despite others

I am SO happy

So about 4 days ago my brother was working in the yard and he was getting rid of this big old plastic pot we had that was already falling apart. To fit it in the garbage bag he had to smash it into smaller pieces with a shovel.

But when he dumped out the dirt….

…eggs. Ten little eggs.


My mom brought them in to show me. Not knowing what they were or if they were dangerous or not, she asked me if I wanted to take one and open it up outside to make sure it wasn’t full of baby bugs or something. I told her that they were definitely reptile eggs but she was still giving them the ‘I-still-don’t-trust-that-they-aren’t-bugs’ look.

I knew there was no way it was full of bugs and I wouldn’t be able to get it off my mind if we cut one out and killed it. But then I remembered candling.

If you don’t know what candling is, it’s when you put a flashlight under an egg to check if it’s fertile or not.

So I told her to hold on and I ran to get a flashlight.

Lo and behold they were not bugs.

It was our first time ever candling anything so we weren’t exactly sure what to look for. The only videos I had ever seen for candling an egg was a video talking about how some geckos lay eggs without a mate but there is a rare chance they could be fertile anyway; the eggs in the video were always empty though. So we checked all the eggs and they were all alive and responsive. I managed to convince my family that I was 99% sure they were lizards of some kind.

Since we kind of accidentally destroyed their nest and a storm was coming we set out to give them somewhere safe to hatch.

 We got a pot and filled it with damp dirt like the one we found them in but smaller. After candling each egg, we made a divot in the dirt and placed each egg half in and half off, careful not to turn them too much and damage them.

My mom did some research and found that the eggs needed to be kept somewhere with good humidity so we got a plastic book crate, drilled some holes in it, and filled the bottom with wet paper towels.

The mystery eggs were put in the garage where it was just as hot as outside but safe from the huge thunderstorm.

Day 2 of eggs and nothing happened. We didn’t think anything would happen just yet but we were all a little worried that we were doing the wrong thing. It was my day to go finish up cleaning up the dirt and shards from the broken pot in the yard when I found another egg.

I picked it up and it wasn’t as firm as the others. In fact it was leaking. I called my mom and candled the little guy. He was just as alive as the others were. There wasn’t much room in the new incubator with the other eggs so we got a tiny beta fish tank we haven’t used in years and fixed it up for the egg. We put it in the garage next to the others.

Now this egg had me worried. He had been out in the storm with a damaged egg. I would go out and check on him throughout the day. Not a thing happened and I was starting to worry that he didn’t make it.

Day 3 of eggs was interesting. I went out to check again on little egg 11 with my mom. She asked how the others were doing and wanted to see. It was fogged up on the inside so I shone a light through and saw it. A head! A little baby lizard head poking out of the egg! 

The incubator was taken inside and everyone was gathered around the table. We would all switch from watching the eggs, to someone doing research, to checking the eggs, to setting up the empty tank we had, to checking the eggs again.

All together 4 little lizards were hatching. They’d kick for a bit in their eggs but then fall asleep because it was so tiring. 

After a while my mom got concerned about one that hadn’t opened its eyes in ages. It wasn’t moving. I picked up the egg and put it in my hand. I rubbed the shell and gently gave it little tugs. Then out the baby came!

This little guy came out healthy and fast. After a brief look-around he ran out of my hand and back into the pot. Then over the edge of the pot to explore the hides we fit in. 

After 4 of the babies fully hatched and we figured out what we were going to do, we put the incubators in the spare tank we had so we could keep an eye on them. At that point it was a little past 1:00am and a 5th egg started to hatch.

Day 4 of eggs and lizards we went to the local pet store to get something that these super small babies could eat. Luckily, Petco carries super small crickets and meal worms. We loaded up on reptile supplies: bus, vitamin dust, hides, heat lamps, you name it we probably bought it.

Upon getting home my mother and I readied the tank.

At that point all but two eggs had hatched. One we thought wasn’t going to make it because it didn’t react when I candled it, and the other was number 11 who was found a day late and broken. We decided to move the two into one incubator instead of two while we moved 9 of the lizards into their temporary home.

When we look for them they were hiding in the incubator all curled up together under a plant we had put in. They actually seem to do that everywhere they decide to hide which is kind of surprising to me. I thought they were going to all be really territorial with each other. But they seem to like each other more than I thought they would.

After a few hours, number 11 hatched and he was just as healthy and fast as the others despite being through the storm earlier. Not too long after that, the last egg hatched. He was much smaller than the others but equally as fast. We added them both to the tank with the others and they hid as quick as a ninja.

Day 5 of lizards was mostly setting up heat lamps and lights and worrying if they were okay. They stayed hidden under rocks and brush. We never saw them eat so we went back to researching.

