Mordant & Kirsten go back and forth, sharing the many ways they have neglected their follow thru and what they are doing about fixing this personality quirk. From to-do lists to apps like Habitica to enlisting a follow-thru buddy, you will find enough helpful hints, anecdotes, and hilarity to help guide you away from the drudgery of having so much to do and not enough desire to do it. [Read more…]
Mordant & McFall tackle the issue of when confidence in one person meets the worry wart in another, how to deal with the conflict, and how to shut up (on either side of the equation) and learn your lesson.
On this episode of Success Freaks, we promote a good cause, but somehow forget to set up the show. We hear what happens when co-workers clash between ‘Worry Wart’ and ‘It’s Fine!’ attitudes. We share a few personal stories of growth. In the Level Up, we learn to look for the lesson in every situation. And in On Beyond, we share the cartoon reactions we sometimes have to each other. [Read more…]
In this hustle-and-bustle-of-staying-connected-social-media life that is now such a large part of your existence, you need a resting period. Remember those? In kindergarten, it was nap time. In elementary school, recess was the perfect time for you to relax your growing, soaking-it-all-in brains and recharge. In college…it was your after-classes nap time—Life coming full circle. What about today?
How do you reboot, rebuild, and recharge?
Do you even?
“Have patience with all things, but, first of all with yourself.”
~Saint Francis de Sales~
Sitting in an office chair in the backyard of my friend EJ’s house, and my thoughts turn trippingly towards Patience. Not your run-of-the-mill, garden-variety, patience-is-a-virtue Patience either. Nope.
Not for today.
Not for you.
For you I save the good stuff. The stuff that runs a little deeper. More personal.
I want to discuss having patience with yourself and your process. Cutting yourself some slack as you begin or continue on your path towards self-actualization. It’s easy to pinpoint what needs doing when you think about patience with everyone outside your personal bubble. There are steps you can take to ease the pain of their annoying stimuli, no matter how much they are exasperating you at present. If all else fails—the smiling, the prayer, the counting to 10—you can always up and walk away. Any of these techniques are done simply enough and your world is set back in balance—if you put forth the effort it takes to keep everything flowing “merrily, merrily down the stream.”
What is Courage? What does it mean and what does it take to have courage? I’ve heard it said, “Courage is a lie that old men tell to young men when they send them off to die.” A clever maxim, yet I believe there is more to courage than that. One of my favorite John Wayne quotes is:
“Courage is being scared to death…but saddling up anyways.”
If you believe what the late-great Duke said, Fear is an active ingredient in courage. How can this be? Isn’t courage the absence of fear? Aren’t the bravest of the brave those without fear? The correct answer here is…no.
Courage is not about feeling no fear at all—a double negative, yet true nonetheless. You cannot have courage without fear. Courage and bravery mean having fear while maintaining the ability to move forward in spite of your obstacles, real or imagined, and get the job done. If you have no fear, then it doesn’t take any special fortitude. Nothing out of the ordinary in the way of grit or guts to keep you on track for deeds of daring do. You’re just doing your job—no problemo. It is when you have fear and then combine it with the need to keep moving forward anyways—this is when courage comes into play.
What happens when you’ve reached all the goals you have set for yourself? Do you stay put or do you create new ones? Are you a failure if you haven’t met those goals? If you abandon them for new dreams and aspirations? All of these questions are addressed as Mordant & McFall compare notes with their good friend Farnoosh Brock of prolificliving.com.
In this episode, these three dream hunters push themselves to remain transparent about what happens when you outgrow some dreams. They open up to one another, discussing what it means to discover the “Freedom To Move Beyond.” They share personal stories of both success and failure, as well as what it took for them to push beyond what even they thought possible.
As long as you make sure to stay true to who you are, creating a life worth living, there is no way for you to be considered a failure. Learn that you can change course, reaching outside your comfort zone in ways you never thought available to you. Listen in and begin your journey to a point beyond..
Welcome to Success Freaks Episode #100!!! It’s been two and half years since The Other Side of LIVE! crawled out onto the live arena and into podcast history. Listen in as the men from Success Freaks “Screw Around and Help Others Be Awesome.” It is a set-list-free kinda night, with call-ins from the Success Freaks Team and Mordant & McFall cutting up, eating on the air, and generally having a good time. There is reminiscing, poking fun at themselves, and even some happy-100th gift giving at the end. This one’s more for fun & celebration. Enjoy!!!
