Sunday, July 30, 2006

Sunday Scripture Choice

1 Corinthians 13:13

And now abideth faith, hope, love, these three: but the greastest of these is love.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

SUCCESS: S- Steering

How do you decide on your goals? What do you want to be when you grow up. Many people waste years and lives not wanting to do anything until they know for sure what they what to be. The Pink Floyd song "Time" says it this way:

"And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun."

It is important to set goals and know where you want to go, but if undecided, for your sake choose something and start going!

"“Everyone should carefully observe which way his heart draws him, and then choose that way with all his strength." Hasidic Saying

Listen to your heart. What do you want, what would make you happy? It does not matter if you know anything about it, it does no’t matter if it seems impossible, and it does no’t matter if you tell anybody else- so long as it is something of worth to you!

"This became a credo of mine...attempt the impossible in order to improve your work."” Bette Davis

If you find yourself at that spot where you haven't decided anything yet, you're actually in a good spot. Just don't stay there too long. All the questions do not have to be answered yet- you just have to know where you are going to point in the right direction. You're like a ship leaving port, heading out into the ocean. Start pointing your ship to whatever port you desire!

"My whole career can be summed up with 'Ignorance is bliss.' When you do not know better, you do not really worry about failing." Jeff Foxworthy

Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Art of The Start

I know this video has been circulated around a lot already, at least in certain circles. It was referred to me not for its content, but for the speaking style. (Speaking geeks are just as bad as any other kind of geek). I watched it and found the style very good as well as the content.

Guy Kawasaki speaks about entrepreneurship, but his message extends deeper. I think that his message can be applied to any endeavor someone may venture into. I list a link to his video on Google Video at the bottom of this entry, but to help out those who may never have the time or capability to watch it, here is the outline that I made listening to it. (I told you I was a geek!) Guy mentions in the speech that his comments were loosely based on his book, The Art of the Start.

1. Make Meaning
a. Increase the quality of life.
b. Right a wrong
c. Prevent the End of Something good.

2. Make A Mantra
a. Not a vision statement
b. 2-3 words. What are you about?

3. Get Going
a. Think Different- Don't do better sameness
b. Polarize People
c. Find soul mates. Balance yourself.

4. Define a Business Model
a. Be specific.
b. Keep it simple.
c. Ask women about your business model

5. Weave a MAT
a. Milestones.
b. Assumptions.
c. Tasks

6. Niche Thyself
1. Great Value to customer
2. Ability to provide unique product or service

7. Follow the 10/20/30 Rule
a. 10 slide maximum
b. 20 minutes
c. 30 pts smallest font

8. Hire Infected People
a. Ignore the irrelevant
b. Hire Better people than yourself
c. Shopping center test
1. Run over and introduce yourself- Hire!
2. If you come face to face- introduce- Don't hire.
3. Drive away- Don't hire.

9. Lower Barriers to Adoption
a. Flatten the learning curve.
b. Don't ask people to do something you wouldn't do.
c. Embrace your evangelists.

10. Seed the Clouds
a. Let a hundred flowers blossom.
b. Enable test drives.
c. Find true influencers

11. Don't let the Bozos grind you down.
a. Losers- easy to ignore
b. Successful, educated- hard to ignore.

Video on Google Video. Check it out while it's free. Art of the Start

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Mark Twain Said...

I am not one of those who in expressing opinions confine themselves to facts.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

True Environmentalists

Weekends bring out so many good things. The thing I like the best is the cars. Many people break out their "babies" and cruise them for the weekend. I, myself, am a Corvette man, but I appreciate nice cars of any influence. I occasionally even admire a Mustang from time to time. I love those big engines, the rumble, and the all the shiny parts.

Some may think that muscle cars and big engines are irresponsible. In some ways they are. Anything can be used in an unsafe manner but there is an upside to these cars and their use. Fossil fuels.

