Danielle Martin – Overcoming Adversity, The Journey of a Model Turned Black Belt

Danielle-Martin-BJJDanielle Martin makes life look easy in her stunning modeling pictures, but those images do not tell the story of her tumultuous journey to becoming the Jiu-Jitsu black belt she is today.

In high school, Danielle was homeless and slept in a campground restroom.

Her mother made some bad choices selling methamphetamine and went away to prison and her father was not there for her.

But instead of becoming another statistic, Danielle fought her way through hardships and has shaped an inspiring life.

After high school, Danielle found herself in a whirlwind as a professional surfer, model and TV personality.

She grew up in Hawaii where she began surfing when she was seven years old. Her passion for surfing lead to sponsorships from O’Neill, Rip Curl and others.

Professional surfing led Danielle to modeling jobs with major national brands like Nordstrom, Nike and Reebok. Danielle was also featured in magazines like Sports Illustrated, Shape, Health & Fitness and Surfing.

After a chance encounter on the beach, Danielle was invited to host a television show that led to roles on shows like Dirty Jobs on Discovery, Planet X on the FOX Network and Pro-Truck TV on Speedvision.

In addition to her professional career, Danielle has won multiple championship Jiu-Jitsu medals at the National, Pan American and World tournaments while progressing through the belt ranks.

Today Danielle is a motivational speaker and founder of True Boundaries — a personal protection and self-empowerment company.

Danielle started when Jiu-Jitsu schools were hard to find and she had to drive two hours round trip to get to academy.

“I don’t really know why I was drawn to it, but it was probably because I grew up not feeling safe,” Danielle said. “I think I was subconsciously preparing myself for the worst.” Continue reading

Posted in Brazilian-Jiu-Jitsu, Inspiration, Interviews | 1 Comment

How to be Happy — Success, Money and Happiness

How to be happy

The formula for success is obsolete.

It’s the model that dictates how we’re supposed to live.

We chase success expecting that happiness is on the other end. It’s not.

But if happiness is your focus you will never find it. Happiness cannot be pursued. The more you aim, the more you’ll miss.

Life is not primarily a quest for pleasure, but instead a search for love and significance.

In other words, you will find happiness when you find a reason to be happy. Once you find that reason, happiness follows automatically.

The greatest challenge is to find meaning. Here’s how… Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Entrepreneurship, Inspiration, Lifestyle Design, Personal Finance | 10 Comments

Bill “The Grill” Cooper – The Trials and Tribulations of a Fighter

Bill-Cooper-BJJBill Cooper was watching the Lakers/Bulls game while his father and sister were arguing in front of the television.

Bill was used to the yelling, so he ignored them until a Slurpee flew across the living room at his dad.

When the icy red drink exploded all over the wall, his father clenched his fists and started charging after Bill’s sister.

Bill jumped up and rushed towards his father. They started brawling on the floor until Bill ended up on his back with his dad towering above.

“He grabbed my neck,” Bill said. “So I spun my hips and sunk in an arm bar.”

Bill cinched the lock tight and yelled for his sister call the police. Continue reading

Posted in Brazilian-Jiu-Jitsu, Inspiration, Interviews | 3 Comments

Budgeting Sucks — Do This Instead: Regardless If You Earn $50K or $1,000,000

budgeting surf

Budgeting is a lot like dieting.

They both work in theory, but in the real world they are almost worthless.

Surprisingly, the secret to controlling spending is to abandon strict and impossible rules.

And forget the complicated online programs too.

Few people are disciplined enough to track their spending, but more importantly, monitoring expenses does little to change behavior.

If you track your restaurant purchases, for example, and discover you spend $300 a month, what does that tell you? It does not answer how much you value eating out and arbitrary historical numbers do little to modify your spending.

Perhaps the $300 is a frivolous waste, or maybe restaurants are the only place your family gets quality time together. In this case, the $300 a month may be the most important thing you buy. What’s outrageous to some families is insignificant to others.

Instead of boring recording keeping, you need to figure out what is really important to you. Your buying choices when funds are limited is what brings your true values to the surface.

The system that works best for most people… Continue reading

Posted in Personal Finance | Leave a comment

The Battle Between Warriors and the Public

IMG_8889-2In the middle of the morning, the 911 calls flooded in reporting a man at busy shopping center frantically waving a butcher knife.

When the officers arrived, the Hispanic man was yelling while holding the knife against his own throat.

The cops stood back and tried to talk the man down.

Hostile crowds started to form and they launched into the usual anti-police rhetoric.

The police did not create the incident, but they were forced to deal with it. They were in a no win situation.

Ignoring the man would leave the public at risk, but to communicate, the officers had to enter the deadly 21 foot range – a distance the untrained public knows nothing about.

The public dismisses the dangers of knives, but cops know the fatality rates of stabbing and shooting victims are similar.

The police were always split seconds behind, forced to play defense as they aimed a mixture of firearms and less-lethal bean bag weapons.

The officers patiently negotiated until he started wildly stabbing himself with the large knife. Continue reading

Posted in Inspiration, Police, Random | 41 Comments