This Blog's Purpose

The purpose of this blog is help people improve their Mind, Body, Soul (relationships) and their Money.

Monday, December 31, 2012

MMV: Monday's Motivational Video - Les Brown

A little longer than normal - but I think it's worth it - enjoy & have a safe and Happy New Year's!

Monday, September 10, 2012

MMV: Step Outside your box

So, can you spot what's wrong about this video - nothing it's flawless. Some people think the colors are off - I think they're spot on.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Outside Wages Wednesday (OWW) #7

So I just found out two days ago that I won't have the same job in eight mos. Or, put another way I will be out of my current job because my department lost it's contract to another company.

With that off my chest, I will look again at the outside wages with a renewed eye on my expenses. And I will have to begin brainstorming on increasing the "+" side.

ATM Withdrawals: $320.00
Generic Expenses: $400.76
Checks Written: $0.00
Total Expenses: $720.76
refund: $4.00
Total Income: $4.00

Total Gain/Loss: -716.76

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Outside Wages Wednesday (OWW) #6

SO, no real income this week to speak of other than a kind gift from a relative.

The expenses keep coming though.

ATM Withdrawals: $420.00
Generic Expenses: $134.13
Checks Written: $452.51
Total Expenses: $1,006.64
Gift: $100.00
Total Income: $100.00

Total Gain/Loss: -906.64

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Outside Wages Wednesday (OWW) #5

So again, I'm tracking the expenses I had during the week versus the income (Outside my regular wages). The expenses actually increased from last week which is surprising. With a child on the way I need that to change in the not-so-distant future. Or maybe at least maybe a change to increase my wages.

ATM Withdrawals: $220.00
Generic Expenses: $120.30
Checks Written: $344.87
Total Expenses: $685.17
Income: $7.42
Total Income: $7.42

Total Gain/Loss: -677.75

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Outside Wages Wednesday #4 (late)

So It's been a busy week to say the least but luckily we got our tax return this week. After tithing and saving the net was $1629.56

ATM Withdrawals: $420.00
Generic Expenses: $136.04
Total Expenses: $556.04
Tax Return: $1629.56
Total Income: $1629.56

Total Gain/Loss: +1073.52

Thank you Uncle Sam - I owe you one...actually you owed me but, I like it better that way.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Outside Wages Wednesday # 3

SO I've been slacking a but on getting these up on time consistently - that being said. I made no money this week outside of the J-O-B. It's starting to get annoying to see goose eggs so might have to change the strategy.

202.98 cash + $1267.74 checks =

$1470.72 PAID
$0.00 EARNED
-$1470.72 - total 

It's Humbling to know I have so many expenses and so little alternate income. This will change and hopefully for the better.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Outside Wages Wednesday # 2

SO I earned some interest on the bank accounts and that's about where the income ends.

money spent = $559.26
Money earned = $4.49
Balance = $554.77

So I made more than $0 this week - I love it. Now to shoot for double digits.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Outside Wages Wednesday #1

So, I think it's time to start tracking my expenses better and also keep track of how much I am making outside of work. The logic being - what you focus on is much easier to track than what you don't focus on.

Now, I'm not going to share with the world what paltry pennies I make during my day job but, I do intend to share with you how much I spend each week and also how much outside the day job I bring home. My goal is to do this for at least a year but, who can predict the future?

So, for now I'll commit to do this each Wednesday until at least my May.

Without further ado - here we go:

For the week of 2/16/12 - 2/22/12

Expenses:                            $785.00
Outside Work Earnings:       $0.00
Net result:                            $-785.00

"OWW" indeed

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Books I've read in January 2012

You Inc - By Harry Beckwith & Christine Clifford Beckwith

Summary: This book is about both finding the right position and/or vocation for you while at the same time talks about how to market - yourself, your business and/or brand ...well.

My Opinion: I really liked this book, the authors talk quite a bit about their experiences within the Marketing world while at the same time they talk about how you can market yourself to become the best candidate whether your being interviewed by a potential employer or potential clients.

