Spartan Beast Malaysia = Cancelled; Now What? Spartan Beast Australia!

I went from booking a ticket, thinking that my Spartan Beast in Malaysia was on a Saturday, to cancelling a plane ticket and realizing that plane tickets on other days were at extortionate prices.  YIKES!

What a disaster.  What seemed like a sure Spartan Beast and trifecta claiming weekend turned into a nightmare whereas I almost lost out on $167 dollars.

So, Arsenio….your health goals of 2018 have suffered a minor hiccup.  What are you going to do now?

Well, there were three options.  First, I’m grateful I don’t have to fly back to Malaysia at this point because I’m so sick of the garbage airlines (Malindo Air & Air Asia) that are ALWAYS late.  I’m sick of almost getting in mid-air collisions (on Malindo) and Air Asia) and terrible service — along with cardboard box seats.

So, got it.  “It’s a low-budget airline.”  Well, no more!

I’d much rather take some time off from these low-budget airlines than deal with lunacy of them always being late.

Well, I’m first very grateful for having experiences both airlines, but it’s time to spend a tad more and fly reputable airlines from a better airline that’s connected to the rail link, which is connected to the city.

Anywho, let’s focus on the matter…my Spartan Beast has been stopped, momentarily, and now it’s either the Beast in Thailand, Australia, or Malaysia (lol) in December (in the Malaysian/Singaporean border town of Johor Bahru). What will I choose?

 

Traveling Pod: Episode 6 – From Hell To Heaven!

Double check-ins, as mentioned before (at Don Meung International in Bangkok, Thailand), had some stereotypical treatment to them.  Yeah, already mentioned.  Then there was the delay turned almost mid-air collision with not one, but two other aircrafts.  I saw it with my own eyes.  We were ascending and we flew directly under a Singapore Airlines jumbo with another private passerby zooming the opposite direction, coming maybe 2km from both planes.  I’ve never seen anything like it.  Such a vast sky but Air Traffic Control failed miserably at this.  Terrifying experience and none of the passengers knew what was happening.

Anywho, landed and immigration presented me with a 45-minute wait, pushing back an anticipated meeting with my content writer.  After the nice officer cleared me, I ran to the Express train that connects the airports with the city center.  After that, I went to 7-11 (due to starvation) before making a six-station trek to my hotel which I was abruptly greeted by loud ass music at the base of a 100$ USD a night hotel?! Checked in, and of course, card was denied.  I said, “man, this is going to get worse.”  During the “denial” process, my content writer called and said she couldn’t wait for me any longer.  Great!

In the end, it was approached, finally, and I went upstairs, sleepily, not wanting to go anywhere and that was day 1.  Definitely one of the worst travel days in history, but then, I knew what was going to follow.

Just one more snippet, and then heaven.

After waking up and feeling like complete ass, I knew I needed to head to the train station to meet my friend, Hakeem Khan, who’s a fitness entrepreneur in Kuala Lumpur.  I didn’t forget, but I failed to go out and get a sim card in the night, resulting in me waiting and using wifi at the Sentral Station.  I plead to Hakeem and told him, “meet me there at 10:45!” So then there it went…I got to the station about 45 minutes later and he wasn’t there.  I was scratching my head, and then put a stop-loss on worry: “he has 10 minutes or I’m going back home.” I gave him five…I bought a ticket and went to the opposite side of the tracks, waiting patiently with my palm on my forehead, for the train.

I glanced over the railway for some odd reason and I saw someone waving their helmet.  IT WAS HIM! I began to fun up the stairs, and at the same time, I was telling myself, “ummm, what excuse can I come up with at that moment to tell him what I was doing.”  We laughed it off in the end, and then heaven broke through.

Heaven, come to me, baby!

I took a taxi to his gym, and boy, was I blown away! A 22-year-old with a gym like that? Loads of equipment inside, nice set up, a place where he does all of his videos, and in a nice, university section of Sham Alah.

