I’m of two minds regarding the tradition of New Year’s Resolutions.

On the one hand, I can’t find a good reason to knock a regular practice of re-inventing oneself, or at least one part of oneself.

The new year is a wonderful opportunity to take a new stand and to grasp at a new opportunity. To break a pattern and step into the unknown.

Yet, I’m frustrated at the mindset that implicitly comes with this practice.

When we designate one specific day of the year to change — to update our mind-software — it gives us a convenient excuse to…

A lack of motivation is an issue of direction.

If you cannot bring yourself to do what you feel you ought to do, it is because you have not oriented yourself towards what your heart really wants. Towards what you are most passionate about.

This feeling of fighting for motivation is essentially the result of your mind and your heart being misaligned — one wants to go to point A, the other to point B, and neither can get anywhere without the other.

But this split — this refusal to cooperate within you — is not a natural phenomenon. Undisrupted…

I’m a big proponent of the power of listening.

That’s not to say that you should always do nothing but listen.

But there is an indisputable and subtle power in hearing not just what is being said, but what is being communicated around you.

Blah blah blah, body language, mastery of tone, etc.

I’ll let someone with more expertise fill you in on those areas.

Today, though, I’d like to tell you about a different kind of listening.

Rather, listening to the person that you’ve likely spent the least time listening to, but has the most important information to tell…

I see so many young men struggling to motivate themselves, and it is uniquely painful for me to see because I know their pain so well.

I remember spending nights, locked up in my room, staring at an empty page, desperately trying to write an essay, or finish a school project.

I remember pulling all-nighters in college and have nothing to show for it but self-hatred and doubt about my own value.

I remember being entrusted with important tasks by people I cared for and finding myself mysteriously unable to accomplish them.

I’ve talked a good deal about my struggles…

My first car died because I forgot to put oil in it.

Alright, it’s a little more complicated than that, but not by much.

The old, used, green Ford F-150 had faulty gauges. It said there wasn’t an oil shortage, but there was.

Of course, if you have to be told you are out of oil by a gauge on your dashboard, you aren’t putting enough care into your car.

So, why wasn’t I caring for such a valuable possession?

Well, I didn’t earn it.

I bought that car with a savings fund set up by my grandfather. I hadn’t…

“Do you know why you hate them so much?”

Daryl’s deep voice rolled and echoed around the cavernous metal space. The words seem to reflect in the shimmering walls and glittering consoles that descended in rows like desks in a college lecture hall.

Tom didn’t hear a word of it. He was awestruck; all consciousness was driven out of him to make space for the wonder invoked by the scene before him. Mere minutes ago, Tom had been on the surface, sitting in a dingy bar amidst the ruins of Manhattan. Now, he had to squint against the bright, fluorescent…

A river of frozen tar, front to back
From horizon to horizon it flows

Wheels beating in rhythm steady, black on black
An engine of pumping iron rows

Mountains rise and clouds fly
Forests and oceans come and go

The endless earth and sky
Together in the distance grow

Vivid visions rush past my eye
Markers on a greater journey

I see a growing family
A grand and prideful legacy

I see roads connecting each
Moment across my life

Just as they connect each
City, town, husband, and wife

To stand on dry asphalt unfurled Is to feel the pulse…

Photo by AronPW on Unsplash

“So, what’s the story?” Charlie asked, peeling the foil back from his cheeseburger. He stared straight ahead, out the windshield of the car, and into the night that was punctuated with streetlamps rather than stars.

Junior didn’t touch his food. He stared ahead as well, not wanting to look at his father. He wasn’t ashamed — no, shame was long past. But he was conflicted. He spoke quietly and flatly. “You know, it’d be easier if you were an asshole about it.” He looked at his father, hoping to glean some insight into his thoughts.

Charlie took a bite and…

Photo by Nijwam Swargiary on Unsplash

Are people really capable of change?

And if they are, how does change happen?

These were the questions posed to me in a recent interview with a potential client. Certainly not standard fair for a job interview, and the depth of the question only served to intrigue me more.

I thought about it for a moment, and as I often do, I went back to my own experience as a starting point. My life is certainly very different from what it once was, but is that a function of change, or simply a natural progression?

The conclusion I came to…

Atheno Boldly Fearless

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