Friday, October 25, 2013

Content Strategy?

Portent-Content-Strategy We are embarking on our next segment in our online life and that is learning Content Strategy.  Now, as we understand it, to get to a point where we can start working on content strategy we first need to have a solid understanding of our brand.  And we feel we also need to know why we need a content strategy.  It is an easy question to ask but not necessarily an easy question to answer.
Let us try to tackle our dilemma as best as we can.  Our brand as we have it defined right now is Live, Laugh, Love, Inspire, Serve.  With our business we help people move from an employee outlook on life to a (large) business owner outlook on life.  98% of what we do is wrapped up in relationship building, mentoring, leadership training and personalized support.  We help people transition from a life of living paycheck-to-paycheck, Friday-to-Friday to a life of freedom and choices.  One of the things we love best about our business is we don’t define what freedom means; you do.  We get to help you get there!
With that in mind, I am leaning towards a content strategy that is centered on relationship building, leadership training and thinking like a (large) business owner.  I am hoping to find a circle of friends out there that would like to help guide some of our own decision making processes while we explore and learn to utilize the Social Media channels currently available to us.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Flipboard – My new way of organizing information for me

Over the years I’ve tried several ways of organizing my information and Flipboard has given me the best way yet.  And, on top of that, I can share with like minded people.  Double bonus!  If you click on the image to the right it will take you to my Magazine Rack.
I’ve been using Flipboard for over a year now, ever since they released the Droid App.  It does a great job of connecting to most, if not all of your social networks and gives a great magazine feel to all of them.  Recently, they introduced Magazines and I started curating my interests a couple of months ago via the editor.  And at this point I bet you are wondering what interests me.

Live, Laugh, Love, Inspire, Serve
I’ve been married for nearly 23 years to a wonderful woman.  I am blessed to be able to be nearly a fulltime partner in life, marriage, business, fitness and so many other areas that we share with each other.  Our lifetime legacy is to be able to Live, Laugh, Love, Inspire & Serve.  By defining our mission statement, what our legacy will look like we are growing so much faster now in the realms of relationship, spirituality, mentally, emotionally and financially.  I know within a short span of time my comment of “nearly a fulltime partner” will change to “a fulltime partner”.  Why else did I get married?  So feel free to subscribe, find out what it means to Live, Laugh. Love, Inspire and Serve.

I spent 13 years in the US Marine Corps.  While they did not want sculpted body builders they were very intent on lean, mean, fighting machines.  Since retiring, my activity level has dropped.  Over 20 years it was a slow decline and one that was always accompanied by the thought of “I am still in shape”.  Then I realized, somehow, magically, I was nearly 40 lbs over weight.  Yikes!!!  Not only do we have the best vitamins, minerals and nutritional supplements available to anyone through our own business, we carry a great line of fitness products.  And as my wife and I continue on changing our lifestyle for the better, this is where we will share what we find that works, and what doesn’t.

“Beauty & Skin Care?  Really?  You are interested in that?”  You bet I am, and I am but at the beginning of the learning curve.  “But you are a man!”  And I have skin.  Not quite like a woman’s, but I still have it.  I and I want to have it instead of some piece of hide when I am older.  I am also learning that there are several grades of makeup that women have available to them.  Some, like what you get at low-end stores, have metals in them.  You know, lead, aluminum, etc.  And at the high end you find mostly natural ingredients but the price!  The Prestige Brands can be quite expensive!  And do you even know the top Prestige Brands?  Artistry, Clinique, Estee Lauder, Channel, and Lancome (not necessarily in that order).  While we represent Artistry the purpose of this magazine is not selling but rather education.

My personal passion lies in Space Research, Exploration & Colonization.  Growing up I just KNEW I would be an Astronaut one day.  But, as they say, life happened and look at me now (or rather look at the last magazine down the list here).  However, that passion is still burning bright in my heart and I’ve not given up on it at all.  For now, I will be flipping in articles on Astronomy, space, X-Prize, the private sector space race and much more.  I love deep space photography and will flip a lot of those space shots in here as well.  And as I come across new/weird/different ideas on how to tackle problems in this arena you may find those flipped in also.  And if you find things I don’t have, tell me!  Please!!

