Saturday, August 30, 2014

Top 10 Qualities of Successful People

What do you need to find and develop within yourself to be most successful? 
The answer comes from looking at those who have created success in a variety of fields. These traits may sound very simple, but they do lead to remarkable results.

If you really want to bring success into your life, you should cultivate yourself just as you'd cultivate a garden for the best yield.

The attributes here are shared by successful people everywhere, but they didn't happen by accident or luck. They originate in habits, built a day at a time.

Remember: If you live your life as most people do, you will get what most people get. If you settle, you will get a settled life. If you give yourself your best, every day, your best will give back to you.

Here are the traits that the highly successful cultivate. How many do you have?

1. Drive

You have the determination to work harder than most and make sure things get done. You pride yourself on seeing things getting completed and you can take charge when necessary. You drive yourself with purpose and align yourself with excellence.

2. Self-reliance

You can shoulder responsibilities and be accountable. You make hard decisions and stand by them. To think for yourself is to know yourself.

3. Willpower

You have the strength to see things through--rather than vacillate or procrastinate. When you want it, you make it happen. The world's greatest achievers are those who have stayed focused on their goals and been consistent in their efforts.

4. Patience

You are willing to be patient, and you understand that, in everything, there are failures and frustrations. To take them personally would be a detriment.

5. Integrity

This should not have to be said, but it's seriously one of the most important attributes you can cultivate. Honesty is the best policy for everything you do; integrity creates character and defines who you are.

6. Passion

If you want to succeed, if you want to live, it's not politeness but rather passion that will get you there. Life is 10 percent what you experience and 90 percent how you respond to it.

7. Connection

You can relate with others, which in turns makes everything reach further and deepen in importance.

8. Optimism

You know there is much to achieve and much good in this world, and you know what's worth fighting for. Optimism is a strategy for making a better future--unless you believe that the future can be better, you're unlikely to step up and take responsibility for making it so.

9. Self-confidence

You trust yourself. It's as simple as that. And when you have that unshakeable trust in yourself, you're already one step closer to succeeding.

10. Communication

You work to communicate and pay attention to the communicators around you. Most important, you hear what isn't being said. When communication is present, trust and respect follow.

No one plans on being mediocre; mediocrity happens when you don't plan. If you want to succeed, learn the traits that will make you successful and plan on living them out every day.

Be humble and great. Courageous and determined. Faithful and fearless. That is who you are, and who you have always been.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Black Attack | Custom Harley Sportster

A Motocross Inspired XL
Street Chopper Staff, Photography by Wes Drelleshak

n the skateboarding and snowboarding scene, it's all about pushing yourself to go faster and bigger. The problem is, this often leads to faster and bigger slams. But then that's all part of the love and passion people have for these sports.

You can't have a striped-down, aggressive-looking bike like this without making sacrifices. This bike's owner, Tanner Irion, summed it up perfectly quipping, "You have to pay to play," when we asked him about riding this balls-out, black-as-night, XL-powered street menace.  

And anytime Tanner puts more than a hundred miles on his bike he's reminded of the sacrifices he's made to have such a killer machine. But he wouldn't have it any other way. "I've been on a 400-mile ride on this bike. Yeah, you definitely feel it. Your body aches. The guys I rode with thought I was crazy. It's not for everybody and that's what sets the bike apart from the rest."

Tanner grew up slashing across the coping of empty pools on his skateboard and plowing through plush piles of fresh powder on his snowboard. To mix things up he would add some two-wheel mayhem into his adrenaline fix and rip up muddy motocross tracks.

Unfortunately a couple of Tanner's motocross buddies were seriously injured or killed, which led to Tanner's wife convincing him to sell the dirt bike. Still wanting to feel the thrill of two wheels, Tanner made good on his dream of always wanting a Harley and followed one of his skateboarding buddies over to Foundry Moto.

"The first time I went to the Foundry shop was sort of sketchy. It's in a shady part of Phoenix and when I walked up, there was this massive dog on a short chain going nuts at all these chickens running around. Then this guy walks up from the back of the shop, grabs a chicken by the neck, and tells me to follow him. We walk to the back of the shop and he tosses the chicken into this cage with an alligator and we just walk away. It was pretty crazy. I thought I was going to end up as the shop gimp tied up in their basement."

