Posted on January 7, 2016

The Top Ten Rules of Success

Identify what you want

After you have written out your goals and broken them down to the daily activity you must maintain in order to achieve those goals, dig deep. Look deep within your soul and identify what you want out of life. What is your WHY? Why do you do the things you are about to do? Why are you going to live such a disciplined life rather than laying on a beach all day every day? What is your “End game”?   Identify, plan, and take action.

Maintain unwavering passion and energy

Once you identify your “why”, go after it as if it is all you have. Live life with the intensity and passion needed so when something happens (and something always happens) it will not shake you. It will not take you off track. It will simply be another obstacle that will make you wiser, stronger and stimulate your unwavering passion to succeed where others have failed.

Focus on your vision

Keep your eye on the prize. Break things down to a granular level and achieve each of the individual tasks in order to build up to the ultimate goal. Keep the end in mind and never waiver on your mission.

Stay true to yourself and value system

Each of us has our own need and greed. We have our way of getting it. Do not justify why things happen, own it. It is never someone else’s fault. You control your own individual universe. If you communicate your needs, desires and wants to everyone around you, they will act accordingly. If you don’t, they will not know and at best they are going to guess, then act the way they want to act, not the way you want them to. Control your world around you. Live life on the path of your vision and act accordingly.

Surround yourself with like-minded people

When you live your life according to your vision, you must surround yourself with like-minded people. The naysayers will try to drag you down. The jealous people will always have something to say. The mediocre people will put their two cents in and claim it can’t be done. Hire the right people that can identify with your vision. Average people allow time to impose its will on them; exceptional people impose their will on their time.

Be sincere – Don’t do it for the money

No amount of money will ever make you wealthy. Because when you make the money that you set out to make, you will ratchet up the amount. Do what you enjoy. Embrace the obstacles and tackle your fears. Then and only then will you achieve your individual success. The dividend will be the money. Money is the way most of society keeps score. Wealth is achieved when you are the best you can be. Not a diluted fraction of a person because you worked 15 hours a day and made a pile of money.   Be sincere in every aspect of your life and the wealth will follow. Make the mistakes along the way, fall on your sword and move on. Don’t dwell on the past, you can’t change that. Make today everything you want. Look to the future and achieve everything you set out to do and you will get what you want out of it.

Work on yourself

Life is fluid, you must always evolve. Read, learn and identify with what is going on around you, as well as the world. Know who you are and what makes you tick. Have someone in your life that you can bounce ideas off of, share your vision and goals, a person that will keep you accountable and keep you on course.

Never procrastinate

Do what needs to be done. Do it NOW. Have a sense of urgency at all times. Don’t allow people to give you their time line, tell them what your expectations are. You cannot expect from people what you are not willing to do for yourself. Lead by example and act accordingly.

Never compromise

Always maintaining your character.   In every aspect of your life, inclusive of business, family, social and relationships maintain your “standard”.   Your standard is your individual characteristics. Identify your top three characteristics and always maintain them. If you find yourself veering away from them anytime, stop and re-align yourself with them.   If you do not like who you are, FIX IT.

No excuses

Never ever let yourself off the hook. When you choose not to get out of bed, in order to work out, when you chose to not complete something you set out to do, when you do not follow your calendar, OWN IT. It’s your choice to make and you must live and die by the priorities you set for yourself. Prioritize what is most important for you and when it does not happen, own it and FIX IT. It is no one else’s fault but your own.

You are the master of your universe, as such you make it happen.


Posted on December 8, 2015

New Years Resolutions… What does January 15th hold for you?

Only 8% of People Achieve Their New Year’s Resolutions.

Here’s How YOU Can Do It.

Let me guess: You want to lose weight in 2016. Maybe you want to make more money. Perhaps you want to spend more time with your friends and family. You might even want to expand your business into a new area.

Self-improvement, or at least the desire for it, is a shared American hobby. It’s why so many of us—some estimates say more than 40% of Americans—make New Year’s resolutions. (For comparison, about one-third of Americans watch the Super Bowl.)

But for all the good intentions, only a tiny fraction of us keep our resolutions; University of Scranton research suggests that just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s goals.

Why do so many people fail at goal setting, and what are the secrets behind those who succeed? The explosion of studies into how the brain works has more experts attempting to explain the science behind why we make resolutions—and more relevantly, how we can keep them.

KISS – Keep it Simple (I assume you know the what the last “S” is)

Many people use the New Year as an opportunity to make large bucket lists or attempt extreme makeovers, whether personal or professional.

That’s a nice aspiration —but the average person has so many competing priorities that this type of approach is doomed to failure before it even begins. Essentially, shooting for the moon can be so psychologically daunting, you end up failing to launch in the first place.

