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In the continued conversation, David Gittens, real estate investor, entrepreneur and host of the Motivational Monday Show talks more about the life change he went through in recent years. How it’s motivated him to stop making excuses in life, but to use his ambition to look for solutions to move him forward.
David: I just wanted to know more and more about what being a true Christian had to offer and how it could benefit my life and others. As that happened, I could just see in myself that I just kept growing and growing and started to become a better leader, a better husband, a better father. It just blossomed into … I just kind of transformed me into the person you see today, the person that you had no idea who I was a year and a half ago.
Charles: Yeah, it’s kind of a paradox, isn’t it, to where giving your life to Christ, in a way, gives you more control over your life, right? In a way-
David: It’s a crazy thought.
Charles: It’s interesting how you give your reins to the Lord, and the Lord basically shows you how to be free in your life.
David: Yeah, we talk about that at church sometimes or our Pastor Loren talks in his sermons about how … I can see it. Before I didn’t want to come to Christ, because I thought that I have to give up all these things that I thought brought me joy, smoking and alcohol, and women, you name it, but it was only when I came to the Lord where I realized that I was in bondage by those things. Doing my best to be a good Christian was when I felt the most free, when I felt the most secure, and when I felt that I had finally reached identity for who I really am.
Charles: Yeah, it’s almost kind of like you’re swapping out the dirty high for a clean high.
David: Yeah, yeah, very true.
David: Very true.
David: Everything that I have today with my ambitions, my goals, my fixed relationships, everything, I feel when I got baptized, I got this veil taken off of me. They described it in the Bible, but I felt I was living in a cloud until I got baptized and I’m as able after or so to see not only what the world is all about but what my relationships, why the things that I was doing to benefit myself was affecting myself and others negatively, and that we’re not all meant to just live for what we want. Most people, that’s exactly what we do. We just live for ourselves. We don’t live for others. We want me, me, me, and maybe that’s by design. I don’t know. It says in the Scripture that the devil does not want you to be on his side. The devil wants you to be on your side, and that’s what’s going to lead you away from Christ.
David: I can see that as clear as day, whereas, before I was just living. I was doing what I wanted to do. If I wanted to be mean or nasty to somebody, if they got in my face about something that I just do, and I’d get that a little bit of comfort, but things like that never benefit anybody.
David: They gave me a smidge of satisfaction, and maybe I ruined that person’s day, maybe they out lash for a reason because maybe they’re going through a divorce, maybe they are having issues with their kids. I don’t know. They lash out to me and instead of being like, listen, dissolving a situation, being a light in their dark place, I lash back. It didn’t benefit me. It probably put them in a deeper hole wherever they were. It doesn’t help. Negativity, it’s contagious and it’s poisonous.
Charles: Right, it’s like an energy.
David: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Charles: It’s an energy that we choose whether or not to follow after the positive or the negative. One of the other things that I’ve seen is that your son is like a mirror image of you. What I mean by that is that the way that I found out more about you was actually through your son. Your son was the one that said to me this quote. He said to me, “No excuses, just solutions”. Your son, your son who is, I think at that time, I think he’s about … He’s in first grade right now, isn’t he?
David: He’s probably five at that time.
Charles: Yeah, how did he come upon that idea? No excuses, just solutions.
David: I instilled that in him, because kids are kids, they get lazy. Anything from him not wanting to ride his bike to him not wanting to open fruit snacks to him just not wanting to do minor things, I wanted to instill in him that instead of making solutions about why you can’t do it because it’s too hard or it’s challenging, discover a solution, and then that’s how you’re going to get to it. It’s funny how you say though that he’s a mirror image of me because that is probably my main motivator to keep in this positive mindset is because I know that in the back of my mind he is a mirror image, so if I am a pessimist, he’s going to be a pessimist.
Charles: It’ll rub right off.
David: If I am an optimist, he’s … I mean, his potential is outstanding. He’s five years old, and he’s repeating these things. He knows that if he can’t figure something out, he’d better try it a couple of times before he said, “Dad, I’m having a real struggle with this. I tried this. I tried that”. He’s coming up with solutions on his own. On top of that, I tell him that if he says can’t, it’s got to be legitimate like, he says, “I can’t climb on top of the roof by myself,” then that’s understandable, but if he says I can’t because he’s just being lazy or he hasn’t tried it, he’s got to give me 10 pushups.
David: I’ll do those 10 pushups with him, but guess what? He doesn’t say, “I can’t”, anymore.
David: If he slips up and does say it, guess what? I’d say, “It sounds like pushups to me”. He already got me, and he instantly figures it out.
