this is where a poem belongs. in hearts and songs. spells and coffee, bright and heavy. hindsight 20/20. cross the street, don’t look back. gone, just like that.
These last couple of weeks I’ve been working on developing a mission statement. It’s been a really involved, difficult project but I’ve learned a lot about myself. In all honesty, these last 9 months have been tremendous for me in terms of growth and development. It’s really interesting to see the progression of my thinking and mindset these last few years. What’s interesting is that some of the epiphanies I’ve been having are not from new things that I’ve learned. It’s lessons that I’ve been beating myself in the head with for several years, surrounding myself with and reading constantly, but maybe I wasn’t ready for them at that time? Or is it because I primed myself with this information and then caused explosive growth? I don’t know, but I feel like a different person. It’s strange because although I feel like a new person, I feel more authentic. I’m comfortable with my nuances. I’m comfortable in my skin. I’m comfortable with my voice, my thoughts, with me.
dream field, she’s dressed to the nines
her cat, her dress, crimes
who are you,
you to me. I feel dispensable, a soap container
a plague, or mono. maybe. Never been kissed.
a tumultuous stirring, a soap box, anti-abortion signs in the middle of a college campus. I stop frat-
Internalizing every tidbit, every
upheaval, every breath
inhale, every breath restrains. thought leaves rustle. thoughts leave.
an anecdote, a pun, a pen, empty on its last limb
I feel as alone as a speck of sand in a toddlers shoe as she hurdles a tantrum. zen
I breath. Subdued. one. two. three.
every follicle, pore, every poor overworked thought tightening around my throat like a nuis-
I let go. one. two. three.
and I grow.
This isn’t a typical self development book. There is no feigned positivity. No fluff. Only truth about how people become the best in their field.
What does relentless mean?
Grover writes that there 3 types of people in the world: Coolers, Closers, and Cleaners.
When Coolers are given a job, they complete it. Don’t expect anything exceptional. They don’t aspire to create an impact.
Next are Closers. Closers deliver higher quality results than Coolers. They can be exceptional, but too many variables involved in the task can throw them off because their knowledge base and arsenal of skills are limited.
Cleaners are 10 steps ahead of everyone. They’ve achieved mastery because they’re highly skilled. They’re the first ones to get there, and the last ones to leave – in the gym, at the office, at PTO meetings. They don’t second guess themselves. They’re not focused on other people, they’re focused on winning.
Cleaners continue to push after everyone’s had enough. They’re able to achieve the flow state as first described by Dr. Csikszentmihalyi. They know who they are, and are comfortable with they’re dark side. Not only are they comfortable with the darkness, they thrive on it. Pressure doesn’t deter cleaners. When everyone’s panicking, they’re the ones staying calm and who everyone else looks to in chaotic times. The intensity they train at is so far beyond what everyone else puts in that they don’t compete with anyone else, only themselves. They’re experts in their field, and they’re so in tune with their instinct they make calculated decisions with confidence and without hesitation. Cleaners stand alone. They’re misunderstood by everyone else and trust few people so their inner circle is extremely small. When everyone else is celebrating, cleaners are already thinking about the next goal, the next game, the next project.
Golden Circle is comprised of the following: Why, How, What
WHATS: what products, what services, the job function, external factor.
HOW: how the WHATS are delivered. How something is different or better.
WHY: purpose, cause, or belief AKA internal factors. The why of a company is not to make money, making money . Companies that know their why differentiate themselves from companies that don’t know their why.
Companies with a strong WHY include Apple, Southwest Airlines, Disney. Those who have a strong why but diverge against it create an imbalance, and people notice. Example used is when Volkswagen created an incredibly high end car with all the bells and whistles, but this car didn’t align with their WHY – Volkswagen literally means “people’s car,” and is associated with the everyday person, the hipster, and should embody inclusion. Even though the high end car they put out had the best specs and was rated high, it was a failure and an volition of the Celery Test.
The limbic system is a portion of our brain that is responsible for feelings such as trust and loyalty. “Gut feeling” is actually derived from the limbic system, though it isn’t related to our logical, analytical or rational side, which is why sometimes it’s hard to put into words why we make the decisions we make.
Putting your WHY into words allows you to give a rational basis when you make decisions. As a leader, putting your WHY into words leads to accessibility and scalability even as your business expands. Those who follow you will be able to read and explain WHY which is important because the leader won’t always be there.
Visceral limbic feelings leads to loyalty. WHATs such as product, services, features are not WHYs and don’t lead to loyalty. WHATs are a proof of WHY.
Hire people who believe what you believe. The Celery Test is the power to filter decisions through your why. You can go to conferences, read books, get guidance and advice, but if it doesn’t align with your why, you’re wasting energy, time, and money.
TIVO failed because they were about WHATS – what their product did, what services they provided, etc. They used WHAT marketing rather than WHY marketing in order to rationalize the appeal of their product, leading to low sales. Sirius is another company that used the same tactics.
Partnerships are composed of WHY and HOW people. This type of relationship works because they WHY people have the vision, and the HOW people create a track to execute that vision.
Example of a WHY and HOW partnership that was incredibly successful is the Disney brothers relationships. Roy is the older, more practical brother who understood economics, business and finances, whereas Walt is the visionary who was always imaginative, optimistic and had his head in the clouds.
It’s important to have a WHY because WHATs never stay stagnant, especially in this technological era. Services, product features, price, etc. are constantly updated, but the vision, meaning and philosophy are inherent and don’t budge.
Anyone can be loud and have energy, but not everyone can be clear. Being loud to me is analogous to social media use in our current generation. On the exterior you can have fancy cars, perfect unblemished skin, a thicc booty and a 6 pack but clarity and why comes from the inside – it’s deep, never changing, and not fleeting.
