Keepin' it Real

Sean Keener's Personal Blog

January 26th, 2015

No Drama

While speaking with some friends last night about 2015 goals, one of them stated:

“No Drama”.

I’m a proponent of the No Drama philosophy. I made the unfortunate decision of hanging around some people who “Love Drama”.

I remember lives that were filled with huge ups and downs over nothing. I think they thought they had their own reality TV show, but of course, they didn’t.

The smallest perceived slight turned into Drama that lasted hours/days.

How tiring and wasteful.

Drama did not build good vibes between the folks involved. Perhaps it is an ANTI – 7 habits of highly successful people habit.

January 25th, 2015

Thoughts on the Your Turn Challenge

I don’t have many thoughts on this.

The past 6 of 7 days, I’ve had my 3 kids, who are 4 years old and under all on my own. Just getting the post up everyday felt good and to participate. I would like to have listened in and participated to the daily chats.

I read a few of the posts, they were interesting.

I injoyed committing and getting a blog post out every day for 7 days. Something that I haven’t done in a while (I’ve been blogging/writing online since 1998)

I’m glad that happened and happy to have participated on the small level that I did. I’m feeling the good vibes. Hope you are too.

Day 7: What are you taking with you from this Challenge?

January 25th, 2015

Surprise Myself

I’m 42 years old when this post is being written. At this point in my life, I am rarely surprised at myself.

I know that I am capable of just about anything, just like every other human on this planet is.

So the last time I surprised myself, may have been in High School as Freshman. I joined the swim team during the winter season after playing Soccer in the Fall. I was a decent swimmer, but 50 and 100 yard speed was not my strength…endurance was in running and swimming.

I trained the entire season which was not nothing at an all boys school that excelled in almost every sport. Christmas break was 2 practices per day (3 hours in the morning, and 2 hours in the afternoon) every day. It was a challenge to train that much when most of my friends were not on this intense practice regiment.

For the last meet we did a significant taper. At my events in the 50 and 100 yard races I beat my speed times by a large margin. I remember being surprised at how fast I had gone that one day.

I don’t remember being surprised by much of anything after that. Even 9/11, I was not surprised by. I had travelled around the world and felt the growing dislike of USA, and knew that some folks were just not happy with them and were liable to do just about anything.

Day 6: Tell us about a time when you surprised yourself. via the Your Turn Challenge

January 23rd, 2015

Getting Unstuck

Today’s prompt is giving advice, on getting unstuck.

One thing I’ve learned, is to be careful giving advice. Often times, doing an experience share is more powerful than giving advice – which is often presumptuous and assumes that I know what needs to be done for that person.

How I get unstuck

1 – I don’t make excuses and do SOMETHING, ANYTHING now to get unstuck.

I made a top 3 goals for 2015 that I stuck on my wall. 1 personal goal, 1 business goal, and 1 family goal. Everyday I look at that goal, and think, what is the 1 most important thing I can do to move that goal forward. For example, I have some business growth goals: so when I feel like I could do more or perhaps “stuck” on that goal, I’ll take 5 minutes to do SOMETHING to move the ball forward. Today, I sent off 2 biz dev emails to folks that I can and should develop significant business from.

2 – I share stucks everyday with people who care

Every person at BootsnAll/AirTreks, has a Daily Huddle. At the Daily Huddle, each person shares:

A) Their #1 priority for the day (specifics)
B) If they are stuck

Just sharing it, often helps that person get unstuck, and when I have a stuck, it helps me too.

3 – I make a plan to get unstuck

Before I got divorced, I made a plan (rough draft) for my wife at the time, and I to “heal” and unstuck our relationship. The plan aligned with my core values and I felt good about the plan if she would work on it with me.

She decided not to, and that quickly led to our divorce. Which might sound like a sad thing, but it wasn’t that sad for me because I was getting unstuck in the marriage. Both paths (Heal or Divorce) were getting “unstuck” and ultimately an awesome thing for all concerned.

Day 5: What advice would you give for getting unstuck? via the Your Turn Challenge

January 22nd, 2015

How to be present with young children

I am a father of three kids, aged 4 and below as well as a divorced/separated for over one year. Before the separation, I stayed at home with the kids every day.

I am also a co-founder of an Internet travel startup and CEO of a company with 30+ colleagues. I don’t tell you this because I think I am great, simply because I am Internet enabled with devices from smart phones, iPads, wifi enabled monitors/TV’s all over the place with pressures on my time and how I spend it. My life can feel like I have more things todo than time, probably like yours.

The one key to being present with children is to turn off or put away all devices. Look at the children and engage. It’s become a daily meditation: my time with my kids. I have the kids 50% of the days and am lucky to be able to focus on just them, when they are with me.

