What’s Entrepreneurism Got To Do With It?

The answer to my post title question is; legacy. So, what’s entrepreneurism got to do with legacy?

I’ve found that God is using this thing called entrepreneurism as a tool to help shape my legacy.  And legacy is important.  For me, for my wife, for my kids, for my followers, for those I haven’t met yet, and the movie that is called “my life.” I don’t always like the journey, but the shaping is undeniable.

In our world today we dig tangible return.  For example, if I invest $10,000 in the stock market, I want a return of 8%.  That’s great, but who remembers the return and how long does the euphoria last once you get it?  Never lasted long for me…more like sand in my hands.  But with legacy, you’re dealing in the currency of faith.  Faith that what you’ve poured in will produce something brilliant further down the road.  I’ve guided many down this road, and yes it’s hard.  Funny how they tend to not look back when they embrace the first steps.

Here are some areas of my legacy entrepreneurism has, and is helping:

  • Fear – I very rarely utter or think the words “what if.”
  • Failure – Entrepreneurism has taught me that multiple failures that create breakthroughs are like finding diamonds
  • The Why Question – This is no longer a mystery.  My answer to the why question is; I do what I do to inspire people to find and live out their epic life
  • Communication – I now have an urgency to get the point across.  Not to win the argument or sell something, but to be clear and firm
  • Physical Health – Took it for granted in the corporate experience and became soft.  Entrepreneurism is teaching me to always discover my limits physically
  • The Beauty of Wine – Finally had the courage to slow down and embrace my 5 senses
  • My Feelings – Finally came to the understanding that I feel everything-deeply.  I’ve come to hate this and be joyous about it as well, but feeling deeply always reminds me that I am Fully Alive.

So what’s helping you with your legacy?  And by the way, you’re building one whether you know it or not.

What Are You Counting On?

What are you counting on? A simple and straightforward question. It reveals more about you and I than meets the mind.

The things we’re counting on reveal our identity.

Maybe you’re counting on someone to make you happy. Maybe your counting on that quarterly bonus. Regardless, these things shape our identity without notice. A subtle defining that happens slowly over time. Identity should be formed by the immovable or at a minimum something we’re willing to stake the risk on.

Here’s a brief list of what I’m counting on:

  1. God’s understanding
  2. My wife’s commitment
  3. My children’s love
  4. Friendship of a few
  5. Solitude

As you can see from my list, there are some things that could fail me. I don’t mind because I’m willing to take the risk. And oh, the heart-break that could ensue just the same. This is living.

Don’t count on what is fleeting and temporal. Marketing often bugs us to the contrary, but that’s just selling something we really don’t need.

Some New Year Advice

By now, you’ve probably seen a thousand articles on new year resolutions. This post is not one of them. I just want to give you some new year advice.

I’ve always believed that you know how to live your life, so my help is designed to come alongside of your journey and inspire.

Here’s my new year advice:

  1. Before you start with all of your resolutions, decide what’s most important to you, then decide what you want
  2. Be very skeptical of the voices who try to tell you that there’s a fast path to getting to where you want to go. Typically, these voices are dressed in celebrity/rock star clothing. Don’t be discouraged, though, the journey is worth the struggle
  3. Focus on being who you really are. For many, this is the toughest nut to crack. Sometimes we all feel the pull to be someone that our boss or potential client wants. We rationalize in our heads that it’s ok to “act” or “stretch.” The truth is you’ll never be able to sustain the show and eventually you will be recognized as a fake
  4. Surround yourself with people who love you and are not afraid of calling you on your BS
  5. Create space for your mind and soul to speak. By the way, everything above is supported by creating space for your mind and soul

If you need any help with the points in my post, reach out through the comments section or by email.

Are You Present for December?

Out in front of you is a window of time. For the sake of my post, December. The most important question, if the Lord allows, is whether you’ll be present.

Are you present for December?

All of your life in 31 days will be found in December. No exceptions, the happy, the sad, the fears, the events, and more. The question remains, are you present for December?

Many of us sprint through the days that create the months. Busy schedules, busy activities and our lives are wrapped in the doing. Tragically, the being part of life is left in the dust. One of my greatest challenges, and opportunities is reminding and teaching my family the art of being. My family is not unlike most when it comes to the struggle of being. In many ways, I play the resounding gong. A bell designed to remind and encourage the behavior of being.