As they say, "You always want to make a good first impression," and right off the bat Tanner knew that the Foundry Moto crew had the right mix of out-of-the-box thinking and live-fast mentality to build the bike he was thinking of.

"I wanted the bike to have an old-school flat track racer feel," Tanner told us. "I wanted it to be tight, responsive, and quick, just like riding a skateboard or snowboard. I also wanted it to be stripped down and stealthy. I'm not into flashy chrome bikes."

After discussing his ideas of a moto-inspired pavement ripper with the Foundry guys, Big Chris, Danny G, Robbie, Rudy, Matt, and Jay, they came to the conclusion that the 883XL engine and Paugcho rigid frame they already had on hand would fit the build perfectly. From that point most everything else was fabricated or modified in-house. While Rudy was busy slicing and dicing the bottom of a sporty tank so that it could be frisco-mounted on the backbone and making a custom barrel-style oil bag, Jay was busy tearing the mill apart to bump it out to 1,200 cc. Tanner brought in his favorite set of Renthal motocross bars, and Rudy replicated the bends of the 7/8-inch bars perfectly with some 1-inch tubing. The rear of the frame was kept simple yet still served a purpose as Rudy fabbed a pair of mini struts, then added a short rear skirt in an attempt to keep some of the road debris out of Tanner's crack. A set of take-off Mag wheels, Harley mids with Moose Racing alligator pegs, shaved 39mm legs, some throwback Hunt-Wilde bicycle grips, a rectangular KC headlight, and for a true motocross look/feel, a Baker chaindrive conversion kit were added. The build wrapped up with a deep gloss-black base set apart with some matte black paneling done in-house by Chelene, and a piece of hand-carved cow skin by Robbie that was riveted to a super-thin pan.

"Waiting four months seemed like an eternity for the build to be complete," Tanner commented. "Making weekly visits to the Foundry was rough. Everytime I stopped by, all I wanted to do was take it home, or at least on a testride. The hardest part was during the shakedown stage after final assembly. I wanted to be the one to shake out all the problems, but for some reason Rudy wasn't having it. I guess I found out why when I prematurely took the bike out for a long ride and the handlebars almost came off in my hands. Is that bad? Now that it's complete, I love riding it. It's like sessioning on a skateboard or snowboard. It's really narrow, super responsive side-to-side, and quick. It's definitely not a pig or slow to react. The Foundry boys killed it, and I owe them all a big thanks."

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Be Free from Unhealthy Relationships

By Rhonda Findling 

If you want to be free from unhealthy relationships, then the first step is not to call, text, e-mail or even Facebook a person that you: 

· Have broken up with or has broken up with you 

· Have determined is abusive 

· Are highly attracted to but they are not returning your level of interest (for whatever reason) 

· Have an unhealthy connection or relationship with

· Is presently in your life but you’re trying to not act needy with 

When you contact someone you're not hearing from or trying to let go of, there can be a pleasurable rush of adrenaline from the anticipation of seeing them, hearing their voice or reading their message. But this rush is just a temporary fix, which you may have to pay a tremendous price for. 

Even if the person does respond positively when you contact them, it may be momentarily thrilling or electrifying, but soon the anguish will return, because the problem is still there. Nothing has really changed. You're still not a couple or the person remains emotionally unavailable. You'll just have to start detaching all over again, doubling your efforts. 

If you've ended the relationship because someone was doing something that you experienced as hurtful or refused to tolerate any longer, contacting them would take away your credibility for the boundary you set. By initiating a contact you would also be colluding with the behavior that you already told them was unacceptable. 


When you contact someone you're trying not to act needy with, it's often impulsive. Acting on impulse can make life exciting and dramatic but it can also put you at risk because you are not reflecting on whether it's a productive behavior. You're not thinking of the future and consequences. You're just acting in the moment. 

