The things that make you special, and qualified, are the unique events that have lead you to where you are.

The things that make you special, and qualified, are the unique events that have lead you to where you are.

I was hanging out with a good priest friend recently, and he introduced me to someone as the ‘next BIG thing to help change the world’. As the person I was meeting looked at me confused, I explained that it was my hope to be the next Tony Robbins, but of motivation. At that point, my priest friend said, “No, we don’t need another Tony Robbins. We need a Charlie Backer, be you. That’s what people need. They need YOU.” That struck me.  By no means was I insisting that I wanted to be Tony Robbins, but in the moment of explaining our goals, I think it is easy to name-drop someone that has achieved something we want. If I ask a young hockey player what he wants to be when he grows up, he may say that he wants to be a hockey player like Brett Hull or Wayne Gretzky. Is there anything wrong with saying that? No. However, we cannot strive to be someone we are not. Tony Robbins got to where he is by his own actions, and more so, his own path in life.

Life does not have a map. Life does not have a GPS where you can simply put in your goals and BOOM you’ll get there. Life is about the struggle, the fear, the tears and the laughs that bring us to where we end up. If we constantly hide in the shadows of those we look up to, we will never achieve our greatness and leave our own shadow upon the world. I don’t want to be the next Tony Robbins. I want to be the first Charlie Backer. I want people to hear my name and find inspiration and motivation in my words and actions. I want to be able to speak, write and share things that uplift people. I want the person who feels like their world is crashing down to read one of my blogs and have a renewed belief in their life, and a hope for a better tomorrow. I want the struggling family that just lost their source of income to watch one of my videos and have the motivation to restart tomorrow refreshed and reenergized with the belief that they ARE worthy of so much more.

Life is not fair. But that doesn’t mean we can’t help each other out. 2015 will be the year I show you who the real Charlie Backer is. Love me or hate me, I hope you find inspiration and motivation to get to where you want to be, and where you need to be.

The best thing you can be is YOURSELF. Don’t strive to be someone else. It ain’t their life, it’s yours. Write that down. Boom.

Life, while a journey, can many times lead you to a lonely road. Don't give up.

Life, while a journey, can many times lead you to a lonely road. Don’t give up.

 

Many times in life we imprison ourselves into the false reality that everyone actually cares what we are doing. We sometimes focus so much on what others will think that we don’t act for fear of upsetting the throngs of people in our world; whether online or offline. When I suggest that people should not care what other’s think about them, I am not condoning becoming a jerk or ignoring laws or neglecting responsibilities. But what I am saying is that you should never pigeon hole yourself into a place where you feel trapped and unable to break free to become the person you are called to be.

We are all gifted with unique experiences and opportunities in life that have lead us to our current state. If we focus solely on the ‘what ifs’ of life, then we will never succeed at realizing the ‘what is’. For instance, I want to become a person that people can turn to for motivation and inspiration, and eventually do this full time. I can think to myself that very few people actually motivate people for a living. I can limit myself to remaining in my regular job and doing the things I’ve always done. I can say that I’m too old, too inexperienced, too naïve. But I don’t want to do that. I want something more. I can list tons of reasons why I could fail. But where does that lead me? Nowhere. At one point or another in life we have to stand up and say, “This is my life, and I’m going to be the one in charge of my future.” As George Eliot said, “It is never too late to be what you might have been.” We have an opportunity every day to lead ourselves to our dreams, and become the person we hope to be. Just think of all the people in history who could have chosen NOT to pursue their dreams and how our world may have looked differently. What if Thomas Edison feared rejection and never wrote down his equations for fear of other’s judging him. What if Abraham Lincoln felt he was too tall to be a leader?  What if Colonel Sanders was too afraid of judgment that he never shared his fried chicken with the world? No matter the person, no matter their legacy or their potential, every person has fears, resentments and failings that they must overcome to achieve something greater. When we allow our dreams to escape our minds, and allow our actions to pursue our want in reality, we will then become a leader in our own life. To lead others in life you must first be able to lead yourself. Set goals. Conquer fears. Choose your actions and words wisely, and make sure you’re on the path towards greatness.

