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LiLTweeks: You don’t have to know the details, just be prepared


The other day I tried on a pair of pants I had bought three weeks earlier. But these weren’t the same pants. The thigh area of the pant legs were so tight they would not have made it out of the store and onto my bill without trying on another pair. And now that I think back I had tried those pants on and they did fit comfortably enough to toss into my bag. So what happened?

Last week I was sub contracted to provide air quality testing services for a commercial environmental safety company. The task required me to collect air samples then walk down and up flights of stairs as high as 140 ft. several times a day in a respirator mask dodging temperatures of 100 – 150 degrees to our mobile laboratory. Granted this type of work isn’t something you can just jump into without being in moderately good health.

Had you saw the physical condition I was in at the close of 2009 you would understand that there’s no way to have fooled myself into thinking I’d be able to take advantage of such a well paying opportunity. I was unemployed, emotionally drained, spiritually crushed, and grossly out of shape compared to my norm. That’s when I started a daily two-mile walk regiment that included climbing eight flights of steps where I live instead of taking the elevator. I knew that when the chance came for me to get back into the game of life I’d better be ready.

Not only was I ready to collect from a well paying job with all of its physical demands, but I also have fabulous quads, calves, and abs for that beachfront vacation next month. You gotta love this life or you’ll hate the journey.

Stay focused. Stay confident and believe your preparation will pass emissions test.

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].

LiLTweeks: How to derail unhealthy living?



The lesson I learned this week [LiLTweeks] marinated over a few days. During that time I revisited how valuable exercise combined with outdoor exploration is for rebuilding muscle and renewing the spirit man in all of us. I also learned the challenges of getting back in shape can be more difficult than jumping onto the track designed for healthy living.


Time for recovery

Last month I traveled four hours by car to visit my mother after a long winter hibernation. After making the rounds visiting family and friends I was ready to pick back up the exercise routine started weeks earlier. I set out to explore a few miles of her suburban neighborhood. Within minutes I noticed bicyclist and joggers crossing the street and heading down a path, I came to find out was named the Monon Rail Trail. This course of exercise routes stretches from the north end of the city over more than ten miles between backyard residential communities to downtown Indianapolis.

A culture of pleasantries

For an entire week I walked 2 – 4 miles every morning amongst the other peaceful exercisers on the rail. The Monon has its own culture and rules of courtesy. There’s the smile and head nod as you approach a passerby. Dogs have manners and walk on a short leash. Then there’s the friendly, “On your left,” bicyclist use to warn pedestrians they’re about to whisk by. The asphalt trail is maintenanced daily by the city, but its natural beauty of trees and bushes are left to appear uninhabited. The perfect conditions for mental and physical rehabilitation I desperately needed.

Fitting into others space

New lessons in life are more rare as I get older, but those repeat lessons are reinforced daily as in that first Sunday’s late afternoon walk. It just wasn’t the same. There were literally ten times as many users bustling the rail. Hardly anyone used the rules I had come accustomed to. And the friendly smiles and eye contact from earlier in the week were nowhere to be found. This was clearly a different breed of which I didn’t fit in. Or was it that they didn’t fit.

iShape the world I live in

The experience made me think about how others affect my world. Yeah, I wondered why that bicyclist with more than 100 meters of space between the two of us and the person ahead felt it was a good time to spit in my direction after passing by. And I must admit it was a challenge to keep smiling when others didn’t smile back. I was tempted to give up and close into my own little space like everyone else. After all there was plenty of stuff going on in my head that I was using the Monon Rail to get away from. When the world doesn’t acknowledge my role as equal I realized that as an individual I still contribute to shaping the world as it tries to shape me.

I’m reminded of an adage my mother mailed over seas to me more than 30 years ago, “Use your head to get along. To get along use your head.” Words to live by. Thank you mother.

Stay focused. Stay confident and believe you shape our world.

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].

LiLTweeks: Guaranteed social media success worth following.

The lesson I learned this week [LiLTweeks] came from observations around my most favorite social media superstars getting all the blogger buzz, Twitter re-tweets and reply’s, and profile status update comments on Facebook. It’s enough to make a want-a-be enthusiast jealous for attention with all the wrong motives.