~ Don’t forget to order your tickets NOW for our Success Freaks Alive! Level Up Your Live in 2013, which is our Conference we’ll be hosting in Covington, GA June 15 of this year. ~ Mordant &McFall will be speaking at this conference along with Allison Williams, Doug Grady, Tim Gillette, Rhonni Rocks and Bishop Jim Swilley.
The burn you feel is from you fighting the process.
“No Pain, No Gain” is the biggest load of overused horse hockey I have ever heard. Do you know how many successes in my life people have tried to invalidate because they came easy to me? I bet in your life you have experienced some of these examples; “That was too easy so something is wrong,” or “If you have no problems then you are doing it right.” Shut up. Yeah, I mean you. I’m looking right at the inner voice that is repeating this crap to you, keeping you from owning your success. I am here as the “Dark Side of Positive” to destroy some of this lie that keeps you from being successful. And trust me – resistance is futile.
Yeah, you know me!
You down with O.P.P?
Yeah, you know me!
All of us have come face to face with family & friends who do not agree with, and quite often do not understand, what we are doing and what we are about. They are sure what you are doing is wrong and you will only wind up hurting yourself, others, and (even worse) them! Breaking through your defenses with knowing smiles and furrowed brows, they hide behind their super-friend guise of concern and offer up an unending stream of advice. When this fails to talk sense into you, their “friendly” advice becomes more pronounced… aggressive… sometimes, even threatening.
How can you be so blind?!
Can’t you see what you’re doing—how you’re hurting yourself and everyone around you?
How can you be so selfish?!
Sound familiar? It does to me—even the “bastard” part. (Okay, maybe I’m paraphrasing… taking poetic license and being a tad overdramatic. But, that’s how it sounds in my head.) All the high dramatics aside, I’m here to tell you…
“It’s none of your business what other people think of you.”
(In “quotation marks” because many others have said this before—“I stand on the shoulders of giants.”)
It is human nature to want to keep the status quo. Home & office, friends & family—there is a hierarchy, a pecking order if you will that most people strive to keep. Office politics and corporate hierarchy often dictate that their denizens jockey for position like nobility at court. The same can be said of your friend and family social structures. No matter where you are in life, each group you come in contact with has its Alpha, its Beta, and even its Psi & Omega.
Then you come along….
With your highfalutin ideas about changing your life for the better. It’s not “good.” It’s not “normal.” Others certainly don’t want you altering things… especially if this means they’ll be moving down a few rungs on the social ladder.
Is this true?
Am I telling you this so you can be pissed off at the injustice of it all?
Mostly I’m telling you so you will understand why it happens, recognize it when it happens. It doesn’t affect you. At least, it doesn’t have to. Why? Because you see it coming and you can steel your self-esteem against the onslaught of their crippling barbs & jeers?
No. Well… some, but mostly no.
It doesn’t affect you because…
“It’s none of your business what other people think of you.” Still.
There is a story I’ve heard about crabs in a bucket. It seems you only have to put a lid over the bucket when you have caught only the first one. After that, when you have more crabs in the bucket, they do all the work. Even though safety, freedom, and a much longer lifespan reside on the outside, the remaining crabs pull the would-be escapee back down to their level.
To the bucket.
To their doom.
It is human nature to do the same thing…mostly without the impending doom. Mostly. You see, this behavior has spelled the death of many a dream. Pull them down enough and creative types will finally come to their senses, leaving go of an inspiration that “probably” wouldn’t go anywhere anyway. A crushed spirit can lead to a safe & secure J-O-B.
Remember, others forcing their Perceptions and Opinions on you = Peer Pressure. This was a big pain in the butt during high school & college. It’s time to begin growing past this now.
Are people actually holding you back? Physically? Really?! Or could it be that you value their opinions over yours? You’re worried about what other people might think, so you buckle under the perceived “pressure.” You hold your tongue instead of offering your brilliant suggestion at the board meeting. One week later, you watch Johnston submitting your idea, receiving all the praise.
That idea-stealing, dream-crushing glory thief.
He kept you back. He held you down. When you shared your idea with him he physically… did nothing. Other than physically open his mouth, suggesting your idea “outlandish.” You did the rest. Worried about what your coworkers might think, you kept your mouth shut.
You did it.
Instead of worrying about what anybody else thought, Johnston stuck his neck out and offered up your idea. Sure, he’s not going to win Team Player of the Year, but who cares?! He’s on his way up & out of the bucket and you’re not.