Without a plan, a journey is just a merry go round.

Without a plan, a journey is just a merry go round.

I was recently talking to someone that said they wanted to lose weight and get healthy. I said, “Okay, are you willing to do anything to achieve this goal within reason?” They responded, “Of course.” Well, tomorrow when you wake up you are going to work out, then the rest of the day you will eat a regimented healthy diet, and then you’ll go to bed early. That’s how you get in shape. That’s it. It’s not rocket science. It’s not something a mystic needs to tell you. To lose weight you eat less bad foods and more good foods. You workout more and watch TV less. Many times we over think our goals so much that we forget that they are simple things to begin with. As I stated previously, success requires two things: motivation and action. Today I will throw in a third thing: success also requires planning. If you plan the proper actions according with motivation you can achieve anything. If you want to lose weight, set the goals that you can achieve, and make sure you are motivated, and BOOM! You’ll be a healthier person in no time.

While there will be times in life where certain goals are not that simply achieved, we must continually push ourselves to achieve the achievable. Meaning, we must always esteem to reach for that greater reality that is within our grasp. If you want to lose weight, great, then do it. If you want to get a raise or promotion, great, set the goals and do it. If you want to be a better father to your kids, or husband to your wife, great, then do it! Life, while crazy, does not always have to be complicated. Life, in its essence, is simply shared actions with persons and things around you. Challenge yourself daily to become something better than you were yesterday. Plan. Motivate. Act.

What's your motivation?

What’s your motivation?

Achieving things in life typically requires some sort of effort on our behalf. If you want to be a great football player, you have to start practicing young, working out and learning everything about the game. Motivation is defined as “the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way.” You have to be MOTIVATED to be a great football player, or it will never happen.

 

When we want to achieve a certain goal, we have to find the motivation for success. Typically this entails writing out and planning steps and benchmarks along the way to reach our final destination. Other times this simply means jumping face first into a new field. While motivation may be the REASON for acting a particular way, if you don’t have a plan in place for success, then it’s like putting gas in car with no driver; it ain’t going nowhere. (Yes I used ain’t, felt kind of freeing) Life, and more so reality, is defined not by our motivations, hopes or dreams, but by our words, actions and actualities. I was watching a show the other day and I saw a man standing on huge stilts and walking around. I wondered, “wow, what does it take to get a job like that?” Well, it takes two things: motivation and action. I bet if you were to talk to the 8 year old version of yourself, he would say “I want to be a person that stands on stilts and walks around.” Is it a goal for everyone? No. But as children our minds are not yet stilted(ha..pun intended) by fear. Fear is something that can paralyze our dreams and halt our motivations, just like a car with no driver. We all have the potential for greatness and the opportunities to do amazing things, but FEAR is a terrible sickness that is spreading in our culture. We fear failure, we fear judgment, heck we even fear success. I have spoken with a lot of people this past year, and one thing I hear time and time again is that “I wish I could do this,” or “I wish I could be that.” This wishing that we do is great! Everyone should wish to be the best version of themselves. But what holds us back? Fear! Fear stops us from even taking the first step. When people first talk to me about achieving a particular goal and ask me to help them, I say, “you can achieve anything with motivation and action, but fear will forever leave you looking back or looking down.” I have a few friends that are into working out and have been for quite sometime. I’ve said to some of them that it’s my goal to get a six-pack since I’ve never had one. One of them responded, “You are the only one holding yourself back.” THAT right there is why most people don’t reach their dreams…they hold THEMSELVES back. It’s very easy to hold us back from trying something new for fear of failing, for fear of being laughed at or made a fool. The reality of life is, to achieve something different than what you currently have, you must do things you’ve never done. For me to get a six-pack, I would need to adopt a new diet plan and workout routine; I would need to prioritize my health above other areas of my life and adjust accordingly. But this is where conversations with those seeking CHANGE or GOALS can hit an impasse. If you truly have the motivation to achieve something, and you have the willingness for action, then why if you’re in the driver seat with a map would you not follow it? It’s because we are prone to do the same thing we’ve always done and to remain in our comfort zone. Life is scary, and our minds and bodies don’t like change. Heck, if they did, no one would be fat or out of shape.

