Thirty Shades Of Truths

 

 

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The biggest break is the one you will give yourself by choosing to believe in your vision, in what you love, and in the gifts you have to offer the waiting world.
— Leslie Odem Jr

 

I wrote the title for this post on my computer on Thursday, and didn't finish it until Sunday morning. For some reason my brain didn't want me to be great. Or perhaps, I just had a hard time quieting my mind throughout the past few days. Yeah thats probably it still.

My one sole wish for those reading this, would be that you sit with these truths above and let one of them speak to you. As I wrote them, a few of them re-spoke to me and I hope they do the same to you.

But nonetheless,

 

With 30 things to read, there really is no need for too big of an intro.

 

So, let’s get into it. 

 

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 1). Focus on what's in front of you. We are humans, it is in our nature to try and control everything. But in reality, we control a small portion of our everyday lives. But we have to pour our energy into the things we can control. Only when we can do that, do we really start to see a shift in our progression. 

2). What’s for you, will be for you. Sometimes when we want something to happen for us so bad, and no matter how much we try to make it happen, for some reason it doesn’t come together. That’s not be coincidence, when something is for you the resistance will be minimal. 

3). True strength comes from realizing that you need help. Though you can do most things alone, it's hard to do everything alone. Everyone needs a little help on their way up.

4). There is a title for every chapter in your book of life. Ask yourself today which chapter you on are. And ask yourself, what comes next?

5). Distractions can come from all angles. But you have to guard your focus. Don’t let small inconsistencies disrupt your path and ultimately your growth.

6). It doesn’t matter what it is. If you aren’t confident about what you can do and achieve you’ll probably never achieve it. Be your biggest supporter and put the work in and continue pushing. Confidence is a powerful thing.

7). You are going to fail. But always remind yourself, that no single failure defines you as a failure. You only fail when you quit. Because when you quit you stop trying to get better and improve on what didn’t go right. Don’t worry about failing, use your failure as a guide to what work, and what didn’t work. Failure is inevitable, what you do next is optional.

8). Long before your dreams and aspirations come to life, you have to have a stubborn belief that you can get the things you want despite your circumstances.

9). Sometimes you have to be willing to make the hard decisions for the greater good. Not Because you always want to, but you know you need to.

10). Be selective in your battles. Oftentimes peace is better than always being right. You simply don’t need to attend every argument you’re invited too.

11). Don’t worry about being seen. Focus on progressing and growing in each aspect of your life. The work you do in the dark will one day come to the light.

12). Life’s test are unexpected and unpredictable. You’ll never fully be ready for it. But you made it this far for reason. Perhaps, your more prepared than you think.

13). No matter what happens in life, you’ve got to be able to believe, “This too shall pass,” and that if you keep persisting, you’ll find a way through.

14). Sometimes you have to take a step back and look at other options. You can’t solve a puzzle trying to force the pieces where they don’t fit.

15). You don’t have to have everything completely figured out to move forward. Somethings you will have to adjust on the go as you take that next step forward.

16). Know your circle. Relationships should help you grow, elevate you, challenge you, empower you, support you and be honest with you. If they aren’t helping you become a better person, then you need to make some serious decisions. You are the sum total of the people you surround yourself with, that’s not just a cliché statement, that’s an honest life truth. 

17). Learn to say no. If you always say yes, you will always be taken for granted. Simple as that.

18).  You attract what you want into your life. The way you carry yourself will always reveal how you want people to treat you. It’s never what people call you, it’s what you answer to.

19). Let go of the story why you haven’t accomplished certain things. You have to be honest with yourself about where you are right now. And that can be discouraging, I get it completely, but instead of complaining, start figuring out how you can get back on track. There is more than one path to get to your destination, you just have to complain less, and start doing more.

20). “They gave up on me” – I get it. But you know what, you are the one constant between trying to pursue a dream, and not even trying. And the beautiful thing about that, is that it only requires one person to believe. And that’s you. So, don’t get discouraged when people don’t see your vision, you will attract the ones that do as you continue pursuing your vision. Focus on proving yourself right, and less on proving them wrong.

21). “Woe is me” – If you always play the victim, you will only be seen as that. Nobody cares about what’s happened to you, they might be slightly concerned for a moment or so, but then life goes on. So, you’ve got to get up and use your pain to your advantage. Because after a while you are going to have to ask yourself, “what now?”. 

22). Be whole by yourself. Don’t give your happiness to anyone. That’s got to come from within, it’s got to come from inside of you. If you aren’t happy with yourself, every relationship you are involved in will not get a fair shot at flourishing. You have to be right within yourself, to add external value to others.

23). You are good at more than one thing. Don’t let your self-worth be consumed by a sport, or a job or one specific thing. Too many get into this hole, and the deeper you get into it, when you try and make a transition you become lost in who you were, instead of remembering who you are. Take the time to figure and nurture your many talents and gifts. We all have them, but you have to search and nurture them.

24). Own everything. Own it. Whenever something happens, before you look out, look within. Too many post the blame on other people and other things before they consider the fact that they might be the problem. 

25). Sometimes God needs you to live a scripture, and not preach one. Listen, sometimes you are going to have to go through some things that you don’t deserve to go through. Sometimes you’re going to feel like God skips your prayers. Sometimes you’re going to be put through more tests than others. Sometimes he needs you to stretch your faith further than you ever thought you could, so someone who might be trapped in the dark, can see the light through you and the way you carry yourself during your hardships.   

26). Don’t neglect your body. Exercise. Go for a walk. Take care of yourself. Eat the right foods, drink enough water, get the right nutrients in your body. Just because it makes your mind and soul feel good, doesn’t mean it’s what’s best for your body. Think moderation, not indulgence (all my desert lovers out there, including myself). 

27). The more you feed your mind the deeper the transformation will be. Just because you can relate to the weakness, doesn’t mean you have to adopt the mindset.

28). Be proud of who you are. No one can do you better than you. Be proud of all your accomplishments. Never settle for less than what you’ve worked for. You don’t have to be perfect, but you always have to give your best efforts. You owe that to yourself.

29). No matter how small you start, always dream big. There is nothing out of reach if you're willing to put in the work consistently, stay patient and make some sacrifices for it. Success is a decision, not a gift.

30). No matter what, you must keep going.  Even when it doesn’t seem like there is a way through, you must keep going and find that way. I recently read “A man’s search for meaning” by Victor Frankl. He said “A man can overcome anything, if he isn’t asked how”

 

 

I hope that one of those spoke to you in a way that makes you think. 

 

 

Your Turn…

 

In the comment section, I’d love to hear some of your own life truths that have helped you, or if you would like to email me them personally, I’d really like to hear some of them.

 

Akeeminspires@gmail.com

 

- Akeem

Blog Edited by: @Cpricerun

 

Four Things To Remember When Life Gets Tough

Life is unpredictable. 

 

You just never know how quickly the tide will turn and change the trajectory of where you were going.  

 

But at the same time, the things we go through are meant to create a stronger and much improved version of ourselves.

 

To never struggle is to never grow.

 


 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

— -Proverbs: 3:5-6

 

 

1)      Find Your Path

 

Be honest with yourself.  And that can mean many things and go many different ways.  But you have to be honest with where you are right now. Speaking from experience, this can be extremely eye-opening and discouraging. 

 

When I was 16, I wrote down about 10 things I wanted to accomplish by a certain age.  I would look at that paper almost every day, and to this day, out of those 10 things, I’ve achieved 2 of them.  A mere 20 percent!  Nevertheless, I’ve accomplished some things that I didn’t expect to.

 

Sometimes the initial path of our journey gets redirected to where we need to go, not where we want to go. 

 

What does that mean?

 

Well, it means that just because you aren’t where you want to be doesn’t mean you won’t end up back on the initial path you started. 

 

 

Ok, let me break it down mathematically really quickly.

1+3 = 4

2+2 = 4

0+4= 4

6-2 = 4

 

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There is more than one way to find the answer.  There are many different ways to get to where you want to go.  But if you don’t develop the skills you need along the way and learn how to get back on that path, you will continue to lose sight of the way.
— Akeem Haynes

 

 

 There is more than one way to find the answer.  There are many different ways to get to where you want to go.  But if you don’t develop the skills you need along the way and learn how to get back on that path, you will continue to lose sight of the way.

 

 

 

 

Embrace where you are.  Stay the course.  Try not to get discouraged.  Develop what you need to on the path you are on.

You will find your way back.  Just don’t stop walking.

 

 

*

 

 

 2) Watch Your Self-Talk

 

No, for real.  You’ve got to watch the things you say to yourself on an everyday basis. Especially when it gets tough. There is no way you will make it out of the hole if you keep digging it deeper.  Adjust what you say.  Don’t play with your words.

 

I never agreed with the saying, “Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words will never hurt you.”  That’s a lie. Words are powerful.  Because eventually, if you tell yourself something enough times, you will start to believe it, and your words will slowly begin to manifest physically.

 

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If you are going through a rough patch, tell yourself you’re going through a transition stage and you’re almost finished.  If you’re going through some financial stress, just say you’re in between funds right now and you’re about to be financially stable.  If you had a bad day, remind yourself that there really are no bad days, just character-building days.
— Akeem Haynes

 

 

If you are going through a rough patch, tell yourself you’re going through a transition stage and you’re almost finished.  If you’re going through some financial stress, just say you’re in between funds right now and you’re about to be financially stable.  If you had a bad day, remind yourself that there really are no bad days, just character-building days.

 

Change the things you say to yourself.   Speak life into yourself.  If you want to see change, you have to not only work for it physically, but you’ve got to put it out there in the universe.  

 

 

 

Words by themselves don’t hurt us.  Only when we give them meaning do they gain their power.

 

Watch what you say.

 

 

*

 

 

3) Trust Your Preparation To Pass The Test

 

When I was in school, up until about my last year in university, I would do well on the assignments and homework and projects.  But as soon as a test, mid-term or final exam came around, I wouldn’t do too well.  Not all the time, but for the most part, I just didn’t do well.

 

And the more I think about it now, straight up, I just didn’t prepare as well as I could have.  I’m not saying I didn’t study or take it seriously.  I just didn’t prepare as well as the other students who got the high scores. And because I didn’t feel confident in my preparation, my brain would be all over the place, and I’d second guess myself every time.

 

But I learned from that experience, and I now apply that lesson in my everyday life.

 

You can’t control everything, but no one can take away how hard you practice and the effort you put toward your craft and developing your all-around skillsets.

 

And when you feel like you’re ready for a breakthrough, that is when you will be tested to see if you are going to revert back to your old ways.

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When you haven’t prepared and prepped yourself for what’s to come, you may pass the assignments, but you’ll never pass the most important tests.
— Akeem Haynes

 

 

When you haven’t prepared and prepped yourself for what’s to come, you may pass the assignments, but you’ll never pass the most important tests.

