allow that roadblock to prevent you from continuing on your journey!

What will it be for you?

Remember - the deeper the rut the harder it is and the more effort it takes to get out. The same is true for a roadblock - the bigger the roadblock, the longer it may take or the more effort it will take to remove it. Sometimes you just have to choose a different route and go around it!


Do you want to stay in your "rut room" and keep throwing yourself your little "pity parties"?

OR are you sick of living this way to the point of understanding that, once and for all, it's time to DO SOMETHING to change your position?

This is not easy. Ruts are comfortable. Take another look around your "rut room". Comfortable.

But you know that this is no way to LIVE life! This is not really a LIFE at all - it is an existence.

How determined are you to get out of your rut? How determined are you to not allow that roadblock to keep you from making progress?

How great is your DESIRE in this area?

This will determine your success. Remember - it's not easy and it will not be accomplished on your first try. But, will you give up and give in?


I mentioned an article from that I wanted to share with you about this very thing - how to get out of a rut! Here's the link for you to check it out:

Be sure to take the time to read this - it's really good and goes along with what I am saying about ruts and out tendencies to stay in them.

Once again I find that what I am saying and thinking and sharing on these topics are backed up by others - like in the article above and the one I'm about to share with you.

Hey, this ol' boy DOES know what he's talking about - imagine that!

Here's another good article for you on how to get out of a rut - check it out:

Tomorrow we will talk and discuss how great your determination and/or desire is for this to actually happen in your life and - just like with the above articles - we will discuss a few things that you can - and MUST - do in order to get yourself out of that rut or around that roadblock!

Until then - enjoy the articles and be sure to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Monday, June 21, 2010

Ruts and Roadblocks

Ruts and Roadblocks

How would you like to see THAT scene before you as you try to make progress on a trip? If you DID come across this then you would obviously have to make some alternative plans in order to continue on your journey.

This major roadblock was caused by a mudslide - something completely out of our hands. It wasn't anything YOU caused and there wasn't anything YOU could do to prevent it from happening. But it DID happen and, because of that, if you were on a journey and encountered this road block then you would have to make some decisions regardless of how and why it happened.

Does that ever happen to you in your life? You do understand that I'm not talking about a boulder blocking an actual highway, right? But has your life ever met up with some sort of roadblock that you had no way to control or prevent? What did you do?

Let's talk about ruts for a moment. A lot of you have HEARD about ruts but I wonder how many of you have ever actually encountered ruts while driving. It could be a rut that has been made on a snow-covered road or it could be a rut that has been carved out in a mud-packed road. Either way, ruts can cause problems for the one trying to navigate down such a road!

You can stay in a rut but you really aren't deciding which direction your automobile will go - you just stay in the rut and follow the same path as others before you. If you give just a little effort to get out of the rut you will not have much success! The deeper the rut the harder it is to get OUT of that rut!

Now, let's again apply that to our actual lives. Sometimes we get in a rut that we have carved out ourselves, don't we? We've just fallen into going through the same motions day in and day out until we have carved out a nice little rut for ourselves.

Living IN a rut is really pretty easy! After a while you don't really have to give much thought to what you are doing - just stay in the rut and do the same thing today that you did yesterday and the day before and the day before that!

Maybe you've fallen into a rut that someone else (or several someones) have carved out. You have fallen into this rut and have given in to the "path of least resistance". "Hey, this is not so bad! I just follow the crowd and don't do anything different and I can just glide right along!"

Not a bad way to live if you want to live life like a robot.

So, what if you realize that you are in a rut and you don't WANT to stay in that rut? What then?

Ruts and roadblocks - they happen to all of us.

I shared with you on today's podcast that I feel that I have faced a roadblock and that I am in a rut RIGHT NOW! I have acknowledged that even a couple of weeks ago but it seems that I'm still here staring at that roadblock and trying to look out and over that rut.

Wow. You too?

So, how did we get here? You see, to me, this is the second most important thing we can do as far as "ruts and roadblocks" go. First, we must realize we are there and it's not where we want to be and then we must try to figure out how we got here!

Sometimes, with the roadblocks - as the example shared above - it really has nothing to do with us, it just happened! That's the way life is sometimes! We can either sit there in despair and just give up OR we can plan an alternate route so that we can continue on our journey!

But, there are SOME roadblocks that we have placed before ourselves. How did THAT happen? It's very important for us to take a close look at this and try to "pin-point" exactly HOW it happened so that we can now do the "opposite" in order to "undo" the roadblock.

