No Different But So Different

No Different but So Different

No Different but So Different                                              

As I take a look at myself in the mirror, there is really nothing that
stands out about me.  I'm not the most handsome guy but also not the
least.  I'm not the strongest; I'm not the weakest.  I'm not the tallest
nor the shortest.  Still, there is a reason that I stand in this place at
this time while someone else stands in another place at the same time.  Was
that person smarter?  Perhaps, but I don't think so. I think they were average...just
like me.  Did they have more ambition?  I don't think so.  I think they were
average...just like me.  So to me, that means, they are no different...but
the outcome is so different.  Did we once stand at the same place at the
same time...or perhaps different times?  Could it be the decisions we made
when we stood there?  Is that what makes us no different but so different?
I feel like I'm searching for an answer that doesn't exist.  Is it something
so minute that puts me in this location and another person in a different
location?  Everything feels no different...but so different.

Dream Big!

It all starts with an idea.  It starts with a dream.  It's up to you to take that idea to the next level.  Often, I thought it was too difficult or too far out of reach to make it happen.  Perhaps, I ignored my ideas so long, I didn't even recognize the ideas or pay attention to them when they appeared.  Life can be hectic; there are a lot of priorities to balance.  I always had an active imagination, but I didn't think there was a purpose for it.  I thought it was a distraction.  Everything has a purpose.  Now, I realize I am a Dreamer.  I may say something that I know is impossible.  Some people will just say, "That's impossible.", and dismiss it.  I ask, "Why is it impossible?"  Now, that I understand I am a Dreamer, I recognize my ideas when they appear.   I never knew how many ideas I had before.  I just ignored them.  Now, they display vividly in High Definition.  I have more ideas than I know what to do with.  So I am a Dreamer and now I know the purpose.  If you are a Dreamer as well, don't ignore your ideas.  Dream big!  Then try to make them into reality.  Just start with one.  Like I said at the beginning, it all starts with an idea.  So don't let it end with that idea.  Take action.  Make that dream into reality to fulfill the purpose.  The world can always use more Dreamers!  Someone inspired me to dream and I hope this inspires others to dream.

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!  Today is a special day.  It is a day we can spend with our families and friends.  A day that we can reflect on the year and appreciate the great blessings we have received.

What Roadblock?

In business and in life, you will have unfortunate circumstances or roadblocks.  You should never dwell on these setbacks.  When you run into these roadblocks, you have to be flexible.  You can't just say, "Oh, well.  There is something in my way so I can't do anything."  That's the wrong attitude to have.  I learned the hard way, but I got wiser.  I've been placed in situations where I faced obstacle after obstacle.  Was it easy?  No, not at all.  Was it easier to accept the obstacle and stop?  Yes.  But I would never accomplish anything that way.  The best feeling is when you accomplish something that you really had to work for.  When you face roadblocks, you have to be fluid.  I imagine roadblocks as having cushions.  When one pops up, I run into it, bounce off, and look for another way.  Sometimes, I just make a game of it.  You know there are going to be roadblocks.  If you expect them and then they never show up, then consider it a good day.  Most likely, the roadblocks will show up.  They don't take too many days off.  So, expect the unexpected.  If you encounter roadblocks, bounce off, and find another way.  With practice, you'll get good at navigating roadblocks.  One day, someone will ask, "How did you get around that roadblock?"  And you'll respond, "What roadblock?"

Aspiration: What Are You Working For?

This picture represents being at the top, but how do you get there?  Some people are born into wealth, others work hard to gain wealth.   The good thing about the American Dream is that you can be born into poverty and work your way up to the top.  That's the dream.  It's not usually an easy road to reach the top though.  Lots of people know the effort it takes so they avoid taking the chance.  Other people say, if there is the slightest chance, why not try it?  This leads me to aspiration.  Most people aspire to reach the top.  Most people work hard each day.  Are they working this hard to reach the top or just to stay where they are?  Most of us are just on the hamster wheel.  We're spinning our feet but not really making progress.  Some people are happy in their lives, many are not.  Money doesn't give you happiness.  Hopefully, we all know this.  Financial success can give you more freedom.  Freedom to spend with loved ones.  The freedom to set your own schedule.  Many aspire to get to the top and to do great things.  We just have to take an honest look at ourselves and decide.  Are we working to reach the top or are we spinning the hamster wheel?  Then we have to make sure our actions are in alignment with our aspirations.