  

 

 

*

 

 

4). Take The Good With The Bad

 

This is such a powerful statement.  You are still here.  You are still here.  YOU are still here. You are here for a reason, a purpose, a specific reason that God has intended for you.

 

Despite everything that you’ve been through, and might be going through at this moment, you are still here. That’s not by accident.  That’s not by chance.  Sometimes when we go through things, it’s not for us.  It’s to show someone watching that they can get through their own situation too.  Sometimes God doesn’t need us to preach a miracle.  He needs us to live in the present as an example of one.

 

Nothing goes unnoticed.   Sometimes we need to fall down in the fight of life so we can learn how to get back up on our feet.  That breakthrough you might be looking for is probably taking its sweet time, and I mean really taking its sweet time.  But that’s the reason you’ll appreciate it so much more when it does come.

 

Without the darkness, we wouldn’t appreciate the light as much.

 

If it didn’t rain, we wouldn’t be able to see the rainbow.

 

If we didn’t go through the bad, we wouldn’t truly appreciate the good. 

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Life has a way of findings its balance. Things can change at one glance. Your moment will come when you least expect it. But what you do while you wait will make the biggest difference, always.
— Akeem Haynes

 

 

Life has a way of findings its balance.  Things can change at one glance.  Your moment will come when you least expect it.  But what you do while you wait will make the biggest difference, always. 

 

 

 

Grow through it, you made it this far, don't stop progressing now. You've came to far. You've got this.

Stick with it. Push through.

- Akeem

The Lessons I've Learned From The Airport

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Airport Layover

 I dislike travelling as a whole. I enjoy new cities, and scenery, and culture and different atmospheres I enjoy that part, but I dislike actually flying, long road trips. All of that, its super quiet for me on that aspect.

Like if your trying to go on a road trip and you need someone to go, I’m probably not the best person to ask. However, I’ll come along, providing we are loaded up with snacks.

 

Matter of a fact I’m writing this at the airport as I’m waiting for my connecting flight.

 

Kind of ironic honestly, simply because of how much it relates to being patient.

 

 

 


Delayed

 

I’ve always somehow been portrayed as this patient person. And Truth is, by nature, I’m extremely impatient. I don’t like to wait. I’m a very punctual person, and the value of time is something I try not to waste or take for granted.  

 

But what happens when you have no choice but to be patient? 

 

I remember when I was coming back home during Christmas time when I was at school in Kansas, and on this particular trip my flight looked like this 

 

 Wichita to Houston, Houston to Edmonton, Edmonton to Calgary.

 

On paper I guess it doesn’t look that bad? however, I had a 4-hour layover in Edmonton, and the flight from Edmonton to Calgary was maybe 30 minutes once you’re up in the air.

 

I was beyond annoyed, tired, and all the above.

 

But It taught me a valuable lesson that day,

You don’t know how patient you can be, until being patient is all you can be.
— Akeem Haynes

 


 

 

Taxing

 

In 2016, on the way to the Olympic Games in Rio De Janeiro, if memory serves me justice, I believe we had a night flight. After boarding the flight and putting my bags up. I sat in my seat and waited for the magical words. “Ladies and gentlemen, we are ready for take-off”

 

 I was already tired from the week of training and travelling back from London earlier in the week. So that made everything that much sweeter, I had everything planned out in my head. I was going to kick back and watch a couple movies, and let the movies tire out my eyes and I’ll be in deep REM sleep and when I wake up I’ll get there.

 

*Doses off*

 

10 minutes later….

 

I opened my eyes and realized I was still on the dang runaway!

 

My trip was ruined, I ended up staying up half the 9-hour flight. 

 

But in the midst of the stress, there was a lesson to be learned from it

 

Don’t get too ahead of yourself. 

 

 

*

 

 

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Sky High

 

This is the one part you have no control over whatsoever. Literally, all you can do is sit and occupy your time and let the pilots and steward & Stewardess do their job.

 

There’s always that stage in life, where it seems like you’re just going through the motions. You’re working towards something, but it can often feel redundant. Sometimes it can feel like you’re not making any progress. And as humans, we strive off progress, that’s what keeps us going.

 

When you’re in the air flying, and you have a long flight, it doesn’t feel like you’re moving or really covering any ground, until you get to your destination and you realize is was the complete opposite.

 

Here’s the lesson here:

 

It’s not how many hours you put into what you do, but rather what you put in those hours.

 

 


Landing

 

“Ladies and Gentlemen, Prepare for landing”

 

Those are sacred words when it comes to flying. It means the trip is almost done! 

 

I wish there was that announcement from the good Lord above that told us that our time was about to come. I imagine mine would go something like this.

 

“Aye akeem, just stay strong for two more weeks and then it’s your time my guy! the next week and a half I got to make tough, but don’t worry, you’re good, stay strong. Two weeks!”

 

See, that way I’m prepared. I know in exactly, two weeks I’ll be good!

 

But when you’re sitting in the sky on the plane, you don’t control the landing, you just got to have faith that you’ll get to the ground safely.

 

But you know what, 

sometimes the unknown is our strongest weapon. You don’t know what you don’t know, so you’ll just have to trust what you do and know that you are prepared for what’s to come.
— Akeem Haynes

 

 

 

-      Akeem

Always Bet On Yourself

I think a lot of people believe in themselves, but very few people are willing to risk everything, and put everything on themselves.
— Akeem Haynes
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It’s one thing to believe in yourself, but it’s another thing to bet on yourself. One is talk, and the other is the real deal. We’ve all heard that cliché statement “Put your money, where your mouth is.” In other terms, if you’re really about it, then be about it.