We all know that the burning of fossil fuels (oil) is a contributor to not only global warming, but also the unrest in the Middle East. As long we was use the oil, these two things will continue to be a point of contention. Muscle cars and V-8's are the answer. The faster we use the oil, the sooner we will be forced to find a solution. If we only build automobiles that conserve oil and fuel consumption, we will just prolong the long term solution and never look for alternative fuels. Necessity is the mother of all invention.

Chevy, Ford, and Mopar owners, hold your head up high. You are the future of this planet!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Pioneer Day 2006

159 years ago today, pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley with the goal to establish a permanent settlement. They were refugees from religious persecution, expelled from a country that failed and refused to protect them. They had been chased form several states and several cities and had been dubbed religious freaks and dangerous to the areas they had previously settled. Their crime: they were Mormons.

They were also Americans, native born and immigrants alike, yet they were forced to flee for their lives and to search for a new safe place to live. They had been invited to come to San Francisco, but no longer felt safe within U.S. borders. They came to the Salt Lake Valley where no body wanted, no one thought to settle, and where they could be left alone.

Somewhere in the groups to follow that first party, ancestors of mine arrived in the valley. They fought for their survival with the others. They had to grow crops to live. They had to face the challenges living in a remote wilderness, without country, friend, or a guarantee of any future. They had faith in God and a determination to make it and that was it.

The U.S. did catch back up to them and tough times followed. They stuck it out and held their ground and became a powerful influence in the settlement of the west. Mormon settlements were the backbone to settling the Great Basin and Salt Lake became the "Crossroads of the West" and a major hub to travelers of all kinds.

This morning, I sit in my house, comfortable and secure. I fly the US flag outside our house and enjoy all the benefits of citizenship as well as technology: T.V., air conditioning, and this computer with which I am using to write this piece. I have seen Presidents of the United States visit Salt Lake City, as well as several other world leaders, and honor the Mormon Church and recognize their contributions to the greatness of our country.

Utah has come a long way since that day many, many years ago. I wonder if any of those pioneers had any idea what they were starting, but I thank them none the less. Happy Pioneer Day to anyone who cares to celebrate it today!

Saturday, July 22, 2006

The 7 Elements of Success

I haven't done this since February, but I used to write about what I consider the Seven Elements of Success each Saturday blog. I have decided to restart this practice. Each Saturday I will cover another element as my entry.

The Seven Elements of Success are: Steering, Understanding, Challenging, Committing, Executing, Segmenting, and Spirituality.

These elements are elements I have seen in other's success as well as my own. They are not steps. They are not all inclusive I am sure, but they are important. I believe that if one concentrates and addresses each one of these elements and incorporates them into his or her methods of operations, success is more likely to happen. In fact I would almost say guaranteed!

So look for these elements each Saturday right here on this blog!

Friday, July 21, 2006

Same Place, Different Time

(Written yesterday) I' m sitting in my backyard and thinking how amazing it is that the same place, the exact location where I am right now sitting, will in six months be covered in snow. It is nearly 100 degrees today and yet the day will come that it will be below freezing.

I hear that the sun is like 90,000,000 miles away, yet the simple shifting of the axis- leaning towards or away from the sun- can push the limits of our existence. Let's say the earth is 8,000 miles across the wide section, and the tilt swings us 4000 miles one way or the other, that means our ability to live on this planet is dependent on staying within 1/22500th of our distance from the sun. Any shift inside or outside of that paper-thin tolerance would spell certain doom for all of us.

Maybe you are thinking "so what"?!! I am just amazed at how fragile our life can be, how very small things make enormous differences and how insignificant my efforts are to anything really important.

My efforts, therefore, can and should be fearless. I cannot alter the axis tilt of the earth. I cannot even make myself grow up one inch. (Growing out, however, is quite simple to do.) So why not go for it? Why not just ignore the things that hold us back from what we really want? Why fear "no's", "You're crazy's" and "you can't do that's"? Why not just cut loose and tear it up. Preferably while the earth is tilting your part of the world towards the sun.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Taking The "Ick" Out Of Sick.