Iron Man 3 - Man Vs Suit

With Iron Man 3 coming out next year, the new trailer made me think.  Suit vs Man.  Does the suit make the man or does the man make the suit?  Tony Stark can throw on this cool, protective suit and do some amazing things!  Does Tony do these amazing things because he knows the suit will protect him?  Does the added security make him more courageous?  I think a lot of the dazzling displays are done because the layer of protection is there, but ultimately, it is the man inside the suit.  Tony's quick wit and intelligence is still there without the suit.  His determination to help the world and protect his family still exists.  When the situation is unfavorable and the suit is extremely battle damaged, it's the man that rises to the occasion.  The suit doesn't have anything to fight for while Tony must fight for everything. If you take any person and change the clothing they wear, it may change their confidence slightly but they are still the same person.  I believe in the battle of man vs suit, the victor should be man.  The man makes the suit!  What do you think?

On Fire!

On fire!  Alicia Keys sings about a girl on fire.  With any form of artistry, people examine it and try to determine what is meant by it.  I am far from an expert in interpreting artwork but here are my thoughts.  The title is Girl on Fire and I believe this song was used on Hunger Games for the main character.  This girl is not letting anything stop her.  You can take more from this song though.  Don't think this is only for girls or women.  The misfortune, drive, and ambition can apply to anyone.  You just have to realize that everything won't always go your way but don't let that discourage you.  That's just one thing, one day, one week...maybe even one year.  The next things, days, weeks, or years could be spectacular!  Letting setbacks hold you down only prevent you from reaching your goals.  Push through it all and set the world on fire!  Not literally on fire, but keeping pushing forward and achieve your goals.  Believe in yourself and you can do it!  That's my interpretation.  What is yours?  Does this song motivate you?

Passion: Job or Career

Passion is on my mind today.  Not just the traditional form of the word like sexual passion...even though that is nice also.  I'm referring to the passion one has for something they love.  It's often the difference between a job and a career.  A job is usually something you do to pay your bills.  A career is something that you truly enjoy.  Something that inspires you.  The video above shows a passion.  You can do well in a job but you will push yourself more for something you are passionate about.  Often we lose track of the things we are passionate about for various reasons.  Who says you can't have a job during the day and pursue your passion at night?  I don't think anyone should give up on their passion.  If it's truly a passion, you can find the time to pursue it.  Somehow...some way.

Beautiful Surprise

Listening to this video, I can understand that it's more about the little things in life.  Little things can mean so much.  They can leave a lasting impression.  In many cases, it is the thought that counts.  It's not that you're giving gifts or showing up unexpectedly; it's the idea that you cared enough to make a kind gesture for someone other than yourself.  True, it sounds like an easy concept, but there are plenty of times when we are self-centered.  When this happens, we are not aware of our impact on others.  So the takeaway from this is make the effort.  Think about more than just yourself.  Make the kind gesture and give someone special in your life that beautiful surprise.

Not As We

Sometimes in life, we build friendships or relationships.  In that moment in time, we think they will last forever.  Some do...some don't.  That's the reality of it.  We never know what the future may hold.  In school, I had a couple of close friends.  At that time, I thought we'd be friends forever.  Now, I haven't spoken to them in over a decade.  We just lost touch.  I had another friend I checked in with every year or so whenever something reminded me of him.  Now, when something reminds me of him, I can't talk to him.  I'm just reminded that he's gone.  It's true the good die young.  Sometimes people come into your life for a lifetime, but sometimes it's only for a moment.  It's hard to predict how long any relationship will last so you should cherish the relationship as long as it exists.