I’ll never be a stilt walker person, but that’s okay. I’m already 6’4, and I don’t feel that age 30 is the proper time to start pursuing stilt walking as a profession. But, just because I’m 30 doesn’t mean I can’t try new things. We must never allow ourselves to be imprisoned by our choices and entrapped by our current reality. The hope of the new Charlie Backer Motivations is to help you to break free from the self-inflicted chains of fear and set a course towards self-fulfillment and greatness. Life goals do not have to be scary. With the right help and motivation you can start anew and become whatever you want to be. The only thing stopping you from greatness is yourself. Boom. Let’s do this.

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Starting

Many times in life we focus on the specific things like how we look, what we eat and how we smell. But, how many times do we step outside of our shell and view life as more than just us? A few months ago I challenged myself for 31 days straight to do a new challenge every day. Some challenges were as simple as “Not saying no to my son”, or as crazy as “believing in myself in every moment.” It is easy to get focused on the clothes we wear and the career we have, but how hard is it to think in broader terms about what’s really going on around us? Well, in 31 days I learned 15 amazing things that have changed me forever. Sometimes it takes a lifetime to figure something out, other times just a moment. No matter the case, make sure you’re always open to what COULD be. Don’t just glance through these 15 tips and forget them. Share this with someone it may help. A lot of times in life just a little encouragement can go a long way.

 

 

  1. Don’t worry about what other people think of you.
  2. Don’t let anyone tell you what you can or can’t do.
  3. Believe in yourself.
  4. Spend time with your loved ones.
  5. Cherish every moment.
  6. Put down your phone.
  7. Don’t’ worry, believe.
  8. Always have a list of goals.
  9. Be open to differing opinions.
  10. Love like you’ll never get hurt (yes, life can be sappy)
  11. Don’t compare yourself to anyone but yourself.
  12. Do not rely on other’s encouragement to do something.
  13. Chase your dreams because their yours, not anyone else’s.
  14. You have an opportunity in every interaction to be better.
  15. Be a person that builds other’s up, not tears them down.
Love life

Love life

Where do you stand on the focus for your life? Are you constantly worried about yesterday? Are you anxious for tomorrow? Or are you stuck with your head to the ground? While the New Year is upon us, and we all have new goals for 2015, how many of them are you repeating? In years past, I have always tried to stick to a few simple goals for the next year. This year, I’ve done something completely crazy and different. As you’ve heard me say numerous times before, I believe in attacking life with the rule of insanity. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. When we set goals, we cannot approach them the same way every time, or we will end up at the same place over and over again. A goal is not meant to be a cycle of failure, but a lap of success.

For 2015 I have 30 goals. 30!!!! Some are huge and some are small, but each will help me (in my mind) to become a better person. As you may have noticed I posted a new cover picture on my Facebook page stating “BOOM: It’s Charlie.” My focus for 2015 is shifting my pages to share more of WHO I am, HOW I am, and what makes me tick. I look forward to having you along for my challenges and journeys, and I believe that 2015 will be the year everything explodes.

I am hopeful that I can be successful on all 30 of my goals, but I realize that I am not a perfect person. I have failed numerous times on simple goals, and have found great success on huge goals. But life is not about counting your failures; it’s about learning from life’s experiences to become better. If you are becoming a better person every day, then you are progressing and have nothing to fear.  At the end of 2015, I want to look back at my year and say, “I did it and I’m a better person because of it. I’m happy with who I’ve become.”

As I’ve prayed and discerned this past year I have come to realize even more that I have been blessed with a special outlook on life and passion towards helping people. My hope for 2015 is to inspire and motivate people to believe in themselves and to reach their dreams. Life is too short to be sad and angry. Let’s make 2015 the year of hope and belief. If I can help you, please let me know. BOOM!

Life passes by so quickly. Be you.

Life passes by so quickly. Be you.