Key Point: "TIME - some people give and others take. Assess that immediately. Give your time lavishly to people who give, and avoid those who take." ...nuff said

On Writing - By Stephen King

Summary: Stephen King, the undisputed master of the horror genre of books for the past 30+ years pulls back the curtain and talks a little bit about his craft. He talks about how both his life - from the moment he knew he didn't have to be a teacher anymore, to the moment he was a few hours away from a premature visit with the Grim Reaper - while at the same time gives all types of golden nuggets on how a mediocre writer can become a good writer.

My Opinion: An excellent read. Mr. King tells it like it is and pulls no punches in describing what makes a good writer to a God-awful one. He shares his hatred for adverbs. He talks about how he got the idea for some of his most famous books - for example Christine was triggered by the thought of a high school outcast he once knew - and most importantly he talks about the 'work'. The 'work' being sitting down, and writing ...everyday.

Key Point: Honestly, if one of the best-selling writers in the past 30 years tells you the best way to write a book...wouldn't you listen?

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Sunday, January 22, 2012

I'm not the expert, but I know who is.....

..YOU are.

You are the ultimate expert

1) So many experts - It's no longer hard to find a "Guru" or an "Expert" on a subject. You trip over them in search results on google. Everything from relationship experts to money experts to experts on how to make a "killing" off AdWords. As if that's what we were put on this world to do "Make a Killing on AdWords". I happen to be of the minority opinion that a person's purpose in life has to be grander than simply manipulating code to make a website show on the first page of google - but, again, I'm the minority.

2) So many opinions - It's just as easy to find "experts" online that espouse the benefits getting out of debt - as it is to find experts who encourage readers to charge their credit cards to the maximum in order to obtain "easy" riches. For the record I'm more so a Dave Ramsey fan than a Kiyosaki fan but, I find it puzzling that Dave considers Kiyosaki a "friend" - when they promote exact opposite strategies to wealth. I suppose their are differences of opinions in the relationship, dieting and marketing spheres as well but, I'm not as attuned to those areas so who knows.

3) The opinion that counts is in fact yours - If you had to take a weekend and research all of the spectrum of opinions on a given subject, I would venture to guess you'd have several ways to skin a cat and no clear winner on the best way if the subject has any form of complexity. It's up to you to sift through all the varying opinions and decide on a final opinion that is in fact yours and only yours.

4) Truth/Falsehood - (the dichotomy) One thing that I'd say that speaks to me when trying to form an opinion is more or less a sense of feeling - Do I feel this person, subject-matter expert is speaking more TRUTH or more FALSEHOOD. The more truth I feel - the more I respect the expert, the more falsehood I feel - the less I respect said expert. TRUTH to me feels obvious and without effort while Falsehood seems forced or very elaborate when something very simple would suffice. TRUTH reminds me of my Pastor at the Church I attend as well as in some ways the Llama who presides over a Buddhist Temple I attend. FALSEHOOD reminds me of a "Guru" I had a chance meeting with while I was searching for a meditation group in a distant city. Instead of meditating, his followers sat around and asked him questions - as if he was an expert - although I had not yet acknowledged his supreme knowledge he had no problem commanding me to go fetch him a cup of water - as if I was his disciple ...or slave - I grabbed it, hoping I was in the presence of an enlightened being- it was only when he began preaching his philosophy that was essentially "winning arguments are a way to enlightenment" that I pulled out my Bulls**t button aka I recognized - to me at least he preached FALSEHOOD.

5) If I were an expert ( and I'm not) I'd give a single piece of advice. - Err on the side of LOVE. Listen to Jesus when he said

"Thou shall love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul and all thy mind...[then added] Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself"

Or Buddha who taught 'Metta' or the practice of Lovingkindess

Even an upstanding secular humanist will tell you their belief falls apart if there's not an underlying principal of the Golden Rule to prevent anarchy, disorder and despair could be expected to follow.

Bottom line though, if all of what I've presented here tingles your B.S. button - then, in your opinion - I'm a promoter of falsehood and in a sense that proves my point again - you are the expert. YOU and only you know what makes sense and truth for your reality.

I sincerely hope that your reality holds you as the resident expert.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Have you given up on your resolution yet?

If you haven't...please check out this video from Tony Robbins to get you some gas...helped me at least:

This videogame called life...

Up until recently I have been struggling to find a good metaphor in which to describe life. Tony Robbins talks about the multitude of metaphors ways that people describe life as. Some calling it a war - and thus they're always on edge, some people calling it a test and thus they are always studying.

