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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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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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Appreciate What You Have

Appreciation is never to be underestimated or undervalued. Like you, I have had my share of complaining, blaming, and straight-up whining. But it’s never gotten me anywhere, at least not to a place that I’ve wanted to be. It takes a simple step back to take stock of the things in life that you do have, not what you don’t have, want, or should have. We can play that game all day long. Focus on the blessings that are real here and now and recognize that you’re more fortunate to have them in your life than majority of people in the world.

Appreciation doesn’t need to be about the big things in life. It should be the things that add value to who you are as a person and what makes you happy. In fact, appreciation should start not with the things, but the people you surround yourself with: family and friends to start. I recently was on vacation in Lake Tahoe (my happy place) with my family and closest friends. This is the one week out of the entire year that I look forward to the most and would not miss for anything….and I mean anything. It’s for one simple reason: the people that appreciate more than anything in the world is my family.

When you begin to really, truly appreciate the people in your life, you’ll begin to see the value that you bring to their lives in return. The positive environment and energy that is created by mutual appreciation and love among people is the strongest emotion and force that you can experience. It’s an empowering experience to be the best that you can be because the people you rely on to reach for your dreams also rely on you  in achieving their respective dreams.

Appreciation also means you’ll never take a moment for granted. We’re only here for a limited time and you never, ever know when it will be over. We’re often separated by time and distance, but the ultimate separator is excuses. Part of taking control of your life is to eliminate the excuses and when you eliminate the excuses, you open yourself up to the possibilities you never allowed yourself.

Who do you appreciate and why? Let me hear from you! Leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter @alexdbarba!

Pictures:

Calvin and Hobbes

 
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Posted by on August 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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