April 20, 2021

Finding the silver lining. Positive Change Expert and Author, Rick Ornelas shares his story, along with giving tips on how we too can become positive change experts in our own lives.


Finding the silver lining in life isn't always easy, but it's necessary to stay in a positive mindset.  Rick Ornelas  is an author and Positive Change Expert who teaches men and women to unlock their amazing potential to create an incredible future and change the world around them.  Rick shares his own stories of trials and tribulations of how finding the silver lining was the thing that helped keep him moving forward. Rick believes anyone can be a positive change expert and in this episode he shares how and why he believes this to be true.

To find out more about Rick and his I  Spark Change community, you can go to: https://isparkchange.com/
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Transcript

Rick Ornelas:

Anyone can be a positive change expert, I firmly believe that and it's just a matter of making the commitment to look for like you said the silver lining earlier to look for that silver lining in everything that you do and just in your in your daily life. Welcome to the bright side of life, a podcast where people share their personal stories of struggles, pain and grief. But through all of that, they are still able to find the joys in life.

Melissa Bright:

Hello, and welcome to this week's episode of the bright side of life. I am your host, Melissa Bright, and I am very excited for today's episode as my guest is the true embodiment of living life on the bright side. But before we get started, I wanted my listeners to know that I have given you guys a name. I have been thinking for a while of what I could call my listeners. And I find it fitting that I call you guys the bright ciders. So from here on out, that's what you guys are. You're a bright sider not only because you listen to my show, but because that's how you look at life. Also, I know it's not always easy, but this is just a reminder to always look at life. Or at least try to look at life on the bright side. Right bright ciders. Alright, and I'm still kicking off each episode with reading reviews. So this review comes from Jim and Jim Ross says, fantastic podcast. I love this podcast. Melissa is such a great host covering some really different difficult subjects. This podcast will help lots of people who may be struggling with life. I'm sure this brilliant content is saving lives. Thank you, Jim very much for the review. And if you want to leave a review, I read every single one just go to the bright side of life podcast comm and click on the review tab to submit yours. Today I am talking with Rick or Nellis and Rick is an author and positive change expert who teaches men and women to unlock their amazing potential to create an incredible future and change the world around them. He's the author of the best selling book, 12 hours of heaven lessons for a better world and founder of ice spark change, which this movement and community of those making the world a better place has grown over 800% in recent months. And their mission is to spread positive change throughout the world by living the golden rule and all they do and leading by example. Rick, thank you for taking your time for being here today. And how are you doing today?

Rick Ornelas:

I'm doing amazing, Melissa, and thank you for having me on the on the show. It's a pleasure to be here with you.

Melissa Bright:

Yes, absolutely. So before we go ahead and get into all your books and everything, I know that you personally have gone through some major life changing moments from a near death car accident to being laid off in 2020. So I know, you know, this is kind of the way I feel. But sometimes I feel when I hear about people's accolades, their accomplishments, their successes, much like yours, I sometimes feel like you and I can be so far removed from each other. And you have had all this success. And that's what I strive for. And that's why I feel that it is so important that you come on here to share your story, not only of your success, but also things that you have personally went through that you have also had hard times. And this is because I want to encourage my listeners to think about that. So as you hear, listen to Rick's story, he's not so different than you and I and this is really why I want to hear his story. Because I've always been fascinated by how people get from where they were to where they are now. So with that being said, Rick, can you share some of the events and times that have happened in your life that have been extremely difficult for you? And how did those affect you and your mindset long term? I know some events, we can usually get over rather quickly. And some of us just impact us for the rest of our lives. So do you mind sharing with us some of those events that you experienced?

Rick Ornelas:

Yeah. First off, I want to say Melissa, I love the way you frame that because we're all just a product of the events that you know, we're all made up of all the events that we've had throughout our lives and the stories of what's happened to us are what really connect us to one another. I mean, that's the essence of history. You know, if you go back all the way, you know, as far as recorded history, it's just all the stories of of what's happened and like you said, I'm no different from anyone else, I'm just someone who's sharing my story right now and who's who has written about it and is trying to share it to inspire others. But like you said, I have had many, many tragedies in my life, the most recent one being. Last year, when exactly a year ago, at this time, when a lot of us were in going heading into those uncertain times, we were heading into quarantine and shut down, and the world was just full fill of uncertainty. And we didn't know what was going on. And that's where I found myself going into an anxious and depressed place. And my business had slowed down substantially, I was late, a couple of my clients that said they need to stop their services. And so I was essentially laid off from from one of them and others had stopped their services completely. And I didn't like where I was headed, I didn't like that I was going into a place that is not comfortable for me, because I'm typically a very positive person and very, you know, look for the opportunity and everything, and I wasn't doing that. Right. And I didn't want to be the person that, you know, sat on the couch, all pandemic, you know, watching funny episodes of different shows on Netflix, right, I wanted to do something. And that, in that time, it really had me reflecting on what was important. And I wrote a blog entitled How to have a successful COVID-19. quarantine how to use it as an opportunity. Yeah. And and it was all about just that about being grateful for what you have using as an opportunity. And in writing that it reminded me of a goal that I had from years ago. And that was to write a book that had been in my head for 20 years. But before I talk about the book, I'll share the experience of because as you as you mentioned, tragedies. And that was the experience that essentially started all this. Now, I didn't know 20 years ago that it would have started, it would have led to what it didn't know, right, you know, last year. But the story is that when I was still living in Southern California at the time, and my wife and my two young daughters were in the car, and I have three now, but at the time just had two and they were one and four years old. They're very little. And we were driving back from a birthday party driving back from Los Angeles from a birthday party, and it was getting late. And the kids were tired, they were asleep. And we wanted to get home before it got dark. And it started pouring like it never does in Southern California. And and it was raining to the point where the wipers can't clear the you know, the water off the windshield. I'm used to that in Texas now. But back then in California and something you've ever used to write but right. But it was so it was such powerful rain that many cars had pulled over. And they just stopped. They were they weren't even driving, but we wanted to keep going on because again, we wanted to get home before it got late. So we decided to continue on just very slowly and cautiously. Well, unfortunately, I hit a pocket of water on the road and started hydroplaning. And the vehicle started spinning out of control. And we were in the slow lane. And we spun across four lanes. didn't hit any of the cars nearly hit the center divider. And you know, I'm screaming my wife screaming we're trying I'm trying to correct the situation, right. And we ended up spinning in the opposite direction, across the four lanes the other way. And at this point, I'm completely out of control and just wondering, you know what's going to happen and you know, just praying that my family will be safe, right, and we go off the road, up a dirt embankment and we hit up a cinderblock wall at high velocity and we flipped completely over and we land back on the wheels. And for a moment, you know, you kind of pause it and then I realized the windshield is shattered and the whole hood is everything smashed down and the right side the windows are shattered and the right side smashed and, and the cars filled with dirt from going flipping over I guess and and I you know, I look over at my wife and then my daughters are crying and so I realized, you know what, I don't know if they're okay. And we managed to get out of the vehicle and we're all completely unharmed. I mean, there's not a scratch. I mean, even the impact of my wife, you know, she was little sore on her shoulder, but we didn't have a scratch on us even with all the broken glass and everything. And a car had pulled over with an elderly couple and the the lady had wrapped a blanket around my wife because it was still pouring rain. And I was talking to the gentleman and he said that was the most incredible thing we've ever seen. We can't believe that you you got out that you were you know you got out and we had caught they'd call the paramedics and And that was, you know, a very tragic event. But the the beauty in it is that it caused me to reflect on my life at that time. Right. And I realized, you know, short, shortly after that, you know, I was given a second chance, and more importantly, that my family was alive. And that, you know, nothing tragic happened to them, you know, at my, on my hands right, under my responsibility. And, and I ended up writing a to do list for myself of things that I wanted to live by, like being present and, and cherishing my family and treating others the way I would want them to be treated. And, and that was the foundation for my book that just didn't get written until 20 years later.

