Ken Okazaki Blogging is serious business

27Dec/140

Be a Hero. Be a Dad.

Ken 048-sWhen it comes near the end of the year, we tend to think of the highlights of what we did. Our minds go to our experiences throughout the year. What we DID with the 365 days until now. The highs and the lows, the good and the bad.

This year my highlight was a distinction, an Aha! moment.

Roll back a few years and I remember overhearing one of my young kids arguing:

My dad’s stronger than your dad.

No, my dad is stronger than your dad!

Well my dad is smarter than your dad.

Not true!

Yes, true!

… until I cut in and gently changed the subject.

But somewhere inside I wanted to egg my son on. He wanted to prove something to his friend. I wanted to be all of the things that he was saying.

He wanted me to be all of those things too, because it gave him self-worth, credibility, and pride.

On the outside I brushed it off as something that all kids must just say, but on the inside another conversation was going on.

I asked myself WHY I was downplaying everything that he was saying. WHY was I embarrassed to hear these things?

Then a crazy thought came to mind.

Back when I was studying NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) I learned something called the New Orleans Flexibility Drill. Google it if you’re interested. The exercise is very simple.

You envision a person, real or fictional, alive or dead, standing in front of you. This is a person who’s characteristics you desire to emulate. You make it as real as you can, how they breathe, the posture they hold, jutting your chin just right, shoulders squared, thinking what they might be thinking, focusing on what they would focus on.

And when you make it so real that you can practically feel the heat from their body and the hairs in the back of your neck are standing on end, take a step forward and “into” their body, thus inheriting their traits.

YOU BECOME THEM!

This may sound corny, no it DOES sound corny! But when do you this it can give you the confidence boost you need, the insight you are looking for, or the right frame of mind to make an important decision.

I had to adapt this for me. Something I can do for myself, for my children, for my wife, for my business, for the world!

I had to become the superhero they needed me to be.

I wrote down the characteristics of the superheroes that I liked and distilled it down to these top five:

1. Strength (think: Hulk, Superman)

2. Intelligence (Ironman, Batman)

3. Vast Wealth (Batman, Xavier)

4. Strong Moral Code (Spider-man, Superman)

5. Romantic (Zorro, Spider-man)

Now I don’t expect to reach the level of strength of the Hulk or Superman within my lifetime, but these five seemed like a good place to start.

So how do I use this in my everyday life?

1. Strength, or health and fitness.

This is where I make daily decisions about what I eat, how much I exercise, and everything else that has to do with my body.

2. Intelligence, or continuous learning and experience.

Read books, try new experiences, test myself mentally and keep pushing the boundaries. I’m happy to say that I love learning and it is always a pleasure.

3. Vast Wealth, or total financial freedom.

Robert Kiyosaki explained it very simply: When your monthly passive income is greater than your monthly expenses, then you are financially free. Every day of my life I am looking for more ways to add more income streams to my self and my family. I want to rocket past financial freedom to TOTAL FINANCIAL VITALITY.

4. Strong Moral Code, or having a basis on which to make the tough decisions in life. My morals are based on my Christian background, and I go back to the standards that my parents taught me over the dinner table as I grew up. I do the same for my own children.

5. Romantic, or just being really in love with the one person in your life who matters the most to you and showing them how you feel. Daily. In front of the kids.

Show your kids how much you love your wife. They need to know that no matter how much you love them, their mommy comes first to you.

Too many parents neglect each other for their children. They forget that they will grow up and move on and after that, all you have left is each other. When that day comes if you haven’t been focusing on your partner, you will be in for a rough experience.

That’s my philosophy in a nutshell.

I’ve heard many people’s philosophies that sounded great, but when I tried them on like a shoe, I realized that none of them were made just for me. They were made by someone else for what THEY needed.

I think each person needs to develop their own philosophy. It doesn’t have to be elegant or even make sense to anyone else. It could be a Franken-Philosophy, a mashup of all your favorite bits of other people’s thoughts on life. Do what works for you.

But having my own philosophy has helped me in a huge way.

Hundreds of times throughout the week I ask myself: “What would a hero do in this situation?”

When these words form, the answer is always simple.

Choose the healthy food

Take the bike to work.

Choose the difficult but more rewarding path for my business

Have that tough conversation with my teenage son

Re-invest instead of spending that hard-earned cash

This is what parenting is about. It’s about being a hero.

Be a hero. Be a dad.

Unless you are a mom. Then be a mom.