The Ant Philosophy

real-ants-in-fantasy-settings-landscapes-andrey-pavlov-4

…you should watch what the ants do and learn from them. Ants have no ruler, no boss, and no leader. But in the summer, ants gather all of their food and save it. So when winter comes, there is plenty to eat.

Proverbs 6:6-8

ANTS NEVER QUIT

Have you ever tried to stop an ant while it was in route to a destination? If you have, then you know that an ant will never quit. When something unexpected blocks their path, they don’t stop to analyze it, mull it over or cry over the scenario. They simply keep on moving over, under or around their obstacle. They keep searching for another path. So, be like an ant. Never quit looking and quit moving towards your destination.

ANTS THINK WINTER ALL SUMMER

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Just as Joseph helped prepare the land of Egypt for a drought, you can’t be so naïve as to think summer will last forever. Ants gather their food in the summer to prepare for the months ahead. Yeah, things look great in the summer but they sense the hard times coming. It is important to think ahead and be realistic.

ANTS THINK SUMMER ALL WINTER

When the days get cold, ants know that it won’t last long. They tell themselves, “summer is just around the corner.” On that first warm day, they start right back up again. Here in the south, it can get warm in the middle of a cold day. The ants will come out and get some work done but dive right back down when the cold settles in. They remain positive though and at the first warm day of summer, they get busy again. Take a lesson from the ant, stay positive even when the weather seems bleak.

ALL-THAT-YOU -POSSIBLY-CAN

Finally, how much food will the ant gather and store up during the summer in order to prepare for the winter? All that he possibly can. Do all you can….and more! It’s important to you and every other “ant” in your colony.

You are What You Wear

As I was passing by Jackson’s room this morning, I noticed that his carpet disappeared and had been replaced with his toys. Upon further evaluation, he was no where to be seen. Then I heard a noise coming from the toy chest and saw his little fingers poking out.

I said, “Come out of your shell turtle.”
Jackson replied, “I’m not a turtle, I’m a dog.”

Sarah saw my puzzled look and informed me that he was wearing a dog shirt today. At that moment I understood why he labeled himself as a dog. In times past he would wear a spider man shirt and say, “I’m Spider Man.” Other times he would have a Mater Truck shirt on and say, “I’m a truck.” He identified with what he was wearing.

Attitude = Identity

As childish as that seems, we too identify with what we wear. You may be questioning my intelligence at this moment and think, “Come on Steve, I’m wearing a Saints t-shirt this morning does that make me a football player?” Of course not! I’m simply using this as a metaphor for our attitudes and perspective about life.

Every day we wake up and put on our attitude. We set our outlook and perspective about how this day will go. Events will take place today, both positive and negative. You may not be able to determine what happens but you can determine your responses.

Things happen – Get over it Quickly

My wife runs an in-home daycare and one of her moms informed her that she would not be bringing the kids today. Being that this is part of our budget and income, it can be frustrating to have unexpected cancellations. We had an attitude choice to make in that moment. We could choose to have a good day or bad day. Regardless of what attitude we chose, those 2 kids would not be coming.

In order to set yourself up for success, you must make the determination at the onset of your day. You must get up and put on the proper attitude. I’m sure you’ve heard the old phrase, “Somebody woke up on the wrong side of the bed today.” If you start your day with the wrong attitude, then hit the ‘reset button’ and start over. When that mother informed us in the above scenario, we initially became frustrated. Now we didn’t get back in bed and roll out of the other side but we did take a few moments to regroup, gather our thoughts, gather our mind and reset our attitude about the situation. The faster we ‘reset’ the more time we have to accomplish our goals and enjoy our life.

The Choice is Yours

Just as my son, Jackson, identifies himself with the shirt he wears, your identity is determined (both in your eyes and those around you) by the attitude you wear. Make the choice to have a good attitude and good perspective today. Then no matter what happens, good or bad, you will overcome.

Ancient Distractions

Happy New Year!!!

Here we are in 2015! I have firmly defaulted on everything that I set out to do just a few days ago. Go figure… It appears to be the same cycle just on a different year.

Today I realized that distractions will creep up quickly in our lives and will go almost unnoticed. Before long, we begin to blame life for our failures rather than taking the responsibility for them ourselves. Today, tonight actually, I realized that I carried over some distractions from 2014 that must be shed if I desire to move forward in life. These ancient distractions that I buried at midnight on Jan 1st and then dug up by noon of the same day!