I was on 4 hours of sleep from the night before, basically because a terrible hotel, but that didn’t stop him from getting the best out of me or me getting the best out of him.  The podcast was sensational, followed by Nandos (Portuguese chicken restaurant) and lots of funny stories.  After that was all done, I went back to my hotel in the evening and was greeted with some extraordinary news.

What I’ve been envisioning is teaching at a bank Mon-Fri in the morning.  I got a message with the other person stating they have another project from the same bank they want to give me.

I’m just so grateful for everything. I find myself in gratitude a heck of a lot more than before because everything I’ve been through was because of this moment.  This moment right here.

And so, here I am at the airport getting ready to take a flight back to Thailand….and I’ll be back in 17 days, too.

Stay tuned!

Traveling Pod: Episode 4 – Vientiane, Laos — The Roots! Stunning Human Beings & Gratitude

Air Asia flight bound for Wattay International Airport in Vientiane.  Hmmm, I’ll just let the nostalgia sit in for a bit.  Just 3 years ago, I was scampering across the streets of Vientiane with a Frenchman who couldn’t handle his alcohol, got snubbed by some tuk-tuk drivers (just like Thailand), and ended up walking home angrily, leaving the Frenchman behind (had no idea where he was after a few drinks).  I know, it sounds like a trip from hell, and it sorta was.  I paid next to nothing to stay in a garbage garbage room ($10 USD a night) and it was infested with mosquitoes (ripped me to shreds that night) and had spider nests in each corner of the bathroom.  That was the last time I was cheap (LOL).  The next day, however, I stayed in something sexy, met a funny guy in the immigration line, came across a wonderful breakfast with great locals and so many other things.  I wanted to go back to my roots — just a bit — to relive some of those special moments.

Check-In + Security + Immigration = 5 minutes

Like, how can you beat that? Hey, I went from checking in, to the immigration line, to going through screening in FIVE MINUTES at Don Meuang International Airport (the sister of the massive one in Samut Prakan — located in south Bangkok).  Now, the other airport that I refuse to spell does a pretty good job, too.  However, I went from a traffic jam, to walking 400 meters to the airport, weaving through traffic (and I mean pedestrians) and got to my counter exactly 3 hours before check-in.  Wow! Oh, throw in a workout I had this morning  that included a crazy amount of arms and legs (which equates to soreness) and there you have it! It hasn’t even reached 10am and it feels like I’ve been awake for 8 hours already.

Arrival

I was a little bit scared about my hotel (S Park Design Hotel) because I received a number of emails from them….same emails.  I received the 8th one over the course of four days and said, “guys, I’ve already emailed you! What’s happening?”  Thanks to my instinct, I checked booking.com’s messaging screening through my email and they had responded to me, giving me their whatsapp number.  So, I contacted them and they confirmed everything with suburb service!

[9:34 AM, 6/13/2018] S Park design: Hello Mr. Arsenio Buck, Thank you very much for contacting me.
[9:37 AM, 6/13/2018] S Park design: We will be there waiting for you for sure. Actually, we planned to pick you up even if we might not have your flight number. Anyway, it is perfect now. By the way, my name is Phonepasith PHENGVILAY, Executive Assistant Manager. My team and I are delighted to be part of your good stay at our hotel. See you soon. Take care.

Now that’s some damn good service!

Flight Mayhem

Ascending was already a pain in the ass, but what was even worse was descending.  We were flying around some pretty dark clouds and it was tossing the plane as if was a god damn toy.  After descending to about 1000 feet, we could finally see the ground.  What guided me through this turbulence? Aloe Blacc’s “The Man.” LOL!

Failed Visa — Again!

I had no idea that I needed a visa on arrival.  Last time I came to Laos, which was three years ago, I didn’t need a visa.  But because I didn’t check this time around, I was in for a rude awakening.  I had Lao Kip (local currency) and I brought only 66$ with me.  The visa was more than half of that, so now I have about 20$ USD left! DAMNIT! I’m so pissed because I didn’t learn from my past mistakes!

