The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 52

July 13th, 2014 6 comments

photo - Version 2This is the fifty-second and final post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here.

So, first of all, I’m kind of astonished that this happened.  The fact that I’m writing this post means two things (well many things, but two primary things):

  1. I actually succeeded in fulfilling my commitment to blog this journey for an entire year.  Let me assure you, this has not been an insignificant accomplishment.
  2. I’ve completed a year of entrepreneurship.  That is also not an insignificant accomplishment.

My intent today is to give a bit of a retrospective.  The things that have happened, the changes in my business, and what I’ve grown into and moved away from.

The biggest thing I’ve moved away from is fear.  Fear that things will fail, or fall apart, of that I’ll be completely doomed, or anything else.  That’s shown up in a big way in how I work.

There’s a scene in Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves, where Robin is battling Little John.  He jumps up out of the water, and pulls Little John into the water.  Little John starts to scream and shout, “I’m drowning, I’m drowning!”.

When he finally yields to Robin Hood, Robin calmly tells him, “Put your feet down”.  The water was shallow enough that he could simply stand in it.

That’s how I was at the start of the year.  Gasping for air.  Every referral that would come my way, I would gasp in like a man desperate for oxygen.  There was no enjoyment.  I was relieved when someone was referred to me (and very grateful too), and would make every conceivable effort under the sun to connect with them.  There’s nothing wrong with that, per se, but there was no joy in it.  Further, it probably came off as a little bit needy, which isn’t much fun either (and frankly, it’s kind of creepy).

And lastly, that kind of approach gets in the way of you getting to see possibility for your clients and hold them at their highest and greatest.  If I’m focused on what I can get, it makes it really hard to truly serve someone.  Not what I’m committed to.  Not at all.

I realized myself that if you trust it and simply focus on providing value to people, you’ll survive.  All that gasping for air and flailing was keeping me from enjoying the process.

In terms of numbers or changes, that’s a little more intangible.  The big change that has resulted from that shift has been that I spend my time serving people instead of doing what “I have to do” to build my business.

So many coaches early on dogmatically state “I need to work on my website, I need to create my business card, I need to spend more time working on marketing”.  And then, ironically, they say “I hate marketing”.  (I know this is true because I train and coach new coaches).

The truth is, you don’t need to do any of that stuff.  If you want to be a coach, you need to get out there and coach people.  Lots of them.  Provide people value and change their lives as a result of the conversations you’re having.  If you do that, it’s inevitable that, over time, people will take note of what you’re doing and start talking about you.  All of that other stuff — that “marketing” — just gets in the way of coaching.  (Which is often why new coaches focus on it.  If nothing else, it prevents them from doing the scary task of coaching people when they’re new to it).

It’s the same for many professions.  I’ve coached public speakers and writers, and the same thing holds true.  If you want to get paid for public speaking, go out there and speak in front of groups.

A couple of people have asked me about tangible results at the end of this year.  I’ve struggled a bit to figure out how I want to share that, because what I charge is more a reflection of who I accept as my clients these days than anything else.  The power of commitment is really what allows for transformation — and I’m a demand that people really commit to what they want to create in their lives.

So, that being said, here are some of the tangibles:

  • My rates have tripled since I first began coaching
  • The majority of my time marketing these days is now spent over-serving and astonishing my clients as opposed to worrying about attending mixers and pounding the pavement
  • For the last 4 months, my practice has been full.  Recently two clients completed with me, and so I now have two slots available
  • The minimum commitment I’ll work with a client for has now doubled — again, because I’m committed to creating breakthroughs and transformation with the people I take on, as opposed to short-term solutions to problems

That may all sound well and good, but it pales in comparison to the internal work that I’ve done.  The stuff on the outside — the external tangibles — are merely reflections of how we’re showing up within.  Never lose sight of that fact.

And that’s the ultimate lesson from this year.  It isn’t about the externals and what you can point to tangibly.  It’s about how you’re being and what you are creating internally.  Don’t get distracted by the stuff on the outside.  Keep doing the inner work, and trust that the external stuff will come to you.

Because… it will.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this series.  It’s been a crazy journey for me, and I’m now letting this blog sit a little bit while I devote more time to the book I’m writing.  Please check back to hear more about that, and in the meantime, check out Bay and I writing over at Evergrowth.

