Best Communicator In The Room

It’s easy to worry how others think of you. But the majority of the time, they aren’t thinking about you at all, they are wondering or worried about what they are thinking or how they are coming across. (And we’re usually doing the same thing as well)

We are all naturally self-centered because we all live inside our own heads.

To stand out, try the opposite.

Don’t think:

Am I coming across as this or that…

Or am I saying the right things…

Or am I being interesting enough…

Don’t think at all. Instead, just be there and listen to what they are saying to you.

Almost everyone can tell the difference between talking at someone, versus talking with someone. While you’re in your head worried about how you are coming across, the other person is noticing that you’re not fully with them and thinking you’re a d bag because you’re not even listening.

The best communicator in the room isn’t the loudest person or smartest or person with the best stories. The best communicator is the person who is the best listener.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner


Where in your life are you running on autopilot?

Where are you coasting by?

Where are you letting things maintain?

Because there really isn’t maintenance when it comes to the most important areas of our lives, only degradation.

Doing the bare minimum is not enough.

Doing 100% is only just good, not great.

Every aspect of your life that means something to you needs maximum intentionality and care.

If that sounds overwhelming, then you might have too many things pulling your attention and time.

A multi-disciplinary still needs discipline. We can do it all, but not all well.

Balance is removing all nonessentials, and focusing on living a non-autopiloted purposeful life.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner

Practice Intentionality.

I was jamming to the new The Midnight album in my car the other day. At a red light, I happened to glance down at the red tail light of the truck in front of me and saw that about a 16 oz glass of water was swishing around inside the light.

From all outside appearances, that light was working perfectly, it just so happened to be a non-water resistant ticking time bomb towards breaking by also trying out as the role of a small aquarium.

What does a random truck’s tail light fishbowl have to do with anything?

Well, it’s kind of a perfect analogy for life.

We often go about our lives like that broken tail light.

Everything seems normal, but when a little storm hits we start drowning.

On the outside, everything looks fine, but on the inside we are drowning in our problems or in constant conflict with ourselves. How many times today have you thought something negative or verbally self-defeating about yourself? ‘ugh, I’m terrible at that’ ‘why can’t I get this right, what’s wrong with me’ ‘I hate myself’ ‘I hate my life’ ‘I’m not pretty enough’ ‘I’m not smart enough’….

Or even worse:

Everything looks fine to us, but to everyone else we spend our lives with (or random strangers who happened to look our way) can clearly see our recklessness or behavior is building up chaos around us, ready to rain down on us. Maybe we don’t realize how tired we really are (and look), then wonder why we ‘suddenly’ get really sick or burnt-out. Or maybe we don’t realize we’re stuck in a negative or abusive relationship, with ourselves or with another. Or maybe we don’t realize how much anger and fury rule over our lives. Everyone got the memo except us. Everything is fine, but we’re about to be hit by a massive life tornado that could have be easily avoided if we had bothered looking up.

How do we mitigate this kind of life neglect?

By Being intentionally as possible. When decisions are made, we give them a moment of real consideration before blindly jumping. By periodically checking in with ourselves about how we are doing and how we are treating ourselves. By testing our limits, and pairing back when we are going to far beyond them for long stretches By aligning our actions with our purposes. By asking for advice from people we respect who are wiser and more experienced than us.

Intentionality is the road to a meaningful life.

Every dumb mistake or decision I’ve made has been the result of lack of awareness of how I was feeling, what was happening around me and the why behind my actions or others actions.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner

Motivation Isn’t What You Need

A spark of insight doesn’t create a motivation to act and get moving.

Acting creates the spark of insight and motivation.

Motion creates the spark.

Making small acts towards a goal creates the feel-good momentum to keep progressing.

That’s why I find daily challenges so powerful. When you create the daily, self-expectation of sitting down to your computer to write, or code, or pulling out your yoga mat or pull up bar to train, you no longer need to find the will or motivation to do something you want to do.

We side-step motivation and replace it with steady progress and the routine of small daily wins of accomplishment.

Small moments of progress can make you feel happy and fulfilled, if you let it.

Isn’t it crazy that we try so hard to find ways to motivate ourselves to actually do the things we want to do, but for some reason don’t?! We try to trick ourselves, we buy every self-help book, and even hire others to keep us accountable to stay on track.

But if you look at it from a different angle, motivation is the result of action, not the necessary ingredient or catalyst to change.

The next time you feel unmotivated:

Get moving.

