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Craig Ballantyne
05-09-2014, 03:12 PM
The British Gentleman is:

- Polite
- Unselfish
- Courteous at all times
- Patient
- Mindful of others, time, and tradition
- Disciplined
- Humble
- Self-deprecating
- Jovial
- Generous
- Stylish
- Dedicated
- Magnetic
- Encouraging
- Gentlemanly (of course!)
- Chivalrous
- Proper
- Owns a dog and goes for long walks in the countryside (<= YES! I've got this one!)

The British Gentleman is James Bond...without the License to Kill. ;)

The British Gentleman is my goal.

That's how I aim to live my life.

Unfortunately, I'm naturally...

- impatient
- selfish
- curt
- lazy
- not so stylish
- distant
- introverted

But I'm dedicated to my Transformation.

Since committing to this, I now...

- speak to people in elevators
- Say hi to as many people that I meet as possible
- slow down and rush less
- pay attention when people reply to "How are you"
- dress better
- connect with even more people

And so on.

I'm trying to do everything I can...short of wearing a tuxedo all of the time. :)

This is my Transformation Entry for the 20th Contest.

I hope that all of our Pro's will read this, and realize that they can still be a part of the Transformation, even if there isn't a category set aside for their fat loss goals.

We can all keep improving - every day - at every age.

I know I am.

Hope you will too,

Craig "TBG" Ballantyne

LeslieM
05-09-2014, 03:33 PM
Okay..this is probably the coolest thing I've read all week! Welcome!

Craig Ballantyne
05-09-2014, 03:50 PM
Thank you!

Craig Ballantyne
05-09-2014, 03:57 PM
Wednesday - We'll call this Day 1 of my Transformation. It was our first day in San Diego for the weekend of business masterminding. We always start the weekend with a small group 1-day Mastermind session with new business owners. We teach the basics and then do hot seats. I was NOT at my British Gentleman best. A little too curt with replies. And I didn't get a chance to spend time with Catherine Gordon who was only in for the day. I regret that. But overall, a good level of politeness. Made a note to do better for rest of week.

Thursday - Our 2nd day involves hot seats for our advanced level group, including Shawna, Mikey, Dani, Kate, and others. I was much better, starting the day by going around and checking in on everyone. Also initiated more conversations with strangers. Nicest thing I did was buy a homeless guy a coffee in 7-11 and then I listened to him mumble his life story. I don't say that derogatorily, but that's literally what happened. Gave him the change and wished him the best.

Friday - So far, so good. Our 3rd day of the MM hosts both Groups "A" and "B" (our beginners). It's a packed room. Gave a rousing speech and told story lessons to encourage members to get out of their comfort zone and connect with others. Bedros followed up with an even better Pump-Up speech. Got some laughs and most importantly, laughed at myself.

Each day getting better and better.

DanielWoodrum
05-09-2014, 05:05 PM
This is awesome Craig!

I thought you were dressing more savvy this weekend.

Looking forward to following this journey.

Dani

PeterJankowski
05-09-2014, 05:36 PM
- impatient
- selfish
- curt
- lazy
- not so stylish
- distant
- introverted



This sounds like me!

I am a stylish mofo though

Radz
05-09-2014, 11:29 PM
Very nice Craig! Coincidently hanging with a British gent tomorrow. Will take notes!!!

mocombes
05-10-2014, 04:35 AM
-
We can all keep improving - every day - at every age.

I know I am.

Hope you will too,

Craig "TBG" Ballantyne

Very inspiring...I'm going to jump in with one of these kinds of goals because I really need calming more than anything right now. I'm feeling a lot of stress/anxiety and need to get that under control.

So, my 20th TC goal (I'm keeping it simple here and sticking to one) is to meditate every day. No time limit set, just do it every day.

Ahhh...I feel better already :)

Craig Ballantyne
05-10-2014, 11:10 AM
I have a friend who is the 'archetype' for the British Gentleman I aspire to be.

But he's Irish!

Hope you had a good time with your BG buddy.

What did you learn?

Very nice Craig! Coincidently hanging with a British gent tomorrow. Will take notes!!!

Craig Ballantyne
05-10-2014, 11:14 AM
Friday, May 9

1) Made an effort to speak broken Spanish to the cleaning staff servicing my room at the hotel. I think she really appreciated it.

But I have no idea because I don't speak Spanish! :D

(PS - I will stop using emoticons. A BG wouldn't use these...would he? ;))

2) My dinner order was delivered without several items. But I didn't get mad.

I followed the Stoic maxim: "There is no good or bad; there is only perception."

I control what I can, and cope with what I can't.

Nothing I could do about the food that was not delivered. So no point in getting all huffy.

"You can always change the way you feel. You have complete control over your emotions. Choose to feel good ones." - https://twitter.com/bobbymaximus

Saturday, May 10
1) Did some stairs. Punished my legs. And politely greeted the other strangers doing their own stair workouts.

RobB
05-10-2014, 11:18 AM
Probably best off, leaving the British accent to Bally:D:D:D

Craig Ballantyne
05-10-2014, 02:56 PM
He is a British lab!

Craig Ballantyne
05-10-2014, 09:15 PM
Saturday, May 11
1) Lunch at Hooters where Bedros and I were extra polite. Although it's hard to maintain civility when eating crab legs.
2) Great day of coaching...lots of photos with Mastermind members
3) Hanging out with some coaching clients on rooftop of Hardrock - pool bar

Craig Ballantyne
05-11-2014, 10:26 AM
Sunday, May 11th
- early flight back to Toronto...was extra polite to everyone, from hotel checkout to INSANE taxi driver to TSA
- will get home to family in time for Mother's Day dinner

Craig Ballantyne
05-12-2014, 01:03 PM
Monday, May 12
1) When I workout I really just want to be left alone, especially when I have really heavy squats to get through...

...it's a lot easier for me to be polite once I get through that final set and into accessory exercises.

But today I slowed down, was patient and polite, and even offered assistance to a couple of strangers during my heavy squats (I usually don't help people unless they ask for it).

So the workout part went great.

2) The grocery store was a different story...it started off wrong...I was in someone's way and, selfishly, I didn't say, "Sorry, excuse me". I recognized my mistake.

When I got to the counter, I lucked out with an opportunity for redemption.

The older woman in front of me in line asked the clerk for help carrying her heavy sacks of apples and produce to her car...I volunteered, telling the clerk, "I'll run these out while you ring in my items."

It worked out perfectly.

I even brought back in some jars from the woman for recycling by the store.

"You're awesome," said the clerk.

"It was nothing," I replied.

And it truly was nothing.

Why shouldn't this be my natural behavior. It was a 5 pound bag of apples...I should be volunteering to help folks out with this more often.

I need to patient, polite, courteous, giving, volunteering, etc.

So many people I know are naturally like that...they'd think this entire project of "becoming a gentleman" is ridiculous.

But I need it!

So I'll keep on pushing and having these little victories each day.

Craig <= Thinking of changing my name to Craigory <= More gentlemanly???

PS - Also did a polite TT FB QnA here...but these are easy to stay polite and positive:

- https://www.facebook.com/TurbulenceTrainingFanpage/posts/10152413176044679

Craig Ballantyne
05-12-2014, 01:05 PM
By the way, if you are enjoying this, you should also check out my Money Transformation from Contest #17:

- http://forum.ttmembers.com/showthread.php?t=12390

concetta27
05-12-2014, 01:55 PM
You are an inspiration Craig. I will enjoy reading and better yet emulating your activity. The world could use a lot more civility and compassion. Thanks very much for your example. Concetta

Craig Ballantyne
05-12-2014, 04:08 PM
Aw shucks, thank you.

I guess that's the Southern Gentleman response. :)

Which I am also fascinated with, by the way...I've always wanted to find a small town, like the one in To Kill a Mockingbird, and meet a real life Atticus Finch.

Charleston is as close as I've gotten...they certainly have Southern Gentlemen there, like Mr. Woodrum.

Good times.

Keep on pushing on.

Never stop improving.

You are an inspiration Craig. I will enjoy reading and better yet emulating your activity. The world could use a lot more civility and compassion. Thanks very much for your example. Concetta

shawnss711
05-13-2014, 10:00 AM
Grocery stores are a great opportunity for practicing patience and kindness.
I am quite impatient myself at times and it is always a test when you are in a hurry because that's when the lines are longest...
I do try to let others with a couple items go in front of me if I have a lot of things in my cart,though. Or if I see a mom struggling with an impatient little one I will let them go first.


I love that you are always trying to improve. That is what we all need to continually get better
everyday.

Craig Ballantyne
05-13-2014, 02:18 PM
Tuesday, May 13th
- Started speaking with a British accent.

PeterJankowski
05-13-2014, 02:29 PM
Tuesday, May 13th
- Started speaking with a British accent.

