Attitude check… yes please!

Attitude Is Everything Chalk IllustrationAttitude is the one thing all human beings have complete control of and yet many unknowingly choose a negative attitude. If we understood the power of our own attitude in our lives, most of us would change it immediately. How many times have you been told to change your attitude? That is a common order from most parents and teachers!

Attitude is created by your thoughts, feelings and actions. Your mind controls feelings and decides whether these feelings will be positive or negative through your thoughts. Your body then follows these thoughts through actions and behaviors. It sounds simplistic because it is.

Through our thoughts, we create an attitude. This attitude is expressed based on how we internalize ideas. Our mind and body move into a new vibration of conscious awareness known as feelings. These feelings are then displayed through actions and behaviors that produce the results in our lives.

Attitude [Thoughts + Feelings + Actions] = Results

Imagine feeding our minds with positive thoughts and flow through the process. We will end with positive results. Now imagine feeding our minds with negative thoughts and flow through the process. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

By changing our thoughts, we can change our attitude, which will ultimately change our results. Attitude is the creative cycle that allows us to feel a certain way and then take the necessary action to a specific result.

Start with the end in mind and make the decision that today is the day to change your attitude!

Yes You Can Rubber Stamp

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Reproduced with the permission of Stickman Productions
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Desire, Determination and Definite Major Purpose… How about you?

Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill

Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill

I am currently reading Napoleon Hill’s book Think and Grow Rich. It has been probably 20 years or so since I read it last. I can point back to a few things in my life that have impacted me greatly… and this book is on that list.

As I read the preface and the introductory chapter, I think back 20+ years to that young man in his late 20’s. He was trying to figure out what he wanted in life.

I was married and had three young kids. I had been working in the telecom business and was making pretty darn good money. I was a hard charging young sales professional who would not allow things to get in his way. Yes I was VERY rough around the edges.

Anyway: the book. I remember the first time I read Thing and Grow Rich. The concepts, though they were foreign to me, really resonated.

Hill was commissioned by Andrew Carnegie to study the most successful people of his time, determine what made them successful and share his findings.

Desire, Determination and a Definite Major Purpose

I remember well what I was doing when I read about these concepts. I had recently made a HUGE move from Dallas to the Twin Cities, gotten married, bought a house, had kids and was very overwhelmed with life.

My desire was to care for and provide for my family. I was determined to make something of myself in the world of sales. My definite major purpose was to be a millionaire by the time I turned 30. I thought long and hard about this and was willing to hold onto that dream until it came to be.


I love what Hill says about opportunity. He says that, “It has a sly habit of slipping in through the back door, and often comes disguised in the form of misfortune, or temporary defeat.” He goes on to say, “Perhaps this is why so many fail to recognize opportunity.”

I sort of fell into the telecommunications business, that’s the subject of another post some day.

I had been baptized by fire… I was a 22-year-old kid with a ton of responsibility with lots of pressure on me to make things happen. One day the owner of the company (must have been raining, because he wasn’t on the gold course) and I found ourselves at odds (to put it mildly).

Well that was when I had the “opportunity” to see, first-hand what Hill was talking about. My “opportunity” did come disguised as misfortune. Thank God I recognized it.

I did the “Jed Clampett” thing… loaded up the car and headed north. I know, Jed went west, but you get the picture.

Hill talks about transmuting (transforming) your thoughts and desires into their physical counterpart… My desire was to build a future for my “future” family. I went to Minnesota to capture an opportunity. Turning my thoughts and desires into reality was the purpose.

Three feet from Gold

Hill tells a story of a gold miner who found a very rich claim. One day the gold vein disappeared. He gave up, sold his equipment to a junk dealer and went home. That junk dealer hired an expert and they determined that one of the richest veins in that area continued just 3 feet away from where the miner gave up.

Having arrived in Minnesota less than 24 hours before, I went in to my “new employer” to “get” my job. I answered all of his questions and told him everything I knew about the wide world of telecommunications. To which he replied, “Thanks for dropping by, I’ll let you know something in the next few weeks.”

WHAT!! I drove 16 hours, to the frozen tundra to transmute my thoughts and desires into their physical counterpart! This would not stand! I knew that I was “three feet from gold” I told him that if I didn’t have an opportunity with his company, I was going to gas up the car and head back to Texas. – I started working there the following Monday! Eureka!

