There are far too many naysayers in this world that feel the need to bestow upon you their “be realistic” speech. It is my belief they didn’t receive too much encouragement from the people who mattered most along their journey. Or perhaps they were encouraged to fulfill someone else’s needs and wants for them. Now is the time to break the mold and encourage someone to keep working toward living a life of passion. So, be an encourager!
“Treat a person as they are and he will remain as they are. Treat a person as what they could be and they will become what they should be.”
~Jimmy Johnson(Calderon Remix)
The Thanksgiving holiday brought along more than just full bellies and miles on the vehicle. Every time I set out to see family for the holidays I always come back with a fresh new perspective on life. Let me paint the picture.
“There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
I was astonished by the many definitions there are for the word, “miracle.” Here were a few:
1.Miracle -An extraordinary event manifesting divine intervention in human affairs.
2. Miracle -An extremely outstanding or unusual event, thing or accomplishment.
3. Miracle -A divinely natural phenomenon experienced humanly as the fulfillment of spiritual law.
4. Miracle –Such an effect or event manifesting or considered as a work of God.
Of all these definitions, I seem to be drawn to definition number three.
Never underestimate your power to change yourself.
Never overestimate your power to change others.
~Dr. Wayne Dyer
What an interesting week eh? With the presidential election being over, it seems like the collective consciousness has finally reared it’s ugly head. On one side we have people gloating over the win of their desired candidate, and on the other side we have people grieving over the loss their party has experienced.
“Say yes to what enhances your life and the world around you.”
These days we are so easily accessible to the very many needs of others. Think about it. Between emails, texts and social media we are open game to anyone who wants to get a piece of us. Sometimes we say yes way too much to these people. Most of the time it’s because we have a fear of what people might think of us if we tell them no.
George Washington warned us over 227 years ago that a party leader would be prone to pursue their own agendas to the purposes of their own election, on the ruin of public liberty.
I think he was spot on in predicting the weather of our political system. First, I must say I am not a political guy. Politics has never really tickled my fancy. As you may know if you know me, or are a part of the Positively James community, I’m very much into the brilliance of the human spirit.
Take a look around my friends. Results don’t lie.
I recently had a great conversation with one of my closest cousins. He’s more like a brother because we grew up together in the same household for a lot of our childhood. It was great to catch up. We both lead pretty busy lives, so though I think about him a bunch, we very rarely get a chance to chat.
NEW VIDEO ALERT!
*Click on HD setting and enjoy the viewing
Shout out to Brandi Nicole Minter for joining me in this mind opening video.
Are you thinking for yourself?
You see almost everything you believe to be true and/or false has been passed down to you from family, community, culture, etc.
Are you really thinking for yourself? Because if you are then you are operating from the truest part of you. If not, then you are operating from what’s been passed down. Other people’s thinking.
Whatever it is you believe to be true and/or false creates your reality. Time to get real with yourself. If you’re not thinking for yourself then what can you do to change that?
Oh, the dramas of the world. If it’s not on social media, television or Netflix then it is the circles around us. If it’s not in the circles around us, it is in our heads. Now some dramas are entertaining. I don’t do television, but I sure love me some Netflix. Some dramas on the other hand are draining like the kinds on social media, or the ones that seem to creep in our lives by the very people we might care for most. However, most of these kinds of dramas can be avoided with the one awesome power we have. Choice.
There are over 8 billion people in the world and not one of them is like you. Why do you think that is? Why do so many of us go out of our way to be something or someone we are not? My friends, what the world needs more of is YOU. That is who you have come here to be. I want to encourage you to dig deep and supply the world with the authentic YOU. Besides, everyone else is taken,right? Trust who you are and who you are becoming. Enjoy the video!
WARNING: This video might change your life! The only permanent thing about life is change. Everything about life is always changing. Just think about the rhythm of traffic and the seasons and just the cycle of life altogether. Change is constantly occurring. A wise man once said, “Breakdown has to come before breakthrough.” So my friends, I invite you to embrace change in your life. Let the NEW enter your life and watch the magic unfold. Enjoy the video!
Trials, disappointments and all the other stuff that can kick our butts from time to time can actually be more of a help than a hindrance. It all depends on how we look at them. All it takes is a certain mind shift. Perspective can make all the difference in the world when dealing with the woes of today. It’s a choice though. We have to be willing to look deeper and see that every trial we endure strengthens our spirit and polishes up our character as well. Enjoy this video as I share a story about a farmer who endured some trials, but in the grand scheme of things it was ALL good.