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The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 51

June 23rd, 2014 No comments

IMG_3028 - Version 2This is the fifty-first and penultimate post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

If you read through these posts from start to finish, you’ll notice that the photos on the side have gotten more and more relaxed as the year has gone on.  In some ways, that’s kind of what has happened to me as well.

The doing hasn’t shifted — there’s still people to call, sessions to set up, coaching to do, minglers to go to and countless ways I can be of service.  Oh, and of course, e-mail.

It’s my being that has changed.  I’ve gotten a lot more relaxed about what there is to do.  The intensity and necessity behind all the doing has lost a tremendous amount of its significance.  That’s the part that coaching has made a difference in.

I’ve never needed help doing things.  I’ve been a prodigious doer from day 1.  I suspect that when I was in the womb, I had the best organized placenta of any womb.  My mum was probably very proud.

The trouble with doing is that it’s often based in reaction to something external.  Concerns that I won’t be successful, that I’ll fail, that I’ll drop below a minimum required number of clients and everything else you can dream up.  That’s the magic that working with my coach has created for me.  An ability to let go of the significance and the attachment to things working out, and really getting that it really will all work out, even if it doesn’t happen to work out the way I might want it to.

When I just put my attention and intention on doing what I love, the rest of it kind of falls away.

That’s not to say that those fears stop showing up.  They don’t, because I’m taking on things that are deeply important and inspiring to me.  In the face of that much possibility, its inevitable that fear is going to show up.  What has happened instead is that the significance of the fear has dropped away.  Getting scared that I’m going to fail doesn’t really mean that I’m going to fail.  It just means that I’m scared that I’ll fail.  Allow the emotion, be with it, and them move on to whats next when its passed through me.

(Even as a I type about that fear, I’m aware how funny it is that other people’s fears seem so obviously fabricated, while ours seem so obviously real.  That’s the gift of altitude that working with a coach provides — being able to see our own stuff with the same altitude that we see others’.)

See, here’s the ultimate lesson from this.  I’m living my purpose on this planet.  I am here to inspire and empower people to live their lives as their highest and best selves.  Even if I get a dead slump of no one hiring me for a year, I’m still going to coach.  I can’t not do it.  It’s simply too important to me.  So from that place, it becomes easy to see that the rest will fall into place.  Maybe not as quickly as I want it to, and maybe not looking exactly the way I want it to — but that’s okay too.

That’s part of life.  If you want to control and try to prevent that… well, entrepreneurialism probably isn’t for you.

 

The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 50

June 16th, 2014 2 comments

photo - Version 2This is the fiftieth post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

Well, here we are, with three entries left to go.

It’s almost time for a retrospective, but not yet.  I have two more posts to share about this journey and process.

I was reading Teri-E Belf’s book, Coaching with Spirit, and read this:

“Within the coaching cycle, one phenomenon is guaranteed — what I call the ‘dip.’  All coaches and coach trainers should be alerted to expect it.  After learning life purpose and having high expectations about possibilities for succeess, clients reach a point, typically midway when thoughts shift to the future.

Clients begin to fear coaching will not work and results will not be produced.  Everything seems up in the air.  Internal beliefs and external habits have been challenged and called into question.  Clients see no way for “miracles” to occur in the second half; the path to success is foggy.

The dip shows up for coaches too.  Why should clients experience it and not coaches?  We are both in the same learning process — letting go of old ineffective patterns and integrating new effective ones.  So next time, celebrate when you reach the dip phase and remember to remain open to trusting it as a natural part of the learning cycle”

I’ve been in the dip for a while.  Hanging out here, resisting any form of celebration, fighting to create something new and different.  And I’ve been reaching out to old acquaintances, trying on many different approaches.

I can see it from a pessimistic perspective, or an optimistic one.  It’s my choice.  I can be frustrated that nothing is working, and gather plenty of evidence to prove that.  I can celebrate that I’ve served more people in the last month than in many of the previous months.  I’ve created possibilities for people that came into my life simply by way of an unsolicited e-mail.  I’ve coached future prime ministers, financial professionals, leaders in the community of creative professionals, and had one person share with me that in both months after the times I’ve coached him, he’s doubled his income.

