Reaching for the Stars or Grasping at Straws?

Reach for starsI think very few people set out to achieve mediocre results, but without a clear path the majority of people fall short of what they initially imagined.  For example, every January the gym where I work out is absolutely inundated with people who made a New Year’s resolution to “get in shape” without realistically assessing all factors involved, especially the effort.  Those results take commitment and effort.  Usually I see these people show up at the gym, obviously out of shape, not familiar with how to work out and for various reasons they gone within 3 weeks.  I applaud their effort and desire, but getting serious about fitness requires a serious commitment and resolve.  Not being critical, but there is lessons that can be learned from this.

True successes will appear “lucky” or “effortless” on the surface.  If you talk to entrepreneurs they will tell you that there is way more below the surface than the average person sees.  Some businesses don’t see profitability for years.  The owners are the last ones to be paid.  Personal sacrifices were made and these people with vision didn’t quit where others gave up.

So when you feel like you want to commit to a venture or idea in business development, my advice is to study those who have forged ahead with their dream.  Ask questions, get a sense for how they made their idea work.  Then truly weigh the investment on your part as well as those around you.  Don’t just be a dreamer and approach your vision half heatedly.

So the question is, are you reaching for the start or grasping at straws?

  1. Big vision, big results – The vision you have for yourself, your job, and the things you are involved in will have an effect on results. If you think small, you’ll have small results.  Stretch goals are a way to keep us out of being complacent.  When contemplating your goals, always consider what is reasonable, attainable and then add to it.  If you commit to getting in shape, it’s not something you are going to “try out” and see if it works for you.  Fitness is something done for a lifetime.  See it that way.
  2. Don’t accept limitations other put on you, EVER! – Truth be told, its poison. There are going to be those who look down on you and will push their own doubt, disbelief on you.  The fact is, something that is done today was once never done before.  I detest when someone says I cannot do something when it is in my power to do so.  Negativity will NEVER produce a positive result.  Make sure anything you listen to will be positive but also constructive.
  3. Emulate great role models – First you must find them but once you do, study them and identify how they think, how they approach a problem, and how they overcome obstacles. Understand, not just what they did, but the underlying belief, conviction, resolve, commitment.
  4. Cause & Effect – The aim of all education is action. We can have all the positive, brilliant ideas and intentions in the world, but if we fail to back it up with action, nothing will happen.  If you intend to accomplish something like when I learned how to play guitar, I studied great guitarists, I practiced tirelessly, and I was continually trying to push my abilities to be the very best I could be.   At times there were setbacks, but I remained consistent in improving to the point where I became proficient.  It took many, many years too.   If you set out to do something, have the corresponding action.
  5. Consider the cost – This is an area where many fail in their attempt to reach for the stars. Yes, it’s great to reach for the stars figuratively when we have a goal in mind.  However if we fail to plan for success by weighing the cost in its entirety, there will be countless reasons to give up and most will do so.  The old adage that before going into battle, a King must thoroughly weigh the cost of doing so, holds true here.  Take the time to think through everything you can, not just success, but obstacles as well.  Trust me, there will be obstacles you didn’t even consider that will arise.

If we do these things, then we will do a much better job setting ourselves up for success no matter what the endeavor.

Respect the Torch!

Collect your Paycheck

Blank Check

How do you feel after a long day?  If you are like me you feel exhausted and worn out.  That’s because I bust my butt during the day to accomplish what I need to do in order to be successful.  I don’t like to leave anything undone or put things off.  Those who know me very well may beg to differ, but in general it drives me nuts to put things off.

One of the challenges I used to go through was that my mind was so active that I could not sleep, and sometimes it still happens to me.  I would have an idea about something and my mind would begin racing.  But everyone needs their sleep.