So if you're thinking of making a contact, take time to reflect. Sit on your feelings. Endure your anxiety. Don't just do something because you feel like it. There could be disastrous effects if you do. 

Call people in your support system to discuss any impulsive urges that come over you- whether to see, e-mail, call, or text them. Discuss and process your feelings with safe reliable people Remember that feelings do pass. Feelings are only temporary, which is why it's important to hang in there even when the urge to contact them feels unbearable. 

You have to do whatever it takes to endure urges to make a contact and move past them. As you do this more and more, you will feel yourself gaining emotional strength. 


Clinging is any behavior that demonstrates holding on, not letting go. This can be exemplified by activities ranging from a compulsive phone call, text, or e-mail when they haven't responded to any of your previous contacts. Contacting someone who is not reciprocating your interest, or has rejected you is a form of clinging. The urge to cling can be irresistible. You know with your rational mind that your behavior isn't appropriate, but you are driven by a compulsion you feel you can't control. You may experience actual discomfort when you don't carry out the compulsive act. 

It's essential to remember that clinging behavior causes most people to distance themselves even further. If someone has issues about intimacy your clinging will make them feel closed in and claustrophobic. They may feel that they have no room to breathe from your relentless trying to get them to prove that they're not going to leave you. Your clinging also makes you look emotionally hungry making them feel that they'll have to endlessly supply you with reassuring love which will scare them off. 

It's human nature to have a hard time falling in love with someone who's bombarding them with phone calls, texts or e-mails. A clinging person doesn't leave someone a chance to long and yearn for them. They are so available another person doesn't have the space to fantasize about or miss them, which unfortunately is sometimes what falling in love, is all about. 

Why clinging is not productive 

There are people whose psychological problems prohibit them from having a relationship. These people are married to their pathology. Your chasing them will not break through their defenses, resistances and impairment. 

Sometimes their lack of response or reciprocating is not even about you. It's truly about them. It doesn't make a difference because no matter who it's about; they just can't do it. They can't be there for you. You must face the truth of their unavailability so you can let them go and move on. Bottom line, you can't force another person's feelings, motivation for relationship, or emotional health no matter how many rules and programs you follow or implement. 

In fact if you don't chase them around you'll get an opportunity to see what they do when they don't get any prompts or reminders from you. 

Action steps: What you can do when you want to cling 

· Go on dating sites online. It will also show you the abundance of people out there. You might also meet someone new who is even better than your ex or a person you're trying to let go of. 

· Distract yourself - do whatever it takes to not think about your ex or a person you're trying to let go of even if it feels counterintuitive. 

· Call someone in your support system. 

Writing exercises 

-Think of a time you were clinging to someone you were in love with. What were you feeling? What was behind the clinging? Was there another action you could have taken to not cling? 

-What does it feel like to show someone that you have been clinging to that you are now independent? Does it feel empowering? 

Action step/ Writing Exercise: 

·The next time you feel insecure or lonely, try not to reach out to the emotionally unavailable person you are currently attached to. Instead, see how you get through it on your own. Write about your feelings that come up in your journal. 

·Try to imagine life without the stress of an emotionally unavailable person's confusing behavior. Get to know how it feels to have emotional space free of them. Write about your feelings in your journal. 

·Visualize yourself in a relationship with someone who's sure of their love for you. Someone who makes you feel secure. Someone who has never disappointed or betrayed you. Describe your relationship in your journal? What is that person like? How do you feel with them? 

Spiritual Tip #5: Surrendering To What Is 

If you're trying to hold onto someone even though you know it's a hopeless situation then you are resisting the inevitable. When it's time for someone to go you can't fight it. The relationship time with them has passed, even if it hurts. Surrender to what is. 

Sunday, June 29, 2014

9 Common Traits Of Happy People

Happiness. It’s the term thrown around more often than any other term when people are asked what they are looking for in life. A loving partner, a fun high-paying job and endless world travel are also amongst some of the most common answers, however all of these are preference-based means to the one ultimate end, which is happiness. Being so sought-after, I thought I’d comprise a list of common traits that seem to be found in happy people -and I’m talking about the genuinely happy people, and not just those who appear to be so on the surface.

