Monday, February 12, 2024

The Silent Struggle: Why Friends Sometimes Don't Reach Out




In the midst of life's trials and tribulations, there's a common thread that often goes unnoticed—the silent struggle of those closest to us. Recently, I found myself in a peculiar situation where two of my dearest friends faced challenging times yet chose to suffer in silence rather than reaching out for support. Initially perplexed and somewhat offended, I couldn't help but wonder why they would withhold their burdens from me, the self-proclaimed "fixer" with a metaphorical cape tucked away in the closet.

Their explanation was simple yet profound: they believed I was doing exceptionally well and feared burdening me with their troubles. In their eyes, I appeared to be navigating life smoothly, and they didn't want to disrupt that facade or add unnecessary weight to my shoulders. It was a gesture of protection, albeit misguided.

At first, I grappled with feelings of rejection and misunderstanding. Why would they assume I couldn't handle their struggles? Wasn't that what friendship was all about—supporting each other through thick and thin? However, upon deeper reflection, I realized that their actions weren't a reflection of my inadequacy as a friend; rather, they were a testament to their selflessness and concern for my well-being. (See, I have grown. 😉)

In our society, there's an unspoken expectation that friends should always be there for each other, ready to swoop in and fix whatever problems arise. As a self-proclaimed fixer, I've fallen victim to this mindset more times than I care to admit. I wear it well. But what if our highest and best purpose as friends isn't always about fixing each other's problems? What if it's about something far more profound—acknowledging each other's struggles, offering unconditional support, and respecting each other's autonomy? It took a couple of conversations with Wendy to come to terms with this. I kept saying "If they have and arrow like ME in their quiver, why not use it?" I didn't understand.

I wish I had taken a more reflective approach on the the front end. In hindsight, I realized that by focusing solely on my desire to "fix" my friends' problems, I was inadvertently undermining their agency and discounting their ability to navigate their own challenges. I failed to see that sometimes, the greatest gift we can offer each other is the freedom to confront our demons in our own way and on our own terms.

This "Ah-ha" moment prompted a shift in perspective. Instead of lamenting my friends' reluctance to confide in me, I chose to honor their decision and channel my energy into creating an environment where they felt comfortable sharing their struggles without fear of judgment or undue pressure. I learned to listen without offering unsolicited advice, to empathize without trying to "fix," and to simply be there—no cape required. I learned to speak the words "How can I help you the most right now?".

The truth is, we all have our moments of vulnerability and weakness, and it's during these times that our friendships are truly put to the test. But true friendship isn't about fixing each other's problems or always being the hero—it's about showing up, being present, and loving each other unconditionally, flaws and all. To me, that's being a true hero. They say that a true friend is someone that knows everything about you and likes you anyway. I believe this whole heartedly.

So to my dear friends who chose to suffer in silence, know this: your struggles are not a burden but an opportunity for growth, and your strength in facing them alone is nothing short of admirable. And to all those who, like me, have a tendency to don the cape of the fixer, remember this: sometimes, the greatest act of kindness is simply being there, capeless and vulnerable, ready to listen, support, and love without reservation.

I'm still keeping the cape handy though - jus' sayin'. ❤️😉

-BT

Friday, February 9, 2024

"Be the energy you want to attract"





I was asked to further explain the quote I posted yesterday. I like to post positive, motivational stuff in the wee hours of the morning. 😊 The quote "Be the energy you want to attract" is often interpreted within the context of the law of attraction and personal development. Further explained:


Law of Attraction: The law of attraction suggests that like attracts like, meaning the energy you put out into the world is what you'll receive in return. If you put out positive energy, you'll attract positive experiences and people into your life, whereas negative energy will attract negativity. Once I decided I was going to push out positive vibes I seemed to get that in return. We have a CHOICE about how we interact with people. Choose positivity and see what happens.