Melissa Bright:

Right. And I'm so happy that that everyone's Okay, so let me ask you this, because I didn't ask you this before being an author, obviously, because you wrote your book last year, and being an positive change expert. What were you doing before? were you doing that? before? COVID? Or no, what were you doing before COVID.

Rick Ornelas:

So I've had a, a coaching, business business coaching, specifically for doctors at strategic medical coaching as the name but specifically for doctors coaching them on leadership and communication and mindset. And so somewhat related, I mean, I still still helping others and working to improve others. Right. Um, but that was the business that that slowed down. That was the business that that was put on hold, like, with everything else. Yep. And, you know, and that's when I decided to write because I suddenly had all this time on my hands and, and wanted to use it as an opportunity.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah. And I think it's amazing, because the same happened for me last year, I was a travel agent, and travel, I mean, came to a screeching halt, there was not anybody traveling. And it was a very humbling thing for me, I think I did fall into some really dark depression. But I finally asked myself, I think this was like June or July. And I asked myself, like, Melissa, you know, what makes your heart hurt? And what, what ever that answer is, how can you do that to make the world a better place? And what can you do about it? And the answer was, it hurt my heart when people felt alone in their struggles, and whatever they were going through, because even though I had my daughter and my boyfriend, there was still something going on with me. And that's how this whole podcast came to be, was because of the pandemic, essentially, you know, and it's so as much as last year was really, really hard on people, I feel like, it almost got us out of this like comfort zone to really make us almost start reflecting and thinking, is there something else I need to be doing what you know, and like you said, You obviously wrote a book during the pandemic. So you use your time quite, quite efficiently.

Rick Ornelas:

Yeah, that's a beautiful, that's a beautiful story. I'm so glad that you shared that. Because that's, I mean, I believe the same thing. I mean, 100%, unless I believe that that, you know, that it was a kind of a great awakening for a lot of people. And, you know, that's the beautiful thing that's come out of it, you know, the the lemonade out of lemons, if you will. Yeah, that's, you know, for for a lot of us that we were able to do that. And that's what I'm, that's why I'm trying to impart that on others. And you know, and show them that there, there is opportunity that they can reach that dream that they can do things that they have never done before. And get out of that, you know, that comfort zone.

Melissa Bright:

Yep, exactly. Do you feel that that the event that your car accident besides what we know now and how the book came out of it, but how else did it change your life and what you had planned for your life? Do you feel that that one single event would kind of change the trajectory? Even if it was that like you said, You became more aware you became more present? You made these lists? Do you feel that you would have done something different had that car accident not happened?

Rick Ornelas:

You know, it's hard to it's hard to say I mean, I'm like the Steve Jobs quote that you can't connect the dots going forward. You can only connect them you know, going backwards, but I know I can I can speak for my experiences that I do know this, I do know that I I grew up I was raised that family is extremely important. It's you know, the most important part of of our lives is our family. And that's what you know, my parents imparted and myself and my sisters. And so, I knew that but at that point in my life, I was young and I was selfish and I had young children and I was still getting used to being a father and still getting used to being selfless, selfless nature of being a parent, right. And I really think that's the big lesson that the accident taught me is that, you know, I was I was learning, I guess, after, you know, when you first have your first child, you learn, okay, now, it's not all about me right now. It's about someone else that I have to care for the world. And so I know, I had that I had that in me, but it really amplified that in my in my mind that look, they they are number one priority no matter what. Yeah. And, and I've, you know, that's something that I've grown in and continue to grow in, you know, to this day, that, you know, I, they always come first, right, and that that's exactly the silver lining in it all, you know, it could have taken you like you said, you're you're a younger father, whatever. And that could have taken you 234 years maybe to like, really grow into the fatherhood and being selfless where this kind of catapulted and it's like, Whoa, this is what just, I could have lost all of this in an instant. And I and I didn't. So I think that's amazing how that definitely transformed you and opened your eyes to that. So that's incredible. Yeah, thank you. And, you know, I'll, I'll add one more thing that, you know, I haven't really shared with others, but I think it's appropriate based on what you've asked, Melissa is that just a short time after that, just a few years after that, my my sister passed away. And I'm the youngest of four, but one of my sisters, my sister, Linda passed away. And she, when she died, she passed away with two infant children. So they were, you know, one and essentially one and a half to 11 months apart my niece and nephew. And, you know, when you add my accident, along with what happened with her, those two combined really, you know, helped me to see like, Oh, my gosh, life is so precious life is so short. And you know, these children are so important. And you have to do everything you can to you know, to take care of them. And in number one, and then also the the precious precious nature of life.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah. Do you feel with those two events happening? So close back to back? Was there anything in your mind that that did go to the negative like you asked, like, why me because it's very easy. When those kinds of things happen to I, well, I feel at least to get in kind of that victim mode and feel like you're just going to be dealt a bad hand for, like, why did this have to happen to me? Why did I have to lose my sister because, I mean, I've lost my mom when I was 25. And I went through that victim mode for a very long time, not even realizing it, because you don't always realize it. But it was really, really hard. I was like, I did feel sorry for myself. So did you ever experience any of that?

