Write it down. Then Start.

You don’t need permission. You just need to start. 

I took some time to write down my goals tonight. I’ve read recently that half of strategy of reaching goals is not to share them publicly. Sure, you need to share your goals with a couple of friends so they can hold you accountable—just sharing with everyone is not a good idea. Interesting.

Create Impact

Recently I was asked to share my story or manifesto telling a little bit about who I am. Have you ever tried to boil down your experience into a few short slides? It’s challenging. Some of these are self-explanatory and others may require more detail but you get the idea. More on a personal note in Legacy or Leftovers.

Photo taken in downtown Willis, Texas. Download High-Resolution Photo

2011 Top Five

Sharing your story is never easy, especially if it is tough and you have spent many years trying to forget it. Here are a few blog posts and video interviews of Myra and I learning how to share our past. It’s not safe, clean or simple but it is our story. Hope you enjoy and we would love to hear yours.

Legacy or Leftovers Blog Post
What will you leave your family, friends and your community? A legacy or leftovers?

BIG Dreams Blog Post
Someone challenged me to define my BIG dream and asked if I still had it in me to go for it. Love it.

He Would Be Ten Today
 Blog Post
Remembering our three year old son Colby. We lost him to Leukemia in 2004.

Courageous Fighting Video
Myra and I sharing the tough times and mistakes we made in our marriage and why we chose to fight for each other.

America, Our Ever Present Past
This is the first time Myra and I talk about how we survived losing our son to Leukemia, her mom to Lupus and mine to domestic violence, and what we did to keep our sanity through all of it.

Share your thoughts or story

Big Dreams

Just to warn you. This is a response to a challenge to define what my BIG DREAM was and if I still had it in me to go for it.  If you don’t know my story this may seem a bit odd but here you go. This is the bullet point version with many gaps but it’s a start.

Part I – Us

I am working daily to clarify my BIG DREAM but as of right now it’s making sure our kiddos know they are loved and that they have a solid foundation for life. To find out how to consistently love my wife Myra in the way she needs. We are both so broken it’s tough sometimes. By broken, I mean we have survived excruciating loss. I’ll have to write a book on all that but trust me when I say broken for us is sometimes best described as a black hole. So the first part of my ‘dream’ is to get ‘us’ right. That’s a huge deal.

Part II – Connected 

I would love to start a “connected” community hub that integrates tech/design/new media & a mentor/relationship with real accountability for people who want to step off a path that leads to nowhere onto a path with possibility. Accountability for personal goals but also measurement for real world – real impact goals.

To underline that while we have this awesome time on Earth we also are a part of a larger plan. We were created to love Him and love others. To share His story of sacrifice for us. He could have come to this earth to destroy us… to punish us… which is what we have seemed to do very well on our own. But He chose to send His son to let us know there is a different choice, even in pain, hurt and wounds — we could still choose to love.

Part III – Discovery

I think my dream is to be what I have always wanted. A real encouraging, loving, friend. The issue, for me at least to is being able to look past my own void and actually be just that. Most of the time I am the exact opposite. Especially to those I love the most. Not cool but true.

That’s a start for me. What’s your BIG DREAM?

Don’t Hold Back

Shake off the funk and let loose who you were made to be and what you were made to do. It’s no one else’s responsibility, it’s not their decision, it’s yours. Now don’t go spewing off suppressed grievances either in your next team meeting and certainly don’t walk out on your responsibilities and commitments (not wise). If you find yourself caught in indecision, paralysis or even hopelessness — take one step forward and get some wise counsel. Find other people headed in the right direction — talk with someone who knows something about you and can help you clarify what is going on in your heart.

You know what I am talking about — you might even know what your next step is. Or maybe you don’t and that’s ok — but get busy doing something that will get you closer to where you know you are supposed to be.

If you need someone to slap you upside the head or even give you a digital high-five or hug or something, let me know. I can probably manage it. That’s it. Let me know how it goes.

The Relationship Zone

There are so many things I have learned during my fourteen years of marriage and maybe I can take some time to list here, but one of the first things I learned during a very trying time was how we live in Relationship Zones.

I remember thinking yep, right now we are between conflict and disengaged and moving further out. This chart opened my eyes and a friend took some time to explain how relationships are like bank accounts, you are either making deposits or withdrawals – and eventually you will reap the rewards of a surplus or feel the pain of an overdrawn & negative account.

Right now I can honestly say we are right in the middle of the Intimacy zone, it’s not always been this way but we have both worked towards the goal of doing whatever it took to keep our marriage alive. The main thing we did was to make time for each other. We started focusing on each others positives. We  also committed to getting back to church regularly and focused on our priorities – God, each other, kids then everything else. Sounds easy but as you know, it’s not. But it’s worth it. It’s worth not being like our parents: living disengaged, disconnected and disinterested or worse. The tough part about trying to live in intimacy is you have to work through conflict, if you simply sweep it under the rug you will drift. Guaranteed.

So where are you? Are you willing do the work it takes for real intimacy? Or will you just drift.  

Recommended Books
Five Love Languages
His Needs Her Needs
Love & Respect

Download Chart:
Download Relationship Zone PDF

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Ideas That Take Flight

Today, we had a staff survivor challenge… with paper airplanes. To win the challenge you would have to build an airplane out of one – 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper and have the longest flight without touching the wall, launch platform or other stationary object — the stopwatch will start once the plane leaves your hand and stops once plane hits the floor. Very happy to report that I brought home the gold with the longest inflight with 3.6 seconds. I chose The Dart concept just in case you were wondering.

Reminded me when I was a kid — paper airplanes, pencil wars and drawing battle vehicles to compete the next day in class. What a blast. Kind of like a 1980’s kids version of the X-Prize. Funny how even at a young age I geeked over prototyping and sketching ideas. It’s really the first step to bringing an idea to reality. Get it on paper or build it out of anything. One of my favorite books talks about this, Ten Faces of Innovation by Tom Kelley, from the CEO of IDEO.

Some of the drawings I can remember were a mountain-based AirplanLanding Track or my favorite Vehicle Cameraflage, a high-tech invisibility cloak – which I would like to claim publicly was stolen for Die Another Day, 2002 James Bond movie.

What was one of your favorite things to do as a kid?  Comment