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It’s your life, live it to the fullest!

Bernie Parent


Read the original article on Philly.com.


I was driving into the office this morning, and I asked the universe for some sort of guideline. I turned on the radio, and Bon Jovi’s “It’s My Life” came on the radio, and it hit me. I have to admit, Bon Jovi says it best, “It’s my life, I ain’t gonna live forever,” and you need to heed his advice and follow your heart.



Stop living by someone else’s rules, regulations, and way of life. Adopting this method means you’ll have to ignore other people’s thinking. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. What matters is what you think. Once you realize this, then you’ll start living for you.


So many people put their happiness and hopes on the backburner because they are so afraid of what people are going to say about them, and they back off. By backing off, they miss out on all the excitement they could potentially attract into their lives. They’re afraid of what their wife might say, or what their kids might say, or what their friends might say, if they decide to put everyday life on hold to follow something that is not guaranteed. As long as you’re not hurting anyone else, do what is right for you. If you don’t, you are essentially living your life for someone else.


People with jobs, a family and responsibilities, I’m not telling you to quit and walk out on everything you are held accountable for. You take care of your own at all costs. I’m talking about making time to do the things that you want to do, and regularly.


I’m going hunting next week. If I were to let someone else persuade me into staying home for reasons that are beyond my scope of responsibility, then I’m allowing someone else to dictate what I can and cannot do; what I will and will not do. And that’s no way to live. You will have many great opportunities to add some fun to your life. Allow yourself to capitalize on them.


Passion is a large spectrum including all of the things that you truly love to do, and everyone is different.


If I walked down the streets of Philadelphia today and picked some individuals out of the crowd and asked them, “Are you living your passions? Are you truly doing what you love to do, or making time for the things that you love to do,” I truly wonder how many people would answer with a, “Yes.”


This morning, on my way to the office, I was stuck in traffic. For a good portion of my commute, my speed never exceeded five miles an hour and I was constantly pushing the breaks. Metaphorically speaking, that’s how a lot of people live their lives; going five miles an hour, never pushing the limit, stuck in “traffic” with the pressures all around them, and ALWAYS on the breaks. When you decide to let go, consider your own opinion a priority, and live a little bit, I promise you, that “traffic” will dissipate and you’ll be cruising right along.


When I ask someone to join me in a fun activity, like fishing trips or hunting trips etc., and their response is, “I have to ask permission from such-and-such,” I really start to feel for that person. Change it around! Respond by saying, “Let me see if we have any commitments or prior engagements.” If you do, then you have a legitimate reason to pass on this trip. By all means, communicate with your loved ones about your decisions, whereabouts, and all other details, but make sure your choices are yours, and not someone else’s.


How do you start? It’s simple. Just DO IT, TAKE ACTION. Live it to the fullest. Be spontaneous. The rewards are incredible! Because once it’s gone, you won’t be able get it back. That beach sunset that you missed out on, might not be there tomorrow. It’s your life. LIVE IT


Twitter: @BernieParent | Facebook: Fan Page | www.legendssportsmarketing.com | www.bernieparent.net


My Passion is the Ocean. What’s Yours?

See the original article at Philly.com.

Bernie Parent

As a kid growing up in Canada, I always fished in fresh water. In 1967 when I came to Philly, I started dating Carol, who turned out to be my wife, and her father was an avid fisherman. He took me out to sea for the first time, just maybe a half mile offshore. I was as sick as a dog. Not a good experience. But something told me I had to get back out there and try it again.


Three weeks later, I went fishing with Dick Weber, who is now the President and Chairman of the South Jersey Marina and The Canyon Club, and now holds the Mid-Atlantic 500 Tournament. But at the time, he had a 31-foot wooden boat, round bottom, rocked like hell, and was called the Bonito. Dick Weber was a teacher at the time, and he would have people charter his boat during the summer. We went with some friends about 21 miles out, and this time it was much more enjoyable, mostly because I didn’t get sick, but also because we managed to catch some bluefish and a couple small tuna in this endless body of water. On the way back to shore from that trip is when I knew that I had fallen in love with the ocean.


I had done a lot of fresh water fishing, and there were always river banks or boundaries in a lake. When you think of the universe, it’s endless. I realized that the ocean had become my universe, and I was able to ride it as far and wide as I wanted. There is no limit; you can go as far as a boat will take you. It’s up to you how far you want to go.


There’s an element of mystery in the ocean; it is deep and dark, and the movement talks to me when I get behind the helm. The ocean demands a certain respect, and it most definitely deserves it. It represents everything I believe in and the lifestyle that I choose to live. I don’t like limits or restraints. I like that the ocean represents being care-free, open, and free.