The Arrival At My Hotel

And these are the days I live for.  The overwhelming sense of joy when meeting such gracious people who are willing to help you.  From the customer service, to the hospitality.  It’s pretty remarkable to see the willingness of other people’s actions.  All smiles (just as last time), funky hotel (pictures down below), and a very quaint room.  This is only the beginning!

image1.jpeg

The rest of the stay is in my podcast. I don’t want this blog being insanely long.

Podcast

Interviewee #12 – David Mauro – The Author Who Scaled Mt. Everest

Wow! Just a story that resonated with me so much.  This was definitely the most inspiring story I’ve ever heard in my life, and it almost reduced me to tears at one point.

This man, by the name of David Mauro, combatted a number of things in his early forties: divorce, death, plummeting job, etc.  There was a moment he was sitting on the bed in his room and said to some dolls, “I don’t need your f***ing pity!”  Something fell in the kitchen downstairs at the time of the echo, too.

He then went out on a journey to Alaska, most notably, Mt Denali.  This is where the journey OFFICIALLY began.

Each mountain he climbed on all seven continents represented a pillar of “destruction.” Meaning, every time he climbed a mountain, he had to face a problem from the past.  He went to Tanzania after Alaska, after getting approval from his girlfriend at the time, and set out on an expedition where he saw some of the most beautiful, yet lethal roses, thorns and animals on planet Earth — which had its own symbolism.

The part that made me realize a lot about my past (father) was his climb up Mt. Aconcagua in Argentina.  He said it was the worst.  Yes, even worse than Everest.  He had to face something that was lying dormant in his mind for years — his father left him.  At a young age, his father disappeared, but then reappeared when his wife (another) had left him and he had dementia.

As David was climbing this mountain, he began to hallucinate.  The hallucination was basically him seeing his father as a 7-year-old kid with dementia.  At that time, he reached out to his father and put his hand on his shoulder and said some words.  This correlated with the reality that his father, who had left him a long time ago, needed his help.  This hit one of the softest spots of me because I do believe that something is still underlying about my father leaving me when I was a kid.

The rest is in the podcast interview down below!

Emergency Vacation: Singapore!

Yes, you read it right! Because of ridiculous rules at immigration and me just simply not wanting to inject anymore of my hard-earned money into this economy, I decided to take (literally) a one-day trip to Singapore.

As you probably already know, I’ve had several layovers in Singapore because I had to switch to a bigger plane before heading to LAX via Narita Airport in Japan.  What I loved so much about Singapore was the service, transit hotel, and being able to take a shower for $9 USD.

Well, this is finally the time I’m going to step outside the airport and see what the rest of the country has to offer.  With a hotel stationed just right outside a line that heads directly into the airport, and with one of my favorite people in the world (student who studies at MDIS in Singapore) waiting for me there with maybe a couple other friends, this will make for an interestingly short trip.  I booked a hotel I might not be at for long.  I might go sightseeing and head to Sentosa Island, but there are a variety of different things that will be coming up.

https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow/emergency-vacation-singapore

Stephen Covey’s Four Dimensions of Renewal – Physical Dimension – Stop Being Lazy (Physically)

How can you preserve and enhance the great asset you have?

Physical: Exercise, Nutrition, Stress Management

Social/Emotional: Service, Empathy, Synergy, Intrinsic Security

Mental: Reading, Visualizing, Planning, Writing

Spiritual: Value Clarification & Commitment, Study & Meditation

George Sheehan, the running guru, describes four roles: being a good animal (physical), a good craftsman (mental), a good friend (social), and a saint (spiritual). Sound motivation and organization theory embrace these four dimensions or motivations – the economic (physical); how people are treated (social); how people are developed and used (mental); and the service, the job, the contribution the organization gives (spiritual).

“Sharpen The Saw” means exercises all of these regularly and consistently.

Physical Dimension

Eating the right food, carrying our body, getting sufficient rest and relaxation, and exercising on a regular basis.

