Hank Green announces Nerdcon: Stories

So Hank Green announced last Friday that he, and the good people from vidcon, are launching a new conference called Nerdcon: Stories. Nerd Con Stories

I’ve been a fan of Hank and John for quite some time but this is probably the coolest thing that either of them has ever done.

The conference is basically designed to celebrate stories but it goes deeper than that.  It’s celebrating human stories because Hank and the folks at Nerdcon realize that stories are the crux of the human experience. 

Think about it.

We all love TV shows, books, movies, and social media but the reason that we love them is because they are riddled with stories and ever since we were little kids we’ve loved to hear someone tell us a story.

Story permeates our existence.  You can’t hang out with a friend, or call your mom on mother’s day (don’t forget May 10th) without telling a story.

What I’ve noticed is that people not only like to hear stories but we actually ARE stories.  If I asked you to tell me a bit about yourself… you’d tell me a story.

I’m currently writing a book that explores this idea as it relates to relationships and especially as it relates to personal coaching and mentoring relationships.

Side Note: People here the word mentor, and they kind of freak out a bit.  It sounds super profound and complex and they get visions of kung fu masters up on mountaintops but mentoring is very simply listening to and telling personal stories. 

Listening to and telling stories is how we connect as people and it’s how we come together and help each other as well.  If I share a story about something that I’m going through and ask for advice, you would probably share a story about a similar situation and how you got through it.  It’s all stories.

Hank mentions in the above video that  “every human society that wants to behave differently, first has to change the stories they tell.”  This is true on the macro level for society but it’s also true on a personal level for you.

If you want to change, get better, lose weight, get your dream job, whatever… You have got to start by changing the stories that you tell.

Used under creative commons.  Photo taken by Dustin Oliver

Photo taken by Dustin Oliver

Notice that I said stories.  PLURAL.  Change will only happen if you change the story that you tell your friends/family/the world AND the story that you tell the person that lives above your bathroom sink. That would be you.

Change starts when we reframe, and rewrite our own stories.  My goal, as an author, speaker, and entrepreneur is to help you unlock the power of your own story. I do that by listening to stories and helping people see them from a different perspective.

Your story is inspiring and powerful and if you don’t think so, I dare you to send it to me so I can prove you wrong. 

You can email me your story at andrew.linderer@gmail.com.

Thanks for reading and don’t forget to comment, like and subscribe.  

P.S. If you know Hank, please let him know that I would be a fantastic speaker for Nerdcon: Stories!  Shoot I’d even just love to just go to Nerdcon, speaking there would be kind of like giving a TED talk. It would pretty much make my life.

I was brave right before I chickened out

So John Acuff  was in town this past week to speak at a Do-Over-3D-bookshot-with-spineconference.  If you don’t know who he is, you should look him up.  I’ve been part of his 30 days of hustle Facebook group for about 6 months now and it’s really been cool to learn from him and the other hustlers in the group.

If his name sounds familiar but you aren’t sure he wrote a book and a blog called, “Stuff Christians Like”.  He’s also written several other books.  “Do over” is his latest and I’ve got a pre-order copy, and it’s fantastic.  You can still pre-order your copy, which comes with bonus gifts at acuff.me but don’t wait cause I think monday is the last day you can order and get the perks.

Anyway, He was in town to speak at some conference so he posted on his twitter that he was going to be in Phoenix and that people should come eat barbecue and hang out… so I did.

Do-Over-Club-Phoenix-e1427938237923 He actually wrote about it on his blog  and posted a picture  of me… Okay It’s a group shot with everybody but you can see my head in the back if you zoom in.

The evite, was a bit shady and I didn’t know for sure how many people would be there, or if I would even fit in.  I was slightly terrified that it was a meeting for professional speakers and authors and I would be a very small fish in a very big pond but I took the small step of courage and went anyway.

(PS Gilbert is not the same as Phoenix @JonAcuff)

Anyway, there were about 50 people there so it was small enough that you could meet people and network a little bit.  I met a really awesome entrepreneur that I’m hopefully going to feature soon when I launch  #InterviewingAwesome.  More about that below.

I also got to meet John, which was a whole new level of cool.  I don’t usually get super excited to meet authors or famous people.  But Jon’s excitement rubbed off on me.  He is excited about what he’s doing and he’s telling people about it. 

He only spoke for about 15 minutes and just shared some things that he’s been working on but then he asked people to stand up and say their name and what they are hustling on. It was really cool. 

I “didn’t get a chance” to share my hustle at Joes Real Barbecue in Gilbert, which is code for “I chickened out” so I’m going to take the chance here.

My name is Andrew and I am a Business Owner.  I’m working at a church right now, and I love it, but I’m also starting a business on the side.

The business is called Novel Consulting and though we have tons of plans for where we want to go, our focus right now is story driven life coaching.  We believe that all people have and are a story but we also understand that the way you tell that story shapes the way the world sees you and more importantly, the way that you see you.

We just got our first client this week, which is super exciting and I’m frieking pumped.

I’m also a blogger and an author.  My blog is actually pretty good.  I don’t say that to pat myself on the back but more to say that I’m really proud of the work that I’ve done on it.   I mean I enjoy reading it, so I hope other people enjoy it too but I write just as much for me as for the people reading it.