5 key tips to being present with children

1) Turn off or put away all smartphones, iPads, tv etc. for as much of the day as possible.
2) Focus your attention on the child and what is important to them. I’m lucky, in that my kids love to dance and be active.
3) When you find your mind wandering, or perhaps getting a bit bored, think about the limited time you have on this planet and with your children. Time flies and they will be adults one day and just not pay attention to you the parent as much. Be grateful for the time that you have now. A key to being present in general.
4) Plan your time, especially with less than 5 years old since they need more attention. Have several activities ready to go when their interests wane. I use art, cooking, dancing, cuddling, blocks and building, and going to the park as my standbys. This keep the kids interested and engaged as they can have short attention spans!
5) When 5 minutes of peace does happen, and they are reading a book quietly and not all over your grill, I take that time for myself to recoup, or often time, get my daily dump in. This is much more injoyable without my twins wanting to be in the bathroom at the same time to brush their teeth etc.

Bonus Idea
I ask myself, am I weak, or am I strong today? Can I focus and not “multi-task” with other devices when I am with my children? The thought of me setting a bad example for them, scares me away from being weak and wanting to “check messages” or some other thing that gives me that short rush.

Just like ourselves, we watched what our Parents did, and ignored what they said. Actions speak, Words are cheap.

Day 4: Teach us something that you do well. Via the Your Turn Challenge

January 21st, 2015

Education should be changed

How we educate our children could and should be so much better than it currently is.

As Seth so eloquently shared in his free ebook “stop stealing dreams”, the education system that I grew up with, taught and trained me to follow directions and work in a factory.

2 skills that don’t have as much value as they historically did. Ouch.

Now that I have 3 kids, I think and am aware of this challenge and change even more. Will they go to a traditional school and just get an average education?

Or will they use all the newest tools and strategies for learning that teach children how to learn and that it can be fun versus a discipline that is boring?

I will do my best to share this with them. Today, I feel like I have more tools and resources to learn and improve myself and lot in life than I ever had previously. The Internet can do that.

If there is one segment of education that I want to change the most, and perhaps I may have the opportunity to be a catalyst in this, is long-term travel as a part of a formal education.

A trip around the world for 1 year is easily doable for 20,000 USD….which is much less expensive than many US universities AND it perhaps more valuable in teaching our children.

How do I know this? I have helped enable 100,000s of young people travel long term. The feedback we here is unanimous in that this is perhaps the best educational experience money can buy.

Change, let’s change traditional education and make it so that an around the world trip is on every resume.

Wanna learn more? sign-up for more information via a non-profit that I am starting, The Travel Access Project.

Day 3: Tell us about something that you think should be improved. Via the Your Turn Challenge

January 21st, 2015


Day 2: Tell us about something that’s important to you.


– to make my own choices
– to think how I want or need to think
– of choice for me and for all others as well
– to choose my path, and but no others
– to move around the planet
– as long as they don’t encroach on other’s freedoms
– to say “no” or to choose different from what others think
– to speak and share
– to learn and try
– to go

via the Your Turn Challenge

January 20th, 2015

Why I’m doing The Your Turn Challenge

I’ve been reading Seth Godin since 1998/9 or so, I think. I remember reading him or about him before he had a blog. Books, maybe some articles somewhere. Maybe it was his permission marketing book.

He seems like a bloke that I’d like to spend time with and/or be friends with.

I bought 100 copies of his book “It’s your turn” when he asked me to. (Yeah, that blog post he wrote, felt like he was asking just me)

I’m doing the challenge because I want to write more.

I want to not be afraid to write/share, but I am.

It feels like a good idea todo it with a group associated with a prolific writer and excellent communicator like Mr. Godin.

Happy New Year to you and onwards!

January 9th, 2015

For on older Kai, Blaize and Pepper

Dear Kai, Blaize, and Pepper (Birth Order),

A few days ago, was the last official day of or your mother and father’s marriage.

Kai, I heard you once describe to others that “your parent’s didn’t get along”. Since you were 3 years old when you said it, I could not debate you. :) Today you told me you were Superman and their was no debating it. You are!

Perhaps you will read this one day. When you you do, I want you to know, that you mother and father got along well. In fact, if we were to measure the time we got along vs didn’t – We could safely say that 97%+ of the time we got along.

I have 1000s of pictures and videos to share with you three. Please ask me if you’d like to see your parents “getting along”. Hours of data of getting along that is beautiful to watch and tell stories of.

Also, ask some of our old friends like Molly, Heather, Chris and Andy, Ask Mimi, Grandpa Mike, Grandpa Dave and Mary of your mother and father to tell stories of times together and the fun we all had.

Kai, Blaize and Pepper, I’m grateful for your mother, meeting her, making magic and all three of your as well as the 5 or so years your mother and I shared.

These are the memories I think of when I think of your mother.

We met on and fell in love right away. Our 1st date was at Townshend’s Tea on Alberta Street in Portland, Oregon in April of 2008. We played cribbage while Stanley ( your 1st dog) sat below our seats. It was fun and we giggled.

