G.O. For Change

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

The Three C’s

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Hopefully you have you already read “Relationships 101” and “2 Questions”, in reference to dating. As a Life Coach, I often am asked, “how do I know if the person I am dating is “into me?” If you are in the early stages of dating a person, allow me to share with you, what I refer to as the “Three C’s”.

1. Communication: Communication is the key to any successful relationship- whether it is business, personal, or even if you ordered a burger with no pickles at your favorite fast food restaurant, communication needs to be there. I know that there is stigma attached to the communication levels of a man versus a woman, but regardless of their level, they should be communicating with you, at the least on HIS/HER level. If you find that you are the only one calling, or texting, or engaging them, they may NOT be into you.

2. Commitment: It’s one thing to talk about how you feel about someone; it’s another thing to SHOW how you feel. There has to be some level of commitment if they are into you. Do you have date nights? Are you spending time together, outside of romantic interludes? Does he/she cancel outings at the last minute? What physical evidence is present that supports the idea that he/she is into you? If you don’t have any evidence, they may NOT be into you.

3. Caring: In reference to the first 2 paragraphs, a person could really forget to call because of their schedule, or they could have financial/time obligations that prevent them from spending time with you on a consistent basis- those things can happen. However, when they talk with you, are they discussing their situations, and resolutions, or do they appear to have a cavalier attitude about the situation? If they don’t seem to have any emotion about disappointing you, they may NOT be into you.

If someone doesn’t make a valiant effort to demonstrate that they want to be with you, then… CIAO! (perhaps I should have made this the 4th C).

As always, thanks for reading,



Thank YOU!

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I wanted to simply say, THANK YOU. Thank you for your servant-hood, your generosity, and your willingness to help in a cause that will affect not just you and I, but other people, as well as our community.

When I initially came up with idea for the “Back(packs) to School” event, all I had was a spark. Thank you for turning that spark, into a flame that EVERYONE can see.

At the end of the day, I wanted to get people involved in the ownership of OUR community- and through our efforts, we were not only able to meet our goal, we exceeded it. You are amazing, and again, I thank you.

In closing, there is a great quote by Gandhi that I would like to share:  “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do.”  Thank you for not waiting.



Written by Garry O'Neal Jr.

August 25, 2013 at 10:13 am

Posted in Change For US

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Dating 102: The 2 Questions You MUST Ask Yourself before Dating Someone

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Hand Displaying Peace Sign

“Game’s the same, just got more fierce” Slim Charles, HBO Series, The Wire

The above quote was given in reference to the more vicious and more violent nature that drug dealing has become, as opposed to the previous years. Dating, also has become more “fierce”, as there are a lot of things that have plagued the dating scene: dishonesty, a “microwave society”, (where people don’t want to wait, and are looking for immediate gratification), the disregard of courting and chivalry, and a slew of other issues that have corrupted what dating used to be.  Dating is, and should be considered serious; at the very least, YOU are putting your time and effort into it, (and if things get serious) your heart. Why would you play around with something as precious and fragile as that?

In “Relationships 101”, you see the importance of making sure that you identify what you want, communicating effectively your expectations, and identifying red flags. This is vital to not only protecting YOU, but not wasting precious time and energy.

To assist you in the dating process, I offer you just two simple questions that, if asking yourself these questions initially when you meet someone, will save you TONS of time and effort. The only way these questions work, is if you follow them exactly! Are you ready?

Question 1.Do I find this person attractive?”

If the answer to this question is “NO”, STOP ENGAGING THIS PERSON IN A DATING MANNER! Now, when I mean “attractive”, I do not mean only in the physical sense, because the person could look like a Greek God/Goddess, but if they appear unattractive to you, IT WILL NOT WORK.

If you answered “YES” to question 1, proceed to the next question

Question 2. Are there any current issues or concerns that would prevent me from dating this person?

If the answer to this question is “YES”, STOP ENGAGING THIS PERSON IN A DATING MANNER! In reference to this question, YOU have to define the circumstance that would prevent you from dating someone- it could be a conflict of religious beliefs, dysfunctional interpersonal relationships that they had/still have (i.e. recently separated/or currently married), drama with their children’s mom or dad, if they only use one washcloth instead of two, or some other core ideology that may conflict with YOUR beliefs.

If you answered “NO” to question #2, they passed! You can continue to court/date- whatever is the next step for you. If they did not pass, that doesn’t mean that you can’t date them, it just means that there are some red flags that must be addressed beforehand.