 

 

I think a lot of people believe in themselves, but very few people are willing to risk everything, put everything on themselves. 

 


Here’s the difference:

When you bet on you, you truly invest in yourself. Your faith is fortified because you found a way to see the light in the darkness. You know what you’re capable of because of the work and effort you put into everything you do. You don’t sweat what people say, because you live your truth. You don’t worry who’s against you, because God is with you.

 

You don’t worry about what you can’t control, because you’ve controlled your preparation. You don’t worry about falling, because you’ve fell so much you’ve learned how to get back up.

 

There’s a difference, and that difference, is that no matter who is against you, no matter the odds, no matter the logic, no matter how hard it can be and will get, you are still willing to bet on yourself to overcome it and find a way to progress forward with a positive attitude.


If you are reading this today, Always be willing to bet on yourself, through the highs and more importantly the low’s because no matter what project you are working on, you will always be your greatest investment and lifelong project.

Bet on you.

 

 

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-Akeem

 

 

 

The Past 5 Months

On the other side of fear are many things.  But one of the biggest drivers that always stops me from being afraid is this thing called regret.
— Akeem Haynes

Wait, what month is it?

 

It’s crazy to see how quickly 2018 has come. But then again, not really.  Time really does fly. But we always have to take a moment to enjoy what’s in front of us and how we’ve overcome some of the things that are now behind us. 

 

I've been getting a lot of questions over the past few months, regarding my writing and inconsistent blog posts and also when the next book is coming out, and of course football.

Why the hiatus?

 

And the answer is… (Insert Deep Answer Below)

 

I just have a lot going on right now. Ha!

 

And also, I’ve been doing different things that require a lot of my focus.

 

I think there is a big difference between being productive and being busy. I am busy, but I am also productive.  We often justify putting off the things we don’t want to do but know we need to do by saying we are “too busy.”  Oftentimes, being “too busy” is just an excuse.

 

(Who is this guy trying to tell me stuff, huh?)

 

More blog posts are coming, and so is the next book.

 

Question 2! (Or rather an opinion/comment I’ve been receiving)

 

“Why would you stop running track, when you’ve had so much success, to pursue football? You haven’t played in 8 years.  You won’t be very good.”

 

I guess the best way to answer this question is, “why not?” - For many, it was a surprise. To the people who really know me, it was just a matter of time.

 

Are the odds against me?

 

Of course.

 

Is it crazy?

 

Maybe.

 

Is it going to work out?

 

Maybe?

 

Is it going to be worth it?

 

Without a doubt.

 

Football has always been a dream of mine.  And I’ve always been a dream chaser.  I think most people don’t understand that certain opportunities aren’t always going to be there. I’m not getting any younger.  My body isn’t always going to be that of a 26-year-old. 

 

I can eat a pint of ice cream and my body will recover in 24hrs. (strawberry cheesecake in case you’re wondering)

 

I won’t be able to bounce back like that when I retire from sports. 

 

I am in the peak of my sports career. 

And here’s the other thing.

 

I don’t fear pursing football and failing at it. 

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I fear not pursing it and living with the regret, wondering how it would have played out. 

 

On the other side of fear are many things.  But one of the biggest drivers that always stops me from being afraid is this thing called regret.

 

I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life, things I should have handled better.  But I don’t regret them.  I’ve had great moments, even if they didn’t end well.

 

I’ve learned from everything and tried to become a better person because of it.

 

I’m going to go in and do my absolute best, control what I can, learn everything I can, and give it my all.  I cannot control everything, and I won’t try to.

 

Just a thought.

 

Get around some good, positive, like-minded people.

 

I’m not the first to say this, and I definitely won’t be the last.

 

I’ve learned years ago to go where you’re celebrated, not where you’re tolerated. I’m so focused on positivity and progression that I don’t go around people who would drag that down.

 

Life is hard enough as it is, and you don’t need to make it any harder with being around negative minds because you will eventually and most likely consume what you’re around.

 

Whatever your dream is, get around people who have done it before.  Get around people who actually know what they’re talking about it.

 

Use your resources.  With technology nowadays, you can find almost anybody’s work, and most importantly, their interviews. Get out there and tap into how other people think.

 

Your brain is one of the greatest gifts you have.

 

And the one thing about humans is that if you can see it and understand it, you can achieve and create your own version of it.

 

Get around some good people, keep learning, keep reading, and keep growing.

 

Mind, Body & Spirit

One thing I always told myself and I believed this wholeheartedly to the bottom of my heart was this. I knew that one day, it would be different. One day I would look back and smile, not because of how hard it was, but because I made it through.
— Akeem Haynes

 

*

 

 

 

A Few weeks ago, I had a session with my old coach back when I played football in high school. Apart from the session being great so was the conversation and the insight. He’s got about 15-18 years of knowledge on me when it comes to this thing called life.

 

I learned along long time ago, that when somebody older is trying to educate you, you shut up and listen. Period. Never ever be too into yourself that you think you know everything because you simply don’t. but we’ll save this part of the message for another day.

 

Between reps we would grab some water and sit on the bench and id ask questions. And the more questions I asked, the more I learned, the more he reiterated what I knew, but he said it in a way that I wouldn’t have said it in.

 

People say things differently, they give different examples and explanations. Put it like this, you could show 10 people how to make chicken, and the chicken would taste differently 10 different times, even with the same recipe. Interesting huh?

