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"Try not to become a man of success but rather try to become a man of value. -Albert Einstein"

The Value We Create is the People We Choose to Serve


By: jwilder, 4/12/2022

The value we create is really the people we choose to serve. Any other value is secondary. The key value of a business is its customers.

It is good to be focused on your product or service. Everything we create and every service we improve is only potential value. Without people to serve, the value is not released. If there are no customers, we have nothing.

To have a mindset that the customer is the most important value is key. All other value is created to serve the customer.

Having a mindset that the customer is the value will influence where we focus our resources. The two most important actions to invest in are:

Connect - Be a business that people want to connect with.
Communicate - Be a business that people want to hear from.

I believe this view that "the customer is the most important value" applies to sole proprietors, freelancers, non-profits, and big businesses.

How many businesses are you eager to connect with and hear from? Do they live up to your expectations or is it marketing hype?

To your success!

What Do You Want?


By: jwilder, 3/22/2022

This sounds like a simple question, but it has proven difficult for me. It was difficult only because I tried to word my dreams in a way that seemed less selfish.

In some ways we believe we should avoid wanting anything specific. Maybe it seems selfish to want specific things. Maybe it feels more spiritual to not want anything. Maybe we think we don't deserve what we want.

I recently modified my personal "dream" statement to address the question "What do I want?" It felt way more honest. Since I devote much of my time to pursuing my "dream," I want to be as clear as possible. I want to shine as much light as I can so I can stand on solid ground.

Getting clearer on what I truly want lines up with my definition of success:

"Success is living a life of integrity while pursuing your dreams in a way that serves others."

A strong foundation will protect what we build from the storms of life.

To your success!

How a Donut Shop Changed My Mind


By: jwilder, 3/21/2022

There are always going to be distractions in life. In good times there are fun distractions. In bad times there are disturbing distractions.

One of the ways to keep moving forward is to have a clear purpose and a dream to build. But, even with this, I tend to have times where my focus and motivation decrease. This week a thought popped into my head...

There is a donut shop in my neighborhood. They are open daily from 5AM to Noon. The thought was, if a donut shop can open at 5AM every day and keep serving donuts no matter what goes on in the world, then shouldn't I keep serving? The key word is serving. The donut shop is serving people. People expect them to be there. They expect a donut when they drive there during store hours.

In the same way, what we do and how we serve is important. Even if things are going on in life and in the world we should still create and serve. It doesn't mean that we don't care. It means we do care. We care about those we serve. It's how we make a difference. Creating gives us something productive to do (serve) and therefore maintains our mental health.

The donut shop served as a great reminder that life continues. And if the donut folks can get up at 4 AM and make donuts every day, I should do the same thing. If the donut folks don't show up, then maybe it's time to worry.

To your success!

Time to Make the Donuts
www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYRurPB4WA0

We All Need a Story of Hope


By: jwilder, 3/16/2022

There's a man I know. He was on the wrong path for a while, but by the grace of God he turned his life around, and never looked back.

This man is kind, positive, and has an infectious sense of humor. He is a gardener at heart, and loves to see things grow.

He loves his kids and is always focused on their wellbeing. He knows that service to others is the best form of self-help. He is a light to many who still struggle. He's always available to share his experience, strength, and hope. He's a coach with a big heart, and always has room for one more on the team.

He takes on challenges like a pitbull. No matter what life throws at him, he doesn't let it keep him down. When everything is said and done, this man makes a difference, and that is what counts. And this I know, the story is still being written, and the best is yet to come.

When success is a long road, when it feels like difficult times will never end, remember this simple truth: we are closer today than we were yesterday.

One day at a time. Do the next right thing. First things first. Do what's in front of you. Don't quit before the miracle happens.

Be filled with love and generosity. Use your gifts to the fullest. Be in awe of the gift of life and the mysteries of the universe. Be a good gardener.

Plant seeds along the way.

To your success!

~ ~ ~

It's OK to Chase Success


By: jwilder, 3/14/2022

Some people say "Don't chase success." I say that's misguided advice. Seeking success is no different than seeking wisdom. And wisdom is the mother of success.

Here are just a few examples that force a negative definition of success:

"The problem with chasing success is it's a feeling you'll never catch."

"Stop Chasing Success. Seek Significance."

"Don't chase success, attract it"

"Why We Need to Stop Chasing Success and Start Enjoying Life"

Don't chase success. Instead, decide to make a difference and success will find you."

The problem with all these ideas is that they start with a negative definition of success. They define success as a feeling, "a high." They see success as lacking significance, sacrificing the enjoyment of life, driven by greed and selfishness.

Let's not get seduced into believing these negative definitions of success.