Approximately a month after the trip with Weber, I bought a 23-foot boat. I would follow the path that Weber had shown me about 21 miles out, but I still longed for more ocean. I knew a 23-foot boat wouldn’t be able to carry me there, so the following year, I bought a 33-foot boat. Longer rides, less speed, but the opportunity to take on canyons. An ocean canyon is the same as a canyon on land. About 60 miles offshore, the ocean ledge drops off to about 1600 feet below the surface. There’s some good fishing there, and you never know what you’re going to catch.


It is obvious that the ocean is a passion of mine, and most people believe that fishing is what solidifies that for me. But in all honesty, it’s about being at the helm and feeling the connection between the ocean and I. As soon as I hit that canyon, and the ocean changes color, it becomes majestic. It really is another world. When you hit the deep, you see whales, porpoises, sharks, sea turtles that could be 200 years old, basically things that you only see in your dreams or on the Discovery Channel. The waves are longer swells, and it is almost as if you’re dancing with the ocean. It reminds me that we are all connected; we are not as separate as we may seem. The power that supplies life to the deep ocean also supplies life to me.


One of my favorite trips was when I took Don Tollefson, a former sportscaster in Philadelphia, out fishing on my 40-foot boat. I had the boat docked behind my Wildwood house, and we left around 4 a.m. I promised I’d have him back on land by 7 p.m. because he had a show to do at 11 p.m. on ABC.


On our way back, we were about 40 or 50 miles out, and we caught a glimpse of birds circling over the top of the ocean, which typically means there’s a whole lot of fish near the surface. So we stopped and kept on fishing. It was such a great time that we didn’t get back until 3 a.m. the next day. ABC sent the coast guard looking for us. But we caught a lot of tuna and Don caught his first white marlin. It was obviously worth it.


One of my most productive trips to date was just a seemingly normal day out on the boat in 1988. There were five friends of mine on board including Tom Kemp. We went to a place called the 500 line in Baltimore Canyon; perfect conditions, flat seas all the way. My goal was just to keep going until noon as far as we could go, and turn around to come back toward shore.


I’ve never seen water like this before. It wasn’t a dark blue like you’d usually see in the deep ocean; it was turquoise. It may have even been a body of water that had come off the Gulf Stream. It was beautiful. We were heading southeast, and once we hit the 500 line, which is about a 2,000 foot drop-off, we got a jump on the line. Tom and I were the only ones left on deck … everyone else was seasick.


Rule of thumb for bringing in a huge fish is if you let the fish go deep, you’ll lose it. There’s too much weight to bring it back up. I told Tom, who was sitting in the fighting chair, to let me know if the fish was going deep and I would jerk the boat forward abruptly and the angle of the line would bring the fish closer to the surface. We brought the ruts in and fought this fish for 3 hours.


It was a humongous marlin that had jumped clear out of the water at least 25 times. Sadly, the marlin lost its fight and died (which was the only reason we were able to bring it in). The fish was a 15-foot monster, weighing in at 900 pounds. People got word we were coming home with a big fish, so we had a few people waiting for us, including biologists. Once we got the fish off the boat, they determined that the fish was a 25-year-old female. To this day, we still hold the record for that weight out of Cape May, South Jersey Marina.


Next week is the start of the Mid-Atlantic 500 at South Jersey Marina with the grand prize going to the biggest white marlin. It’s an expensive tournament with an average of 100 boats running anywhere from 30 feet to 80 feet. Some of them cost roughly $10,000,000 and it’s just a beautiful tournament.


Having said that, I take my boat to The Canyon Club and at night, all of the boats are set up with their flood lights on and there are 1,000 people enjoying the food, live music, prizes, and the company of fellow avid fishermen.


The next morning, all of the boats are lined up and engines start at 4:30 a.m. You’re not allowed to clear the inlet until 5:00 a.m. Once the horn sounds, you see 100 boats scatter into the ocean with the hopes of brining home that grand prize. It’s tremendous competition. You fish three days out of the five, and you’re fishing for one reason only. Some people even bring captains in from the Bahamas. But ultimately, it’s all about being in the right place at the right time.


The ocean will forever be a part of who I am. I will never lose this passion. I may get to a point in life where I can’t be out as far, but that is a long way off. There will never be a day where I get bored with the ocean. It is forever changing.


I am making myself available for readers to submit their questions pertaining to sports/life/current events/relationships/etc., to Bernie@legendssportsmarketing.com. Submit your questions and I may randomly choose yours to be the subject of my next article!


Twitter: @BernieParent | Facebook: visit my Official Fan Page |www.legendssportsmarketing.com |



Passion, vision, purpose: Your journey to success

A lack in passion and purpose will lead to a loss of control over your life and success. Do you feel as though you are prohibited by your current situation and you cannot find the method to regain control of your own fate and circumstances? There is a three step process to salvage your sanity and success, and it all starts with passion.