 

But as we started talking more, we started talking about the mind, body and spirit. How you treat your body as a whole. How to feed your body the right things inside and out. Which leads me to the message today.

 

 

*

 

Mind

 

If there was a ranking, this would probably be #2. The mind is a complex component. Very complex. You can think yourself into doing anything, but you can also think yourself out of everything. And I mean everything. The mind is a place where all our information lives, its where our dreams and created, its where our ideas are stored.

 

Your mind can be your greatest weapon, or it can be your greatest road block. I’ve probably said in many of these messages, be careful of the story you tell yourself on an everyday basis. I don’t mean to every sound redundant, but that’s probably the only edge I’ve ever had on anybody else. The story you tell yourself, every day is the story that’s going to come to fruition. Some of you may have read the book so I’m going to expound on this story so it’s a little different. When I was in high school my only motive, was to get a scholarship in football, or track. I knew that without a scholarship I couldn’t afford to go to school at least for a few years. All I could do was control what I did on the field, or on the track and classroom. Everything else was out of my control. I couldn’t control going to school and only eating one meal a day or sometimes none. I couldn’t control that most nights we had to use candle light and take cold showers in the middle of winter. I couldn’t control the fact that I wore the same two pairs of shoes throughout high school, I couldn’t control wearing the same clothes throughout high school, I couldn’t control sharing a place with 10 other people at one point. SOMETHINGS ARE GOING TO BE OUT OF YOUR CONTROL, REALIZE THAT. But what is in your control you have to take full advantage of that.

 

One thing I always told myself and I believed this wholeheartedly to the bottom of my heart was this. I knew that one day, it would be different. One day id look back and smile not because of how hard it was, but because I made it through. Every single day before I took the field or track id tell myself in a short prayer. “Today is the day, if not today, then tomorrow. I just have to keep working and believe in it, and have faith. It’s going to work out”

 

Every day, envision the things you want. Envision how you’re going to make it out of this tough time. And I know some of you are going through some things right now, but continue fighting and breaking those mental barriers.

 

The things you tell yourself in your mind every single day, will one day come to fruition.

 

It is possible. It will be done. It shall be done.

 

 

Body

 

Take care of your body please. Take care of your body. This is so key. One thing half the world doesn’t realize is that if you take care of your body, it will take care of you. I hate vegetables. I don’t like broccoli, or peas, or tomatoes, or anything of that stuff. But I know what it does for me in the long run, not the short run. If you focus on the short term when it comes to your body, you’ll probably find an excuse to not go exercise or not drink that water or not drink that green juice.

 

Between you and I, I could eat ice cream and cookies every day. And I mean every day, and I’m not strong guy when it comes to desert. I’m strong but I’m really not that strong. I could grab a cookie, get a few scoops of ice cream and dump it right on that cookie, add some fruit and eat that every single day. Mannnnnnnn just talking about it!

 

But I also don’t want to get big. I don’t want to put on that extra weight because I know how much harder I’m going have to work to sustain that habit. So, I eliminate the pressure and I don’t really buy it in my place.

 

It feels good to work out, it feels good to break a sweat, it feels good to get results, it feels even better to watch your body go through transformation. Your body will love you for it, not only now, but later.

 

Drink more water. Eat more greens. Do yoga. Go for a walk. Stretch more. Go for a jog. Hit the gym. Play some basketball. Play tennis, gulf, whatever it is. Get out and be active even if it’s for 10 minutes out of the day.

 

Watch how that small change changes your mood throughout the day. The best way to help you if you get angry is to take a boxing class. Hit a punching bag. Exercise that anger away.

 

Eat, drink whatever you want, in moderation it’s all good. But remember

 

 

If you take care of your body today. It will reward you later.

 

Spirit

 

This is probably the most important one of them all. You must believe in something. I’m a Christian. I believe in God. Believe in something. Strengthen your relationship with a higher source. I’ve gotten this far in my life, because someone was praying for me when I wasn’t praying for myself. Somebody was praying for my breakthroughs and guiding me through decisions when I could have taken another path.

 

You can feed your body and mind as much as you want, but when those things break down, what do you lean on? Where do you get that guidance from?

 

I’ve made a lot of changes in my life this past year, especially in the past few months. And this has been the area where I’ve seen the most benefit from. I read or listen to the bible every day. I pray to God for guidance, for acceptation, for forgiveness, and most importantly I pray more for people.

 

The thing about having a belief in something, is that no matter happens, you commit to it. Even on the days you don’t feel like it.

 

Sometimes when things aren’t going well, I’ll take a few moments and ask God to help me understand his ways, because sometimes he makes me want to fight him, but he accepts that. (I think)

 

I’m not saying you have to believe in my god or anybody else’s god. But believe in something. Take the time to feed your spirit. Because whatever area that you feed, will eventually get nourished.

 

Whatever area that you feed, will eventually get nourished.

 

Feed your faith, feed your spirit.

 

 

*

 

Mind. Body. Spirit.

 

 

Akeem Haynes

Two Types Of Pain

Everybody hurts, everybody goes through something. Everybody. Life doesn’t throw warning signs, its unexpected and pain is pain. But the difference between pain that helps you press forward and the pain that keeps you down, is how you use that pain and the meaning you give behind it.
— Akeem Haynes

*

 

Sometimes bad things just happen. Point blank.

There isn’t always an explanation for why things happen.