Technology could be considered a slice of Space Research, Exploration and Colonization but the subject is so big I opted to create a magazine just around this (general) topic.  Computing, transportation, homes, integration and more are the more specific topics I will be flipping into this magazine.  While Space is my passion, sometimes articles around space belong more here than they do in the previous magazine.  I also have a son who is a Type I Diabetic and will flip medical articles into here.  Not only on Type I Diabetes but on T-Cell research, genome knowledge, life extension ideas and more.  While I am not a huge proponent for human cloning, I find the idea of organ cloning compelling.  We are still a long ways off but it is an exciting field.

As you may have picked up, I am a US Marine.  We are the only branch in the US Armed Forces that do not think, talk or even act of ourselves as “former” or “ex” military.  The day we graduated Boot Camp or OCS we earned the title of US Marine.  I don’t expect many of you to even want to follow this magazine, but for my Brothers and Sisters out there in the world – Semper Fidelis!  And I warn you know, don’t get me started on politics or the actions happening up on the Hill.  I serve no man, regardless of who may win the election for President.  But I support and defend the Constitution of the United States.  I am a US Marine and I will defend this great nation!

The Developer started as a way for me to gather insightful and useful knowledge for my career choice.  And guess what happened?  I found more magazines in the same vein.  So now I am finding it more common to flip in articles on technologies, patterns and practices that I know I will be stepping into or need to learn.  Yes, I am an ASP.NET (MVC) specialist with extensive backend and middle tier chops.  I love managing data and greasing the pipeline between the data source, not always a database, and the user.  I see so many failures in the arena of data design and implementation it is not even funny anymore.

So that is the list of magazines I have out available to the public right now.  As I gain more insights into myself they may evolve a bit.  Enjoy – and remember to Live, Laugh, Love, Inspire and Serve!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Tag line? Or just a way to live?


My wife and I got back a couple of weeks ago from a trip to Spokane, WA.   We went out for a Family Reunion and to learn.  Sounds strange but for us it was a blessing we were there!  One of the conversations I listened in on was about “The Secret”.  Now, of course, you can Google it and find a lot of stuff out there.  After a lot of looking I realized there are many, many versions of “the secret”.  Some of them are weird, some are older versions recast and some are spot on.  Now, I’ve heard “the secret” many times before but never applied it to our life.  For some reason, this weekend really resonated with me and we are making a change!

I also spend 5-10 minutes a day on Google+ and Facebook.  Neither are high or critical items on my list but I do get into some interesting conversations.  Like this one from a gentleman in England.  He posts a “Question of the day” and sometimes I answer it.  This one got my attention! 

What is your tagline and why did you choose it?” 

My answer?  Here you go: 

Live, laugh, love, inspire, serve.
To be successful we are often told to visualize what we want; like houses, cars, bank balance, etc.  My wife and I discovered 2 weekends ago something a little more powerful for us.  We brain stormed and thought about what we wanted others to say of us in 20 years AND 4-6 words that would sum up our lives the way we wanted to live it.
Of course, we have further fleshed out exactly what each of those 5 little words mean to us, not only with pictures but with the underlying attitudes to go along with them.  Well, not completely yet but we are getting close.
As we move forward, every decision will be passed through this tagline (filter) and the outcome will be decided on everything that makes up those 5 words for us...

And now you are wondering what a tagline has to do with “The Secret”.  First, let me define “The Secret” as best as I can.

  1. Want it with all your heart.
  2. Fervently believe you can do it.
  3. Vividly imagine it all the time.
  4. Enthusiastically talk about it all the time.
  5. Treat it as if it were a matter of life or death.

It - What does it mean to us?  What is it?

Like I said, we talked on our drive home from Spokane.  We turned over what it meant to us.  We both then realized that it was not something physical, it was not money in the bank, it was a way of life.  It is the legacy we leave behind us.  And it is what we are excited about!  And it was what we were defining on our drive home!

