27 05, 2018

Bring Depth to Your Life

2018-05-23T06:48:08+00:00

A blanket of fast-moving Prussian blue clouds hovers over the land, with bits of Creamsicle-colored sunlight peeking through. A soft, muted rustle of wind makes the treetops of my scrub oaks sway ever so slightly. Then there is a low, peaceful roar as wind rushes between branches. The little family of squirrels chirrups as if to say, “Take cover, rain is coming! Get OUT of those trees, kids!” Suddenly the wind picks up to a true roar, the trees bending as a raptor glides overhead, its wings spread wide. Soon my safe, covered corner of the back porch on this old house will keep me dry as storm-watching, one of my favorite porch sports, begins. Nothing quite so poetic exists in my little world as the security of my dry little corner as chaos comes from the skies above.

Countless Hours of Study

I began storm-watching as a childhood pastime, from the garage of the little brown house I grew up in. Now, as an artist, I could study clouds and the effects of wind and light forever. Few artists take the time to understand clouds and the subtle differences in the sky, yet even the untrained eye can spot a sky that feels real, clouds that have the feel of movement, edges that indicate drops of moisture blending against the distant blues. John Constable (1776-1837) in England was, perhaps, the best. Rather than being seduced only by the surroundings of country roads, distant church steeples, and rows of trees — all of which he painted beautifully — he spent his life studying clouds, and it was the skies that made his paintings come alive. He would sit at his easel, painting en plein air (outdoors) for countless hours in rain, snow, blowing winds, and every imaginable condition, to master the art of skymaking.

Constable knew his subject deeply. He was not satisfied with painting the sky well enough to get by; he wanted to be the best sky painter in the world. He wanted to understand the conditions, because he knew the sky was the key to making his paintings speak the truth.

Obsession with Depth

Recently, as I interviewed artist Jill Carver for my podcast, we discussed Constable, and his obsession with knowing his subject so well. The great artists, she said, know their subjects deeply. You can tell instantly, instinctively, when an artist has taken the time to truly know and understand his or her subject.

The great marine painter John Stobart, a dear friend and a man who will go down in history as one of the great marine painters of all time, lives the subject he paints. His obsession with historic ships requires research and study so that the rigging of each rope, each mast, is historically accurate. When I asked why it matters, when the majority of people viewing the painting would never know the difference, he said, “I would know the difference, and anyone who knows ships would know the difference. I’m painting history, so history has to be accurate.”

Living It Instead of Pretending

A conversation with the great Western painter and sculptor John Coleman that took place on this very porch led to the same subject. We talked of painters trying to break into the Western art market who are pretenders, as opposed to real cowboys who have lived the lifestyle. He said, “I know horses, I’ve spent my life around horses, and anyone who does not live it can be spotted by anyone who knows.” He said the same about Native American paintings. “I’ll see paintings with the costume of one tribe and the blanket of another tribe. Someone who knows their subject deeply would never let that happen.”

This idea of thoroughness, mastery, and knowing one’s subject deeply certainly applies to our lives as artists — in fact, it really applies to every aspect of our lives. To be a master at one’s craft requires determination, relentless study, and deep curiosity. A true master is always learning his or her craft, whether an artist, architect, or apple grower.

I certainly would want a surgeon who is obsessed with her craft — not just understanding the basics, but mastering the highest level of competency, and feeding her curiosity with a life of learning and staying ahead of her colleagues.

Seeking Depth

I struggle with depth because of my intense curiosity. As a painter, I tend to get bored and want to try a lot of different things, play with different styles. Some weeks I’ll paint tight, others loose and brushy. There is value in experimentation, in making new discoveries and keeping things interesting. Yet I’d never make a living if I did not possess real depth as a publisher and marketer. Though I’ve done those things for almost three decades, I spend several weeks a year attending events, taking courses, reading, watching videos, and being around people who are at the top of their game because not to do so means going in reverse. The person who sits still is drifting backward. Imagine if your heart surgeon had not kept up since medical school 30 years ago. That’s not the person you want cracking your chest open.

Overused Terms

Being a master of many things is difficult because mastery requires time. I think the word “master” is thrown around too loosely these days, and even I am guilty of it, yet a master is typically someone who has obsessively spent a lifetime in study and improvement of their craft until they’ve reached a level of true perfection. At my recent Plein Air Convention, I spotted artist David A Leffel sitting in on the sessions of other artists for three solid days. When I asked him about it, he told me he had learned a new and important painting lesson from each class he had attended. David has been doing art for almost eight decades, yet he is obsessed with getting better. This is the mark of mastery.

