Archive for the ‘Meaning’ Category

Most of us would not think of Bad being a good thing…

What the hell’s joyous about losing the one you’ve loved…where in the hell is the silver lining when the company brings you in…the same company that needed you to bail them out of a jam on weekends, holidays-once you even cut your vacation short. When they needed you most, you were always there…today they brought you in to tell you that they’re taking the company in a different direction and you’re not setting sail with them...”But thank you for everything.”

How hard is it to say Bless my soul when you lose your lease…or you only have only one month to pack up and get out of your home that you’ve amassed 2 decades worth of memories…now you have to downsize and feign the look of a fresh new start to the nosy ass neighbors pretending to be working in their yard. Sure they’re doing just fine-you’re the one who’s dying inside.

…the business that you started-first as a side hustle, then you took out a 2nd mortgage, telling your wife that everything’s going to be juuust fine because the contract you signed is huge and all of your struggles will have been worth it….after countless assurances of full speed ahead, the deal falls through and sinks to the bottom of despair. You’re deeply invested-at this point you aint worried about a return, you’re not sure if you can even survive.

We’ve all got a thumbprint on pain. We’re scarred with unfairness and share the commonality of being down and low….but no matter what “it” is…no matter how low, dark, or walled off it may seem…there’s opportunity in bad.

But first you have to look for it…

Mike Massimino, the astronaut tagged by NASA to repair the Hubble telescope-a billion dollar machine that detects other life and environments in outer space-if he doesn’t fix this part, billions of dollars could be lost forever because there is no backup Hubble…it’s one and done and now its future rests solely on his shoulders. Once in outer space, the only thing standing in the way of the repairs was a handle held in place by 4 innocent screws. The first, second, and third screws were removed as planned, but the fourth one was giving Massimino a little trouble, but with a liiiittle extra effort he thought he could….

…he stripped the final bolt.

With billions of dollars at stake…with millions more spent to send a crew to outer space, the screw was stripped…no Home Depot to run to & the supply of both oxygen and options was limited. At first Massimino did what any of us would’ve done…he beat himself up. It took you 4 tries to be an astronaut! You should’ve never made it this far! You shouldn’t have put so much force on that final screw! A mixture of negative emotions pushed to the front of his mind, but he gained his composure saying to himself, “As bad as things are, you can always make it worse.” He settled in…explored his options and fixed the almighty Hubble.

So you’re in a bad situation…remember worse has options and one of your options is opportunity. Find the opportunity in the bad. Massimino’s mantra has always been, “There’s impossible and then there’s improbable…& if it’s not all zeros…even if there’s a .0000001% chance-if there’s a 1 in there, you’re still in the fight.”

Bad can be good because it causes a shakeup..an awakening…sometimes bad cauterizes the shit that’s been lingering on for far too long in your life and now that it’s officially over, it’s time to pivot…push off & make good from the bad.

Opportunity is not found by lamenting in anguish about all of the injustice, unfairness, Why is this always happening to me! kinds of pleas…

The opportunity is found in looking for a crack, a sliver, a speck of light and building-digging you fingers in and clawing out from there.

How you got here has already happened…where you go from here is yet to be determined...you just have to find the opportunities and often they’re found in the bad.

Catch The Sales Life w Marsh Buice podcast- making an impact in less than 10 minutes each day. Find it on iTunes or your favorite podcast platform.

While on the set of Deliverance, filmmaker John Boorman walked up to actor Burt Reynolds and said, “Stop acting. Just behave…we’ll wait for you because we can’t take our eyes off of you..” Boorman didn’t want an actor…he  wanted Reynolds, first, playing the role of Lewis Medlock.

When we act…when our performance is based on conformance..when we just blend into our environment, we lose ourselves in order to take on the character that we think society, family, or our boss wants.

We act and cease behaving…

As told by Ryan Holiday, George Clooney initially struggled as an actor because he tried so hard to fit the character the producers were looking for until one day he got the realization that he shouldn’t try to fit the role…the role should fit him. It became clear to him that the producers needed him more than he needed them. See, if this audition didn’t pan out, Clooney could go on dozens of other auditions-he had options, while the producers were desperately seeking the one.  Armed with his newfound knowledge, Clooney began showing up to auditions projecting that he was The One for the job. And because he projected so much confidence..because he didn’t walk in there all desperate…because he showed himself approved…filmmakers made a way because Clooney behaved his way into the roles.

