The Heartbreak and Hope of Moving to Fargo

david scott blog fargo minneapolis blogger

The pre-Socratic philosopher Heraclitus once said “change is the only constant in life.”

And boy was he spot on.

So in the spirit of change, here’s the news: my family and I are moving to Fargo, North Dakota.

“No one ever told me that grief felt so much like fear.” – C.S. Lewis

Grief, ah glorious grief.

I don’t deal well with grief, but my family and I are in the thick of it.

Grief is defined as a response to loss. Grief is the loss of someone or something, to which a bond or affection was formed.

While the possibilities are endless in Fargo, my family and I are absolutely grieving and heartbroken to leave our home in the Twin Cities.

We love our amazing house, we love the Twin Cities, our neighborhood, and our neighbors. (Especially TJ, Kara, and the Fitzpatrick clan) We’ve established a strong bond to the Twin Cities metro and our home.

And just because we grieve our life-change, doesn’t mean we hate Fargo. On the contrary.

It is perfectly okay to grieve life-changes and be emotional. You should be emotional. You should grieve. This is a very normal part of life.

In his best selling book, The Emotionally Healthy Church, author Peter Scazzero talks about how most people “stuff” their emotions, refusing to grieve their limitations and their life circumstance. I tend to agree with Peter, as most people I know stuff their emotions, refusing to be transparent.

I choose to be different. My family chooses to be different. We want emotional freedom by getting “stuff” out in the open.

By doing this, an important result happens: this grieving allows us to move forward, be challenged, and grow.

So, while we’re heartbroken and grieving, we are definitely hopeful, and excited to get to Fargo.

The compelling case for Fargo.

So, why Fargo?

My company is based in Fargo, so that’s the first answer to why.

But the more important reason for our move is about something larger and much more passionate.

Before I tell you what that larger passion is, let me ask you a question:

Have you ever wanted to be a part of something so incredibly special that you would take a risk? A once-in-a-lifetime type of opportunity? A pursuit that drove you with ultimate excitement?

Something bigger than you, like a cause, or something with profound meaning?

That’s what I’m experiencing with the company, I work for and work with, BNG Holdings.

They are something special. We have something special.

The owners and our team are scary-smart. And those of us who are willing to sludge through the growing pains of a small company, and stick with our chaotic-creation for the long run, will achieve incredible professional satisfaction.

So the first reason is a job. (although I’ve never once considered what I do as a “job”, rather I consider it an honor and privilege)

The second reason is I want to be a part of building something special. You should want this too.

Drinking the kool-aid.

Fargo is quite the unique and eclectic community. I’m definitely enamored with it.

Despite the windy weather climate, it’s actually aesthetically awesome, with solid schools, restaurants, and opportunity for outdoor activities.

And let’s not forget about the Bison of North Dakota State University, (NDSU), who have won four national college football titles.

Did I mention they’ve won these titles four years in a row?

There’s also lots of commerce in Fargo, with 10 Fortune 1000 companies based here.

Here’s a quick rundown of the businesses that call Fargo their nesting-place.

  • One of Microsoft’s largest campuses is located in Fargo.
  • Sanford Health, a large regional healthcare provider, is based here, with a new campus coming soon.
  • Case New Holland, a farm equipment company, is based here.
  • McGough Construction, a Twin Cities based commercial builder, opened an office, expanding to Fargo.
  • There’s even some great ad agencies located in Fargo.

Fargo-Moorhead has a robust and expanding population of approximately 250,000+ thousand and there are multiple tech companies, SMB’s, and manufacturers located in or near Fargo.

The point: Fargo is growing quickly, and my fascination with Fargo has me gulping the flavored drink mix.

“Take risks. Life rewards the risk takers.” – Kevin Spacey.

In the never-get-old novel, Outwitting The Devil, by Napolean Hill, Hill has a candid question and answer style interview with the Devil himself.

In the third chapter, Hill asks the Devil to describe his most clever tricks to controlling people.

The Devil’s responds by saying “One of my cleverest devices for mind control is fear…the fear of poverty, criticism, ill health, loss of love, old age and death.”