Personal Energy: Your energy refers to your overall vibe, attitude, and demeanor. It encompasses your thoughts, feelings, and actions. If you want to attract certain qualities or experiences into your life, you must TRULY embody those qualities yourself. It's not easy - it takes work. Working with a mindset coach helped me tremendously here. 


Self-Reflection: This quote encourages self-reflection and self-awareness. It prompts you to examine the energy you're currently projecting and consider whether it aligns with what you truly desire in life. If you want to attract love, success, abundance, or happiness, you must first cultivate those qualities within yourself. Many people have gone through something major and can't seem to get out of that rut. Becoming aware of it is the first step!


Authenticity: Being the energy you want to attract also emphasizes authenticity. It's not about pretending (don't be a fake) to be someone you're not, but rather about embodying the best version of yourself and aligning your actions and intentions with your desires. It takes work and consistency to pull this off.


Mindset Shift: This quote can inspire a mindset shift (my goal here 😉) from a passive to an active approach to life. Instead of waiting for positive things to come your way, you take ownership of your energy and actively cultivate the experiences you desire. Take action, move forward, disrupt the pattern.


Positive Influence: By being the energy you want to attract, you not only improve your own life but also positively influence the environment and people around you. Your positive energy can uplift others and create a ripple effect of positivity. I have seen this first hand in just the way I go about life. When I do something epic like climb Mt Washington in the winter, I like to post it on social - not to boast, but to inspire someone else to take action. That's positive influence and It's also my way of being the energy I want to attract. 


I hope this serves as a reminder to take responsibility for the energy you bring into the world and to consciously cultivate the qualities and experiences you desire in your life. People are watching, make sure they see good stuff. 😊

Sunday, January 28, 2024

Everything You Need Is Already In You.

 


Just some thoughts from The Cockpit this morning. 


I’m up early again, working on World Domination (😄).  I decide to flip back through my notes from the bootcamp I went to in Vegas in October. Here are some things I wrote as I listened to the speakers. 


I get to choose how I speak to myself. Have you ever caught yourself driving down the road just ripping into yourself? I heard it said the other day "be careful how you talk to yourself because your body can't tell the difference”. I think there's something to this. I've been catching myself lately, not giving myself slack. Try giving yourself a little bit of grace and understand that Rome wasn't built in a day.


Trusting the process is not enough. You must ATTACK the process. We hear this a lot..."Trust the process". Is there some magical level of success at the end of trusting the process? I don't think so. I think you need to get up every day and go right at it. Take action. I am a “shoot, aim, ready” guy, not a “ready, aim, shoot”, guy. Most times this approach serves me well. I don't wait. I make things happen. When I DO wait, I find that I am disappointed to see an opportunity slip by.


You will never rise above the level of your health. I believe it all starts with your health. It doesn't make sense to be worldly successful in business if you don't have a body to enjoy it with. Do what you need to do on a daily basis to make sure that when you reach your level of success, whatever that is, you actually can enjoy the fruits of your labor.


Narrative determines outcome. We control our own narrative. As I mentioned above, how we speak to ourselves can make a big difference. Rewrite your own narrative if you need to. Say it out loud and listen to what it sounds like. Mine lately has been "I am becoming a sought after Speaker and Coach”. Bold? You’re damn right. If I can't say it out loud and believe it, how in the world would I expect anyone else to?


Feedback - What CHAMPIONS eat for breakfast. I love feedback. To me it's just a faster way to get better. It can be a little bit rough on the ego at times but it's good healthy exercise for the mind to be able to listen to feedback. Take it all in, decide what of it you are going to use to get better and get rid of the rest. 


Own your mind, control the controllable. This can be a daily battle, and it should be if you're doing it right. A lot of the guys that I interact with these days start their day with some gratitude, some meditation, or some journaling. I believe that gets your day off on the right foot. My routine seems to be to get in "the cockpit", My corner of the couch where I can reach my coffee, open up the laptop and enjoy my most creative part of the day. It's LITERALLY what I'm doing right now. This sets up my day and gets me off on the right foot.


