Blog

“Reigning Supreme” Defined and Seeking Inspiration Elsewhere.

I can’t skateboard.  (Yet.)

But I like to pretend I can.  Like… I seriously like to pretend that I can.  I can barley do the foundational trick, the ollie (equivalent to an air squat in the CrossFit world), but dammit I love zooming around on my board pretending I’m legit.

What is “reigning supreme”?

Although it quite literally means to rule as a king or queen superior to all others, I like to think it’s something else.

I tried to ollie over a minuscule speed bump, fell, landed on my left hip where my iPhone was in my pocket, cracked the screen into bits, got up, smiled and kept cruising.

And there you have it!  Reigning supreme: getting out of your damn comfort zone and being silly enough to smile past your failures.

I want to keep typing but instead let me direct you elsewhere.  Go watch the documentary “Bones Brigade” on Netflix (or go buy it) ASAP.  It is easily one of the most inspiring things I’ve ever seen and a must watch (even if you aren’t into skateboarding).  Which was my second point: seek inspiration from other places.

My world is CrossFit.  I’ve got to be around  and watch some of the sport’s best.  And every time I’m around them I feel like I’m better for it.  But there is nothing inherently special about the fact that they are great at CrossFit, it’s that I’m watching someone who has aspired to greatness… someone who left their comfort zone and failed enough times to get to where they are now.  It’s very humbling.

No one embodies this idea of Reigning Supreme more than the Bones Brigade’s Rodney Mullen.  He has become a real hero to me.

The world needs more Rodney Mullens.

Mullen-Bones_Brigade_filmstill11_RodneyMullen_TonyFriedkin

Now go REIGN SUPREME!

Standard
Blog

What Everyone Ought To Know About Their Friends.

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with” – Jim Rohn

Are you lacking in the brilliance, talent, skill, and luck departments?  Doesn’t matter!  You can still be wildly successful… if you got a good wolfpack.

I’m going to ask you to do some thinking.  Play along.

Who makes up your wolfpack?  Over the course of a day who are the 5 people you spend the most hours with.  Think about your home-life, work-life, and social life.   How many of your hours are spent with which people.  Write them down! (If you have less than five, that’s fine).

The questions.  Who are they?  What do they do with their lives?  How happy are they?  How optimistic are they?  How successful are they?  How ambitious are they?

Evaluation.  Are these the people who are going to help you get to the next level of you?  Do they not only support you but push you forward?  This one can be a tough one to answer objectively BUT MUST BE DONE.

Choose.  You may find out that your closest people aren’t going to be the people you need to push you to greatness.  You can’t be afraid to decrease the amount of time you spend with those kinds of people and increase your time with the right people or seeking those people out.  This doesn’t mean cutting some relationships cold turkey just decreasing your hours spent with them.

I am the average of Mike Bledsoe, Doug Larson, Chris Moore, Rob Conner and my gal pal Lisa Mac.

1234086_10151884672637489_1373371445_n

Standard
Blog

Life Lesson’s Learned From Pixar

Even though Pixar has had some bumps in the road, I have to admit I’m a fan-boy, and have been since my happy ass left Toy Story on opening day back in 1995.  I remember we got there late so I had to sit front row looking almost straight up the entire movie.

As the years have passed I’ve eased up on bashing the competition (just ask my sister how many times I talked trash about any Dreamworks animated movie she liked), but I still think Pixar is the king of the animated film.

(P.S. My sister didn’t cry at all during Toy Story 3, so clearly she has no soul and her opinion should not be counted anyway)

To most these are probably “just movies,” and I can’t really pin down why I’m so deeply obsessed with them.  But each of them has a warm and fuzzy place in my heart and here are a few reasons why.

To Infinity and Beyond

I hesitate to type out what I’m about to type in fear of sounding over dramatic… but that phrase may be the most beautiful words ever put together.  When I watched Toy Story as a kid it was just some snazzy catch phrase Buzz Lightyear said.  A few years later I’m sure it registered in my brain as something similar to “giving 110%”.

As an adult I’ve found it quite pleasant to sit and dwell on the phrase.  Limitless +.

