This thought brought to you by nearly 12 years of hardship, trials and tribulations and a ton of goofing up along the way and figuring shit out the hard way. Think about this one for a hot minute. Our social support system is critical to determining whether or not we keep on pushing through with goals and aspirations or if we give up. Do you really want it? Do you like the idea of wanting it? I’ll use my experience as an example, please let me know if you can relate…

I have spent so much time in my own space, developing my craft, fighting to be heard, struggling – really struggling. Some people, often closest to me have told me to give up. Others call me stubborn, or even just plain stupid. It’s not like that to me. It’s not a choice. I would rather wonder where my paycheque was and continue to make positive impact in the lives of others than go work for some company and build their dream. I truly don’t know what I’d be doing if I was not a catalyst for lifestyle change in others’ lives.

I’ve had a lot of time to think about the next thing, the next way to inspire to the masses, another promotional strategy to communicate my message …the list goes on and on… it’s really quite a thing for me. My overactive mind still sometimes gets the best of me and I find myself reeling these extravagant thoughts and dreams of creativity and purpose in so that it’s fuel to the fire. But at times, it goes unnoticed. Actually, I feel like most often it goes unnoticed. That’s okay though, except for when it crosses a certain line. I am human and emotions do play a role.

More often than not, I’m the butt of most insensitive jokes. What’s batshit crazy about that, is that the jokes come from people you wouldn’t expect. Just little shots from those on the sidelines, not really sure what I’m doing behind the scenes and clearly not in tune with how the words they speak may affect others around them.

“Will you pay me in exposure.”

Screen Shot 2018-01-14 at 11.05.45 AM.png

This is a real example from a real person in my life. A person I would have in the past called a friend. Harmless or not, the demeaning nature of this comment temporarily derailed my train from the tracks of my greater purpose. It was like a callous shot in the arm. A sting from a wasp. Albeit temporary, I’m not going to die (thank the heavens I learned this past summer that I’m not allergic to stings!) it still hurts like hell.

Why?

Because it’s from the perspective of an individual closer to me (although now that could be argued) than a random person. A person that knows (some of) my story and has seen my growth, seen my shortcomings and been there on the path for some of it. They were not alongside me shoulder to shoulder, but ironically enough I met this person and had a positive impact on their lifestyle. Typical me, years ago we met and  I provided my professional services to incorporate wellness into a lifestyle darkened by poor nutrition, alcoholism and inactivity, stress and so on and so forth…. So the comment itself bamboozles me. And feel free to use that word when given the opportunity this week. It’s under-utilized. Anyway, I know my value and was miffed by the lack of discretion. I felt like calling them out with something like:

“Hello, we got on so well because we learned from each other in times of critical need. Now you want to dismiss the work that I do because of whatever insecurities or predisposed commentary you have about my business practices…”

I did throw fire back, unapologetically – as this wasn’t the first time this individual made the exact same discerning comment. I laughed it off the first time, something like 6 months ago… but once the knife is in and turned a couple times around it’s hard to not take things personally… you know?

Screen Shot 2018-01-14 at 11.57.35 AM.png

However, today as I look back on it, I have let that shit go. It was not a personal attack against me. Who knows what the people around us are going through. They could be just reacting and projecting a story they have in their head about you. And that brings me finally, to my main point. Ta da! See? Full circle…

The people we hold closest to us in our personal lives have a story they’ve built up about us. So no matter what you accomplish professionally, no matter how much experience you gain in your field, you’ll always be “sonny”, “baby brother” or “one of the boys”, “daddy’s girl” the “party girl” or “wild child” or whoever you were to them when they met you.

You’ll only become a prophet once you leave your hometown.

 


 

Now, for those of you wondering what the heck I was getting flack on Facebook about anyway, I actually made a calling for an IT/Web design tech savvy person to bounce some ideas and see what they would recommend for a project I’ve been working at for a while; my new online store. I am prepared to hire the right person as web design, though I can do it – is not a great use of my time. I’d prefer to have someone much more in love with it and proficient to get it done right and with the same kind of passion as I bring to my clients.

