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Archive for category: Passion

It’s gonna be difficult.

It’s gonna be difficult.

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That goes for anything you do in life that matters.

I mostly say this so I can tell it to myself (again). Doing the hard work is just that, hard. It’s not always fun. It’s always difficult and it only sometimes pays off.

It’s the hope we have within us that drives us to do that work that matters though. It’s not about the accolades or the destination. It’s not about the thrills of barely making ends meet (Trust me on this one).

It’s about the small possibility of making major change. Change that matters. Change that’s hard to grasp.

It’s gonna be difficult. Now get started.

August 21, 2014Read More
It’s really about perspective

It’s really about perspective

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The past few months have been very interesting for me and my family. We are making some much needed changes and the one thing that keeps coming up is perspective.

The first thing I’ve learned about it is that almost everyone has a different one. It depends on how you look at a situation as to whether you will understand it like the person that is going through it. It depends on your situation, what you’ve been through in the past and countless other variables.

We are embarking on a major downsizing and lifestyle change. Our main goal with it is to be debt free. Since the mortgage is the last thing, our new, smaller house, will be paid for in cash. Our secondary goal is to live more simple. We feel we have a large storage building we pay a lot for every month and there’s a lot of space that’s nice to have but not really necessary to life.

The funny thing is, when we tell people we are going from 1825 square feet down to 1000, we get some crazy looks. People can’t understand why in the world we would downsize when we have a perfectly good house. They also don’t get why we care to be debt free so much or why I don’t just get a regular job.

Perspective. We see things differently because we want to. We see our future unfolding in a certain way that may or may not be close what happens. Regardless of whether or not you agree with someone’s perspective on a situation, at least have the respect to understand that they aren’t asking you to do the same thing.

August 20, 2014Read More
I want to draw a cat for you. (Not me of course)

I want to draw a cat for you. (Not me of course)

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Speaking of creating something different, this guy embodies just about everything I’ve ever said about making something so ridiculous that people can’t not buy it.

IWantToDrawACatForYou.com is just plain stupid. Stupid awesome if you look at what he’s done.

  • Created something incredibly unique
  • Acted on his idea
  • Targeted a niche market
  • Stuck with it

See what I did there with that acronym? :D

But in all seriousness, this is a business that will take off as we can tell from the counter on his site. He’s already sold over 17,000 of these drawings that literally take him about 3 minutes from start to finish. They aren’t good. They aren’t fancy. But they are something we can’t help but share and talk about.

Creating something that people talk about isn’t easy. And it’s even more difficult to act on the idea when most likely everyone he pitched it to thought he was nuts. Who would buy that?!

Well, apparently Mark Cuban sees the vision. He just invested $25,000 for 33% of the company.

What’s your ridiculous idea?

August 15, 2014Read More
The future of education and how we can begin to change it

The future of education and how we can begin to change it

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I don’t know where this world will take me in the coming months or years. I don’t know what stands around the next corner that will be in my way for making something that matters. I don’t know all the tactics, money, influence, time or resources that will be required. I don’t know pretty much anything that lies on the road ahead.

But I do know I’m going.

I’m going forward with an idea that I’ve been toying around with for awhile. One that will connect the homeschool and alternative education communities. One that will change the way this community works as a whole. One that will challenge the way we think about education in today’s society. Even if it only changes it for a tiny portion of people in this world, I’m going forward with it, because it matters.

But know that it doesn’t just matter to me. I’m not in this for me. I’m in this for the future of all our children. For the future of our education system, our political arenas, our jobs, our society as a whole. Maybe you say that this little project can’t make that much impact. Or that since it’s related to homeschool it won’t affect those other areas. Maybe you’re right. But maybe, you’re wrong.

I see a future where we don’t have the majority of our culture taking direction and waiting for instruction. I see a future where our education system helps foster dreams and goals instead of crushing them. One that celebrates when someone stands up and says, “I have a new way we can do this.”

In that future I see a slew of people that understand jobs must be created through means of personal creativity instead of handed down from “the man.” Where we take ownership in our jobs and make something that matters, even if it doesn’t pay a lot. I see a culture of people that do work they take pride in and do it for the simple fact that it will make a difference to someone at some point.

