Monday, September 07, 2009
If not, get one.
I can tell you first hand that you're probably spinning your wheels without it.
I started my company while I had an outside job, but after a couple of years I could no longer do both; so I took the frightening leap and quit my corporate job to work for myself full time. Now, I wonder why I waited so long.
I frequently meet people who have no idea where they're going in life, and still don't know what they want to be when they grow up. The most critical thing to success is finally making this decision.
Until you have a goal, you can't move in any particular direction. It's like getting into your car to go and meet your spouse without knowing where he is. Your career is your target; and as difficult as it is to hit a target you can't yet see, it is completely impossible to hit a target you don't even have.
Someone who has clearly defined goals flies straight toward them like an arrow. Your career path will no longer be fuzzy, it will appear before you with crystal clarity. Like having an instruction manual, you'll suddenly see exactly what needs to be done and in what time frame. You'll know how much education you'll need and how long it will take. You'll know what professional organizations you need to join, and you'll know what people it will be necessary for you to network with to move yourself rapidly toward your goal.
Unfortunately, making this goal decision is the most difficult part of the process. Human personality is so multi-dimensional, our interests are all across the board. You have literally a buffet of possible career choices. However, you must choose. Don't let this stumbling block cost you another five years of your life, just start. The good thing about life is you can quit any part of it whenever you want to, make a totally different choice, and begin moving immediately in a new direction... as long as you have a goal.
Best wishes on your bright future.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
It seems we have a new kitten.
Not exactly by choice; you see, I've sworn off kittens. I recognize that I am powerless to resist the cuteness of kittens, so I avoid them. I decided a year or two ago, after the eldest of our four cats died, that I didn't want to get more. Unfortunately, the three remaining cats are all about the same age, so when they go, it will be in quick succession and extremely painful; but I decided to limit myself, IF I COULD, to just one small dog, and MAYBE one cat. And only maybe. I'm tired of the bickering, the territory disputes, the endless cat hair everywhere... you know, the cattiness.
Well, two doors down from us, there are renters. They're young; college kids I guess. They're disorganized, disheveled, and irresponsible. They had two cats and two dogs, until both of the dogs got loose and ran away (I know this because I saw the "lost dog" flyers posted all over the neighborhood). The two cats have always been free roaming, and spent many hours lounging around my front porch, sunning themselves and collecting affection. Since both of them were friendly, and since I like cats, and since I get along well with my neighbors, I knew who owned them and what their names were.
Well, the kids moved out. The week they moved, the one guy who was talkative told me they were vacating and said goodbye. They never got their dogs back, and I don't see the Persian, Orwell, hanging around anymore. The sanitation workers picked up the enormous mound of household possessions they left at the rear curb.
But they "forgot" the tabby kitten, Henry.
Poor little Henry looks to be about 5 months old. He's longer and lankier than a baby kitten, but much smaller than an adult cat. He's WAY friendly, greeting every stranger with his tail held high, and completely nonchalant toward strange cats AND my dog. I haven't seen my old neighbors come around looking for him, so four days ago, I started feeding him, right where he has been camping out on my doorstep.
I'm a sucker. And this is how we aquire pets.
At least they cared enough to neuter him.
I received the most wonderful email today: Welcome to ASCA!
The American Society of Consulting Arborists is a prestigious organization for those of us who have met their standards for ethical business practices, and their requirements for experience and education. Oh, and paid their huge membership fee. But, I've been trying to reach this goal for over a year, and I've finally got it. I'm stoked! Gotta love reaching your GOALS, and making your dreams come true.
Best wishes on your journey!
Friday, August 07, 2009
My journey really began in late 2006.
I was disgusted with myself, and in my lack of self worth, and my compounding health problems. I was so morbidly obese, I feared for my life. I felt backed into a corner, desperate, and at the end of my rope.
I decided to change EVERYTHING about my life: everything I was eating, everything I was doing, and even everything I was thinking. In late December, the day after Christmas, I decided that I was no longer an obese person, and I started off in a new direction.
In keeping with my new mindset, I focused all of my effort on being a fit, healthy person, asking myself constantly what fit people eat, how fit people spend their time, and what fit people dream about or look forward to.
I guessed that a fit, healthy, athletic person ate a specific diet based on promoting health (not on taste, convenience, or price), so, so did I.
