10 Secrets to Making 2011 Your Best Year Ever

Chances Are You Will Either Ignore These or Screw ‘Em Up

Time for a harsh reality check. So I figured I’d just lay it out for you. If you get pissed off that’s your issue not mine.

If your income and success sucked last year… it was probably mostly your own damn fault.

Yeah, sure, the economy was in a tank, Washington was run by a bunch of morons, your prospects were all screamin’ idiots, and God had it out for you. All totally excellent excuses for having a lousy year.

But wait. ‘Hey, it’s not your fault’ you say to yourself). You tried and tried and worked really hard so it can’t be your fault. (You wouldn’t dare say that kind of crap to someone else because you know they would crucify you if you did, right?)

I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt because maybe you did piss off the universe, and cosmic forces beyond your control invaded your body and caused you to do stupid things that did not work.

However, at some point, after you’ve been around the block of life a few times, you must accept some things about success.

The first big realization you have to purge from your thought process is that success is somehow magically bestowed upon people in a spontaneous burst of luck or being in the right place at the right time…

That thought is just pure crap!

It is a Hollywood myth that people use to delude themselves and to absolve themselves for their own mediocrity.

If you get nothing else – get this: ALL highly successful people have well-defined goals, and a relentless focus on hitting them. No excuses, period!

This reality really upsets most people. Especially those who refuse to grow up and get serious about attaining their dreams.

The second big reality you have to accept if you are going to be highly successful is… “times a wastin” and you can’t wait until you have your shit together to get started. You must start NOW. Not when the economy improves or the kids are grown or when you get some cash together.

The only time you have is NOW…….Tomorrow you might get hit by a freight train that rearranges your molecules so that you are no longer recognizable. There are no guarantees – all you have is today.

If you are still reading this, here is my list of 10 things you must do if you are to have your best year ever.

WARNING: You may not like these. But here they are…

Step 1: Stop Wasting Time.

You don’t “need” multiple hours every night to relax… staring at the Boob Tube isn’t helping your brain, your digestion, your nerves or your future.

Step 2: Develop Some Discipline… something most folks have no clue about.

Every day, do something you really, really, really don’t want to do (that needs to be done eventually). It can be doing the dishes, or exercising, or getting up early (by going to bed at a decent hour)… or it can be diving into that book or CD series you’ve been meaning to finish.

Step 3: Take Care of your Body.

Eat less, sleep more, and exercise at least 4 times a week. Your body will reward you for it.

Step 4: Face Your Fears.

If you’re not keeping a private journal where you can air out everything on your mind without reservation, then start one now.

Step 5: Stop Lying to Yourself

The “truth” is hard to ascertain in many situations, and living well includes being honest with yourself. Self delusion is just a weak persistent form of ego protection.

Step 6: Do Constant Reality Checks.

Good salesmen lead better lives… because to make sales you must see the world and everyone in it as it IS… not as you wish it was, or believe it should be.

Step 7: Take Time to Build Relationships.

Call or write – real notes or letters not emails – to those who are important to you.

Step 8: Associate with Winners

Every single successful person I know has a deep network of buddies and colleagues they call frequently, and share information that outsiders would pay a fortune for.
The highly successful know this and constantly attend events and seminars where they can network and learn from each other. The real learning and connection comes from face-to-face meetings, hanging out and breaking bread or sharing a beer in the bar. I have 4 such scheduled events already booked and paid for this year. How about you?

Step 9: Reach Out to Experts.

I’ve had multiple mentors along the way and it has changed my life. Thirty years ago one of my mentors said to me, “Steve if you want to become a millionaire, start hanging around and learning from those who are already millionaires.” Sage advice for sure. I took his advice and have made a point to hang around them as much as possible and to study them very carefully.

Step 10: Master the Art of Setting Good Goals…… and put together a realistic and executable plan to achieve them.

Goal setting isn’t rocket science. It is a lot like learning any new skill. You need a teacher or coach who can set you on the correct path and then hold you accountable to do the practice that it takes to master the skill. Unfortunately, most people—especially business owners— don’t want to be held accountable because doing so would expose them as the fraud they are. I pity the fools.

Richard Lindsey

Blunt, to the point and oh so true!

Michele Redmond

Very well put article. Info we’ve all heard before but worded much better!

Doug Bryan

All 10 were great, but the last one is the one I’m needing this year. I need “accountabilities”.
I look forward to working with you and seeing you at least 2 of the 4 events you’re attending this year. (After all, that’s where we met and both of our businesses should grow this year as a result!)

Glad I had lunch with you that day in Baltimore!

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