As I sit in the Calgary International airport, waiting for boarding to Winnipeg, I’m in a reflective kind of state.

Have you ever just sort of wondered how you got to a point you’re in at life. Like, completely non-judgmental, but just …pondering? I’m totally there. I’ve got my luggage holding my snare and all my tour clothes and the essentials (travel roller, skipping rope, running shoes, grooming kit etc…) and my carry on consists of my cymbal bag, stick bag and another bag full of books, this MacBook and a couple more items that couldn’t get in the checked bag.

I know wait to go on an adventure I’ve dreamed of since I started playing. I thought in high school… “it’d be so cool…” So much that I actually literally wrote it down as my Grade 12 graduation yearbook quote:

“I’m gonna be a rock star one day!”

Crazy. I mean, the meaning back then is a little different than now, but I think I hit it on the head with persistence and patience and just pursuing what I love hard.

Power of words.

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Anything worth doing takes time, effort and an unwillingness to give up. Ever.

Rome was not built in a day.

Many hands make light work.

Move quickly? Go alone. Move farther? Go together.

Prescribe to the behaviours of unity and strength in numbers and not only will you succeed in the completion of the task at hand, but you will revel in the success and accomplishment with a band of brothers and sisters for life.

The team teaches collaboration.

Oftentimes the spotlight captures just one face. Yet, those who are cast in the shadows make light and help guide the vessel through the night.

Hard, work and luck are the same four letter word.

There’s no coincidence here. We make things happen. We create life. It does not happen to us.

An open mind and eagerness to learn are pivotal and the team depends on that.

It’s no surprise to me that those,

who are stuck in their ways can’t touch their toes.

Persistence is royalty.

Be it King or Queen,

the Monarch that tries and tries again

will one day grow,

to fly the skies in zen.

… of the Towers and Trees,

They hit up Sneaky Dee’s,

Now they wait in the YYC.

Connecting to the coast,

To the west they love the most,

The Westjet girl was s’posed,

To bring my coffee: darkest roast

Davey, Davey, Davey, can’t you see

Sometimes your D’s just hypnotize me.

Alright… a little context now, right?

Little did I know when I booked the earliest flight home to Calgary, I’d have the opportunity to sit with a couple of new best buds of Towers and Trees, the Dave’s. AKA: Double Dee’s.

I bought the dude that had the aisle seat with these two guys off with a copy of my book. (Turns out his name is Wes, and he loved the book. Works with heavy equipment and is always sore. Loves music. Wanted it autographed, so of course I was pumped to hear that. )

Point being, do well. It’s important to do good, but it’s more important to do well.

Be kind to everyone you interact with. I’m flying back in to TO in a couple weeks because of that exact mentality. Good hangs always win.

More to come in the next few days… just stay tuned. And try to keep up, it’s insane in my life these days. Good kinda insane.

Catch y’all soon!

Xo

Hey folks, it’s been a minute. I know. Lots has gone on out here in Toronto, as I hear up for my panel on Thursday. So much excite. So much still to get done.

This city is beautiful. There’s something to be said about fitting in vs. belonging. One of my favourites, Simon Sinek dug up an article written by one David Mead that speaks to that eloquently right here: Fitting in vs. Belonging

I have had a bit of a time trying to stay mindful and in full practice of my habits and behaviours, but wowza! It’s tough in the road. I want to be better at just reading my lessons and staying in touch with my athletes, but it’s rather difficult living out of a suitcase. Pleasant reminder of why I’m doing what I’m doing in the first place. I can only imagine the difficulty for an artist who’s not trained in this stuff.

I ran a 10km with my new friend and fellow panelist, Andre. That was certainly a bright point as far as fitness on the road went. Just under an hour too. There’s been a silly amount of walking (north of 10km every day…) but I just started running with Dre at his condo and once we started talking…

Goes to show the value of social support. And that’s where I’ll leave it today. If you’re immersed in an environment that doesn’t fully support your behaviour, your goals, your drive… the likelihood of you reaching your goals significantly falls. Keep that in mind when you receive a response that isn’t what you’d like from your tribe. It may be time to expand that tribe.

