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advice – My Blog
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Dating, love, Relationships
It’s been a long time since we’ve last chatted. My goodness has it! We won’t talk about how long, let’s just move on shall we? So in my attempts to make the world of dating a better place, I am spreading a little dating advice for my ladies (sorry guys, I will have another post for you in the near future. Stay tuned!) Having been married for 10 years with two kids a house and dog (yea that part right there), and spending time out here in the dating world in today’s time, I have found that the way people go about dating these days has DRASTICALLY changed. Gone are the days of batting your eyes, glancing his way a couple of times, laughing at his jokes and telling his friends how awesome you think he is in order to let him know you’re interested. No my friends, we now have the side piece, call me shorty, friend with benefits, marriage is a business dating era. And as crazy as it may sound, I actually sympathize with any woman who has been in any of these titles. Why? Because often times the reason she even allowed herself to become subjected to this type of treatment, was mainly due to the lack of healing she did not gain from previous relationships. So the cycle continues and unfortunately leaves the woman who “just wants to find a good guy” stuck with a DUD! So what is a DUD? Thanks to my big brother, I have grown very fond of acronyms. So out of my dating experience I have deemed the DUD to be a Drastically Underdeveloped Date. Now before you go having a conniption fit, let me explain what I mean by drastically underdeveloped.  Let’s take a little word stroll: 1.      They don’t know what they want yet, but they know it when they see it (even though in most cases what you see isn’t what’s real) 2.      They are just looking for someone to chill with, nothing too serious. (Ok seriously? I can chill at home alone. I don’t need a partner for that) 3.      They are a serial online dater, looking for the next nice nightly hookup (Eww! That’s all I got for that one) 4.      They are looking for a well-established woman to “build” with as they come up in their vision (reality is they don’t really know what their vision is and you having one helps him look good until he figures it out) 5.      They are in a committed relationship (wife or courtship) but it just isn’t doing it for them completely. You understand them and they want to be friends. Totally innocent and platonic. They just need someone to help them work through the relationship difficulties (ok so this isn’t even dating, but I can’t tell you how many times during girlfriend convo’s I hear about this type of snare) I could go on and on with these scenarios but they all end with the same theme…a D.U.D! So how do you avoid them? Well to be honest I haven’t found that you can avoid them, the right question to ask is how to handle them when they arise. Here are some ways I decipher and dispose of a D.U.D. Be upfront about who you are and what you’re about women standing strong From the way you position yourself physically by way of your posture, facial expressions, clothing style, and even your vernacular, they all tell a story about who you are. Do your best to make sure the story you’re telling through these different means lines up with who you are inside. It all matters! Be who you are not what you think one wants to see. Be nice nasty when it’s needed…  jennifer anniston smirk This one is my fav! Only because I get to be classy but still sassy and throw them off all at the same time! Ha! Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t get enjoyment off of being mean. But there is a time when one takes your kind heart or kind way of telling them no as a challenge to try again, and THAT is where the nice nasty trick comes in handy. When a person keeps trying to get their agenda accomplished with you after it has been clearly laid out that it’s not going to happen, then you give them the nice nasty. The nice nasty is a simple way to make your intent clear but with an added “I’m not kidding, stop!” tone to it. You can say things like “So you’re just going to keep at it after I’ve already told you huh? That’s not smart.” Then smirk. Or “See I know you have sense, I’ve witnessed it. So I’m going to reiterate what I said just encase you weren’t clear. Umm K?” (Insert smirk). Are you getting the point now? It’s a tough toned sentence with the body posture that’s pleasant. It’s being sarcastic with style. beyonce strut Just walk away and leave them where they lay! A person can only be so nice for so long. You can only have so many conversations and flip no so many types of ways. What you will end up doing is keeping yourself in their endless cycle of “chase” that you’re not trying to be a part of if you don’t just stop interacting and walk away. The key to getting a behavior to stop is to not encourage it. Stop answering their calls or responding to their text messages. Stop smiling when they try and talk to you about keeping that thing they call a “relationship” or “dating” going. Put it all to a halt! They will get it and move on to the next possible victim (and I hope they get smart and do the same as you). Now if this guy just keeps trying with you…well that’s another topic that will have to be addressed for the future (It’s called Craaazyyyy!!). For now, when dealing with DUD’s try to remember you attract what you are and if you don’t want what you attract, check what you’re placing out there and change it. Much Love Stay Resilient Pursue Passions and Be Intentional In All That You Do! Cole
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Relationships
How many times have you found yourself in a spot of betrayal? Said to yourself “I never imagined this would happen” or better yet “I would have never thought they would do such a thing!” These statements and many others are the tails I’ve heard and even said in my years of learning people and building relationships. These very statements are the signs that you have been a victim of an opportunist. You may or may not know what an opportunist is or even how they surface, but I can almost bet that you have been victim to one in some form or another. So who are these people? An opportunist simply put, is an individual who seizes every opportunity to improve life for themselves. Basically, if it doesn’t help them, they don’t do it. Now, when you think of it this way you would think everyone should spot an opportunist the moment they appear. The only problem with this thought is that an opportunist does not allow themselves to be spotted in plain view. They have crafted a skill and depending on how advanced one is in their opportunistic ways, they can get what they desire and move on to the next without ever being detected. Its rather quite stomach turning to know the depths of how far this personality will go to get what they want. But what’s worse and much more life threatening is if you deny this type of person exists and ignore the signs when it’s happening to you. Spotting the Loyal Liar What do they talk about the most with you?
