Sunday, March 2, 2008

You ship will never come in

“Once ship to comes in, I will retire and relax.”

I am here to tell you…Your ship will NEVER come in.

If you never send it out.

Anthony Robbins calls it "Massive Action." Nike says, “Just do it.” In the Bible it says you reap what you sow. Robert Kiyosaki says, "9 of 10 business fail...that just means I need to start ten times."

Whatever you call it these sources are all getting at the same idea. If you ever expect to have "your ship come in" you need to send it out. If you want to have good luck, go out and make it. And it just makes sense. Success isn't going to just drop out of the sky and land-in-your-lap. You have to take action. Sitting on your can surfing the Internet is going to get you nothing.

“A journey of a thousand miles, begins with a single step.” - Chinese Proverb

Small steps are fine. You just have to take lots of them.

They say that you reap what you sow, but that isn't really true. Really you Reap MORE than you sow, but sowing takes faith. Seeds are small, compared to the plants that grow out of them. We were planting seeds last spring for my daughter's small business of kitchen herbs. The instructions said to plan 3-5 seeds in each hole we dug. 3-5 seeds?! But we only see one plant that really grows and becomes viable. Some of the seeds are dead to begin with, they produce nothing. Other seeds do germinate and grow, but they produce weak plants, I don't know if it is the soil, or the seed, the water or a host of other things that might be involved but they grow but in a short time they die. Then there are the other seeds some of them grow and they really grow strong. They go crazy and take over all the other ground. They take up all the light and grow grow grow. Can you pick the seeds by looking at them in your hand? No? Neither can I. So, we just planted them, following the rules, 3-5 seeds per hole, and you know what? Each pot has a great little plant in it now!

So no one wants your product. So that seed is dead. Move on. So, you sell a few products but you can’t turn a profit. That plant is anemic. Move on. Plant more seeds. More and more and more seeds. Take Massive Action! Planting one seed at a time? Then expect to see a lot of failure. Plant a lot of seeds all at the same time and you will be amazed at how many plants you have. You will also not remember the seeds that didn’t grow. They aren’t failures they are just the seeds needed to get to the few that grow.

Monday, February 11, 2008

The Most Important thing my Father taught me

I learned a lot from my father, but I thing the most important thing I learned from him was that ignorance is good.

Talk with any inspirational speaker or any very successful business person and you will find that they are ignorant too. Yep. The more you can cultivate your ignorance the better off you will be.

Ok, now, of course you know that I don't mean that the way it sounds.

Somewhere in my high school days I was in a deep conversation with some friends. I knew that the point I was trying to make was right but I couldn’t really explain why or how. I talked about it with my dad. I remember it clearly we were in the basement office of our house. He shared with me a phrase that I remember often. A phrase that propels me to success.

The phrase was, "I don't know the answer." If you can get comfortable with the idea of not knowing you will find yourself much more successful. IF... IF you follow up that phrase quickly with, "But I can find out." these two ideas, "I don't know, but I can find out." will propel you over the top. So many people think they have to know it all, so they bluff and because they bluff they don't learn.

Me, I am happy to say I don't know. I want to surround myself with people who are smarter than I am. They make me successful. My advisors and mentors help me do better than I could ever do myself.

Face it, You can't know it all. So, accept your ignorance, embrace it, revel in it and surround yourself with smarter people.

Repeat the phrase

"I don't know, but I can find out."

Friday, February 1, 2008

Lessons from Christopher Columbus

"In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue."

Have you ever thought you knew what you were doing ...only to find out that you were completely wrong? Was this a bad thing or a good thing? Is there a pattern to when it is a good thing or a bad thing? In my experience, as long as I am taking positive action toward a goal, it almost always turns out to be a good thing.

Look at Columbus. He was trying to find a new Silk Road, a new route to Asia. Well he missed it by about 15,000 miles! More than a little bit off buddy. He messed up. But he discouraged because he didn't find a new route to Asia? um. no! (fact is he didn't know he wasn't in Asia) What he found was a route to the Americas. A world whole world that Europe didn’t know existed.

I recently ran in to a roadblock with a project I was working on. I had all kinds of plans, time, and personal investment rolled up in it. But ran into an issue that made it impossible to continue. At first I was really upset about it. But then I thought, Well, What if I had run into this problem 5 minutes after deciding to pursue this project? I would have let it roll off my back and not thought further of it, knowing there are a Million good ideas out there and the fact that this one is not possible to pursue just means that there is another, better idea for me out there. Something just waiting to be discovered.

You act. and yet something goes wrong. What do you do with what is handed to you that is what determines the outcome.

So next time life throws you a curve ball, a road block, or a sharp turn. Check yourself. Your reaction is what will make the difference. (Of course I question the sanity of Chris C. If I had landed in the Bahamas with no crush of tourists around, I think I would have settled down with a palm frond umbrella and a cool drink and just kissed Europe bye bye. :-)

For more information about Christopher Columbus see

Friday, January 11, 2008

Ready, Fire, Aim

Don't just stand something!