Day 6 of lizards and they are alive and well! They’ve taken a liking to the new heat lamp and have been scuttling around there all day. I even saw one eat a cricket! 

Even the smallest of the bunch was enjoying himself in the warmth :)

I will continue to take care of them until it comes time to release them back to their natural habitat. I’ll keep you all updated. It’s such a strange and wonderful learning experience :) 

can someone tell me where this fanon trend of making ladybug hate chat’s puns, hate chat’s humor, hate chat’s flirting, and be all around irritated with him in general comes from? seriously. 

because 

Originally posted by akumatisedmari

ladybug

Originally posted by checkyesbraixen

loves chat

Originally posted by miraculousgifsbug

so much?????

Originally posted by aeotaetumbles

like just?????

Originally posted by miladybugnoir

i don’t know?????

Originally posted by ladynoir-aka-life

where you guys are getting this from??????

it kills me when ppl write articles about “straight” women wanting to hook up w women and they cite all of this scientific research about sexuality being “flexible” and talk about how “labels aren’t necessary” and the kinsey fucking scale without even once mentioning that maybe, just maybe, women want to date and marry men exclusively – despite being attracted to other women – because society has demonized, punished, and persecuted lesbian and bisexual women for centuries

I Don’t Think Jacob’s Captors Let Him Go By Accident

by reddit user nowwegotcha

Jacob became one popular dude during my sophomore year of high school, two years ago. In the middle of the year, he just showed up. His family had moved him away from their old home, but his reputation somehow got loose in the hallways.

At the age of twelve, Jacob had been kidnapped from his home in the middle of the night. His parents had been apparently drugged by an unknown person, and their son had been stolen. No one even called the police until the parents woke up. No witnesses, fingerprints, ransom notes, nothing.

Keep reading

“God I love you,” he gasped as he broke away for air.

Ladybug froze, her eyes widening in awe at his sudden declaration. Adrien was poised above her, his shirt hanging loosely off his shoulders, one arm holding his weight while the other hand ran lovingly through her hair. He looked at her with eyes full of pure adoration, as if she was the sun and moon and stars all wrapped together into one glorious being.

For all their months of stolen kisses and secret meetings, they had never put a name to their relationship. Never once had they put words behind the feelings that drove them together.

super quick ladrien for bane for her new nsfw series of fics, drawn to you :D this one is from chapter 1, which i died over. it’s so sweet ;0; it’s smut but it’s super jdkfsklfjskl just really romantic and i’m still dead about it srsly ;0; bless u baneeeeeee 

My country is celebrating 100 years of independence this year and we are also achieving marriage equality on the 1st of March. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate our achievements as a nation than celebrating equality and human rights. Congratulations, Finland, may there be many more victories such as this and may your freedom last a thousand years!

(yes, the Finnish flag appears backwards because she’s waving it around)

4

school is helpful, but you are a priority

3

So this is love, so this is what makes life divine…

anonymous asked:

Hey, you're awesome, thanks for existing, basically ^_^ Anyway, I wanted to know if you have any tips on how to write different personalities? My characters (all of them) always end up with the same default personality that I fall back on. Thanks!

Thanks for your question, darling!  I think most of us have struggled with this – after all, we’re conditioned to one way of thinking, feeling, and acting for as long as we live.  That doesn’t necessarily mean we write characters like ourselves, though.  In fact, many of us have a “default character” that’s sassier than we are, sweeter than we are, or in some way different enough from us that we still feel like we’re writing a character.

The problem, then, isn’t that we can’t visualize a different personality than ours.  On the whole, we can.  What we’re missing are the small details that make it feel whole – otherwise, it’s like painting the same room six different colors and trying to pass it off as six different rooms.  Different dominant traits can’t hide the fact that you’re working with one template!

So the question we’re left with: what are the traits we’re missing?  And how can we change them to create a unique and whole personality?


Three Types of Character Traits

There are, as the title suggests, three major categories of personality traits as I see it: fundamental traits, acquired traits, and detrimental traits.  A well-rounded character needs some of each to be three-dimensional and realistic.