We are taught from a very early age that life has limits and boundaries.  To infinity and beyond, especially in Buzz’s delivery, is a proud refusal of limits and boundaries.  It says priority number 1 is to reach the unreachable (infinity), and priority number 2 is to continue past that.  What an epic message to be etched into the minds of a generation.

What seems unreachable to you now?  Bust your ass, get there… now go past that. 🙂

That Wasn’t Flying, That Was Falling With Style

And immediately following Buzz’s big “To Infinity and Beyond” scene you get this gem, and my personal favorite.

If there is anything I’ve learned over the past few years it’s been falling with style, aka fake it til you make it.

There is something magical that happens when you just jump off the bed thinking you can fly.  You find yourself using all available resources to help you do just that.  Whereas had you known you were just a toy you wouldn’t have ever tried or noticed all things and people in your life that could help.

Get this.  When the idea of starting a podcast was brewing in Mike Bledsoe’s brain I had never owned a real camera or edited video with real video editing software.  I volunteered to film and produce it.  I used some savings to buy a camera, used a credit card to get a Mac/editing software and faked it.  I’m not a producer, I’m a faller with style.

We Scare Because We Care
And then there is Monsters Inc.  I can’t count how many times I’ve seen this movie…  In theaters, on dvd, on blu ray, on the cloud, re-released in theaters in 3D…

The lesson here aren’t learned from just the quote alone.  I’m going to assume you’ve seen the movie, and if you haven’t and don’t want it spoiled then skip this one.

At the end of the movie the monsters learn that how they have been harnessing energy (by scaring kids and capturing screams) could be improved (by humoring kids and capturing laughs) in a mutually beneficial way.

A few lessons here…
When presented with new and better information you have to be willing to make a change.
You’ll live a much happier life if when dealing with multiple parties you always set up win-win’s.
But the one I like the most plays into the first one and  that is:  you can’t identify yourself with who you were yesterday or what you’ve been told you are to be if you want to make a change.

Yesterday you were a monster, and you did what you were told all monsters were to do: scare… “because that’s just what monsters do.”  At some point you start to feel bad for scaring kids, and want to make a change.  But since you allow your entire identity to come from being a monster  you’ll never try being  funny.  Even if you and you’re entire universe could directly benefit from you being funny, you’ll never go learn to tell jokes because “that’s not what monsters do.”

So then if you want to make that change you have to become not a monster.

(Otherwise you’re liable to swing far the other way that you create a scream extractor.)

Are there any changes in your life you could make for the better but don’t because “that’s not me”?

Just Keep Swimming

Finding Nemo!  This one is to the point.  You’re going to have you’re bad days, you’re going have your horrible days, you’re going have days where your heart is ripped out because you lost your only child or worse.  And when those days come you need to force yourself to be optimistic and keep on keeping on.

While that is clearly the message I think it falls flat when put into practice because on those days it’s probably going to be too damn hard to be optimistic.  So knowing that you probably won’t have the willpower to be optimistic, do the next best thing (what Nemo’s dad did) and surround yourself with someone who is.

Adventure Is Out There

Up.  I wish I had been given a disclaimer before seeing this movie.  “Warning: You will need a full box of tissue 5 minutes into the movie”.  Hopefully my sister cried during this one, or I’d be extremely worried.

The lesson here is that your dreams, wildest imaginations, and adventures are all “out there.”  They are just waiting on you.  It’s there all the time, but you have to be proactive.  You must be willing to engage with the world around you, and explore new things.

If you don’t feel like your life is an adventure, it’s because you haven’t been proactive in getting there.  Seriously.  Like seriously seriously.

Anyone Can Cook

Ratatouille.  And if your “this is all hokey bullshit meter” isn’t at an all time high yet, here’s this tasty nugget.

Said simply anyone can do anything.  Just figure it out.  It doesn’t mean you’ll be world class or the best, but if there is something you want to do, go learn it and do it.

Enough with looking at someone else and saying “I wish I could do that,” we have Google now.  Type in what it is you wish you could do and figure it out.  It reminds me of a great Steve Jobs quote: “Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you”.  It’s not that these people are smarter than you, they just took the necessary steps to figure things out.  So get to steppin’.

Standard
Blog

Zen and The Art of Disappointment

WARNING: First world problems ahead.

