Morning Cup of Joe – It’s a Small World

Explore I think back to a conversation I had while living in Houston with an individual who’d never travelled more than five miles outside of where they were born. According to them, they really did not have any reason to explore or travel outside of their comfort zone. The elementary school, middle school and high school they attended are all within a 3 mile radius from their home. This person grew up in a small town which may explain to some degree why they never had a desire to leave. It could also explain why so many others do.

I’ve never been one to sit around and wonder what’s on the other side of the wall. I would much rather climb the wall and find out for myself. I guess you can say I have always been curious about the world around me, even as a child. I’m glad that I have not lost my childlike curiosity because this is truly what motivates me to learn more and maintain a sense of fearlessness.

Think about it for a second. Most children exhibit no fear because they don’t know what fear is. They will test their boundaries, test their limits and if you have any, they’ll also test yours. The fear of the unknown will either restrict you from learning about something that you would otherwise never have an opportunity to learn or it will broaden your horizons by introducing you to elements that you wouldn’t otherwise be exposed to. Dare to step out of your own way.

When was the last time you traveled to another state or country? When was the last time you dared to figure out what was on the other side of the wall? When was the last time you were out of your comfort zone? A winner will always have an issue with being comfortable simply because we’re always looking for ways to better ourselves. Comfort is the cousin of laziness.

There is a beautiful world out there waiting to be explored by you. There are perfect strangers out there waiting with baited breath to start a conversation with you. There are cultures that would embrace you as one of their own. There is a life that’s worth enriching through experiences gained through traveling and exploring. You can learn so much from reading but there is no substitute for real-life experience. The Eiffel tower in person is much more breathtaking than any picture can capture.

I’ve studied abroad in Spain and Russia and my life hasn’t been the same as a result of these experiences. I traveled to Haiti after the devastating earthquake to bring resources to my family and their community. I have driven cross-country from Los Angeles, California to Orlando, Florida. I’ve travelled to almost every continent except Australia & Antarctica but they’re on the list. And on almost every one of these trips I tried to talk myself out of going by creating a myriad of excuses like not having enough money, bad timing or the fact that I didn’t have one connection in some of these countries. These excuses came because I was stuck in my comfort zone. I decided to step out on faith and just do it. Some of the best decisions of my life.

There is a trip you’ve been putting off for whatever reason, stop thinking about it and just go! The world is waiting for you.

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” – Saint Augustine

To The Top!
Joe Paul
Motivational Thought Leader, Corporate Trainer & Keynote Speaker

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Morning Cup of Joe – Order My Steps

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No one, no thing and no cosmic force can deny what God has specifically for you. There are times when we pray a particular prayer to receive a specific blessing yet we do nothing to meet God half-way; that is true for most people who pray. They mistakenly believe that their prayers fall on deaf ears when in actuality God is waiting on them to make the first move. Don’t pray and sit, you must move. Understand that it is difficult for God to guide your steps if you are standing still.

Prayer does in fact change things yet taking action forces the prayer to come to realization. Another key component to meeting God half-way is your belief system. You must have unwavering belief that this prayer will come true in order for it to actually come true. You must have unequivocal faith that you will realize what you are praying and hoping God to make happen. Once you pray and start working towards that which you’ve prayed for, watch how fast God works. He can only work if you believe in your heart of hearts that He is able. Believe me, He is able.

No matter your circumstances, God can and will bring you through if you believe that He can. In my own journey, I have been fortunate to realize the power of God and I can almost guarantee that you too can share your testimonies. If He came through for you before, He is able to do it again. If He has helped you to believe that miracles can happen, He is capable of doing it again. Remember, what God has for you is for you. Believe that God can and He will never disappoint you.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – 93 Octane

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Do not wait until your gas is empty before you decide to fill up. This concept holds true in the natural as well as the metaphysical world. There are many people who will wait until the very last minute before they fill up ignoring the strong possibility of being stranded. They clearly see that the gauge is on “E”, yet they do nothing about it. Some won’t do anything about it until they eventually encounter the inevitable.

It is imperative that you not wait until you are at your weakest most vulnerable state before you decide to do something about it; most people don’t follow this rule and end up substituting substances to mend the pain. The wonderful thing about human beings is that we are equipped with an internal gauge that will let us know when we need to refuel. Don’t ignore the signs; stress, fatigue, negative attitude towards life and depression to name a few.