This ain't easy! (Pardon my southern slant on that line.)

Chances are - and chances are really good - that it didn't happen overnight (with the "we put it there" variety of roadblock). And, that being so, our "pin-pointing" won't happen overnight either. We'll get back to this in a moment and combine it with the "rut problem" as well.

How do you get out of a rut? WITH A LOT OF EFFORT!

Anyone that has encountered a physical rut - especially a deep one - can tell you that it takes MAJOR effort to get out of (and stay out of) a rut! Remember, the deeper the rut the harder it is to get out OF that rut!

How deep is your rut? Have you caught this before it got too deep or will you need some major climbing gear just to peek over the top of your rut?

The same is true for ruts as it is for roadblocks - we MUST figure out how we got here!

How do we do that with ruts and roadblocks?


What is DIFFERENT now than it was before?

Has the joy, energy and happiness been sucked from your life? Why? How? When did it happen?

Go back in time and try to "pin-point" a time when you actually felt the way you think you want to feel now. When were you happy? When did you feel as if you had positive and powerful energy in your life?

Take a snapshot if you will of "then" and one of "now" - what's different?

Go through a process of elimination with both the rut and the roadblock and try to determine what changed in your life in such a way that caused you to follow that path that led you to where you are today.

Take how ever long it takes to try to figure it out. Write down what you find as you go along. You likely will find SEVERAL things that have changed and not just one!

We are going to talk more about this tomorrow and also we will talk about what we do once we pin-point the problem.

But know this, friend - YOU CAN OVERCOME THIS and you CAN get out of your rut and you CAN get around, over or through that roadblock whether you caused it or life just dumped it there.


Know that. Believe that. Feel that.

And, as you go through your day...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Thursday, June 17, 2010

What Would YOU Do For...

What Would YOU Do For...

I hope you'll take the time to look over this again if you took at peak at it earlier today. I had posted a short message stating that I would not be able to do the blog for today because I was out of town getting my son signed up for college.

However, I have some "down time" and wanted to go ahead and put some thoughts up for today. (I do apologize for not having an image to go along with today's blog - I've gotten quite fond of those! I am at a "public computer" and am unable to save anything from the internet that I might decide to use).

So, the question is kind of "loaded", wouldn't you agree? I mean, it's kind of hard to answer it since I left it "open ended" like I did.

If you took the time to listen to the podcast (if not, be sure you do!) then you know I had just finished watching the very end of an episode from "America's Got Talent" in which the host of the show made the comment, "I wouldn't do THAT for a million dollars!" while watching someone swallow a sword and a "moving" drill.

Which made me think, "What would YOU do for a million dollars?" Hey, don't even make it a million dollars, what about $50,000 - which is what the contestants of the reality show, "Fear Factor" played for and which I mistakenly said was $25,000 (still nothing to "sneeze at").

When you consider some of these reality shows and what they ask contestants to do in order to even have the CHANCE to win that money, you soon realize that people are willing to do just about anything for money! I've even seen one where they offer people as little as $10 to do some really stupid and, often, disgusting act. Surprisingly, many say "yes" without even giving the hosts a chance to offer more - which, still, isn't much at all.

Here's the thing - some of these people that are more than willing to do unspeakable things to themselves and put unspeakable things into their bodies likely do not have the characteristics necessary to design a life that would ensure them the million dollars many times over.

Too many times we see the lights and camera - which, is also a main reason many of these people participate - and aren't willing to get involved in a day to day routine that could lead us to a life of financial security that we can only imagine at this time in our lives. what about YOU?

I really hope you will consider this and really think about the fact that what you do TODAY (and each "TODAY" that you have)can do far more for you than a stint on one of these reality television shoes.

But will you do it? Are you willing? Are you determined enough? Again, the fact is - only YOU can make that decision and only YOU can take the action necessary.

One other thing that I mentioned in the podcast was when I thought about the fact that on some of these shows (such as "America's Got Talent" or "American Idol" or any variation for the different countries) actually reward people for their TALENT! And, in reality, only those that have the drive, the determination, the PASSION to keep after it regardless of any roadblocks will be able to make it to the end.

Now, let me ask you this question - are you willing to use your "talents" and abilities for the betterment of those around you even if there is no promise of a monetary reward?

Although the reward may not be monetary - there IS a reward when any of us does this by serving those around us in our own special way.

Maybe it's just the way you always have a smile that brightens everyone's day. Perhaps it is a word of encouragement that you so easily give. Whatever it is and in whatever way you give it - please keep on doing that! YOU make the world a better place by what you do right now, right where you are!

