Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Ultimate Success Formula Part 3

Welcome to the third and final segment of this three part series called The Ultimate Success Formula. I certainly hope that you're getting value from the content, but more important than that I want you to learn this stuff. Before you say to yourself, "I'm learning!" I'd like you to consider learning from a perspective that you may not have considered. In this day and age we talk about learning as the accumulation of information leading to knowledge. Although there is nothing wrong with this, I'd like you to consider the thought that this isn't really learning. I'd like you to consider the possibility that information and knowledge not acted on is not learned. Consider the definition of learning to be defined by action. If you take this information and you're able to talk about and even regurgitate it, but you're not using it to change your life, you're not learning. So please take this stuff, put it in to practice and share it with others. DEAL? I know you said, "YES!!" so we'll move on to the last part.

The last part has to with the actual achievement, so let's use a historical event to put all of this in to perspective. At one point in history, man made the decision to go to the moon. To be more specific it was to go to the moon and bring him back. If you think about this goal it certainly fits the criteria that I laid out in part one doesn't it? Know what you want! We had the specifics, we had the by when, the what, we even had the why, and we all knew how much it would suck if we didn't beat the Russians, right? All of that played into an emotionally charged goal that not only charged up the people directly involved, but it charged up the whole country. When John Kennedy got up in front of all those people at Rice University and publicly said we choose to go to the moon, that certainly was a commitment to be and do whatever it takes, wasn't it? So all of the aspects of step one are in place.

The second step is Take Action...NOW! Think of all the people that were involved in the project. Just from a numbers scale there was massive action taking place. Think of the deadlines that needed to be met, especially in light of the underlying need and massive desire to beat the Russians to the moon and back. I don't know if you've ever seen the mini series on HBO "From The Earth to The Moon", but it is fascinating the massive amounts of thought and activity and learning that occurred to make the mission a success. Once everything was in place, think of the massive effort to simply launch the rocket and pull away from gravity.

The third step is to KEEP ON KEEPING ON! Another reason so many people fail to reach their dreams and goals is that they quit, and the reason they quit is that things don't go smoothly. Imagine all of the setbacks that the scientists had to endure and learn from and overcome to get everything ready for that first trip to the moon and back. If you ever get to watch a documentary about the moon shot, I highly recommend it. It's a fascinating tale of how to achieve anything in life. So what's the big deal with setbacks and bumps in the road. The real big deal is that most people, for some reason, don't expect them. Most people have this notion that success is a straight line from point A to point Z with smooth tracks on a relatively flat terrain with regular stops for bathroom and leg stretch breaks at every letter from B to Y. The truth is very different than that. The truth for ALL of us reaching for something BIG is that not only will the path be bumpy, curvy and all that. The truth is that the whole trip we'll need to lay the tracks and put down pavement while we're in motion. Using the moon shot example, not only did the people on that project have to overcome all sorts of adversity just to launch, once they did launch that wasn't a straight shot either. It was constantly adjusting, sometimes by a little and sometimes by a lot, to get them from here to the moon. Once they got there, it was a whole new ordeal to get back.

So here are the points for Step 3.

  1. Create a system of accountability.
  2. Resolve up front that you will succeed and you will never quit.
  3. Learn with every success and setback
    • Am I getting closer or farther?
    • What's working?
    • What's not working?
  4. Practice shifting your attitude
  5. Change your approach
If you do those things, eventually you'll reach Step 4 Success! Once you've reached your destination there are things to be done as well. Remember to CELEBRATE! Take the time to pat yourself on the back for a job well done. Take the time to reflect on the journey that you've just taken and all that you've learned.

As the directions on the shampoo bottle says, rinse and repeat. Set your next goal. There's no better time to set another goal than fresh off the victory of accomplishing a goal. If you sit around and wait, I promise you that you'll get lethargic, again. The best thing you can do is to set the next goal, and repeat the steps...on to the next thing.

Having said all that, consider this for a moment. A while back I heard someone say that the most important part about setting and achieving goals isn't even about crossing them off the list. The greatest benefit of getting after Big Hairy Audacious Goals or BHAGs is the person you will inevitably become in the process getting after them. It certainly has been that for me. This is a picture of me when I was about 24. I'm the one on the left. By the time this picture was taken, that kid on the left had already attended a handful of seminars and workshops and had big dreams and goals, but he also really cared mostly about drinking a lot of beer. As a matter of fact I'm pretty sure this was taken just before a huge party we threw that night for my friend Philip. When I look at this picture and I contrast that to who I am today, I'm amazed at the difference.

