244 Likes Later

Landon Ray Keeney

Landon Ray Keeney

On July 30, 2014, my wife and I welcomed Landon Ray Keeney to the world.  A magical moment we will never forget.

About a day later, we let the world know by introducing him on Facebook (is there any other way?).  One day and 244 “Likes” later, we were just as happy before we made the announcement as we were after.  The only thing that really changed were the number of people happy for us.

What does this say about us as a society?  I can tell you what I think it means to me.

Social is a vehicle, not a value.

We live in a wonderful era of communication where we can instantly connect with thousands of people across the world and give them a “status update” on our lives.  But do you really need everyone else’s approval on your life?

I really hope not.

The response of 244 “Likes” will not define my relationship with my new son or our happiness as a family.  What social did do was open up hundreds of wonderful communication opportunities with our closest friends and family to talk about this newest miracle.

ACTION ITEM: Please see social media as a communication tool, and not a scoreboard driving you toward unhappiness or an unfulfilled life.  There is far too much to be thankful for!

Based on Your Newsfeed, Life Sucks

This title should make each of us pause for a moment and reflect. bitsoftruth24 Read it again.  How does it make you feel?  Does it sound like something that could come out of my mouth? (I hope not).  But, how does it make you feel?

  • Gross
  • Inadequate
  • Lame
  • Shallow
  • Boring
  • Angry
  • Paranoid

Not positive feelings!  Why then do so many of us think this way about our lives when we’re viewing social media status updates and posts? Let’s dive in a little deeper as to exactly why these feelings come about in the short list below.

  1. Friends/Followers – Be honest.  Of the people you call friends or follow socially, how many of them do you have a truly “meaningful” relationship with?  Why are so many comparisons of my life to yours made every day?  Why is it that because I can see your newsfeed, you’re instantly a measuring stick to my life?
  2. Stuff Posts – I bought stuff I really didn’t need, but you wished you had.  That makes me awesome and you wanting to be awesome with my newly purchased stuff.  Don’t take into account the question if I could even afford it, or if it was a wise financial decision?  Just know I have it and you don’t.
  3. Experience Posts – I’m in Hawaii, the Virgin Islands, in Aspen Skiing, at an expensive restaurant, and you only dream of visiting or experiencing these places.  How could life be so good?

I’m going to get in the front of the line here.   I’m guilty of thinking ALL OF THE ABOVE! I’ve said it in previous posts and I’ll say it again.  Social media is a great tool for communication (huge understatement) and has totally reinvented the definition of “conversation” in the future.  It allows us to stay in contact with people and potentially even connect with individuals through new channels.

However, social media a HORRIBLE measure of the happiness, success, struggles, and meaningful relationships in our lives.  Social media is an extremely dangerous thermometer, yet most reading this post use it to take the temperature of our lives on a daily basis. It’s human nature to compare, but this comparison can’t come to the point of leading an unfulfilling or unhappy life.  “Keeping up with the Joneses” paranoia will set in and this is a race you or I will NEVER win.  You can’t, because you’re not the one running it.  You will always be in second place playing keep up.  It’s exhausting. I know people running this race.  Do you?


  1. Set your own goals and pursue them aggressively with passion.  For you, not for anyone else.
  2. Put the phone down.  Instagram will stay in business while you’re enjoying the company of your closest friends.
  3. Don’t forget to smile.  When I take a moment to count my blessings (and there are many), the paranoia subsides instantly.
  4. Your life doesn’t suck!

Compassion is NOT for the Weak

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One thing I absolutely, 100%, DO NOT want you to think is I’m only focused on immediate achievement and winning at any and all cost regardless of others thoughts and feelings.  This is not me and shouldn’t be you either.

I hope if you asked those close to me, one of the first things they would mention about me is compassion and genuine care for others.  This is not a mistake and takes a TON of effort.  It also means you can’t fake it.

I think this a foundational element of having and developing a Keen Mind.  Achieving and winning are good things.  Helping others achieve is a GREAT thing.  If you’re only operating for yourself, your own goals, and in your own mind I will promise you will not truly achieve what you could’ve if you took a moment to look around and help others achieve in the process.

Please don’t underestimate compassion for weakness.  Just because someone is kind, or has a big heart does not mean they’re weak.  It doesn’t have a single thing to do with their decision making or ability to lead others.  It means they’re a human being ready for a challenge and there’s never been a better time to be a great person than now.  Why do I say this?

Ten years ago you could only tell those near you about the wonderful people you met in the hopes that some day long down the road you’d serendipitously cross paths in an airport lounge.  Today you can connect with them nearly immediately via social networks.  Powerful tribes are being built right now because of the tools we have at our fingertips.  What a wonderful time we live in!

Compassion will get you further in your career or endeavor than almost any other attribute you’re working on today.  The reason is founded in the most basic of human principles.  People love to help and associate with those who show their true colors and they trust them.  Love is a powerful word.  Notice I didn’t say “like” to associate. Great things will be accomplished by focusing your Keen Mind on compassion and doing well for others just as you’re doing well for yourself.

ACTION ITEM: Instead of working on just you today find someone else to help.  Call, email, text, FaceTime, do something to help the lives of those you count on each and every day.  Your reward will be astonishing!