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.

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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

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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)

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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.