Choosing to own/be the change not being the victim of it.

Let’s set the stage a little here. I’m an emotional eater and when I was a struggling freelancer, I ate a lot of bad stuff. At the weight I got to, I should have been 8-9 feet tall but I wasn’t. A new job comes along and I start realizing that I’m miserable and want to change.

24 hour fitness was a mile up the road. I signed a 30 day trial and began going driving my car to the fitness place. I did this about a week and then realized I had a bike and could get there more easily and with more effort (the entire point of going to the gym) by riding my bike. So that is what I did. I’d leave my bike infront of the garage every night.

It was bout day 5 of this when I walked out of my house early in the morning, looked at the garage door where I left my bike and didn’t see it. It was STOLEN!!!

I wish I could say I do this everytime but I have to admit I don’t. The thought crossed my mind that I would just run to the fitness center. At first I was angry but I quickly realized that this was going to be great. Now I was running 2 miles (up and back) and getting in some weights as well.

That was it, I was hooked and ended up averaging 20-25 miles a week within a 6 month period after my bike was stolen. It has physically changed my life. I hope to meet this theif one day and thank him for his help.

As I said before, I wish I responded this way and with as much quickness everytime in these type of situations but alas, I don’t. In fact, most times I complain to others around me and bring in the drama. It’s my way of looking for confirmation that I was wronged. Every once in a while, I’ll be sharing my victimization with someone and they’ll just look at me weird or have the kindness to call me out on my attitude.

I must say I appreciate that response from my family and friends. Maybe not immediately but it doesn’t take line and I begin to see clearly why they felt the need to address it with me.

I’m sharing my stolen bike story because I believe I have been sulking over a victim scenario over the last 12 months and it’s time to start running. I’m going to lead the change not play the victim to it or it’s nasty brother, no change.

I need to look at my life’s challenges and face them as they truly are, my challenges. These are not someone elses responsibility right now. I’m the one who needs to initiate the change. Right or wrong (I’d prefer Right) I am responsible to bring out the change.

My bike was stolen so you’ll find me running on the side of the road.

DAA Dallas Chapter Event | Smash Through Your 2019 Career Goals – Review

What a great event we had at the DAA meetup. I was really looking forward to connecting with other passionate data professionals but didn’t expect to have the talks impact me like they did.

Focus was word that was verbalized in any of the conversations or talks but it was for sure a theme of the night for me. Each of the speakers were incredibly relative in their approach to the topic of pursuing your dreams in 2019.

The 3 speakers were Mike Merrill, Dave Gatdulais, and Carl Brandvold.  Each one brought a different perspective to the topic and landed thier points with percision. I really appreciate the time they took to prepare and share but even more than that, they were incredibly gracious with their time during the event to share thoughtful responses to our questions.

I’m really looking forward to our next meetup in March.

If you are in the digital analytics space or hope to be, you will do yourself well by attending the next event.

Great jobe DAA team. Thank you for all your hard work on puting this event on.

Click here for more information about the event.

2018 40 Book Goal

I have set a crazy goal of reading and documenting my journey through 40 books in 2018. Take the journey with me.

  1. The Exceptional Presenter – Timothy Keogel (kay-gul) – read 1/2/18
  2. Robert Klein – Seeing What Others Don’t -read 1/16/18
  3. The Oz Principle – read 1/6/18
  4. A Sense Of Urgency – read 1/10/18
  5. Never Split the Difference – Chris Voss – listened 1/4/18
  6. The Speed of Trust – Stephen M R Covey – read 2/11/18

Great thing about this?  I read more than 40 but stopped keeping track because it was causing me to limit the energy I was putting into it.  Why is that?

updated: 1/17/2019

The Smarter Screen by Shlomo Benartzi

Improving online behavior is a huge undertaking and this book gives the reader a head start in understanding how a few simple changes in the way we communicate online can make a big impact. 

This isn’t manipulation of any kind. The data backs up the conclusions and there are some great hypothetical examples in the book. 

I would recommend this book to anyone that works with online content. It’s definitely worth the read. 

If righteousness can come by the law…

Paul was amazed at the possibility of those who saw the need for Christ for salvation but then sought to “perfect” their salvation by works. (Gal. 3:3) 

It is Jesus who is the perfection of our faith. He is the Righteousness we need and must continually rely on.