There’s lots of things to celebrate, and there are lots of things to find wrong with where I’m at.  Ultimately, I get to choose which way I want to lean, and frankly, I’ve been choosing to lean in the shittier of those two directions.

So here I am.  Humbled, open, and ready to embrace whatever is next.  The universe has a divine wisdom to it that I can only hope to travel along with.  It may not go in the direction I necessarily want it to, but that’s not its job, and it’s not my job either. My job is to be Adam, fully-expressed, as I travel along with that path.

Trust.

Trust that it will work out as it works out, and embrace the present moment for what it makes available.

(By the way, you can count on this being the scummiest photo of the collection.  Just because I hung up my legal career and took on entrepreneurship doesn’t mean I gave up my love of dancing or the clothes and shoes that source it).

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The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 49

June 9th, 2014 No comments

IMG_3009 - Version 2This is the forty-ninth post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

Here’s how my days go lately:

I wake up.

I get scared.

I look at my calendar, see a bunch of appointments.  I get scared by everything I have to do.

I eat breakfast, make tea, clear, and then meditate.

Then I remember that I get to choose to do whatever I want.

And then I choose to serve whoever is next in front of me, powerfully.

That’s all I need to do.

So many funny things have happened on this journey.  One of the silliest, to me, is getting over my ridiculous fear of the telephone.  As a kid, I hated the telephone.  I was always worried about it being awkward (like if I didn’t know what to say), or not being a good enough conversationalist.  I hated calling up my friends to ask them to hang out, because they might say no, and I couldn’t bear for them to hear the disappointment and rejection in my voice.

Text messages and e-mail were a godsend for that part of my fear.  They let me empower my fear totally.  I never had to talk on the phone!  I could just send people e-mails or text message, and then manage the fears however I needed to when we were in person.

Imagine my skepticism and concern when I found out that most coaching is done over the phone.  First of all, I gotta call this jerk I’m paying money to?  Why won’t he meet up with me?

And then second, you’re telling me will likely be using the phone with all of my clients?  Oh geez.

And then it got worse!  All of the training I saw and received screamed to me: “PICK UP THE PHONE”.

My fears were perfectly aligned with the reason that coaching happens over the phone, and why communicating over e-mail or text message really doesn’t work much as a coach.

The phone allows for intimacy and connection.  E-mail and text messages don’t.  There’s no connection with a human being.  Sometimes you get the emoticon, or you know the person in front of you so well that you can get a decent amount of meaning from their e-mail, but even then, with 80-90% of our communication being non-verbal, it’s clear how crappy digital mediums are for genuine human connection.

And it was the connection that terrified me.  I didn’t like connecting with people, because then I was vulnerable.

49 weeks in, and all that has changed.  The first thing I ever tell someone to do, if they’re interested in being referred to me is “call me”.  Call me on the phone.

And when I see an e-mail land in my inbox, the first thing I do is look for a phone number.  I want to get on the phone with that person right away. I don’t want to spend time crafting an e-mail, deleting it, editing it, getting it just perfect (notice, those are all things that actually stand in the way of genuine connection.  Being human is to be imperfect).

There’s some other things that are cool about the phone.  You know what I don’t have?  Call waiting.  Or another line.

If you’re talking on the phone with me, that’s all there is.  There’s no additional calls coming in, there’s no queue for me to get distracted by.  It’s not like e-mail, where I can be crafting my message to someone, and suddenly get distracted by the message I think I need to craft to the six other people that just reached out to me.

So simple.

So I guess the theme for this week has really simply been that business, and life, happen in intimate, connected conversation.  Not in e-mail, not in text messages, but in conversation.

Want to increase your business as an entrepreneur?  Stop e-mailing and pick up the phone.

The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 48

June 6th, 2014 No comments

IMG_2997 - Version 2This is the forty-eighth post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

What a crazy week.  Nothing has physically changed in my world since when I posted last week, but how I am being within that physical world is radically different.  I’m not even the same person any more.

Transformation really can be that dramatic.  It isn’t always — sometimes it looks like a snake moulting its skin, gradually shifting and growing out, until one day it just slithers away and the skin is no longer a part of it.  Other times it looks much more like a caterpillar turning in to a butterfly.  Caterpillar, bag of goo, butterfly.

