Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Something Extra Special I am Thankful For in 2020

At this special time of year—which is dedicated to giving thanks for all of our blessings—I have something extra special to be grateful for. This week's blog post is dedicated to the unique source of my THANKSGIVING in this unforgettable year of 2020.  

Largely lost in news cycles dominated by the COVID-19 Pandemic and the post-presidential election coverage in the United States was the recent passing of an unusually noteworthy and newsworthy event: 

The 400th Anniversary of the arrival of the Pilgrims on the Mayflower. 

I recently learned that I am a direct descendent of at least eight (8) passengers on that historic ship, four (4) of which signed the famous Mayflower Compact.

These ancestors include (Compact signers in BOLD): 

Signing of the Mayflower Compact
John Tilley (1571-1621) and Joan Hurst (1571-1621)  — my 11th Great-Grandparents

John Howland (1592-1672) and Elizabeth Tilley (1607-1687)  — my 10th GG

Edward Fuller (1575-1621) and Mrs. Edward Fuller (Ann) (1575-????)  — My 10th GG

Samuel Fuller (1608-1683) and Jane Lathrop (1614-1683) — My 9th GG

Click HERE to view the full list of those who signed the Mayflower Compact.

I am grateful for these noble ancestors of mine and am deeply inspired by the sacrifices they were willing to make to cross the great Atlantic at a time when doing so was difficult and dangerous. I admire their faith in God, their faith in themselves, and their faith in each other.

Moreover, I am inspired by the extent to which they were willing to work, strive, sacrifice, and risk everything for FREEDOM—religious and otherwise. As they look down upon me from Heaven above, I hope they are pleased with the way in which I have chosen to live my life and raise my family. I also hope that it brings them joy and satisfaction to see and know that their 9th, 10th, and 11th great grandson values freedom enough to also dedicate his life to its personal and professional expansion and perpetuation throughout the same Great Nation they helped to forge.  

Sailing to America in 1620 did not pose a simple solution to the problems the Pilgrims faced in England. Nor did an easy life await them upon their arrival on the cold, snowy, windswept shores of North America.

In fact, exactly HALF of them (51 out of 102 passengers) died either on the journey or not long after landing. This included two of my own ancestors (Edward and Ann Fuller), who passed away in early 1621, just a few short months after reaching Plymouth Rock in Massachusetts Bay on November 11, 1620. That means they were not fortunate enough to participate in the famous First Thanksgiving

John Howland, perhaps with the aid of Providence,
rescued himself from a watery grave in 1620,
much to the relief of hundreds of thousands
of his descendants, of which I am one!
My 10th Great Grandfather, John Howland—age 28 during the voyage—was famously washed overboard the Mayflower's deck during a terrible storm that struck during the Pilgrim's transatlantic crossing. Fortunately, he was able to miraculously grab hold of a rope attached to the ship and bravely pull himself to safety.

John Howland's story has been repeated hundreds of times in history books and other publications over the centuries, including (more recently) in an article in the Associated Press and a featured book by Irish artist and author, P.J. Lynch

Click HERE to read the Associated Press story about John Howland's watery adventure and rescue

Click HERE to see P.J. Lynch's book John Howland's watery adventure and rescue

I am not alone in this, my family heritage. In fact, approximately 10 million U.S. citizens (and 35 million people around the world) share similar ancestral lines. Possessing such a heritage does NOT, of course, make me existentially superior to anyone else. Indeed, whether you descend from Pilgrim immigrants, the Native Americans who so kindly assisted them after their arrival, or someone who came on the scene later on from any number of different foreign countries and circumstances, all citizens of the United States share something very similar and special.

What is that? 

The answer is: LIBERTY. We all possess liberty. And what is more, we all have the opportunity to work to expand our personal and professional FREEDOMS to whatever extent to which we are willing to pay the price.

Can there be any greater blessing than that?   

How much do you value and seek after FREEDOM?

I don't know about you, but I value and seek after it even more than I want TURKEY at THANKSGIVING, and that is saying a LOT, because I LOVE turkey... and every other delicious delight I plan to gobble up tomorrow afternoon!

Happy Turkey Day Everyone.

And REMEMBER: no matter how difficult or trying your present circumstances may be in the midst of this incredibly challenging year, I challenge YOU to serve up a helping of GRATITUDE that is as least as large as your slice of pumpkin pie.

If you do, I promise you will feel better afterward.

In fact, you might even feel as good as you will while eating that turkey and pumpkin pie. You will, at the very least, feel better than you will after eating all that turkey and pumpkin pie... that is, if you plan on eating as much Turkey and Pie as do I!

Boy do I LOVE THANKSGIVING!!!  

#GiveThanks

.....................................................

Tune in NEXT Wednesday for Part 2 of why I started my own education and training company.  

And if you liked this blog post, please share it with your family, friends, colleagues, and students—and encourage them to sign up to receive future articles for FREE every Wednesday.

To sign up, just enter your email address on the upper right hand side of this page where it says: "Follow by Email." Then hit "Submit" and follow instructions from there. Doing so will provide you with a FREE article from Freedom Focused in your email inbox each and every week of the year on Wednesdays.    


Click HERE to learn more about Freedom Focused.

Click HERE to buy the SAL Textbooks.

  

Monday, November 23, 2020

Why I Started My Own Company, Part 1: Freedom

Dr. Jordan R. Jensen
Founder, CEO, & Master Facilitator
Freedom Focused LLC
Established 2003
Why are you receiving this email on Monday instead of Wednesday this week?

Because I wanted to share a special THANKSGIVING edition post on Turkey Day-Eve, which happens to be this Wednesday.

So for better or for worse—and if you signed up to receive these blog articles, I'm guessing it is for the better (SMILE)—you get to have TWO (2) articles, instead of just one, from Freedom Focused this week. And since many of you are probably stuck in your home waiting out the COVID-19 Pandemic anyway, chances are you are bored and could use something to do, so here you go!  

Today's post is the first in a series of three (3) articles aimed at answering the following interrogatory:

Why did I choose to start my own education and training company?

GOOD QUESTION!  

With a Doctoral degree in Education and a Bachelor's degree in English, there are a number of different, regular, and salaried jobs I could have pursued in a variety of fields over the years... if that had been the desire of my heart.

And I actually did teach high school English for one year about a decade ago. I only taught for one year because my wife received an international work transfer with her job, which took us to Canada at the end of my first year of teaching. Later, in 2016, I applied for approximately 100 different positions in higher education at about 75 different colleges and universities all over the United States and World. But my rejection rate was 100%. For a variety of different reasons, nobody wanted to hire me. I also applied—and received interviews—to teach at two more high schools, but both of those schools hired someone else instead of me.    