Any risk can be scary and fearful. Like moving.

And there’s no doubt I’m taking a risk by moving to Fargo. (I’d argue it’s a pretty low-risk)

But if you sit down and really think about all your daily decisions, each one is a calculated risk to some extent. Some choices and decisions are higher risk than others, but nonetheless, each decision has risk involved.

That said, I want to buck the status-quo of being fearful and not taking risks.

Growing up I was taught to play it safe. I was taught that the path to success was getting a four-year degree, being risk averse, working for a large company, and saving a little bit of money for retirement.

That teaching couldn’t have been more wrong.

Take risks. Life rewards the risk takers. – Kevin Spacey, keynoting the Content Marketing World 2014.

I want to take a risk, be uncomfortable and punch fear in the face. I want to leave a legacy that teaches my kids, and others, that life is about taking risks and it’s okay to fail and fall down.

Moving my family to Fargo, so my family can be together, as well as allow me to collaborate in our growing company is totally worth the move. I don’t consider it a risk at all and I refuse to be fearful.

As a matter of fact, I feel extremely grateful to even have this opportunity.

Are you stuck?

If you don’t happen to have a unique and amazing opportunity as I do right now, you may feel stuck.

And if you feel stuck, as I once did and even as Jon Acuff once did, you’re either losing hope or wanting to get un-stuck.

In Jon Acuff’s new book, Do Over, he talks about his many life transitions and experiences. Experiences like moving multiple times, ultimately settling in Nashville, and having 8 jobs in 10 years.

More importantly, Jon talks about how you can take advantage of your current situation in order to get un-stuck and start doing awesome work.

Acuff then talks about life transitions. One of the transitions he writes about is is getting a surprise career opportunity, requiring dedicated hustle to take advantage of it.

I feel like I’m in a similar position and I’m stoked to take advantage of it.

What Jon is experiencing in his career life is similar to what I’m experiencing now. It took Jon Acuff 16 years to figure out how to call a Do Over on his career and I can completely relate. Did I mention I’m stoked?

Do you need a Do Over on your career or life and do you want to get un-stuck? If so, read Jon’s book. Seriously, it will change your life.

But most importantly, take a risk to put yourself in a situation that will allow you to move to Fargo. (Metaphorically speaking)

For years I was stuck, and for the first time ever, I don’t feel stuck. I feel energized and refreshed.

And the move to tropical Fargo is only the beginning of my journey from heartbreak to hope.

31 Things I Would Tell My Younger Self

What would you tell your “younger-self” if you had the chance?

As an eight year old girl or eight year old boy, what wisdom would you tell yourself, that you learned later in life?

What pain would you want to avoid later in life, by sharing with your younger-self?

I Felt Inspired

My family and I attended a music festival in Minnesota this past weekend. The one musical act that inspired me the most was MercyMe.

Lead singer Bart Millard sang a song from their newest album, called Younger Me.

MercyMe leader, Millard, talks about painful memories, which he would share with a younger-self. stock-photo-15047572-sunset-silhouette-of-man-kneeling-and-head-bowed

The song also talks about being holy, righteous and redeemed and learning what that truth means later in life.

Listening to the song, I could not help but wonder, if I could talk to a younger me, what would I say?

31 Things Are Not Enough

There are SO many things I would share. If I could, these are some of the things I would tell my younger-self.

  1. Much of the pain you will go through is not your fault. Your parents divorce is not your fault. Enduring the cruel words of elementary & middle school kids, who hurt you with those words, after being diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome, is not your fault.
  2. Feeling lonely during middle school and high school years is normal. There will be times during your teenage years that you will feel lonely and isolate yourself. This is normal, but do not seek comfort in the world. Seek the warm embrace of Christ. Only He can fill your lonliness.
  3. Develop an awesome relationship with your brother. Do not fight or quarrel with your younger brother. Love him. Become tight with him. Not having an awesome relationship is one thing you will regret later in life.
  4. Do not date girls. You are not mature enough to date in middle school and high school. Wait until later. This will save lots of pain, heartache and money.
  5. Invest while in high school. You will have two economics teachers when in high school named Mr. Kearney and Mr. Hentges. They are financially wise men. Pick their brains and invest wisely.
  6. Learn how to pray everyday. The best way to become close to your Abba Father is to talk with him. Spend time daily, doing this. He wants you. He wants to hear from you. Spend time with him everyday.
  7. Suicide is a struggle many teens go through. You will struggle with this as well. This is a lie that Satan tells you. Remember this when you struggle: you are wonderfully made by a Creator who loves you. You are holy, righteous and redeemed. Do not end it early. Give this burden to Jesus. He will gladly take it.
  8. Be bold, be fearless. You will struggle with fear. Fear of failing, fear of money, fear of everything. It will grip you. But be bold. Do not fear. Isaiah 41:10 says “do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
  9. Avoid video games. They are a waste of time and will make you fat. Your body is a temple, so take care of it by being active. Do not spend time improving your hand-eye coordination with Sega, Atari and Nintendo.
  10. Learn goal setting. Learn how to set S.M.A.R.T. goals. These will make you successful and driven. You can accomplish much, when you plan and set goals.
  11. Be transparent. Do not keep your emotions inside. You will struggle with stuffing your feelings and thoughts. Do not do this. Let it all out. Be transparent and vulnerable. Do not hold your thoughts and feelings back. Even if it offends others, speak the truth and do not stuff it inside.
  12. Listen to your grandparents. They will not be on earth forever. Spend time with them. Listen to them. They have wisdom you will never learn in schools or in books. Take advantage of the time you have with them.
  13. Listen to your parents. Your parents have much wisdom as well. Listen to them. The wisdom you learn will help you avoid pain later in the life.
  14. Do not look at porn. You will be tempted in your teen years. Other boys your age, including their dads, will encourage this nastiness. Do not listen to them. Avoid it. Run from it. Respect women and respect the purity of your eyes and heart.
  15. Do not drink. Nothing good comes from drinking alcohol. Your pastor will one day tell you “don’t drink, don’t smoke, don’t chew and don’t date girls who do.” That is the best redneck wisdom on the planet. (Thx Pastor Wes) Believe it. Avoid alcohol.
  16. Avoid smoking. If you want to put poison in your body, there are less stinky ways of doing it. This habit is gross. It will only give your dog breath and it is expensive. Avoid smoking.
  17. Do not worry. Fundamentally, people worry too much. You are one of them. Stop it. Surrender this at the foot of the Cross of Christ. Let Him carry your burden.
  18. Spend as much time with your wife as possible. You like to work and you will be tempted to be a workaholic. Avoid being a workaholic and find balance. Your wife will be lonely if you choose work and other things over her. She is a princess and deserves your best. The best thing you can give is your time. Time is priceless and cannot be bought. Spend this time with her. Davecscott blog man wife sunset 2
  19. Spend time making memories with your kids. You will regret, later in life, not spending enough time with your daughters. Do not take part in things that take time away from them. Spending time away from your kids will be tempting. Things like coaching, golf, soccer and work will all want your time. Avoid them. Spend time with your kids, creating memories. Walks, bike rides, and travel are all things you can do with them.
  20. Be grateful. You will struggle with being grateful. You will want to keep up with the Jones’s. Avoid this lie. Be grateful for the things you have, otherwise you will be miserable chasing the things you do not.
  21. Be content. Be content with the things you have. Paul, the disciple of Christ, wrote from prison that he was “content in his circumstance.” He was content being in prison. Wow. Seek that kind of contentment. Be content in Christ, even when things are falling apart.
  22. Listen to encouraging music. Despite what Lars from Metallica tells you, music DOES influence your moods, thoughts and brain. What goes in will also come out. Avoid music that does not encourage and uplift.
  23. Business is not all about money. You will own and run businesses someday. When you do, do not focus only on making money and revenue. This is foolish and you will isolate good people and employee’s. Older business mentors will tell you to focus on a variety of things, including processes, revenue, human resources and technology. Use these wise words to impact business. Do not focus solely on revenue.
  24. Have empathy as everyone is struggling. Everyone has wounds and bruises. Some you will see and some you will not see. Have compassion for others, as they go through tough times.
  25. Grow up. You are an immature, young man. Be responsible and grow up. Seek the wisdom of older men who can challenge you and help you grow up and mature.
  26. Life is not fair. Your high school guidance counselor will tell you that life is fair when you get a job in a “secure, stable industry, like teaching, physical therapy or trade-labor.” Punch him in the face when he tells you this. This is a lie. Life is not fair. Become an entrepreneur. Work in a start-up environment. It will challenge and stretch you.
  27. Fight. Do not fight, just to fight. Rather, fight for the things that matter. Fight for your wife’s love, fight for your kids, fight for you home. Satan and the world will try and fight you harder, but you cannot give up the fight. Do not fight with another person because they took your parking spot at the Target parking lot. That is just stupid. Do not sweat the small stuff and fight for the important things. Fight with Christ’s strength, not your own.
  28. Cry. Learn that it is okay to cry. Real men cry. Do you want to have a heart attack, at age 40, due to hypertension and high blood-pressure, as a result of emotional stress, by not crying? What logic is there in this? Learn to be emotional and cry. It is how God wired you.
  29. Honor your sister-in-laws. Someday you will have sister-in-laws. These ladies are your little sisters. Honor them. Encourage them. Pray for them. They will need it being married to your brothers.
  30. Read the word of God. I Corinthians 3:2 says “I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it.” You will always drink child’s milk, unless you grow up spiritually. You need to grow from child’s food to solid food and mature. The only way you will do this is if you study God’s word. Memorize it, practice it, dive into it. It is invaluable.
  31. You are holy, righteous and redeemed. There is nothing you can do to earn you salvation or favor from God. He has already given it. Tell yourself this every day that you breath. You are holy. You are righteous. You are redeemed. You were never meant to carry this beyond the cross. You are set apart with a brand new heart and you are free indeed.

Leave a comment below. What would you tell your younger-self? I would love to hear your thoughts.

The Best Advice Ever Received From Mike Rowe

I recently watched a video, a TEDtalk to be exact. The TED was of Mike Rowe, host of the Discovery Channel reality show called Dirty Jobs.

blog pic 1

In this TED, Mike Rowe describes, in detail, the aspects of working in hard environments.

About 2/3 through the talk, Mike begins equating his Dirty Jobs, into two Greek terms.

The one term is called Anagnorisis and the other is Peripeteia. Each have significant meaning to Mike and his TED.

I won’t define them here.

Mike then goes on to talk about how his personal circumstance and discovery (Anagnorisis) drives him to the conclusion that life is about hard work, not chasing your passion.

The advice he received about chasing your dreams and passions, albeit from supposed wise mentors, is the worst advice he’s ever received.

I tend to agree with him.

Mike Rowe is brilliant and he is also right.

Life on this earth can have incredible meaning. But that meaning and purpose is defined by sacrificing self and NOT following whatever I want, rather giving up dreams to serve others.

Joseph in the Old Testament went through this, as his brothers sold him into slavery. Joseph then became a prison inmate. Most importantly, Joseph vowed to be the best prison inmate he could possibly be. He didn’t chase his passion while in prison.

Job was one of the wealthiest men in the bible. God took it all, instantly. Job never once cursed God. Rather he praised God in his trial.

He didn’t do what he wanted to do, or chase his passion. He was obedient. (for Job’s obedience, God gave Job twice as much wealth in the end)

I am grateful I didn’t listen to my high school guidance counselor.

My high school guidance counselor told me to go into 2 fields: teaching or physical therapy.

I’m glad I didn’t listen to him. He also told me life is a big ocean. Again, I’m glad I didn’t listen to this ridiculous advice.

It’s okay to be a dreamer, just understand that sometimes in life it’s not about chasing your passion, and more about hard work, in the circumstance you’re in.

Work hard and give to others and serve them.

Mike Rowe’s advice is the opposite of what we hear everyday, but I guarantee by working hard and persevering, it’s the best advice you’ll ever receive.

Now get back to work.

4 Critical Things My Daughters Taught Me in 2013

20140104-140501.jpg

My daughters are nothing short of amazing. They have their own little personality traits, quirks and habits.

They make me laugh, they make me cry and even challenge me.

In 2013, I was challenged the most by my daughters.

It was a stressful time in our home as we moved, I had some professional stress and just a lot of personal growth in our family. And of course, with growth comes growing pains.

So how was I challenged and what did I learn?

1.Tea Cup.

Dads, you can’t raise girls like boys. They are like delicate tea cups. My daughters are constantly telling me to be delicate with their emotions and embrace compassion and empathy. Compassion, empathy and being delicate are all part of handling daughters like tea cups.

2. Just be present.

Daughters don’t need Mr. Perfect or Super-Dad. They do need you to put down your iPhone and just sit and interact with them. Tough to do for dads, yes, but it can be done.

3. They need to see me love their mother well.

Daughters are extremely aware of how their dads treat and love their mom. Daughters also formulate opinions and relational worldviews by what they see in that relationship. Daughters will form impressions of their future relationship with their husband and also learn behavioral norms from the actions of their moms and dad’s marriage. Daughters are EXTREMELY influenced by this relationship.

4. Take care of your wife and daughters or some other man will.

Word of caution for all dads: if you don’t take care of your wife and daughters, you open up the door for them to find value through someone else or something else. Most importantly, teach your daughters to trust in Jesus and embrace Him and run to Him, finding satisfaction in Him. And strive to be a part of their lives.

Be encouraged guys. Being the dad of daughters is hard, but these is a lot for dads of daughters to be grateful.

Please follow this blog and share comments below! I’d love to hear from you.

3 Ways My Life Changed After A Near-Death Experience (And The Most Important Lessons I Learned)

davecscott fargo blogger

On December 23rd, 1994, I almost bled to death as the result of a horrendous skiing accident.

I was skiing with my brothers on an icy winter day, and in my feeble attempt to keep up with them, had a nasty accident that landed me in the hospital.

It was awful. I remember lying in the snow after striking what felt like a Mack truck, thinking to myself ‘what just happened?’

Then everything got really scary when I tried to get up.

As I flexed and moved my body and legs to try and stand up, I realized something was very wrong. What I didn’t know at the time is that my pelvis, parts of my hip, and my tailbone were shattered. I was bleeding internally and hemorrhaging blood, but couldn’t feel it.

When I finally got to the hospital, two days before Christmas mind you, the doctors immediately prepped me for surgery and put me under.

While the orthopedic surgeon was operating on me, he noticed a sudden drop in my blood pressure.

Twice.

It dropped to the point where they had to medically resuscitate me. I almost died.

Life is incredibly fragile.

I don’t often think about death or the frailty of life.

There’s not a reason for me to think about it. For the most part, I’m healthy and have zero concerns for my well-being.

I live life like a guy who’s in his late 30’s, heading into his 40’s. I tend to live like I’m invincible and won’t ever die. Most days, I typically live like I’m promised one more day on this earth, working desperately to squeeze in a little bit more each day.

I don’t pop pills, don’t self-medicate, and don’t take any prescription medications. As a friend of mine once said, I don’t smoke, don’t drink, don’t chew and don’t hang out with people who do.

But our existence is still vulnerable. You’ll die someday. I’ll die someday. Life is short and we’re not here for long.

Seeing life through a different set of lenses.

People I’ve met that have experienced a near-death experiences tend to look at life through a different set of lenses.

From their encounter, they’ve learned that life is indeed fragile and tend to live with a renewed vigor and freedom.

They are liberated. They dream. They are confident. They are grateful. Most, not all, tend to live life with a reckless abandon, where their focus is on letting go of things instead of on hanging onto them.

I envy people that live this way, don’t you?

What I learned.

I’d like to think I learned something profound from my accident.

I want to say I had an epiphany which caused me to become some all-knowing intellectual with a level of emotional intelligence that rivals that of Jesus,  Gandhi, and Tony Robbins.

But I didn’t.

I did discover some things. But it wasn’t the accident that taught me, rather the recovery afterward.

My recovery was rough. I got bad news from my orthopedist, after my surgery, and I had a choice to make. He told me I may not ever run again, and I’d have to learn how to walk. My doctor told me it would be hard. This news was pretty discouraging, considering I was an active, young guy.

But for me, it was all a matter of perspective. That’s the first thing I figured out.

My perspective changed. Perspective is a powerful thing. Perspective is the art of changing your attitude toward something. It’s choosing to make a conscious decision to live either in the negative, or live with a worldview that things could always be worse.

For me, perspective revealed that I needed to find joy in my trial and circumstance. Doing this wasn’t easy. Finding joy, and choosing to embrace this mindset, was the most gut-wrenching personal commitment I’ve ever had to make. But the alternative was way worse.

I also learned the power of goal setting. I’ve always been an intentional person who favors action over conversation, but living with purpose through goal setting is key to not wasting your life.

You can’t accomplish everything or be anything, despite what the commencement speaker told you at your college graduation ceremony. You can, however, set goals to help you achieve your passions in life.

Lastly, I learned not to give up. I could’ve thrown in the towel, early on, and ended up living in a wheelchair for the rest of my life. But I didn’t. Instead, I plowed through my physical therapy and found inspiration in accomplishing little victories.

Life is going to seem daunting at times, but there is always hope. You simply need to persevere and take action. Do not give up. Even when you fail, keep moving forward.

You need to learn to focus your energy on what you can control, get up earlier, learn to hustle, and embrace the things that make you wiser.

Change your perspective, set goals, and don’t quit.

Learn to be grateful.

Have you endured a scary situation in your own life?

Maybe you’ve had a life-threatening experience, as I did, that shocked your perspective, forcing you to be more grateful than ever before.

What was it and how did it make you more grateful for what you have?

Share in the comments below. I’d love to know how your trial made you more grateful, and if you learned the same things I did from a near-death experience.

 

Five not-wrong-but-annoying-things you can do on Twitter

I’m addicted to Twitter.

It’s short, sweet, to the point and relevant! It’s such a great way to communicate.

But man is it frustrating when I login to my Twitter account only to see some of my followers completely hijack my Twitter feed because they choose to post random things 50 times in a row.

Here’s an example: you check Twitter and see 50 posts…from the same person.

Annoying. So what does this do?

It ends up flooding my Twitter feed from anything relevant and good.

blogger_fargo_davecscott_twitter

I’ve got a solution. I’ve created a guide that you can follow, with five technically not wrong — but annoying — things you can do on Twitter that cause the world to shift out of alignment. These five things are practices you should avoid.

  1. When posting throughout the day, don’t Tweet 50 Tweets all at once. By randomly and strategically Tweeting throughout the day, you’ll gather more followers because you won’t annoy the masses. You’ll get more traction — in terms of relevance — and engage more people.
  2. Tweets with food pics. Okay, this is just gross. I’m guilty of it, just like many Twitter addicts. Enough said.
  3. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it’s a duck. If you follow a Twitter account that looks naughty and share their content, you could potentially look silly. If it looks subjective, then it probably is. Plus, no one likes to get a call or email from your social media manager asking, “did you know that you shared a inappropriate photo of Kim Kardashian…again?” Avoid those touchy conversations.
  4. Political Tweets. Be kind here. If you’re complaining about various political candidates via Twitter and it’s perceived as negative, then it’s negative. No one likes a “Negative Nelly” or a “Debbie Downer.” Be kind, be high level and be encouraging.
  5. Be creative and original. Don’t post the same stuff all the time. Tweet about a run or walk or a great coffee shop meeting. Engage people on Twitter with what you’re passionate about. Don’t Tweet the same stuff all the time.