Category Archives: Happiness

The WORK(B4 I Go)OUT

6′, 200 lbs of straight man-child is what I am. Half Black, Half Puerto Rican and I’m a fitness fanatic. And, not just in the gym, but across the board in my thinking and my behaviors.

There’s so much conversation about fitness today regarding eating, supplements and sleeping patterns etc. I am frequently asked what I do to exercise, eat and any general health routines I follow. I am not about to make any recommendations or tell you what you should do because I believe, and I do want to stress, in the importance of your individual life and chemical makeup. So full Disclaimer: The following is what I do, that works for me individually and may not be right for you. I am not a dietician or personal trainer and none of what I write about should be taken as medical advice or recommendations.

I, for example have an overactive thyroid gland that borders on HyperThyroidism. Your thyroid regulates your metabolism, which determines how fast and effective your body breaks down food in your digestive system. What hyperthyroidism means for me is that I can pretty much eat whatever, whenever (hate me, I know) because I will process it at an accelerated rate. With that said I still take pride in a healthy-ER diet however, I have no problem crushing a double cheeseburger with everything at 12 Midnight and then passing out.

My actual lifestyle acts as my work out in many ways as I am constantly moving for work and I’m an active, busy person in general. I get about 5-1/2 to 6hrs each night which works well for me. I do change up the bulk of my exercise/fitness routine quite frequently, but I did want to include what my typical exercise week has looked like for the past few months.

Monday

  • Morning: KJ 20 Min AM Routine
  • Evening: Street Feet(Cardio), Body Pump(Cardio Build)

Tuesday

  • Morning: 90 Min Bikram Yoga (Core)
  • Evening: Gym (Build) – I always do a strength workout, usually upper body

Wednesday

  • Morning: KJ 20 Min AM Routine
  • Basketball with the fellas (Cardio)

Thursday

  • Morning: 90 Min Bikram Yoga (Core)
  • Evening: Gym (Build) – I always do a strength workout, usually upper body

Friday

  • Morning: KJ Morning Routine Redux – Repeat 5x
    • 100 Push ups
    • 100 Crunches
    • 30 Pull ups
    • 30 Chin ups

Fitness is such an important part of my life and one of my deepest passions that I’d like to start sharing more about my active lifestyle and different work outs or healthy living details that I try out or adopt. Please let me know if you have any questions in the meantime and maybe I can create a post with that information!

As always thanks for reading and spread the word #MakeFitnessFun #MakeMoves

What If Kupah James was never in Entertainment?!?!?

I recently was having a conversation with my friend Sami and we were talking about careers/life choices, etc and ended up thinking about where we’d be if we made very different choices. I asked her where she thought I’d be if I never got into entertainment and it was HILARIOUS what she came up with. I asked her if she’d mind writing it up as a guest post of sorts for me to share with all of you and I think she had a little too much fun coming up with it. This is what she wrote:

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Hi Everybody! This was a lot of fun for me, thank you all for reading. And, thank you Kup for letting me participate on your blog! When Kupah asked if I’d mind writing what I was trying to say, I started thinking about some specific questions… Where would he be? What would he be doing? Not focusing so much on how other people would be impacted, but how would he?

If Kupah James never found entertainment I think he’d still be living an all-around successful and fun life. You can change a career, but you can’t change who a person is and what makes them who they are. Kupah is outgoing, loud, positive, ambitious, creative and active with an entrepreneurial spirit. He would have to be doing multiple things and working with people as much as possible.

Corporate Kupah:

I picture him in a corporate/office setting wearing a suit (suspenders over the shoulders) because he’s in a leadership or management position. Having studied sociology and criminal justice and previously working at a D.A.s office, I imagine he’d be doing something law oriented to help people or project-manage for a cause/company that helped people. That could be in a government/ public service way, or more legally/advocate based.

I imagine he would still be doing fitness and Klass with Kupah. But, he’d be going to the gym more and teaching more fitness classes (sadly, not Street Feet) than he does now. Depending on his actual day job, he’d be trying to start a foundation or open a gym. He’d be using business connections to network and find capital for these ventures.

