5 Things We Can Learn From Rocky

5 Things To Learn From Rocky

So I’m a bit of a movie nerd and one of my all time favourite movies is Rocky. To some that will make total sense, to others not so much.

When I was younger I loved Rocky because it was about boxing, but as I got older and time went on I began to realise it was about a lot more than that. I began to understand what it was really about – following your gut, your heart and your dreams, to achieve things even you weren’t sure you could do. To keep going no matter how tough things get and if life knocks you down to get back up!

The movie is full of inspiration and motivation, but so is the story of how Stallone made it happen. He went broke, people laughed at him and he even had to sell his dog!  But he stuck to his dream, worked hard, struggled and eventually it worked out!

So what can we learn from the story of Rocky, both on and off screen? Here’s a list of my five lessons.

 

Keep moving forward
Don’t let negative past experiences ruin today. This is a bad habit of mine, but is something I’m working on now with my fitness challenge. I told myself that I’d never be able to reach my fitness goals because I’ve never stuck to a regime before, so why is now any different. With a little support, encouragement and positive outlook I’m finally doing it.  I’m 18 days in and although I may miss the odd one, I’m trying not to let it bother me. I suck it up and focus on the next day’s routine.

So if you want to try something new or something you feel you’ve failed at before move forward, let past negatives go and focus on now! If you have a blip, let it go and start fresh.

Sylvester Stallone felt rejection so many times in his journey to get Rocky made. He stuck to his guns though, got the part, got it produced and even won an Oscar! He didn’t let all the negativity that was thrown his way bring him down: “I take rejection as someone blowing a bugle in my ear to wake me up and get going, rather than retreat.”

There ain’t no can’ts!
Or as my Grandma says “can’t means won’t”. Saying you can’t do something is pretty much a sure fire way to fail before you’ve even started. Everyone’s guilty of this at some point in their lives. I’ve had a lot of folk say to me “I can’t draw” and to them I should really ask, have you tried? Most folk will probably say something like “yeah, once and I was rubbish” compared to who? Someone who has being at it for years? All you need is practice and determination. Both in time will build your confidence in your skills and yourself. Find yourself an art class or a book on drawing or whatever it is you want to do. Research, the right information, tutorials and hard work will serve you well and soon you’ll realise you can do it!

In order to beat Apollo, Rocky has to learn to fight right handed, something he says he “can’t” do. With hard work, determination,  Mickey screaming at him (encouragingly of course) and a training montage he gets the job done and wins the fight.

 

Believe in yourself
Believing in yourself can sometimes be difficult, especially if doing the opposite is a lifetime habit. It was a terrible habit of mine, doubting my skills and I’ve only recently truly started to think more positively about them.

One way to start believing in yourself and thinking more positively is to write a list of all your achievements. It doesn’t matter how small they are, as long as you felt good about it. When I did my 30ish before 30 list it brought back great memories and things I’d completely forgotten about. It helped me realise that I’ve done some pretty cool things already in my life and there is no reason why I can’t achieve more.Stallone believed in himself and the story of Rocky so much that he turned down so many offers for the script, offers that would have made him a lot of money. He wanted to play Rocky so refused any offer that didn’t include him – that’s awesome self belief right there!

 

Life ain’t all sunshine and rainbows
Let’s be honest, sometimes life can suck and things can get tough – you just have to keep on punching! If you’ve hit rock bottom, take heart that the only direction left is up. Take steps to live more positively, choose how you react to things. I’ve heard folk say that gratitude journals help them develop a more positive outlook and although I’ve never tried this myself I can understand the merit in it. I tried making a positive list – each night write down one positive thing that happened or you felt through the day, then on the following Monday you’ll have a list of seven things that made you happy. This made the start of my week pretty sweet and overtime you start to look for the positives in everything and your whole outlook eventually changes, worth a shot right?

Every movie in the franchise delivers life blows to Rocky and each time he overcomes them to win or see things through to the end – “It ain’t about how hard you hit, it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward”

Go the distance
If you want to accomplish your goals or do something new – go for it! Immerse yourself in it, take a class, join a club, do some tutorials, or take part in a hangout online. Whether it’s saving up for a once in a lifetime trip, to learn Photoshop or play an instrument. Just do what it takes to make your dreams come true, but also be aware that it’s ok for those goals to change and evolve. Don’t do things half assed, do them to the full and be enthusiastic. If you start to get bogged down and start to worry you’re not getting there fast enough, take a moment, breathe and remember why you wanted to do it in the first place. See it through to the end and you’ll never have to say that you didn’t try and you won’t regret a thing!

 

So there you go, that’s why Rocky inspires me. Now do you have any movies or quotes that inspire you to keep going, to try something new, or believe in yourself? Then share them in the comments because we all need a little motivation at times!

Embrace Your Inner Geek During Geek Week

Geek Week

 

It’s Geek Week over on YouTube and I’ve been feeling pretty inspired to get my nerd on and write something.

Being a geek or a nerd to me is the same thing. I don’t know where to draw the line and frankly I don’t care! If you’re a geek or a nerd chances are you’re slightly obsessed with something and love it with your whole heart, so really we’re all the same.

