Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Do it Anyway

Do It Anyway

~Mother Theresa

People are often unreasonable, illogical, and selfish.
Love them anyway.
If you are kind, others may accuse you of having selfish ulterior motives.
Be kind to others anyway.
If you are successful, you will gain some false friends and some true enemies.
Succeed anyway.
The good you do for others will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Honesty and trust make it easy for others to hurt you.
Be honest and trusting anyway.
The biggest people with the biggest ideas can be brought down by the smallest people with the smallest minds.
Think and dream big anyway.
What you spend years building can be destroyed by others in a single day.
Build anyway.
When others need help and you try to help them, they may turn and attack you.
Help them anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, others will be jealous and resent you.
Be happy anyway.
You can give the world the best you have and it still may never be enough.
Give your best anyway.
You see, in the end, it is all between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.


~Lou Sandoval is a business owner with over 17 years Fortune 100 experience. In 2002, he left a successful career to pursue his dream of business ownership. Lou believes in giving back to his community and has also been involved in the Boy Scouts of America and serves on a few non-profit and professional boards. Opinions expressed here are solely personal and not a representation of any of the organizations with which he may be affiliated.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

The Tenacity to Survive



To say that the past 11-12 months have been a challenge is being neglectful of the journey that I've been on.  The significance of this 20th day of November makes me present to how quickly the days fly by.  The girls have grown a lot over the past year, my head spins with the breakneck speed with which time has passed.

We have two lenses with which to look at what we encounter in life- fear and panic or optimism and opportunity.  I can honestly say that what has probably caused me much pain and agony is the second path.   I know no other way than to move forward.   As we undergoe each experience , we have two ways that we can react, with fear, anger and resentment or compassion , kindness and understanding.   In spite of the perceived wrongs I've encountered- I was reminded today of the choices available to me by the parable of the two wolves:


An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy.
“It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

Here is to setting a banquet for the better wolf.

~Lou Sandoval is a business owner with over 17 years Fortune 100 experience. In 2002, he left a successful career to pursue his dream of business ownership. Lou believes in giving back to his community and has also been involved in the Boy Scouts of America and serves on a few non-profit and professional boards. Opinions expressed here are solely personal and not a representation of any of the organizations with which he may be affiliated.

Monday, November 7, 2016

The Eve of the Election


The polls will open in a few hours and what seems like a perpetually toxic campaign season will come to a close.   It seems as though the last three election cycles have progressively divided our country at every possible point:  Race, Religion, Socio-economic class, political ideology and now gender.   It seems as though at every juncture we use the 1st amendment as a battering ram aiming to bludgeon the opposition into submission.  Via social media, in conversations you see the shaming on both sides of the ideological fence.  

As if it where not enough to have democrat and republican, we now have full fledge divisions in those respective traditional parties.   Born out of frustration that career politicians no longer understand the very constituents that claim to represent.  A proverbial outsourcing of our democratic process, we entrust individuals whose wealth far exceeds the average American.  How can they remotely understand what the common person struggles through each day?  How can they comprehend the financial gaps that result from outsourced jobs or inflation in household cost of living due to increased taxation which sought to feed the beast that politicians created?

We live in an era of supersized government and as been said before- our children stand to inherit one of the largest national deficits compounded by larger deficits at the State, County and City level.  What little disposable income families had evaporates at the hands of the policies enacted by politicians.   Governmental intrusion occurs at every level with a structure that provides hidden expense and closure of opportunity to every American.

It seems as though every election feels like the crucible of Society is close to being upended.  This election is no better.  We have reached a new low- two candidates so personally flawed that the decision to choose of the 'lesser of the two evils' has us come face to face with Mephistopheles himself as we hold our noses and vote. It doesn't make the decision easier:  Do we teach our children that it acceptable to outwardly insult, bully and denigrate people or do we go deeper into the abyss and show them that lying crisis of character and political subterfuge are acceptable personality traits of the leader of the free world?  Adopting the Win at all cost mentality has its consequences as we sever relationships with friends and family members- with co-workers and neighbors.   For what?  

In almost twenty-four hours we will know the results of this shameful period in our country's history. Both sides will claim that history has been made regardless of who wins the election.   The most concerning element is that we have lost the very essence of who we are as a nation, what is acceptable conduct in addressing one another in a public debate and a list of other issues.  My hope is that we can come together as a nation and work together again for a common good. 

Otherwise, what legacy are we really leaving our young ones? 


~Lou Sandoval is a business owner with over 17 years Fortune 100 experience. In 2002, he left a successful career to pursue his dream of business ownership. Lou believes in giving back to his community and has also been involved in the Boy Scouts of America and serves on a few non-profit and professional boards. Opinions expressed here are solely personal and not a representation of any of the organizations with which he may be affiliated.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Forty Days



You fought the good fight, you were tired.
You carried your burden for so long.
You seldom complained after a life of selfless service.
We always knew you were so strong.
A family’s love you showed us in many ways.
Your love lives on, in our hearts today and always.


