The Hardest Part of Success

It is that time again. All the chips are stacked against me, nothing seems to be going my way and it seems like the hits just keep coming while my resources to handle those hits whether financial, social or spiritual continue to dwindle. A person gets to know a great deal about themselves in difficult situations when the totality of your person is stripped bare and there standing before you is you. It is not the artificial made up you that you pony around for the world to see, it’s the true you in all it’s cowardice, fear, self-loathing, heroic, loving and caring self. Difficult times truly do test the very fabric and nature of our souls and make you question everything about who you are and who you believe yourself to be.

On this journey of life and this road to fulfillment I have had to answer those questions many times, really who am I. Am I the hero that I believe myself to be or the coward that is afraid, worried and fragile in the face of adversity. Can I continue forward against these immeasurable odds that seem to grow moment by moment. Do I have the resolve to continue forward and the audacity to believe in myself when there is no visible evidence of why I should do so only my belief that I must. On the other side of this darkness and chaos will there be light or the cruel realization that everything I have believed my entire life has been wrong.

Sometimes I am scared, sometimes I want to give up, sometimes it hurts to continually try so hard and fall so far. Sometimes I look myself in the mirror and don’t recognize who I truly am. Instead I see glimpses of my self staring me back, a shell of myself waffling in the mirror. Sometimes I want to hide away ashamed of how I have failed, of how I continue to struggle, of how I continue to hold on against all hope that through this darkness there is light and that somehow maybe just maybe that light is inside of me. And somehow I will learn to allow this light to shine.

Success does not make great men it is only a result of what has made us great. The internal fortitude the spiritual belief, the faith that has carried us like footsteps in the sand when our egos failed. Yes sometimes I am scared, sometimes I have doubts and sometimes I feel beaten. But still I carry on. In the face of adversity when all seems lost and I feel like I have taken all I can I still get up believing that maybe this will be the time. In the darkness of my despair I still search for the light to shine within me. And when all hope seems lost I continue to believe and move forward. It is not in spite of this but because of this that I am heroic.

Others can believe in me because I am of them, of their fears, their worries, their beliefs and their strength. It is not my lack of fear that makes me great it is my willingness to acknowledge, face, overcome and share it that does. The hardest part of success is to face not only what is before you, but what is within you, to acknowledge who you truly are and deal with it.

 The Promised Land Book Cover
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Angie Miller and Your Town

I must confess that this year was my first time ever voting for contestants on the American Idol television show. In fact I was voting for one contestant in particular, her name Angie Miller, a resident of my town Beverly Massachusetts. In thinking about Angie Miller and in-between writing my book, I cannot help but to think about the year  the town of Beverly has had over all. A year that includes a historic season and Super Bowl win for the football team the second in the last 3 years. It is a year that includes other strong performing academic and sports programs along with an American Idol contestant. I can’t help but think like Buffalo Springfield, “There’s something happening here.”

When I look around to this small town called Beverly Massachusetts I have to ask myself could this be America’s Town?  You can look on the bottom of any license plate and see Massachusetts touted as the Spirit of America. I think we can all agree that over the past few years or longer as a nation we have had to question that spirit. With the seeming disappearance of the American Dream we have a small town right here saying loudly and quite clear that we still believe. Our actions show not only do we believe but we are willing to put in the hard-work, dedication and perseverance necessary to reach for those dreams, so much so that a young lady can reach for the stars and take her shot on American Idol.

Yes, unexpectedly Angie Miller’s time was ended on American Idol and it was heartbreaking watching her tears streaming down, voice trembling trying to make it through her farewell song. Heartbreaking because like many of you I have recently experienced the same situation, where you do your best and fight so hard with every ounce of your heart and soul and but for some reason things seem not to fall in your favor. I felt her pain because it was my pain. But like Tom Hanks said in Castaway, tomorrow will come, the sun will rise and you never know what the tide will bring in. Angie has a dream, as do I, as do you. She continues forward as will I, as will you. The next day, Angie was on The Tonight Show and then Kelly and Michael, and off she goes, a star takes flight. Her spirit symbolizes Boston Strong, the spirit of a nation and the heartbeat of a small town.