Grab your guitar and bang out a song. Write a page of your novel. Eat one healthy meal.

Make a small change.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner


“To begin, begin.”William Wordsworth

“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”Confucius

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” Mark Twain


A life well-lived is not comfortable. In fact, most of the time its the opposite of comfortable.

A life well-lived is an uncomfortable life.

Which sounds… uncomfortable… because it is.

But its worth it, because discomfort is where the magic happens.


Let me explain.

Everything you want out of life lives just beyond the edge of what you can tolerate.

When you’re comfortable, you’re living a marshmallow life.

Everything is squishy and safe (in theory).

Everything lives within routine and habits you’ve set up around you.

Everything around you — your house, where you live, your stuff — is in service to your desires and whims.

We are all like this. We all bend towards wanting safety and security. It’s built into our DNA. We protect ourselves from harm and death this way.

Yet, in today’s world, safety doesn’t necessarily mean ALIVE.

Sure, we’re living, breathing, working… but are we really?

Are you really LIVING? Are you really breathing in what’s around you? Are you really working on what you are called to?

Comfort makes us safe, but it also makes us fat and slow.

A well-lived life is uncomfortable, and that uncomfortable tension used properly (in moderation, with cautious curiosity) will give us what we really want, a life that is








Why? Because we’re made to pursue, we’re made to love a good story. And lucky you and me, we are creating our own unique story of who we are right now. What story will you tell?

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner

Find Your Obsession

The best way to master any skill is to obsess over it. When every detail matters to you, no obstacle, setback, competition or problem will stop you.

An obsession is:

  • Staying up late to keep working on it just a little more.
  • Losing track of time.
  • Being able to describe in detail the ends and outs of your work with enthusiasm (or the desire to learn every detail so that you can)
  • Talking about your constantly (to the annoyance of everyone around you.
  • And loving the craft for the crafts sake.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner

The ‘Right’ Answer

When you lack an answer to your problem you’re dealing with, you don’t have to find the ‘right’ answer, you just need to create an answer.

Even if you had all the knowledge, and the best advisors, and all the resources, you still might not get it right.

When you lack answers, it’s time to make some up. An answer doesn’t have to start out ‘right’ or perfect. It just needs to be right enough to move you to action.

An answer is a call to action.

Sure, listen to your gut, seek advice from those smarter and more experienced than you, be smart as possible and use what you have to produce the best answer you can, then immediately take action on it.

Wrong answers are just unfinished equations.

Nobody has life figured out. The ones who do are either really lucky (a matter of self-belief) or really good at turning wrong answer after wrong answer into a right one.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner

Self-defeating Loops

Self-defeating loops are no joke.

How we think about ourselves affects how we act and how we act affects how we think.

Our inner and outer worlds are in a symbiotic relationship with one another. 

Focus too much on the negatives of your life, that becomes your reality. It’s not law of attraction, it’s law of action. If you think worthless, you’re going make decisions like you are worthless, which will reinforced your negative thinking.

The more you act defeated, unconfident, unlucky, the more you become those things.

But the reverse is also true. Think success, confident, luckily, and more opportunities will stand out to you and the more you’ll make actions of success, confidence and luckiness.


Keep Pursuing, 

— Josh Waggoner

Step out of the Waterfall

Water is a great analogy for overwhelm.

When you’re overwhelmed by your life / problems, it’s like you are standing under a raging waterfall.

Every problem is flowing over you at once. The pressure is suffocating. Your senses are overloaded. It’s difficult to focus and act on a problem individually because each problem supersedes one another. Mentally, you’re not looking at a few problems, you’re looking a giant looming monster.

But once you understand you are under a waterfall, you become aware and give yourself the power to step out from underneath it.

Step out.

The biggest issue is that your spending all of your energy focused on all that’s wrong.

Problems are easier when you’re honed in on one and giving all of your strength to solve that one.

I find it’s always better to break it down to the smallest components and focus on taking action on one issue you’re facing first and succeeding, versus trying to handle them all at once and floundering.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner


Every smile matters.

Every wave, every door held open,  every random strangers coffee, or dinner paid.

I’ll never forget the night that our entire dinner table was paid in full by a couple in the restaurant. I never caught their names. I don’t remember their faces, but I remember that feeling.

Small gestures of genuine add up.

In fact, It adds up to what you’re looking for.

More adventure? More creativity? More meaning?

Genuine acts lead to genuine opportunities.

For you, sure. But more important for everyone you help.


Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner