Trick Shots

Yesterday he thought he was Evil Knievel.

Trying some “trick” on his bike, my son did a full flip over the handlebars and landed flat out face down on the ground.

The bike came crashing down on top of him.

Luckily, he avoided injury.

It was quite a teachable moment.

Lessons learned.

Experience gained.

Wisdom unlocked.

But, today, he got back on his bike.

He didn’t let the fear of that moment overwhelm the love he has for riding his bike.

The stories we make up in our heads determine our level of fear.

Change the narrative and we become stronger and install a more positive perspective on the world.

Trick Shots2023-08-06T12:14:33-04:00

Become A Lifer

It’s impossible to split up “Professional Life” and “Personal life”

These aren’t separate entities.

There is just Life.

When we’re working we may be weighed down by family trauma.

When we’re with a friend we may be thinking about a work project.

When we’re tired we may have to muster up the energy to go to the gym knowing we have work to do after.

We may need to stop working on a project to attend our kids’ game.

When we are looking at buying a house, moving, traveling, etc it can be impacted by our work and the financial rewards from that work.

It all overlaps and intertwines into a messy unrelenting knot that can’t be undone.

Recognizing that should put us at ease. We don’t have to fake it or try to make it all work perfectly into this “work-life balance” box.

It’s nonsense. There is just balance.

We are balancing work, kids, friends, romantic partners, hobbies, and tragedy and triumph.

It’s randomness every day.

We have to stop putting pressure on ourselves to be perfect. It doesn’t exist.

Map out your day, figure out what works for you, and take a deep breath.

Balance comes with accepting all the challenges we have not ignoring them.

Become A Lifer2023-08-20T15:48:40-04:00

Imagine and Create It

Is the life you have today the one you want?

If not, it’s the perfect time to start creating a new one for yourself.

Thinking you have to have it all figured out is your imaginary blockade to start.

Starting anything is like venturing down a trail that hasn’t been shaped yet.

We get to create the path.

There will be thorny bushes, large gorges, and steep hills along with beautiful flat terrain that reflects beauty for miles in the distance.

There is no exact path or a perfect way to go.

There is no “if I do this then that will happen”.

It doesn’t work like that.

It’s about taking a leap and forging ahead and making decisions that align with our values and vision.

We’ll get scraps and scars.

The calluses will heal over.

We’ll build strength step by step.

We’ll have the courage to get up after we stumble instead of sitting on the ground and pouting.

And don’t worry about getting lost, that’ll happen, but we’ll also be finding ourselves each and every day.

Imagine and Create It2023-06-25T12:13:06-04:00
  • Joe Yungman Profile Headshot

Joe Yungman

JOE YUNGMAN

EPISODE 343: An Interview with my 100-year old Great Uncle

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In this special episode, I interview my 100-year-old Great Uncle to learn more about our family, life growing up in the 1920s and 1930s, WWII, and his career working as an aeronautical engineer.

We cover a lot of ground, many of the items relevant to my family but also life lessons sprinkled in throughout the conversation, especially on what he sees as big issues with our world that need to change for us to prosper in the future.

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Seth Godin, Author, Blogger, and Founder of Akimbo

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Joe Yungman2023-05-18T20:23:01-04:00

Centenarian Club

When I asked my 100-year-old great-uncle what has been the most important part of his life it all came down to relationships.

His relationship with his parents

His relationship with his sisters

His relationship with his wife

His relationship with his friends

It was his relationships that made for a fulfilling and happy life.

Sometimes they last for a day.

Sometimes they last for a season.

Sometimes they last for a lifetime.

But, more than anything they make a lasting imprint on our lives.

We can all take something from that reflection.

Centenarian Club2023-05-11T20:32:27-04:00
  • Bryan Ward Profile Headshot

Bryan Ward

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Episode 335 features the Creator and Host of the DadUp Podcast, Bryan Ward.