Many times we take on or inherit positions and continue playing the position the way that it’s always been played. We run alongside of the way that it’s always been done..we conform…we act…when Life needs you to behave.

When you act you blend in…but when you behave, you stand out. When you act, you’re cast in black, white, & grays of usual…but when you behave..when you bring your “You”…when you bring your flair…your flavor…your uniqueness..your quirks…when you bring your How I do to what you do…when you Be AND Do-not just do…well, you become the red umbrella walking through the gray crowd….

And you know what….

The world…Us…we’ll wait for you because you personify…you embody what we’re looking for. There’s too many actors in this world and not enough Be-ings. Beings behaving in such a way that we can’t help but get out of your way…to clear our schedule..to make room…hell to create a whole other column just for you.

And let me tell you how liberating it’ll be for you…because you cease acting & start behaving, you get to be you & because you’re no longer burning the emotional currency of acting, you’ll feel more complete…more in control of your most valuable asset…

…that asset is You…

So rest easy. Don’t worry about missing out…just behave…we’ll wait for you because we can’t take our eyes off of you.

**Catch The Sales Life w Marsh Buice podcast-making an impact in less than 10 minute episodes. You can find it on iTunes or your favorite podcast platform. **

When it comes to our own lives, we pay attention to only 2 letters of the alphabet…we start at A and worry about Z and we totally alienate the other 24 letters of our lives. We want to know how it’ll all pan out before we even move-it’s like we stand at A and have to know the answers to Z. We do it in all areas of our Life-we need to know if this relationship is the one…we need to know that this is a career that we can retire from…we fret in finances, spirituality, health, our day, month, year…hell our whole Life. We have to, have to, have to know how everything plays out first and if we don’t know if “it’s” going to be ok, we’ll catastrophize that too-we just blow shit out of proportion…and we haven’t even moved…we’re still standing on A.

Life’s job is A-Z, but my job is only to get to B & once I get to B get to C, D…G…T; I just have to get to the next step in my Life and once I get there, focus on the next one…that’s all that Life asks of me-to maximize each letter of my Life.

It’s human nature to want to insure our next step with certainty-to know that something’s worth taking on, holding onto, or letting go, but sometimes the answers will not be clear until you take a series of steps. Life’s not revealed, it’s unfolded…we want our answers to be behind Door #3, but instead Life nudges us to just head in that direction and along the way, she’ll whisper what to do. 

Will the next step be clear..will it be certain…will it be a win…will it be what I wished for? No..no it won’t always be. That’s why there’s more than one step…that’s why there’s C,D,E, & F’s in our lives, because along the way, we’ll hit walls..we’ll get blown back..we’ll stumble and fall. Moments that hurt..moments that seem unfair..but they’re moments of transition just the same. And when you hit moments such as divorce, demotion, death, bankruptcy, sickness, and abandonment…as much as they hurt, don’t capitalize them. Don’t give them prominence in your Life-don’t capitalize the A’s B’s, D’s, S’s; don’t let these moments be the reason why you gave up..threw up your hands and sat down. As shitty and fucked up as these moments are, they are still moments of transition that today have no reason but years from now bear deep meaning…moments that have no answer until you take the next steps. It’s hard…I know it is, but there’s healing beginning at the doorstep of next. 

…and resist saying the words, If I knew then what I know now, I would’ve NEVER…..Because you had to go through that now to discover your never…what you’ll never tolerate or put up with again…that you’ll never again not speak up instead of staying silent..that you’ll never be talked to, treated, or abused again…

Now is necessary for Never. 

So has your journey continues today, don’t worry about Z…just get to B…then C…focus on taking just one more step.

And don’t worry… Z will be waiting for you…after whY. 

Don’t miss an episode of  The Sales Life w Marsh Buice Podcast on iTunes or your favorite podcast platform.

