Luck, Impatience, and Inching Along

(3 minutes)


1 in 292 Million

These are roughly the odds of winning the powerball jackpot. Pretty poor odds if you ask me.

Why then, are so many people playing the lottery and trying to get lucky?

Because there is that ONE chance.

The hope in the “jackpot” can be felt. It’s immense. Its a real thing…real that in all likelihood will NEVER happen. But it could change our life tomorrow.  Tomorrow!

Impatience = searching for luck

Luck is a funny word. You work hard for years on a dream and when it happens you’re considered “lucky” because to all those who weren’t watching the entire time…it just happened ~ stupid people.

The fact of the matter is, the hard work was done achieving minuscule win after win, 10 or 15 years ago. However, when the trigger event happens, its then called luck.

Here’s what luck really looks like.

Daily focus on a realized goal.

Every day working to literally inch forward, always progressing. Some days will progress more than others, but over time, tremendous momentum will be generated.

I’ve said to almost every team I’ve ever worked with, “how do we get a little better TODAY?” Same question the next day, and the next, and the next. Every day working on fine tuning the product. Never perfect, but always progressing.

Looking back on our team the past couple of years, collectively we’ve done some really amazing things. Together. Every day, by inching along. Reflecting back on two years of focused labor and momentum paints a much different picture that’s tough to see on a daily basis.

A beautiful picture of patience and persistence.

ACTION ITEM: Stop trying to hit a grand slam home run, with no one on base because you’re trying to get lucky and you’ve become impatient.

Exercise patience and maintain focus.
Inch Along with powerful momentum.

Go Get It. 

We Get What We Must Have

Want vs. MUST

I’m publishing this post from 36,000 ft, flying back home from a recent visit to New York City.  As per my usual travel cadence, I spend the time coming home recapping the visit and reflecting on where I stand with my goals.

It wasn’t until this year I started viewing my goals a little differently, and it’s been extremely successful.

Want vs. Must

I’ve heard this probably 20+ times when listening to Tony Robbins, but it wasn’t until I put it (my goals) in writing, when I started to see massive change.

Here’s exactly how it happened for me and how it can happen for you.

  1. Sit down in a quiet place where you can be brutally honest with your feelings.  You have to be REAL & it’s only about YOU.
  2. Grab a pen and begin to be unreasonable with what you want… (no MUST have).  100% Honest.
  3. Make a list and read it frequently.  I try to read mine weekly.

The title of my list started as, “What do I really want.”  The problem with this title is it wasn’t committed enough.  Wants are nice, but they don’t change behavior.  My list now is titled, “My MUST Haves!”

Below is my exact list.  I’ve removed a couple highly personal elements of my list, but don’t let that stop your list.  The key here is NOT to compare your list.  Do NOT try and keep up with the Joneses.  Own your must haves.  Get honest and get in motion the lifestyle you want to live.

My MUST Haves:

  1. I must make a great income.  $______________/yr+  Why? Because it will provide our family with tremendous opportunities and freedom to explore and live without a “job.”  This income will provide tremendous freedom to explore all the experiences we’re looking for.
  2. I must be passionate about the work I’m doing, but not feel handcuffed to it.  I want to work from anywhere and anytime I feel the need.  I don’t want a job.  I want to own and manage a business and its outputs.  I’ve learned I have the talents to do such a thing and I’ve learned others whom I consider equally or even less talented have been successful in doing so.  Make it happen today!
  3. I must live on a golf course in a nice but not extravagant home.  Why? Because I want my neighbors to be right or left of me and not on all sides of me.  Because I want to play a couple holes at night if we find the time.  It’s my ideal scene in the evening.
  4. I must create multiple sources of income for our family through business ownership and other businesses (i.e. rental properties/etc).  Why?  Because I want the freedom for my wife to stay at home (if she even wants to).  Because when we can create enough passive income, we can limit our tax liability and continue to earn money without directly working for it.
  5. I must travel and explore all that this great country has to offer.  Mountains and lakes, oceans and cities.  I want to eat great food, drink great wine and relax in beautiful surroundings.  I want to travel multiple times per year with the family and invest in experiences and not empty things that clutter a house
  6. I must be on the attack and not on my heels.  I want to be aggressive in pursuing this lifestyle design and all that it can provide our family.  What is the alternative?  There isn’t one.  Make it happen.
  7. I want to live comfortably knowing we’re contributing to our future and our son’s future with consistently maxing out retirement contributions and never taking on too much debt (except debt paid by others).  We contribute here first, or we contribute to owning more assets that provide us monthly cash flow to continue our path to financial freedom.  More experiences and less stuff.
  8. I MUST continue to push to get better physically, spiritually and intellectually.  Continue to dive into new books, thoughts, blogs, and readings.  Continue to learn and expand my relationships.   Remain consistently unsatisfied.

ACTION ITEM: Get serious and get it in writing.   Don’t think in terms of, “want to have” think in absolutes and “must haves!”

We get our Musts!


Halftime Adjustments for 2014

Screen Shot 2014-06-22 at 3.50.20 PM We’re about a week away from June 30, which is also the halfway mark of 2014.

Pretty hard to believe isn’t it?  

