In recapitulating 2010 goals, achievements and events I have created this manifesto that serves also as the platform for the New Year 2011.

One word can sum-up this year: Awareness!  That is awareness to self, to my feelings, to my surroundings and to other people. Awareness to the things I feel a connection to it, to those I no longer feel connected or identified with it and awareness to the things I need to give up in order receiving new things in my life.  The result of this awareness is the change I feel inside me. It is a constant awareness of improvement to be a better father, husband, son, brother and a friend.

2010 Review:

1.      Discovery: I created a personal journal to log the things I did during the day( where and when),  to record the things I learned and why they’re important to me, any good deeds I did during the day, and a how to manifest my goals as if already happened (Nevillize concept by Joe Vitale). The result was an eye opening experience; 365 days of self -discovery to things I’ve never considered before.

2.      Law of Attraction: I am what I think so all the negative thinking was re-directed towards positive thinking to see the good, the lesson learned and thus the opportunity to make it better. This is dynamite!

3.   Change and responsibility: Believe + Commitment+ Being = Change= Results. This is formula to get what I want in my life.  Responsibility to do what I have to do until it’s done. To know what are my priorities in my life, to know what feels right and do it and to respond to life rather than react to it always moving forward!

4.   Appreciation & Gratitude: enjoy what I have and share it with others. This is the fundamental principle to attract good things in life. Give onto others and good things will happen to you. Do not expect it; it will happen at the right time and place. Trust that it will and God will take care of the rest.

  • Donated blood for the first time ever: major personal leap forward. This is something I will continue do regularly.  I also signed up as a living organ donor to seal my commitment. When it happens and if it happens I will be ready to do what I need to do. No turning back!
  • Help people by giving. Whether is money, time, resource, etc… I know I DO have something to contribute regardless of my current circumstances.  This also led me to get involved in my church community.  What I love about this is that great things started to happen. You can’t go wrong by doing well to others! Being grateful allows me to appreciate the abundance in my life. Thank you God for all the blessings I have and all the blessings I will receive
  • Started automated donations to charities that support school classrooms (, local public radio stations (,  to my local Library ( where I got my motivation and inspiration) and supporting friends who are raising funds for a greater cause: Challenge Athletes Foundation ( CAF) on behalf of my friend David Orman, Smart Ride raising HIV awareness (Jesus Roman), and Susan G. Komen 3-day  for the Cure ( Limayra Melendez).

My Major Experiences:

  • The birth of Ian Karlo (4-16 @ 1:54 PM). He is the newest resident “case worker” in the Guzman family helping his big sister to renew and maintain our marriage relationship in check.
  • Launch of my book: YOU Improved– A Personal Guide to Change and Improve the New Version of YOU. How to change your thinking, Image and Outlook on Life to Get What You Want! This is the byproduct of a decade of learning and experiencing and years of action of being, doing and having.  I’ll carry this tune to 2011.

My Negatives (turned into learning experiences)

  • Emotional rollercoaster: in my relationships, work, businesses, and life.
  • Financial meltdown: business re-organizations and an opportunity for fresh start.

My Positives (life changers)

  • Letting Go-surrender what I can’t control
  • Let go of Ego, act with humility and integrity
  • Do what is possible and trust God with the impossible

My Resources (to get things straight)

  • Meditation and Yoga: tune into the awareness frequency.  Stay active, flexible, connected to my surroundings.
  • Ho’oponopono (self-transformation technique).  This ancient Hawaiian clearing process has allowed me to love, forgive and accept myself and thus other people.  Simply repeat as a mantra when meditating: I’m sorry, please forgive me, thank you and I love you. What am I clearing? Any anger, frustration, insecurity, grudges and all negativity that dwells in my subconscious. You need to be honest and willing to change.
  • EFT and auto-suggestion:  tapping, (Emotional Freedom Techniques) help to release negative feelings and beliefs trapped inside of me. Auto suggestion is just that, ways to suggest positive thinking anywhere, anytime.  (Need for information? just Google it! Like I did. Help is just a search away!)
  • Children: my kids are my legacy. I lead them by example and continue to show them love, respect, compassion and gratitude.  I lead and they will follow. When they grow they will be productive individuals with strong values. I promise so!