Anyway, while we are here, it is imperative that we give to those who are around us and to not withhold the good due them.  People wrong us all the time, that’s life.  We forgive and move on to bigger and better things rather than get all wrapped up into our own self-absorbed drama.  Trust me, our own personal version of how someone wronged us is the polar opposite of how the other person sees it.  Life is short and if someone deserves credit for doing something, then give it to them.  If you need to tell someone that you care about them, then do it.  Having the courage for those 20 seconds to tell someone how you feel can change your life.

My point is, if you have given your all in everything you do; at the end of the day when you lay your head on the pillow, collect your paycheck.  That’s when you reflect on what you did and have the opportunity to know that you did everything you could and made a difference in the lives of people around you.  Don’t go to bed without knowing you could have done something to enhance the lives of those you care about.

The last thing you want to do is to have doubt or regret because you could have done something to affect a situation.  So if it is in your power to help someone, then why wait?  Once I put off seeing my grandfather when he was elderly, when I thought I should go.  But because of a lot of things going on in my life, I delayed and planned on going in the future.  Well I missed my chance and regret visiting when I know it would have meant so much to him.

You earn your paycheck all day long, doing what you are supposed to do.  Don’t take short cuts, but sometimes do the thing that is hard.  Go the extra mile, make the extra sales call, tell someone you care, make that phone call to a relative, or whatever you know that you should do.  THEN, when you lay your head on the pillow, collect your paycheck.

6 keys to more success

success_at_workThese are some ideas on how you can get more out of every day.

#1  Luck be a lady:  Thomas Jefferson said something interesting regarding luck and I really think he was on to something.  Here is what he said (paraphrased, but only slightly), “Sure I believe in luck, the harder I work, the more of it I seem to have.”  The people who succeed are the ones to put the work into it.  Those who are touted for being tremendous innovators and geniuses all used their intellect, passion, personality and all the resources they had to achieve their goal.  The key here is to have purpose.  Purpose clarifies our thoughts and actions so we can harness our being to accomplish great things.  Some have no true purpose, and that’s not a good place to be.  Others have purpose but it’s not clear and will not produce clear results.  Those who have a well-defined purpose are the ones who rise to the top in life.

#2 Crystallize:  If you want desired results in your life, you must be crystal clear on where you want to be.  It won’t matter how self-assured you appear on the surface, if you lack the clear vision for who you are and what you want, you will reap second rate results.  Do this by focusing on where you want to be in 10 years, 5 years and so on.  Then consider what would need to happen in order for that to become a reality.  Forget things falling into your lap.   It just doesn’t work that way.  You MUST clearly plan what you want and what you don’t want in your life and then immediately begin acting accordingly.  Behave as if your vision is a present tense reality.

# 3 Keep your friends close, your enemies closer:  There are people who annoy you.  And for various reasons.  Don’t just ignore those people, as there is much that can be learned from them.  For example, if someone has an abrasive personality, determine what characteristics account for that attribute and become aware of it so you avoid coming across that way.  Another example is a bad habit that an individual manifests.  Note that and don’t let it become a habit for you.  And don’t hate the person.  It’s the attribute that annoys you so don’t confuse the two.  The truth is, you can learn from anyone, so be open to it.

#4  There is no “I” in team:  Human tendency is to focus on what you can get out of a situation.  Survival instinct tells us to protect ourselves at all cost.  However, unless a bear is chasing you through the woods, you have to consider how your actions impact others around you.  The success of any team is contingent each individual acting as one.  If one misses the mark, the team will fail.  A chain is as strong as it’s weakest link.  So rather than focus on what’s in it for you, ask the question, “What can I do for others around me?”  When the focus is not on yourself, you will be able to go beyond the self-serving motives and make the world around you a better place.