Next time you have another brilliant idea (don’t worry, you will; you have them all the time), speak up. Whether it’s about your job, some creative spark, or a dream you just can’t quit—make your move.
Don’t worry about what others think.
Why should you? They’re not worried about you. Not really.
People are too enmeshed in their own lead role to worry about your bit part in their life. Everybody’s got their own stuff going on. Their world, and opinion of you, is colored by that. It’s not personal. Remember, everyone is hip deep in their own sheep sugar and the smell is why they’re making that funny face—not you.
But, what if they’re right… and you’re not!?
Life is a game, meant to be played—an experiment where you try new things. Often you will fall flat on your face…and that’s okay—great even! This is how we learn how to do this thing called Life. As long as you’re not hurting yourself or others, muck things up a bit. Take chances. Ready, fire, then aim as you go. It’s okay—you’re doing fine!
Only you can decide what your life is about—what’s important, what’s not. At the end of the day, Y-O-U are responsible for your own experiences. That means you can make mistakes and….
You can fix them!
These are your lessons. You have to learn them, to go through “the fire” sometimes in order to Level Up Your Life. When it comes to your life, you are responsible—yours is the opinion that matters. I’m not going to tell you that everything will always work out the way you want. In fact, often, when you get what you want, it winds up not looking anything like you thought it might. Is this some cruel cosmic joke?
No. Maybe. Sure. Who cares!
Whatever happens, isn’t it better to follow your passion? To attempt even a few of your “crazy” ideas? Rather than suffer a life of “quiet desperation”? You might surprise yourself. You will fall flat on your face…a lot. But, that’s okay. That’s why you’re here. To run and fall and skin your knees… and create a great life for yourself.
So, what do you say?
You down with O.P.P.?
No way, not me!
You down with O.P.P.?
No way, not me!
You know what? Me neither.
“I took the road less traveled, and it has made all the difference.”
For more on this topic, check out the podcast >>TOSOL #55 – Down With O.P.P. (Other People’s Perceptions)? <<
On this path to chasing & catching your dreams, you are headed for the “mountaintop.” That main destination you have set your heart on at this stage in your journey—for the adventurous at heart, there are always more mountains to climb. With scenery so beautiful and enticing (the grass is always greener up on the mountaintop), you long to frolic and eventually purchase a spread of your own in that land of milk & honey. So, you kiss your mum & da goodbye and waive your friends cheerio as you strike out for adventure and a better standard of living. You’re so bold. You’re so brave—with not much more in your pocketses than your hopes, aspirations, and a few magic beans. Somewhere, not too far from where you began, the path grows steeper…and steeper…and steeper still. That’s when it hits you. The light bulb appears above your head, illuminating an important fact that in your exuberance to get started had eluded you until this you’re-hip-deep-in-sheep-sugar-now moment….
You don’t know how to mountain climb.
It’s not all sunshine & roses. This path you’ve chosen to better your life. It’s not so easy. Sure, it’s mucho better than the alternative—having no life at all, living vicariously through someone else’s safely-watched-from-the-couch fantasy. In his book The Dip, Seth Godin talks about being gung-ho for a passion or project until you smack headfirst into the reality of what it will take to attain such lofty and noble goals.
“THE DIP is a little book about quitting…. Every new project (or job, or hobby, or company) starts out exciting and fun. Then it gets harder and less fun, until it hits a low point—really hard, and not much fun at all. And then you find yourself asking if the goal is even worth the hassle. Maybe you’re in a Dip—a temporary setback that will get better if you keep pushing. But maybe it’s really a Cul-de-Sac, which will never get better, no matter how hard you try.”
This is where you are first smacked in the face with the reality of what you are undertaking. (Oh, yes, there will be other moments.) The High-School-Musical infatuation once held for your pet project wilts in the shadow of this dream-mountain you picked out for yourself. Oy, the things you’ve gotta go through to become the person you need to be to scale such a behemoth. Where did all the fun go? You never signed on for…this! Actually, you did. You just didn’t know it…yet. Tricksy-tricksy Law of Attraction. Throwing opportunities your way and you not ready to act on (and sometimes even notice) them. Now you have this huge opportunity…with a mountain of work—Yuk!—standing between you and your dream.
Whatever will you do?!
First thing…relax. Though there is much you will face and endure along the way, all is happening as it should. As it must. Everything you’re coming up against in your effort to reach the mountaintop is happening to help Level Up Your Life and get YOU ready.
