My Thoughts

My Thoughts

Saving Mental Energy – Jarrod’s Journal

Jarrod’s Journal

I want to do something so that I keep this blog updated, so I decided to go back to old-school style blogging and keep a journal. This comes after pondering what else I could do that wouldn’t require me to think so much. Past blog posts have been so thought out that it keeps the pressure on to create. But I’m writing a book and using my creative energy to create (hopefully) compelling Instagram and Snapchat stories, set up live author interviews, and do my day job (which is basically writing for eight hours straight). I’m not complaining, but I needed a way to feel like I wasn’t neglecting my main site while at the same time not draining myself unnecessarily.

This is where my mind was just four days ago…

I blame Gary Vaynerchuk for this constant state of modification and angst. I’ve been listening to him every day for a while now and while he makes a ton of sense, I have to be aware of what works for me. That’s a hard thing to do because I think I can do it all. In practice, I can’t. Let me explain:

I know I’m capable of putting out good content on a consistent basis on any platform, but because of the sheer number of platforms, I just feel stretched thin. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, Website, Email, YouTube – it seems like too much for one person to keep up well and consistently. My frustration has been with hitting the wall of what I have time and energy to do, but for some reason I still persist. I think this is because I believe that there is some strategy out there that will allow me to maintain all of these platforms, write a book, and go to work. I just need to modify my management a little bit more. I have a serious never-give-up mentality that causes me to ignore failures and explore solutions until every stone is turned. Doing a journal like this is just another turning of a stone. Hopefully this will be the stone that allows me to put blogging on an automatic level versus using the serious thought I have used before. I need to save that stuff for the next book!

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My Thoughts

Reaching The Next Steps To Success

success pic

Two instances occurred that taught me what I needed to know about being successful. Mind you, I’m not there yet, but I think I’m gaining the understanding necessary to achieve and hold on to it.

Cracking the Door to Success

A few months ago, I posted a YouTube video (and even wrote a blog post here) about the controversial casting of the movie, Gods of Egypt. At the time, many people were calling for a boycott. My argument was that you could boycott if you wanted, but it wouldn’t mean much because the problem lies in negotiations for funding, not on the director. It wasn’t good that they had whitewashed the characters in the movie, but based on an article I had cited, that was the only way to get the movie made from a funding standpoint. I ended the video saying that if you really just wanted to see the movie, you could, but be a part of the solution by creating or doubly supporting something that was more diverse as well. This isn’t what people wanted to hear.

First, I accept that saying you could see the movie and disagree with whitewashing at the same time is flawed. I made a mistake. Still, because of the freshness of the issue, when I uploaded it to YouTube it quickly became one of my most viewed videos. Most people, I believe understood where I was coming from, but there were a few who disagreed. I woke up two days in a row to negative comments. None of them were completely over the top, but it was enough for me, an already anxious, introverted individual, to feel even more anxious and uneasy, completely throwing off my days. In my 34th entry of King for a Day, I describe it as “cracking the door to success”. The video only had a little over 600 views, but that was more attention than I’d ever received online. And when I received the negative comments, I quickly shut the door by way of deleting the video.

Higher visibility = higher negativity

Let’s fast forward to this past week. I’ve been revamping my Instagram feed and have gotten more and more likes the more consistent I have been. One day, my picture was one of the top posts and two people decided to make some very misinformed / homophobic statements. This put me in the same spot I was last time. I once again had cracked the door open to success. I don’t define success by the amount of likes I get on Instagram, however I think of it as a metaphor for what it would look like on a grander scale. People are going to say mean and nasty things. I was faced, yet again, with the choice of whether to back down and delete it or leave it up. This time, I chose the latter. And I think that shows a bit of growth on my part. I’ve gained a thick enough skin to ignore, delete, block, or whatever I need to do. This time, nobody is getting in the way of my shine.

As I work towards becoming a full-time author, I understand that there are moments like these that are going to prepare me for what’s next. I have no misconceptions that it’s going to be easy. But little by little, I’m readying myself for anything.

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My ThoughtsWriting

Do Authors Need to Write Every Day?


Maybe I need to rethink this “write every day” thing. It’s a standard idea among authors, so, when I don’t,  it gives me unnecessary pressure. I have a job, I’m producing daily content on social media for marketing purposes, and I’m trying to work out regularly. Sometimes, I just don’t have the time to write. And if I end up not writing a word in my latest book, I feel bad. It’s like I failed or let myself down. That’s not a good feeling to have because, as a result, I slow down.