1) The distraction of others. Last year I spent a lot of time allowing myself to be absorbed in other peoples problems. As if I didn’t have enough going on, I dove head first into the affairs of my family and friends. Sometimes it was solicited but most of the times not. I tend to put a lot of value in my own opinion for everyone else’s life rather than fixing my issues. These last few days, I have found a good portion of my time at up with worrying about relatives and co-workers problems. It is taxing on my already feeble mind and depletes energy levels below empty.

2) The distraction of multi-tasking. For the last few years, I took on the world. I couldn’t let go of micromanaging my employees and attempted to be superman at work. It appears that I love to punish myself. I do believe that I would rather have punched myself in the face for 3hrs a day everyday last year than to have put myself through the headaches that I did. Since beginning the new year, I hit repeat and began doing the same actions that caused me so much grief in the past. Simply training, delegating and having better communication would fix those issues.

In addition to my regular job, I engaged in several direct sales companies from weight loss, fitness, coffee to memberships. Today, I was contacted with a compliance issue from one of my websites in this industry that I no longer want the pain of dealing with. I proceeded to waste about 4 hours worrying about what to do and sending correspondence emails to the company. I need only do 1 thing and that is focus on the ONE company that I want to pursue, all others must disappear.

3) The distraction of stuff. Hello NETFLIX and INTERNET browsing!!! As if we actually have enough time in our day to waste on consuming media. I completely neglected every person I know, intention and goal that I set, every book that I would like to read and anything that could make this year better than last year just to “veg” out and be a zombie. It’s not only detrimental to my brain cells but it’s also a bad example for my children!

Now… what did I learn? That I am an idiot. Completely irresponsible and negligent idiot. If I want this year to be better than last year, then I must do something different. There is no way around it. The only path to success in every avenue of life is for me to do the work it takes to be successful in those areas. I make the choice to be 1) what others want me to be, 2) what I’m comfortable being or 3) what I need to be.

The best way to overcome and avoid distractions is to realize they exist, take responsibility that you allow them to exist and then relinquish their existence by any means necessary.

Start – Average to Awesome

Jon Acuff - Start: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average and Do Work that Matters

Inspired by Start.

The inspiration behind this blog was birthed from reading Jon Acuff’s book “Start: Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average and Do Work that Matters.” As a matter of fact, you can find the phrase “This too shall post” is buried somewhere between the front cover and the back cover (you’ll just have to read it for yourself to figure it out).

It was that very section that brought me to this point. In years past, I have started many different websites and blogs. I really enjoy the blogging experience but never drilled down a focus of conversation. The topics typically bounced from work experiences to religious debates. Ultimately, these were short lived and met their demise before a year had passed. I was great at starting them and equally great at shutting them down. Where I lacked was being consistent and creating something that matters.

While reading Jon’s book, I was able to relate to his experiences (howbeit on a much smaller scale). I haven’t written a book or spoken to large crowds or built an online identity with thousands of followers, but he connected with me on a personal level. From the first page to the last page, we connected. No, I haven’t met the guy and I may never meet him.

My Guide Through Life

Fact is that I have a guide in my life already, multiple of them. My long time mentor and close friend, David Bunch (aka Big Bad Brave Dave, will tell you more about that another day) gave me “Start” for my 30th birthday present. He has seen me start many ventures and give up more than I’ve started (if that’s possible, I did it!) Dave has so much confidence in me reading the book that he included a gift receipt. I’m sure Jon would be proud of you Dave for having such faith in his catchy book cover and equally amazing summary on the inside flap.

Initial Experience of “Wow” and “How”

At one point in the book, Jon talked about the “Wow” person and the “How” person in a marriage. Instantly, I was drawn in… Why? Well because each word described Sarah and I to the “T”. I have always been the “Wow” and she is the ever questioning and dream deflating “How”. As a matter of fact, I reread that section to her while she was driving. The response she gave was 10 minutes of dying laughter (because it described us so well). I almost regretted my decision to read this section while in a moving vehicle because at one point we crossed a 5 way intersection and I could promise you that her eyes closed and tears of laughter were bursting out of them. Not to mention we passed through every yellow light as it changed colors to red. I don’t think there were any green lights on the road during this time.

“This Too Shall Post” Purpose (Or Something)

Okay, so… A goal for this blog… “This too shall post” is a medium to share real life experiences, good or bad, with everyday people. Each post will always answer the same question, “What did I learn from this experience.” We see too many fakes on Facebook and celebrity “Real life” shows. What we really want and need is something that is truly relatable. This is not about me, so please feel free to join up in this venture. Do something that matters, become a contributor and help thousands of other people with your stories. We aren’t professional bloggers, just a bunch of Awesome People coming together for an Awesome Purpose.

Until next time, God Bless and See You Later!

-Steve