Start being honest with yourself. I talk a lot about this with my clients. If we are not truthful with ourselves, we can't really be truthful with anyone else. Being transparent and vulnerable is not easy. But it is a necessity when you are looking to develop personally. You have to be brutally honest. It's not always easy to hear but you have to do it if you're going to grow.


Keep the main thing the main thing. This one is hard for me. I like to do a lot of things. Sometimes we need to break it down and just run the lap that we are on. It can be as simple as "what are the five things I need to accomplish today?”. I think it was Tim Grover that said "become a master of the average”. In other words, let's do the basics well.


The PEAK of your productivity is the PEAK of your vulnerability. In cycling, they call this "being on the rivet". Have you ever seen a cyclist going really hard? To be “on the rivet” is an old cycling term meaning giving it full exertion, almost to the point of breaking. It derives from the days when riders used riveted leather saddles, and with intense effort, the hips slide forward, leaving the cyclist's posterior straddling the front rivet of the saddle. This is also where the cyclist is a half step from “blowing up” - being done. Long winded example but you get the drift. We are most vulnerable when we are “on the rivet”. Be careful how much time you spend there. 


Be different. Disrupt your industry. I heard marketing/digital media expert Chans Weber say this. So often we operate within the boundaries of what we feel are the norm for our particular business. Don't be afraid to be different. Be disruptive. Shake things up. A lot of great things were accomplished by people that said "I'm not doing it that way”.


What is REQUIRED is not enough. You must do The UNREQUIRED. I hear this one a lot from Ben Newman. Ben is one of my coaches and was most recently named one of the Top 5 Mindset & Performance Coaches in the World by USA Today alongside Ed Mylett, Brendon Burchard, Tim Grover, and Mel Robbins. Ben completes a workout that he calls “The Unrequired” every day - no matter what. It gets done. However, he makes the point that you can't do The Unrequired without first doing The Required. Do what you need to do, but we don't get a medal for that. Then do more. 


What is the single most important daily discipline for me, and on a scale of 1-10, how intentional about that have I been over the last 30 days? I also heard this one from Ben. I think if you focused on nothing else each day, but your single, most important daily discipline, you would probably crush life. Asking yourself how committed to that you are on a scale of 1 to 10 only increases the effectiveness. Note, see the above paragraph on being honest with yourself.


I get to design my life. True enough, right? You might think you have limitations on how you can live life, but when it really comes down to it, you are the only one in control. If that's not the case, something major needs to change. You are either in the wrong relationship or you have the wrong people around you. Do an audit, take stock, find out if you are the one that's really in control.


What does my very best look like? How can I add 10%? I like this one. Again, you need to be honest with yourself here. What is your very best? What does 10% more look like? What would it take to add 10%? Write it down. Look at it. Leave it somewhere where you can see it.


Do something every day to connect with someone on a deeper level. This might be as simple as stopping to chat with somebody in the grocery store line. You never know how you can affect someone's day. You can also do this with family. Are people hearing enough from you?


When you love yourself, you give other people permission to love you. I believe you get back more of what you push out. If people see you being kind to yourself and giving yourself grace, you will probably get that in return. If you are always dumping on yourself and hating on yourself, you can expect that in return as well.


Your hard work puts you where your blessings can find you. Funny how that happens. I often say "the harder I work, the luckier I get". But I don't think luck has anything to do with it. I just try to keep on doing good things and son of a gun if good things don't happen. I can't explain it and I'm not gonna try.


People are watching you. I am reminded of this every time I think nobody's reading this stuff or paying attention to my regular posts on social media. Just when I think no one's listening, someone will tap me on the shoulder and say hey, “I really like your stuff” or “keep going”. Many people watch and never comment, but every once in a while, I'll get a private Facebook message from someone and that little bit of fuel keeps me going.


