Please Take My 2014 Reader Survey

One of my goals for the year is to take this blog to the next level.  I want it to be more valuable and beneficial to my readers.  To accomplish this, I would love to know more about YOU.  To that end, I have created my 2014 Reader Survey.

reader survey pic

Would you please take a few moments to fill out this survey?  By doing so, you will ultimately be helping yourself.  Why, you ask?  Because you will be helping me make my content even more relevant to you.

I covet your input – it is important to me.  The survey is very easy to take.  It should take you 5 minutes or less.  The survey results are completely anonymous.  There is no way for me to know which of you said what.

Take the Survey Now!

Thanks so much!

2014 is here!  Do you want to make this your best year ever?  Setting goals is one thing, but building habits into your life is what will actually get you to the place you want to go.  Michael Hyatt has produced 3 free videos that are incredibly helpful in helping you make 2014 your best year ever.  I challenge you to watch these videos and maximize 2014!

The first video is below.  You can find all 3 at bestyearever.me.

Happy New Year my friends!

My cousin, Lindsey O’Brien Kesling, was just 22 years old when she died due to accidental carbon monoxide poisoning in her Scottsdale, Arizona apartment in November 2010. My little bro, Timmy Baron (26), stars in this informative video produced/edited by Lindsey’s brother, William Kesling (19), www.williamkesling.com, and filmed by Dane Kissel.

LOK Wishing Tree Foundation is a youth arts organization founded in Lindsey’s memory. Besides their focus on creating performing and creative arts opportunities for youth in underserved areas, LOK Wishing Tree Foundation also feels a strong commitment to carbon monoxide awareness and safety to help prevent other tragic deaths.

I ask you to sign the petition mentioned in the video to make CO testing mandatory in all states.  The next 30 seconds of your life could save the lives of many others.  Please act now by going here to sign the petition – Lindsey O’Brien Kesling Wishing Tree Foundation.

To get more information about the LOK Wishing Tree Foundation – click here!

Are You Ready for Some Football? 5 Reasons CRE is Better than Football

In much of the country, kids are back in school.  That is certainly the case here.  This means that although it is 95 degrees here, my summer break from blogging is over.  It is time to start writing again.

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto.com

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto.com

The other great thing about this time of year is the start of football!  Tomorrow I’m taking my boys and heading to Nashville to watch the University of Kentucky kick off their season against Bobby Petrino and the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers.  Feel free to post your snide remarks about UK football in the comments.

Earlier today, I received an email from one of my former coaching clients, Chad Grout.  Chad is a master Commercial Real Estate Broker in Nashville, TN and is the owner of Urban Grout.  His email was so good I want to share it with you.

Five Reasons Commercial Real Estate is Better than Football

  1. You will get to play every position at some point in your career.
  2. You can make more money playing for both sides at the same time.
  3. If you don’t do your job you don’t get paid anything at all.
  4. You can play as many games as you want and only your wins are counted.
  5. You can play hard until you’re 90 years old.

Five Reasons Football is Better than Brokerage

  1. There is an off-season.
  2. You don’t get yelled at when the other guy drops the ball.
  3. Regular paychecks!
  4. No matter how bad you screw up, you always get another chance.
  5. When you get blind-sided, at least you have pads.

So let me hear from you.  What is your favorite thing about this time of the year?  What other parallels or contrasts to do you see between CRE and football?  Post your comments below!

Ask Me Your Questions

Take a look at the right column of this site.  I encourage you to sign up for the email list of this blog.  Not only will you receive every new post directly to your email inbox, but you will be the first to know of any new announcements.  There are some exciting ones coming up.  And I will never give your info to anyone…ever.

iStockPhoto from myrrha

iStockPhoto from myrrha

2013 is a year of new beginnings for me.  This blog has a new look and an expanded scope.  I have a new job.  I have a new vision for the future and new goals.  I couldn’t be more excited.

Another shift that starts now is I am purposing to focus more upon the highest interests of my readers.  Practically, that means I am trying to write for my readers.  Until this point, I’ve been writing whatever I hoped would be interesting or useful for someone.

In one of last week’s posts, The One Secret to Winning the Business Every Time, I make the case that the most important thing that you can do with your clients and prospects is understand their needs.  You do that by asking questions.

So today, I’m asking for your questions.  Here is how this will work.  You can ask me anything.  As this blog is focused on Next Practices in Life, Business, and Commercial Real Estate, your questions simply need to fall into one of those categories.  Feel free to ask about my experiences, background, job, or my thoughts on any subject.  I’m certainly no expert in most subjects, but I have thoughts on most.  I will respond in one of 3 ways:

  1. Your question will turn into a post – Some of you already been firing questions at me – and they are great questions. Those that warrant a full post will get it.
  2. I will respond that I don’t have a clue – This may happen more than I’d like.  However, if I don’t know, then I will tell you.
  3. I will find out – I expect some questions will pique my curiosity and will send me searching.  In that case, I will report back what I find.

To give you a feel for what I am working on, here are some post titles coming up in the future.

Life

  • A Review of the App ‘Book on Her’
  • How to Pursue the Hearts of Your Children
  • How to Create a Healthy Family Culture

Business

  • The 7 Steps to Cast a Vision that People will Follow
  • The Art of Delegation Results vs Tasks
  • Book Reviews

Commercial Real Estate

  • CRE App Reviews
  • Why You Should Consider Syndications as Part of Your Business
  • More Posts Unpacking the Steps in a Prospecting System
  • An Introductory Post on Creating Presence

Those are my plans, but I want to hear from you.  Here is how you ask a question:

  1. Use the comments section below
  2. Include your name and website – I will link to them if I use your question as a post.
  3. Ask your question!

