Guest blog post from Adam Scott at Accelerated Lives.
Think about what you told your mother or father that you wanted to be when you grew up. As children we had great aspirations of being veterinarians, doctors, baseball players, and even astronauts. Yet most of us now sit at a desk reading this and are counting down the time until five o clock. We do this five days a week until Friday afternoon hits. Suddenly we are free. Let’s face it, most us are simply working for the weekend. It’s been years, even decades, since we had those childhood dreams. Ask yourself today “what happened?”
Gallup released a report in 2013 that stated that there are twice as many actively disengaged workers in the workforce as there are engaged workers who love their jobs. Gallup also found that only 13 percent of workers felt a sense of passion for their jobs. Take a second and truly digest that statistic. That means that roughly 87 percent of individuals surveyed are surviving their nine to five jobs. This is what I refer to as the “complacent lifestyle.” This is the area where those childhood dreams are slowly drifting from shore and leaving you with a feeling of being “stuck”.
Truly ask yourself again, “What happened?”
What occurred is a very simple concept. We started believing that no matter what we do, the world will keep us where it wants us to keep us. We’ve all felt it before. No matter what we do, nothing seems to work out or we come up with excuses before we actually try. This leads to what I previously referred to as “stuck” and the “complacent lifestyle”. We become complacent to the point we stop trying and start believing that this is the way it will be forever. Slowly but surely we go to work and sit at our miserable desk jobs with our only passion being the weekend. We sit and hope that things will eventually get better.
A mentor of mine once offered the most valuable advice that I can give you. No one is coming to save you. Read that again. No one is coming to save you. We wonder what differentiates successful and passionate people from the average nine to fivers. What could possibly be missing from your complacent life?
THE THING MISSING FROM YOUR COMPLACENT LIFE IS ACTION!
You didn’t become a veterinarian, doctor, baseball player, or astronaut because you stopped taking action in your daily lives. You stopped chasing your dreams because it was easier to make an excuse than to actually make a conscious effort to change it. Most of you would rather complain about how bad or hard it is than to take the simple first step. When did “knowing the struggle” become an achievement? Yet, if you simply took small action steps each day you would realize that you are capable of doing anything you put your mind to.
As most of you reading this know, Dr. Christy Moore initially dropped out of high school. She could have easily have chosen the complacent or stuck life. Yet she took action like so many successful people before her. She knew that the better life was out there and went and got it. She doesn’t have a “Dr.” before her name because she sat on the couch hoping for a better life. She now inspires and serves as an example to others to become more in their personal lives. She knows that it’s never too late to take action.
I come to you stressing that you take action. Around eight months ago I too was at a point where I was working two jobs, living for the weekend, and simply hoping my situation would change. This year I took action on something I have been procrastinating on for several years. On March 8, 2016, a dream of an outdoor company that inspires individuals to find themselves outdoors was born. Starting Accelerated Lives was something I took action on and I continue to take action on to this day. It hasn’t been the easiest thing but I wake up each morning excited for life. Most people cannot even say that. For the first time in my life I have found my passion and it is all because I took action.
So, I leave you with this one simple piece of advice.
No matter how hard it may be
No matter how much time it will take
No matter how much money it will cost
We only get one chance at this beautiful thing called life
SO START TAKING ACTION!
Excerpt from working copy of my memoir...
My dad practices tough love when he tells me I had to act like an adult now that I was one. My parents could not do this part for me. I knew he was right but my heart sank as I drove slower than usual down Highway 80 headed to Ardsley Park. I sat outside Mi-Mi’s apartment on 48th Street frozen with fear.
My old beat up Datsun 810 didn’t need a key to crank up; anything flat and thin would work. I used a butter knife as a key on more than one occasion. The classical music station that the radio was stuck on was playing softly in the background as I thought back to my Pa-Pa’s funeral. Sitting in the limousine on my uncle’s lap I stare out the window at the church stairs. I have climbed the stairs to Aldersgate United Methodist more times than I could count, many of those times holding Pa-Pa’s hand. I slowly become aware of the conversation going on between my dad and uncle “Mom says getting out of the car is the hardest part. She would know she has buried sisters, in-laws, and Worry Wart”. The conversation tails off and we sit for a few more minutes before exiting the limousine.
Sitting outside Mi-Mi’s on this hot summer day I ponder how true my dad’s statement was, the hardest part is getting out of the car. Getting out of the car is like seeing a decision all the way to the end. I decided to have sex. I decided to keep the baby. I decided to get married. I now had to decide to get out of the car and tell my 96-year-old great-grandmother I was pregnant. I decide on this sweltering July day I will never stay in the car and let life move on around me.
Mi-Mi was a great cook and made the best macaroni and cheese. I watched her make it for years. She was making it for me as I walked in to have lunch with her. She thinks I am here just for a visit and to take her to the grocery store. I learned the hard way a trip to the grocery store with her meant I was buying the groceries because conveniently she always left her wallet at home when she went out. She was still worked doing alteration by feel because her eyesight was so bad. And she lived by herself! So the least I could do was buy a few groceries (which I in turn made my dad pay me back for).
I watch her in the kitchen but I can’t make the words I need to say come out. As we start eating Mi-Mi breaks the ice and asks me say what was on my mind. Her response to my news was shockingly different than I imagined. My sweet Mi-Mi showed me grace beyond what I thought possible. Her advice has stuck with me all these years later. She told me:
When life gives you lemons you don’t just make lemonade, you can
make anything you want with those lemons. This one decision in your life
does not make all the decisions in your life.