We’ve all heard that saying “everything happens for a reason”. And as much true as that is, I believe that statement only applies 99% of the time. There is a 1 % chance that sometimes you just might get the short end of the stick.

 

I don’t mean to be negative or to sound pessimistic. I’m always overly optimistic and positive. But this is reality and that’s how it is sometimes. I was reminded of that this morning when a close friend of mine is going through a tragic moment with his family.

 

One thing I’ve realized, is that when things happen it changes you. There are two types of pain in this world. There is pain that teaches you a lesson, and there is pain that keeps you stuck in the past. But no matter which one, you will still hurt. You will still feel pain.

 

What do you do when you have these encounters with life?, When I was 14 I lost one of the people I cared about the most. I remember it like it was yesterday, I was at a friend’s house getting ready to go to football practice. And my phone rang, and it was my mom, at the beginning I couldn’t really hear what she was saying because she was crying.

 

But what I did make out after she calmed down a bit was this. “Akeem, your grandfather died today”. At the moment my heart froze, but for some reason I wasn’t showing any emotion. I believe it’s called “Shock” ha. I remember grabbing my stuff and heading home.

 

When I got home I dropped my stuff in the house and went and sat on the steps and waited. I feared that the worst was yet to happen. That was my mom’s dad. And I knew she wouldn’t take it well.

 

A few minutes later she came home. And as the car drove away, she saw me sitting on the steps, took 4-5 steps and dropped to her knees and screamed “why”. The only thing I could do, was hold her and let her know that everything was going to be okay.

 

And that’s when it hit me. See I had spoken to him a week before he passed away. And his last words to me was “when are you coming to see me?”. He would always ask me that because I made a promise after my mom and I left Jamaica. And when it hit me, that’s when I realized I broke my promise to him. That’s when I realized that I’d never hear, or see him anymore in my life. I promised him that before he passed away I would come back and see him. And at that moment, I realized that I will never be able to fulfil that promise, for the rest of my life, that will sit on my heart. And that’s when emotions took its course and I broke down in my room at 4am in the morning.

 

THE LESSON IN THE PAIN

 

I wanted to honor him. I wanted some way to apologize to him for not fulfilling that promise. I wanted something for him to see as he looked down on me.

 

The next morning before school, I grabbed a plain white shirt I had, grabbed a sharpie. And stared at the shirt for about 10 minutes and wrote.

 

“RIP Etel Samuels

Forgive me, for I have let you down. But I will never leave this earth without giving everything I have to it. In your name, I will live on this earth and earn and work for every single thing. I won’t let you again.”

 

And then I grabbed a white arm sleeve, and wrote down his name and the year he passed away.

 

I wore that shirt and that sleeve every single high school football game that year. And every time I felt tired, I’d look at that sleeve and found that energy I needed. We ended up winning the high school Championships that year and I ended up breaking the city record for touchdowns, rushing yards, receiving yards, kick return yards and Touch downs. Needless to say, I left everything I had on that field because of the pain that was left in my heart.

 

 

Recycle your pain. Everybody hurts, everybody goes through something. Everybody. Life doesn’t throw warning signs, its unexpected and pain is pain. But the difference between pain that helps you press forward and the pain that keeps you down, is how you use that pain and the meaning you give behind it. I used that pain to motivate me, I used that pain to dig deeper, I used that pain to flip on a switch that said “aye Akeem you got more in you. He’s watching you.”  I recycled my pain.

 

Recycle your pain! Some of you may be hurting right now, you may be going through something at this very moment. Don’t let that pain keep you down. It’s okay to hurt, it’s okay to be sad, it’s okay to feel a type of way about things, it’s okay to be down. But it’s not okay to stay there.

 

On the other side of that hurt, and pain is a smile. A new motivation, a new meaning, a new purpose behind why you do what you do.

 

Use your pain to make you better, not bitter. Use the pain to propel you forward, not de-gress your downwards. I know it’s not easy, I know it’s tough. But you must and you need too. There is someone out there that is watching you, there is someone out there looking up to you and saying “she/he is so strong. If they can get through it I know I can do too”.

 

On the other side of pain, is a smile. A smile that someone is watching.

 

And no it won’t be easy, and yes some days will be easier than others. But nonetheless, you got this and you can and will get through it.

 

You will get through it.

 

 

*

 

IMG_1563.JPG

 

Akeem Haynes

 

So, You Want to Be an Entrepreneur?

If you want to get ready to be an entrepreneur, you don’t need to spend time talking or promoting on social media at first. What you need to do is go MIA and spend time learning more.
— IW

Being an entrepreneur is the cool thing to do today, but just like anything else worth having in life, it comes with a high failure rate. After ten years as an entrepreneur with plenty of failures that made me feel like a wantrepreneur, I had to come to a brutal realization. If you can come to this same place without failing for ten years like me, you will be ahead of the curve.

 

I was watching this video one day, and the guy mentioned how from age 20 - 30, Bill Gates did not take even one day off. He was focused on his grind and learning everything he could about the industry so he could build Microsoft. Bill Gates was going through what was called his "Dark Years." 

I did a bit more research, and I noticed a trend pretty quickly. There are a lot of entrepreneurs that go through these Dark Years. Take a guy like Gary Vee as an example. He spent most of his early years just grinding on his wine business. He was not all out in the public eye because he was building his worth a damn factor by making more money and proving that he can get it done.  I could list off a bunch of entrepreneurs that followed this formula.