Well friends, I must get back to some things at hand - but thank you for taking the time to read this blog entry. Again, if you haven't had the chance, take the time to listen to the podcast that you can find on the main website:

And, whatever you do and wherever you do it - as you go through your day, always be sure to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Emotion of Success

The Emotion of Success

Happy? Sad? Melancholy? These are likely some of the words - mostly "happy" and "sad" that come across our mind when we think of emotions, right?

Although we may go through all of these from time to time as we journey along the pathway to success, this is not really what I'm referring to when I talk about the "Emotion of Success".

The idea for this article (and the podcast that goes with it) came from part of an article by Jim Rohn entitled, "It Is a Challenge to Succeed".

(You can find a link to all of Jim Rohn's material by clicking on the banner that you'll find here: )

Here is an excerpt from that article that I want to share with you for today: "I’ve often said that to have more, we must first become more, and to become more, we must begin the process of working harder on ourselves than we do on anything else. But in addition to gathering new knowledge, new skills and new experiences, it is also important to discover new emotions. It is how we feel about what we know that makes the biggest difference in how our lives turn out. How we feel about the chances we have and the choices we have determines the intensity of our effort. Whether we try or don’t try. Join or don’t join. Believe or don’t believe."

As I read this I cannot help but think about the fact that PASSION is also an emotion. And, from what I can deduct from this and other materials (and my own personal experience), it is one that is absolutely MANDATORY in order to achieve any level of success.

You cannot miss the point that Mr. Rohn makes about the necessity of IMPROVING ourselves in order to improve our lives! This is what my podcast and this blog is all about - helping you IMPROVE your mindset and your attitude so that you can be better equipped for the journey ahead.

The decisions you make as to whether you "try or don't try, join or don't join, believe or don't believe" all will come from your determination and your passion and your FEELING (emotion) about what this REALLY means to/for you and your family.

When you really consider this, THIS will be what determines if we even SEE the chances and choices that pass before us each and every day. I often hear people say, "I wish someone would just give me a chance!" while they sit around on their butts all day WAITING for someone to drop that chance in their lap. All the while chance after chance passes by their door day after day after day.

You've heard me say (or read my writings) how important the choices we make today are for our future. And, if you've read or listened to many others in this area of personal development they will have said the same thing.

What you do today MATTERS!

If your attitude and emotions are not in line with a person that is PASSIONATE about improving their lives then you will allow opportunities to pass through your fingers by NOT MAKING WISE CHOICES when they come your way.

Think about it!

Too many times we make the choice to NOT do something, to NOT read something and/or to NOT try something and, usually, we don't really have a good reason for NOT doing these things. We just decide NOT to and, many times in the process, have made a CHOICE to turn down opportunity.

Yeah, that's right - that knocking at the door just MIGHT BE opportunity!

I hope that this article - based on the wisdom of Jim Rohn - will challenge your thinking and encourage you to "put your antenna up" so that you can be aware of those choices that can lead to opportunity each and every day.

How do you feel about that?

Always remember to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

R U Running on Empty?

R U Running on Empty?

During my podcasts you will hear me talk about "Magical Monday", "Turn-around Tuesday" and "Wide-Open Wednesday" and about the fact that, what happens in your life and to your life is up to you. This makes it magical and wide-open because YOU can turn it around!

Now, see, if you have a hard time believing those things then, trying to incorporate them into your life is kind of like getting behind the wheel of a car that has an empty gas tank. You won't get anywhere.

Yes, I know (based on yesterday's podcast and blog) that I emphasize that only YOU can make this happen. In other words, even with a FULL gas tank YOU still have to put the key in the ignition, turn it on, put it in gear and steer it down the road.

But, again, if the tank is empty - you're going no where.

The truth is, as I recorded the podcast for today last night - and still even today - I feel as if my tank is empty! Yeah, it happens to me, too.

Here are a couple of reasons - and things you can check out for yourself as well:

1. My tank is empty because I've not been putting the "fuel" in the tank! Well, duh! But it happens very easily when I (or you) don't "feed ourselves" by reading, etc. those positive materials that keep our mindset where it needs to be. I realized that lately I have not been reading the materials that I usually read that keep me going. So, again, it is up to ME in this area to do what is needed and to make sure I am putting "fuel" in my tank!

