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March 23, 2022

Episode 19: Pursuing a LEGACY

Episode 19: Pursuing a LEGACY

   “Curator of a Bigger Vision Within,” Mark Smith specializes in speaking from his personal experience of trials and tribulations in life. His desire to chronicle CHOICES and share the “journey” of his life, resonates with everyone at our core personally and professionally.
   With his podcast “The Process,” he outlines and breaks down SITUATIONS we all go through, and offers insight on methods to weather the storms in life. Known for his clever use of acronyms within his messages, Smith gives listeners a way to remember key points as we GROW FORWARD. Mark’s vision statement of “Your Why is Greater Than Your Situation Which is Part of Your PROCESS,” gives us the perspective that we are always GROWING.

Follow him on Instagram
within_your_process

Visit his website:
https://anchor.fm/Mark-V-Smith

Download Acronyms PDF

Support the show (https://www.buymeacoffee.com/melissaebken)
Transcript


SPEAKERS

Mark (79%), 
Melissa (21%) 

Melissa Ebken
0:06

Hey, everyone, welcome back to the pursuing uncomfortable Podcast. I'm Melissa Ebken. And I have a special guest today, Mark V. Smith. And Mark has had some amazing accomplishments in his life. And as you can tell by the introduction, I am so pleased that he's with us today. So Mark, welcome to the podcast.

Mark V Smith

0:28

Melissa, thank you so much for having me today. I'm excited to be here.

Melissa Ebken

0:33

I'm so glad, Mark, you just finished teaching a class and made time for the podcast. So thank you for that. What class were you teaching today,

Mark V Smith

0:44

I work for a nonprofit in in the Baltimore area. And it's with men and women who are a lot of them are reentry by reentry. I mean, they just react with many from society from doing time in prison. Some of them who haven't worked in quite some time and some of them have been are recovering from from drug and alcohol abuse. So I work at intensively with a three week program and I help them first week is we help redirect their mindset. The second week, we actually get started with some of the tips and and skills they need to be obtaining employment. And the last week we really polish them up. So they are actually interviewing and hoping to get those those jobs they're longing for so well, we're on week one. So I said the redirection of that attitude this week is it can be challenging, but I'm starting to see it where they we're Thursday, day four, you're starting to see them come around the corner. And I'm excited about this group.

Melissa Ebken

1:42

That has to be really empowering work.

MV

Mark V Smith

1:45

It is I mean, just to see them going from I mean, some people will call it a rough piece of clay to see a motive, I just say that just teaching them to to believe in themselves again, that's the that's the main mission. And the main key because when we're at graduation, they always say, you know, I want to thank Mr. Smith for this, that and the other. Mr. Smith didn't do it. You had it in you. You just needed to believe in yourself, and take the action steps to make sure that you are living what you're supposed living the way you're supposed to, and living the dream that you should be living.

Melissa Ebken

2:18

Mark, you said something that stuck out to me. He said learn to believe in yourself again. Mm hmm. That doesn't have to be a needed lesson only when we're at say rock bottom. It can be when we're near the top or when we're somewhere in the middle of those places. It can be when we're new parents or in the middle of just the ordinary day to day stuff. How important is that belief

MV

Mark V Smith

2:48

is every day, it's a everyday occurrence. And it starts Melissa starts when we get up. It starts right the very moment, even though you mentioned something that I always say is that for everybody that's at the top, at some point, you're going to fall back. Yeah, that's a natural order of life. So it starts at the very beginning of humbling yourself at the very beginning of every morning. I me, me personally, I take I get up at 430 Every morning, not even Saturday and Sunday. That's brutal. But I get up at 430. Because I need that and want that quiet time, I want the time to actually get in tune to myself, I want to get a good workout in, I want to read a potentially read a daily devotional, I want to sit down and have some time to get my head and my mind together to thwart off any types of arrows or spears, and anything that are coming from me during the day. As you can imagine, you know, we have to be the best. We're always being watched. And I talk about that a lot. No matter where we go, no matter what we do. Somebody is observing us. And we always know what we can do about that's just a natural order of life. But we also had that option when we do encounter people all across the way it's up to us Do we even better or do it even better? That is something that we're in control of every single day. But also that glow. That glow that we have is so important and it resonates. And I you know I write I my series of process, I write in a lot of acronyms. So for me when I think a glow, I think of myself and that's gratitude living, others will witness that's, that's cool.

