It’s the NEW style…

Four and three and two and one (What up!)

When Mike D, MCA and Ad-Rock first organized as the Beastie Boys, they were among the hardest of the hardcore in 1979. Rather than abandon their sound for their love of rap music, they made music history by changing the scene instead of themselves.  As it turned out, they could do both. At the same time.

If only it were that easy for the rest of us…

The saving grace is that we’re not alone in this.  A month ago…

  • I hadn’t read The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.
  • I hadn’t heard any of the Question The Rules modules from Johnny B. Truant & Lee Stranahan.
  • I hadn’t received optimystical clarity from Mynde Mayfield.
  • I hadn’t asked a few particular people for guidance, or heard the rather confounding feedback I eventually received.
  • I hadn’t gone to the NC CEO Forum or heard the amazing speakers discuss how they achieved a triple bottom line in their businesses.
  • I hadn’t seen that (I can not believe I’m about to say this) Glee episode with Neil Patrick Harris about dreams.
  • I hadn’t gotten my new tattoo, a cover-up for another tattoo that represented a period in my life I finally became ready to leave behind.

And really, it was the last one that came with a bullet because it was an intentional change made to represent this moment…this time in my life where I’m standing at the crossroads, looking forward at what my life could be, knowing the only thing these paths share is a change from what my life currently includes. I now have a permanent reminder of who I am today and I couldn’t be happier.

The tattoo sealed the deal, but it was a combination of all these things together that created a rather perfect existential storm.

Kickin’ the clarity…

I’ve seen how other people before me have worked through trying times when it feels like nothing is certain and everything is up for grabs. And I’ve seen how they rocked it into six-figure businesses that fulfill them.

I understand Resistance and refuse to accept it as my driver.

Most importantly, I’ve questioned everything I thought was solid (spoiler alert: there really is no spoon) and have come to realize I don’t have to change who I am in order to change what I do.

True, there are tons of people writing about sustainability. Are any of them business-focused pervs who are incapable of providing a value proposition without giggling at the word proposition?

There are a lot of people who discuss grieving and the importance of reconciling your past in order to be fully present for the now.  Are any of them twisted enough to tell you it’s okay to feel anger while cracking on the reaper with jokes that would make your mama blush?

Even if the answer is yes, I’ve realized I actually do have things to offer that won’t compromise my current line of work or my integrity.  I don’t need to take on an assumed name (yet) and I don’t need to write to you in a fashion that reads like comment bait.  While I certainly hope you comment, that’s not my goal here.

Short time frame, big difference…

If I learned anything from the last 30 days, it’s that I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be right now. More, I’m exactly who I’m supposed to be.

I’ve been so focused on change that I forgot it’s okay to be the constant. I don’t have to be the one who changes all the time. And neither do you.

As I bless this site with a new header (created by the ever-awesome Marty Whitmore) that more accurately captures what I’m trying to do here, I also bless myself with a little kindness for all the crappy things I’ve been doing to my mind.  It is true that I’m a total freak, but people have built revolutions on this kind of thing… so why not me?

If this resonates with you at all, I’d love to hear your experience and insight.  It’s been so liberating to find I’m not as alone as I thought I was…

I hope you know the same is true for you…


  1. Wow. Ash has nothing on you.

    I've actually been putting off getting a tattoo that I've had planned for about 5 years now. It's not that I don't want it, I just worry that what it represents will soon be left behind in my life as well. Not sure if getting the tattoo will help me hang onto it, or if it will just be a sad reminder when it's gone. Difficult decision to make, and the fact that I keep putting it off (first it was money, now this) makes me think I've already subconciously decided it and just can't accept it. I can certainly sympathize with your sentiments of change.

  2. “That's right… who's laughing now… who's laughing NOW?!”

    I could totally take Ash in a knife fight. Or a chainsaw fight. I happen to know how to use both…

    Thanks for commenting, Mr. Sweeney. This was my fourth tattoo (covered my third) and I have to say, I've never regretted my first two. I dealt with the third for 12 years before doing this and I'm so glad I did. Of course, I'm a tattoo person. It's a deeply personal decision you have to make for yourself. You can choose to not get a tattoo a million times over, but once you do it you can't go back. You need to do whatever feels right for you. If that involves getting one, let me know. I can hook you up with a really great artist who does great work at a reasonable price :)

  3. I've got only one, but it's below the sleeve line, so people always assume I have more. Rather than being cryptic about it, I might as well just say that I designed a volleyball-themed tattoo. Since I left college, I haven't had much time to play, and I worry I won't play consistently again. If I get into a league or a pick-up group, I'll probably spring for it, in which case I'll definitely ask you about that artist. Thanks!


  4. you had me at 4 and 3 and 2 and 1 and when I grab the mike it's time to have some fun!

    Jess you continue to impress me, working Beastie Boys into your blog post makes it even better! We all have to get a bit elder and learn to be comfortable in our own skin. I can identify with what you are saying in this post but have fought the feeling or found excuses for it many times leading to where I'm at now. If someone can ever invent a pill that helps you mature, they will be a millionaire overnite but that will never happen.

    Our journey on this planet leads us to places we never think we will be at when we are younger. I have to admit that I am impressed with some of the younger professionals you and I have met over the past year via social networks. Like the new site and keep doing what you're doing!

  5. It reminds me of Morpheus… “sooner or later you're going to realize, just as I did, that there's a difference between knowing the path and walking the path.”

    Some of the younger professionals in our area are indeed impressive on many levels. Fortunately we're not so “old” that we can't have fun, what with these giant brains of ours… ;)

    You rock, Brian. Thanks for the kind words…

  6. :)


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