Then the other night, I came upon a metaphor that I think fits (at least for me):

Life is like a videogame

1) Life has a definite possibility of given outcomes - Now I'm a little bit old school so I'll go ahead and date myself by saying I remember playing on a Commodore 64 but mainly got my 'gaming' experience in by playing games like Galaga and Street Fighter at the arcade* and Super-Mario Brothers at home. Whatever the game was, there typically was a goal to blow up as many attacking space ships, beat up as many traveling martial artists or rescue poor old Princess Toadstool from an evil turtle. They all had some GOAL that you were shooting for - likewise in life, it's better to have goals than to go without them.

2) If the game is too easy &  not challenging enough we feel like we got ripped off - Now, I don't know about you but, if you wait anxiously for the newest game out there called Super-Stab-fighter Deluxe...or something...and it's been promoted by all these videogame magazines as being "the best game since that other really cool one!" and you wait outside of Best Buy for two days like my brother would** and pay a cool $75 dollars to be the first to purchase Super-Stab-fighter-Deluxe only to beat the games 87 levels in under 10 minutes - wouldn't you feel ripped off? Life is like that in a way, we need a challenge. if everything gets handed to us on a silver platter without effort we feel as if we lack purpose. But if we struggle to achieve our dreams they then feel so much more rewarding.

3) You can decide to live off ACTION or RE-ACTION - Sometimes you have to choose whether to ACT or RE-ACT.True Story : So the first time, I played Batman -Arkham Asylum I was over my lil bro's place. He started the game from the very beginning and - being the old-school player that I am I was absolutely floored by the opening sequence. While credits were rolling. This cinematic scene seemed to be coming to an end and eventually the camera focused on a light. So I just sit their, holding the controller waiting for something to happen and then after looking at me with a look that says "You idiot" for a full minute, my lil bro finally  says "You may want to move...or something". I moved the controller and suddenly what was a second ago an opening movie turned into me playing the actual game. A very awesome game if I might add. That moment taught me something unique - if you want something - like a date, a certain amount of money, a better lifestyle - you have two choices you can a) wait for something to happen or b) you can take action and make something happen.

4) You have 99 'lives' so to speak until you get it right. - Failure is something that videogames in a lot of ways encourage. People close to me that have been to my house know that I'm obsessed with playing both versions or Star Wars Battlefront - repeatedly, when I'm bored on my now out-dated X-box or as I like to call it X-box Classic. One thing you get to do on this game, over and over again, is die and then respawn - or instantly come back to life in the same place you were before or a different place. It's learning from what you did wrong the last life(or year - or hour) that makes you better in this life - let's say as the Sniper Class of Storm Trooper***. Failure is sometimes the greatest teacher.

5)  Mastering the videogame is possible - Now, again I've mentioned my lil bro - who I love. He  however, loves schooling me on just about every videogame we play together - which I hate. The one exception being the aforementioned Battlefront game which we tend to end up about even on. One thing I will say about my lil bro is that he has 'Mastered" the videogame. Whenever he buys a game it is completed or conquered within a week or in some cases a matter of hours. The question you might want to ask yourself is "What can I do today to  start mastering my life?" If you're the type that plays a videogame with excitement and expectation knowing that you can reach the exciting achievement that marks 'conquering' the game. I lay the gauntlet down to you and ask you to dare to bring that same excitement and expectation to your own personal life whatever challenge or goal you may be facing.

So in closing my life is becoming more and more like a videogame.

But what's more important is -  what metaphor do YOU apply to your own life? I'd love to hear your opinion - please leave any comments, compliments and/or constructive criticism below.

Thanks so much for reading and I hope you have a great day!


* In my day, we used to have video arcade's where stand-alone video games were played and taunts were spewn back and fourth until the guy on the left of me playing Samurai Showdown realized that he had just met someone who was unafraid to 'perfect' him with Hanzou's fireballs.

**OK I might be exaggerating a little bit or likely a lot here.

***Sniper Class of Storm Trooper - for your information, when playing Star Wars Battlefront II this is best used on the Kamino aka the cloning facility board. Gosh - I love sniping me some 'droids.