Now is the time to use your gifts as a world changer.
This morning Chi Chi Rodriguez, the legendary golfer, told me that you cannot have courage without a crisis. Courage takes extraordinary strength.
What a beautiful message. It gives me hope that whenever I face a crisis, I can dig deep and tackle it head on with the spirit of a warrior. It gives me a chance to be courageous.
This isn’t a message about writing books, even though I’m the CEO of a book company. It’s a message about legacy. We have a hybrid company where we give homeless people jobs as editors and writers, but we also do much more. We help them and also our clients, understand that their story can change the world.
I often say that “your story matters,” and it’s true.
It doesn’t matter how small you think your story is, it can change your life. If you’ve been through a rough conversation, a break up, and you’ve managed it well, or maybe you didn’t but now you’re on the other side of it, chances are that you’re ahead of many people.
Some people don’t manage those things at all. Some, like my father, end their lives because they have lost all hope.
Some, like him, lose hope that someone could ever love them. Others lose hope in becoming successful, of overcoming their mistakes, or that they have no purpose in this world. I live to create hope and legacy in others. I want to help people discover their legacy and it’s the only reason I help others write books.
If only I could read a book that my father had written. How magnificent would that be?
Hope is such an important thing for each one of us and all of mankind. Hope allows us to believe that, even in the worst circumstances, life can get better.
As we gear up for our annual event called The Conversation this week, I realize that it’s all about Legacy. How can we inspire and ignite people to change their lives? How can we encourage them to build a business model that helps them become an impactpreneur instead of an entrepreneur? Your story matters.
How much margin time do you have built into your life?
I often write about currency. When I was asked to give a TED talk I did it on “Words are Currency.”
It was a unique perspective for most and I received hundreds of comments, emails and letters about it. I said that words are just as important as the dollars in your bank account because words build or destroy, words can transform nations, start or stop wars – and save lives.
In business – words are critical. They are the engine that delivers your message and builds your brand.
I have been thinking about it for a long time. For years I’ve worked with world changers such as CEOs, celebrities, speakers and humanitarians. People who change and save lives. Samuel Bistrian, the CEO of Roma boots who has impacted the lives of orphans all over the world by doing boot drops and giving them free rain boots.
Greg Secker, in London, who travels to Africa and beyond fitting children with hearing aids. Harry Singha, the global king of youth leadership, who intentionally builds great leaders.
All of these world changers have one currency in common that allows them to live in excellence.
That currency is Time.
I learned years ago that you have a choice of two paths to follow. I could choose to follow the basic thinkers who say I don’t have enough time and I don’t have enough energy (or money, or fill in the blank) or I could take the other path – and create margin time to live my life’s calling. I could choose to create abundance, and give it too.
Time is currency.
Time runs out.
Time is valuable.
Time is an asset.
Time is more valuable than diamonds, rubies, dollars or gold.
Ask a cancer patient who doesn’t have much time left what they would give to have more.
How are you leveraging your time? Are you treating time like dollars or are you wasting it?
I coach people to use words as dollars. When you see a word as having a monetary value you are more selective about which words you choose.
It’s the same way with time.
When you view time as a currency that just might run out (it will) you will think of every hour in terms of equity.
Make margin time.
What is it you want to do that you haven’t yet done?
Create margin time and do it.
Here is more clarity:
If you want to achieve a major life goal or create a business or a life or a family that leaves a lasting legacy on the world, it’s possible that you will need more time.
You might need to think differently, or pattern interrupt your schedule.
Do you take advantage of the hours in the middle of the night? Two days a week I let my body naturally awake and instead of fighting that 3am alertness I get up and a focus on a project that changes lives. It’s an intentional awareness that I need those hours to accomplish these things.
What time can you carve out of your schedule for those unexpected guests, visits from someone in need, or events that could transform your business?
3 steps to leverage time:
- Think of every minute as a dollar. This change in thinking will change the way you view time. Don’t waste it.
- Create more time. Evaluate your schedule and make a list of time wasters. Eliminate those things right away. Even if it’s temporary (a month, a year)
- Set aside a new hour each day. Find an hour you currently do not utilize and use it to achieve your goal or project.
If you eat lunch out, for instance, and decide to use that hour to focus on a project, that’s 1 hour a day times 5 days a week and adds up to 20 extra hours a month. Imagine what you could do and achieve!
Create margin time.
Dream bigger than big and execute.