Jolly good old chap.

neilg197
05-13-2014, 05:08 PM
Friday, May 9

1) Made an effort to speak broken Spanish to the cleaning staff servicing my room at the hotel. I think she really appreciated it.

But I have no idea because I don't speak Spanish! :D

(PS - I will stop using emoticons. A BG wouldn't use these...would he? ;))

2) My dinner order was delivered without several items. But I didn't get mad.

I followed the Stoic maxim: "There is no good or bad; there is only perception."

I control what I can, and cope with what I can't.



I use emoticons all the time, and I'm British so you can feel free to use them.

Wise words about there is no good or bad, only perception. Maybe that's one for us all to remember

Craig Ballantyne
05-14-2014, 05:49 AM
Stoic philosophy has been helpful for me.

I encourage you to check out:

"The Art of Living" Epictetus translated by Sharon Lebelle.

It's a small book with short daily lessons.

Also, "The Obstacle is the Way", by Ryan Holiday.



I use emoticons all the time, and I'm British so you can feel free to use them.

Wise words about there is no good or bad, only perception. Maybe that's one for us all to remember

PeterJankowski
05-14-2014, 06:43 AM
Also, "The Obstacle is the Way", by Ryan Holiday.

Everyone seems to be going on about this at them moment. A good read then?

Craig Ballantyne
05-14-2014, 10:22 AM
Almost got tricked by someone today into breaking my 6th Personal Rule:

"I do not engage in confrontations with anyone, in-person or online. This is a waste of time and energy. If I have caused harm, I apologize and fix the situation. And then I take a deep breath, relax, breathe out, and re-focus my efforts back on my work and goals."
- http://www.earlytorise.com/12-rules/

But I stuck to it.

Stay strong.

Laugh it off.

There is absolutely NO reason why anyone should get in a "fight" with someone online, because you ALWAYS have that chance to STOP before you hit SEND/SUBMIT. Stay positive.

Also, some nice feedback on this journal from an ETR Team Member:

"thanks for sharing your BG transformation... not only did i find it interesting to read your daily accountability, it's also inspiring to see the changes you're making (note: i noticed in our call earlier this week that you seemed more friendly, calm and patient). in the words of craig ballantyne, keep on pushing on!"

Craig Ballantyne
05-14-2014, 10:35 AM
Great post by Seth Godin today:

Emotional handwashing (http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2014/05/emotional-handwashing.html)

Emotions are far more contagious than any disease. A smile or a panic will spread through a group of people far faster than any virus ever could.
When you walk into the office or a negotiation, then, wash your bad mood away before you see us. Don't cough on us, don't sneeze on us, sure, but don't bring your grouchiness, your skepticism or your fear in here either. It might spread.

LeslieM
05-14-2014, 01:03 PM
Great post by Seth Godin today:

Emotional handwashing (http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2014/05/emotional-handwashing.html)

Emotions are far more contagious than any disease. A smile or a panic will spread through a group of people far faster than any virus ever could.
When you walk into the office or a negotiation, then, wash your bad mood away before you see us. Don't cough on us, don't sneeze on us, sure, but don't bring your grouchiness, your skepticism or your fear in here either. It might spread.


Good stuff. I find myself getting frustrated a lot lately by people constantly getting offended both online and in person. I don't think most people go out of their way to offend people. I TRY to tell this to the young moms in my life who are constantly getting offended by remarks people say when they are out with their kids. (stuff like, "I don't know how you do it." or "I could never do what you do." "You have how many kids??") Most people are just not very good at conversation and say dumb things sometimes in an attempt to make conversation. No reason to get in a huff, just offer a gracious reply("The best I can." "You might surprise yourself." "Eight, I left four at home!") and move on! By the same token, a bad conversation or mood can be changed by our reaction.(as you already know and practice!) I don't think I could be an online personality! Exhausting! I'd feel the need to counsel every grouch!

mocombes
05-14-2014, 09:49 PM
Which I am also fascinated with, by the way...I've always wanted to find a small town, like the one in To Kill a Mockingbird, and meet a real life Atticus Finch.



I'm just catching up to this thread after a few days and am truly enjoying the tales!

Along these lines, I have a brother-in-law from Lynchburg, VA (how's that for a terrifying name, not at all gentlemanly). He can "charm the leaves off a tree" as my mom used to say (specifically about a way-too-smooth Sicilian I used to date, but that's anther story...)

I've envied the way he can spin a yarn, welcome y'all to come in and "chew the fat", and make anyone feel valued for just being themselves. Noble traits, indeed.

mocombes
05-14-2014, 09:54 PM
By the same token, a bad conversation or mood can be changed by our reaction.

I actively committed to this a couple months ago and was truly blown away by the responses I got in a couple situations. Fortunately they were via email so I had time to think through my posture, but I was very pleasantly surprised. I'm currently thinking about how to handle one with my ex...

Craig Ballantyne
05-15-2014, 05:51 PM
Well said, Leslie.

I'll admit, I once had a hard time taking a compliment.

But I've gotten over myself.

Give a sincere thank you, and return the compliment.

Life is simple.

Good stuff. I find myself getting frustrated a lot lately by people constantly getting offended both online and in person. I don't think most people go out of their way to offend people. I TRY to tell this to the young moms in my life who are constantly getting offended by remarks people say when they are out with their kids. (stuff like, "I don't know how you do it." or "I could never do what you do." "You have how many kids??") Most people are just not very good at conversation and say dumb things sometimes in an attempt to make conversation. No reason to get in a huff, just offer a gracious reply("The best I can." "You might surprise yourself." "Eight, I left four at home!") and move on! By the same token, a bad conversation or mood can be changed by our reaction.(as you already know and practice!) I don't think I could be an online personality! Exhausting! I'd feel the need to counsel every grouch!

Craig Ballantyne
05-15-2014, 05:54 PM
Do unto others and always leave people better than you found them.

That's the ticket, Maureen.

Craig Ballantyne
05-17-2014, 11:11 AM
I resolve to stop calling people, "Bro".

A BG would most certainly not do that.

That type of language does not go over well when you put yourself in the right environments. I've had a nice short stay at the beautiful new Four Seasons in mid-town Toronto...working on ETR essays with this great view.

Last appointment this morning here in Toronto and then heading back to the farm...where I must avoid the word "Bro" in my small-town conversations with friends.

Craig

PS - Look for a new ETR essay format coming soon. Even more great FREE info every day! https://scontent-b-lga.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc3/t1.0-9/s403x403/10269614_747209478642757_5604281613070014892_n.jpg
(https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=747209478642757&set=pcb.747209658642739&type=1)https://scontent-b-lga.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn2/t1.0-9/s403x403/10382849_747209611976077_109335362276609595_n.jpg
(https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=747209611976077&set=pcb.747209658642739&type=1)

Craig Ballantyne
05-19-2014, 01:20 PM
This weekend I have been polite and patient with a trying family member that can easily overwhelm me with their personality. It's just how they are.

I can't control it.

I can only cope with it.

I must concentrate on what counts.

Craig Ballantyne
05-19-2014, 02:27 PM
Sunday - Your Device Free Day

The British Gentleman takes Sundays off from the Internet and even his phone.

You can do this too, as it simply requires planning.

Since Sunday is a family day in the British Gentleman's world, he is already with the people that matter.

Everyone else can wait.

There is no need to contact anyone else, nor to be contacted by anyone else.

That is how you can turn your Internet and phone off for a day.

You can easily provide an emergency way of contacting you...landline, someone else's phone, etc.

But you are not to be bothered...nor tempted...by digital devices.

Once you do it, you'll pleasantly discover how un-needed you are in the world. :)

When you turn your phone and email back on Monday morning, you won't have 300 messages and text messages.

Relax.

Enjoy the day.

Be a gentleman.

That's what family days are for.

Craig

mocombes
05-19-2014, 10:53 PM
Do unto others and always leave people better than you found them.

That's the ticket, Maureen.

Yes, and for my latest challenge I took a few days to think about my response to my ex this past week, and all seems to be well now.

It really was due to a lack of communication.

It was the "do unto others" i kept meditating on, how would I want to be treated? Then acted. All good. :)

Craig Ballantyne
05-20-2014, 12:29 PM
Wonderful feedback, thank you.

Craig Ballantyne
05-20-2014, 12:31 PM
Little improvements everyday.

1) Cleaning up my language. No more "Thanks man". Sub in, "Thank you, sir"

2) Better mental preparation for dealing with stress

3) More patience on the road

4) Pleasant greetings to one and all

5) Helping more people get what they want - I have everything I need ... so take my energy devoted to "getting" and help others get what they want.

shawnss711
05-21-2014, 09:50 AM
Those are all really great things to work on!
Patience is one I have to work on consistently.