Confucius once said, “If you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life.” Every person has at least one passion in life, but finds it hard to make it work for them. For some it may be sports, or painting, or helping others. Whatever it is that fires you up inside, take the second step and envision it.

People may mistake vision with purpose. You have a vision, a dream, and the purpose is your substance, your outcome. Once you reach your purpose, you can’t just stop. It is a cycle.

My personal, favorite example of how passion, vision, and purpose are facilitated is good, ole’ Mr. Ed Snider. Mr. Snider is passionate about the game of hockey, he visualized one day owning a team in the National Hockey League, and achieved his purpose by building his team. He grabbed hold of his passion and used his vision to build it. He visualized what he wanted his team to be and acted upon it accordingly. The outcome, the Philadelphia Flyers, was his substance and he made it tangible.

But he never stopped.

Mr. Snider’s purpose changed to winning the Stanley Cup. Eventually, it changed to building a new arena. See the cycle?

He visualized how to accomplish these tasks, and once he did, he moved on to the next one.

Mr. Snider’s purposes and visions have impacted Philadelphia greatly. Thousands and thousands of people have benefited from his work; from management to players to fans to employees to builders, etc. Not only did he bring an NHL franchise to a city that is passionate about hockey and the joy of the game, the philanthropic and economic impact he has had on this city is undeniable with all of the jobs and projects he has created such as the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation, Flyers Charities, etc.

Before 1974, Philadelphia was in the dumps; things weren’t going well for the city. People needed something to be happy about. Mr. Snider ultimately gave the people of Philadelphia back their excitement and passion with the winning of championships. His purpose and visions revived a city plagued by depression. And 40 years later, people are still talking about it.

Let’s think of it this way. I’ve been discussing a fishing tournament for this upcoming summer. I visualize the boat and preparing for the tournament, but at the end of the day, if I don’t have a purpose — in this case being the winner of the tournament — I just have a boat floating in the water. Your purpose is connected to your passion, what you love to do. Make your passions your purpose, visualize the steps you need to take, and act on them.

My passion as a child growing up in Canada was obviously the game of hockey, and there was a goaltender by the name of Jacques Plante. I would watch Plante every Saturday night, Hockey Night in Canada. I was only 10 or 12 years old, and when we took it to the streets, I would become him. During the playoffs, I envisioned myself there. I took his place.

I wholeheartedly wanted to be a goaltender in the National Hockey League. And it’s funny, when you reach your purpose, it is very seldom the way you may have visualized it. I’ve dreamed many times about winning a championship with a shutout. My purpose was winning the Cup, but I visualized it being a shutout. When I look back today, we did win the Cup – twice — but it was nothing like what my vision had been.

When you visualize, you’re gliding, everything is smooth, almost like you are on a cloud. But when you’re physically experiencing your vision and you are in the moment, don’t let the bumps and barriers in the road stop you from reaching your purpose. Because nothing is exactly the way it may seem or turn out the way you had planned it. At the end of the day, you have to have something you’re shooting for (and not my head, please).

I recall a time in my life that I didn’t have a purpose. I hung around with people that did nothing, had nothing, and life just sucked. I became that person, too. One day, I had a moment of clarity, slammed my fist down on the table, and I told myself that I would never live this way again. If you find yourself in this situation, search yourself to find what it is you love to do. Some people may say that what they love to do won’t bring them any financial gain, but I’m here to tell people that once you take the first step, people that you don’t even know will come into your life and help you succeed. The process will take care of itself. Once you believe in this, that my friends, is when the magic happens.

Your purpose in life doesn’t have to be financial. It can be physical, mental, part of a recovery, etc. Don’t just say “I want to be successful.” Be specific. You want to be sober. You want to lose 100 lbs. And the key to my success right now is recognizing that my passion, vision and purpose could apply to every aspect of my life emotionally, physically, financially, etc. You have to remember that if you don’t like your current situation, you are the only one that can change it.

Structure your passion, vision, and purpose one step at a time. Set small goals to lead you closer to your purpose. And once you have reached it, create another one. Have as many purposes as you like, either simultaneously or one at a time. Someone is sitting out there right now, whether they’re 15 or 85, and they’re reading my articles. They may find that they are passionate about something and they’re visualizing how it may play out.

The next step is to take action, baby.

Get off your ass and find out what it’s all about. Explore your passion. Do some research. Become a participant, not a spectator. You have the ability to succeed, my friends.

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I am making myself available for readers to submit their questions pertaining to sports/life/current events/relationships/etc., to Bernie@legendssportsmarketing.com. Submit your questions and I may randomly choose yours to be the subject of my next article!

* * * * *

Twitter: @BernieParent | Facebook: visit my Official Fan Page

www.legendssportsmarketing.com | www.bernieparent.net