You see, the truth is that time is ticking away all the time. Eventually five years will go by and then ten. Next thing you know twenty then forty years will have gone by. I think about all of these people I see around who all had some dream or goal, but never learned to get after it. Making excuses or justifying their reasons why they had to wait became their inertia. They never set out on that journey of discovery, and because they never took the first step they never found out who they could become. Don't let that be you. Work the steps. Know what you want. Take action, now. Keep on keeping on. Succeed. Repeat. If you make this a part of your life you'll find that The Ultimate Success Formula really does work, even if you never actually hit any of your goals. How is that possible? I'm not saying don't hit your goals, hit all of them, most of them, some of them. But the greatest benefit you'll receive is that you'll discover who you really are, and that's an experience that no amount of achievement could ever replace.

Until next time...

Live FREE!


Monday, January 26, 2015

The Ultimate Success Formula Part 2


Did you read The Ultimate Success Formula Part 1? I certainly hope you did. If you didn't, please go back and read it. If you did, did you write something down as a goal? Did you get specific about it? Did you get in touch with your "Why?" your emotional reasons for wanting this goal? We used to have a saying, "If you have a big enough why, you can figure out any how." We also used to say, "Unless you have a why that makes you cry, you won't be able to withstand the challenges that will inevitably come your way." Not every goal has to be of the earth-shattering variety, of course. You can set some little fun ones along the way, but even with those, really hone in on your why. This is very important, because of the next part. Of course, once all of that is done, you got to commit. It's not just enough to want it, especially with your BHAGs (Big Hairy Audacious Goals). You gotta be committed with every fiber of your being. To paraphrase Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. it's gotta be something you're willing to live for, willing to die for. What we call LEVEL 5, BE and DO Whatever It Takes committed. Which brings us to...

Step #2 is TAKE ACTION...NOW! So why is getting in touch with the emotional aspect so important, because emotion creates motion. Unless something moves you emotionally, you probably won't take action. Even if you do take action it probably won't be massive enough to sustain momentum through to the end. This is so often the case for so many people. Think about all the people right now at this time of the year who set the goal of losing a bit of weight and quitting smoking. It happens year after year, and according to all the stats over 95% of the people have already quit. For many of these people the issue is that they never got started.

When it comes to reaching a goal, I want you to think in terms of inertia. What does physics have to do with this? Well what does inertia tell us? Objects at rest tend to...stay at rest. Objects in motion tend to..stay in motion. (I know that's overly simplified, but stay with me.) Tell me if you've ever done this. For whatever reason you get a wild and crazy idea in your head at night, and you get all fired up about it. So Excited!! You can't wait to get up in the morning to start. You think about it all night. You have a hard time falling asleep because you're so excited. You tell yourself you'll get up early and get started first thing in the morning. You finally go to sleep, and you wake up excited. You haven't been this excited in a long time. You can't wait to get started, but then you tell yourself, "well, I gotta eat breakfast, right. I'll get started right after breakfast." After you're done eating you say to yourself, "Well, I gotta take a shower and brush my teeth and get dressed. I can't get started until I've gotten ready." While you're doing all this, another part of your brain starts to kick in, and it sounds something like, "Will it really work? What have I missed? It can't be that easy, let's think this through a bit." I know I've been there, and the truth is I'll probably be there again at some point in the future. The thing I want to stress here is TAKE ACTION! When? NOW!! Nothing takes the place of action. You need to do something in the direction of your goal and capitalize on all that energy and emotion or you'll never get around to it. The inertia of your past is too strong. You've got to start...NOW!!!!! The worst thing that could happen is that you'll fail miserably and fumble along the way, which means you'll learn something. The best thing is you'll get exactly what you want. So what's the lesson? TAKE ACTION...NOW!!

So here are a couple of points:

    • DO MORE!
  3. Plan as you go.
I know that sounds counter to what most of us have been taught about the whole ounce of planning, blah, blah, blah.  I can tell you without a doubt in my mind that most people don't have an issue with planning, and planning and planning and planning....The issue for the vast majority of the people on this planet is that they have a lack of getting in to action problem. NO! The BEST thing for most people, and that probably includes you is to GET YOUR A$$ IN GEAR!! As soon as you have the idea to lose weight by doing jiu-jitsu you need to get out of your chair and go sign up for a class...NOW!! As soon as you have the notion of asking out that girl, you need to ask her out...NOW!! As soon as you have the notion of starting your own business, you need to start it...NOW!! As soon as you think to yourself I'm gonna hire Jang as my personal peak performance coach, you need to do it...NOW!! ;-) Are you getting the picture? DO IT NOW!! DO IT NOW!! DO IT NOW!! If you don't the inertia of your past will take over and you'll go right back to doing life the same way, and nothing will change. So one last time...DO IT NOW!!!!!

I certainly hope that clears up step two of The Ultimate Success Formula, so until next time...

Live FREE!! and GET YOUR A$$ IN GEAR...NOW!!!