From our notes on 07/15/2013…

Live - to live life richly, deeply, fully, without hesitation,  enthusiastically,  adventurous, passionately, purposely, to flourish, to make the most of life, faith filled, with conviction, boldly, without regrets,  with the belief that we are worthy of blessings

Laugh - heartily, no job, no stress,  no debt,  freedom, relaxed, often, freely/unforced, success is increased by being happy

Love - openly, honestly,  freely,  no guilt-shame-condemnation,  passionately, deeply, compassionately,  to empathize-not sympathize, boldly

Inspire - uplifting,  with conviction,   raise others up, lead by example,  to be defined by our victories not our trials, to be a catalyst in others lives, when you walk into the room be someone who walks into the room, have a clear direction and focus on it with or without your current team, be the lead goose, always treat/encourage people (to be) more than they think they are, hope givers,  encouragers, to be a couple others want to follow and run with.

Serve - selfless not selfish,  eyes out not eyes in, treat everyone like they are the most important person in the world, to find out what people want and help them achieve it, focus not only on our family's legacy but the legacy of our team, help people get their "end state", be a couple our team can count on.

Our next step is to further clarify each of the 5 parts of our tagline, our method of living.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

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“Success depends on getting good at saying no without feeling guilty. You cannot get ahead with your own goals if you are always saying yes to someone else’s projects. You can only get ahead with your desired lifestyle if you are focused on the things that will produce that lifestyle.”

- Jack Canfield
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“Whatever The Mind Of Man Can Conceive And Believe, It Can Achieve.”

- Napoleon Hill (via nevrfail)

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A man with #dreams needs a women with #vision #love #truth #positivity #power #knowledge #growth #instagood #relationship #success

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“Watch your thoughts, they become words. Watch your words, they become actions. Watch your actions, they become habits. Watch your habits, they become character. Watch your character, it becomes your destiny.”

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motivationdemotivator I am sitting here and wondering what success is really all about.  I've spent 20+ years poking at it, climbing the so called corporate ladder and still I don't find myself where I thought I would be by now. So, what went wrong? My motivation was what was wrong. 

Negative vs. positive motivation.  When we talk about motivation and success we usually talk about positive motivation.  We read positive mental attitude books.  We dive into the “atta boys”, learn how to give them to people and expect others to give them to us.  This is true in the work place as well as any other facet of life.  Whether we are trying to lose 30 pounds, gain the next promotion or “make a success” out of ourselves.  We compare ourselves to those we surround ourselves with.  We look at them and say to ourselves “I’m not doing so bad”.  Well, is this a true statement or is it a statement to justify where we are at knowing full well it is not where we expected to be?

When we talk about negative motivation we think it is people yelling at us, pointing out what we did wrong, getting in our head to enforce their point of view.  Having gone through Marine Corps Boot Camp, I too had this idea.  And since so many of us have this idea we behave as if this was a true statement.  I want to take a little deeper look in the average life to see if there is something more.

motivation-motivation-demotivational-poster-1276385776If you read my previous post you will start to get a very small look into my thinking.  I am in the midst of tweaking my thinking so I can enjoy life to the fullest.  It is a hard road for me as I bought into the same line as all of you:  Get a good education, get a good job and you will be successful!  Now I will ask; compared to what?  Compared to my coworkers, some who are behind a payment or two?  Compared to my next door neighbors who are either busy raising kids or trying to survive their golden years?  Am I really correct in thinking I am doing great compared to them?  Or am I just comparing my average life to those around me who have settled for the same average life.  Does that make me the best of the worst, the worst of the best, or the cream of the crap?

So, I ask myself, if I don’t like the 40-40 grind; you know, 40 hours a week for 40+ years of my life, sitting in rush hour, building a company that will pay me the least it can to keep me; what do I like?  What do I want?  How do I want to live life?  So I am taking a look at my motivation as an employee.  And this is what I am finding.  Why do I go to work?  I tell everyone I love my job.  The truth of it though is I go to work for the paycheck.  What does the paycheck provide?  It provides a certain level of living.  It pays my mortgage, my car payment, my utilities, food to eat and the very occasional vacation.  *IF* I have anything left over it goes towards a retirement fund.  So far that is looking bleak!

Ok, fine, what does this have to do with motivation?  Let’s take a test case.  My wife wants me to stay home for the next 3 (work) days.  She would love to rekindle our romance.  I am all for that so I call my boss and he says NO, I need you at work.  So now I have a decision to make.  Do I stay home anyways knowing I will probably lose my job or do I say no to my wife?  If you are like me I say no to my wife.  Why you might ask?  It is easy. If I lose my job then I can’t pay the bills.  If I can’t pay the bills then I stand to lose my house, car and possibly my wife.  Lack of finances is the leading cause of divorce you know.  So, is the motivation for my job positive or negative?  If we are ABSOLUTELY honest with ourselves it is that negative motivation that gets us out of bed in the morning, plops our butts in the cars and drives it to work.  And that is a downward spiral when you’ve done it long enough.