#5 You’ll fail before you succeed:   Col. Harlan Sanders famous chicken recipe was turned down 1009 times before someone said “YES” to his chicken recipe.  He traveled around the country, sometimes sleeping in his car but never allowed rejection to stop him from realizing his goal.  He believed in his recipe and was convinced that someone would partner with him.  When we allow our focus to be on failure, we will reap more of the same and our motivation will be negatively affected.  Learn from failures and refuge to make the same mistakes in the future.  Do you think that the Colonel questioned whether he would find someone willing to utilize and profit from hi fired chicken recipe?  I’m sure he did, but he didn’t allow it to stop him or even slow him down.  So don’t allow failure to cloud your vision.  Learn from it and move on.

#6  Enjoy the now, be present: We all use electronic devices that supposedly make us more efficient and more productive.  A few years ago during a conversation a friend told me, “why don’t you put your phone down and be present.”  I’ll never forget that because what these devices do is distract us from whats happening in the present.  Connecting with someone somewhere else, collaborating for a meeting tomorrow, making notes, answering emails or whatever is so darn important – can usually wait.  The other thing it does is train us to not 100% focus on what we’re doing at the moment.  Yes, maybe were engaged in a conversation, but also, listening for that sound of an email we have been waiting for all day.  When you are talking with someone, family, friends, co-workers, give them undivided attention.  You will be amazed how much more you contribute and get out of a conversation.

Enjoy living every day to the fullest.

Respect the torch!

When they say you can’t…

cant-hookOne word in the English language makes me cringe more than most others, it’s the word “cant.”   It limits your ability and keeps you bound to where you are at.  The “can’t” mentality will hold you to where you are and prevent you from going where you really want to be.

This is true in every area of your life.  If you truly believe that you cannot do something, then you are right.  If you look for reasons for why something is NOT possible, then you will find multiple reasons to substantiate your belief.

There is a tool used by loggers called a “Cant Hook.”  It is a necessary tool for moving logs when they are too heavy to roll.  Loggers don’t want to hit the dirt with their chain saws, and the cant hook is a sturdy tool that moves the log so the cut can be made without hitting the dirt, and dulling the chain.  Basically this device comes into play when the loggers cannot physically roll the log without assistance.  It helps them when they simply “can’t.”

What do you do when you feel like you can’t do something?  When something seems impossible, difficult, or daunting do you make excuses or do you look for possibilities?

The first thing you should do is to discard the word “can’t’ and replace it with something like “possible” or “can.”

The language we use and our terminology will affect the outcome of any situation.  So refuse to consider limitations in your mind and live with the freedom you were intended to have.  Great things have been accomplished when people had a vision and didn’t allow themselves to be tricked into looking for reasons to quit.  They pressed on and dealt with the obstacles as they came up, not allowing themselves give in and cave under pressure.

When the pressure to quit is increasingly strong, then grab a can’t hook and eliminate the idea of “can’t”, because you absolutely CAN if you persist and are strong mentally.  It is simply a matter of deciding if you want to put forth the effort and not give up on something that is important to you.

Be of a courageous mind and refuse to give up an walk away in defeat.  We always have a choice in how we view things and  it’s a choice only we can make. Either focus on why you can or why your cant, it’s up to you.  You can win and you can achieve if you believe and act accordingly.  So always look for whey you CAN in every situation and you will reap exactly what you set out to do.

Ignite your passion!

Who’s in charge

Choose-Self-paced-or-Live-On-lineMany people I talk with have the inner belief that you are either dealt a certain hand, or that things happen to them because of this destiny that is going to happen.  I hear phrases like, “things happen for a reason”, or “it wasn’t meant to be.”  While it is a nice thought and can be an intellectually stimulating topic of conversation, nothing could be further from the truth.

One of the greatest gifts we have is the freedom of choice.  The freedom to choose what we want in life.  There may be points when we have to deal with obstacles in life and circumstances that may be negative, but we all choose how we handle adverse situations.  From the beginning of time mankind has had the ability to make his own decisions.  That is a tremendous privilege and responsibility.  We must accept responsibility for what we have in our lives, good or bad, and accept responsibility.