Simply Amazing

"Simply amazing!  And she loves me." (Trey Songz).  That's how I feel when I think about the special lady in my life.  There are plenty of distractions in, mortgage, car payments, and utility bills are just a few.  We get overwhelmed by the things that aren't as important and sometimes forget about what's truly important.  I cherish the time we spend together because it feels like nothing else exists in that moment. Though we don't spend as much time together as preferred, the time we have together is quality time.  It's great!  It's a time when all the daily problems just disappear and all that exists is love.  And that's...simply amazing.

My Hometown

I think about my hometown.  It's a small, quiet town so it seems like everyone knows everyone else.  As a teenager on the school bus, if my friends and I got too rowdy, the bus driver would simply say, "Don't make me tell your parents!"  And she very well could.  I went to the local convenience store and the people knew my name...or at least knew how to connect the dots..."Oh, that's -------'s son."  It was away from the busy life of the city.  I enjoyed going to baseball games and family BBQs.  Sometimes we get so caught up in where we are or where we're trying to get that we lose track of where we came from.  I'll be the first to admit my hometown is and always will be a part of me.

Don't You Remember?

Music is good for the soul.  Often we have feelings that we can't express...we just can't find the right words.  We think that we are the only ones experiencing whatever we're going through at the time, but that's not true.  Lots of people have similar experiences.  Sometimes you just have to reach your feelings and then you will find that you are not alone.  Love, anger, humor, happiness, disappointment, joy, pain, and loss.   Most people have felt all these things.  Whenever you feel any of these feelings, remember, you are not alone.

Kissed By The Sun

I knew the sun well.  She was always outside and I was more of an inside person.  When I went outside, I would acknowledge her and extend a courteous greeting.  She would return a warm greeting.  When I drove my car, I could see her watching me but her presence was calmed by the air conditioning.  Sometimes I turned off the AC and drove with my windows down.  There were times when I ignored the sun while resting my arm on the door.  She gently let me know she was there by lightly touching my arm.  If I continued to ignore her charm, she persisted until the heat was too much and I was forced to pull my arm away.  This wasn't the relationship I wanted; she was too pushy.  But somehow, one day, my feelings changed.  I decided to go to the beach.  I walked outside but she wasn't there...only dark clouds.  I had packed my beach gear for a nice day but she didn't show up.  Was she no longer smitten with me?  I drove around for an hour with my windows down.  Finally, I felt her faint touch on my arm.  Then it became more pronounced.  I looked up and she was back.  We went to the beach and I laid with her.  She watched over me and I felt so comfortable with her.  I fell asleep, for what seemed like a moment.  She woke me from my slumber with a kiss.  It was hot! Oh God, it was hot!  Too hot!  I jumped up, scolded her, and ran away.  For days, I stayed inside and avoided her.  I cursed her as my skin itched uncomfortably and eventually peeled.  My friends tell me often how nice the sun is, but I am too familiar with her.  She brought me pain.  Our relationship will never be the same.

Sunshine and Rain

Today has been a bit of an awkward day.  It started off with sunshine.  As a matter of fact, it woke me up this morning.  The sun pierced through the windows until I was awake.  I thought it would be good to check out the beach.  By the time I arrived there, the sun was well hidden behind the clouds.  Then the rain began.  The rain wasn't too bad but persisted long enough to change my beach plans.  Later, the rain stopped and the sun returned brighter than ever and even brought a rainbow along with it.  This one day could represent a lifetime because we always have sunshine and rain.  Some days are the best days of our lives and others are just the worst.  Sometimes we tend to focus on the bad days and that just drags us (and the people close to us) down.  We just have to life, there are more sunny days than rainy days.