By compiling this list I’m not suggesting that these are the only keys to happiness, I’m simply shedding light on some common characteristics I’ve come to find.

1. Love Themselves For Who They Are

On the surface this may sound incredibly egotistical, but by it I simply mean that they are truly comfortable in their own shoes. They accept and embrace themselves physically, they maintain their true character traits regardless of whether or not they receive approval and they work to make the best of the human experience they are living -rather than wallow in what others would define as weaknesses or shortcomings.

2. See Relationships As An Extension To, Rather Than The Basis Of The Human Experience

Relationships, whether friendly, familial or romantic, are certainly one of the greatest parts of the human experience. However, far too many of us let their presence or absence, and even more so the value we attribute to them dictate our overall happiness in life. I’ve found that genuinely happy people tend to find complete contentment within themselves, and see all relationships as the awesome extension to their self-content. It’s often when we are not looking for others to fill a particular void, or to make us feel a certain way, that most of the truest and most-valuable relationships are formed.

3. Embrace Change

Life is a constant lesson and happy people tend to be well-aware of that. Not only are they always open to change, but they truly listen to suggestions, respect and consider all opinions and take criticism constructively rather than offensively.

4. Celebrate Rather Than Compare Themselves To The Accomplishments Of Others

Jealousy is a killer, and as Gary Allan once said, “You can be the moon and still be jealous of the stars.” We are all capable of accomplishing anything in this life and are the only ones that are going to find the drive within ourselves to do it. Rather than observe and compare to those who have accomplished, the truly happy tend to celebrate it and use it as motivation to accomplish things within their own lives.

5. Never Dwell In Being A Victim

We’ve all been the so-called ‘victim’ to several things in life. Whether it be an unexpected break-up, getting fired from a job, or even something as serious as the recipient of domestic abuse. Truly happy people tend to be those who choose not to dwell in it. They choose to let the victimization strengthen them, rather than wear it as a badge of weakness or as the thing that makes them consistently worthy of receiving sympathy.

6. They Live In The Present

As fun as reminiscing about the past or fantasizing about the future can be, nothing will ever be done in anything but the present and happy people tend to realize that. Not only do they realize it, but they tend to use it as motivation to make the most of it. In addition to being motivating, presence can also come in handy for truly appreciating those moments of relaxation, allowing yourself to be truly in them, rather than projecting future concerns into them.

7. Trust That Everything Happens For A Reason

This can very easily be paired with the choice to not be a victim, but happy people tend to trust the process and existence of everything in their life. They know that nothing is ever too big to handle and choose to embrace what life is currently throwing at them rather than cowering at the sight of it.

8. They Don’t Let Money Dictate Their Lives

Nobody is denying that in this world right now we all need money to exist, and as a result many of us spend the bulk of our lives doing things that help us earn it. What I’ve found to differentiate happy people is that they don’t let money be the ultimate dictator in their life. They still make sensible choices within their means, but they never let money: A) prevent them from pursuing a so-called “risky” passion, B) be the factor that is blamed for why their life is so miserable, C) complain about how little they have. There are creative ways to do everything in this world, and seeing money as only being possible to make in the standard ways is the most crippling thing to that creativity.

9. Look Within For Solutions

One of the most powerful realizations a genuinely happy person will often operate based on is “change starts within.” The empowerment that comes as a result of not only realizing this but even more so in using it as the backbone to everything in life can be quite remarkable. There are thousands of books, mantras, techniques and practices out there that can all help us to find solutions to so many things in life, but they all require one thing to truly be serviceable: the consciousness to support them.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

What Is Going On In Thailand

What started as a coup d'├ętat is now moving into the 'purge' phase. On May 22 the Thai military, after six months of political bickering, dumped the elected politicians and said 'enough was enough'. The street protests were not peaceful and people died, many more were injured. So decry the move away from democracy if you feel so self-righteous but realize that many good Thai people are alive because of this move to peaceful progress rather than a continued, and violent, stalemate.

