Morning Cup of Joe – One Man Army

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There may come a day when you reach out and call someone but they do not answer. There may come a day when you really need help but no one is around to hear your cry. There may come a day when you are at wits end and just need a friend but no friends are available to come to your rescue. The world can be a lonely place sometimes. When that happens, learn to depend on the only person you’ve been able to depend on your entire life; yourself.

Having to fend for yourself is not easy; trust me, I know. Obviously you can be more effective if you have “back-up” or at least one more soldier on the battlefield with you but that will not always be the case. Some battles are simply yours to fight and certainly yours to win. When you start to feel as if you are the only person who cares about your situation, although you can’t see Him, you are not alone. In essence, even if it seems as if the world has given up on you, God never will.

Learn to depend on yourself. You cannot realistically expect for others to forever be there for you during your time of need. Sometimes we have to pick ourselves up from our bootstraps, dust our shoulders off and keep on truckin’. Please understand that you are not going to enter every war with an army. There may come a time when your entire military consists of an army of one; you.

When it feels like the world has turned its back on you, walk in the understanding that you serve a God that is capable of anything. With God on your side, you have absolutely nothing to worry about.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Army of One

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You are not your problems. All too often we allow our problems to not only define us but also dictate what our tomorrows will look like. The problem may be small to the world but it may be as big as the world to you. No matter what the problem is, it is not insurmountable. We allow most problems to fester and ferment in our psyche until it eventually overcomes us. Before you get to the point of no return, I urge you to connect with someone you trust, share your problem with them and allow the both of you to come up with viable solutions. You are not alone.

You truly never know what someone is going through and you can’t possibly know just by looking at them. When you think you have it bad, someone else is experiencing something ten times worse. While there is no test or special sign that will alert us if and when someone is experiencing pain or trouble, that shouldn’t prevent us from trying to be a friend. A friend is one who will ask the uncomfortable questions in order to find the root of the issue. This is the only way you can create an exit strategy to remove you from your problems. The first step is to understand that failure is an event, it is not a person. Just because you experienced failure does not mean that is who you are as a person. The attempt may have failed but you certainly did not. It is better to try and fail than to never have tried at all. If you are going through hell, do not stop, keep going.

If you are on this side of the dirt, I am unequivocally convinced that you can do something about your problems. Most of us try to handle our problems alone; this method of problem solving can be exceptionally overwhelming. While handling it alone will allow you to exercise your independence, it is not the only option. Understand that two heads are always better than one. If you have two people working to solve the same issue, you may find the solution twice as fast. In essence, whatever you are going through does not have to be the end of the world; you must stay strong. You must stay strong especially for the people who rely on your strength.

Remember that you are not your problems. Your problems are just that, problems. And all problems are meant to be solved. If you aren’t able to find a solution to your problems, join forces and restructure your attack until you eventually overcome it. This is a proven strategy for winning any battle.

Life is so precious and we truly only have one of them to live which is why I urge you to make every single day count by focusing on overcoming your obstacles, preferably with an army behind you.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Right Now!

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Most people live their lives in the future; those same people have a relatively difficult time being organized and focused. This makes sense because if you aren’t living in the present then how can you reasonably focus on it. Meaning most people are so focused on the future they neglect to pay attention to the right now. When we neglect to pay attention to the right now, we allow room for external forces to interrupt the natural ebb and flow of our predestined blessings. Focus on the now.

At times, I am baffled when I hear people say things like “I don’t think I can win” or “Tomorrow is going to be a terrible day”. Every time I hear a variation of those statements I always think to myself, “How do you know?” Those statements relatively deal with the future in that you are, in a way, predicting the outcome of a race that hasn’t even started. People count themselves out of opportunities every single day simply because they think they know what tomorrow brings. Tomorrow may very well bring you all the answers you’ve been praying for. Take charge of the present moment and work feverishly to create the outcomes you desire.

Today is the only thing you have some control over. Being concerned about tomorrow is futile as tomorrow may never come. You cannot control that which you haven’t seen. You must understand the importance of living for right now and not only living for right now but living in the moment. Every second we are blessed to hear and feel the beats of our hearts is a second we should devote to focusing on the present day.

Do not be concerned about a future you cannot control; learn to live in the present.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Bumps In The Road

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I have learned throughout this journey that if you are intent on being successful then there are certain obstacles, trials and tribulations that you cannot avoid. To the untrained mind, it would seem that the universe is plotting against you to ensure that you don’t succeed. You would be surprised how many people have conditioned their minds to believe such things. They subscribe to the path of least resistance. Some even believe that they are not meant to succeed because it would all be a little easier if they were. This is totally not the case.