Right now I’m really excited about a series of blogs that I’m calling Interviewing Awesome.  The basic idea, is that I am going to pick people that I find inspiring and interview them, ask them about their life and their business.  My hope is that the interviews with inspiring people will not only encourage my readers but give me a chance to support awesome people as they work towards their awesome goals.  Win!  Win!  Win!!  I already have one interview that is done and scheduled to post on Friday the 10th so check back then to meet Ashley Frank, but I have two more interviews that are in the works and my goal is to do at least one a month.  Hopefully more.

I’m also currently working on a book.  I’ve had a dream to write a book since High School and it’s finally happening.

The book idea, at least right now, is “mentorship made easy”.  My idea is to write something that will give an average person the tools and inspiration to either find or become a mentor.  Ideally, both.

Whew! Okay those are my goals.  They are now out there.  Read Jon’s blog so that you can hear him explain how important voicing your goals is.  The hardest part of bravery is not doing something brave.  It’s telling people that you did something brave.  

Let me know in the coments what you are doing that is brave.  Who knows, maybe I’ll be Interviewing your Awesome soon.  

2 fitness secrets that my 4 year old taught me

IMG_0570The other day I was working out from home and my 4 going on 15 year old daughter, Zoe, was watching me.  (I’ve got one of those cool sets of dumbbells that allow you to adjust the weight. You know the kind, and you know you’re jealous)

After a particularly difficult set, Zoe looked at me with that questioning look on her face and said, “Um… Daddy?”  “Why do you keep… like… stopping?”

Part of me was instantly offended.  “I stopped cause it’s heavy!  You try curling 10 pounds! PER HAND!”

After I got over my initial hurt feelings, I tried to explain.

(Side Note: Yes my four year old sometimes hurts my feelings and no, your judgment doesn’t help.)

I told Zoe that sometimes we have to take breaks.  As I tried and failed to explaine this concept it became apparent to me that the idea of rest was foreign to my 4 year old.  She has unlimited energy and she never gets tired, especially at bed time.  When she wants something, she throws everything she’s got at it; physically, emotionally, and mentally.  No holds barred, no barbie left undressed!

This is great when it comes to learning new things.  She attacks new problems with vigor and determination.  Mind, body, spirit: every part of her is in it. 

There are two things that I learned from my daughter that day about fitness.

1) When you are going… GO!  Her total dedication is inspiring.  She doesn’t do anything half way, and we could all learn from that.  Though her passion is less than pleasant when she wants to stay up after bedtime there is something to be said for her all or nothing approach.  Her whole being fights rest!  She physically squirms, emotionally breaks down and cries, and mentally plans the perfect time to remember that she needs a glass of water.  It’s poetry in motion… constant motion.

But it’s not all gogurt and apple juice for my determined little girl.

2) Her energy runs out, and when it does, she crashes… hard. Don’t believe me… Check out this video of her falling asleep trying to eat a cupcake.

Zoe taught me two things about fitness but that video should have taught you two things about life.   First, my daughter is hands down, way cuter than yours and it wasn’t even close.

Second, WE ALL NEED REST!

The reality of life is that we can’t go forever.  Nobody has unlimited amounts of energy and everybody eventually runs out.  When kids run out, it’s cute and they drop their cupcakes, but when you and I run out, we drop our kids, we get sued by CPS, we lose our job, spidermonkeys take over the world, and bananas start getting traded on the stock exchange.  Don’t let bananas be traded on the stock exchange.  Learn how to rest.

The problems that you and I face are a bit more complicated than those that Zoe faces, as are the goals that we’ve set for ourselves.  For us, rest is vital and it has to be planned.

When a kid misses a nap, bad stuff happens.  Ask any young parent.  When you fail to rest, worse stuff happens. Ask your kids. Ask your spouse.

You will burn out if you go balls to the wall 24/7.  You need to take breaks.

This is true in fitness, but it’s also true in business and personal life.  We need to rest.

Now, just like anything in life, balance is important.  If we rest too much we become lazy, If we work too hard for too long, we get burnt out. 

But for a lot of us, rest has become very ineffective.  We make it to the weekend but are no less rejuvinated come monday morning.  We go on vacation only to come back more exhausted than when we left.  We sit and watch TV while we think about work and call that “rest”.

IT’S NOT! 

Rest is not a passive action.  At the gym, in between sets, I don’t sit and stare at the wall, I focus on breathing and stretch the muscles that I just worked so they will be ready for the next set.  Rest is active.

Rest involves actively turning work off but that’s only the first step.  After we actively turn work OFF we have to actively turn rest ON.  Rest is actively focusing on family or a good book or a great movie. If our mind is consumed with these things, there is no room for work or stress.

The unique ability to shut off one part of your brain and turn on another, is not a skill that you will learn overnight.  It will take some time and some patience, but as you train your mind, much like you train your body, your ability to turn off and/or turn on different parts of your brain will grow.  This will allow you to actually rest.

 What do you do, to actively rest from work?  Maybe you read, maybe you write, take your kid to the park, eat gelato and sip wine at a coffee shop called ground control?  (okay that last one is mine.)  