2015 is just a few weeks away. How are you preparing for the New Year? Or, are you even preparing? Is it just another day on the calendar for you? 2014, for me, was a pivotal year of joy, sorrow, stress and excitement. I embraced numerous public challenges and accomplished them with somewhat ease. I shared my struggles and my goals, my hopes and my dreams with 100s of people.  I pushed myself to do things I never thought possible, and yet at the same time knew all along were capable. I realized that unless I step outside the box of self-comfort, that I would never truly be happy.

Our states of life are not dictated by the date on the wall or the age of our body, but in the actions and progress we make to attain greatness. When I was studying to be a Catholic Priest I read so many amazing and miraculous stories of saints and wondered: Could I ever achieve such greatness as sainthood? The simple answer is: Yes, sainthood is possible for everyone. But, with everyone, saints included, there are moments of greatness and weakness that pop up daily. The difference between saints and us, is first off: they’re dead, but secondly, they chose the path less traveled. It is so easy to fall into the crowd and walk with those around us in hopes that it leads us to greatness. But, in reality, to achieve personal greatness we must step outside our current self-made prisons and run with the passions and gifts that we have been given. In doing this, in reaching out and breaking from our current norm we will be able to see the sunrise of a new era of our lives. But, unless we do something different, nothing different will ever happen or change. You hear me talk a lot about the rule of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results. I realized this past year that I was unhealthy and out of shape, and I had to get in better shape. Had it not been for me seeking out someone with knowledge on weightlifting and nutrition, I would still be where I was.  Our lives are not meant to be away from the crowd entirely, it’s not like all saints were hermits who lived by themselves. Rather, we are called to be ourselves within the crowd. Everyone has something special within themselves that makes them unique, and at the same time wonderful. I have met so many great people over this past year and I have realized the one thing that makes them all special: Self. They all acted like themselves, they challenged themselves, and they OWNED themselves. Sometimes when we meet people they act as though they are not comfortable in their own skin. They are afraid to speak for fear of offending someone. They are afraid to act for fear of upsetting someone. Well, let me be straight with you here: 2015 is a few weeks away, and pardon my language, but don’t give a shit what anyone thinks about you. NEVER let anyone’s thoughts of you STOP you from achieving the greatness that you are called to. NEVER let the possible fear of offending another stop you from taking the next step. The reality of life, and especially our current culture, is that people LOOK for reasons to be offended. Heck, I wouldn’t be surprised if people were offended that I just used a cuss word in my blog. The world is getting crazy, but you have to hold onto your SELF. It’s your SELF that makes you special. We need unique leaders, and people who are passionate to lead our generation to the next level. We need good people who want other’s lives to be better out there leading the charge. It’s so easy to become a prisoner of fear. Fear of offending others, fear of hurting others, fear of losing others, fear of harming others etc. But, when it comes down to it, that nature of the person is what will shine through the action. We are all ordered towards the good. So Stand up, believe in yourself, and if YOUR will be good, let it explode with all that you are and lead other’s to their greatness.

In closing: Take the next few weeks to figure out how YOU can be better. Not happy with your weight? Set a goal. Not happy with your job? Set a goal. Not happy with yourself? Set a goal. Life is about consistently challenging ourselves to be something better. We are always getting old, we can’t stop that, but we can make sure we are progressing to the greatness we are called to.

Thank you for sharing your time with me this past year. Thank you for your encouragement and support, your challenges and your insight.

2015 will be a crazy year of changes and challenges regarding “Charlie Backer”. I look forward to sharing them with you in the coming weeks.

Till then, BOOM.

Life is far too precious to let moment’s slip by, and let days become years of routine

Life is far too precious to let moment’s slip by, and let days become years of routine

Throughout my 31 Days to a Better You challenge I faced many new obstacles and detours. Our lives can so easily turn into a routine, that we forget that each moment is irreplaceable and precious. As I look back at each of the challenges, I can say that I’m proud of what I accomplished. So many times I can preach “Live in the Moment” or “Be the best you” or “Push yourself to be something better”, but how many times do I practice what I preach? This challenge MADE me put my money where my mouth is and act. We are judged not by our hopes or dreams, but by our actions and words. Life is far too precious to let moment’s slip by, and let days become years of routine.  This challenge not only helped me to BE a better me, but it helped me to realize who I am. By analyzing my actions and words, I was forced to face some scary realities like: What is your biggest vice or don’t second-guess yourself. And in doing that, I was able to differentiate between who I am, and who I project myself to be to others. Many times in my life I would conform to be liked. Conformity doesn’t allow one to be a better you, but a worse you. Each time you conform to another’s thinking or thought without actually thinking about it, you LOSE yourself in the process; you become more like someone else, rather than becoming a better you.