I was a bit bummed at the time by all the rejection. But now I am glad nobody wanted to hire me.   

          Why? 

                    Because it was never the desire of my heart to work for someone else.

                              I have been—and always will be—an entrepreneur at heart.    

My wife, on the other hand, has been very successful in a salaried profession with a top company. As such, if I wanted I could just press on as a stay-at-home Dad for the rest of her career and my family and I would be well taken care of.  

Don Quixote de la Mancha
Was not afraid to dream "impossible" dreams
With so many different, viable, and arguably easier options available to me, why in the world would I be so determined to build Freedom Focused—and why would I so stubbornly refuse to ever give up until it has fully flowered and otherwise reached the full measure of its potential stature? Especially when I am 17 years into the building process and still have not yet gotten things fully off the ground? Why on Earth have I not given up after all those years of temporary failure? Why do I, like Don Quixote of old, insist on endlessly jousting with windmills, come what may?

That is an even BETTER QUESTION!  

There are many answers to this query. One worth noting right off the bat involves the key word "temporary," which precedes the word "failure" above.

Another, different answer is: perhaps I would have taken a different pathway had a legitimate and promising alternative journey opened up to me.

But it simply never did.

And the possibility of my pursuing any other pathway with even a sliver of the desire, passion, or persistence I possess for building Freedom Focused was, quite simply, utterly untenable. It does, therefore, seem (for better or for worse) to be my career destiny—a view I hold that grows clearer, stronger, and more compelling with each passing day.      

There are many other reasons as well!  

The purpose of the next THREE (3) blog posts is to identify and elucidate three of the more prominent and important reasons.

I  LOVE  FREEDOM
And if given the option,
I'd like to fly fighter jets in my next life!
Perhaps the simplest—and yet ironically the most comprehensive—answer to this question can be answered in just ONE word, which is the subject of today's post.

This one word is: 

          Freedom

I

          💖   LOVE   💗

                              FREEDOM


I really do!

It is, therefore, no coincidence that I named my company FREEDOM  FOCUSED, which is an organization based on, fixed toward, and ever in promotion of the creative and productive expansion of human agency and cooperative synergy.   

With all of my heart and soul; from the top of my head to the soles of my feet; and with every fiber of my being, I cherish my personal, professional, and civic FREEDOM beyond anything else in the Universe. The only things that can even compare in value to me include life itself, and maintaining a clear conscience before my fellowmen and God as I journey through that life.

In the view of one spiritual leader from the last century:


"Next to the bestowal of life itself,

the right to direct that life is God's greatest gift to man."

— David Oman McKay 


So why do I LOVE FREEDOM so much? I suppose it all begins with a rather basic rationale that virtually all human beings can relate to:

I despise being told what to do.

          Yep... I really hate being bossed around.

                    And I'll bet you do too!

On the other hand, I love and cherish TRUTH (with a capital "T") and have made it my life's quest to strive to seek after truth and then willingly align my thoughts, speech, and behavior with whatever objective or visceral truths I discover.

I believe that as human beings, we all have an Existential Duty to seek after truth and then align their lives with it, both for our own good and the welfare of others whose lives our conduct will impact. With that said, perhaps the single greatest truth of all is that it is WRONG to coerce another to think, speak, or act against one's own FREE WILL.

This includes the right to choose the wrong... if one desires. 

I personally don't think it is smart to choose the wrong. I have learned from personal experience that choosing the right is so much wiser and less painful in the long-run. And in the end, choosing the right is ultimately easier as well. Why? Because you don't have to spend so much time and effort cleaning up preventable messes you created in the past.  

Nevertheless, I would stand up for, speak in favor of, fight in defense of, and even die (if necessary) to protect the right of myself and others to make my/their own decisions—including wrong or bad ones—as long as those decisions do not break the Laws of the Land or directly harm others in the process. Indeed... the Rule of Law is as important a principle and practice as is human agency. But that is a subject for another article.  

Gandhi encouraged us all to:
Be the change we wish to see in the world
A primary reason I have always wanted to BUILD and LEAD an organization is because leadership is where the most freedom lies, and the higher up a hierarchical structure you rise, the more freedom you possess to influence others, autonomously make decisions, and chart your own work path and career course.  

I've also had a lot of bosses over the years that have left much to be desired in their own leadership style and substance. As a result, one of my single-minded goals in life is to follow Gandhi's advice and "Be the Change I Wish to See in the World." In other words, I want to be a boss so I can prove to myself and others what authentic leadership really is, how it should operate, and what it ought to model and accomplish.

I don't want to be a boss so I can boss others around. I want to be a boss so I can show other bosses (and bosses-in-training) that there is a better way; namely, by empowering my colleagues and subordinates by modeling the way myself, teaching more than I task, and otherwise developing high-functioning, largely independent and autonomous, and synergistic self-directed work teams throughout the organization.

This approach allows, encourages, and supports individuals at all levels throughout the company to think, speak, and act for themselves as freely, creatively, and as often/much as possible. When an organization is made up of high-functioning self-action leaders, that kind of approach is not only possible, but highly desirable.

Why?

Because of the mind-blowing synergy that can germinate and proliferate therefrom, thereby leading to unprecedented, news-making, and even world-changing progress, productivity, and results through cooperative contribution.  

As a boss, the desire of my heart and my primary goal is not to tell others what to do. My primary purpose is to teach and model correct principles and then let others govern themselves to the fullest extent possible. My job as a CEO is not to micromanage the actions of others. My function is to hire the best people I can find on this Planet—including men and women of all races and backgrounds who are well suited to their position and function—teach and coach them to become the elite champions they were born to be, and then get out of their way so they can perform the wonders they are capable of (both individually and collectively)—wonders that I could never dream of accomplishing on my own.

Indeed, one of the most enjoyable parts of my job in the future is going to be sitting back and looking on in awe as I watch corporate miracles unfold before my very eyes as the personal and synergistic power of other people's genius and talents is fully tapped into, authentically released, and then majestically magnified many fold through the extraordinary power of cooperative synergy.

Upon my eventual retirement (around the year 2040), I fully expect to look back upon what Freedom Focused has accomplished, and then honestly and gratefully acknowledge that it was my incredible colleagues and associates (not me) who were responsible for 99.99999% of the organization's productivity and results. And it will have been my privilege and honor to make a 0.00001% contribution.  