I think he’d be in a committed relationship, living with his girlfriend, but, unsettled and feeling slightly unfulfilled. I think he’d be pursuing so many projects, jobs and hobbies to fill those voids and not know what was missing. He’d travel for work or to meet a potential investor and then get the travel bug. At that point I think he’d be trying to see as much as possible throughout the year and look into the real estate game; which would lead him to go for his realtor’s license and open up that market in the city of Boston.

I think we’d still find Kupah always on the go, always talking to people, making connections, trying to catch the next wave and forward thinking about projects and jobs. It just would be in different circles, different industries and be different activities and hobbies. I think his personal life would be different and we would find him more in the financial district or Back Bay during Happy Hour than at the latest nightclubs during the Midnight Hour.

Kupah James: Tamed-

Kupah #2 is less of an outwardly force of nature. Obviously you can’t remove someone’s love of music and creativity, but, not being the lifeblood of his day, what would that look like on Kupah #2 where movement, music and that specific type of creative element isn’t at the fore front? Now, Kupah has a hard time focusing too much on administrative type tasks/routine tasks. But, what if you have that creativity and fast-paced mind without the “muscle memory” of channeling it outward?

I think we’d have an outwardly reserved Kupah (crazy I know!) who wrote constantly and was glued to a computer for work. He’d write books and weekly columns and have a blog he updated 2-3x a day. This Kupah would work from home, be self-made and entrepreneurial but, in a completely different way.

But, this Kupah would be a dad and married. He’d be the stay at home parent, with a business minded wife. He’d take his wife on exciting vacations and plan elaborate date nights. He’d treat her like the queen she would be and be attentive and romantic.  Think date nights and heartfelt cards, foot massages, etc LOL. He would still remain active, going to the gym regularly but now, instead of teaching fitness classes, he’d coach all of his kids’ sports teams and charm all the other moms and teachers at their schools. On a different personal note, he’d have his guys’ days with his friends at more local spots and spend his holidays at home instead of a gig!

This Kupah is still outgoing, still has his natural charm and people skills, and still has his focus and ambition. He’d be creative in his work and in his relationships but his social circle would be smaller in person, but larger to the masses through media. This Kupah would reach more people internationally/nationally through his writing.

Source: IMdB

Secret Agent Kupah:

This Kupah is the dream. This is the Kupah that our Kupah intended on being when he entered college and began his pursuits of sociology and criminal justice. This Kupah’s life is full of unending excitement (not always positive.) This is a Kupah who may have another undetermined name altogether. This would be James Cooper, FBI Agent.

This Kupah channels his talents and knowledge both physically and at a computer. He hates the reports he has to type up, the memos, the meetings that he’s not leading and reading all of the suspect profiles. He answers to somebody, multiple somebodies, but leads a team and makes more life-changing decisions in the field than he ever could in another profession.  He’d use his charm and personality to have the best solve rate, hands down. Who better to gather information, back suspects into a corner conversationally and get a confession or at least real information from someone’s mom or girlfriend?

Physically he would work out constantly and be active in his daily work activities. He would be amassing all kinds of connections and networking to use as sources, aides, and to have the hook ups as he travels around for a case.  Personally, he’d have few meaningful relationships outside of his partner, family and childhood friends.

This Kupah would maximize all of his strengths and passions, but would toe the line with censoring his comments and actions as he’d hate having to answer to someone and have that accountability to a superior. Think Mike Lowery FBI agent. He wouldn’t have as many projects and hobbies, but his career would, arguably, be one giant one. He’d travel and mingle and dance and be loud and make as big a  difference. But, his difference wouldn’t be as well-known (keeping government secrets and all.)

Source: Google Images

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I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts on this one LOL!! Which Kupah do you like the best? PLEASE share, tweet, like, subscribe….