So this year, Keep your resolution list short…

And it’s more sensible to set “small, attainable goals throughout the year, rather than a singular, overwhelming goal,” according to psychologist Lynn Bufka. “Remember, it is not the extent of the change that matters, but rather the act of recognizing that lifestyle change is important and working toward it, one step at a time…

Make it Tangible

Setting ambitious resolutions can be fun and inspiring, but the difficulty in achieving them means that your elation can quickly give way to frustration. That’s why goals should be bounded by rational, achievable metrics.

“It is much easier to follow a plan that says no potato chips, fries, or ice cream for six weeks.”

And be specific. Don’t say you’re “going to start going to the gym” in 2016—set a clear ambition, like attending a weekly spin class or lifting weights every Tuesday or Thursday.

“We say if you can’t measure it, it’s not a very good resolution because vague goals beget vague resolutions”

Make it Obvious

Charting your goals in some fashion, although there’s no universal strategy for success. For some, making a clear schedule and daily task is enough of a reminder; Utilize your calendar like outlook to build the perfect schedule to follow and success will be the result.

An strategic tactic: share your goals with your friends and family. It’s another way to build accountability, especially in the Facebook era.

Believe in yourself.

To be clear: Simply setting a goal does raise your chances of achieving that goal, significantly. But within weeks or months, people begin abandoning their resolutions as they hit bumps in the road that throw them off their stride. At the end of the day you MUST believe in yourself.   Know whom you are inside. Know what you are capable of. Visualize yourself after you achieve your goal and all the ancillary things that come along with it.

“What the mind can perceive, it can and WILL achieve”


Posted on November 16, 2015

Year end is here… Are you prepared for a new one???

5 ways to transform your year end planning and new year’s resolutions into goals. But more importunately into a reality.


Now is the time when people do some year-end planning and begin to think about and set New Year’s Resolutions.   However, I am not a big fan of most New Year’s Resolutions and here’s why:

  • There is typically no accountability.
  • They are rarely specific.
  • They are too easy to break.
  • They lack focus and clarity.
  • They typically don’t have timeframes and measurable milestones.

You can use this time of year to set specific goals for how you want the upcoming year to look. There is a process to set goals, and it is one that I have used for years. This is something that I have coached both individuals and large firms alike.

To help transform your resolutions into goals involves five easy steps and it doesn’t take a lot of time. However, these simple steps will help turn those non-specific resolutions into winning goals that are measurable, trackable, and most importantly result oriented.

  1. Make the goal specific.

Many New Year’s Resolutions are not specific. They are too general. Examples include:

  • Lose weight;
  • Be a better spouse or parent;
  • Be a better leader.

The challenge with these is that there is no specific target to hit. Here are some ways to make the above goals specific:

  • Lose 15 pounds;
  • Plan specific days to spend alone with your spouse;
  • Build a hobby with your children that you do on a consistent basis.

Read one leadership book a quarter. (Start with Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, if you haven’t read it yet)

  1. Create goals that are measurable.

As with the initial examples above, there is really no way to measure certain characteristics, like “more” or “better”. What does it mean to be a better leader? A better spouse? A better parent, etc.? How can you measure that? Again, it’s next to impossible.

On the other hand, 15 pounds is something that is specific and measurable. You know when you’ve lost it, and when you haven’t. You can check on your progress along the way. You can also measure if you’ve read a book quarterly dealing with leadership. That is something tangible that you can look at and know that you’ve accomplished (or haven’t).

  1. Make sure the goals are attainable.

Often when resolutions are made, they are not attainable. There are two reasons for this: One is that not enough time is given to be able to achieve the desired results, as in losing weight. Two, many times, when setting goals, people are over-zealous for what they can achieve. Then, when they fail, they get discouraged and may give up on the process of goal-setting.

Planning out bite-sized steps to achieve each goal can be helpful. Creating a plan of action around each goal will help assure that each small step is completed on your way to completing the big goal!

  1. Add some risk to each goal.

While you want goals that are measurable and attainable, I like to encourage people to put a little risk in the goals. There is a fine line here between risky goals and ones that are a bit too much. However, I tend to err on the side of adventurous goals that will excite.

When setting goals, in addition to having specific and measurable goals, add something to strive for in addition to the actual goal. For example, instead of just a goal of getting in shape or losing weight, add in the twist of making it publicly known. So people will call you out if you are eating junk food.

  1. Make each goal time-sensitive.

Set an end date for each goal. Have a time frame that you will work with. For example, a specific financial goal. Set a time frame: Break it down to quarterly, monthly and weekly milestones. Measure your activity that creates the revenue daily. This way, if your activity begins to lag, you recognize it within a week and not after half the year is gone.

Having an indefinite goal for every day of the week more often than not is unattainable. Breaking the goal down into smaller segments can help to create more attainable wins as you look to accomplish bigger goals. Remember, goals are different than habits, but can be a great kick-start to formulating new habits.

Side notes;

Partner with someone for accountability.

Setting goals is great. However, being able to set them with someone and help keep each other accountable is a sure-fire way to increase the likelihood of staying on track.

Pair up with someone to help you reach your professional goals. Two are better than one!

Celebrate small and big victories alike.

As you complete action steps and each of your goals, take time to celebrate! This will boost your motivation and help you keep going. Decide ahead of time how and when you will celebrate your wins.

What other steps do you use to transform your goals? What goals have you set for this year?

Posted on October 23, 2015

Winning is a Habit

A man can be as great as he wants to be. If you believe in yourself and have the courage, the determination, the dedication, the competitive drive, and if you are willing to sacrifice the little things in life and pay the price for the things that are worthwhile, it can be done.”

                                                                                                                                  ~Vince Lombardi

Right at this very moment, I want you to decide exactly what it is that you want out of life.

What kind of person do you want to be?

More importantly, how hard are you prepared to work to accomplish your goals?

Think of any prominent name: Michael Jordan, Babe Ruth, Steve Jobs, Albert Einstein. Who were they before they were someone? Some may have been well educated, some may have come from a good family, and some were middle class, others homeless, some even in debt. It doesn’t matter!!! Not everyone that is famous today was born to shine. What they all have in common was a belief that they COULD do what they were passionate about and they were willing to work harder than everyone else to achieve their goals.

Make a decision today that will shape your destiny. It’s not going to miraculously come to you. You can’t worry about what people think or say about you. Develop the skills you need to achieve your goals and work on them every single day and don’t stop until you no longer have to introduce yourself.

Commit to yourself TODAY…do not wait until tomorrow!!


Again, how hard are you prepared to work to accomplish your goals?

A positive start to your day will start with these five tools:

  1. Wake up at 5:00 a.m. Wake up before anyone else. Use your alone time wisely.
  2. Exercise – it will not only fuel your body but it will also fuel your mind.
  3. Meditate – contemplate the universe, pray, gain inner peace, rejuvenate yourself. Use the time to help yourself grow spiritually and mentally.
  4. Adjust your goals daily – get into the habit of working hard enough to accomplish some and to make room for new ones.
  5. Gratitude – be grateful for the ability to wake up, be healthy enough to work hard and grateful for the people most important in your life.

Leaders are made, they are not born. They are made by hard effort, which is the price which all of us must pay to achieve any goal that is worthwhile.”      

                                                                                                                                  ~Vince Lombardi

Posted on October 9, 2015

Wake up!


What is the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning?

The words and what you tell yourself are not only powerful but IMPACTFUL.  With that said, keep in mind that if and only if you say them in the right way, will they change your mindset?

Wake up every morning with a purpose. You should have clear goals laid out on how you plan to carry on with the rest of your day from the moment you open your eyes. You should technically have the goals set up the night before because like I’m often heard saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”  You need to develop the discipline necessary to focus and write down what needs to be done daily for the following day, the evening prior.  As individuals, we make up a myriad of excuses as to why we didn’t write down our goals.  Again, the word is discipline, because all success is built on discipline and consistency.

I’m tired of hearing about all the noise you tell yourself as to why you aren’t functioning at the level you should be.  Give it up!  I don’t care what happened yesterday, that’s the past. You were not born wealthy, so what?  You had a bad childhood?  Okay, you are all grown now.  You made bad choices? Got it, make different ones today.  I don’t want to hear the NOISE!!!  What you do today will determine your future tomorrow.  Write down and live your action plan, because I don’t want you just going through life, I want you to LIVE IT to the fullest!

You are basically living in fear and you don’t even know it. You don’t take risks because you are afraid, yet if you listen to what I’m telling you, you would realize that the antonym of fear is greatness and accomplishments.  It’s your goals coming to fruition.

Go to sleep with a plan…..Wake up with a purpose!

Posted on September 16, 2015

“Anything the mind can perceive it can achieve”

Engage in the life YOU want.

“If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.” We’ve all heard that saying before but how many actually understand its meaning?

Who wants to extend themselves beyond their comfort zone? Of course no one wants to leave their comfort zone, because that would mean that our flaws would be visible to all those around us. Stress would enter our lives and even worse, if we fail, the embarrassment would set in.

 STOP THE NOISE! Change your pre-conceived limits right now!

In life, MOST conform. MOST stay stagnant and MOST never stretch past their comfort zone. I’ve often said this and I will say it again…..