  • I’m doing exactly this and without a doubt.  I’m VERY serious about my sleep for the most part.  Some of my friends call me after 10pm, but I’ve already meditated into sleep.  Others asked me why I sleep early, and it’s because I know, sometimes, that I’m at the end of the road at night and know that I can’t get anything else done because of mental fatigue.  So, I hit the sack.

“Most of us think we don’t have time to exercise.  What a distorted paradigm!”

Let me give you an example of this.  Last week I had to work a 9-5pm teaching test prep courses and work a mere 2 hours at night for a minimal rate.  However, I still exercised, did my podcast, ate well, slept well, and posted two blogs.  Could I have been more efficient with more time? Sure…but I didn’t make excuses to why I didn’t exercise.

You don’t need special equipment to exercise.  A good exercise program is building your body in three areas: endurance, flexibility, and strength.

To be honest, you’re considered minimally fit if you can increase your heart rate to at least one hundred beats per minute and keep at it for 30 minutes.

Flexibility obviously comes from basic stretching (warming up and cooling down especially), which loosens the muscles up.

Strength comes from resistance exercises such as calisthenics, push-ups, pull-ups, and sit-ups.  I’ve raved so much about the gym I go to because I’m on a course.  Lab Leaner, which is designed to shred body fat in a rigorous, 45-minute round of hell.  Then you have Lab Strong, a course designed to build strength.  Of course I can add in kettlebell strength and another class during the week, but I throw in lots of cardio because that’s by far the most important for the Spartan Race.

One of Stephen Covey’s trainers had Stephen almost collapse a barbell full with weights onto his thoracic region.  His trainer helped him at the very end and said, “well, why did you wait so long?

He replied, “almost all the benefit of exercise comes at the very end, Stephen.  I’m trying to build strength and that doesn’t happen until the muscle fiber ruptures and the nerve fiber registers the pain.  Then nature overcompensates and within 48 hours, the fiber is made stronger.”

All in all, the essence for renewing the physical dimension is to sharpen the saw.  If you haven’t been exercises, your body is going to protest this change in its comfortable downhill direction.  You will hate it, but be proactive.  Do it anyway.  Get soaked under the rain.  Feel the burn in your legs in that last one hundred.  Scream when you’re going up the steps.  Put your favorite song on and sing it while sprinting down the street.  This is no quick fix.  This is going to bring phenomenal, long-term results.

Travel Blog: Episode 4 – Malindo Air, Interesting Characters, Centrally Located Hotel & Nandos

Nervous, anxious, shallow-breathing – what the hell was wrong with me? I should’ve been elated, jumping for joy that the ties are finally being ripped away from a three-and-a-half year old job.  However, when I was on the skytrain, I was feeling ridiculous anxious about it all.  Nonetheless, when the sunlight began coming through on the bus while I was sitting comfortably inside and on top of an expressway, I felt a hell of a lot better.

Upon arriving to the 2nd airport in Bangkok (Don Meung), I was getting in line when I saw one of my old TOEFL students.

This lady, who’s a millionaire, learned with me last September and October at one of the universities on a special project.  When I saw her, my jaw dropped and we met each other with smiles and pictures.  While all this was happening, I looked over my shoulder and was appalled by the scenes.

Never Fly Air Asia X or Nok Scoot

If there were two flights leaving out of Don Meung via Air Asia, passengers on the second flight would’ve missed it, due to herds of Chinese tour groups (massive problem apparently). I then looked further down the terminal and Nok Scoot was hampered by loudness (lol) and rudeness.  On the other hand, Malindo Air, which I would make my first ever appearance on, had only one passenger.

Indonesian Words

“Let them be.  They need you because you’re a teacher.  You’re fine.”

Conversations, of all sorts, were developing between this samaritan and I and he gave me some words of wisdom.  Of course defeating myself and psychological barriers I’ve created because the opinions of Thais, he kindly asked me if I had a girlfriend or wife.  Every time I say “no,” to people all around the country and world, they’re shocked.

I, too, am shocked.

But before they ask me if I like men, I quickly point out that Thai women despise black men. Is that the truth? No.  Not all Thai women, but around 80% of them do.  He then gave me some words of wisdom that felt great from a stranger I had only known for 5 minutes.

