Tag Archives: Dream

Inspiration Only Goes So Far

Peter Snell

One of the awesome benefits of my blogging journey so far, have been the stories I’ve heard of people inspired by my writing to dream again, to do something remarkable, to throw caution to the wind and risk failure for freedom.

So in the interest of not wasting anyone’s time, this post is not for the guys I have just mentioned. You guys can go back to dreaming big and doing cool stuff.

This post is for ‘the inbetweeners’ (and I’m not talking about the brit comedy) – the people who read my posts, tell me they are loving what I write, indicate their 100% agreement with it, and then go back to their day-to-day lives.

I find you lot frustrating – and possibly because in a way you reflect my own internal struggles to turn inspiration into action.

You see the thing with inspiration is inspiration only goes so far. Inspiration will get you to your race – but it won’t get you to your prize. It’ll get you pumped about what you want to do, but it won’t do it for you.

You see if you want to do something remarkable – you need to involve yourself in your dream beyond just being inspired by it. You need to lace up your proverbial Nikes, do your stretches and get beyond the starting blocks and into your race of turning your dream into a real life journey, possibly for all of us to witness.

Now this message isn’t for those who are content with their current situation. If what you dream about is where you are now, then congratulations, you are the envy of millions of people who want to live in their dream like you, or at least live in real pursuit of it.

No, this post is for those in the space between ‘I’ve been inspired to pursue what I dream of’ and ‘I’ve started making moves turning my dreams into my reality’.

Inspiration may be the birth of your dream – but it’s beginning to live out that dream that really gives it life.

So if you’re one of those people who has been following my writing, and have been inspired by words that have been given to me for you to hear – I dare you to take the next step in making your dreams real. I dare you to leave inspiration in your wake and to pursue what’s been placed in your heart for all of us to benefit from.

That’s a part of why I started this blog. As this blog develops, you watch part of my dreams unfolding. My hope is that as you journey beyond inspiration, I will also have the privilege of watching and applauding your dreams unfold as well.

Photo credit: enricovivian.blogspot.com

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The Difference Between Smart People and Wise People

owl3So for people who are following my writing, I thought I would share a bit of my story.

When I was 19, for about a year I acted, danced and sung my way across New Zealand with a performing arts company – one of the coolest things I’ve done.

It was a great experience. I performed in some iconic New Zealand theatres, met some fantastic people and made some life-long friends – but looking back in hindsight these were not the things that would impact me most on that tour.

The tour introduced me to a person who would shift how I see the world – someone like noone I’d ever met before.

He was an interesting character. A gentle giant who stood at about six-foot-two (or it seemed so at the time). He would’ve been in his fifties then – a tall,  lean, white male who everyday donned the same set of thick glasses perched lightly on his nose and had a head of greying hair that always looked slightly unkempt.

A part of his role on tour was to drive our tour bus. We spent hours on that bus – travelling from city to city – town to town. And while he drove, I found myself for hours on end sitting next to the guy, picking his brain about everything and anything. From practical stuff to big picture stuff, from people’s everyday problems to life’s big questions.

On that bus, for that year, I learnt more about myself and the world than I had learnt in any other year in my life. That person taught and helped me experience life concepts and ideas that still inspire and bamboozle me to this day.

Given all this – there was one lesson he embodied that stood above them all.

He modelled for me what a wise person is.

And this led me to explore the difference between a smart person – and a wise person.

Beyond that tour bus, I have interacted with many different kinds of people from many different walks of life, and in my experience the people I’ve met have fallen into one catergory or the other. Few have fallen into both.

So – based on my experience (and opinion) – here are several differences I have encountered between smart people – and wise people.

Smart people know a lot. Wise people apply what they know well.

Smart people tell you about something. Wise people show you something.

Smart people present arguments. Wise people walk you through experiences.

Smart people can make the simple complex. Wise people make the complex simple.

Smart people protect what they know benefitting themselves. Wise people share what they know benefitting others.

Smart people revel in the mystery of their work. Wise people willingly help others unlock their mystery.

Smart people hate being wrong. Wise people recognise being wrong as an opportunity to be better.

Smart people look to critique others. Wise people know the critiquing begins with themselves.

Our Parliament is filled with smart people… not necessarily wise people.

Our universities are filled with smart people… not necessarily wise people.