Cheers from TO,

XO

So Toronto, you lovely mistress. You are my jam. The minute I landed, I felt something. Albeit, I didn’t sleep: kept up by the turbines of the plane and the anticipation of the panel… not knowing what to expect, but knowing that when you lower your expectations, you allow yourself to rise to greater heights. I was a part of a really powerful experience at the Tune Up Toronto: Focus on Jazz! panel, as put on by TD, CIMA and MusicOntario. We were in a great room at Hugh’s Room Live, Larnell Lewis was the Keynote, the G.O.A.T., there was food, the attendance was high and most importantly – engaged. Seven hours engaged. Take note Alberta…

It’s reaffirming. We are drawn to scenarios that we are supposed to be in. I’m meant to be here. It’s a great feeling and I really feel valued, understood and respected. I can connect with the individuals that want to listen and I have met some truly amazing people that are masters of their destiny. I want to be amongst that, fighting to change mindsets, lives and help others reach the next level.

You’re not a prophet in your own backyard.

Here are the three common points I took away from today:

1. Kindness rules

2. Authenticity rules

3. You have to want to love the music a disgustingly, unadulterated amount in order to succeed.

Here are some shots from the my first day in Toronto for the Tune Up Toronto Panel.

The eagle has landed…

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My new BFF, Midget.
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My AirBnB has great taste. Same record player. And she’s rad… #sigh
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Told you she’s rad.
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What a privilege to be on a panel with such amazing minds. Thanks Doc. Thanks Teresa. Thanks Rosalyn.

Describe a situation that you’ve felt you’ve been wronged.

Describe in as much detail as you can why you’ve been wronged. Describe that person.

Did you describe them with any positive words?

How did the situation make you feel? Who was involved? How did it radically change you values? Your opinions of others? Your generalized opinion of the world? How did you have to change your life?

Define the word “forgiveness” without using a dictionary.

Can you forgive whoever did you wrong in the situation? Even if you choose not to forgive right now, what good could come of forgiving that person?

Put yourself in the place of the person that did you wrong. How could their childhood played a role in the incident? How do you think they felt when they did you wrong?

How does it feel to forgive the wrong-doer? And in what ways have you grown?

Sure, we all want to lose 10 pounds yesterday… but how we are pushed towards the ability to do that isn’t realistic, is it?

“Lose 12 pounds in 12 days!”

“Drop a dress size over the weekend!”

“New radical diet that burns 3lbs of fat in a week!”

None of these are sustainable, even if they do work.

Sustainable coaching comes with trades. As a coach that prides himself in helping my athletes through “the grind”, the tough plateaus, the unmotivated morning of training after a wild weekend of partying and misbehaviour… I prefer to coach on the foundation of sustainability.

I like changing a person’s entire lifestyle: the way they move, the way their relationships improve, the way they feel when they get up each day, stay happy and engaged at work and then return in the evening with energy to play with their kids. I like that. I get more satisfaction from hearing: “my husband and I now enjoy taking the grandkids out to the playground or out hiking with the dogs on the weekend. We never thought that would happen at this age… thank you.”

Over:

“my six pack was looking better than last summer at the cabin…”

I mean, there’s nothing wrong with aesthetic goals or short term programming, but I’m in the business of changing lives. And that is just a tough gig when you throw crash diets, quick exercise programs and the next fab “service” out there. Of course the people will get results. They’re highly motivated for 4 weeks. But what happens after that? When the eat kale, drink more smoothies and less beer realities kick in?

Think about it this way:

You’re super Mario. Bopping around, jumping over turtles and trying to save the princess. What I do as your coach isn’t just give you the flowers, the stars or any of the other power ups – no, no. They’ll always be there. I teach you how to harness those super powers so you fly through life feeling invincible.

That’s sustainability.

I coach you to be sustainable.

Xo