Malindo Air – Typical Delay, New Seats, Zero Turbulence, Half-Empty Plane!

I don’t get out one plane can be late with no passengers on it.  The pilot said, “backlogged.” However, same thing happened when I took Malaysia Airlines.  Try 3.5 hours late.  So, there’s something obviously wrong with KLIA 1 & 2 (the international airports in Malaysia) and Thailand, which was delayed because I saw, with my own eyes, the workers moving like robots.

Do I care? Not really….but just do a good job. LOL. That’s all I ask.  But no worries! I’m here!

The plane itself was pretty damn big – given the fact that it was a BOEING. The first class seats, which is divided into only two sections and separated it with a light drape, was GORGEOUS for a small plane.  The seats were much more spacious than any other Air Asia flight I’ve been on, too.  And most importantly, MY LUGGAGE SHOWED UP! You know, I lost my luggage for a week back in 2016, and to this day, I’m still scared when luggages are coming out of the belt from down below, swaying form side-to-side – hoping!

People Skills = SOUND!

From making people laugh at a pizza stand at KL Sentral, to sparking up conversations with passerbys at the station.  My positivity/PMA is INSANE, but my people skills have continued to develop since I started learning about personal development.

PARKROYAL – Kuala Lumpur

So, is this a Sheraton like hotel? Not exactly sure.  Haven’t looked around the hotel just yet, but the service was FIRE! Better than GTower (two years ago), and Sheraton (last year). Plus, handling the bill at the beginning if you don’t have a credit card is super essential.  Or else, they will freeze your the full booking price and charge you, on top of that, at checkout.  It’s a hassle and pain in the ass.

Small, but very comfortable room.  Lighting and air controlled by a button.  Is it worth the amount I paid for it? Hell no. Lol.  I think it’s a $70 a night hotel, not a $100 dollar a night.  However, I’ve yet to see what amenities it has and the breakfast.

Nando’s – Australia – Circa 2011

This was my first meal in Australia when I first moved there,  My girlfriend, at the time, was sitting next to me with her erratic “distant” friend Evans, who I later left because of threats, and his GF.  Oh, good times!

Let’s come back to Nando’s.  This is Portuguese chicken at it’s very best.  I’ve missed it like I missed the cereal Kix.  So, as the train was wrapping around, seeing my hotel on the right side, I glanced over to the left and onto the streets down below and WAAA-LAHHH! NANDO’S! I went there for dinner and although I didn’t have the piri-piri sauce with me, it was still amazing.

Here’s the beginning of my trip with much more looming!

https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow/travel-pod-episode-1-malindo-air-interes

Travel Blog: Episode 3 – Traveling Dates For This Year – Finally Set: Super, Beast, Trifecta, Australia, Hong Kong & More!

Barring any setbacks and leaving of the country, this is what my travels look like this year (roughly).

Now that I know my future and I’ve finally let go of the past, I can focus on one of the most exciting times and live ahead.  This has been my dream – to teach everywhere, speak when I want, go to conventions, be my own boss, have a team develop content, teach, and travel the world.  Sure, sounds a bit hectic, but inspiring while visiting places that might change who I am for the better is simply life-transforming.

Earlier this year I made a podcast and goal-list to inspire myself to reach higher.  Because things got sour and I had to close out a toxic workplace, I had to wait and see what was going to come into my life in terms of micro work, first.  Now that it has happened and I’m able to project what’s culminating, I can refocus on what I absolutely LOVE TO DO!

First Travel: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

This is going down NEXT WEEK! Spartan Race, meeting with a team member, and a wedding – all within a couple days.  Just booked out! Is it going to be possible to get some entrepreneurial work done while I’m there?! Nonetheless, Malindo Air (and lots of blogs to follow) is on the way.  Stay tuned!