Our churches are filled with smart people… not necessarily wise people.

My hope for all of us is that one of the big pursuits in our life would not be limited to just becoming smarter.

My hope is that like my now friend from that tour all those years ago, we would continually pursue becoming wiser.

I wanted to finish this piece by honouring that friend I met all those years ago on that tour. Those conversations we had on that bus have changed my life forever. Thanks Gee.

Photo credit: www.zazzle.com

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The Practise of Pausing Time

me at the altar3Fifteen minutes is a long time when you’re waiting at the altar.

Hollywood movies warned me this was the way it was meant to play out, but that did not prepare me for how I was feeling at that moment.

Two o’ clock, at a snails pace, turned to two fifteen. I could sense from guests a small amount of pleasure at watching me squirm. To be honest I would’ve enjoyed the squirm as well from the pew seats.

Surely she’s not too far away.

And then like the Hollywood movies – our wedding story began to unfold.

A light murmur spread through the church as my future wife arrived outside. Once the murmurs settled, our wedding song began to play, and one-by-one the bridesmaids elegantly made there way down the aisle. My wife then joined the party by entering at the rear of the church.

And then it happened.

As soon as she came into my vision…

I paused time.

I paused it. There’s no other way to explain it.

And for that paused moment, which may have been brief, I was not bound by that hour – or that minute – or that second. I was freed to live that moment out with the intensity and fervor that it deserved.

Her elegance, those eyes, the breathtaking beauty, the nervous excitement, that dress – the moment became bigger than the timeframe it was lived within – removed from the confines of time and space.

When I close my eyes I can still relive the whole moment in its intensity and entirety.


It’s this practise of pausing time that I think is a great lesson for all of us.

For a lot of us, with time –  it always seems like we’re running out of it or we don’t have enough of it. I’ve been a victim to its pressure, encouraged to save it and told not to waste it away.

My past has conditioned me to pursue being on it – to set plans to it that are bound by it. And I’m told if I’m wise I should manage it well, set it aside and watch it carefully.

But these are not the concepts that grind me the most about time. It is my feeling that I am subject to it. Like time is my Master.

Well today is a new day. I’ve been looking at it wrong.

Time is a means – it is not an end. It exists for us, we don’t exist for it (let that breathe for a while).

Time is a tool with which we live within not a master that we serve under. We need to master it, not the other way around.

We must engage more in the practise of pausing time.

And I’m not talking about planning our time better – that’s too mundane. I mean we must learn to pause time – more.

In moments like walking down the aisle toward your future husband, holding your baby in your arms for the first time, standing atop gorgeous mountains or walking alongside flawless lakes – in these moments when time stands still – we need to stand with it. Be attentive, be immersed, be still.

Mastering this practise opens up a whole new world of heightened awareness and sensitivity in the moments that matter.

You are not subject to time – time is subject to you.

So this is my challenge – in the moments that transcend time – I dare you to transcend with them.

I dare you to more often engage in the practise of pausing time.

Photo: That’s me waiting at the altar – she did eventually join me there:)


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5 Books That Changed My Life

boys-readingI hated reading growing up.

At school the choice between a book and a basketball was an easy one. My heroes were Michael Jordan and Brian Lara not Dickens or Tolkien (I did think Roald Dahl was cool though – Boy was one of the only books I read cover to cover as a kid).

But as time passed, and my world began to open, reading became a staple in my life. If not to satisfy my appetite for knowledge, to help shape how I see the world.

I love the ‘exchange’ that takes place while reading. Authors are able to share their ideas on the topics we love based on research, history, convictions and experiences and us, readers, are able to uphold our pre-conceived ideas on that topic against what they’ve written, either challenging us to shift our thinking or to reinforce the beliefs and ideas we hold onto.

This is why I’ve grown to love books (I’m unsure of what this love of books does for my street credibility – but this is my truth).

So of all the great books I’ve picked up so far in my life – these titles are the ones that have had the greatest impact on me.

5 Books That Changed My Life

Tribes by Seth Godin

A book urging people to form tribes around their passions. Seth Godin is a world renown blogger / business innovation thinker. Tribes is written from a business angle but the principles can be applied to the rest of your life. Great read for people looking for that last ounce of inspiration before stepping into pursuing their dream line of work. A classic.