The best always rises to the top. People want the best, and some people can afford the best and will always seek it out. Whether you’re a gardener, a candle maker, or a bricklayer, people will seek out the best and pay a premium for it. It’s the difference between a $200,000 painting and a $2,000 painting of the same size.

Why Bother, Dad?

Now that my daughter has her first job, her mom and I are coaching her on how to be an exceptional employee. “Why?” she says. “No one else works that hard. No one else goes to the extra effort, why should I?” She then answered her own question when she told the story of the store manager looking over hours of security camera footage and firing several employees because they stood around doing nothing when the manager was out of sight. Thankfully, she kept her job because she was always working.

Doing It for Yourself

Being the best, seeking depth, seeking mastery, isn’t just about being the best for others, it’s about being the best for yourself. If you’re going to live a rich, fulfilled life, it starts with your own self-esteem, from knowing that you strive to be the best in the world at what you do. Yet getting my kids to understand this isn’t always easy. I’m sure my folks struggled with my slack attitude as a teen, but the message must have seeped in with repetition over time. And though I’m not the best, not where I want to be, I’m obsessed with finding ways to get better.

I’ll leave this corner of the porch soon, pull out my easel, and see if I can learn from rapid paintings of clouds. Constable did hundreds of them, and it shows in his work. I’ve got a long way to go, but learning is half the fun.

Depth is a concept rarely discussed, and it may not be a fit for you. There is no right or wrong. No judging here, but I wanted to share what I’ve recently started to learn, and the patterns I’m seeing in common among people who are the best at their craft. Not one spoke about doing it for the money — it was simply the pride of doing things right and doing them well.

Have a great day, and whatever you do today, do it with mastery.

Eric Rhoads

Bring Depth to Your Life 2018-05-23T06:48:08+00:00
20 05, 2018

The Magic of Summer

2018-05-18T12:50:41+00:00

Heat is radiating down on me this morning, the warmth of the summer sun. Spring didn’t last long here, and it’s already almost 80, just after sunrise. I can feel the warmth on my skin as I absorb my Vitamin D in the bright red Adirondack chair here on the back patio. Squinting from the brightness, I can barely make out the screen on my iPad with all the reflections around me. I’m always grateful when winter leaves and summer arrives.

My friend Richard Saul Wurman, founder of the TED conferences, once told me that we should plan our lives based on how many summers we have left. Summer is, after all, the time most of us take time for ourselves and our family, take vacation, and spend our time doing the things we love. Though no one is ever sure how much time there is, he based his remaining summers on the average lifespan of a man.

A Magic Trigger

Something magical happens to trigger something inside us when we think in terms of summers. Some may have three or five left, others fewer, and still others have more. Yet even if you’re 30, you have only 48 summers left. If you’re 60, you have 19 left. Someone born in 2017 will get 79 summers. Somehow this puts things in perspective.

Busy Winters

I spend a lot of my winter “hunker down” months looking forward to summers, when Laurie and I don’t have to wake up at 6:45 to get the kids off to school, and when we can all spend our time playing. Though I work all summer, other than my painting camps and a week off with the family, admittedly, I sneak out early and go in late most of the summer.

Remember those last few weeks of school, when you could hardly wait till school got out? It seemed like the last two weeks were as long as the whole school year.

What Could Have Been

As a teen I used to look at myself in the mirror and think about what I might look like as I age, thinking I had plenty of time. And now I look in the mirror and see someone I don’t recognize, and realize that every moment counts. I wish I had taken the “every moment counts” attitude to life when I was 20. I wonder what might have been if I had understood then what I understand now, yet I can’t look back with regret. I need to accept where I am today and change what I don’t like. And, as you probably know, I am opposed to self-talk about aging, and I operate as though I’ll live forever. Who knows, some tech gurus say that is coming, with 3D-printed hearts and the ability to transfer the contents of one brain to another.

Much to Get Done

My prayer this morning included a request to help me get done what needs to get done to help the most people possible. I’m not asking for more time, but I’m extremely focused on achieving my goals. One of my goals is to teach a million people to paint because painting changes lives — and I’m working on something that, if it works, will give me a reach of 24 million people next year. And at the Plein Air Convention, I had over 200 attendees stand when I asked for volunteers to teach painting to veterans in their town. Therefore, the PleinAirForce Veterans Squadron will soon be helping hundreds of veterans, some PTSD victims, by teaching them to paint.