Craig Ballantyne
05-21-2014, 10:27 AM
Created this a while ago for everyone to use:

http://forum.ttmembers.com/showthread.php?p=188520#post188520

RobB
05-21-2014, 10:55 AM
Thank you sir! Will check it out a little later! :)

Craig Ballantyne
05-23-2014, 08:07 AM
Couple of new ones...good for the weekend to think about:


What is your #1 problem in life? Be clear. Now...how much time are you putting in to fixing this? How much money are spending on a solution? How many people have you reached out to for help? Why are the numbers in your answers so LOW? This is your #1 issue. Nothing else matters as much. Be clear on what matters, control what you can, concentrate on what counts.


How will you measure your life? Family and friends, love given and received, people helped, experiences had, reputation built, legacy left, time spent, and lastly, money made. Not by emails answered. Not by petty issues. But by what really matters. Be clear on what does, and make it count. Now...let's switch to BIG THINKING for next 7 days. Fun stuff ahead!

Craig Ballantyne
05-24-2014, 12:12 PM
It was about 4 years this spring that I sat down and wrote my Declaration of Individuality, my Code of Conduct, my Principles of Performance, and my Philosophical rules for Life that have guided me during my eternal personal transformation...that is continuing up through today via the British Gentleman project. Here's what I wrote on that sunny Sunday afternoon at the kitchen table out on the old farm...It's amazing what my personal core values have evolved into today.

***
My 12 Rules for Living

The one thing I admire about people who have strong nutrition beliefs is their dogmatic behavior. For example, a Paleo eater, under no circumstances, will ever eat Wonder Bread. There is no, "well, everyone else is having a PB&J on Wonder bread, so just this once, I will too."
That's not how it works. Not when a Paleo eater has a strong personal philosophy that they never, ever, ever eat processed food from a bag or a box.
And that strong personal philosophy guides them to guilt-free behavior that is congruent with their goals.
I've also taught my fat loss clients to develop their own personal philosophy - essentially a set of rules that dictate decisions, and I've also created my own rules that determine how I live my life so that I reduce guilt, stress, and wasted emotional energy.
The purpose of this email is not to say that my personal philosophies are wrong or right.
Instead, they are simply here to encourage you to adopt your own rules for the sake of living a better, more productive stress free life. 
You may have your own rules in your head, but I encourage you to put them in writing. And you can adopt a set of rules for every aspect of your life, from health to financial to family and business.
You can watch me explain my rules here (http://www.earlytorise.com/12-rules/)

(NOTE: My rules have changed - slightly - since I first wrote them. Here is my updated approach to life.)
My 12 Rules

I go to bed and get up at the same time 7 days per week (8 p.m. and 4 a.m.) I stick to my diet, avoid caffeine after 1 p.m., and avoid alcohol within 3 hours of bedtime.
I write for at least 60 minutes first thing every morning.
I do not check email before 11 a.m. and I do not talk on the phone unless it is a scheduled interview or conference call.
I act polite and courteous, and I do not swear.
I create a to-do list at the start & end of every workday and update my daily gratitude & achievement journal.
I do not engage in confrontations with anyone, in-person or online. This is a waste of time and energy. If I have caused harm, I apologize and fix the situation. And then I take a deep breath, relax, breathe out, and re-focus my efforts back on my work and goals.
I am guided by these two phrases:
a) "Nothing matters." - I can only work towards the major, massive goals and my vision of helping others, while the opinions of others do not matter to my goals.
b) "It will all be over soon."
Everything that happens to me - good and bad - is my personal responsibility. I blame no one but myself. These are the choices I've made - this is the life I'm living. I will accept the consequences of my actions.
I will help 10 Million men and women transform their lives.
I will not be the person I don't want to be. I will not be petty, jealous, or envious, or give in to any other of those lazy emotions. I will not gossip or speak badly of others, no matter who I am with or what environment that I am in. I will not be negative when it is easier to be positive. I will not hurt others when it is possible to help. I will know the temptations, situations and environments in life that I must avoid, and I will, in fact, avoid them, even if it means loosening relationships with others who "live" in those environments. It's my life and that matters more than what other people think of me.
"I will always keep the child within me alive." - Ted Nicholas.
"I will write with honesty and feeling." - Ted Nicholas. The opinion of others does not matter. What matters is the number of people that I can help by sharing advice and encouragement in my writing. These 12 rules allow me to live my life with less guilt, more energy, and more productivity than if I did not have these personal philosophies outlined.
Now I know there will be two types of reactions to this content. First, some will dismiss it - and dismiss me.
But to those people, remember the point of the list is not for you to sit there and think, "Oh, what a total weirdo. I never want to hang around with this guy."
Instead, the point of the list, the idea, the article is to simply stimulate your thinking.
And that's the 2nd type of reaction you can have to this article.
This is the reaction of the people who I'm interested in - the people who will realize what's holding them back is not a lack of knowledge (because the knowledge is out there and freely available), but instead, it is decision making.
Listen, I know that every week you make decisions that leave you full of guilt and remorse, but on the other hand you also make decisions that you know are correct - even though they are difficult to make.
Wouldn't you be better off if you made MORE correct decisions with less effort and stress?
Of course, and that is where you rules to live by, your personal philosophies, come into play.
With this post, I've given you a model so that you can create your own personal philosophies that will allow you to make the correct decision and fewer decisions that leave you with remorse.
As a result of making more correct decisions, you'll move closer to your goals and suffer less frustration. Life will be simpler once you start adhering to your own personal philosophies - and not worrying about what others think.
Tell me your personal philosophies and life rules (http://www.earlytorise.com/12-rules/) <= Share them here
Stay strong and get stronger,



Craig Ballantyne

Craig Ballantyne
05-26-2014, 12:22 PM
Not my best day dealing with small town conversation in the gym and with the UPS guy, but I regrouped, and ended each encounter as politely as possible.

BUT...

Big wins are the sum of small victories. Small victories the result of forward failing steps. Forward failing steps the upshot of little bets.

My goal is to keep on improving my patience. It's my downfall. If I can slow down, everything will get better.

Radz
05-27-2014, 12:23 PM
My patience is what I'm trying to tackle too Craig, especially with my 2 boys and most importantly with my wife. Our parenting styles are so different and it definitely makes marriage a challenge. I had the weekend off (Family went away) where I quietly contemplated ways to be a better husband, father and human. They came home and lost patience 3 hours later! Old habits! Time to re-group for another day! :)

Craig Ballantyne
05-27-2014, 05:38 PM
Always look at your behavior objectively, as in the 3rd person. Realize that 90% of the time you are probably being foolish, and would look at someone acting that way as being foolish.

Now realize it is you.

And commit to change.

Craig Ballantyne
05-28-2014, 02:17 PM
"First, say to yourself what you would be; then do what you have to do." - Epictetus

Craig Ballantyne
05-29-2014, 04:49 PM
I challenge all TT Members to:

a) Buy a box of Thank You cards (Or make your own, or heck, just use paper)

b) Send out 1 per week (I sent out 1 per day, 7 days per week, but I have a lot of biz contacts) for the next 3 months

c) Brighten people's day...because it will brighten yours.

d) Here's why I do it (personal story):
- http://www.earlytorise.com/how-to-make-someones-day/

e) I get a little smile 3 times from this.

First, when I write it and realize how awesome my friends are...and having gratitude for people makes you happy.

Second, when I drop the card in the mailbox...because I know they'll go from surprised to confused to happy in the span of 3 minutes.

Third, from when I hear from the person to whom it was sent. They are always so happy. For example, I just received this from one of our employees...I sent her a card last week:

"Hi Craig,
I got your Thank You card, and I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate it. I was feeling a little down yesterday, and it brightened up my day! Your card helped me push through and double down on work.

You walk the walk Craig!

Thanks,

Amber"

***
I'm telling you...it's almost like magic, but these cards almost always seem to show up in someone's mail on the day they really need it.

Craig

Craig Ballantyne
05-30-2014, 08:20 AM
Maya Angelou — 'I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.'

</pre>

PeterJankowski
05-30-2014, 08:39 AM
Maya Angelou — 'I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.'

</pre>

Sad that she passed away. Smart lady. She's left a great legacy.

Radz
05-30-2014, 11:18 PM
Challenge accepted!!! :) Great idea Craig. I will do one per day Mon - Fri starting next week!


I challenge all TT Members to:

a) Buy a box of Thank You cards (Or make your own, or heck, just use paper)

b) Send out 1 per week (I sent out 1 per day, 7 days per week, but I have a lot of biz contacts) for the next 3 months

c) Brighten people's day...because it will brighten yours.

d) Here's why I do it (personal story):
- http://www.earlytorise.com/how-to-make-someones-day/

e) I get a little smile 3 times from this.

First, when I write it and realize how awesome my friends are...and having gratitude for people makes you happy.

Second, when I drop the card in the mailbox...because I know they'll go from surprised to confused to happy in the span of 3 minutes.