2. My tank is empty because I need feedback, input, etc. from YOU! Now, although it is up to ME, I still need others - just as you do. This is the idea behind the "Mastermind Group" that Napoleon Hill talks about in his classic, "Think & Grow Rich" (get it for free - just pay S/H @ ). The strength and charge we get from sharing thoughts and ideas with like-minded individuals. On this part, I also can compare this to dipping water out of a well to share with others without ever making sure that I take some of the water for myself. Sooner or later, I've got to be refreshed as well.

So, bottom line - part of this "empty" feeling is due to what I have failed to do in my own life and part of it is because I need feedback from YOU! And, that, for the most part, I have failed to receive from you, friend.

Please know that I'm not "whining", I'm simply talking and sharing from my heart and also trying to help you understand how important it is to not only RECEIVE but to also GIVE BACK.

Yes, I need it too!

If you would, if you are "out there" and reading this and/or listening to my blog - please leave a comment here on this blog. I'd appreciate it and it may also spur someone else on to do the same.

Oh, don't get me wrong. I'll survive. I'll thrive. But, right now....I need to refuel.

Thanks, friend.

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Monday, June 14, 2010

It's All About You!

Now that sounds a bit selfish, doesn't it? You would think this would be the exact OPPOSITE of what I would be wanting to promote in this blog, wouldn't you?

Usually when you hear the phrase, "It's all about you" it is being said by someone that doesn't mean for it to be taken as a compliment! It's usually being said about someone that has demonstrated, by their actions, that everything centers around them and what THEY want - regardless of how it impacts or inconveniences anyone else.

However, I want to use this in a different and a POSITIVE way when I say, "It's all about you!"

Here it is: The power that you possess to use your "God-given" talents and abilities to do good in this world means absolutely NOTHING unless YOU decide to use them in that way. No one else can do it for you and no one else can use YOUR talents and abilities for you in such a way. Only you.

That being said, I think you see the point now when I say, "It's all about YOU!"

In all areas of our lives we must understand that we CANNOT sit back and wait for other people to do anything for us. Now, I don't mean that others won't do kind things for us along the way. What I'm talking about is our tendency sometimes to wait and expect others to "make us happy", for example as we discussed last week or to "give us a break", etc.

If you are waiting and expecting others to make the opportunity for you then, guess what? You will be waiting for a very long time.

It's up to YOU!

Yes, only YOU (no, I'm not going to say, "...can prevent forest fires" - even though I'm tempted!) can take the steps necessary to take the necessary ACTION toward your goals and dreams.

Simply put - it's all about YOU!

Be sure to listen to today's podcast to get more comment on this - but I think the point is pretty direct and simple.

So, what are YOU going to do about it?

Again, the choice is yours: do nothing or YOU DO SOMETHING.

The same is true for the direction of your day and it is why I end each blog entry and each podcast and each article that I write with the phrase...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Thursday, June 10, 2010

Make Happiness Who You Are

Make Happiness Who You Are

Going through the process of not allowing our happiness to be dictated by people and/or things is, perhaps, one of the hardest things for us to do in the realm of developing a positive mindset.

It seems to be so easy to allow our emotions to be triggered by the smallest and most insignificant things and it also seems to be so hard to fight against that tendency.

Short and sweet, here is the key: CHANGE YOUR FOCUS!

Short and sweet, yes but easy, not necessarily!

If you will really look at our "happiness fixation" it really is usually based on what others can do or how "things" can or will make US happy, right?

C'mon, be honest.

That being said, we must admit then, that we are quite selfish in this area of happiness! And that is exactly why we must change our focus.

I believe that, in the area of personal development, the ONLY way that we can develop a happiness that comes from within (an inner peace) is by changing our focus from US to OTHERS.

Instead of, "what can you do to make ME happy?" we must work on changing that to, "what can I do to bring happiness to someone else's life?".

This is how - in tune with the title of this article - we can "make happiness who (we) are". We must work on making this a part of our DNA, so to speak and allow it to become a part of who we are!

It CAN be done. But it WILL take time.

Time alone won't get it done, however. Hey, time is going to pass one way or the other but it's what we DO with and during that passing time that matters.

Remember, this is a PROCESS and this process must include our involvement in it and it WILL take time! A little at a time and a little each day changing our focus from US to OTHERS will bring about the desired result of making "happy" just a part of who we are.

Regardless of what goes on around us and regardless of how people may treat us.

Now, get ready for this - even some that we try to help and serve will turn on us. That's right! But, again, why waste our energy and emotions on this by allowing their actions to control OUR emotions?

