WHAT ARE YOU DOING?

I am writing now. I’m not sure where I’ll end up but the important thing is to begin, to put the pen to the paper and let the creativity flow.

I started a new job today and I am relaxing on the couch after a long day. My six weeks of leisure is over and it’s now time to get back to work. There are many things to do with my writing and I’m too tired to do any of it. Except one thing that I have committed to and I’m doing it as I sit on the couch.

I committed to blogging everyday for Q4 of this year and I don’t have the energy to think about a subject so I opened the program and began to type. I have no idea what I’m going to write or if what write will make sense.

I wake each work day and I have a routine that I perform. First I make coffee, then I sit down and read ten pages, which takes about ten minutes. After that I write for ten minutes. This timed writing session is helpful because it helps to keep the habit of writing consistent and it brings creativity.

When I begin writing for the day I don’t know what will come out. When the rough draft is complete I’ll read through and change words and sentences that don’t make sense, but the main subject is still intact. This couldn’t have happened if I had not first put the pen to paper and let it flow.

This is what I’m doing now, I’m letting it flow. I’m writing whatever comes to mind. This is no different than starting any task that seems unpleasant. Washing the car, cleaning the house. These examples of an unpleasant task are not less so when you consider the outcome. A clean car and a presentable, comfortable home. It’s the end result we’re looking for, but we can’t see the results until we take the first step.

At this point in my writing career I’m looking to establish an audience. My platform is directed toward working people who are searching for meaning in life and I want to connect with others with the same values.

I’m still searching, trying to connect with those who would benefit from my writing but it is difficult to do when there is nothing for the audience to read. This is why one of my goals is to blog everyday. In three years I’ve made about thirty blog posts, not a great volume of work. In the next 90 days, if I write every day, maybe I’ll have a hundred and twenty articles. A person could sink their teeth into that a little easier and maybe get something out of one of the articles.

I’m not sure where this journey will take me. I know where I want to go, but how do I know that blogging is the vehicle that will get me there? I don’t, but I do know that if I don’t start typing there will be no article and there will be nothing for my future audience to read. So with an open app and an open mind, I put the words on the page and hope for the best.

Thank you for reading and Peace and Live to you.

I AM DISCIPLINED AND DECISIVE

A few years ago I typed this mantra several times and taped it in several locations so that I could see it several times daily. I taped one to my laptop, desk and various other locations. This is the only one that remains and I’ve seen it daily for the past 2 plus years.

I’ve seen this enough times that I have memorized it and repeat it several times daily. It brings me comfort. The comfort comes not so much in the wording as in the cadence and tone that I chant in. The words have a meaning that is assigned to them by our collective understanding of our language and they could mean anything.

For instance, the word gift brings up a slightly different meaning in each person’s mind. For some it could be a toy. Others may think of money. Still others may think of a challenge to be faced as a gift. Whatever it means it’s a word that aligns with a high vibrational state of mind.

When we sing, or even talk, we now know that we are not hearing sound, rather a vibrational frequency is being converted through the vibrations in our ears to an electric impulse that our brain receives, causing our conscious mind to understand. This seems like a lot to comprehend until we realize that everything is a vibration.

We attract and repel vibrations that either match, or are dissonant respectively and words are no different. When the word is written it is two dimensional. When it is spoken it becomes three dimensional. But when it is chanted it takes on a fourth dimension, the dimension that aligns with our higher self.

Vibration is used for many things including therapy for muscles and other health concerns. It can be used for healing as well as to destroy. In the case of the chanting we can go back to Gregorian chants or the Walls of Jericho in the Bible.

When words are spoken with intention they are more powerful than when written. When the powerful vibration of chanting is added its power is multiplied exponentially. This is why a priest chants while giving a blessing. The practice is as old as the spoken word. Chanting is the birth of music.

There is a reason why certain songs evoke sad or joyful feelings and it is done through using notes that have a vibration that evokes these feelings. If you’ve ever wondered why a sad song tugs at the heartstrings it’s because of the notes that are used. The songwriter uses notes to have an intended effect on the listener.

Why is this important? Because in order to manifest an intention it must be done with emotion and vibration evokes emotion and the most powerful vibration that we can project is through chanting.

Thanks for your time. Peace to you all.

WHICH WAY, SUCCESS?

That’s the question today. All these years that’s been the ever elusive question. It could be a loaded question because sometimes the answer comes back; “I don’t want money or fame.”

In the context that I’m asking the question it means what’s the way to the successful execution of my goal, whatever it may be. Any path I choose has an infinite number of forks that can be followed and who’s to say which is the path that gets me where I want to go?

No one can say which is the best path, we can only make decisions and hope for the best. The problem comes when we are frozen in place for fear of making a bad decision. What is a bad decision? There’s no way to tell before we make it. The only way to know for sure is looking back and measuring the results we had hoped for.

