The creature initiates its taunt with a leap off the ground that could out-rival the height of a third grader’s smile.
It latches its tiny arms around the 6-foot iron-rod with the ferocity of a concerned mother, then begins to scale.
Its approach to humanity and gravity is one of defiance, as it navigates upward with the agility of nature’s first Ninja Warrior.
Finally, while upside down, the squirrel finishes its feast out of the “squirrel-proof” bird-feeder. Then struts toward the coy pond with its tail in the air and, without breaking eye contact, begins quenching its thirst while gnawing away at my ego.
Winning the battle in your own backyard is not so dissimilar from conquering the battle within!
Have you ever had a dozen “dreams” but not one of them have come true yet? Have you ever told yourself you could speak another language, play a musical instrument, own your dream car, learn how to cook, read more books, be your own boss and work on being the best friend and family member of anyone around you? Well in no specific order I definitely have done much of this “dreaming.” Many of my closest friends and family will tell you that I am always thinking of a new idea, plan, plot or development that I MAY or MAY NOT do.
I was contemplating this the other day and thinking critically about my behaviors in this way. I was truly wondering…..am I a flake?? Do I talk a big game and nothing ever changes? After all I want to be clear; I am not an idiot here. I am quite successful in my career with more promotions on the horizon and a high income earner with a loving son and girlfriend and my family thinks the world of me. I have accomplished things along the way in my life some will never be able to including becoming a second level Sommelier which is no easy task and the youngest General Manager in the history of one of America’s greatest and most prolific fine dining concepts. But at the end of the day those weren’t my “dreams.” Those things just happened along the way mostly born of the necessity to grow my career.
So here I am with so many of my “dreams” still on the sideline while my “success” is moving forward on other things. Some of that is ok; I do love my job and my industry but again multiple pieces of my souls puzzle have still been missing for years. It’s true…I wanted to learn to play the guitar like BB King and I currently play camp fire guitar and have only 3 originals I’m proud of….I love the Spanish language and wanted to be fluent and I can’t get past the basics in conversations and can’t ask the questions I want to know about the person I care to know so much about…..I often have dreams of getting my restaurant, investment, income property and I flip flop on those concepts more than a Chicago Politician.
I guess the answer is how do you move the needle to get them all done? Does this mean compromise and letting one go or does it mean better time management of them all ? This is a difficult and age old questions and I think I found the answer….you ready for it? You need to put all the effort and energy into the one that you are most passionate about. Look at my example…guitar sounds cool..would love to be better but it’s not my career nor do I want it to be. Spanish I dream to speak it fluently but I have years of retirement and travel to Latin destinations to move that needle. What is most on my mind and passionate is the need to become an investor. To do more with my time, money and effort day to day. That is what I need to put first and foremost and with the reward just might come more time, money and ability to re-visit the other dreams! You never know after the oozing passion of your TRUE dream is pursued and accomplished there could be more time and balance to re-visit the others!
In closure, it’s important to become a master of ONE and not none. I’ve been a Jack of All Trades for ages knowing a LITTLE bit about everything and mastering only the things I didn’t intend to! It’s time for me to take the things I do know and walk them into a life of mastering one that I haven’t. Good luck with your journey and know that your other goals, hopes and dreams are NOT FAR AWAY and stick your time, effort and energy into the one you want to see materialize the most. Even if it’s out of reach such as becoming a rock star or athlete just go for it and the other “trades” will be there waiting for you if that doesn’t work out!
Think about the things you are passionate about and actively pursue. Now, think about the things you are passionate about yet make no time for at all. Finally, think about the fleeting feeling you had as you considered each of those scenarios, and how infinitely different they were.
Modern society seems to applaud the ‘busy little beaver’ approach to a productive day… but maybe with a subtle change or two, we can have a more rewarding life.
Maybe it’s time to pursue a little more investment of time in YOU!!
Great hobbies are forever, and thankfully… circumcisions do not make the cut!