One thing is very clear, three weeks into this regime. It has been brilliantly planned and executed, so far. There is no way this coup was a whim of General Prayuth, fed up with political talks going nowhere. There is a grand plan behind all this, 'grand' being the key word. The re-writing of school's curriculum to reflect the true nature of historical battles rather than the rather romantic versions Thais have learned as they grew up. Students will also be taught about the nature of corruption and how it has been such a bad influence in the Kingdom. These changes of the curriculum are not whimsy, they have been carefully researched and planned. They are grand and worthy plans indeed.

Let's move south to the former tropical paradise, now euphemistically called 'Phuket Inc.' Greed-gone-crazy as a chair and table on the beach has grown into elaborate 150 pax beach clubs in a matter of four or five years. And not just one establishment. Literally hundreds of unregistered, unlicensed, illegal constructions have sprung up along former pristine beaches to overcharge silly tourists for the pleasure of a beer or a hamburger overlooking the west coast beaches. Now these establishments have seven days to reverse time and remove the buildings, some extremely extravagant and expensive. This wasn't a knee-jerk decision - this has been clinically planned and executed with documents and the legals all carefully prepared.

Look no further than the Phuket's very own 'Day of the Long Swords', D-Day for the local taxi and tuk tuk industry, when the army and police moved in, arrested 95 taxi drivers (plus a few allegedly corrupt officials), pulled down their little 'gang huts' and, in one swift motion, dismantled decades of rife corruption, intimidation, extortion, bashing's and even deaths in the battle for their slice of the lucrative public transport income pie. You don't have to be half smart to realize that public transport in Phuket has been priced well in excess of world standards - around five times the price of similar services in the capital, Bangkok, or more. Now the roads are free to be repopulated with a useful, workable and fair public transport 'system'. Again, this has not just been a 'good idea', it has been thoroughly and strategically planned. The replacement plans were already worked out it seems.

Then there is the country's broadcasting services. On Day One of the coup all TV and radio was taken off air and only the government stations allowed to broadcast. (In those first few days there were calls for a new music director of the military-run radio station with a handful of folksy, patriotic Thai songs playing on high rotation. But I suspect even these songs had been carefully picked for their benign nature to start the process of 'healing'.) Three weeks later and all cable services, local and overseas, have been restored. But small commercial 'community' radio stations in Thailand are still off air as the purge sorts out the 'real' from the purely political. This is going to take longer than we might think as the many thousands of small radio stations need to be individually checked for technical compliance (and political compliance one would assume). But there seems to be a plan to all this, hammered out over time, not merely in the hours or days following May 22.

Importantly, there was a detailed 'road map' to a return to full democracy issued days after the coup. Was this document hastily hacked together by the military PR department in the hours following the official Coup? Of course, not. It is clearly a well-researched document with the hand of wiser political academics seen in the writing and preparation. This road map details the many stages of social and political reform necessary before fruitful elections can be considered in the former Land of Smiles.

In 2014 every business, event or idea needs a catchphrase. The Military PR Department (they obviously have one) have come up with the concept of 'bringing happiness back to the Thai people'. It cuts through the politics of colored shirts, the long decade of bickering and offers the Thai people what they love and appreciate most.

So, the hand of detailed and rigorous planning appears behind just about every move of the Thai Junta so far. The longer you live in this wonderful place, the more you realize that there are firmer hands on the steering wheel than the elected politicians. Whether it is a plan to De-Thaksinise Thailand or just restore civility and pave the road ahead, it IS a Grand Plan.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Ben Hardy the man who built "Captain America" for "Easy Rider"

The man who built one of the most famous bikes in the world, Ben Hardy … Ben Hardy, born Benjamin F. Hardy, was an African-American motorcycle engineer and chopper builder, who is best known for creating the customized choppers for the characters ‘Captain America’ and ‘Billy’ which featured in the 1969 Peter Fonda road movie Easy Rider, a movie which influenced more people to take an interest in motorcycles and choppers than any other.

The “Captain America” bike, made from a then 20 year old, heavily customized Harley-Davidson “Panhead” is considered one of the most iconic motorcycles ever built, one which captured the zeitgeist of a generation and became an anti-establishment symbol…