Archives For Entrepreneurship

What Matters?

September 20, 2013

Not long ago, I started listening to podcasts. I mean, I had been listening to a couple here and there for a few years, but now I actually took the time to look and see what is out there. I went in search of shows that were not only going to fit my interests, but also that would in some way be of benefit to me.

 

IStock_000000306141_ExtraSmallCurrently I seem to be spending most of the time listening to 2 shows in particular. One is a Chiropractic show called Spinal Column Radio. And, it’s really helped me shift my mindset on how I want to practice and want my office to run. It’s also tied me into some new doctors to listen in on, or read their books or blogs.

 

The other show is what really got me to thinking about this particular post. It’s called The Fizzle Show, and it’s 3 guys that actually in some ways remind me of myself and 2 of my best buddies. Their personalities just seem to match ours in a lot of ways.

 

Anyway, there was an episode that I heard the other day in which one of the guys, Corbett Barr, talked about a list he has of What Matters.

 

They discussed this list on the show, and how he came up with it. Apparently a while back there was an article circling the web talking about the top regrets of the dying. The list of regrets gave Corbett some inspiration to actually make a list of what’s important in his life. You can find the list here.

 

So, now they had me hooked. I couldn’t help but think of all the different things going on in my life. Ask my wife, and she would tell you that I am always coming up with something to do or some place to go. I very seldom take the time to “stop and smell the roses”.

 

Truthfully, I have had a lot of thought on that recently, and want to make some changes. Nonetheless, it’s part of who I am. And, I could no easier just start to turn my mind off than I could change the direction the wind blows.

 

But, this list gives me a different perspective. It helps me narrow down what is important to me, What Matters. And, I can use it to help me make decisions on what I really want to get involved with doing.

 

Now, of course, this exact list may not be what helps me to decide anything. After all, these are the things that matter to Corbett. So, I have a challenge ahead of me. First, I need to sit down and make my own list. What matters to me? Once, I come up with that, most of my decisions, and all of the big decisions, will have to stand up to the test. Will ____ stand the test of What Matters to me?

 

Question:

Do you have a list of What Matters to you?

Your Calling

July 31, 2013

What happens when you start something? No really. Think about it for a second. What happens when you really go ahead and take the time out of your busy life and schedule to sit down and start working on your new project, business, calling, etc.

 

IStock_000013887628XSmallIf you are like me, then you find a few things that seem to always come up.

 

First, there is that little feeling inside that asks, “Can I really do this?”. Typically this is followed by the next question which is, “Why me?” or perhaps “Who am I to try to tell others about this? And, why would they listen to me?”

 

Now, I will be quick to tell you that over the years I personally have harnessed quite a bit of self confidence, sometimes almost to the point that it could become a fault, yet, even still I hear these questions in my own mind. And, I hear them all the time from friends, family, patients and clients that are seeking my guidance, and probably more importantly in this particular scenario, seeking someone to believe in them.

 

You have to realize that when you are about to sit down and start something, there will always be something that will try to attack your mind, and in the process attack your life. Call it the Devil, call it Murphy’s Law, or any other name that we can come up with, but the fact still remains, that it’s there. And, unfortunately it gives off the persona of power. This is the part that trips up most people. They just can’t get past the idea that there will always be things that are going to come up against anything that makes their life better. And, even more if it makes the lives of others better. The greater the impact, the bigger the challenge. It’s just a fact of life. Get used to it.

 

But, for those souls that dare listen to that burning voice inside that  tells them to step, this is the moment of do or die.


When you feel truly led to a cause, a belief, a challenge, an enterprise, etc. that you genuinely feel is the direction God is leading you in your life, then when you see the resistance against you start to mount up, it should not phase you. It should make you feel all the stronger in your mind that the journey you are about to embark upon is yours and yours alone. No one else can do it quite the way you can. If they could, it wouldn’t be your calling.

 

So, you take the first step, and to your great surprise you all of the sudden see a path starting to open in front of you. You can’t see far down the path, but you can see the next step and even at times the next couple of steps.

 

You think to yourself, “What is happening here? Just a little bit ago, I couldn’t see anything here, but now I see steps. Where are they coming from? And, more importantly, where do they lead?”

 

You go on a little further. Then further still. And, eventually, you start to understand that this is God. He put the idea in your head for this project or this enterprise because He wanted it done. Still, He is not the type to force you to do anything against your own will. It’s against His nature. So, when He finds someone that actually listens to what He has to say and starts walking in that faith, then He opens steps up as they go. That, is His nature. He opens doors that appear shut. He builds bridges where the waters look too deep. All this for the sake of blessing those who hear his purpose in their heart and go in the direction He steers them.

