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April 2, 2018

#mondaymotivation

Accept You

For every phase of my life, I have encountered someone whom I have clashed with. People who couldn’t even begin to fathom what it is that makes me tick, with the innate ability to cut me down with the exact right comment, at the exact right time, which made me question who I am, what I do, and why I do it. No matter how much I tried to brush it off as ignorance, deep down, I just wanted them to “get it”, to see me for me, and in all reality, I just wanted their acceptance.
These people can ruin your life. There’s no other way to say it. The focus and energy we have all wasted at some point in our lives trying to gain acceptance from somebody who isn’t willing to waste any focus or energy on us, has a direct correlation as to how far away we are from accomplishing something truly meaningful, or reaching true happiness. They become walking rabbit holes who divert us from focusing on an ideal, in order to focus on an opinion, all at the cost of our time and even our sanity.
Take a hard look at yourself and honestly assess who these people are in your life. (And if you think you don’t have any, look again, because there’s always one.) Maybe you work with them, maybe you went to high school with them, or maybe you grew up with them, and you’re still trying to make them “get it”, even if only in your subconscious. Stick to your guns. They’re not going to get it, and that’s okay. Their acceptance is irrelevant to your journey. Stay focused on an ideal, forget the opinions, and create a life you are willing to accept as your own, because in the end, that’s the only acceptance that actually matters.
-CPT Ryan
March 26, 2018

#mondaymotivation

Start Being You

Stop trying. Stop trying to be something you aren’t, stop trying to do something you really don’t want, and stop trying to become everyone else but yourself. You are not a human trying, you are a human being, and the sooner you start being, the less time you will waste away hopelessly trying to create a reality that just isn’t real.
Just be you, do you, believe in you, and be real with you. All you have in this life is your very being, and that is a beautiful thing to waste on trying to cover it up with something you’re not. We tend to think we’ll find solace in turning into everything we aren’t, when in reality, genuine solace is found by turning into what we are capable of by being true to who we actually are.
You will always be better at being yourself than trying to be somebody else. You have been given this life with the sole mission of making the most of your reality with every single day you have. But in order to make the most of your reality, you need to be willing to make the most of YOUR reality, not someone else’s. So let go of everything you aren’t, everything you don’t really want, and everyone else you’re trying to be, and grab hold of everything you really are, and everything you really want, and go get everything you’re capable of being.
-CPT Ryan
March 19, 2018

#mondaymotivation

Hard Knock Life

In a deep conversation about life some time ago, I was asked point blank if I have ever really had to struggle. While initially taken aback, my foolish pride kicked in as I started rattling off a slew of impressive things. “Of course I’ve struggled,” I retorted, followed by a complete biography of “First of all, I…” and “Then I…”, and “Not to mention I…”. At the end of my dissertation, I felt fairly confident I had proven my case in the court of public opinion, however, the real point of the conversation wouldn’t dawn on me until some time later.
Life has a funny way of making you eat your words. In boxing terms, it’s a counter puncher. You throw your best jab, and it comes over the top with a right hook that knocks you flat out before you even saw it coming. What I didn’t know in the midst of my rant about my “struggle”, was that life had a right hook waiting in the wings; locked, loaded, and ready show me that even though I had done things that were hard, I had never actually experienced true struggle, and it was about to show me the difference.
The time that followed was uncharted territory. Nothing I had done prior, regardless of how hard it was, could prepare me for it. It was a dark and hopeless place, which opened my eyes to a part of my brain I never knew existed. It made me question everything. It made me want to quit. It made me want to change. But in all reality, it was probably one of the most important times of my life because it made me want to take action. It showed me that doing what is hard, or difficult, in life is about testing your will to succeed. Whereas the struggle…real struggle…is about testing your will to survive.
In doing what is hard, you may come up short from time to time, fall down, or take a few losses. Don’t mistake those times for real struggle and adversity, as they will leave you hopelessly unprepared. “There are levels to this game,” as UFC champ Daniel Cormier once told an opponent, and life’s challenges are no exception. If you have done things that are hard, I commend you. If you have experienced struggle in its truest form, the kind that takes your breath away along with all your facades, don’t miss your chance to take advantage of this gift from life. It is here where you will find yourself, you will find your friends, you will find your propensity to take action, you will find your hunger, you will find what has true meaning, and most of all, you will find your will to live.
-CPT Ryan
March 12, 2018

