29 May “Be The Light” With Russel D’Agostino
Be The Light
Just over a month ago a young woman, Jacquelyn, asked me if I was happy with where I’m at in life right now. I absolutely loved that she asked me because the truth is, the world doesn’t ask if we’re happy. They’ll ask about the things we have or events in our life but not about our genuine happiness. So too often it’s the people who wear the brightest smiles that are the ones screaming in pain on the inside with their inner voice unable to be heard. They don’t even wear a smile for themselves but for their loved ones and the rest of the world. They don’t want others to know what they’re feeling because they don’t want to be a burden, have others feel the same way, and also just don’t know how to put that feeling into words. I know some of you reading this may be going through that or may know someone who is. It’s going to be okay and I can say that because I was drowning at one point as well, but you need to get help, work on yourself, and take action. You owe it to yourself to live the best life you can and it’s your responsibility to guide others out of the minefield they’re in once you have already done it.
Now, before I share with you my answer to Jacquelyn’s question I’d like to fill you in on some lessons I learned along the way from being mentored business/life and focusing on the “Seven Rocks of Life.” I want to talk about the responsibilities of being a mother/father, happiness, and purpose. I’ll be open and transparent with you praying that you find the value and hope you need.
To all the parents and parental figures out there the only thing that you need to do is do the best you can. You just need to set the best example you can for your kids and lead them into adulthood. That’s all your child honestly cares about, but they will know when you aren’t. That being said, I need to make this statement very clear.Anyone can become a mom or a dad. A boy or a man just needs to impregnate a girl or a woman and that girl or woman just needs to pop out a baby.
Being a mom or a dad is nothing more than a title, a formality. Starting at the pregnancy, being a mother or a father is a responsibility to pass on a mentality, values, and principles, for life and be the right example. My mom has always been an excellent mother and does the best she can. She’s in all the family pictures and memories and has passed on her immense faith and caring heart. I am so grateful for her and proud of her. My dad was only a dad, not a father. The only positive thing I learned from him was how to properly shake a hand and that was from him squeezing my knuckles together. My earliest memory with him was getting uppercutted in the chest when I was around six or seven years old because I didn’t want to play with my younger sister.
Before you think the rest of my childhood was filled with abuse please stop, that was one time, I was not abused. However, he was just very distant as I got older. There was no more dad-son time, throwing the football around, or swimming in the pool on his back. He would yell, say and do dumb things, and lay on the couch. He was just an angry man who liked to drink a lot and didn’t want to get to the root of his problems and battle his own “demons”. The final straw was when he decided to have an affair which ended up with him getting kicked out of the house and mentally torturing my mom for the last three years in court. Because of all that I always gravitated toward my athletic coaches and learned a lot of lessons from them.
But a real father figure I had was actually a YouTuber that goes by the name AlphaM (Aaron Marino). All through high school he was the one giving me advice on what it means to be a man in so many different areas of life and I do owe a lot of who I am to him. Thank you, Aaron. It wasn’t until I met Steven Mazzurco and really connected with him over the years that I had a true father figure and learned so much about life. I say it all the time but I’ll say it again, Steve. Thank you for everything, I love you.
So, the problem with happiness is that we are programmed to treat our happiness as a feeling instead of a focus. That was a huge concept I struggled with before Steve really helped me develop my mindset and break it down. Our happiness comes from the perspective we choose to have and the way we view the world. Sometimes we just need to put on different lenses. Our emotions need to be like water in a bottle. When life rattles us around we can remain calm instead of exploding like a bottle of soda. We can’t allow other people or circumstances to take control of our happiness. It’s through progression where our happiness grows. A lot of the times we think we’re the ones driving through life but, really, our emotions are at the wheel and we’re stuck in the trunk, it’s dark and kinda smells. We need to put ourselves in the driver seat and simply have our emotions in the passenger seat. Acknowledge them but don’t allow them to set the course for our life because it will lead to disaster. When we know where we’re going in life and we have a GPS guiding us there our journey is one of progression. If you don’t have someone acting as that GPS to help guide you won’t know where you are going and won’t end up where you want to be.
Most people die at 25 only to have their body buried around 80 years old. On their last days they realize that they were running through life and doing a lot of things, but they didn’t really go anywhere. They were running on a treadmill their whole lives. We aren’t meant to just exist in this world only going through the motions every day. We’re all born to really live our lives with purpose. I learned when you don’t know your purpose you will confuse activity for progression, status for significance, and contentment with fulfillment. But here’s a secret I want to share with you. You don’t need to “find” your purpose because it’s already inside of you. It’s just been buried through years of drifting through life doing things other people told you to do. You have to get to the root of who you really are and see what makes you come alive. If you never do that you will remain drifting through life and as long as you are drifting through life your future will always be at the mercy of someone else’s decision.
Being mentored is not the secret to a better life. It’s what action you take from being mentored and the education you take in that determines where you will go. Having the privilege to be mentored for almost 3 years now by Steve really helped me grow from a scared boy to strong and confident young man with a bright future. And when he helped me focus on the “Seven Rocks” that’s when I discovered who I really am and started understanding why I was placed in this world. I’m here to be the light in people’s lives so they can shine with the world and live the life they truly desire. Oh, and to share my answer to Jacquelyn’s question – three years ago I was drowning in depression but now I’m happier and more passionate about life than I have ever been. For anyone in their dark place right now remember this: The reason you want to give up on life should never be stronger or more important than the reason you were given life in the first place. I may not know some of you but I love you and I am here for you. Be the light!
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” – Matthew 5:14-16.