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April 16, 2018

#MondayMotivation

Blind Clarity

It will not always be clear. You will not always know what it is you want, what your vision looks like, or what your purpose is. It may feel as though you are just blindly wandering along, not really knowing if anything you are doing is really going to help some higher cause, or take you to a place of fulfillment. These feelings are inevitable, and they are just as much a part of the process as defining your passion, your purpose, and your plan. It is in these times where you’ll find the importance of, at a minimum, prescribing to an ideal.
Although goals, plans, and visions can provide us comfort and motivation in the darkest of hours, just because you don’t have them doesn’t mean you are altogether lost. Sometimes the only guiding light you will have is an ideal, or a concept which is completely formless, but holds a deep meaning to you somehow. As you embed these principles into all that you do, slowly a vision will form through opportunity, and that vision will eventually give way to passion, which will power your purpose. You may even know exactly what it is you want to do, but it doesn’t exist yet, in which case you need to derive courage from those ideals, so you can go out and create exactly what you see in your mind.
You don’t always have to know exactly where you’re going in order to know you are eventually going to get there, and your fire doesn’t always need a blueprint in order to burn. Don’t settle for mediocrity in the face of blindness; just because you may not be able to see your future today, doesn’t mean it won’t exist, and just because it doesn’t exist, doesn’t mean you can’t create it. So set chase to that which cannot yet be seen, led only by a trust in a concept, and a passion for change, and open your eyes to a reality you never imagined possible. – 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
January 22, 2018

#Mondaymotivation

Just Gonna Send It

Deep in the Canadian forest, where the glistening snow blankets the wide open country side, and rolling foothills grow into majestic mountain tops, lives a brash denim clad warrior on a snowmobile steed known in action sports folklore as Larry Enticer. Okay, in all reality for those of you who don’t know him, Larry is a self-made, mullet wearing, Canadian satirical character, who rides a 1970’s era snowmobile off some outrageous jumps. That being said, Larry’s brand of humor isn’t necessarily for everyone, but he presents a point we could all benefit from.

The trademark of the self-proclaimed “Denim Danger” brand is Larry’s catchphrase “Just gonna send it”, which he confidently proclaims prior to freeing his flowing mullet locks when he launches his snow ship through the air. If things aren’t perfect, that’s okay too, because he let’s you know he’s “Still gonna send it”. And when he crashes or fails, he gets up, brushes himself off, and once he knows he’s good to go, he starts his sled back up, declares “Round two”, and sends it again.

We all need a little more “Send it” in our lives. Whether it’s trying something for the first time, pursuing something that scares you, a lifestyle change, a career change, or any other challenge in your life, stop putting it off while you wait for everything to be perfect, and just send it. Even when you think there’s a high probability of failure, still send it. And when you fall, get up, dust off, and go for round two. So whatever excuses you have for holding your greatness back, confront them with a little swag and a jean jacket, tie back your mullet, and just send it.

-CPT Ryan

January 15, 2018

#MondayMotivation

What The Hell

And then one day you wake up and ask yourself…what…the hell…am I doing? Maybe you started down a certain path because you thought it was the right, or responsible, thing to do. Maybe you were trying to make other people in your life proud of you. Maybe you were subconsciously covering up your insecurities or failures. Or maybe, you don’t really even know why you went where you went, or why you are what you are. Regardless of motive, the day of reckoning between what you’re doing, and what you were meant to do, comes to all of us in due time. The question is, when that day comes…what…the hell…are you going to do about it?
The difference between pain and misery is that pain is suffering with a solution on the horizon; misery is suffering with no resolution in sight. When you wake up and realize you were meant to do something else in life, don’t let that realization turn into festering misery as you watch your shot at a better life pass you by, knowing exactly what you could have done to make it happen. Take the short term pain of starting over, and use it to start laying a foundation for change in order to hone in on what you really want out of life, and to leave the feeling of being unfulfilled behind you.
So good morning, we hope you slept well, but the day of reckoning between you and who you’re meant to be is here, and it’s time to figure out what the hell you’re gonna do about it. Whether it’s your job, your relationships, your hobbies, or your side hustle, let’s get rolling and stave off misery by lining up your plan and taking some action. There will still be pain and there will still be suffering, but your pain has a plan ready and willing to manifest itself in the form of passion…you just have to get up and go get it.

-CPT Ryan

December 14, 2017

#ThankfulThursday

What are you thankful for…

More often than not do you find yourself thinking…  How can I get better?  What steps can I take to improve? Or even worse, I need to strengthen my weakness.  Lets stop for a minute, change gears and what if you tried something different? What if you thought of all things in your life, physical, emotional, and spiritual. Then within each of those categories you listed out at least 5 things you are thankful for? How could this change your day? Change you mood? Or Change your outlook on the journey you are on? Taking a minute to  appreciate all the things that you may overlook on a daily basis, what you have, where you currently are. You may notice this has an interesting impact on how your thoughts start to transform from what you don’t have, to what you are blessed with. 

You probably have heard over and over again “the joy is found in the journey.” Being thankful for your current situation will help you to take a step back and reflect on where you were before, where you are not and how much progress you have actually made. Instead of inundating yourself with where you need to be. Be thankful, build yourself up, foster a mindset of positivity.

I challenge to take 5 minutes of your day to slow down, pull out a pen, a piece of paper and write down as much as you can in that 5 minutes. Start small and list out all the things you are thankful for.