Rick Ornelas:

Yeah, I did. And I did. And it didn't. I mean, I remember going and seeing, seeing my primary care doctor, and, you know, he was essentially about to diagnose me as being, you know, clinically depressed at for, you know, short time after. And I think actually that experience of going to him and seen have him, you know, he's about to lay give me this label of Oh, yeah, you're depressed, right? You're, you're depressed because of what happened and everything. I think that was almost like another wake up call. That was like something that said, Look, there's, there's no way you can, you can go down that path because of my kids. Because I, you know, I saw my niece and nephew and I saw, you know, my own small children. And I was like, there's just there's no way there's no way that this can happen. You know, by that time, I we had had a third you know, I had another little one. Right. And, and so, you know, it's it's just those collections of experiences and I honestly, almost I'd never even again, connected the dots and even realize that until until you've just asked that question. Yeah, that you know that that had such an impact at that time.

Melissa Bright:

Right? It's it's sometimes crazy like people will ask questions and if you haven't ever really maybe thought of it that way or never been asked it that way it can kind of spark that which I love cuz I I'm a big reflection person, because I need to be I have lots of things. But all right, we will go ahead and and move on. So I have been intrigued to ask you this since since we talked and I still truly don't know. So you are called a positive change expert. And can you tell me what exactly that means and how you help people by that.

Rick Ornelas:

I love that you asked this because It's something that people are always curious about. And the funny thing is, are that are the real truth behind it is that I, it was someone like yourself on another podcast who, who doubted me that. And it was it was early on, you know, when my book had first come out that he, he dubbed me this and the way he phrased it, so I'll share the way he phrased it is, as I was sharing what I was doing with iceberg change, and as I was sharing what I was trying to accomplish, and my vision for everything and the positive change that I was spreading, he just simply he said, you're positive change expert, and, and I was like, oh, okay, when I got that down, I'm gonna write that down, write that down. And, and then as other started saying similar things. And so I was like, take, I'm gonna run with that. I'm gonna go with that. But but the truth, the truth is, is that anyone can be a positive change expert, I firmly believe that. And it's just a matter of making the commitment to look for, like you said, the silver lining earlier to look for that silver lining in everything that you do, and just in your in your daily life. And, you know, if people want to call me that, hey, that's great. You know, that's fine.

Melissa Bright:

You could be called worse.

Rick Ornelas:

Yeah, yeah, I could. And I know, I have, I just hope I, you know, I'd love to have an army of positive change experts, right, that there's, there's people all over the world that are doing this, and I'm sure there are people and I'm trying to seek them out. Right. But I'd love to find more folks like that.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah. And so you had mentioned about the , I Sparke Change. And so let's talk a little bit about that. And then we're going to go back to more more of your you being that expert, but I would love to hear about how this came to be and what is this and all of that great stuff.

Rick Ornelas:

It's, it's really interesting, because a couple times in our conversation, you've already talked about, um, you know, things getting sparked, or, or, you know, having like, some new idea or something, sparking change. And when I was writing my book last year, I started it almost exactly a year ago, at the beginning of April, you know, for the second week of April. And when I hit the beginning of June, I started getting so spiritually connected. And as I felt divinely inspired, that I started, my writing flourished, I went from writing seven and 50 or 1000 words in a day to writing over 2000 and a couple hours and, and I was just in, you know, what people call like that flow state where just the words were pouring out of me. And as I said, I felt like I wasn't writing the story, like I was just being given to me. And as I went in that time, that lasted for about a month, I started having dreams and visions, and all sorts of ideas for a brighter future for a better future, you know, for the brighter side of life, if you will forgive the pun, but, but I, and that's where the idea for I Spark Change came, because it's a theme that's used throughout my book, 12 hours a heaven. And it's also what I felt I was being called to create what you know, I felt this really deep calling that I wasn't just supposed to write a book that I was needed to do more, and I needed to help more people and spread that positive change, you know, become an expert in positive change and really spread that. And right after, you know, I finished writing and around the time my book was published, that's when I created the, you know, the iceburg change group and movement to start spreading that positivity and change.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah, and so what kind of what kind of things do you do? So if somebody would join? What What kind of things do you guys do? Do you guys go? Help people? I'm gonna ask you, I'm not gonna fill in the blanks.