And yes, I see all this stemming from a small, but major change in how our children are educated. I’m not saying that homeschooling is the answer. I’m not saying it’s the only way or the best way. I believe each family needs to choose for themselves which route of education works best for them, and do it with all the passion they have available in them.

But I do also believe that choosing alternative education is a great way to pave a new path for our school system that so many know is broken. I salute the teachers in the arena that make a difference everyday. I salute the administration that works hard to be a safe haven for kids who have a terrible home life. I commend each and every person involved in the education of our society from elementary to private to college and beyond. I commend you because you are wanting to make a change and you are working in a system that works against you from it’s very core. You should be saluted for doing the hard work that matters.

With that said, I am committing to this new project. I hope you’ll stand with me if it matters to you. I hope you’ll help spread the word and be a part of this community that you belong to. I hope you’ll continue to push for change and help other families while doing the hard work that matters to yours.

But most of all, I hope you find this as a place of belonging. A place you can make a difference. A place you can matter. A place you’d be missed, if you were gone.

Join us: Homeschoolgoods.com

August 1, 2014Read More
More important and more accessible

More important and more accessible

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If connection is so important to us there days, why isn’t there more of it? I find that we’re so connected with our “friends” on Facebook that we rarely find the time to connect in real life.

Connection is more important and accessible that it has ever been. But with that, brings the possibility of deeper connection than we’ve ever known.

Find new ways to connect the disjointed, displaced or disconnected. Find new ways of reaching people you’ve never met. Find better ways of getting to know them all more intimately.

July 24, 2014Read More
Do not buy my kid LEGOs.

Do not buy my kid LEGOs.

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Actually do, because I see them as incredible building tools. But don’t buy sets. Sets you can only build one thing with the instructions, then you’re done. Game over.

My son is almost 5 and he’s just getting into Legos. I made the mistake of showing him the instructions but I can tell you that the next time we build, there will be no blueprint. We will create. We will make it up. We will build without restrictions.

[A brief dive into the history of LEGO will show you their near bankruptcy state back about 10 years ago. Their main reason for the comeback was the creation of the "set". These sets (Star Wars, Ninjago, Batman, etc) that are now all they sell, was something foreign to them. A main cornerstone of their product was that no block should ever only be able to be used for one thing. Now, most every block is custom and has one sole purpose.

Sadly, it was our culture and society that demanded it. We had to be told exactly how to do something, the right way, the first time. Now there is little chance of failure (due to instructions) and next to no hope of creating something unique.

This post isn't just meant for LEGOs, just so you know. It's meant for anything you're creating. Make it up. Forget the instructions. That's what creating is all about.]

July 23, 2014Read More
Un-launch

Un-launch

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There’s this whole big movement about “launching” and “starting” your project. I agree that you have to at some point. But it seems like everyone has jumped on the same ship and they’re all buddy-buddy with the next guy about how to be a success in this world.

I really don’t give a crap about being a success in this world. This world can be destroyed in an instant. And it will someday.

What I do care about it being the best servant I was created to be. Serving family, friends and my God is on the top of my list. It’s not about material things or wealth or fame.

So I’m un-launching. I’m un-starting. I’m being true to what I was created to be instead of what the world wants me to. Too many of us have been programmed to want more, do more, achieve more. But I find that the more I want, the more I want. That’s a problem that too many of us in America (and other places) have. It’s an entitlement mentality that we have to fight. A healthy striving for making a difference, gone terribly wrong.

Make a difference, yes. Make a ruckus, of course. But most of all, make it your own dream, not that of the media’s.

July 16, 2014Read More
I am not ashamed.

I am not ashamed.

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Actually, I am a little. I’ve been so focused on great marketing that I’ve neglected my duty and desire to spread the gospel. When I say that, there will immediately be critics. Those of you that don’t want to be preached to. I’m one of those people to be honest, one that doesn’t like being told I’m wrong or get lectured to about things going on in my life.

I’m not here to do that.

What I am here to do is openly admit that I was wrong. I have been wrong all along about the calling for my life. I have known for some time that something was not right, but it’s been through the gospel that I was convicted of it.