Sam Houston
Congressman from Tennessee
Governor of Tennessee
President of the Republic of Texas
Senator from the State of Texas
Governor of the State of Texas

This leadership approach maximizes the minimization of micromanagement—a less effective executive and managerial approach that should be reserved for new hires and blatantly ineffective performances. In the inspired words of President, Governor, Senator, and General Sam Houston: Govern wisely, and as little as possible.

"Govern wisely, and as little as possible."

— General Sam Houston 


While I will not hesitate to micromanage when and where necessary; I will likewise avoid the practice whenever possible. My people will be too smart, talented, and effective to have to regularly condescend to such measures—that is, as long as I am doing my job right.

Moreover, I do not expect to ever be the smartest or most talented individual at my own company. I will merely be well suited to play my particular role, which will mostly involve unleashing talent and capacity in others.   

I also believe that bosses should earn less and employees should earn more than they do in most corporations in America. We are surrounded by so much unchecked greed in this land of plenty. It is sickening! It has also led to extreme inequalities that ought not to exist.

However, the answer does not lie in governmental overreach via class-warfare-inducing taxation. Taking from one to give to another is never the answer. The answer lies in individual, private, self-action leaders hearkening to their consciences and choosing to inhibit their own avaricious proclivities. And the only fair and ethical way to make this seeming pipe dream a reality is to become a boss myself and then model the behavior I wish to see in other bosses around the nation and globe.  

Bottom line: I love FREEDOM. I want as much of it as I can possibly attain in my life and career. I also want to teach others how they can maximize their own personal and professional freedoms. One of the reasons I want to be a boss is because of the freedom that comes from leadership.  

There are always two (2) sides to every "coin" in life.
With this said, it is absolutely essential to remember that there are always two sides to every stick and coin in this world. The FREEDOM that comes with leadership is only one side of the proverbial "stick." And if you pick up one side of any given stick (or coin), you automatically choose to pick up the other side right along with it.

If I desire the freedom, influence, and decision-making power and authority that comes with leadership, I better be prepared to accept and embrace the responsibility, pressure, stress, difficulty, disappointment, rejection, and loneliness that accompanies that freedom. And believe me... all of those "other sides" of the stick do indeed accompany leadership. Frankly, I'm okay with the responsibility, pressure, and difficulty. I'm even okay with the loneliness of the job. I've always had a "Lone Rider/Lone Ranger" personality anyway. Solitude and loneliness suit me better than most people, which is one reason I am well suited for my position at Freedom Focused. But I confess I'm not a big fan of the stress, disappointment, or rejection parts of the job. Nevertheless, it is what it is, and I cannot have one side of the proverbial "coin" without owning the other as well.

That's just the way things are!     

All decisions and pathways in life have TWO (2) sides.
And sometimes, the other side of the stick BURNS,
either because you made a bad decision leading
 to negative consequences, or because you
made an extra wise and mature decision
and life is refining you.

The Other Side of the Stick

As I have amply chronicled in the autoethnographic (autobiographical) sections of the SAL Textbooks... it has been anything but an easy journey to get where I am today.

In fact, it has been so difficult that if I had to go back and do it all over again, I am not certain I would choose the pathway I did. Fortunately, I don't have to go back and do it all over again, and now that the foundational work is now finished and behind me, I feel grateful and am raring to "Go."

Fortunately, all along the way I chose to live according to one of my life's most important personal and professional mantras:

"No Regrets!"

As a result, the further I get into my life and career, the easier things seem to get—at least compared to the profound difficulties life demanded I surmount in order to get to where I am today. That's not to say my problems as an executive are over. In many regards, they have merely begun!

Suffice it to say, easier is an exceedingly relative term.

Nevertheless, I have discovered over time that in a sense, and viewed strictly from a SAL-perspective, there really is no such thing as "hard" or "easy." There is only an individual's capacity (or lack thereof) to effectively confront a given issue in one's life or career. The key therefore to making things easier is for us as individuals to get better. As the great business philosopher, Jim Rohn, once said: "Don't wish life were easier; wish you were better!"*

"Don't wish life were easier; wish YOU were better!"*

— Jim Rohn 

In other words, self-action leaders look primarily inward, not outward, for solutions to their problems. 

Now...  this is not to say that you do not have to sometimes look and reach outward for HELP in solving your problems. Oftentimes you do! I know I have had to look outward for additional help beyond my own, personal leadership capacity many, many times throughout my life. But, with the exception of legitimate emergencies, looking outward should be a self-action leader's secondary, not primary route. We should first look inward and take personal responsibility for everything we can do for ourselves—and then exercise the courage to reach outward when we reach the end of our personal capacity and need a legitimate lift from others. And at times we will!  

Elbert Hubbard
1856-1915
American writer, philosopher, & artist
Over time, it is true that things tend to become (or at least seem) incrementally easier over time in proportion to our education, progress, and growth as self-action leaders. Thus, the reason my life is easier now than it was in the past is due in large part to my own increased capacity. As Elbert Hubbard once eloquently put it:


"The reward which life holds out for work is not idleness nor rest, 

nor immunity from work, but increased capacity." **

— Elbert Hubbard 


In other words, "Things don't change; WE change!" (Thoreau).

When we progress personally as self-action leaders, life becomes easier over time, not because anything has fundamentally changed about life or the world, but because our personal capacity has grown, making us stronger, smarter, and better equipped to deal with life, the world, and its endless obstacles, challenges, and difficulties. On the other hand, if we regress personally as self-action leaders, then life becomes more difficult over time.  

My challenges in life have ranged from battling a severe case of OCD and Depression in my personal life to getting rejected over 100 times in my Dating Life. From temporarily failing, getting ignored, and/or being rejected thousands upon thousands of times in my Professional Work, to having to wait for 17 years (and counting) for my career to finally take off. My journey has been anything but easy; but it has provided me with perfect preparation for my current and future role at Freedom Focused.

If the truth be known, after 17 years of dedicated effort, my waiting period still exceeds my working period career-wise—to this very day! However, I'm getting closer with every blog publication, and I'm nearing the 200 article mark in that effort... so thank you for aiding my cause by reading this article! And an even BIGGER THANKS to those who choose to reach beyond themselves to share it with others. After all, in the end, no one succeeds in a vacuum all by themselves—no matter how effective a self-action leader one may be in isolation. As such, I am always grateful to anyone who advocates for or otherwise aids me in any way. And despite all the rejection I've received all along the way, I have also been very blessed with necessary aid and advocacy from wonderful human beings at critical junctures all along the way.

And I never forget those wonderful people and what they did for me! 

To all you mid-career, salaried professionals my age (early 40s) who are already one-half to two-thirds the way to retirement, imagine having to wait nearly two full decades to finally get your career off the ground, and then—in your early 40s—still not know for sure exactly where things stand or where they are headed!

