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Tag Archives: relationships

Learn from Your Parents

Mom and Pop

We don’t give enough credit to our parents for who we are as individuals and who we hope to be in the future. I am more reflective and thankful today than I ever have been about what amazing parents I have been blessed to have in my life. It’s become more prevalent to me since I moved away from Reno to Denver to follow a path I envisioned for myself for the last four years and none of it would be possible without my parents.

I’ve been going through the recruitment process with a reputable company over the last several months and I recently had a sit-down meeting with the managing partner of the office here in Denver and he asked me two of the best questions I have ever been asked. They weren’t particularly deep questions but they were simple and I’d never thought about them before: (1) What’s the most important thing you’ve learned from your mother? and (2) What’s the most important thing you’ve learned from your father?

They’ve been married for 25 years, have 3 idiot sons (I’m the middle), and a soon-to-be grandchild and this post is for them:

Mom

Mom

It’s difficult for me to put exactly what I want into words when discussing my mom (and my dad too). She’s been through a lot in the last couple of years and she’s handled it with more conviction and humility than anybody I have ever met. Behind the conviction and perseverance that I see in her, is her unwavering integrity and poise. It’s these qualities that she has bestowed upon me that I hold dear. To be a source of strength and compassion to foster an inner integrity beyond myself. It’s because of my mom that I have begun my own journey to make the world a better place by being a better person for not only myself, but for those around me.

The most important things I’ve learned from my mom is perseverance, integrity and compassion.

Dad

Pop

My dad is a big kid at heart. Some of the funniest and most memorable stories are because of him. I owe my personality to him. Through all of the hilarious “Jorge” moments, I am the man who I am today because of the father that he was when I was a child and still is as I enter a new phase of life. The amount of self-assurance and personal value that I recognize in myself is because of the qualities I saw in him. His dedication to my mom and our family has inspired me to discover a new level integrity so that I can become a loving husband and father like him.

The most important thing I’ve learned from my dad is responsibility, self-reliance and dedication.

With every great journey, there is a companion and my parents have been on this journey for over 25 years. Throughout my life I have had the example for what I want for myself. Each day that I struggle I have the best two people in the world to call for advice, guidance, and inspiration. I love my parents.

What have you learned from your parents? From you Mom? From your dad? When was the last time you spoke to your parents? Let me hear from you! Leave a comment below, subscribe to my blog and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

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Posted by on February 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Honoring Our Integrity

This post is a bit more personal in nature because I am going to share some personal perspectives and relate them to the principles I have shared over the course of my blog. The recent development about Gen. David Patraeus’ indiscretions serves as a learning opportunity for all of us when it comes to the agreements we make in life and the integrity we establish within ourselves. These behaviors are not new, probably more common than we want to admit, and will most definitely be prevalent throughout our lives. Not even some of the most famous and revered people have fallen: Tiger Woods, Kobe Bryant, JFK, Martin Luther King Jr, and the list goes on. It can speak volumes of their character without them ever having said a word or even getting to know us.

What it comes down to is our integrity. It comes down to what we believe, the type of person we want to be, and the kind of lives we want to lead. The agreements we make in life, regardless of the nature of these agreements, are a part of the mosaic of our lives that define us. They define us because that’s how we want to be defined; by our own volition. If we want to be remembered for something,  The person who makes and breaks agreements is not the person we should want to be.

Sometimes the terms of our agreements change and that’s okay, but when they change, make it known that something is different. Sometimes they change for the better and sometimes they change for the worst; that’s the nature of life. It’s how we deal with that change that will define or alter our integrity. By engaging the change and seeking understanding is how we grow. The subversive, indiscretionary behaviors that so many engage in benefit nobody and deviate us from our integrity.

When we knowingly deviate from our authentic-selves and integrity, it can become a heavy burden. The longer we go without resolving the internal conflict the further away we become from ourselves. Only with a clear conscious can we move on and begin the process of getting in touch with our authentic-self. Even then, our integrity is forever changed. Those people who go through life denying this fact and justifying their behavior with fabricated bravado do so at their own detriment.

Think of the last time you found out about another’s indiscretion? How did you react? Was it somebody close to you? Let me hear from you! Leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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The Petty Grudge

We’ve seen it before and probably experienced it before. Holding a grudge against somebody because of something they may have done wrong is the worst way to handle ill feelings about somebody. More times than not, it’s something so silly that it’s embarrassing. We need to learn to let it go and have a talk. It’s time to be the bigger person and admit that something isn’t working and it needs to be addressed. By not dealing with it, we allow it to reside deep inside and can create resentment and anger. The fuming anger ball that overwhelms us commandeers our emotions and judgement. Take control before it does.