And for 2011, CONTINUED

My Personal Statement I want to create unlimited wealth to share with the people I love, whenever I want without restrictions for the rest of my life. In turn I will provide my services as a “personal developer”, helping people change and improve their lives.

My Personal Quote: “You must be the change you wish to see in this world”~Gandhi

My Personal Slogan:  “Do what you say you’re going to do”. Inspired by a dear friend to keep my promise to talk the talk and walk the walk.

De-multitasking strategy for 2011:

Setting up Email and office times (following Tim Ferris’ 4HWW strategy) that will free myself from being in front of the PC all the time so I can do fun stuff and take care of my priorities. Handle one thing at the time until completion or becoming proficient at it. This way I can dedicate the time and energy necessary to do it consistently and do it well.

1st. Quarter Goals:

You Improved Book

  • Create audio-book ( English and Spanish)
  • Book translation ( Spanish, Portuguese)
  • eBook creation
  • Web-site and resources to help others change and improve their lives

Moving forward

Moving forward with this goal in mind in everything I do. Now our son is 8 months old and my daughter is already passing the goodness into him teaching him things and entertaining him. She is such a sweet helper; I can appreciate the character she starts to build, emulating traits from her Mother and myself. I am committed to revolve my time around my children, my family. We recently re-arranged our office area to be open with the living room and plan to schedule “office times” to check email and stuff without taking quality time with my children

it’s much better to write it

Looking back on my last entry on this goal, everything I wrote 8 months ago happened, I DID IT! I wrote the book! It has been a unique experience of learning and doing, taking risks and facing adversity. I started to write this book right away without caring about organization and making sense. I discover that I have gone way back in my journey of self growth, sharing my experiences with other people, living life the way I wanted to be. My intentions were set to create my guide on personal growth based on the experiences I lived during this past decade. I thought that if it helped me , it can help anyone who would like to change and improve their lives. As expected, the rest DID unfold as I progressed over the months.

Shifting focus: I want to experience Systema

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I want an instructor certification in Systema! That’s what I had as a goal since 2009 making videos and send them over to Vladimir for evaluation. The feedback I got was to continue to work on the basics, do this, don’t do that, etc…and it was back to the training floor, do more videos and send them over to headquarters for review. Over time, I’ve come to realize that I want to EXPERIENCE Systema rather than earning the certificate. Shifting my focus to experiencing Systema rather than training in Systema has allowed me to let go of my ego, the frustration of whether I am doing this right or not, the anxiety of getting reviewed by my peers and the focus of getting that certificate. All this was causing tension; my breathing was affected, my body and, therefore my movements focused in the “technique” not the principles of Systema. Going forward in 2011 I want to experience Systema, applying the principles by living it, focusing on myself, my breath, my body, and my emotions. The rest, I learned, will come naturally, becoming part of me, because Systema is part of me.

Letting Go of the Past

The end of 2010 is just around the corner making room for a New Year fill with opportunities as well as challenges. During the last week of the year I always like to clean and organize my house and businesses to receive the New Year fresh and energized.  It is always a busy week with little details to go over, tying loose ends, closing old chapters, out with the old, in with the new before the clock turns midnight on Friday night.  This past year has been an emotional roller coaster with gut wrenching turns and sickening drops as well as victorious climbs and exhilarating thrills. One thing in common is that I always end up moving forward getting on with life.