Anything is Possible

I am a firm believer that anything is possible.  I still believe in the American dream.  I don't think it comes easily but it can be achieved.  It takes hard work; it takes determination.  I learned this lesson very early in life.  I am an observant person; I don't talk much but I look and listen a lot.  I enjoy watching what people say and do, then seeing the results of their actions.  Sometimes I try to guess the result before it happens.  This way I can learn from my actions as well as others.  Back to my original thought, I wasn't always a believer that anything is possible.  When I was in high school, I never paid attention to geography.  I never thought I would see any of the places the teachers mentioned.  Years later, as I traveled to unknown places, I craved knowledge about these places.  The same guy that didn't want to listen in class was now soaking up information like a sponge.  Being in those places increased my interest and made learning easier.  I'm a visual learner so it helps to actually see everything first hand instead of looking in books or listening to someone talk about it.  The sights available in this world are beautiful.  The fact that I have been able to see so much when I never thought I would proves anything is possible.

Shaped by Events

We are shaped by the events we go through in life.  Theoretically, you can take two people and send them on separate journeys.  Once the journeys are complete, you should be able to see differences in the way the individuals handle different situations based on what they learned from their journeys.  Since we are all individuals on different journeys in life, it is safe to say we are also shaped by events or experiences we face.  Most experiences are not completely unique so fortunately for us, we can often find people that have been through the same or similar experiences for advice and support.  We go through positive and negative experiences during our lifetimes.  "If everyday is a sunny day, then what's a sunny day?" (Eddie Murphy, Vampire in Brooklyn)  Events in life shape us; our response to those events is what defines us.

Myself and Others

Sometimes as I sit and write, it seems like my writings have a dark undertone...sort of melancholy.  That is never my intent so I hope that my words aren't perceived that way.  My goal is to motivate...myself and others.  There are so many tasks that we adults have to accomplish in any given day.  I know I have times when I need someone to give me that added push (instead of an energy drink) when my body just wants to rest.  I know people depend on me to accomplish these tasks and I depend on the people closest to me to be my motivation.  Sometimes, it only takes a few words or just a glance to bring back the motivation.  I'm not sure if I provide this with my few words but I will continue to try.

The First Step

I have been slacking on exercising but excelling in eating lately.  I can feel myself getting sluggish.  I went to the gym yesterday but I didn't do a lot.  Yet, I was sore this morning.  Guess it's been longer than I thought.  To get my belly back under control, I need to get back into cardio.  Tonight, I forced myself to run.  I stretched and began running.  The run started off well but less than halfway, I began feeling uncomfortable so I tried to give myself a fairly close object to run to.  Then once I got there, I gave myself another object to reach.  It worked for a little bit but then I got tired so I walked until I made it to the halfway point.  At the halfway point, I began to run again.  This time, I didn't stop until I completed the run and I even sprinted the last few steps.  It wasn't my best run but it was a start.  I'm just happy I took the first step.

Burnt Bridges

Don't burn bridges!  You never know when you may need them again.  Sometimes, it may seem like the best choice in the heat of the moment.  Part of being an adult is growing wiser.  With this wisdom, you will hopefully be able to determine whether you are acting impulsively or with a clear head.  When I was in school, I had a crush on a young lady.  I only knew her physical attributes, but that was enough to make me want to know her.  Unfortunately, my close friend was also fond of her...but I think he was in the "friend zone".  Even so, he told me that he liked this young lady.  It was a confusing situation because I liked her too.  I weighed my choices and probably due to teenage hormones, I made my move on the young lady.  I spoke to her during lunch and walked with her to her classroom (which is where my friend saw us together).  This was on a Friday and I was on top of the world, not thinking about the friendship I was ruining.  I didn't see the lady over the weekend so I was excited to see her again on Monday.  I quickly found her and walked with her to her classroom.  When we arrived at her classroom, she told me she already had a boyfriend and it was a bad idea for us to continue to hang out.  Of course I was always feels like the end of the world when you're young.  Then, I needed a friend to listen to my pain.  My friend didn't want to hear it...he didn't even want to talk to me.  He lost trust in me and I couldn't blame him.  I ruined a friendship for one day...and it was not worth it.