‘GOTTA HEAR ITS’!
“Someone would open the door and I would hide my G.I. Joes like I was scurrying to cover up a crime scene!”
“When you convince yourself something is a hobby that isn’t a hobby, you’ve made a hobby out of manipulating yourself.”
“‘Imagine circumcision at this age, four guys come in like ‘Stitch, we’re going to cut part of your penis off…’ …’It would take four guys to get that foreskin!'”
It’s a New Year, aka, GO time! Like clockwork, or more precisely, full-calendar-year-work, we are ‘ready-set-go’ to break old habits and start new trends… Here’s a powerful something you ought to consider while berated with infinite inspirational articles and a handful of self-written notes: what was the VERY first trend?
Here’s a 3-pronged riddled-truth :
we perceive life in it
yet death comes in it
andit’s the moststriking number
Oh, the power of THREE!
Discover why three is the most important number since zero — and why zero has never been a number at all.
‘GOTTA HEAR ITS’!
“If someone shook your hand with only 3 fingers, and just 3-toed-sloth you, you’d have to break form…”
“‘What was the original iPhone girl called again?’ ‘Patricia?'”
“Anyone can make it to New Jersey… it’s a loophole on life if they make it back!”
Thank you for following our posts and listening to our Podcast on Loopholesonlife.com featuring Stitch & Stan! Your presence on our site and in our lives by listening is greatly appreciated and valued!
Lately I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching and researching how to slow down a bit in my life and truly “stop and smell the roses.” I did a little research on the phrase because I thought to myself this phrase is genius and yet so convenient but also so appropriate to life; yet the phrase is almost unabashedly American in it’s sound and approach and to me it’s such a simple yet profound life lesson. It seems the phrase is greatly attributed to Professional Golfer Walter Hagen in his 1956 book “The Walter Hagen Story.” Apparently in the book, which I just put on hold at the New York Public Library, he says “You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry. Don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.” I am a huge fan of the phrase; but a terrible follower of it’s principle.
I am looking forward to hearing more from Mr. Hagen in his book and I think his mindsight is right where I want mine to go for a little journey. You see much like so many other people in life I have been a fool who has been running around each day doing the duties, choirs, parenting, working and relationship role that has made each day go by as fast as a shooting bullet and rarely have I slowed down for a moment to realize how good my life really is or how incredible many of the moments during this hustle really are. Think of Mr. Hagen out on the course in a competitive game of PGA Golf where every stroke matters and huge money is on the line and in this game he stops maybe only for a couple cherished seconds and leans over and closes his eyes and smells the incredible bushel of flowers near the path on his way to the next tee off. What an incredible moment and sense of life appreciated in an overall intense life circumstance of a heated golf match.
This is my goal in life now. When I am walking in NYC on a perfectly sunny day and see a leaf fall off a tree and blow back and forth in the light breeze as it daintily makes its way to the ground and lands perfectly on a bench next to an old man reading a book. To stop even if for ten seconds to notice that happening and soak it into my mental appreciation for life. Another reason this phrase is so brilliant is that all the senses play a great role ironically in “smelling” the roses. It’s not so literal after all which is the genius of the phrase. The feel of a hug from my son after I pick him up from school is a second or two I close my eyes and soak that moment in. The sight of my friends smile when I make them laugh is a brief moment I try to absorb. Yes of course the smell of so many things does work as well; like the smell of a warm cup of coffee on a crisp cool morning that I am alive and healthy walking to start my day.
I am so happy I am starting to realize that it’s time to “smell the roses.” I think I avoided this for so long because I haven’t fulfilled all my dreams yet in my career and personal life. So I felt like there was not justification or time to allow myself to enjoy with great sincerity what I have. Thankfully after doing much soul searching and frankly researching other insightful peoples blogs; I have really come to the conclusion I have so much to celebrate right now! I live in one of the coolest cities in the world, I am healthy and in good physical condition, I have an incredible child who is full of goodness and love, a great girlfriend who loves me dearly and my dreams for my career are only a couple small steps away and definitely within an arms reach. As the wise Walter Hagen said “Don’t hurry. Don’t worry” I may not be across any finish line yet but I don’t need to worry or hurry right now. It’s time to take life as it comes, keep the ball moving……but definitely time to occasionally stop…..and smell the roses!