Contrary to your beliefs, you are not a superhero. You don’t have anything to prove to anyone but yourself. Do the best you can with what you have. You are already equipped with the necessary tools to overcome any obstacle. It is natural for some people to have a desire to be everything to everyone but understand that you are fighting an uphill battle because you simply cannot please everyone. If you run out of gas, who will come to your rescue? If you practice filling up before you’re empty, you won’t have to ever worry or wonder about answering that question.

Much like a car constantly needs petroleum to run effectively, efficiently and go the distance, your mind needs a constant flow of positive thoughts to run just as efficiently. Overflow your tank with positivity and watch as your life improves.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Take A Chance

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You have been very cautious about whether or not you should take risks. You continue to question whether the risk is worth taking or if it is right or wrong. At times, you may even ask yourself if the risk is worth the potential reward. Please understand that the system of Risks and Rewards works hand in hand. You cannot reasonably expect to claim inevitable rewards if you don’t bother taking risks. Understand that I do not mean taking unnecessary risks; I encourage you to take calculated risks that have the potential to yield positive results.

Take a second to imagine that you are standing at the edge of a cliff but you can’t see the bottom. There is either a bed of pillows at the bottom of the cliff or a bed of thorns; you will not know what is down there until you jump. Some people would stop there and not jump thinking that surely the bed of thorns is a more fitting end to their story. Winners understand the importance of taking risks so they would most likely choose to jump and find out.

I for one would jump without even thinking about it just to see where I land. I am almost certain I would land on the pillows; a bit optimistic I guess but thats the power of positive thinking. Perhaps it is due to my deep understanding of the importance of taking chances. I encourage you to start taking risks. Helen Keller once said “Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure.” This message should be very clear to you. You know what you have to do, now do it.

Take that chance, make that move, and believe that the path you are taking, while it may be laden with obstacles is one that has already been charted for you.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – From Start to Finish

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When things are meant to be, it seems as if all of the pieces start to magically fall into place. There is a test that I used to conduct just to test this theory and see if it’s true; I have never been disappointed. I first start by picking a start date, an end date and sticking firmly to both of them. Next I commit myself to ensuring that everything is in place so my desired outcomes happen on the specific date I choose, if not before. Then, almost like magic, all of the other pieces start coming together almost seamlessly.

Oftentimes, we ignore the obvious signs that are pointing us in a different direction. This happens when we try to force a square peg into a round hole; it simply won’t fit. Learn to quickly recognize which steps are ordained and which ones are not. You will know if what you’re doing is the right thing to do if you experience very little resistance or obstacles along the way.

I firmly believe that God wants to see His children succeed. I seriously doubt we were placed on this earth to fail. Walk in the understanding that God’s got your back. Work on creating a plan of action then work even harder on the execution of this plan. If you start, God will help you finish.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Vision

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How different would your life be if everything was perfect? What if you were working the job you’ve always wanted, had a healthy and happy family and lived in your dream home? What if your greatest worry was simply waking up the next morning? What if all of this was true? Could your life be what you’ve always dreamt it could be? Is it really that farfetched? In many people’s minds, this is not a reality that they will ever know. Simply because they haven’t discovered the thing that makes all of the aforementioned possible; that thing called vision.

Vision means having an unusual competence in discernment or perception; intelligent foresight. Being visionary forces you to focus on the future. Your head & shoulders can only face one direction at a time; you cannot look forward if you are constantly looking backwards. While the past may serve and should serve only as a reference guide, most people use the past to dictate their present and not their future. Most people make the critical error of allowing their past to control many of the outcomes in their lives by spending time focused on something you can never change; the past. Visionaries use the past as a road-map to eliminate the possibilities of running into the same obstacles over and over again. When the obstacle won’t move, you must.

If you cannot see or visualize how great you can become, it will be nearly impossible to live up to your full potential. While it is very important to focus on and have the ability to drill down to details, it is imperative that you learn to develop the skill of visualizing everything from a bird’s eye view. Being a visionary means having the ability to see that which is not there yet maintain the belief that it will appear one day. When we intently focus on something, just like magic, it seems to magically appear in our lives. If you want to start living a more fulfilling life, you must create a mental picture of what that life specifically looks like. While some claim to have the ability to see the future, you certainly have the ability to see and create the future you want to see in your life starting today. Open your eyes and witness the possibilities.

Having a vision is critical to your success; if you can’t see where you’re going, how are you going to get there?

