Archives For Dreaming

There is a temptation to play it safe.
I struggle with this every single day.

The temptation is to stick with what you know, talk more then actually doing things and provides opinions rather then solutions.

Safety is a value we are taught from a very young age. Things like looking both ways before you cross, not touching the stove or talking to strangers are all things that keep us safe. But inside this safety that protects us we start to get so comfortable with this place that we confuse what we are suppose to not play safe.

Life is not meant to be safe.
There is no hall of fame for those that play it safe.

We don’t celebrate safe decisions, we celebrate those that take risk.
We don’t mimic those that never stepped out, we mimic those that jumped without the safety net.

The temptation every day is to play it safe, but the only way to truly live is to step out from safety, embrace the unknown and live where safety cannot be found.

ship

Context indeed is everything.
Without context we are left to guess. When we are left to guess our imaginations take us farther away from the truth. Think about the last time you people watched and the stories you made up about the guy with the latte or the mom with the screaming kids. Often times scenarios can become greater then the context of the actual truth.

One of the best demonstrations of context is text messages.
Imagine reading text messages without any context of the situation? The success of text messaging relies heavily on understanding the context of situations.

Now think about the project you are working on, blog post you are writing, or piece of art you are creating.
What is the context that it will be living in?

Sometimes our amazing ideas don’t seem so amazing to everyone else because we have forgotten to define the context and focused more on the content.

The most important thing you can do for your project, dream, or life is to set the context.

a conversation between a man and a mirror

“You are just not getting it…how do you not see that I want to accomplish everything I set my mind to? Why do you always doubt me? Why do you always say it can’t be done? Why do you stand there with a smirk on your face as I continue to struggle along? Answer me…” I said to the man looking at me. “What have you ever done with yourself?” Still no response.
“How many times am I going to have to have this conversation with you?” said the man. “The solution is right in front of you. It is staring you dead in the eyes.”
“Staring me in the eyes?” I said in a quiet questioning voice. “I sure don’t see it.”
The man fire back, “You ever think you are the very reason why you are not accomplishing anything?”

silence

It is easy to look at circumstances, others, or the world as to why we are not accomplishing what we want to accomplish. The externals factors are always a great place to look into why we are being held back.
But sometimes the greatest barrier that is separating you from accomplishing anything at all is yourself.

Try to get out of the way today

*kyle

Surely I am not the only one that struggles thinking about the future?
All the unknown, the perceived darkness, the  pressure to succeed.
Surely I am not the only one who does not know how to think about the future?
What do I call it? Do I get to see the future in today? Who makes my future? What is my future?
Surely I am not the only one who wants to see the future from a 30,000 foot view rather then my 3 foot view. To see past the walls of reality and into the horizon of forever.

When it comes to the future it seems that I have more questions then answers.

I think about the future a lot. What it will look like, feel like, be like. But what continues to plague me, as I look at the future, is what my response to the future will be?

My prayer recently has been one of asking that I have the right attitude about the future.

How do you think about the future?

*kyle

Everything has changed.

How many times have you heard that statement uttered but never exactly understood what everything was? In most cases, everything has changed. The way we view human interaction, make money, find a spouse, and discuss politics has changed. But one of the biggest shifts is the way we view jobs. No more are you an employee of a company, instead you are a brand representative of yourself.

20 years ago, the job market was full of employees. These employees sat in cubicles, worked in offices, stood on assembly lines, and helped us bag our groceries. It was the day of the employee. And everyone seemed to be happy with this. The system was set for how to become an employee, gain influence, and advance in the company. Fast forward to today, the only employment that is happening is unemployment and people are increasingly finding discontent as an employee. More and more people are shifting to contractors rather then employees.

The idea of a contractor comes about when people realize they do not need a big name behind them and instead just needed themselves. The contractor is the groupons of this world that took a model or system and created their own way of doing things. The contractor is Kevin Rose of the world who want to make cool apps and so they join up with their friends to launch a company that creates apps. The contractor is the one who collaborates with others, dreams with others, and executes ideas with others.

The Contractor vs the Employee comes down to the idea of how you see yourself.

Do I need the backing of a brand? Or am I brand myself?
Do I rely on others to fuel my ideas? Or is being me the fuel for ideas?
Am I limited by options? Or do I create different options to go beyond the limites?
Am I tied down in one place? Or am I able to move about from project to project?
Do I need security? Or am I willing to live with uncertainty?

These are all important questions to consider when weighing the battle of the Contractor vs the Employee.

I believe that contractors are relevant to todays market. They are the ones that have freedom, expansion, and blank canvases to work with. The very reason why you might be frustrated with your job is because you are an employee and not a contractor.

Are you a Contractor or an Employee?

*kyle

 

 

 

An exercise for you:

-Grab a piece of paper (yes a real piece of paper)

-Write at the top “If my life was a story, what is the plot of my character?

-Answer the question.

I hope that you can fill that sheet of paper with words.
If not, keep reading below.

For most of us (myself included) we know we are a character in a story, a story that is bigger then ourselves, a story that has an overarching theme. As a character in this story we interact with other characters each and every day. Some of these characters have defined purpose and plot, other characters are more like “extras” that sit at the bar sipping on a cocktail trying to blend in. But sometimes it is easy to get lost in the story, to lose sight of where you are going.
Simply put, you lose purpose and meaning.

I have to ask the question again:

Are You A Character In Search Of A Plot?

Still don’t know the answer?
Here is a way to distinguish if you are in search of a plot or not:

If you have no plot:

  • You start projects only to stop them half way
  • You find yourself spending money on items that you think will bring happiness only to find you want more
  • When challenged you shrink back rather then step up
  • You are always asking others for things rather then giving away anything
  • You listen to Ke$ha (okay that is sort of a joke, but seriously don’t do this)
  • You tend to react with anger rather then patience when dealt setbacks
  • You constantly compare yourself to others

If you have a plot:

  • You live from a place of response not reaction
  • You have clear life goals and plans to accomplish them
  • You speak less and listen more
  • When faced with a “no” you keep moving forward
  • You don’t just consume you produce
  • You spend less time looking for answers and more time asking questions

The way you answer the question above will determine the direction your life takes. Often times the plot does not reveal itself until we spend some time searching for it out. If you find yourself feeling like a character in search of a plot spend some time writing out the last three months of your journey notices recurring themes and situations. Spend time going through the characteristics of those who have a plot and those who do not have a plot and see check which applies to you.

The plot will never reveal itself until we are willing to see it.

Question: Is there anything you would add to either list?

*kyle

So being honest, the past couple of weeks (maybe months now! wow) Is the most I have ever written in my life and I have really enjoyed it!

Kyle reached out to me on twitter asking  if I wanted to write for Standing on Giants, I took the opportunity but I was apprehensive. Could I really turn out content on a regularly? My blog goes weeks without new stuff. I HATE writing stuff for school, the times I have enjoyed writing it has been writing outlines for scripts, plus I stink at spelling! But, it was a challenge and I took it, and yes it might sound funny, but I was nervous. Now weeks later…. its nothing to me! (thank goodness! haha).

I think everyone can learn something from this. We have to at the very least TRY stuff sometimes.

The people who succeed most often fail most often.

What are you scared of starting? Who knows what you can do until you try!

Try doing that new, scary thing this week…. and tell us how it goes!

*chris