Rick Ornelas:

Yeah, of course, I'm the the whole thing that I want iceburg change to be about and that it's, it's, you know, is becoming, you know, the vision is that is a community of those who want to spread positive change. Now, plain and simple. Now, that's up to the interpretation of these, the individual. So for one person, it may mean doing charitable work, right. It's, as we were, luckily introduced by an organization that we partnered with the July 8 project on doing some Meals on Wheels work. So now we've been doing that we've been doing some Meals on Wheels, deliveries, and that's, you know, fantastic. For others. Maybe that's not their thing, right? Maybe their thing is they want to just Go out, go throughout their day, being nice to strangers and smiling to strangers and you know, kind of kind of spreading the love that way. That's fine. It's really, I really don't want to, you know, like I say, living the golden rule that do want to others, right, that kind of keep that keeps it pretty simple, right? Yep. You know, most people are going to act positively if they are acting that way. But to further answer your question in terms of the community, and like on social media and everything, there's affirmations, there's positivity, there's scripture, there's different videos with tips on how to be more positive or have more optimism in your life or today, there's, there's one on reducing stress, because it's stress Awareness Month. So things like that. And what I'm really encouraging the community to do now is for others to share the ways that they're sparking change, and, and to continue to share videos, share, you know, post share comments to keep letting others know what they're doing to spur change in their life. Yeah, I love it. And so since you are in Texas, can anybody join from anywhere in the world to do whatever if they want to be part of iceberg change? Yes, absolutely, absolutely. Unless, so there's a Facebook community, that's just you type in the letter iceberg change on Facebook, and you'll find it. And then there's a website, which is iceberg, change, calm. But the whole point of creating iceberg change, one of the visions I had of this brighter future was that iceberg change is just, it's just phase one. It's just the early phase of what I'm trying to create. What I should say we're trying to create is that what I see it evolving into his a global community, of individuals, groups, organizations, charities, companies, it doesn't matter, just all types of people that are spreading positive change through their work through their lives, through their, their hobbies, through their endeavors. And I'm another thing that we're working on is morphing it into the world's first social media platform. That is that exact global network that is connecting individuals that are doing all those positive things. That's amazing. That is so awesome. And I I'm intrigued because I was checking out the website, and I was like, oh, if it can be anybody anywhere, then I might have to sign up. And so I'm gonna look further into it after that. Yeah, I would, I would love it if you would sign up and share. You know, I mean, even even like, podcast, for example, was even your podcast, that you're, you're giving people a chance to amplify their voice or you know, just what your podcast is all about. Right, the brighter side of life. I mean, that in itself is speaks to positive change.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah, absolutely. Okay, so now we're going to go back to this whole the whole expert, the positive expert thing? And do you? Do you feel that you have always been a positive person? And if the answer is yes. Do you feel that you sometimes still struggle? Because I feel that we can't be happy all the time? So do you still struggle daily? Or have you always been a pretty optimistic positive? Thank you to better help for sponsoring this podcast. I have been using better help for almost a year now. And the progress that I have made and my mental health has been incredible. I just want to tell you, my listeners a little bit about better help to see if it might be a great fit for you. Their mission is making professional counseling accessible, affordable, and convenient. So anyone who struggles with life challenges can get help anywhere, anytime. They offer four ways to get counseling, from video sessions, phone calls to live chat and messaging. It's also available worldwide, you will be matched with your counselor and 24 hours or less better help offers a broad expertise in their network. So it provides users with access to specialists they might not be able to find locally. Financial Aid is also available for those who qualify. So visit better help.com slash bright side of life, that's better help.com slash bright side of life, join over 500,000 people taking charge of their mental health with the help of an experienced professional. And for your first month you're going to receive 10% off by being a listener of the bright side of life. So let them know that I sent you by using the link better help.com forward slash bright side of life. That's better help.com forward slash b r i gh t side of life. The link will also be in the description section of this episode. I'd say the answer to that question is both so yes, yes. I have

Rick Ornelas:

I've always been a positive, positive person. I think that's how I was raised. I was raised with that growth mindset of looking at the bright side. Yeah, the answer. The second question is that I think we all struggle with that, you know, myself included, because things are gonna happen in your day tragedies are gonna happen in our lives, like, you know, we've discussed earlier, right, and we're all going to get down, we're all going to struggle and need help. And I think the the biggest difference between what I'm trying to accomplish and maybe some others that that struggle with it, is that I don't stay in that place for very long, that I'm, I'm constantly looking for the opportunity. And that's what I that's what I teach others, and that's what I coach others is to, to constantly be looking for that that opportunity, and that that can quickly get you out of that out of that negative mindset. Use a technique called positive reframing, where you look for the positive in any situation, and it's a good tool to help you get away from that, but that's what that's what I do. That's what works for me. Right. And you know, a lot of others and, and I think the other thing is, is looking for the opportunity, and the and the other aspect of it that can help is getting help is seeking to share what you're going through with others is to know that you're not alone, right? Um, you know, and so many folks that are going through something, they think that they're all alone in their struggle. And as we said at the beginning, it's our stories that connect us all we're all connected in those in those ways. And it's the challenges in the in the struggles that are what really connect us, not the not the, you know, the great happy times, it's all the difficult times.

Melissa Bright:

And that's that really is when I asked myself the question of like, what makes my heart hurt and all these things I I would see successful people and I'm like, Man, what, what did they do? Why do I feel like I am so far away from these people? Like I could never be or a record Nellis? And what if I if I would like have met you in person? I don't like surface level conversations, I if you would have said like, Oh, you know, I lost my sister. However long ago, as soon as you would say something like that, that would show any type of vulnerability. Now we can have a real conversation. Now I'm like, not that I wouldn't be listening to, you know, other things. But now we have connected on another level in terms of like, Oh, I lost a parent or, or whatever, we've lost somebody close to us. And those are the things that I like, like you said, those those stories and those hardships, and those are the things that truly connect us. And as much as we think sometimes that we're so different from other people, I'm starting to realize how much more alike we are than we realize. And there's it's very, very comforting to know that. Yeah. It's so true. It's so true.