The paradox here is that the idea of freedom of choice is the thing that can set us free from believing that we have to accept something.  For example, how many times have you heard someone say that God gave them a disease or ailment?  Some profess that they have a chronic condition to make them a better person.  How about when you didn’t get a job you wanted and you say to yourself that it wasn’t meant to be.  There may be other factors, like more qualifies candidates, or your background wasn’t sufficient or maybe you had poor performance on the interview.  None of these circumstances should be chalked up to “that’s how it should be”, or “it must have happened for a reason”.

Granted, that at times, bad things happen to good people.  But how we deal with the situation determines the outcome.  Ultimately it is ourselves, who has the power to determine what is in our life.  Not every single thing, because there are factors that affect us like, environment, society, etc, but overall we do have the ability to shape the world that impacts us and how we view it.

The people who achieve greatness in life are those who look for the circumstances they want in order to succeed and if they can’t find them, they make them.  Think of the settlers that came to America wanting a better life.  They picked up their loved ones and what possessions they could carry and left to a foreign country with hope and a desire to make the life they wanted.  At times, things came up that challenged them, but they kept their eyes on the life they wanted to live and let nothing stand in their way.  There are hundreds of stories of men and women throughout history who were faced with insurmountable obstacles and, through persistence and unwavering conviction to principles and their ideal, came out on top and beat the giant that faced them.

We are affected by the past, but we can also shape out future into the life we want by making choices that align with what we want.  Our vision should always be positive toward ourselves and those around us.

Every day is a golden opportunity to make our lives what we want.  Things will inevitably come up, but we are in charge of our lives and we need to stake our claim on what we want every day.  Move toward what you want by choosing what is right, just, and making it yours.  There may be a fork in the road, but you choose which way to go at that point.

Choose life.  Choose good.  Choose what you want in your life.

Ignite your passion!

Just the facts ma’am

joe fridayAs a sales professional it is critical that you stick to the facts and behave in an ethical and honest manner.  How many times have you heard a politician distort facts or leave out a crucial statistic?  It makes me sick.   In the long run they only hurt themselves.  Compromising in this area will cost you dearly.  The price?  Integrity, value, self-worth, credibility, and a litany of other characteristics that make you an asset.

Don’t you want to be able to look yourself in the mirror and like what you see?  I’ve said many times that you cannot take short cuts when it comes to selling or genuine success.  This includes a moral code that cannot be broken.  And it doesn’t matter if anyone ever finds out, you will know.

Your personal integrity is one of the most valuable things you can acquire.  You cannot buy it because it is earned over time.  Yet, how easily some just give it away and concede something that is priceless.  How you do things and the core of your being are important.  I want my children to be proud of who I am and what I stand for.  When I’m gone I want people to remember me for someone who stood for something important and can be an example for others.

Recently I heard a politician talk about something in which he was endeavoring to paint a picture for people about an issue.  He used a particular fact in which to make his case.  The sad part is that he left out three other facts that paint an entirely differently picture that the one lone fact he used to make his case.  My question to you is this:  Is your agenda more important that selling out your integrity?  If you were to gain the whole world but lose your soul, then you have lost everything.  If by your actions you alienate those most important to you then you have lost.

Integrity is one of those priceless things that cannot be purchased like talented players at the trade deadline.  Maybe some never have it.  Those great qualities that men like our founding fathers are not easily earned but can be lost so quickly.  Once it’s gone it is difficult to get it back if not impossible.

The point of my rant is this:  In all of your interactions, handle them like they are the most important events in your life and consider how you will think about it years from now.  Keep your integrity close to your heart and treasure it.  Don’t be like a cheap politician with an agenda, you are better than that.  Be someone of substance and character.  Be someone your mother would be proud of.

Stick to the facts in a balanced manner.  What I mean by that is that when you are revealing an idea, concept or solution, give the whole picture, stick to the facts, and do not leave our crucial information.  Retain your integrity.  Live on a higher plain and let the quality of your life be seen by all.  It will pay off for you one hundred fold.