Melissa Ebken

4:28

And we're gonna get into some of those acronyms before we're done today. But I really resonate with what you're saying. You can feel the energy of someone come into the room who is well, you can feel the energy of someone when they come into the room. If they are at peace within themselves. That's a much different energy, a much different feeling than someone who's at war within themselves. You can feel both of those. Well, at least I can. I assume a lot of people can probably some people can't but a lot those things if you have intuition, they just really send the flag up the flagpole, so to speak.

MV

Mark V Smith

5:07

Mm hmm. My grandmother used to tell me all the time. Babies know the difference between halos and horns. Yes, I used to I used to the kind of grandma, I don't know about all that. Is that true? Or is it an old wives tale? what what do you think about it. But as you go back, that's just what you're talking about. We had that. That's that. I going to say that sixth sense, I'm gonna say that, that gifted sense, to understand what somebody truly is hurting. And they display they're displaying it or you see it internally, versus somebody who is actually feeling feeling like you're on top. So it's an amazing, amazing gift. But it's also one that we have to take a moment and recognize it, and help those who truly need to be helped at that time.

Melissa Ebken

5:51

Yeah, babies and animals. 

MV

Mark V Smith


5:55

Yeah. Yes, that's true.

Melissa Ebken


5:59

Mark, tell us a little bit about the writing you've done?

MV

Mark V Smith

6:04

Well, I thought about back in 2018, I had said that I wanted to create something that was with deep within my spirit. And by that I mean, I wanted to basically unleash the fact and talk about the fact that we all go through things in our lives. And it's okay to talk about it, it's okay to look for resources and look for help. And I, you know, I said, But to do that Mark, you have to look look within, you got to look at some of the Journey of the journey that you've had going through your life. But when I say writing it, I need to come up with a couple components that will always resonate. And that was the first one I said, Melissa is I had to believe that what I'm getting ready to start to talk about had to be able to change someone's life, I had to really believe that going back and using acronyms, which I'm going to talk about in a second was going to be a difference maker and how I get across my messages. Secondly, I had to feel that my story was worth sharing. Even if you only change one person, even it was just one person that could listen and apply some of the missions and some of the things that I had to go through and still go through. And lastly, I had to say when you put those two together, Mark, you have to make sure that that that you are displaying everything that your only your only thing that you're worried about is being defined by God, not but what other people think about what you have to say. So when I put those three together, and I said, Okay, what do you want to talk about? Or how do you want to display it? So I started to Chronicle about different elements in life that people go through whether it is finding, losing work, losing a parent, losing a friend, going through relationship issues, daily, daily things that we all embattle and go through on on a significant basis. So I said, Well, what do you want to call this? And then all of a sudden, I said, Wait a minute. Life is a process. Everything builds on each other. So many steps, everything we do is considered a process. So why don't you just call it The Process? So I did I started start writing again, like I said, back in general, excuse me, January of 20 2019. I said, I'm going to start writing this. And I did so I created thus far I've created six series, there will be 10. Right? I started with something I said, we always have to go back to when we get frustrated. And that's a foundation. You know, we always get in trouble. We always run home. So I had to have something that we can always go back or I like to call it base camp sometimes. And I did I created something called The Foundation. And the first message that I created was was Air. And everybody was like, Why would you call it Air? I said, Well, number one, you need oxygen to breathe. Number two, it is something that's essential, and technically it is free. All you have to do is go outside and enjoy it. And lastly, more importantly, it is something that is that can uplift everybody. And I said let me take it a step further. Because I'm the type of guy that I dare to be different. So I said let me just add another art on the traditional A I R which we all know so I say A I R. So that's still for accountability, which we all must do at some point. You have to be accountable for everything that you do. Number two, I said that I was integrity. You have to have integrity, doing what you say you're going to do. Long after the mood you set it in left you the next one is you have to be responsible. Now we I used to say, I have an old adage when I was younger old Mark. I used to say not my monkey, not my circus man. It's not my problem. Not my problem. But it is my problem. It is my situation what's going on right now in Ukraine. Although this is although this I'm living here in Maryland, that's still my problem, because that affects us. That affects everybody that I know, in certain ways. So it becomes a responsibility to do what's right, no matter where you are. And the last one what I think Melissa it's so key that we don't, that I think we truly feel that we've lost in society is respect, accountability, integrity, responsibility and respect. You see, I always tell that I teach in the class and I teach when I speak that you know what, I may not like exactly what you're doing. I may not like exactly what you're saying, I might not like, like your personal views your lifestyle. But guess what, I must respect you. Because you're a human being. And you deserve that respect. We don't have to agree on everything we don't. But we can shake hands we can part as friends, you will get that respect. We are too quick in society on social media on TV, we judge we ridicule we label, we put people in boxes versus giving them the respect again, I'm we talked about responsibility. I am not I don't agree with Russia's doing right now. But I respect the fact that that is the country that Putin is the leader and that's what they decided to do. It's not that that's out of my hands. I don't have to like it. But I do respect individuals for being who they are, and move forward. So I said with that first message, that first episode, that is where I'm, that's where everything needs to start, we need to be accountable with everything we do, I need to be accountable what I write about, I need to show integrity with everything that I do. Without my running, to have integrity, I have to be solid, I have to be secure. And when I'm saying I have to be responsible, I need to make sure that I'm putting things out there on a consistent basis. That means something and they impact people. And I have to do it in a respectful manner, to make sure that it has the ability not to offend people, but to enlighten people that there is something here that can help you when you need it. So that's that's how I got started with the process in 2019.

