G.O. For Change

Changing people, places, and things one blog at a time…

Archive for May 2012

Nipping the Nuptials: Prenups & Love

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Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently married his longtime girlfriend of over 9 years. There was a lot of opinions as to if Zuckerberg should, or should not have a prenuptial agreement.

To clarify, a prenuptial agreement, or prenup is “a contract entered into prior to marriage, civil union or any other agreement prior to the main agreement by the people intending to marry or contract with each other. The content of a prenuptial agreement can vary widely, but commonly includes provisions for division of property and spousal support in the event of divorce or breakup of marriage. They may also include terms for the forfeiture of assets as a result of divorce on the grounds of adultery; further conditions of guardianship may be included as well.” (Thanks Wiki!)

Usually, you see people talk about prenups when one party has a lot of wealth, and to protect themselves in case of divorce, and they don’t lose a significant amount of their assets. There have been a lot of situations where prenups have been discussed; Kobe Bryant and wife Vanessa were looking to divorce last year, to which he stood to fork over 100 million dollars, due to there not being a prenup (which prompted rapper Drake to mention the situation in a recent rap, entitled “Stay Schemin”:

“Kobe ’bout to lose a hundred fifty M’s
Kobe my n—- I hate it, had to be him
B—- you wasn’t with me shooting in the gym”

 The last line of that verse is often proclaimed by anyone now when talking about prenups. Even when I asked my best buddy Troy about this situation, he stated that Zuckerberg should yell out “You wasn’t with me in them dorms!” Jay-Z and Beyoncé recently married (details of the prenup are here), which, looks to protect both of the stars if things go south. Hall-of-Famer Deion Saunders recently underwent a messy divorce (details here), and I don’t want to get started about the Humpries-Kardashian wedding (I have written blogs that lasted longer than their marriage).

My take on prenup? It’s not for me. A lot of people on Facebook believe there should be a prenup in place, and while I understand their viewpoint, I disagree. The new Mrs. Zuckerberg was there BEFORE Facebook ever existed, and I am pretty sure she has been there throughout the development. Was she there writing codes and doing technical support? Probably not, but if Zuckerberg is like me, I am pretty sure that he has asked her for her input.

My wife plays a huge part in my success with school, my entertainment company, this blog, and other areas of my life. Has she dj’ed a wedding, or written a paper, or posted a blog? NO, but she has talked to me about my mixes and playlists, made sure that I scheduled an appropriate time to meet with clients, and she proofs all of my blogs and contracts, including this one (thanks Babe!). So, when my company is successful, she also reaps the benefits. She has been here from the start. I find it funny that people get married, and they often forget these words:

To have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.”

Bottom line is, I am not anti-prenup, I am Pro-Love. Isn’t that the reason for getting married? As always, thanks for reading.

Garry

Ps. Below is Eddie Murphy’s view on getting marriage and money. Still funny.

 

 

 

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Written by Garry O'Neal Jr.

May 23, 2012 at 3:15 pm

The MUTUAL in Mutual Funds: Investing in your Relationships

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Over the weekend, my family and I had a bad dining experience. My lovely wife is a huge fan of diner-style restaurants- whether they are pretty well known (perhaps they were on “Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives” on the Food Network), or  small places that only certain people know about, she scours city magazines for places to visit. She informed me of this restaurant that was recently on the aforementioned television show. She was excited about its history, and looked forward to going. We went, and while the food was great (really great, even though my steak was “well done”, when a food connoisseur like myself only orders “medium”), the service has horrible-the waitress was not attentive; she didn’t check on us, refill our drinks, and when it was obvious that another waitress took our order sitting on the counter, and gave it to someone else, she didn’t even apologize to us, but rather act as though she didn’t understand what just happened.

While waiter/waitress issues aren’t uncommon, I do rely on the managers/owners to alleviate any issues I have. This doesn’t mean simply taking money off of my bill, but actually making me feel as if you are apologetic about the situation.  This was the critical failure in this situation. When I spoke to the manager, he made me feel this wasn’t that big of a deal. Unfortunately these issues ruined our dining experience, and we will not return.

