Archive for July, 2013

Jul 31 2013

How to Receive Compliments

Published by under Life

I was never the dude hitting night clubs every weekend. But I went to enough to know that bouncers are generally grumpy people.

One night, some of my buddies and I hit a club. One of them, Jon, was wearing a baseball hat and had it turned around backwards. A bouncer came over and told Jon to turn it straight or take it off. Jon basically told him no. Things escalated quickly and Jon ended up getting clubbed in the head with a huge MagLite flashlight. The gash required ten stitches.

When we hear compliments from people, there’s something inside most of us that acts like a bouncer. Our personal bouncer won’t let the compliment inside us and does everything he can to injure the compliment.

This bouncer needs to be personified. He needs a name. I call mine The Grump. The Grump doesn’t want anything good to come inside my heart. He stands guard and beats down any compliment that tries to come close. “NOT ON THE LIST!” he growls.

The Grump has only two replies to a compliment. If The Grump is in a bad mood, he says, “No! I’m not that thing you just said about me. I’m not good at that.” If The Grump is in a less-grumpy mood, he robotically responds, “Thank you” but doesn’t let the compliment come inside.

When we turn down compliments, we often imagine we’re doing the humble thing. We’re not. We’re sabotaging ourselves.

The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood, but the speech of the upright rescues them.
_Proverbs 12:6

Inside us all is a voice we use to talk to ourselves. For most of us, this voice is overwhelmingly negative – almost wicked. “You’re dumb, you’re fat, you’re not talented, you’re ugly, your hair is stupid, you’re a loser, you’re not funny, you’re never going to be anything, you’re a failure.” These words lie in wait for blood. They cut us like an aggressive bouncer with a flashlight.

Compliments we receive from other people are the speech that rescues us from the tragedy of these negative voices. And when The Grump rejects these compliments, it’s like turning away a lifeguard while we’re drowning.

Compliments are a specialty food. Our hearts need to eat the kind words others speak to us instead of shoving them away like they’re dog food.

We live our lives from the inside and we’re often too close to ourselves to have a truly objective picture of who we are, what we are, and what we’re good at doing. The next time someone gives you a compliment and The Grump (or whatever you name your bouncer) steps up and says, “No entry.” Simply tell him, “NOT TODAY, GRUMP!”

Imagine the compliment landing on your heart. I’ve started physically touching my chest when someone says something nice about me – like I’m placing it on my heart.

Repeat the compliment back to yourself, “I am a good ______ (whatever the person said).” Write it down and review it later. I keep a notebook in the Evernote app on my phone called Rainy Day Encouragement where I write down things people say about me for the times I doubt myself. One of my friends had me record the thing I said about them into a voice memo – half joking, but half serious.

The best baseball players BELIEVE they’re going to hit a home run when they bat. If we’ll never see ourselves as special, we’ll never swing for the fences. Receive compliments. Eat them. Believe the good others see in you.

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Jul 30 2013

What Makes Success

Published by under Life

We all want success. But success looks different for each of us.

Success for me in the 100m dash might be 13 seconds and not looking like a complete goon while doing it. For Usain Bolt, success is 9.49 seconds with absolute precision on each of the 24 steps he takes to complete the distance.

Success for me in making a certain type of handicraft might be creating three per hour that aren’t wonky in some or another. For an Etsy pro, it would be 12 per hour that are perfect.

Much of the discontent we experience in our lives today comes when we try to run someone else’s race – when we compare ourselves to their innate talent or years of hard work.

The only comparison we ever need to make is against ourselves. The controlling question for us shouldn’t be, “How do I get to the top?” but “Am I operating at my capacity?”

If we can wake up every morning and spend our day working at our own capacity, we’ll be happy in what we make and our muscles will grow, allowing us a higher capacity over time.

One day, we may wake up and find ourselves on top. Or we could be in the middle of the pack. Whichever the case, we should be able to say what all runners, amateur or professional boast, “I’m running a personal best.”

It’s you vs you. Today and every day. Play your best!