 

So again, what happens when you start something? Which forces do you listen to? Do you see the path begin to open for you? If so, then good, keep moving. If not, keep looking, and trust in the fact that God will never put a burning desire in your heart, a purpose, unless He is willing to walk with you through the fire that is bound to come.

Effective Vs. Efficient

June 11, 2013

Ouch, that’s about all I could say after reading part of Tim Ferriss’ book, The Four Hour Workweek.

IStock_000019289272XSmallI have always taken pride in the fact that I can be incredibly efficient when I need to get something done. In fact, I have even made the statement that I seek efficiency in everything I do. That’s why I am always looking for some new technique or way of doing things better and faster.

I thought this was a good thing. After all, I am the enterprenurial type, and we are always looking for ways to fix problems. Right?

Well, as I was reading through Tim’s book, I get to this section where he talks about the difference between effectiveness and efficiency. According to Tim, effectiveness is doing things that get you closer to your goals. Efficiency is doing a task(whether it’s important or not) in the most economical manner possible.

At first, he threw me for a loop when I read this, but then after thinking about it for a second, I realized that these 2 things are not one in the same.

You see, I can and have been very efficient many times in my life, but I have not always done what was the most effective use of my time. I have been incredibly efficient in setting up ways to get my desk cleaned up. I have been incredibly efficient in getting projects done over the years, whether it was in school, or even in business. But, was I being effective? Did me taking the time to streamline a way to get my desk cleared make me any more money. More importantly, did it actually free up any more of my time?

That is an important distinction. And, it’s one that we really have to ask ourselves if we are wanting to take our lives to the next level.

Is what you are doing today, this very moment, taking you closer to, or further away from where you want to be in your life? Answer that question honestly and see if you come up with the same response as I did. Hopefully, your ouch doesn’t hurt quite as much.

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The Day It All Changes

June 3, 2013

There are many different parts in the making of a champion life. We try to cover the major categories in life from which we believe everything else is a spinoff, whether it’s Physical, Mental, Social, Spiritual, or Financial. But, at times there are things that we like to cover that don’t necessarily fall into one of those categories, at least not a single one specifically. And, this is one of those:

IStock_000004286043XSmall

The Day It All Changes

Have you ever had a time in your life when you just finally reached the point where you said, “No More!”? Have you been pushed by people, circumstances or situations until you finally felt like you were in a corner?

Well good!

There is tremendous power in that day!

You see, when you get backed into a corner, you only have 2 options. The first is to lie down, feel sorry for yourself and just keep letting life hit you. Or, you can take option number 2, and pick yourself up, look whatever is putting you there in the eye and saying, “You know what, I’m not afraid of you anymore! If that has been the best that you could do to me so far, you are in trouble. I’m still here and I’m still breathing. Now, it’s time for you to take some shots from me!”

When you get pushed to that point where you are no longer afraid, but more “ticked off”(I was trying to figure out the nicest way to say that, this wasn’t my first choice), you inherently find the strength and abilities you have to change your situation.

Suddenly, you lift your head, you look up and ask God for some guidance, and then you fight back.

It’s from situations like this that people go on to change the world.

It’s from situations like this that people go on to become millionaires.

It’s from situations like this that we raise up a whole new generation of people that will dramatically change the landscape of the world we live in.

These situations are that powerful. And, they only come along so often in life. Don’t waste them.

Question:

Have you ever reached the end of your rope with your circumstances? What did you do to change them?

As I have mentioned mutliple times lately, I have really gotten into listening to a bunch of different podcasts as well as finding new blogs to check out, etc. And, yesterday as I was listening to Amy Porterfield’s podcast(find it here), I was introduced to a lady that I had been hearing some about through various other blogs and podcasts. This woman apparently has had a huge impact on many of the up and comers in the business world, so I was glad to finally hear her in an interview. Her name is Marie Forleo.

IStock_000016390963XSmallMarie has quite a resume behind her in that she has literally built an empire from scratch. And, the best part of this is that she has done it her way. She has been true to what she is all about and has had tremendous success as a result. She has been featured on Oprah. Richard Branson is a huge fan. Tony Robbins is a fan. And, on the list goes. She has written a book, done seminars, consulting and even has her own business online training program called BSchool. She also has what she calls Marie TV, which from what I have been able to tell so far is primarily a YouTube show in which she gives great advice on personal development, business, etc.