Don’t get me wrong, Beverly is not perfect, we do not always win and we have a lot of internal issues to deal with. Despite these issues I can honestly say that we work as a community to support each other, do our best and win, lose or draw do so with dignity and respect. Yes there are other great towns, in fact I believe you may be living in one of them.

Angie Miller released her heart touching single she wrote, You Set Me Free almost the same time I released chapter 6 of my book, The Promised Land, we all have to start somewhere. I believe that the Spirit of America is alive and well here in Massachusetts and perhaps the small towns like Beverly across the country who represent the heartbeat of a spirit that manages time and time again to rise to the challenge. I may not know you but I am sure you like Angie Miller are a hero because through all the challenges you mange to get back up and come back that much stronger.

Keep dreaming, keep believing, together we have it in us to inspire a nation!

Buy The Promised Land Chapter 6 Now

The Promised Land

The Hardest Part of Success

It is that time again. All the chips are stacked against me, nothing seems to be going my way and it seems like the hits just keep coming while my resources to handle those hits whether financial, social or spiritual continue to dwindle. A person gets to know a great deal about themselves in difficult situations when the totality of your person is stripped bare and there standing before you is you. It is not the artificial made up you that you pony around for the world to see, it’s the true you in all it’s cowardice, fear, self-loathing, heroic, loving and caring self. Difficult times truly do test the very fabric and nature of our souls and make you question everything about who you are and who you believe yourself to be.

On this journey of life and this road to fulfillment I have had to answer those questions many times, really who am I. Am I the hero that I believe myself to be or the coward that is afraid, worried and fragile in the face of adversity. Can I continue forward against these immeasurable odds that seem to grow moment by moment. Do I have the resolve to continue forward and the audacity to believe in myself when there is no visible evidence of why I should do so only my belief that I must. On the other side of this darkness and chaos will there be light or the cruel realization that everything I have believed my entire life has been wrong.

Sometimes I am scared, sometimes I want to give up, sometimes it hurts to continually try so hard and fall so far. Sometimes I look myself in the mirror and don’t recognize who I truly am. Instead I see glimpses of my self staring me back, a shell of myself waffling in the mirror. Sometimes I want to hide away ashamed of how I have failed, of how I continue to struggle, of how I continue to hold on against all hope that through this darkness there is light and that somehow maybe just maybe that light is inside of me. And somehow I will learn to allow this light to shine.

Success does not make great men it is only a result of what has made us great. The internal fortitude the spiritual belief, the faith that has carried us like footsteps in the sand when our egos failed. Yes sometimes I am scared, sometimes I have doubts and sometimes I feel beaten. But still I carry on. In the face of adversity when all seems lost and I feel like I have taken all I can I still get up believing that maybe this will be the time. In the darkness of my despair I still search for the light to shine within me. And when all hope seems lost I continue to believe and move forward. It is not in spite of this but because of this that I am heroic.

Others can believe in me because I am of them, of their fears, their worries, their beliefs and their strength. It is not my lack of fear that makes me great it is my willingness to acknowledge, face, overcome and share it that does. The hardest part of success is to face not only what is before you, but what is within you, to acknowledge who you truly are and deal with it.

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Why the Hell is Life So Tough

I can remember late at night staring up at the ceiling. I was wondering to myself how did my life get to where it is and why the hell is life so tough. I was working for a company that was in the process of going under after just leaving another company that was in the process of going under. The former company attempted to sue me and after paying costly lawyer fees to protect myself here I was. I felt lost but found all at the same time because I knew I was right where I am supposed to be. You see my situation was not only something that I created but something that was created for me.