So, the main thing I learned throughout this challenge is to BE YOU! Don’t just think that you are going to just BE YOU, actually BE YOU and believe in it. Do NOT ever let anyone make you feel like you are worthless or not as worthy of respect. If you view life in the grand scheme of things, we are all beings trying to do the same thing: live our lives. So realize, it is YOUR life to be lived, not anyone else’s. When life throw’s you a curve ball, react, respond and reflect, but most importantly do it as only you can. Many of these points below hit hard into many aspects of my life. But, that’s what life is about: constantly challenging yourself to be something better. If you’re not moving you’re standing still, and if you’re standing still you might as well be like the Tin Man from Wizard of Oz. Don’t be a Tin Man in your life. Be the best you can be because that’s why you were created. You weren’t made to be the best Will Smith or Justin Bieber; you weren’t made to be the best Ozzie Smith or Brett Hall. You were made to be the best YOU. Now, go out and be you. Don’t worry what other’s think. Don’t wait for your friends to encourage you or for your spouse to give you a pat on the back, just do it. And, if whatever you are doing is truly meant to be than those closest to you will see that and join you on the journey. Life is not a lonely road that you are pushed along by others, but a path of self-discovery, sacrifice and success that only you can achieve. At the end of the day there will always be great people like St. John Paul II and George Washington. Don’t strive to be them, take the greatness that they held and carry their torch on your own path. Light up your life with YOUR inspiration, love and imagination. Thank you for joining me on this journey. Now go, light the world on fire.

Need motivation in your life? Shoot me an email: charlie@charliebacker.com

Here’s the TOP 15 Things I learned:

  1. Don’t worry about what other people think of you.
  2. Don’t let anyone tell you what you can or can’t do.
  3. Believe in yourself.
  4. Spend time with your loved ones.
  5. Cherish every moment.
  6. Put down your phone.
  7. Don’t’ worry, believe.
  8. Always have a list of goals.
  9. Be open to differing opinions.
  10. Love like you’ll never get hurt (Yes, life can be sappy)
  11. Don’t compare yourself to anyone but yourself.
  12. Do not rely on other’s encouragement to do something.
  13. Chase your dreams because they are yours, not anyone else’s.
  14. You have an opportunity in every interaction to be better.
  15. Be a person that builds other’s up, not tears people down.

Day 28 – 31 Reviews

November 3, 2014 — Leave a comment

Day 28: Brighten someone’s day today. Say something encouraging, motivate someone to push themselves.

Many times we get so focused on our own lives and responsibilities that we forget that there are other people out there. There are people in this world, in your life that need motivation and need uplifting. We will never understand all the trials and tribulations that people deal with on a daily basis, but we can do our part to brighten a person’s day, rather than darken it. We can uplift, rather than scold and tear down. We have an opportunity in every interaction to better someone’s moment, don’t waste it.

 

Day 29: Set 1 goal towards being a better you, and act.

 

A lot of times I find myself struggling to comprehend how I can achieve a specific goal. But, then I sit back and remember the first time ( and only) I ever ran a ½ marathon. It’s scary to stand at the starting point and think that I have 13.5 miles to run. But, if you break it down into stages, like miles or even down to steps, it makes it more manageable. When setting goals we can’t just think of the end result and be afraid of journey, but must look at each step. I’ve known people that were up to their heads in credit card debt and could never think of their life without that monthly minimum payment. But, after they set an approach and CHANGED their routine they were able to start knocking down that debt. When you set goals, realize, as I like to say a lot: the insanity rule. Don’t set the same goal over and over again, with the same routine, and expecting different results. You will fail: every, single, time. Change it up and see what you can do!