So ask away!  I look forward to increasing the interaction with you on my blog and ensuring that I am listening to my readers.  Use the comments below.

A New Year and a New Look!

iStockPhoto

iStockPhoto

2013 is here and I couldn’t be more excited.  One of the most exciting things is the redesign of my blog.  I will tell you up front that it is a work in progress.  However, let me take you through some of the differences:

  • WordPress.org – If you don’t blog, you may have no idea what the difference is between WordPress.com and WordPress.org.  Wordpress.com is the free version where WordPress hosts your blog for you on their servers.  Wordpress.org is the self-hosted version of WordPress.  The big difference is that on a self-hosted site, I have much more control over the look and capability of my blog.  I’ve been putting off the switch for a while.  The new year was the time to jump in!
  • New Theme – I have left my first theme behind – Standard.  I am now using the Genesis framework with the Focus theme.  I’d love to hear what you think about it!
  • New Products – This is a soft announcement for some products that will be available in the coming months.  I am working on 3 ebooks.  One will be offered free of charge in exchange for you signing up for the email list (all those who have already signed up will receive this ebook as well!).  The other two will be sold at a great value.  The topics of the ebooks are achieving a virtual office, how to increase your income with a killer prospecting system, and how to becoming top of mind by developing your presence.

So this is simply a short post to give you an idea of what is to come.  Please give me your feedback on the look and feel of the site.  I want to hear the good and the bad.  This information will be very valuable as we continue to tweak the site.  I would also love to hear your thoughts on the ebook topics?  Would you be interested?  Would you like different topics instead?  Comment below!

Friday Quote to Motivate: Head of the Class

If you are always the head of the class, then you’re in the wrong class.  The best place to learn is always where others are ahead of you.  ~ John Maxwell from his new best seller The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth.

iStock_000009922777XSmall

Not Your Standard Goal-Setting Post

I learned to set goals from my dad.  He’s set annual goals every year that I can remember.  As a result, I’ve been a goal setter most of my life, and I believe that it has benefited me.

2013

However, I was on a coaching call with one of my clients last month that caused me to rethink goals.  This guy has absolutely crushed his goals for the year – killed it.  Do you know how he feels about it?  He feels like he has stolen from next year’s income.  His goals actually have prevented him from enjoying his success.

What he should feel is something short of elation.  His growth this year has been incredible, and I had a front row seat to it.  This guy started his own firm and became a first-time dad.  He had realistic goals.  They were measurable.  They were stretching yet attainable.  In some way, hitting his goals left him wanting.

This is the time of year when top producers and high achievers set goals for the upcoming year.  It is the perfect time to pause (nearly impossible in December) and reflect on the year.  And while my thinking is changing on the best way to set goals, I will set them nonetheless.

None of the following is rocket science or original thought.  It is simply how I’ve learned to do this.  As you work through your goals for next year, remember the word ‘balance.‘  You really gain nothing if you work 80 hours a week and lose your family.  What benefit is ten million dollars if you  don’t have your health.

I do have a thought and a challenge at the end of this post so be sure to read until the end.

Steps For Setting Life-Changing Goals

  1. Set goals for your entire life.  You may have just said, “Duh!”, but many people don’t.  My areas are spiritual, family, work/career, personal health, personal development, and social.
  2. Write them down – Again, “Duh!”  But this is so important.  I think Dave Ramsey said something like “goals that aren’t written down are just dreams.”  Something happens when you write something down.  More specifically, I encourage you to hand write them.  I gain so much clarity when I write by hand versus typing.
  3. Use the 3 P’s – I’ve read numbers of blogs that espouse this method, but I think that Brian Tracy is the guy who codified it.  If Tracy didn’t come up with this, he wrote about it in one of his books.
      1. Present - don’t write down that you want to lose 20 lbs.  Write that you are the weight that you want to be.  For example:  ”I weigh 170 lbs by the end of 2013.”  It is in the present tense.
      2. Positive – you are much more apt to accomplish the goal if you think of it in the positive.  The best example is the quitting smoking goal.  Instead of saying that you are going to quit smoking this year, write “I am a non-smoker.”  See the difference?
      3. Personal – this simply means that you start each goal with “I” and an action verb.  ”I sell 10 Single Tenant Net Lease properties by September 2013.”  ”I am a student of my wife and seek to understand and know her.”  ”I take my daughter on a date once a month so that she doesn’t have to date biker-guy to get my attention.”  You get the point.
  4. Write your goals daily – I’m not good at this one.  This is the idea that writing your goals and placing that sheet of paper in a drawer for a year is not optimal.  I’ve heard of studies that say that even this annual fire and forget method is way better than not setting goals.  However, there is some real power in re-writing them daily.  I did this for a couple-week stretch earlier this year.  Those were some of the most productive and focused days of my life.

I keep thinking of my goal-shattering client, though.  This process failed him in some way.  What he needed was a growth plan.  Goals can be a part of it.  I’m reading John Maxwell’s new book the 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth.  He said that happiness has more to do with growth than anything.  And growth is a life-long process.

I want to grow as a writer which will involve writing a book.  I want to grow as a speaker.  I want to grow as a husband and father.  I want to grow as a leader.  My goal is not to arrive, though.  My goal is to try to approach my potential.

How would you quantify that kind of thinking in a goal that is measurable, challenging, and attainable?  I need goals that I never actually hit.  Goals that are always beyond my grasp – causing me to stretch and grow.

Help me out here.  How do you think you can set goals that are just barely unattainable and then be satisfied with the growth?