Melissa Ebken

12:03

I love it. Have you found that there are? Well it's a universal truth that the process that gets you through grief is very similar to the process that gets you through, say, a scary diagnosis. Now granted, there's going to be some medical interventions there for the diagnosis, it's not going to be there when you have grief. But the internal work is so similar, whether it's facing a fear, or overcoming something that has happened, there's seems to be a universal thread of the the steps you do to get that, to overcome that or to achieve that, even though some of the specifics may vary.

MV

Mark V Smith

12:46

And so it's a tough process, you know, and that, like the, I call that growth, I mean, it really is, is as growth. And I go back and look at you know, always tell the story of 2002 when my father passed away, I had we had an early strained relationship, and we became best friends towards the last few years of his life. He died relatively early 62 years old, of prostate cancer. But the the significance in that is there was that grief of that loss, but also compounded and took it a step further because and when he died in 2002. That was my birthday. He died on my birthday, November 9 2002. I was born November 1964. I tell him, I was trying to get away from telling my age, that's okay.

Melissa Ebken


13:38

Like doing the quick math there Mark.

MV

Mark V Smith

13:41

I want to help everybody out here. So it took many, many years of, of going through the grief process. There was times, you know, when initially, the first couple years I to me, I hated that day. I hated the whole month because it seemed like that was always playing in my mind that, you know, this is the time that I lost my dad, my best friend, and how am I going to get over that? What are the next steps of going through it? And it just as you know, I talked about before I'm defined by what God says about me, not what other people think about me. And I will never forget I was driving to work one day. And all of a sudden, it was a day before my birthday November 18. November 18 2016. I remember I was driving to work several years afterwards. Yes, a long time afterwards for almost 15 years afterwards. I was driving to work and all of a sudden I just start crying. Tears are coming down my face just start calming down my face. And I didn't know what to do. I'm like What is wrong with me? Ya know, this is why is the hitting you so bad today. So I had to pull over Yeah, I literally pulled over for off of a busy intercession pulled over into the median and in, got out. And it was almost is it was a powerful uplifting, it was like God touched my touch my shoulder said, Mark, you have to remember, you are blessed and highly favored. How many people do you know that the day that I gave you life, the day I took your father home and gave him life. And that from that moment on, that was a significant change of who I was what I thought, grief in a nutshell, because I went 15, almost 15 years of just anger, frustration, the why not knowing why this had to happen. And then that message, that message that all of a sudden, right around that time frame hit me. And it's less clear as day that that's what this meant. That was the significance of all of it, it was to make you grow. And I always think about that. And when I wrote series, two of the process, which was the perfect storm, which that counterpart wasn't perfect in life, I wrote the series of the message on growth. And I said that was a gradual reminder, obstacles will test hope, gradual reminder, obstacles will test hope, growth, that was so significant. And that experience was significant in my life, to test my hope. And I talk a lot now to people about it. Understanding that it doesn't have to take 15 years for you to accept what is here, understanding that there's resources and counseling situations and things that are available. See I didn't I refused to talk about it. I refused to talk about the death of my father, and the pain that it caused me. And finally, again, I believe that it was that time in that moment, that all that burden and everything I was feeling from that grief from that loss was finally extracted. God said, Okay, I've let you try to do it. Let me pull it out here now. I mean, let me show you that meaning, let me show you exactly the significance of what that day is. And from that point on, man, that's it's a, I view that as as that day, as one of the best one of the most remarkable days again, how many people can say that's the day that I received life. And the day that my earthly father went home to glory? Yeah, that's powerful.

