Starting Over: Keys To A Life Of Prosperity…

Mon, May 9, 2011

Blog Posts

Imagine for a second staring down the barrel of the ‘grim reaper’ for a moment and being told that you had less than 24 hours to live.

What would you do differently? Who would you do it with?

I know this ‘may’ appear to be a grim headline, however I wanted to get your full attention and I believe what I have to share with you could be a matter of life and… well a life of prosperity and high profits.

What does this have to do with you?

The fact is we’re all going to face the ‘end’, and, when that day comes. Are you going to have a life filled with regrets or a life filled with accomplishment and joy?

One of my favorite movies “Shawshank Redemption” has a quote that has stuck with me:
“You either get busy livin’ or you’re dyin'”

I choose to get busy livin’, how about you?

Regardless of where you’ve been, you get an opportunity to start anew. It doesn’t take tragedy, failures and mistakes to hit the refresh button to get on the path YOU deserve.

Read on and be ready to have a major mind shift on how you think about building a successful business and life. Also – let me be clear, I’m a ok and no need to worry…

The powerful insights and discoveries that follow are a result of a meeting the other day with a group of business owners and some a reflection of some powerful learning lessons and experiences in the last 3-4+ years.

Among the many ideas were the key questions to operate our businesses from the right place while maintaining a ‘life’ of balance. Dan Kennedy who I’ve studied for years summarizes it this way: “You’ve got to get to a place where you work ‘on’ your business more than you work ‘in’ your business.”

To the extent you are working ‘in’ your business is the likelihood that you have bought yourself
nothing more than a job (or two or three jobs).

So – it’s important to have the right foundation to build from.

The last few years have brought me many gifts, life lessons and learning opportunities.

For years I was your typical type ‘A’ working regularly 70, 80, 90 even 100 work weeks. Sure, I chalked it
up as commitment, focus, and dedication. Perhaps it was and looking back, I’d probably do it again at that point in my life…

However, in late 2007 shortly after my son Kyler was born I ended up in a hospital for 4 days. It got me to re-evaluate everything in my life…. and I do mean everything.

Suddenly, the things that had been important weren’t that important in the bigger picture of what I wanted from success. And notice, the way I defined that: “…what I wanted from success…”

For years, I let success dictate it’s terms to me… the ideals, values, and perspectives of others success
instead of looking at what was important for me.

I remember on the third night of my hospital stay writing my last will because the next morning I was
due to have a procedure that the Surgeon told me:

“…There is a 1-in-500 chance that you could die
on the table with this procedure…”

That was an eye-opener. I admit I stayed up almost all night writing and crying, thinking about some of the great things I had done, and also some of the things I either missed, was misguided on, or potentially might miss down the road… like the time with my family and kids.

Was all the stress, driving so hard, and focus worth that? Have you been there? Can you relate?

For me, it was a defining moment in my life and in my career.

I started to make hard choices. I started cutting out things that weren’t part of my bigger vision and values. These things were not easy, let me tell you.

Think about if, if you had a choice to cut off your left foot or your right hand, what would you pick?

And that’s what it felt like.

Now, I didn’t do that literally of course, however that’s truly what it felt like. It was gut wrenching to make some of the hardest choices I’ve ever made. I had to tell clients goodbye. I had to tell staff goodbye.

Many of them had no idea. Many of them just went with the transitions I was going through and all the while even people who were close to me didn’t know these things were going on.

In fact, there are people who worked with me every day who are going to read this right now and they had no idea this was happening.

I started choosing things based on my values. I walked away from million dollar opportunities. Literally.

However, there is a silver lining in this gut wrenching experience… However it wasn’t easy.

I had my family questioning what I was doing. I had people closest to me who didn’t understand how I could just back away from certain things. Some family got scared. Some family walked away from me.

However, I had to do what was true to me.

It took time. In fact, it’s still a work in progress. Because I finally came to a realization that I was the only one that was going to make me happy. I had to stop pleasing everyone else and get back to basics of taking care of what I valued most…

What was that?

It started with what mattered most to me… my family and kids.

I remember sitting down in a seminar shortly after my 4-day hospital stay at an event with Joe Polish. He had us do a goal card of what we were working towards.

While most goals in the past were generating ‘x’ number of customers or ‘x’ dollars in revenue or ‘x’ in profits, I started focusing on the thing that mattered most to me…

I remember talking and discussing these ‘new’ goals with my friend Vince and it was refreshing…

They were tailored around: How often I could spend time at home with my kids. How many
days I could be at home and not on the road or in the office. How many trips could I take with them.

