Personal posts

February 6, 1995: The Day That Changed My Life Forever…By Mic Johnson

Post written by Mic Johnson,  Blog Coach | LinkedIn Trainer | WordPress Web Site Guy | Rational Optimist | Jayhawk | Sushi Lover | Cancer Volunteer

NOTE: This article was first published on February 6th, 2013. I’ve made a few edits and plan to publish it every year at this time in honor of my Dad. Thank you. 



With this blog, sometimes I never know what I’m going to write about until something inspires me. Sometimes it hits me weeks in advance. Sometimes it hits me the day I sit down to write. Sometimes I see something in life, on Facebook, on Twitter, or on LinkedIn that inspires me.

But I also use this space (and I thank all of you that take the time to read, share, and comment for indulging me) to share personal stories that have impacted me and my life.

That’s part of the culture at Blue Gurus. It’s who we are. What you see is what you get. We have no choice but to be ourselves. People that work with us know they are getting real human beings who wear their emotions and passions on their sleeves every single day. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. So I wanted to share a piece of me with each of you today…

February 6th is never a normal day for me. And it hasn’t been since 1995.  Read more

Unpacked Baggage

Post written by Mic Johnson, Blog Coach | LinkedIn Trainer | WordPress Web Site Guy | Rational Optimist | Jayhawk | Sushi Lover | Cancer Volunteer

Why is honest communication so hard?

My take: People allow their mind, ego and insecurities to get in the way of taking the road less traveled by. Then the fear of “what might happen” wins out…and they do nothing. 
Unpacked Baggage What happens next: This scenario plays out time and time again until they have so much unpacked baggage that they don’t know where to start. A sense of being overwhelmed envelopes them, sometimes for moments, sometimes for days. So they never start unpacking. They find other short-term distractions/vices to avoid dealing with the baggage. And, over time, the baggage ultimately weighs them down. Sometimes for the rest of their lives.  
The irony: Amazing things happen when you’re sincere, transparent and vulnerable. The right type of people respect the courage that it takes…and will embrace you. 

IF YOU…A Stream Of Consciousness About Winning At Life

Post written by Mic Johnson, Blog Coach | LinkedIn Trainer | WordPress Web Site Guy | Rational Optimist | Jayhawk | Sushi Lover | Cancer Volunteer

LightONYou never know when inspiration might strike. Some of my best blog posts have come to me when I’m driving in my car or running around the track at the gym.

And so it is with what you’re about to read. For some reason, I woke up around 6 a.m. on a recent Saturday morning thinking about what you’re about to read below.

So I started writing, and after about 30 minutes, I was done and knew I wanted to share it with the Blue Gurus community. I hope it helps you or someone you know.

I know my list isn’t all inclusive, so I’d love to know what other items you would add. Please share them in the comments section below.

As always, THANK YOU for your support of Blue Gurus and our blog. We can’t tell you how much it means to us.



-Treat people right
-Know you aren’t in a position to judge others until you’ve judged yourself
-Work religiously on bettering yourself mentally, emotionally and physically
-Always choose “Because it’s the right thing to do”
-Help others
-Are humble
-Laugh every day
-Allow yourself to be loved
-Have given up comparing yourself to others
-Spend time regularly doing things you’re passionate about
-Trust your instincts
-Know that failing is a part of growing
-Have no expectations of other people
-Find the silver linings
-Know being right is less important than being understood
-Your opinion is most valuable when it’s asked for
-Don’t settle
-Live in the now instead of worrying about the future
-Know that money and possessions will never love you back
-Commit to spending quality time with people who build you up
-Don’t spend time with people who knock you down
-Slow down
-Take calculated risks
-Lift people up using the natural gifts you’ve been given
-Aren’t afraid to tell people how you feel
-Aren’t afraid to get outside of your self-imposed comfort zones
-Aren’t afraid to apologize
-Aren’t afraid to cry
Then, whether you realize it or not…
You’ve already won at this thing called LIFE.