Someone once mentioned that parenthood is the process of holding on and letting go at the same time. I couldn’t agree more. As my daughter approaches the teenage years of her life, I’m realizing that the process of letting go has already begun.
So what kind of advice can a father give his daughter as she approaches this new phase in her life? This is my open letter.
I knew this time would come. It seems like it was only yesterday your mom called me at work to let me know her water broke. I drove like Batman weaving in and out of traffic to get to her, so I could help bring you into this world. I remember holding you and singing to you for an entire hour while the doctor and nurses cared for your mom. I knew right then and there that my life would be forever changed for the better. With just a blink of an eye you are now only days away from becoming a teenager. The BIG 13!
Ever wonder why some people are able to retain information a little better than others? Recently I learned that in order for people to retain information, there is a chemical in the brain that needs to be present. This chemical my friends is dopamine. According to the Urban Dictionary, dopamine is the kick ass chemical in your brain that makes you feel and do happy things… whatever they may be.
It’s not always easy to stay clear from negative people. What happens when it’s a close friend? What happens when it’s the very people you work with, or maybe even your spouse? WATCH THE VIDEO and find out how you can handle the NEGATIVE NANCY with a little more class.
Jill is an easy going kind of girl. She almost always goes above and beyond for her friends. She’s usually the only one who smiles in the grocery store and keeps her co-workers steady laughing with her infectious humor. Everything she does usually has a positive purpose. She pretty much brings the light wherever she goes and always leaves a place better than when she found it. Now unless you happen to be a Scrooge McDuck, most people love having people like Jill around.
For a while myself and my significant other struggled to understand how each one of us operated from not only a relationship standpoint, but also from an emotional standpoint.
To better understand each other, we decided to dive deep into the book, “The 5 Love Languages” to help us better understand how each of us “ticks”.
Now, let me be clear. Our relationship is far from perfect, but what we have found as of recently on our relationship journey is that in order for us to survive, we must first understand what each one of us needs from one another.
I know so many couples who have given up on their relationships and possibly too soon for that matter. It is my hopes that this video sheds some insight of how far you can go with someone you love if you dig deep into what their love language looks like.
I am surprised my partner and I have made it this far. We’ve been together almost six years, and don’t get me wrong, most of it has been great, but like most couples we have struggled big time in the communication department. That is until recently. I came across a book titled, The 5 Love Languages written by New York Times Best Selling author, Gary Chapman. It was recommended by our couples counselor. Yes people, counseling can work wonders if you find the right one.
How do you nurture and care for yourself?
Just the other day, Erica and I were talking about how we’ve been lacking motivation. We just haven’t felt like doing much throughout the day lately. I’m sure you have days when you just don’t feel like adulting, yeah? I don’t think adulting is a word, but I’m making it one anyway. As the conversation continued, we reminded ourselves that it’s going to get pretty crazy in our lives again very soon.
So many of us lack the belief in ourselves, as well as the courage to go big and follow our dreams. I wouldn’t beat yourself up too much, I’ve been there. The system we are born into, though I don’t think it’s all bad, doesn’t exactly encourage you to chase your dreams. But there is something cool going on. There is an energy shift happening and it’s beautiful. More and more people are waking up and creating their own avenues and creating their own jobs…jobs that nourish the soul. I’ve always said if you have your heart set on being a doctor, lawyer or teacher, by all means go for it! We need them! However, if the thought of any of these type of careers don’t necessarily speak to your heart or fulfill you as it should, then maybe now is the time for you to awaken the giant within you. You just might surprise yourself. I know I have.
It’s ok to feel fear. However, to let it hinder you from growing into your greatest version is not ok. Now more than ever, humanity needs us to move beyond fear and take positive action. I’m not talking about taking action against something. I’m talking about taking positive action within our lives.
A little over a week ago, I found myself feeling down about the woes of our world. I mean how can you not be with all the media coverage mirroring where we are currently at in our evolution as humans. I am very well aware that media is a big business and what is portrayed in the news has an agenda, which is usually to gain more ratings, which in turn means more money. We may not always hear about it in the news, but there are people out there doing great things. Read on.
There’s no benefit in half assing your way through life. It’s imperative that you start to practice going the extra mile in every area of your life. This will help you push through any physical and mental boundaries you may have.
