If you want to change clothes you’re going to have to get naked.

If you want to change clothes you’re going to have to get naked. We understand that you can’t just constantly change your outfit by putting more clothes on top of the clothes you are already wearing. At some point, you’re going to have to remove the layers that you’ve covered your body with and start again.

Or you could wear the same clothes forever. Look down at the outfit and decide “well, I sort of chose this, so this is what I’m stuck with”.

Could you imagine wearing the same shirt and pants from when you were a child? I hope you didn’t grow. I think it would be mighty uncomfortable to go through life being voluntarily restricted as you grow. I hope those clothes don’t go out of style. It would be bad if you were wearing a polyester leisure suit in 2016.

I hope they don’t fade. I wouldn’t want you to be drowned out by all of the other colors that are fresh, bright, and noticeable.

It’s not always fun to strip down. You’re briefly cold. You may even be uncomfortable with what you see. But, it’s a short term thing. The risk of being temporary vulnerable to achieve more self-satisfaction. It makes complete sense.

Yet, people every day stay in the same relationships, careers, and lifestyles that limit who they can be. They think that because they are in those roles, that they sort of chose, they are stuck there. It takes 1% of your day to change your clothes. If you were to live until 80 years old, 1% of your life is almost 10 months. If you spent 10 months of your life working towards a change, would it be worth it? What would you be able to accomplish in the remainder of your life if you spent 1% of it working towards that change?

If you want to change clothes, you’re going to have to get naked. If you want to change your life, you’re going to have to go for it.

58 Things All Teens Need to Do

So, you’re a teenager! High school, College, and Adulthood, are coming fast. Careers, relationships, maybe even a family of your own is on the way.

I worried about missing out on things when I was a teenager. I did a lot of different stuff. But now, in my thirties, I look back and can provide you with a list of things that you need to make sure you do while you’re young. So let’s get started…

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Be Brave; Pull the Tooth

There is never a perfect time to do a hard thing. And if you are constantly waiting for the perfect time, you will never accomplish your goal. Sometimes we have to make our own opportunities. Failure sucks and it happens often. But you can’t let the fear of failure prevent you from taking a step that you know you need to take.

I remember when I was a kid and would have a loose tooth. It was exciting and terrifying at the same time. I knew I just needed to grab it and yank it, but I would wait, and wait, and wait, until finally my mom, afraid I would swallow it or suck it down my windpipe, would pull it.

Baby teeth have to be removed before adult teeth can come through. This often applies to other parts of life too. You can’t get a new boyfriend/girlfriend if you’re currently with a loser. It’s harder to buy a house when you haven’t put the one you are living in on the market. Big scary decisions often require bold, brave actions.

It’s good to plan. It’s good to get an idea of what is the best decision. But perpetually planning will only provide you with regret. At some point, you have to be brave and act.

Tied up by life

On Friday, I was feeling frustrated at drew this picture (badly):

Not sure what happen to my arm.

Not sure what happen to my arm.

If this is you I challenge you to do the following steps:

  1. Write down the goals you want to accomplish.
  2. What are the things that are in the way of accomplishing those goals?
  3. How can you remove those obstacles?
  4. Do you have the ability to remove those obstacles on your own, or do you need help?
  5. Do you know someone that’s already done the things you want to accomplish?
  6. If so, it’s time to invite them over for a chat.
  7. Find authors who write about what you want to do.
  8. Read, read, read.
  9. Slowly start to carve out the baby steps it will take.
  10. Work hard. Be kind.

It’s easy to list out but hard to do. But it will be worth it.

A Chance Meeting

positive energy

I had the good fortune this morning to run into a friend of mine at Chick-Fil-A. We sat and talked, and I practiced something that I had been contemplating for some time. As she sat down across from me, I asked her about her life, her children, and her grandson. We caught up about mutual friends, and talked a little bit about life.

And with the exception of saying that I was speaking at an event being presented by someone we both know, I never talked about me.

What was particular about this, was that I was feeling very, very, low this morning. I am exhausted, am frustrated, and frankly just felt a little like a loser. We talked for a bit, and as we left, I felt more upbeat and a little encouraged.

Instead of focusing on my negative energy, we focused on her positive energy, and it brought me up to her level. Had we instead focused on all the negative energy that I was feeling, I would have brought her down to mine.

Sometimes if you want to warm up, you need to move away from the cold, and closer to the fire.