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Me at 4 years old in the front row

If you’re like me then you’re always learning so you can reach your goals. Bigger goals than you had in the past.

Sports have played a huge role in my life in teaching me the importance of growth, progression, and permanent change.

I remember when I was 4 years old and “graduated” from pre-school (check me out in the front row of the picture above cheesin’). They had us all stand up on this podium in front of our family and say out loud what we wanted to be when we grow up. I said I wanted to be a “wrestler” (this created a tear jerker that I’ll talk about in a bit).

10 years later I started wrestling. I lost every match in my first year. It was horrible.

The only reason I started wrestling was that I…


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Change how you see money

2 years ago when I was at the signing table finalizing the purchase of my 3rd home, I remember thinking “can we just hurry this up?”. At one point the lawyer even looked at me and said: “you really don’t care about the extra stuff do you?”. I smiled at him and “no, I don’t”.

My experience of buying a home had completely changed in my mind. It was simply another transaction that would lead to a happier life for me and my family.

Really? You didn’t have ANY excitement? Yes, of course, I did!

It was a different type…


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I know we’ve all heard it before but when you change your thoughts…you change your reality. One of those constant realities for us all is how we think and live out our lives as business owners.

Before I give you my 5 ways to change your mind that will create massive change I want to tell you a story…

I really love seeing other people step into their calling.

Last year I mentored one of my students who got kicked out of college into getting an amazing job that led to him starting his own videography business with no degree…


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Being seen has been a challenge for me. Going through a divorce, being a public school teacher, and being an introvert makes me hesitate before going live, posting photos of myself, and sharing intense stories from my past. Sometimes it even stops me from living daily.

Being an entrepreneur makes it even more challenging. You can probably relate, right?

We stress over how we sound in emails, on live broadcasts, we’re scared to be on the other side of the camera, and we constantly undervalue ourselves by keeping our prices low, keeping a 9–5 in case we fail, and telling…


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Last year I wrote a pretty successful post on My Issues With Veteran’s Day. I’m much more of an honest writer now so here’s part 2.

If you know me then you know that I’m not the guy who wears the “Iraq War Veteran” hat or has the “USMC” tattoo on my chest or even discusses my military past with others. I sometimes even go as far as talking to other veterans like I’m not one. This is fun and interesting for me.

I’m not the guy who posts on facebook about sentimental issues that make people tear up or…


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I often suggest to my students that they become more “vulnerable” in their work. As artists, it seems that vulnerability is the key to being happy, sustainable and growing a real business over time. Check out this post where I link to Brené Brown; the vulnerability guru.

So here’s an embarrassing “vulnerability” story: My wife and I are high school sweethearts. We were going on our first real date. We went to watch Mission Impossible starring Tom Cruise. This was 16 years ago. My brother was home on leave from the Marine Corps at the time and I recall him…


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There are so many recent studies out there that are alarming about how much we’re on our iPhones. I do try to discipline myself at times and refrain from pulling my iPhone out and using it for anything. I’m actually going through a challenge right now where I don’t even OPEN my phone when I get home from work at night. Let me tell you, it’s difficult. But I’ve figured out some ways to creatively use my iPhone in my life. Try them out and see if they spark any creativity in your life!

1. Use It As A Scanner

I get so frustrated when people send me a document and ask me to print it off, sign it and then scan it back to them. I started streamlining this stressful, time wasting ordeal by simply taking a photo of the signed document with my phone and then emailing that photo back to them. It will be a JPG file but who cares because the iPhone photo is large and won’t lose detail. It looks just as good as a real scanner and it will save you a ton of time!

2. Create Home Movies Of Your Family

There are times when I’m like “I will (or…


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Have you ever heard that you can’t assess or test someone’s creativity? Well you can. Read on.

I am a teacher so “assessments” are always a hot topic among my colleagues…and my students.

I know that students are so concerned with assessments that I started letting them make their own assessments. Your mind probably responded by asking “but how can they be trusted?”. Good question. If you’re an educator, I challenge you to test this out with your students. Ask yourself if they’re really trying to “pull one by me” or maybe you need to let go of some control and allow curiosity to lead.

Anyways, when I let my students make their own assessments for projects there is usually someone who throws out that “creativity” should be an objective. It’s usually followed…


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When I was going through my master’s program studying “educational media production” I had to produce an art piece inspired by Andy Goldsworthy. My instructor for this course was probably the most influential educator of my life: Jeff Goodman (check out his viral YouTube video here).

Anyways, I recently listened to an interview on NPR where Goldsworthy was discussing his creative processes. This inspired me to create a similar project for my digital art students.

As we were exploring Goldsworthy’s work, his processes and discussing our curiosities I was reflecting on what his work has taught me about art and…


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1 in every 150 people in the U.S. have “Borderline Personality Disorder”

I have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). I’ve known for the a while but before that I was told that I had Bipolar Disorder (this is a common mistake apparently).

I’ve had BPD most of my life but didn’t know until someone showed me a list of the symptoms. I looked at it and said “Yep. Everyone of those is me.”

Since then I’ve been taking what’s know as Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). For me this is like “mindfullness” or “meditation” on steroids. Daily, I am asked to “look inward” and notice how I feel, how I responded to people and…

Mark Maya

Marine Corps Iraqi War Veteran, former college wrestler, & PTSD conquerer turned millennial thought leader, confidence coach, & mental health guru.

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