Third, from when I hear from the person to whom it was sent. They are always so happy. For example, I just received this from one of our employees...I sent her a card last week:

"Hi Craig,
I got your Thank You card, and I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate it. I was feeling a little down yesterday, and it brightened up my day! Your card helped me push through and double down on work.

You walk the walk Craig!

Thanks,

Amber"

***
I'm telling you...it's almost like magic, but these cards almost always seem to show up in someone's mail on the day they really need it.

Craig

Craig Ballantyne
05-31-2014, 12:27 PM
Awesome, Mark!

Craig Ballantyne
05-31-2014, 12:38 PM
In your transformation, not every day will go perfectly. That's okay.

Forgive yourself and others for the mistakes of the past. - Ted Nicholas

Learn your lessons.

And move on.

Craig Ballantyne
06-01-2014, 10:33 AM
Decent BG weekend, but could have been better.

So I'm adopting the WWBGD slogan for my tougher decisions...until the behavior is automatic.

What would a British Gentleman Do?

He would always make the most civilized choice.

My Canadian farmboy choices sometimes aren't up to par. Ha.

Onward!

Or Tally-Ho, as the BG would likely say.

Craig Ballantyne
06-03-2014, 09:58 AM
It is really important for you to tell a few select positive people what you intend to accomplish ... and to have them hold you accountable and to give you feedback.

This is essential.

There is no need to go it alone.

Craig Ballantyne
06-05-2014, 10:30 AM
A British Gentleman knows:

You are what you do when it counts.

Craig Ballantyne
06-06-2014, 03:19 PM
What are you waiting for? Be better every day.

Step outside your comfort zone.

Forget about the little O's (opinions) of small P's (small minded people) so that you get out of the fishbowl of mediocrity and head for the ocean of opportunity.

Man Up!

Craig Ballantyne
06-08-2014, 06:02 PM
Want to make an impact? Pour your heart out. Be vulnerable. Build relationships. Worry about who listens, not who criticizes.

Craig Ballantyne
06-09-2014, 12:56 PM
I have a surreal feeling from this weekend.

It's hard to believe that TT has grown such a connected, happy family like the one that got together this weekend.

#WeAreTTFamily

Check out the photos here, so awesome.

https://www.facebook.com/hashtag/ttsummit14

If ol' Craig Ballantyne can change, ANYONE can change.

Believe it.

Believe in yourself.

Face your fears. Become the person you need to become in order to achieve the goals and dreams you want to achieve. Control what you can, cope with what you can't, and concentrate on what counts. Never give up on what is important to you...but make sure you know what that is.

Craig Ballantyne
06-10-2014, 11:41 AM
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Craig Ballantyne
06-11-2014, 09:44 AM
The World needs good people like YOU now more than ever. There is so much negativity in every day life and we need positive leaders like you.

Craig Ballantyne
06-11-2014, 09:45 AM
2 flights today, SD to LAX, then to cleveland. Will be wearing dress shirt, blazer, etc.

This sets the expectations for me on how to treat others and for how others should treat me.

Good lesson these. Appearances matter in many ways.

Craig Ballantyne
06-13-2014, 01:40 PM
There is no need to curse.

MLK Jr. didn't need it.

Presidents don't need it.

Churchill didn't need it.

You can get your message across without it.

Try it.

Craig Ballantyne
06-14-2014, 10:46 AM
"You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want." - Zig Ziglar

Help more people than anyone else.

Add value.

Build your skills

Help. help. help!

Craig Ballantyne
06-15-2014, 08:18 AM
Yesterday I had a breakfast with a friend and his girlfriend. She asked a lot of newbie questions about what I do, and I tried really hard to be polite. I think I pulled it off...but I know I still need to be better.

Slightly made up for it by giving directions to strangers on the streets of Cleveland.

The downside was that they were asking for directions to a casino.

Oh well. Overall a good 'learning experience day'.

Oh, I also helped out two people at a seminar I was attending. Got one pumped up for the Vegas 1-day MM and the other was an old colleague that needed some fences mended...and I think we accomplished that.

mocombes
06-16-2014, 03:22 AM
Love those "learning experiences"... I'm having a pretty good one myself right now. Even though I'm not directly responsible, I'm going out of my way to make it better so we can all live with a little more aloha here. In the future I'll know how to nip this kind of thing in the bud.

Craig Ballantyne
06-16-2014, 08:37 AM
Go public.

Get accountability.

Tell the world what you want to do.

Then you have no choice but to do it.

Craig Ballantyne
06-17-2014, 05:32 PM
I shared this with my team last week, and it's a great TT Member story. Really proud of this young man...plus it's great proof that the BG's habit of Thank You Therapy really works miracles!

***
150 people attended the TT Summit. We had like Peter Jankowski from Australia, Gustavo Rosello from Dominican Replublic, Gilroy D’Souza from India, Steve Agyei from the UK, and so many other CTT’s from all over North America.

I want to tell you about one particular attendee and an incredible story that he shared with me. Young Nestor Flories, a new CTT, and beginner trainer, quit his real job a few months ago to jump into the fitness industry full-time. You can follow his journey here: => http://forum.ttmembers.com/<wbr>showthread.php?t=12963 (http://forum.ttmembers.com/showthread.php?t=12963)

Nestor does not have much money. He rode a bus – OVERNIGHT – from Fresno to San Diego (an 8-hour ‘red-eye’ bus trip) to attend the event. He was rewarded with winning the first-ever CTT Rookie of the Year award. I promised him that the TT World is dedicated to his success. He deserves it. He is an action taker.

But he almost missed out.

You see, just a few days prior to the event Nestor was considering backing out. You can’t blame him. No one would look forward to that bus ride, especially when combined with the loss of income from missing work.

Nestor did in fact decide to skip the event. After work one day, he got home, sat down at his computer, and began to write an email to Lesa letting us know that he was cancelling.

There was a knock at his door.

His roommate entered with the day’s mail. In it, a small card. You know what it looked like. You’ve received one before yourself. It was one of my thank you cards. It encouraged him. It thanked him for his dedication. It told him how much we all were looking forward to seeing him at the TT Summit.

Nestor deleted the email draft. He bought his bus ticket. The rest is history.

I can’t wait to see where he is in a year from now.

mocombes
06-18-2014, 04:54 AM
This is such an awesome story. It gives me goosebumps, or as the Hawaiian's like to say, "chicken skin."

Craig Ballantyne
06-19-2014, 10:54 AM
Saying "hi" to more strangers on my dog walks. Usually i just pass by, but that's not what a BG would do.

Off to grocery store in mentally prepared, patient, BG mode.

Craig Ballantyne
06-20-2014, 09:28 AM
Did not make it to the grocery store yesterday.

However, I had a long call with my accountant and was very polite.

Usually I get overwhelmed and frustrated and raise my voice at his hard-to-understand descriptions. This time I kept my patience and was polite at all times.

Then again, he was delivering such good news that it could even turn a Frenchman into a British Gentleman.

Today I will try the grocery store.

Craig Ballantyne
06-23-2014, 06:12 PM
Small step of success.

Running errands today...pulled into parking lot same time as someone else going to same store.

In the past my competitive, selfish nature would have been "me first" and racing in.

Instead, I delayed getting out of the car and let the other person go in to be served first.

Day by day getting better.

Also sending out plenty of Thank You cards. Always keeps things rolling nicely.

PeterJankowski
06-24-2014, 01:23 AM
Small step of success.

Running errands today...pulled into parking lot same time as someone else going to same store.

In the past my competitive, selfish nature would have been "me first" and racing in.

Instead, I delayed getting out of the car and let the other person go in to be served first.

Day by day getting better.

Also sending out plenty of Thank You cards. Always keeps things rolling nicely.

Small steps brother.

Craig Ballantyne
06-24-2014, 05:36 PM
Here's a great role model, a true gentleman in defeat. And dashing and suave, to boot!

"(The referee) certainly didn't give us a helping hand," Gianluigi Buffon said.



"But in the end you can't always be recriminating and putting the blame on others."


"Every now and then, it's only right that you accept what you're to blame for and when you're coming off two defeats without even scoring a goal, we clearly also have to take our share of that blame," added Buffon, who tied the record by being selected for his fifth World Cup squad.

Craig Ballantyne
06-25-2014, 03:10 PM
This week's PEXT theme has been Overcoming Resistance. Enjoy:

June 22
Life is good…so make it THAT good for others (family, friends, employees)…share the abundance…stop worrying about yourself and put the growth, wealth, and health of others first. You have the resources to help more people get what they want. PS - Identify any resistance you have to giving and 2 ways to overcome this. What can you lose by giving more? Nothing. You only gain.


June 23
"The failure to act is often the product of inner, emotional resistance than external resistance. To move forward you must give up your excuses. Do not capitulate to external resistance, AND resolve your own internal resistance. A high performer has no margin for such weakness." - Dan Kennedy ..... List your internal resistances to success. Identify 2 solutions for each.

