It’s 2015 and most people start all their New Year’s Resolutions, lofty goals, or otherwise map out how the coming year will be better than the last. I’ve tried it lots of times and one year made a resolution not to make any more resolutions.
Two years ago, I set out to focus on goals. Ten of them to be exact. Based on a Brian Tracey interview I had heard through Success Magazine (a favorite of mine). For thirty days, I wrote and memorized my top ten goals and three action steps for each. The year progressed. At the end, I looked back and discovered I had failed to achieve any of the goals. “How could this possibly be,” I asked. They are all still important at the end of the year, but I failed to achieve even one. The fault must be with me, of course.
Last year, 2014, I set no goals. No intentions. Just wanted a few certain things: for my business to be successful financially, to help my friends and family, and to strengthen my relationships. This time, while I had some success and had amazing help from friends and family throughout the year, I still didn’t quite experience what I had hoped to happen.
However, while there were many many challenges that I had never thought I’d face, there were many successes:
- I wrote nearly 60,000 words for a novel and even more for ideas for other stories. With this, I’ve decided that I am, officially, a writer. I’m not a professional writer, but a writer none-the-less.
- My friends and extended family members helped my family through a very hard time that occurred at the beginning of the year. I am eternally grateful and humbled.
- My business partner, key employee and staff helped solidify and strengthen my business setting us up for long term success. While we lost some great folks, it wasn’t due to anything we had done wrong, but rather great opportunities that they were offered. Recent research says that if you have great people, expect them to be poached.
- My wife and I (and boys) managed to go through a tough time and come out stronger than ever. Our future looks bright personally and financially.
- I accepted the role as President of a professional organization chapter. While I still feel like a kid compared to the professionals I am helping lead, I have been so rewarded professionally and so excited to see businesses thrive that have joined. I still have 9 months to serve and hope things keep going in the same direction.
There is more, but those are things that feel key.
The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure.
~ Joseph Campbell
This year, I turn 49…one year from the half-century mark. This gives me great pause as my mother passed away suddenly at only 55 years young. Logically, I know I’m healthy enough to go on many many more years, but there is that subconscious fear that I have to achieve whatever I was put on earth to do more quickly. Regardless, I’m eager to accomplish more sooner than later.
And it was with that thought that I decided (and have heard of others doing the same), to simply create a theme for the year. And that theme is fairly simple: Creativity, Profit and Adventure.
- In writing and art
- In my business and for clients
- In relationships and for fun
- For things I want to explore in life
- For the ability to help others in business (mine and others)
- For the resources to give to the community
- To travel and explore parts of the world I’ve never seen
- To experience new things with my wife, family and friends (individually and together)
- To create things only in my imagination to thrill and inspire others (see Creativity above)
See how it all loops together?
That’s it. I hope to write more this year than the past, but…hey…we’ll see. It could be an adventure!
How about you?
Love is not consolation. It is light.
Friedrich Nietzsche on Love (8″x8″ PDF)
You are free to print and share, but not to sell.
I don’t like to commit myself about heaven or hell…you see, I have friends in both places.
– Mark Twain
(Original photo on left by Steven Kraghmann. Original photo on right by John Moore.)
Mark Twain on Heaven and Hell (8″x8″ PDF)
You are free to print and share, but not to sell.
So there I was… huddled down behind a barrel as a gunman stalked the streets shooting anyone that moved. While he was busy shooting, I leapt from my hiding place, raced into a building, and slammed the door behind me, hoping for protection from the madman.
BLAM! BLAM! BLAM! The gunman fired at the door.
“I KNOW YOU’RE IN THERE!”
I dove behind some furniture, peeked out through the window, and saw him approaching the door with the butt of his gun raised high.
BAM! BAM! BAM! He beat the gun against the door.
“What the hell are you doing in there? You got some kind of commercial business to generate all this trash!”
Okay…really I was hiding behind some furniture, but not from a gunman. I was hiding from my deranged angry rural garbage man.
You see, he had some sort of issue when I put out more than two cans of garbage. As soon as he pulled up with his truck, he’d jump out, and start cursing. This was the second time he had come to the door and I stayed hidden.
What he didn’t understand was my mother had passed away a few years earlier, and I had all her stuff stored in my garage. This included the unsorted accumulation of history from great-grandparents to that of me and my siblings.
That night, I was a little braver.