When we set out to accomplish a goal and work feverishly at it, we inevitably face “bumps in the road”. The most successful among us understands and accepts this fact. When that happens, learn to slow down, reassess your approach and try again. The common misconception about intentional challenges is that they are designed to break you. Consider the alternative; those same challenges are exactly what can make you. It’s truly all in how you view your situation. Embrace your challenges and view them as opportunities to get better, faster, stronger and wiser. The ultimate goal is to succeed no matter what challenges life may throw your direction.

The key word is survival. You must dedicate yourself to outlasting your problems. You possess the necessary power to do anything you want in this life, within reason. Do not misread nor misunderstand what an obstacle truly is. Obstacles are confirmation of the inevitable attainment of that which you desire. All obstacles have the capability to stop us short of reaching our goals. While that may be true, please understand and consider the fact that all obstacles are also meant to be conquered. The fact that you have survived this long is evidence that you are a conqueror. You are greater than your challenges.

Anything worth having doesn’t come easily. Keep fighting until you get it!

“There is no telling how many miles you will have to run while chasing a dream.”
– Author Unknown

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Learning From Losses

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There aren’t too many folks who enter a competition innately expecting to lose. While this may seem obvious, many people actually believe they will lose before throwing their hat in a race. The issue isn’t with the fact that most people count themselves out before jumping in, it’s that we don’t learn from the losses. There is something to be said about learning a lesson after each experience no matter the outcome; win or lose.

The greatest difference between a win and a loss is the lesson you choose to learn from that particular experience. Just because you win doesn’t meant there aren’t lessons to be learned. A couple of key questions that deserves an answer after a disappointing loss are “why” and “what”. If you ask “why” this particular situation ended up the way it did and “what” you could’ve done differently then you are less likely to repeat those errors that initially contributed to the loss. The same formula works with a win. Visionaries are quick learners and always ask what they can do differently that will yield different results.

Losers are devastated after a loss while winners understand that in order to conquer the world it takes winning one battle at a time. Losers fight battles they know they can win while winners understand the importance of accepting a challenge; great or small. Every experience has a lesson. It doesn’t matter if you win or lose, it’s how you analyze and execute the game. Learn to understand the key differences and similarities between your wins and your losses and you will be able to have a greater influence on your outcomes.

Losers fight until they are tired and winners fight until they’ve won.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Start And Finish

Don’t ever start something you aren’t willing to maintain and eventually finish. It takes little to no effort to start something and everything to finish it; perhaps that explains why so many people have great starts and limited finishes. This theory is also applicable to Olympic runners awaiting the sound of the starters’ gun. Many times, the person who takes off first or the fastest isn’t always the one who ends up with the gold medal at the end of the race. The person who wins is typically the one who finishes strong.

No one will remember how you started but the world will never forget how you finished. If you are going to exhaust effort on anything affiliated with your dreams, I encourage you to focus intently on finishing. I am guilty of not finishing a few things that I’ve started, we all are. The goal is to develop and strengthen the skill of follow-through. Following through with the careful execution of any goal is the greatest gift you can give yourself.

There is an indescribable feeling that you experience when you accomplish anything. The ultimate goal is to experience this feeling early and often. There is a way to accomplish this. Step one, finish strong. It doesn’t matter how you start, it’s how you finish that matters. It’s funny what our minds have the capability of retaining. As I wrote this, all I heard was an old friend’s voice saying “finish strong”. I choose to finish what I‘ve started and so should you or don’t bother starting it at all.

Be a finisher and finish strong.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

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Morning Cup of Joe – The Plan

One thing that has stood true throughout my life’s journey is that when I plan something, if it’s in God’s will, things seem to automatically fall into place. It seems like anytime I set my mind to doing something, I receive miracle-like cues to know if it’s the right thing to do. When it is right, you will know because the pieces will fall right into place until you eventually complete the puzzle. Miracles will happen that you will not be able to explain; that’s when you smile and thank Him. That’s when you’ll know it’s the right thing to do.

Before I relocated to Los Angeles from Tallahassee, I wanted to make sure that everything was in place. What I quickly learned is that sometimes you have to take risks. Sometimes things just don’t go as planned. I ditched the plan and bought a one-way ticket to LA. I didn’t have a single family member within a thousand mile radius, no employment prospects and I only had one friend. I literally knew one person in LA when I arrived with my suitcase and little brown bag filled with hopes and dreams. With those types of odds, one would expect immediate failure. How can you blame them?