“Mediocrity is UNACCEPTABLE!!”

Most people do not understand that your beliefs and more importantly, the beliefs you have about yourself, will determine your behavior in the long run.  Sure you can convince yourself to let’s say, go to the gym or eat healthy or better yet, start working on your goals list, but if you don’t shift your thinking, if you don’t actually push yourself, physically and mentally, then you will not be able to create long term growth and satisfaction.

I realize that on the surface you believe that you will stick to your desired goal, but this is simply not factual. YOU need to reach down deep. YOU need to go to the root of your desire. YOU need to realize that “Thing”, whatever that thing is that you are truly passionate about. YOU need to challenge yourself to take action today, NOW, so that your desire becomes the driving force and your mindset is so in tune with the belief that you can and will accomplish whatever you set out to do. Then and only then will nothing stand in your way.

Stop running away from challenges. Stop telling yourself the “Noise” of what is possible or not. Why it can not be done. Make it so that not only do things get done, but get done the way YOU want it to be done.   You know that “to do” list that you have?  Do the hard things first.  Dream and do the things that scare you the most first.  Then and only then will you grow, develop and satisfy your inner desire.  Build an identity around that goal of yours.  Stop looking for easy. EASY DOES NOT WORK!  Easy will not get you the life of your dreams.  Easy doesn’t allow your God given gifts and talents to shine through. Trust me, the things that you are passionate about will only begin to monetize when you challenge yourself.

It is time to embrace who YOU are.  Show the world who YOU are.

And most importantly, ACT ACCORDINGLY!!!


Posted on August 21, 2015

Charisma… God given gift, or can it be taught?

As we are all watching the Presidential race the single most used term to describe Trumps character is charisma.   So the question begs to be asked. In the race to become the leader of our great nation, is charisma a factor?  Can you be taught charisma, or is it a God given gift?

If you want to be effective as a manager, politician, parent, or a leader, it helps to have a little bit of that X-factor leadership quality, charisma.

Charismatic leaders appear in our society whenever there is a need for some common unity, like a war or natural disaster. By using what comes natural to them, it allows them to motivate a group of people to go the proverbial extra mile for the common good. That is charismatic powers. There is no need to look back to the days of Moses, simply look at Winston Churchill, Martin Luther King, and Nelson Mandela.  Now look at Donald Trump today, as he is having the entire GOP follow him in the issues of our nation.

So do you have what it takes? If not don’t worry, because you can train it to some extent. Although charisma is a God given trait, charismatic leadership can actually be taught. Recent research conducted by a team of scientists led by John Antonakis from the University Lausanne Business School, shows that training managers a specific set of charismatic leadership tactics improves their charisma, and thus, their effectiveness as leaders.

So, what skills were being trained? Here are highlights of a paper I recently staged for a team of managers. Three months later the production of their sales teams increased 28 percent.

Here are the 10 habits of remarkably charismatic people:

  1. They listen way more than they talk.

Ask questions. Maintain eye contact. Smile. Frown. Nod. Respond, not so much verbally, but nonverbally.

That’s all it takes to show the other person they’re important.

Only speak when you have something important to say, and always define important as what matters to the other person, not to you.

  1. They don’t practice selective hearing.

Some people, I guarantee you know people like this, are incapable of hearing anything said by the people they feel are somehow beneath them.  They listen just to respond.

Sure, you speak to them, but that particular falling tree doesn’t make a sound in the forest, because there’s no one actually listening.

Remarkably charismatic people listen closely to everyone, and they make all of us, regardless of our position or social status or “level,” feel like we have something in common with them.

Because we do: We are all people.

  1. They put their stuff away.

Don’t check your phone. Don’t glance at your monitor. Don’t focus on anything else, even for a moment.

You can never connect with others if you’re busy connecting with your stuff, too.

Give the gift of your full attention. That’s a gift few people give. That gift alone will make others want to be around you and remember you.

  1. They give before they receive—and often they never receive.

Never think about what you can get. Focus on what you can provide. Giving is the only way to establish a real connection and relationship.

Focus, even in part and even for a moment, on what you can get out of the other person, and you show that the only person who really matters is you.

  1. They don’t act self-important…

The only people who are impressed by your stuffy, pretentious, self-important self are other stuffy, pretentious, self-important people.

People that count are not impressed. If they have substance they get irritated, put off, and uncomfortable. And we hate when you walk in the room.

  1. …Because they realize other people are more important.

You already know what you know. You know your opinions. You know your perspectives and points of view.

That stuff is not important, because it’s already yours. You can’t learn anything from yourself.

But you don’t know what other people know, and everyone, no matter who they are, knows things you don’t know.