Here’s a link to the Ray Dalio, “How the economy works” Youtube video mentioned in the episode – https://youtu.be/PHe0bXAIuk0

Find Bryan Online:

Website: https://Daduptribe.com

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bryan-ward-0653b821

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/Daduppodcast

Twitter: https://twitter.com/daduppodcast

TikTok: https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMdtsdnYH/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bryan.ward.5245

About Bryan:

Bryan is a dad to two boys, now grown, and has built a brand around being the best dad we can be for our kids and our family.

I was actively involved in my boys’ lives not only as a dad but a coach.

Each week on my show, Dad Up Podcast, I bring on high-profile guests to share their experiences, tips, and tools they have used as a parent. These guests are high-level guests that bring so much value to the show.

Dad Up Podcast is For Dads. About Dads. Being Dads.

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Seth Godin, Author, Blogger, and Founder of Akimbo

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If you enjoy this episode I’d be grateful if you would leave a 5-star review on Apple Podcasts, if you believe I’ve earned it.  Thanks for listening!

Bryan Ward2023-03-30T19:23:12-04:00
  • Jim Kukral Profile Headshot

Jim Kukral

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Episode 183 features Jim Kukral, Founder of LifeApoc.com. As an almost fifty-year-old successful businessman, husband, and father of two, Jim realized that he needed to spend his remaining days on this planet helping people figure out how to live a life of significance, impact, and purpose.

Find Jim Online:

Life Apocalypse Website: https://www.lifeapoc.com

Personal Website: https://www.jimkukral.com

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jimkukral

About Jim:

For 25-years Jim Kukral has been writing books (10), keynote speaking (150+), and building successful lifestyle businesses as a marketing entrepreneur. But the pandemic and a near-death diagnosis of colon cancer changed everything for Jim in 2020, so he threw away all his past success to start something completely different, a new brand called Life Apocalypse. As an almost fifty-year-old successful businessman, husband, and father of two, Jim realized that he needed to spend his remaining days on this planet helping people figure out how to live a life of significance, impact, and purpose.

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Seth Godin, Author, Founder and Speaker

Share This Podcast - Choose Your Platform!

Listen To The Podcast

Get The Blog

Review On Apple Podcasts

If you enjoy this episode I’d be grateful if you would leave a 5-star review on Apple Podcasts, if you believe I’ve earned it.  Thanks for listening!

Jim Kukral2021-09-28T10:09:48-04:00

Telling Isn’t Teaching

Kids learn repeatable patterns through practice and experiences. Their characteristics, habits, skill development, and values are shaped by these experiences.

It’s done through reading and imagining, through play, through creating, and through testing.

One of the neat things as you observe this is there are minimal to no instructions. Kids correct course most of the time and in some cases learn the hard way when they don’t. Those life lessons stick with us forever and sometimes we even have the scars to remind us.

But rarely, if ever, do they learn by being told something. When it comes to deep learning, we need to let them experience it themselves, think openly, and be challenged.

The best teachers in the world do this not by giving the answers but by asking the right questions.

The next time your child asks a question you know the answer to don’t be in such a hurry to answer it. Instead, return serve with a simple question like “What do you think?” or “Why do you think it’s like that?” or anything around this questioning.

Although it may be simple to you, watch their brain rev up as they try to come up with an answer.

You’ll be amazed by the imagination they have through the answers they come up with and they might shock you with their perspective.

Who knows, It might open up additional questions and dialogue that might fuel their passion and spark their curiosity to explore more.

In the end, that’s the fun part of learning anyways.

Telling Isn’t Teaching2022-04-11T19:12:43-04:00

Play the Long Game

We all want to win. We want to be on top and show that we are the best, the brightest, the most talented in a specific area at a specific time. Winning generally feels good.

But what happens after we win? There’s a letdown, a lull, an empty feeling, and a drive to win more to get that feeling back.

That’s what we get when we have a finite focus and are looking to beat others at something. That is acceptable in a game but is hard to replicate when we look at it through the lens of life.