#mondaymotivation

Mis-Management

When it feels forced. When the harder you try, the worse it works out. When everything you say is misunderstood, and everything you do is misinterpreted. When you start thinking something is just plain wrong with you, and there is no way up and no way out because, really, who would want you anyway? When you start having those feelings, and they start creeping into every aspect of your life, realize that you aren’t a failure, you have simply misapplied your passion into something which is not compatible with what you have to offer, or what you were meant to do.
We get so spun up about what we should do with our lives, we lose sight of what we could do with our lives. We mistake acceptance for success, and chase the accepted instead of the unexpected, one day realizing we have worked ourselves into something we never really wanted but thought we needed, and now we just can’t fake the funk any longer. And that’s okay.
It’s okay to be a misfit. It’s okay to lack acceptance. It’s okay to have gone down the wrong path, and it’s certainly okay to change course in exchange for what you were meant to do. The most successful among us, the truly successful ones, not the most distinguished or most decorated, but the ones who made a life of chasing their dreams, were all once the misfits who were misunderstood and misinterpreted. So make no mistake about it, you may not fit in, but why would you want to anyway?
-CPT Ryan
March 5, 2018

#Mondaymotivation

For Them

When you are losing faith, and coming to the end of your rope…look around. When you have tried everything you can to make your vision a reality, but you just can’t seem to get anything to work…look around. When the pep talks, the speeches, and the motivational social media posts lose all their luster and meaning, and you feel like you just can’t find the spark in anything anymore…look around. And when you are just done, tapped out, given up, and all you want is a way out of the suck…look around.
Look around and you will see the faces of the people who don’t just believe in what your capable of, they know what you are capable of. They believe in everything about you. They have your back, they have sacrificed for you, they have walked through fire for you, and they would follow you to the depths of hell, all just so you could succeed. No different what you feel, and would do, for them. Just look around. You know these people are there, even if you don’t want to admit it.
When you have lost the will to do it for you, look around, and do it for them. Be the person they see in you. Be the person they have invested their time, love, and compassion in. It can’t always be about everyone else, or for everyone else, but until you can do it for you again, do it for them. Behind every success is a low point, a point of seemingly no return shrouded by the darkest of days. But if you can just look beyond yourself for a second, and see the people behind you, there you will find the grit to keep going, because you better believe they would do the same for you.
CPT Ryan
February 26, 2018

#Mondaymotivation

Read For Swagger

I just don’t care anymore. I can’t. Ever since I found what it is I was meant to do, and what I was truly passionate about, I stopped caring altogether. I don’t care that it doesn’t make sense to you. It shouldn’t. I don’t care that you wouldn’t do it if you were me. You’re right. This is my grind. My dream. My life. It has nothing to do with you, unless you’re part of my tribe…in which case you better believe I’m the ride or die you want in your corner, because I don’t even care about my own welfare when it comes to my team.
I don’t care about what’s never been done before. That’s what I want. That’s what I need. I can’t do it like everyone else. It’s not in my DNA, and it’s certainly not in my plan. I can’t just read the book, I need to be the book. I want to be the one who showed up, guided by passion and fueled by purpose, who dropped a change bomb on the world that suddenly became the new “way to do it”, haters and naysayers be damned.
I don’t care if you think this side of me is too bold, too reckless, or even downright arrogant. That’s the perk of figuring out who you are, and where you want to be. I don’t have time to care about what you think anymore. I don’t care if it’s hard, I don’t care if it hurts, I don’t even care if I fail, because even if I fail 100 times, you better believe I’m coming back for that 101. My life is no longer ruled by that which I can’t have an effect on. My life is now ruled by my passion, my purpose, and my people. As for all the rest…well…I could really care less.
-CPT Ryan
February 19, 2018

#mondaymotivation

Prove Your Potential

Nobody is going to do it for you. There always comes a point where you are going to have to do it yourself. People may see potential in you, they may see talent in you, they may see a future for you beyond your wildest dreams. And while that which others see in us makes us feel good, it’s not getting us anywhere. You’re never going to actually be what other people have the foresight to see in you, until you’re willing to prove your potential through personal action.
Proving potential to yourself is a uniquely individual task. You can have a team, coach, or loved one push you, and those people will be essential in your journey to success, but in the end, the livelihood of your potential rests squarely on your shoulders. Its pulse needs a plan, its reality requires risk, and its future needs your unwavering follow through. Most of all, it needs YOU. Success isn’t going to just walk up and tap you on the shoulder because you look like a good candidate; more likely, it will walk up, punch you in the gut, and take your lunch money until the day you decide to get your shit together and fight back.
Maybe the process will involve taking blind leaps forward, or maybe you’ll have to take a few steps back, or even start from scratch altogether, but either way, the decision to act is on you. Potential creates opportunity, opportunity calls for action, and action forms a reality which then creates the potential for opportunity. Sew the seeds of confidence from what people see in you, with the vision of a life you see for yourself, and create a blueprint of how you plan to combine the two into a reality which has always been waiting for you to arrive.
-CPT Ryan
February 12, 2018