NO VACANCY!! The romance of a long weekend’s escape occupies the only room you had left in the anticipation apartment.
As the days come marching in, your heart beat seems to synchronize with the rhythms of a Bourbon Street celebration. You are prepared to depart for a family wedding in New Orleans and to arrive in the middle of a good time.
But first, you must fit a week of work into two days… and, oh yeah, you are bringing your 8 and 6 year old children with you… and, oh yeah, those kids are carrying cartoon-themed luggage as well as strep-throat…
We associate it to the bad times, but too often let it snake its way into the special ones.
So, today we ask… How do we minimize stress to maximize the moments that matter most?!
‘GOTTA HEAR ITS’!
“…then, after everyone is celebrating you for great speeches, smiles, high-fives, and hugs… you get strep-throat yourself, and have to carry around two 50lbs bags and a couple of kids all the way from Bourbon Street to Ohio.“
You, or someone you know
Bonus Content: ** disclaimer: by reading this you subscribe to the fact you should have already hit play! ** > Reflect on the singular scenario Buddha totally stress beads out > Let the mysteries of constipation flow through you > Learn how listening to the Joe Rogan podcast will scientificallycure your anxiety! http://podcasts.joerogan.net/
As the rhythmic wheels of our first-world routines lullaby our heads and hearts to sleep, it escapes us once more. A great truth, cowering behind the shield of a green curtain and slithering yet deeper into figment of imagination.
Most lives are restlessly lived in the mist of this slumber… However, if you are lucky and brave enough, you can follow it. And if you follow it long enough, you can hear it… From beyond a well-traveled path to the lesser-known curtain, you can identify that alluring whisper which has begged, bartered, and bet against your better judgement for your entire life.
Join Stan, Stitch, and Mike as they travel down that familiar road, bricked and yellowed, together. It has been too long since someone confronted this ‘so-called’ wizard face-to-face!
‘GOTTA HEAR ITS’!
“They’re gambling against the gamblers, but the gamblers are the sheep and Vegas is the shepherd.”
“Cereal deserves at least 1%, otherwise just use faucet water.”
“Obscure movie references, wine, Cleveland sports… Mike might be in the running for my new best friend.” …“Tune in next week to the Mike and Stan Podcast!”
In the not so distant past I was on the infamous #loopholesonlife.com podcast with my pal Stitch and as we concluded thoroughly discussed the wonders of Hot Yoga and the concept of “Everything from Nothing” we caught ourselves in the midst of an unexpected and organic moment of realizing we….like many others…..might just have a little too many clothes, toys and materials than what we really need. We made a commitment that night to do something about it and I hope to challenge and implore many of you to do the same along with us!
The campaign is called #RiseBeforeFall and we are committing to giving away about 1/3 of our closet to a charitable organization of our choice! I have chosen to give my clothes to #goodwill and my shoes to #soles4souls and will be documenting my progress on twitter if you follow me please @stanloopholes. My son is gonna catch the fever and give away his toys that he is now too old for as well!
I got super excited about this when I was talking with Stitch because honestly I thought he wouldn’t be game for such a challenge! For me living in NYC it’s easy to see the upside in downsizing in our shoebox apartments. But even Stitch in his nice sizeable Akron Ohio home was down for the cause! “I am about to go nuts, man!” were his exact words!! So let’s see it Stitch! Follow his path @loopholesonlife; let’s see what you can post along with me!!