Reality Check

I have been working hard lately in many different areas of my life, reaching various milestones.  I thought I had everything under control with the perfect balance...but that wasn't reality.  I didn't realize it until my boss gave me a small task and I failed at it.  Sometimes, all it takes is one moment to change your entire perspective.  In that moment, I had to take a look in the mirror and ask myself the difficult questions.  Am I meeting the work expectations of my boss?  Am I meeting the expectations set by me?  I'm always tougher on myself than my boss could ever be.  Like I said earlier, I have been working hard lately in many different areas.  Perhaps, I lost focus on work.  It is possible since I shifted my priorities recently.  So now, I must ask myself a tougher question.  Am I ready to once again focus on work?  The truth is the answer to that question is not as simple as it once was.

Run Your Race

Run your race.  These are words I often say...sometimes to others, mostly to myself.  This phrase keeps me focused on the task at hand.  It doesn't have to be a race, just any task in life.  It simply means:

Don't worry about what other people are doing.
Don't let other things distract you.
Stay focused.

The end result is up to you.  Why worry about what someone else is doing?  Perhaps they are taller, stronger, faster.  Big deal!  Use your strengths to achieve your goal.  You may not accomplish your goal as fast as someone else.  Who cares?  Maybe your goal is to complete the task.  Then later, you can work on speed.  Bottom line, worrying about what others are doing or falling victim to distractions will only slow you down and perhaps prevent you from reaching your goal.  In daily tasks and life, you have run your race.  No one else will do it for you.

Public Speaking

I am an introvert; I tend to shy away from crowds...normally.  Yet, I crave the spotlight.  Weird, huh? Most people dislike public speaking and I am no exception.  I can and I will do public speaking but I usually only do it when I really have to.  I get nervous; my voice my lack confidence.  My eyes may dart from side to side as I avoid eye contact.  I would never say I'm a great public speaker.  My speech skills my change from day to day.  But there are times when I'm focused voice is calm and confident and I give good eye contact to the audience.  It's not that I'm less introverted in that moment but more that I am welcoming the challenge.  It's still an uncomfortable situation but I'm not allowing myself to back down.  After all, what's the worst that could happen?  Embarrassment...I think I could live with that.

Broken Promises

Don't make promises that you can't keep.  That is a good statement but we can't see the future.  How do we know if we will be able to keep that promise?  Have we kept this promise or one similar in the past?  We learn from our past and history repeats.  We also know what is important to us and what lengths we are willing to go for the important things and/or people in our lives.  If you've ever been on the receiving end of a broken promise, you know it's not a favorable situation.  Sometimes you may have your heart set on something happening because someone promised it.  Sometimes you've already planned something else because you expect the first thing will happen.  Because I have had promises broken, I am now more cautious of the promises I make.  I don't want to feel bad for not fulfilling a promise and I don't want to let anyone down.

A Penny for My Thoughts

Sometimes I like to think about where I will be five years from regards to relationships, work, and finances.  I feel like I'm on track in all regards but nothing is a given and a lot can happen in five years.  I'm not rushing the future.  It just seems so far away now but I know once five years has past, I will wonder where the time went.  Time is weird like that.  It's good to have an idea of where you hope to be in life five years from now but you can't be consumed by what the future holds.  You will miss the important life events in the present.  This year I am focusing on the present to create a brighter future.

Take a Deep Breath

Sometimes I can be too focused.  I'm sure somebody can relate to this.  Before I finish one goal, I'm already looking at or working on my next goal or two.  It's fine to be focused, but you have to take some time between goals...even if it's only a moment.  A brief moment to take a deep breath and enjoy the sense of accomplishment.  A brief moment to release all the stress this goal created.  A moment to recharge your batteries for the next task.  Some people are so focused, it's difficult for them to allow themselves this moment.  You need it!  You deserve it!  It will make you stronger for your next goal.  Go ahead...breathe.