It might have been a negative term in the past, drawing up images of the mean girl in high school. But that’s not what it means today. Let’s not kid ourselves. No one desires to be unpopular.
Social equity is the new currency.
And no matter who you are or what you do, sharpening your relationship skills will multiply your business and enhance your life.
The key to social equity isn’t social media. It’s social relationships. It’s building equity, investing in them.
It’s not okay for instance, to be a leader in corporate America – who isn’t able to build relationships. Relationship building is not only necessary to lead people within the company, but in the day of social media, it is valuable to build relationship with customers as well.
In today’s intrapreneurial, socially responsible, green organization – a leader without followers is simply an executive who will soon need an updated resume.
And the same is true for entrepreneurs, or wives, or friends, or video gamers! It’s not enough to be a great gamer, for instance, without a following.
Gamers that are networking can create connections and secure sponsorships earning them $250k or more a year. Let me repeat that….gamers! As in, teens that play MineCraft or Call of Duty. Why do they make more than their parents?
I was invited to speak on an all male panel of business leaders, CEOs and entrepreneurs including the founder of Black House White Market, a multi-million dollar brand. The black-and-white store sells fashionable clothes for women and was eventually purchased by Chicos.
When the moderator asked our view on customer service, there was a lot of chatter amongst the men about the old solid icons of customer service such as Nordstroms and the Ritz Carlton. Then, the conversation turned to technology and a discussion about the dangers of it and how it’s divided the world.
But I was the lone dissident. The future, I said, is about merging the old with the new.
Technology is vital. And at the end of the day whether you’re a gamer or a hotelier or a consultant – customer service is about relationships.
But the Ritz writes hand written notes! One of the guys mentioned.
And that’s great. But social equity is currency and clout in relationships. So whether it’s a hand written note, a text, an email, letter, telegram or a phone call, it’s about building equity – caring trust and confidence. And guess what? There’s a human at the end of that technology exchange.
I went on to say that business is about relationships. It’s always about connecting with the human heart.
Whether it’s 2013 or 4013, even gamers who make $250k a year, connect with followers who are humans. That’s why they are successful.
Relationship wins. So how can you win too?
Here’s three tips to multiply success in business, life and love.
1. Look people in the eye.
No really. Like, almost stare. See what kind of response you get when you engage your client, or your friends face to face.
In a world where everyone’s looking down, just look. Look them in the eye.
I had a book client who was a very busy CEO of a multi-million dollar corporation, and he looked me in the eye for over an hour. He didn’t touch his phone, he didn’t look around the room and he wasn’t distracted by anything. He captivated me with his focus.
2. Be magnetic.
Engage, ask questions, and converse. Even if it’s not face to face, work to build social trust. Send gifts, articles, and videos.
3. Invest in relationships in business and life. Be authentically focused on RELATIONSHIP.
Have you ever met someone you were drawn to like a magnet? Someone so powerful, creative and loving that you just wanted to be around them all the time? Or maybe that person is you.
I call these people 1% ers and they are the people I surround myself with!
A 1% er is someone that is at the top of their field.
If they are a professional athlete, they are the top 1% in their industry, not just in wealth but in who they are and how they change the world. 1% ers change the world through relationships, connections and action.
I did a TEDx talk and I spoke about how words are currency but the other important currencies in the world today cannot be ignored.
The currencies are words, time and relationships (social equity).
Forget about learning new technology and go back to the basics first. Sharpen your skills today.
Connect. Give. Look. There’s power in relationships.
That power will always exist. No matter how advanced we get.
When we write a book, we always begin with the end in mind. We ask a client specific questions over six weeks on telephone coaching calls. This is an intentional process for creating speeches and writing books.
One of the questions I ask is: What was the best day of your life?
It’s a profound question.
When you can identify the best day of your life, your voice is filled with joy and you have a lot to say. The best day of your life leads to understanding your purpose and often turns into an entire chapter.
But another question we ask is:
What was the worst day of your life?
That’s a question that not only leads to a chapter, but changes lives. The worst day of your life can change your life forever. It’s where destinies are made.
Jennifer Mcalister survived the Boston marathon terrorist attack. Like every other mom there that day, she had worked hard to qualify, and that moment meant that her kids could experience her victory and learn from her hard work. That was a day that no one could have predicted, and it became the core of her legacy in her new book about Trust. It’s a perfect example of how you can turn your tragedy into triumph to help others.
The worst day of my life is captured here in this TED talk. It changed my life. But I used it to harness the power of my calling to change lives for a thousand generations.
What’s your legacy?