No Limits

limitsHow many times have we put limits on ourselves?  We probably do it every day without realizing it.  People put barriers on themselves and will never rise above the limits that are self-imposed.  And they truly are self-imposed.

Remembering the 2012 Olympics in London, there were incredible performances and records broken.  Dreams realized for some, and hopes of others, shattered.   These athletes only get a shot every 4 years and are competing against the top performers in the world.  Years or grueling training and just about every area of their lives are managed in light of their upcoming competition.  Diet, leisure, rest, social interaction, exercise, weight, conditioning, and their schedule are subject to how it will prepare them to be at their peak level at the time of the event.

The event that impressed me the most was the Women’s 400 relay.  Team USA had some setbacks and disappointments in years past as a team and personally.  Obviously they were all top athletes capable of competing at this level.  In reality, all who qualify for the Olympics have the ability to win.  But occasionally individuals, whether competing as a team or individually, rise to the occasion and really seize the moment.  Some squeak by and others are clearly superior to the competition.

The Unites States Women’s 400 Relay team was poised to be competitive in this event and many thought they could win.  However, in these events there a lot of things that can go wrong and the difference between winning and not winning is razor thin.

Most events are won or lost before they begin and it goes beyond physical conditioning.  The deciding factor many times is the belief system and the mental training.  I’m sure it’s intimidating to line up against the best in the world in the same event all trying to win.  There are always challenges when hanging off the baton too, and many teams have forfeited by handing off to slow, too fast or dropping it.

As the race began, the US got off to a good start in the first leg and were very much in contention, next Allyson Felix pulled away from the pack with blazing speed, in the third leg the lead was maintained, but the fourth leg was run by Carmelita Jeter, who absolutely destroyed the competition.  There was a point when she knew that they had a good chance to break the record and she ran with blazing speed the entire leg with every intention of not only victory but breaking the record.  As she crossed the finish line, she pointed to the clock, realizing that they had beaten the record.  That record was set in 1985 by the German team and was obliterated by over half a second (which is HUGE in the 400).  Teamwork, belief, and determination prevailed as they broke a barrier and refused to be subject to limits whether self-imposed or from others.  They seized the moment and realized their dreams and came out victorious.

It inspires me to see athletes rise to the occasion and claim victory (especially is they are from the United States).  Those girls deserve those medals but even more, they are now part of history in the record books.

May you days be filled with victory and excitement as you remove the limitations you have put on yourself.  Refuse to settle, but claim what is yours and be the victor you have always dreamed of becoming by daring to dream big and see it through to the finish line.

Ignite your passion!

Be Original

US FlagRecently a top ranking US government official said that one of their inspirations was Mau Tse Tung. At first one might think that referencing eastern philosophy is sort of “out of the box”, innovative and intelligent. After all, it’s trendy and hip to revere modern day revolutionaries and rebels. Schools are now introducing out kids to Castro, Mau, Marx and other so called rebels. And yet, you hardly hear of our founding fathers, the principles they stood for and how many gave of their own blood.

I don’t think people look far below the surface to truly understand what some of these people stood for and what drove them. They read a couple of quotes and have an outline of what they were about and then buy a T-Shirt with their picture on it because it is “in” at the moment.

I am not saying that we should not consider the ideas from other cultures, but I am saying that we should deeply consider what these people were about and what they stood for before we just buy into what they believe. For example, people read a few quotes, many of which are nice, and think they truly understand. For an education official to publicly declare that they turn to Mau for enlightenment is hideous. History clearly shows that Mau believed in violence, tortured enemies, craved power, lived lavishly, murdered those who stood against him, and is responsible for the largest genocide in history. Yeah; sounds like someone I want to follow. Now compare that with the founding fathers of our country.

