(Presenting for you a sample chapter from my book Becoming a Beacon: Observations from a Guy Working Through His Own Crap. If you want more where this came from I invite you to order HERE on Indiebound, where you have the option to order it from your favorite independent bookstore!)
Once upon a time there was a guy. He entered middle age wondering why he was so depressed and miserable. Desperately hoping and believing there had to be more to life than what he was experiencing, which was a life and career that felt like a waste and a failure. This guy gave up multiple opportunities to follow his own path, so he could keep the acceptance of others and be stay where he didn’t belong and settled into their expectations instead of his truth. This knowledge just ate him alive.
He viewed himself as an unlovable sellout making life choices based out of desperation, surrendering to a life that didn’t call to him. He felt the need to hide from the world, apart from posting silly Facebook memes, lame sports commentary, and spending time with people who just never really knew what he was all about. Granted some days, neither did he. The one absolute truth was that he knew that he wasn’t wired for the world he was existing in.
I’ve plowed through and still am working through a lot of the same bullshit as most. The only possible difference is that I’m just becoming a little more aware of the specific stench of my shit. Still very much in the process of learning how to accept it, own it, and break free from it, I’m sharing my insights and experiences along the way, along with what gets stirred up through that process.
Please allow me through these pages to be your partner in crime, your wingman. Let’s experience the highs, lows, and everything in between while trekking toward our individual journeys. Let’s accept that there’s a perpetual learning and growing process. We will continue to evolve for the duration of our time here and as we do, let’s continue to be accountable to ourselves and each other. Let’s feed off each other’s energy by celebrating our successes and achievements, no matter the magnitude. Cheer each other on as we chip through our blockades and climb out of Elephant Shit Valley.
Let’s take a deep breath, say “fuck it” and dive in. Obviously, I cannot force you to jump, but I can promise that once we get to the other side it WILL get so much better. So, why not?
I’m certainly not trying to convince anyone that “my way” is the only way, and I don’t wish to shove any sort of “awakening” down anybody’s throats. I wouldn’t necessarily consider myself to be “awakened.” People need to come strictly from their own free will, when they are open and ready to at least entertain the idea. All that said, if you’re opening this book then I’m going to work off the assumption that you are at least willing to hear me out. I’m humbled and grateful for that alone.
I keep feeling called to create connections and opportunities for fostering unity, love. I also believe strongly that, while we come from different beliefs and experiences, we all ultimately want the same thing: to make our world a better place. Certainly, the majority of us, I think?
If each of us grows to find our true callings and embraces our gifts, each of us landing in our true spot in the jigsaw puzzle, the power generated by each of us would tilt the advantage the masses. It would send a giant message to our leaders that we know we can do it better, and back that shit up daily.
It would represent a paradigm shift; instead of following along like lemmings to whatever garbage we are force fed by media, society, our educational systems, and other suspects. Imagine what we could be capable of if we called out their bullshit for what it is? If we determined and followed our own truths rather than those dictated to us by CNN, Fox News, or MSNBC?
What can we accomplish if we challenged ourselves and each other to become our best? What if we empowered our children and grandchildren to do the same? Built each other up instead of looking for fault? Imagine every man, woman, and child grabbing the world by its gonads, engaging their true callings. Every single one of us, answering that call from the universe with the roar of a lion! With light, fire, passion, and love! Without settling! Without lashing out! Without fear, hate, anger, pain! Breaking chains, smashing through ceilings, glass or otherwise! Embracing and honoring our own power, our own spirit! The many, connected as one! The one, connected with the many! With NO FUCKS GIVEN!
It will be new and different. It will lead to good days, horrible days, and all kinds of days in between. Overall, it will be amazing, wonderful, and empowering! All unique, beautiful gems shining in their own individually perfect lights, combining with those of others to create the most incredible prism ever imagined.
Do I know how this all will exactly play itself out? Do I know how we all manage to get to that place? Not at all, but it’s not all mine to create. We all have a hand in that. All of us, at our max at the same time? Oh, hell yeah! We’ll find many paths and many answers.
I am not asking anyone to give up any core beliefs, families, religion, politics, loves, and passions, that will be needed more than ever. I am imploring you to give back our limitations, doubts, and fears. I am challenging you to toss in all the chips and go all in on YOU! This is our challenge, our call. Are you ready?
Why am I going down this road? Because everywhere I look I see emptiness and unfulfilled dreams. I sense fear, despair, pain and anguish which lend to inauthenticity, anger, hate, surrender, and denial. People who are not being seen or heard, feeling trapped in unwanted roles. If we pay attention to what is behind what people are saying, they are screaming out, unable to express needs articulately. That we are doing the best we can with how we are hardwired and falling into the same traps as our previous generations have, just plugging along like good little sheep because that’s all we know.
We don’t know ourselves, our power, or our capacity for love. We haven’t even caught a sniff of what our true potential may be. We believe we’re supposed to settle for some life short of the one we dreamed. WE DON’T YET KNOW THAT WE CAN FLY!
We all know of motivational speakers, life coaches, and spiritual guides out there, carrying powerful messages of true transformation, breaking through inner walls, finding true self, and all that good stuff. Many of them are phenomenal and have tremendous, dead-on messages and very loyal followings. But what really happens though? Yeah, we finish the books, turn off the videos, return from out retreats and seminars. And for a while we are a house of fire, trying to change what we can and trying to connect. What happens when life comes along and kicks us in the crotch? We realize that our dreams require money that our checking accounts lack. They take time to develop, which gets lost for many reasons. We may get stuck working extra, or the furnace breaks, or an issue pops up with one of the kids. We may not have much support to deal with the shit that flies at us. The obstacles loom larger, and we eventually take our dreams and chuck them. Maybe we keep reading and watching stuff, but the old wiring wins out and up goes the old white flag. We just accept the boulders and blocks for what they are. And that our little pocket chisels won’t quite cut it for the size of the job at hand.
We’re taught that we are on our own to pull ourselves up by our “bootstraps”, that we are pretty much on our own to figure out our shit. Regardless of how high the pile is or how bad it smells, or so we are taught. That bootstrap thing? Yeah, it is only true up to a certain point. Of course, we do the bulk of the hard work, but there MUST be some help along the way or else nothing can happen.
We all had to learn our skills, hone our crafts, right? We didn’t pop out of the womb with all these knowledge bombs! We must be mentored, take classes, read books, watch videos, learn by doing, and so forth. Every piece of information, instruction, and wisdom came from someone else that either donated their time or offered us their services at a cost. We may have needed to obtain certifications, licenses, create LLCs, 501C3s, and other mandated paperwork saying that we are legally able to practice our skills, right? We can’t just get grab some crayons and draw them, they must be granted to us after we demonstrate we have earned them.
If you work out of an office, workshop, storefront, basement, your home, anywhere, the space had to be secured from someone. Did you build it on your own? Great, but again, you had to get the space from someone. You likely took out a loan or grant to create the money needed to start up? Safe to assume you don’t have a money tree, that had to be provided by someone else. And people must consume your goods and services, or else you won’t be offering them for very long. Good luck doing that all by yourself. Do you now see where I am going? Yes, you worked your ass off, and you should be commended for that. But “no man is an island”, regardless of whether we believe we are. Everyone needs help from others to survive, all of us.
Community, it’s how this all works.