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Collecting Experiences. Collecting Life. (3/26/2015)

So here I am at Café Praga off Revolucion in downtown Tijuana at 10:15pm. Writing.

10:15 is interesting. It also happens to be my birthday – October 15th. In a weird sense, it reminds me that I am alive. It reminds me …. well…. better to look forward. I wonder how I will spend 10/15 this year. In years past, I’ve spent that day dancing in the desert of Arizona, mountaineering in Peru, collecting souvenirs in Praga, with most recently a small party in La Presa on the outskirts of the city eating pinguinos y tomando leche.

It’s been about four and a half years since I walked away from a promising career as an engineer. I returned to the old office this past week to find nothing had changed >> not drastically. I lasted thirty minutes there before I walked out.

I left a career where people can be paid $100k plus a year.

To collect experience.

There’s no FUCKING other way about it.

To live. You see, once you experience living on your terms the opposite seems claustrophobic.

I could have continued >> especially with more support at home. But, I, now, can’t return.

Capitalism is great: it’s great to motivate.

But what motivates me is THE NEW EXPERIENCE.

It’s when I feel alive.

It’s when I  bloom.

It’s when I grow.

So what will I do on 10/15 this year? I don’t know. But I look forward GREATLY to the new experience.

I look forward to FEELING ALIVE.

I collet experiences. They make me feel alive. I am addicted to feeling alive. I see no other FUCKING path.

Now, I’m going to enjoy this jazz band here and turn off the distractions >> to experience it. Yo, Fucking EXPERIENCE LIFE. Why not? Yes.

Enter you. (3/31/2015)

What if you had no boss, no timelines, no schedule, no…

No constraints.

What would you do?

Because that’s the situation I find myself in. I guess it makes sense to back up a little bit first. I grew up on a small horse farm in rural Virginia about an hour South of DC.

I spent my life riding my mountain bike, listening to records (or “vinyl”) and reading.  It was laid-back. I was in general happy.

I dreamed of moving to the city when I got older.

I didn’t have a city picked out, just in general.

While I liked the country and all it has to offer, I thought my future would be in the city.

Fast forward to college, and I am packing up my things to start at Virginia Tech as an engineering major. It wasn’t my first choice but it worked for what I needed; a quality education, money for my hobbies and a chance to take charge of my future. It was the best fit, and engineering seemed like the biggest challenge and best shot I had to getting out (read: escaping) the small town of Fredericksburg, Virginia.

Let’s fast forward again to graduation.

The year is 2004, I have a degree.

I have absolute freedom to do what I want. I take a job in DC with the stipulation that I’ll be there for 6 months upon which time I will leave to move to San Diego. San Diego was the place on the map that seemed the best fit for me; the weather, the culture, the music, the city.

Life never follows plans, but still after sending over 30, maybe it was 40, letters to all the engineering firms in San Diego, I got two job offers.

Fast forward, 4.5 years, I was looking for the next step.

Enter an MBA.

Exit an MBA because it’s too easy.

Enter the real world.

Enter crisis.

Enter Sandman. No, not really.

Enter Buddhism, meditation, spirituality, adventure.

Exit Jamie from the corporate world.

I first tried to start a business in South America (read: not a good idea for 1st place to start your business when you have no income coming in, have to make big decisions, and don’t know what you can legally do.)

Exit Jamie from South America.

Fast forward, a little bit and I have a book for sale, I start teaching myself webdesign, Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, publish my entire collection of music as a debut album, move to Mexico, and basically become semi-awesome.

But no money.

But, I figure, while I am not a man of money, I do know quite a bit about starting a business, moving to a different country, making friends and connections, and basically just a lot of stuff.

Enter disability.

Enter reading every book I can on relationships and trying everything I can conceive of to make money (read: legally).

Enter book reaches #1 in US on free promotion.

Pay my rent with royalties from music sales.

Move to the outskirts of the city to start living in motion (read: rent under $100/month).

Somehow it all starts to come together.

Somehow it all starts to make sense.

Somehow it all starts to look doable.

Somehow faith starts to manifest into reality.

Somehow this website will benefit me.

Somehow this website will benefit you.

And that’s what I’m hoping on.

And the whole point of this.

Get involved.

Be smart about what you do.

Start something that you can be proud of.

Start something you.

Start, now, today, this moment.

Just start.

Enter you.

Selling Nopal en Tijuana like it’s Friday night (Looking good) (4/21/2015)

Right by the intersection of Diego Rivera and Taboada in Zona Rio, Tijuana, there’s a group of people selling cactus.

Why does this matter?

You see, I was driving by yesterday on my way to work and I noticed something.  There was a girl with big hoop earrings in.