In other words, imagine spending 17 years and tens of thousands of hours working on your career and still find yourself, in a sense, at ground zero, with virtually no financial remuneration or formal advancement to show for your endless efforts. 

That's been my pathway—a seemingly unending journey of difficulty and dead ends along a seemingly endless walk of faith. Indeed, my life has, since age 12, been a date with one monumental challenge after the other, with no extended respite.

Sure, there have been victories along the way; but the difficulties and failures have far outweighed the opportunities and successes, at least so far. I don't know all the reasons why I had to face so many deep, bruising, and long-lasting trials.

The first 17 years of my career I was mostly just beaten up by the
"hockey stick of life." The next 17 years? 
Let the scoring begin! 


But here's the thing...

There's always two sides to every stick in life. As such, if Karma is real, and if you really do reap what you sow (and I believe that it is, and that we do), then just imagine what the next 17 years in my life and career is bound to bring!

At worst—based on even basic probabilities and very modest likelihoods—I have an awful lot to look forward to and a cornucopia of blessings and prosperity headed my way both personally and professionally.

But at best, the flood gates are truly about to open for Freedom Focused

How do I know this?

Well, technically, I don't... at least not for sure. Indeed the very nature of every authentic leap of faith is such that you can't know for sure precisely where your hard work, sacrifice, and suffering will lead you in the end. If you did know for sure, then it wouldn't be a leap of faith! And you also wouldn't grow nearly as much in the process of that pursuit of the unknown.      

Nevertheless... I know enough about the way things tend to work in this world throughout its 6,000 year formally chronicled history of advanced human civilizations to know that my prediction is a pretty safe bet, assuming I do not, like the Great War poet, Alan Seeger, have a premature "Rendezvous with Death." Unlike Seeger, I have thankfully never had that impending sense of doom and macabre, which is fantastic! Of course I could always be wrong.

But I digress...    

You see, it's really just basic mathematics at play. If you change one side of an equation—on paper or in life—nature usually changes the other side to make it equal and congruent over time.

I've just spent 17 years adding onto one side of the equation in a dedicated, determined, and detailed way. As long as I've respected natural laws along the way, is there any real doubt that those same laws of nature won't richly compensate the other side of the equation over the next 17-plus years?

Suffice it to say, there isn't any doubt in my mind that extraordinary things are on their way for Freedom Focused... assuming (again) that it is not my destiny to die young.

But even in the case of that personally undesirable scenario, I've produced sufficient material at this point in the game—and have trained enough colleagues and students in the principles, practices, and culture that will eventually permeate Freedom Focused—that even if I were to die young, someone else would pick up right where I left off and continue carrying the banner, championing the cause, serving others, and reaping the rewards of all that endless planting in which I've been engaged for so long.

Don't be too quick to judge the progress of something
just because you can't "see" anything yet.  
Thus, no matter what happens, no one can alter the depth or strength of the metaphysical roots that have already developed underground. Indeed, Freedom Focused already boasts a vibrant and rock solid subterranean root structure that will someday be capable of bearing an exceedingly significant and weighty superstructure (tree) above the surface.    

While there are always exceptions to every rule in life, most of the time things work out with a more-or-less mathematical precision; we really do reap what we sow!

This is NOT true in the short run, mind you. In the short run life looks nothing like math or farming; it resembles something more akin to an inexplicably chaotic fracas—an ugly mess! That is why we as human beings like to half-seriously repeat statements such as: No good deed ever goes unpunished. Because in the short run, that unfair phenomenon often plays out, much to our temporary chagrin.  

But in the long-run, it never ceases to amaze me how a picture's authentic colors and contours gradually come clearly into focus over long periods of time. People really do get more or less exactly what they have coming for them (the good, the bad, the beautiful, and the ugly). That's why there is really no use in being a phony or otherwise plying in deception in either our personal or professional life. After all, the truth always comes out eventually. That is why Abraham Lincoln once wisely quipped:



"You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time.

But you can't fool all of the people all of the time."

— Abraham Lincoln    


So why try? It's so much smarter to just deal in the truth. As Mark Twain once famously put it: When you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.


Mark Twain

"When you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything
."

— Mark Twain    

  

Blessedly, the growth, progress, confidence and capacity I've garnered by going through all of my challenges has absolutely transformed my life for the better. Indeed, take away any one of my significant trials and I would be much less refined, polished, and prepared to lead Freedom Focused over the next two decades. As a result, I'll be the first to admit that my blessings ultimately exceed my trials, and at the rate things are going, the score won't even be close a few more years down the road.

But I'm not gonna lie; the pathway that led to where I am today was genuinely hellish. Indeed, I would not wish the trials I have passed through on my greatest enemy! Yet, despite it all, the other side of those trials is turning out to be as picturesque and majestic as the crucibles were painful and malevolent.

Once again... there may be only one coin and one stick, but there are always two (2) sides!

I've gone to great lengths to chronicle the details of my personal and professional adversities so my readers know I am not just exaggerating reality, spinning a yarn to suit my narrative, or throwing a pity party for myself.

Plus, I am—first, foremost, and above all else—a TEACHER. I therefore draw extensively from my own experiences in an effort to pedagogically empower others in their own personal and professional battles.  

As such, my real intention, and my ultimate job, is to TEACH—early, often, and always. Everything I say or do in my role as the leader of Freedom Focused is aimed at EDUCATION, and more specifically, that sort of instruction that influences and inspires others toward Existential Growth, personal and professional achievement, and the happiness, satisfaction, and inner peace concomitant thereto.    

  

Click HERE to read details about Dr. Jordan Jensen's Battles with OCD & Depression

Click HERE to read details about Jordan's Dating Difficulties

Click HERE to read details about JJ's Career Crucibles


Leadership is, of course, only one of an infinite number of life arenas where these same principles hold true. There are always two (2) sides to everything in life. Every stick and every coin has a front and back side to it. Every choice has a consequence. And to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction (Newton). 

Thus it is that as self-action leaders, we must study things out in our minds and then wisely make decisions that will not only expand our personal and professional freedom, but bring about the kinds of consequences or "reactions" (karma/reaping) that we are willing and able to live with in the long run.

Ironically, true FREEDOM can only be acquired by voluntarily relinquishing one's own agency upon the altar of TRUE PRINCIPLES and upright PRACTICES. In other words, to be truly free, you must willingly accept personal RESPONSIBILITY for paying the full price that authentic freedom in any life arena demands.

There is no other way.  

