Don’t Just Do It, Do It Now
There is a saying, “Do the best you can with what you have.” I find that many successful people are those that act and react. They go for it and adjust along the way.
They also don’t always have everything they need to start, but go ahead anyway and figure it out as they go.
Lastly, some super successful people will never have what others do, but they find a way.
These characteristics make them underdogs and shows us that we can do more than we think we can if we take a leap of faith and don’t wait until we have everything (we think) we need.
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Have you ever finished writing a letter (e-mail) and counted how many times the word, “I” appears and realized it’s in every other sentence? Do you agree that with Facebook and Instagram it seems like many of us are saying, “Look at me?” When asked to do something do you find yourself wondering, “What’s in it for me?”
It’s natural. We are all the center of our own universe and the world revolves around us. However, there are still people out there who ask, “What can I give?” instead of, “What do I get?” These people stand out.
I know a guy who is known for his random acts of kindness, selflessness, and empathy, and guess what, he’s super successful. He doesn’t give to get, but in the end people turn to him when they need a realtor. His name is Norm, and he’s always there in times of need for his family, friends, and the community in general. Nice guys do finish first.
Imagine you woke up one day and all (and I mean all) of your hair fell out? To make matters worse, you’ve also lost almost all of your hearing. In addition, you grew up dirt poor and now as an adult struggle to make ends meet. This is the story of my grandfather.
He gradually lost his hearing (due to a childhood illness) until he was almost completely deaf by the age of 24, and was forced to wear an embarrassingly big, and bulky hearing aid. The stress of losing his hearing caused his hair to ALL fall out all at once—and it never grew back. A printer by trade, he often didn’t hear instructions and made mistakes which caused him to lose jobs.
It’s hard to know if deep down he felt sorry for himself, but he didn’t let his condition stop him from meeting and marrying his high school sweetheart, being a role model for my mom, starting a printing business, and living a full life.
My “Papa” was known for wearing a variety of unique hats, turning his baldness into branding. He focused on his strength–working the presses–and hired help to talk to handle sales and talk to the customers.
Later in life, he learned sign language, which made communicating easier. My grandfather lived into his nineties and I never once heard him use his handicap as an excuse for not doing something.
Three Life-Changing Books
You probably thought I was going to mention one of my own 23 books, but like many writers, I am an avid reader and the most important books I’ve ever read are:
How to Win Friends and Influence People (Dale Carnegie)
See You at The Top (Zig Ziglar)
Unlimited Power (Anthony Robbins)
Honorable mentions: The Artist’s Way, Think and Grow Rich, The Power of Positive Thinking, and On Writing (Stephen King)
The Constant Reminder
I’m old school, I wear a watch. If you’re like me, you probably look at your watch dozens of times a day. I have a suggestion.
As we all seek to make changes and form new habits in the coming year, If you wear a watch, put a small dot on the face as a reminder of the change you intend to make.
If you don’t wear a watch, put a sticky dot on your phone. Or, wear a reminder bracelet, write on your hand, create a screensaver, or leave an object out as a way to stay on track for a few weeks until a new habit takes hold.
I had no idea what I was going to write about this month until I watched the tragedy unfold in Pittsburgh. I’m sure each of the victims of the shooting didn’t wake up thinking this was their last day on earth . . . but for eleven people, it was (some Holocaust survivors).
This is so obvious, but I’ll say it anyway. Many of us think we have all the time in the world to do this, fix that, or go there. Who knows what tomorrow will bring? By all means, plan for tomorrow, but live for today.
Attached is something I created for myself. It’s a balance sheet to make sure we pay attention to what we have right now. Sure, there’s the things we want, but there is also the things we already have that are often overlooked. Hopefully this will help you (and me) stay focused on what we have now.
Daily Balance Sheet
Real Fears This Year
In the past, people were afraid of speaking in public, spiders (and snakes), clowns, and death. I’m serious. Today, the top fear (according to a USA Today poll) is the corruption of government officials, followed by terrorist attacks.
The difference between the two lists are the things we feared most in “the good old days” were largely preventable–or within our control–don’t like clowns (and I’m with ya here) then avoid going to places where they are.
How do we avoid being a victim of a terrorist attack? Largely, we can’t, but the likelihood of it happening is slim. Government corruption? Again, not much WE can do, other than vote. So worrying about these two things doesn’t do any good.
A couple of things that made the lists from past and present include: Not having enough money for the future, identity theft, and becoming ill. Maybe we can’t completely avoid these terrible things, but there are steps we can take to make them less likely.
I guess what I am saying is, we should worry less, live more, and take control of the things we can control. In the 1950s, some families built underground bunkers in case of a nuclear attack. That took a lot of time and money and in the end, it wasn’t needed.