Sunday, October 26, 2014

My Success Story Busking in Mount Dora, FL

Saturday was the day. With my guitar strapped to my back, I hopped on my bike and took the back roads to downtown Mount Dora outside of Orlando where I had set out to play my guitar on the grassy lawn for anyone who'd listen at the Mount Dora Craft Fair.

My goal was simple and my goal was two fold. The first part was for me to actually go out and be bold enough to play music in front of people. The second part of my goal was to make at least $1.

Because I earned my Bachelor's Degree in Music, I have acquired enough knowledge to teach myself to play the guitar. I've been casually learning the instrument on my own. Though I've played countless gigs with various rock bands behind my drum set and even singing some of my own songs, I had never yet played guitar in public for an audience besides a few friends here and there. This was to be my first experience playing guitar for the public.

When I arrived at the craft fair, I had underestimated the amount of people that'd be there. Though I heard 200,000 people go to Mount Dora every year to attend this festival, the swarms of people shuffling up and down Mount Dora's normally quiet streets was surprising. I set up shop on a grassy section of Alexander Street just one block from the city center.

With my instrument in hand and my black case open and loaded with my own dollar (to get things started), I tuned up the acoustic guitar. Then I warmed my fingers up with some chords and I felt nervous. But I had achieved my first part of the goal. I was in the city playing the guitar. Check!

I started running through the songs I had written and jammed on some chord changes. As people walked past, I'd feel anxious at first because I wanted to make sure to not make any mistakes in my chord changes and fingering positions. I wanted it to sound good for them.

As the minutes passed and I warmed up and started to relax, I let myself get into the music and groove into the chord changes. I started to smile and look up at the people who were walking past me on the sidewalk.

I made eye contact and share a smile with a man wearing a red polo shirt as hee was about 10 feet away. He reached into the pockets of his khaki shorts and took his wallet out. He tossed some money into my case and it was more than $1!

I was overjoyed and my confidence surged. I felt proud to have done what I set out to do. I kept playing and even got bold enough to start singing some of the songs I'd written. When I started singing, a young lady walked all the way across the street and give me $1 saying, "you sound very good." Then another couple came by to give me a dollar.

I kept playing and really enjoyed my first busking experience. I did much better than I expected and made some friends in the process. I'll be doing it again very soon.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Recognizing a New Passion

So what are you passions? In the past this question used to stump me. I was nervous to identify my passions because along with it, I set an expectation on myself. This question of passion comes up a lot when you start analyzing your life purpose, what career path you want to take and when you just want to improve the overall quality of your life. I felt that if I knew what made me happy that is what I was passionate about, I was doing something wrong by not living a life full passion.

I've realized it's much simpler than that. For me a passion is just something I enjoy doing. It doesn't have to be something I'd kill for! It can just make me happy or feel good. It can be something that interests me or something that I find myself thinking or reading about over and over again.

Recently, I discovered a new passion. Healing Crystals! This one caught me out of the blue last week. It started I was watching the Spirit Science video about Crystals. I already owned a few crystals and had learn the basics of how crystals affect our seven chakras while I was studying to be a yoga teacher in Bushwick last year. I also had receive a crystal healing reiki session in Manhattan last spring. So I wasn't a complete beginner but the video opened my eyes to the possibility behind the use of crystals.

Since watching that video, I've been passionate about increasing my collection of crystals. I want to experiment with them and see how they influence the way I feel and how I interact with the world. I recently purchased a singing clear quartz crystal from a metaphysical shop The Crystal Closet in Mount Dora. My new beautiful crystal really enhances the vibration of any crystal it comes into contact with. When I place a rose quartz or green crystal on my heart chakra, then touch it with my singing quartz, feelings of love and compassion fill me up.

This brings me back to the purpose of this post. Passions can come from something small and grow into something big. The key to identifying a passion, at least for me, is to fearlessly recognize what I'm interested in and what makes me happy. When I do, I find that my life naturally begins to be filled with more passion simply because I've acknowledged its existence in my life.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Why do people fear following a career they're passionate about?

When I ask myself this question, the fist thing that pops into my head is that people don't think they can do something (or should I say make money from something) that brings them joy and happiness.

Unfortunately, although so many of us believe this, including myself sometimes, it is clearly a blatant lie. Somehow we grew up thinking that what we want to do is out of reach or not practical i.e. can't earn us a living.

If you want to be a professor for example, you might hear people talking about how it's so hard to become a tenure professor or that academic jobs are so competitive to get into. That there is little security in the job. The reasons go on and on. How do we know this is true? How do we know it would be true if we decide to follow that path? etc. etc.