Holding a grudge is that ever-present pill that we swallow and expect the effects to harm the other person. We don’t know how long it’ll last, but we know we didn’t do anything wrong! Right? Well, odds are we’re just as culpable in the “grudge match.” Bottom line is that if it wasn’t some egregious act, then it’s silly and we need to get over it. Really assess as to why we’re so upset with the situation and if it’s worth it. By letting it go, we’re doing ourselves a favor.

Instead of holding it inside, take the extra effort and steps to talk to somebody; especially if we’re in conflict with somebody. Only by talking to them can we really find resolution and move on. It’s going to be uncomfortable, but remember the purpose of the talk: getting the conflict out on the table in order to better the relationship. The intent is not to hurt each others’ feelings, but to have a candid conversation about what’s wrong and where to go from here. If we’re not sure on what to say, rehearse the conversation we want to have in our head before hand. Really focus on visualizing what we want to say and how we want to say it. Ask for feedback from a close, trusted friend. Often times they might have insight or ask a question we never thought about that will change our entire perspective!

Holding a grudge? Why? What steps have you taken to resolve the issue? Let me hear from you! Leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

 
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Posted by on November 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Reject Rejection

Rejecting rejections is a facet of knowing that it is not about us, but about the person rejecting us. It can be that we asked at the wrong time; remember, we reserve the right to say “no” and so do other people. The key to rejection is knowing that it’s an internal response that we feel when our hopes aren’t met. We can hope for hundreds of things and when they don’t come to fruition, it’s rejection. In order to continue on our paths to success, we have to learn to reject rejection.

Rejecting rejection is going to be easier said than done. The feeling of rejection is personal, even if it isn’t. Jack Canfield likens rejection to a myth. I think of it the same way as when I ask somebody a question. If the answer is yes, well then I am better off for asking. But, if I get a “no” (a rejection), then it becomes a matter of perspective. I wasn’t better off before asking the question, therefore I can’t be worse off after asking the question. I stayed in the same state. We can look at several examples:

  • Ask somebody to a dinner date. You weren’t going to dinner with anybody before, so you’re not any worse off.
  • Applies to grad school at Yale. You weren’t attending Yale before you applied and you’re not afterward.

When it’s time to move on from the rejection, remember the acronym SW.SW.SW.SW. Remind ourselves that Some Will, Some Won’t, So What, Someone’s Waiting. The  internal dialogue we need to tell ourselves is “Next!” While I was working briefly for a call center, it was common to be rejected on the message that I was trying to share with people. I knew intrinsically that people’s outright rejection of my calls wasn’t personal to me. In fact, the sign on the wall reminded us that for every 5,000 people we called, we can only expect 5-10% “yes” responses. If that’s not rejecting rejection in action, I’m not sure what is.

Rejection is going to be most common when it comes to relationships. These rejections are different from the ones we will encounter on our path to our goals and dreams because they have a significant personal effect. It’s easier to not take something personally when it comes to tangible results or experiences like a job application or request. When it’s a personal rejection, it’s that much more important to remember everything we’ve covered throughout my posts. Sometimes the people we are closest to don’t always fit into the journey we are on and vice versa. It’s never easy, but with time and understanding, it can be a healthy form of acceptance.

When we’re you rejected? How did you feel? How did you move on to the next question? Let me hear from you! Leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

 
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Posted by on October 9, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Have a Heart to Heart

We’re used to having to hold our feelings in, or least feel like we should. This shouldn’t be the case. In fact, it’s a necessary facet of life to release the uneasy feelings we try to keep inside. By holding onto those feelings, we’re not making room for new ones. It also inhibits our ability to move on and toward the next step in accomplishing our goals and dreams.

Typically, we have various key people in our lives that we will open up to in one way or another. Family is usually the first resource I go to when I need somebody I talk to, but I also have a close group of friends that I can confidently confide in and know that they will give me honest input. Part of the relationship that we have created means that the sharing is always a two-way street. I count on them as much as they know they can count on me. These conversations can range from sharing personal anxieties, failures, and even about the standing of the relationship between us. They key is to actively listen to our friends and family. You never know when you will need them or when they may not be there.