Put your heart in all that you do and if your heart isn’t in it then change what you’re doing, whether it’s a relationship, career or other. This will help fuel your soul and push you beyond the limits you thought were there.
If a man is to be a street sweeper, he should sweep the streets even as Michelangelo painted or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep the streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and Earth will pause to say, ‘Here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.’
-Martin Luther King
Going the “extra mile” in anything we do can make a big difference in our lives and in turn, make a difference in the lives of those closest to us. I believe that if we truly want to be successful in life, we should be willing to go the “extra mile.” From an economic standpoint, going the extra mile can bring favorable attention from those who are in a position to provide opportunities for advancement. But the buck doesn’t stop there.
We have all had moments in our lives when we quit something too soon because we didn’t see the fruits of our labor in the time frame we wanted. The truth is, you must keep a long term vision of where you are going instead of a short term one.
Patience empowers us, strengthens us and is the KEY to success in any area of our lives. We are all masters in progress, so embrace the journey and focus on becoming better.
“Why is patience so important? Because it makes us pay attention.”
So, I scoured the net to find a descent definition of “patience.” The Cambridge Dictionary online was by far my favorite and most straight forward.
Patience is the ability to accept delay, suffering, or annoyance without complaining or becoming angry. I think we most definitely live in a “right now” culture. It’s just the way it is. We need faster internet, movie streaming, food, shopping (thank you amazon), cab(uber) service, you name it! The truth is retailers bank big time from our impatience. I am not completely against impatience because sometimes I feel we need to make things happen, and sitting around waiting for it to happen is not always the best action to take. My only problem with impatience is the short term thinking that it involves.
It kills me that so many people are NOT content with their lives, and the sad part is the majority of people who are not content never come to a higher consciousness to admit it. The truth is, living isn’t simply going through the motions and accepting what life hands you. What does that teach our kids or the people who look up to us? Nothing. There is a lot of time left to do what you really want to do in your life. Get to Work!
Just a few days ago I spoke with an old friend on the phone. I know, crazy right? I actually clicked on his name in my contacts, called him and we had a conversation. Go figure. This friend of mine is someone I’ve known for a long time. I’m talking we went to high school together. We were not great friends back then, but as time progressed, so has our friendship. He’s a pretty busy guy as so am I, so we don’t talk as much as I’m sure we both would like to. Fast forward a bit, we had a great conversation.
So many of us spend way too much time beating ourselves up, and let the mistakes we make keep us down. Who does that help? What does that change? You see, there are three things that we have control over in this life:
1. Our thoughts
2. The images we form in our heads
3. The action we take.
Please allow me the chance to remind you of how awesome you really are and what you could do to flip the script on your woes. This is not rocket science. It’s a choice to live on purpose.
It is important to me that you know how wonderful you truly are. I know it has been ridiculously busy and life has been somewhat overwhelming for both of us. The world has succeeded in pulling us in many directions, which in turn has kept us not all here; even when we are next to each other. The stress levels have been at an all time high. I believe this has caused us, but maybe more me, to focus on our faults, weaknesses and limitations.
WARNING: Moms and Dads, you may not want to read this.
I feel it is my duty to share with the youth today about the reality of success in the “real world.” First off, I’d like to say, congratulations to those who just graduated, or are about to graduate high school in 2016. You are now among the 81% of high school graduates in the nation. It might be more now, but according to the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics, it’s somewhere around there.
What does it mean to live on purpose? One of the phrases I use with my athletes is “Everything on purpose.” It’s sort of become our mantra for the season. For those of you who are not aware of what I coach, I coach pole vaulters for Track and Field. There are some key steps in creating the perfect vault. It takes speed, a good leap, a driving knee, a fluid leg swing, core and upper body strength and finally, finesse. For all this to come together to be a successful vault, one has to do every single one of these steps on purpose; with pure intention. There can be no half-assing in any of these steps, otherwise, the vault cannot be successfully done. You might get lucky every once in while and get over the crossbar, but that doesn’t make it a perfect vault. I don’t teach my athletes to just get over the bar. I teach them to fly. In order to do this, everything needs to be done deliberately. I feel the same way about life. In order to be truly successful in life, which to me is just being happy and content, everything we do has to be on purpose.
I am seriously so humbled and grateful for all of my readers, subscribers, friends and family for all their support with Positively James. The message to Think, Feel and Live Better is getting out there and I am couldn’t be more jazzed. I thank you all again for allowing me to share my journey with you. Keep putting your best thoughts forward.