Charles: It’s empowering, I bet, for him. It sounds like it’s something that, there’s always an action. There’s always something that he can do rather than just sit around on the sidelines and just mope about it. You’re prodding him into, you need to take action, just don’t think about it, right?
David: Absolutely, and that’s a lot of what I’ve been learning too, following inspirational people is you can think about what you’re going to do, you can wish about it, you can pray about it, but if you take no action, you’re not going to get those things.
Charles: That’s useless, isn’t it?
David: You get none of those things done.
David: I even feel like, in the aspect of prayer, prayer is powerful, but if you’re not willing to take advantage of the opportunities that God puts in front of you to make your situation better, it’s worthless. I mean, I feel like when God has to intervene, we’ve exhausted all options, that’s, okay, it’s time for Him to step in.
Charles: Tight. Well, let me ask you this. Do you feel that you’re lucky?
David: That’s funny. I never thought I’d get that question, because I see a lot of people that have done it, that are super successful, say that they get that question a lot or they get blamed for being lucky. I don’t think luck has anything to do with it. I think God had a lot to do with it. I think that hard work had a lot to do with it. I don’t think luck had anything to do with it.
David: I don’t go to the casino not just because I’m a Christian. I don’t go to casino because I’m not lucky, okay? If I put like $1,000 on black, it’s going to be red.
David: I’ve done that enough times, not $1,000, but I’ve done that enough times to know that gambling is not my thing. I’m just not lucky. I don’t play the lottery because I don’t think that luck is going to have anything to do with me getting the things that I want.
Charles: Prospering, right?
David: Prospering. You hear all these horror stories about people that win the lottery and they’re broke in a couple of years and they’re alone. Probably most of them is maybe they were married, and oh, I got all this money and I’m going to go load on strippers and cocaine, so then when they’re broke, they got nobody.
Charles: Yeah, their maturity didn’t match their success.
David: Absolutely. Back to your question, I don’t think that luck has anything to do with it. I think that God’s intervention in my life through Pastor Loren Covarrubias and Joel Osteen and Mountain Zion Church and all the ministers there, I think that that had a lot to do with it. I think that the hard work ethic that my mom instilled in me had the other half.
I don’t know where this ambition comes from. I don’t know how I can get up at 4:30, work until 2:30, get off, go get the kid from the bus, make sure he’s taken care of, fed, stuff like that, kiss the wife, go back to work, work until it’s dark out, make sure the kids are tucked in, read a book until I’m ready to fall asleep, and then get up and do it all over again.
David: I don’t know where I get it from, but I do know that it’s helped get to the places I want to be. If I were to just pick up the kids, go home, turn on the television until it’s time to go to bed, those things will not get me to where I want to be, unless I was maybe lucky.
Charles: Yeah. Well, do you feel that your ambition … Because some people could view ambition as a blessing and some could view it as a curse, what do you think about that?
David: I can see how it can be a curse, because I have to really channel my energy. I have to really check myself. If I feel I’m being over ambitious, I got to really be like okay, is my family hurting from it, because of me being on the phone so much and my son just wants to have a conversation with me or draw pictures with me? I need to time block these things, and yes, because I think if you get carried away and you’re only focused on the end goal and not living in the present, then absolutely ambition can get in the way of you being successful in all aspects of your life. As far a blessing, I mean, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I don’t want to be average.
Charles: Yeah, mediocre.
David: I don’t wake up in the morning and say, “Hmm, I really want to be average today”.
David: Never, never crossed my mind.
Charles: Nobody would admit to that. Nobody wants to be average. Everybody wants to be unique in their own way, but it all depends on a person’s motivation. Would you agree with that?
David: Absolutely, and motivation starts with ambition. That’s how you keep the motivation gears running, the ambition.
David: Like somebody today might be listening to this audio, and we might be steering inside of them, and they’re going to be ready to go like a gun ready to get fired. Unless you keep that ambition moving and going every single day, then eventually the gears are going to get a little rusty, and eventually it’s going to stop, but you got to remember that motivation is something that you have to work on daily.
In This Episode
- Exchanging temporary pleasures for life-giving ones.
- Turning negativity into positivity
- Children can be a mirror image of their parents
- The benefits of taking action
- How ambition fuels us to get us to where we want to be.
David Gittens is a real estate entrepreneur and host of the Motivational Monday Show. His passion for real estate hustle is often seen on the Renegade Detroit Investors Real Estate Club live Facebook feeds. Dave’s goal has always been to be the best version of himself both personally and professionally.
Family is very important to Dave and so is his local church. You can find him playing pool at times with his Men’s Accountability Network or M.A.N Group sessions held occasionally at The District Venue in Lake Orion, Michigan.
David’s always open to new ideas on ways to improve. His hustle and drive are always reflected in his family and business ventures.