This weekend I was reminded of a long lost goal we had well over 12 years ago. And it made me stop and think about my direction.
Back then we had a very successful photography business. Things were good. But like everyone, when things are good, you look for new ideas that you can build and move forward with.
As luck would have it, I came across a book that completely changed my view of life. It was a book by a new author that was taking the world by storm. His name – Robert Kiyosaki. His book – Rich Dad, Poor Dad.
Andrew was away at a seminar in another state. Somehow I ran across the Rich Dad concept and rushed out to my local bookstore to purchase a copy. After tucking my toddler into bed that night, I climbed into bed myself and started reading. And read. And read. Yep, I read the book from front to back; then pulled out a notebook and pen and started to take notes.
This was something I could get into. This was a dream I wanted to move forward with.
Buying houses and fixing and flipping them was something exciting. So I bought more books, attended a few seminars, even hooked up with a few mentors to learn from. I attended Robert Kiyosaki’s training seminar and invested in his game, Cashflow.
Yep, I went full force into adding real estate to my portfolio.
Because I was looking for change, opportunity presented itself everywhere. I came up with another idea of a coaching business, and quickly fell into entrepreneur mode by developing a business plan, creating a website, designing marketing materials, etc.
Then another friend presented me with the concept of network marketing. That idea looked good too.
And before I knew it, there I was with a successful business, and multiple other opportunities knocking at my door and vying for my attention.
I’m sure you are starting to see the writing on the wall.
As you can imagine, running a business is challenging, even when everything about it is working well. You still have to put in the time to keep it running at the highest level to keep your clientele happy. Add in a desire to learn something new – in this case a real estate business – and you’ve doubled the amount of time and energy needed to make it succeed.
But I didn’t stop there. Nope. I also had to jump in and start up my coaching practice. And network marketing – sure why not. All I had to do is buy the products and talk about it with my friends. It was a great way to make a little extra money on the side.
One day, many months later, I set out in my car for a dude ranch a couple of hours from home, right in the middle of the Rocky Mountains. I had signed up for an executive retreat through a business coach I had been working with for a number of years. It was a two day event that promised to show you how to gain life balance and really focus in on the direction you wanted to head in the coming years. Just what I needed, right?
As I pointed my car up towards the mountains, and saw the city slipping away, tears began spilling from my eyes. Within a few minutes, I was literally sobbing as I turned onto a two lane road and headed towards my final destination.
What was going on?
I knew I had stress. I knew I couldn’t do what I was doing much longer. I knew I needed change.
And that’s when I discovered the secret of focus. And the true cost of lost opportunity.
What Do You Do?
I started attending networking events to promote all of my ideas.
“Hi, I’m a photographer.”
“Hi, I have this coaching program you should look at.”
“Hi, I have a great product and business opportunity for you.”
I started getting confused when I went out, never sure of whom I was going to be at that moment in time. You can imagine how the people I was networking with felt.
Then I attended this retreat and learned a few things about life balance and focus, and discovered I was missing one thing with all the ideas I was trying to put into play. Passion for the outcome.
All the ideas I had come up with recently and tried to put into action were based on my desire to increase my wealth, not my desire to share “me” with the world. Sure there is nothing wrong with making money. But when you take on a project with the sole purpose of making money at it, it loses its infrastructure within your constitution. And that’s where I was at.
I had looked at all these new ideas with the sole action of increasing my wealth, not to increase what I wanted to give to the world.
Once I started looking at who I was and what I wanted to do with my gifts and my life, it started changing my focus.
Opportunity is everywhere. In fact, you have opportunity every single day.
- You can go to work or quit your job.
- You can sign up for a seminar or go to a class. Or not.
- You can email someone and try and make a connection. Or not.
- You can choose to travel. Or not.
- You can choose to take action on your Big Idea. Or not.
And with both sets of choices, you have an opportunity cost associated with it.
For example, if you attend a seminar, it will take away money from your bank account. But it will also introduce you to ideas that you may have never thought about before. It may take you from ignorance to awareness, and give you another reason you should move forward with your idea. Or in some cases, give you a big a-ha moment that makes you realize once and for all, you don’t want to move forward in this direction.
It may take you from ignorance to awareness, and give you another reason you should move forward with your idea.
Sitting and hiding in a familiar environment only lets you experience more of the same. You’ll never discover your true potential. Some may say “ignorance is bliss”, but for me that’s too high of an opportunity cost to pay.
How about you?
So after looking at my life through well-balanced eyes, I began making changes once again. And started looking for opportunity that put me on track with what I wanted to share with the world.
Which leads me back to this weekend.
My Lost Goal … No More
I had read a story about a new foodie place in downtown Denver, and we decided to visit for lunch over this past weekend. When I saw the address, in my mind all I saw were old warehouses and a very scary section of town.
As we drove to it, my jaw dropped in amazement. I knew they were building up the new Riverfront section. But I had no idea the extent of construction that was in place. Condo unit after condo unit is in some stage of construction, with hundreds, maybe even thousands of units coming onto the market in the near future. People were everywhere enjoying the sunshine and walking from place to place. The train station is getting a major overhaul, which will connect all four corners of Denver, including the airport relatively soon.
And that old feeling of “what if” hit me once again. What if I had followed the real estate path and invested in a place or two down here? What if I had found a partner to invest in vacant land or an old run down warehouse. What if …?
Then I smiled, found a great location, set up my tripod and recorded a new video for my VisionOfSuccess.tv series.
Nope. I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing. Yes indeed.