Herein lies the great paradox of FREEDOM, and is the point at which freedom diverges from mere liberty. Everyone everywhere technically has the liberty to think, say, or do whatever they please. But no one is free from the natural consequences of one's choices. Moreover, freedom of opportunity, influence, and power must ultimately be earned. There is no exception to this rule in the long-run.  

There are many people in the world that want freedom without responsibility and consequences. The problem is, there is no such thing! Those who pursue this impossible undertaking end up with little (if any) freedom—and usually a measure of despair and regret as a bitter side order accompanying their metaphysical meal of misery.  

All of us must figure out the level of freedom we each desire—and the price tag attached thereto.  

          We must then exert all the blood, sweat, tears, and time required to pay that price.  

                    There is no other way.

                              But it is worth every ounce of effort!

                                         So what are you waiting for?


No excuses.

          Study hard; then get to work!  

                    Begin expanding your freedom TODAY!  



Tune in NEXT Wednesday to learn more (Part 2) about why I started my own education and training company. Better yet, tune in this Wednesday for a SPECIAL Thanksgiving Day message from Dr. Jordan Jensen.   

And if you liked this blog post, please share it with your family, friends, colleagues, and students—and encourage them to sign up to receive future articles for FREE every Wednesday.

To sign up, just enter your email address on the upper right hand side of this page where it says: "Follow by Email." Then hit "Submit" and follow instructions from there. Doing so will provide you with a FREE article from Freedom Focused in your email inbox each and every week of the year on Wednesdays.    


Click HERE to learn more about Freedom Focused.






References

* Rohn, J. (2000). Building Your Network Marketing Business. CD recording.  

** Hubbard, A. (Ed.) 1946. An American Bible. New York, NY: Wm. H. Wise & Co. Inc. Page 8. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Profiles in Courage, Part 2

Last week's blog post dealt with one of the most important virtues and characteristics a self-action leader can develop: COURAGE

If you missed that article, and would like to read Part 1 before you read Part 2, then click HERE.  

This week's article continues this theme.

One of the most courageous things any of us can do in any circumstance is to say, do, or pursue a course we know to be right, evenand especiallywhen it is unpopular to do so. And perhaps the most courageous thing one can say or do is to engage in right actions when the consequences of doing so will be negative, harmful, or even deadly—as is the case in soldiering and other, related occupations and endeavors.   

Such courage was highlighted in a famous book entitled, Profiles in Courage, written by then Senator John F. Kennedy—shortly prior to his ascendancy to the Presidency.

In the book, Kennedy chronicles specific instances from history where seven different United States Senators took a stand for conscience when it was politically unpopular—and in some cases politically disastrous—to do so.

These senators, who placed "their convictions ahead of their careers" (p. 192) included the famously circumspect John Quincy Adams, in addition to Daniel Webster, Sam Houston, Edmund Ross, Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar, George W. Norris, and Robert A. Taft.

Senator, and later President
Andrew Johnson of Tennessee

In a chapter that shares additional anecdotes of courage, Kennedy recounts an incident in 1860 involving Senator Andrew Johnson from Tennessee. Johnson, along with Sam Houston, was one of only two Southern Senators who remained loyal to the Union following Confederate secession in 1860-61.

As you can imagine, taking that stand south of the Mason-Dixon Line in 1860 took enormous courage. 

To illustrate, after courageously casting his lot with the Union in 1860, Johnson was assaulted, beaten, and nearly hung by an angry Confederate mob in Lynchburg, Virginia, during a train trip en route to his home in Tennessee. If that wasn't bad enough, he was then "hissed, hooted, and hanged in effigy" (p. 194) by citizens throughout his home State. Despite all this abuse, public derision, and scorn, Johnson remained true to his Union convictions, stating: "I am a citizen of the South and of the state of Tennessee....[But] I am also a citizen of the United States" (p. 194).

Johnson was later richly rewarded for his courageous loyalty to the Union when, in 1864, Abraham Lincoln asked him to serve as his running mate for a second term—an opportunity that led to his ascension to the Presidency itself upon Lincoln's assassination in 1865.

General Sam Houston
Congressman from Tennessee
Governor of Tennessee
President of the Republic of Texas
Senator from the State of Texas
Governor of the State of Texas
Like Johnson, Sam Houston of Texas similarly risked his career on the cause of the Union, albeit with far more grievous consequences. In a speech delivered at the Texas State Capitol in Austin on September 22, 1860, Houston—then Governor of Texas—courageously declared to his overwhelmingly pro-Confederate colleagues and constituency:

"It has been my misfortune to peril my all for the Union. So indissolubly connected is my life, my history, my hopes, my fortunes, with it, that when it falls, I would ask that with it might close my career, that I might not survive the destruction of the shrine that I had been taught to regard as holy and inviolable, since my boyhood. I have beheld it, the fairest fabric of Government God ever vouchsafed to man, more than a half century. May it never be my fate to stand sadly gazing on its ruins! To be deprived of it, after enjoying it so long, would be a calamity, such as no people yet have endured."

Sadly, Houston saw his beloved Union dissolved only a few short months following his speech. With its fall, he was also forced from his position as Governor of Texas. He died two years later at his home in Huntsville, Texas, on July 26, 1863—a true, proud, and willing Union Patriot living deep within the confines of the fledgling Confederacy.

Fortunately, the story does not end tragically, with Houston's and the Nation's death. A few weeks previous to his passing, the Union's Army of the Potomac defeated the Confederacy's Army of Northern Virginia in the epic Battle of Gettysburg, fought on July 1-3, in Southern Pennsylvania. Later, this battle would become famous not only for being the bloodiest battle in the history of the Western Hemisphere, but also for the role it played as a key turning point in America's devastating civil conflict that would eventually preserve the Union and end slavery in the United States. So, while Houston's vindication did not come fully in his lifetime, it did eventually come, demonstrating that karma is kind to the courageous.

At what points of your life have you taken the high road to courageously say or do the right thing—even when it was unpopular, or even risky or dangerous to do so? At what points have you taken the coward's pathway instead? Do you have any regrets for demonstrating courage? What about cowardice? If so, why? 

As you quietly query your own mind, heart, and conscience with the questions above, I challenge you to be more courageous in the future, regardless of the consequences. In the words of a favorite Christian hymn of mine, whose lyrical author is unknown:

"Do what it right; let the consequence follow. Battle for freedom in spirit and might. And with stout hearts look ye forth til tomorrow. God will protect you; then do what is right!"

Such a course is infinitely easier said than done. But I can say with confidence—and from personal experience—that it is worth it to embrace courage and eschew cowardice. Not only because of the personal esteem and confidence it builds within your mind, heart, and soul, but because as previously stated, Karma is Kind to the Courageous!  