One of my goals was getting a new book done to help artists discover ways they can make a living and live their dreams — and if I didn’t mention it before, we already hit #1 bestseller on Amazon in two different categories.

Releasing the Brain Muscle

One of the things I love about summer is the release of the brain muscle. It’s tight all year, jammed with projects, workload, and stress, and summer provides a chance to stop squeezing that muscle at that level and allow new ideas to float in at a leisurely pace. Walks through the woods, painting by magnificent waterfalls, floating on a lake — it can all play an important role.

Time off is important work time, something most people don’t fully get. When my team members take one week off, and then a week later at another time, I don’t feel like they are fully relaxing. It takes me a full week to come down from my busy life. That second week is when the magic happens.

26 Weeks of Vacation

I once met a billionaire who told me he works 26 weeks a year and takes the other half of the year off. When I asked how he could possibly be productive, he told me he was more productive and more focused in the weeks he was working because he’d given his mind a rest. Another fellow CEO just told me the same at a recent mastermind meeting. Who knows, maybe I’ll try it one day.

In just a couple of weeks, my kids will be out for the summer, and a new chapter for the year begins.

I’m looking forward to it as a reset button in my life. Time to get grounded, time to think, time to play, to sleep, and to give my busy little brain a rest. I hope you’ll do the same.

How many summers do you have left?

What bucket list items need to get done so you can check that box? I’ve always wanted to go to Africa, so I’ll be taking a group there in the fall. The Canadian Rockies, Banff, and Lake Louise are on my bucket list, and I’m taking a group there as well. And because I can’t get enough art, I’m taking a group behind the scenes in Italy.

I think back to my friends who have dreams they keep putting off. Then, like lightning, some ailment stikes and their chance of doing those things has vaporized forever.

Where is your summer bucket list?

What do you need to get done in your remaining summers?

Throughout my life I’ve always found barriers like money, time, obligations — yet if you want something badly enough, you’ll find a way to remove those barriers.

Since summer is right around the corner: What will you do? If you learned that this is your last summer, what would you get done that you’ve kept putting off? Sadly, it will be the last for some. My dear friend Sean, a stroke victim, had dreams he never fulfilled because he did not want to spend the time or the money, and now he is trapped in his body in a hospital, unable to move or speak, with very little hope of any quality of life. I think he would love me reminding you that now is the time. Never put anything off.

Here’s to making this your best summer yet.


Eric Rhoads

PS: Months ago I wrote about my kids’ desire to talk us into getting a dog. Then I wrote about how we adopted a senior dog, Tucker. This weekend we are mourning his passing from cancer. We gave him five amazing months of a great life. The house is quiet, and we miss him. We’re all pretty upset, but the kids are really having a hard time with it. We would appreciate if you keep us in your prayers. We become close to our faminals (animal family members) and losing them isn’t easy, no matter how much we knew it was coming.

The Magic of Summer 2018-05-18T12:50:41+00:00
13 05, 2018

Long Shadows

2018-05-09T10:41:56+00:00

Nestled in my cozy covers, I’m awakened by a blinding light penetrating my closed eyelids. Opening my heavy lids, I leap out of bed, wanting to capture a photo of the light streaming through the back lot, where a row of trees are in shadow, with golden rims of light around their tops, highlighting their unique shapes. Below them, a field of intense burning light with the silhouettes of dozens of twisted, gnarly tree trunks, and from them long shadows are cast.

Long Shadows

Perhaps it’s the time of year combined with the position of the sun, but these shadows are so long they reach across a couple of acres as they do a lanky dance over the property, highlighted by the intense light of blades of grass, bushes, and weeds.

Depth in Shadows

To those of us who consider ourselves artists, shadows are the foundation of all painting and one of the more difficult things to master, because they are not just dark blobs; they are alive with warm and cool color variations. Since painting, with the limitations of color and paint, cannot possibly replicate the intensity of light, it is the shadow that creates contrast. A light looks lighter when surrounded by the dark of a shadow. A color looks warmer against a cool shadow.

The Halo Effect

If you study shadows as I have, you learn that shadows can have sharp edges when close to the object blocking the light, and they soften with distance. Often the edges of a shadow, if you look closely, create a halo effect, and there can be intense color at that magical spot between dark and light. My mentor used to call it a “bedbug line,” though I’ve never known why.

