A formerly homeless friend of mine stood in my kitchen chatting about addiction in America. Shopping, eating, clothes, renovating, drugs, alcohol, sports, watching television, and…not to mention pharmaceuticals. We’ve got a drug for everything. We decided to co-author this post together. He’s an amazing writer, who has seen it all.
I met Aaron on the streets of Dallas, where he’d gone for food, and I’d gone to serve food to 400 homeless men and women. I learned he was a writer, and we became fast friends. He’s an intellect, with several books in the pipeline, and a lot of life experience.
We’ve written together, we’ve had many dinners together, and now he’s my brother. He’s a success story. He’s off the street, thriving, with property and a new truck in Arkansas. He’s still the same person I met on that parking lot, only he’s got a new perspective. He’s been surrounded by addiction, in the shelters, where homeless go to counselors to get state distributed drugs, and in his past life where he was a gambling addict who earned thousands in one poker game. We agreed that even in the wealthiest mansions, addiction exists. Aaron said it best. “We all want to feel good. But addiction is simply filling that empty space with everything but God.”
The answer? It’s not simple. My friend, the director of a drug treatment program, can tell you that. My homeless guys who enroll in and then leave, addiction programs, can testify to that. Nothings easy. But it all starts in the mind. A lot of addiction is about contentment. and maybe boundaries.
Take baby steps, reach out. Do it all over again. And I’m not just talking about drugs here. I know some people who are addicted to Facebook and blogging and it takes just as much away from their loved ones as anything else would. Might sound extreme, but three hours a night disconnected or unplugged from the people in your own house, sounds like an addiction to me. Albeit, not along the lines of heroin or meth.
What are we focused on? Whatever that is, will grow, and flourish.
It’s interesting being a creative type in the success Industry. I love music, campfires, abstract art, snowboarding, and books. I’m a get out there and do it person, but I also love to sit and think.
In my business I feel like a person with two distinct yet opposing lives. One, the artsy journalist who wants to scale jungle mountains, or interview the homeless who sleep under bridges. That half of me is the person happy alone, writing a great book. The other half is the me that sits in business meetings, coaching speakers and entrepreneurs through the dynamics of publishing, building a brand, and writing books. These people either are rich already, want to be, or want to teach you how to be.
Writing about how to get rich is interesting, because it forces you to spend a lot of time thinking about what rich really means.
And the good news is that no one talks about attraction or manifestation anymore. No, these guys are writing about legacy, authenticity, and doing the hard things.
Ryan Chamberlin recently quoted Darren Hardy about the Compound Effect of doing several small things well, over and over. Versus doing a million things to get ahead. Tony Jeary and I brainstormed about what it means to be a 1 per center – and both agreed that its about living strong in your faith, family, and finances. His book Success Acceleration gives you the principles to go where you want to, faster than ever before. Gary Smalley, an amazing man with a large legacy, has been a relationship expert for decades, and really practices the concepts he’s written and talked about. He lives a rich life. And he helps others to as well. The point?
Think about what rich means to you. Focus on that, and Eliminate anything that takes away from it.
Abundance always brings more to your life. But it also takes away time from your life. More friends, more money, more houses to manage, more work opportunities. It all takes time. So be discretionary. Choose well.
Prov 4 says guard your heart. I love that, because instead of attracting more, networking more, and connecting more, we can think about being strategic. What is it you need to guard?
I was flattered to be recently named “One of Americas most influential writers, not because of how many but because of WHO she reaches. Tammy has the ear of the Executive reader.”
Although Seth Godin or my other favorite bloggers might not agree,
It was a nice quote, and reminded me to narrow my focus even more in 2011. I want to help others have rich lives. And that means staying strong.