Rick Ornelas:

And the unfortunate thing is, you know, we're at the most connected time in history with the internet and social media, everything, but we're also at the most disconnected time, right? Because that has led people to not have to communicate the way you're describing right to not have to have those intimate conversations that really connect us. And a lot of people communicate just on that superficial level. Yeah, and so they never really connect exactly, you know, like you were saying, and, and the other part of it is that so many, so many people live in fear, part of that connectedness, that connectedness and, and having you know, our lives be so public, is that people are constantly afraid, and I don't mean to, you know, just generalize, but a lot of people are constantly afraid of being judged, again, judged by others, because it's all visible right there on the on the screen. Right? And so they don't want to share their vulnerability. They don't want to let that out into the world. Because they're afraid of, you know, there's going to be people making hateful comments and all these things. And unfortunately, our people, there are people in the world that will will do that. But there are far more people that will be supportive. And that will embrace that individual for, you know, being vulnerable. Yep, absolutely. And that's what I've started saying that vulnerability is my superpower because when I started my podcast, and I said, I'm going to do it the right way. And when I post and when I say anything, it is going to come from my true self and people to know that you know, I struggle with mental health, with depression, with anxiety, so on and so forth. The list is very long, but and that's what connects people to people is

Melissa Bright:

Oh my gosh, Melissa, I didn't know you struggle with anxiety. So do I, and what you've just posted, I feel like that just spoke to me, I feel like you were in my head. And that is going to be much more beneficial to somebody than me posting about some superficial thing that somebody could potentially be jealous of, or I don't want that that's not what I'm trying to do. And so that's kind of that was definitely my goal. Because before that, I was really struggling with depression, I would post so superficial things, because I didn't want to talk about that. And then I somewhere had a switch. And I'm like, nope, this is what's gonna happen. It's, it's been a lot better. You know, nobody, thankfully has said anything bad. But it's not always easy to put your your stuff out there, necessarily. So not very true.

Rick Ornelas:

And you know, it's a credit to you, because I'm sure that's had a positive effect on your, your podcast and on others, you know, whether you realize it or not, I'm sure it has. Yeah. And that that's, that's, that's the goal right there.

Melissa Bright:

Okay, so now, would you say you are positive change expert, but you are also you do coaching? Correct? Yes. Okay. So, when a client comes to you, is there a common theme that you would notice in people that what could potentially be holding them back from their full potential? Or is every person a unique story?

Rick Ornelas:

Again, I'd have to answer that it's a little of both. It's a little of both, it's at least that's what I found is that, oftentimes, it's both I'd say the commonality that I've seen in clients I've worked worked with, is that a lack of belief in themselves or lack of belief in their ability, and you even alluded to that yourself earlier, we know when you were saying comparing yourself to someone else. And you know that that constant comparison, which is very easy to do, today, maybe what what the corporate is, but it may be something else from childhood or whatever, but, but a lot of times, it's that lack of belief that they can accomplish that next thing, or they can be that person that they want to be or have the success that they're looking for. So that's the first part is that that is, I'd say, probably evident 99% of the time. Yep. And then the second part, is, is a fear to take action, which stems from the first one, yeah, right. So not being not believing leads the inaction, to go to that next step that would get them to the place that they're they want to be. So a lot of people get paralyzed by that fear. And they either don't know what that next step is, when it's, you know, really apparent to someone from the outside looking in, you know, like me, and it's like, oh, you just need to do this. And like, Wow, I didn't even think about that, when, you know, it's just so plainly obvious to someone, but because, because they don't have that belief, because they have that fear that they can accomplish that they're blinded by that. And so that, so they don't take action. And I say, you know, the belief in the action, those are the two common threads that I see a lot.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah, like, you just described me that that was exactly like before, and I've done a lot of like, work in the past, I would say a year. But it, it was that I first of all, didn't believe one that I was worthy enough of success. There was a lot of stuff there. And then to like the fear and not taking action. So if I don't believe that I'm worthy of it, then why would I ever go and even try, you know, and there took a lot of a lot of work to get past past that. With that being said, I'm assuming that you have probably had clients of all that come from different backgrounds, from different stories. And people do often go through unimaginable things like losing loved ones, what have you. And for them seeing good in life almost seems impossible. So do you have a story of one of your clients that you wouldn't mind sharing one of their transformation stories to show that it is possible to get through hard times mental blocks, what whatever was stopping them from their full potential and greatness?

Rick Ornelas:

Yeah, that one that comes to mind is is a young female who was early in her career she she was and I don't want to give too much away but but she, you know, she was she's early in her career. And she was struggling to kind of find her career identity in the profession that that she was in, in helping others and It really stemmed from that belief, it really stemmed from the belief in, she had this real big desire, like, Oh, you know, I want to accomplish this and I want to be great. And she just just did not believe herself. And still to this day, she struggles with that a little bit. But she's come, you know, so far from where she was, but it led what it was leading to, it was leading to her sabotaging different things. Yep. So you know, self sabotage, to where she, you know, got a got a new position and was working, you know, was doing great for a little while, and then she kind of sabotage that, because she just, she didn't believe it. And, and that was affecting her family life she had, she had two kids, and one was was a new baby, right, so she had just had a baby. And so she was depressed after that, and all the challenges that come with having a second child and right marriage wasn't doing well. And she was just really disconnected from who she was, I guess, is the best way to put it. And, you know, we helped her to essentially find find her identity is, is the best way to explain is, you know, where we got to is that she found her true identity, and she believes in that identity. And now she's, you know, she's moved on working somewhere else has been flourishing, has been promoted multiple times, and, and is flourishing in her position. And, you know, she's even doing a challenge with her health that she's, you know, about to compete in something, and it's doing phenomenally well. And, you know, I'm really, really proud of her, you know, and how far that she's come. Yeah. And I'm sure as as her coach, it's amazing to watch that and see that happen. And I just want to go back to self sabotaging. There was a book that I read while I listened to it now I can't, well, I can, but it's a bad word, but the book on f yourself. That was one of the most eye opening books because they talk about self sabotaging. And if you think you're basically it's like, if you think whatever you think you can make it, you can make it happen. And that could be either positive or bad. So if she thought that she wasn't, let's say she wasn't qualified for that position, well, then she's gonna go somehow self sabotage that and then come back and say, See, I told you I wasn't qualified. So that fits exactly where she thought I've been there done that, too. Yeah, it's that self fulfilling prophecy that, you know, we have, you know, the reinforces that belief. And it Henry Ford is credited with saying, you know, if you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right, yeah, Confucius actually said it like 1000s of years before him in a different form. But and it's been, you know, said by many other famous people, but, you know, great people in history, but that's really true. It's, it's very, very true. Because our brains, our minds are essentially they're like a computer, whatever programming, you feed it, that's the programming it's going to run with. So if you feed that self sabotage, you know, everything, it's gonna keep going that way, it's gonna keep running, you know, that programming, until you decide, or taught or, you know, led to programming a different way. And then you'll start to have different outcomes. Yeah. And sometimes I hate and I say this so much like the cliche sayings, if you think you can, you can't, if you think you can't, you can't. But unfortunately, it's it's no more simple than that. It's literally the truth. It is, it's very true. I know, my kids. That's one of the sayings, you know, that my kids probably hate. me saying it so much that I know, but eventually, it's the time when it like really happens. And they do something that like, Dad, I thought I could, and I, and I actually did it, and then they're gonna be like, okay, now I see why dad's been saying this for years. So Oh, yeah. I mean, from the time they were young, I've told him, I never wanted to hear them say I can't, you know, Oh, I can't do it. I can't do this. And I was like, No, you're just still learning how to do you know, whatever it is, I can't write about, you know, you're just learning how to, yep, how to write it, and you're not there yet. put in the work and then you'll get there.