If it doesn’t GROW, it GOES. You could apply this to most anything. Finance, personal relationships, personal disciplines. If it isn't on an upward trajectory, get rid of it. With regard to the personal relationships, that doesn't mean you nuke every relationship that isn't growing but it might mean you put it in a different box for the moment. Pour into the things that are feeding you back.


Grind. But do so with a purpose. How many times if you ask someone how it's going and the reply is "busy busy". Make sure you're "busy" isn't just chaos. Grind with a purpose, grind with the direction, just don't grind aimlessly.


Who has the keys to your heart and shouldn’t? Get rid of the keys and make it a combination. I heard this one from Tim Grover. It was kind of deep. He was asking who we are letting into our lives and how easy are we making it. He encouraged us to change it to a combination instead of a key. Make it harder for people to get into your inner circle. A bit of a pre-qualification process if you will. Know what the criteria is and stick to it. As I've gotten older, I feel like I have begun to do this organically anyway. I have less time and desire for anything that isn't moving the needle for me.


Everything I need is already in me. This is probably one of my favorite “Ben" quotes. I've also heard it said that "sometimes we ask advice about things we already know the answers to". We are smarter than we give ourselves credit for. And we give others too much credit! We know what's best for ourselves, but sometimes we look to others for validation. Stop. Sit down, take a good look at where you are and where do you want to go. Outline the steps to get there. Then break those steps down to daily tasks and disciplines. And then, go forth and conquer.


Thanks for reading, this started out as a short list of things to think about that I was planning to post on my group coaching Facebook Page called The Peak. But I decided to expand on it and share it to a larger audience. I hope you enjoyed it and got something out of it. As always, I am happy to have a discussion with you if you find yourself struggling with life or business. Getting Summit Coaching & Consulting up and running over the past year has been a blast. I am taking on one on one clients as well as membership into our “Peak” group coaching environment. I am also starting another mastermind group in February. I'd love to tell you more about it. If you think it makes sense to have a conversation and you can schedule a call at the link below. Have a great day!!


Click HERE to schedule a call.  



Saturday, January 6, 2024

The Evolution of The Edge

 


Over the past few years, I have attended some great in person events. Mostly on the construction industry side, but a couple of them have been more on the personal development side and digging into being a better you. In the process, an idea began to form. I could see myself putting on my own event someday here in southern Maine. About that same time I began to get the itch to return to coaching. I had done some triathlon coaching in the past, but this was going to be different. I was interacting with a lot of entrepreneurs, business owners, younger people, struggling with business and/or life. It seemed like a natural to jump in and try to help. Couple that with my tendency to be the "gatherer of people" and all of a sudden you've got the makings of a budding community. 

A year ago I decided to stop ignoring the itch and I created Summit Coaching and Consulting. I did some marketing and let people know that I was available as a Coach. In the amount of time it took for somebody to watch my first video, the phone rang. I was off and running. There was a new pep in my step. I finally had some oxygen. I was helping people. It felt good. I poured every nickel that I made coaching back into personal development and becoming a better Coach. I started a Facebook page, a group, The Summit. I invited people to join. I got uncomfortable and put it out there. We are now at 690 members. I kept podcasting. I blogged when I could and I continued to do what I needed to do to make sure my construction business kept rolling. Contracting paid the bills, coaching, filled the cup.

The support and encouragement I received from the Summit community, and my extended network of friends and business associates was nothing short of amazing. It fueled me. 2023 was a great year in that regard. I was having lunch with a friend of mine this past week, and he said "you've never been afraid to make a change". I guess he's right, and there IS a change happening, a transition, and evolution if you will. I think that just because we're doing one thing right now it doesn't mean we have to do that forever. I think it takes a tremendous amount of courage step into the unknown, to put yourself out there, and just not really know if it's going to work. It's funny how opportunities present. Once you decide that you are going all-in on something, doors start opening. I think that too many people sit on the sidelines and say "what if?". And they go through life, wondering what it would have been like to do what they were really put on this earth to do.

