What’s in Your TEA?

What’s in Your TEA?

What’s in your Cup?
by -Christopher M. Jackson


Hey Phambam! It’s ya boyee Chris  and I am here to give you a shot of caffeine.

I have a Facebook Live series I call Coffee with Chris for our Phatburn members and I want to share one of our recent topics.



I use the acronym T.E.A. (Thoughts – Emotions – Actions) to help illustrate why we do what we do.

Our thoughts drive our emotions which in-turn drive our behaviors.

Who you are being in any given situation is a direct result of this formula.

Keeping that in mind, as you read through this post, I want you to remember that our T.E.A. is a direct reflection of our WHO.


So WHO are you? Better yet, WHO are you being? I asked the same of myself one day.

WHO am I?  I’m a rebel.

WHAT do I do? Duh, rebel.

HOW do I do it?  I think outside of the box. I make up my own rules.

So what kind of T.E.A. would I be sipping on then? Well,  let’s take each statement above and have a look-see.


I Think Outside of the Box

Outside the box thinking or “creative thinking” means to think differently, unconventionally, or from a new perspective. Some of the more known outside of the boxers that come to mind are  Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and of course, Albert Einstein.

Although those are some of the more well-known influencers of change, there are people we may not have ever heard of that display similar ways of processing their surroundings with the the very limited resources they have. With not much available at their disposal to make their life easier, every day they are still able to  flex their thinking skills to find out new ways to survive. Pretty dope.

Take my grandma Nini for instance. Nini managed to take care of and discipline 5 children alone every time her husband was deployed to fight in war; 3 of them. Tough granny, not to mention tough grandaddy, my Poppi the tanker slash best man I have ever known.

So, how am I an outside the box thinker? Well, to answer that is to liken my thoughts that echo one of my favorite pieces of my favorite quotes below:


Some people might say that is just being opportunistic. That isn’t rebelling. Well, when one rebels, usually there is some conflict occurring either inwardly or outwardly. I am willing to bet the frapp’ in your ‘ccino that Mark Cuban has stirred the pot a time or two outwardly because he was unwilling to struggle with an internal conflict with himself.

He goes with his gut, as do I, and is not concerned about being judged. He is confident that he is not just doing, but BEING who he is supposed to; true to himself.  This is a powerful way to go about making the type of decisions that get stuff done in order to  bring something NEW into creation.

Be true to your WHO and “never stop innovating” (said in a pissed off Steve Jobs voice)!

So my “T” (Thoughts) in T.E.A. relates to my thought process that there is always another way to do anything.

That in turn makes me feel (the “E” (Emotions) in T.E.A.) pretty confident, sure, and boss enough to pave my own way thorough life.

The “A”- (Actions) I take often resembles those that can be seen in entrepreneurs, artists, musicians, activists, and the like.


I Make My Own Rules

I remember my Head Coach telling me that he wanted me to train with my teammates more while playing in Germany. He said it send the “right” message to the team and that I would benefit more from their strength coaches than from what I was doing on my own.


Let me BE. Yup. That was my ‘tude about that. To me, I did not like the way our coach trained us as individuals specific to our strengths. So I resisted his style of training because I knew deep down inside that the unconventional ways I was training would give me an advantage over my competition. Blame it on Rocky IV ok!?

Turns out that among all the protein shakes and Bitbügers, my cup of T.E.A. enabled me to be a 10-year starter, seldom to miss a game never to dropped below a ranking of 5th overall for my position in the entire league each year I played.

I thought that if I were to train at 5:00am (when no one else would) in the mountains for an hour (where only the freaks would) and just consider that as my warm-up before the “real” training began (when everyone else would have considered that a day of training), I would be doing way more than anyone else. That was my edge: phresh brewed T.E.A. baby!

My T.E.A.

Thought – Do what others won’t
Emotion – Feelings of extreme badassery
Action- Dominated my opponents for years

Needless to say my coach got over “being right” and was satisfied with being happy. Hey, nothing feels as good as winning. Not to say  I was the reason why we won all of those years, but I sure as heck contributed to the pot in a major way.


Anytime you find yourself wanting something in life. Anytime you want to approach a situation or notice you are in a situation that you want a different outcome. Ask yourself, what is in my Cup of Tea? If it isn’t to your liking, get another flavor.


How do I do that?

Well, it’s a simpler said than done type of deal, but totally doable if you come at it from the perspective of WHO you are at the present moment verse WHO  you desire to be in order to put yourself in a position to experience ____________.


Think about this…

WHO are you being?
WHAT are you doing?
HOW are you doing it?

Let’s use the example of health and fitness.

WHO – someone who would benefit from an exercise program but scared to start.
WHAT – making a million excuses why no time is ever the right time so you never do.
HOW – looking for things to justify the story your head in order to avoid changing.

Old way of thinking would look like:

T-houghts- I think it’s too late to get in shape.
E-motions – Helplessness.
A-ctions – Avoid taking the action required to look and feel what you desire.

New way of thinking would look like:

T-houghts – How do other people who struggle with getting started take the first step?
E-motions – Curious and hopeful.
A-ctions –  Look into fitness studios or advice from other people around the same age.

Simple right? I know. So what stops us from sipping on the good stuff?  Our G.A.I.L.S.

I will speak more about G.A.I.L.S. in my next article set to brew next week.

Till then, high 5’s and cartwheels my phriends! Peeeaaacccceeeee.







*Gazi Stadion, Stuttgart, Germany 2007: A playoff game against the Dresden Monarchs of the G.F.L. (German Football League). 308 total yards and 4 touchdowns.

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