John Adams and John Hancock: We Recognize No Sovereign but God, and no King but Jesus! [April 18, 1775]

John Adams: “I have examined all religions, as well as my narrow sphere, my straightened means, and my busy life, would allow; and the result is that the Bible is the best Book in the world. It contains more philosophy than all the libraries I have seen.” December 25, 1813 letter to Thomas Jefferson

Samuel Adams: “ He who made all men hath made the truths necessary to human happiness obvious to all… Our forefathers opened the Bible to all.”

John Quincy Adams: “The Law given from Sinai [The Ten Commandments] was a civil and municipal as well as a moral and religious code.”

Ben Franklin: “the excellency of the Christian religion above all others, ancient or modern.”

Alexander Hamilton: “I have a tender reliance on the mercy of the Almighty, through the merits of the Lord Jesus Christ. I am a sinner. I look to Him for mercy; pray for me.”

Patrick Henry: “The Bible is worth all other books which have ever been printed.”

Thomas Jefferson: “I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus.”

James Madison: “ We’ve staked our future on our ability to follow the Ten Commandments with all of our heart.”

George Washington: “The name of American, which belongs to you, in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of Patriotism, more than any appellation derived from local discrimination. With slight shades of difference, you have the same religion” …and later: “…reason and experience both forbid us to expect, that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle…”

This is vastly different from Mau, Castro, Marx, and other trendy philosophy’s. And yet they are taught less and less in schools and even more so at our universities. .I cannot help but admire the commitment and dedication of our forefathers in that they saw a vision of our country way beyond their own lives

The words of our founding fathers are not the popular view today because so much pressure has been put on the shortcomings of our country, plus magnifying and distorting the truth about the founding of our country instead of embracing it’s greatness along with the privilege of living in the United States.  Aside from how our country has positively impacted nations around the globe.

I for one, refuse to be a sheep and to allow popular culture and trends to shape how I think. We should not just assume we really get what these so called rebels thought. On the surface, it may appear that they had a lot on the ball, but people that lived in these countries that were affected would probably tell you otherwise. Our forefathers gave their lives and sacrificed so that we can live free and to have the freedom to think for ourselves and to worship as we see fit. Oh yeah, for someone to say that we are not a Christian nation, when over 80% of the population is still Christian and to recognize the vision our country was founded upon, is absurd. Our forefathers founded this country on Christian principle.

So, be original, don’t follow trends. Know what you are following and who you are quoting before you open your mouth and insert your foot.

To your success and Ignite your passion!

Rome wasn’t built in a day

italy-rome-colosseumMany young professionals have struck gold with their ideas. Facebook, Google, and Microsoft immediately come to mind. It seems as if each surpasses the other with innovative ideas and give people what they want in a simple format. Generally speaking the public reveres these innovators and everyone wants to pick their brain and see if they can use the same formula to develop an idea like theirs. In interviews they are asked how they did it, and how they arrived at the point of coming up with the idea that made them rich. They are depicted as geniuses. And while, yes, they developed something out of nothing and the timing was perfect, it is not the norm. Most of the time building something of value takes time and should be done the right way. Not knocking the success of these individuals, hats off to them; just pointing out that generally success doesn’t happen that way.

I heard an Astronaut speak recently and got to meet him. He is in his mid 80’s, and seemed mentally sharp as well as physically. I feel confident that many generation X’ers and generation Y’ers, upon seeing him if he walked into a room may think of him as just another old man with stale ideas and old thinking. The underlying mentality is that the young people have the new exciting ideas that will take the world by storm.

Personally, I got an appreciation for how these Astronauts trained, sacrificed, risked their lives, and put the mission ahead of their own goals to advance technology and further science that would benefit us. Many involved in the space program don’t even get into space until their 40’s & 50’s. And that is after an incredible screening in every facet of their being. Then comes years and years of training and preparation. In some of these missions they faced incredible obstacles, overcame insurmountable odds, and did what was once considered impossible. The United States put a man on the moon back in the day where there were no cell phones, computers took up an entire room (and did a fraction of what an iPhone does), TV was black and white, and so much technology we take for granted was either in infancy stages or not invented yet. In spite of that, engineers, scientists, and others put their heads together and worked collectively to achieve something great. Sometimes it took several years to solve an issue that would affect the entire program.