Any decision, though, must be followed by execution. If there is no execution, follow-through and perseverance, there will be no results, making even the best decision look bad. So, maybe there are no bad decisions only bad execution. Now, obviously there are decisions that could bring harm, this isn’t what I’m referring to, I’m using this in the context of decision-making.

Each decision we make brings with it more decisions that must be made and it’s useless to try and answer every single variable before taking the leap of faith. so now it’s time to make some decisions and follow through with them. Continue to execute until the objective is achieved. Set aside the fear and realize that I’m exactly where I need to be at any given time and all paths lead to my ultimate objective.

Thanks for allowing me to share these thoughts with you. Peace and Love to you all.

LIFE OF THE WORKING MAN

I wake up in the morning there’s an achin’ in my head,
A ringin’ in my ears. Am I better off dead?
I’m getting too old and I don’t know any more
I kick off the sheets and I roll out of bed
I’m blind to the world and my eyes are all red
I look at the clock and it’s only half past four. Go on about my day and that’s a fact
Cuz I’m too young to die but I’m too old to act
Like it matters to me.
Shuffle off to work just to get my pay
Got a bad attitude but that’s okay
Someday I’m gonna be free.
CHORUS
I’m living life, the life of a working man
If you wanna go far you gotta have a plan
Time’s too short you got to take it by the hand. Lunchtime’s over got my belt on tight
Nap in the back room got me feelin’ alright
Think I’ll coast on through the afternoon
Boss man come up to me with a smile
Says “Hello John it’s been a good long while
Looks like your workin’ days are through.”
So, I packed up the tools and threw ‘em in the truck.
I backed it on up and said, “What the fuck,
I don’t gotta come back no more.”
CHORUS
I pulled up to the house and sat in the drive
Momma come out and said “Sakes alive!”
She sat next to me and poured us both a beer
We smoked a joint, then another one
We both knew my work was done
I’m glad that its over I won’t shed a tear

I wrote this song after a new song by James McMurtry inspired me. I liked the cadence and the words he used. This song sounds nothing like his and the theme is not related. But it was the catalyst for my creativity.

I’ve been thinking about the path I want to follow with my writing career. It seems that maybe the things that I would like to do are not the things that are best suited for me and when I follow a certain way sometimes it ends in disappointment. I’m sure a lot of people can identify with this. It’s is a theme that I have been exploring as I plan the next quarter and review the goals for my ideal life.

Regardless of the dreams and goals I have had in my life, I am a blue-collar worker. I have been a pipe fitter since 1991 and in that time I have come to know, and be known, by a great many people. It is not uncommon for me to go somewhere in my own city and see a friend or co-worker. Sometimes I see someone I know or who has a mutual friend. I belong to a large network of working men and women who have at least one common goal; make a living by earning a livable wage with health insurance and a retirement.

I joined Local 469 at my fathers suggestion because I had a young family and needed a decent wage and health insurance. At the time survival was at the forefront of my mind and retirement was a distant light at the end of a long, dark tunnel. Through the years the long tunnel became brighter and shorter but I was so wrapped up in making a living that I didn’t notice.

I’m now closer to the end of my career than the beginning, or even the middle, and I’m still thinking about my path. The clues to the path forward are hidden in plain sight. They can be found by looking at the past and being in the present. My mission in being a writer is not only to bring entertainment to people, but to share meaningful thoughts that help others to reach their aspirations.

I’ve had this in me for many years but self-doubt is an ever-present companion that each of us must deal with. I do have a great deal of self-confidence in other areas but my thought for years was, “who would want to hear from me about success?” Plenty of people, that’s who.

In recent years I’ve come to be recognized when I go places and some people have told me of the positive impact I’ve had on them and it has made me realize that I’ve brought value into these people’s experience. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do and without trying to do anything different than being myself I’ve done it.

So, what’s the takeaway? It has to do with the path I’m following and have been following all my life. The life of a working man. I started at about ten years old knocking on neighbor’s doors looking for odd jobs and continues today as I sit in orientation for yet another company where my skills are in demand.

What does any of this have to do with my career as a writer? One of the keys to success is to find the right audience and what the message to them is. I’ve always seen myself as a motivational type and that is part of the message I want to share. Motivation for what? Why success, of course. But success means different things to different people. Yes, it does and if I don’t see myself as a success in any business other than my career where is my audience?

I’ve been trying to figure that out and I’ve found it right in front of me the whole time. Anybody who follows my social media page knows that I’ve been posting videos of me playing the guitar and that I’m writing this blog. In the course of planning I have been looking at the statistics for the posts and have found that the posts that are directly related to my experiences as a blue-collar worker receive the most attention. It makes me wonder why I’ve been trying to run away from it my entire career. This is who I am and I embrace it. I don’t need to look for somethings that I already have.