The Spotlight Entrepreneur

 

Now it is more fun and easier than ever to talk about what we are going to do; it is more fun to be on social media and put the spotlight all over ourselves for no reason. We have not earned this; we have not done anything to make ourselves worthy of the type of attention we want. My views on this have changed a lot in recent years, and it will make sense a bit later on why. 

I used to tell people that anyone can inspire, anyone can lead, but you have to want to do it. You did not need to accomplish anything first, but I quickly saw the danger in this. I am guilty of this misstep myself. I started to see a lot of entrepreneurs who would start a business or sell products teaching others how to be successful, and they would hope that product would make them successful. I quickly jumped on board. 

I started a business all about success. The idea was I would teach entrepreneurs how to succeed and bounce back from failure. How could I do this when I had yet to figure out the formula to success myself? I was just praying that people would give me money and I could say I was a success because of that business. I was not willing to go through the pain of dark years. 

I quickly shut down that business because I knew where my fault was. I started working again, and I began to focus on what I had a degree in, and that is marketing. I have spent a lot of years working on my marketing craft and have been able to make some decent money because of it. The difference here is that I have worth a damn factor when it comes to marketing. I have started a business, helped other companies, had things go viral and worked in this field, and because of this, I began to get a lot of freelance marketing jobs.

 

It was at this point I learned about Bill Gates and the dark years, and I worked on changing everything.

 

The Dark Years

 

If you want to get ready to be an entrepreneur, you don't need to spend time talking or promoting on social media at first. What you need to do is go MIA and spend time learning more. The reason a lot of people fail is that we become actors. We lose touch with reality because we are trying to portray an image. We need to focus and double down on our learning.

 

Jim Rohn has a quote that says, "We can get more than we have because we can become more than we are."

 

The part too many people miss is the part about becoming more than we are. That requires diving into books, watching educational YouTube videos, going back to school, taking online courses, finding mentors and listening to podcasts. The dark years are about becoming hungry as ever. The dark years are about developing the inner lion in you that is just waiting for the chance to roar.

 

The problem with just talking about what you want to do is the fact that it builds up your ego and it makes you feel all warm and gushy inside when people show you love. As humans, we naturally crave this. The dark years are about denying yourself this joy. The dark years are about forcing you to get to that point by actually becoming successful. Doing that in today's world is NOT easy. We live in a social media superstar actor world.

 

Without The Dark Years

 

The easiest way to get lost in life is by assuming you already know enough to reach the next level. Entrepreneurship is a skill! There are things you need to learn and master to get what you want.

 

Some people think they will do everything themselves, but that does not work. You can only go so far alone. Others think they will just hire people but to be a great manager you need leadership skills. To hire people, you also need to know a little bit about the work that they do, or else how would you manage them?

 

People think a business-like Facebook become a billion-dollar enterprise because they had an excellent idea. It is not true! Companies like Facebook become great because they know how to grow and execute.

 

I am still in my dark years right now personally and when I come out, and I am going to have a full story and analysis on everything I have done and why. I will tell you that it is not fun. Without social media, I feel less significant than I have ever felt in my life. I don't know what is going on, and I hate not being able to talk about what I am doing. But I feel a power building up in me, and I have learned just how much I don't know.

 

Since 2017 has begun, I have bought and read about 72 books which are easily the most books I have ever read in a year. It reminded me of just how ignorant I am.

 

I wrote this strictly for you. It's not about me; it's not about my name because I have not done jack. What I do know is that the more you learn, the more you earn, but very few people focus on that learning part.

 

 

Stay tuned for part 2

 

 

 

Why Joy Is So Much Better Than Happiness

Having joy does not mean you will not get upset, sad, angry, afraid, or discouraged.  Those are all natural, human emotions.  But joy allows you to see past your circumstances.
— Chanelle Price

Do you know someone who can stay positive no matter what life throws his way?  Someone who can find peace in the midst of ANY storm?  You look at this person and wonder, “How the heck is he still smiling?”  The answer is simple:  he has joy. 

            Now, think of someone else who is content when life is going well.  But as soon as things go wrong or circumstances get tough, he crumbles.  This person may even be yourself.  In fact, most people are this way.  Why?  Because we desire happiness, not joy.

Happiness and joy are not the same.  Happiness is based on outside circumstances.  My bills are paid, I’m happy.  I’m healthy, I’m happy.  I’m succeeding in my profession, I’m happy.  I look good, I’m happy.  But what happens when you can’t pay your bills, you get sick, you lose your job, or you don’t feel attractive?  That happiness goes away.  All of a sudden life sucks and you are miserable with nowhere to turn. 

Unlike happiness, joy comes from the inside.  It is one of the best feelings in the world.  It encompasses hope, faith, peace, and resilience.  And the best part about joy?  It doesn’t go away!  No matter what is happening in your world, you can always experience joy. 

Having joy does not mean you will not get upset, sad, angry, afraid, or discouraged.  Those are all natural, human emotions.  But joy allows you to see past your circumstances.  Joy is that small voice that whispers, “Everything is going to be okay.”  “Things don’t look good or feel good, but I know everything is working out for my good.”  “I‘ve overcome hardships before, I can do it again.”  “God will never give me more than I can bear.”  “Times don’t stay difficult forever.”  “Better days are ahead.”

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned that life is not always going to be easy.  But we can make it easier on ourselves by choosing to take control of our situations instead of letting our situations control us.  Stop letting life determine whether you’re happy or not.  It’s easy to look for happiness in your occupation, your materialistic possessions, your looks, your location, your friends/family, and your significant other.  It takes a very, very strong person to say, “No matter what I do, what I have, where I live, what I look like, and who I have in my life, I’m going to be okay.”