Fragile--Handle With Care

With all the medical problems that can happen to the heart, the worst problem isn't diagnosed by a doctor.  This painful affliction is known as a broken heart and everyone is vulnerable.  Everyone has a heart and no matter how much some may protest, they want to share their lives with someone.  It takes courage to be vulnerable and put yourself out there because there is the risk of a broken heart.  There is the chance of everlasting love on the other hand...which should be worth the risk.  People respond to broken hearts differently.  Some people try and try again.  Others let this create a dark cloud over them.  Some people turn their backs on love and choose to never try again.  I'm not an expert on broken hearts.  I have experienced it in the past.  It was a long time ago and I still remember how it felt.  As the date moves closer towards Valentine's Day, I hope everyone realizes the heart is very fragile.  If someone has given you their heart, make sure you handle it with care!

The Light

I think it's only fair that I tell you about how my life changed after my bad year.  First of all, I can't say it was a completely bad year.  I didn't completely know it at the time, but towards the end of that year, I met the love of my life.  I didn't have a lot of friends but I did have a couple of really good friends to help me when I was down.  I was down, but not out.  I was devastated after my Grandma's death.  I thought I never did anything with my life to really make her proud of me.  It also made me realize how short life can be.  After the storm, I rose with a new fire in my heart and a positive outlook.  I knew my Grandma was watching from above  and I decided to give her a good show.  With the attitude change, everything else began to change.  I lost weight, work got better, and I got the promotion I wanted.  It didn't happen overnight but I made it through the dark to get back to the light.

The Dark Knight

My outlook on life wasn't always so positive.  I was just thinking about that.  Actually, a few years ago, I had a bad year.  I won't say it was just the worst because there is always someone that has it worse and you never know what the future holds.  At the time, it just seemed like a bad, hopeless year.  I had gained about 20 pounds and was just out of shape.  With that, my energy levels were low.  I had recently moved to a new location and didn't really know anyone.  I was unmotivated at work after I didn't get the promotion I had hoped for.  Financially, I was living paycheck to paycheck.  That's not suffering but it's not financially stable.  I was also lost in relationships.  Overall, nothing was going my way.  At the end of that year, my Grandma passed away.  That put the darkest cloud over my head.  I felt like I was stuck in quicksand and the more I fought, the deeper I sank.

Off The Sidelines

Being forced to sit on the sidelines sucks!  That's all there is to it.  Luckily, I managed to not push myself too fast.  I gave my ankle time to heal.  I decided to try running a couple days ago to see how it felt.  It felt good, no discomfort.  I did wear a more supportive shoe this time.  The shoes gave me a bit more confidence to push myself during a few stretches of my run.  I hope you're not imagining me as an everyday runner type.  That is not me.  I run a couple of times a week.  During this run, I did walk a bit but I still completed the 2 mile run.  Today, I will try running again.  I hope to improve my run today.  Regardless of how I run today, I'm just excited to be off the sidelines.


The title says exactly how I feel right now...sidelined.  I'm just sitting by as things happen around me.  Literally sitting.  I guess I should give you the back story.  Yesterday, I agreed to play ultimate football with my coworkers.  I told myself I wouldn't push myself past my physical limits but once the game started, my competitive spirit took over.  I wasn't the all-star but I made great contributions to my team: some great passes and some phenomenal catches (which probably seem better in my thoughts than reality)!  About half way through the game, my lower back began to tighten and hurt.  I moved a bit slower but I still had bursts of greatness because I knew my teammates needed me.  Afterwards, my back was killing me.  I could still walk, just uncomfortably.  Then later at work, while sitting, my ankle just began to throb.  At the end of my workday, I stood up to leave and I could not put pressure on my ankle.  That is the twist in my story.  It wasn't my back that sidelined me, it was my ankle.  I guess I sprained it but I didn't realize it until later.  So now, I'm sitting here...sidelined.


It's a new year!  So far, everything seems about the same.  Now is the time that people begin working towards their resolutions.  Mine are the usual.  Be better at love, work, fitness, and finances.  Pursue my goals.  I think I'll stop there.  If I really sit and think about it, I'm sure my list would just continue to grow.  The main theme of my resolutions is to be better.  Some areas of my resolutions just require a little improvement while others will be more of a challenge.  "Being better" isn't really a well defined goal but it works for me.  I just want to see improvement and growth in myself.  So, what are your resolutions for 2012?