New Year, New Me

It’s tough to ONLY think of 10 things that can be done for a new year. I don’t always think of a New Year’s resolution because anyone who knows me knows that I tend to wear my goals on my sleeve. With that said, I thought a lot about what I could do to be a better person and I was able to come up with a list far too long for any blog, so unfortunately, I’m only going to stick with 10! Sorry to disappoint! Below you will find 10 things I’m looking forward to working on in the New Year. Enjoy and please share some of your own too!

10) Read More; every time I have ever read anything I found myself learning something and I’m looking forward to learning more and broadening my horizons in literature.

9) Travel! With a little bit of planning I would like to get outside my comfort zone and see more of the world starting with my own neighboring states! With friends and family in Chicago, L.A, Miami, Delaware, Atlanta, NH & Texas I want to see all that they have to offer!

8. Money – No, no, not to make more, but learning how to use money, understand money, speak money, the list goes on. It’s been said that just about 2% of the population contain almost 90% of the Money! Why is that? Well I’m not an analyst but I do know some know how to use their earnings to make more earnings while some use their earnings to buy things they didn’t earn!

7) Get more organized! I can’t speak for anyone else but I’ll probably be working on this in every list! Lol. Becoming more organized has only given me the ability to be more productive and efficient. Therefore, it isn’t rocket science to think that continuing my organizing skills is necessary for greater success.

6) Friends, as previously stated in a FB post earlier this week. The company we keep is a representation of who we are (not to mention the most influential factor in how we behave.) I have won some and lost others. What remains is a young man taking a closer look at how I decide and who to surround myself with at all times. The drama setters, hypochondriacs, enablers, liars, jealous (aka haters) are all over the place. I’ll fight through the sea of nonsense and discover the true friends I have and allow them to help make me a better person.

5) Art of Silence; let’s start that one now buy letting YOU interpret it how you see fit. Sometimes remaining Silent is all you need to say.

4) Kupah goes to Boston. I’m moving to the city folks, ears and eyes open. If you know of any neighborhoods let me know. I’m finally moving into the City I have repped for so long; I can’t wait and I’m already excited!

3) Family – I’ve matured to understand family is first and I want to spend as much time as I can with my own! I have a sister and a mother, a barrage of cousins, aunts, uncles and so on. I will make more time to see them because one day it will be game over and there are no do-overs in the game of life.

2) Positivity, it has been mentioned by a small few that my energy and presence is infectious. I plan on trying to continue that trend and if ever possible spread more positivity throughout the land. Every smile counts! Trust me, every smile counts to someone!

1) MakeMoves; as the official creator of the dopest phrase out there, I’m saying MakeMoves is the universal phrase and can be used for thousands of reasons and purposes! For me, it simply acts as the conduit for my motivation. No parts or assembly required just MakeMoves! I intend on continuing the movement by expanding Klass Universal Entertainment and fulfilling all of the above. 2013 is here ladies and gentlemen… MAKEMOVES!

Top 10 Evaluations of Importance

Sup readers,

I realize that it’s an exciting time of the year again and there are tons of emotions, thoughts & feelings surrounding the holidays. I felt that rather than write my thoughts about the holidays or it’s season, I would write about something that relates.

There are so many things going on today that it is very easy to forget what is really important. I am not the one to tell you what is and what isn’t, however I am the guy that will proceed to share with you how I evaluate importance.

1) Don’t sweat the small stuff, and it’s all small stuff.

2) Say what you mean and mean what you say because those that matter, won’t mind and those that mind, don’t matter.

3) Believe in your own ability to have an opinion but, be open to listening to others’ thoughts without jumping ship from your own beliefs. We are all different and have different experiences.

4) Ask for help; that’s why we have friends and contacts! Thinking you can do everything yourself is naive in this day and age so pull over and ask someone for directions, save time.

5) When upset know when to table things and know when to bring them up. There are plenty of people complaining every single day. Are you one of them or the other kind that just tables it for later, if necessary, and keeps on making moves?