June 24
Overcome your resistance to getting the important things done. End procrastination once and for all. "Extreme Productivity depends on control of self, environment-working conditions, others, time/priorities, and immunity to criticism. Always be asking yourself, 'Is this moving me towards my goals?' and “Where’s the profit in this?” Be willing to buy time & productivity. Find people who are better than you at certain tasks & pay them to do it." - Dan Kennedy

June 25
You’ve made your bed, now lie in it...and love being in it...for this is the life you’ve chosen to live. You are right here, right now, because you want to be. Be thankful for it. And if you think you've made "the wrong bed", if you don't love where you are...Tomorrow I'll tell you what to do...Until then: Don't resist your personal responsibility for everything in your life.

June 26
Cont’d from yesterday…If you are not happy, you must overcome resistance and change. "Ask yourself WHY you want something but refuse to act in congruence with achieving it. Either say NO to achievement OR dig in and get to the bottom of the persistent incongruence between what you say and what you do. It is OK to admit you are not willing to pay the price – and by doing so, that will stop self-sabotage." - Dan Kennedy

June 27
More Pestering to fight The Resistance! "Do THE EXERCISE: Disclose 'where you would like to be and have known you would like to be for some time but aren’t' The more specific the better. Discuss why you are NOT there – and make a list." - Dan Kennedy

Craig Ballantyne
06-26-2014, 07:00 AM
“The greatest trap in life is not success or power, but self-rejection.” – Henri J.M. Nouwen


Do not compare your scale weight, your bank account, your job, your car, your clothes, or your bench press against others.


There is only you. You now and you then. Point A and Point B. The path to progress.


Do not self-reject or self-destruct.


Instead, celebrate your journey of progress, getting better every day.


Accept yourself as is, for you are the only you there is - all while pushing yourself to progress, of course - and believing in yourself all the way.


Identify when you are tempted by self-rejection. Do not let it suppress the core truth of your existence. The treasure you seek is WITHIN


Stay strong and never give up on what is important to YOU!

Craig Ballantyne
06-27-2014, 08:02 AM
I must say...

I was very charming on the flight from Toronto to LA yesterday...making 3 jokes to the flight attendants.

And then I had a really great conversation with my young Iranian cab driver as he chauffeured me to and from Whole Foods.

Look for that in an email update next week...hopefully TT on Monday.

Finally, this quote from my friend and Jeet Kune Do instructor, Dwight Woods.

"The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his education and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he is always doing both." - unknown --- it's often attributed to Zen Buddhism, but that's not accurate according to QuoteInvestigator.com

Craig Ballantyne
06-27-2014, 10:51 AM
Today in the hotel gym I was finishing up with some meathead curls.

A woman, about 45-50, walked in to use the treadmill.

She sneezed.

Without messing up my tempo, the BG in me said, "Bless you".

She smiled and thanked me.

I also made sure to say Good Morning to all the hotel staff, and I wrote a thank you letter for the housekeeper and left it on my pillow with a tip.

Craig Ballantyne
06-29-2014, 08:29 AM
One of the most important books in my life in recent years has been "The Art of Living", Epictetus translated by Sharon Lebelle.

I'm reading it again for the 5th time. Today's reading was this, a major inspiration for the BG Project:

Clearly Define the Person You Want to Be
“Who exactly do you want to be? What kind of person do you want to be? What are your personal ideals? Whom do you admire? What are their special traits that you would make your own?

“It’s time to stop being vague. If you wish to be an extraordinary person, if you wish to be wise, then you should explicitly identify the kind of person you aspire to become. If you have a daybook, write down who you’re trying to be, so that you can refer to this self-definition. Precisely describe the demeanor you want to adopt so that you may preserve it when you are by yourself or with other people.” – Epictetus, Art of Living

Craig Ballantyne
06-29-2014, 07:02 PM
This weekend I had 5 cab drivers.

Four were excellent.

Three provided interesting conversations.

The first was a young man that had newly moved from Iran, you'll hear more about him in a future TT newsletter.

The second was an older gentleman from Iran that had been in America for thirty years. It was interesting to contrast him and the young man.

The third was the worst and severely tested my BG skills and patience. He was new, not too bright, and drove me around in circles. But eventually got me to Maestro's restaurant for dinner with Bedros Keuilian and the amazing Keuilian family. Fun times with lil' Chloe and Andrew.

The fourth was an Eritrean gentleman in Denver. We had a great conversation about what he's noticed since pot was made legal. He says he sometimes picks up people at the airport, drives them to store, they buy a bunch of pot candy, and then he takes them right back to the airport! He also thinks crime is down and things are better because it's legal. Not what I expected to hear!

And finally, the fifth cab driver took me too and from Whole Foods. He was polite enough to wait because I was polite enough to ask him politely.

I have no idea why I wrote this, but I hope you enjoyed it. ;)

Mike Whitfield
06-30-2014, 11:22 AM
Craig, I gotta say you're inspiring me.

Typically with neighbors, I'll wave if I see them but don't usually say much (except my neighbor that lived diagonally from me... he was a big Falcons fan so that makes for some fun football talk considering my love for the Panthers).

I decided to change that with my new neighborhood. So, I've had a couple of 5-minute conversations already while taking in some things from the move or coming back from a walk with Charlotte (our black lab).

Shamefully, I used to have the same mentality as I did with long stop lights... "I could be doing something more productive right now".

Thank you for leading by example sir!

Craig Ballantyne
06-30-2014, 05:50 PM
Very cool.

Neighbors are worth the investment.

Build a community.

Be part of it.

You'll grow too.

Craig Ballantyne
07-01-2014, 07:19 AM
Here's why most people don't change...

"The failure to act is often the product of inner, emotional resistance than external resistance. To move forward you must give up your excuses. Do not capitulate to external resistance, AND resolve your own internal resistance. A high performer has no margin for such weakness." - Dan Kennedy .....

So the solution is to...

List your internal resistances to success. Identify 2 solutions for each.

Why do you say you want to achieve something and then continue to act incongruently with your goals and dreams?

Write out your resistance.
Tell the world - or your accountability partner - of your plan to change.
Set a strategic plan.
Change your habits.
Implement daily rituals that get you closer to your goal.
Remove the temptations and distractions that suck you back into your comfort zone.
Demand of yourself that you Play Up a Level and do better.

You know that there is a BIG SELF inside of you that is capable of so much more. Give your BIG SELF a chance.

Step outside the Comfort Zone.
Make little bets and take bigger steps so that you can win victories.
Celebrate your progress from Point A to Point B.

Use that as momentum to keep on going.

Stay strong and get stronger - and overcome your internal resistance.

Do this every day.

This is the recipe for success in life.

You CAN do it. Because if I can, so can you. I believe in you.

Craig Ballantyne
07-02-2014, 10:37 AM
Yesterday was a big filming day.

It started off on the wrong foot.

It was a new videographer and I didn't gel with him.

It felt as though he was the type of negative person that I was talking about in all of the scripts and about how he was the type of "crab in the bucket" that you wanted to avoid in life.

Worse, he disagreed with me on the way the videos were to be filmed and edited. I started to argue, and then I pulled back.

I could either try and be right or I could acquiesce and make the best of the situation. So I stepped off. I found a work-around. In order to reduce the need for editing, I would just be perfect in my delivery!

It was tough, but I did it. I only had to re-record 7 of the 40 five-minute videos that I filmed.

By the end I was exhausted, but it was worth it. Just 10 more to go today.

I did a Man-Up and played the BG card. That was a big win yesterday.

Today, while reviewing my Craig Codes (another big project I'm doing), I discovered this code and it sums up yesterday really well.

"You will struggle, and that's okay. Everyone does, but not everyone perseveres. If you persist, nothing can stop you. Expect more of yourself. Keep on pushing on. Never give up on what is important to you."

DanielWoodrum
07-02-2014, 12:01 PM
That's great Craig. I really admire your ability and willingness to stick this through, as I know it's very difficult.

I too, am working on my patience. It's a constant battle, but this thread as been a source of positive motivation.

Thanks for sticking to your guns and sharing your personal journey.

Craig Ballantyne
07-04-2014, 11:02 AM
Thanks Dani, happy to help.

Great post by Seth Godin today:


"When I meet people who proudly tell me that they don't read (their term) "self-help" books because they are fully set, I'm surprised.

"Fear is the driving force here. If you accept the results you've gotten before, if you hold on to them tightly, then you never have to face the fear of the void, of losing what you've got, of trading in your success for your failure.

"And if you want to do this to yourself, well, I guess this is your choice. But don't do it to others. Don't do it to your kids, or your students, or your co-workers. Don't do it to the people in underprivileged neighborhoods or entire countries.

"Better might be difficult, better might involve overcoming unfair barriers, but better is definitely possible. And the belief that it's possible is a gift. We owe everyone around us not just the strongest foundation we can afford to offer, but also the optimism that they can reach a little higher.