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Jul 29 2013

Go Get Em Vol 3

Published by under Humor

Here are some things I thought about this week…

I know the chicken at McDonald’s isn’t 100% real chicken and the beef at Taco Bell isn’t real beef. And it may not be healthy. But can we all agree it still tastes delicious?

I’m an honest person. But sometimes I don’t live like it. I’ve decided I’m going to tell people why I was ACTUALLY late to things. Instead of saying, “I got stuck in traffic” (traffic being one light that stayed red for a little longer than it normally does, allowing me to justify saying I was stuck – because I was), I’ll say things like, “Sorry I’m late. I thought it was more important to get on Google and figure out if Abraham Lincoln liked oatmeal.”

Sleeping on the couch is a great idea. Until you wake up the next morning and your back tells you it was a bad idea.

Spiders couldn’t be more disgusting if they tried.

Whoever invented Panda Express should be drug out in the street… And have a parade thrown in their honor.

It’s almost that time of year again – when football coaches remind us that Dockers still aren’t that fashionable. And still shouldn’t be worn with tennis shoes.

So far in my life, I’ve backed my car into a picnic table and a parked car. Actually, to be more specific about the parked car – I backed my mom’s car into my brother’s car.

UPDATE (7/29/2013 12:02PM)
It took less than 12 hours after writing this for me to back into something else…

It’s a perfect day to plan your abduction of tomorrow…

There is nothing new, only different. The future is to those who take it. Nothing is easy, and the best things are the hardest.
_C2C – Le Banquet

Go Get Em!!!

5 responses so far

Jul 27 2013

How To Be Amazed… With Ourselves

Published by under Life

One day, the animals of the forest had a race. They were all there. The bear, the giraffe, the raccoon, the raven, and everyone else. Before the race started, the animals made fun of each other.

“Look at how fat Bear is,” one said. “He’s so fat his mama pushed him around in a wheelbarrow instead of a stroller.” Bear looked down at his belly and shrugged his shoulders.

“Hey, look how skinny and tall Giraffe is,” another shouted. “So ugly! It looks like he got beat with the ugly stick,” Bear chimed in. “No,” replied Raven, “he IS the ugly stick.”

Then the Fox glanced around and said, “See how Raccoon looks like an idiot with his two black eyes!? Are you gonna be Batman’s side kick? Your superhero name would be Trash Man and your power would be flipping over garbage cans and making a mess, you slob, Raccoon.”

So busy were the animals making fun of each other that they didn’t realize the race had begun. Finally, Coyote yelled, “GOOOOOOO!!!!!”

The animals left the start and raced through the trees. When the first group of finishers came around the final bend, they saw the finish line tape had already been broken and standing next to the time clock was the Donkey.

When they asked him how he’d won, the Donkey replied, “I wasn’t made smart. I was born to mind my own business and do my job.”

Those who live out their purpose in life will win.


For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
_Ephesians 2:10

And THIS is how we can be amazed with ourselves – we’re made by God to do good. We don’t need to wonder what God’s will is for our life! We know! We’re supposed to love him, love ourselves, love others, and do good. And he’s crafted each of us for a specific role in that work. Yet. Too many of us are never amazed or impressed with any it. We stand at the start line, self-conscious (possibly because people have made fun of us) that we’re too dumb, too boring, too fat, too ugly, or too late.

“The greatest tragedy in America is not the destruction of our natural resources, though that tragedy is great. The truly great tragedy is the destruction of our human resources by our failure to fully utilize our abilities, which means that most men and women go to their graves with their music still in them.”
_Oliver Wendell Holmes

We come from God and we’re made for doing good. We’re important. We’re equipped. We’re smart. We’re able. We desire good. We’re honest. We’re dreamers. We’re optimistic. We’re kind. And God himself back us. Amazed yet? One more. We’re music-makers. And every day it’s time for the world to hear us sing. What God has put in, we must push out. And we’ll be amazed that, when we do, the world stands in applause. And, someday, God will, too, when he welcomes us home with the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

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