6) Sleep it off, whatever it is… Sick, upset, tired, achy, depressed, irritated… Doesn’t matter! Sleep it off. Take a nap, wake up and if you’re not feeling better then address it.

7) Say “Hi!” There are 80 different ways to communicate yet we never seem to get it right. How’s this possible?

8. This is very important! If you have something nice to say to a person, SAY IT. Stop assuming they “already know.” The problem is that everyone may think the very same thing and guess what, no one says it. Take responsibility for your thoughts and speak! I promise you your kind words will not go unnoticed.

9) Gossip, Twitter Terrorists, Rumors, Hearsay, Facebook are the end of the world and its Privacy! Yes there are filters and safety features but here is an idea…. DON’T PUT IT UP. Seriously! And for those who live and swear by getting your facts from FaceBook and Twitter, get a life… #NuffSaid.

10) To me the most important thing to round out this list, and please keep in mind that these are just what popped in my head while blogging, it is YOU! All You. You You You. Never forget there is a You and You cannot take care of anyone or anything if You haven’t first taken care of You.

All in all enjoy the following photo. This guy is kind of a big deal and I read this once a day to remind myself of the things that matter and especially of the things that don’t.

Talk to you soon! Always #MakeMoves not noise…

 

MakeMoves

Make the most of the situations that present themselves

Make the best decision based on the facts at that time

Make those around you better

Make acceptance speeches not excuses

Make smiles on the faces of others by MAKING SMILES ON YOUR FACE

Make no mistake about it, you will make mistakes

Make Love Not War

Make others come to your level do not let them take you down to theirs

Make your bed every morning

Make a meal for a loved one

Make a Stranger not a Stranger

Make a glass half empty, half full

Make time to make time

Make enough money to do something but not enough to do nothing

Make a sand castle

Make the effort

Make sacrifices

Make it count

Make it to live 100 years

Make a drawing of your dream house

Make it to your dream house

Make the world better when you leave it than it was when you arrived in it

Make a list

Make a wish

Make an enemy, a friend

Make a tragedy an opportunity

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Look I definitely don’t have all of the answers but I’m trying to learn a little more than nothing.

All I’m trying to do, and say, here is #MAKEMOVES!

A story you should read..

There are so many things I can be grateful for in my life and I try my hardest to remember how hard others have had it in their lives before I think about my “have’s and have-nots.” I was thinking of a story I once heard,  and I felt compelled to share it with my readers, as I thought it was the perfect way to express how incredibly lucky I think I am in my life. So, please read it to the end and I hope that you can understand the lesson provided, but also look inside yourself and find this inspiring. When I heard this story, I was inspired and have been ever since.

“Like many families in the US, our ancestors are most likely from other parts of the world. Well that’s no different in this story: here was a Latin family whose dreams and aspirations were, like everyone else’s, about coming to America to find and hopefully live the American Dream. Dreams can sometimes turn into nightmares within a house hold and for the young girl of this story, that’s what happened. Very set in their ways, this family didn’t use words to express love and affection rather they “took care of business” and you should assume the rest. Living relatively modestly, this girl found herself on the other end of some really unhealthy and abusive experiences. At such a young age (6-12), you can imagine the developmental risks and implications of these interactions. All too familiar with local police she became a bit of a run away, learning about life on the streets and using the real (at time harsh) world as her classroom since she didn’t find any solace, comfort or place in a traditional learning environment. Burdened by family pressures while hardened by life lessons she met a man, she bared his children before she was even 20yrs of age. No education, no strong family ties and no wedding ring. Only promises of a future one day down the road. This man wasn’t exactly the knight in shining armor and he used manipulation and preyed on her love for him; eventually this lead to more abuse and mental deformations. After years of abuse and ridicule she found enough strength to take, what were now her children, and raise them on her own. With no career in sight and a measly G.E.D she made sure her children always had food on the table and clothes on their backs. They may not have had fancy toys and 20in rims but they had each other…

You must understand this story is already more than what some people have dealt with in their lives and trust me I realize that there is worse out there… Read On Please…