Great marketing tells stories. It triggers emotion. It pulls us into a relationship with the brand and helps us buy into it, sold on it for life. That’s the gospel in a nutshell if you ask me.

So I won’t get religious on you, just a little spiritual. If searching for status, success, fame or something similar, you’re in the right place. The message of the gospel is that you can have all that with a commitment to Christ. You will instantly get status with God, accepted into his forever family. You’ll have thousands of angels singing for you when you make that decision. And you’ll have successfully gained eternal life, never to lose it under any circumstance. No choice you make will take you where the hand of God won’t protect you.

That’s the message of the gospel. It’s really that easy.

I have spent the majority of my career life building on the Internet. Africa may not be my mission field, but the Internet certainly is. And this tiny little portion of the web called my blog, is where I can share the changes in my life without fear.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel. For it is the only thing that will never change and always be here to protect me.

July 8, 2014Read More
How “The American Dream” is really incredible marketing.

How “The American Dream” is really incredible marketing.

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Create compliant workers and consumers. That was the goal of the industrial age. It worked incredibly well.

So well, in fact, that it built us into the superpower that the world knows and fears. And through all the building, came the development of “The American Dream.”

Own a house. A big one. Own a car. Or two. Or five. And they better be brand new. Use whatever means it takes to get there as quick as you can so you can impress your neighbor and catch your parents when you’re half their age.

That’s the story we’ve been buying into for years. The one that says “You’re nothing if you don’t look like this. Act like this. Have this.” That’s the story of the industrial age that worked so well. One that we bought into through plenty of schooling, advertising and media exposure. One that brands use to this day to help us buy more and want more.

The problem is, we don’t need more. Many of us don’t even want more. We’re done with more and we don’t even know it. We’re strung out on consumerism and we can’t even tell. That’s the marketing brilliance of the last 100 years.

Marketing tells a story. It always has. It starts by identifying with us and then we take the reigns and run with it. We build out the rest of it. Apple has done it to us. Microsoft, Chick-fil-a, McDonald’s, Walmart, Sears, Coors, Craftsman, Pepsi. They all have a story they started and we grabbed ahold with both hands. Not all of us for each one of then, but at least one or some.

Most of us though, the vast majority of us, grabbed “The American Dream” one. The one that tells us to want more. Bigger. Faster. Stronger.

It’s time we decide to think for ourselves. Maybe the system doesn’t know what’s best. Maybe it’s flawed. Maybe it’s got too much control.

And of course, by maybe, I mean absolutely.

June 13, 2014Read More
Education vs. Learning (Two sides, same coin.)

Education vs. Learning (Two sides, same coin.)

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Education is a major part of my life as well as our culture. I’m adamant about being educated. What I’m not adamant about is the way we are doing it do our culture.

Education and learning are used interchangeably but they are really two very different things. Two sides of the same coin, and you are the coin.

On one side, education is important because it helps us to move forward in the world. It helps us to grow and become the person we were created to be. But it can also be used against us. And, unfortunately, the system we live in has done just that. It’s used education to strip away dreams from us and form us into compliant worker bees for the needs of larger corporations. (Which was the purpose of the school system when it was formed. It worked excellent, maybe too well.)

On the other side, learning is essential to life. We cannot grow if we don’t learn and we must love to learn new things in order to, again, become that person we were created to be. But it’s also been used against us. It’s been forced down our throats to learn things we will never use again just because the system says we need to learn it. But for what reason, I ask?

What the system doesn’t realize is that you can’t force education or learning on someone. They will grow only enough to hate both.

I’m all for education and learning. I’m completely against the how the system works now though. In the past, it was necessary. It provided workers for the industrial age. People that took direction, did what they were told and lined up at the door until the manager called out a new instruction.

The world doesn’t work that way anymore. We will always have people willing to be the drone, to put in the hours, to do the grunt work because they don’t care to change their circumstances. (Or maybe they enjoy it) Whatever the cause, they certainly don’t want to make a ruckus.

This call for reform isn’t for them. But it very well could be for you.

June 4, 2014Read More