 

Day 30:  Journal

Whether you write about your joys or sorrows, successes or failures a journal is a great way to reflect. You know, for most of my life I’ve written in a journal from time to time. I would journal about life as a high school student living away from my family, or as a reflective tool regarding my faith and relationship with God. But, to be totally honest, I never really used journaling as an outlet for struggles. It wasn’t until I hit the challenge of “name your biggest vice and remove it from your life” that I found myself needing a new outlet for my life. In writing about my vice and the struggles I underwent (and still am dealing with) I was able to have an accountability partner in my vice. While I have my wonderful wife and friends to talk to whenever I need to, having a journal gave me a personal outlet to just write about whatever was on my mind. I’ve found in journaling, especially with regards to my vice-challenge, that each day I listed my struggles and progress, and now I can look back a week and see where I was a week ago. I can see how I’ve improved, and also where I need to grow. A journal allows us to have a written account of anything we want. Keep it for your kids, keep it for yourself, or keep it for the trash. But either way: know it’s there.

 

Day 31: Today’s challenge is to list 31 things that make YOU special.

Looking at our lives and ourselves requires a humility that allows us to not only point out the flaws, but also the positive attributes that make us who we are. In challenging ourselves to write 31 things that make us special we are FORCING ourselves to THINK about ourselves, and listing ONLY the positive things. We all have 31 things that make us great; write it, remember it, re read it.

Review of Day 23: Do one random act of kindness

A lot of times I get stuck in the mentality “Go big or go home.” As you may know, I rarely do anything partly or slowly, I’m usually ALL in or nothing. So, when I saw this challenge, I was thinking of all these HUGE things I could do to help people. I could buy a family dinner, I could get my Dad a new dog. The ideas were endless! But, when reality struck I realized that a random act of kindness is just that, it’s random. It must come from a natural and simple part of our being that pulls us to do something more. How many times have you walked by an old lady struggling to put her groceries in her car and helped her? How many times have you seen someone who’s car gets stuck in the road and help push it to the side? These are SIMPLE things we all can do. These are things that this challenge was made for: Random acts of kindness. They don’t have to be huge and theatrical, but they do have to be done with love. It’s all about people helping people.

 

Review of Day 24: Reach out to someone you admire

This challenge required us to reach out to someone you admire that you have never met personally. Whether this person is an actor, or writer, or the Pope, today’s challenge was about making that first step. I realized that in writing my letter I was overcome with excitement wondering: Will I get a response? Will they even read it? If we don’t ask, we will never know. This world is filled with so many wise and great people, don’t’ ever be afraid to ask: You never know what you’ll hear back.

 

Review of Day 25: Learn something new

If you’re not learning, you’re not growing. I think I’ve heard that before, but I couldn’t find the reference. Well, today’s challenge helped me to realize that no matter where we are in life, we can always learn something new. We can either focus this task upon learning something specific, or we can allow life to throw crazy things in our path and learn from our experiences. In challenging ourselves to learn we are 1st: saying that we don’t know everything and 2nd: saying I want to be something MORE than I currently am. What did you learn today?

 

Review of Day 26: Figure out your biggest vice and overcome it

While this challenge may seem easier said than done, this is not meant to be the end all be all, but it’s the starting point. If you’re biggest vice is smoking, then set a path towards quitting. If you’re biggest vice is being an aggressive tap dancer, then take steps (ha, get the pun?) to tap dance less. Whereever you are in life, you’re not perfect, and you realize it. And, in realizing that you’re not perfect you know that there are particular things that slow you down and stop you from achieving certain realistic goals. How’d your day go?

 

Review of Day 27: When something bothers you today, just bite your tongue.

Wow, talk about timing. Yesterday I had to figure out my biggest vice and take steps to fix it, now today you’re telling me to bite my tongue? Life is never predictable, and no matter how many times we may feel we know what is going to happen, we can’t control every variable. When I was growing up my Mom used to say “Let Go and Let God.” Just because you may be faced with a difficult situation, or a frustrating moment, it doesn’t mean you always have to respond an arm for an arm. Today made me think twice before I responded to things because I didn’t want to respond in anger. Life’s too short to be a jerk, don’t forget that.