Relying on government aid and local town scholarships she was able to give her children the opportunities they needed to make friends and do most things other families and children were able to do. Yes their cereal had generic labels and cheese came in a block but to the outside world, the family took care of itself. Taking and applying some lessons she learned in her early days on the streets she taught her children respect, honor, values and morals. Her children both then had enough skills to finish college, have jobs/careers and are law abiding citizens. Her children say please and thank you to complete strangers. Her children are friendly with each other and love one another and communicate daily. Her children have no criminal records. Her children have never done drugs (WHAT???)! Her children love and support her to this day. This woman still struggles today with physical ailments and a personality disease that doesn’t always allow her to be happy or pleasant. She has fought with people, pushed them away and made some poor decisions because of this disease. She has lost loved ones because of this disease. She has limited options in life now because of this disease. Yet she still gets up every single morning and puts on a smile for a world which has not dealt her the best hand in life. I think about this woman and I need to make sure all my readers know how much I admire this woman for her fight when she could’ve quit. I admire her will when there was no way, I admire her optimism in the face of reality and I wish I had her strength to start over and lose and start over again.”

I want everyone, and I mean everyone, to know how much I love my mother. I’m so proud of her fight and will and the knowledge she provided to her children when she could’ve quit. I am so thankful for her sacrifices she made to raise two children in this difficult world. I love her with all of my heart and people sometimes ask me where I get my energy from and I would like to proudly admit that I get it from my momma!

Until next time!

“The Secret of Happiness” on my 30th Birthday

Good Morning – Today is my 30th Birthday! #KJ’s30 !

I don’t normally pay much attention to my birthdays, but I’ve been looking forward to this one. Not for a celebration or anything like that, but because this feels like a milestone for me.

I live my life happy, smiling, moving and with friends & family. I have a good life, but I have some big goals and opportunities ahead of me. For today’s blog, I wanted to share a story from the book ‘The Alchemist’ by Paulo Coelho entitled, “the Secret of Happiness.” I’d love to hear how you all interpret it and what you can take away from it. For me, it’s inspiring and gives focus looking ahead at this next chapter of my life.

‘The Secret of Happiness:’

“A merchant sent his son to learn the Secret of Happiness from the wisest of men. The young man wandered through the desert for forty days until he reached a beautiful castle at the top of a mountain. There lived the sage that the young man was looking for.

However, instead of finding a holy man, our hero entered a room and saw a great deal of activity; merchants coming and going, people chatting in the corners, a small orchestra playing sweet melodies, and there was a table laden with the most delectable dishes of that part of the world.

The wise man talked to everybody, and the young man had to wait for two hours until it was time for his audience.

With considerable patience, the Sage listened attentively to the reason for the boy’s visit, but told him that at that moment he did not have the time to explain to him the Secret of Happiness.

He suggested that the young man take a stroll around his palace and come back in two hours’ time.

“However, I want to ask you a favor,” he added, handling the boy a teaspoon, in which he poured two drops of oil. “While you walk, carry this spoon and don’t let the oil spill.”

The young man began to climb up and down the palace staircases, always keeping his eyes fixed on the spoon. At the end of two hours he returned to the presence of the wise man.

“So,” asked the sage, “did you see the Persian tapestries hanging in my dining room? Did you see the garden that the Master of Gardeners took ten years to create? Did you notice the beautiful parchments in my library?”

Embarrassed, the young man confessed that he had seen nothing. His only concern was not to spill the drops of oil that the wise man had entrusted to him.

“So, go back and see the wonders of my world,” said the wise man. “You can’t trust a man if you don’t know his house.”

Now more at ease, the young man took the spoon and strolled again through the palace, this time paying attention to all the works of art that hung from the ceiling and walls. He saw the gardens, the mountains all around the palace, the delicacy of the flowers, the taste with which each work of art was placed in its niche. Returning to the sage, he reported in detail all that he had seen.

“But where are the two drops of oil that I entrusted to you?” asked the sage.

Looking down at the spoon, the young man realized that he had spilled the oil.