I checked out her site, watched a few videos, and I have to say I am impressed. Marie has a great energy about her and just seems to make useful information easy to learn and accept. So, I will definitely be checking out more of her content.

As much as I love coming across new sources of information and new people to listen to, read, etc., what makes me even more excited is when I have someone that I can relate to a little bit.

There’s no doubt that several of the other bloggers and podcasters that I have mentioned on this blog recently I can relate to, but this one seemed to have hit me a little different. I think that there are a couple of reasons for that.

1. Honestly she reminds me in alot of ways of Penny. Penny is also high energy and has a way of connecting with people that makes you just want to sit and listen to what she has to say. Also, both ladies backgrounds are similar in alot of ways. And, from what I can tell so far, they have very similar passions. So, with Penny and I getting this business up and running, it’s exciting to see someone is already successful doing some things that are similar to what we are wanting to accomplish.

2. The other reason that I was struck by this particular interview was that she mentioned a phrase she has coined as a “multipassionate entrepreneur”. She went on to explain that when she was trying to get her business going she kept listening to all the “experts” saying to find one thing you are passionate about and focus on it. She went on to say that it just didn’t work for her. She was passionate about too many different things. So she moreless went against the norm and branched out a bit more.

Penny and I both can totally relate to this. That has been one thing that I think made Designing A Champion a little hard to explain at first, because although there is one primary goal, which is helping people to become more and to bring back the human spirit that made this country great, we approach this from multitude of ways. We are too passionate about too many different things, all of which impact the spirit of a person, and in turn their life, to just focus on one area. We want people to learn to think well, be fit, be sociable, be spiritual, and be financially sound. All of these impact every other area of life in one way or the other, and they intertwine even among themselves. All of these are important, and all are places we want to help touch people’s lives.

Sometimes it pays to go against what the “experts” have to say. Sometimes, we have to be willing to be different from the average. The “average” lifestyle in America is killing us physically, but even more important, it’s killing the spirit of our country.

We need more people that aren’t willing to settle for the average life.

We just aren’t willing to be average. And, we are searching for others that don’t want to be average either.

Questions:

What are your passions? Are you pursuing those passions?

In An Ideal World…

April 30, 2013

I was listening to a podcast this morning on the way to work, and the host specifically asked the question to his guest, “In an ideal world, what does your day look like?”. Now, this particular guest happened to be another podcaster that I listen to regularly as well, so I sort of knew his answer before he gave it, but it just reinforced the idea of what he had in his mind, and it sounded pretty awesome to me.

IStock_000017095734XSmallI have been working for years now doing a multiple of different projects and working on ideas. And, I have done so to the point that some of my friends often ask me why I am involved in so much, and always looking for more to do. The answer would probably come as a shock to most people, because I think inherently most people think that I am chasing dollars and working to try to be wealthy. And, while I very much want to be wealthy(I am not ashamed to admit that, and you shouldn’t be either), the primary reason that I do what I do is so that I can live in my ideal world.

I know exactly what my ideal world looks like. And, I know exactly what my ideal day looks like as well.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not naive enough to think that I will have either my ideal world, or my ideal day 100% of the time. And, that’s not the point. The point is to get to where the majority of the time, I get to be in that place and in that day.

Most people, in my experience, get this idea that their ideal world or day looks something like this: Sitting on a beach somewhere, drinking a pina colada, and just soaking up some sun. Or some variation of this dream. And, I totally understand that, after all, that used to be my idea as well. But, as I have gotten a little older, I soon began to realize that although that would be nice for a while, it soon would bore me to tears. So, that’s when I had to really take the time to sit down, dig inside my mind a while and figure out what it is that I really want from life.

Once, I found that vision, I have been doing everything that I can to get myself and my family into a position to be able to have the freedom to do what we want, when we want, and for us to live in our ideal day, most of the time. It’s this idea of living in my ideal world that really spurred me to become an entrepreneur in the first place.

And, the beauty of this whole concept is that in getting ourselves into that position, we are helping other people either directly or indirectly to do the same. And that, is the ultimate win-win scenario.

Question:

In an ideal world, what does your day look like?

 

For years I fought the urge to get into the podcasting and blog world. And, truthfully I can’t even really give a good reason why. There are so many great resources out there, and one of the things that I love about the Blogosphere is that the information never stops.