This is the hard part, “dark side” that comes with getting what you want out of life. The price to be paid for this kind of “magic.” So, what do you have to look forward to on your journey through the Dark Side of Positive?
Goblins & Gremlins galore?
Yes, all this and more, Dream Hunters…. All this and more.
There’s the Gremlin we call Work. How can there be work when you’re doing what you love?
You just got ambushed by Gremlin Work.
Are you willing to put in the necessary effort to not only be in the right place at the right time, but to become the right person in the right place at the right time? We hear of “overnight successes” all the time, but are they really? Take a closer look and you’ll find they’ve spent, often, years in preparation of their “big moment,” that opportunity that comes knocking only once every so often. People like to call them lucky. Because it makes them feel better about what they’re doing and their chances at catching that same “big break.” What they fail to see…is the overnight success that took 5-10-20 years to get there.
“The harder I work, the luckier I get.” ~Samuel Goldwyn, producer~
I’ve spent the last couple years at on-the-job training for my talk radio show, The Other Side of LIVE! (The exclamation point is part of the title.) At the writing of this blarticle, I’ve recorded nearly 300 vlogs, most dealing with subjects not unlike those delved into on TOSOL. Before that I’d spent the last 25 years performing comedy across North America. TOSOL is doing none too shabby—it is well received, the numbers are growing, and they’re about to get bigger.
And, people are going to say I got lucky.
They’re right, you know. I did get lucky. And, every time I walked on stage, or stayed up late to rewrite, or took acting classes to learn another aspect of my craft, or went to Toastmasters to learn to speak to people instead of perform at them….every time I did those things or something like them, I got luckier and luckier and luckier. I’m a lucky guy. You can be just as lucky. All you have to do is show up. Put your best into whatever you’re doing. Learn to take the good and the bad of what’s happened to you and shape them into something useful.
“I’ve found that luck is quite predictable. If you want more luck, take more chances. Be more active. Show up more often.”
~Bryan Tracy, author & speaker~
Even with all that “luck” on your side, won’t be easy. It can’t be. How can it? Circumstance and the life lessons are there to shape you, to mold you, to teach you what you need to know to survive on the mountaintop. Those who take a shortcut to the top rarely last up there for any length of time. There are plenty of bankrupt lottery winners who can attest to this. You don’t walk into the gym and begin working out with the 100 lbs. weights. You begin with the 25 lbs. weights (or the 15’s if you’re a champ like me). It’s not so much that you don’t know what you’re doing as that you’ll hurt yourself. Badly. I have a formally squished finger on my left hand (it still crackles when I push on it—ask me, I’ll let you hear it) that warns against such reckless behavior.
There is a price that must be paid—as if God & the Universe are asking “How bad do you want this?” What are you willing to give up? Your time? What kind?
Now do you begin to see why I call this the “Dark Side of Positive”? Success for this passion that yearns to come to fruition demands a sacrifice. Don’t worry; it’s not asking for too much. Just your life and all that you are ready, willing, and able to give. In return, it will give back to you in equal portion for what you have given.
And, they will call you “lucky.”
Have you counted the cost? Are you ready, willing, & able to—as the Psychologist K. Anders Ericcson study at the Academy of Music in Berlin shows—spend your 10,000 hours to become the best of the best?
“In the book Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell puts forth the premise that to be an expert in your field requires a devotion to one’s craft for at least 10,000 hours. Gladwell and other elites cited in the book challenge the premise that genius or being gifted is a matter of innate talent. In fact, closer analysis of success stories prove out that the element of innate talent plays a lesser role in achieving expert status than one might think. Gladwell also points out something quite fascinating and worth remembering. In his study, Ericcson didn’t find any ‘naturals’ or prodigies who effortless mastered their instrument. Neither did Ericcson find ordinary people who worked harder than anyone else and yet never made it to the top. In other words, he never found people worked hard and never made it.”
As Victor Antonio (by way of Gladwell and Ericcson) alludes to in the above, you can be anything you set your mind and energy to being—but, there are some things you must first go through to get there. More than just time, there are other “perils” you must face on your climb up Mordor to the mountaintop.
Snow? Rain? Gloom of night? Not quite. The elements you must face as you climb your metaphorical mountain are those things you must confront to get there. Skills you must learn along the way: speaking and management and accounting, oh my! Not to mention whatever talent you must hone as you climb ever onward & upward.
Another element, one that you must all face once you grow your dream beyond the hobby stage, is the J-O-B getting in the way. Climb the mountain high enough and someday—not to-day, mind you, but some-day—you will come to a crossroads. At that point in your life you will question whether or not to leave go of the bread-and-butter income-producing profession that has helped you get this far. If your dream grows so big that it becomes a career, then you will need to rethink your current employment. The real trick will be in the timing. Let go too early, and you risk losing your foundation as your finances begin to fall short. Wait too long…and you get caught in the quicksand of contentment. Eventually you watch your dreams fade away, leaving you with a life that is “good enough.” You tell yourself that it’s okay and you just want to be happy. Yet you find that you are not. You find that, even with your happy, contented life, you are often listless, sad or mad even.
Because, some joyous part of what you used to be has died inside…
Cooked to a slow boil in the pot of your contentment.
One of the more difficult perils you will most likely face on your way up is Isolation. Though life is very much a team sport, there are times when we must go it alone—especially when creative outlets are involved. Painter, writer, sculptor, digital artist—alone time is a definite must when pursuing these dreams. Hours upon hours of it. The same can be said for dancers, singers, and actors. Though much of their art involves partners, there is still the learning, training, and even rehearsing that comes before the duets. If you are a person who cannot stand solitude, then perhaps these are not the dreams for you. Nora Roberts, one of the most popular romance writers in America, has one golden rule for cranking out five books a year….
“Ass in chair.”
Could you do the same? Where do you stand with your dream? When family and friends beg you to come out from your cave and “live a little,” what then? Are you grateful for the chance to step away from your passion…to see the light of day for a change? Or do you take up Dave Ramsey’s financial battle cry to “Live like no one else so you can live like no one else”? Like crabs in a bucket, those around you will pull you back in—even though the kind of freedom you’re seeking can only be found in those “wide open spaces.”
Even now, I’ve cloistered myself away from most of humanity so I can jot down these thoughts and share them with you. J.K. Rowling began writing the Harry Potter series in 1990. In 10 years she touched the world. I bet she clocked in a ton of alone time for her writing. I’d like to touch the world—wouldn’t you? And, because of those who have gone before us, we have a pretty good idea on what it’s going to take to achieve something of that caliber.
This is the Dark Side of Positive. You want to get somewhere in life? Want to create a great life for yourself. Wonderful. However, the wanting isn’t enough. Not for this. Not for your dream. The dark side of this golden coin is you are going to have to give and give and give of yourself. You’re going to have to invest all of you…and then the Laws of Attraction, Reciprocity, and Manifestation kick in…and you begin to get back 10, 100, 1000-fold what you put in. The bad news vs. good news of all this is it’s going to take a lot of work—Boo!
And, it’s all up to you—Yay!
Yes, there is a dark side to positive, but it is a necessary “evil” for all the good it brings into your life. It’s there for a reason. It’s there to help you grow. To help you level up to the where you need to be to handle a dream as big & brilliant as yours. Dreams this big require a sacrifice of sorts. Don’t worry; it isn’t much. Just all you’ve got to give. Your dreams will grow in direct proportion to what you put into them.
It’s all up to you!
Manifestation, stirring the quantum soup, dreaming dreams & wishing wishes attract opportunities—that’s the easy part. It’s up to you to reach out and act on them when the time is right. Even early on when you’re not quite ready. That’s when you fail forward and go for it! You probably won’t be ready to ride that first opportunity right out of the chute, but you’ll learn. Remember, ready-fire-aim—make adjustments as you go. Keep moving forward, climbing up that mountain and becoming the person you need to be to reach the mountaintop. Once you get there, you’ll know what all the fuss was about and what all the trouble was for. Because, from that vantage point, the view is amazing and you can see forever! From up there, you will begin to understand and appreciate all that you had to go through. But, before any of that…
You’ve got to take those first steps.
Go grab your gear and begin your journey up the mountain. When the weather gets rough, and it will, remember to tuck your chin and keep climbing. Keep your eyes on your Why—the prize, your passion, your reason for this dream you have. Your Why will be a beacon for those darkest times when you have nothing left to keep you moving and you’re ready to give up. Like a bright star in the East it will guide you ever onward and upward. Eventually, with but a cup of audacity to begin your journey and dash of persistence to carry you through, braving the elements, isolation, and anything else life may throw your way, you will move beyond the dark, difficult time…
…to reach your Mountaintop.
Click here for the Cross the Finish Line: >>>Podcast<<<