Fundamental Traits

The fundamental traits of a person’s character are not as simple as interests and preferences; they are the very base of all decisions and desires.  They are either learned in early life or developed over a long period of time, rooting deeply into the personality.  A few examples of fundamental personality traits include:

  • Upbringing – The word choice here is conscious, as upbringing encompasses many different aspects of a person’s development.  Consider who raised them, and with what morals and practices they were raised to adulthood.  Consider their influences, both familial, social, and in media; consider the relationships that were normalized during their development, as well as the living conditions (financially, emotionally, environmentally, etc.).  The people, places, emotions, and conflicts made common during a person’s developmental period are essential to their personality in adulthood.  This is why psychologists often draw present-day problems back to a person’s childhood memories – because those formative years can subconsciously dictate so much of a person’s future!
  • Values – These may not coincide with the values a person is raised to hold, but upbringing certainly has an influence on this. A person’s values will direct the course of their life through every decision, large and small.  You don’t need to outline everything your character believes is important – every moral and every law they agree/disagree with. But those values which stand above others will give your character purpose.  A few of my favorite examples are: Jane from Jane the Virgin (whose initial storyline is heavily based on her religion and desire for a beautiful love story, as well as her childhood influences who inspired these values) and Han Solo from Star Wars (whose character development rested upon his values shifting from money and gratification to more honorable things).
  • Beliefs – Different from values, beliefs are a more general set of guidelines for how a person believes things are supposed to be.  Beliefs can also be a source of great conflict, as a character tries to stay aligned with their beliefs despite other values or desires.  These beliefs can be established systems, like religion or politics; they can also include more personal belief systems, like nihilism or veganism.  A characters beliefs, like their values, can change over the course of the story – but even if a character is questioning one system of belief, like religion or pacifism, they should have other belief systems in place to govern some of their activity.
  • Reputation – A lot of human activity, whether consciously or not, is dictated by how others perceive them (or how they believe others perceive them).  There are two types of reputation: personal and passing.  For instance, a woman named Sally who gains a personal reputation of sleeping around will behave in reaction to this reputation – either sleeping around because everyone already expects it of her, or specifically not hooking up because she wants to shake this reputation, or developing a thicker skin to deal with the rumors until it passes.  A man named Billy who, because of his tattoos, bears a passing reputation as an intimidating man will either try to soften his demeanor with strangers, own up to the image, or at least learn to expect judgment from strangers as a consequence.
  • Self-Image – Also relevant to a person’s behavior is the way they perceive themselves, which can often have little to do with their reputation.  A lot of self-image is based on definitive moments or phases in the past.  For instance: for several years after I started wearing contacts and cutting my hair, I still saw myself, in dreams at night, with long hair and glasses.  One of my friends, similarly, could not seem to notice when boys would flirt with her during sophomore year – because she still saw herself as an awkward middle schooler with braces, and not as the charming cheerleader with the great smile.
    Inversely, self-image can be inflated, causing character to behave as though they are funnier, smarter, or more prepared than they truly are (see: the rest of my sophomore acquaintances).  This can be an overlooked character flaw opportunity – or flawportunity…

Originally posted by alliefallie


Acquired Traits

Now we move on to the acquired traits of personality, which are the ones you’re more likely to find on a character sheet or a list of “10 Questions for Character Development”, alongside a million other things like their zodiac sign and their spirit animal.  But the traits I’m about to outline are a little more relevant to a character’s behavior, and more importantly, how to make this behavior unique from other characters’ behavior.  The following traits will be learned by your characters throughout their life (and their story), and are more likely to shift and grow with time:

  • Interests – I know, I had to reach deep down into my soul to think of this one.  But it’s true!  Interests, both in childhood/adolescence and in adulthood, are an important part of a character’s personality and lifestyle.  Childhood interests both reveal something about the character (for instance: my nephew loves trains, Legos, and building, suggesting a future interest in construction or engineering) and create values that can last for a lifetime.  Current interests affect career choice, social circles, and daily activity for everyone.  Forgotten or rejected interests can be the source of pet peeves, fears, or bad memories. There’s a reason I’ll never play with Polly Pockets again, and it 100% has to do with bloody fingertips and a purse that wouldn’t open.
  • Sense of Humor – This can be a little hard to define, understandably.  If you were to ask me what my sense of humor is, I’d probably start with a few stupid memes, pass by Drake & Josh on the way, and somehow wind up telling you bad puns or quoting Chelsea Peretti’s standup comedy. A person’s sense of humor can be complex and contradictory!  Sometimes we just laugh at stuff because someone said it in a funny way.  But anyway, to help you boil this down to something useful: take a look at a few kinds of comedy and relate it to your character’s maturity level.  Do they laugh when someone lets out a toot?  Are they the kind of person to mutter, “That’s what she said,” or simply try not to laugh when something sounds dirty?  Can puns make them crack a smile?  Do they like political humor?  Do cat videos kill them?  Is their humor particularly dark?  Can the mere sound of someone else laughing make them laugh?  Figure out where your character’s sense of humor is, and you’ll feel closer to them already.
  • Pet Peeves – For every interest a person may have, and everything that makes them laugh, there’s something else that can piss them off, large- or small-scale.  Are they finnicky about their living space and neatness? Do they require a lot of privacy? Do certain sounds or behaviors drive them crazy?  What qualities are intolerable in a romantic interest for them? What kind of comments or beliefs make them roll their eyes?  If you need help, just try imagining their worst enemy – someone whose every word or action elicits the best eye-rolls and sarcastic remarks and even a middle finger or two – and ask yourself, what about this person makes them that mortal enemy?  What behaviors or standards make them despicable to your character?  That’s all it takes.
  • Skills – Everybody has them, and they’re not just something we’re born with.  Skills can be natural talent, sure, but they’re also cultivated from time, values, and interests.  What is your character okay at?  What are they good at?  What are they fantastic at?  Maybe they can cook.  Maybe they have a beautiful eye for colors.  Maybe they have an inherent sense of right and wrong that others admire. Maybe they’re super-athletic or incredibly patient or sharp as a tack or sweet as a cupcake.  Maybe they know how to juggle, or maybe they’re secretly the most likely of all their friends to survive a zombie apocalypse.  Where do they shine?  What would make someone look at them and think, “Wow, I wish I were them right now”?
  • Desires – A good way to “separate” one character from the next is to define what it is they want, and then use every other detail to dictate how they pursue that goal.  Every real person has a desire, whether they’ve defined it or not – whether it’s something huge, like fame or a family of five with triplet girls and a beach house on an island, or something small, like good grades for the semester.  These desires can cause a person to revise their values or forsake their morals; and these desires can conflict with other people’s desires, influencing how people interact with each other.  Remember that every character is living their own story, even if it’s not the story you’re telling.
  • Communication Style – A majorly overlooked character trait in pop fiction is unique communication styles.  Having every character feel comfortable arguing, or bursting out with the words, “I love you,” is unrealistic.  Having every character feel paralyzed at the idea of confronting a bully or being honest to their spouse is also unrealistic.  There should be a healthy mix of communicators in a group of characters. Some people are too softspoken to mouth off at their racist lab partner.  Some people wouldn’t see their girlfriend kissing another guy and just walk away without saying something.  Some people just don’t react to conflict by raising their voice; some people enjoy sharing their opinions or giving the correct answer in class.  Boldness, social skills, and emotional health all have a part to play in how people communicate their thoughts – so keep this in mind to create a more realistic, consistent character.
  • Emotional Expression – Along the same lines but not the same, emotional expression is more focal on feelings than thoughts.  If you’ve ever heard of the fight-or-flight response, the different types of anger, the stages of grief, or the five love languages, then you’re aware of different “classifications” of emotional expression and management.  Read up on some of those things, and think about how your character handles emotions like happiness, sadness, fear, anger, loneliness, paranoia, and so forth.

Detrimental Traits

While acquired traits are certainly more enjoyable to brainstorm during the creation process, detrimental traits are as important – or even more important – to the character’s wholeness as well as their role in the story.  Not only do these negative or limiting traits make your character realistic, relatable, and conflicted – they create a need for other characters and their strengths to move the plot forward.  A few examples of detrimental traits include:

  • Flaws – Character flaws are probably the first thing that came to your mind while reading this, but they’re the essence of the category.  Flaws in a character’s personality, morality, or behavior can be a source of character development; they set an individual on their own path and provide a unique motivation for them.  Having Character A struggle with sobriety while Character B learns to be a more patient mother can do a lot to separate their stories and personalities from each other.  Even if certain flaws don’t reach a point of growth, they create a third aspect to personality and force us, as writers, to be more creative with how our characters get from Point A to Point B, and what they screw up along the way.
  • Fears – Everyone has fears, whether we’re conscious of them or not – and I’m not talking about phobias or “things that give you shivers”.  Just like everyone has a primary motivation throughout life (romance, family, success, meaning, peace of mind, etc.), everyone has a fear behind that motivation (loneliness, failure, emptiness, anxiety).  We all have something we don’t want to happen places we never want to be and things we never want to do.  We’ve all been in situations that mildly bothered others but wildly affected us at the same time.  For me, it’s a lack of autonomy, or in any way being forced to do something or be somewhere against my will.
    What does this mean for me?  It means that when other people have nightmares about being chased by an axe murderer, I have nightmares about being kidnapped and locked up.  It means that I’m continually aware of my “escape plan” if something goes wrong in my living situation, and I’m hypersensitive to someone telling me, “You have to do this.”  It means I struggle to follow rules and usually don’t get along with authority figures because I have to assert my independence to them.  It’s irrational and continual and doesn’t just affect me in one situation; it subconsciously directs my steps if I let it.  That’s how real, guttural fears work. Phobias are only skin deep, and they don’t make you feel any closer to the character.