What you should understand is that rewards come to those who take risks. The greater the risk, the greater the reward. Had I chosen not to move to LA when I did with what I had, I am certain that I would not be the person I am today. I came to LA with a sword which was sharpened through my diverse experiences. Each experience helps to shape our view of the world around us. The only reason I survived was because I understood my choices which were between two simple options; I could either sink or swim. Against all odds, I chose to swim. To me, it seems like the obvious choice so I choose to make it often.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

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Morning Cup of Joe – The Fight

Anything worth having is indeed worth fighting for, right? While this is true, most people never consider the opposite. Anything worth fighting for is truly worth having. Think about it. When was the last time you fought hard to have something? Did you get that thing? If you did, you most likely still have it. Where we go wrong is with thinking that if it’s worth having then it’s worth fighting for. Shift your focus to whether it is worth fighting for because if it is then most likely its worth having.

There are some people and many things in your life that you didn’t fight to get yet I am willing to bet that you are willing to fight to keep. Obviously, there is a thin line between the two. Your focus should be to distinguish between what is worth fighting for and what is not. Some things simply aren’t worth fighting for. Truthfully, there are some people who aren’t worth fighting for either.

Your ultimate goal should be to achieve personal happiness; understand that no one and nothing can help you achieve this goal. Personal happiness can only be achieved by taking full responsibility for your own happiness. You are the only one who can make you happy. Most of the time we depend on others to fill that void. If you continue to do this, you will continue to be disappointed. It is not only important to take a personal inventory of what is worth fighting for in your life, it is equally important to know that you are worth fighting for.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

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Morning Cup of Joe – Nothing to Fear

During the 1930’s, the great depression was in full swing and fear was rampant. At his inaugural presidential address, Franklin D. Roosevelt’s words to the American people were as timely then as they are now. His words are so poignant that they are permanently etched into history and are displayed at the Roosevelt Monument in Washington DC. A brief excerpt of his speech is as follows; “This great Nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper. So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.” Pay close attention to his definition of fear.

Fear of the unknown prevents us from moving forward. There are things you are thinking about doing yet are afraid to make the first move because you don’t know what the outcome will be; do it anyway. That fear you feel, unless transferred into fuel to drive you to achieve your goals, is unhealthy. Fear can paralyze you if you let it or motivate you as it should. In addition, fear is not real. It is a perceived danger based on the unfamiliarity of the present and uncertainty of the future. You fear what may happen tomorrow even though it is not happening now. A popular acronym for F.E.A.R. is False Evidence Appearing Real.

Allow your fear of the unknown to encourage you to at least try. Don’t be afraid to take a chance and risk it all on one move; the dividends may be well worth the risk. I have taken countless risks in my life; from starting my own company without any assistance to moving to several major cities without any support yet those decisions have landed me where I am today. Was I fearful, worried, and concerned that I may fail? Sure I was. Was that a belief of mine? Absolutely not. I believed that if I take a risk, the payoff will always be greater than the risk itself; it always is.

Don’t let fear keep you from being your best self and living your best life. Fear is not real and overcoming it is easier than you think. Look your fears in the eyes and declare victory. You were born to win and there is nothing anyone or anything can do to change that.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

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Morning Cup of Joe – Trouble, Trouble

One thing I’ve been fortunate enough to learn throughout my life’s journey is that trouble truly doesn’t last always. Simply, whatever it is you are going through is as temporary as a passing storm. The longest storm that I know about lasted forty days and forty nights. What you should consider is the fact that on the forty-first day, the sun did shine. Your goal is to last until and even past the forty-first day.

We have all experienced a form of chaos in our lives, perhaps to different degrees but we have experienced it nonetheless. Think back to a time, even if it was recent, where you thought that your problem was the biggest problem in the world. How did you overcome that problem? What did you have to do to overcome your situation? Repeat those steps and the outcome will not be different. The man with no arms envies the man with no legs. The man with no legs envies the man who cannot see. The man who cannot see envies the man who cannot hear. My point is, no matter what it is you are going through, there is someone else who is a little worse off. No, that doesn’t improve your situation but it puts it into perspective.

Understand that trouble is temporary. We were built to conquer and to rise above all obstacles. Draw on the strength that you have hidden somewhere inside you to overcome this minor obstacle. I say minor obstacle because the only obstacle that is difficult to overcome is death. If you can read this, you can overcome any obstacle. The first step is believing that your problem is not greater than your strength to overcome them. Do you believe it? You should.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

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