IStock_000013078634XSmallMaybe that is part blessing and part curse. There is literally more information being put out everyday. And very often the info is very good and the podcasters/writers are able to back up what they speak or write about. Still there is always that small percentage that actually give wrong, or just flat out bad information.

The trick is to know which ones are the quality podcasts/blogs. So, here are some of my criteria:

  • Considered by many to be an expert in their subject. Often showing success in an area before they ever podcasted/blogged about it.
  • Consistently put out high quality material. I value my time too much to read or listen in to something that I feel is a waste of time.
  • Someone I can relate to in some way, shape, or form.
  • This is probably the most important: They are recommended by someone else that I either know personally, someone that I follow/read/listen to, and someone that I trust. If they fit these criteria, they have my attention, and I will always at least check them out to see if they fit me.

That being said, I have now really dived headfirst into the Podcasting/Blogosphere world, and I am finding lots of quality sources out there. Personally, I spend most of my time looking for sources that are going to help me improve my life and in turn help me to help others. That being said, here are 3 Podcasts/Blogs that I have been taking in and highly recommend them to you:

1. The Entreleadership Podcast-This was really the one that I started listening to on podcast first. It’s put out by Dave Ramsey’s company and is hosted by Chris Locurto(you can find his blog here). Chris does an awesome job taking you through Dave’s principles, and he interviews authors,leaders, business people about how they run their businesses and daily lives. If you want to become a leader, or a better leader, you need to listen to this one.

2. This Is Your Life-The Entreleadership Podcast turned me on to this one by Michael Hyatt(find his blog here). Michael is the former CEO of Thomas Nelson publishing. But, in the last 2 years, he has decided to go out on his own and has built up a huge following as a speaker, business leader, as well as being an author himself. Michael’s podcast is about leadership, business, and life. He gives loads of great information on ways to improve yourself, your business, your family, and just about anything else. I have gotten so much from Michael’s content, that I couldn’t even write about all of it here. Definitely check him out.

3. The Smart Passive Income Podcast-Guess how I found out about Pat Flynn(find his blog here). If you guessed Michael Hyatt you are correct. I just recently started listening in to Pat’s podcast about a month or 2 ago. Since then, I have had numerous ideas on how to design the life that Penny and I want to have. Pat’s content is primarily about how to generate a passive income with online business, and he has loads of great information about the various ways to do so. Another thing that I really like about Pat is that he is very transparent about how he makes money on the web. In other words, he not only shows you various ways to make money, but he shows you the proof of how he is doing so. While the info is primarily about internet business, it’s valuable in businesses that are not on the web in a number of ways as well. So, be sure to give it a listen.

Although these 3 are primarily leadership/business oriented blogs and podcasts, they provide a huge amount of information that is just helpful in all areas of your life. I can’t recommend them enough.

In closing, I think that this may possibly be a regular post for me periodically as well. When I come across some new info out there(involving any area of life and/or business), I will be sure to let you know. Until then, be sure to read our posts on More Great Resources(Formerly called Things You Should Read), and again, make sure to go check out the guys listed above.

Question:

What are some of your favorite sources of information on the web(blogs, podcasts, etc.)?

 

 

At Bible study last week, our Pastor was teaching on the law of sowing and reaping. In Mark 4, Jesus taught the parable of the farmer, and explained that we plant seeds in our life, and everything that we have, get, etc. comes from the seeds that we plant. The specific seed that Jesus was talking about in this parable was the Word of God, but for a believer, everything else in life springs from the Word.

IStock_000017548120XSmallBut, even if you are a non-believer, or just aren’t sure, this story still teaches us alot about human life and the way that we “come into things”. I can think of very few people that will state that we don’t reap what we sow. It’s just one of those basic laws of nature that is accepted as true.

So, just think about this: Can you imagine a farmer planting seeds, and then not expecting for something to come of them? Or, can you imagine the farmer planting seeds, and having no idea what type of crop he is expecting.

Yet, somehow, we tend to do these very things in our own lives. We spend years neglecting our bodies, neglecting our minds, neglecting our family or friends, neglecting our finances, and even neglecting our faith. Then, we tend to expect that things will turn out the way that we envisioned in our dreams. We want the nice house, with the nice car. We want the little family playing in the yard behind the picket fence. And, we want money to travel, etc.

In other words, we spent a big part of our life planting seeds that were not necessarily what we were wanting to end up with, and then we expect something different.

If we want our lives to go the way that we desire, we have to consciously make the decisions to do the things that will take us in the direction we want to go.