  • Money
  • Sex
  • Influence (fame, recognition, leadership, authority or power)
Above are some trigger topics that you will hear often from many people. But the key to zone in on is what is it that the people around you talk the most to YOU specifically about and do they benefit others as much as themselves or just themselves? The triggers I listed above are common topics that most opportunist will use. If you have something they want, they will repeat that thing every time they are with you until they get it. It can be subtle and often layered in with casual conversation or it can be blatantly done to the point you dismiss it as a joke. No matter how its done, pay close attention to the frequency of it. This will tell you if you have a possible opportunist in your midst. Is there a pattern in their presence?
  • They always seem to have an emergency that needs your assistance
  • They take from you but you can hardly count the ways they have given back to you or can be relied on when you are in need
  • Around for the good times but never the bad times
  • They often make more “I” than “We” statements when collaborating with you on something
  • They often tell you what you want or need to hear but with no action tied to it
These are just a few beginning signs that you may encounter with the opportunist in your life. Keep in mind a master manipulator will often be able to hide these signs making it more difficult to pick up on their schemes. One tried and true way of knowing if you are in the presence of an opportunist is the way you feel when they leave you. When a person is adding value to your life you feel empowered to be better. When a person is continuously taking from you, there is a void that remains when they leave you. You feel less energized often down and in some cases of no value to others. An opportunist is like a leach. Once they have made all the withdraws they can make from you, they move on to the more abundant victim, leaving you lifeless, depleted and broken. When you recognize that this person exist in your life, begin taking immediate measures to not only remove them from your life, but learn to recognize early on when this person tries to enter your life and stop them before they can even start the preying process. The value of your life should never be negotiated it should be celebrated! #beintentional #bewise
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Relationships
So you have just got out of a long term relationship or marriage and that itch of loneliness begins to rear it’s head. You block out all the thoughts that try to come about your ex and anything that reminds you of them, but no matter your strong efforts you still find yourself battling loneliness. You begin hanging out more with friends, doing more things to fill up your time like reading or working out, but nothing seems to fill the void where the person once was. Then in an instant the right man or woman comes into you life fills the void and places you on cloud nine!! I mean you are so far up that no one could see you or tell you anything even if they wanted to. Life is good!! Life is so good that you began to leave your great friends behind because you just don’t have time and now begin changing your entire life to fit the void that has been filled. I mean after all they are worth it right? So since they are worth it, why do you still feel empty? Ever asked that question? Or how about this, why do I not feel the same as I once did when it all first started? They haven’t changed and I haven’t changed but something is changing. Two things are happening here: 1) The wounds from your prior relationship(s) are reopening and pain is coming back. 2) The person you thought was ideal to fill your void turns out to be nothing of what you originally had in mind. How do we get here? How do we fall so easily for someone and not cover all the bases before doing so? What causes us to repeat cycles of pain that could be easily avoided? Well my friends, just like two things can make it happen, there are two primary things that can help us maintain control over them. Patience and Perseverance. You must allow yourself time to heal and that takes Patience. You didn’t fall for this person overnight and it’s going to take time to get over them and move forward in your life. With Patience you need Perseverance to keep going. You need that inner drive that tells you no matter what you go through, hear or see you deserve the partner you desire and you can weed out the mess to get to them. Just takes a little practice. Patience Time can’t move fast enough when you have no PATIENCE. Time will challenge your every nerve, rock your world in every way as it relates to healing from a breakup. The key to maintaining patience is looking ahead to what you DESIRE and not focusing on what you lost. It’s easy to get lost in the drama of all the things you and that former partner could of done or had, but why not focus your efforts on what you learned that they couldn’t give you and look for those attributes in what you desire in the future. When dating take it slow! Go in with the mindset of I am just getting to know them and nothing more. If it blossoms great if it doesn’t no biggie. We are going to have fun and enjoy life in this moment. No pressure and no promises. Take all things with a light heart for at least 6-12 months depending on how long you were in your last relationship. This will not only give your wounds more time to truly heal, but you will also prevent unnecessary hurdles for you and the other person to overcome as it relates to comparisons of the past. Everyone deserves to be given a chance to start with a clean slate. Especially when they were not the ones who hurt you. Patience also gives you a chance to really know if a person you start to be involved with should remain a hang out buddy or something deeper. Time reveals much! perseverance Perseverance reminds you that you DO DESERVE what you DESIRE and no matter how much one tells you that you are being unrealistic, you must believe that you can and you will get it. How you keep that hope alive is by looking for examples around you. If it’s a happy balanced marriage look for couples you know who display this and ask how they keep it going. if it’s a strong leader or goal oriented partner look for someone who displays those characteristics and ask how they learned to be that way. Whatever it is you are looking for in your relationships find the example ask questions, seek answers and repeat the process. You can never have enough examples of what you desire. The more examples you have the more proof you will have to support your decision to wait and fight to have such a thing. Like the picture above shows, the obstacle may look impossible but all you need is one example and a strong will and it CAN be so! Breakups on any level are hard and heartbreaking, but with the right tools, support and mindset you can be an over comer of them and have a happy whole ever after. Just keep pursuing PATIENCE press thru with PERSEVERANCE and your PROMISE will be had! Much Love Cole
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Career, Relationships