Stay tuned as I am not done yet. 

Peter Attia: Is the obesity crisis hiding a bigger problem?

I just watched this great TED talk.  And yes, I am recently into health and fitness.  On top of that I am now also a rep for the best nutrition supplements on the planet.  Nutilite.

As a young surgeon, Peter Attia felt contempt for a patient with diabetes. She was overweight, he thought, and thus responsible for the fact that she needed a foot amputation. But years later, Attia received an unpleasant medical surprise that led him to wonder: is our understanding of diabetes right? Could the precursors to diabetes cause obesity, and not the other way around? A look at how assumptions may be leading us to wage the wrong medical war.
Both a surgeon and a self-experimenter, Peter Attia hopes to ease the diabetes epidemic by challenging what we think we know and improving the scientific rigor in nutrition and obesity research.
I am not going to talk about how polluted our food sources have become.  Instead, I would highly encourage you, dear reader, to research it for yourselves and form your own opinions.  There are several great resources out there, not just on Type 2 Diabetes, which is what part of this talk is about, but also on our metabolism and what impacts it.  Pick up Jillian Michaels’ book “Master Your Metabolism”.  It may well set you on your way to thinking for yourself where your health is concerned. 
An educated man is an armed man.

Live, Laugh, Love, Inspire, Serve

If I had to explain my vision, my mission statement, my passion in a very small handful of words I would simply say "Live, Laugh, Love, Inspire, Serve".  More than just five words; these are attitudes, values, principles and the core of my beliefs.
Quite awhile ago a new show hit the air.   The theme song was different than all the others in a long series of shows known as Star Trek.   I've always liked the song.   To me it is a very powerful song. Today, I will start living this song.   Here are the words:
It's been a long road
Getting from there to here
It's been a long time
But my time is finally near
And I will see my dream come alive at last,
I will touch the sky
And they're not gonna hold me down no more
No, they're not gonna change my mind
Cause I got faith of the heart
I'm going where my heart will take me
I got faith to believe
I can do anything
I got strength of the soul
And no one's gonna bend or break me
I can reach any star
I got faith
Faith of the heart...
I already understand that this journal entry probably won't make sense to a lot of you who read this.  What is important is it makes a deep and profound sense to me. And that is my main audience right now. I am 52 years old and it is time I take what was given me and start making a profound impact on those I meet and those I never would have met if I stay the current course of my life.
Helm.   Plot a new course,  warp 10.  Engage!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

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While this is fitness oriented it applies to life.  What are goals?  They are your dreams with a deadline!  What if you miss your deadline?  Look at how far you've gotten, reset your aim and keep moving towards your new deadline.  If the deadline is too far out and you find yourself procrastinating, break your goal into smaller pieces and set monthly, weekly (the best timing IMHO) and daily (sub) goals.
When you have reached your goal - don't stop there!  Set a newer, bigger goal.  At some point, you will realize it is not the attainment of the goal (a point in time) but the journey to attain that goal that has the most impact in your life!
To visualize, post up physical pictures that represent your goals/dreams.  Put them on the fridge, on your bathroom mirror, on your car’s dashboard so you will see them multiple times each day.  You need to build a burn within yourself.  Visualize it constantly.  Focus on it.  And no matter what, just keep going!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

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“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.”
- Arnold Schwarzenegger (via dancewithmydemons)

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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

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This is too true. Most people think success is a destination. It is not. Success is the journey towards your goals and it never follows the route you carefully planned to take. Just keep on going!

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Where have most the men gone?  I find so few who know what they...

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How do you define success? For me, I first break it down into major areas of living and life. For instance, I can define success in these areas:
  • Physical
  • Mental
  • Spiritual
  • Financial
  • My Purpose
The “My Purpose" is a larger overarching subject and depend a lot on the other 4 areas all heading towards success. Yes, that is right. You never reach success, you are always on the journey towards success.

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