I had the idea to start Celtic Scrapbooking for months before I decided to do anything about it. what kicked me in the pants? finding out that my wife was pregnant with our third child. Within 4 weeks of finding out we were pregnant, Celtic Scrapbooking went from a nice idea in my head, tossed around over drinks with friends, to starting production in China and putting the finishing touches on our website. I had never done international trade, I had never studied it, I had never built a website, I had never started a business. I just did something, and then the next couple of things would come up then the next, and the next. Ready, Fire, Aim

"Once you've decided, don't delay. The best is the enemy of the good... a
good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan next week."
George S. Patton Jr.)

So Act now. If you have an idea. Act on it. Don't wait around until the time is right. AND Don't get discouraged if they fail. Remember failure is all part of the deal you have to fail to push the envelope. They say that 9 out of 10 businesses fail in the first 5 years. Is this discouraging to me? No, all it means is that I need to start 10 times. Heck that isn't hard! Besides by the time I get my 10th try at it starting won't be a problem at all. This is the idea behind Ready, Fire, Aim. Just start firring, see where the bullets hit the target, adjust your aim and fire again. don't wait to get it right because... YOU WONT!

Ready, fire, AIM .. Do it now!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Skiing your way to Success

I am a skier…OK I was a skier, now I am a father of 3 young girls and I might ski every few years.

When I was in High School I wanted to learn to ski. I was passionate about it. I wanted to ski. So I worked all year on a paper route to save enough to rent my skis and pay for my ski lessons. The first year I learned new mindset in order to learn to ski and to get better at it. The The Mindset was,
“Falling is as much a part of skiing as skiing is”.

This mindset was critically important to me learning to ski. This is still how I ski. The idea is, if you aren’t falling you aren’t pushing yourself and you won’t be getting better. Pretty simple right? You can learn to ski without falling, I guess, but you won’t learn very quickly and you won’t really achieve the full potential as a skier that you could. Makes sense right?

You will achieve more in life if you take this same approach to success.
"Failing is as much a part of success as success. "

So go out there and Fail spectacularly. Go try the moguls don't stick to the Bunny slope you won't get anywhere that way.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Olympic Spirit

Yesterday I had the great privilege of listening to and then meeting Ruben Gonzales, 3 time Olympian. What a great story he has. His message was inspiring and motivating and very helpful to me where I am today. You see, my message has been an still is, just show up and most of the work is done. Most people say they have a dream but they do nothing to make it a reality. The biggest step you can take, I believe, is to take that first step.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step – Chinese proverb

Ruben’s message was that if you will persevere you can have anything you want. He was 21 when he decided to take up the sport of Luge.


The trainers at the Lake Placid Olympic Luge training center laughed at him. They normally start training athletes at 11. Here was this 21 year old who wanted to take up the sport. Well he persevered and in 4 years he became one of the top 50 lugers in the world and went to the Olympics.

His story of sticking with it is just what I needed to hear. Right now I have a business to which I was expecting a much greater response than we are getting and it was tempting to just give it up and go do something else.

Thanks to Ruben I am inspired to push on and figure out why to continue to persevere in my dream of building this company to support my family. I don’t know what I will do but like a bulldog I will not give up. I know our product is something that people will benefit from for years to come. So now I need to figure out how to make it real to them to help the prospects understand the value they have in it.

You can read more about Ruben Gonzales at

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Because I asked Part 2...

Ok it has been a few days and I get my wisdom teeth out tomorrow but I wanted to follow up from my last post. I am sure you are waiting with baited breath.

While I was contacting these folks I also contacted Irish Dancing magazine to see if they wanted the article. Ok can you believe this, the January issue (deadline November 24) is about Shoes, Feet and Floors. They were very interested in my articles.

The editor of Irish dancing magazine contacted me on the morning of Thanksgiving and wanted to know if I could have all three articles done by the weekend. Yes, three articles. You see the review had bloomed into three articles: how I made my floor, a review of currently available flooring, and a side-bar article about the differences between vinyl and hardwood flooring. I told them that I could not make the deadline for two of them because I don't have the floors yet, but I could probably make the deadline for the one about how I made my floor. With the help of my wife, my mom, and my mother-in-law we wrote a 300 word essay about how I made the floor my daughters dance on and did a mock photo shoot of how to make it yourself. We had it done by Friday morning (which is Friday evening in London where Irish Dancing is published) we made the deadline for the January issue.

The flooring review will be in the February issue. the flooring has already started to arrive.

What are the chances that Irish Dancing's next issue was going to be about the EXACT topic I was thinking of writing about? Well the Lord works in mysterious ways. sometimes just showing up is what it takes.

Remember this all happened,
Because I Asked

there is more to tell as well, You won't believe where the next turn takes me.... more to come