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Rewards Beyond Fortune and Fame

August 26, 2016 by  
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When I was young I was so very much into myself.  I craved success, financial and non-financial.  Oh man, how I wanted to be rich and famous! I went after both with great passion and energy. I worked hard and long to reach my goals. They consumed me!  And after many years, it paid off. I made millions and even got my 15 minutes of fame with a segment on Tom Brokaw’s nation wide NBC news show and a front page story in the Wall Street Journal. And yes, I thought I was pretty hot stuff. It was all very satisfying and rewarding.

However, over the years my idea about what is truly rewarding changed. Just 2 weeks ago I received the richest reward I could hope for, one that far exceeds the rewards that I had from fame and fortune. It happened on a little island called Whidbey, just west of Seattle Washington.  I had taken some of my kids and grandkids for a summer vacation and we stayed at an absolutely beautiful multi-acre estate called Quintessa owned by 2 lovely ladies, Tessa and Carrie.

My wonderful and huge reward came when Tessa, after learning my name, told me about how my books, tapes, and periodical, The Financial Freedom Report, was the key that motivated her to buy a number of income properties, including the heavily wooded Quintessa Estate with its ocean view and accommodations for up to 32 people.

Tessa stood there and thanked me so many times it was almost embarrassing. In the last 10 to 15 years, I have received many, many letters, emails, and phone calls with thanks and appreciation from people whose lives have been financially improved, but Tessa’s story and her enthusiasm given to me in person was like getting hit in the face with a brick–a good brick of course!  It brought to my mind, very forcefully, just how much more value and reward there is in helping people, so much more than fortune and fame.

The irony is that back in my younger days I was being very selfish, seeking my own fame and fortune but over time it led to helping many other people which was an unexpected bonus and a wonderful reward. It certainly made me want to work harder to help more people. I found I wanted more of that wonderful feeling, a feeling that surpasses anything I get from fortune and fame.  It took a bit of time to learn that lesson but I don’t think I will ever forget it.

So let’s all try to reach out and help those around us, whether it be family, friends or complete strangers. You may not even know what you have to offer but the rewards for finding out are amazing.

P.S. If you want to stay at the Quintessa estate, it is located at 3493 French Road, Clinton, WA, 98236, or contact them by email at thequintessa@gmail.com. Quintessa is set up in such a way as to help our kids and grandkids do some major bonding which is exactly what happened!

 

Mojo Insights

July 8, 2016 by  
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Last week my wife and I hopped on a non-stop flight to London spending a few great days there in a hotel right by the Thames river and the London Eye.  We were also only 2 blocks away from all that Parliament action and the Brexit vote for Great Britain leaving the EU so it was a fairly historical moment to be there. Then we were off to Paris on the wonderful 200 mile-per-hour Eurostar train under the English Channel. It is such a smooth ride and we had such superb views of the English and French countryside and villages. The whole trip was wonderful but the beautiful ride and great times in London and Paris would not have been nearly as wonderful and fulfilling without the incredible book that my son gave me for Father’s day.

The book he gave me is called Mojo: How to Get It, How to Keep It, How to Get It Back If You Lose It by Marshall Goldsmith. It re-opened my eyes to things I already knew but, like so many people, I had not been paying attention to or acting on. The mojo that Marshall is talking about is that positive spirit that speaks to what we are doing now, the spirit that starts from the inside and radiates to the outside. Mojo is at its peak when we are experiencing both happiness and meaning in what we are doing and when we communicate these experiences to the world around us.

Let me give you a few “factors”, as the author calls them, that jumped out at me and motivated me to again look at myself.  He asks 4 questions and, of course, in the book he addresses each one of them with some very good answers. They are listed categorically:

“Our professional and personal Mojo is impacted by …”

  1. Identity (Who do you think you are?)
  2. Achievement (What have you done lately?)
  3. Reputation (Who do other people think you are–and what have you done lately?)
  4. Acceptance (What can you change–and when do you need to just “let it go?)

Those questions really got me thinking and I took a much deeper look at myself because I really have lost some of my Mojo. So much of my identity is based on what I was years ago and what I did then.  But the good news is that whoever we are now we can change if we really want to as long as we are willing to look at ourselves deeply and fairly.

Here are 2 other great points he makes that are very powerful and helpful. Marshal says, “…worrying about the past and being anxious about the future can easily destroy our Mojo. This sort of thinking afflicts the high and low, the rich and the poor, the achievers and the struggling.”  The other point has to do with a way to regain your lost Mojo, encompassed by the simple statement “Forgive yourself for being who you are.” In other words, we all need to work on our acceptance of others and of ourselves. He goes on to say, “I am in no way suggesting that you should not try to create change and try to make the world a better place. I am suggesting that you change what you can and let go of what you cannot change.”

Next week, I will to continue to give you some other wonderful insights into our Mojo from Marshall’s book and talk about what we can do to make it that much better. In the meantime, answer the questions you see here and see what insights come to you from this simple exercise.

 

 

The Real Measure of a Successful Life

November 18, 2011 by  
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I wanted to mention this book that Craig Horton, who I shared a letter from in my post last week, recommended. It’s a powerful book about mentorship titled “A Game Plan for Life-The Power of Mentoring” by John Wooden and Don Yaeger. Craig considers this one of the most powerful books he’s ever read. He’s not the only one.

The retired basketball player and coach mentored and inspired unknown numbers of people through his work as a coach and through his publications and lectures. In this, his last book, he first focuses on the people who helped foster his values then, through interviews excerpts, he turns the reader’s attention to number of his most successful mentorees, giving us an inside view of the affect good mentoring can have on an individual, not just as athletes but as human beings. Wooden is particularly focused on being successful without having to sacrifice principles. That is a focus I am behind 200%.

I really like Wooden’s philosophies and know you’d get something out of reading this book if you take what he says to heart. You see, how well you live is not purely about the success you have, even though in your mind and actions, it sure seems like it. The real measure of a successful life is how much you improve the lives of others. You can do this by sharing your success—be it monetary, career, personal, emotional, relationship, etc.–with others in ways that help them achieve and fulfill their lives as well.

The Rewards of Helping Empower Others

November 11, 2011 by  
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I received a very kind note about last week’s blog and I wanted to share it with you some of what he said:

What I have always appreciated over the years in our association with each other is that you are always willing to help people grow and be productive in the real estate business even the little guy. Your efforts have never really been about making a lot of money but helping others which is precisely why you made a lot of money in the seminar business and book business because you lived by that philosophy. I have always found that people who are the most successful are very willing to help others. You are one of these people which I deeply appreciate.”

–Craig Horton

Craig sums up quite well my philosophy about why I do what I do. It’s not about money although I do spend a fair amount of time advising people about how to make money. It really comes down to helping empower people to do what they desire to do with their lives. It could as easily be making great art, getting in shape, or building your own home. I just want people to do with their lives that which fulfills them so they can be proud of what they accomplish and happy with the live they live.

One of the things I also like to encourage is people helping people. This is what I do to help people because it is that one very valuable thing I have that I know can touch lives and make a difference. That is also very fulfilling. Especially on those days when you receive such nice comments and know that what you are doing is truly helping others. Thanks Craig!