I think, in this space, the theme for this week has been service and connection.  Last week was filled with terror, fear and panic.  This week, I woke up with those same thoughts.  Sometimes I would be sitting on my couch and they’d leap out at me and spear me in the ass (or wherever my body chose to manifest terror at that moment).

The difference was that they didn’t seem so significant this time.  Like, the thoughts hadn’t changed, and the circumstance hadn’t changed — but I had.

So what?  I was scared.  That didn’t change the way mustard tastes.  It didn’t change what there was for me to do.  It didn’t change what I could provide the next person in front of me.

And from that place, everything shifted.  I just got into action.  I reached out to people that had expressed some interest in the past and chatted with them.  I got in touch with some previous clients and offered to give them some coaching in the moment.  I looked beyond the fear-based thinking (“What is going to get me a client RIGHT NOW?”) and instead looked at service-based thinking (“Who can I really serve right now?”).

I looked to my existing clients and looked for ways that I could serve the living daylights out of them.  Serve them in a way that would astonish them.  That team you’re managing that you’ve been struggling with?  How about I come in and coach them all for you for a day?  Your companies that are working to integrate?  Why don’t we bring the teams together and I’ll work with them to create a more powerful corporate culture?

Is that going to make me more money?  I have no idea.

But that’s besides the point.

What I know, with absolute certainty, is that it will serve the people in front of me in a way that they’ve never been served before.  And if my clients, as a result of working with me, create breakthroughs in their companies, there’s only so long I can continue making that happen and have people not reaching out to talk to me.

I hate sales, and so does every other entrepreneur.

Instead of selling, turn your focus to serving.

(I promise you, it’s way more fun).

The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 47

May 23rd, 2014 5 comments

IMG_2981 - Version 2This is the forty-seventh post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

The theme for this week turns out to be miracles.  I didn’t think that’s what it would be.  I thought it would be hate, or anger, or frustration or defeat.

I wrote this post for Evergrowth earlier in the week, in the throes of a breakdown.  Struggling to be with my stuff.  Hanging out in panic.

It’s ugly when I start panicking.  It’s busy too.  So busy.  I get working hard, I stop focusing on my heart, what really matters and the things around me.

But then stuff started to shift.  Slowly.  Somehow, it started to seem less like everything was falling apart around me.  I got supported by people.  People were telling me, if I could listen, what a profound difference we were making in their lives every time we had a coaching session.

In one of my coaching sessions with Steve Chandler, he had me look at the places I was currently underserving my clients, and I saw opportunities everywhere to take things even further.  To be the coach that doesn’t stop at “customer satisfaction”, and instead aims for “customer astonishment”.  And I took those on too.

I was out for dinner last night to celebrate my birthday with Bay, and Happy, by Pharrell Williams came on.

I said “Man, this is such a good song, what is this?”.  Bay told me about Pharrell Williams, and what the song was about.  Her enthusiasm kind of touched me.

Then I woke up this morning and put on the song just before a client call.  While watching the video, suddenly a chord was struck in my heart.  Then six more chords were struck.  Then the whole piano came crashing down.

Suddenly, I was crying.  I was overcome with emotion.  Joy.  A release.  I started to manage it, to avoid being too emotional — what if Bay saw me crying because of a music video?

But then I realized:

WHO FUCKING CARES?

After reading about the song on Wikipedia, I saw this link to Steve Carell (along with a bunch of other people) dancing to the song, and I got hit again, right in the heart.  The emotion didn’t run out or stop before my client called, and I didn’t want it to.  I answered the phone, and choked out that I wanted to share what had just happened with him.  And then, while doing so, I had to put the phone down for a few seconds, just to be with everything that was showing up.

I went over and hugged Bay, and then came back and just sat with my client.

I’ve been searching for intimacy for 2.5 years, and this morning, one day after my 35th birthday, a miracle occurred.  Suddenly it was right there, sitting in front of me.  Rolling down my cheeks and making it hard to speak.

Miracles can happen.  Thanks for letting me share mine.

The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 46

May 10th, 2014 No comments

IMG_2958 - Version 2This is the forty-sixth post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

Astonishing that we have only six weeks remaining.  Writing this series has taught me one thing for certain: writing an ongoing weekly series of blog posts for an entire year is a lot of work.  Even though each of these posts is fairly small, the simple act of sitting down and writing every week, consistently, is hard work.  It does not come easily.