It seems that instead of finding my audience, my audience found me and they are just like me. Sure, we have differences, maybe religious or political differences but, at the end of the day, we all want the same things out of life. That’s something we can all identify with.

Thank you all so much for your support over the years as I’ve made my way through my career and thanks for letting me be me. Peace and love to you all.

HOW DO I DO IT?

Good morning my friends. Today I’m continuing to work on my planning for Q4 and there are more challenges as I move forward. The challenge is time and allocation of time.

We each have the same twenty-four hours in the day and how we utilize it is important, but this is not exactly what I mean when I say time and time allocation. What the planning calls for is scheduling out my days and blocking out certain days throughout the quarter that I will not be working on my plan. This is important because if I assume that I will be working toward my goals for a certain amount of time each day and I plan that way, I’ll become overwhelmed when things don’t go as planned.

It’s no surprise that things never go as planned so why the frustration? Because when the plan is made to work on a Saturday for X amount of hours, for instance, and I wake up feeling bad or I have an idea to go do something fun like hiking or go to a festival I’m going to do it. Now the time I had planned on working is gone and I’m playing catch up in order to stay on track.

Two or three days like this and soon I’m so far behind it’s useless to try and I’m left feeling demotivated and frustrated with myself. I’m sure there are many others who have gone through this as well. Maybe it’s why not everyone is living their ideal life, I don’t know.

As I mentioned in a previous blog, I’ve come to the realization that it’s better for me to let go and do what feels right. Some of the readers of this blog have also mentioned that and encouraged me. It’s satisfying to know that others read and take the time to respond. So, with that in mind I began breaking down my time.

Because of the work schedule I normally have (usually 60 hours weekly) I don’t make a lot of plans and I do activities as they come up sometimes at the spur of the moment. Flying by the seat of one’s pants is not a great success strategy and I’ve been doing that for years. My only plan is work. My work schedule is usually six days a week. A joke I have at work is telling my supervisor “I plan on working this weekend. Don’t make me break my plans.” Because of this, I don’t usually know what I’ll be doing two or three weekends out from any given time. Not that I’m trying to pack my life with scores of activities, but it helps when planning an ideal life.

What I decided to do, and I have been doing this for many years, is schedule out my entire day. This is something that is set on a daily basis from Monday to Saturday because I work a regular job. This may seem to be a bit of overkill to some but I learned this technique many years ago and it has helped me to become successful in my career. I’ve used it to manage my personal goals as well but this time I will incorporate it more fully.

An example of how it works is there is a ten and a half hour block that is spent in someone else’s employ. Obviously that time is taken, but there are niches that can be used to great advantage. I’ve discovered a few and I’ve used them with great success.

A thirty minute lunch can be allocated (I’ve normally used this time for meditation and it has worked great to keep me balanced). Here’s another; It takes about 45 minutes to drive to and from work and instead of seeing it as an unproductive time, I usually listen to an audiobook or memorize the words to a song that I wish to learn. Both of these are productive uses of my time since they both move the needle on specific goals that will help me attain my ideal life.

Another use of time is in the mornings. I’ve been waking up an hour or more before I have to leave for work for years. It’s a practice I developed because I feel that the best time for me to exercise is before work. It’s also a good time to read my daily ten pages and write my daily 10 minutes. That’s two goals that are being worked on before the workday even begins.

Ten minutes and ten pages is not much and seeing results on a daily basis is impossible, but in setting up the ten minute blocks of my day, by the end of the year I can see that I’ve read over three thousand pages. That’s more than ten three-hundred page books. Now that’s progress, not to mention the education that I’ve given myself along the way. In ten minutes I can write 250 words which adds up to over ninety-thousand words. Each of my novels is about seventy-thousand words, so that’s more than a full book. It o LU takes doing it.

The one obstacle that is not accounted for in most plans is procrastination and this one is not much different but it is easier to overcome with this plan. As an example, in Q2 I had a goal of asking a question on social media every day for 90 days. It was a simple task that took two minutes. I did it at the same time every day. It was the first thing I did while sipping coffee.

I received hundreds of answers from many different people and my time investment was only two minutes a day. These questions were thought-provoking and caused some people to think about their lives in a way that maybe they never had before. This small two minute practice may have made a big difference in someone’s life and maybe they passed the good vibration on to someone else. Think about it. Maybe one of the questions made someone’s day. A powerful impact fora two minute investment.

This is ultimately part of my ideal life. To spread good vibrations and manifest abundance. I’m not talking about money necessarily,but anything that is good. I believe we receive what we give. Sure, I give off bad vibrations sometimes, but I understand that when it is visited back on me that I had a part in it.

With that, I hope that you received something good from these thoughts that I’ve shared with you. Please feel free to comment and share if you would like to share the good vibes. Peace and Love to you all.