If we don’t have a “North Star” or some vision or purpose driving us forward we’ll always be trying to rush to get to these “feelings” of victory. We become short-sighted, we rush, we sell out, we make poor decisions in the short term that affect us dearly in the long term. Happiness is in short supply.

We have to flip that mindset. We have to believe in whatever our “North Star” is and head toward it. Not with so much of a shot clock running but knowing that we’ll always be going forward and progressing incrementally. Small steps, daily, can create amazing results in the long run.

Our decisions then become focused purely on the long game and they start to build consistency in our processes and our emotional and mental state.  We know we aren’t craving for that big payoff right now but a slow gentle drip of euphoria that we garner daily from walking down the path of our purpose and living in the present moment.

Play the Long Game2022-02-17T15:45:16-04:00

Don’t Skip The Trail

I had a chance to get back out to Umstead Park today with my son to go for a nice trail walk and enjoy some of the beauty nature has to offer. As we were about halfway through the walk he started to ask the age-old question, “Are we there yet”, which prompted me to share some insight about life which I’ll share here.

The trail is a metaphor for life and the only thing certain is there is a beginning and there is an end.

We all start out the same way, through birth, although everyone’s trail looks different. 

My perspective on the trail and the difficulty in certain spots is based on my experiences in life up to this point. I might be able to easily navigate certain terrain more easily because I have come upon similar things before and can use those memories to help me get through.  There will inevitably be spots though where I need to pause and consider a plan of how to get to the next step; which rock should I step on to propel me forward, should I jump or take a long step, is there any spot that looks slick. All of these types of things come at us at different speeds and at different times, too. You have to be ready to seize all of the opportunities when they are presented to you and make the correct calculation and best decision with the information you have to go in the right direction. 

My son has a different perspective. For starters, he is much shorter than me so his view on the world is already different. Everything looks bigger and scarier and his footing is a little unsteady because of the surface area of the roots and rocks. It’s not harder, it’s just different. But he also doesn’t know what he doesn’t know. The things that I am looking out for, right or wrong, may not be things that he even considers and that can work in his favor, too. There is also a lot more fear of the unknown because he hasn’t seen as many paths as I have and hasn’t climbed as many hills so his mind isn’t callused as much as mine is.  That will come in time and he’ll have to endure these when they come upon him.

That’s why support systems and having people you trust are so important to get through life. We all need mentors and guides at various times and those lessons taught (like Yoda on Luke’s back during Jedi training) will come in handy as we are on our own and have to make decisions in real-time. You can walk the trail of life alone and maybe do just fine but it gets lonely and dark and depressing that way. Finding purpose is a lot harder.

You won’t always know if this path will lead to the right spot but if you continue to evaluate the terrain coming ahead you can try to get back on course if you happen to veer. So this hits another parallel, what happens when you get way off course?

We all get deep into situations we shouldn’t have whether it is a poor career choice, poor health, or a poor financial situation like when I was in $18,000 of credit card debt. That sucked. I couldn’t believe I got myself in that big hole on top of the car payment and student loans that needed to be paid off. Not to mention the other bills that had to be paid each month.

But I had a choice.

I could continue to go down that path even though I had a feeling of where that was going to lead me; more stress, more anxiety, more frustration, less happiness, or I could alter course and use my judgment and newfound experiences to lead me in a better direction.

It wasn’t going to be easy and it wasn’t going to be quick but for me to get back on level ground I had to keep chopping away in small increments. I had to choose that new path every day. In order to tackle newer challenges that were important to me then I had to make the sacrifices in the short term to help me out in the long run. Eight years later, I was completely debt-free, over 50k paid off, and I felt back on track to conquer new adventures.

And so that’s the moral here, as I told my son, the trail is the fun part and not the destination. Oh, you’ll certainly get somewhere someday but what stories are you going to be able to tell when you get there and what level of pride will you have that you navigated tough terrain and not only achieved your goals but worn the path just a little bit more to help people that are coming behind you.