Let me know in the comments below and don’t forget to like, subscribe and check back on Friday.

How to actually let go and move on

This post is part 2 of “I wish I could hate you”If you missed that post you can find it here.

 

There’s an old proverb that says “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t”. 

This proverb was, I’m assuming, designed to help minimize risk.  I can see it being advantageous in military or business endeavors.  Maybe even in sports.  In those situations knowledge of your enemy or competition is key. It makes sense to say that having an enemy you know, is better than having and enemy that you don’t know.

I thought the phrase was interesting, and I’m a nerd so I spent some time trying to find the origin of the phrase and something kidna sad emerged.  Like any old phrase it has been misquoted and distorted over time but the most common modification that I found completely changed the entire meaning of the phrase.

The most common misquotation goes something like this: “Better to have something bad but known, than something (that could turn out to be good) but is (currently) unknown.”  How sad is that.

We’d rather settle for familiar garbage than pursue spectacular dreams.

Our fear of the unknown imprisons us to the negative impact of the known.

When we hold on to things, ideas, or people; what we are actually doing is giving those things control in our life.  We are telling those things that they get to decide the scope and range of our options.

So what would happen in your life if you let go of the devil you knew and pursued the angel that you didn’t?

Maybe your devil is a person but maybe it’s just the idea of a person that you can’t seem to shake.  Maybe your devil is a job that you have but don’t like.  Maybe it’s the car that you’re driving that keeps breaking down.  Maybe it’s the gym that you go to but always leave feeling crappy after working out with a bunch of muscle-bound meat heads surrounded by botoxed-Barbie dolls.

(I hate gyms but kind of like alliteration, can you tell?)

Whatever you’re devil is, it’s time to let go.letting-go

Here’s one way to start.  Take out a piece of paper and write down your devil on that page up at the top.  Once you’ve done that make a list of things that YOU can do to let go of, and remove that devil from your life.  Notice that I capitalized YOU.  The only person that can make a change is you. 

Often we think of letting go as a passive action but that is why we never ACTIVELY let go.  Letting go is an action and we must act in order for the action to take place.  Your fingers and arms (and probably your mind and emotions) must move away from the object that you are holding and then in many cases they must actively push that thing away.

Now, Listen closely because this is where people mess up.  (Ask me how I know.)

Once our hands have done the action of letting go, we leave them open and they just kind of sit there.  But unlike objects at rest that tend to stay at rest, hands that open tend to close.  If we don’t push away the devil and then close our hand around something that is positive, our hands get bored and tend to reach back out and pick up the very thing that we set out to let go of.

The best way that I have found to successfully let go of devils (aka addictions or vises) is to fill my hands back up once I’ve emptied them with positive habits.

Don’t just let go of laziness, grab on to a day planner.  Don’t just let go of a bad relationship, fill your life with positive ones.  Don’t just let go of an addiction, build positive habits.

I’d love to hear about the devils that you are letting go of but what is more important is the angels that you are picking up.  Let me know in the comments.

PEE INTO THE WIND!

I’ve always been a huge fan of the TV show “Friends”.  I know that it’s not technically the most wholesome, or intelectually stimulating show, but I just love it.

In one particular episode, the One With the Metaphorical Tunnel, Joey is giving Chandler relationship advice.  (I actually cringed a little bit as I typed that last sentence.)

Chandler is scared to take a step of intimacy with a girl.  He’s afraid of the metephorical tunnel of commitment and what might be on the other side.  Commitment, emotional intimacy, love.  Joey’s advice is to, “Face your fear.”

“Go for it man! Jump off the high dive! Stare down the barrel of the gun… Pee into the wind!”  Chandler’s response is priceless.

“Ya Joe, I assure you, if I’m staring down the barrel of a gun I’m gonna be pretty much peeing every which way.”

It’s a goofy scene from a show with very little redemptive value but I think there is some truth to Joey’s advice.  Often times the single thing that keeps us from achieving our goals… is fear.

Maybe it’s fear of rejection or failure.  Maybe it’s fear of change or fear that we wont get the support we need or make enough money pursuing our passion, but it’s fear.  Plain and simple.

I want to challenge you to look at your goals for the year and identify what fears might be holding you back.  Maybe your afraid that you wont actually make it to the gym 3 times a week.  Maybe your afraid that you will fail, or that people wont like what you are working so hard to achieve.  Maybe you are afraid of success and how that will change the status quo.

Maybe you’re just plain old afraid of change.  Whatever it is, the first step is to identify the fear.

What’s the seccond step you ask?

PEE INTO THE WIND!!!!

So take the leap! Dive In! Stare down the barrel of the Gun! and Pee into the wind!

Face your fear and punch it right in the nose.  Too often fear sneaks into our lives and wrecks our dreams before we even notice that it’s there.  Don’t let that happen to you.

Identify your fear and then plot it’s demise. Plan out how you will systematically conquer whatever fear happens to get between you and your goals.

I’d love to hear any success stories of fears that have been faced.  If you’ve got one that needs to be faced but you don’t know how.  Comment below or PM me.  I’d love to help.