Originally posted by giantmonster

  • Secrets – Even goody two-shoes Amber from the swim team, with her blonde blonde hair and her good good grades, has a secret.  Everybody does, even if it’s not a purposeful, “I have a deep, dark secret,” sort of secret. We have things we don’t tell people, just because they’re embarrassing, or painful, or too deep to get into, or they don’t paint us in a good light.  While the secrets themselves tell a lot about a person, so do the reasons a person keeps a secret.  Hiding something out of shame suggests a person is prideful, or critical of themselves, or holds themselves to a higher standard than they hold others.  Hiding something painful suggests that the person struggles to handle sadness or regret, or that they feel uncomfortable showing raw emotion in front of loved ones. And so on and so forth.
  • Conflict – Whether internal, interpersonal, legal, moral, societal, or what have you, conflict will limit your character’s actions at every turn.  A story is nothing without conflict driving the plot in different directions and causing your character to rethink both their plans and their lifestyle.  Without Katniss’s moral conflict over killing other tributes, The Hunger Games would be the story of a girl who entered an arena, killed a lot of people, and lived the rest of her life rich and comfortable.  If Luke Skywalker didn’t have interpersonal conflict with Darth Vader, Star Wars would be the war-story of a guy who joined a rebellion and then… yeah.
  • Health – Physical, mental, and emotional health is a huge limiting factor for characters that often goes untouched, but it’s valuable nonetheless.  Not everyone has a clean bill of health and can jump off trains without pulling a muscle, go through a traumatic life experience without any hint of depression or anxiety, or watch a loved one die in gunfire and shove right on without emotional repercussions. Consider creating a character who’s not perfect – who isn’t perfectly in-shape or abled, or neurotypical or stable day-to-day, or completely clean and clear of residual heartache, unhealthy relationships, or bad emotional habits.  Don’t define them by these traits, of course – but don’t feel that you can’t write a character with health issues without writing a “sick character.”

So this post got ridiculously long, but I hope it works as a reference for you when creating unique characters.  Remember that you don’t need to outline all of this information to create an individual, realistic character.  These are just some relevant ideas to get you started!  It’s up to you, as the writer, to decide what’s necessary and what’s excessive for your creative process.

Still, I hope a majority of this is helpful to you!  If you have any more questions, be sure to send them in and we’ll get back to you :)  Good luck!

- Mod Joanna ♥️


If you need advice on general writing or fanfiction, you should maybe ask us!

If You’re Too Busy For These 5 Things: Your Life Is More Off-Course Than You Think

Originally posted by teapotsandroses

Despite turbulence and other conditions keeping airplanes off-course 90 percent of flight time, most flights arrive in the correct destination at the intended time.

The reason for this phenomenon is quite simple — through air traffic control and the inertial guidance system, pilots are constantly course correcting. When immediately addressed, these course corrections are not hard to manage. When these course corrections don’t regularly happen, catastrophe can result.
For example, in 1979, a passenger jet with 257 people on board left New Zealand for a sight seeing flight to Antarctica and back. However, the pilots were unaware that someone had altered the flight coordinates by a measly two degrees, putting them 28 miles east of where they assumed to be.

Approaching Antarctica, the pilots descended to give the passengers a view of the brilliant landscapes. Sadly, the incorrect coordinates had placed them directly in the path of the active volcano, Mount Erebus.

The snow on the volcano blended with the clouds above, deceiving the pilots into thinking they were flying above flat ground. When the instruments sounded a warning of the quickly rising ground, it was too late. The plane crashed into the volcano killing everyone on board.

An error of only a few degrees brought about an enormous tragedy.

Small things — if not corrected — become big things, always.

This flight is an analogy of our lives. Even seemingly inconsequential aspects of our lives can create ripples and waves of consequence — for better or worse.

How are you piloting your life?

What feedback are you receiving to correct your course?

How often do you check your guidance system? Do you even have a guidance system?

Where is your destination?

When are you going to get there?

Are you currently off-course? How long have you been off-course?

How would you know if you are on the right course?

How can you minimize the turbulence and other conditions distracting your path?



1. Organizing Your Life

I don’t think I’m alone in being slightly scattered and sloppy about certain areas of my life.

Life is busy.

It’s hard to keep everything organized and tidy. And maybe you don’t want to have an organized life. But moving forward will require far less energy if you remove the excessive baggage and tension. Everything in your life is energy. If you’re carrying too much — physical or emotional — your progress will be hampered.

In his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey explains that some things are important, and some things are urgent. Most people spend their life prioritizing urgent and “shallow” activity (e.g., answering emails, putting out proverbial fires, and just day-to-day stuff).

Very few people have organized their lives to prioritize almost exclusively important and “deep” activity (e.g., learning, health, relationships, travel, and goals).

No one cares about your success more than you do. If you’re not a meticulous accountant about the important details of your life, then you aren’t responsible enough to have what you say you want.



So how do you organize your life?