Tune in NEXT Wednesday to read Part 1 of a 3-part series that answers the question: Why I Started My Own Education and Training Company.  

And if you liked this blog post, please share it with your family, friends, colleagues, and students—and encourage them to sign up to receive future articles for FREE every Wednesday.

To sign up, just enter your email address on the upper right hand side of this page where it says: "Follow by Email." Then hit "Submit" and follow instructions from there. Doing so will provide you with a FREE article from Freedom Focused in your email inbox each and every week of the year on Wednesdays.    

Click HERE to learn more about Freedom Focused

Click HERE to buy the SAL Textbooks

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Profiles in Courage, Part 1


In recent blog posts, I recounted my three (3) favorite movies and explained why I love them so much. Among these reasons are the life leadership and character-development strategies they so richly exhibit and powerfully personify. Among the many virtues and attributes displayed and personified in these three movies—Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, The Count of Monte Cristo, and Risen—perhaps the most prominent and memorable one is COURAGE—the topic of the next two (2) Freedom Focused blog posts. It is my hope that you will come away from these two articles with a better, clearer, and deeper understanding of this vital Self-Action Leadership characteristic and virtue.    

In his book, Profiles in Courage, which I will discuss at greater length in next week's post, John F. Kennedy refers to COURAGE as "that most admirable of human virtues" (p. 1).

I love to study and practice this valuable virtue and characteristic. I also love observing its personification in others. Moreover, I take conscious actions every single day to cultivate it within my character. I am encouraged to do so by my own conscience, noteworthy examples of others, and the advice of one of my favorite nineteenth century thinkers: Emerson, who wrote that "he who is not every day conquering some fear has not learned the secret of life.

"He who is not every day conquering some fear has not learned the secret of life."

— Ralph Waldo Emerson 

Many scenes in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves are dedicated to COURAGE. One in particular features Robin as he courageously confronts one of his Merry Men, Will Scarlet—who we learn later in the film is actually his younger step-brother (unbeknownst to Robin for most of the movie).

Will seeks an easy way out of the problem posed by the Sheriff of Nottingham and his evil henchmen. Scarlet's plan favors cowardice and capitulation, which will certainly lead to bondage.

Robin has a broader vision of his and their potential. Moreover, he is courageous enough to confidently paint a picture of that potential—even though he initially stands alone in his view. In the process, he persuasively exposes the cowardice and folly of Will's plan and rallies the entire group to aim for something greater and more desirable than they had ever dreamed possible.

It is a moving scene worth watching...    

Click HERE to watch COURAGE scene from Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves

A common misnomer about COURAGE is that courageous people don't feel fear.

That is complete nonsense!

Courage is NOT the absence of fear.

Courage is bold, decisive, and confident ACTION in the face of fear. 

Perhaps John Wayne said it best when he quipped that:
"Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway."

John Wayne


More Misnomers about Courage

As a cultural anglophile—I have deep ancestral roots in the British Isles and have a college degree in English—one of my favorite scenes in the movie Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, comes at the very beginning when Robin has a chance to exhibit something he calls "English Courage." The scene takes place in an enemy prison in Jerusalem, where Robin finds himself at the beginning of the movie—away from home fighting in King Richard's religious "Crusade" of the late twelfth century.  

Click HERE to watch a MOVIE CLIP of this SCENE.

The exhibition of this kind of courage fits nicely into many cultural caricatures of what it means to be courageous. However, the reality is that most of us may never have an opportunity to exercise courage in such a dramatic or climactic manner.

And that's okay!   

Another misnomer about COURAGE is that you have to be in a certain place at a certain time doing a certain thing in order to exercise courage. In other words, only some people have opportunities to be truly courageous—and only at certain times.

That, of course, is also complete nonsense!

Everyone, everywhere, has opportunities everyday to exercise courage. In fact, it has been my experience that many of the scariest things we ever do in our lives come in the form of COMMUNICATION in relationships. As such, if you ever communicate in any relationship, then you are going to have plenty of opportunities to exercise courage throughout your life and career.

Ralph Waldo Emerson
You don't have to be a physical daredevil to exercise courage. Situations involving doing the right thing when it isn't convenient, or opening up your mouth (or in some cases, keeping it shut) will provide you with ample opportunities to exercise courage throughout your life and career.  

Once again, to quote Emerson:

 

"He who is not everyday conquering some fear

has not learned the secret of life."

Ralph Waldo Emerson


These words of America's prized nineteenth century philosopher and poet have become a living mantra for me. Rarely, if ever, does a day go by when my life does not provide me with an opportunity to exercise courage in one form or another. And the growth and progress that comes from choosing courage over cowardice is incalculable!

I still have a long ways to go; but the progress I've made to date has been palpable, noticeable, and filled with rich personal and professional rewards.  


Courage Personified

Another form of courage that ALL of us can exercise every day of our lives involves thinking about, saying, or doing something hard to do that is good, right, and true. This kind of courage leads to long-term happiness, success, and prosperity. The price of such courage, however is delayed gratification. Unfortunately, too many of us too often value immediate gratification above principles and values.

It take a LOT of courage to think, speak, and act in ways that are consistently reflective of true principles and your own deepest held personal values.   

Each of us has opportunities every day to exercise self-discipline, self-regulation, self-control, and otherwise delay gratification in a variety of forms. When such opportunities present themselves, how do we respond? With courage? Or with laziness—which can also be a form of cowardice?     

One of the most meaningful, emotive, and touching scenes in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves comes near the end of the movie. It once again involves Robin Hood and his step-brother, Will Scarlet. After a deadly and unsuccessful battle in Sherwood Forest with the Sheriff and his soldiers, Will Scarlet and several others are captured and imprisoned in Nottingham Prison. Will then cleverly obtains his release by ostensibly agreeing to return to the forest and kill Robin if he is not already dead.

However, despite the previous ill will between the two, Will has, over time, come to admire, respect, and believe in his older brother and the vision he has established and carried out with the help of his merry men and their families. Consequently, he is not fully committed to his purported plan. Instead of carrying it out, he courageously confronts Robin about their past issues. It is at this point in the movie that Robin learns for the first time who Will really is. In a moving moment of family reunion and reconnection, the two brothers embrace and then courageously covenant with each other to stand side-by-side "to the end" by seeing through their plans to defeat the evil Sheriff and his oligarchic reign of tyranny.

Click HERE to watch a clip of this MOVIE SCENE.

Robin, Will, and the rest of their inner circle then courageously put their plan into action, which leads to the kind of "All-American Happy Ending" that we cherish in this optimistic, can-do nation. In the process, they inspire good people everywhere to dedicate their lives to overcoming evil and expanding FREEDOM by championing the good, the right, and the truth.