Melissa Ebken

17:26

That's a huge perspective shift.

MV

Mark V Smith

17:29

Mm hmm. Very is. Very is. Very is.

Melissa Ebken

17:34

So I'm going to throw out one of another one of your acronyms. And if you don't mind, can we unpack legacy?

MV

Mark V Smith

17:42

Oh, man, that when I wrote series five, and I closed that series, or that message that was called, if I asked you if procrastination, is the thief of time, I wrote, yeah, again, talking about

Melissa Ebken


17:58

thats a whole other podcast episode right there. 

MV

Mark V Smith


18:01

Exactly. I talk about real life things. And that's what this was. And that's where a lot of my life was. But I closed a series that series with with a message on legacy. And I thought about what the true meaning of leaving a legacy is. And when I broke it down, I say, Okay, how have you been impacted yourself, Mark, and I said, that was leaders exemplifying greatness. Among choices over the years. Leaders exemplify exemplified greatness among choices over the years legacy. So I went back in pay, went back and thought about from the time that I was playing Little League football, I have been playing. I played organized sports from the time I was a little kid up until my early 20s. And I thought about this individual who impacted me, you know, I played for an organization called the Eastland Vikings, and it was an organization I was back in back in Wow, that was early 70s. And they only had a team that I had, they only had three African American or three black children on the team. And our coach John Mollison, who is was one of the greatest people that I've ever met. He taught us not about X's and O's. What it's like to be what a man supposed to be. What a father is supposed to be.

Melissa Ebken


19:23

What a coach, right there. Coaching, the people 

MV

Mark V Smith


19:27

Yeah,absolutely what a citizen is supposed to be, how you're supposed to be in your neighborhood, and you were eight years old. We're eight years old, nine years old. He's impacting us on that. And I talk about, you know, one of my first jobs working at working at Blacklick Blacklick. Woods, Ohio, for for what turned out to be a park National Park. And we were tasked to to build trails, walking trails, so all we had was shovels, axes, and blankets and wheelbarrows. So we had to literally build a, a two mile trail, we got paid for at the end, a lot of poison ivy, a lot of poison ivy, a lot of poison oak, a lot of sunburn. But I remember Thomas Williams, who was who was our leader or our boss at that particular time, he challenged us every single day to think about what you're doing. Think about the impact that this is going to have on a young child someday, a family one day, and when I really think about it, as I started to get, I'm not gonna say older, Melissa, I'm say wiser. As I started to get wiser as I start to get

Melissa Ebken


20:33

I'm on board with that one 

MV

Mark V Smith


20:34

As I started to get wiser and started to really think about my life. And so I, you know, we, I've had to clear a lot of ditches and trails inside of my life to get to where I am today, I had to, I had to fill a wheelbarrow or a thing with a lot of junk and take it and dump it. So and circle back to it. So I can continue on to go foreard as I say, so I continue to grow forward. So I think about individuals like him, go ahead, I'm sorry.