And that speaks to one of the big takeaways from this week: commitment.

Without my commitment, right at the start, to take this series on, I have no doubt that I would have given up.

Some days, I wake up and have zero desire to write.  I don’t want to open my laptop, I don’t want to type words, I don’t want to take another photo of my socks and shoes (no matter how damn good they may look today).

I just want to crack a beer, play some video games, and watch Game of Thrones.

But I haven’t done that, and the reason is because I’m committed to something.

Creative endeavours are notoriously challenging to make a living at, because some days, you get up and you just don’t feel creative.  No matter how much you want it, you don’t feel like doing that thing that your creativity produces.  Steven Pressfield wrote about this exact thing in his book The War of Art.  

In a lot of ways, entrepreneurialism is a creative endeavour.  Perhaps the ultimate creative endeavour.  There’s no precedent for what you want to do (or at least, not the exact thing you want to do).  There’s no one there to tell you that you’re taking the approach in the wrong direction, and there isn’t anyone that is calling you in to their office telling you that the work you did was or was not good enough.

The only thing that will really keep you going, through the ups, the downs, the fear, the inspiration, and every other part of the ride, is your commitment.

Steve Chandler compared struggling coaches to a truck driver.  A struggling coach doesn’t have a system.  When they wake up and don’t feel like working, they mill about.  They say they don’t feel like working and they choose instead to spend their time doing something else.  They wake up to a bad e-mail and decide that today isn’t the day to take on that project they’ve had set aside.

Contrast this with the truck driver.  The truck driver doesn’t have a choice about how they feel.  They wake up in the morning, eat breakfast, and head out to their truck.  Whether they’re feeling happy, sad, motivated or tired, they go out and drive truck.  Whether its raining, sunny, thundering or clear out, they go to work.  Their mood is irrelevant to whether or not they do their work.

The missing ingredient is commitment.

The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 45

May 2nd, 2014 No comments

photo - Version 2This is the forty-fifth post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

This post is a week late because I spent the last week in Disneyland.  Entrepreneurs need vacations too (actually, we need them more than non-entrepreneurs).  Make sure you’re taking yours.

The theme this week has really been reinvesting.  My experience with a number of entrepreneurs I’ve met with is the assumption that they shouldn’t have to pay more money to invest in themselves.  They should simply be able to make things go, and the only place really worthy of investing in themselves is their business.  Buying more infrastructure, paying their employees more, generating more capital so as to buy more advertising, and so on.

I think that’s crazy.  As an entrepreneur, you are your business.  You are its lifeblood.

When training leaders, we often say that how the team is being is a reflection of how the leader is being, and this holds true for businesses as well.

When I start working with businesses, the first thing I do is meet with the people in charge of leading the organization, and see how they’re being.  The way the leader is being will always tell me volumes about how things operate organizationally.

If the leader shows up late to meeting, and then dashes off to his next one with only minutes between each appointment, I know that the business is going to be frequently operating by the seat of its pants, likely lacking clear systems and often pushing up against, if not overstepping, its deadlines.

Because of this simple fact, it’s imperative that entrepreneurs invest in themselves.

This week, I hired my second coach.  I’ve admired Steve Chandler for years, ever since my friend and colleague, Lisa Peake, sent me a copy of his book Wealth Warrior.  Wealth Warrior changed my perspective on how I related to making money and generating lasting wealth and prosperity.

It was a big investment — $3,000 for 7 coaching sessions.  That took a couple of conversations with my wife, and even more conversations in my own head.  But at the end of the day, if I’m not investing in myself, how can I expect anyone else to?  And if I’m not willing to invest money in growing the leadership of my organization, how can I expect my organization to grow?

Investing in your business is important.  Think of these as things like buying better infrastructure, buying more computers, buying redesigning your workplace, buying pizza for your employees, etc.  These things are all essential.

As an entrepreneur, you’ve got to put the oxygen mask on yourself first.  If you’re not investing in your own development, your company is going to get stuck where you get stuck (note that this doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t make a lot of money — financial success is only one place someone can get stuck)

Start there.  Put the oxygen mask on yourself first.


The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 44

April 19th, 2014 2 comments

IMG_2873 - Version 2This is the forty-fourth post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

Mindfulness and a life by design.