What a crazy path this podcast and Loopholesonlife.com mindset brings us each and every day, week and month! You would have thought this would have come up on “The unbelievable life of washing machines, and materialism” which was perhaps one of my favorite pods of all time; but leave it to us to get sidetracked like two dogs chasing a squirrel and find our passion to do something great on our Nothingness podcast.
I thank you for reading along with this blog and following our podcast and I challenge you to join us on twitter and to join us before the summer is officially over by committing to participating….even if a little….in #RiseBeforeFall!
“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.”
Winnie the Pooh
Revealing words. Bear truths… Straight outta the 1-double-0 acre wood comes the philosophy of our favorite teddy.
Unrivaled is Pooh Bear’s knack for stating something so profoundly simple that we are left with nothing but the simply profound.
Pooh, as he so often does, operates in a fashion that demands we conclude he is delightfully ignorant, or better yet, just a “Silly Old Bear!”…
But friends, perhaps it is we who fast-forward past his simple genius, overlooking his bear smarts. Perhaps we are focusing on the wrong word and Pooh is simply ignoring the right one. Maybe it is us who carelessly hone in on his use of “nothing”, as Winnie casually escapes our emphasis on the “impossible”!?!
So… how do we accomplish the impossible?
Well… if Winnie the Pooh, Yoda, Taoism and Nike all agree on an approach, Just Do It! (per Yoda, there is no try)
‘GOTTA HEAR ITS’!
“You know you’ve made it when your Last Name serves as a noun, an adjective and, especially, a verb!”
“I’ve never considered anything I’ve done impossible — I’ve just never even considered the possibility.”
“Greatness is not a destination. Greatness is a decision.”
Your most treasured memories are entrusted in them. They are your go-to for guidance, when you’re feeling lost. No matter how obscure the question; you look to them for answers. They know your interests, and share some common ones.
Whether delivering a laugh, or drawing out a good cry… You know that you’ve got ’em, right by your side!!
Kinda wild how we all became best friends with our cell phones, right?!?
Maybe you called it…? Either way, connect with Stitch and Stan as they unravel the ONE device that we keep so close our other cells get jealous!!
It has been called a technological marvel and a necessary evil… …but is it technically evil or necessarily marvelous?
‘GOTTA HEAR ITS’!
(1) “What is one fun use of the mobile device? I mean fun too, not like emergency contact information.”  “The Weather app is fun! I like to know what’s happening!” (1) “Not my definition of fun, but okay…”
“One time a phone is always safe to use — and more efficient too…?When you’re taking a dump! !”
Have you ever had a moment, so beautifully malleable, that today’s outcomes seem to be yours to cast in the vastness of tomorrow’s best potential possibilities?!
Where society’s rigor, for a moment, can be molded as seamlessly as an infant can of Play-Doh?
Where you can fearlessly face and relentlessly forge the future, with the requisite conviction of Plato?
Where you can shape it, you can bend it, but you will never fold.
For you can manipulate the clay-of-today with the certainty that tomorrow will bring nothing less than a hardened state of your original vision… Memorializing your craft, as if your acts were an everlasting statue gifted to the past… Forever capturing the greatness of the goodness in that single, beautifully malleable, moment.
Have you had that moment? If so, give us a heads up next time!!! Because today Stan and Stitch simply attempted to play with some Play-Doh, which was then overtaken by Plato, who seemingly swayed Michelangelo to shape the possibilities into something far greater than either of us could have perceived!
Friends, join our #RiseBeforeFall campaign… get something outta nothing and so, so much more!!
Great to be back writing another article for #loopholesonlife and I’m still loving my role as co-host of The Loop Holes on Life Podcast which I encourage all of you to checkout and enjoy on our website loopholesonlife.com!