"To write off people because you don't think getting better is comfortable enough is sad indeed.Better is a dream worth dreaming."

mocombes
07-05-2014, 04:34 AM
Since you pointed us to James Altucher's podcast I've been listening regularly and really enjoying them. I just caught the one with Seth Godin and was struck by a couple things.

First, count your success by the lives you change (which felt good as I think I did a little of that today).

Second, the most important things to teach kids are to lead and to solve interesting problems. He had his kids editing Wikipedia pages at 10 years old!

What a wise man. Thanks for hooking me/us up with that podcast.

BTW, you're killing it on #1 :)

Craig Ballantyne
07-05-2014, 04:38 PM
Thank you Maureen, I really appreciate your kind words!

The best thing about Altucher's podcasts is that they all come with transcriptions! He has great guests. I hope you get a chance to go through all of them.

Craig Ballantyne
07-05-2014, 04:38 PM
Here's my opening speech at the TT Summit. I think you'll enjoy it. Make sure to be there next year...it's going to be even better!

The British Gentleman onstage...

http://youtu.be/ZUry44D-gGU

Craig Ballantyne
07-05-2014, 04:52 PM
Side note: Really good discussion here on a Man-Up Transformation from another TT member.


http://forum.ttmembers.com/showthread.php?p=189460&posted=1#post189460

Craig Ballantyne
07-06-2014, 12:29 PM
Today I politely rolled with the awkward punches.

"Your workout program is working!" says the inappropriate TSA guy to me after giving me a pat down.

Awkward.

But funny.

Craig Ballantyne
07-07-2014, 09:52 AM
Always remember that no matter how bad your struggles are, there is always someone going through worse that is working harder than you. Step-It-Up!

Our lives our easy, our struggles small, let's do better everyday!

Craig Ballantyne
07-08-2014, 12:07 PM
Sunday was a travel first.

This had never happened before.

My flight was delayed by heat.

The temperature had soared in Denver to 34 degrees celcius, and apparently that would make it difficult for our too-heavy plane to take off.

So they unloaded all the bags. Asked for volunteers to take another flight. And then they had EVERYONE get off the plane - because the air conditioning was not working. LOL.

It ended up being a slightly inconvenient 2 hour delay. But a safe flight home, more importantly.

Throughout the ordeal I was surprised to see everyone dealing with it so calmly.

It wasn't hard to get the volunteers to leave the flight.

No one flipped out when they were told their luggage would arrive hours later than they would.

No one complained when we had to get off the plane.

Everyone lined up in orderly fashion to get back on.

It was incredibly polite and no one screamed at the gate agents (who were stressed, but doing all they could).

I was really impressed by everyone around me.

Inspired, too.

The moral is to always keep a cool, calm head in situations like this.

Control what you can.

Cope with what you can't.

Concentrate on what counts.

Craig Ballantyne
07-10-2014, 11:44 AM
I feel like I'm slacking a bit, shirking opportunity to challenge myself, avoiding situations where I'd be tested, and overall regressing.

Time to BG Man-Up.

Yesterday Bedros sent me a text thanking me for the morning PEXT coaching that I send him.

I replied and explained how often I'm writing them for myself.

He knew that.

Here are a few I've written to address the problems mentioned above...

July 9
Identify the #1 day-to-day issue that is bothering you. Something chronically annoying. Identify how it can be fixed. Contact the people & resources to eliminate it. Have the tough talks it requires. Fix the stress. Ease your life. Surround yourself with people who are smarter than you, with social support, and people do the work for you.

July 10
Overcome Resistance. Crush internal sabotage. Defeat procrastination and lack of focus. Summon your powers of self-discipline. Fight for every minute to concentrate on what matters. Give it your all. Do the Important Work. Control what you can, cope with what you can't.

July 11
You are awesome! But you are not perfect. There is a problem in your life, business, health, or relationships that demands your attention. Stop shirking responsibilty and avoiding the problem. Man-Up. Attack the issue today. Take one big step towards its resolution. Make the call, do the work, pay the price. It won't fix itself. It's up to you.

July 12
Spend an hour this morning without any electronics. Just sit and think. Make space to escape in your busy life. Finish your day with three hours free from all gadgets and TV. Spend the time in conversation or in love, but not in the digital world.

July 13
Give your meditation and prayer to someone else today. Turn your thoughts and love toward them and them alone. Identify 2 solutions for their obstacles. Helping them will help you. When you are done, write a Thank You card to a friend or mentor.

Craig Ballantyne
07-11-2014, 01:05 PM
Better last 24 hours. A few random hellos to strangers. Polite in the gym. That's always tough for me as I'm focused and don't want to chit-chat.

Also had a polite encounter at the Post Office over something that is quite annoying with their service. No point in getting upset, though.

Craig Ballantyne
07-12-2014, 11:49 AM
Amazing morning.

Big bike ride around Stratford river and I said a lot of hello's to strangers walking and biking. Beautiful day...

Plus, a funny "interval story".

After a short workout...

Following the circuit I did a WEIRD interval.

I blame ol' Bally the Dog (even though it was my fault).

Before doing the 10-Minute Metabolism Booster, Bally and I went for his normal walk. That also meant he went for his normal poop. But I did not bring a bag! We had no choice but to leave a little "treasure" on the ground...


...until after the workout when I sprinted around the block, picked up the "Bally Treasure", and then sprinted down the street with it (waving at all the neighbors out walking their dogs - ha!), dropped off the treasure in the garbage, and sprinted home. Time = 8 minutes. I was whooped.



Please don't call the poop police on me! I swear I picked it up - eventually.

But a British Gentleman always scoops.

pageboy9
07-12-2014, 03:05 PM
Ha! "Poop Happens"

I love the Bally stories.

Our new puppy was born 4 weeks ago, and we're going to visit him and his litter mates tomorrow.

Can't wait for the adventure to begin again, and I know that walking, training, playing with, and loving "Dimitri" will make life even more wonderful.

Craig Ballantyne
07-12-2014, 04:56 PM
That is wonderful!

Craig Ballantyne
07-14-2014, 12:46 PM
Really fantastic Device-Free Sunday. No phone or computer. Just fresh air, sunshine, books, family, and brushing ol' Bally the Dog to get rid of his fur. My goal is to do the same for next Sunday, then I have to work a weekend, and then finish with every Sunday for the rest of the summer.

Craig Ballantyne
07-15-2014, 01:04 PM
Be a good person, say and do good things, and attract good people into your life. Surrounding yourself with good makes you better. It's that simple.

Craig Ballantyne
07-16-2014, 12:22 PM
"Do not fear criticism. Only the morally weak feel compelled to explain themselves. Let the quality of your deeds speak on your behalf." - Epictetus

Craig Ballantyne
07-18-2014, 08:01 AM
He was no British Gentleman, but my old man taught me a lot of lessons, and I wrote this for him a few years ago.

The Chair

Home (http://www.earlytorise.com)/Family (http://www.earlytorise.com/issues/channels/etr-lifestyle/etr-family/) / Lifestyle (http://www.earlytorise.com/issues/channels/etr-lifestyle/) / Motivation (http://www.earlytorise.com/issues/channels/etr-self-improvement/etr-motivation/) / Self Improvement (http://www.earlytorise.com/issues/channels/etr-self-improvement/)/The Chair (http://www.earlytorise.com/the-chair/)

http://www.earlytorise.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/7-20-chair-e1405629334882.jpg
http://www.earlytorise.com/wp-content/uploads/userphoto/174.thumbnail.jpg
by Craig Ballantyne (http://www.earlytorise.com/author/cb/)
COMMENTS >> (http://www.earlytorise.com/the-chair/#comments)

The chair is where my father sat,
On sunny summer days,
Beer in hand, shirt undone,
The paper had his gaze.
The grass was never greener,
Than in my memory,
The shade was always coolest,
On the days he sat with me.
The Willow tree kept him in comfort,
It wept in gentle breeze,
We’d sit there without speaking,
Happy in each other’s company.
The tree has grown in time,
And the years had taken toll,
The chair has been replaced,
My father had grown old.
He no longer gets to sit there,
He lies at rest instead,
But place a chair under that tree,
And it’s like he’s there again.
A chair, a tree, a father,
You have these in your life too,
Though they may not be the same things,
They matter much to you.
When it comes time to count your blessings,
Remember this in life’s race,
The things that really matter,
Exist in plain view of your face.

PeterJankowski
07-18-2014, 08:09 AM
Really nice Craig. Thanks for sharing

RobB
07-18-2014, 08:43 AM
I agree with Peter......nicely done and a great tribute to your father! Mine passed away 3 years ago, Wednesday.......

Craig Ballantyne
07-18-2014, 10:16 AM
Thanks Peter and Rob.

And Rob, sorry to hear that. Stay strong!