Second Travel: Ho Chi Mihn, Vietnam

I miss Vietnam and the unbelievable friends I have there.  I even met a brilliant Thai speaking national at the airport when were were standing around, incredulously, wondering where the hell our plane was.  Vietnamese Airlines for $121 dollars RT?! Pfft, you crazy.  In America, you can’t go from Los Angeles to Las Vegas without spending $130 minimum.  This is why I emphasize that living in Thailand is so centrally located to everything.  3-4 days in the heart of June!

Third Travel: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Spartan Beast + Trifecta Achieved

This might be the most heartwarming and emotional trip ever! Achieving a goal that I set out to achieve in the early stages of last year has to be claimed! Achieving what’s going to be my first trifecta while going through an unbelievably amount of pain, wanting to give up every second of the way is going to be the pinnacle of it all.  The 2005 regional championship race is going to come back when I’m ready to give up, and that’s when the overdrive will takeover.  I’m beyond ecstatic.

Fourth Travel: Bali, Indonesia

I HAVE TO go back to the place that almost made me cry when I left (in a good way).  The banjo playing “la bamba,” serenading at the entrance of the plane almost reduced me to to bawl mode.  From staying at the Sintesa Jimbaran, to meeting a wonderful Australia family at a safari.  This was one of those moments that I will cherish forever – but I need to create more memories by going to UBUD.

Fifth Travel: Hong Kong/Taiwan

It’s a hard choice in between the two, but I need to go to uncharted territory once this year.  I can’t continue going to the same places.  Vietnam and Indonesia was 2016 and Maldives was last year.  I have to keep it going.

New Years – Australia?

And, of course, I’ll have to FINALLY do something good for New Years.  There’s no better place to go then going back to Australia…..but again, this could or could not happen based on my status here in Thailand.

Career Goals For 2018

Well, this is the big one! I mean there’s Tedx, working for companies (on my own contracts), there’s the podcast, Herbalife, YouTube, selling things on my website, business cards, meetings, presentations.  Omg! I mean I really need to thing and plan this one out thoroughly.

Podcast

One of the biggest goals of course for this year is building a bigger audience. Stagnation does happen from time-to-time.  Has my podcast been on the incline? Absolutely YES.  I mean in 2016, I would be excited if I get 1-5 plays in one day.  Now that I’ve enabled downloading on my podcast, everything has taken off.  There are third-party websites picking up my podcast.  I’m on iHeartRadio and Stitcher along with dozens of others.  I bought a year-long subscription on SoundCloud to reach out to people on there and it’s all going very well.  The next big step is obviously Spotify.

I definitely need MORE INTERVIEWS! Since I’ve already established a schedule, there’s a one day void on Monday and I would love to do four interviews a month.  I have two prospectives at the moment.  One person, who I was suppose to do a podcast interview last week until technical difficulties, has gone completely silent.  Perhaps he was frustrated with the entire ordeal – and he had a reason to be. LOL. It happens.

Collaborations are extremely important.  Having people put me on their podcast and provide a link…or even attaching the link to a blog is very important.  Example, there was one particular “hollywood” personality who I got in touch with and I think she was all up for the podcast on my end; however, she then asked for $995.  I laughed because she had just a hair over 1k followers.  Smh.

YouTube

My students, at the company that recently expunged me (I love saying this – lol), looked my educational videos up on YouTube back in October.  When they did this, I realized my plays went from 2k to 3k in a months span.  Since then. My videos are at 4.6k.  I’ve looked at the geographical location and it points basically everywhere: Indonesia, Brazil, Antigua, France, Reunion, South Korea, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Switzerland.  You name it.  I couldn’t believe it because I hadn’t made an educational video in the past two years! So, I decided to make a ton of videos and I make sure content is being distributed rapidly.  I now have my graphic designer working on a new banner and a few other things.

Herbalife

I’m not one of those people that like shoving products or anything down others’ faces.  I did this probably a few years ago in trying to convince some of my friends that they should try Herbalife…and it never worked.  After that, I just didn’t care anymore.  If I could just live it, people will come.  Since then, lots of people, including co-workers and students, have asked me about the products.  No, I haven’t gone up the ranks since 2013, but I do want to take the great leap sometime in the last quarter of this year and start set up a new stream of income.