Ahhh, the good old days. The days when responsibility was just a word heard at the dinner table. I’m talking about the days when the only hat I wore was a blue Little Slugger hat. It was a common accessory to my Osh Kosh BGosh overalls of course. Life was so simple then.
I remember the days when people loved me the second I walked in a room and bombarded me with hugs and kisses, and an occasional cheek squeeze. Wasn’t a fan of the cheek squeeze, however. Now that I think about it, I don’t think I ever had my cheek squeezed. Sounded cool though. My aunt Cookie, however, used to squeeze my ears between her fingers. Ahh, the good old days.
Well, hello there my fellow readers, dream chasers and intentional living humans! Always nice to take a pause from the cray cray and do the two-step with you guys. Alright, let’s get to it!! As I mentioned in my last post, there are always two sides of the coin in this world of duality. In my last post, however, I was talking about the givers and the takers. Today we are talking about the naysayers and the one’s who support our dreams.
The name of the game is “giving,” people! I deeply feel that it is in our nature to serve and assist others. I believe we come from a source of giving and it is who we are. We are lots of things. But in the grand scheme of things we are givers. Now giving doesn’t have to always refer to money. We can give in other ways too.
Why do we have this need to compare ourselves to others? You do it. I do it. We all do it. Sometimes we do it and it makes us feel like crap. Other times we do it because it makes us feel like we are superior over others. Oh yeah, we sure do like to judge others just so we can feel better about ourselves. Breathe.
Truth is, I don’t think any of of these reasons for comparing myself to others has ever made me a happier person. You? Didn’t think so.
Many of us believe there are a few more things to do or conditions that need to be met before we can be happy. I am one of these many people. Much of my mental dialogue has gone like so:
“When I become successful, then I will be happy.”
“Once I am done paying off this debt, I will be happy.”
“When the kids get older, it will be easier.”
Are you fighting the “good fight?” Perhaps you may not even know what the “good fight” is. The phrase originally came from the King James version of the Bible. It seemed to be a call to spread Christian faith. I’ve heard the phrase throughout my life a myriad of times. However, it wasn’t until I read The Alchemist, written by Paulo Coelho that the phrase resonated with me.
You, my friend, are amazing. You are beyond amazing. You make lives better. You are perfect just the way you are. There is only one you. There is no one in this world like you. You were meant to be. You were intended to live the life of your dreams and that is what you do or will do. You matter. You make a difference. You are happiness. You have unique qualities and talents and share your special gifts with the world. I appreciate you. You appreciate you. You express yourself in ways that bring more love, joy, hope and laughter into people’s lives. Breathe.
“Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
Are you still shackled to the pains of the past? Having a hard time finding joy in the present because of something that happened in the past? If so, find peace in knowing you are not alone. There are many people in the world that face these same obstacles in life…including me. Truth is for me, It hasn’t always been easy to forgive, especially in dealing with matters of the heart.
Support networks are muy importante on this journey we call life. Who do you have in your corner?
As I sit here on the eve of my birthday, I am filled with tremendous gratitude for the people I have in my corner. I celebrated my birthday last night with my parents, who made the effort to drive three hours just to take me out to dinner. Alongside me to help celebrate, were my beautiful daughters and lovely partner, Erica.
I must admit I wasn’t very excited for this upcoming birthday for reasons I’m not quite sure of yet. It sort of seemed like just another day this year. However, sitting their at dinner, quietly taking in the experience, which I tend to do frequently, the day began to show me why it was a special day. There I was, surrounded by the people who have been there for me through thick and thin. There I was, surrounded by the people who love me no matter what. They know the good and the bad, and they still show up for me.
Listening to your own advice is not always the easiest thing to do.
Ever since I was young boy, I’ve had this ability to connect with people. I believe listening to them is what gave me my cutting edge. I remember trying to solve relationship problems in the first grade during recess between young boys and girls with a bad case of puppy love. I would go back and forth, giving them advice on how to approach each other to seal the deal. Sometimes I just did some patch-up work to reunite the two. This all happened before I was even in a relationship myself…I mean, what did I know about relationships? They seemed to believe in me, so I started believing in me too. This went on for years. People would come to me for all kinds of advice and still do.