That makes them a lot more important than you… Because the are people you can learn from.

  1. They shine the spotlight on others.

No one receives enough praise. No one. Tell people what they did well.

Wait, you say you don’t know what they did well?  Shame on you–it’s your job to know. It’s your job to find out ahead of time.  Not only will people appreciate your praise, they’ll appreciate the fact you care enough to pay attention to what they’re doing.

  1. They choose their words.

The words you use impact the attitude of others.

You don’t have to interview job candidates; you get to select a great person to join your team.

We all want to associate with happy, enthusiastic, fulfilled people. The words you choose can help other people feel better about themselves, and make you feel better about yourself, too.

  1. They don’t discuss the failings of others…

Granted, we all like hearing a little gossip. We all like hearing a little dirt.

The problem is, we don’t necessarily like–and we definitely don’t respect–the people who dish that dirt.

Don’t laugh at other people. When you do, the people around you wonder if you sometimes laugh at them.

  1. …But they readily admit their failings.

Incredibly successful people are often assumed to have charisma simply because they’re successful. Their success seems to create a halo effect, almost like a glow.

Keyword is seem.  You don’t have to be incredibly successful to be remarkably charismatic. Scratch the shiny surface, and many successful people have all the charisma of a rock.  But you do have to be incredibly genuine to be remarkably charismatic.  Be humble. Share your screw-ups. Admit your mistakes. Be the cautionary tale. And laugh at yourself.  While you should never laugh at other people, you should always laugh at yourself.  People won’t laugh at you. People will laugh with you.  They’ll like you better for it–and they’ll want to be around you a lot more.

Try some of these habits on for size and see the results immediately. 


Posted on August 17, 2015

Goals vs. Dreams

The major differences between Goals and everything else

Goals require action items… Dreams are merely things you think about.

Goals take work… Dreams can happen while you are asleep.

Goals have deadlines… Dreams are just that, dreams.

Goals must have a time line… Dreams can go on forever.

Goals have measurable results… Dreams don’t any level of accountability.

Goals produce results… Dreams don’t. You can’t change your life with a dream.

Goals must have a specific outcome… Dreams can inspire you.

Goals can change your life… Dreams can bring you motivation.

Goals require hard work… Dreams just require your imagination.

Goals must have focus… Dreams don’t. Dreams can be drifting, ever-changing thoughts… Goals must be laser-focused. They must be specific and they must be always on your mind.

Goals have a cost… Dreams are free.. While you can daydream for free, Goals don’t come without a price. Time, money, effort and sweat. How will you pay for your goals?

Dreams stay in your mind… Goals take over your being, your body and your thoughts.  At the pinnacle they become intertwined in every fiber of your soul that drives you, with the passion and hunger to succeed in every aspect of your life.  

That is what goals do for me and that is why I find myself always saying,
“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do.”

Wake up, stop dreaming…Take Action.

Stop the Noise! Mediocrity is unacceptable.”

Posted on July 31, 2015


This is a topic that I touch on a regular basis. But this time I want to take it to the next level. Imagine for a moment, do you multitask out of fear?

Despite what todays hectic society and the frazzled people around you want you to believe, we as humans are not wired for multitasking. Multitasking indeed has its place, but not when it comes to productivity and creativity.  Performance wise we are at our peak when we’re focused. When we’re really focused and we’re leveraging our God given skills, talents and creativity in a way that is challenging,  It stimulates us to be at our best and eliminates all the ancillary noise. It allows us to recognize our fears and immediately rationalize them.  In turn putting them in a manageable “box”.

We all can relate to the feeling of being so into the task at hand that you lose yourself in what you are doing. Your sense of time is diminished or even nonexistent, any sense of nervousness or anxiety completely diminishes and trivial thoughts not related to the task at hand evaporate before we even are fully aware of them. You become who you are naturally.  No fear, no unknown feelings of “why”.  In that moment in time you create success. That is where the “Genie in the bottle” begins.

So how do you actually get and even more importantly stay focused? What are some practical ways to get this focus, even what some people call “insane focus” in your life?

Here are a few simple points that you can begin implementing today.

The key to focusing and becoming more productive has everything to do with eliminating or at least minimizing distractions.  Ask yourself what are your distractions? What keeps you from being focused?

Make A Distractions List… Take a few minutes and write down your major distractions. What are the things that are keeping you distracted in whatever area of life you want to achieve more focus in? What’s distracting you at work? Is it friends or a significant other who calls or texts often during business hours? Is it your email notifications? Is it a client who is unreasonable and is negatively affecting you? Is it your Facebook notifications? Is it a associate that just comes in to your office and sits down? You need to get very clear and honest with yourself about what’s really distracting you.