Those are the two things that have really been on my mind lately.  One of the things that really drives my life is passion.  If you spend two hours talking with me, you get a sense that I’m deeply passionate about the things I take on.  I’ll talk to you about the funk-styles of dancing forever if you want me to.  Ask me about what makes a good angle in boogaloo, and I’ll tell you all of the theories I have, and everything I’ve come up with over the years of getting down.

If you ask me about the nuances of P vs. 2P in Virtua Fighter, I’ll explain the situations where you want to choose one over the other (actually, you don’t even have to.  You can just go and read the blog I used to write about that exact kind of thing here).

Anyhow, that passion really drives me forward.  I’m voracious when I start to love something.  The flipside of that passion can be obsession.  I want something so much that I lose sight of the life that I have around me.  I put all of my focus, time, and energy into what I’m pursuing, and then realize I’ve spent a week working on it.

There’s nothing wrong with that, if it’s a joyful, intentional week, but with obsession, it starts to get dark.  Instead of loving the progress and the journey, I can start to focus only on what I’m not currently achieving.  Then it becomes a treadmill that I’m always running faster and faster along.

This week, I’ve been really taking on a practice in mindfulness.  Because, whats the point of having an amazing life, if I’m not present to it.  I get to do work that I love, but if I’m not taking the time to stop and really appreciate everything I’m creating, it’s only slightly better than a life than I spend with my head buried in a bunch of papers at a deskjob I don’t enjoy.

Mindfulness means doing things like running and really focusing on every aspect of the run, rather than just doing it so I can stay slim.  (I caught myself doing that recently.  Crazy).

The other thing that has been dawning on me has been how important it is to design our lives as entrepreneurs.  I mean, it’s why we get into the work in the first place — freedom!

I’ve slowly been reviewing the pieces of my schedule and life, and determining whether I actually want things to look this way.  If I don’t, then I look at what needs to happen to rearrange them.

That’s a lot different than the space I was coming in to 44 weeks ago, which was “I’ll say yes to everything and find a way to make it fit”.  I know I can be successful under that paradigm, but it’s not what I’m really interested in.

But I have to start somewhere.  If I don’t be a demand for the schedule I want, who will?  That doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone will be happy about it, but that’s not what matters.

What matters is that I love my life.

The 52-week guide to becoming an entrepreneur – Week 42 & 43

April 15th, 2014 No comments

IMG_2872 - Version 2This is the forty-second and forty-third post in my epic journey going from lawyer to entrepreneur.  You can read the previous entry here, and next week’s entry here.

That’s right, I’m doubling up weeks again.  The theme this week has been all about the power that designing the life you want to create can provide you.

Most people go through life in the noise of ordinary and what they should do.  Even those of us that can’t see ourselves doing it often show up wowing other people, but always feeling like there’s just not something we’re nailing.

It’s the safe and the ordinary.  It’s comfortable, because there’s a predictability to it.  If we stay on our course, and shoot for a raise at our next performance review, we know that the worse thing that will happen is that we won’t get it.

As an entrepreneur, I know that the same thing can happen.  It’s easy to get some early profits going, and then incrementally increase from there.

But that’s boring.  It doesn’t lead to any breakthroughs.  It doesn’t create exponential results.

I’ve made wild declarations, and then acted so as to get myself there.  In the process of doing so, I’ve come up against breakdowns after breakdowns.  Those breakdowns that have actually allowed me to create something new on the other side of the old that was being discarded.

It’s not until we make powerful declarations and reach for something outside of what we currently know how to create that these breakdowns become possible.  Up until that point, they’re merely problems.

“Oh, my calendar is over scheduled.  Well, I guess I’ll just rearrange things and cut in to my exercise time.”

That’s fine, as long as I’m not holding myself accountable to win a marathon.  Until I make a crazy declaration like that one, this is simply a problem.  A speedbump that I overcome, and then revert to the old way of doing things.

But if I declare winning a marathon, holy crap, I can’t actually let that keep happening.  It’s a serious breakdown if my training keeps getting push out to make room for work.

You can see that the wild declaration and goal I set for myself actually requires that I break things up, and it’s actually going to create breakdowns.  What worked before no longer works.

That’s what I’ve been presenced to these past two weeks.  Set unreasonable goals for yourself, and hire the best coach you can afford to have you achieve them.

It’s that simple.