I asked you to share this journey with me to becoming the best versions of ourselves, so it’s only right I share the woes too, right? I have to say, last week sucked! My health was sub par as I battled a sore throat and congestion. A few things went down at work that left a bitter taste in my mouth, and it has been non-stop raining for almost two weeks. I really shouldn’t complain about the rain because we seriously need it and haven’t had much of it over the past couple years. Needless to say, it still affected my mood and was sort of the icing on the cake to a crappy week.
I’ve been teaching on and off for a little over six years now. Every year I start the same way. I welcome my new students into the classroom, introduce myself, tell a few jokes, act like a dork and finally go over my classroom expectations. Out of all the things I do to kick the year off, the most important one is going over my positive classroom expectations.
Well it’s that time again folks! Yup, yup, it’s Woman Crush Wednesday! And what an honor it is to let you know that Positively James recognizes the very lovely and inspirational, Molly Hahn this week as our WCW. Molly Hahn is literally “adding LOVE to the world one doodle at time.”
Just recently a friend had texted me, asking what were the most important things to keep in check as a father. At first, I was a little stumped because, well, this is not something I think about often. First and foremost, I was flattered he asked me. It’s nice to feel like there are some things you do well and others take notice. Anyway, we had a nice conversation and I was delighted to catch up with an old pal. However, I left the conversation feeling like this should be a topic of discussion among many, if not all fathers. A discussion about what you ask? You know—HOW TO BE A KICK ASS DADDY! So I came up with a few tips in efforts to help papas near and far and from all walks of life.
I remember when I began to create Positively James. It was about a year ago. I was trying to think of a logo that would best represent my purpose, which was to get people thinking, feeling and living better in efforts to become the best version of themselves. I had no clue the lotus flower is what would bring it all together.
Well, I was planning on writing about the importance of expression in all it forms until I was delightfully interrupted by a phone call. This was no ordinary phone call; in fact, this was a call for me when everything thing else had to be put on pause. Yes, this person got it like that. On the other end of the line, I could hear and sense a need to be heard and with no reluctancy, my ears and heart perked up. The conversation that followed would then inspire me to write about change and how to embrace it.
It is with great pleasure to announce that our WCW for the week, hands down is Miss Shyanne Robinson!
She is no ordinary being, she is our dog! Shyanne was chosen by my partner, and brought to our family a few weeks ago from the Haven Humane Society in Redding, California where they provide pet adoptions and low cost veterinary care.
In order for me to answer the question,”Why this Positively James thing?” I have to answer the question, “Who is Positively James?”
So, let’s not waste anytime and get right to it! Positively James is the super me. He is the best version of James and someone I aspire to be like in my lifetime. Positively James is the evolved me. He is the hero of my story, the one who is able to transcend all the illusions of the ego. He is the mastery of James Calderon. I long for the day when we become one.
“What will they think of me must be put aside for bliss.”
This is a great time to be living! Now more than ever it seems like more and more people are waking up and taking heed to the call to follow their passion. I am beside myself with how many talented game changers I see daily on my Instagram feed. There are some awesome people out there doing some awesome things. So what is it that makes these people move to the beat of their own drum? How are these people able to step away from the ordinary and into the extraordinary?
It is a grand honor and pleasure for Positively James to recognize the wonderful Marianne Williamson as our WCW this week!
Marianne is a spiritual author and speaker. Six of her eleven books have been New York Times Best Sellers. Four of them have been #1.
Marianne has been an inspiration, as well as a hero of mine for quite some time now. I am proud to say I have her famous quote from her book, Return To Love, framed and hanging up in my daughters’ room, so they are reminded daily that playing small in this world helps no one!
How often do you say ,”thank you” and truly mean it? Here’s another question: How often do you say, “thank you” just because it is the polite thing to do?
These days just about everyone expresses gratitude. Good thing, no? Let’s see; we say thank you when the waiter brings our food, when the clerk at the post office hands us a new book of stamps, and to pretty much anyone who provides us with any kind of “material goods to advice or information” as author, John B. Waterhouse mentioned in the 5 Steps To Freedom.
A few weeks ago I sat in a room with three other people. One of these persons made it very clear to all parties included that they did not like me. It was supposed to be a complaint meeting from a parent and I was there to just listen in hopes to understand this individual’s complaint about me, apologize for any misunderstanding, and go back to what I do best. It turned out to be so much more than that. What I experienced over the next ten minutes would test my character like no other experiences ever have.