You need doubters… you do…
I know you reeeeally want others to believe in you… I know you endlessly plead your case to your besties and your Aunt Laura, but you must have doubters in your Life. You need doubters because if you didn’t have someone to say that “You can’t”…if you didn’t have someone say “You won’t”-if you didn’t have those who didn’t believe in you then how would you ever grow?
Who would provoke to rise otherwise?
When I got to McNeese State University, I came in as an undersized offensive lineman –  truthfully I really I think I was brought in to just fill a slot.  I was #5 on the depth chart-meaning 4 other linemen would have to go down, fail out, or spontaneously combust before I’d ever get a shot at touching the field..and that’s exactly what happened (minus the combustion part). All of those playing in front of me either flunked out or got hurt, so like the Red Sea parting, I suddenly became the starting offensive tackle…for a day. Upon hearing the news, the coaching staff immediately began scrambling because they didn’t think I was “ready-” which is really code for they weren’t ready to cast me as a starter. So they ended up finding a kid at a junior college to immediately fill the open spot, but with only a week before practice started for the new season, the kid decided he didn’t want to play football anymore.
With no other options..no one to take from one position and slide into the vacancy, the coaches reluctantly gave me the nod.
And I’ll never forget that…
I set out to bust my ass-training extra-staying late, to earn that spot. I started that year as a sophomore never looked back and went on to become an All-American, All-State (Louisiana), and was elected Permanent Team Captain by my teammates… an undersized lineman who started out as #5 on the depth chart.
None of that would’ve been possible had they not doubted me first.
I needed them to doubt me…
Doubters make you prove yourself… not to others-they make you prove yourself to you. Doubters provoke you to raise your game up, test your faith, and they become your litmus test to see if you really want what you say you want. Have you ever told someone your far-fetched idea and as soon as they laugh, scoff, and look at you crazy you shrink? You downsize – minimize your plans because you didn’t have absolute conviction in your abilities and destination.
Doubters test your ignition – is it a spark or flame?  Do you want it so bad… do you see it so vividly that the second they doubt you-when they do a double take at your grandiose plans…the second you see that glimmer of doubt in their eyes or their expression, that only fan the flames even more? 
See when others judge you or determine your future only from the front porch of today- man that notion alone should ignite you toward a full-fledged inferno. Doubts are just opinions, but you are living, breathing talented absolute fact and they just kicked the ant pile. They woke you up to say, “Fuck this!” See there’s a difference between saying, Fuck You  and Fuck This…You is a defensive stance….This is a new mission-a mission where you stop telling and start showing…Up. It’s the point where you work at developing yourself and no longer wait to get picked. Your effort..your grit..your resilience is what puts you in the starting lineup of life. You’re already in motion when they “all of the sudden“ take notice.
 
By then it’s too late…
 
They underestimated you which is a good thing.  See, when people discount your abilities… when they underestimate you…when they pay you no mind… when you’re non-factor in their book, when they don’t give you any resistance-they don’t even object or get in your way because they don’t think you can do it and you just keep showing up working right there in their face… doing, growing, becoming what they never saw you in the first place…
 
But you did…
 
*Check out The Sales Life Podcast  less than 10 minutes long to get you ready for the greatest Life skill there is…Selling your way through Life. Find it on iTunes or your favorite podcast platform.

Dear World,

We’ve been through a lot together over the decades you and I-marriages, births, deaths, fulfillment & disappointment, war & peace, good times & hard times. There were days when you were more generous to me than I could possibly have deserved. And there were days when you cheated me out of things I felt I was entitled to. There were days when you looked so achingly beautiful that I could hardly believe you were mine, and days when you broke my heart and reduced me to tears. But with it all, I chose to love you, whether you deserve it or not. (& how does one measure that?) I love you because I like who I am better when I do. But mostly I love you because loving you makes it easier for me to be grateful for today and hopeful about tomorrow. Love does that. 

Faithfully yours, 

Harold Kushner

This beautiful letter came at the end of Kushner’s book “9 Essential Things I Learned About Life.” 

(Hear what this letter means to me on my podcast The Sales Life

Strange how Life can be a mixture of such vast emotions right?

…some days there aren’t enough words to express just how wonderful things are…other days there are no words that can adequately describe just how broken we’ve become. One day we’re on high…other days we’ve painfully discovered rock bottom has many levels.

Whatever it is…however it is…it’s your world…love it no matter what. Hard to do some days I know…but it’s the only one you’ve got…and you’ll be better when you do.

Just  remember it could always be better…but it too could be much worse.

I had a salesperson that I just couldn’t seem to get her to work with more customers- being she was new, I would repeatedly emphasize to her to work with more customers, but when they would come in, she’d usually fall back & let another salesperson Up (catch) them. I couldn’t figure it out..she knew her product, she was technically sound, & she was used to competing against the boys because she came from a male dominated industry …so what was it? When asked, she responded, “Marsh, I don’t have a huge need- the other salespeople around me have to struggle to make a sale in order to pay rent & car notes- I don’t have a huge need so I don’t need to make much.” Leaning back I asked her, “So what’s your end game…” to that she told me that she planned on being in the car business a long time. “Then if that’s the case, you’re not doing yourself much good- here’s why…

First, you can’t teach what you don’t know & you’ll never know until you first do. In his biography, Arnold Schwarzenegger said the 3 keys to him becoming a 7x Mr Olympia, successful businessman, & one of the highest paid actors at the time in Hollywood were reps, reps, reps.”