Just know that you attempted to serve and give of yourself and, for whatever reason (bad day, etc.) this particular person rejected it. So what? There are others that are waiting and willing to receive your act of kindness.


So...are you ready to begin the process?

Yes, others and things can BRING joy and happiness into our lives (aren't you thankful for that?) but we should never turn the power over to any person or any thing as to whether we can be happy or not.

That power and control is yours. Own it and use it for the benefit and betterment of those around you.

By doing so you will find that, indeed, "happiness is who you are"!

As you go along your way, be sure to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Happy Regardless!

Happy Regardless!

Clouds. Rain. Storms.

Rainbows. Sunshine. Clear skies.

All of these are a part of daily and/or weekly events in our weather. And, we cannot have one without the other and, for most of us, we would not want it to be just "one way" all of the time!

Oh sure, when it's raining for several days in a row the idea of constant sunshine seems really pleasant, doesn't it? But then, when we have a drought and the sun just keeps burning down with no relief in sight we tend to wish, once again, for some of that rain!

That's just the way we are!

When it's bitter cold in the middle of winter we whine and complain about it being TOO cold and then, when it's in the middle of summer we whine and complain that it's TOO hot!

Hey, that's just life, isn't it?

The struggle that we all share when dealing with weather is to learn to be HAPPY REGARDLESS!

Sun or rain - deal with it and have a happy, positive attitude!

Take this example and magnify it ten times or more and you have the situation of us struggling to not base our happiness on people and/or events! Said in a different way - learning to be HAPPY REGARDLESS!

Happy regardless of what people do or say to us.

Happy regardless of who does or doesn't like us.

Happy regardless of whether or not we got that "perfect" job.

Happy regardless of whether or not we got that raise.

Happy regardless of the fact that our air conditioner just went out and it's 110 degrees outside.

Happy regardless of the "storms" that come our way.

Oh, I know that I didn't touch on some really serious struggles that come with the death of someone that we love or tragedy's that come due to accidents or destructive natural events. But please allow what might appear to be a "surface discussion" work it's way deep down into your inner being of hurt. It still applies although, once again, it's easier said than done.

From the Bible we read the apostle Paul describe his dealing with such struggles when he said something along this line: "Ive been through all kinds of things. Good things and a whole lot of bad things. (He even goes on to make a list of all of the bad stuff that has happened to him). But here is what I've learned...whether everything is going great or NOTHING is going even "good", I have learned to be content. Regardless."

Now, that's not an exact quote, but that's the heart of the message.

For us, this can only come when we develop the understanding that happiness - TRUE happiness - must come from within. When I say "true happiness" I'm talking about the kind of happiness that is not at the whim of other people or things. The kind of peace and happiness that comes REGARDLESS of what is going on around me.

THIS IS NOT EASY! But it IS possible! And, again, it is a process.

Why not work on this process beginning today?

Here's a way to begin - pay attention to your attitude and your moods as you go through the day.

Do you allow yourself to get easily "worked up" when something doesn't go the way you wish? If someone doesn't behave the way you think they should do you get angry and resentful toward that person?

What about something as simple as if your favorite television show is not on for some reason - honesty check your attitude at that time.

These are all indicators that we are allowing outside influences to "control" our mood and, yes, even our happiness.

If you're like me you don't like those examples because you can find them all day every day in your own life!

So, simply begin by PAYING ATTENTION and BEING AWARE.

When you find yourself getting these feelings of disappointment, discouragement, frustration and, yes, even anger, stop and think about what is going on. Take a deep breath and say to yourself that you will NOT allow this (whatever it is or whoever it is) to impact your attitude and your happiness in this way.

It's not worth it!

The more you pay attention the more you will find that this happens in your life. DO NOT BECOME DISCOURAGED at this discovery! You are not unusual in this way - many (if not all) of those around you struggle with the exact same thing!

But, the difference with you is this: you now know that it IS something that you can control and you now know HOW and WHAT you can do to begin to get this under control.

It's in your hands and YOU have the control in this area as well as many other areas in your life.

You can do it and you WILL do it IF you make a decision to begin today!

Do it. And AS you do it...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Monday, June 7, 2010

Happy Changes

Happy Changes!

Yes, I realize that not all changes are happy. That's not the intention of the title. The idea behind the title is this: What makes us happy changes as we go through life!

Wouldn't you agree? Think about this in your own life by going back to your childhood and what it was that made you happy then. Most likely it was very simple things like riding your bike until dark, eating watermelon and homemade ice cream, catching fireflies and swimming in the creek.

