Thursday, April 11, 2019

Why I gave up complaining. By John Henry Soto

When I hear people complain about how hard it is to make it because of where they grew up, I can't help to think of my grandparents coming here in the mid-40s without knowing a word of English and finding factory jobs they worked for 20 years. They were around my age now when they arrived here! Then I remember my grandma telling me how she had to leave school in the 3rd grade to go to work. Her job was cleaning clothes in the river and sewing. She was 8 years old. My grandpa told me stories of working as a truck driver for the fire department. Things were a little different back then. He also drove a rock truck from the village to the city for building materials. I still carry his metal belt license on my key chain. I remember as a young boy walking by my grandpa's bedroom while he was resting after work and seeing him laying down wide awake scratching his forehead deep in thought. I always wondered what he was thinking about. I never had the nerve to ask him because I was afraid it wouldn't be good and it would make me sad. But I'm sad now anyway so in retrospect, I should have asked. His space felt sad to me but he always smiled and was the funniest dude around. Not a day goes by that I don't think of him in some way. I never met my dad so he was it for me and I couldn't imagine a better role model.
My grandma worked at a zipper factory called ACME. That's right ACME. Same place the Coyote spent a fortune on gadgets to try to capture the Roadrunner. She worked there for almost 20 years. Someone convinced her she should retire and she did. Three years shy of being eligible for a pension. Not sure if it was deliberate or not but it really bothered her. She said she did it to take care of me because my mom was working at the time and had remarried. I don't have all those details families don't talk about. My grandma was a tough lady and ruled the house. She worked hard and I never heard her complain that the work was too much. She did, however, hate the commute to her job in Long Island City and spoke about that a lot. The subway announcements she never understood so she had to ask around and sometimes people were not very nice to help her. But she always had the furniture she wanted and we always had food. Food was a big part of growing up for me. I miss those days and I truly miss her. Today is my grandma's birthday. She would have been 108! She lived to 96 so that's pretty amazing. My grandpa was 96 when he moved on! My mom was a lot younger which was very sad. I'll write something soon just about how great she was.
I truly can go on and on in detail about my family and my upbringing but that wasn't the reason I began writing down these thoughts. The purpose was this. I use these stories and memories whenever life challenges me harshly or I'm physically tired or it feels like it's a never-ending journey towards success. I look at my life and realize what an amazing success I already am and how blessed I am to have the opportunities in front of me. Today I feel really great. I would like to thank you for reading. ❤️🙏 JHS

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Empathy is a Powerful Tool

Empathy is not sympathy. Giving someone sympathy devalues them and makes them feel worse. Empathy is understanding a person's situation and helping. In business, empathy is lacking and has been for a long time. It's destroying companies and alienating consumers and employees. Its time for a change and I feel a change coming. Whether you're into social media or not you must admit that it's forced some businesses into uncomfortable areas by making them have to be accountable for, not just the product they sell, but also their employees from the top to the bottom. It's a new day and I feel the change. I choose to try to stay ahead of the game and implement empathy as part of my strategy. Social media moves fast and all I can do is try to keep up. I'm behind many but more importantly, I realize I'm ahead of many as well and that's what's exciting. For me, this moment and 2019 will be a year to rediscover my purpose, nurture my family and move at a faster pace as an artist. It's going to be fun and I look forward to taking this journey with all of you. Thank you for reading and your support.  JHS

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

The Kool-Aid is cold and ready!!

I don't like the political game but I'm fascinated by the lack of full education on the issues. Everyone has half the story and some of it is wrong. They hear snippets here and there and draw one conclusion based on it. The media outlets together decide the buzzwords of the day and they use it to get the people under a spell. Just go to YouTube and check out the videos of the major networks doing this. It's pretty crazy. Word for word! My favorite is, "This a danger to our democracy" Type that into YouTube and see the kool-aid being prepared for you.
I use to question everything when I was young in the South Bronx. Someone once said that rock and roll is a fad and will be going away soon. They said dance music was taking over. Some other dope said Rap would never become mainstream. I thought that was crap. I knew it was going to be around for a long time. But whenever I would ask where did they hear this, They would say said MTV or some news channel. They had nothing but the news media. Just what someone told them. This, of course, being pre-internet where all the truth can now be found ;) it was easier to argue a good point. Today you can't argue because there are so many half-truths being thrown out there that people get hypnotized and can't even see a POSSIBILITY that someone is rigging the game and not using the whole truth. I'm sorry to say but the game is rigged, my friends. I can't even imagine what we would be listening to today on the radio If CNN was around back then!! JHS

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Kick-Ass Successful Actions

The core of my upcoming book are these 10 actions for success that I wrote in 2013.  I was coming out of two of the roughest years of my life and I thought to myself, what are the basic components I use in my life that I've always followed that bring me happiness?  Then I tried to find out, what are the components of my life that when I violate them, my survival goes down and it brings me misery?   After asking myself these 2 questions, I started coming up different items which eventually ended up being this list.  I'm sure more can be added but these work just fine for me and I feel they cover every important aspect of life.  Of course, I'm not perfect.  I try to follow these!  I don't always succeed but having them has made a big difference in my life and has brought me comfort.  I would like to share them here with you now.