Screen Shot 2018-01-14 at 11.35.35 AM.png
This is what the comment above was in response to… the backstory is that in our industry trades of services and “promises of fame” often act in lieu of monetary compensation. So I felt that comment delegitimized my credibility and assumes I wouldn’t flat out hire someone to do the job. Not the case at all. Se la vie… 

Turns out for the time being anyway I don’t need to hire anyone on. I was able to figure things out and get the coding done DIY style so now all of you can check out the products and services I offer to musicians, via remote coaching, webinars and soon to be released, E-Programs.

That’s right, I’ve got a few introductory exercise workout programs and stretch techniques that I’ve built and can’t wait to release to help people conveniently take care of themselves at home with proper instruction!

For now, online coaching services and free weekly webinars – if you’re interested in checking it out, please head to the MusicFit Collective New Online Store at

—–> musicfit.yondo.com

The first webinar is set to help explain what kind of exercises are best for you in The Musician’s Guide To Working Out and I’d love to see you there.

Until next time,

Namaste sweet!

M

 

Featured image by Joshua Alfaro on Unsplash

Advertisements

10 seconds left in the third, down 2-1.

2 men on, full count, bottom of the 9th. 

Either way you look at it, there’s a necessity to be clutch in adverse situations. Only under times of great distress can there be innovation to remedy the adversity. 

When you can see rock bottom and someone is there, reaching out… take the hand. 

Realists don’t 

Really have a 

Real place in what I deem to be 

Reality.

Let’s examine a child’s mind for a moment. Heck, let’s look at your youth. What did you see when you laid out in the freshly cut lawn, face up, staring into the open blue skies that was every lazy Sunday afternoon in your childhood? Did you daydream like me? 

Just because I’m snacking on carrots doesn’t mean I am a bunny. That may be as great of an assumption as if you thought anyone that chases sticks is a puppy. 

It’s not whether you are for the carrot or the stick that defines you. No, no- I believe that if you let what you do define you, you’ve already lost. 

The wonderment in a child’s eyes is simply unmatched in this world. The playground is how I create. The playground is how I thrive. The playground is how I groove. I encourage all of my nearest and dearest and anyone else I respect into that environment of intellectual prosperity. We live in a social construct that doesn’t subscribe to the creativity that the playground, the child’s imagination and the spirit of the phrase “what if” epitomizes. 

I’m here to dispel that fallacy. I’m here to bring about groovement, raditude and a place we call home; Imagine-Nation. 

Look up into the sky this afternoon. That’s your reality. 

Always Be Closing.

The phrase made famous by good ol’ Alec Baldwin (THE GREATEST ACTOR EVER!) in 1992’s classic, Glengarry Glen Ross might hold some weight still with regards to my recent revelations in mindset theory and how it plays on building a team.

First off, what team, right? I can’t just hear you now…”Mike, You’re self-employed. Sole proprietor. Let’s not get crazy here.” Well, I consider the folks I train, my athletes per se, as my team. I have worked incredibly hard at building a specific culture around the practices I teach to develop a consistent branding and foundational value system that is deeply rooted in my heart. Find it, own it and give it back. I am a man that wakes up each day with purpose in finding and serving myself and then my community and others around me to help them become the best versions of themselves and I am proud to say I have attracted a team of individuals that do the same. We are called Team Schwartz.

My aim in the post is to communicate how “closing” relates to the mission that Team Schwartz instils and hopefully in doing so, start to make you think a little bit about what your mission is and what steps you can be making right now in order to see it through.

I want to break this thing down to 3 key points to keep things from going off the rails…

  1. We’re all “snowballs”
  2. Our greatest obstacles are our own creative desires
  3. Taking action is the most important step

All right, let’s get into it.

Firstly, we’re all “snowballs…”

For my fellow Canadian readership, we know exactly what this is all about, but for those of you who have never had the opportunity to make a snowball, here’s the gist. Generally as a kid growing up in the balls-cold, sub-zero hellish winter that’s known to grace the beautiful province of Alberta, the one wintertime activity we’d all risk frostbite and hypothermia for was building snow forts and having snowball wars with our little tribe of friends. Pack a bunch of snow up in a ball and hurl it in the face of an unsuspecting sibling or adult and then duck and cover in the snow fort and hope like hell they didn’t see you. It was exhilarating! The greatest challenge came when you were asked to build an impressive, sizeable ball that could still be thrown accurately. Hence, my comparison to our human condition.

How could one just take snow, a inanimate piece of nature and wildly construct something that could be perceived as an agent of war. It had undergone alterations, embraced change and was now an instrument of war, on a blindside mission from your grip to that big, smug smiley target of your older sister’s face. How could one possibly dream that shit up?