It’s almost time for the 4th of July and it’s a really great time for reflection.  If you haven’t gone back and looked at your 2014 goals, now is the time.  Every all-time great coach understood the art of making halftime adjustments to win.  This should be no different for you or I. I’m a glass half full kind of guy, and there is half of the year left to achieve my goals.  If you don’t have goals written down, do it soon!  You have the rest of 2014 to achieve them. Good goals follow the acronym S.M.A.R.T.

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Results-Focused
  • Timely

In order to help the audience, I’m going to share with you some of my personal goals and precisely where I stand.  Although I may not share with you the exact number (for personal privacy reasons), I will tell you what I’m doing about each of them.

  1. Debt Reduction Goal – My wife and I had the goal to have zero debt (with the exception of our house) by August 1, 2014.  I can tell you we will accomplish this goal by the beginning of July.  This feels fantastic!  It provides a tremendous amount of freedom and flexibility for us to attack all that life has to offer without fear.
  2. Savings Goal – Along with our debt reduction goal, we have a goal to maintain growth in our savings to hopefully build a house some day.  I can tell you we’re about 70% along the way to our goal today.  Maintaining our current plans should put us in a position to achieve the goal by September or October of 2014.
  3. Vacation Goal (Unplug Time) – Our goal was to take a great vacation before the baby arrives in August.  Beth and I spent five days in San Francisco this spring and it was AWESOME.  At the end of this post, there are a few quick pics to document our visit.  We relaxed, walked a TON, and enjoyed each other’s company without phone calls, emails, and interruption.  I highly encourage you to do this in 2014 if you haven’t already.
  4. Income Goal – I have a goal to increase my income 35% in 2014.  I thought about this a great deal a few months back and I’ve had to reevaluate where I’m spending my time and who I’m spending it with.  I had NO chance of hitting my target.  I will tell you I got angry with myself and had to reflect on what I was doing to positively impact this goal.  I can tell you I’ve seen a great deal of change after a serious self evaluation and I’m excited to see where 2014 ends up.  More to come on this at year-end!
  5. Volunteer Goal – I set a goal to volunteer three times in 2014 at places where I’ve never done ANYTHING for in the past.  This would cause me to get uncomfortable, meet new people, and help with others.  This next statement is extremely selfish, but it is the truth.  When I volunteer, I feel really great afterwards.  I need to get my ass in gear on this one.  I’ve got six months left to make good on this promise.
  6. Daily Focus/Meditation Goal – This year I committed to spending a focused amount of time daily clearing my mind and more recently practicing meditation.  It’s something I picked up early in 2014 and something I’ve fallen in love with.  The goal is to spend 20 to 30 minutes focused on relaxation and transforming my thoughts.  The challenge in this goal is the word DAILY.  I’m going to work harder on the daily focus of this goal because I can literally feel the results in my efforts when I remain diligent in the process.

I hope you enjoyed my look at a few of the goals I’m attacking in 2014.  I hope this will give you the energy and excitement you need to tackle your goals.  It’s extremely helpful for me to share these goals publicly for accountability.

ACTION ITEM: Take a moment to review your 2014 goals.  If you don’t have them, work some time into your schedule to get them written down.  Next, it’s truthful reflection time.  What’s keeping you from attaining the goal?  Lastly, here is a link to Tony Robbins goal setting workbook.  It’s fantastic.

San Fran Pics:

Zac & Beth visit Google World Headquarters

Zac & Beth visit Google World Headquarters

San Francisco Selfie

San Francisco Selfie

View from our patio

View from our patio

Golden Gate Bridge

Golden Gate Bridge

31 Things I Learned Turning 32

Yesterday (March 15) was my birthday.  Beware the Ides of March.  I took some time to reflect on the previous year and just where I’ve been. 31

The 31st year of my life was a really challenging and wonderful year.  Below is a list of 31 things I learned in the last 365 days.  I’ll also leave you with what I’m most looking forward to in the upcoming year.

1. Be myself – every day

2. Read more

3. Embrace fears – everyone is scared (Jay-Z)

4. Say “Thank You” more often

5. Ask more questions

6. Meditate often

7. Listen to more podcasts (most are FREE)

8. Help accomplish goals for others

9. Don’t take myself too seriously

10. Start more: projects, relationships and solutions

11. Launch a blog and share something great with the world (check!)

12. Waiting sucks – go now!

13. Buy a gift for an unsuspecting friend

14. Find a mentor or mentors

15. State your intentions clearly

16. Buy a drink for your friends

17. Don’t be the smartest guy in the room

18. Challenge yourself to get better every day

19. Goals are great, discipline is paramount

20. Get uncomfortable

21. Save a little for a rainy day

22. Eliminate average: thoughts, actions and people

23. Dress for success

24. Ask for help – no great thing was ever accomplished alone

25. The Masters (golf tournament) is a really magical place.  Thank you Juan for the tickets!

26. It’s okay to say NO

27. Tell a better story

28. Donating time can be more valuable than money

29. Take time to recharge

30. Don’t underestimate the power of prayer

31. The number of people who REALLY CARE is astounding.  Thank you to all of my friends!  I hope I can repay you.

Looking forward to year 32, I can tell you without reservation I’m most looking forward to being a dad.  Everyone tells me it’s a life changing event and I’m ready for the challenge.  Come August 2014, Beth and I will be welcoming another Keen Mind into the world.

ACTION ITEM: Take time to reflect on what you’ve learned in the last year.  I’d really love it if you’d share your thoughts in the comments below with our entire tribe.