My 10 Successful Actions.

1. If you're unhappy with your current situation, change it. Something can be done about it.

2. Don't hate anyone for being successful even if the work isn't your cup of tea.

3. Surround yourself with people that will motivate and inspire you and always motivate and inspire others. Those that don't find value in what you're doing don't matter so don't pay any attention to them. They will go away eventually when they realize they can't win.

4. Don't be afraid to promote your work and do it often. If you believe in what you're doing, that will communicate to others. Remember, this is Show Business so showing your business is part of the game. Can you name that famous person that never promoted anything? Me neither.

5. If you're having problems or feel stuck, ask someone you trust for some
help or advice. But never ask someone to give you work because you have a
relationship with them. And always make yourself available to help

6. Take time every day to do some personal enhancement. It can be a new
course, read a book on your art or life, a seminar. Learn something new
every day.

7. Find a solid platform for life that works for you and that you're willing to die
for. It can be a religion, a faith, belief or a philosophy of life that gives you
tools to improve your conditions and help you reach your goals.

8. Be true and honest with your partner. Get them on your side and helping you
achieve your success. At the same time help reach their goals too. You
should never have to convince a partner or anyone to help you succeed.

9. Use your time wisely. We have 168 hours in one week. After we sleep, eat
and commute we are left with anywhere between 50 and 70 hours. With
that time you need to spend time with family and work on your goals. It's
plenty of time. If you're working more hours or you feel it's not enough
time, then please refer back to # 1 on this list.

10.Take care of yourself. Eat foods that will give you energy and take good
quality supplements if needed. You need to be able to control the body at
will and make it do things. Sometimes you might be tired and want to veg
out as some say but the only goal a vegetable has is to be cut up in a salad
then devoured. Don't be devoured! Move!

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Chasing Butterflies with Someone Else's Net.

How many epiphanies can one man have before finally getting comfortable with not giving a shit about epiphanies?  Well, apparently a lot!  I for one have had more AH HA moments than I can count but it's always lead me to the next AH HA moment.  But I guess that's part of living a life of purpose and always having to readjust your big boy pants and keep moving.  Purpose!  I'm not really sure how someone goes through life without purpose but believe me, it happens.  I know this to be a fact because it seems to keep happening to me!  I'm not saying I don't have a purpose but I seem to get sidetracked by someone else's purpose and when I've finally had enough, I get the AH HA moment which has become quite famous in my home.  I run around the house yelling, "AH HA!!  I GOT IT!!" My wife just looks at me now and says, "You said that before and I always agree with you so why don't you just keep doing that!"

Well, last week I had another one!  Ok Ok!!  I'm sorry but this time it's different!  I swear!  This time I'm remembering it clearly and documenting it here in this blog so the world can read it and call me out on it next time I try to bring to fruition someone else's dreams.  Now don't get me wrong, I want to help others find their way but not at the expense of my happiness or the risk of losing opportunities.  Those lost opportunities are also people I could've helped and didn't because I was chasing butterflies with someone else's net.

This is my advice.  Wake up in the morning and think about the one thing you would want to do that day.  Now don't get cute and say sleep or coffee.  Really think about it and find out what's the one thing that you would love to do more than anything else.  When you find what it is, write it down on a piece of paper and stare at it.  Really look at it.  What will you feel?  Are you in pain by it or happy because it's what you're getting ready to spend your day doing?  It's at this moment when you will either make the biggest decision in your life or just put it aside and make excuses because you have bills to pay.  The hard fact is that most people won't even write it down.  The thought alone is painful enough.  All I can say is that you're heading towards a life of pain and struggle if you don't at least take a look at it.  You don't have to radically change your life (although it might be a good idea) but you can start making a plan to move towards your goal and passion.  Save the piece of paper and work on it.  Find people who do what you want to do and ask them for help.  You'd be surprised how many are willing to help.  I know I would be flattered if I were asked to help someone find a life living and working in their passion.  I hope the best for all of you.  JHS

Friday, February 16, 2018

Car Company Troubles....

If a car company produced a car that had a warning label on the dashboard saying, "This car might cause you to want to run off the road for no reason", that company would be out of business.
If that same car company sold cars that might explode for no reason at all, that company would be out of business.
If that car company made commercials, where they give warnings about how driving this car, might lead to your DEATH, that company would be out of business.
No company in the world gets more passes on investigations than Big Pharma and it's just sad and feels hopeless. But, Just go educate yourself on the subject and stop reading posts and getting angry. JHS