Orthodoxy by G.K Chesterton

A champion of the early twentieth century writing and speaking curcuit, G.K Chesterton lit up packed houses of his day with his wit and thought-provoking life concepts. He wrote in a way that made life’s seemingly mundane – moments of magic. One of the most challenging books I have ever picked up. Concepts so complex that like me you may only be able to read the book one concept per day. For people who want their worldview blown out of the water.

Leading with a Limp by Dan B. Allender

My favourite book on leadership. Dan Allender proposes a new idea on leadership, that adjacent to focusing on your strengths as a leader, some of our greatest leaders led out of the transparency of their weaknesses. A challenging and refreshing take on an important topic.

In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day by Mark Batterson

Inspiring book about hope in hopeless situations. The book is framed by the story of a warrior who against-all-odds defeats enemies in impossible situations. Great read for people who themselves are battling some form of opposition: work, relationship struggles, depression etc.

The Bible by Various Authors

In my eyes, the undisputed champion of literature. Can’t be imitated, neither underestimated. The most controversial book of all time. Premise for some of the worlds greatest acts of grace and worst acts of tyranny. Above all books this book has shaped my worldview more than any other. So complex and simple it has kept me in continuous intrigue since I first picked it up. Haven’t put it down since. The heavyweight champion of books in my eyes.

So there you have it – 5 books that have changed (and are still changing) my life. I hope that they are able to impact you in the same way they impacted me.

What books have changed how you see the world? Would love for you to share. I’m always keen to have my worldview challenged.

Happy reading.

Photo credit: http://schools.natlib.govt.nz/creating-readers/creating-reading-culture/boys-and-reading

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Why I Want to Die Empty.

empty jarNote: I recommend you read this post slow and let it sink in.

When I initially penned the title of this post I thought it may be a little morbid. And it probably is.

To be honest I don’t intend to offend anyone – but I do want to share my truth.

A lot of people have asked me why I started this blog – and the topic of this blogpost provides a large part of that answer.

It’s because I want to die empty.

I want to make sure that when my day comes – I have nothing left to give this world. That there is nothing left in my tank.

I want to make sure that every bit of creativity I have within me has been spoken out, written, sung or performed.

I want to make sure that every God-given idea I’ve been gifted has been prayed upon and explored.

I want to make sure that every word of encouragement or inspiring thought I can share with others, is shared with others.

I want to make sure that every ounce of my love for my wife is completely expended.

I want to make sure that my faith is whole-heartedly lived out.

I want to die empty.

And I want you to die empty too.

You see the thing that holds a lot of us back is the same thing that could move us all forward. Fear.

We all generally have a fear of regret and a fear of failure, and one will overcome the other depending on which one we allow to affect us.

Our fear of regret HAS to overshadow our fear of failure – because when all is said and done – failure is  not gonna be our biggest disappointment. Regret is.

Fear regret – more than you fear failure. Turn your FULL life (of talent, creativity, wisdom) – into an empty death.

So –

remember that poem in your heart that you wanted to write…

that great business idea that you wanted to start…

that piece of art you dreamed of painting…

that building or piece of furniture you wanted to build…

that epic movie that you wanted to make…

Now is your time to make it happen.

Now is your time to start your journey toward dying empty.

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/9110803@N08/5377485512/


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9 Points on How to Get and Keep a Man… from a man’s perspective.

gingham-wedding-bowtieI was having a laugh with my wife and our good female friend the other day about  writing a blogpost on ‘How to get and keep a man… from a man’s perspective’.

Surprisingly the idea wasn’t just met with initial laughter.

They told me I could definitely offer something valueable on the subject – especially from a guys point of view.

So I pondered it – thought about all the single female friends in my life, past and present, who have struggled to find the life companion that most females long for. I had to ask myself if there really was any insight I could add in their situation, especially being a guy.

And that’s when it dawned on me. that’s exactly what validates my advice – it’s the fact that I am a dude! I am more than qualified to give single woman a fresh perspective on what good men are looking for in a good woman.

So based on that logic, I penned this post. Please remember, I am NOT a relationship expert – my opinions below are my own and based on years of personal observations.

And note this is light-hearted. Its aim is to provide food for thought for those still on the lookout for Mr. Right.

So here goes.