Common sense knows success is good. Success is a positive direction. Success is a goal achieved. Success is finding balance. Success is living a fulfilling life. Define success for yourself, and let others play word games.

To your success!

Keep Your Balance


By: jwilder, 2/28/2022

Sometimes we have to say "stop." Take time to regain our balance. How can we be helpful of we are off balance?

Take a minute, hour, day, or week. Take as long as it takes.

Define Success For Yourself


By: jwilder, 2/24/2022

It's important to have our own definition of success. Our definition of success should speak to our ideals and be grounded in humility.

As we pursue our dreams we will encounter many different situations, challenges, and even trials. Pursuing our dreams is not a casual effort. There is the possibility that we may experience hurt from ourselves or from others. When we experience the emotions of frustration, lack of progress, or lack of recognition, we can get derailed and lose momentum. We might be tempted to say “this isn’t worth it.” This is when a good success definition can bring us back into balance.

A good success definition can give us a good direction and bring us back to our foundation. A solid foundation is one that is based on personal growth and service to others. For example, nowhere in my success definition does it say anything about recognition, specific timelines, or expectation of wealth.

For me, success is: "Living a life of integrity while pursuing my dreams in a way that serves others."

You know you have a solid and valuable success definition if it has the power to bring you back into a state of peace and empowerment. When we stand on solid ground, we can make much progress and experience the riches of life.

What is your definition of success?

To your success!

Success Recognizes Success


By: jwilder, 2/23/2022

It is nearly impossible to hide our attitudes. They are revealed by what we say, and what we do.

One of the easily recognized traits is making excuses. If the first thing a person reaches for is an excuse then that exposes their character. People will usually not point it out, but it is noticed. There are many other traits that reveal our mindset.

The good news is, if we have a success mindset, it will be noticed. Success is humble, we don’t need to proclaim it. Success recognizes success. Wisdom recognizes wisdom. Ability recognizes ability.

If we are diligent in cultivating a success mindset, and act accordingly, we will recognize success in others. Being able to recognize traits in others, and knowing that our traits are not invisible, is extremely helpful in developing valuable relationships.

To your success!

Talent AND Hard Work is the Core of Success


By: jwilder, 2/21/2022

If we have a drive to grow and fulfill our potential, then leveraging our talents is a good place to start. I believe everyone has some sort of natural talent; something that comes easier to you than it does to others.

There should be no debate about talent versus hard work. As if talented people don’t have to work at improving. Hard work is always required, no matter how much talent we have.

We can earn a good living by working hard, even if we aren't a natural. I have had many jobs where I only used a portion of my talents, and that was enough for me, at the time. There are many things we have to learn and do in life. We don't need a lot of talent to do many of these things, but we need skills. I have made a living leveraging my skills, but they aren't my talents.

When it comes to fulfillment and following your heart and your dreams, our talents are going to be at the core of our success. For example, if my talent is thinking, I don’t have to be an Einstein. Who would pursue thinking if the requirement was Einstein! I enjoy thinking. If I enjoy thinking, then I will enjoy more thinking! Deeper thinking, wider thinking, big thinking, thinking, thinking, thinking! So hey, why not leverage that? That’s what I will use as the core. I might choose writing as a means of expressing my thoughts. I could also make videos, write songs, write code, etc. There are many ways to express the talent of thinking.

Pursuing our talents is sustainable for many reasons...

  • We can improve our talents forever without getting burned out or bored.
  • Our talents drive our curiosity.
  • Our talents are enjoyable.
  • Our talents give us a sense of significance.
  • Improving out talents gives us a sense of progress.

We could say success is finding ways to maximize and express our talents to the fullest. The next step of success might be to find a way to serve others using our talents. That is the basic formula of sustainable and fulfilling success.

To your success!

The Advantages of eBooks


By: jwilder, 2/17/2022

Non fiction authors learn, research, practice, and write books. A book is a snapshot of the author's understanding at the time the book was released. However, the author continues to grow and gain knowledge, experience and wisdom. Now wouldn’t it be nice if the book you purchased in 2000 would miraculously be updated by the author with new information and clarifications based on feedback? Well, that is the nature of e-books. But what authors take advantage of this?

The value of e-books is that they can be continuously updated, easily accessed, and continuously refined.

That’s my goal. Books on Success are living books, continuously improved and updated each year.

P.S. I love paper books! Why not be able to print a quality paperback copy of an e-book, on demand. Why not, have the option to include highlights and side notes that were added via an e-reader. Furthermore, why not also publish on demand a companion booklet containing myu highlights and notes with page references? And why not be able to highlight text and add to my personal knowledgebase? The book business is still so archaic. We need knowledge businesses.

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