Craig Ballantyne
07-19-2014, 12:45 PM
A really great NYC gentleman website to get you in a "people are great!" mood is this one...I check it out twice per week:

www.Facebook.com/HumansofNewYork

The book is also great.

Craig Ballantyne
07-19-2014, 06:15 PM
Sunday will be Device Free. Here's my article on it..

***
In military jargon there is something referred to as Mission Creep.
According to Wikipedia, it is “the expansion of a project or mission beyond its original goals, often after initial successes. Mission creep is usually considered undesirable due to the dangerous path of each success breeding more ambitious attempts, only stopping when a final, often catastrophic, failure occurs.”
Recently, I’ve suffered from Internet creep. No, I haven’t had any interactions with Anthony Weiner. I’m referring to the slow expansion of time spent on email correspondence and website surfing into my daily schedule.
Blasphemy, you say. Is not your editor supposed to be the epitome of schedule discipline and restraint when it comes to productivity?
Well, yes, and I take the responsibility of being a good example to our readers very seriously. Hence the need for an intervention.
My most recent experiment was based on an idea that Matt Smith and I have been discussing for a long time. I call it the Device-Free Day.
The experiment was run on a Sunday. I didn’t use a computer or turn on my ” phone for almost 36 hours (from Saturday afternoon to Monday morning). No email, no text messages, no checking NFL scores online. Nothing. It was wonderfully liberating. I plan to do this at least once per month.
Granted, for a few ETR readers, this might not be a big deal. But for the majority of readers, going that long without access to email or text messaging is akin to withholding breathing from their daily routine. I can assure you, however, it was not that difficult. I’ll prove that to you below with a step-by-step plan on how you can do the same.
The benefits are numerous.
Avoiding the siren’s call of the Internet gave me much more time to think, to reflect in introspection, to plan some big projects, to spend time with family, and to read the books that have been piling up around me thanks to my overzealous Amazon shopping habits.
One of them was the educational and entertaining, Daily Rituals, by Mason Currey. I love this book. It’s an amazing anthology of the daily habits kept by famous authors, painters, and composers from history. Many of them exhibited strange and wonderful behavioral quirks. Some were extreme disciplinarians, others were substance abusing, obsessive-compulsive geniuses that drank themselves to death or at least suffered from wild excesses. Many of them make my habits look downright normal.
It also revealed how dedicated these artists were to their craft, often working five years or more just to finish one book! It was incredibly inspirational – and even if you’re not a writer, you’ll find great motivation in their perseverance and persistence towards their goals.
But you’ll also discover that even three hundred years ago, our literary heroes were dealing with procrastination every day. Instead of email, they spent hours answering letters instead of working on their novels. Others engrossed themselves in multiple newspapers, and would today likely cycle through a series of online websites to get their fix.
Ultimately, they all found ways to combat their vices enough to create works of fiction, musical compositions, and other works of art that have stood the test of time.
That’s the role of the Willpower reset – to give you the discipline and defense against the many time vampires of modern society that will help you get more done.
By taking a device-free day, you’ll experience mental clarity. Ideas for projects will bubble forth when you don’t have your attention diverted to your inbox, or as you sit in anticipation (read: desire) of a new text message to satisfy your attention deficit issues.
Taking a holiday from wireless connectivity will help you identify the gaps in your defense and weaknesses in your day. At what time are you most itching to access your favorite news sites? When are you on the cusp of madness to get access to your inbox? By knowing these truths about yourself, you can shore up your defenses and modify your routine to be more productive.
You’ll also discover the power of batch tasking and how transition time, back and forth from email to work to email to work is robbing you of hours of productivity each day. While the reality of a device-free day is that you’ll return to an email inbox filled with more messages than usual, you’ll also realize that you can whip through the correspondence in a short time, much less than you would spend on a normal day checking email several times.
Ultimately, you’ll experience incredible liberation from a device-free day. It will reset your willpower so that, for at least a few days after, it will be easier for you to avoid checking your inbox, Facebook account, YouTube, and favorite news websites as often as you had been last week.
Of course, this all sounds easier said than done, right? Well, let me give you hope that it will work for you.
First of all, I don’t suggest trying to do this on a Monday when you’re traveling for business to an important meeting all the while having three kids at home (with at least one of them sick, of course), and an overwhelmed spouse that wants to hear your voice. Likewise, I don’t recommend a device-free day on the morning after a hot date when you want to keep the spark alive.
Certainly there are days that are best for trying this experiment. These tend to be later in the week or on the weekend.
Everyone can pull this off provided you plan and prepare for what we know will occur. You just need to establish a series of practical considerations that will enable this to work.
If you worry that you will succumb to temptation, as I nearly did late in the afternoon when the desire to visit ESPN.com was almost overwhelming, there are simple steps you can take to stay strong.
First, make your commitment public. Share this with your friends and family the day before. This will also help manage their expectations with respect to your response time on any messages that they send you on your device free day.
If necessary, hand over your devices to a gatekeeper. Have them stored under lock and key so that you can’t get at them.
That said, make sure everyone important has an emergency contact for you. Have your ” phone forwarded to another number where you can be reached. I still use a landline. My immediate family knows the number. Everyone else can wait.
You will also need to have any relevant phone numbers, meeting places, and content to review printed off from your devices so that you don’t suddenly find yourself trying to remember where you were to meet your wife for lunch or the details of a specific project that you want to work on.
Finally, be prepared to deal with the aftermath. You’ll need to set aside time for the extra work that you’ll come up with for yourself. Being liberated from technology will allow your mind to work properly again. You’ll be more creative than you can remember yourself being in a long time. This will lead to many good ideas that will need implementing when you are ready to return to your already busy schedule. Consider this a good thing, but be prepared for it.
Listen, you can cut the cord, so to speak, yourself or you can pay $350 per weekend to attend a digital detox camp in the woods. I think you’ll agree that the DIY approach is better, and certainly cheaper.
Likewise, you can do a willpower reset with anything in life. If you think you’re drinking too much caffeine, take a weekend off to reset your intake and identify the times of day where strong habits have been built and desires are overwhelming. Once you’ve identified these obstacles, come up with at least two solutions to overcome them in the days ahead.
The simple connection of cause-and-effect can liberate you from almost any negative ritual in your life. If you find your progress in life hampered by the control of digital devices over your time, plan ahead for a device-free day this weekend. At the very least, you’ll actually get something done and remember what it was like to be alive back in the 1980′s. The retro experience will deal your mind a load of benefits.
Tell me what “detox” you plan in your life and how it will make you more productive. (http://www.earlytorise.com/how-to-have-an-internet-free-day)

LeslieM
07-20-2014, 12:18 AM
The chair is where my father sat,
On sunny summer days,
Beer in hand, shirt undone,
The paper had his gaze.
The grass was never greener,
Than in my memory,
The shade was always coolest,
On the days he sat with me.
The Willow tree kept him in comfort,
It wept in gentle breeze,
We’d sit there without speaking,
Happy in each other’s company.
The tree has grown in time,
And the years had taken toll,
The chair has been replaced,
My father had grown old.
He no longer gets to sit there,
He lies at rest instead,
But place a chair under that tree,
And it’s like he’s there again.
A chair, a tree, a father,
You have these in your life too,
Though they may not be the same things,
They matter much to you.
When it comes time to count your blessings,
Remember this in life’s race,
The things that really matter,
Exist in plain view of your face.



This was a beautiful way to honor your Dad's memory, Craig. It inspires me to try something similar for my mom. Thanks for sharing it. Leslie
P.S. that is a great tree!

Craig Ballantyne
07-21-2014, 01:04 PM
Some good BG progress over the weekend and interactions on dog walks. Also calming The Impatience Beast within with some yoga. I read these two books yesterday:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152579714104679&set=a.10150105584239679.286047.104855019678&type=1&theater

Craig Ballantyne
07-21-2014, 01:13 PM
Yesterday I had another Device-Free Sunday. That’s where I avoid all electronics. I don’t use my cellphone or my computer, and I try not to watch TV (I only watched a little last weekend because it was the World Cup). It makes for a relaxing day filled with friends, family, Bally, and books.


If you haven’t tried a Device-Free day since getting your first cellphone way back in the 90′s, I highly recommend that you do! You’ll love it…and YES, the world still goes on without you plugged into the Internet all day.
Relax, you’ll enjoy it.

Craig Ballantyne
07-22-2014, 12:53 PM
"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude." - Maya Angelou

Craig Ballantyne
07-22-2014, 01:11 PM
British Gentleman Mindset Breakthrough: I was buying a book of American stamps today at the post office. Seems simple enough, right? I ask for 20. She counters with, "We have these really COOL US stamps in packs of 6!!!"

Ok, chill out. <= My first - and wrong - reaction.

Then I realized, to get through the day as a British Gentleman and overcome my natural cynicism, I must approach the day with childlike wonderment.

But I wasn't satisfied with that explanation.