Book

Grrrrr this is the one! I was thinking of having a ghostwriter do it for me, but no one knows the story of what I went through here in Thailand more than I! I mean I have to tell it very vividly and descriptively.  I wish I had documented everything when it occurred, but I didn’t.  I just recently watched a TedX about a girl saying, “staying silent is the worse thing you can do.”  Well, I need to speak up about the experiences I’ve had in this country once and for all.  Just doing it is the catch…but if I can just brainstorm a couple of pages in the morning and make it my number one priority for the year = BINGO!

Website

The website is going to come into fruition over the next few months (before my anticipatory leave to South America), and on there will be lots of PDF’s templates and other things for my students all around the world to buy and stuff.  Luckily I have a graphic designer that’s doing amazing work at the moment; and what’s even more is I have the savings to pay for it all.  Very ecstatic and grateful for it.  Now, when this website launches, this WordPress site is going to be switched over there.  WordPress hasn’t provided me with much of anything except traffic.  Even the payment button is faulty.  If I want to sell things and plugins, I have to pay an additional 150$, which isn’t even worth it (sorry, WordPress); so I’m going to have a brilliant graphic designer build my website from scratch.  WOOHOO!

Podcast

https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow/career-goals-for-2018

Paulo Coelho’s Advice For First Time Novelists

Whether you’re a part-time blogger, writer for a newspaper, or novelist – Tim Ferris had an interview with Paulo in his book ‘Tools of Titans’ that could prove very useful for a lot of people.

Right now, I’m writing my book called “Overcoming The Odds,” which will be about being a colored teacher in a very anti-color society such as Thailand.  But, to be honest, I’ve hit a lot of road blocks with even getting the introduction down.  Then I realized, “how about I write about the freshest memories in mind first and put it all together in the end?”

BINGO!

Bob’s your uncle!

See, what this does is create a lot of momentum.  If you see yourself getting stuck relentlessly in just the beginning, write in the others areas before coming back.  At that time it will be much less difficult.

Here’s a nice excerpt from the book that Paulo talked about in terms of helping the writers out there.

* What are the most common mistakes or weaknesses of first-time novelists?
“Keep it simple. Trust your reader. He or she has a lot of imagination. Don’t try to describe things. Give a hint, and they will fulfill this hint with their own imagination. That’s why I am so reluctant to sell the rights of my books for movies because there, you have everything. The [viewer] does not need to think. However, if I say like in Aleph, at the very beginning, ‘I am in my house in the Pyrenees, and there is an oak there.’ I don’t need to explain my house in the Pyrenees. I only needed to put in the elements that are important: the oak, myself, and the person that I’m talking to. That’s all. . . . Trust your reader. Understand that he or she can fill the empty spaces. Don’t over-explain.”

* How do you capture ideas that might help your writing?
“I strongly encourage writers not to think about writing every time they do something. Forget notebooks. Forget taking notes. Let what is important remain. What’s not important goes away. When you sit down to write, there is this process of purging, this process of cleansing, where only the important things remain. It’s much easier than taking notes and overloading yourself with information.”

* What do you find helpful when you are stuck or stagnated?
“There is only one thing. When I feel stagnated, I promise myself that [even] if I don’t feel inspired, I need to move forward. I need to have discipline. . . . In the middle of a book, there I am: I don’t know how to continue the story, even if it’s a nonfiction story. But then, I say, ‘You, book, are fighting with me. Okay. I’m going to sit here, and I’m not going to leave you alone until I find my way out of this crossroads.’ It may take 10 minutes. It may take 10 hours. But if you don’t have enough discipline, you don’t move forward. . . .”

Excerpt From: Timothy Ferriss & Arnold Schwarzenegger. “Tools of Titans.”

By the way, in the Alchemist, I remember the little boy saying to the alchemist, “look, I have a lot of livestock, I have love among many other things.”

The alchemist said, “but those aren’t the pyramids.”

Keep your eye on the grand prize!