Reps weatherproof your career. You’ve got to work with hundreds of experiences, objections, scenarios, & obstacles while fading & maneuvering through thousands of rejections not only so that you can learn, but so that you can pay it forward and help others succeed who are starting out as well. Reps also give your customers the needed assurances that you can help them with their current situation because you’ve helped other customers maneuver through similar circumstances as well.

This brings me to my 2nd point,” I told her, “When you’re not working with enough customers, not only do you not possess enough of the necessary skills that they desire & deserve, but not working with enough customers means that you’re OK with them buying from an inferior salesperson- if you say that you’re here to help customers, then you’ve got to follow through with actions to those words.”

Which brings me to my 3rd point,” I quipped, “Do you have kids?” She told me that she had a boy and a girl- Mason & Madison…”Do you want them to do well in life,” I asked knowing she’d say yes. “If you want them to do well, then be their teacher- set the example because they can’t be what they don’t see. The reason why so many struggle as adults today is because, no one played the part…no one showed them the pattern… no one chalked the outline, nor showed them what they could be because no one helped them see…no one showed them more so they’ve accepted less.”

You must do well…you must reach beyond your comfort zone…you must dig deep and get back up…you must set audacious goals & kick the door in when Life tries to slam it in your face…you must reach higher because this isn’t just about you.

It’s way bigger than that…

….but first you’ve got to set the bar.

I’ll see you on the Blacktop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Humps, roadblocks, …detours are a part of life, but they’re humps not Himalayas. Sometimes we get to a hump in Life & we turn the hump instantly into a Himalaya- the hump we face goes from waist deep in reality to a 22,338 foot mountain in our minds.

Soooo many things in Life are humps miraged as a mountain. They look that way to us for a couple of reasons: 1) It’s something that we’ve never faced before so we think that we’re no match for it. 2) We’ve faced a similar situation before & resulted in a shit sandwich- so we think we’re about to eat another. It’s all Bullshit.

Isn’t it crazy how we have a Redbox Rental state of mind sometimes?! You know the Redbox rental that’s right outside the store where you can rent a DVD for less than 2 bucks? We rent our problems much the same way- we walk our happy asses to the box covers of Life’s problems & we select a cheap B Flick negative rental and we play that negative movie, over & over in our minds. It’s impossible working for something to positively manifest while thinking something negative.

Look,you may be facing some big mountains in your life- no doubt, but I am telling you that you need to look at your problems through different lenses. First, stop calling it a “problem-” I call them challenges, Eckhart Tolle calls them situations. Whatever you call it, call it something other than a “problem” because often the mere utterance of the word problem stunts us right in our tracks- 1 minute we’re galloping through Life & the next scene we’re like Lt. Dan from Forest Gump, flailing around handicapped with our legs blown off. Try using the word challenge or situation & watch your whole perspective change. Your mind will shift to that of a solution mindset and will begin looking for ways to solve it by tinkering and poking at the situation.

The 2nd thing I want you to realize is that mountain that you’re facing is nothing more than a bunch of humps stuck together- they’re like big words…I tell my daughter all the time that big words are nothing more than small words clumped together. Break the bigness down- declump those ganged up humps…you don’t get to the summit in one leap.

So back to the beginning…

Humps, detours, & roadblocks are necessary in life-they’re needed for you to grow- I mean think about it, would you voluntarily subject yourself to pain, hardship, embarrassment, recourse, and ridicule? Hell my hands would be in my pocket and sure as hell not raised to be subjected to the harshnesses of Life, but we need the stimulation- i.e. kicked in the ass, in order to grow. I don’t like it any more than you do, but I know in retrospect I’ve liked who I’ve become and what I’ve accomplished on the other side of the bleakness. Yes it was painful…yes it was lonely & dark… no it wasn’t fair…but it was necessary. There isn’t a single one of us reading this that cannot look back at some cataclysmic event and not say yes it was hard, but I learned so much.

So I need you to do 2 things: 1rst charge the mountains in your Life one hump at a time..and (2), don’t look at every hump as a Himalaya.

You’ve got this!

I’ll see you on the Blacktop!

(HT to Deepak Chopra)