As I drove home, I thought of the entire situation. I really was upset at the care this popular diner felt was acceptable. While I am in no means in the top 1%, I do spend a significant amount of money on food. I really was baffled at the lack attention that our server gave us, considering our tips fund her salary, and at the manager’s response, given that word of mouth communication can make or break a business. I wondered how many others received sub-par service, but because of the good food, came back. The lack of investment on this particular diner’s part, has led me not to invest time and money on my part.

So how can we better invest in relationships (both professionally & business)? Glad you asked! As a business owner, and a person who values relationships, here are a couple of my components that I hold dear:

1. Communication: Communication is the KEY TO ANY SUCCESSFUL RELATIONSHIP!  Whether it’s between friends or business associates, or you and a fast food restaurant, say what you mean to say, articulate appropriately, and be prepared to answer questions. Too many people leave the communication up to text messages, emails, and twitter posts. For example: a friend of mine stated that a guy informed her that he was interested in her, but only communicated through a text message, never calling her. Some of us even call out sick from work via text! I have spent years perfecting my “sick voice” when I am calling out, and it will be a cold day in hell before I give that up! Back in the diner, I informed the manager that my order arrived much later than I expected it to. His response: “your steak was cooked longer because it was bigger (as it should be), and it took more time to cook than other steak meals.” While I understood that, don’t you think my server should have communicated the message, rather than from the manager, BEFORE I was upset?

2. Honoring expectations: I own an entertainment company. While I deal with a lot of clients, I make sure that I am meeting their expectations (and   exceeding them). Unfortunately, perhaps this diner has become cocky after receiving a lot of attention from the television shows and magazine articles, and has forgotten that the customer is number one. In relationships, make sure expectations aren’t misconstrued. When a client hires me, we sit down, go over questions, what they need, and at the end of our conversation, they sign a contract. The contract isn’t a huge, but it spells out what my responsibilities are, as well as what the client’s responsibilities. This way, there are not any problems. If you are dating, or exclusive with someone, you should ABSOLUTELY inform the person (or persons) of your expectations prior to engaging in any activity; this allows all parties involved to know what they are getting into, and decide whether to, or not continue. If you want to wait 90 days before having sex, (via “Think Like a Man”) great, but inform the person  of your decision, and be prepared to have them walk away if they aren’t willing to come to terms, which brings me to my next point:

  3. Holding on to your expectations: To be honest, because of the good food (even though the food was overcooked), I STILL wanted to return and try again. My wife immediately stated that we were never going to return, because there is good food elsewhere. She was ABSOLUTELY correct! The reason? If I returned, I am, in a way, condoning the behavior to continue. Its one thing to return for a second chance if you feel that the behavior will be corrected, however if it compromises your expectations, you should not. As my wife put it, returning back just because of the good food, but the service is horrible, is the equivalent of “remaining in an abusive relationship because the sex is good” (reread that). She was right, and you know what would happen, if I returned, and we received the same crappy service? I would be angry; not at the diner, but MYSELF.

4.Honoring your relationships: Look, being married has led me know certain things, and one being- it’s not the BIG things you do, but it’s the small things that really matter. Of course your significant other expects gifts on his/her birthday, and other holidays, but what about a gift just because it is a Saturday? On Facebook, I have made it a point to recognize other business owners, and promote them. Do I need to? Not really, but because they do great work, and they are great business owners, why WOULDN’T These business owners are professional, courteous, and do great work, AND they promote me, which honors our relationship. In the diner situation, the server could have been better, as well as the owner could have been better, but they weren’t. Hopefully the next diner will. As always thanks for reading.

Garry

Ps. Always order your steak cooked “medium”, it makes the chef have to work on it.

P.P.S. I took my family out to dinner yesterday, and the waitress was AWESOME; she made sure my family was taken care of, was courteous, professional, and kind. In addition to giving her a nice tip, I spoke with her manager, and informed her of the great service I experienced.  Perhaps the other restaurant should take notes.

P.P.P.S Check out Troy Speights, www.precisecutlawnservice.com for all your lawn care needs, and Lisa Fleet @ www.glamorousdivas.com for all your photograph needs). We have worked together for a while, and they are awesome in what they do!