9 Points on How to Get and Keep a Man… from a mans perspective.

1. Be prepared – remember that song Scar sung in the Lion King?

The search for a good man actually begins with you. It’s important that to prepare for a good man you commit yourself to continually becoming a good woman. I’m not talking about your outward appearance, I’m talking about you as a person. You have to pursue being of the quality you are seeking.

2. Recognise who you are and what you hold / Love yourself

Good men are attracted to woman who recognise their value and understand who they are – so always pursue and love your identity. Love yourself fully. Men don’t define who you are so don’t let them. A woman secure in her identity knows she has been made with perfection in mind – so make sure that realisation is deeply embedded in you.

3. Guard your heart

Can you see how these points fit in order? If you are continually committing yourself to improving as a person and moving into a greater understanding of who you are and loving what you see, then guarding your heart is the obvious next step. Ensure your identity includes being someone who protects her heart. This doesn’t mean locking it up in a jail cell and being the angry jail warden that hits people that come near it, but more be thoughtful and aware of men who want to add something to your life, and those that want to take something from it. You know what I’m talking about. Be mindful.

4. Embrace your singleness

It’s important to truly recognise the phase of life you’re in and embrace it fully. I think so many people (including men) lose the awesomeness of the ‘single’ stage in their life. Singleness is a gift – so live it out fully. Embrace it.

5. Look for the best in men

Here’s a great stat – 100% OF MEN AREN’T PERFECT. It doesn’t matter how far and wide you look – you are not going to find one. That’s not to say that there aren’t great men though. It’s important to get in the habit of looking for the best in the men you meet. If you do this, you’ll find that there’s probably more great men out there than you think.

6. Be you

Good men are looking for what makes a woman different, not what makes them the same as everyone else. Work that. Be you. If you’ve prepared yourself well – to be a good woman – and come across as a woman sure of herself and her identity, then you’re in a great space to attract the right man and lose none of who you are. Ideal.

7. Enjoy yourself, have fun

In line with all the points above, it’s important to enjoy yourself. Good men are looking for woman to have fun with – so be fun. Be light. Be present. Listen. Take interest in his interests. you’ll find the right men will also take authentic interest in yours. You may even share interests. Even better.

8. Show ‘a little’ vulnerability

This tip only works if you fully understand and practice point 3 (see point 3). With the right man, share something about yourself that is beyond what you would normally just share with a group of friends at the pub. This is not to say you should open up about your life like the Hoover Dam (See point 3) but small signs of vulnerability can indicate to a good man the right interest.

9. Don’t be too full on

Post-date or hangout – if you haven’t heard from him within the time you were hoping – don’t fret. Give him space. The right guys will pursue you not the other way around. Don’t forget that when you hung out with him you were fun, you were open, you listened,  you were present. If a man doesn’t respond to that? I promise you, you are not the problem.

And that’s my lot. Hopefully this is of some help to single women looking for the ‘one’.

And this is my parting thought:

Despite what the movies and magazines feed you, and with high frequency, good single men worth your time ARE looking for a good woman like you.

So be encouraged that the right man is still out there waiting to meet you. Make sure you’re ready.

Photo credit: http://www.simplyblueweddings.com


Filed under Inspiration, Life

Speak Up Man! The World’s Waiting on You.

Kid-President-900-600I’ve just started this whole blogging thing – and  one thing I’ve learnt so far has just astounded me.

On my Twitter and Facebook I share a lot of other people’s content – content that I rate. I wouldn’t share it otherwise.

But when I look at the stats (or analytics for the digital natives) it’s MY content amoungst this other great stuff I share, that is getting significantly more attention.

This doesn’t cause me to puff my chest out or get arrogant, but it does present a huge lesson for all of us.

Anyone with an online profile: the world far prefers to hear what you have to say before sharing on someone else’s gems. However good other people’s online stuff is, people want to know how YOU see the world – yes YOU. They’re intrigued to see what you see and feel what you feel.

They want to know you beyond your photos of sunsets and places you’ve travelled to in the past year (speaking to myself, huge culprit). They want to know you beyond the one-line gags and memes you forward (even though these are funny lol). People want to know how you see the world differently – and they want to see it with you.

So be encouraged that the world awaits you. They’re waiting to hear what you have to say.


P.S Love you Kid President.

Photo credit: http://ryanseacrest.com


Filed under Inspiration