I was sitting at dinner with the stunningly beautiful and sexy “Cosmo Girl” and had hit it off well in person after weeks of online and phone conversation. She was even laughing at my worst jokes.
The conversation was smooth and flowing like the drinks. Have you ever noticed there is a tipping point in drinking? Besides the drinking and getting sick part, I mean the part where you become either; very funny, very horny, or very sad.
For the record, I was funny.
But “Cosmo Girl” got very sad. Her conversation had drifted off into all these stories about wrong decisions, missed opportunities, and failed relationships.
On the drive home, she dropped a bombshell on me.
“I really like you and enjoyed the night, but I don’t think it will work out. Nothing has for me lately and I’d rather stay friends and keep you in my life than screw it up and lose you,” she said, weeping.
I walked her to the door, gave her a hug, and watched her go inside. As I turned to go back to my car, I realized we all have garbage to deal with. Not just physical, but emotional. And sometimes, we just don’t have room in our ‘truck’ to deal with someone else’s garbage.
So how do you deal with your garbage and help people with theirs?
You have to go through it all, of course. Box by box. Experience by experience. Day by day. Soon, you’ll have a space cleared out in your garage and in your heart.
It might take a long time, or maybe it will only take a few months. It depends on how long you’ve been piling things up.
When it comes to getting rid of the garbage of an old relationship, a good rule is one year for every five you were with someone. It doesn’t mean you can’t have a great relationship right away, but you’ll still have a lot of garbage to clear out.
You don’t have to do it alone, either. Find people who have already cleared the clutter.
The next week, I had a HUGE pile of garbage.
This time, when the garbage man hopped out of his truck, fumes coming out of his ears, and stomping his way to my door, I simply stepped outside, handed him a cold bottle of soda, and said, “MAN! You look hot. Here’s a soda,” he looked at me confused.
“I’m SO sorry I’ve been generating so much trash. I’m trying to clear out all this stuff my mom left me when she passed away. Is there anything I can do to make this easier? Hire someone to make a big run?”
He looked at me for a moment, cracked the soda open, took a swig and said as his whole demeanor changed, “Oh don’t worry about it. Maybe if you can spread it out over a couple of weeks, if you don’t mind. Sometimes I’ve got to make more trips ‘cause of all the other people on the route,” he turned away looking at the pile of trash, “Sorry to hear about your mom.”
“Garbage Guy” always waved “Hi” after that and I never had to hide behind the couch again. I counted my blessings that I only had garbage from my past and not an entire route of other people’s garbage.
Published in The MOMster Chronicles January Edition.
The relatives have gone, the decorations have been put away, the kids are all busy playing with their new games, toys or gadgets, and you’re basking in the romantic glow of the perfect gift your significant other gave you.
Or are you?
The holidays are some of the most stressful times on a relationship, no matter the level of intimacy you’ve reached. No matter if you’ve just started dating someone or celebrating your 25th wedding anniversary, there is one universal truth all women need to remember; we men aren’t always so bright.
Before anyone takes offense, let me rephrase that last statement; we men aren’t as detail oriented as women are.* So when you told your hubby last month that you’d REALLY like a forest green cashmere sweater, rest assured he only heard one of those four words. Maybe two.
Communication is paramount in any relationship. But in a romantic relationship, we can, after time, slip into ‘mind reading’ and assume what our partner wants, needs and desires.
The reality is that we often give what we want to receive. When unhappy, we tend to withhold what we often most want. A simple example is a hug. You give them and will generally get them back when you’re happy. But when you are unhappy, you withdraw, and others give you space just when you need a hug the most.
Gifts can reflect the same thing in a relationship. We give what we want to receive, give something that will make the other person happy (and thus ourselves), or we give what the other person says they want when they give us a list.
The best gifts are those that are unexpected and heartfelt. And it’s important to always think about why the gift was given to you from the other person’s perspective.
If you want that forest green cashmere sweater, go buy it yourself and expect nothing.
And when your guy gives you a forest green robe, slippers, a blue sweater and a red cashmere scarf, just stop and think how much he loves to see you comfy and cozy at home with him, how sexy you look in the sweater he got you, and how great he believes the cashmere must feel against your neck on a cold winter day.
Ahhhh. There’s that glow.
*Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home and School by John Medina
Written by Eric Huber
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(MOMmy Rappings is an article written for The MOMster Chronicles. Articles are posted one month later here. To subscribe and get the latest tips, information and help for moms, contact Megan Donley at www.childtamer.com)