Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash

Ditching the drama of turning 30

This year, I turned 30. It was fantastic.

First, it felt great to be done with my 20s. Second, I was excited because I thought the social pressure, the anxiety, the people-pleasing, and the insecurity would all go out the window.

But then I began looking around at the other 30 year-olds. And some, not all of them, seemed to really have their stuff together.

Some were bankers, some were consultants, and others were drop-shipping gurus making good money while hustling and enjoying the grind.

But, to my surprise, that didn’t happen to me.

Sure, I traveled a lot and…

Photo by Sasha Freemind on Unsplash

On therapy, medication, and insights from 4 years of healing

Comparison is the self-esteem destroyer of our 20s and 30s. For high achievers, like myself, we constantly keep our minds running, reading things, obsessively thinking, and comparing ourselves to other people’s success.

Add to this a society that has glorified million-dollar success stories of entrepreneurship, and you have a recipe for a life of unhappiness until you make your first million.

But it does not have to be this way.

We can make the effort to not beat the sh*t out of ourselves for not quitting a great job in search of an “amazing job”.

We can stop comparing ourselves…

Harry Benson’s “Pillow Fight” featuring The Beatles

From military to missionary to MBA, here’s what I learned

Your prefrontal cortex is not fully operational until age 30, which means your decision-making function (that wonderful CEO in your forehead) wasn’t 100 percent functioning in your 20s.

All those times your emotions overwhelmed you? All those moments where you could not think clearly? It was your 20-something-year-old brain operating at a C+.

As if these biological hindrances weren’t making life complicated enough, life has changed significantly in the last decade (2009 to 2019). …

Photo by Andrik Langfield on Unsplash To Becoming A Happier Person

It’s more simple than you think

Think about your life for a minute. What are those moments where you were truly happy?

If you had to describe the quality of this moment, you will probably realize it’s simply because you felt like yourself.

This seems like a stupid observation, but the key to this realization is that last little word — self.

Today, we always talk about making an impact, by we rarely talking about becoming an “impact maker.” …

I see your catchy title, but does it give your readers what you promised

The past month on Medium, I’ve watched article after article pop-up on my phone’s notifications. They have ranged from productivity secrets to sex talk to people sharing wonderful vignettes (I particularly enjoyed Rolli’s The Fate of Imaginative Children and Molly Henderson’s Jeff Bezos Lazy Saturday Morning Routine).

Eventually, after a month of seeing feeds, I began to see a lot of the same styled titles.
- “The One Secret to X,”
- “The Two Ways to Y,” and
- “15 Things You Need to Unlearn to be Z Person”.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with these titles. In fact, it’s nice…

From Pixabay

First big failures are defining, but 5 years later it’s time to go

In 2014 I finished my 3rd year in the U.S. military (my 7th if you include the U.S. Military Academy), and I had just received a negative review that spelled the end of my career.

I was devastated because after 7 years of commitment to the organization, the leadership decided in a matter of 2 months that my career was over.

After 7 years of training and service with great performance reviews, I suddenly was no longer valuable to the organization.

Five Years Later

Tuesday, talking with my mom on our drive home from the airport, I realized that it had been more…

Image by Mabel Amber on Pixabay

How one of my favorite authors changed my faith forever

In 2016, I left the U.S. Army to go on an adventure. The program, called the World Race, was a volunteer-based journey to 11 countries in 11 months.

After watching the two-year decline of my career, I needed to get away, rediscover what mattered, and find out if I still had faith in God.

Then our volunteer team’s coach introduced me to an author that would forever change my life. His name was Richard Rohr, a Franciscan priest from Albuquerque.

On The Threshold of Transformation

The first book I read by Richard Rohr was titled…

Image from

This weekend I read The Little Prince, and I closed the book (however this happens on kindle) and felt this eerie feeling that I missed something . . .

  • What was the point?
  • Why did he go away?
  • What was the rose about?
  • Why is his rose so important, yet so fickle and scared?
  • Is this some childhood idolatry madness?

Its simplicity seemed stupefying and easily dismissed.

Yet, some points were powerful in both astute yet obvious ways:

  1. adults care way too much about numbers (guilty)
  2. the power of anticipation built through relationship
  3. the humor of thinking you’re truly in…

My last day wearing the uniform

When I was 18 years old, I decided to attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York. I was young, full of energy and idealism, and ready to “lead America’s sons and daughters” in the “fight for freedom.”

It was a 2007 and the times were energized with passion for service and the troops. Then reality hit, and I found myself standing in wool pants and white t-shirt getting screamed out while I bumbled around like an idiot.

The cadre (cadet leadership at West Point) broke us down to reveal how incapable we were at handling pressure.


Charles Payne II

I’m an Army Veteran turned business student who writes about the books, faith, life transitions, and decision-making | USA 🇺🇸 to BCN 🇪🇸

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