"For every failure, there's an alternative course of action. You just have to find it. When you come to a roadblock, take a detour." -Mary Kay Ash
We all trip on bumps in the path to success. We all have to step over obstacles through our journey of life. We all have roadblocks on our road to glory. These setbacks should never be an ending point for us. These barriers simply provide us with directions. Directions that provide us with a detour to get one step closer to the goal we're chasing.
When you face a challenge that brings about a feeling of fear or doubt you are faced with two choices. The easy, and regrettable choice, is to quit. Turn around. Run away. Slump your shoulders and leave. Or you can think. Consider what alternatives you have. Can you go right instead of left? Up instead of down.
There is no single path to any destination. There are always alternatives. When something is in your way, there is always a detour. To find the detour you must be willing to keep pushing even when situations grow tough. Keep your eyes open, mind searching, and heart pumping. If you want it bad enough, you will always find a way.
I just finished up listening to a podcast from Oprah's Super Soul Conversations. This particular podcast was with Shawn Achor who is happiness and positive psychology researcher. There were two parts that really stuck with me regarding the conversation he and Oprah shared.
The first were a handful of habits Shawn called happiness habits. Each of the following were shown in his research and experience to significantly improve one's happiness after 21 consecutive days.
1. Listing 3 news things you were grateful for each morning.
2. Sending a Thank You email, letter, or phone call to a different person each day.
3. Relive, write about, and visualize a meaningful moment that occurred in the last 24 hours for roughly 2 minutes.
4. Mindful breathing for 2 minutes.
Considering each of these habits take just a couple of minutes and each one, performed alone and for 21 days, showed a significant increase in happiness levels, I feel one or all of these could easily be a positive addition to our lives.
The second takeaway were his parting words regarding happiness.
1. Happiness is a choice.
2. Happiness spreads.
3. Happiness is an advantage.
When we choose to be happy, not only do we become more productive and successful, but we also lift the spirits of those around us.
When an opportunity presents itself... grasp it. Capture it. Latch on to it and ride it out. With every opportunity there is a chance to experience a part of life you've never witnessed before. With every opportunity there is something to be learned. These opportunities can lead to your next career, a new love, or a goal you had never thought of before that could change your life forever.
When we become stagnant our lives tend to dwindle away slowly. If you do not look to try new things, progress in different realms of your life, or improve in some manner, you begin to take steps backwards.
To avoid this cease the opportunities at hand. Experience all that life has to give.
Turtles, though slow, can be elusive creatures. One past time my brother and I had growing up was searching for turtles. We spent countless number of hours during the days of summer seeking out these patient reptiles. Our record in one day was close to 20 I believe... One of Amber's favorite highlights from my home videos as a small child, prior to being able to speak somewhat coherently, featured my 3 year old self racing around the backyard screaming "Tur! Tur!" to notify my brother and parents I had found a turtle. Amber, being the kind hearted individual that she is, never misses an opportunity to help a shy turtle to cross the road.
Because of memories like these, turtles hold a special place in our hearts. I look forward to warmer weather and the opportunity to find them once again!
There is beauty all around you; nature, people, and relationships. Each of these pieces create a beautiful puzzle that fits uniquely together to shape our lives. Take the time to admire and appreciate the intricate masterpiece that forms around you. Allow the workmanship to bring a wave of respect and admiration to your spirit. Do not rush moment to moment or else you may miss out on a majestic scene that is about to unfold. Patience is a wonderful guide through the finer things in life. The details are easily missed when we are not present. When we allow distraction to pull our attention elsewhere, we miss out on the opportunity to witness the true beauty of life.
Slow down and admire the world around you.
We are all artists. We create our reality. We visualize and design our destinies. This ability is something we all possess, but how many of us take full advantage of the power within? If we are capable of designing our days, years, and life as a whole, why aren't we?
Is it fear? Doubt? Confusion? We each have our limitations and barriers that hold us back in some manner. Time and fear I imagine are our greatest opponents. We are inherently cautious about taking certain risks, running out of time, or appearing "different" in the view of society. In this regard, we are all the same.
However, certain individuals are able to overcome these fears. They are willing to determine what they want and pursue it diligently. They know what their "perfect" day, job, and life looks like through visualization, goal setting, and focus. With these tools anyone can create the days and lives they dream about.
With that being said, I challenge you to set aside time to design your perfect day. What would your ideal 24-hours look like? What routines, jobs, and people would make up your day in order for you to lay in bed each night thinking, "Today was wonderful.""
