Friday, September 11, 2015

Life Balance and How to get Shit done

I am not speaking as the expert in this blog, rather as the experiencer.  The past 10 years of my life has been one crazy roller coaster.  I have ran 300 miles in 4 ½ days, completed an Ironman and 70 something other endurance events, started a business and expanded that business; got married, had 3 daughters but tragically we lost 1; started another business, lost it; and yes there is more.  But, I am not here to bore you into itemizing stories about my life; today I share my opinions on life balance and plain and simple, how I’ve been able to GET some SHIT DONE.  And ultimately, I want to fire you up to accomplish your goals and aspirations.    

Here is my take on a “balanced life”….It doesn’t happen.  When you think about it, who wants to live at balance?  I ask this question not necessarily knowing the answer but with my past experiences guiding my learning curve, I have realized that perfect life symmetry just does not happen.  For the split second that you feel you are perfectly in control, let’s say balanced, BOOM!  A blow comes down and smacks you in the face.  Then the teeter-totter heads back down; when you reach the “ground”, there is only one way to propel yourself back up…You push yourself off the ground.  You soar back up; enjoy the ride, only to hit the apex of the teeter-totter once again.  It’s an ongoing process.  How do you respond? 

So you want to get in shape?  But you have three kids between the ages of 4-8.  You have work pressure as your boss is on you to close two big accounts.  You haven’t gone on a date with your wife in 3 months.  You feel sluggish, lack energy and the body aches.  You are overwhelmed because of the three soccer games this weekend. Yeah, that’s a tough one. 

Here are a few things I recommend: (remember, I am speaking as the experiencer, not the expert)

First, get things GREAT with your wife.  Go on a date, like tonight!  Make her your priority.  Over work, over your kids, over your exercise, over everything, she is #1.  When you have long days and want to crash on the couch the minute you get home, don’t be selfish, she needs help.  Get up and go help!  A happy wife equates to a happy life!

Second, make two small changes to your diet.  Eat 4 servings of vegetables everyday and drink 65 ounces of water everyday.  These two strategies, when built into habits, will snowball into other positive and healthy habits.  Be consistent as it might take months, even years to form these habits.  Do not try and revamp your entire lifestyle.  This is a recipe to become even more overwhelmed and right now you need to destress, not add more.  Instead, work on no more than 2 various strategies at a time.  Do not move on until it is connected into your routine.  When you feel ready to move on, choose 1 or 2 more habits to work on and go with the same process. 

Third, find the time to exercise.  We all have at least 30 minutes every single day for movement and exercise.  Either wake up 45 minutes earlier in the morning or do it before you go to bed.  YOU HAVE THE TIME.  If you aspire to train for an event, like a triathlon or half-marathon, communicate your goals and time budget to your wife and family, then plan an efficient training schedule (or hire a coach), write in all of your workouts in your weekly calendar and go for it!  You do not have to be the fittest person in the world.  Just be the fittest YOU can be.  What makes you happy?  If running with your buddies makes you happy, go do it.  What drives you?  If looking good naked for your wife motivates you, then get to the gym.  What are you willing to sacrifice?  Late nights, social gatherings, sleeping in, processed foods… If you want to achieve big things in fitness, you have to make sacrifices. 

Lastly, you must take 100% responsibility for your life.  Eliminate excuses.  Read the books that will help you grow.  Exercise.  Eat healthy (but indulge once in awhile).  Build STRONG and positive relationships.  Remove negativity and things that send you south.  Keep going when SHIT gets hard.  Don’t blame; find solution.  Stay motivated!  Be happy in the moment. 

It is very easy to get complacent, lose productivity and ultimately lose motivation.  You sit down and end up watching 2-3 hours of television, when you should have been reading or exercising or working on a project.  We all can write a long list of excuses why SHIT is not getting done.  But do no be the excuse maker.  Be the ACTION taker. 

This is a journey.  And not to sound too philosophical, but life is a wild ride.  You are going to win some and lose some.  Some days will be harder than others.  Some days you will want to stay in bed all day, but can’t because SHIT needs to get done.  So GET UP!  Rise today.  Don’t worry about tomorrow just yet.  Yesterday is gone, so move on.  If you can dig deep and find your strongest self, this thing we call LIFE can be pretty amazing.  Do not accept a mediocre life.  Challenge and push yourself to your limits.  Realize that it will be uncomfortable if you want to get SHIT done. 

Do not search for a balanced life.  Instead, be in pursuit of your ultimate self.

Remember, I got your back.  Peace Out!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Life changing learning lessons

Not going to lie, it's been a whirlwind last 4 weeks.  Emotional highs and lows have knocked me around a bit.  Without boring you with all the details, I do want to express the learning lessons that have been life changing...

Learning Lesson #1:
Four weeks ago I made a big decision to close down the CFA Playground.  This was a business I started one year ago and plain and simple, it just didn't work out.  The excitement I had 365 days ago when opening this facility was marred by the complexity of running two entirely different businesses.  I was spread thin, became overwhelmed and stressed and ultimately could not physically run both facilities.  We loved the Playground and everything it symbolized but the business model did not work in our community and I came to that tough decision to cease operations.  Hence, the BIG learning lesson....MORE IS NOT BETTER.  Better is better.  Quality is the key.  Quickly, I turned a negative emotion into positive.  Instead of sulking in my sorrow, I quickly found new motivation.  This attitude adjustment reinvigorated my enthusiasm to continue building the mother lode, California Fitness Academy (our main facility).  What a learning lesson!  In life, you must be willing to take risks when reaching for your goals.  Sometimes these risks can lead to failure, but failure is not necessarily a negative thing.  Failure can supply some of the biggest learning lessons in life, if you are willing to respond and grow.  

Learning Lesson #2:
"RAISE YOUR STANDARDS" has been the main philosophy going around our facility.  What do you desire to achieve?  How bad do you want it?  Are you willing to put in the action?  Will you be consistent?  These are valuable questions to ask yourself.  When raising your standards or aiming for specific goals you must create a game plan, with actionable steps, to be successful.  Anyone can have big goals; the question is, are you ready to put in the necessary work?  What habits and daily actions are needed for you to move forward?  Do not try and revamp your entire lifestyle.  Look for a few realistic action steps that you can take immediately.  Once you take ACTION, then it is about being consistent.  Short-term results is not what we are after.  We are in this for the long haul so you must be willing to do the work for months, even years.  This builds a solid foundation.  The stronger the foundation, the higher you can go.  Go out and raise your standards today!  Don’t wait.  This is something that you can do right now. 

Learning Lesson #3:
Relationships are such a key to how you want to live.  “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”  This quote from Jim Rohn says it all.  I encourage you to eliminate energy vampires, negative people and any relationships that suck you dry.  Instead, surround yourself with people who love life, are motivated to grow and learn and that will support your healthy endeavors.  If you want to get in shape, you need to hang out with like-minded healthy people.  If you want to build and grow a business, you need to find mentors who have already been through the journey.  If you want happiness, you need to surround yourself with happy and cheerful people.  When it’s all said and done, your relationships might be the KEY to this crazy life. 

Past writings