So I packed stuff up, I moved stuff around, gave up on stuff that doesn’t work for me anymore and gave away stuff that I don’t longer need.  In the process I drove with the kids to the nearest recycle center with a trunk full of paper material from a business that I had to let go during the course of the year because of the financial burden it represented.  As I moved the boxes to the recycle bin, I looked over the tons of paper, letterhead, envelopes, brochures and other marketing materials from the business with a melancholy remembering the years and memories my wife and I collected during the glory days of the business.  I realized that I was still emotionally attached to this business perhaps because I really saw the potential of it both financially as well as contributing to the community. I also remember the frustration of running the business, the letdowns, lack of direction and responsibilities. I felt that I gave it up; that I quitted at the very last minute and I froze there disappointed watching the business go to the dumpster. I felt an urge to pull back to re-start the business but soon realized it was no good. What is done, is done; another business, another life investment in the Tao of Carlos.

Suddenly Karymar who was watching me from the back seat said “Papi why did you froze?” looking at me still holding the last box of brochures and business cards.  The spell broke and I was back in the present. She said to me “Papi let go of the box” and I almost mechanically dropped the box inside the bin, thinking Karymar knows best and by letting go of the past I also left behind all that was negative about the business experience and took only the good memories and the lessons learned to later apply to yet another venture already in the horizon.

The Chronicles of Ian Karlo: The Rite of Baptism

Ian Karlo was baptized on Saturday December 18 in a small ceremony at the St. Francis Catholic church in Apopka, Florida. The rite of baptism or christening is a sacrament of Jesus Christ, a tradition in the Roman Catholic Church. For Catholics having our children baptized means the removal of the original sin, making the child one of God’s children and a member of the Catholic Church. It is an acknowledgement and commitment for parents and godparents to accept the responsibility to train our children in the practice of faith, to watch over the child’s spiritual growth to lead a good Christian life. The rite of Baptism involves different stages as part of the initiation before the child becomes part of the Catholic Church. We dressed Ian Karlo in a white gown to symbolize purity, a clean life, the innocence of a child. The Priest starts the ceremony by asking the parents and godparents to accept the responsibility of having the child baptized. He presents the cross as a symbol of the sacrifice of Jesus’ death to clear the sins of mankind. Ian Karlo was anointed with oil symbolizing the Holy Spirit. We then moved to the baptismal fountain where Ian Karlo’s received the holy water as a symbol of a new life in Jesus Christ. Then at the end of the ceremony is the passing of a lighted candle. Light is a symbol of Christian life, meaning that faith is present. The entire ritual lasted about an hour. I have been in many baptisms before and each church has its own version of the rite. What is important about the Rite of Baptism is how we take the ritual and its symbols into Christian faith for the rest of our lives. We have the responsibility for the sake of our children’s spiritual growth as well as our own faith and desire to walk in the steps of Jesus Christ.

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‘Tis the Season to Give

There is something that makes Christmas the most wonderful time of the year.  If giving was your first thought as of why this season is so wonderful, you would be correct! Giving should be an all year around thing, but we tend to focus on Christmas time to give things to the people we love or to be kind with others. How long this being going on? Well since as far as we can remember. Giving goes way back in human history; it is rooted deep in family values, passed on throughout generations from childhood to adulthood. Since we were little our parents taught us the importance of being grateful for what we have and kind with people who are less fortunate regardless of their circumstances that led them to where they are.  As we grow, the responsibility of maintaining this value passes from the parent to the child. If done well, carried on through persistence and leading by example, the values that the parents teach to the child will be carried on in their belief system way into adulthood and for life.  If this value was not nurtured during childhood, it will not be carried on into adulthood. It is here where that belief of being grateful and generous with others changes. As we grow, our views in life changes and we judge them based on our own experiences and the experiences of other people.  We all have problems of our own, bills to pay and so on that we feel the need of self-gratifying one first and if there is time and resources think of others.  We can see this trend everywhere and today’s TV commercials send the word out of “self” first hand to the masses.  We see commercials where parents give their kids video games and lots of stuff they already have. The kid’s reply is always the same “you’re the best Dad /Mom ever” and then presents the parent as the “cool parent”.  Very few if any shows people giving things or items they don’t need any more to the other less fortunate. You would see this demonstration of generosity in small, local communities. I would like it to see people being generous  with others  on a national level.