Sinek describes the following leaders as being clear and having charisma, not just being loud: Dr. King, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs. Being loud rallies people, but clarity and charisma inspires.
This book is important. It’s made me realize why I have’t attained ‘success’ yet. Essentially, I haven’t developed and expressed a clear Why. Am I a how person or a why person? I think I’m a why person who has been trying to be a how person. I’m trying to learn too many different skills in order to execute a blurry vision. I have to stop, focus, and develop a solid vision. In Tom’s interview with Tai Lopez seen here: https://impacttheory.com/episode/tai-lopez/ he talks about having a tombstone goal. Create a tombstone goal and reverse engineering that – if I want the end of my life at age 90 to look like this, this and this, then I have to do these following things by age 80, and so on and so forth. Not only did this book highlight the importance of having a clear vision, it also helped me understand the difference between being loud versus being clear. Charisma and confidence is exuded by people that are steadfast in what they believe in. They derive power and strength by having a crystal clear vision, not by being the loudest around. Loud people eventually run out of steam, whereas people with charisma and clarity are more consistent because the message they deliver and their philosophy does not alter.
brown freckled skin leaning in sheryl sandberg style we’re both introverted. an inconvenient truth, heart on my sleeve it’s gore, all of it. you and me, sleepy and dreamy melatonin washes, lightly lapping my dream shore
seaweed avocado cream cheese, sashimi, my rice rolls as you squeeze me
i love you like a fat kid loves cake. i love you like a grandma loves to bake. like a seattle millennial loves to get baked. like a buff dude likes protein shakes. wow.
i love you like i get up in the morning after a solid 8 hours and i stretch, feels good, bones crack, lips sunrise into a smile, warmth, heat, kindling
i’m corny, you lightly graze on my insecurities, loving dove pecking at the crumbs meticulously placed all around me, surrounding me
warm hands cold heart you rub your heart of psalms against my welcoming cool soul, bringing it back, back to life, karmic, graze anatomy
I read quite a bit last year. I made some graphs because I like nerd shit. I read a variety of books, I reread some books because I thought they were important and they were short and sweet and it helped me reach my 52 book goal. I read comics, essays and fiction. I read nonfiction, I listened to audiobooks. I read books about zombie babies murdering neighbors. I read a book Da Terminator wrote about his Terminator life and there were actual nuggets of wisdom that I deeply appreciated.
I read the last book one of the greatest scientists of our time wrote. I read books that made me cry. Books that made me pull over and replay the last 30 seconds because that stanza was just so damn beautiful, so thought provoking and insanely and gorgeously and painfully written.
I read about how Starbucks began. I appreciated the hell out of the story.
I read a book about Elon Musk’s larger than life story, a heart wrenching story about a neurosurgeon’s fight with lung cancer. Books about the big bang theory, event horizons, and books that provided a hypothesis that disproved Gods existence – which really fucked me up, but in a good way. A book by Seth Godin about how to stand out, how to use your imagination and creating with love because that’s what differentiates us from machines in a cog – “Linchpin” was the book that inspired me to start this blog. And James Altucher’s “Choose Yourself” taught me to train my idea muscle on the daily – I’m all about that swole idea muscle life.
I reread Carol Dweck’s “Mindset.” Why? It’s a book so fucking important it should be read at least once every year. I also read 2 books that taught me about meditation and the power of being present, and lead me to download Headspace, an app that has positively affected my life. “You Are a Badass,” “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck,” and “Rejection Proof” made me laugh out loud IRL, and the story of Elizabeth Holmes of Theranos in “Bad Blood” made me go WTF IS WRONG WITH PPL.
I read short books, essays, books with pictures, ebooks, I listened to books, I read books by brown people who look like me, read books by women, just like me. That felt good. Empowering. In October I was stressed the hell out wondering how I would get to my 52 book goal and I went into Overdrive (pun intended). I felt like I was back in college, with only one week left of finals, but like, in a more fun way, not the “Oh shit I’m gonna fail this fucking class if I don’t cram all this information inside my brain which I will immediately dump out soon as I finish my test” kind of way.
My favorite books of 2018 are David Goggins “Can’t Hurt Me,” “Between the World and Me” by Ta-Nehisi Coates, “The Giver” by Lois Lowry, “Daring Greatly” by Brene Brown, “Relentless” by Tim Grover, and “Ready Player One” by Ernest Cline. My goal for 2019 is to read 30 books and to even more books by authors from diverse backgrounds. My goal is lower this year because a higher priority for me in 2019 is to network and really cultivate deep meaningful relationships. I want to apply what I read instead of just consuming vast amounts of information, which often leads to inaction. Inaction is one of my greatest weaknesses. It’s easy to stay at home and read in my own little introverted bubble, life’s more comfortable that way. Ideas and people grow when we interact with others. Growth occurs when you put yourself in uncomfortable situations, and I’m trying to develop that David Goggins type of calloused mind 💪🏾🧠
i look back craning my neck 90 degree angle, perfect, at the scene of you hunched over the computer screen pixelated 420p, take a smoke break. single black tolkien hairy hobbit toes stroking different cats for different folks. you’re a forlorn folktale, toes up and down the calico’s spine mouse click clack, back cracks as you look back craning your neck 90 degrees single dotted line black eyes piercing mine, perfect
I push you closer, hoping you would go away.
Leave me be as i wrap my arms around your waist like an unwanted Christmas present from my grandma once removed twice removed third times the charm.
I remove myself from the heated argument. I just want to clear my head. I wear your sweater and I like how you smell, unfamiliar familiarity, the warmth coats my worn shoulders you press up against. It’s like i don’t know who you are anymore.
Hands rough. I want you closer, so i push you away.
closer to me.