Environmental Energy

  • Is your living space cluttered and messy or simple and neat?
  • Do you keep stuff (like clothes) you no longer use?
  • If you have a car, is it clean or just another place to keep your clutter and garbage?
  • Does your environment facilitate the emotions you consistently want to experience?
  • Does your environment drain or improve your energy?



Financial Energy

  • Do you have unnecessary debt?
  • Do you know how many dollars you spend each month?
  • Do you know how many dollars you make each month?
  • Are you making as much money as you’d like to be?
  • What’s holding you back from creating more value in other people’s lives?
  • Most people don’t track their expenses. But if they did, they’d be shocked how much money they waste on stuff like eating out.
  • I’ll be honest, as a creative and right-brained person, administrative and logistical details bog me down. I procrastinate and avoid them. But this lackluster behavior is holding me back from the very goals I’m trying to accomplish.
  • Until I can hone in on my finances, I won’t have a healthier financial life, regardless of my income. Until I take complete responsibility of my finances, I’ll always be a slave to money.
  • And so will you.


Relational Energy

  • Are your relationships the most meaningful and enjoyable part of your life?
  • Do you spend enough time nurturing the relationships that really matter?
  • Do you maintain toxic relationships that no longer serve you?
  • Are you authentic and honest in your relationships?
  • Like money, most people’s relationships are not organized in a conscious manner. But with something so critical, we should take better stock of our relationships.


Health Energy

  • Do you eat with the end in mind?
  • Are you conscious of and in control of the foods you put in your body?
  • Does the food you eat improve or worsen the other areas of your life?
  • Does your body reflect your highest ideals?
  • Is your body as strong and fit as you want it to be?
  • Are you healthier now than you were three months ago?
  • Health is wealth. If you’re bed ridden, who cares how organized the other areas of your life are? It’s so easy to put our health on the side, such as foregoing sleep, over consuming stimulants, and making poor eating habits.
  • Little things become big things. And eventually everything catches up.


Spiritual Energy

  • Do you have a sense of purpose in life?
  • Have you come to terms with life and death in a way you resonate with?
  • How much power do you have in designing your future?
  • Death, it turns out, is not your greatest fear. Actually, your greatest fear is reaching death and having never truly lived.
  • When you organize your spiritual life, you become clear on what your life is about. You become clear on what you stand for, and how you want to spend each day. You develop conviction for what really matters to you, and what is a “distraction.”
  • No matter how well defined, everyone has a moral system governing their behavior. Most people believe in being honest and good people. But until you organize your spiritual life, you’ll experience internal conflict when acting contrary to your values and vision.


Time

  • How much of your time do you feel in complete control of?
  • Is your time being wasted on things you don’t intrinsically enjoy?
  • Are the activities you spend your time doing moving you toward your ideal future?
  • Are you spending most of your time furthering your own agenda or someone else’s?
  • What activities should you remove from your life?
  • How much time do you waste each day?
  • What would your ideal day look like?
  • What activities could you outsource or automate that take up your time?
  • Until you organize your time, it will disappear and move quickly. Before you know it, you’ll wonder where all the time went.
  • Once you organize your time, it will slow down. You’ll be able to live more presently. You’ll be able to experience time as you want to. You’ll control your time rather than the other way around.


Stop What You’re Doing and Get Organized

Getting organized and conscious of your present circumstances (e.g., your environment, finances, relationships, purpose, and time) puts you in a position to build toward the future you want.

The fastest way to move forward in life is not doing more. It starts with stopping the behaviors holding you back.

If you want to get in shape, you’ll make more progress by stopping your negative behaviors than starting good ones. So, before you start exercising, purge the junk food from your diet. Until you stop the damage, you’ll always be taking one step forward and one step backward.

Before you focus on making more money, reduce your spending. Detach yourself from needing more and become content with what you have. Until you do this, it doesn’t matter how much money you make. You’ll always spend what you have (or more).

This is a matter of stewardship. Rather than wanting more, more, more , it’s key to take proper care of what you currently have. Organize yourself. Dial it in. Your life is a garden. What good is planting if you don’t prepare the soil and remove the weeds?

Why do most people stay stuck? They never organize. They try adding more, or being more productive, or taking a different approach. So before you “hustle,” get organized.



2. Plan And Invest In Your Future


“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” — Chinese Proverb


Taking these foundational areas of life and organizing them is essential to creating your ideal future.

Very few people consciously plan and design their life. It’s actually startling how few Americans are investing in their future. Most Millennials are terrified of the stock market and long-term investing. Most Baby Boomers never developed the discipline to invest, but instead maintained an addiction to American consumption.

Even still, you have complete power over the details of your life the moment you decide you’re worthy of that power. That decision is manifest in tangible behaviors, like fixing or removing troubled relationships and saying “no” to activities that are nothing more than a waste of your time.