In the meantime, I make sure that my children learn the meaning of being generous with others. With the help of a friend and my sister we planned a little “toys for tots” home drive contacting a family of lower resources and with a lot of children. We asked our children to pick up the toys they like and to give away the toys they no longer use. At first there was no reaction; children cannot comprehend this until they see it. Fortunately there are cartoons on TV that foster generosity and kindness to others. Every time my daughter Karymar watched a cartoon where the characters were nice and kind with each other, I would stress the morale of the story and encourage my daughter to think in ways of how she can help others. However, no matter how much we prepared for it, choosing which toy to give away was not an easy deal. In countless occasions Karymar was unwilling to give away her stuff and it took more time and explanation to convince her to give away some of her toys. At the end, we end up with two bags full of toys to give away.

The day came when we were ready to deliver the toys to the family. When we got there we were literally surrounded by children unaware of why we were there.  Entering the house we gather all the children in the living room and after explaining why we were there, they toys were handed to our children which in turn and some reluctantly gave it to the other children.  Soon the living room floor was littered with toys; our children and the other kids were talking and showing the toys to each other. I heard my nephew saying something like “oh I had lots of fun with it” while other kids were eyeballing the toys re-considering why they were giving their toys away. Before anyone could back out of the deal and reclaim their old toys, we exit the house leaving the other kids raving about their “new” toys.  After saying goodbye, we had a small talk with our kids; congratulate them for a job well done and recalling why we did it.  With time and practice, they will get the idea gist of it and soon will be part of their values for ever to be passed on then to their own children.

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Random Selfless Acts: give to feel better

I have been working non- stop creating a sales letter to promote my book and let me say it is not an easy task trying to put together a compelling sales letter before the year is over. The deadline is looming though it is 20 days away. Creating this letter is part one of a much bigger project that rolls out at the turn of the New Year. I was feeling in a rut; ideas were not flowing and I was not making any progress. So I decided to take a break to go to my Arnis (Filipino Martial Art) class to take my mind off the project for a couple of hours. However, I was not really feeling like going to Arnis class at all and drove around aimlessly undecided on what to do going through my options since I was out of the house already. Then I received a phone call with an unusual message that really got my attention. It was from the Central Florida Blood Bank telling me that my blood type is needed and that I should go and give blood now. And just like that, without giving it a second thought, I called the number on the message and made the appointment while steering over to the nearest blood bank. I learned not to question these messages when they appear and just to go with it. Nothing bad can come out for doing something good.

When I got there, I was asked if I wanted to donate using the new state of the art Alyx System. I knew about this type of automated blood collection system that allows you to donate two units of red cells in just one visit… meaning that I could touch more lives in one visit. I was feeling great already. While donating I was watching CNN reporting some breaking news: a bomb factory house found in a Southern California neighborhood. The headlines read that the house contained the nation’s largest cache of homemade explosives. Authorities couldn’t remove the materials safely out of the house so they burned the house down. Unbelievable news I thought when the nurse technician told me that I was done. I didn’t realize that thirty-five minutes have passed. I left the blood bank happy with a “Be a hero” T-shirt and a coffee mug in hand. From now on every time I feel down, stressed or mentally blocked I know I better start giving to feel better. That is the best tonic anyone can have.