When we engage in any heart to heart conversation, regardless of who we’re talking to, we have to remember the end goal: to strengthen the relationship by reaching new understandings. No matter how personal it may become or uncomfortable, there’s no progress if true, authentic feelings aren’t expressed. I have had several of these conversations and they can be very uncomfortable, but I was better for it because I knew intrinsically what it meant for my growth as a person. Not all of them went well, but I was confident in myself because what I said was the truth and in alignment with my integrity.

awkward

 

After we’ve released the pent-up feelings and emotions, it’s can be a huge relief. It can also be equally painful because we’ve said something to end (or damage) the relationship or vice versa (depending who we’re talking to). No matter the outcome, remember that that is the time to persevere. True friends will stick by you no matter what! Keep trying your hardest toward your goal; you never know, that person may come back into your life at some point to show you their true colors. Hopefully as a true friend.

When was your last heart to heart? How did it turn out? Were you completely honest with the other? Let me hear from you! Leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

 
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Posted by on October 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Policy of Truth

We all tell the truth. Well, maybe half-truths. Okay, okay, so maybe telling the truth isn’t about the truth, but what we perceive to be the truth. Right? Good. No, it’s not good and justifying anything other than the truth is a lie fabricated to facilitate the means to an end.That end is to just get through it; whatever it is. But when we hedge on the truth, we bury ourselves in the lies, unresolved issues and tension, and never root ourselves in the reality that we really are in.

So here and now, I’m going to institute: a Policy of Truth. This is one of the most important agreements to make with yourself because it can be so difficult to commit to. The truth is uncomfortable, insulting, offensive, and vexing. It’s reality. The simple acknowledgement that you know you should tell the truth is inherent in all of us. It’s the practice of telling the truth is what eludes the best of us. Think of the truth as that insurmountable hill in front of us. We know in our core that the other side of the hill is our sanctuary. Where our authentic selves can shine. And yet, we hedge at the climb because staying on this side of the hill is apparently easier. But what really happens on this side of the hill is an internal conflict between the authentic you struggling to be free and losing to the doubter in you. The inner battle drains you of energy; the same energy that you could be directing toward your passion and relationships.

Instituting a Policy of Truth is the gateway of releasing that pent-up energy and allowing yourself to make room of the new vivacious energy you crave to pursue your dreams. It’s the perfect alignment with your authentic self that provides the guidance you need when telling the truth. You’ll want to consider what you say and how you say it when it comes time to tell the truth, but the time is now. Waiting for the “perfect” time is the best way to ensure being “too late.” In fact, when you tell the truth faster, you cut through the garbage that comes with silence and establish yourself as a trustworthy person will credibility so that when something happens in the future, people will know where you stand. They know they can count on you to speak your mind and mean it, you’re sincerity will begin speaking for itself.

Do you hedge on the truth? Why? When was a time you told the truth from the beginning and it paid off? Leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

 
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Posted by on September 20, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Be in the Present

I was having lunch with my mom the other day and we both noticed something that struck us as odd. At the table next to ours, was a family of four and both of the kids were on mobile devices: phone, tablet, or video game hand-held. Neither was engaged in the conversation with each other or with their parents, nor were the parents talking to their children. Only the parents were speaking to each other. It occurred to me that this disconnect has become a regular occurrence. Granted, this may be an isolated incident, but our attachment to our electronics has made quite an acceptable excuse to neglect the people around us.

Not being in the present makes it difficult to appreciate the people in your life and to make sure they stick around. By distracting yourself with your latest Facebook update, Tweeting the latest happenings, and text messaging the person who’s not in front of you sends a very simple yet powerful message to the person who is with you: You’re not important to me at this point in time. And eventually at this point in time will translate into a dissolved relationship.

The next time you plan on going out for breakfast, dinner, lunch, or even coffee, leave your phone in your pocket. Give the person in front of you all of your attention. By knowingly disconnecting yourself from the tech-sphere, you can focus on the conversation and be sincere. Everything on Facebook and Twitter can wait. The person texting you can wait. Your emails can wait. They’ll be there when you return because the person you’re talking to may not be. If they do stick around, it’s certainly annoying when you’re checking your phone every thirty seconds.

The time you make for the people who are important to you in your life also allows for you to find out about how they’re doing. It’s about being sincere. They are in your life for a reason. They are the ones helping you on your journey because you are helping them. You could miss out on something great by not paying attention!

How do you handle your phone in a social settings? Does it bother you when Let me hear from you! Leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

 

 
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Posted by on September 16, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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