Often the trials and tribulations the “hell” that we go through in life is to prepare us for something greater a “heaven on earth” or Promised Land. I believe my current situation was happening because I was settling and God could not allow me to settle for anything less than my true purpose in life. Through the hell that I was going through I was being given the opportunity to grow and become the person necessary to achieve what was meant for me.  God was pushing me to be more.  I know and I believe that my purpose here on earth is to lead humanity into the Promised Land, where we live in purpose and meaning through making a difference in ourselves others and the world around us.

We have all been there you have I have. Staring at some ceiling wondering how our lives became such a mess and why the hell is life so tough. You are a good person, you give, you work hard, why does this keep happening to you? Have you ever wondered what is beyond the mess and what would happen if you did something different, if instead of running from the situation you ran to it?  What would happen if in your life you pursued purpose and meaning allowing the “hell” to be your stepping stones to growth and success. God has more in store for you, your life has a meaning, you serve a greater purpose and there is a Promised Land set aside for you. You just have to realize it first. And we realize the Promised Land through 7 basic but essential principles:

  1. Moral Integrity, the foundation of humanity
  2. Character, who we are and what we are about
  3. Belief, the starting point of achievement
  4. Self-Empowerment, truly educating yourself
  5. Change/Challenge/Growth, critical keys for changing our life.
  6. Purpose and Meaning, what we do and why we do it
  7. Vision, the fundamental aspect to creating a fulfilling life.

These principles will allow you to not only change your life but to realize true purpose and meaning.  They will allow you to truly be significant in the world. Our world is changing, the economy is faltering, business is in a tailspin, education is losing its’ prior benefits and morally we are losing the most humane aspects of ourselves. What worked for us before is not working for us now and life is getting a whole hell of a lot harder. It’s time for a change, it’s time for meaning, it’s time for purpose it’s time for us to achieve God’s promise. It’s time for us to climb that long awaited mountaintop and achieve the Promised Land.

Purpose and Meaning…How to Enjoy it in Your Life

I believe there is a Land that has been Promised to us from God and we have yet to reach that land.

We all remember the scene. Charleston Heston dressed as Moses, his staff pointed to the heavens, the Red Sea parted before him as he was leading his people to the Promised Land. Here is where it gets interesting. Before the Promised Land they arrive at the desert where Moses goes alone to the mountaintop where he receives God’s next directive. Now God could have given Moses direct coordinates or GPS like directions to exactly where the Promised Land was but instead he gives him these Commandments.

Commandments, spiritual laws of how we as humanity should morally govern ourselves. Out of all of the things God could have given Moses ends up with directions on how to grow humanity. Maybe those Commandments were God’s way of revealing to us the true nature of the Promised Land. It is not a physical location or destination but a moral and spiritual one. You see the land that God has promised is waiting within us. The only way for us to realize our true potential is through our own moral and spiritual growth and development. Through this inner growth we are able to realize Purpose and meaning in our lives. I believe there is a Land that has been Promised to us from God and we have yet to reach that land.

Through The Promised Land, through the spiritual and moral development of ourselves we will realize purpose and meaning. I feel today more than ever we have the opportunity to realize God’s Promise. Look at the rise of the Self Development movement and personal growth initiatives. These movements derive their message from a belief in the development of humanity. They carry the message that through growing ourselves and using our gifts we can fulfill a purpose that uplifts us.  Humanity itself, the very fabric of our morality is on the brink of either a great crisis or an even greater victory.

I believe the violence, the lack of morality, the loss of significance that many of us face is our greatest opportunity to realize God’s Promise for us. Out of the darkness of despair can come the wakening of a spirit and the enlightenment of humanity. Together in the spirit of purpose and meaning we will light the way for the evolution of man. Tomorrow begins today it starts now.

I challenge all of you to think not about getting rich but how you can use your gifts and talents to fulfill a purpose that uplifts humanity. When you can achieve this you have the beginnings of true wealth. When you can use your gifts for the upliftment of society you are the manifestation of God’s dream and you have realized The Land of Promise.