For about 12 years of my life starting when my Grandfather died in front of me, I changed. I became angry, horrifically narcissistic, could honestly give a shit about anyone but myself or anyone around me, I destroyed my marriage, rejected my family, cried daily, yelled daily, was so stressed out I made myself physically ill. It all came to a head in 1993 and I started a slow shift back to civility.
I made the choose to stay alive and work to become a better man. Today, I am still a bit narcissistic, quite opinionated, 90 percent less angry and I honestly give a shit about everything! So when they say people don't change, trust me they can. I am that example.
I am a product of my parents no question, their example formed me. My Mother who is tough, angry, pained and sad. She takes no prisoners, takes the bull by the horns and taught me to not settle. She taught me to fight for what is right, to stand up, speak up and to do it! My Dad is the most loving man on this planet, a ladies man, (a trait I did not inherit), and everyone loves him. He speaks to every stranger, waitress, waiter, gas station attendant and as you speak with him you know you have a friend, a story and a smile wrapped around your face. The two of them are headed this October to 59 years of marriage. They are a comedy act, totally in love, somewhat dysfunctional and joined at the hip, inseparable at 80 and 82 years old.
My parents also surrounded us with our grandparents, cousins, extended cousins, bridge clubs, gatherings, funerals, events and it seems music and people were always filling our house or us theirs. And they supported me in everything I have ever done unconditionally. As a budding entrepreneur at age 10 to now 13 companies later.
I say all this because I was reading something earlier about how people don't care anymore, how we are selfish, self centered, focused on our careers and our own agenda's. We seem to be immersed in our i-gadgets and same-sungs. We speak without looking each other in the eye, we "sort of" support stuff. We think posting something on Facebook is somehow speaking to the entire world and we go about our days feeling pretty good for shouting something out to our world.
But I question our passion, our motivation, our desired result. I question IF anything we are doing is making a difference or helping anyone to shift.
I get a lot of support for THE ART OF ACTIVE NETWORKING and my events designed to help people connect to do better. I also get a massive amount of crap, dissenters, complainers and people copying what I do or say, thinking they will do it better. I hope they will because more good attitude and ideas helps more people and I am not much a believer in competition, only collaboration. I see no reason to tear others down.
But if you want to complain, tear someone down or otherwise be either a couch bitch or a Facebook naysayer or you prefer to be the type that mumbles under your breath about what's always wrong with the world, I say stand up, shut up and give it your best shot to make it better for yourself or others.
I have put over $30,000 of my own money in to my events all to help others, and we have! And no one can take that from me. Would I hope someday they would break even...god yes! Then I can do even more. But sadly this is my hobby, my part time passion and I too, like you. have jobs and a career where I make my money which allows me to do these events.
I could be at the gym working on my ass, I could be out with you even more having fun, I could be reading the pile or books and scripts I am behind on or, working harder growing my businesses. I could be meditating, sleeping or exploring my awesome cities more than I already do. But in the time I am given I choose to do this for now because I love meeting people, I love helping people (if I can), to do just a little better or to make a shift in their life, and I adore the conversation just like my Papa does!
So someday in one of my cites please consider coming. I promise you will meet people you would never meet otherwise, you'll walk away with a smile, you'll be able to give without the need of getting more and you will possibly meet someone whose life you can help through collaboration, partnership, friendship or a smile!
Everything including what people say about the event is on my site, you can join the email list for your city and we have three events and benefits coming up in three awesome cities. I'm not good at asking for help but I need help finding a venue in LA and NYC still.
I am so grateful to you all for the support you give me and others. And I am ever grateful for my journey and my ability to move past the people, things and mindset that don't serve me or my intentions. Thank you!