Melissa Bright:

Exactly. I love it. What is one of the first things that you do you do with your client when they hire you for let's say, the coaching or the positive change expert? What is one of the like, what is your first session like with them? I'm so curious about this, by the way.

Rick Ornelas:

It's it's gonna sound you know, really simple, but I want to find out everything about them. So in my notes, I call it a needs and discovery analysis. You know, it sounds so official, but all it is, is I'm really just finding out about them. You know, the number one question I always ask is, I say, Why? Why did you contact me? Why why We hear why why do you want? Why do you want to, you know, to meet with me? Why do you need help? And usually, I get a very superficial answer. And then I have to dig with, you know, four or 568. Other questions to really dig. Right. But I want to find out, I want to find that deep. Why? Because the Why is never as simple as that first knee jerk response. It's always fundamentally way, way, way, way deeper than that. You know, it's, it's not, you know, the why maybe, like, we use this other this person I discussed earlier, you know, the initial Why is, oh, I need help with my job. that that wasn't her Why? I mean, that, you know, as we discussed, I mean, that that was not her why at all? Sure, that's where that's what she thought. But once we started digging, we realized it went far deeper than that. And so I essentially want to find out, you know, what's, what's brought them to my doorstep, so to speak, and, and then I want to find out, you know, what their, what their goals are, you know, what, what do they want to accomplish by by, you know, going through coaching, or whatever they want to work on? Right? Um, you know, where do they want to be? Where if, if they could just, you know, wave a magic wand, where, where do they want to be? And, you know, there's a series of other questions that I'll ask them in there, but they're all basically centered around those, those two areas, you know, kind of where they are now, and where they want to get to, and then in there, you know, we start figuring out what the roadblocks are, what's standing in their way, what, you know, what challenges we're going to have, what things we're going to need to unpack. But the reality is, at least what I found in Melissa, is that most people and include myself in this statement is that, that most of us are kind of living here, when we could be living way, way up here, like even higher than I can reach out on the screen. Of what you see, you see me reaching from for whatever reason, right? Either the choices we've made, the beliefs we have in ourselves, or we don't know how to get there, or, you know, whatever it is, right. And, you know, it's an I mean, it, it says, you know, it says in Scripture, and, you know, there's plenty of other sources that say that, you know, we were meant to live, you know, abundant and beautiful lives and be the best version of our of ourselves. And, you know, that's what I'm hoping, you know, everybody can accomplish.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah. Do you feel that when people come to you? Have there ever been instances? Because the first question that you said, is, like, so astounding, but then again, not like, that seems the obvious one, like, why are you here? But have you ever had somebody say, like, I don't even know why I'm here. Like, that's a really good question. Because I feel like sometimes people don't ask themselves these questions until the until you say you, you just ask them the question. And they're like, oh, I've never thought about that. Now, obviously, if they're gonna hire you, they have some kind of idea. But like you said, they always have that superficial answer, and then usually, way further down the road, they come to a different answer. And I just, I think it's amazing, that, that you do that to help people because sometimes people just don't ask themselves, and they and they do, unfortunately, stay in the same place for for most of their lives. They were potential, they are destined for greatness, they could have done it. But so I like the the thought provoking questions that you ask.

Rick Ornelas:

Yeah, thank you. And I found, you know, just to, just to respond to what you're saying, I found that, you know, along with that superficial answer, sometimes people need need help in figuring that out. So, you know, they may not always say, I don't know, you know, they may usually answer The answer, like as the superficial answer, because I think that's what it is. But oftentimes, they really need help in figuring it out. And that's where, you know, the additional questions in the conversation and, you know, getting to that vulnerable place where they, they can really figure out, you know, what they need, what they need help with? And, you know, and, you know, myself, I mean, I, I had to go through a process to figure that out as well. Right. You know, I think that's, this is part of the journey for a lot of us.

Melissa Bright:

Right. And that's kind of with the question that that I asked myself, and I actually heard that on somebody else's podcast was, she had said, how she found her purpose. And she, she said, I asked myself, what made my heart hurt? And I thought about it, and then I came up with that answer. And then the next question is, okay, so how do we What is happening in the world that makes my heart hurt? And now how do I go and change that? And that she made it that simple. She's like, that's how I found out my purpose. And when she worded it that way, it like became so simple to me. I was like, Oh, well, I know what makes my heart hurt. And I know how I want to change it. And so I just love I just love that because I'm all about self referral, reflection and asking questions. So I like that question.

Rick Ornelas:

I might have to borrow that question.