Oh how I love social media!! There was a time when you had to wonder what was going on with this household, that relationship or co-worker. Now you just log onto your favorite social media site and you can pretty much learn all you want to know! It’s funny at times, but in most cases very scary and downright sad. There was a time when one would say “What happens in this house, stays in this house.” Now its “Let’s show how REAL we really are and post it!” Let’s show the people that we are no different than the next person. We are human just like you” Now I am all about  being authentic and transparent with people when it will benefit them and help them succeed in life. But I do not agree with telling my every move and keeping people up to speed on every possible move I make. There has to be balance to everything and social media is no different.

I have watched countless relationships get ruined or badly damaged due to social media output. I have seen women and men attack each other on a whole other level just to be relevant or popular. Or the ones who have deep wounds that have not healed and bleed their feelings all over social media pages to gain support and strength. Both can be very unhealthy and detrimental to ones future. Therefore, managing this big resource will be key to maintaining your focus and protecting your goals and the people in life surrounding them. So how does one stay in touch with the ever changing social world and maintain privacy? Great question! Let’s take a look:

status update

Relationship statuses need not be a priority to post

If you are not married leave the relationship status option alone. Here’s the deal, we all know that people change, things change etc. etc. Unless the ultimate commitment has been made, that being marriage, you run the risk of appearing unstable or one who tends to “play the field” quite a bit if you get my drift. If you’re a serial dater or use the online dating option quite a bit, use caution in giving updates with photos of who you’re out with. As we all know when things are going great in the relationship world, everyone and their cousin wants to throw some type of negativity on it. It’s almost like the universe of hate decides to bless you with all things ugly. You get inbox/text/voicemail messages from people you don’t know saying “I felt you should know..” or “Beware they are known to..” all in an attempt to sabotage your happiness or bring about drama to watch unfold.  Save yourself the extra stress by saving this update for when it matters most and that would be when your tax filing status has changed.

selfie photo

Self Centered Selfies – “Let me take a selfie”