That’s what I wanted him to learn and I hope it’s a great lesson for you reading this today.

  • Enjoy the peaks and valleys because they are inevitable.
  • Stop and smell the roses and don’t be in such a hurry to get somewhere.
  • Help others by being a guide and marking the trail with your experiences.
  • Don’t let fear guide you on your path but the belief in yourself that ultimately you know the direction if you just trust your own judgment.

Good luck as you navigate your own trail and hope to run into you at some point on the journey!

Thanks for reading!

Carpe Diem,

Brian

Don’t Skip The Trail2021-03-19T10:42:24-04:00

When Was The Last Time You Quit?

life lessons

When was the last time you quit something?

Like realized it wasn’t fitting into your life and just quit it.

We all want to do more. Workout more. Make a few more calls. Spend more time with family. If you’re not doing more its said that you are falling behind or missing out.

But at what cost?

When was the last time we prioritized our day/week and analyzed the things that are distractions versus the things that are actually helping us grow or are important to us?

I believe this is one of the most ultimate struggles we have inside ourselves. We want to do everything and be everywhere. We stretch ourselves too thin.

Whether it’s wasted activities that are “time robbers” or giving our time to others who simply don’t respect it, there are a lot of applications to this question.

Something I’ve continued to ponder when it comes to prioritizing my time and efforts because I was doing so many things at surface level and feeling like I was just treading water. It wasn’t until I realized that I needed to go deeper into only a few of them and “quit” the others that I started to gain momentum.

By the way, it wasn’t easy, nothing ever is.

So, Here is how I prioritize some things now…

  1. My son
  2. Sleep
  3. Crossfit/Fitness
  4. Nutrition
  5. Full-Time Job
  6. Podcast/Children’s Books

And the list goes on….

There are a lot of balls to juggle and only so much time available. So let’s take a step back so I can share a bit more of how I found time.

For the longest time, my Sundays were filled with NFL Football all day long. As a huge 49ers fan (still disappointed in our Super Bowl loss!) I never missed a game. And I didn’t miss others, either. I played fantasy football, used to bet on games, and wanted to “enjoy” my Sunday. And that’s fine if you choose to do this. But for me, it wasn’t cutting it.

My son was growing, and it was a priority to be there with him and for him.

I started the Just Get Started Podcast and wanted to spend time editing it for the following week.

I also had business ideas I wanted to work on and test out.

And I was getting into CrossFit and had lofty goals of strength and weight gains.

Oh, and another HUGE priority of mine is sleep. I am a firm believer in all of the sleep research out there that you need a minimum of 7 hours per night of actual sleep, not just laying in bed.

So when I started to add it all up it made sense. Remove as much of the Sports/TV that I could while still allowing myself enough to satisfy those “cravings”. And that’s what I did. I only watched my 49ers and occasionally a game or two here and there if they were on a bye or played the primetime game. I also took out almost all TV watching during the week and spend that time with my son before bed and then work on some projects after.

As I’ve built this habit, it’s been amazing how I’ve trimmed even further without even noticing. I don’t have the NFL Sunday Ticket not so I can only watch my 49ers when they are on Primetime slots. I have taken out almost all weekly TV watching as well besides catching a few shows I like to watch like Shark Tank or Westworld. Since these are streamed, I can watch whenever I want so I am in more control.

Again, you may decide to do something different but it first starts with your priority list. What is most important in your life to focus on. Do those things first and if you are running into trouble with time available then you have to look farther down the list to what you are doing that is causing the problem. Although it may be fun or cool to do, you may have to make the sacrifice because, in order to grow and evolve and be fulfilled, you have to be focusing on the things that are most important.

Figure that out and I am confident you’ll free up a lot of wasted time and be much happier each and every day.