Ever heard the phrase, “Rome wasn’t built in a day”? Well, it wasn’t, and get rich quick schemes will come and go and so will many of the innovations that mesmerize people today. The older I get (my real age you ask???, I’ll never tell), the more I appreciate that elderly retired astronaut and how he faithfully labored away at something he believed in and did it with pride. What about you? Are you laboring away at something you are good at and something you love to do? If not, that’s a shame.

Some observation I learned from the retired colonel:
• Doing things the right way will alleviate fixing it later
• You need to be flexible in your plan as things change and roadblocks arise
• When you work as a team, you will accomplish more
• A contingency plan is a must; you have to anticipate what could happen
• Know your destination and be clear on how to get there
• Smell the roses along the way; don’t get overly caught up in where you are going that you lose sight of the enjoyment of the journey
• Take pride in what you do
• Be solution oriented, not focused on the problem
• Appreciate the supporting cast

Anything worth having is worth working for and putting forth the effort. Things don’t generally fall into place as quickly as they did for those who benefited from the tech boom. Most of the time things that are worthwhile are earned by application of ethics and principle faithfully. So plan your work and work your plan faithfully and enjoy every step of the way.

Ignite your passion.

Be Unstoppable

justin-verlanderA couple of years ago, one of my favorite baseball players, Justin Verlander threw his second no hitter against Toronto.  He is a big, strong guy with great skills and a tremendous attitude. He is a team player and he wants to win and he is committed to his team. His goal is to throw seven no-hitters in the course of his career. Now that’s what I would call a clear vision.  With that said, since that time he has experienced “no so stellar” performances and suffered several injuries.  In all of this he remains confident in his ability to dominate once again and has recently shown that he still has what it takes.

What makes him stand out is the fact that he has a belief in himself that he can accomplish what he sets out to do and he obviously has the skills to back it up.

Those who make things happen are the ones who think big, and don’t focus on why things can’t happen, but as the question, “Why not.” Everything that is done today was once never done by anyone. The first hurdle in achievement is the mental barrier. Remember Roger Bannister? On May 6th, 1954, he was the first human to run the mile in under 4 minutes and shocked the world. Since that time hundreds of people have done it, and yet before that many, many races were held when people didn’t accomplish that great feat.

The truth is, the power is not in the mind, but in the belief that we can achieve and develop the ability we have. And it must be in the realm of reasonable possibility. For example, I shouldn’t expect to run a 4 minute mile if I am not in shape and never train. Now that’s an extreme illustration, but you can set reasonable goals for yourself and get the things you want out of life by applying principle.

Here are some things that can help us attain new heights and get what we want:

Focus: It is easy to get distracted and change what we want. Be single minded and clear about what we want and why and what it will do for us after we get it.

Give: That’s right! A giver is one who can receive as well. It is imperative that we give and share of our resources and help others along the way. The other main area of giving is the giving or yourself to your goal. There is no such thing as something for nothing. There will be a price to pay and you need to weigh that and consider what that will be before you set out to achieve.

Don’t settle: Why do people just accept what is dealt to them? If you are not in the circumstances you want, then make them. Don’t settle for anything less than what you truly want. You deserve it.

Pick yourself up: There will be setbacks and obstacles. How you deal with them will be a major factor in the achievement and the speed with which you reach the finish line. Stay fixed on the goal.

Be relentless: Be bullish about your goal and don’t let others affect you. Don’t let others take you down with them either. Stand firm on what you want and don’t pay attention to the “nay-sayers”.

In the end, you will be happy with yourself and what you have by being true to yourself in your goals and aspirations in life. You attitude is key in all of this and enjoy the excitement of the journey as you stay on the path to success.

Ignite your passion!