And granted, I still had business goals. I still had them as part of the plan because they were/are the vehicle to achieve the goal, however maybe for the first time realized the hierarchy and priority that mattered most.

This wasn’t easy mind you. I am a driven, focused, achievement oriented person so at some level it felt like I was giving up. And I remember one of my success coaches mantra’s from years before in my head:

“What are you willing to give up to REALLY get what you REALLY want and deserve?…”

So – I modified my plan and started putting things into action.

Up through 2007 I had a few projects I was heavily involved in. As 2008 started I started looking at delegating and moving away from the projects and focusing my energies to get in line with my true values.

In 2009 I decided to team up with a group. It gave me the ability to delegate the projects I had been working on and then have some new exciting opportunities we could build together.

Officially I was a marketing consultant, howevever they had full control of all financial choices and business decisions. I licensed them use of my name, likeness, and some of my products and intellectual property as part of this business arrangement. At the time, I felt this was the best choice in the plan.

I worked on developing my skills, talents and abilities. I built a few independent online campaigns to contribute to that arrangement. I started chipping away at my plan, spending parts of 1 day at home per week. Then parts of 2, then 3, then 4, then 5.

The group I had teamed up with made major changes. They basically told me to get out of the way and they wanted me to solely focus on relationships and helping bring more campaigns. They would focuson day to day things. Seemed like a great synergy.

It brought me closer to my goals and values of spending more time with family.

Then I was hit with one of the biggest shocks of my life. My wife of 8 years let me know she wanted a divorce. It was a gutwrenching blow. It took the wind out of my sails. I didn’t understand.

Everything I had been working for was to spend more time with the family and kids. I didn’t get it at the time. Today, it’s very, very clear what happened. More on that another day 😉

Again, I chose to look at finding the silver lining in everything going on. The business venture I was designated to consult on wasn’t working.

In fact, it was losing money every week. However the majority owners continued to do the best they could to keep it going. They had a huge vision to build and create success.

It was during all this adversity – the business failing, My marriage failing, that I truly found the answers I was looking for in doing what was in line with my true values and spirit.

I didn’t understand it all at the time, however today it’s very clear.

So – what are these insights I gained going through this massive adjustment period?

Most importantly, you’ve got to be true yourself and never, ever stop believing in YOUR dreams!

Here are few nuggets you can take away from my 3-4 year+ learning period…

* What is it your so passionate about that you would do for free? HINT –
it’s bigger than that affiliate program you’re marketing isn’t it? It’s
bigger than something that you’re doing that feels like you’re going
through the ‘motions’ right?

* Paint the picture of you at your best, at your highest potential
doing what you do in your business
. Are you focusing on the sales?
Marketing? Admin? Finance side? Be specific.
Describe to the best of your ability what it is you can see yourself
doing in our business creating your ‘ideal’ life doing it.

* What is it that you value more than anything in your life? What are the top
3 things you value more than anything? The top 5?

* What is it that will knock you off track from your goals and cause you to QUIT
doing what you’re doing?
HINT: If the answer is anything other than NOTHING,
then you’re in the wrong field and you should look in the mirror and make
adjustments.

* What are your top VALUES? HINT: I recommend taking an official assessment
to help identify what your top values are. There are many different assessments
out there. I’ve taken several over the years. A great friend
of mine Stephanie Frank at stephaniefrank.com has one. Look her up and let her
know that I referred you to her. She’s great people.

* What are your GREATEST strengths? Gifts? Talents? HINT: Take inventory of this
as this is important to identify. HINT: Is your greatest strength the thing you
answered above that you’d do for FREE? if so, then you are likely to achieve
greater tangible results, however there is an answer if it doesn’t match up too.

Arguably, what many people (including myself) consider one of my greatest strengths is not the thing I enjoy the most. So guess what? There’s a conflict.

I had a large multi-million dollar firm contact me in October last year about building what arguably could be a multi-million dollar campaign. They shared their vision of what they wanted to accomplish and how I could fit… and let me tell you, it was tempting and exciting.

The people behind it are well funded, stand up people. It would no doubt be a 7-figure (and probably a high 8 figure per year business). I went through the filtering process with these questions to see if it fit what I VALUED most personally and where I wanted to go… and it did NOT, so I made plans on adjusting it.

Although it didn’t fit my personal VALUES, what I did do was contact someone who had this as one of the greatest values and strengths and I connected the two together to make it happen. I don’t believe that it’s moved forward, however its a great example of what you can do.