Give this deep thought. Write it down, create a vision board, and review it frequently. Allow faith in yourself and loved ones to enable you with confidence to make this vision a reality.
Anyone who knows Amber and me also knows we are dog lovers. We have four currently; Atticus, Scout, Stella, and Cash.
Beyond our love for our own furbabies, we have also spent time volunteering at a local animal shelter, C.A.R.E.
Caring for a dog can have an amazing impact of your life. Look at these 10 health benefits that are linked to dog owners from the Huffington Post article, The 10 Health Benefits Of Dogs:
Dogs have been coined "man's best friend" for a reason. They provide us with so many benefits physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially. They boost our moods, help us exercise, and are always there for us no matter how bad our day has been or how poor of a decision we might've made.
They do not judge us, they only love us. Humans and dogs will always have a special bond; a connection that is natural and meaningful. The heart of a dog is truly wonderful.
Dancing is a beautiful form of art and entertainment that has been part of human history since the dawn of man. It's a way to connect, express yourself, and enjoy one another's company.
Dancing has played a special role our lives since the beginning of our relationship. For our very first date I romantically took Amber to a senior center's monthly dance party. It served two purposes; homework for school and a first date that would either scare Amber away or make her mine forever. Luckily, she has no fear and our destinies were decided right then and there. Fast forward a couple years I even danced for her when proposing...
Off and on for a few years now Amber and I have been taking part in dance lessons. We attend Ballroom lessons on Tuesday night at Step By Step Dance Studio. We've learned Waltz, Swing, Rumba, and Salsa to varying degrees. It's an experience we look forward to every week that we are able to attend.
I would say dancing is one of our weekly highlights. The instructors, Dwayne and Kelly, are amazingly talented individuals. The other folks who participate are kind and fun to be around. Every few weeks we throw a class party with a potluck style dinner. It's a wonderful experience all around.
Thanks to these lessons, along with some extra practice with Kelly, Amber and I were able to relearn our First Dance from our wedding day back in 2014. We performed at Amber's talent show in December just before their Christmas Break started. It was fun and exhilarating being out on the floor to perform.
I think it's safe to say from the beginning to the end, dancing has always been, and will always be, a big part of our lives.
Jim Rohn said, and many have repeated this, that we are the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with. When I hear successful individuals repeat something over and over, I listen.
Your inner circle, your best friends, your work associates... all these people that we spend hours a day with have such a huge impact on who we are. Analyze your life for a minute. Consider the people you spend the most time with. What influence do they have on you? Do you notice if you all seem to have the same hobbies, interests, and habits? This would make sense because we typically associate with like-minded people. This can be both good and bad however.
If your inner circle of friends have ambition, creativity, positive attitudes, and healthy habits you will be set up to succeed in most situations. If your friends tend to be lazy, lack initiative, or have poor habits you will typically get sucked into these harmful behaviors.
Audit your inner circle. Are your friends enhancing your life? Are they supporting you, motivating you, and allowing you to live the best life you can? I'm blessed to be surrounded by supportive and successful people. I'm grateful for my wife and friends who over the last few months have been determined to make exercise and healthy habits a priority in their lives. I'm lucky to know people with high ambitions for both their personal and professional lives. Seeing them strive to create a new business lights a fire in my soul to keep pushing the limits of my success.
My inner circle is a group of wonderful people and we continue to support and build one another.
When I have a song I'm rocking out to, it's not uncommon for me to set it on repeat and just keep playing it over and over. When I do this, the music energizes me, boosts my mood, and can completely erase the stress that might have been eating away at me moments before.
But music isn't the only thing we can set on repeat. If you have activities or habits that can positively flip your mood, why not repeat those everyday? We each deserve to feel joy and happiness on a daily basis, so why not design your life to do so? I think repeating behaviors on a daily basis (aka habits) that can positively effect our mood should be repeated as often as they fit into our daily lives.
If reading scripture inspires you, read a passage every morning (and evening).
If a few minutes of meditation allows you to better focus, do so prior to important tasks.
If a book or movie brings you joy every time you watch or read it, do so often (Harry Potter anyone?).
If it's important to you, do it as often as you please. The great and successful Dan Gable said,
"If it's important, do it everyday."
We are Amber and Jordan Kirbey. We are excited to share our experiences and ideas with you!