The Power of Picking Up the Phone

Post written by Jason Terry, Entrepreneur | Social Coach | Web Developer | Scuba Instructor | Guitar Player | Cruise Traveler | Lego Collector

Wow.  It’s been an interesting three weeks since we got back from Vegas!  We had the usual catch up to do with emails and phone calls, but we also faced more challenges than normal….and one of them in particular could have been avoided.

Austin Durbin

Austin Durbin

But before I go there, I wanted you to know that there are a ton of great things going on in our world:

  • Mic and I are heading out to Hillcrest Country Club with Jason Moxness (Alterra Bank) and Joe Pribula (Wells Fargo) to play in a charity golf tournament for a 2.5 year old boy named Austin Durbin who is battling leukemia. The funds raised will help his family pay for medical expenses. If you’d like to contribute, they’ve set up a PayPal account.
  • We recently sold a couple of big projects including additional LinkedIn training classes for current clients and a WordPress website project for a new client that will be completed by the end of the year.
  • We’re taking our wives, Trista and Missy, to the Chiefs game on Sunday. Big thanks to our friend and client Jacob Wayman of Kansas City Internal Medicine for the invitation!
  • We donated time to a group of MBA students working on a class project studying innovative businesses (we were honored to be chosen for a case study.) Read more

What Happens In Vegas…Ends Up In A Blog Post

Post written by Mic Johnson, Blog Coach | LinkedIn Trainer | Social Coach | Rational Optimist | Jayhawk Fanatic | Sushi Addict | Cancer Volunteer

Cocktails at The CosmopolitanIn early October, Jason and I took our wives, Trista and Missy, to Las Vegas for four nights for the 1st Annual Blue Gurus Retreat!

We wanted to get away for a few days to relax, have some fun, see some shows, play some craps and celebrate what has been a rewarding and productive year for the company.

We were fortunate enough to stay at The Cosmopolitan, a gorgeous property in the CityCenter area right in the middle of the Las Vegas Strip.

A BIG THANK YOU goes out to our friend Paul Buchheit for hooking us up with wonderful rooms that had incredible views of the Bellagio Fountains and the Strip! We enjoyed a couple of cocktails with him when we got into town and it was a great way to start the trip.

View from The Cosmopolitan

Here are a few of the highlights from the trip as well as a few correlating business tips to think about:

1. On the night we arrived, the four of us went to see Cirque du Soleil’s Michael Jackson ONE at Mandalay Bay. It was a great show with lots of sights, sounds and music.
Business Tip: Don’t wait to start having fun. Jump right in.

2. On the second night, Jason and Trista saw Terry Fator at The Mirage and Missy and I took in O at The Bellagio. Jason and I both had high hopes for the shows and both walked away a bit underwhelmed.
Business Tip: Be optimistic, but know that sometimes people and companies just can’t live up to your expectations.  Read more

MICOLOGY: A Personal Journey To Life And Career Happiness

Around 5 years ago, right as the Great Recession was picking up steam and the markets and world economy were in a tailspin, I was unemployed, sitting alone in the basement of my house, and had absolutely no idea what I wanted to do next in my career.

I was scared.

I was embarrassed.

I was ashamed.

I was alone.

I was lost.

I was depressed.

I had no idea how to get out of the funk that I was in.

Ironically, I didn’t take the advice you so often get when you’re in a situation like that. I wasn’t “pounding the pavement” looking for my next opportunity. I wasn’t going to “get back out there” and get a job just to have a job. I wasn’t going out and meeting people every day. I didn’t make it my job to find a job. I wasn’t scouring the job boards every day. I wasn’t going on informational interviews.

By now, you’re probably asking yourself “Mic, why weren’t you doing any of those things? What were you doing? How did you survive?”

The answer isn’t easy, but I want to share it with you in case you’ve been in that situation, find yourself in that situation in the future, or know someone who may be there right now. But before I do, let me preface this with a couple of very important points:

1. All of those things I mentioned above are often good and necessary things to do when you’re looking to make a career change.

2. Everyone has financial challenges and realities they have to figure out during the career change process.

So why wasn’t I doing all of those things? Because I had no idea what I wanted to do for a living and I felt that I was starting to lose myself because of the career choices I’d made.