Popularity listings worth modeling

Most of us have seen the Twitter users with 1,856,000 followers tweeting random mental gushes of what’s happening in their world of fame and fortune. Now and then there are famous people I’ve managed to sneak in a confirmed Facebook friend request before they reached 5K and move to the overflowing Like Page, if that’s even possible post Oprah’s social media jump. But few of them connect back with us like Paulo Coehlo or Mari Smith. Then there are my above average Facebook friends (Ty Adams) that earn special celebrity status within our community because they post great content that gets many more comments and likes than most of us do.

Stop it right now

Have you noticed people creating problems for themselves trying to win social media popularity contest in an effort to get the most comment replies? I’ve been guilty of posting favorite quotes to the point of plain intellectual laziness myself. I suppose it’s a learning process. Every now and then one of my friends will rant about witnessing spiritual campaigns people launch to convince the world of fake “I’m living holy” status updates backed by bible scriptures to get attention. Word to the wise, “If that’s you stop it?”

Just be a friend

I know a few of my friends will wonder if I’m talking about them so let me set the record straight right now. None of my friends behave that way. That is you don’t behave that way without me eventually telling you about yourself. I expect to be treated the same and have been in the past. That’s what friends do. Friends don’t let friends faux tweet or falsify status updates. From one friend to another, being a friend is about doing something good for others like showing them you care. That’s all. Just list your friends and follow them to the point of ensuring their confidence in you being there. Making friends smile when they need it most guarantees social media success to the point of following you back and maybe even buying your stuff.

Stay focused. Stay confident, keep posting valuable content, and you will be followed.

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].

LiLTweeks: I own it. No one else to blame.



The lesson I learned this week [LiLTweeks] like several of my lessons came from an iTunes podcast. I usually playback archived broadcast of shows I subscribed to while writing blogs or exercising. This time I heard something that made me realize I have a way to go before owning my mistakes without pointing the “finger” at someone else to take the blame for my misfortunes.

Surreal Opportunities

Back in February of 2010, Tavis Smiley interviewed talented actor and comedian Tracy Morgan to promote his new movie. The energy coming off of Tracy was electrifying. From the moment the interview started he was talking about the surrealness of coming up with nothing other than a dream and now being able to walk down the street seeing billboards of him and Bruce Willis in, “Cop Out.”

Three minutes into the conversation Tavis asked, Like Richard Pryor owning his style of comedy, “Have you gotten to a point in your career yet where you think you own anything yet? Where you can say this is Tracy Morgan’s, this is my thing?”

Full Responsibility Disclosure

That’s when Tracy dropped the bombshell that nearly diffused the interview. And would have had Tracy not kept talking after, “Yeah. My mistakes. The mistakes I’ve made in my life are mine. I own them. That’s all I own in this world.”

I tell you, hearing those words makes everything I thought about accusing someone else for, [unattractive]. Over the last six years I’ve taken my fair share of finger pointing and problem blaming way too far. Just bitter about things that I have no one else to blame other than me.

I’m to blame for not having my own lawyers and inspectors present when making those real estate deals. I’m to blame for not monitoring my professional development credit hours for meeting my end of the state board of education contract. There is no one else to blame other than me for allowing my trust in people to go uninspected. People sometimes have a corrupted agenda, that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t fight back when they’re exposed, instead of hiding behind the guise of, “What would Jesus do?”

Learn From Everything Around You

Morgan said, “When I was young my father taught me how to learn.” Somewhere on that very same journey we forget what we’ve already learned, because we let our guard down, or either we just quit learning all together. For me, I passed on the blame as a substitute for not getting wise counsel and allowing the mind chatter to drown out the voice of God in me.

Well Tracy, I was listening when you said, “The key to longevity is to approach everything you do like it’s the last time you’re going to do it.” From now on I’ll be alert, paying attention to life as it pertains to the many lessons I’ve learned along the way. And you better believe from now on, “I own my mistakes, they’re all mine. No more Christian nice guy, beginning with myself.”

Stay focused. Stay confident and appreciate the art of learning.

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].

Categories: LiLTweeks, Weekend Post

LiLTweeks: Faith, move that mountain!


The lesson I learned this week [LiLTweeks] brings humility in knowing that God is no respecter of man, it is that man’s faith that moves mountains.

Rejoice. Rejoice.

Just a quick message of what it means to know that if you don’t give up and expect that all things are possible to him that believes, you will win.