“Well, that is the only advice I have to give you,” said the sage of sages. “The Secret of Happiness lies in looking at all the wonders of the world and never forgetting the two drops of oil in the spoon.””

Summer 2012 ReKap

I had a great Summer and had a ton of fun – I am more than sad to see it go, but, I’m glad to have the opportunity to look back on it and highlight some of it in a Summer ReKap for you all!

(I know Summer isn’t officially over for about another week and a half BUT after Labor Day passes and Chocolate Bar starts up, it becomes the Fall for me)

HERE WE GO!

Had to go with my Top 3 for these first few (Summer had WAY too many awesome things going on!):

  • -Movie: Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises, Prometheus.
  • -Song: Only One by Chris Lake, She Wolf by David Guetta, Don’t you worry Child by Swedish House Mafia
  • -Venue: MiniBar still going strong On Mondays and Emerald is Growing Quickly! One Memorable Royale Night with Cito and Behrang (Miss those Guys)
  • -Creative Talent: Somebody that i used to know (Cover) By Walk off the Earth STILL AMAZING
  • -New Grown & Sexy Spot: Emerald Lounge (see my review in this post,) The Seaport has been amazing for the Summer*
  • -New Equipment: New Rayn Mixer “62” Any questions?! Haha
  • -New Experience: Started riding a Motorcycle; dropped the first day and been riding ever since. Indescribable!
  • Funniest Moment: Oh man, in my life there are so many…
  • Best Moment: Fire at a Friends house talking and reminiscing until Sunrise. That’s a good life!
  • New Thing I Learned: How to buy a Condo and How to Ride a Crouch Rocket!
  • New Thing I Got Into or, I am Interested in: Reading is growing on me little by little and I may have caught myself watching episodes of Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix… OMG SMH….
  • New Challenge: Developing my organization skills and attempting to grow to the next level in entertainment. Fitness is still a strong passion and strengthening my relationships with friends and family. That last one is especially important because you are a result of who you surround yourself with. Deny till you die but it is what it is.
How was your Summer? What were some of your favorite moments/experiences? Any new spots, movies or songs I should be digging into?!
Until next time……….

Chocolate Bar is Back for the Fall!

I am very excited to tell you all that Chocolate Bar is back, TOMORROW! The Chocolate Bar is featured at Cafe Fleuri in the Langham Hotel in Boston.

The Chocolate Bar is set up with a variety of stations that offer all different types of chocolate treats, desserts and food. The Langham Hotel describes it as such:

“The decadent Chocolate Bar features stations with varying levels of chocolate intensity and flavors – from white to dark and everything in between. A DJ plays hit music to set a fun, upbeat tone where families indulge in close to 200 pounds of premium chocolate each Saturday. A never-ending supply of cupcakes, truffles, brulees, bread pudding, crepes, whoopee pies and more take center stage while Executive Pastry Chef Jed Hackney creates rotating items with fresh, seasonal ingredients such as September’s lemon madeline with ivoire cremeax and strawberries, and a caramelized white chocolate torte with banana and sesame.

The DJ is yours truly 😉 They also serve chocolate based cocktails that can be included as a part of the package price. I look forward to the Chocolate Bar every year because it is so much fun (and we all know how much I love to have my fun!) Everyone enjoys it, the location is beautiful and you have awesome views of the city. The food options are always changed up a bit, like they mentioned in the excerpt from above, and it never disappoints.

 

If you have any friends or family visiting, bachelorette parties coming up, etc it’s a great place to bring them. It’s a unique experience and it’s in a great location to show anyone around Boston – and just in case it wasn’t clear.. it’s CHOCOLATE (who doesn’t love that?)

Until the end of next June, I will be there every Saturday from 11a – 3pm and I hope to see as many of you there as possible :)

Also, for something equally enjoyable and delicious, every Sunday at Cafe Fleuri they have their Sunday City Brunch. The best brunch option in Boston (in my humble opinion) while live jazz music is played.

