Encourage and Uplift

I love to encourage people. It’s part of who I am and what I love to do. I actively seek out opportunities every day to be an encouragement and bring a smile to someone’s face. I do it for both myself and others. Allow me to elaborate.

There are two ways to approach life. You can choose to be negative and constantly criticize the things you see around you, or you can choose to see the good in people. You can choose to recognize their potential and uplift them instead of tearing them down. I personally choose the latter.

The world we live in is filled with seriousness. Horrendous and horrific things happen every day. If we listen to the news or the pessimistic voices, it may seem like everything is getting worse and will continue to do so. However, I wholeheartedly reject this notion.

As a Christian, I believe it is my responsibility to share God’s love and the hope that I have found. Because of Jesus, we have hope and a future. It is challenging to be loving and hopeful while predicting doom at the same time.

Jesus said that he came so that we may have abundant life. Did you catch that? He came to give us life. It is our enemy who seeks to steal life away. Therefore, I strive to be more like Jesus. I want my words to bring life to people and uplift them.

Is there someone that you can encourage today? Even a small word can do more than we know.

Starting Over Once Again

This year has been flying by. It has had its ups and downs and I am finding myself in a familiar place. I have to make the choice to reengage in consistent behavior.

Last year I was able to focus on a set of specific goals and translate them into daily actions. For 100 days from early September through early December I was focused. I was disciplined. It felt really good.

I tried a couple times this year to start again. It didn’t work. It took some reflection to figure out why. This is what I think:

1. Daily habits are super effective, but aren’t sexy. You can’t take shortcuts. You can’t push the easy button. They have to be done daily. I have to focus on each day and do what must be done. I lost track of that and it has stated to show. I have treaded water since December with my weight. I have put a few pounds back on, but overall I haven’t been consistent. That is issue 1.

2. Stephen Covey once said, “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” You can’t schedule the important things behind the less important ones and expect progress. The things I have outlined as my goals have to be prioritized over less important things.

3. This 100 days goal ends right before my birthday. This is the gift I am giving myself this year.

Today was Day 1. I am back in the saddle. It is time to ride to 100 Days Strong. I will share the goals that I am working on in the days to come. For now, I have completed my list for today. Time to rest and recharge for Day 2.

What sets you apart?

Which aspects do you think makes a person unique?

There are so many ways to be unique. Some are cool. Some are strange. Some are illegal. But let’s not focus on those right now. In my opinion the following three things are part of the equation.

1. Authenticity. It took me a little while, but I finally came to a place where I would rather be me. I don’t need to compare myself to others. Me is good. God made me. He has a plan for me. I will be me and follow the plan.

2. Compassion. My life is not just about me. It is about taking care of those around me. My family. My friends. People that God puts in my path. I always want to look in the mirror and see a man who can have compassion on others.

3. Sense of humor. I love to laugh. I try to do it as often as possible. Laughter is medicine. If I don’t laugh often I can get too bogged down with life. That is why I seek out opportunities to laugh with my wife. See my post from a few days ago.

These are his three of the things that make me unique. The list is long and could keep going. The point is the list is me. This is who I am and aspire to be. Me. And I want to make God smile. So me, following God’s plan.

Tired but content

It has been one of those weeks. There has been a ton of activity. There has been accomplishments and setbacks. It has been busy and frustrating. You know what I mean right? Just one of this weeks.

I started a new training program this week. I just completed day 7 of VShred. It kicked my butt. I thought I was in decent shape. I have been lifting for a couple years consistently now, so I expected to fair a bit better. (The flip side is if I hadn’t been working out, how much worse would it be?) It has been an adventure for sure.

Even though it was different, I did it. Even though it was tough, I did it. I was tired, but I got it done. I am proud of that. I am tired, but content. I like that feeling.

Now to week 2. Let’s do it again, only better.

Her laugh is amazing

What makes you laugh?

I have an admission to make. I have a TikTok account. I know, half of America does, but it still feels like a dirty little secret. “You have a TikTok? Are you ok?” This is the response I expect when people find out.

Yes. I watch for a very specific reason: I find videos I know will make my wife laugh. A couple of times a week we will spend 20 minutes or so watching them. I have a pretty good knack for finding good ones, but every once in a while I strike gold.

What is the gold you ask? Her laugh. You know that kind where it is hard to breath and your eyes start to sweat? That uncontrollable belly laugh of high enjoyment? Yep. That is it. Pure gold.

So, what usually gets laughs like this? It varies from day to day, but it usually involves a dog or cat and the awesome personalities they exude. Or, it could be a kid swinging a ball bat and hitting his dad in the…you know…or a ton of other things.

Her laugh is one of the sweetest sounds on earth to me. It brings me joy. It calms me. It makes me fall for her deeper and deeper…and we have been at this for almost 25 years. I just can’t get enough.

When she is laughing I want to join in. So, what makes me laugh? Making my bride laugh.