If you know me or keep up with me on instagram or twitter (@CTPCAM) then you know I had been super excited to be heading to The American Open in Dallas to film a documentary about CrossFit’s impact on USA Weightlifting.  I also had VIP tickets to see Kanye West with my friends Mike Bledsoe, Alex Maclin, and Kendrick Farris.

If you read my last post you saw my recommendation on having a personal mission statement.  Mine ends with:

FOCUS ON THINGS IN YOUR CONTROL.

An ice storm that stretched from Dallas to Memphis, was not in my control.  I’m not going to pretend it was easy to be Zen about it.  I had my moments.

Think about the last few times you were upset about anything.  I’d suggest that if it was due to something that YOU could NOT control then you start training yourself to not get upset about it.  It won’t be easy.  It’s like training in the gym, be consistent and train hard and progress will come.

So I won’t put this in the loss column.  I know that had I made it to Dallas I would have had fun, been inspired, and hopefully created a sick mini documentary about the sport of weightlifting.  (And in my mind I like to think there is a parallel timeline where I did just that, and it kicks ass, and I got buck at the Yeezy concert).

But I didn’t.  And what I got instead was a big win and big practice on how to choose how I respond to life.  Cause really that is what determines your happiness.

How do you respond to life?

IMG_2909And if you need a bit of help Pharrell can help:

Standard
Blog

10 Things In My Daily Routine That Have Made Me Happier and More Productive

NOTE: I didn’t start doing all these things at once.  They were all incorporated over a stretch of time.  If any of this appeals to you try adding it to your routine.  (Hint: For a bigger chance of successfully making anything part of your routine try adding only 1 new thing per month)

  1. waking up early (really: not sleeping in)
  2. eating a healthy breakfast
  3. creating a personal mission statement (review it daily) (see below for ideas)
  4. creating a vision board (look at it daily) (see below for details)
  5. turning off/removing myself from distractions and crushing 90 minutes of my highest value work (for added happiness do this more than once)
  6. meditating 15 minutes (see below for recommendation)
  7. designating a time to drop everything and train (DEAT)
  8. produce/share something to add value to others
  9. listen to as much inspiring music as possible
  10. read before bed

Waking up early doesn’t mean 5AM.  It means not staying up so late that the idea of getting up between the hours of 7-10AM seem crazy.  You’ll be amazed at how using those extra early hours to be productive will really set the tone for an awesome day.

I don’t get crazy for breakfast, it’s usually just Bacon (or sausage) and eggs, avocado, and banana OR if I’m in a hurry or out of food a Perfect Foods Bar.

When it was recommended to me that I make a personal mission statement I thought “riiiiiiiiigh, okay”.  Having done it, and woken up to read it daily I’m super glad I did.  It helps you keep in touch with your values, principles, and priorities.  If you’re interested in making one try using this tool here.

Doug told me about vision boards a while ago, and even showed me his.  It took me a while to finally make one, and now I wish I had made it sooner.  It’s basically pictures of things to keep you on track and motivated.  Here’s mine below…  (it’s the desktop background on my laptop)

IMG_4193

(and while that all may just look like “stuff”, when I look at it I envision friends at the game with me, family at the beach/winter house with me, friends shooting hoops in my house, someone riding shotgun in the tesla…. don’t just think STUFF)

Meditation… another one of those things I used to roll my eyes at the thought of.  Couldn’t recommend it more.  I use and highly recommend the Headspace app for anyone trying to first get into meditation.

DEAT is something me and the Barbell Shrugged crew started a while back.  We began getting so tied up in our work that we’d allow ourselves to put training on the back burner (AND WE LOVE TRAINING).  So we nixed that in the bud, by setting up a time of the day (3pm for us) where NO MATTER WHAT we drop everything and train.  We love DEAT so much we made coffee mugs!

Recently I’ve been listening to a band I used to bash hard when I was a 14yr old kid who was wayyyy into KoRn… and that is STS9.  Oh how things change (and should).

And the recent things I’ve read/am reading before bed have been/are:

Steve Jobs by Walter Issacson
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
Death By Black Hole by Neil DeGrasse Tyson (re-reading this one)
Fast Company Magazine

Anyway’s can’t say you’ll enjoy my routine, but maybe you can take away some nuggets or pearls.  Until next time friend, Reign Supreme!

Standard