Myles Berrio is a creative director, speaker and published author whose mission is to impact lives one person at a time. He has been featured on The Entrepreneur Hour podcast, The Eric Holtzclaw Show, La Mega Mundial, and currently building a branding company, while growing his non-profit Love More The Homeless.
1. What's your story? What makes you unique?
Growing up from an immigrant background, mother from Jamaica and my father from Central America, Panama, hard work and sacrifice became a very well-known language to me. From starting to work at a family friend's owned restaurant at 15 years old to having 3 jobs in college while being a full-time student studying Biology, it didn't take me very long to discover how important self-awareness plays as one of the, if not the greatest KPI's to the way your life pans out for, pretty much, the rest of your life. Basically, my favorite quote by Albert Einstein, "If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will go its entire life thinking that it's stupid", explains it all. I just decided early on, that I should stop letting people judge me by my ability "to climb a tree" and not to mention, feeling "stupid" isn't extremely favorable to a healthy and successful future. I guess being that kid who spent more time in the principal's office and detention after school than in class because he couldn't stop talking, came very handy later on, with maturity and personal development of course. So, 19 years old, sitting on the hand-me-down craigslist coach of an old fixer upper apartment, I was faced with the opportunity to continue to pursue the socially accepted conventional route or a more venturous path I felt was designed for me. Of course, I chose the latter. I grew from a sales agent in nutrition to a business speaker, later publishing a book "Believing In Believing", speaking to hundreds of business leaders, managers, and executives on goal setting, achievement, personal development, sales, and marketing. Fast forward a ton of traveling, life lessons and experiences, friends and connections, and eventful memories, today, as a resident of the beautiful Atlanta, GA, I am running a small branding company and non-profit called Love More The Homeless. 23 years young today with, still, so much to learn, in addition, I implore you to ask yourself what is your design.
2. What motivates you?
What motivates me every single day I wake up, is whether or not I am using the gifts God gave me to the fullest or settling for what is just fun and easy. Whether you think you are special or not, I sincerely believe we all have gifts, some of us just never open them. Just think about it, it is not impossible to go to sleep and abnormally just never wake back up. Everything you want to accomplish, everyone you want to impact, all of the places you want to see, you get an entirely new 24 hours to at least take the next step towards turning that in to fruition. So ultimately, what motivates me is the very incredible God that gives me another incredible opportunity to be the incredible being I was designed to be. Whatever that looks like for you, every morning you get to start over, or just start period.
3. Who is a hero of yours?
If I haven't spoken about Him enough, my hero is a hero to more people than you might think. People go their entire lives looking for a relationship with someone they know will take a bullet for them. Isn't that the most profound type of relationship? Well, my hero actually did take a bullet for me, metaphorically speaking. Literally speaking, he did for me everything I could never do for Him, including giving his life to give me mine. My hero has taught me what true love means, and not the "true love" we search for in movies like the Notebook. As beautiful of a love that is, yet so complicated and conditional, this is a more beautiful meaning of love that never changes, is always patient, and always committed. He taught me the true character of giving, the meaning of forgiveness, and even more so, the true meaning of life here on earth. Jesus is my hero and I am so grateful for it.
4. What's your future plan? Your goals?
A visionary like myself has way too many goals to even count. Therefore, I will say one of my current goals for the near future is to really grow my Love More The Homeless project. I am currently working on a unique branding method that will spread the challenge on a bigger scale, and later incorporate more of engaging actions to not just give to the homeless but actually strengthen their mentality to be able to move forward in life, out of that lifestyle. Also, one of my current goals which came from a gentleman who attended one of my "How To Become A Self-Published Author" seminars, is to help him publish a very unique project we are working on. He lived through a very unfortunate past growing up, leading him to a life of incarcerations and regrets. But God completely turned his life around while imprisoned through writing beautiful poetry. So, I am committed to creating a powerful publication of his poetry, coupled with scripture, followed by blank pages for journaling or devotions.
5. If you could give one piece of advice, what would it be?
I want to answer this question with a story. On a Sunday evening there was a woman who took her husband's one week new Mercedes out to simply get some groceries. She had a car of her own that she would normally drive, but it was such a beautiful day, how could you not drive the Mercedes. About 15 minutes into driving, the woman took a right into the grocery store parking lot, only for the situation to take a left: front grill and bumper barely hanging on, the Mercedes left tire torn and the rims of both front tires bent and brutally damaged, and the right front light smashed into pieces. The woman bursts into tears knowing that a car accident with her husband's brand new car is the last thing the family needed on their plate. As she shockingly and frantically searched the glove department for the insurance paperwork and necessary documents, she also pulled out a black piece of paper folded hot dog-style with her name on it and a golden seal. She opened the piece of paper and in it read, "In case of accident, remember honey, it's you I love, not the car".
6. What is something you feel strongly about (a cause, belief, etc.)?
If I could only dive more into this and drill this into your core values, that is, figuring out what your true design is for here on earth. It is so common for people to go their entire lives trying to cut down a tree with a hammer, when all they need is an axe. I once heard a quote state, "You'd worry less about what people think about you if you knew how seldom they do." It's not enough to just please your parents or pursue an entire life based on what you were good at or liked in High School. In my opinion, those perspectives and many others, seem like a valid cause to one's life decisions but are extremely and immensely biased and limited. There is so much more to your you-ness and family members and public school systems can definitely facilitate finding what that is, but do not ultimately paint the entire picture. So, try many things, become friends with failure and enemies with comfort zones, take a gap year and travel, serve in a third world country, actually learn a second or third language, write a book, develop friends outside of your race and culture, personally develop, do anything and everything to discover where your effort matches your life's design.
Lastly, for my fellow men out there. One simple sentence. Strive to be the man you want your daughter to marry. Period.
7. What's one of the coolest things you've ever done?
I'm not going to lie, this question hilariously exposes how un-cool your life actually is or at least that my bucket-list needs to be more in effect. I guess the coolest thing I've ever done is zip-lining through the mountains of Antigua in Guatemala. At about 500 feet the zip-line was about 1700 feet in length.
8. Anything we haven't asked that you'd like to talk about.
In a world increasingly lead by app updates, notifications, social media, trends, and tech, take the time to go back in time and rejuvenate the fundamental experiences that made life possible. Instead of texting a friend you haven't spoken to in a long time, "Hey! What's up! It's been forever!", actually write and mail them a letter. Call your parents more often than you should now, because there will be a time when you feel you really should have. Unfollow people on social media that you find yourself negatively feeling inferior to their lifestyle but can't help to compare; it's just not worth not being thankful for where you already are in life. Take care of your health and don't make being busy an excuse for being negligent. It will sound like a valid reason today but too late of a regret someday. Be bold and courageous enough to do what is right for you, even if it doesn't look "right" aka "fun but dangerous" to others. There is no reason good enough to feel accepted by someone or a group of people that will cost you your life, someone else's, your marriage, or anything of utmost importance to you. Lastly, but not least, don't make decisions when you are angry and don't make promises when you are happy. Live life to the fullest by your design and as the profound, Elizabeth Gilbert wrote, "Eat, pray, love."
If you'd like to find out more about Myles, you can check out his book Believing In Believing and LoveMoreTheHomeless at www.mylesberrio.com.