Melissa Bright:

I know and I wish I wish I knew. So it's the lady from Will and Grace the the redhead from willing grace. It was her and her business partner and so I don't know which one set it I don't know if it was her the other lady, but she said it on. Jay Shetty is on purpose podcast. And I listened to it. And I was like, wow, this is the most simple thing ever. Is it really this simple? It was for me. So anyways, we sometimes it is sometimes it is that simple. To figure it out. Yep, exactly. Okay. So now we're gonna switch gears. And now we are going to finally get to your book that you wrote last year. And you wrote a book called 12 hours of Heaven? Can you explain what inspired you to write the book and what it's about?

Rick Ornelas:

As far as the inspiration? And thank you for bringing it back to the book? Yeah. So but as as because that's, that's what really started this journey, you know, a year ago, but as far as the inspiration is, it's twofold. First was, and this is one of those connect the dots, you know, stories, yeah, is, is that after my accident, after the accident, immediately after the accident, my mother was so strong in her belief that, you know, I already felt like we had been given a gift. And, you know, we were spared for some reason, but she said, you know, your guardian angel protected you all of you. And then that's why you were here, and she gave me this little gold Angel pin to put in my in my car and keep there, you know, moving forward. Right? And it was, it was at that time, after she had given me that pin, you know, right after that. I was sitting in my car, and I daydreaming or you know, you can call it a vision or Daydream or something. But I, all of a sudden saw the story from my book, in my head, very clear, like, like a movie, I just saw it all just very clear. Like it had been something that I'd watched. Right. And, and at the time, one thing I failed to mention earlier is that I did write about a page about a Word document page worth at that time. But as I said, I wasn't ready as an individual, you know, there's different things I was going through as an individual, I might, I wasn't ready to write it at that time. And so I never did anything with it. It didn't go beyond that, you know, a few paragraphs, right. And then last year, when I had written that blog, and said, Look, I'm going to use this as an opportunity. I, I had been thinking about writing that book, these signs have been coming up for the past couple years, like, you should really write that book, you should really write that book. And, and I would move along in my spiritual journey and, and in 2019, in the summer of 2019, my father passed away at the age of 96. Oh, wow. You know, I was really close with him. And I remember, you know, I had been thinking, Hey, I really should write this book. And my father was a big reader for a big chunk of his life, right and love to read. And, you know, until I got really old, but um, but he had gone in the hospital just a couple months before he passed, and I went to visit him in the hospital in California. And I was sitting there just spending as much time with him as I could for the few days that I was there. And I remember telling him that I was going to write a book, and I told him about the story. I had never told him about the story, or any or anything. And I shared the story with him. Honestly, I hadn't shared the story with anyone. And I, I share the story with him. And it's funny, because at the time, I was gonna call it 12 hours in heaven. And he said, Well, they're not really in heaven. So you should call it of heaven and took his advice to 12 hours of heaven. But I remember when I told him that I was gonna write this book. He was so proud. And he was so incredibly, like he's just so excited, right that he pressed the call button to to have a nurse come in, so he could Tell her because he wanted to share it with somebody. Oh, and, and I knew, you know, and you know, after grieving, you know, when you pass and everything, I was like, I have to write this book and, and so when I started writing, you know, I decided I dedicated the book the book to him. And I mean, my big inspiration was was that, you know, or maybe it's threefold, it was the it was the car accident, you know, leading to the inspiration for the story. You know, it was my father. Because the subtitle is lessons for a better world. And he taught me many of the lessons that are that are in the book. And, you know, and then I'd say the third, the third inspiration was just what myself and everyone was going through last year, you know, at this point in time last year, where, you know, people were getting anxious and, and I saw the, the kind of the humanity was heading, it seemed like it was heading in the wrong direction, right. People like us hadn't, we hadn't had the awakening yet. Right? Right. And people were kind of heading in that dark place, everyone was so fearful, and, you know, masks and gloves, and, you know, just hand sanitizer, and all this stuff, crazy stuff. And I was like, you know, this is not good, like, people need some hope they need some inspiration, you know, and that's what you know, and that really played an impact all of those, you know, had an impact in my writing.

Melissa Bright:

And what is the book? Because I read, so is it? Is it a? Is it a true story? Is it a series of stories? How is the book, what is the structure of the book?

Rick Ornelas:

so it's a fictional story, it's one fictional story, okay. And it's about an angel that is sent down to heaven. And he gets trapped in an elevator with 10 individuals that are all, from all walks of life, all totally different people, for 12 hours for a period of 12 hours. And in the 12 hours, that they're trapped in the elevator, he's able to help each of them through the biggest challenges of their lives. And those are the lessons that he teaches them. And, and then he learns some things about himself along the way. And he's on he's on a journey himself. That's amazing.

Melissa Bright:

I want to read it.

Unknown:

Yeah, I love you,

Rick Ornelas:

Thank you, I it's been very well received. And, and it's inspired people. And, you know, that was my whole hope in getting it out there is that it would provide some inspiration for others. And I'll just add that shortly after finishing, you know, these inspiration, inspiration comes from all sources. But shortly after, after finishing the book, I had just finished a yoga class, and I'm sitting there afterward with my instructor, you know, just chatting. And she, unknowing that I had written a book, and annoying what it was about, she was talking about some of the lessons they were the theme for class are some of the lessons in my book, right? I think it was gratitude, you know, she's talking about gratitude and being present, which are two of the lessons. And, and so I started sharing that with her. And then as we were chatting, instantly, I had, you know, inspiration to write five additional books, to write five additional, you know, kind of in a series. And so I just started writing the second one, which is actually a follow up to the first one, which hopefully will come out later this year. Yeah. If all goes well.

Melissa Bright:

That's awesome. I thought you were gonna tell me that she was. She was using these lessons. And then I thought she was gonna say that she read the book unknowingly that it was like you because I was like, That is insane.