I knew that I was standing at the precipice of great opportunity and I was not willing to accept anything but the fulfillment of my Definite Major Purpose. Period.

The opportunity that slipped into the back door disguised as misfortune, was a life-changing event. I didn’t have any concept of Napoleon Hill or his book at the time but his principles were played out right there in my life.

What about you?

  • What is your desire?
  • What is it that you invest your thoughts on?
  • What is your Definite Major Purpose?

Hill says,” Before success comes in any man’s (woman’s) life, he (she) is sure to meet with much temporary defeat, and perhaps some failure. When defeat overtakes a man (woman) the easiest and most logical thing to do is to quit. That is exactly what most do.”

Don’t quit. You might be three feet from gold.

If you haven’t read Napoleon Hill, “Think and Grow Rich” lately… or ever… Google it… you can download a free copy.


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The 80/20 Rule

the-80-20-rule-240x172The Pareto Principle, better know as the 80/20 rule sounds like a mathematical formula and in some ways it is but don’t fret, this isn’t a lesson on statistics. The rule came from an Italian economist, Vilfredo Pareto, who stated that 80% of the Italian income was earned by 20% of the Italian population.

What this means is that 80% of your outcomes come from 20% of your inputs. To put this another way, 20% of your activities equate to 80% of your happiness. Instead of focusing on income, we will focus on your overall well-being or happiness factor.

To prove this theory, look at the distribution of wealth and lately with the shrinking of the middle class, this is even more apparent that a small portion of the population controls the majority of the economy. Look at business, the top earners are a small percentage of companies and earn the largest portion of income. And if you look at your own habits, you most likely spend most of your income on few things like your mortgage, car payment, food and you probably spend most of your time with a few people each day.

So how can you use the 80/20 rule to maximize your outputs?  Let’s look at John Maxwell. He talks about the fact that he is only good at a few things. Therefore, he doesn’t waste his time with those things he cannot do or does not want to do. By focusing on what you are good at – those few things; and not waste time on those things you are not good at, you maximize your efficient self and are able to improve upon and increase your skillset on what you are good at and what you love to do.

Malcolm Gladwell speaks of how to become an expert; the common thread is spending 10,000 hours perfecting one’s craft. If you spread yourself across the board, become a Jack of all trades, master of none, then your efficiency rate decreases and no longer will the 80/20 rule work in your favor.

Take a moment and consider what you love and what you are really good at and then list out those things that cause you to waste time and decrease your efficient self. If you are able, hire someone to do those tasks that fall on that list. Share duties with your children, spouse, roommate, significant other, co-worker, team members etc. Trade your time and skillset for theirs. You will find that focusing on those 20% tasks, the 80% yield will be worthwhile.

Where are you investing your best 20%?

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9 Must Know Tips for Military Transition

I recently saw an article entitled, “Thank You For Your Military Service — Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You”.9 Transition Tips

This is such a great article for anyone planning on military transition to pursue a career in the civilian marketplace.  If you are transitioning or considering transitioning in the future, please read the entire article here, if not please pass this on to someone you know who is in this situation.  This is some of the best advice that I have seen out there.

I will probably cover some of these points in an “Unplugged” episode of the Lead Like a Marine Podcast.

The 9 reasons:

  1. You Can’t (or Won’t) Accept That You’re Starting Over
  2. You Believe You’re Unique (Just Like Every Other Transitioning Person That Day)
  3. Your Resume Is Longer Than the CEO of Our Company’s (or Shorter Than a Recent College Graduate’s)
  4. You Didn’t Proofread Your Resume
  5. You Don’t Have a LinkedIn Profile (Or, Even Worse, It’s Not Complete)
  6. You Think Social Media Is For Kids or Sharing War Stories
  7. You Didn’t Prepare For The Interview
  8. You Wrote a Thank You Note (But Only to Say Thank You)
  9. You Don’t Know What You Want to Do

Read the article!

If you are transitioning or are planning on transitioning, please tune in to the Lead Like a Marine Podcast, where we interview those who have successfully transitioned.  Great stories of lessons learned and tips and tricks to help make transition less hectic.  Please listen in and pass the link along to others who are proudly serving out great country.

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