Simple pleasures.

Now, my guess is that, if we were to take the time to do some of these again (maybe not riding the bike and chasing fireflies!) we might find that these still have the ability to bring a smile to our face.

Life seems to be cyclical, does it not? The simple things brought happiness to our lives when we were young and, it seems, as we get older we return and understand that simple things can still bring happiness into our lives.

But it's that "middle part" of our lives that seems to get us in trouble sometimes! It's that part of our life when we tend to get into the "pursuit of happiness" to the degree that we miss those things that actually DO bring happiness into our lives WITHOUT the pursuit! It's right there in front of us but we miss it due to the perceived notion that there is "something out there" that will make us happier - IF we can just "catch it"!

So, what makes you happy? Did you work on your list yesterday? What did you find and, hopefully (because you're not done yet), what are you still discovering?

Now, here's the thought that can confuse us at times: can anything or anyone actually MAKE us happy?

That's a tricky one, isn't it? Yes things and people can bring happiness into our lives, but can they MAKE us happy? The other side of that which I have discussed briefly in the podcasts is this: if they can MAKE us happy, what happens when they are gone?

Is our happiness left to the whims of people that come and go or in things that come and go as well?

When you think of it that way it's easy to see that we do not want to allow this in our lives, right?

So, what do we do with this? How do we approach this in such a way so that we can come to a satisfactory conclusion about happiness in our lives?

We'll try to begin looking at that a little closer beginning tomorrow. Be thinking about it and see what you come up with. I'd love to hear your thoughts and ideas via e-mail ( anytime!

Until then be sure to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


What Makes YOU Happy?

What Makes YOU Happy?

If 100 people were asked this question, I'd likely get 100 different answers. Oh, some of them might be similar (my family, my kids) but, upon my requesting for them to get more specific we'd find different and specific names, personalities and reasons for even this.

Now, right off there is one thing I want to make sure you understand with this question - it's not, "What WOULD make you happy?" The question is is in the present tense which suggests the additional word "now" - "What Makes You Happy NOW?"

You see, too many times we spent so much time - wasted time - pursuing what MIGHT make us happy IF this were to happen or if that were to happen. And, while doing so, we let our lives (and lots of the happiness tied in with it) pass us by.

The phrase, "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" is, perhaps, one of the most famous phrased that comes from the United States' Declaration of Independence. It reads:

"We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

Our founding fathers recognized our right - endowed (given) by our Creator - to own and cherish these in our own, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

However, here lies the problem - many are constantly in pursuit of something that they THINK might make them happy and never achieve that which they pursue.

A friend of mine, Gerry Nesbitt, said this once: "We are possessed by what we pursue."

How true! And, the "grass is greener on the other side of the fence" mentality will have us constantly possessed with an endless pursuit.

Why? Because there is ALWAYS "the other side" of the fence!

Look around you right now - today!

What makes you happy NOW?

What makes you happy TODAY?

What brings joy into your life?

Who brings joy into your life?

Here's a word of caution - if your happiness it totally dependent upon a person or a thing then you must also consider the question of what will happen if/when that person or thing dissappoints you or is gone?

See what I mean? Too many people rely on someone else to make them happy and then, due to a breakup or whatever, they find themselves without that person in their life and they are miserable.

Oh, I understand that happiness many times IS connected to those around us. But, just make sure you are not allowing that control totally in the hands of others.

Think about it. Make a list as you think about today's question, "What makes YOU happy?" and we'll continue this discussion tomorrow.

Until then...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Believe in Yourself and Others

Believe in Yourself and Others

Here's a couple of interesting things to consider as we begin today:

- Everyone around you can believe in you (family and friends) but if you don't believe in yourself you WILL NOT achieve much success.

- Even if NO ONE around you believes in you, if you believe in yourself you can and likely will achieve much success.

Take a moment and really look that over and consider what that means in your own life! It's a very POWERFUL observation that can make all the difference in your life. The difference being IF you believe in yourself!

This is a message that we all need to hear and, obviously, was one that I needed to be reminded of a week ago as I was on my motorcycle. If you don't know what I'm talking about then go back and listen to the podcast and read the blog entries for the past couple of days.

You see - so that I can emphasize this - even if NO ONE ELSE believes in you but you BELIEVE IN YOURSELF you can, and likely will, achieve great things in your life!

The problem comes in fighting off the feeling of doubt that will try to creep it's way into your life because of the negative thoughts and feelings of others around you. We MUST put up a "barrier" around us to keep these poisonous thoughts from creeping into our minds. Again, this is an absolute must!