If we don’t like the harvest we are reaping at the moment, we just have to start changing the seeds we are planting.

And, here is the beauty of it: Most of your life results can be intentional, and you can start doing the small disciplines necessary at any point. If you want a result, then plant the seeds for it. If you are not sure which seeds to plant, then ask someone who is where you want to be in life. Study what they plant. Then, and this is the key, go out and plant in your own life. You will reap what you sow. So, make it something special. And get started today.

“Change takes time. The restoration of health takes time. The regaining of prosperity, whether by a nation or an individual, takes time. And the changing of one’s attitude, circumstance, and lifestyle takes time. You cannot demand your share of the American dream today, or this month or even this year, when the previous thirty or forty…or more years have been devoted to the planting of seeds which were clearly destined to produce just the opposite result come the time of harvest.”-The Gift by Ron Reynolds

Question:

What are some seeds that you have been planting in your life recently?

The Power of Habit

March 31, 2013

We are officially kicking off our Spring into Summer Challenge today. We are extremely excited to be doing this, and we hope that we will see some lives change dramatically as a result. It’s really amazing to me how much just doing a few small things will make a such a huge difference in your life.

Complete jenga towerAs Penny and I were putting the Point List together, we discovered some things we take for granted. We also noticed that we included some things on the list that had made a huge impact in our lives at some point, but we had for some reason just let them slip out of our lives. Very often life gets in the way it seems, or the Law of Familiarity sets in and good habits can go by the wayside.

One of the best parts of making a list is that it really forces you to take the time to sit down and focus on your life. I mean, when was the last time that you looked at all of your habits? When was the last time you took a personal inventory of the little things that you think or do daily in life? Did you realize that your habits make up the majority of your life?

Science tells us that we tend to repeat the same set of habits every 7–10 days at a minimum. We repeat our diet. We repeat the clothes we wear. We repeat our exercise routine. We repeat our work routine. And, if you are anything like me, you very often end up at work in the morning not even sure how you got there. The path you take is so ingrained that you could almost make it blindfolded.

So, if this is the case, doesn’t it make sense for us to re-evaluate the habits that got us where we are today? I believe this challenge is going to help Penny and I, as well as many others start to see some of the small things that we all do daily that are good, bad, or neither. But, more importantly, I think that it’s going to spur us on the right track and allow us to achieve a whole new level in our lives.

Join us for the Challenge and see what your life will look like during and after the next couple of months.

Question:

What is one daily habit that you have that makes a huge difference in your day?

 

Most people that are trying to personally grow are also trying to develop their leadership ability. But, it’s more important to develop their leadership qualities. What I mean by this is that in order to develop as a leader, you have to take into account and focus on the qualities that you look for in a leader. Dave Ramsey states it this way:

IStock_000009517861XSmall“The very things you want from a leader are the very things the people you are leading expect from you. You must intentionally become more of these everyday to grow yourself and your business. And to the extent you’re not doing that, you’re failing as a leader.”

So, the next question has to be, “What are the things that you want from a leader?”. What are some of the qualities of leadership that seem to make the biggest difference in any type of organization, business or social? What are some of the traits that set great leaders like Abraham Lincoln, Henry Ford, and Ronald Reagan apart from the crowd?

Here is my short list:

  • Courage-The very definition of the term leadership implies that you are taking a group of people to a new place. If the leader doesn’t have the courage to step out and go in a particular direction, they won’t be “leading” for very long.
  • Vision-This goes hand in hand with courage. Again the leader has to have some sort of vision of the future. Remember the Biblical passage that states, “Without vision, the people perish.” The leader must have some idea of where they are going, even if it’s not fully in focus yet.
  • Ambition-The leader must want to go to a new level, place etc. I know that personally I would never follow anyone that is just happy with maintaining the status quo.
  • Loyal-If there is not loyalty flowing both from and to the leader, then the vision will never come to pass. There has got to be a level of trust between the members of the group.
  • Always Improving-This is the central key to almost every other quality in leadership. If the leader is not always continuing to grow, then they will always lead their organization into stagnation. The leader must study and improve themselves consistently.
  • Responsible-There are few things that will weaken a leader’s role faster than a lack of taking responsibility. No one wants to be part of a group where the blame gets passed around, see loyalty above.

These are just a few of the qualities of leadership that stand out. It’s vitally important to any leader to develop these qualities and more. The beauty is that it all starts with growing ourselves personally. If we do that, leadership ability will follow.

Question:

What are some of the characteristics you look for in a leader?