What is being mean, anyway?

I practice being in the following ways:

  1. Doing absolutely nothing in silence. Many refer to this as mindfulness. I often practice this to hear from God
  2. Stopping to look around me and let my 5 senses take over
  3. Listening
  4. Practicing my art
  5. Romancing my memories. “>Central Park comes to my mind right now

If you live in a place where “being” is a strange concept, you should take the risk and try it. Don’t worry, this is not something you do for hours. Think of it as adding salt to flavor. It’s something small that is really big.

Telling Lies

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I read once that if you want to get comfortable with telling lies to others, you need to get comfortable with telling lies to yourself.  Kind of chilling when you think about it. I agree with the analogy.

Now, what are these self-lies we tell ourselves?  In my case, during my days in the corporate world, it was performance.  For example, if I hit this number I will get an applause at the weekly staff meeting.  I would sit and find myself perspiring and feeling so much adrenaline at the thought of telling my peers how well my group was doing.  The lie I embraced was that age-old dysfunction of; “if I do this or that, I will be liked/loved.”  Did my peers like/love me because of my great feats?  No, and if some were of the flattering variety, it never lasted very long.

Telling, and believing, self-lies is a dangerous habit.  Like an awful addiction to any opiate.  You can never find the strength to stop. It can cripple you from finding and leading an Epic Life.  One scary part is found in how many people/messages are out there to fuel the habit. It ends when the habit births regret.

In the end, lies are lies, no way around it.

Lying to oneself is not only confined to the individual.  But creeps into the organizational world too.  Take the large corporation that proclaims, via marketing, that it values the client.  Ironically, though, its client service department can’t even return phone calls in a reasonable fashion.  The organization continues to print materials, hold town hall meetings, formats focus groups, but the truth is still the same; valuing a client is more of a fantasy.  And by the way, most loyal clients know this.

So what happens if we start embracing the truth versus the lie?  Here are some outcomes to consider:

  1. We can get down to the business of change-for the better.
  2. We’ll stop blaming the competition, our dads, the economy or some other phantasm for our poor results.
  3. Focus and happiness.
  4. A legacy colored in the brush strokes of love and action.
  5. Freedom!

I’m sure there are more outcomes to list, but the point remains for us to stop the lies.  Our Epic Life/Venture depends on it.

A Message to Men

The above is a recent photo of my daughter. She’s beautiful, smart and has an authentic spirit. Now that she is an adult, much has changed. I’ll spare you all the things you know and have heard. My post today is not really about her. This is a message to men. The ones who she might date, encounter or run from.

The behavior of men in the current frame is flowing like water from a fire hose. It’s sad and it’s real. I always knew it to be sad, but not real. The “real” came into focus over the last 2 years. Here’s why:

  • My wife has endured harassing behavior inside of more than one large employer
  • My daughter is heading into a world where immature men seem to be everywhere
  • I’ve spoken to more than a few intelligent women who confirm the first two bullets

My message to men is simple:

Think, stop and back off.

If you’re reading this and you’re a man, I’m trying to keep it simple. If you apply the principle of think, stop and back-off, you will contribute to turning this mess around. It is a mess, by the way.

I think the many men are faced with many contributors to creating bad behaviors.

The end of reason is real. Many of us would have to agree that our culture is one of emotion-driven actions, I feel this way, so I behave this way. Reason restrains and asks the tough questions. Without . reason you might feel that every woman wants to…they don’t.

The disappearance of fathers is real. If you didn’t have a father who took the time to explain that women are co-equals, you might take your cues from music or film. Those two are very flimsy foundations to build on.

The dumbing down of leadership is real. You know it’s true, leadership is now caricature and the playground for men who should not be allowed in. I think many men, if their capable of honesty, would agree that most managers don’t belong in the roles given. By the way, your organization shares in the responsibility here.

I have more concerns and ideas, but I think if all of us men would just think, stop and back-off, we might have a shot in a much needed turnaround. It’s kind of a starting over approach. I’m certain that my wife and daughter would value the change.