The Eye Path

Shadows in paintings, and often in photographs, are also a tool to move the eye to the places you want the eye to go. Yes, a little secret is that great artists tend to create a path for the eye to follow through an experience, with little surprises until you get to the point they most want your eye to go. Kind of like a curvy board game where you stop, roll the dice, then go on to the next block until you’ve hit the jackpot.

Dark Shadows

As a kid I would come home from school every day and turn on the TV at 4 o’clock to watch a show called Dark Shadows, which was essentially a vampire soap opera. Hitchcock made shadows into symbols of evil. Even the 1930s radio show The Shadow had men learning in the shadows. “Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows.”

The Earth Shadow

Shadows cannot be avoided. If you and I stand out in the sun, there is a shadow behind us. Sometimes it’s short, especially if the sun is directly overhead, but in the early morning or late afternoon, shadows are long. There is a shadow most people don’t know exists: the shadow of the earth, which you can see just as the sun goes down behind the horizon. Cat Stevens even sang about moon shadows.

Lasting Shadows

But what about the shadows we cast as humans? These shadows are more like those in a painting: Once they are laid down, they are a permanent record of that moment in time. The shadows we cast can be dark and evil or filled with light and color, and they can be short or long, meaning they can have a short-term impact or a more lasting effect.

Two Kinds of Shadow

There are accidental shadows and intentional shadows. For instance, years ago I ran into a former employee at a radio convention who said to me, “You probably don’t even remember this, but I was over at your house one day looking for some advice. Though you could have given me advice to stick with my job, which would have been to your benefit, you told me you saw something in me and that I needed to take advantage of it. You told me I should start my own business, tap the dreams living inside of me, and go for those dreams. I left there with a clear mission, and immediately started working on that dream, and today I own a bunch of my own radio stations.”

That, my friends, is a long intentional shadow because I saw something in someone they did not see in themselves and tried to set them on a path to consider. Though I had no idea what the outcome would be and how long that shadow would last, it was very intentional.

Accidental Shadows

My mother (happy Mother’s Day, Mom, I love you) left a lot of important lessons with me and my two brothers that were accidental shadows. Though I’m sure there were many lessons she wanted us to learn, it was her consistent loving demeanor that affected me most. That was a long shadow that not only has impacted my entire life, it hopefully will impact the lives of others beyond me, especially my own kids. And knowing my grandparents and great-grandparents and their loving nature, I suspect my mother’s love came from being in the accidental long shadow of generations before her.

What kind of shadow are you leaving? Is it long and lasting, or short and fleeting? Is it dark and evil, or is it filled with rich, subtle colors?

Our time here is brief. No matter how much time God gives us, to us it never seems like enough. To Him, it’s perfect timing.

Graduation

As a kid who hated school, I could not wait till the day I graduated from school, so I never had to return. In spite of being anxious, I also knew I was getting what I needed to help me get ready for life. Though there were still important lessons to learn, I knew graduation would be a new life, a new level. I look at life in a similar way: There is a time to learn, to grow, to guide others, and then suddenly we graduate to what lies ahead, which is where these lessons can be put to real use.

Stress Cracks

You can I cannot control our accidental shadows much. Like it or not, we will cast shadows on those we encounter, and that shadow will have an effect. I’ve cast a lot of bad shadows accidentally because of a rotten mood, or my out-of-control ego. I look back on my early years in business and cringe. I used to think a manager was the boss and was supposed to push all the time, but the problem is that when you push all the time, stress cracks develop and you can destroy people. It took a lot of years to understand that it’s more productive to pull, to make people want to do something. Though there are always times when a little nudge or push may be needed, less push and more pull brings better results and joy-filled people.

Feeling Awful

Throughout life I’ve encountered stories from others who have shared the impact I’ve made on their life. Sadly, not all of them are good stories. Recently I received a call from someone who told me he felt I had bullied him. I had never realized it, yet when he pointed out why, I could see how he felt that way. I was mortified, apologized profusely, felt awful, and pondered how I can change my behavior so I never do that again.

Touching Millions

We all have our perfect timing. We all go at our own pace and realize things we need to do when the time is right for us. I burned through a lot of life trying to grow my business, trying to make money, but my happiest times and the most gratification have been since I’ve lowered the money priority and elevated the priority or helping others. Now my goal is to leave a long intentional shadow by using the gifts I’ve been given to enrich the lives of others in some way. That’s why I’m driven to teach so many people to paint and to amplify that effort to touch millions, because I know painting changes lives. (If you’re not a painter but want to be, I’m convinced anyone can. You can start here.) It’s also why I started teaching marketing so that artists could truly live their dreams and why I recently wrote a book. It’s why I write.