If it had gone forward, I was still positioned to consult on the project and get a small % of the profits– and as importantly it fit into my personal VALUES.

Do you see where this is going? Do you see the POWER I’m revealing to you in these insights?

I can tell you from the experience and pain that I had to go through to unlock the hidden wealth in these simple insights. It’s freeing to truly do what you VALUE most and in line with what is MOST important to you.

Here’s another insight:

* In your industry, who is your IDEAL customer? What are there main characteristics?
HINT: If you don’t know officially, then take inventory of this from the perspective
of what YOU want the characteristics to be. Are they friendly, coachable, trainable,
respectable? Do they have the financial ability to afford what you’re offering?
These are fairly important characteristics correct?

Do they respect the fact that perhaps you want to have a life and not be on call 24-7
and you only communicate once per week?

Again, what’s important for you?

Are you starting to feel the power of this simple process?

Here are a few insights to build ‘from’ your business instead of ‘in’ it.

* Where are you NOW with your GOALS?

* Where are you going in the next 90 days? next year?

* What’s it going to take to get there? Be specific.

* And most importantly, who are people and what are the resources that you feel
can help you get there?
HINT — make a list.

Building success is a team sport. Life at it’s fullest is a TEAM sport.

My kids and I have a little mantra we share in our family: We’re a TEAM. We reinforce and remind each other of this all the time. Granted, I’m the captain of the team, however all of us have our role.

With all the adjustments I’ve made in the last 3-4+ years after that experience in the hospital, I wouldn’t have been able to do it without a great TEAM of people around me.

I can tell you that I’m so grateful for my friends, my colleagues, my family, the students, the team of experts I consult with, the team of experts in business.

You know who you are… and yes, I’m speaking to you right now.

We all go through cycles in life. We’re all going to get knocked down in our life. It’s not whether we’re going to ride that roller coaster of cycles, it’s how we ‘choose’ to enjoy the ride.

The key is how we handle it. The key is how long do we stay down when we’re in that rut or that cycle.

I challenge you… You’ve got the talent and ability. You’ve got the mental make up. You can do it. You have people around you who can help you. You have people around you who care. You have what it takes. God saw to it to give you that seed of potential.

What are you doing with it?

I dare you to realize that every moment is your moment to be your best and get better. Take inventory of what’s important to you… what you value most. Take inventory and go through the exercises above.

Make today the day your plan to win in both life and business!

You deserve it.

Prosperity and Success,

Dan

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2 Responses to “Starting Over: Keys To A Life Of Prosperity…”

  1. SaRita Says:

    Dan,

    In all the years I’ve known you, this is the most powerful message I’ve ever received from you.

    If everyone who reads this takes the time to actually ANSWER the questions you asked, their lives will change forever — and it will happen almost immediately.

    Thank you for sharing your heart and your wisdom.

    It’s inspiring to see someone I admire so much weather the storms and come out of them with more faith, more commitment, more focus, and more determination than ever to help other people.

    No matter what challenges come your way, always remember that you’ve made a real, lasting difference. You’ve helped a lot of people become more successful and more in tune with what’s really important.

    So thank you.

    You ARE a champion, and I’m proud to know you and call you one of my most valued mentors.

    SaRita

  2. JoniWB Says:

    Hey Boss,

    Now that I’m done shedding tears over what I’ve just read, I want you to know that I admire you more now than the 5 years I’ve been with you and that is saying quite a bit.

    My prayers have been answered; that you would stop for just a moment and reflect on what was truly important…your family. Now I know you always, always put your family first-that’s why you allowed yourself to work so hard. I’ve never questioned your intentions.

    But the closer I got to you and learned who this person “Dan” was I wanted somehow to remind you of the basics you were teaching me and the thousands of your other students.

    I knew deep from within…if I could reach you even for a moment, somehow, you’d remember. Whether just an email with a thought-provoking message or letting you know my values on certain subjects which I would not jeopardize.

    I’m quite sure you picked up on your other friends points of view as well even if it wasn’t apparent to you at the time.

    I’m so very grateful you’ve been a part of my journey first as a student, second as an employee but most of all as your lifelong friend.

    I thank God for you everyday because you are the real deal and you always have been.

    Thank you so much for sharing your heart-felt story for all too see. You’ve shared your ups and downs with many and this is just another reason why so many admire and love you as a mentor.

    It doesn’t get any better than this…than you!

    God Bless you and your family Boss,
    Joni


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