The bottom line is, YOU are in control.

As always, Thanks for reading.


P.S. Just because a person may successfully pass the two questions, doesn’t mean that they are off “probation” let them prove to you that they are worth it…because, YOU are worth it…right?

Relationships 101

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Relationships Title Slide

Happy Spring everyone! Ah, spring- the time of year where the weather gets warmer, the days gets longer, and the flowers are in full bloom! And just like those awesome flowers, dating kicks up as well (technically, dating season officially starts during the late weeks of February).

While dating has changed over the years (typically people are speeding up the “romantic” stage, and lessening the “getting to know each other” stage), the core concept of dating is still the same: finding someone that you share similar interests, and hopefully, have a loving, lasting relationship with.

If you are starting to date, please allow your friendly neighborhood Life Coach to offer you some suggestions, as you wade through the sea of potential suitors:

1.Get YOURSELF Right!: Before venturing out into the dating world, you should do a self-assessment, so you will be the best YOU when meeting someone. Are you just getting out of a relationship, and haven’t had time to process? Do you have anger issues, or other potentially “relationship-killing” issues that need to be resolved? Please resolve them prior to starting any new relationship.

2. Identify what you want: We all have our preferences, and that’s great! Make a clear determination of what you want, which, coincidentally informs you of what you DON’T want. Identify deal breakers (i.e. chronic bad breath), and things that you might be able to work around (i.e. opposing political views). If you want someone who is looking for a long-term relationship, or looking to (or not looking to) have children, or be financially stable, have certain assets, then by all means, jot it down. I would however, point out 1 thing- your preferences may lower your dating candidates, but don’t give up, and don’t settle! He/She is out there!

3. Communicate your expectations: Exactly, what are you looking for? Are you looking for a serious relationship, resulting in marriage, are you just looking for friendship/companionship, or something else? Communication is the key to any successful relationship- whether it is business or personal. Think about any job you have ever had; did they tell you 3 months into the position of their wants, or did they tell you right away what they required? If you are getting to know someone, and they inform you that they aren’t looking for a “serious relationship”, and you want to get married within the next 2 years, wouldn’t it better to release yourself from that commitment early, than waste your time?

4. Don’t ignore the red flags: I love the quote by Maya Angelou- “The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them.”(PLEASE reread that!) If you are out on a date, and your spidey senses are tingling, don’t ignore the red flags! Here are some “red flags” to look out for:

  • Being rude: If someone is rude to others in front of you, and they barely know you, how do you think they will treat you later?
  • People who want a relationship too quickly: Look, I know (yes, you!) are awesome, but if you are on a date, and they are already naming your future kids…run!
  • Liars: If someone is omitting information- children, a spouse, or other information that you inquire about, this should definitely be a red flag. As I tell my friends who are dating, lying to someone robs them of making their own decisions.
  • Drama: If they seem to have constant drama following them, why entertain them? (you can also direct them to #1 of this list)

As you are going on dates, remember: you have the RIGHT to be selfish initially- if someone doesn’t have what you want, MOVE ON! Don’t settle with someone, just because they seem interested, and you haven’t found that special person, or your biological clock is ticking, or you feel that you “should be married by now”. Be patient. Good things come to those who wait…right?

As always, thanks for reading,


p.s. Make sure that YOU can bring good qualities to the table as well! You can’t have a laundry list of things you want in a mate, and YOUR list of attributes is pretty bare. Just an FYI.


Lessons I learned from my Son

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Today is my Son’s 3rd birthday.  3 years ago, I remember taking my wife to the hospital, where our doctor casually informed us that the baby would be coming today,  me going home to let the dog use the bathroom, then as my wife informed me to get back ASAP, me threatening the dog to pee,  speeding back to the hospital, the pushing and breathing, and finally, Logan popping out, looking at me for a second with a “what the hell just happened” look on his face, followed by the loudest cry I’ve ever heard in my life.