Carpe Diem,

Brian

When Was The Last Time You Quit?2021-03-19T10:42:27-04:00

Lessons From A Legend

life lessons

I’ve had a ton of interesting experiences in my life, and some, where I made wrong choices and had to do things over or I made them harder than they probably needed to be. I hardly looked at the choices I was making, how I was reacting to them, and where I could improve. Unlike Sherlock Holmes, I wish I had laid the pieces out and tried to fit them together to unlock the mystery.

Then I hit what I have affectionately called my “Renaissance Period” in my early 30s. 

It has been a journey of deep learning and discovery filled with eye-opening lessons and revelations that have helped alter my path and set me on a more meaningful course for my life.

As I reflected and thought of the impression I wanted to make on the world, I was reminded of my grandmother, Nana Ro, as I called her. She was my everything and she taught me so many very subtle lessons that I didn’t realize until much later.  She had been through a lot. She had witnessed pain. When she was in her mid-20’s and with two toddlers at home, the love of her life and father to her boys got killed in a car accident. She didn’t find out until a day later.

She had several miscarriages later in life, worked 3rd shift to make ends meet, and raised five children along the way. She deserved to take a break every once in a while. She deserved to get waited on like a Queen. But she never once complained about it. She was the epitome of servant-leadership.

For the years I knew her it was extremely rare for her to do anything first or for herself, especially when her grandkids were around.

She cooked dinner, we ate first.

We wanted to watch a TV show, she turned the channel.

She cooked Christmas cookies, we always ate them first (and found her hidden spot in the downstairs freezer and raided that as well)

I wish I realized this all in my younger years. It wasn’t until this Renaissance Period and deep reflection that I realized (very luckily) that some of this rubbed off on me and a whole bunch more of it needed to be refined. It took some work to iron out the learnings and apply them to my life.  But here’s what I came up with. Simply put like Nana Ro would have done.

Feed others first that otherwise can’t feed themselves.

Translation – Many people, to no fault of their own, have a narrow view of the world, business, new technology, etc. and you have the opportunity to be the guide of information for them to open up a new way of thinking. You can help people help themselves by feeding their minds with creative ways of solving a problem or simply suggesting to them to ask the correct question to themselves to gain a new lens on the same situation. You need to do it with honesty and humility, however, as this is the way for people to start buying into those ideas but you have to let people be the hero of their own story and you are just the guide to get them to their destination.

Don’t be so polished and lighten the room up

Let the ego go! Nobody wants or needs the hard-ass and it doesn’t go over well anymore. I’m not saying to not be professional especially in business environments but try to be “business casual” in your encounters with most people. They’re human just like you and do you think they are as happy as they seem or don’t have 15 other things on their mind or even want to be at this particular job? So lighten up the room, have fun, be personable. It not only differentiates you from almost everyone else but you get more out of people that way. Being yourself builds trust and respect much quicker than putting on “a show”. Trust me, people can see right through the charade. Just stop it!

Bring a smile to everyone you encounter

Smile more often. Take the glass-half-full approach to life. There are a lot of bad times and challenging situations but you have a choice to make each and every day. You decide on the attitude you’re taking into your family life, your business, your workouts, and everything else that matters to you. Even though things may not be perfect, be the strong one that others can use for inspiration. I know it can be hard but looking at life through the positive lens ends up making it much easier and manageable. You somehow can breathe a bit more freely. The storm clouds seem to pass and the days just appear brighter. Trust me, it works, because I’ve tried it both ways.

Although I narrowed down to three bite-sized chunks, I learned so much from Nana Ro that I can’t put in one article. Some stuff I am still uncovering periodically as I reminisce about my childhood and the time I was lucky to spend with her. 

I miss my Nana Ro very much. She passed away in the Spring of 2019 and I think about her often. I think about her kindness and the love she projected out into the world and hope she’d be proud of my mission and the impact I am trying to make on the world.

I’d like to think it’d make her smile.

Lessons From A Legend2021-03-19T10:41:53-04:00
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