We’re all on that mission. It just takes someone to come along and start to roll us up. As, Wes Knight states and I paraphrase him – “push that snowball up to the top of the hill, and then let gravity do the rest. (Wes is a former favourite professional MLS player turned favourite mindset/influencer/health & wellness podcaster I’ve recently immersed many listening hours into… find him here @WesleyTKnight)

It’s my belief that the first step to “closing” anything in life, is finding your big, bad “why”. Sometimes it takes something or someone, bigger to help you up that hill.

Second up.

Creative resistance is a bitch.

I’m going to Coles Notes this one for y’all. When “closing”, i.e.. getting something you have worked extremely hard for – in sales, it could be that big deal. In life, the man or woman of your dreams… it’s most often the damn thing that you want to attain that puts up the biggest amount of resistance in you achieving it. And what’s worse, it’s all your own doing! We as humans are not afraid to fail. Well, maybe sometimes we are. If we believe in failure. Which is a whole other debate I’ll get into next week maybe. No no, I challenge that position. We as humans are innately fearful of our own success. This principle is addressed in depth in one of my most favourite reads “The War Of Art”. (Please go read it here if you haven’t had the chance yet… it’s worth every penny if you’re into becoming the best version of yourself) Basically what I mean is that if our greatest accomplishment is to finish writing that novel one day, that one day theory will plague our minds and build a huge amount of resistance up to prevent us from completing that task! The task itself is its own Berlin Wall. And much like that wall, we need to deconstruct our theory of success and resistance and tackle our greatest fears head on.

Leading me to my final point…

Just jump.

You can worry about where you fall next time. If you don’t take action on your opportunity, if you sit on the sidelines and wait for the perfect play instead of just getting in there and mucking it up, you’ll never ever close. I’d much rather be in the game, injured, broken, bruised and hell, maybe even lose that game rather than sitting in the stands watching. Wouldn’t you?

Once you know your purpose, snowball , let go of your fears and roll with it. Taking action is the most important part of the process. It could literally make or break your shot at the gig, that beautiful waitress, that six figure contract… You’ll spend all your life screwing things up, so you might as well embrace that and just literally roll with it. You’ll have experiences when you commit. They might be great for you, they might challenge you. They might really piss you off and make you want to quit. But as I’ve learned, that entrepreneurial spirit in me that wants to Always Be Closing… well, persistence is in my blood and quit isn’t in my dictionary.

When God gives you lemons, you find a new God. Until then, Always Be Closing.

 

Get focused. 

You are the product of your behaviours. Oftentimes I’ll hear if a client that will give a vent session about an experience that sounds a lot like last week’s trouble of the week. And the week before that too. 

I’m a firm believer of if you keep running into the same problem, the problem might just be in fact … you. 

Instead of putting down the bar, unlacing the boots, throwing in the towel or whatever the heck else you wanna metaphor for quitting, try re-focusing. 

Breathe in ten times slowly and deeply. Calm yourself and try again. 

With this approach it’s hard not to come out successful. Give it a go!

And remember, you don’t have to be a rock star to start, but you have to start in order to become that rock star. 

Stay sweet, folks!

Coach 

You want to go out and get it, right? You have that pride. That urgency. That sauce. You are the one they look up to. Everyone comes for your word. You’re the cone of silence. They’ve entrusted in you their deepest fears, their greatest passions, their full faith. But somehow you buckle. You let your naivety get in the way of the common good. You’ve broken down walls that took months to build, destroyed hope, respect and reputation with a few swift pawn moves. Ignorance is bliss and that perfect world just happened to start to crumble before your very eyes today. All because you thought you were untouchable.
Thankfully, you still have ’em in your corner, willing to take one on the chin for you. Even after the cold shoulder you gave. Maybe it wasn’t your intention. No one means to be malicious, right? No one actually wakes up and wants to mess up another person’s day, right?
With that thought in front of mind, carry forward the notion that perception is reality. What others perceive is ultimately the truth. Don’t give them any ammo. They will take it, load it and play Russian roulette with you all day long. Only half of the message is what you deliver. The greater half is how it’s received. do you want to be invincible? Because right now you’re invisible.

I race tomorrow. Let’s just go out and skate like we can.