This “I’m going to be okay no matter what” mindset is my definition of joy.  How do you develop this type of attitude?  Through practice.  The next time life throws you a curveball, take a deep breath and say, “I’m going to be okay.”  Because, believe it or not, you will be! Choose to enJOY life in the midst of any and everything you go through.  

 

 

Chanelle Price

 

Follow Chanelle on her social media accounts:
Instagram : Cpricerun
Twitter : Cpricerun
 

 

 

Kids Know Best

I was having a conversation with one of my therapist in phoenix. Brendon Cole who is a stud of a human being, but along with being a stud he’s also an Olympian, and a Meticulous Physical Therapist and that’s why he’s a beast as what he does. He’s also an all-around good human being, (I can’t speak for everyone BJ. HA!).

 

We got on topic of talking about kids, and I had asked him if he wanted to have kids one day, and sure enough like it always does, the conversation escalated and went far left when we started in the center. But along with hearing his views and sharing my own, I started to think to myself. What if we thought with purity like kids did?

 

Take out all the other stresses and components that comes with life’s complications, but what if for a moment, we thought like kids do? We were all kids once before, with pure imaginative, authentic, creative thoughts. We didn’t focus on the negatives at those ages we just focused on all the great things we could do, like fly to mars on our spaceship, or save the planet with buzz lightyear (To Infinity and beyond!) or save Mufasa from Scar in the lion king. That big smile you see on a kid’s face when you let them ramble about what they want to do, is something that we can learn and reflect from.

 

Try to focus less on what people say you can’t do, and breath life into all the endless possibilities of what you can do. What separates us from any other species, is the ability to focus on one thought over the other.

 

 

 

.

 

 

 

 

“I want to be a _______”

 

My little sister Naila, is four years old. And recently I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up, and without any deep thought she said a doctor or teacher as she continued to play with her Elsa and Anna dolls (From the movie Frozen). You couldn’t tell her anything, that’s exactly what she wanted to do. I’m sure she got the idea from one of the shows she watches and liked what she saw and wanted to imitate that and in her thoughts, she was already that.

 

She didn’t think about how many years of education it would take, or what field she wanted to teach or any of that analytical stuff, she can’t even pronounce analytical yet and I think that’s the issue we have sometimes when we know too much.

 

Sometimes we get so caught up in how much we know, that we hurt ourselves by realizing that we know too much! We psyche ourselves out of doing something before we even try. With all the access, we have nowadays, we can look everything up and instead of paying attention to the positive things, we focus on the negative comments and then we start to doubt if we should even do it.

 

How many times have we wanted to buy something, and we go online to do our research and read the reviews, and that specific item is 4.8/5 and instead of realizing that 4.8 is a great score, we scroll down to the negative reviews and end up saying “man I don’t know about this”. (I’ve done this). Shoot, with how many people in the world someone is bound to give it a bad review.

 

We have to remember that there are two sides to each story. Every individual can only look at the world from their own eyes and their own points of views. Our minds have a way of processing the negatives first and most times over- looking the positives, that’s why with anything that we do, we have to take society and their opinions of what they think and processed with a grain of salt. They are only trying to push their point of view from their world, on you.

 

 

 

“We have to take society and their opinions of what they think and processed with a grain of salt. They are only trying to push their point of view from their world, on you.”

 

 

 

Sometimes we have to refer to that inner-kid in us and just say screw it, “IM GOING TO GO FOR IT” if it works out it works, GREAT you’ll look like a genius, and if it doesn’t, well then do what kids do when they fall down when they are first learning how to walk, they laugh and smile and then get back up and try again.

 

It’s hard to break a kid’s spirit when you constantly and consistently uplift them and tell them that anything is possible and they can achieve it. Somewhere along the way as we got older, we let the world drown out that voice of enthusiasm and optimistic outlook we once had. However, it’s never too late to get that attitude back.

 

Think about a time when you were young and you believed you could be anything, the thought of that moment should make you smile and fill you up with not only joy, but a sense of hope and ambition as well as purpose. Use that feeling, remember that feeling, and harbour that feeling and keep it with you to always remind you that, you deserve to live a life like the look a kid gives you when you tell them pizza is for dinner! If things are tough right now for you, if you feel stuck, and need a spark. Think about that moment, the thought of pizza alone should bring a smile to your face. It’s all possible despite what anybody says, and it always will be. Don’t be so hard on yourself, you got this.

 

What would the young kid in you say?

 

Young Akeem would probably say “Don’t forget to have fun”

 

25 year old Akeem needs that reminder daily.

 

 

 

.

 

 

As I was watching my sister color, I thought to myself “Would that be the same thing she wanted to do a few years from now? Or even a few days from now? Maybe, maybe not.”. but regardless, who am I to tell her otherwise.

 

I’ll always encourage her and tell her that she can do anything, even when the world tries to tell her otherwise.

 

Akeem: “When you become a doctor, are you going to take care of me when I get sick?”

 

Naila: “duhhhhhhhhhhhh! ha ha ha ha ha”

 

 

 

 

It’s on You….

 

Think about all the things you wanted to become when someone asked you “What do you want to be when your older?” . In the comments below I hope that you share with me some of the things you wanted to be when you were growing up. I wanted to be a doctor, a Pediatrician at that, today I am not a pediatrician, but who’s to say it’s too late ;)

 

 

 

God Bless,

 

 

Akeem Haynes