Going back to an illustration from yesterday, we must make sure that our filter is clean and working! Just like an air filter on an automobile or air conditioner (or any machine) that is designed to filter out the dirt and dust that can ruin the engine we must do the same thing and filter out the negative influences that can ruin our positive mindset. And, just like the air filter, we must constantly check to make sure that our "filter" and clean and working at the highest capability.

STOP DOUBTING YOURSELF. No, I'm not "yelling" at you, I'm putting those words in capital letters so that you can "feel" the importance and significance of those words.

You are unique. You are special. You are one-of-a-kind and you are capable of accomplishing great things. (Go back again to the "7 Daily Affirmations" that I covered a couple of months ago.)

Without this belief you will never accomplish what you were put here to accomplish - so, dump the doubt and move on in a powerful and positive direction of BELIEF!

Now, here's the other side of the coin. You must also learn to believe in others.

Yes, even though no one else may believe in you and the fact that you believe in yourself will propel you to great things, you must also come to the understanding that you have to believe (and rely upon) others.

Now, I don't know about you, but this one is tough for me at times. And, if you are a "type A" personality it is likely the same for you.

"If you want something done right you have to do it yourself!"

Yes, that's a thought that those of us that fit that "type A" category believe in very strongly. But, it's also a believe that will keep us from reaching our full potential.

Somewhere down the line we have to learn to find dependable and trustworthy people and then BELIEVE in them and let them help.

And, my friend, (at least for me) this is hard to do!

You see, I can even break down that "find dependable and trustworthy" part of that thought and come to the conclusion that I can't FIND anyone that would fit both of those categories!

Yeah, some of you are smiling as you read that because you are either the same way or you know someone that is.

But for me, it is a message that I needed to be reminded of - "Believe in yourself....AND OTHERS!"

It's a process but it's a process that I must be dedicated to each and every day so that I may improve in this area each and every day. A little at a time. A day at a time. One step at a time.

But it IS something that MUST be done!

And the same is true for you today.

So, join me in this endeavor to "Believe in yourself and others" so that we can all celebrate our achievements that will make this world a better place.

And, as you do so each day, don't forget to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Be Open and Receptive!

Be Open and Receptive!

How receptive are you?

Now THAT'S a loaded question that would need some clarification before it could be answered, right?

It is for me! My question in response TO the question would be, "How receptive am I to what?"

That does make a difference, doesn't it?

I mean, if you ask me how receptive I am to you treating me to a steak dinner I'd say that I'd be VERY receptive to that idea! However, if you were to ask me how receptive I would be to jumping out of an airplane I'd probably hesitate and not be as receptive!

But there are times that we "close off" our willingness to be receptive without any good reason.

Here's the point of the thought for today... I want to encourage you to be open and receptive at all times and not be like a door that is open and closed at different times.

By being open and receptive at all times we might be pleasantly surprised at what might come our way and be a positive addition in our lives.

Let me give you a very simple example. When I was a kid my mom would bring home some frozen pizza from the supermarket from time to time and I absolutely disliked how they tasted! As I got a little older this was my only experience with pizza and, because of that, in my mind I had decided that I DID NOT like pizza! While in high school and in the school band we would stop off and eat from time to time while traveling and, at times, it would be at a famous pizza chain - but I WOULD NOT eat pizza. Why? Because I did not like pizza! So, I'd order their spaghetti (which wasn't that great) instead. I did this for years and would turn down offers from my friends to at least TRY the pizza to see what it was like. In my mind I already KNEW what it was like and I knew I DIDN'T like it!

I finally gave in during my Senior year of high school and tasted some pizza from this famous pizza chain and, guess what? I LOVED IT! What had I been missing all of these years? I had a new "favorite food" and it tasted NOTHING like that frozen pizza that I had tasted years earlier.

I wasn't very receptive to trying this fresh pizza because I had already closed my mind to the idea that it might actually be different - and better - than what I had already tasted before.

We are like that in so many ways and, because of that, we very likely are "missing out" on so many things through the years. Are you?

Have your eyes and ears open and, by doing so you will become open and receptive to WHATEVER comes your way in whatever form!

Yes, you will need to be like an air filter that, although it takes in all air, filters out the impurities that could harm the machine (whether it be a car engine or your home's air conditioner). Be open and receptive to all "signals" but be sure to have that filter in place so that you can filter out the negative and harmful impurities from your mind and life.