You get to decide right now.

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” — Benjamin Franklin

Your vision should be based on your why, not so much your what.

Your why is your reason, your what is how that is manifest. And your “what” can happen in a ton of different ways. For example, my why is to help people get clarity on the life they want to live, and to help them achieve their goals as quickly as possible. My what could be blogging, parenting, being a student, going out to dinner, and several other things.

Too many people think creating a vision is about nailing down exactly what they want in the next 20 years. The problem with this mega long-term approach to goal setting is that it actually slows your potential.

Instead of having a pre-set plan of what he wants to do, Tim Ferriss executes on 3–6 month experiments that he’s currently excited about. He told Darren Hardy in an interview that he has no clue what the outcome of his experiments might be. So there’s no point in making long-term plans. He has no clue what doors will open up, and he wants to be open to the best possibilities.

But his why doesn’t change.

When you are proactively creating and collaborating with many different people, the whole becomes different and better than the sum of its parts. This is why you can’t plan for everything. Because at the highest level, you’ve transcended your need to have things exactly how you want them. You know that with the help of other people, you can do things 10X, 100X, or 1,000X bigger and better than you could ever conceive on your own.

Rather than expecting a particular outcome, you are completely confident that the best outcome will ensue. This is how you create and contribute beyond anything you could ever comprehend. Collaboration and synergy lead to new innovations and ultimately, human evolution. It’s how the old and outdated rules are redefined and replaced with new and better ones, thus changing the global environment.

Invest in Your Future

When you choose to forego momentary gratification in order to have an enhanced future, you are investing in your future. Most people fail to do this successfully.

Most people don’t purposefully invest in their finances, relationships, health, and time. But when you invest in yourself (and your future),you ensure your future present moments will continue to get richer and more enjoyable.

Thus, your life will continue getting better and more in line with your ideal vision.



3. Tracking Important Metrics


“When performance is measured, performance improves. When performance is measured and reported, the rate of improvement accelerates. ”

— Thomas Monson


Getting organized and investing in your future are futile if you’re not tracking. In regards to the most important areas of your life, you need to be on top of what’s going on.

Tracking is difficult. If you’ve tried it before, chances are, you quit within a few days.

Research has repeatedly found that when behavior is tracked and evaluated, it improves drastically.

If you’re not tracking the key areas of your life, than you’re probably more off-course than you think. If you were to be honest with yourself, you’d be stunned how out-of-control things have become. As J.M. Barrie, author of Peter Pan, has said:

“The life of every man is a diary in which he means to write one story, and writes another; and his humblest hour is when he compares the volume as it is with what he vowed to make it.”

The cool part is, once you get organized, make a plan, and start tracking, desired change happens quickly.

Track the things that are closely related to your core priorities. As Jim Collins said in Good to Great, 

“If you have more than three priorities you have none.”

Your priorities reflect your why, and thus, your life should be build around your priorities. Not the other way around. Consequently, if you’re serious about improving upon the foundation of your life, track your priorities. 

For example:

Your key relationships

Your finances

Self improvement (such as health or how you use your time)

You can track whatever priorities you have. But I can absolutely promise you that once you do, your conscious awareness of these things will increase. You’re ability to control these things will enhance. Your confidence will wax strong. And your life will become simpler.

You’ll be living a simple, yet organized and refined life. You’ll be responsible, which put another way is freedom.



4. Prayer and Meditation To Reduce Noise

“I have so much to do today that I’m going to need to spend three hours in prayer in order to be able to get it all done.” — Martin Luther

There’s a lot of emphasis on hustle these days.

Hustle, hustle, hustle.

But all the hustle in the wrong direction isn’t going to help you. Yes, by hustling you can fail often, fail fast, and fail forward. However, as Thomas Merton has said:

“People may spend their whole lives climbing the ladder of success only to find, once they reach the top, that the ladder is leaning against the wrong wall.”

This happens way too often. We get caught in the thick of thin things. Far too late do we realize that in our mad rush, we were pursuing someone else’s goals instead of our own.

But spending a large chuck of time in prayer and/or meditation does more than provide clarity to what you’re doing. These things open your mind up to possibilities you can’t get while busy.

For example, a few days ago I spent the entire morning praying, thinking deeply, listening to inspirational music, and writing in my journal. A few hours into this process, an idea came to me that is absolute gold.

I also got insights regarding important relationships during that time, which when those insights came in, I immediately sent out emails or texts to those people. Amazing collaborations and mentorships were the resultant outcome.

But there’s more.

Your thoughts are incredibly powerful. They actually govern not only you but those around you. Think about it, if you think positively about the people you’re around, their lives are better. This is why people “send positive energy” or pray for other people. It actually makes a difference.

Your thoughts create endless ripples — even waves — of consequence all around you.