Melissa Ebken

21:01

You know, it just inspired a thought I do so much work and so much talking and so much counseling on emptying that wheelbarrow, if you will, can you imagine how much more difficult that would work would have been had, you had to hang on to all the stuff that was in that wheel barrel?

MV

Mark V Smith

21:19

I think I talked a lot. I in in this series, I talked about a specific incident. And that was when my wife went into Macy's and came back out with two bags. And the the bags, I was quite confused on what these bags were. And she said, I'll tell you, we'll talk about when we get home. Anyway, when we got home, when I started writing my series, or writing for a show, she had said you ready to see what they are. And I said yeah, and she got two bags, two big duffel bags in gray. And she said Mark You always talk about today and tomorrow. But what how you talk about you said light bag and heavy bag. So I want you to always remember, I want you to look at this. And anytime that you also, if you ever think about going back, or revisiting some of the old things that held you back, I want you to pack it, pack it in that heavy bag. Because someday we're gonna take and dump that away. And that's the same. That's the same thing that I think about when I you know, go back to legacy. Because again, it's what I was taught there was so impactful. And then I go back and think about my high school principal, my high school principal, who used to tell yeah He used to tell us all the time, on time means you late you dress for the job you want, not the job you have. You always do your best, you know, he's the first one that that unveiled Don Miguel Ruiz Four Agreements to us, you know, be impeccable to your word. You don't take things personally, you don't make assumptions, and you always do your best. So these are this is this was a leader that she was showing young kids showing young men, these types of things at an early age. I'm 18-17-18 years old. And on down to you know, the college coach, you know, that I had to my father to my grandfather, who who impart so much wisdom on me when I would take those young trips. I have a series where I wrote about taking a bus trip to a Greyhound bus at 14 years old to North Carolina to see my grandfather. And then one time my grandfather used to tell us it was they had a big lake at the end of the property. And he would tell us all the time, don't go fishing on Sunday, you catch the devil, and I'll never we were fishing one time. And late at night on a Sunday morning and a water moccasin came out the water came towards us he shot and killed that snake and then turned around and told told us I told you never go fishing on Sunday. So these are the type of these are the type of of this. That's legacy that was a leader. These are leaders that exemplify greatness among choices over the years that they make. So that's all that I embark on doing inside my life is chronicling my choices, chronicling the things that I've gone through. And chronicling the people who have helped shape Mark to be the best person that Mark could be. I'm still a work in progress. I'm definitely not where I want to be. But I'm better yesterday than I was then. I'm better today than I was yesterday. And definitely be better tomorrow.

Melissa Ebken

24:22

Mark, one of the things that you've made manifest here in this conversation is the difference it makes in life when you have coaches at a young age that don't just teach you to the sport or the activity at the end but they actually coach you, the kid the person, they those are the ones that really stand out and make a difference in life. And I can see the difference that these people have made in your life your principal, your coaches, all of these people from a young age and youth sports all the way up through college and high school all the way through having people in your life that coached you, as well as whatever activity you were doing.

MV

Mark V Smith

25:08

There, were central that there were central fakers. And you know, I say you always say all the time, Melissa life is simplistic, it really is designed to be simplistic. It is simplistic. We've convoluted it, we add so many things, so much stuff, so many other things that don't belong inside the inside that bag, you know, that heavy bag, we keep packing that wheelbarrow that we keep filling up and have to go down to come back it becomes these individuals who did this who impacted my life, they weren't making much money. I mean, that's truth be told they're making next to nothing they

Melissa Ebken

25:46

maybe making next to nothing monetarily, but they were making fantastic human beings,

MV

Mark V Smith

25:52

they were making, they were, they were creating legacy. They were creating leaders, they were building a building an army of individuals that can go out and effectively make change. But not only that, they can give it back to others. That is that they were changing, helping navigate the course, to change generations of future people, future leaders to come.