I stayed around the house yesterday. Unable to speak and not feeling too well kept me from doing what I usually do. What did I do with my time?

Caught up with some much needed sleep.
Had breakfast with my wife.
Listened to kid stories.
Played video games with the kids.
Walked my daughter to her friend's house.
Watched a movie with the family.
Watched the taped copy of "So you think you can dance" with my wife.
Spent some alone time with my wife.
Wrote a little bit.
Cooled off in the pool.
Kissed everybody good night.

Maybe I should get sick and loose my voice more often.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Sound Of Forced Silence

If you ever want to know how much you really speak- try not speaking for a little bit. Yesterday I began losing my voice. Every word I said had a price to it. It hurt to speak and it made the volume weaker with each forced syllable. I tried to limit myself, but couldn't help myself. Today I am without a voice.

It'll be interesting to see how many times I try and nothing will come out. But already I have learned one thing that I can take from this experience: I yap too much!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Better Than A Poke With A Stick??

It's fire season. That means that from now, or actually about a month ago, there will be wildfires here in the west. Thousands if not millions of acres will burn, the sky will have the hazy smoke look, and newscasters will do those ridiculous story on location. It's a scene played out every year. I don't understand why?

We just got back from camping. Have you ever tried to start a fire? Have you been in charge of maintaining the fire? You work and work to get the kindling just right, the tender situated just so, and then have to baby this little fire along until it can burn grown-up wood and topples over and goes out.

I can have a fire going for an hour, poke it with a stick a couple of times and it's out! Yet get two kids and a couple of firecrackers and next you'll have hundreds of firefighters, a couple of helicopters, and about a million dollars to put it out. What they should do is just hire me. I'll just poke with a stick a couple of times and it'll be out in no time!

If it's really a big fire, just line up a couple of hungry campers who are desperate for fire for cooking, ask them to maintain it...the fire won't stand a chance!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Back On The Wagon

Normally on Sunday, I would post a scripture for the day. Seeing how I have not written for a while, I thought it might be nice to actually post a real entry today. And since being reminded by my mother yesterday that's it has been a while, I thought today might be even more appropriate as a real good place to restart.

Usually I just start to write. I just choose something I am thinking about and then let the writing do it's own thing. It is something that I really like to do. Sometimes it's ranting, sometimes it's raving. In either case, my true feelings really tend to surface. It keeps me thinking, keeps me balanced, and keeps me from sleeping in too late.

I have always wanted to be a writer of some sort. It has always felt good to write a great story or thought. I have "writings" dating back to 1972 I believe. It's just something I like to do. I think that is why I enjoy speaking as much as I do. I find it exhilarating to write out a speech and then perform it for people. This blog has been fun, helpful, and a great outlet for me. And then life happens.

I had a bunch of projects coming due, I have not been feeling well, and I was feeling pressured to do other things rather then take the time, and it does take time, to write everyday. I started to allow other things to get into the way of my writing. I was allowing other priorities to bump what I felt was a personal priority. Why do we do this?

I don't know exactly why some stay on track with their own ambitions and others don't. And I understand that there are other people involved in our lives that need us as well. There are my priorities and there are others who count on me making them a priority and live is balancing the two of them. But there's the problem, they must be balanced. One is not more important than the other.

Fortunately, all has not been lost. I can pick this blog up at anytime and get back on schedule. And out of sheer good fortune, I have recently been offered a column with a national magazine. Nine issues a year and best of all- it pays. I still have some things that need to be worked out, but it is my job for the taking.

I am, as I said, fortunate that my lack of dedication to this blog did not cause me to miss an opportunity. I do feel had I been more true to writing everyday, my skills would be better polished. I have been working on other projects that have required writing, but nothing beats the daily routine.

One's personal priorities must be addressed. It is part of life, it is a part of success, and it's a part of happiness. Be true to your priorities and if you feel you have let them slip, just pick them back up again.