At least that is what it did for me back in 1991. And what it has continued to do up to this very day!  

In what ways are you good at being courageous? In what ways could you exercise more courage in communication with others or in tackling inner fears that hold you back from becoming all you are capable of becoming?

I invite you to take stock of your own "Courage Quotient" today and then make a plan to begin stepping outside of your "cowardice zone"  and into your "Courage Zone" a little bit more—beginning immediately!

A sad irony exists about COURAGE.

The irony is this: those who cave to cowardice do so because they are trying to avoid pain and perceived regret. In reality, however, cowardice is the surest pathway to both pain and regret.

Courage, on the other hand, provides an expressway to FREEDOM and PEACE of MIND—in the long run. In the incisive words of Eleanor Roosevelt—niece of President Theodore Roosevelt and wife of President Franklin Roosevelt:

"Courage is more exhilarating than fear. And in the long run, it is easier. We do not have to become heroes overnight. Just a step at a time, meeting each thing that comes up, seeing it as not as dreadful as it appeared, discovering we have the strength to stare it down."

Eleanor Roosevelt



Tune in NEXT Wednesday for Part 2 in this two-part series on COURAGE.  

And if you liked this blog post, please share it with your family, friends, colleagues, and students—and encourage them to sign up to receive future articles for FREE every Wednesday.

To sign up, just enter your email address on the upper right hand side of this page where it says: "Follow by Email." Then hit "Submit" and follow instructions from there. Doing so will provide you with a FREE article from Freedom Focused in your email inbox each and every week of the year on Wednesdays.    


Click HERE to learn more about Freedom Focused.


Wednesday, November 4, 2020

The Job I Never Imagined I'd Have

My "Day" Job
As I compose this article, I am sitting in a hotel room in Odessa, Texas. 

It is 7:37 p.m. on a Friday evening. 

I just finished putting my toddler son, Tyler, down for the night in his pack'n'play.

After ensuring his sippy cup was full of milk, I covered him with his favorite blanket, sang him a lullaby, gently stroked his head and face, expressed my love, and bade him goodnight. 

Somewhat predictably, he didn't go right to sleep. Not with his older brother and sister blissfully eyeing the Disney Junior channel on television (ahh... the simple joys of a hotel t.v.).

But that's okay.

Tyler didn't take a nap today, and I turned out all the lights except the television and computer screens, so it should only take a few minutes (fingers crossed) before he settles down into a sweet slumber for the next 11 hours or so.

Ahhhhhhhh....

          I LOVE this time of day!

                    Why?

                              Because I am a full-time stay-at-home parent.

                                          I build Freedom Focused on the side.

Lina at work in Sydney, Australia, August 2019
My intelligent, talented, and beautiful wife, Lina—who is lovely in every way, and whom I respect, admire, and absolutely adore—is a successful mechanical engineer who works full-time for a Fortune 100 Corporation. She has traveled to 13 different countries with her work. She also "commuted" back-and-forth to Australia for seven months in 2019-2020. Her work stint "Down Under" alone provided the kids and I with over 100 days all on our own.

I'm not gonna lie; that was an enormous challenge!

But this stretching experience—and others like them—also proved to be a fun adventure that provided us all with a tremendous amount of GROWTH, which is what Self-Action Leadership (SAL) is all about.  

The kids and I found out earlier today that Mama (Lina) would have to work tomorrow (Saturday). Thankfully, that doesn't happen very often in her new position in New Mexico. But when it does, the kids and I usually plan some kind of trip together to productively pass the time we would usually be spending with Mama on the weekend.

Off to "Daddy Fun Week"
Summer 2020

The kids and I are veteran travelers.

We have logged literally tens of thousands of miles together during days, weeks, and weekends when Mama had to work or was out-of-town with work. While our best times are those we spend all together (with Mama) as a complete family, our unique life circumstances have also afforded us with opportunities to create many special memories with just Dad and the kids—memories I cherish with all of my heart and soul, and that will only grow sweeter with the passage of time.

My kids are AMAZING travelers.

Give 'em an Amazon Tablet and a Happy Meal and they'll literally go all day (up to 600 miles) if our travel plans call for it, with hardly any complaint! And for all the Moms, pediatricians, and children's psychologists out there who are rightly uneasy about kids spending all day on a technological device, rest assured that such extremes occur only a few times a year on our occasional "long-hauls."  

The kids are also super low-maintenance on the road (thanks to tech devices, art supplies, and drive-up fast food windows). I actually have to stop to "go potty" more for myself than I do for them. It's a little embarrassing—and indicative of my love of fountain drinks—but demonstrative of my kids' steely bladders!     

Being a stay-at-home Dad is a WONDERFUL job; but it is not always an easy one.   

Growing up, I never dreamed that at age 41, I would be spending most of my daytime hours teaching, tutoring, tending, changing diapers, shopping, cooking, cleaning, taxiing kids to gymnastics, cub scouts, and taekwondo, washing clothes and dishes, ironing, sweeping and scrubbing the floor, vacuuming, playing with, reading to, and otherwise looking out for three small children under the age of eight. 

But that is the way things are for me in 2020; and it's been that way for the better part of the last FIVE (5) years! 

My present reality reminds me of the words of a famous Beatle:
 

"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans."

John Lennon 

Picking up my oldest child and son, Tucker,
from school with Kara and Tyler in 2019.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. 

In fact, I wouldn't go back-in-time to change anything about my life—even if it were possible to do so.

Why?

Four (4) reasons.  

First:  I have done my very best to accomplish my hopes and dreams as a writer, speaker, thinker, teacher, and entrepreneur... all along the way. Furthermore, I have already been blessed with my share of AMAZING career opportunities and travel adventures that have taken me all over the English-speaking world as a published author and speaker. Indeed, if I died tomorrow, I wouldn't have any major regrets about my life and career to date.

Are there things I could have done differently or better along the way?

          Sure.

                    But no significant regrets.   

Second:  Because of reason #1, things still are turning out the way I had hoped; it is merely taking longer than I originally envisioned, which is okay.

Why is it okay?

Because entrepreneurial ventures, by definition, run on unpredictable timetables and trajectories. If you want certainty and predictability, don't become an entrepreneur! Get a job and become a salaried employee instead.

Moreover, as a self-action leader, I can only control myself. I can't control other people or the timetables of my long-term destiny. As such, if I do my very best each day, I consider myself to be continually and consummately successful as a self-action leader—regardless of my tangible external results (or lack thereof). 