#Mondaymotivation

Don’t Let the Bastards Get You Down

The snipers are out there…waiting. Waiting to shoot down your pride, hamper your progress, and destroy your purpose. Waiting to take shots at your new ideas, deflate your lofty goals, and destroy your unreasonable dreams. Their aim is your heart and mind, along with any place else they can make it hurt, using your shortfalls and self-doubt as their ammunition. And all along, it is their own desperate sense of self-loathing, lingering insecurities, and missed opportunities that drive them to pull that reassuring trigger.
To them I say: Take. The f*king. Shot. Seriously, just take it. Take the shot, because more times than not, I’m on the move and you’re going to miss. Take the shot to remind me to keep going. Get some hits even, because the occasional hit will ignite me, expose where I need work, and keep me hungry. Fire away, I don’t mind, because when you pull the trigger,you commit to exposing who you are, what you fear, where you are weak, and when life makes you uncomfortable, all of which I truly hope you someday overcome.
Don’t let the bastards get you down. They’re always going to be out there, just waiting for a chance to take that shot at you; because it’s easier to take a shot at someone else, than it is for them to take a look at the person in the mirror. Expect it. Every endeavor, every sacrifice, and every triumph will always be riddled with the bullets of those not daring enough to confront who they are, in order to realize who they could be. Let’s face it, none of us are bulletproof, but we are all capable of surviving the hits along the way, just muster the courage to keep going and it will all be worth it in the end.
-CPT Ryan
February 5, 2018

#mondaymotivation

Perspective Check

It’s easy to get caught in the perpetual rut of feeling as though things are headed in the wrong direction, that they can’t get much worse, and that you’re nothing more than a helpless passenger on this sinking ship, clipping every iceberg as it navigates the murky waters of negativity. Although it may seem like an exercise in futility, it is essential to put yourself in your place, and remember that somebody, somewhere, not only has it worse than you, but so much so that it’s borderline unfathomable to think it can get that bad.
Somebody, somewhere, right this second, is experiencing epic tragedy, insurmountable hardship, and they are up against astronomical odds. That is their reality. It was also their reality yesterday, last week, last year, and it will probably be their reality again tomorrow. That also means despite the circumstances of their reality, they chose to get up and keep going, last year, last week, yesterday, today, and they will do it again tomorrow. So you know what? You can too.
Exercise your sense of perspective daily, as it’s probably the most valuable exercise you will do. Nobody walks this earth without becoming a victim of the world’s misfortune at some point, that’s just life. But there’s a difference between being the victim, and playing the victim, and if you’re playing the victim, you’re just playing yourself. Somebody…always…has it…worse. This is a fact. And they would kill to be in your shoes today, taking full advantage of all of your privilege and opportunity. Bad times are just as fleeting as the good times, but how you experience both is an exercise in perspective, just open your eyes.
-CPT Ryan
January 29, 2018

#Mondaymotivation

Chasing Creation

We all have experienced that feeling of the chase. Whether it’s chasing what we believe is the ideal life, a fulfilling career, or personal goals. Maybe we’re even chasing something that has already happened; a time in our life when we felt we were at the pinnacle of living, or what we’re capable of achieving, and we either fall into a constant state of reliving the past, or chasing how it made us feel. But is the chase just going to leave you spinning your wheels? Maybe what we need to do is create instead.
The word “chase” implies you’re a step behind, that you’re in a constant state of falling short, or that you’re following a path created by someone else. The chase is rooted in ambiguity and fueled by hope, which, as Jim Carrey once explained, “Hope is a beggar.” Don’t depend on the chase to create the life you want, or the one you once had. Put the control back in your own hands, take responsibility for your future, and go out and create, or re-create, the life you want to live.
Let’s stop chasing and let’s start creating. Creating is laying out a plan…you’re plan. Creating is ignoring the useless things people say and think while you execute that plan, while using the constructive criticism to your advantage. Creating is taking risks, with no real failure, only learning, growing, and refining. And creating is taking ownership over your life, so you never have to be a slave to the chase ever again. So exit the chase for a more promising path, drawn on a road map of your own choosing, and start living the life everyone else wants to chase for themselves.
-CPT Ryan