The number ‘40’ is wrought with historic symbolism in religion.   It has been identified as being symbolic with a period of testing or trial.  Personally, the last forty days have been a period of reflection- a redefinition of purpose.  Am I on track in my life?  Are the people around me the people I want to be surrounded with?   Are the causes I support important, am I making a difference?   I have taken copious notes on my life as I’ve searched for the meaning of whether in the grand play of life- all of this will matter.   Is what really matters slipping through my very fingers?

While I’ve not identified a real answer to those questions, It has given pause for much thought and reflection.  As I look at my father’s life and the impact it had on mine- who he was, what he stood for, what was important.   Perhaps I’m overcomplicating things- in its essence life is pretty simple.   The value’s dad instilled in us- Faith- Family and work ethic.   Faith- First and before anything man needs a spiritual compass to guide him.  There will be dark times in our lives- we need to lean on our faith to make it through.   The fact that dad choose five days before Christmas to leave us provides a prelude to his last unasked request- remember what is truly important during this time.   Family- my dad would often remind me that it was family who would always be there for you in your darkest of times, but also in your success.    As I went through my teen years he would remind me that it was Family first, then friends and then everything else.   I’ve always taken that collectively as family.   My immediate family has always been a priority.   During the weeks after my dad’s passing- I’ve seen some great acts of friendship and an outpouring of support from many of our circles of ‘extended family’.    In some cases, individuals from whom we would remotely not expect anything have graciously expressed and showed their support and condolences for our loss.   It is humbling to say the least.  

Being heartbroken is tough.  When you suffer a loss- there is awkwardness both on behalf of people around you and with yourself.   The pain of the loss relays a perspective for impatience.  My first day back into the office, I found myself losing patience with a person on the other end of a phone conversation.  As the conversation turned to a discussion of trivial things – first world problems of a sort- I found a voice in my head thinking, “If you found out this afternoon that you only had 90 days to live- would this really matter? Would it be that important in the larger scheme?”   I caught myself and called the individual back afterwards to apologize for tuning out in the conversation.  “Perhaps it is me” I said, “I just want to apologize for tuning you out”.  “It’s too recent Lou”, they said. “You should rest”.    The world around you continues on.  Yet you are somewhat stuck.  Feeling the loss and wondering how you can get through it.   As people encounter you and learn of what has happened, each mention of the experience brings the loss into consciousness.   You catch yourself becoming emotional, tears streaming down your face for no reason sometimes.    You struggle to identify the ‘triggers’.  At first it is everything to do with your lost loved one.   The sleepless nights, the apathy- I’ve been told it is all part of the healing process.   

Elizabeth Kubler Ross best summarized it in her stages of grief and loss in her book “On Death and Dying’ - Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and acceptance   I can’t say that I’ve experienced them all, but I’m working through it daily.   I totally respect the Jewish religion for how they handle it.  Through Shiva- they mourn for seven days.   It is customary for family and close friends to visit the family of the deceased.  It is the great expression of community and support which aids the transition for the surviving family of the deceased.   While the grieving process can’t be confined to seven days- It sort of gives you a safe space in which to be alone with your emotions.

As the forty days comes to a close, I’ve had a lot go on in my life, completing decisions that had been in play since the beginning of December, It has been a rough few weeks.   It has been a blur that has been truly tiring.  I had no awareness of what today signified when I took a razor to the goatee I had grown since dad’s funeral.  I stopped focusing on appearance, I was inside my head.   I had let it grow.   When I woke today- something told me it was time to shave it.  A few friends have told me that they feel that I’m in a phase of my life where I’m creating once again.   Perhaps, but the pain just keeps me moving forward.    It’s what dad taught us, his work ethic.  Play hurt, don’t give up.   It’s ok to fail- so long as you learn.   So many lessons running through my head, I’ve always been present to them- now I catch myself hearing them in his voice in my memories of him.

Dad- I know you are there, I know you are looking over us.   I know you are at peace- in pain no more.  That is what you deserve.


Thank you pop, I’m so indebted to you for what you’ve done for me.   If I never told you enough- I hope you knew it.  I really do.  Love your son. 

~Lou Sandoval is a business owner with over 17 years Fortune 100 experience. In 2002, he left a successful career to pursue his dream of business ownership. Lou believes in giving back to his community and has also been involved in the Boy Scouts of America and serves on a few non-profit and professional boards. Opinions expressed here are solely personal and not a representation of any of the organizations with which he may be affiliated.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Opportunity

When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us. —Helen Keller