You see, throughout my career, I worked for big companies, small companies, in a home office, and in cubicle farms. I made good money, had good benefits, and so much more. I had been in customer service roles, inside sales roles, worked in communications, and eventually worked as a recruiter for several years.

But I wasn’t happy. Read more

Keep Watering

Post written by Mic Johnson, Blogger|LinkedIn Trainer|WordPress Content Guy|Social Coach|Rational Optimist|Jayhawk Fanatic|Cancer Volunteer

“Life is a roller coaster. It goes up and it goes down. All we have to do is hang on.”

– Mic Johnson

I want to share a little story of how this blog post you’re reading came to be. I got up this morning, shaved my baby face with an electric razor, brushed my teeth, watered the flowers and plants, and turned on the sprinklers. Then I went to the gym and got in an hour workout, lifting weights, doing some cardio, and ending with a few sit-ups.

The entire time I kept thinking, “I need to write a blog article today. What am I going to write about?” It’s that way for me sometimes. Sometimes I’m inspired and have all kinds of ideas to choose from. Sometimes I have writer’s block and I can’t seem to land on anything that gets my creative juices flowing.


So I thought about a few LinkedIn topics. I thought about writing how businesses can get started with blogging. I thought about talking about a WordPress web site project we’re working on. All of these ideas went through my head, but none of them inspired me enough to sit down and start writing.

I finished up my workout, got into my car, and drove home. As I pulled up to our house, the sun was shining (on an unusually cool and gorgeous morning in Kansas City) and the sprinkler was doing it’s best to help our yard get through the summer. And then the idea for this post hit me….

Keep Watering.  Read more

The Article I Can’t Stop Thinking About…Top Five Regrets Of The Dying

Post written by Mic Johnson, Blogger | LinkedIn Trainer | WordPress Content Guy | Social Coach | Rational Optimist | Jayhawk Fanatic | Cancer Volunteer

Ralph and Mic

In the last couple of weeks I’ve been faced with the death of the father of a very good friend of mine. His name was Ralph Butler and he was one of the nicest guys I’ve ever known…always encouraging, helpful, a loving husband, father, grandfather and friend.

Not only had I known him since I was a little kid, but we also were forever bonded by the fact that we both love Kansas Jayhawk Basketball.

Over the years, Ralph and I had many conversations about various Jayhawk players, teams and games. I’m going to miss him dearly, but feel confident in knowing that Earth’s loss was Heaven’s gain.

Around the time of Ralph’s passing, an article I remembered reading about a year ago resurfaced…and I can’t stop thinking about it.

I’ve shared it with so many people via email and my social networks…and I felt compelled to share it here too.  Read more

Perspective: My Takeaway From The Boston Marathon Explosions…By Mic Johnson

Mic Johnson, Blue Gurus

Post written by Mic Johnson, Blogger|LinkedIn Trainer|WordPress Content Guy|Social Coach|Rational Optimist|Jayhawk Fanatic|Cancer Volunteer

I posted the following on my Facebook page a few hours after the explosions at the Boston Marathon. It started as a simple post and then more and more thoughts and feelings started pouring out of me. I wanted to share it here and hope it helps you find…and keep…perspective.

Thanks for reading, 


I often wonder what America would be like if we could all hold on to the perspective we gain from our basic humanity being tested. 

9/11, Sandy Hook, Boston, and the countless, inexplicable, inevitable events to come in the uncertain world we live in. 

Far too many people are drunk on money, possessions, ego, greed, and power. So many are downright mean to other people and have hate running through their veins. Times like these sober them up for a moment or two and then it’s back to the bottle full of all the things that aren’t important in life.  Read more

I Normally Don’t Struggle To Write, But This Week Is Different

Mic Johnson, Blue Gurus

I’ve gone back and forth about what to write in this space this week.

I thought about writing on the importance of asking “Why?” in business.

I thought about writing on LinkedIn.

I thought about writing on how being a social business is about, more than anything else, the culture of an organization. 

I thought about writing on a Twitter moderation I did for a client’s annual luncheon recently.

I thought about writing on Christmas and the holiday spirit. 

I thought about writing a New Year’s Resolutions post. 

But I just can’t do it.

Not this week.  Read more