My Grandpa Died Today

My Grandpa Died Today

It’s September 28th, 2017.

Facebook told me at 4:02 this afternoon I was tagged in a photo.

It was a collage of pictures of my Grandpa.

One was recent. One looked to be about a decade old.

And one held a Grandpa I hardly recognized.

He looked dapper. He looked fit.

He’d aged a bit between then and the time of my first recollection of him.

I knew what the photos meant before I read the words, but refused to accept until my eyes processed them.

He was gone. Continue reading “My Grandpa Died Today”

It’s time to add some fuel to your fire

Time to add some fuel to your fire

Tell me if this doesn’t ring true for you on some level:

There’s something you have always wanted to do. You see other people doing it successfully.

Then you realize many of those “other people” are younger than you or right around your age.

You’re not stupid so you know what they’ve created takes time.

This leads to getting down on yourself because you’re already behind the curve and you begin to wonder if it’s even worth trying to do that thing anymore.

With each passing day, you grow more anxious.

“I haven’t made any progress. I’m going so slow. I’m already behind. Why try?” Continue reading “It’s time to add some fuel to your fire”

Why I’m renting a room from my baby mama and her husband

Why I'm renting

It’s 7:30 in the morning. My son yells from the other room, “Daddy, I have to go pee.”

I manage to grumble only half-audibly, “Ok, dude, go pee”, while wondering why he still insists on notifying me every time this incredible event occurs.

The static electricity builds up as I shuffle in my mismatched socks down the hallway. The drip drip drip of the Keurig and the aroma of coffee brings a much-needed perk to my still-sleepy mind.

I flip on the electric griddle, throw on some bacon, and pull out some eggs to cook in the grease that the delicious cuts leave behind. As I flip the last egg, I call out, “Breakfast is ready!”

A few moments later, my son’s mother, her husband, and their 7-month-old baby appear in the dining room. Continue reading “Why I’m renting a room from my baby mama and her husband”

You’re Not Special

Feature image for "You're not special" post

A person’s a person, no matter how small. – Dr. Seuss

We all love to talk about ourselves don’t we? Our slights, our grievances, our successes, our ambitions, our interests. We love to talk about all the things that make us human. All the things that make us who we are. We think we’re special. Guess what?

You’re Not Special

Neither am I.

I recently decided to dive into the world of creative real estate investing. After what seemed like months of reading, studying, listening, watching whatever “training” I could get my hands on, I connected with a successful individual that knows his way around the industry.

I offered to help him grow his company so that I can learn through experience instead of study. His response in not so many words: find people having problems with their property, knock on their door, and talk to them. I’ll pay you for any properties we can work with.

So that’s what I did.

Very quickly I was reminded of something that we seem to so easily forget:

Every one of us is truly unique.

This is what I mean when I say “you’re not special.” You are not the only one with desires, lofty goals, money problems, stress, or a favorite food. We all have these things that make us individuals.

It’s too easy, in our age of information overload, to fall into the trap of treating anybody outside our immediate social circle as a number instead of a human being. There are so many people vying for our attention. Everybody wants something and we’ve only got so much to give.

Stay guarded, but stay human

It’s true. There are only 24 hours in a day and time is the one asset we each have that we can never get back. So of course we must stay vigilant and protect our time as the treasure it is.

However, there’s a fine line between being brusque and being inhuman; a line I believe we’d all be better off paying more attention to.

When I was out knocking on doors of people who were in jeopardy of losing their homes, I was exposed to a smorgasbord of emotions. Some had mentally removed themselves from the situation, as though it were happening to someone else. Others were frantic, obviously not able to think critically. Still others were prideful, willing to so curtly excuse even the mention of help in spite of the glaring issues.

I realized how easy it would have been to go off on some of these people. I understood how dealing with people in stressful situations could wear someone down to the point of giving up.

Very quickly I discovered the promise of money alone would not be enough to drive me to knock on the next door. I had to remind myself with each new home that the individual inside was a human, with thousands of days worth of experiences that had brought them to this point in time. These individuals need help and I had determined to help them.

The Golden Rule

Now that I think about it, mother was so much more philosophical than I’d given her credit for when she said “treat others how you’d like to be treated.”

We’ve all heard the saying but how many of us have truly grasped the implications?

It’s not just a quip to remind us to “be nice.” Indeed, it hints at something much deeper, something much more human: we must understand the humanity of the individual and respond in every unique interaction appropriately.

Every one of us has a story to tell, a life that’s been lived, a life yet to live, and a unique perspective of the world. Be mindful not to lose sight of the human component of the world you live in.