While praying and/or meditating for a large portion of time, the level of your thoughts will elevate. And interesting things will begin happening. If you’re uncomfortable with the idea of miracles, you can think of it as luck.

Whatever you call it, when you spend large portions of time every day in deep reflection mode, luck strikes. Stuff happens that is completely outside of your control for your benefit.

For instance, during my deep dive into my mind and soul, one of my favorite authors came across my blog. He re-tweeted one of my articles and reached out to me. Now we’re friends. We’ve spent lots of time together. He’s helped me get a book contract. He’s even had me speak at one of his events!

If you’re skeptical of these ideas. Give it a try. Why do you think the majority of the world’s most successful have rituals such as these? There is a higher realm you can tap into that unlocks limitless possibilities.

The only thing holding you back from those things is your mind.



5. Move Toward Your Goals Every Single Day

How many days go by where you did nothing to move toward your big goals?

Probably too many.

Life is busy.

If you don’t purposefully carve time out every day to progress and improve, then without question, your time will get lost in the vacuum of our increasingly crowded lives. Before you know it, you’ll be old and withered, wondering where all that time went.

As Harold Hill has said: 

“You pile up enough tomorrows, and you’ll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays.”

After you’ve gotten yourself organized, made plans, started tracking, and gotten into the habit of prayer/meditation, taking action and hustling will be automatic. You’ll be focused on the right thing and in the right frame of mind to actually execute.

Its good practice to do these kind of things at the beginning of your day before your will power depletes.

If you don’t, it simply will not get done. By the end of your day, you’ll be exhausted. You’ll be fried. There will be a million reasons to just start tomorrow. And you will start tomorrow — which is never.

So your mantra becomes: 

The worst comes first. Do that thing you’ve been needing to do. Then do it again tomorrow.

If you take just one step toward your big goals every day, you’ll realize those goals weren’t really far away.



Conclusion

It’s really easy to get off course in life. Like airplanes, we constantly need to make course corrections.

But we can ensure we get where we want in life by organizing ourselves, planning for our future, tracking our progress, heightening our mindset, and hustling.

Do this long enough and you’ll be shocked.

Go!

under-rated scene of the night: allura saying ‘my lady and i will protect emon’ and then turning around to find kima 0.3 seconds away from decking a wyvern rider because i have won every staring contest i have ever had with a wyvern of course i can ride one

WARNING: VIEWER DISCRETION IS ADVISED. FOOTAGE SHOWS SHOOTING ATTACK ON LAS VEGAS CONCERT.


LAS VEGAS METRO POLICE PRESS CONFERENCE ON SHOOTING ATTACK:


According to Sheriff Joe Lombardo of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, 20+ people are dead and 100+ people are injured following a shooting attack on the Vegas Strip last night. The first gunshots rang out at 2208 local time from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay casino and resort, above the Route 91 Harvest country music festival. The gunman was killed by SWAT members. Among the dead are several police officers who were attending the concert. Among the injured are at least two police officers who responded to the shooting, one is critical. An exact number of injuries and fatalities cannot be accurately reported at this time, according to the Sheriff. Police are searching for the gunman’s female roommate, Marilou Danley - Asian female, 4'11", 111lbs as a person of interest in this attack. No other persons are believed to have been involved in this shooting, only the unidentified male gunman, with his female roommate as a person of interest. No explosives were discovered at the scene and no other attacks were carried out at other hotels, despite social media reports. The entire area remains locked down, the scene is active but no further threat to the public is believed to exist. All area hospitals are treating patients from this incident. The Red Cross is in need of immediate blood donations for live saving efforts, so locals are asked to donate as soon as possible.

[Information accurate as of 0500 EDT 02 October 2017]

Stealing a few minutes away from the ship and crew.

Once interlinked, fates go around and return once more
All in accordance with the wishes of humans

At Jim and Spock’s wedding, Ben Sulu catches the bouquet and ignores everyone’s good-natured ‘you’re already married’ comments. He gives himself a moment to smell the flower arrangement his husband put together, then turns to him and asks, “Vow renewal?”

Hikaru Sulu, of course, says, “Yes.”

So today is the WINGS tour in Seoul

Baekhyun is there.

The Hwarang Cast - aka Yoonwoo, Jihan, Minho, Hyungsik and Seojun (apparently the last two)

Kai is there.

Taemin is there.

I’m just so so weak for these friends supporting each other. How did they even manage to get tickets?? I’m sure the tickets sold out within like a minute or two considering how much the fandom has grown.

6

[On being on the show and it’s long running legacy]

It means a great deal to me! I mean, I-I-I wasn’t here from the very beginning but at this point I’ve now been here as long as or–longer then some of the people who were here from the beginning. So, it’s a crazy thing.