Change: How You Respond Can Mean the Difference Between Success & Failure

respond to changeThis morning, my boys and I discovered that how you adapt to change can mean the difference between success and failure in your life and business.

We were enjoying a breakfast at Tim Horton’s during our weekly Man to Man Time (where I mentor them in life skills and entrepreneurship) and each of us were reading a section of the USA Today as we always do, to find a story that we can share with the others, that somehow applies to life skills, success, entrepreneurship, money, or spiritual values.

I got the “Life” (entertainment) section this time, which doesn’t always have a story that applies to what we want to talk about – at least, not always at first glance.

Today’s “Life” section headline was on the movie Gangster Squad which was finally being released after a four-month delay due to the The Dark Knight Rises movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado in July, which left 12 dead and 57 injured.

Gangster Squad is about mobsters and gangsters from the 1940’s, and one scene portrays a shootout that happened in the famous Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. That shootout scene happened to be featured in the previews for Gangster Squad, which I saw when I took my boys to watch The Dark Knight Rises at midnight on it’s opening day, the same day of the shooting.

At first, I didn’t see any life application in this story, but then it dawned on me that Aurora, Colorado theater shooting dealt the Gangster Squad makers a huge change in circumstances that would doom the movie if the producers had stuck to their original plan of an early September release, and if they kept that theater shootout scene in the film and in the previews. [Read more…]

You Don’t Have to Be a Millionaire to Do What You Love

Do the work you loveIf you’ve ever worked through a life planning process on your own or with a life coach, you’ve probably been asked a question like “What would you do with your life if someone gave you a million dollars?” But have you ever thought that it just might happen? It did for mega millionaire Steve White.

On Thursday’s edition of The O’Reilly Factor, host Bill O’Reilly did a segment on two people who won big in the lottery. He asked them what was the worse thing that happened to them through the experience, and also how it had changed their lives.

The topic is timely because of the recent $588 million Powerball jackpot that will apparently be split between two winners.

One person featured on the show, Steven White, won over $200 million, but after taxes received a lump-sum of only $60 million.

I can’t believe I just used the words “only” and “$60 million” in the same sentence!

White’s prize had been the largest in Powerball history at the time – in May of 2004.

Anyway, as White talked about his experience, O’Reilly asked him what he ended up doing with his money.  White replied that he loved cars and airplanes, so he decided to find a way to build businesses around those two things.

He said, “They say if you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”

Yup, I’ve heard that before, from Dan Miller, author of 48 Days to the Work You Love.  And I’ve experienced it in my own life.  It’s not that we don’t have work to do when we’re doing what we love. But it doesn’t feel like a drudgery.  It enriches us and fulfills us. It matters.

So, the next time someone asks you what you’d do if someone gave you a million dollars, I’d recommend you really take the time to figure out your answers. Because it just might happen.

But you don’t have to win the lottery or be a millionaire to do what you love!

I believe everyone can identify their skills and abilities, clarify their values, dreams and passions, and create a plan to find and do the work you were made for.

And 48 Days to the Work You Love is a great resource that has helped tens of thousands of people to do just that! I know it can help you too.

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Stop Making Excuses

Stop blaming othersPlease stop making excuses or blaming others if you’re not enjoying the success you had hoped to achieve at this point in your life.

I know from personal experience that it is all too easy to blame someone else for our misfortune, shortcomings, failures, or the lack of achievement in fulfilling our goals, dreams and hopes for the future.

The blame game is as old as humanity itself – since Adam & Eve ate the forbidden fruit in the Garden and Eden.

But the truth is this:

Our lack of achievement is our fault.  

Actually, it’s our choice.

[Read more…]

Stop Waiting for Permission

take permission, take actionI hereby give you permission to stop waiting for someone else to give you permission.  

Go ahead.  Start that business you’ve always wanted.  Complete that project you’ve been waiting to do.  Make your next move.

Most of us, for most of our lives, have been waiting on someone else to give us permission to act.  To tell us we’ve got what it takes.  To affirm that we’re worthy to achieve and succeed.

It begins innocently enough when we’re children who are dependent upon our parents.  But for many, it continues on long into adulthood.  They wait for their boss to give them permission.  Or their spouse.  Or still…their parents.

I’ve observed recently that few successful people wait for permission.  They take permission. [Read more…]

The Greatest Motivation for Life Change

I think pain is the greatest motivator for life change.  

It’s stupid.  But true.

People have a hard time making change in their life because they want to.

So we wait until we have to. Sometimes, that’s too late.

Like not taking care of our health until the heart attack. Not nurturing our relationship with our spouse until they say they want to leave. Or not saving for a “rainy day” until we lose our job or the car breaks down.

I’ve fallen prey to the pain motivation more times than I care to admit.

I’d rather look at the areas of life where I could experience pain (either for myself or others) and then identify some simple steps I could take to make change in order to avoid that pain.

What if, instead of pain being the greatest motivator for life change, avoidance of pain was the greatest motivation instead?  Does it, or would it, make a difference in your life?

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What Olympic Gold Medalist Jim Thorpe Taught Me About Achieving Success

Visualize Success in Your Mind's EyeThis week, as I watched American Ashton Eaton won gold in the Decathlon, and fellow American Trey Hardee take home the silver, I was reminded of a life lesson that Olympic athlete Jim Thorpe taught me about achieving success through visualization.

By the way, this year is the 100th anniversary of the introduction of the Decathlon in the Olympic Games and Jim Thorpe’s gold medal in that first Decathlon.

Jim Thorpe, a Native American, is known as one of the greatest athletes of all time.  He was an All-American, Olympic gold medalist in the Decathlon and Pentathlon, star NFL running back and Major League Baseball player.

On his way to the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm, Thorpe and his fellow American Olympians sailed aboard the ocean liner Finland.

One day on the ship, while all the athletes trained on a cork track laid on the ship’s deck, Thorpe sat nearby in silence.

A sportswriter named Francis Albertani saw him sitting there and asked “What are you doing, Jim? Thinking of your Uncle Sitting Bull?”

“No,” Thorpe said, “I’m practicing the broad jump. I’ve just jumped 23 feet eight inches. I think that I can win it.”

Thorpe did in fact go on to win the broad jump event in the Olympic Decathlon with his jump of 22 feet 7 inches!  He also won three more of the 10 Decathlon events en route to the gold medal, and four of five Pentathlon events to earn a second gold.

What was the secret to Jim Thorpe’s Olympic success?  It was the power of visualization. [Read more…]