Sunday, January 25, 2015

I'm out of cream for my coffee, what can I do?

I had just brewed some coffee. Most of the time I take my coffee with cream and sugar. When I went to look for cream in the fridge I was completely out. Rather than run to the store immediately I looked for a solution to my dilemma.

The solution? Vanilla ice cream. I took a scoop, melted it and then poured my coffee on top. Gotta tell you, it wasn't too bad. There are solutions everywhere if we just take the time to look for them, rather than getting caught up in the problem.

Just thought I'd share that with you.

Enjoy your day!!


The Ultimate Success Formula Part 1

A long time ago, in a galaxy far away...I was a much younger man. ;-)

For reasons I will get in to at some future time, I was up very late, most nights. On one of these nights I saw an infomercial for Tony Robbins' Personal Power program. I remember watching that infomercial, and having some hope for my future. I watched it several times. There were some nights I would flip through channels hoping that it would be on. Finally, one day I not only watched the infomercial, I actually bought the program. I had no idea then, but that would be one of the most pivotal moments of my life. Very rarely do we ever make a decision and in the moment of making that decision do we realize that this could be a life altering event. Most of my earth shattering and life changing decisions seem to have happened much like taking an extra deep breath.

One of the most important things that I got from my experience with Tony Robbins (and I've gotten and continue to get much) was The Ultimate Success Formula. In fact I still use it to this day whenever I'm setting goals. Over the years I've modified it a little to fit my own needs, but at its heart and essence it is the same. I'm going to write about it in three parts, so please do come back and read the rest. I will go in to the steps fairly deeply and pull out what I think are some key distinctions that will help you. Ready? Not Ready? It doesn't matter, because here we go...

1. Know what you want! That's it. The first step is to know CLEARLY what you want to accomplish. It's so simple, but most people either have no idea what they want or are so vague about it that they wouldn't know if they achieved their goal or not. Over the last fifteen plus years of being a coach, I've asked thousands of people this question: What do you want? You know what I here almost all the time? Here are a few: "I know I don't want...", "I'm not sure, but I think...", "I think it would be nice if I could...", "I don't know, I just want something different." Nearly every person I know says this. I have my ideas about why this might be, but the point here is this: If you don't know where you're going how will you know if you've arrived? Are you with me?

The second mistake people make when it comes to setting a goal is that it is reactive rather than proactive. This is where they get into the thinking process of, "Well, I don't like what I've got so I just want something other than what I've got." It's kind of like this: I got this seafood platter, I don't like this seafood platter, I want something/anything that is not this seafood platter. Are you with me on that one? Again, nothing wrong with the line of thinking, it's just so vague and so broad. Life gives us no limits on what we can accomplish. It's amazing the opportunity this affords us, but at the same time if you don't focus in on what you want to accomplish, you could dabble in a bunch of everything and never actually accomplish anything. This isn't about limiting your life, this is about focus. You can still dabble in a bunch of stuff, but almost every person I know who has feeling of fulfillment about their lives have focus and clarity about what they are up to accomplishing.

The single greatest reason why most people never accomplish their goals is simply because they don't know what they want!

To help you along your way here are a few things to consider when setting goals:

  1. Write it down. 
  2. What do you want? NOT What do you not want? 
  3. Get specific: who, what, where, when, how much, how many? 
  4. Get emotional. Why? Get in touch with how you'd feel once you accomplish it. Get in touch with how much it would suck if you don't. 
  5. Commit fully: Be and Do Whatever It Takes!

I certainly hope that helps you get started, and I hope you come back for the next two parts as well. Until then...

Live FREE!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Why Do You Have To Die?

Last night my son, Payton, asked me "Dad, are you going to die?" WOW! I said, "Yes, we all will die some day." He asked me, "I don't want you to die. Why do you have to die?"

Me: "Well, Payton, what does it mean to you when someone dies?"
Payton: "It means someone goes away forever and ever and never comes back."
Me: "If you knew that someday that person was going away and never coming back would you be nice or mean to them?"
Payton: "Nice."
Me: "Would you want to have happy, fun times or angry times?"
Payton: "Happy times."

We don't really think about the fact that someone we love will not be with us forever, at least not so often that we allow the thought to have an impact on our daily activities, do we? For example, I know that I won't be here forever, but it's not so much on the front of my mind that I think to myself "I'm not going to yell at my kids today, because if for some reason I was to die I don't want that to be how they remember me." Nor do I think to myself, "I'm going to call up that friend that I owe an apology to today, because this may be the only chance I get."

The more and more I thought about it, long after he went to bed it seems to me that the end of our lives is there for us to appreciate the life that we have that is someday going to end, and to appreciate the lives of others because we know that they, too, will one day cease to be with us. I think we all know this like we know we should love our neighbor as ourself and do unto them as we'd want them to do unto us, but for some reason like so many things we're so busy that it doesn't really register as important. Perhaps it has something to do with the perception that it's still far away in that place known as someday. I know that all of those somedays that I've thought about usually are here before I know it and much faster than I thought it would arrive.

