It’s been a year!

I published my very first post on July 21, 2011, titled The Beginning of Our Impossible Dreams.

Let’s celebrate!

So much has changed in just a year! A year ago we debated moving halfway around the world. And my husband decided to quit his job to pursue his passion of the fine arts. Now, even though we decided not to move to Thailand, we do live in a very different city, and my husband has a very different job. It’s crazy all the things that can occur in a year. The craziest thing of all is that we both believe we’re exactly where God wants us.

In honor of my blog’s year anniversary, I thought I’d list my top five posts. This is based on the number of views each post received, not including being read from the home page view.

1.  WealthRock: Joseph Irons

2.  Financial Success: James Smith

3.  The Beginning of Our Impossible Dreams

4.  Can Stress and Communication Co-exist?

5.  Get Motivated! Business Seminar

Thanks for reading!

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Financial Success: James Smith

My husband and I attended a three-day seminar about growing wealth, put on by the Smith Companies. We arrived an hour early the first day. While waiting for the seminar to start, I watched the PowerPoint they had cycling on two large screens. Several of the slides contained quotes:

“Do or do not. There is no try.”  -Yoda

“Look back in forgiveness, forward in hope, downward in compassion, and up in gratitude.”  -Zig Ziglar

“People have a hard time letting go of their suffering out of a fear of the unknown. They prefer suffering that is familiar.”  -Thich Nhat Hanh

Most of the first day was introductory to what we would be learning the next two days, and for the majority of the time Ryan Smith, James Smith’s son, was our teacher. There were a number of things he shared with us that can be applied to daily living—not just financial growth.

  • There is always going to be another problem.
  • The ability to work hard is a gift.
  • The only person who hates competition is one who can’t compete.
  • Money is a tool for serving others, not for self.
  • Everything is an investment:  marriage, children, what you eat, what you wear.
  • Having a written plan increases your odds 300% of getting it accomplished.
  • Education without application is entertainment.
  • Fear is the opposite of love.
  • If you have the ability to demolish someone and you don’t, you’re an adult.
  • When you make better choices you have better options.

Our Current Cash Flow

We also heard from Steve Sitkowski, cash-flow specialist:

  • Coachable:  willing to learn, and willing to step outside comfort zone and try something new.
  • It’s not what happens in life that matters, it’s what you do with it.

Robert Bluhm, attorney:

  • If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
  • Give like you’ve already been blessed.

And there were a number of things shared that tended to be more business-specific:

  • Business:  to provide a product or service that blesses someone’s life and creates a profit.
  • If you don’t have a systematic approach in your business, you won’t get a standard return.
  • Just because you call something an investment, doesn’t make it one.
  • Find motivated people and train them.
  • Checklists are more imperative the more experience you have.

What I learned that first day will always be in my mind when I contemplate working toward the impossible. I love finding life-truths in unexpected places. And I hope you gain something from the speakers’ points as well. I want to leave you with one last quote they shared:

“I would rather attempt to do something great, and fail, then to do nothing and succeed.”  -Dr. Robert Schuller

Get Motivated! Business Seminar

Last week, Tuesday, we went to the Get Motivated! Business Seminar. There are mixed reviews on such events, just look at this consumer report article:  Can ‘The Donald’ make you rich? ‘The Donald’ was not at this seminar, but a couple people mentioned in the article were. People attending Get Motivated! may have been disappointed if they were expecting a miracle to help their business. But for those of us looking for a pep talk and some self-help tips (and didn’t mind a few infomercials), it was great! Despite sitting in the dark, I was able to jot down a few notes per speaker:

Bob Harrison

Bob Harrison

  • Your reaction to an event is predetermined before the event takes place.
  • Achievers create the interruptions.

Steve Forbes

Steve Forbes

  • People come after you when you’re successful.
  • It’s not over ‘til it’s over.

Rick Belluzzo

Rick Belluzzo

  • These times of disruption and change are full of opportunity.
  • Believe that disruption is good.
  • Strive to make a difference.
  • Be willing to take on tough assignments.
  • Be self-aware and open to feedback.
  • Perseverance can pay off.
  • Always maintain integrity.
  • Be hardheaded and softhearted.

Lou Holtz

Lou Holtz

  • ATTITUDE
  • Be excited.
  • What is your attitude when people say negative things?
  • We get too complicated and lose sight of our purpose.
  • Make good choices.
  • One law:  Do Right
  • Trust, Commitment, Love

Colin Powell

Colin Powell

  • You will know you’re a good leader if they’ll follow you out of curiosity (trust).

Rudy Guliani

Rudy Guliani

  • Listening is the best way to learn.
  • Don’t stop making notes.
  • A person with goals is very effective.
  • Every day take time to relax and think. At least five minutes.

James Smith

James Smith

  • Work for yourself as hard as you work for others.
  • It’s the little things you do.
  • Be the show!

Terry Bradshaw

Terry Bradshaw

  • If you listen to the people who say how stupid you are, you won’t amount to much.
  • Keep things simple.

Bill Cosby

Bill Cosby

  • Do it! Live it!
  • Surround yourself with people who are doing it.

Stephen Pierce

Stephen Pierce

  • Biggest threat to the future is not letting go of the past.
  • It’s about you getting better.
  • New perspective. Change.
  • It’s impossible to be great if we are seeking comfort.

Bill Self

Bill Self

  • You have to love what you do.
  • Pressure can bring out the best in people.
  • Best time to go out to compete is when your back’s against the wall.
  • Welcome—don’t be jealous of competition.
  • Believe in what you do. Have confidence.
  • Enjoy the process.

All of the above points can be applied to daily life—not just businesses! “Your reaction to an event is predetermined” says so much about why we hesitate to pursue our dreams. Choosing to pursue ours took a leap of faith. “It’s impossible to be great if we are seeking comfort” is something people do not want to hear. We are creatures of comfort. But becoming great is worth stepping outside our comfort zone. Most importantly, “You have to love what you do”. At the same time we must remember that does not always happen over night. Sacrifices need to be made along the way. But those sacrifices get us to where we ultimately want to be. All of the speakers’ points are great reminders and words of encouragement to us on our journey. I hope they inspire you as well!

Which statements stand out to you?