Oh the famous selfie. Instagram, Facebook and Twitter are inundated with selfies galore! Everywhere you scroll you tend to see a selfie. I admit they can be fun to post and humorous often times, but when the selfie turns into a “look at me” daily scheduled event, it can be down right annoying. A recent 2013 Facebook survey stated “Facebook users found that posting photos of oneself correlates with lower levels of social support from and intimacy with Facebook friends (except for those marked as Close Friends).” The lead author of the study suggests that “those who frequently post photographs on Facebook risk damaging real-life relationships.” In other words, people don’t want to be forced to like you because you take photos and look for likes to be tagged to it; even from your closest friends. It becomes almost an obligation for them rather than a sincere compliment. Although selfies are the norm for social media, use them more at networking/business events, sporting events, conferences etc. Basically limit your self-centered photos of being in the bathroom, in your car, or in the bed for that special someone or practical jokes. It might just save you a ton of embarrassment and or even your job!

dramatic

No more drama please

You know this person. One minute they are happy the next minute someone has psst them completely off then the next minute they are hopelessly in-love then the next moment the world is ending. Dear God! Make it stop! I got annoyed just typing that up. Ladies I have to really go hard on you with this one because this is primarily done by our gender. Yes we are emotional creatures, nurturers and guiders of this vast world; but does everyone need to see your emotions flood their timeline? I think not. For my most sensitive male, the one who is “in touch” with his feelings this goes for you too. We all have those days when the world of feelings just hit us every which a way. I mean slap us in such a way we want to scream. But please for the sanity of those who love you and for your reputation leave the drama for inside your home or your therapist. Believe it or not, many employers use Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn as a primary source of getting insight into who you really are. You don’t want to miss out on a great opportunity all because you decided to share your every waking feeling with the world.

At the end of the day, we all have our shortcomings or less than favorable ways that some people just won’t deal with. The key is to let those traits be seen by those individuals in a controlled and less public manner. Because what you do now, truly does come back to you in the future when sharing it on social media. Stay cautious my friends.

Much Love

~Cole~

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Relationships, Uncategorized
We all have had a time when we gave our all to a person, position or project and was left feeling unappreciated, abused and just plain used. There was a level of vulnerability that you allowed to be displayed that left you open to be hurt in a major way. You’ve shed some tears, broke some things and maybe even went into hiding to get beyond the pain. But sometimes even with all those tactics and maneuvering to clear up the residue of the pain inflicted on you, it sometimes still lingers. Its frustrating because all you want is to be free of the reminders of it and move on with your life and for some reason you just cant!  Well my friend have you considered that the issue may be the people that surround you? Could it be that these very individuals are the ones causing the remnant of pain? I know often times we don’t want to think that someone close to us is causing us additional pain, but the fact is the very people closest to us are sometimes the very ones hindering our success in life. So once you identify who they are what do you do? How do you handle such a delicate situation? How do you possibly open up the conversation and how do you move forward after you’ve had it? Do you just dive right in with no chaser? Or warm them up to it by creating the right environment to discuss the issues. Neither are horrible the main thing is to do it. Its your life and you must take control. Taking control requires courage and confidence. but you can do it! When having to take these measures give a few of these tips a try: 1. Meet a neutral place Do not meet at “the spot” that is your normal hanging place to chat or catch up. You need to meet in a neutral spot where the distractions will be minimal and the interaction can be more focused. 2. No small talk Normally when you meet up with a friend you two discuss a little small talk. What happened on the way, who called you just before you got there etc. The tone of this conversation is serious and you want to make it known that you mean what you say and you must say what you mean. 3. Leave no stone unturned Speak freely and frankly. Do not beat around the bush with your feelings on the matter nor leave out certain things that you just don’t feel like going into at the time. If it hurt you, held you back or seems to be a repetitive issue address it. 4. Let them say their peace If by chance the relationship can be saved you must allow them a chance to say their side. You cannot control the entire conversation, dump all your concerns on them and not give them a chance to respond. Even if the relationship is not salvageable, its always healthy to hear what the other has to say to create that closure many of us like or need to have. It either confirms what you already knew or creates awareness of things you didn’t. When everything has been laid out on the table there is a weight that can be lifted off of you emotionally which allows you to move forward in life freely without hesitation due to the past. Now of course there is no right or wrong way to address a situation that is hurting you. The most important factor is to address it. Do not allow another moment of your life to be stolen away due to poor habits, lifestyle choices or influences. Deal with them and remove as necessary. It’s your life and you deserve to live it in abundance! Much Love ~Cole~
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