First and foremost I am a Humble Hubby (husband), a Delightful Daddy, and an Alliteration Aficionado. After that, I’m a writer. I’ve written one novel which is about to be queried (middle-grade fantasy), and am writing a second one still in its infancy–messing its diaper kind of infancy. I’m also a full-time writer. This is my hobby blog, because when I’m not writing I like to write.
I’m also just beginning my journey towards becoming ‘totally ripped’ physically. My definition means the ability to see my own toes.
I thought about starting a blog on personal development documenting my own journey. For the record, I am not at all fearless (hence the quote marks) but, compared to who I used to be, I’m an unstoppable adrenaline junkie, relatively speaking.
Being fearless, means pushing that outer ring of comfort, or as one of my client’s said, “leaning into fear.” It’s like a cold swimming pool: once you jump in it’s never as bad as you thought it would be, and eventually you feel comfortable (about the same time you’re quivering and your lips are the same shade as an imaginary dinosaur).
“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome.” – Booker T. Washington
Maybe you’re like me: approaching middle-age and still trying to figure out what you want to be when you grow up.
I’ve tried many things. Lost thousands of dollars on various false-starts and half-hearted attempts. I’ve invested in many (too many) self-help programs and books which left me thoroughly confused. I’ve hired a number of coaches, all but one of whom were well worth the money. But if life is a continual process of think, plan, and do, then I was stuck in the endless world of Think N’ Plan. Maybe you’ve visited there or, perhaps, purchased a summer home overlooking the Drifting-Aimless Sea.
I’ve learned a lot over the years. Sadly, I’ve learned just as much about what not to do as I have what to do. If you decide to follow along, endure my arcane sense-of-humor, and can tolerate me being as honest about my failures as I am about my successes, then you might (hopefully) learn to believe you can achieve your dreams too.
Regardless of whether you’re a spring chicken (and a chicken who can read no less) or a person looking into their more seasoned years realizing that they don’t want to end up in that proverbial rocking chair realizing you never lived.
It may have taken a few decades, but I’ve realized that life is out there – out past the dragons and storm-raged seas. It’s there for anyone willing to set their sights, risk getting lost, and take the chance knowing that, as long as you have hope and determination, you will arrive.
The destination may change, but dreams never do. Many destinations can fulfill the same dream. That’s something I wish I learned a lot sooner.
James Cook lives in Massachusetts except when he’s traveling. Then he lives wherever he is.
He is happily married and has a young daughter who is growing much too fast. He was born at an early age and continues to live as of this writing. When he is not working he enjoys kayaking, hiking, fishing, running, reading, learning, golfing, acting, eating, sleeping, and writing about himself in the third person. When he is working, he works. He is currently launching a writing and brand consulting business and is working on getting back to his fighting weight of 190 lbs. (though he’s a lover; not a fighter).
43 Completely Random Things About Me
- Call me James and possibly Jimmy, but never call me Arnold.
- I will eat almost anything at least once.
- I’m the youngest of four – a full ten years separating me from the next-youngest.
- I cannot say ‘particularly’ particularly well.
- I think ripping paper is the worst sound ever.
- I once ran a half-marathon (walked part of it, but I finished).
- I believe my wife and I are the only two good things to come out of the 70s.
- I’m allegedly (per a cousin) a descendant of Francis Cooke who arrived here on the Mayflower four-hundred years ago and about twenty miles from my house. Evidently we Cooks only make an intercontinental move once every millennium.
- I was home-schooled all of middle-school.
- I shook David Hasselhoff’s hand.
- I’ve also shaken hands with a convicted murderer.
- I’ve flown in a helicopter.
- I’ve become a savage fan of Supernatural thanks to my wife’s friend Laura (last season, oh no!).
- Other than that and NCIS, I hardly watch any TV–oh, and football, I watch a lot of NFL and college football.
- I wrote my first screenplay at the age of six. It was two minutes long and, because no major producer would front me the money to buy dry ice, the one special effect needed, the project died.
- I absolutely loathe winter but just the cold part. I like snow. If it’s going to be cold, it might as well serve a purpose.
- It took me 7 years to complete the first draft of my first novel.
- I’m an expert planner and a rookie doer.
- I once had a conversation with Tiger Woods. It went like this, Me: “Nice shot, Tiger!” Tiger: “Thanks!” (1995 US Amateur Championship).
- I grew up in a haunted house.
- My entire life has been spent residing within one mile of the same river. I know, I’m so exciting.
- I seriously considered making a go of the PGA Tour.
- I now golf only 2 – 4 times per year (I still break 90).
- I once had a brush with death (not really, but at that moment, I was convinced I was going to die).
- I did not inherit my family’s smelly-foot-gene.
- I was a hurdler in high-school.
- Quiet is the best sound in the world, in my opinion.
- I learned to speak fluent Mandarin entirely from fortune cookie papers (kidding on all counts).
- I believe the United States is the best country in the world. Not because of what its government has done, but because of its people.
- I once stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Tony Robbins (shoulder to nipple is more like it).
- My career aspiration around age twelve was to be an Ichthyologist.
- I love acting and have been in seven plays and various skits.
- I’m a proud introvert (despite the above).
- I once went shopping pretending to be British with all of the sales clerks. Whether I pulled it off, I’ll never know.
- My favorite drink is brandy.
- I’ve never smoked anything ever–except salmon.
- I once tripped and flew down a flight of stairs landing comfortably in a pile of blankets left at the bottom. Terrifying at the moment; fun in hindsight.
- I’m one of the few people who love public speaking. Yes, I still get nervous.
- I out-drove a police officer pursuing me once. Once. #NotProud
- I bought my wife’s engagement ring on eBay (yes, it’s real).
- I met my wife online before it was “a thing”.
- Oftentimes my sarcasm is taken seriously.
- I once shot an elephant in my pajamas. How it got in my pajamas, I’ll never know. (Groucho Marx quote for fun).