She was basically saying, “Yo, my job today is to sell cactus. And, Fuck it, I’m going to look good.”

She wasn’t letting the task a hand dictate her attitude, or clothing choices.

No, she was going to look good.

Now, most people probably didn’t notice these hoop warring that looked like they could be displayed in the Olympic games.

But…

That’s not the point.

I picture her: it’s morning, she’s getting ready, and she makes the deliberate choice to put on these accessories.

She’s thinking, “I want to look good today. I want to be my best. I’m going to go sell the FUCK out of some cactus.”

Except she was thinking it in Spanish.

She wasn’t letting anything dictate her choices. She wanted to look good. Fuck anyone that wanted to stop her.

She was on a mission to sell cactus; she was on a mission to look FUCKING AWESOME.

So, did I buy cactus?

No. Not that time.

BUT, I certainly noticed enough to write about it.

Whatever you need to do to go farther in your life.

Do it with dignity.

Do it with class.

Do it with hoop earrings.

Just Fuckin do it, like you own the place.

Even if you’re just selling cactus. Especially if.

Because, you will find

The one who cares is the one who succeeds.

Bridge the F#@$ Out Of That Gap [Free Life Coaching] (4/23/2015)

I heard there’s a cheap torta place near the cathedral on 2nd in the corner.

So that’s where I just was. Walking around looking for it like a man looks for water when his hair is on fire.

Does it matter? Yes, no, I’m a little hungry. It would be FUCKING AWESOME to find the place.

But does it REALLY matter?

Yes. It’s cheap food. Every dollar I spend on food is a dollar I’m not investing in my future.

But you know what else matters?

The future. Where I want to be.

Because (free life coaching lesson now) that’s the key to bridging the gap.

What’s this mean?

It means my “compelling vision” of my most perfect life; where I am now; and how I’m going to bridge the difference.

Not shit like. “I want  house.”

But, “I want a 2 story rambler on 6.5 acres of pristine land located I the Rocky Mountains.”

Yo, it’s specific. It has numbers so you can visualize it. And, overall, it’s achievable.

So back to my walk.

I pass a travel agency. They have the numbers for different trips posted (plus photos).

In case you’re wondering, 1349 pesos to Mexico City. I suspect you are picturing it now too.

You have the number in your head, visualize it, FUCKING feel what it would be like to be there, and think, “what do I need to do now to make it happen?”

And, do that.

Because that’s what you’re supposed to do.

Visualize,

Put a number to it,

Consider Options,

Take Action.

Right now, I see my most perfect life about $700 / month away. Really, not that much.

So, I am considering options to get there. Selling engineering services, adventures, ETC..

But, I’m also considering what I want to be doing.

I don’t want to be tied to a computer, email, location.

I know the picture of how I want my life to look and the number to get there.

Start at the end or next step. Work backwards. And bridge the shit out of that gap.

So those tortas are actually important.

Because the man who knows what he wants, is the man that gets it.

And it makes the tortas taste just that much better. Visualize that.

 

Irrational Optimism: My Secret To Progress (4/28/2015)

I got this new catch phrase that I’ve been telling myself:

Irrational Optimism.

It’s a noun, or maybe an adjective, regardless, it’s the OVERRIDING belief that SHIT’s going to work out. Somehow, and it’s going to be FUCKING AWESOME.

In the last post, I talk about the two traits of successful people:

1. Belief that the future’s going to be better

2. Belief that the future’s achievable

In the housing boom of the ’90s, a catchphrase was created, “Irrational Exuberance.” It dealt with the optimism of the market.

I’m stealing this idea and applying it to me.

You see, I believe that you have to have this quality to make anything if yourself in this world. The ability to shake it off, keep going, take hits, negative criticism, walk my path without wavering on my irrational optimism.

I think it’s important to guard it. Keep it inside and be careful who I share my irrational optimism with because everyone has an effect on it. I can tell one person and it increases; another and it decreases. I got to be careful with it. I don’t know about just willy Nelly throwing around my irrational optimism into the wind to see what sticks.

I got a quick test on this: does this person add or drain my energy?

I only have so much energy  and if I’m spending my energy defending my position, I’m not using it in maintaining my irrational optimism. Yo, an object in motion will continue to stay in motion unless I meet an energy drain and then I can lose my irrational optimism.

I know people say you’re supposed to share your dreams with others. Yo, I contend it builds my human connections. But if I share then need to defend my position, it’s going to fucking drain me of resources and I’m going to lose my irrational optimism.

I have a fear of commitment. I have a fear of being trapped. I have a fear of losing my irrational optimism. I have a fear of settling down. I have a fear of being normal and content.

I have irrational optimism.

Give it a try. 😉

Everything can change, today, by starting on THAT.

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How will you use it?