Then as I biked to the UPS store after the post office, I realized a better phrase...one that people would get...and it's to approach the day as if I was given a 2nd lease on life...like someone waking up from a coma, or like Bill Murray's character in Groundhog Day.

So that's the breakthrough.

Mentally go through the day with childlike wonder/2nd lease on life outlook and it will be much easier to interact with everyone about everything.

The mundane becomes magnificent.

And the attitude must be genuine...not facetious.

I can make that work.

The lady at the post office helped me more than she'll ever know.

Craig Ballantyne
07-23-2014, 12:11 PM
"If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough."
- Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Also...

Research suggests talking to strangers can result in happiness. The study says people reported positive feelings when being spoken to and initiating conversations with strangers in public.

I can attest. Feels great to say hello or good morning to a stranger.

Try it.

They won't bite.

At least they haven't bitten me yet.

Craig Ballantyne
07-23-2014, 04:39 PM
PS - Encouraging words are always worth a read...and I always read everything I write because the advice applies as much to me as anyone.

***
http://forum.ttmembers.com/showthread.php?p=189906#post189906

LeslieM
07-23-2014, 04:47 PM
"If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough."
- Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Also...

Research suggests talking to strangers can result in happiness. The study says people reported positive feelings when being spoken to and initiating conversations with strangers in public.

I can attest. Feels great to say hello or good morning to a stranger.

Try it.

They won't bite.

At least they haven't bitten me yet.

I talked to a stranger at the gym today. Actually, she did most of the talking. She wanted to know about my workout and how to lose belly fat.(she also wanted to be a able run without peeing her pants) I told her what I could(You have to combine diet with total body....just kidding) I did tell her that she needed to clean up the diet and do resistance training. I gave her your facebook info saying that you were a very nice CANADIAN gentleman.(couldn't fib) who creates great short workouts. That was another thing she wanted. So...if a new lady jumps on your next Q and A asking about incontinence, you're welcome! She then got on the abductor machine.

P.S. Also, a little old lady came up and asked me what protein powder I used to be able to do that "thang" I was doing! (KB swing, goblet squat, swing) 8 )

PPS-If you want the perfect Bill Murray/childlike wonder scene look up What About Bob, sailing scene!

Craig Ballantyne
07-24-2014, 09:12 AM
Today's BG progress:
It is an absolutely perfect day here in my lil' town of Stratford, Ontario. It's cool for a summer's day, but I prefer that. It would be just right to do the Justin Bieber walking tour. Alas, I'm too busy for that. But...

I went to our little health food store. It's our Whole Foods with less junk (there is SO MUCH JUNK in Whole Foods these days...it should be called 1/2 Junk, 1/2 Whole Foods)

I had a few questions about the meat, and spoke with the owner. As we ended our discussion, I told her how much I loved the store and everything it offered the city. She was very flattered and thankful.

Most people doing good work don't get thanked enough for it. So go out of your way to give a BIG Thank You to someone today that brings goodness into your life...whether it's your barista, your boss, your best friend, your bus driver, your beef farmer, etc.

Focus on small, positive changes, habits, rituals, right thinking, and routines everyday. Change your mindset. You are a person who can and will succeed. Truly believe in yourself. You CAN - and WILL - do it this time! Never give up on what is important to you.

Craig Ballantyne
07-25-2014, 11:08 AM
Research suggests talking to strangers can result in happiness.

University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor Nicholas Epley says, "Commuters on a train into downtown Chicago reported a significantly more positive commute when they connected with a stranger than when they sat in solitude.”

"I can attest. Feels great to say hello or good morning to a stranger. Try it. They won't bite. At least they haven't bitten me yet." - Craig Ballantyne

Craig Ballantyne
07-26-2014, 06:20 AM
“Once you have determined the spiritual principles you wish to exemplify, abide by these rules as if they were laws…How long can you afford to put off who you really want to be? Your nobler self cannot wait any longer. Put your principles into practice – NOW. Stop the excuses & procrastination. This is your life! From this instant on, vow to stop disappointing yourself. Decide to be extraordinary and do what you need to do – now.” – Epictetus

Craig Ballantyne
07-28-2014, 07:53 AM
All progress, all good days, start by winning the morning. Attack your #1 priority. Stick to your best habits when willpower is highest. Do something BIG early in the day that moves you forward. You'll get that sense of accomplishment and success to make the entire day better


Make a difference. Live a life that matters. To do so, you must stop letting your days slip away on little things. Start your day with positive rituals that get you focused. Do the BIG jobs first. Eliminate temptations so that you remain focused. And have STOP times and strict deadlines for all projects. Control your day, own your future.

DanielWoodrum
07-28-2014, 04:34 PM
I really needed this ONE today, Craig.

My motivation was low this morning, but when I received this PEXT from you it really gave me the kick in the pants I needed to start my Monday off on the right foot.

I was able to get 2 emails sent, read 20 pages, and take the pups on a walk before heading to work at 7:00 am this morning thanks to this message.

Dani

Craig Ballantyne
07-29-2014, 11:34 AM
Great work. You need to a perfect start to the morning to make the rest of the day amazing - always. Keep on pushing on.


You cannot fail but you can always make progress. If you persist, nothing will stop you from moving ahead and getting closer to your goals and dreams. Keep on pushing on, little by little on some days, BIG step by BIG leap on others. Never give up on what is important to you. Stay strong, get STRONGER every day. I believe in you. You CAN do it.

mocombes
07-30-2014, 01:45 AM
Research suggests talking to strangers can result in happiness.

University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor Nicholas Epley says, "Commuters on a train into downtown Chicago reported a significantly more positive commute when they connected with a stranger than when they sat in solitude.”

"I can attest. Feels great to say hello or good morning to a stranger. Try it. They won't bite. At least they haven't bitten me yet." - Craig Ballantyne

This has always been true for me. Most people are just waiting for someone else to notice them, and when you do it lights them up. I always enjoy myself much more when I make some sort of personal contact with people when I'm out and about. It's those days when I don't feel like doing it that it makes the most difference.

Craig Ballantyne
07-30-2014, 11:07 AM
Be ProActive. That is a behind-the-scenes secret of a British Gentleman. He plans and prepares, and always has 2 charming solutions to every obstacle.

ProActive means that when there is a problem, you are working to solve the problem in every which way you can...and also keeping the lines of communication open.

That's what we need to do every day going forward. Be ProActive. Put that on a sticky on your computer during your workday.

Whatever is in your way, you’re stronger than it, you’re tougher than it, and you’re better than it. You’re going to beat it.
https://fbcdn-sphotos-f-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xpa1/v/t1.0-9/s526x395/10491998_10152600426159679_9213083138028013764_n.j pg?oh=2fcf7b79464a9644ca414e774f1c5845&oe=544C672D&__gda__=1414840018_13fb83a2a2cb4a22c8bdad2b4a490bc e
(https://www.facebook.com/TurbulenceTrainingFanpage/photos/a.10150105584239679.286047.104855019678/10152600426159679/?type=1)

PS - Wouldn't everyone, including you...

...be better off if you put a little extra effort into taking care of your health, into giving generously, having patience, and showing compassion? Find one way to improve all of these areas today. Give a little extra random kindness to the world...it needs it now more than ever.

A British Gentleman aims to be better EVERY day.

Craig Ballantyne
07-31-2014, 08:04 AM
Comfort Zone <= Leave it & You Will Achieve It => Your Goals

Leave your comfort zone in one BIG area of your life. Push on. Become the person you need to become to achieve what you want to achieve.

Craig Ballantyne
08-01-2014, 09:07 AM
Your attitude, environment, & belief in yourself are three key elements of your success. If you have these RIGHT, you WILL succeed in time.

Craig Ballantyne
08-02-2014, 11:49 AM
“People are unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered. Love them anyway. If you do good, people may accuse you of selfish motives. Do good anyway. If you are successful, you may win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway. The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable. Be honest and transparent anyway. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway. People who really want help may attack you if you help them. Help them anyway. Give the world the best you have and you may get hurt. Give the world your best anyway.”


― Mother Teresa (http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/838305.Mother_Teresa)

LeslieM
08-02-2014, 11:57 AM
“People are unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered. Love them anyway. If you do good, people may accuse you of selfish motives. Do good anyway. If you are successful, you may win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway. The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable. Be honest and transparent anyway. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway. People who really want help may attack you if you help them. Help them anyway. Give the world the best you have and you may get hurt. Give the world your best anyway.”


― Mother Teresa (http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/838305.Mother_Teresa)

This is great.

Craig Ballantyne
08-04-2014, 10:23 AM
I realized that the British Gentleman habits require RULES.

I'm going to write these.

Rules are stronger than rituals.

Rules are what truly allow you to change.

This was a great 12-week learning experience.

Much progress has been made.

I'll be back in the next contest with another random life transformation.

The BG one will continue, of course.

Stay strong, polite, and courteous!

Sincerely,

Craigory