This past week, I’ve been trying to focus on getting real with myself. I ponder thoughts like Who am I? What am I capable of?, and Have I done enough? All of those really amount to Am I doing the right thing? and the answer I keep getting is that I am doing just fine. I don’t need to be the guy who stays up until two in the morning and I don’t need to hit all of the objectives on my list every single day. Why? Two answers:

  1. The amount that I want to get done is a lot, and
  2. I’m just not built to run myself ragged day after day.

I do my best and I make sure that I move the ball forward. Progress is key. It may not be as fast as I’d like, but the alternative is to mope about how I can’t do what I need. This feeling can go on for days, as it has this past week. When it does, normal objectives fall through the cracks and sometimes I don’t do anything. If only I celebrated that I did what I can, I could continue getting a lot more done and progressing.

This isn’t an excuse. These are the best of my abilities. If you can stay up until 2:00 AM and wake up at 6:00 AM for work without feeling like a corpse, then that’s what you should do. I guess what I’m trying to say is, don’t be something you’re not, but always work at your best. That’s what I learned this week. And it’s something I’m going to remember moving forward.

So, should authors write every day?

Well, yes, but only if you can. My suggestion would be to not compare yourself to what everyone else is doing. Do as much as you can and be okay with that. You will get the book done. You will meet your objectives. You will be fine. Stop beating yourself up. Your only competition is you. So, do you.

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My ThoughtsTV / Film

Why I Loved The New Power Rangers Movie

Power Rangers Review

Last weekend I finally saw the Power Rangers remake, and boy, did it exceed my expectations.

But first, a story…

I remember play fighting with my younger brother (we were around 6 and 7 years old) at a local high school where my older brother attended. We were under the care of his teenage friend and pretending we were the Power Rangers. I was always the Blue Ranger because blue is my favorite color. Anyway, I playfully threw my little brother head-first into a table. It was made of wood, but the corner of it had been broken leaving behind a jagged spike that pointed sideways. He wasn’t seriously injured, but the middle of his forehead did meet the spike right above his brow. It left behind a small scar that’s visible to this day. than a small scar. We slowed down our play fighting for a while, but with each episode of our favorite show that passed, we got right back into the swing of things.

If you’re a millennial in your late 20 / early 30s, it’s likely that you know all about how karate was one of our daily obsessions. How couldn’t it be with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Karate Kid, and more? The Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers just took it to a whole new level. It was great because it was diverse, had great bad guys, and a story that kept our young minds engaged. However, it wasn’t without its problems.

The Glaring Problems of Old

To its credit, this series was always very diverse. However, the problem laid in its placement of certain diverse characters. The first season featured a black ranger who was Black, and a yellow ranger who was Asian. Even at my young age, I could see the issue there. Yet, it was something nobody talked about because they enjoyed the show so much. Nor did we have Twitter, where I’m pretty sure it would have been blasted.

Aside from that was the very weak story. Keep in mind that I loved this show as a kid, and I had no expectations of Emmy-worthy material, but a look on the wiki page shows just how juvenile and simple the original story was.

Lastly, the characters weren’t entirely deep to begin with. Once the popularity of the show grew, there were some deeper storylines, but nothing like what I saw with the latest movie.

Power Rangers Takes A Turn for the Better

**Spoilers Ahead**

In nearly all aspects, 2017’s Power Rangers takes it up a few notches. There was a shuffling of characters that got rid of the whole racial / color thing, but there was even more. We got a Black, highly intelligent kid on the Autism spectrum (a rarity), an Asian ranger with a big personality, and a LGBT / Latina ranger. Two thumbs up on the inclusion front! A new crop of kids are watching this and any who identify with these characters will get the message that they matter.

I also enjoyed the twists in the story from the original. Zordon and Rita Repulsa fighting on Earth millions of years ago, the reason for the form of the Zords, Rita being the original Green Ranger, and her whole revamped mission added some cohesiveness that was missing in the past. She used to want to conquer Earth, but in this movie, she goes after a crystal (one of many that are found on all planets) that will help her take control of the universe. It’s a grander scheme and it works.

The characters’ stories were deepened from the get-go this time around. Jason and Kimberly’s stories were done the best, I believe. However, no one in the cast felt left behind. I imagine this is a hard thing to accomplish for an ensemble within a two-hour space, but everything was explained just enough to feel for the characters.

Make no mistake. This is still not an award contender, but all of this combined with the feeling of nostalgia made this one of the more enjoyable watches of the spring. I highly recommend you take a step into your past and witness the future of a beloved franchise.

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