November 21, 2017

All In A Life’s Work

It’s the uncontrollable, nauseating, pit in your stomach. It’s the sweat in your palms, and running down your back, as a flush of heat comes over your face. It’s the heartbeat thumping out of your shirt, slamming its way up into your throat one thunderous beat at a time. And it’s the uncontrollable shaking in your knees, down into your calves, as the adrenaline courses through your veins, desperately wanting to make contact with the ground like some wild lighting rolling in on the storm. These aren’t the feelings of a near death experience, however, this is how it feels to go “all in”.
It’s no coincidence that going all in on something has the same unmistakable trademarks of a near death experience, because it’s an exercise in finality. It’s an eternal sacrifice of what you are, towards what you want to become, and the permanence of that change is terrifying. So sometimes we decide the stakes of going all in are too high, so we resort to the “fall in”. We keep doing what is comfortable, staying noncommittal, half-assedly throwing our hats into a few rings, hoping we miraculously fall into something great without the stress and anxiety of betting the farm on our vision.
You will never just fall into your vision, and even if you did, it would mean nothing without commitment. With commitment comes sacrifice, sacrifice creates meaning, and meaning drives purpose. So when you finally decide to go all in on something, you are effectively setting into motion a perpetual cycle of purpose fueled by commitment, which will be equally as rewarding as it is terrifying. Stop hoping to fall into your life, and start going all in on your life, because the stakes are high, and a lot could go wrong, but nothing as wrong as a life unfulfilled by the unnerving thrill of committing to something greater than yourself. – CPT Ryan
November 13, 2017

Monday Motivation – Living Promise

Living Promise

Life has little use for promises. As soon as you think something is promised, life has a way of wiping the slate clean, leaving you with nothing more than a memory of what you thought was supposed to happen, and a feeling of breathless bewilderment. Whether its health, relationships, employment, money, success, loyalty, or even life itself, none of them make promises, they can only have promise.

Having promise and making a promise are considered to be two different things, when in actuality they are one in the same. Having promise is foreseeing a positive outcome given a certain set of facts and circumstances, combined with a vision, hard work, and a little luck. Making a promise is no different, but somehow we tend to think that it’s some ironclad agreement with the future, when in all reality, it’s merely a hopeful prediction. So when a promise is broken, it can suddenly become a major setback in our lives because we gave it power it never really had to begin with.

Start having promise instead of depending on, and being held back by the inevitable broken promises life doles out to you. Having promise allows you to have flexibility, readjust, adapt to changing circumstances, and even overcome failure. It breeds a positive outlook, sets the tone, and lays out the path forward. Most importantly, instead of worrying about the “What if’s”, it allows for the “What if’s”, enabling you to seamlessly forge ahead, immune to debilitating disappointment. Stop depending on promises you know the world can’t keep, and focus on having promise in all that you do, and you’ll find that promise had is even more powerful than a promise kept.

~Cpt. Ryan

October 23, 2017

#MondayMotivation

Light Your Way Out

If you know you want to change your situation, if you know you’re not where you want to be, if you know you want more from life but you don’t know where to find the motivation…you’re not looking hard enough. It’s everywhere. When you are in a bad place in life, or simply cannot stand the norm any longer, everything you look at, every hour, of every day, should be a stark reminder as to why you need move forward, simply because you are surrounded by an environment you no longer want to be in.
You are not a product of your environment, your environment is a product of you. So if it feels like your world is beating you down, the walls are closing in on you, and you have become trapped by your reality, start drawing power from those feelings instead of letting them render you powerless. There is an immense pool of untapped strength in those places, situations, and monotonous routines you want to escape, as they all unleash our most basic survival instincts once we finally decide enough is enough.
Don’t surrender to your surroundings. Seize them. Own them. Let them build you into what you can truly become instead of letting them tear you down into what you never became. Use their fuel to ignite your fire to create change, blaze a new trail, and burn down the walls built by “the way it’s always been”. And when that fire starts to dull, and your motivation wanes; stop, look around, and ask yourself if where you’re where you’ve always wanted to be. When the answer is no, strike a match, and get back to the grind, because the light at the end of the tunnel can only be lit by your flame.
September 18, 2017

#MondayMotivation

Life Unfiltered

Everything we touch today comes with a filter. From our pictures and videos, to what we say and the feedback we get, all the way to how we see ourselves and how we let the world see us. Some are societal, and some are self-inflicted, but more and more we are choosing to ignore the reality in favor of the filter. The problem with the filter, however, is that it doesn’t really change anything, it just strains out what you don’t want to see, be seen, or in some cases, deal with.
You can’t change what you aren’t willing to accept, and you can’t accept what you aren’t willing to see. At some point, the disparity between the filter and the reality becomes so big, that all you are left with is fiction. Remember that progress is rooted in reality, so if you are scared, ashamed, embarrassed, or nervous about what’s behind that filter, realize that whatever it is that makes you feel that way is going to stay right there until you are ready to take the filter off, and stare all that is real square in the face.
Every once in a while, we need a reminder that filters actually exist to highlight or enhance what is good as opposed to covering up what is bad. If everything looks great on the outside, but you are still in unfulfilled turmoil on the inside, try living life unfiltered for a while. It may be humbling, discouraging, or downright depressing at first, but soon enough those feelings will be overtaken by progress, and the only thing left to be filtered will be the haters, the naysayers, and the doubters. – CPT Ryan