Shadow Impacts

I’m trying to make my own long shadow list. What impact do I want to leave on others before I’m called off this earth? But I’m also trying to listen and observe carefully and be willing to make a quick left or right turn so accidental shadows can occur. Of course, we really never know the impact of the accidental shadows we leave, which is why I try to manage my anger, keep my spirit happy and loving, and try not to be a jerk. Sadly, it still happens from time to time. Hopefully, I learn from it.

Motherly Shadows

Today, since it’s Mother’s Day, we can reflect on the shadows left by our mothers. For some those shadows are long, loving, and fruitful. For others, we must be careful to escape those shadows and not carry them forward so we don’t destroy lives or create hurt or angst in others.

(Just as I wrote this, I glanced up from my keyboard and a mother and baby deer were about 40 feet away, grazing on my weed, the baby staying close to mom’s side. Talk about perfect timing!)

Unknown Shadow Casters

Our shadows are how we will be remembered. But in most cases, the shadows can last and impact future generations without you and I being known or remembered. My dad talks a lot about the impact his grandfather had on him, how it molded who he is, and the lives he touched as a result of his grandfather’s shadow. And though he is known and remembered with a couple of generations, the person who cast a shadow on him is unknown to me and will someday be forgotten. Yet the shadow lives on.

Unknown Shadows

Each of us has a gift, some have several gifts. In many cases we don’t yet know what they are, in some cases the gift is not ready to be used, but there lies within each of us something so powerful that it will have a lasting effect on generations. The same is true with whatever darkness lies within us, which is why we want to be conscious about what shadows we leave behind. We can cast a shadow so long that it impacts people for generations. Think, for instance about the shadow cast by one man born in Galilee over 2,000 years ago. Whether or not you personally buy in, there is no denying that shadow touched lives for generations.

Your Impact

In what ways are your shadows affecting others? What is it about you that will live on that perhaps should not? What shadow can you cast that will impact the world and its inhabitants forever? You may not think that big, yet your shadow may touch someone who becomes an author, a world leader, or a great orator. A woman who comes to my June Adirondacks paint camp each year raised a son who became a world-famous author who is touching the lives of hundreds of millions of people. Her shadow had a big influence on his success.Though we’ve not spoken about it, I’m sure some was intentional and some accidental.

Environmental Shadows

The shadow of my own parents is long. Brief moments at the dining room table painting with my mom led me to my passion for art. Listening in to my dad conducting business on the phone at home trained me for business. Who knows the impact those long shadows will have? I’m sure they never envisioned a kid who became a publisher, a radio broadcaster, an artist, a blogger, a podcaster, and an author. Yet they formed my shadows with their shadows.

Today, as we celebrate and honor our moms, or the woman who raised or is raising our kids, let’s give some thought to the impact of our shadows and the impact of their shadows.

What can you do to leave a long intentional shadow on the world?

What you can do to make sure that even your accidental shadows have a positive short- or long -term impact?

You have it inside of you to cast a long shadow on the earth, on the world, no matter your state of life at the moment.

Happy Mother’s Day.

 

Eric Rhoads

PS: Today in our house we not only celebrate Mom, but the date of our wedding, 23 years ago. The long shadow cast by my wife, Laurie, has impacted my life and my kids’ lives in so many wonderful ways. It was she who bought me my first art lesson at age 40, which resulted in my passion for art, resulting in our art magazines, art conferences, art instruction videos, and so much more. Happy anniversary and happy Mother’s Day.

Long Shadows 2018-05-09T10:41:56+00:00
6 05, 2018

Temporary Moments of Discomfort

2018-05-04T17:12:56+00:00

Crack! The massive cracking sound slammed the all-metal water tower on the country road in front of our property, and it reverberated like a giant speaker. Sheets of rain are pouring down, an Armageddon of water from our roof. Zero visibility has eliminated my view. Silence does not exist as the wind howls and pellets of rain slam the metal roof. Suddenly I’m startled by an annoying emergency flooding alert on my phone. Yet the family sleeps, unaware of the chaos.

Loving Storms

I’m not sure why I love storms so much. I don’t recall ever being afraid of the thundering noises. When I was a child l, we would open the garage door for storm-gazing. We would cheer at thunder and lightning, which we referred to as “God bowling.”