We finish up lunch and I drive her to the Red-n-White. She buys a few bags of groceries; well, I buy a few bags of groceries. I walk her back into her little apartment and put away the groceries. I quick hug and kiss goodbye and I am on my way back home. My day ended better than I thought it would. I drove away from my Mi-Mi’s thinking she was right this is just a bump in the road.
Don't let your speed bumps sidetrack you,
A few years ago I had my DNA test. I wanted to know about my ethnic background. I knew I was a mutt. I have dark curly hair...did my hair come from Irish decent, Scottish, African, this is what I really wanted to know.
I think everyone should have a DNA test done. Watch this video, these people were sure they know who they were. After their DNA came back some of them found out the countries they hated were their countries also.
I used 23 and me to test me DNA. Here is my ethnic breakdown:
Other interesting details I found through 23 and me:
Edited July 9, 2016
I removed "All lives matter" from the post just a few minutes after posting. It was pointed out that this phrase can be considered a slap in the face of those that a part of Black Lives Matter. I did not mind deleting the phrase and did so quickly. BUT I have had a few emails questioning why I removed the phrase. Some of the emails are down right rude and made the assumption that can only support one or the other. Really, are we that simple minded? The phrase is not ONLY black lives matter, it is black lives matter...it is not exclusive. More than one thing can matter. For example:
Heart beats matter.
A lot of things matter.
Or an even better examples:
Children lives matter.
Elderly lives matter.
Asian lives matter.
White lives matter.
Christian lives matter.
Jews lives matter.
Muslim lives matter.
Native American lives matter.
Indian lives matter.
Latino lives matter.
LGBT lives matter.
The problem with All lives matter is it negated the real issue...Blacks are being targeted.
You neighbors. Your friends. Your co-workers. Your peers. They are being targeted. Trying to redirect to ALL lives matters takes the focus off the problem. Even if you do not believe the statistics (which I believe), the Black committee perceives they are being targeted. Shouldn't we speak up and try to help find a solution so the problem (real and perceived) can be fixed!
On the same topic you can believe and say Black lives matters AND Back the blue all at the same time! In Dallas, the police were walking hand in hand with the peaceful protesters of the Black lives matters group. A radical crazy man shot the police not a Black lives matters supporter.
How do we, White people, speak up? How to we support African Americans and police?
Originally written July 7, 2016
I woke up this morning and began my morning like any other. I picked up my phone, checked my email, text message, and remind app all for work since it is a clinic day and students regularly have issues on clinic days. Then I check USA Today, twitter, Instagram, and lastly Facebook. I realize once I am in Facebook that the news articles I skipped over in USA Today are not about the shooting of the CD man but of yet another black male.
I watched the Facebook live video of Philandro Castile. I rewatch the video a second and then a third time. I cried each time. Castile was shot 3-5 times by an officer in the St. Anthony Police Department in Falcon Heights, Minnesota with a 4-year-old child in the backseat. After the third viewing of the video I got myself out of bed, had coffee, and dressed for work.
I did a lot of driving today and had time to think. In respiratory therapy we care for all ages and are usually in the room when patients pass. I have watch many people die over the years from working in the hospital. I have witnessed newborns, children of different ages, young adults, elderly, trauma patients, burn victim, and terminal patient’s deaths. I know this will sound cold but I do not linger on death. I think of the part of my job dealing with death is an honor. I am blessed to help people pass with dignity and hopefully without pain; but I do not linger on their deaths. It is a coping mechanism.
I could not get the image of Castile bleeding to death out of my mind. Hours after watching the video I am still numb. The shock is lingering. I was not going to write anything. I was just going to go home and ignore this feeling; but then I thought about the poem by Pastor Martin Niemöller:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out--
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
I am a supporter of the police and I know every officer is not a bad officer. The good officers need to speak up and call out the bad ones. Just like we (white people) need to speak up and support the African American community.
If we, White people, do not speak up then who will? If we don’t demand the killings to stop, then who will? If we don’t embrace our friends, neighbors…hell, strangers of color WHO WILL?
We, need to speak up. We need to demand justice...this is where I was stopped in my track by that small voice in the back of my mind.
Who are the “we, white people” I was writing about?
I need to speak up.
I need to demand justice.
I need to embrace my fellow man.
So here I am a white middle aged woman saying:
Stop the murdering.
Officers, stop covering for bad officers.
If you are white SPEAK UP!
African Americans should not be afraid of the police. They should not be the only ones protesting. They should not be the only ones speaking up!
How do we, White people, speak up?
How will you SPEAK UP?
Welcome to My Favorite Things Wednesday!
Have you ever put on a pair of shoes and wondered how you walked before you found them?
I have! I bought my first pair of Chacos 4 years ago. My first pair Zong X Ecotread double strap came in the mail; and I ordered my second pair that same day (same model with a single strap). Since I live in the warm south, I literally wore these Chacos 10-months out of the year. I can walk all day and my feet do not hurt! Considering I have bad feet and walking across my house in barefoot is like walking on needles. I can wear Chacos and not feel like an old lady. Every other shoe I found that felt half way decent looked like elderly shoes…not a good look for a 30 or 40-year-old!
My favorite Chacos have adjustable straps and are "fit for adventure". I have worn my Chacos on the way to ankle surgery, through airports, at the beach, pools, lakes, on boats, to work, to Disney World, graduations, weddings, funerals, football games, baseball games, literally everywhere I go I can wear Chacos! I wear Chacos everyday... year round! Beside my two favorite pair pictured above I own flip flops and shoes.
There are endless possibilities for mixing and matching foot bed and straps. You should really check them out! Click here for an interactive quiz to find the perfect Chacos for you!
So, do you own Chacos?
Where do you wear your Chacos?
Show me your #ChacoNation
List of my favorite things: