Strategy Without Execution = Death

Writing is hard.

The lessons I’ve learned haven’t come with ease. I’ve overcommitted and underdelivered, a sure recipe for failure with clients who rely on you to produce. The hard lesson of entrepreneurship or any solo business venture; failure is inevitable and you’re responsible for ALL of the work.

I’m happy. I get to write blogs, articles, network with new, like-minded professionals who share the same mission: Produce remarkable content, grow their business, share their story with more people, and of course, generate more revenue!

What about when someone needs a well-written 1,500 word SEO optimized blog post on an unfamiliar topic? You need to do research, craft an outline, write a draft, edit the draft, format, add internal/external links, insert quotes, oh wait, shit. I forgot an image. Search for an image – 20 minutes later – you find one you like!

A headline, crap! Wait, what is the purpose of this post? Why did I write this? Why is my client’s audience interested in this?  Does it make sense? Does it flow? Ah!

See, I enjoy this sensation. The slight stress promotes creativity for me to think on my feet and make decisions. It forces me to write, no matter what.

Should I write a blog post about what goes through my head under the pressure of a tight deadline? What about the editing process? How do you handle writing about projects which you aren’t an expert in?

My point? I can talk a big game and over back it up but sometimes I don’t. I’m not perfect, but I’m working on it. Learn how to execute on your strategy and anything is possible. I’m always working on mine.

10 Quotes of Inspiration

What is it that inspires you?

Each day I wake up and find inspiration through practicing gratitude and appreciation and looking at what is right in my life. I read, write, and learn each day to remember that life is a marathon and not a sprint. I could certainly use more patience than I have now.

I come across a ton of quotes that I store in my journal each day. Below is a list of my top ten most recent inspirational quotes.

What are your favorite quotes?

Enjoy! Please like, share, and comment below!

  1. “Being a giver doesn’t require extraordinary acts of sacrifice. It just involves a focus on acting in the interests of others” Adam Grant, Author of “Give and Take” and “Option B”
  2. “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”Walt Disney
  3. “Those that are a friend to themselves are sure to be a friend to all” Seneca
  4. “It’s not that I’m smart. It’s that I stay with problems longer.” – Albert Einstein
  5.  “He who has a why to live for can bear with almost how” – Victor Frankl
  6.  “On their deathbeds, people don’t think about their work or their life experiences or the items remaining on their to-do list. They think about love and family.” Rick Rubin
  7.  “If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself. What isn’t part of ourselves doesn’t disturb us” Herman Hesse
  8. “It means much not to be spoiled by intimacy with riches; and he is truly great who is poor amidst riches”Seneca
  9. “If you want to know what a man’s like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals” – J. K. Rowling
  10. “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them” – John F. Kennedy

 

I started my blog because…

I started my blog because…

I always wanted a blog, and the more time I invested in my own journey to self-discovery, the more I realized that so many people are struggling with the same problem all over the world.

What is my purpose? What are my strengths? What are my dreams?

I wanted a place to share my experiences while acting as my support system through this journey into a new phase of my life. This new phase of my life was one I was embarking to make massive changes in my life to become a better person and no longer take advantage of the blessings I’ve been given.

I woke up one day realizing that my life was the product of other peoples dreams. Never what I aspired towards or dreamt of. When I started thinking from my heart and dreaming of what my life’s purpose is, I realized that major changes needed to be made. None of which have been easy. The process of setting small goals to improve my lifestyle and change habits that were limiting the growth of my life.

For me – joy, happiness, passion, and achievement play a crucial role towards those goals. Great satisfaction was achieved when I sold my TV months ago and began the habit of reading a lot, every day. I started to read and write for thirty minutes each before I would get to the office. This was a small but drastic change in my life. I found a new level of passion for writing. I realized the impact it has on the quality of my life, my relationships, and enjoyment I had each day. Though I’ve changed many other habits during this time, these are the two that have helped me become the person I am today.

When I write, I feel closer to achieving my dreams and fulfilling my purpose in life. After all, jumping into a career as a Freelance Writer from a few software sales jobs into the easiest transition or the wisest decision at the time. I’m still struggling each day. When I don’t write, I don’t feel myself, and that is when I confirmed any doubt. I made the right decision and will succeed at this. I have no choice.

Where to begin?

I knew little about professional writing before deciding to make a career of it. I had never written professional copy, ads, blog content (except my own), articles, but knew writing had a special place for me. As I continue to develop my skills as a writer, the process of mastering learning alone keeps my hand moving and head in the books as often as I can.

Clarity entered my life and memories became more clear the more I wrote.  I became more curious about the world around me more than I ever had in the past.

I started practicing…

I found this book called “How to be a Writer, by Barbara Baig and at first wasn’t sure what to expect of it. I didn’t know her but knew that if I ever wanted to achieve ANYTHING as a writer, I needed to practice. Also, going to a university or college to take a course is not an option, so I decided to educate myself through diligent research and learning from accomplished professors and authors alike. As I flipped through the pages it became clear I had made the right choice.

Barbara’s book aided me to cultivate a disciplined daily writing practice. After all, the most important aspect of being a writer, is, of course, writing. Her book inspired me to search into what she calls the creative and content mind to expand my capabilities as a writer. Some of these practices include; creativity, memory, observation, imagination, curiosity, and using the subconscious mind. Instead of only writing when times were tough, I began to practice and is what I credit for me writing this today.

So how are things going so far?