The 1st year was a whirlwind. We traveled a bit.

Hawaii (2x), San Diego, New Zealand, Disney World, New York City, DC, Korea, Australia to name the places I remember.

About a year after we met, I asked your mother to marry me just beyond the breaking surf of Noosa in Queensland Australia.

We planned a simple (cost about 2,000 USD) and small (16 people) wedding in Kauai. We were off to the races and excited.

Hit the Target (Kai)
A little bit before the wedding, we were ready to try and make a baby together. VOILA! I hit the target right away and Kai came into our lives in late April 2010. Your mother was a happy pregnant woman and loved being a momma with Kai and all that it entailed.

Kai, you were a breastfeeding maniac. Both of us were so happy that you could gain sustenance in this way. You frequently wanted to cuddle while feeding with mamma.

One time, your Mother was away for a long day. You just would not have breast milk from the bottle. It had to be the real thing! We both enjoyed and appreciated the beauty in that.

The 3 of us laughed, played and grew up together for a few years. We wandered around the USA, New Zealand a few more times and had lots of adventures when you were 1 and 2 years old.

Hit the Target (Blaize and Pepper)
In May of 2012, Kai, you were about 2 and 1/2…I hit the target again! This time, the fertilized egg split after a few days and we had identical twins (Baby A = Pepper and Baby B = Blaize). It was a challenging pregnancy for your mother and I, but in the end, Blaize and Pepper are just fine.

The pressure, lack of sleep, and having 3 kids under 3 was a lot that 1st year of the twins life. Perhaps I added to the chaos as I was launching a 1st of it’s kind travel software/service and in process of buying a company.

That 1st year of the twins life, was the most sleepless year of my life. For 5 months (April through September 2013) – I was the night-time nanny for Blaize and Pepper so your mother could get some sleep. She was producing milk for the twins, and caring for you Kai. I took care of the twins at night, managed your school and did a little bit of work during the day. It was a major challenge for your mother and father. In the end, our relationship, though full of good times and results – was not strong enough to withstand this challenge and we decided that being together was not the best path.

I filed for Divorce on Dec 31, 2013 and then your mother did the same on January 7, 2014.

More of my favorite memories with your Mother

– participating in the spin classes that she taught. Your mother loved teaching and I think was in flow and happy when she taught. I hope you get to experience it one day with her.

– the process of making the babies, growing them in her womb, me caring for her and the excitement of it all… are all just awesome memories.

– the test when we learned we were having twins. I was ecstatic. A 2 for 1 special!

– As you know, your mother is a workout queen. She did it almost everyday we were together, even when 8 months pregnant and beyond. What an inspiration. Her dedication still inspires me today to get off my arse and MOVE!

– good clean fun. your mother laughs, and could be silly with me like no one else. I have so many memories of just laughing, playing cards, and just having fun without any drinking, drugs or anything. I’ll always love that about her.

– I was giving an speech about the benefits of long-term travel in 2008. BootsnAll had grown quite a bit and I was trying to be more professional and uptight, versus myself and it was not my best talk. She told me after..” yourself. You are funny and interesting. That is good enough”.

This was the best I ever felt in the context of our relationship. At that moment, I felt loved for who I am. I still take her advice everyday, just be myself.

– Stand Up Paddleboarding in New Zealand. Your mother and I would do an 8 km paddle just beyond the surf. We were both happy and exhilarated to be in nature, active and having fun together.

Yoga was a big part of our relationship. We did it together at home, in classes, retreats and encouraged and helped each other do it with you little ones around. I remember a few special moments, after a class when you mother and I were in shivansana, we would lightly hold hands for the last few minutes of class. Special moments for sure!

Running in forest park. We probably ran wildwood trail 100 times…and almost always had a blast. It was always fun to sweat together. Looking back..After the twins came, continuing todo this became difficult!

– not a drinker or drug doer- I mentioned this before…but I love this part of your mother. She might have a glass of wine or 1 IPA. She took and continues to take care of herself. She’s got a goody-goody part to her that I love.

Our relationship did end with a little bit of drama. The drama made a sad time, even more challenging for me, and my guess more challenging for your mother as well.

Even so, today, I only think of the good times and how we laughed and made magic.

You mother is a beautiful woman, kind and a loving soul, and a wonderful mom. I’m grateful to have shared some time and space with her.

I wish your mother well, send good vibes to her everyday and hope that the next partner she finds, is a better fit for what she needs. By the time you read this, I hope that this has happened if that is what she wants.

Kai, Blaize and Pepper – I am here to talk when you are ready. I have more good memories to share about you three, your mother, and I from before you would remember.

With Love and Gratitude.
-Your Pops

November 1st, 2014

Surfing at 1000 frames per second: Chris Bryan

Worth 7 minutes of my life to watch. Injoy.

from Chris Bryan

1 (503) 528-1005

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