I’ll bet that once you get your distractions identified, that what you will find is that one of the biggest culprits that sucks the energy out of you and that makes you the jack of all trades and the master of none, is multitasking.  You’re attempting to do multiple things at once.

Distractions are the antithesis of focus. When you’re attempting to do several things at once, you are by definition not focused. You are dividing your focus and attention. When you divide or divert your attention you will never perfect the task at hand.

When your attention is scattered and not focused you become much less effective. If you want success in every aspect of your life, you must be focused on it.

“If it is worth your time doing, then make your time worth it.”

Your undivided attention has to be focused on whatever it is you’re doing, if you expect anything worthwhile to come from your efforts.  You can’t do that effectively if you’re always trying to multitask. Make no mistake about it, multitasking and the “I’m very busy feeling” that you tell yourself all too often when you have poor time management, is just that, a ridiculous feeling.  It’s a productivity dirty bomb that has you fooling yourself.

Being busy is in no way the same as productivity. If you take the time to honestly analyze the perfect transaction from beginning to end you will discover it’s the exact opposite. You didn’t feel “busy” or crazed at all. You most likely were in a rhythm of what makes you who you truly are. You were relaxed. You were singly motivated to accomplish what you wanted and didn’t allow the noise to effect you. You may have appeared busy to the outside world, but on the inside you were actually at ease, to the point that other actually say that you made it look easy.  All the moving parts came together because you focused and orchestrated every move.

As I have said time and time again. Multitasking is for those who “need” to feel busy as a sense of accomplishment.  They simply do not measure results in the truest sense of the word.

The introduction of the calendar

Yes I know the Egyptians invented it first, but I want to believe I am perfecting the use of it.

Establish set times where you tackle a specific task. Repeat those times on a consistent basis.

Focus your full attention only on the task that you set for yourself during that time. Your calls can go to voice mail. The emails can wait. Your Facebook can wait. Then let the people around you know that you will be unavailable during those times.

When you schedule time for everything you have to do during the week in order to achieve your goals, you will become focused, what you’re going to discover is that you have more time then you used to have. You are no longer so “busy” that your time management is no longer an issue. You are working your calendar and time is not working you.

As you develop a discipline of working your calendar you will also find that you’re really preventing yourself from unconsciously multitasking. You’ll be getting things done in a more timely and effective way. Your energy will be supercharged and you will be on top of your game. People will take notice and before you know it they will follow your lead. Then you have achieved the ultimate goal. A culture in all aspects of your life that follows you around.

One without noise, negativity and best of all, without fear.

Posted on July 27, 2015

The Three C’s to succeed.

A little over a year ago I read this commencement given by Admiral William H. McRaven for the first time.  I have read it at the end of every month since then.

Within it, I hope you will find, as I did, what are the three C’s of success.

Consistency, Commitment, Confidence that you will succeed.

William H. McRaven is an admiral, former commander of the Navy’s SEAL Team 3 and current commander of the US Special Operations Command — the man who led the mission to get Osama bin Laden. On May 17, 2014 he gave the commencement address for his alma mater, the University of Texas at Austin, which touched graduates with its earnest, simple advice about living a better life. This Memorial Day, an excerpt:

If you will humor this old sailor for just a moment, I have a few suggestions that may help you on your way to a better world.

And while these lessons were learned during my time in the military, I can assure you that it matters not whether you ever served a day in uniform.

It matters not your gender, your ethnic or religious background, your orientation, or your social status.

Our struggles in this world are similar and the lessons to overcome those struggles and to move forward — changing ourselves and the world around us — will apply equally to all.

I have been a Navy SEAL for 36 years. But it all began when I left UT for basic SEAL training in Coronado, Calif.

Basic SEAL training is six months of long, torturous runs in the soft sand, midnight swims in the cold water off San Diego, obstacles courses, unending calisthenics, days without sleep and always being cold, wet and miserable.

It is six months of being constantly harassed by professionally trained warriors who seek to find the weak of mind and body and eliminate them from ever becoming a Navy SEAL.

But, the training also seeks to find those students who can lead in an environment of constant stress, chaos, failure and hardships.

To me, basic SEAL training was a lifetime of challenges crammed into six months.

So, here are the 10 lessons I learned from basic SEAL training that hopefully will be of value to you as you move forward in life:

Every morning in basic SEAL training, my instructors, who at the time were all Vietnam veterans, would show up in my barracks room, and the first thing they would inspect was your bed.

If you did it right, the corners would be square, the covers pulled tight, the pillow centered just under the headboard and the extra blanket folded neatly at the foot of the rack — rack, that’s Navy talk for bed.