These last 3 years have been remarkable. I remember someone telling me that having children changes you. Boy, were they right! Here are some things that I learned from my son, my son has taught me:

  1. Patience (or my understanding of my lack thereof): If you are a parent, I guarantee you just nodded your head. I thought I had a pretty good grip on being patience- I work with youth all day, but this is a different level.
  2. It’s not about ME: As a professional Life Coach, I always focus on the actions of YOU- YOUR goals, YOUR actions, YOUR willingness, but my Son has taught me that it is all about him- I can’t live vicariously through him- so while I will equip him with the things necessary for him to be well-rounded, I can’t force him to be a basketball player, or a Life Coach. 
  3.  It is about ME: Wait…what? I know this contradicts the previous lesson, but the difference is how my actions affect him. My actions, beliefs, and attitude, will, whether short-term or long-term, play a part in how he views things (take a look at Erik Erickson’s stages of development for more insight) I am the first impression that he has of a man, and I work tirelessly to make sure that his father is a role model for what he aspires to be like (better than). This means that the “do as I say, not as a do” crap doesn’t work. If I want to teach him that exercise and eating healthy is great, I can’t eat cheesesteaks every day, and playing “Call of Duty 2” all day (even if I am an elite player).  Whether you believe it or not, our children become interested in what WE do
  4. Playtime is AWESOME!  Just running around, playing, making him laugh- these are the most important things I make time for. Those times when we are laughing and acting silly are times that can’t be replaced.  
  5. Spare the Rod, Spoil the Child:  Support and accountability is understood no matter the age. My son knows what his mother and I say goes. This will resonate with him as he gets older. If you ask me do I spoil my child, I couldn’t say I don’t, but my son also knows what spankings (if warranted) feel like too. Providing support and accountability is CRITICAL in the development of children. Talk to your kids, hug and kiss your kids, but if they need to be disciplined, that’s the way of life. I have seen too many children have poor attitude and behavior because their parents had a laissez-faire attitude. Chances are, you have seen them in your local grocery store, or mall, or at a 3-year old birthday party (just kidding!)

As always, thank you for reading.


P.S.  To my son Logan, when you get older (and the internet is still available), I hope you read all of my blogs. You were my inspiration. I love you.

P.P.S. Please look for a blog later in the future entitled “Lessons I learned from my Daughter”, as we are expecting our 2nd bundle of joy this summer! (Question: do I get a free gun NOW, or after she is born?)


Written by Garry O'Neal Jr.

March 25, 2013 at 12:12 am

5 Lessons Learned from Polar Bear Plunging

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This weekend marked the 17th annual Polar Bear Plunge- a charity event sponsored by the Maryland State Police, where individuals take a “plunge” into freezing water (Sandy Point Beach in Maryland), with the proceeds going to the Special Olympics. This year was my first year as a plunger! It was an amazing event! Here’s what I learned:

  1. Great causes are a great motivator: Would I go jumping into a freezing body of water for NO reason? Of course not! But with the donations going to the Special Olympics, I didn’t have any issues spreading the word, getting donations, and taking a plunge!
  1. It’s bigger than ME: We all have our issues and obstacles, but I can say proudly and confidently that I have been blessed. It is very easy to become concerned about our own issues, our own affairs, and turn a blind eye to what happens in our country, our state, even our own communities. Often we turn to our politicians and state officials for answers, but we should ask ourselves, “What can I do?”
  1. Create an EXPERIENCE: Quick- what did you do last Tuesday? Can’t remember? (I’m pretty sure it was awesome) I won’t forget this entire experience- deciding to participate, getting donations, actually plunging- these images are permanently etched into my cortex. I have a couple of rules, but one that I hold dear, is called the “No ifs, ands, or buts” rule- simply put, if I ever become interested in something, I have to do it-no ifs ands, or buts about it. I am glad that I was able to create this experience.
  1. The U in Unity: It is great to get people on board with an idea. Some of the other members in our group (HEEBIE JEEBIES!!) already have participated in the plunge 2-3 times. It was awesome to connect with my friends, and thousands of other people who were there for the same reason. To really feel connected to other people is something that we all desire, and when we have it, it’s beautiful.
  1. Humanity is REAL:  We as people have seen some ugly things in our world, and it’s very easy to become skeptical about helping your fellow man. There have been things that have happened that could easily make you saddened at our state of affairs, shake your faith, and even question our own existence. As a team, we were able to raise $2,000 for the Special Olympics, which spoke VOLUMES about people and their willingness to help. To see people spring to action for something bigger than them really uplifted my spirits, and took the sting off of that icy water. We have seen our share of villains, but we also have witnessed our superheroes emerge as well. To those who donated, volunteered, and plunged, thank you.

As always, thanks for reading,


P.S. I’ll be returning next year, hopefully you’ll be there too!

P.P.S. Even Batman was there!


2012 in review

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,000 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 8 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Written by Garry O'Neal Jr.

January 21, 2013 at 9:59 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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