Being a businessman for more than half of my life makes it both extremely important to have grace in my conduct and to respect that which is owed for products and service. Somewhere on the road I began holding myself extremely accountable for meeting my part of the bargain in transactions. However, from time to time we all need help getting out of the mess we create for ourselves. Say, Amen.

That’s where this story begins. I was not able to pay for services from a vendor that resulted in costing me more for being late on payment in full than from the original bill. I think you get the idea. So, I went to the service provider and let him know that I was financially challenged at the moment and wanted him to know I would make good on the deal, it was just going to take a little longer than expected.

You should know the first time I met with the vendor months earlier he reduced my rather large bill by 25% for no other reason I can imagine than having received favor from him. That’s grace. Now here I am again seeking a solution in faith for settling my debt with dignity and once again that same vendor reduced my balance due by more than 60%. That’s knocking a mountain down to the size of a hill.

I never requested a payment reduction. I continued to stand in faith. I was confident in the results being what I believed instead of what it looked like. What I learned again is that God is no respecter of man. He is a respecter of faith and integrity. That’s perfecting. In the words of My Total Money Makeover author, Dave Ramsey, “I’m doing better than I deserve.”

Stay focused. Stay confident and replace your fears with faith.

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].

LiLTweeks: Have your status updates gone uncommented?


The lesson I learned this week [LiLTweeks] came about after realizing my Facebook account’s privacy setting preference for personal information and posts was custom set to [be seen by] “Only Me” for over three months. The setting change happened shortly after Facebook made those privacy control changes for user posts on its platform. I continuously posted links to great online content, funny quotes, inspirational messages, and labor intense notes the whole time. Week after week numerous news updates without one comment response.

Technical difficulties are correctable.

You’ve heard of the term technical difficulties right? There are quite a few book titles on the subject. Facebook friend and The Bond Institute’s Audacity Expert and life coach Tonoa Bond (@tonoabond) even offers her thoughts on the idea in a free eBook. But what I discovered is that my Facebook technical difficulties were an extension of a much bigger life issue.

Do you know someone like this?

From lacking clearly defined goals, to depression, to self-sabotage, there are many reasons for not living your dreams. But this LiLTweek is focused on the “Only Me” button. Perhaps you know someone that feels like no matter how hard they try they just aren’t able to produce positive results. Maybe they feel like nobody out there cares about them or what they have to say. Have you ever felt alone in a room full of people?

Don’t worry about everyone else.

Facebook friend and @websuccessdiva Maria Reyes McDavis and I were discussing her inspirational Proverbs 31 Project (scheduled to launch June 1, 2010). And she mentioned, “I just speak out what I need to hear myself sometimes. . .” Reminds me of a pastor preaching, “Don’t worry about whose not here in church hearing this message. The lesson is for you and me to learn, right here, right now.”

Breathe. Relax. Re-focus on the solution.

Investigating my Facebook problem revealed a solution. And I repeatedly changed the preference every few weeks or so. Mysteriously the preference changed back like a default to “Only Me.” I’m not sure what that was all about, but the bigger lesson learned is that if the only me button is activated in your life there won’t be any connections, comments, or relations, let alone friends. Socially speaking if you feel me.

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].

LiLTweeks: The Philosophy of Winning, Part 1



“True character in a winner is not boiled down to one event or situation. Winners are made of the stuff that can get back up, dust off the dirt, wipe away the tears, ignore the stinky smell you’ve stepped into, and focus through the pain with confidence to perform better next time the whistle blows.”

(Note: Philosophy of Winning is an excerpt from soon to be published Special Report on Winning)

Winning or even being a winner means something different to just about anyone you ask to share their thoughts on the subject. Straight talk on it is, even though many of us buy into what others think it means to be a winner, what you personally believe and how you feel about it is what brings out the champion in you.

Believe you are a winner, even when no one else does.

Say it like you mean it, “I’m a winner and there’s nothing you can do about it.” What does that feel like? In high school I was part of a group of guys called Hard, Inc. We were cut from a unique breed of athletes, walking around chanting how fine we were, long before MC Hammer wrote, “Can’t Touch This.”

My grandmother would often tell me, “It’s not always what you say, but how you say it, that wins friends and creates enemies.” Before long I learned that you can look at competition the same way. Nana could have easily said, “It’s not the win or loss that matters, but how you played the game, that makes you a winner?” (To be continued. . . )

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].