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Every Second Counts

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How bad do you want to live your dreams? Are you willing to do whatever it takes to get what you want? How far will you go to ensure that your goals are achieved? The answers to these questions are based on your desire to be better. Some people are satisfied with where they are; this message is not for them. This message is for those of you who are sick and tired of being sick and tired. This message is for those of you who are tired of watching everyone else enjoy their blessings while you continue to ask God to provide yours. This message is for the folks who are ready to do something about it. This message is for you.

The time and effort put into accomplishing your goals directly correlates with the outcomes you’ve been experiencing in your life. Specifically, if you are falling short of achieving your goals then you are clearly not investing the appropriate amount of time and effort necessary to be the best. What you put into achieving your goals is exactly what you can expect to come out; little to no effort will always yield unsatisfactory results. Adopt the “every second counts” mindset and start spending more time focusing on and working towards accomplishing all of your dreams. Time is of the essence.

In order to have what others won’t have tomorrow, we must be willing to do what others won’t do today. The people you admire most and the countless others who exemplify the definition of success did not get there by accident nor by chance or luck; it took time, hard work, dedication and a commitment to excellence. The common theme amongst top performers is coming in early and leaving late. Be committed to winning. Be committed to doing whatever it takes to live your dreams. Be committed to living the life you were meant to live. You only have 24 hours in a day, for some that may not seem like much, to me that is all the time you need. If you want to win, you must invest your time into creating that realization; that’s what winners do.

The world is waiting for you, what are you waiting for?

To The Top!
Joe Paul

Morning Cup of Joe – Free At Last

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It is unreasonable to expect people to believe in your dreams and be more passionate about them than you are. The world around you is filled with dream killers. There are people who simply don’t want to see you succeed. The fact is, misery loves company and if you don’t succeed you will be miserable and if you are miserable you will be keeping a lot of company. If keeping company means failing then I’d rather be alone. It’s true what they say, it is very lonely at the top but there’s plenty of room up here.

Even if there are those who don’t want to see you succeed, succeed anyway. Reach as far towards the sky as you can then reach a thousand miles higher. Create goals so big that even you would be amazed if you reached them. You can achieve what your mind can conceive. How committed are you towards making your dreams come true? There will always be people who doubt you, even those closest to you. The only person responsible for your success is you, stop pointing fingers. If you don’t succeed it’s nobody’s fault but your own. Winners take full responsibility for their actions. You can’t expect others to be passionate about your dreams if you aren’t passionate in your pursuit of achieving them.

As a dream seeker and a person who accomplishes goals, it is imperative that you keep your eyes on the prize. Your focus should be laser-like similar to a racehorse in the Kentucky Derby. Those horses have blinders to restrict them from all of the distractions and other racehorses around them. What is going on to your left, your right and even behind you is none of your concern. At all times focus on your dreams and pursue them with vigorous passion. There is no greater joy than accomplishing a goal and seeing your dreams come true. Your dreams are meant to bring you freedom. Follow your dreams, find your freedom.

To The Top!
Joe Paul

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Morning Cup of Joe – Left Behind

There is someone or several people in your life right now who are keeping you from reaching your full potential. This person may be really close to you or someone who you interact with a little less. This person may be the one you turn to for advice or the one who offers it freely. This person may be someone you trust. Besides you, in some ways this person may be partially responsible for some of your failures including dreams you decided not to pursue.

Sometimes in order to move forward, we must leave some things behind and some people in the past. This is perhaps one of the most challenging things to do. Back in college, I was faced with a similarly difficult choice. My best friend since elementary school and I were starting to grow apart; our interests were constantly clashing. While I was focused on creating a better tomorrow, it never seemed to make the top of his list. I did not want to accept the fact that in order for me to get to the next level I would have to part ways with someone I’ve known for most of my life. While some choices may not make us feel good they are certainly good for us. I did what I had to do to protect and preserve my future and I challenge you to do the same.

Change is not easy but it is certainly necessary. Some decisions are exceptionally difficult; that doesn’t mean we should shy away from making them. Reevaluate who is in your support circle. If you have someone in your circle who you cannot count on, you need to cut the dead weight. If someone in your circle is constantly negative, you may want to limit your communication with them. If you are wondering why some of your dreams aren’t coming true, check your dream supporters. There are some people who simply don’t want to see you succeed. Figure out who they are and separate from them. Once you release the anchor, your ship can sail out to sea and your journey continues.

Not everyone who is around you is on your side.

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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