I remember once I was back at my alma-mater, The Ohio State University, where I stepped up to the bar with some old friends. One of them told the bartender that me and my pal would love to try this new shot they were offering, the Tsunami, he proceeded to order two of them. The bartender promptly agreed proclaiming “Two Tsunami’s coming right up” and before we could haggle our friend on why he didn’t order one for himself the bartender was already splashing two full cups of water into our faces. We were soaked and speechless, taken aback and had probably about ten different feelings and emotions going through our heads in those ensuing seconds. Anger, frustration, curiosity, stupidity, naivety and then in the end when we realized what really had just happened; we laughed our asses off and humor and even some joy and jubilation set in.
This is what I want my article to feel like when I talk about complacency today. I look back on that moment of getting splashed in the face with water instead of receiving just another boring old shot on another same old day and the way it put me off track and set me back is what breaking complacency is all about! I want us all to take a moment today, tomorrow or this week (can’t wait too long on this!) and check our complacency meter. How would yours read? Is it reading high up above 50% with lots of nervous yet exciting unknowns about what the future holds or is it trickling very low flickering around 10%? What I mean by this is does your life challenge you or make you feel alive in ways that are exciting and maybe even uncomfortable? This meter takes into account all aspects of life; work, family, physical fitness, friendships, hobbies and so much more.
So maybe work is something you aren’t satisfied in at the moment. Each day is a doldrum of unmotivating work that goes in a circular motion day after day. When someone bring up the “ole” work talk at a social event you cringe even talking about it. Well then I say it’s time to do something about it and erratic that complacency!! Maybe you don’t have to just quit….we all have financial obligations and rents to pay and mouths to feed. But ask yourself what can you do? Can you shake up the way things are done? Can you get a promotion and take on more responsibility? Is your boss holding you back and you’ve always said “he/she won’t change…he/she is impossible to work with?” Well guess what you may not want to hear….but have you sat down and shattered the complacency meter and straight up told your boss that you and the others feel that way? It may not go to well but guess what; ❝I really try to put myself in uncomfortable situations. Complacency is my enemy.❞ (Quote by Trent Reznor- yes I’m a big Rock Fan!). I promise you this- if nothing else telling him or her this uncomfortable news will certainly shatter their complacency meter for a day!
I really do want to stress however this isn’t all about work. Many of us have jobs that bring us some financial success and happiness and perhaps that’s what we are destined to do. Even an pro-athlete who we would deem as the most successful of professions must feel immense complacency at times playing the same sport in the same cities over and over. Sure it pays very well but who’s to say they didn’t want to be a Rock star or a Scientist or anything else. What I mean is that we have to check our complacency meter on all of life’s aspect. How’s your family life? Do you let your wife give the kids a bath every night? Shake that up and take your turn; make a game out of it and have a blast! Do you need to take time for a date with your significant other and shake complacency up. How’s your health? Do you eat the same foods and never challenge yourself to get healthier or feel more fit? Fitness is an easy way to shatter your complacency meter and really put yourself in a difficult situation from what your used to that will result in lots of jubilation and happiness in the end; much like that splash of water to the face I took.
Hobbies are a way I have found incredible outlets to keep from being non complacent. Right now my career is very successful waiting for it’s next challenges that I know are forthcoming and I am actively pushing towards them. So to get my complacency meter way up I challenge myself on home life (I travel to keep it exciting!) and I use my hobbies where I continue to get better and learn more about the guitar and try to practice and learn a new language in Spanish! In my humble opinion; Television is one of the absolute detriments to the complacency meter. I try to avoid TV at all costs and put my time into things that make me uncomfortable whether it’s travelling somewhere I haven’t been (even if just locally), eating a food I haven’t tried (ethiopian anyone?!), playing a song I haven’t mastered or trying to say something in a language I don’t know how to say. These are small examples but I love the way they keep my life feeling on it’s “toes” and I challenge you all to try and take a similar approach wherever you can!
So good luck out there on assessing your complacency meter and feel free to drop us a like on this site if you enjoyed this article and give us any feedback you might have as well! Look forward to having this complacency talk with my pal Stitch on The Loop Holes on Life Podcast real soon and wish all of you the best week ever!!