I'm 54 years old. I feel like I'm late to the game of doing what serves me. Oddly, I stumbled onto that by serving others. Funny how that works. I like to get up early, grab the laptop, a huge coffee, and sit on the couch. I guess that's where I am most creative. I guess I have a "never finished" mentality where I can always be doing something better or improving in some way. 

I like quotes. One of the favorite gifts I was able to give for Christmas was a wall hanging of Teddy Roosevelt's "The Man In The Arena" quote to my brother Dave. If you guys think I go hard, follow him around for a week. Anyway, back to quotes, I usually will drop a couple of good quotes on my Thursday night call with our paid coaching group called The Peak. The one I have liked the most lately is "sit with the Warriors, the conversation is different". So I would say that would sum up my last couple of years, I have been sitting with the Warriors. The conversation IS different. I've surround myself with people that don't settle for anything less than my best. And I've tried to be there for other people in that same way. In the process I think we've all gotten better.

And then there's that "putting on my own event" thing. It kept coming back to my mind. There are two ways to go at something. One is, "Ready, Aim, Shoot", the other is "Shoot, Aim, Ready". The former is probably the more prudent approach. I tend to roll with the latter. An example of that is my podcast. I decided one day that I was going to create a podcast and I did it. My goal was to do one per week. It's been almost 2 years and I have 43 episodes. Did I hit my goal? Nope. Have I done 43 podcast episodes and impacted tons of people? YUP! And we tweak the process and we adjust and we continue to improve. But I am not sitting on the sidelines saying "man I'm thinking about starting a podcast". I took action, I did it. It wasn't perfect and it still isn't. It is definitely a work in progress. But I digress....Back to the event. 

Deploying the Shoot, Aim, Ready approach, I created The Edge Event. I got some great speakers lined up and I secured a venue. I have worked at pulling something together in a couple months that probably warrants at least six. I'm not an event planner. I've just gotten a bunch of great people together in the interest of helping others. Leveling people up. Bringing them along. I'm excited about it. We are one week out. Could I use more time? Absolutely. But the date doesn't move. The tickets are sold and the people are planning on coming. I couldn't be more excited. This one will not be perfect. I will learn. But the next one will be a little bit better and the one after that will be even better. There are people flying in from different areas of the country, and I couldn't be more humbled that someone would get on a plane and fly to Maine to attend an event that I put together. We are doing this. 

When I was younger, and I was working at a millwork company, I went to a one day event specific to the industry. There was a lunch and I was sitting across the table from an older guy. Looking back, he was probably the age I am now, and at the time I was about 20. He said something that has stuck with me since then. He said "you know, for as long as I've been in business, I've never missed a chance to attend an event. I went even when I couldn't afford it, and I went even when I didn't have the time. I always found a WAY". I was young, so I didn't even know what that kind of thinking was all about. But it stuck with me that if this guy that clearly ran a successful business, had that strong an opinion about getting together with like-minded people, then there must be something to it. I don't know why it resonated with me so much at the time, but I guess it was one of those moments where someone says something and you just tuck it away not really knowing that you're gonna need it later in life.

The Edge event is on Friday January 12th. A week day. People work. Life is going on. I know. But let me ask you a few questions. When was the last time you invested in YOU?....in making a better YOU? What is your plan for 2024? Will it be the same as 2023? Will you be happy with that?  I challenge YOU. Come and invest in YOU. If you haven't signed up, I would love it if you did. Come and spend a few hours listening to some folks that have dealt with adversity and prevailed, people that operate at a high level. Come listen to what makes them tick. You'll definitely take SOMETHING home with you that will stick with you like it did me years ago. Come find YOUR edge. I promise you won't be disappointed. I don't think we're ever done working on ourselves. I continue to look for opportunities to do that and I'm hopeful this will be that for a lot of people. And hey, who doesn't want to take a Friday off?

I hope to see you on the 12th? Tickets are available at the link below! Come To The Edge!!!

eventbrite.com/e/767957490527?aff=oddtdtcreator

Thanks!

BT