If you’re looking for something to do around Boston during the day or as a visitor or for visitors – Saturday morning/afternoon at the Chocolate Bar and Sunday City Brunch. Then you can always check out Bond at night. Mentioned in this previous post; and your weekend in Boston is complete – word!

The Details:

Chocolate bar 11AM To 3pm Saturdays

$40 per person $55 with two chocolate martinis

$28 for children ages 5-12

250 franklin street boston, ma 02110

Reservation call: 617.451.1900, ext. 7125

boston.langhamhotels.com

Until next time – Subscribe, Comment, Check out the Chocolate Bar!

How to start being Happy

I talk a lot about happiness and positivity in my life and on this blog; How to identify it, how to keep it, the importance in spreading it, etc. I talk about those things in generalities and sometimes through stories. People have said they agree, they believe that too, they want to strive for happiness and positivity but they don’t always know how or where to begin. It can be hard to start somewhere positive and avoid the patterns of negativity or unhappiness that have been created out of habits. Habits of indifference, dirty looks, judgment, insecurity, laziness; all of the common things people do everyday and aren’t always aware that they’re doing.

How crazy is it that it can be HARD to be HAPPY or to be POSITIVE?! I don’t believe it should be, or that it really is.. I think people need to change their mindset and be proactive. To help get as many people started that truly want to be, I think you can begin with the fundamentals. The fundamentals that we’ve all learned or heard since we were kids: Manners and politeness (which lead to greater kindness.)

Not too long ago simple manners and politeness were standard teachings in households. Of course, this wasn’t/isn’t always the case, but for most, or at the very least it was expected in school. Somewhere down the road between suing each other, racial and cultural differences, rumors, social media bullying we have become so afraid to say anything to anyone. Sometimes when I say, “thank you” people are astonished that the words still exist. Seriously?!

People never seem afraid to point out when someone fails or makes a mistake, but rarely make the effort to say something nice or supportive. I’m confused, and slighted, that while we can tear people down daily, not too many people have the courage to pick people up. Should you quit your job to rush to the aid of a loved one having a bad day? No! Should you try to be a superhero and put your realistic needs and priorities aside? No! But, looking someone in the eye and genuinely saying, “Hey, I like that outfit,” “Nice job today,” “Congratulations on that man, that’s awesome,” “I appreciate you always being such a good friend,” can’t be so difficult!

I spend most of my day smiling and constantly thinking about forward progress. I’ve been on the other side of the tracks, I’ve made choices I don’t want to make again and I have no intentions of going backwards. So, when I meet people, my confidence and energy are obvious, in fact, there are many who feel that my ego and persona are overdeveloped. And that’s ok, but to most who just enjoy me as I am, the way I enjoy them, feel that I must know I’m doing ok, that I’m happy, that I’m confident in who I am and where I am in my life, so why tell me? “He already knows.”

The problem with this is that if everyone goes around thinking this exact same thing, this results in me, or anyone, walking around never hearing nice things from the ones that matter the most. Strangers or acquaintances will say positive comments all of the time, but the feeling in friendships becomes “there’s no need.” That’s unfortunate, not just individually, but collectively. Because we all need motivation, inspiration, support and we also need to hear it and feel it. Telling everyone you love, that you love them everyday could be a lot of work, but personally, I would rather spend significant time of my life making someone else’s better because POSITIVITY is just as potent and CONTAGIOUS as MISERY. The mind is a beautiful thing and we all have more power and abilities than we think.

So, back to the beginning: How to start?

Spend some time each day telling someone something encouraging or positive. Smile more. Say thank you! And, this is a challenge I have for all of you who really want to SEE the effects of this:

Next time you are out to eat and the server brings over your food, he/she will ask, “Can I get you anything else?” If there is something you need, then ask for it, but before they leave, complete your request with, “Can I have a smile?” I guarantee the person will not be able to refrain from smiling, even if it’s a little one, you’ll see it! It costs nothing, but could mean EVERYTHING.

Thank you all for the support and the smiles :)