I cannot control most things in this world. But I can personally do my imperfect best each-and-every day. And I have a deep and abiding faith that if I will simply do that, then everything else will eventually work out for the best in my life, relationships, family, and career.   

Third:  while I patiently work and wait for the second half of my career trajectory to evolve, I am enjoying and growing from the unspeakable blessing of being able to spend TONS of quality and quantity TIME with the people who matter most to me in all the world: namely; my wife and children. In the process, Life is turning me into a more patient, tender, compassionate, flexible, mature, capable, multi-skilled, and wise human being. Of course, I still have a LONG way to go! But I am a different (better) person than I was five years ago, and it is because of the unique challenges and opportunities I have been blessed to confront. 

Career opportunities—and careers in general—come and go.

          But Family is FOREVER.

                    What more could I possibly ask for?  

With my own stay-at-home Mama,
pregnant with her 7th child, my
younger sister, in 1981.

Fourth:  Some of the most INTELLIGENT, CREATIVE, CAPABLE, CARING, and otherwise AMAZING human beings I have ever known have been stay-at-home Moms. As such, the mere thought that I am even a shadow of the human being that some of those incredible women and mothers are makes me feel like a million bucks—and as true a success in life as one could ever rightly hope to be.

While an understanding of these realities helps me keep things in perspective, live in the moment, and enjoy the GIFTS of the PRESENT, it doesn't always make it easy.

I have always been a highly motivated, deeply driven, and unusually ambitious person. Because of this fact, I openly confess it is often difficult and frustrating when things don't happen, or otherwise work out, as quickly as I would like in my career—or anything else for that matter.

I have never been an "inherently patient" person, especially when it comes to other people's performances and life's endlessly enigmatic timetables. 

Fortunately, LIFE has provided me with plenty of opportunities to develop this elusive and important virtue—that pesky, but oh-so pertinent, 'P' word so vital to our long-term success as human beings and self-action leaders. Along the way, I still experience moments every day when I want to tear my hair out with irritation or frustration as I wend my way through a maze of challenges I never envisioned myself confronting.

But such is life...

          And it's all okay!

Why?

Because thankfully such moments are ultimately outweighed by other, better, moments where I am enveloped by the beautiful love and blissful companionship of my wife and children, or am otherwise reminded of my extraordinary blessings. And that is to say nothing of the absolutely priceless investment that children are in one's future! Thus, every time I feel tempted to complain about the difficulties of my present reality, the better angels of my nature urge me to take a deep breath and COUNT MY BLESSINGS instead.  

Holding the hand of my youngest child, son,
and namesake: Tyler Jordan Jensen, in 2019
After all, does not Life know better than I do about the way things really are, should be, and all questions concerning timing

And if so, should I not then balance my native ambition and drive with a wise and mature patience—in recognition that even the most ardent passions of the human heart and spirit must ultimately bow before the eternal edicts of Natural Law if human conduct, contribution, and achievement are to fully flower in their appropriate time and place? Moreover, and most importantly, should I not rejoice at the blessing of having so many opportunities to "Practice what I Preach" in the Present?   

The answer to these questions is a clear, resounding, and unequivocal "YES!"

As such, I strive my imperfect best to bridle all my passions—that I might become more disciplined personally and more caring interpersonally—and that my character may be sharpened to its finest possible edges and points over time.

It's not easy, and I'm far from perfect; but it is possible. And the rewards of following a disciplined and focused SAL journey through life are abundant—and worth every drop of blood, sweat, tears, and time required to obtain them.  

Do you, like me, find yourself in the midst of a protracted period of Waiting? An experience capable of engendering bitterness, frustration, discouragement, or other negative emotions—if you allow it? 

If so, I encourage YOU to avoid being too eager for what the future may hold. Don't miss the majesty of each precious moment of the PRESENT. Instead of always yearning for what tomorrow might bring, do your duty as you understand it TODAY—and enjoy THE PROCESS to the best of your imperfect ability.


"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery;

today is a gift—that's why they call it the PRESENT."

—Attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson


And along the way—during those moments of difficulty and longing that will inevitably arise—I hope you might find as much truth, comfort, and peace as I have in the inspiring words of the naturalist and poet, John Burroughs, who once penned a masterpiece on this vital LIFE subject:  


WAITING

"Serene, I fold my hands and wait,

    Nor care for wind nor tide nor sea;

I rave no more 'gainst time or fate,

    For lo! my own shall come to me. 

I stay my haste, I make delays—

    For what avails this eager pace?

I stand amid the eternal ways

    And what is mine shall know my face.


Asleep, awake, by night or day,

    The friends I seek are seeking me,

No wind can drive my bark astray

    Nor change the tide of destiny.


What matter if I stand alone?

    I wait with joy the coming years;

My heart shall reap where it has sown,

    And garner up its fruit of tears.


The waters know their own, and draw

    The brook that springs in yonder height;

So flows the good with equal law

    Unto the soul of pure delight.


The stars come nightly to the sky;

    The tidal wave unto the sea;

Nor time, nor space, nor deep, nor high,

    Can keep my own away from me. 


Daddy's little Buddy... 
finally asleep!

In case you were wondering, YES... little Ty guy did eventually fall into a peaceful sleep that lasted for about 11 hours. Not as quickly as I had hoped... but soon enough to get a lot of quality work done on this article. And as much as I love the little darling, that is always one of the sweetest moments of each day!

The kids and I all had a good night's sleep followed by a delicious breakfast at Chick-Fil-A. After that we visited and scootered around a full-size replica of Stonehenge! It was soooo COOL! We then visited an epic children's playground and Presidential historical site in Midland before heading back home to Carlsbad, New Mexico and our beloved Wife and Mama.


Visiting a replica of Stonehenge
in Odessa, Texas
Another wonderful "Daddy Fun Trip" is now in the books.

I am a BLESSED man.     

Tune in NEXT Wednesday to learn more about one of the most important attributes a self-action leader can ever develop: COURAGE

And if you liked this blog post, please share it with your family, friends, colleagues, and students—and encourage them to sign up to receive future articles for FREE every Wednesday.

To sign up, just enter your email address on the upper right hand side of this page where it says: "Follow by Email." Then hit "Submit" and follow instructions from there. Doing so will provide you with a FREE article from Freedom Focused in your email inbox each and every week of the year on Wednesdays.    





Click HERE to learn more about our Vision and Mission at Freedom Focused.

Click HERE to buy a copy of the Self-Action Leadership Textbooks.

Something Extra Special I am Thankful For in 2020

At this special time of year—which is dedicated to giving thanks for all of our blessings—I have something extra special to be grateful for....