Lucky 7’s: The 7 Conditions of Growth

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Hello Blog Nation! I know you’ve probably been waiting for another blog posting- well, fear not blog readers! It seems that life can get pretty time consuming with a beautiful wife, and a handsome boy (who, by the way has really taken an interest to the 80’s episodes of Spiderman- how cool is that!).  So, after much deliberating (and a serving of “5 hour energy drink”- which really works!), it is time to get back to blogging.

There are many different quotes about change;” He who rejects change is the architect of decay.  The only human institution which rejects progress is the cemetery”, you must welcome change as the rule but not as your ruler, even “change is inevitable – except from a vending machine”. The fact is Change is EVERYWHERE! Look at our cars, clothes, music, food- nothing is how it used to be. One of the biggest things to change is…us.

Now, there will be people that you may think do not have the capacity to change, well, they do, it’s just that they haven’t been properly motivated to actually DO so. For example, think of someone you know that is recently out of a relationship: often you see a change in them (hopefully this is after the “listening-to-sad-love-songs-eating-ice-cream-straight-from-the-carton”phase). They may want to go out more, go to the gym, dress nicer- something may have motivated them to change. At work? Perhaps a supervisor who was a jerk now appears to be more “friendly” to you after you hit it off with the new boss, even with you, perhaps you want to DO more, BE more. But you seemingly are stuck. Sucks, right?

Well, there is good news! You DON’T HAVE TO BE STUCK! You can start right now! Below, are the “7 conditions of Growth”- these 7 steps can help you grow and change right before your very eyes!

1. Become DISSATISFIED with the status quo: This is critical; when a person is tired of the “norm”, the “usual” and is TRULY unhappy, then growth can start.

2. ENVISION where YOU need to go: Most people already know what “growth and change” looks like; perhaps they have a picture on their desktop, or refrigerator, their phone-wherever. Recently there was a HUGE jackpot for the lottery. If you ask around, people already knew what they would do with the money- vacations, investments, etc. (most of the inquiries did start with the phrase “after I quit my job” for some reason.) Make sure that you know where you need to go, and what it looks like when you get there.

3. DEVELOP a process by which to get there:  Nowadays, most people do not use maps- we use GPS systems, which now is even an application on our phones! I love GPS! The reason? Think about what it does: it asks YOU where would you like to go, and once you enter the destination (see #2); it tells you within SECONDS how to get there! We as people, we operate relatively the same way. Most of us know what the change and growth looks like, and what we need to do, which may sound like “I need to _________________ (insert action) for ________ (insert timeframe).

4. INVOKE YOUR WILL to make it happen:  See, this is where a lot of people fall short; sure, they are tired of the situation, and know what change would look like, and even how to get there, but it’s THIS condition that often breaks people. This means total dedication and commitment from YOU!

5. TAKE ACTION to make it happen: This condition falls right in line with the one previously mentioned. DO SOMETHING! Recently I had a friend lose a job, and she was DESPERATLEY looking for another; she got her resume together, identified jobs she wanted, and after getting advice from several people, had a plan of action. The next day I talked with her, and asked her of her progress, she stated that she “just didn’t feel like” doing the things she so frantically needed just 24 hours prior. See kids, a plan of action is only a “plan”, make sure you do something with it.

6. EVALUATE your action steps:  Have you ever put together something, and it didn’t seem right? (Curse you IKEA and your 405 steps for a table!) Sometimes you need to look at your action steps and see if they are helping/hurting you towards your goal. If you are trying to lose weight, going to the gym 3-4 times a week seems like pretty good action steps. Heading to the nearest all-you-can-eat-buffet right after that visit to the gym? Maybe not so much.

7. RECOMMIT to your journey: Look at it this way, the things that lead to you wanting to change didn’t happen overnight, so change and growth equally don’t happen either. If you are overweight, there had to be a consistent routine to get you overweight, so equally it will take the same effort to get you where you want to be. The key here is to be realistic and optimistic about your change: will you be faced with challenges? Sure. Have some doubts? Possibly. But, as long as you realize that you have put yourself in a great situation to be successful, realize change and growth WILL happen….because “change is inevitable, and the only thing constant IS change.

As always, thanks for reading,

Garry

Written by Garry O'Neal Jr.

May 14, 2012 at 12:31 pm

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