My ex wife thinks everything happens for a reason, and that we’re put in situations meant to test us. If we learn from the situation, we graduate beyond it. If we don’t learn, we repeat the situation until we get it.

A more plausible explanation is that we get stuck repeating negative patterns and getting shitty results. If we’re introspective enough to realize there’s a negative pattern, and then we’re creative enough to figure out how to stop the pattern, and then we’re strong enough to implement our solution, we can grow and move on.

The resources we draw on to notice, create, implement and grow are by definition the ones we happen to have around us. So in retrospect it seems like those were the perfect resources we needed at exactly the right time to solve the issues we faced.

That’s like a puddle thinking a divot in the road was made for it because the puddle fits perfectly inside it.

Regardless of whether the lessons are designed or just discovered, to a introspective person living consciously, life feels like a series of lessons that were put here specifically for us to overcome.

Creating Reality

The most powerful lesson I learned during my time with Steph was how to create my reality.

Steph is a woman who creates what she wants.

  • As a young girl, Steph used her iron will to perform the impossibly bratty feat of holding her breath until she passed out and hit the floor.
  • She decided as a young woman in Britain, that being a factory worker wasn’t going to be her life, even though she was lower class and almost totally uneducated. No, she was going to come to America. It took 10 years from the time she decided that’s how it was, to when it happened, and she doggedly pursued it for all 10 of those years. Today she’s a citizen and has served in the US Navy.
  • When she wanted her undergraduate degree she had the small issue of literally not having attended high school. No matter, she got in anyway and graduated despite never having been exposed to algebra or structured writing. She figured out what a variable was during a Calculus lecture. It helps that most grown men could not bench press her IQ.
  • She decided that being 35 and a single mother of two young boys was no reason to settle. She had extremely exacting physical and mental criteria for her future partner, and shortly found herself with a hot, 18-year-old boytoy, who would later become her sugar daddy as well, and then her nurse.
  • Steph fancied herself artistic, and had always hated math because she didn’t understand it. She decided that that wasn’t acceptable, so she earned a master’s degree in math and began teaching it. She earned a 4.0 and was hired immediately upon graduation. One of the most successful books we ever produced is the Practically Cheating Statistics Handbook. (So easy, it’s practically cheating. I find myself very clever.)
  • She decided she wanted to make a serious run at writing novels. She then spent four hours every morning for two years writing two novels that were extremely well-received and became agented. The agents never sold those novels. Undeterred, she decided to earn her second Master’s degree, this time a terminal degree: Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. She wrote a third book during that time, followed by dozens of others, then founded her own publishing company.</li>
  • She decided she wanted to save whales, so she submitted five separate entries into the sea shepherd video contest. When she only came in third place, she immediately booked a flight to Taiji, Japan, home of The Cove, did good work there and was noticed by the sea shepherds. She was offered a place on the ship next season.</ul>

    Manifesting Reality

    When Steph decides something will happen, you can bet your ass that thing will happen. I always admired that about her.

    I needed to see that because when I met Steph I had huge energy but zero focus. My hard drive is a wasteland of unfinished paintings from years ago. I have lost count of the websites I’ve started and never finished.

    I needed a role model who could set her iron will to make something true, and then forge that truth from the fire of her life, come hell or high water.

    I think that’s what it takes to live a courageous, satisfying life. Without her I would be jerking off to fantasies of accomplishment, unable to maintain focus or optimism long enough to produce anything of value.

    After watching her for eight years (and 12 days), I get it now. You just do it. You decide what’s going to happen, and that becomes your reality.

    • If something goes wrong you don’t even blink. You just forge ahead.
    • If your first strategy fails, you try 100 more.
    • If you feel tired, shut the fuck up, no you don’t.
    • If someone tells you you can’t do it, they stop existing to you.

    You don’t expect help, you don’t expect pats on the back, you just slap the shit out of the reality until falls to its knees and begs to conform to your exacting standards.

    I know this now, and I do it. I have built businesses, I have forged careers, I have created value, and I’ve done it with the focus and fire that I gained by being around Steph.

    So, thank you Steph, I know you’ll rock the world.