I'm sure that this nothing profound, but perhaps my son in his own way was reminding me of the fact that I only have a limited number of days left and that I could not necessarily do more, but rather I could just be better...patient, loving, risking, passionate, excited, enthusiastic...just BE ALIVE!

Me: "Maybe, Payton, the reason we die is that because if we knew we could live forever, we'd just waste all that time. What do you think, buddy?"
Payton: "Yeah, but I'm gonna be sad when you die."
Me: "Are you crying? Are you sad?"
Payton: "Yes."
Me: "That's ok, buddy. Being sad is just a part of being alive."

Until next time...


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

What does it really mean?

A little while back my wife was talking with a man who had very briefly met me, and he told my wife that he was intimidated by me. He mentioned to her that I came across with so much confidence and because I didn't talk that much to people it was very difficult for him to approach me. For him, just apporaching me and talking with me was difficult for him to do. Of course he did approach me and we did talk. Eventually after talking with me he realized that there was nothing at all intimidating about me.

It's interesting to me that as I've gotten older, more and more this has happened. I've gotten this feedback on severa occasions that I'm somehow intimidating. One of the reasons people have given is this perceived level of confidence and I've even gotten arrogance. What's been even more interesting to me is that the one distinguishing characteristic that people always point to is that I'm quiet and don't talk much. It's funny because when I was younger, because I was quiet and didn't talk much, people thought I was shy.

Of course nowadays when people meet me, it's generally in some business setting and I get introduced as the communications expert, the trainer, the guy who's spoken in front of thousands of people. I suppose with that context people have a tendency to take my being quiet as being aloof or arrogant and feel intimidated.

I'm just surprised by how a shift in context can shape people's perceptions. I've been quiet my whole life. I was quiet as a child because I was observant most of the times, and when I did speak it was quite a whirlwind of activity. So much so that it would always surprise people. The comment I used to get when I was a younger was something like "I thought you were shy, but you sure can talk when you have something to say." or "For someone so shy you sure can talk when you have something to say." I was never shy, just observant. People loved to label me as shy, though. Now, the same behavior has me being labeled as intimidating.

It's amazing how we as people love to jump to conclusions and label things. I suppose it gives us some false sense of knowing what is going on. By labeling things and people we can put things in a box, and if we're wrong we can be surprised. What would it be like if we were just open? How would life change for us if simply met things and people wherever they were and were open to seeing things for what they were rather than seeing them the way we wish them to be? How often do we miss out on opportunities because we've jumped to some conclusion ahead of time, rather than engaging with the moment? After all if you really think about it, our assumptions and conclusions say more about what's in our own hearts and minds than it does about what's actually occuring, doesn't it? Until next time...

Live FREE!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

My Defective Travel Cup Part 2

So did you figure out what was going on? The first step to solving any problem I believe lies in the questions we ask. If we ask the poor questions then inevitably poor answers will come out of it, wouldn't it? If we ask better questions, we get better answers. Are you with me so far? Sometimes we only get to the better questions by struggling long enough with a series of poor questions, though. It's interesting how our education system puts a premium on knowing the "right" answers and is less than encouraging about asking a bunch of questions. Anyways, I digress, but on a similar vein...I once did a a very simple card trick for a friend of mine, and he asked me to do it again to figure out how I was doing it. I'm not a professional magician, so I broke the cardinal rule of magic and did it for him, again... and again and again. After a while he said something like, "I'm looking and looking, but I can't figure out how you're doing it. I'm really looking, too." I simply said, "What do you think you're looking for?" The truth is that many times in life we are looking for answers where we can't find them, not for lack of effort, but because we don't know what we're looking for... are you following me, here? Good, so here we go with the cup.

The first thing was what if there was nothing wrong with the cup? Then the issue lied with me, but what about me? Was I not using the cup correctly? Well, how could that be? I've been drinking out of cups most of my life, right? What if there was a design issue with the cup and the way that I used the cup was combining to create this issue? There was the answer, literally at the end of my nose. So what was the issue? The way I was using the cup and the way it was designed, when I tipped the cup to drink from it, my nose was covering the vent hole. This obviously restricted the flow, and when I pulled the cup away from my nose, just enough for the air to go through, this action caused a sudden surge of liquid to come pouring out when I wasn't expecting it to. This was what caused the spill. Problem solved! Now what possible life lessons come from this?

Well, I got some good lessons out of it, but for this time I'd like you to simply think it through for yourself and email me or comment on what you got out of this post, okay? That's all for now, and until next time...

Live FREE!