I knew that fit people were active: they got up early to work out, went jogging after work, and they engaged in physically demanding recreational activities with their fit friends, such as bicyling or kayaking, so I got outside and became active.
I intuitively imagined that fit, healthy people were more focused and goal-oriented, because they could see a positive future for themselves- something I, as a morbidly obese person, could not... so I listened to self-help CDs and decided that I actually had GOALS in life: I wanted more money, more education, and more recognition. I was going to be healthy, fit and dynamic.
I kept my 2007 New Years Resolution. Amazingly, the weight melted off. In 17 weeks, I had lost 50 lbs. By September I had lost a hundred. Then, it slowed down; I'm about 135 lbs down since 2006.
The difference in my life is like night and day. Not only did I achieve the goals I knew I had control over, but I also achieved the goals I couldn't achieve by myself- like the absolutely insane goal to double my income. When I told my boss, during my annual evaluation, I had no intention of staying with the company and working for low wages for another year, she gave me the largest raise I've ever had in my LIFE. At the same time, my own business began to skyrocket, and lo and behold, my income had doubled from the previous year. Amazing.
I've heard many times that it's best to take "baby steps" toward your fitness goal, and to go slowly. Well, I say rubbish. I tried that for YEARS.
When I changed everything, everything changed.
Wednesday, August 05, 2009
In some lines of work, it is common to hear the same questions or comments from customers REPEATEDLY. These gems are legendary among the employees. Then, of course, the tables can be turned, and YOU will be the customer, and catch yourself asking a silly question.
Have any tidbits to share?
Everyone has heard the classic "Can I ask you a question?" (Is it rude to reply "you just did"?)
When I was a wrecker operator, unlocking someone's car, they'd always make some comment about how easily I could break into their car, and speculate about how lucrative it could be for me to be a thief.
I always let them know how silly that was by pointing out that the thiefs goal is very different from the locksmiths goal, because most thefts start with glass breakage, which a locksmith will avoid very carefully.
When I worked in the nursery, people would pick up a couple of plants, and ask "how far apart should I plant these?". I'd answer "You mean how close together? Not closer than three feet." Some of them would look confused or become defensive at my choice of words, and insist they MEANT exactly what they said, repeating it for emphasis or calling me out directly (if they were more combative). I might get something like "So, I should plant them three feet apart?" to which I'd respond "You can plant them on opposite sides of the county if you'd like, but I wouldn't recommend planting them any CLOSER TOGETHER than three feet." If it was a plant I didn't like, and I'd get asked how far apart to plant them, sometimes I'd just say "40 miles" and keep working. My coworkers would just die laughing.
Friday, July 17, 2009
There is such a motivation myth going on.
Let's revisit what motivation IS.
Motivation just means you have a REASON. When police ask whether a murder suspect had a motive, they want to determine whether the suspect had a reason- something to gain- by murdering someone.
Therefore, ANYONE who has weight to lose is motivated. If that is YOU, and you haven't lost any weight yet, you still have every pound of motivation you started with. Your goal is to LOSE the motive!
I get so tired of people complaining about a lack of motivation, and asking other people to GIVE it to them. Motivation is internal. You cannot get it from somebody else. Either you have it, or you don't.
Many people confuse motivation with inspiration. Inspiration can be gotten from other people, and should be sought out. Inspiration is as simple as reading the great advice contained on this website- but even THAT can't make you lose weight. The only thing that works is ACTION.
Asking yourself whether you "feel like" exercising is asking for time off. If there was one word to describe people who only exercise when they feel like it, the word would probably be OBESE. Cosider it a duty. You are 100% obligated to do it, regardless of how you feel. Think about this- if you woke up every morning and asked yourself whether you FELT like going to work, or school, or where ever, how likely would you be to actually DO so? The fact is, none of us have the luxury of deciding that it FEELS better to snuggle with the sheets for a couple more hours- we force ourselves to get up and do what needs to be done, no matter what, because we know that if we don't, our lives would soon fall apart.
Motivation is important. It's necessary. But it's meaning is lost on so many people. They think they lack motivation. And believing that makes it easier to avoid the truth: they only lack ACTION- a factor that is 100% in their control.
Motivation never melted a single pound off of ANYBODY. Only ACTION does it.
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