Rick Ornelas:

No, that would have been it would have been a great story. But what she did tell me is that she did, she did get the book as soon as it came out. And she started using the lessons with her children to you know, impart those lessons on them. And they they used each lesson as a theme for a week that they were going to do that for each week, which I you know, that was that was really cool to hear. Yeah, that's amazing. Well, thank you so much for sharing that. And where can people get your book at? So it's on all the usual platforms? It's on Amazon, in Kindle and paperback versions on Amazon. You can go to Goodreads or Ingram spark or Google or any of those other places. If you searched the whole title 12 hours of heaven lessons for a better world. It'll it should pop up on Google, but for Amazon, for sure. Awesome.

Melissa Bright:

Well, thank you very much. Okay, so this is the surprise that I told you about that I wasn't gonna originally tell you about before because I didn't want you to be able to think about it and Okay, I have never done this before with any of my guests. But I promise you it's not that crazy. I feel special. I know. I want to try something different and I Like, I feel like you, you've definitely done a lot of like public speaking. So I'm like, okay, I can I can kind of test him a little bit. Okay, no pressure. But I am going to ask you a series of questions. And I want you to give me your answer. And here is the most important part is your answer in three words or less. Oh, yeah. And it was water before we do that, all right. And it's whatever, it's whatever comes to mind. I told my boyfriend about this. And he's like, What if he's not prepared? I said, Well, that's kind of the whole point. Because it's kind of like this, this rapid fire. Yeah, let's let's do it. I'm all for it. Okay. So the first question is, if you could only do one thing every day for the rest of your life to help you stay in a positive mindset, what would it be?

Rick Ornelas:

You give me an easy one to start out with. I know, see? and serve others. There you go.

Melissa Bright:

All right, and what is the best advice you have ever been given?

Rick Ornelas:

To love unconditionally?

Melissa Bright:

See, you're good at this. What gets you excited about life?

Rick Ornelas:

opportunity?

Melissa Bright:

There you go. And what can you What can you do today that you were not capable of a year ago?

Rick Ornelas:

amplify my voice?

Melissa Bright:

Oh, see, you're good at this. And this one? This one I feel is easy, because? Well, you'll see why. But if you had the opportunity to get a message across to a large group of people, what would your message be?

Rick Ornelas:

To spread positive change?

Melissa Bright:

There we go. Yeah. And what do we all have in common besides our own besides our genes that makes us human?

Rick Ornelas:

Our vulnerabilities?

Melissa Bright:

Yes. See, these are great. What is the one thing you would like you would like most? Hang on? What is the one thing you would most like to change about the world?

Rick Ornelas:

Trying to get this down to three words. I know what I want to say but three words or less?

Melissa Bright:

You're can speak like a baby.

Rick Ornelas:

Believing in yourself?

Melissa Bright:

Yes. Where do you find inspiration?

Rick Ornelas:

everywhere?

Melissa Bright:

If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake?

Rick Ornelas:

Again, I have the answer. I need to try to paraphrase it. I should have made it a sentence. I'll give you a sentence. Can see the silver lining.

Melissa Bright:

There we go. And this is my Well, this is my last question for the rep at rapid fire. But what do you love most about yourself?

Rick Ornelas:

What I'm doing now?

Melissa Bright:

There you go. Okay, so I just have two last questions for you. So with everything that you do in terms of coaching and your books, um, where can people find out if they want to find out more about you and your coaching and in any of your services that you have?

Rick Ornelas:

The best place? And thank you for asking that. Melissa? The best place would be my website, I spark change.com. There's a coaching tab. There's information about me and my background and a blog. And they're on there, they'll there will be links to various articles I've written, you know, different podcasts, things like that.

Melissa Bright:

Yeah. Awesome. Thank you. All right. And my very last question that I always ask all of my guests is Rick, what does the bright side of life mean to you?

Rick Ornelas:

So I feel like I've kind of answered that in many different ways in our conversation, but I'd say the bright side of life is looking for the opportunities and everything.

Melissa Bright:

Yes, that is perfect. Well, Rick, thank you so so much for coming on here today, to share your story and to I just want to thank you for everything that you were doing. I know that you're giving people opportunities, and you're helping people and you just want to go out there and do all these different acts of kindness just to change the world. One, one small act at a time. So thank you so much for what you do, and for coming on here today.

Rick Ornelas:

Thank you very much, Melissa. It's been a pleasure. And it's been really fun too. I really enjoyed our conversation and, and I enjoyed those questions too. And that was that was really fun. So thank you for doing that.

Melissa Bright:

Yes, you are so welcome. Thank you. Thank you bright ciders for listening to this week's episode of the bright side of life. I wanted to bring Rick on the show because like I said at the beginning, he truly does encompass what it means to live on the bright side of life. And looking at the silver lining to what he's doing with his book and his community at iceburg change. A couple of things I would encourage you to take away from this episode is one, the golden rule, which is the principle of treating others as one wants to be treated. We all go through something and it doesn't cost anything to be kind to someone. And another takeaway that really resonated for me, and I hope for you to is asking yourself those questions. What is it we really want in our lives? And are we taking action to achieve that, because we do deserve to live an abundant life. I have struggled with self worth for a really long time. And I know that's why I wasn't taking action. So maybe the first question is what is stopping me? I promise that we're all into the in this together. And it's okay if you don't know the answer, but I strongly encourage you to do some self reflecting and see what you come up with. And if you would like to learn more about what Rick is up to and everything in his books, just head on over to AI spark change.com and that will also be in the show notes so you can see that. And just another reminder, if you'd like to leave a review, you can just go to the bright side of life podcast.com and just click the review tab to submit it there. And lastly, if you know someone that may need to hear Rick's story, please share it with them because we never know if this is the one that puts hope back in their heart.

Rick Ornelas

Author, Positive Change Expert, & Founder of I Spark Change

Rick Ornelas is an author and Positive Change Expert who teaches men and women to unlock their amazing potential to create an incredible future and change the world around them. He's the author of the best-selling book, 12 Hours of Heaven; Lessons for a Better World and founder of I Spark Change. This movement and community of those making the world a better place has grown by over 800% in recent months. Their mission is to spread positive change throughout the world by living the Golden Rule in all they do and leading by example.