It was a simple task — mundane at best. But every morning we were required to make our bed to perfection. It seemed a little ridiculous at the time, particularly in light of the fact that we were aspiring to be real warriors, tough, battle-hardened SEALs — but the wisdom of this simple act has been proven to me many times over.

If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride, and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another.

By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter.

If you can’t do the little things right, you will never do the big things right.

And, if by chance you have a miserable day, you will come home to a bed that is made — that you made — and a made bed gives you encouragement that tomorrow will be better.

If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed…

During SEAL training, the students are broken down into boat crews. Each crew is seven students — three on each side of a small rubber boat and one coxswain to help guide the dingy.

Every day your boat crew forms up on the beach and is instructed to get through the surf zone and paddle several miles down the coast.

In the winter, the surf off San Diego can get to be 8 to 10 feet high and it is exceedingly difficult to paddle through the plunging surf unless everyone digs in.

Every paddle must be synchronized to the stroke count of the coxswain. Everyone must exert equal effort or the boat will turn against the wave and be unceremoniously tossed back on the beach.

For the boat to make it to its destination, everyone must paddle.

You can’t change the world alone — you will need some help — and to truly get from your starting point to your destination takes friends, colleagues, the good will of strangers and a strong coxswain to guide them.

If you want to change the world, find someone to help you paddle…


Over a few weeks of difficult training, my SEAL class, which started with 150 men, was down to just 42. There were now six boat crews of seven men each.

I was in the boat with the tall guys, but the best boat crew we had was made up of the little guys — the munchkin crew, we called them — no one was over about 5-foot-5.

The munchkin boat crew had one American Indian, one African-American, one Polish-American, one Greek-American, one Italian-American, and two tough kids from the Midwest. They out-paddled, outran and out-swam all the other boat crews.

The big men in the other boat crews would always make good-natured fun of the tiny little flippers the munchkins put on their tiny little feet prior to every swim.

But somehow these little guys, from every corner of the nation and the world, always had the last laugh — swimming faster than everyone and reaching the shore long before the rest of us.

SEAL training was a great equalizer. Nothing mattered but your will to succeed. Not your color, not your ethnic background, not your education and not your social status.

If you want to change the world, measure a person by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers…


Several times a week, the instructors would line up the class and do a uniform inspection. It was exceptionally thorough.

Your hat had to be perfectly starched, your uniform immaculately pressed and your belt buckle shiny and void of any smudges.

But it seemed that no matter how much effort you put into starching your hat, or pressing your uniform or polishing your belt buckle — it just wasn’t good enough.

The instructors would find “something” wrong.

For failing the uniform inspection, the student had to run, fully clothed into the surf zone and then, wet from head to toe, roll around on the beach until every part of your body was covered with sand.

The effect was known as a “sugar cookie.” You stayed in that uniform the rest of the day — cold, wet and sandy.

There were many a student who just couldn’t accept the fact that all their effort was in vain. That no matter how hard they tried to get the uniform right — it was unappreciated.

Those students didn’t make it through training.

Those students didn’t understand the purpose of the drill. You were never going to succeed. You were never going to have a perfect uniform.

Sometimes no matter how well you prepare or how well you perform, you still end up as a sugar cookie.

It’s just the way life is sometimes.

If you want to change the world, get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward…


Every day during training, you were challenged with multiple physical events — long runs, long swims, obstacle courses, hours of calisthenics — something designed to test your mettle.

Every event had standards — times you had to meet. If you failed to meet those standards, your name was posted on a list and at the end of the day those on the list were invited to — a “circus.”

A circus was two hours of additional calisthenics — designed to wear you down, to break your spirit, to force you to quit.

No one wanted a circus.

A circus meant that for that day, you didn’t measure up. A circus meant more fatigue — and more fatigue meant that the following day would be more difficult — and more circuses were likely.

But at some time during SEAL training, everyone — everyone — made the circus list.

But an interesting thing happened to those who were constantly on the list. Over time those students — who did two hours of extra calisthenics — got stronger and stronger.

The pain of the circuses built inner strength — built physical resiliency.

Life is filled with circuses.

You will fail. You will likely fail often. It will be painful. It will be discouraging. At times it will test you to your very core.

But if you want to change the world, don’t be afraid of the circuses…


At least twice a week, the trainees were required to run the obstacle course. The obstacle course contained 25 obstacles including a 10-foot-high wall, a 30-foot cargo net and a barbed-wire crawl, to name a few.

But the most challenging obstacle was the slide for life. It had a three-level, 30-foot tower at one end and a one-level tower at the other. In between was a 200-foot-long rope.

You had to climb the three-tiered tower and once at the top, you grabbed the rope, swung underneath the rope and pulled yourself hand over hand until you got to the other end.