You can be a nerd about anything, movies, music, science, comics, or more specific things like Lord of the Rings, Firefly, Mass Effect! Anything goes and that’s the fun of it. In recent years the embracing of nerd/geek culture has been amazing, we’ve all been able to shout that little bit louder about the things we love and not be ridiculed for it. It’s something we can all get involved in and have fun with. Even those who claim not to be nerds or those that used to mock us – are you trying to tell me there’s nothing you love or obsess over? TV shows, books, cars, computers, design? Come one, there’s got to be something you’re crazy about!

 

I’ve had my share of TV based obsessions over the years, Firefly, Quantum Leap, Star Trek, Supernatural, David Duchovny I mean The X Files. There has also been musical loves, movie obsessions, a whole load of Middle Earth based geekery and not to mention the Bat that brought Peter and I together when we were first getting to know each other. Each one has in some way influenced the other and my life in a positive way.So with this wealth of love and appreciation so readily available to us, why are some folk reluctant or afraid to embrace that inner geek and show off their fandom with pride? Some casting off their childhood loves to be more mature and possibly growing up a little too much?

“The most sophisticated people I know – inside they are all children.”
Jim Henson
 

I’ve had eyes rolled at me, the odd “grow up” comment, the “really? You like Batman” and “girls aren’t supposed to like action movies” conversations. It used to bother me quite a bit, but now I know I’m not the only one! There’s tons of us ladies out there who love a bit of destruction porn and Statham movies. I love geeky and nerdy things and would happily sit for hours discussing the deepest meanings of The Matrix, the tormented dark version of Batman I’d love to see on the big screen or how I think Star Trek is better than Star Wars! And now I’m calling on you to embrace your inner geek and shout about your nerdy obsessions from the rooftops. Here’s four reasons why:

1 »  Truly loving something, be it a comic character, Sci Fi, TV show, book or a piece of music, makes us feel good. So go find your fandom,
the thing you love and geek out over it!

2 »  You’re soooo not alone! Guaranteed if you love something there’s hundreds if not thousands of folk who love it too. That’s loads of potential nerd buddies! Go connect. Join a forum, go to a con get involved and spread the love!

3 » Inspiration is there in abundance! Things we love and enjoy inspire us, to keep going through difficult times, to get out of a creative rut or to try something completely new. Watch, listen, read, do and be inspired.

4 » This video. When asked by a fan to tell her daughter why it’s awesome to be a nerd, Wil Wheaton had this to say ↓↓↓

 I also loved this little quote from the comments under the video:

“Hipsters are all about loving a thing and when they meet someone else who loves it, then they’ll move onto something else.
Nerds are all about loving a thing and when they meet someone else who loves it, then they’ll jump with joy at finding someone to share that thing with.”
Share your joy folks!

 

Small Business Heroes: Ink+Smog Editions

Ink + Smog Designs

I’ve been designing various things for folk for years now, but I never put much thought in to making a career out of it. Recently however, I’ve found myself in a pretty cool place – Finally knowing what I want from my designs. I’ve thought about designing cards for a while now, but never thought it possible. When I got asked to design a friend’s wedding invite a while ago I was excited and loved the process of it, just to be a part of such an important day felt amazing. A few lovely bloggers had said that my designs were great and I should really think about pursuing the greetings card idea. However, it still didn’t click until I started designing two wedding cards at the end of May, one for Joni and Joe and one for Peter’s cousin Ermanno and his new wife Rebecca. What a buzz there was doing it and now I know I can do this!

So now it’s a case of finding and evolving in to the type of business I want to be and for that I’ve been looking for inspirational folk to learn from. There are so many talented artists out there that inspire me and one day I hope to find myself among the ranks of these incredible people. So without further ado I want to introduce one of my most recent finds:

 

I came across Ink + Smog through Julie Ann Art (who I will definitely be blogging about in the future). I was on Rosemary and Robin’s Etsy store for five minutes before I decided I HAD to have something of theirs in our home! I have a gallery planned for our hallway and I’ll be framing these cards up to be part of it.

 

The thing that struck me most when my parcel arrived was how personal it felt. Each card had a little bit of history and information with it including how it was made and what from. I loved this idea and have never had anything like it before. It makes you as a customer feel valued and a bit special and is definitely something that I appreciate.
 

 

The cards themselves just make me think of summer and as we have very short summers in Scotland (usually, I don’t know what the hell’s going on this year) bright colours are something I find myself craving. I also want our home to have a bright fun feel and getting that across in the art we have is perfect for two folk who appreciate all things creative!

I’ve worked in customer service in some way or another since I was 16 and although I’ve moaned in the past about it there is nothing better than putting a smile on someone’s face with something you have done. This is why I really loved the postcard that came with my cards. The fact that Rosemary and Robin took the time to write a short note especially for me meant the world. My inner customer service geek, yes that is a thing, was smiling from ear to ear.  I truly hope that when I get my own store sorted I can make my customers feel as special as Rosemary and Robin made me. Thanks so much guys and I’ll be posting pics of our finished gallery when I finally paint the hall!

 

You can find Ink + Smog here:

Blog | Etsy | Facebook | Twitter

No go check out their links and get some Ink + Smog goodies for your home – their cards are too pretty to give away!