2012 has been my best year to date. Years ago I decided to be less victim and more victor. I can tell you right now that this post is NOT about kettlebells or training but it is about LIFE and living it. I apologize in advance if you expected just to read about the physical arts here on my blog. The reason I started this blog in the first place was to have an impact on my readers. I promise you that this post has impact. I can’t promise that it won’t ramble a bit but I hope you find something worthwhile in it.
I will share a lot here. Much of it you may disagree with but my goal is simply to get you to think about where you are and how you got there. I have to tell a few stories to accomplish that. I will also reveal things I’ve never shared publicly
If you don’t like what I write or you do. I sure would appreciate your feedback in the comments. I thank you in advance. Let me also write upfront that I am not an expert in much of what I am about to share with you. I’m simply giving you my take.
Over the last 10 years I’ve lost 3 jobs that paid me more than 6 figures. I was one of the top producers in each situation and my companies closed their doors, never to reopen. Each time this happened, there was a lot of financial pressure exerted on my household. Frankly, we are still recovering.
I tell you that because each challenge turned out to make my life more interesting and help me get to where I am now. Before I recovered from the third episode, I read an article in “Baltimore Magazine” that talked about kettlebells. The article certainly peaked my interest and I immediately signed up for a session with a local trainer. I was hooked immediately and a year later I went through my first kettlebell certification. 8 months after that I become an RKC.
I discovered that I love helping people get healthier and get more fit. I soon realized that it is almost impossible to out train poor lifestyle choices and became more and more interesting in eating well. I discovered the Primal Blueprint and read a lot about Paleo eating and many of those folks I shared these ideas with saw immediate results.
The next part of my story is this. 3 and 1/2 years ago I was introduced to Send Out Cards. I knew right away that it was a great personal communication tool, leveraging technology. I have used it professionally and personally ever since and even became a distributor. I’ve changed my own life as well as that of others by being more open to showing appreciation and by being a lot more communicative. Every day I am thankful to Nick Berry for showing it to me and for Jeff Packard for helping me to really examine myself and how to use Send Out Cards to my benefit as well as others.
Another thing to share is this. Almost 3 years ago, I got real interested in Marty Gallagher and what we teaches regarding power lifting. So I emailed him. He got right back to me and we started a correspondence that has developed into a wonderful friendship. I was able to introduce a bunch of my RKC friends to him and some of us still train with Marty. We all definitely still learn from him.
Here’s one more short story before I get to the meat of this piece. I have always felt a deep connection to the great city of New Orleans. I felt it the first time I was there as an adult way back in 1991. I will spare you the details but I never forgot how I felt when I first went to JazzFest. Last year, in the early Spring, I felt called to New Orleans. I can’t explain it and I won’t attempt to try but a whole bunch of us there for my birthday early last Fall. While there, Paul Sanchez introduced me to some folks who I imagine will be part of my life and mission until the day I die. Paul introduced me to one, who acquainted me to someone else. That someone else runs Trumpets Not Guns and this foundation has become real important in my life. I can’t recommend enough finding a charity that you are passionate about and that you feel deeply connected to it.
So here we go. Yesterday I met a gentleman from Venezuela at a local gym. Our conversation really impacted me and got me to thinking. Jorge owns a local small business. His enterprise helps local car dealers to be able to quickly and economically take trade ins and get them out on the lot for sale. His crew and he do paint touch up, fix trim and other cosmetic work. He’s been doing this sort of work for 23 years;ever since he came here. The first 2 years he did it as an employee, cleaning up around the body shop we worked at and then he went out and started his own small business. When he first started making sales calls his English was still rough enough that he had a friend write out the provided service on poster board and then Jorge went to dealership GM one after the other with his “presentation” until he had a number of customers. And by the way, Jorge stopped in the say “hello” to his original employer recently and found that 2 of the guys he cleaned shop with are still there and still doing the same thing.
Jorge told me yesterday that he never went through a recession. He told me he always worked hard and made sure his employees did the same. He also told me that for the last 20 years he was giving raises for consistent work well done. He admitted that his margins got tighter but it was worth it to ensure that his dealer network loved the work his team did and that his employees knew that they would be rewarded for effort and quality.
Jorge is retiring after 20 years of running his small business. He is moving back to Venezuela and he unsuccessfully tried to sell his enterprise. The first person he approached about selling it is actually one of his current employees. The guy said it was “Safer” be an employee and besides he is going to quit working for the company as he decided he doesn’t want to work outside anymore.
The 2nd guy actually agreed to purchase the business. And then stopped showing up. Jorge had agreed to assist this buyer transition into a leadership role and then this person STOPPED coming to work. Jorge had to take the business back and the ultimate excuse was that the work was “too hard.”
By the way, both of the prospective buyers were American born.
So why does any of the above matter? Think about what I wrote. There is a common theme and that is that we all need to “do something.” Not think about doing but actually doing. Be a person of action and not a victim. All Americans enjoy access to the same opportunity as Jorge. Yet far too many of us sit around and complain and play the poor victim. We WANT stuff but we don’t want to take the necessary action. We don’t want to break a sweat or hear the word “no.” We want to enjoy the bounty of the harvest but we don’t want to sow any seeds.
You are where you are for no reason other than your own choices and actions. Never “pass the buck.” The buck stops with you. You have no one you can realistically congratulate or bemoan other than yourself.
No longer am I at the mercy of others. No one can decide my fate any longer. I DECIDE.
God did not give us the ability to always make right decisions but he did give us the ability to make those decisions right.
Accept responsibility and you are free!
I want to share some books that will be full of impact if your mind is open.
- The Flinch
- Success Is Not An Accident
- The Four Laws Of Debt Free Prosperity
- Secrets of the Millionaire Mind
- The Traveler’s Gift