The record for the obstacle course had stood for years when my class began training in 1977.

The record seemed unbeatable until one day a student decided to go down the slide for life — head-first.

Instead of swinging his body underneath the rope and inching his way down, he bravely mounted the TOP of the rope and thrust himself forward.

It was a dangerous move — seemingly foolish and fraught with risk. Failure could mean injury and being dropped from the training.

Without hesitation, the student slid down the rope — perilously fast. Instead of several minutes, it only took him half that time, and by the end of the course he had broken the record.

If you want to change the world, sometimes you have to slide down the obstacle head-first…


During the land-warfare phase of training, the students are flown out to San Clemente Island, which lies off the coast of San Diego.

The waters off San Clemente are a breeding ground for the great white sharks.

To pass SEAL training, there are a series of long swims that must be completed. One is the night swim.

Before the swim, the instructors joyfully brief the trainees on all the species of sharks that inhabit the waters off San Clemente.

They assure you, however, that no student has ever been eaten by a shark — at least not recently.

But, you are also taught that if a shark begins to circle your position — stand your ground. Do not swim away. Do not act afraid.

And if the shark, hungry for a midnight snack, darts towards you — then summon up all your strength and punch him in the snout and he will turn and swim away.

There are a lot of sharks in the world. If you hope to complete the swim, you will have to deal with them.

So, if you want to change the world, don’t back down from the sharks…


As Navy SEALs, one of our jobs is to conduct underwater attacks against enemy shipping. We practiced this technique extensively during basic training.

The ship-attack mission is where a pair of SEAL divers is dropped off outside an enemy harbor and then swims well over two miles — underwater — using nothing but a depth gauge and a compass to get to their target.

During the entire swim, even well below the surface there is some light that comes through. It is comforting to know that there is open water above you.

But as you approach the ship, which is tied to a pier, the light begins to fade. The steel structure of the ship blocks the moonlight — it blocks the surrounding street lamps — it blocks all ambient light.

To be successful in your mission, you have to swim under the ship and find the keel — the centerline and the deepest part of the ship.

This is your objective. But the keel is also the darkest part of the ship — where you cannot see your hand in front of your face, where the noise from the ship’s machinery is deafening and where it is easy to get disoriented and fail.

Every SEAL knows that under the keel, at the darkest moment of the mission, is the time when you must be calm, composed — when all your tactical skills, your physical power and all your inner strength must be brought to bear.

If you want to change the world, you must be your very best in the darkest moment…


The ninth week of training is referred to as “Hell Week.” It is six days of no sleep, constant physical and mental harassment and — one special day at the Mud Flats. The Mud Flats are an area between San Diego and Tijuana where the water runs off and creates the Tijuana slues — a swampy patch of terrain where the mud will engulf you.

It is on Wednesday of Hell Week that you paddle down to the mud flats and spend the next 15 hours trying to survive the freezing-cold mud, the howling wind and the incessant pressure to quit from the instructors.

As the sun began to set that Wednesday evening, my training class, having committed some “egregious infraction of the rules,” was ordered into the mud.

The mud consumed each man till there was nothing visible but our heads. The instructors told us we could leave the mud if only five men would quit — just five men and we could get out of the oppressive cold.

Looking around the mud flat, it was apparent that some students were about to give up. It was still over eight hours till the sun came up — eight more hours of bone-chilling cold.

The chattering teeth and shivering moans of the trainees were so loud, it was hard to hear anything, and then, one voice began to echo through the night — one voice raised in song.

The song was terribly out of tune, but sung with great enthusiasm.

One voice became two, and two became three, and before long everyone in the class was singing.

We knew that if one man could rise above the misery, then others could as well.

The instructors threatened us with more time in the mud if we kept up the singing — but the singing persisted.

And somehow — the mud seemed a little warmer, the wind a little tamer and the dawn not so far away.

If I have learned anything in my time traveling the world, it is the power of hope. The power of one person — Washington, Lincoln, King, Mandela and even a young girl from Pakistan, Malala — one person can change the world by giving people hope.

So, if you want to change the world, start singing when you’re up to your neck in mud…


Photo: Getty Images

Finally, in SEAL training there is a bell. A brass bell that hangs in the center of the compound for all the students to see.

All you have to do to quit — is ring the bell. Ring the bell and you no longer have to wake up at 5 o’clock. Ring the bell and you no longer have to do the freezing-cold swims.

Ring the bell and you no longer have to do the runs, the obstacle course, the PT — and you no longer have to endure the hardships of training.

Just ring the bell.

If you want to change the world, don’t ever, ever ring the bell…


I have said it time and time again.

Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do.