Freelance writing has taught me a lot about myself in a few short months.

Here’s a short list of some of the writing topics and lessons I’ve learned thus far:

  • SEO and Keywords
  • Social Media Management
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Copywriting
  • Email Marketing
  • Advertisements
  • Blog Posts
  • Article/Magazine Content
  • Newsletters
  • Press Releases
  • Copywriting
  • Image editing/resizing
  • How to create Infographics
  • Basics of HTML/CSS
  • WordPress Customization

Let alone the time and effort spent on courses, books, and other resources to continue my efforts towards writing mastery.

Are you a writer? What is the purpose of your blog? What recommendations do you have for a new freelance writer expanding his business and portfolio?

I started this blog to be a catalyst for change while expanding my presence as a writer, blogger, author, and life enthusiast. To show those who are unsure that it is possible to change careers and succeed doing what you love. A place to share my journey into a career as a professional writer. Succeeding as a freelance writer is similar to that of an independent business owner or Entrepreneur. It is draining to handle pitching to new clients, manage current projects, meet deadlines, update websites, and handle all business matters all at once. I couldn’t be happier. I love the grind.

Lifestyle Writing

Lifestyle writing is exciting to me because it allows me to share with you the push and pull of life. The surface of my writing career has hardly been scratched and some days I wonder why I do it at all. For many of us, myself included, life isn’t easy. We take risks and then question every move we make wondering if it is the right one.

I end this post with a quote from Seneca inspired by my role model and Author, Tim Ferris. As Seneca wrote in his Moral Letters to Lucilius, “Therefore, we should decide what we wish, and abide by the decision.” “It is bothersome always to be beginning life”. This should have been proposed to me years ago, maybe I would’ve listened.

“A jack of all trades, master of none” is the mantra I’ve been proclaimed to live by for years. I’d master one thing for a short time and when a new idea came to my mind, completely shift gears and focus on something else. I wouldn’t push past the barriers of discomfort and drive towards new possibilities. I’d stick within my comfort zone of a subject and that was all.

You know what I think? I think my youth’s ignorance taught me a lesson. A lesson that I’ll remember for my entire life. A lesson of respect and appreciation for another’s way of thinking. A lesson to always remember in the end – the more wisdom and knowledge we have, the less we actually know.

A Caffeine Induced Trance

Daily Prompt: Trance

Trance: a half-conscious state characterized by an absence of response to external stimuli, typically as induced by hypnosis or entered by a medium.

Trance: a type of electronic dance music characterized by hypnotic rhythms and sounds.

What comes to mind when you see the word trance? At first, I pictured someone walking mindlessly without a care in the world. When I spoke the word out loud I brought about memories out at a nightclub with blaring trance music until the early hours of the morning. What in the world was I thinking? My ears are still ringing… safe to say that was not my favorite scene, though occasionally quite enjoyable.

I’m guilty of entering a trance-like state when I spend countless hours of my life over-caffeinated in a local cafe – usually Starbucks. You know, the guy with multiple cups, a venti for water and a venti for coffee, and half his home office with him. His bag filled with notebooks, pens, pencils, journals, and probably lunch – smart. This is the same guy you can see in deep thought staring into the abyss, appearing soulless.

Yeah, I’m that guy, a lot. I’ve grown accustomed to this state as it is usually followed by feelings of inspiration, joy, and a sense of accomplishment. I’ll sit back and let my mind digest everything that just happened, which usually occurs after a solid writing session of at least 1,500-2000 words. The more I write and longer I remain in this state, the greater the feelings.

As a writer, this state of trance is a river of words flowing onto pages and allowing me to clear my mind of all that I am presently thinking of. Hence, when I exit this sensation I feel strong emotions as if I just experienced something remarkable.

Adversity is Either a Friend or Enemy of Your Life – The Decision is Yours

“The obstacle is an advantage, not adversity. The enemy is any perception that prevents us from seeing this.” – Ryan Holiday

Thank you to the “Five Minute Journal” that I write each day for this quote from Ryan Holiday, the Author of “The Daily Stoic“, The Obstacle is the Way“, and more.

Each day we wake adversity is staring us directly in the face – even before we get out of bed. This comes in many forms including; Physical, mental, emotional, social, spiritual, financial, and more.

Now, however you view adversity – be it a challenge, an obstacle, or difficulty – can help you see the good in bad situations. Our most important memories in life are often those we make in the midst of emotional crises with heightened levels adversity.

This video below from Jocko Wilink will shed insight into how you can react during moments of doubt or uncertainty. I watch this in the morning and convince myself that my problems, frustrations, and more will all lead to results that will allow me to progress and grow in my life. The word “GOOD” will be forever changed in your vocabulary, at least it has for me.

The perspective of adversity often changes when viewed as an opportunity. Life revolves around taking advantage of obstacles and solving problems. A sense of empowerment will fill your spirit when you begin to overcome feelings of adversity and turn them into constructive obstacles that you WILL get past.

My entire life changed when I flipped the switch on how I perceived my failures. The learning process began which convinced me to the values that defined my life. Followed by a completely changed outlook on life.

We all struggle with adversity. Next time you find yourself with a minor or major moment of adversity, be mindful of the potential outcome or result when you overcome it. The fulfillment or gratification you will achieve when it is behind you will make it all worth while.

Remember, the obstacle is an advantage. Never stop learning from your mistakes, failures, and the major defining moments of your life.