Friday, September 30, 2011

The First 48

My favorite animal is pork.  Followed closely by steak.  Though I despise salad, I will eat rabbit.

Friday has gone from "good Friday" to GREAT FRIDAY, since moving in with my girlfriend.  Not only does she have a career, but she also has a job Monday through Friday that consists of working out, and eating food with negative calories, and drinking diet water.  I fully support her decisions, the only problem for me personally is that health food makes me sick.  See the irony there?

So, the agreement is Friday and Saturday is dedicated as "we will eat whatever the hell we want" days.  Not sure if this is celebrated and recognized in other households, but it should be.  We both work our asses off, professionally and physically, to be able to thoroughly enjoy these 48 hours.  Have you ever tried to take a dogs food away in the middle of them devouring it??  Yup, that's us come Friday night.  So, to all waiters and waitresses out there.....fair warning, we are NOT done with that yet!!

Anyone who knows me, knows of my affinity to food.  Not just any food, but mind-blowing and knee weakening food.  Food that's so amazing that the second it touches your taste buds, if a passerby took one look at your face, even they would know that whatever it is you just shoved in your mouth must be delicious.

I'm a food whore and a food snob.....but of the more sophisticated and classy type.  I wont eat just anything, I have way too much self respect.  You probably wont see me eating in any sketchy neighborhoods, and I will never do it in the that is.  Unfortunately there are other people in my life that have been sucked into a life of drive-thrus (which is so wrong, they refused to spell it correctly) , dollar menus and unprotected dining.

I'm not sure where or when exactly they fell off the wagon and starting accepting a life of at-risk appetizers, but it needs to stop.  I have some modest goals in life: build a successful business, fall in love, start a family, see the world, and convert every person addicted to anything that can be ordered by a number over to the good side.

Not sure which side you're on?  Easy.  How often do you order a meal with at least one of the following words in the title:  cheezy, beefy, double, triple, pounder, monster, Mc(fill in the blank), saucy, whopper, or super?

I know, I know, you're busy and it's cheap.  Stop it!  Your stomach deserves better, and there are some amazing deals out there.  Just check out!

Just because your parents force fed you pot roast 6 days a week, doesn't mean you have to accept a life of consuming slop wrapped in recycled paper.  I beg you, put an end to eating hot garbage that can be ordered by a number, and then trying to convince us foodies that it's actually "good" and you're happy with ordering a "Triple Cheezy McShitty-Melt".  You sound like how Charlie Sheen sounds when he's trying to convince us he's not on drugs.  It's crazy talk, and we know better.  We know the signs.  And I'm not above staging an intervention if I consider you a friend.  And if I don't consider you a friend, well, I hear the Five Buck Box at Taco Bell is AMAZING!!!!  ENJOY!!!!

In no way is this meant to be "preachy".....I write this for me, because I can internalize it when I write it, read it and share it.  If you take anything at all from any of this, I'm glad I shared

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Plenty of Pain....Still No Gain

Who's ready to get in shape????  Not many, apparently.  Recent studies show that only 16% of people, over the age of 15, participate in daily sports or exercise.  Compare that to the over 80% of people watching TV for at least four hours every day, and you can understand why the health and fitness industry is pulling in an obese, plump, hefty, chunky, beefy, rotund, gargantuan-like $17.6 Billion!!

Sure, it's easy to say - "I should hit the gym, and lose a few pounds."  But why don't more people commit to it?  Why is it that every time we feel like hitting the gym, our creature comforts hit back harder?

According to Marshall Goldsmith, in "What Got You Here, Won't Get You There", there are five main reasons why people do not succeed when it comes to getting physically fit and in better shape.  While reading through them, I noticed an amazing correlation between why people struggle to get physically fit, as well as financially fit......

  1. Time - It takes a lot longer than the individual expected.  They simply don't have time to do it, and do not make time to do it.
  2. Effort - It's much harder than they expected.  It's just not worth all the effort.
  3. Distractions - They do not expect or plan for a "crisis" to emerge that will prevent them from sticking to their plan.
  4. Rewards - After they see some success, they don't get the response from others that they expected.  People don't immediately love the new and improved person that they've become.
  5. Maintenance - Once they hit their goal, people forget how hard it is to stay there.  Not expecting they'll have to continue to stick to a plan or they'll slowly backslide and eventually give up completely.
Losing twenty pounds, getting rock hard abs or bulging biceps are going to require more than you walking around in some rounded, unbalanced and ridiculous looking pair of sneakers.  It's going to to require all of those things listed above, and a little luck to boot (no pun intended).

Same with business.  You want to grow professionally, prepare to put in a lot of time, especially early on.  It's probably going to require more effort than you initially thought.  There will be an abnormal amount of distractions, and the rewards may not be immediately apparent.  Even after all of that, one of many hats you'll be wearing will be of the fire-fighter variety. Maintaining your business, putting out fires, all while trying to continue to grow, will be a normal day for you.

It's not easy, it's just worth it.  If you don't think you're willing to commit to all of that, don't even start.  May sound harsh, but think about it.  Why subject yourself to all of the pain, with little to no gain??  

It does "feel" easier, however, when you're doing something you enjoy - including working out.  If you love the beach, try running on the beach.  If you like the outdoors, try hiking or mountain climbing.  And if there's something you are passionate about, figure out if there's a way for you to make a living doing something that revolves around that.  

In no way is this meant to be "preachy".....I write this for me, because I can internalize it when I write it, read it and share it.  If you take anything at all from any of this, I'm glad I shared.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

From End To Beginning

Life and business seem to be cyclical and definite all at the same time.  We have the ups, we have the downs.  It starts and then stops, and then starts and stops again.  We're motivated into action, and then take time to rest.  There's time to sow, and there's time to reap.

In business you have the highs and you have the lows, and we've all had our share of both.  But what happens inside of us that causes this professional ebb and flow?  Is it a change in circumstances, surroundings, personality, attitude or approach?  It could be any number or combination of things.  Regardless of why, what truly matters is not whether you're currently in a valley, or upon a peak, but more how you're responding to it.

Nobody with a pulse can honestly always be "level-headed".  What is important though is that when we're going through a lull, be it personally or professionally, we're not simply trying to "survive" or "stick it out".  The economy is what it is, and we can't afford to simply be a passenger.  We have to hop in the drivers seat, strap in, and throw this thing into over-drive.  Seth Godin describes this as "The Dip" we all experience prior to things getting really good, or at least back on track.  The worst thing we can do is just "ride it out", rather, we need to LEAN INTO IT!

When it's good, enjoy it.  Not just to a level of content, but thoroughly and totally enjoy it.  Feeling great, while continuing to do the things that got you there, will hopefully help you get the absolute most out of this time of harvest, and keep you motivated during the times of greatest challenge.

Figure out what or who gives you that extra motivation.  I've been fortunate enough, as of late, to find myself in a position of working for something much bigger than me.  The age old adage "when one door closes, another opens", seems to be true.  This time, the door that's opened is far better than the one that closed.

For some, the money and recognition alone wont always be enough.  Whatever it is that stirs your soul, think about it, and hold onto it.  Remind yourself of it as often as you can - write it on your mirror, think about it when in traffic, or before you go to sleep at night.

Sometimes it takes one thing ending in order for us to create a new beginning.  A lost job that drives you to start your own business.  A failed marriage or relationship that brings you to the person of your dreams.  Or losing a loved one that helps us appreciate life, and strive to make this one opportunity we have the best it can possibly be. Thanks Pops!

In no way is this meant to be "preachy".....I write this for me, because I can internalize it when I write it, read it and share it.  If you take anything at all from any of this, I'm glad I shared.