But wait... aren't people already doing it?

The last question: Aren't people already doing it? Is the thirst-quencher. It's the knockout punch. No matter what you want to do, someone is already doing it and probably doing it very successfully. SO successfully that they have enough money that they wouldn't have to do it for the rest of their lives if they didn't want to but still they decided to do it. There are many successful professors who have earned tenure. Perhaps things are changing in the academic world but why wouldn't YOU be able to become a college professor? Why is anyone else better than you? Why would they be more capable of doing it than you?

They're not... The difference between you and them is that they did it despite all those other people telling them it couldn't happen. Or maybe they were lucky and found encouragement for their dreams. Either way, it doesn't matter. They did it and so can you and so can I.

Whenever we find ourselves doubting our dreams and our own abilities to achieve them, we must remember that other people already did it. The journey may not be easy and things are always changing so it might be different when you get there. We can't let that stop us. We must go after our passions and not give up because someone told us we couldn't do it. We must remember it's already been done and seek out opportunities to surround ourselves with people who are going to encourage us rather than encourage doubt.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Liked or Feared? What's the Ideal form of Leadership?

Should a leader be liked or feared? In my opinion, a long-term successful leader should be liked and respected. Someone feared, might eventually become hated and challenged  by mutiny or revolution.

An example that comes to mind for me is the leadership style of Alexander the Great who connected with his soldiers on a down-to-earth basis that fostered their respect. He would walk through their camp and talk with the soldiers and during battle, fight on the front lines with them.

Although he was able to keep his distance as a leader and not become too much of a peer, being open to them and spending time among their ranks produced an undying loyalty that helped him conquer much of the Mesopotamian world.

To me, being liked as a leader does not imply having an equal status as a direct peer or friend. It includes much respect and an overall benevolent attitude toward the leader. With this kind of attitude, followers will like their leader and accept their commands because they have built trust in their style of leadership. Fear remains in power only as long as it takes to be overcome.

Think of our own emotions. Often they take a leading role in our lives and influence our behaviors and actions. When fear is in charge, it stays there until we face our fear and do the thing we fear regardless of our feeling. We don't like that fear is in charge so we keep trying to overcome it and most often we eventually do and in the process we grow.

What do you believe? Should a leader be like or feared?

Friday, October 3, 2014

What am I excited about career-wise?

Besides making progress in building my real estate property finder company Foster's Property Finders LLC, I  am also very excited that I am going to have an eBook for sale to everyone soon.

I have two books I am currently working on. The first is about affirmations and the purpose of the book is to offer readers a chance to practice improving their thought life thus enhancing the overall quality of their life. The second eBook I will be publishing is a sci-fi fantasy novella.

I began writing poems as a young child then moved to creating comic books and stories. In high school, I wrote more poems and meditations and evolved into writing short stories in my twenties. Since then it's been a dream of mine to write a book and be a prolific fiction writer. So the progress I'm making on this work excites me.

A new page on this blog titled 'Books,' will be created on ElectricThought.net that will offer my books for sale once they're finished. In the meantime, I will offer a per-order special to anyone who'd like to receive the books at a discount once they're ready. More details to come. Subscribe to ElectricThought for more information and to stay updated.

Thanks everyone!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Reclaim Your Art of Dreaming

I want to inspire people to use their imagination and remember how to dream big. Many people are told when they are growing up that what they dream is out of reach and that it's too hard or you have to be lucky to achieve it. The problem doesn't come from those words, the problem comes when people start to believe those words and take them in as their own.

Often we associate living a dream with a career or job. It makes sense why we do that because if we do work that gives us joy, joy will seep into the rest of our lives and improve our over-all quality of life since work takes up large portion of our daily life. Why is it so easy for children to blurt out their dreams when asked what they want to do when they grow up? Because their thinking hasn't been limited by what other people believe they can and cannot do. They just know what's fun and makes them happy.

Stop and take a look around at all the ways people live in the world. There are organic farmers, touring musicians, business builders, event coordinators, TV producers and countless other ways to earn a living. So if you had a childhood dream, someone in the world is most likely already doing it! There is no reason that couldn't be you or me.

When someone tells you that something is out of reach, don't automatically take their opinion as fact. Take a look at the evidence. The evidence is that countless people are doing the thing that would bring you joy. Maybe a few got lucky breaks or were born into it, but most probably just kept dreaming and walked towards their desire one day at a time.

If there was a revolution in the way we dreamed, if we could even just allow ourselves to dream again, the world would be filled with more fulfilled and happier people. Let's start a revolution to help people use their imaginations and once again find their dreams.