It’s not the works that we have done but the Righteousness that He Is.

What am I relying on for my relationship with God that isn’t Jesus? 

(Press Reset Button NOW)

Bonus: The question I should ask myself after hearing the Abraham and Isaac story is not whether or not I would sacrifice my son but whether or not I am in need of the sacrifice of God’s Son because of my sin. 

3 Years Ago Today We Said Goodbye

It was 3 years ago today that I was forced to say goodbye to a good friend. It was my first blogging community. At the helm was a kind (atleast I thought he was) and giving blogger named @tomfoolery. Then on April 1, 2010 I woke up to this horror of a blog post…

“This is the last post for More Than Useless. Blogging and commenting have been a lot of fun and I really do enjoy it, but maintaining the current format of this site along with the frequency is challenging.

Over the past few months, I’ve had a number of awesome opportunities arise online and offline – I’m passionate about them and excited for the work I’m going to be doing. To that, I want to make sure that I can give each of them the focus and effort that they deserve.

I’m likely going to reboot the site sometime in the future though it will be much more casual in nature (so maintain the RSS subscription if you’re actually interested).

You can still follow me rambling on about a variety of tomfoolery via Twitter, contributing more content to the 8BIT Network, working to push out more awesomeness for the Standard Theme, and focusing on a few other things.

This isn’t an April Fool’s joke. I know, the timing sucks. It never was my thing.”

Sometimes the cruelest April fools jokes aren’t jokes at all. 🙁

I Had To Bean A Client Yesterday

Yesterday afternoon was rather frustrating. I love what I do as a freelancer but it’s not an easy job and there are some days that make it that much harder. My clients are great people. Many of them are hard-working, honest and great at what they do. It’s my goal to just accent that with the work that I do.

Sometimes, though, I take on a client that becomes a bigger issue than I can afford and I have to cut ties. I recently had one of those ‘clients’ and it didn’t end well. I did everything I could to try to work with them but unfortunately we just couldn’t seem to get on the same page. It came down to a matter of blind expectations that I would work more hours than what we agreed to. I let my judgement slide and continued to work the extra hours hoping the client would see the value I was bringing to the table. In return he increase my pay to match the hours, but as usual, this didn’t happen. He saw the extra work as just part of the gig. Therefore he never saw the value. The big drawback in going through this and trying to make his business a success was that my business suffered.

I learned a long time ago when I was in full-time ministry that you had to set up guards in your life that would prevent someone who couldn’t control their own life to control yours. This same rule applies to my freelance business as well. I can’t let a failing business that is out of control take me down with them. I already stopped investing in businesses but now I need to reconsider my vision for “saving” businesses. I guess I needed to learn this lesson the hard way because I let my guard down and took a huge hit in the process.

It was a short jog, but necessary.
It was a short jog, but necessary.

After speaking with the client and finding out just how big of a hit my family and I were going to take this month, I had to go for a jog. (It was a short jog since I hadn’t gone for a jog in over a year.)

While on the jog I called my dad who had been in sales most of his career. He understands what it means to ‘take a hit’ because of an unreasonable client.

His advice was simple: “Bean him”

My response was the same as yours probably. “Bean him? What does that mean.” My dad went on to explain that while working in sales he would carry beans in his pocket. When a client would treat him wrong or things just weren’t working out in the relationship, he would reach in his pocket while walking to his car and throw a bean. It was his way of shrugging it off. He said, “You can’t let it bother you or the rest of your business will go down with this one client. You’ve got to get past it and move on.”

Easy for your to say, I thought. So I pleaded my case explaining how much of a sleezeball the client was for misleading me through bonuses and pay increases that never happened. My argument continued with myself while my dad was listening and only took a breath after saying “How can he be such a sleezeball!?” My dad responded with the words that would allow me to move on, “He may be a sleezeball but you found him.” I couldn’t stop laughing.

It’s my responsibility as a freelancer and business owner to choose wisely and keep my guard up.

So I beaned a client yesterday. I’m finished, I learned some valuable lessons and the future is looking good.

One last thing to remember is that although I may have some immediate issues with bills and such, I’ve got a rich and loving heavenly Father who is going to take care of me and my family. 🙂

(Featured Image, running in the rain image)