Here's the story that I shared on the podcast for today. I will share it with you and then I'll discuss it in more depth in tomorrow's blog entry.

Last Thursday as I was traveling back home on my motorcycle I passed by a church building that had a sign out front with one of those "changeable messages" posted. As I passed by I glanced and the only words that I saw was, "Believe in yourself". I honestly didn't think much about it as I drove on past but did wonder what the rest of the message was.

As I arrived back in my home town - about 20 miles past the first sign - I passed by a business that had one of those "scrolling marquee" signs with the "lighted message" scrolling across. Now, think about the timing of this as drive past at about 40 miles an hour only to see the following message roll across the sign: "Believe in Yourself".

Now, honestly, my first thought was, "Is there some kind of campaign today that I missed on the news about today being the day to 'believe in yourself'?" I really think my "logical mind" did not want to think anything of it at the time. However, that thought did not last long and I smiled to myself and thought, "No, Mike - that's a message for you today!" And, when I considered the likelihood of those two signs saying the exact same thing and the timing involved I got an even BIGGER smile on my face as I opened up mind to receive the message.

Now, that may sound "weird" (or whatever word you want to use here) to you - but I believe it to be true and I believe that it happens to me and to you countless times during the course of a week and, even during the course of a day and we simply miss it because we are not open and receptive to the idea of this happening!

I, like so many of you, struggle with self-doubt from time to time and lately I have been "back on track" with some of my ideas and plans and this message was EXACTLY what I needed to be reminded of - and I received the message that was given!

But that's not the end of the story!

I spent a few minutes at my office and then began to ride my motorcycle home when I passed a different scrolling marquee sign that, as I passed (again, think about the timing) I read the words, "and others".

"Believe in yourself and others".

Wow! I still get chills when I share that with you and I'll share more specifics about the importance of that message in my own life as well as yours in tomorrow's entry but, here's the deal - ARE YOU WILLING TO BE OPEN AND RECEPTIVE to the messages that come YOUR WAY as you go through your day?

You don't need to "look for them". If you are open and receptive you will see them when they present themselves! And, likewise, if you are NOT open and receptive they will come and go and you will never even know that they were there.

Try it. Don't judge that pizza on that frozen, cardboard-tasting one you had in the past. You may be surprised at what you find!

And as you continue on your journey, don't forget to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Dream BIG and Do It TODAY!

Dream BIG and Do It TODAY!

I've been discussing the importance of rediscovering and following "the music" or your dreams. I get excited when I think about the feeling you will - notice I said WILL and not "might" - receive when you begin to uncover and rediscover what you once dreamed about and got excited about!

Again, it's so easy to allow "life" to clutter our world in such a way as to "cover up" those dreams and goals and to make it hard - if not impossible - to hear the music that use to make us smile, laugh and dance!

I was reminded once again last night of how natural "music" is to our lives. Our youngest son, Jordan, spent the weekend at his grandparents and, during that time, they kept their great-grandson for the day. Jordan plays the guitar and talked about how Cayden would immediately start smiling and dancing whenever he heard Jordan start playing the guitar.


And, even when talking about actual music, we sometimes forget what a joy it is to hear, smile and dance to the music once we become adults!

Let me ask you this: Do you do the "Bootie Shake" during my FUN FRIDAY podcast? If you don't know what I'm talking about, find any of my Friday podcasts and listen in - I do this each and every Friday as part of the podcast - we do the BOOTIE SHAKE! (Yes, I know "bootie" is not spelled correctly - that's part of the fun!). As part of the recording I play some "dance music" and encourage the listeners to stand up and "shake their BOOTIE" regardless of what others might think!

And, I know that many are afraid to do that - I'm not sure what they are afraid of, but we don't want people to look at us funny. But, I also know of some that have told me that they have done it, got some strange looks but loved it, did it anyway and smiled and laughed!

Somewhere down the line we have begun to give too much precedence to what OTHERS THINK and less significance to what MAKES US SMILE!

Please understand that I know we have a responsibility to others and that we cannot live a life of "if it feels good, do it" with complete disregard to anyone else. I think you know that's not what I'm suggesting so don't allow that thought to keep you from "hearing the message" for today!


Begin to follow that "rediscovered" dream and begin to hear that music once again that brings joy to your soul and see what happens.

I'd love to hear from you - your fears, your excitement, your anticipation - as you begin to "dream big and dream big TODAY".

And, all along the way be sure to...

"Make it an AWESOME day! (Who else is going to do it for you?)"