Interested? Check out this link from the Red Cross

The Chronicles of Ian Karlo: crawling and teething

Ian Karlo is learning to crawl…backwards. We like to encourage him to crawl every day to practice for his first activity next January, participating in the diaper dash category at the Disney’s kid fest. Laying on a mat on all fours, he starts to buck like a wild pony. Then he makes his move backwards away from where we wanted him to go. He gets more confused by all the calling and yelling around him trying to get his attention. He just smiles at us; his first tooth peeking out looking like a tiny grain of rice. After practice, it’s time for his exersaucer play center which it is his favorite pastime. As soon as he is put on it, he immediately starts to bounce and hard. Every morning around 5:30- 6:00 AM and after his first bottle of baby java, Ian Karlo is put on his exersaucer and everyone knows it is time to wake up. The sound made by his constant up and down on the stationary stand reverberates all over the house. Yet nobody seems to be bother by it not even his signature high pitch yells. It’s a sweet sound we all can get used to in this house. These sounds are taken to yet another level when Ian Karlo is joined by his sister who orchestrates songs teaching his little brother how to talk.

Karymar is now reading. She recently picked up a book by Dr. Seuss and started to read. We were amazed when we heard our daughter reading page by page with remarkable ease. I never liked Dr. Seuss nor understood his books until now. They’re perfect for a child who is starting to read. What a genius! I am thoroughly enjoying watching my children grow. I am constantly reminded of the little cues and hidden messages my children communicate to us. To me they’re God’s little case-workers; keeping us parents in check to make sure we care for what is important.

Mudras for the Road

Mudras are gestures or positions that in conjunction with Yoga, meditation and breathing help stimulate different parts of the body allowing energy to flow. This energy release can produce health benefits to the mind and body. Most mudras involve hands and fingers positions. We are all familiar with the “praying hands” position called Anjali Mudra or “Namaste” but there are many other mudras and combinations. Mudras can be practiced at all times while sitting, standing, lying or even walking. You don’t necessarily have to be in a Yogi position and you can do them anywhere without drawing too much attention.

During my long road trips, I practice mudras while meditating in silence just being aware of the road and everything surrounding me. On the road, time is on my side and I use that time to synchronize with myself. You can practice with one hand or both and the longer is practiced the better usually 15 minutes or more. Of course start little and then add more time as you progress.

Gyan Mudra enhances knowledge. Effective in cases of mental ailment, imparts happiness, the intellect develops, and memory is sharpened. Join the tips of the index finger and thumb and keep the other 3 fingers stretched and joined.

Shoonya Mudra Relief in diseases and pains relating to the ear. Press the middle finger on the base of the thumb and keep the thumb on middle finger. Keep the other three fingers straight.

Apaan Mudra Helps with digestion clearing the body by elimination of waste matter from the mouth, eyes, ears, nose etc. Helps when urine is obstructed, reduces constipation. Join the tip of the thumb with the tip of middle and ring finger, keeping the other finger straight.

Prithvi Mudra (mudra of earth) Reduce physical weakness. One experiences happiness. Join the tip of the thumb and ring finger.

Prana Mudra Helps in pumping the life force into your body. It’s called mudra of life. Beneficial for all types of diseases. Imparts special power to the eyes. Join the tip of the thumb with tip of little and ring finger. Keeping other two fingers straight.

Vayu Mudra Helps in diseases like arthritis, trembling in Parkinson’s disease. Better results obtained if practices after Prana mudra. Also known as the mudra of air. Press the index finger on the base of thumb and keep the thumb on the index finger. Let the other fingers be straight.

Varun Mudra (mudra of water) improves the deteriorated quality of blood due to shortage of water & gives freshness to the body. Join the tip of the thumb and little finger.

Ling Mudra (mudra of heat) Produces heat in the body and helps in curing cold and cough. Interlock the fingers of both hands together. Keeping the left thumb up (encircled by right thumb and index finger) i.e. left thumb should be vertically straight and right thumb around it.

Meditation should be part of your daily regimen of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual growth. It’s a time to recharge your body, heal your emotions, enhance mental awareness and enrich your soul. Whether I am on the road or at home, I set aside time to meditate, to reconnect with myself. Problems cause stress and the accumulation of stress can lead to a physical and emotional breakdown. However, with meditation along with Yoga poses and Mudras anyone can live a balanced life.