Melissa Ebken

26:17

I love that. You know, Marvel, and I think this all the time, Marvel Universe has really skewed our idea of what a superhero is. real superheroes are everyday, ordinary people, who are heroes in their own lives, who find ways to overcome the challenges, and to impart the simple wisdom to others life and faith. They're simple, they're not always easy, but they are simple. And people who just stand in the gap for each other, who lean into those things in their lives, who face the grief, who faced the loss and who hold space for others who are going through the same thing. Those are real heroes. And those are the people that you've been talking about that made such a powerful difference in your life. That also describes so many of the people that will listen to this podcast, we're regular folks putting in our best efforts every day or the best we have for that day. And what we don't see yet is the influence that that will have down the line down the generations.

MV

Mark V Smith


27:29

This is and it is amazing work. It truly is amazing work is rewarding work is unselfish work, it gives a takes people to to make them a better person. And I always say you, it's hard to knock me off my square, it's very hard to knock me off my square, I'm the same person that is going to be and that's what they tell me all the time it makes when I speak or when I go to training when I'm inside the teaching group that Mr. Smith, you always seem like you, you're okay, you're okay. I'm at peace, I'm really at peace. And my job or my task is is giving you something or giving you a portion of me that you didn't have every day. And I'm going to give it to you stick around many days I walk in there and I feel terrible. But guess what? I'm gonna give it to him. I'm gonna give them the best that I can give him for that particular time. And, and know, know, that that my goal, you know, is what it's going to be reality. My goal is to change 100,000 lives. And I'm going to do that, that and beyond that and beyond.

Melissa Ebken

28:35

If you change 100,000 that you can count, there are probably 300,000 That you don't even know about.

MV

Mark V Smith

28:43

Absolutely, absolutely.

Melissa Ebken

28:46

Mark I want to circle back real quick. I missed the glow acronym. Can you tell me what the glow acronym is?

MV

Mark V Smith

28:54

It's gratitude living, others will witness so that's an extra W on there. So as I said Dare to be different as something gratitude living, others will witness glow.

Melissa Ebken

29:07

All right, and I'm going to put a document together that has all of these acronyms on them and make it available for download in the show notes for this podcast. These are fantastic.

MV

Mark V Smith


29:20

Thank you. Thank you

Melissa Ebken


29:21

How can we connect with you Mark? How can we learn more and keep in touch?

MV

Mark V Smith

29:26

Well you a couple of ways. I encourage everybody again to take a moment and follow them up or listen to the podcast so you can you can go to any one of the platforms whether it's I Heart Radio, Pandora, Spotify anchor and you can look up the Mark Smith The Process. You can also follow me on social media. I'm on LinkedIn under Mark v. Smith, got to put that V in there. Also again, excuse me, Facebook, you can find me under Father and Friend as well as on Instagram under Within Your Process. But again, my Email addresses mark@theprocessmarksmith.com. and my website is theprocessmarksmith.com. Any one of those ways you can connect with me reach out to me again, like subscribe, I just finished a YouTube video for the series that I'm in right now called if I only watch this, if I only knew then what I know now, how many of us have said that? How many of us that so I released a video a short video, it's on YouTube, please encourage everybody, please check it out, just released last Saturday, and we're already over 20,000 views. So it is speaking to the need of what individuals need to talk about and get off their chest. So again, that is my passion. That is my dream. That is my goal. And I just want to help everybody be the best that they can be all the time all the days of July.

Melissa Ebken

30:52

We have a lot of different places where you can get in touch with Mark, all of those will be links in the show description. So make sure you check out that there'll be a PDF for you to download that has all of these great acronyms and all the different ways you can get ahold of Mark V. Smith, I would imagine that you turn up a few Mark Smith's in a search on any of these platforms. Absolutely. His message resounds with a lot of people he created a video and like he said just boom 20,000 subscribers already, so make sure you give him a follow. And you know, you can only be better after spending some time with Mark. And Mark. I feel better for spending this time with you today. And I know the listeners will feel fantastic after this episode as well. So again, thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us today.

MV

Mark V Smith

31:48

Thank you, it's been my pleasure. I would just leave your listeners with one thing. Always remember, your why is greater than your situation, which is part of your process. You will get through it

Melissa Ebken

32:00

beautiful words. Thank you Mark.

MV

Mark V Smith

32:02

Thank you