Chickens and Mountain Lions

In that garage we raised chickens and a baby mountain lion cub (“Blinky”) and a couple of dogs. It was home to my blue Stingray bike with the giant handlebars, and later my gold Schwinn with a fake “varoom” motor on it. I was such a nerd.

It’s amazing to me how the thought of a storm triggers so many memories of that garage.

Quick or Sustained?

I’m not sure, but I think I’d rather live in a place where we get all our water in huge, gushing storms rather than a steady stream of rain over long periods of time. That’s also the way I prefer life’s storms. I’d rather get them over with and deal with them, no matter how severe, than have my life be one ongoing problem after another.

Some acquaintances live in perpetual storms. It seems like life never cuts them a break, and they suffer through endless problems. Sometimes those storms are real problems — but other times they are attitudes looking for problems. There are people who find problems in everything.

I Thought Problems Followed Me

I have memories of moments when I was like Pig Pen, the character in the Charlie Brown comics with a cloud of dirt floating all around him. When problems would hit, it was as though they never ended. I would wallow in them. I would talk about them all the time. I wanted others to feel sorry for me.

Then one day I discovered the way I perceived problems was the reason my problems stuck with me. A wise mentor told me to embrace problems.

I thought he was nuts, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the biggest growth comes from pain. The brightest sun comes after the dark clouds of a storm.

Blue Steel

Though none of us like pain and we don’t look forward to problems, these problems are what form us. My dad likes to say that it’s the hottest, bluest flames that harden steel.

I’d be lying if I told you I look forward to problems, but by changing the way I look at them, by knowing that they will provide growth and something better, I have become much happier.

A Giant Storm

This past week I was faced with a giant, tornado-like storm in my life. Though I was bothered and somewhat stressed, I faced it with strength, with calm, and without raging emotions. That allowed me to see the upside of a bad situation, and to help others who were experiencing severe emotions see that there might be a silver lining in this dark cloud. In fact, the outcome was better than anything we could have imagined. Even though the start of the week seemed like the end of the world.

What about you?

How do you look at life’s challenges and problems?

Do you face your problems with grace, and with a sense that no matter how dark it is, you’ll be better off on the other side?

Facing Blindness

Thirty years ago I spent a weekend lying in bed, crying in fear and shaking endlessly because a doctor had told me I was going to lose vision in both of my eyes and be blind for the rest of my life. I allowed my fears to control me.

Two years ago it happened again — I went about 80 percent blind in one eye. I called the doctor and went in for an emergency procedure. I was calm, I was joking with the doctor, and though I feared the worst, that fear did not control me this time.

The only difference was how I looked at the problem.

Walking in Your Shoes

I’ve not walked in your shoes, I don’t know the severity of your problems, I don’t know the issues you face with your loved ones. I cannot begin to imagine your pain. But I can tell you that flipping this switch in my head made me stop living with fear and drama.

Maybe it will work for you?

The Other Side of Problems

There are now over 100,000 of you reading this on Sunday mornings, and my guess is that some of you have lived a lot of life and dealt with a lot of problems, including some that truly were the end of your world. My guess is that in most cases there was something that happened on the other side of the problem, that made things better —maybe not in every case, but in many cases?

Think about those times when your world was ending and the outcome was for the better.

If you’ll consider looking at problems as temporary moments of discomfort that lead you to better things or to important lessons, it can change everything.

The longer I’m alive, the more I understand how much we can control our brains to enrich our lives and not react negatively to every challenge we face. I guess I feel like God’s got my back no matter what.

I hope you’ll try it this week. Instead of a negative reaction to a problem, look at it as something you simply have to deal with that will provide something better on the other side. Approaching things this way may enrich your life.

Eric Rhoads

PS: I’m truly humbled by the release of my new book. This week, in the middle of my storm, the sweet news was that it became a #1 Amazon Bestseller in two different categories. Then we sold out of books, and we’ve sent the remainder of the print run, and all indications are that those will be gone soon. We’re already into the second printing after releasing it on May 1. And tonight I’ll be talking about the book and marketing and how people can create art and live their dreams on The Walter Sterling Show at Westwood One, a national radio show that airs on 50 of the biggest radio stations in America. The best news of all, though, is how many people are finding it helpful, including people who are not just in art, photography, or crafts, but people who run small and large businesses. Dan Kennedy, one of the top marketing minds in the world, sent me a FedEx to tell me the book was “solid,” which I consider a compliment. So forgive the bragging — I’m pretty excited.

Temporary Moments of Discomfort 2018-05-04T17:12:56+00:00