02 August 2012

Making Decisions, "Man`ing Up" & Making Moves

I'm not a fan of Country Western music, but there was one song I have always liked since I was little kid. It's called "The Gambler" by Kenny Rogers. The chorus goes, "You've gotta know when to hold them ... know when to fold them ... know when to walk away ... know when to run. You never count your money when you're sitting at the table. There'll be plenty time for counting ... when the dealing's done."

I retired from my career in Law Enforcement in 2011 and I spent the last year, building my Life Coaching and speaking businesses (www.HRJREnterprises.com). In June, a friend offered me a position on her Admissions team for a post-secondary technical school she was hired to take over. I saw it as a way to further help people improve themselves. I even called it "Life Coaching 2.0" because not only would there be people I could help, but with the school I had a physical entity to plug the people into.

However, as I learned the job and did the job, I learned that it just was not a good fit for me, and today - August 1, 2012 - I made the decision to "walk away" from the job. It wasn't an easy decision and I left behind some great people, but at the end of the day, I had to make a move that was best for me, my family and my peace of mind.

How do you know if you're a slave to your job?
  • If you take your paycheck over your peace of mind, or ...
  • If you can't be who you are because you have to be what the job wants you to be ...
... You just might be a slave.

Far too often in our lives we find ourselves in uncomfortable positions that seem impossible to get out of. The reality is these situations are not impossible to remove ourselves from; they're simply very difficult to remove ourselves from. There are all kinds of consequences to take into consideration; but the fact of the matter is, there are always consequences. There are consequences for the things we do as well as for the things we don't do. At some point we have to make a choice ... and then act on it.

The main reason why so many people are unhappy is that they know what choice they have to make, but they allow their fear of facing those consequences; or worse, their fear of the unknown to keep them from taking the necessary action to achieve their desired results.

The bottom line is this ... Nothing in life worth having comes easy. If it did, we wouldn't appreciate it. People can find freedom in the work they do in life ... provided they find or create work worth living for as opposed to working just to make a living. Getting your freedom won't be easy, but "when the dealing's done" it will sure be worth everything you went through to get it ... THIS I KNOW.

24 June 2012

Just Can't Fall Asleep?

Sure you can ... You just won't.

It's a psychological thing. Like most people, you might be accustomed to going to bed only when you get sleepy or tired. This is the equivalent of driving your car day in & day out and not getting gas or changing the oil until those particular lights come on. Thinking about it THAT way, aren't you and your car headed for a hard time if your gas or oil lights come on?

Don't wait until you're drop-dead tired to go to sleep. You must discipline yourself to get in bed a certain time. Once there, just lay there, be still and breathe. Your body will do the rest. Being still will slow everything down and your body will begin its dormant process. 

After all, our bodies are machines and every machine functions a certain way. There are many different kinds of automobiles and televisions and phones that have different features and capabilities, but if you run them non-stop they will eventually burn out. If you run your body until near exhaustion every day, you're only putting off the eventual burnout that's coming. 

Be still and rest my friend.

10 May 2012

HRJR's Daily Diamond

This morning I prayed for a man I never saw. I never spoke to him. I could only hear his suffering, and ask God to ease it as best as His Will will allow. No matter how jacked I may think things are for me, I remain grateful because I know there's always someone out there who's catching it far worse.

09 May 2012

HRJR's Daily Diamond

"What's the difference between living an ordinary life and an extraordinary life? The word "extra." In other words "MORE ... ADDITIONAL." In order to have an EXTRAordinary life, you're going to have to do MORE than the ordinary; you're going to have to do something ADDITIONAL than what what you're ordinarily doing. In order to HAVE more, you're going to have to DO more." ~ HRJR

06 May 2012

9 Biggest Mistakes When Networking

George C. Fraser & HRJR
George C. Fraser created an organization called "FraserNet," and it is the largest African American business Networking organization in the country. He has also written books on networking.

If you're an African American whose business benefits from networking and you don't know who George C. Fraser is, you are doing your business a serious disservice. I have learned a great deal from this man and had the honor and pleasure of meeting him and seeing him live on several occasions (next goal: to share the stage with him).

Below is a list he has compiled called the "9 Biggest Mistakes When Networking." I know I was guilty of some of these things, but not no mo' (smile)! If you find yourself guilty of any of these ... the time to change is NOW.

9 Biggest Mistakes When Networking

1) What Can You Do For Me?
The main goal of all effective networking is discovering what you can do for someone else. Great networkers want to know what they can do for you, not what you can do for them. If you understand this, the rest is just mechanics.

2) You Don't "Get Out!"
Get out; networking is analog, contact sport. You don't do it alone from your office, phone or computer. Force yourself to go to tradeshows, conventions, and seminars. Get out there, meet people, and press the flesh.

3) You Won't "Shut Up!"
Ask good questions, and then shut up. The mark of a good conversationalist is not that you talk a lot; it's that you can get others to talk a lot. Ask questions like, "What do you do?", "Where are you from?", and "What brings you to this event?" Then listen. Ironically you'll be remembered as an interesting person.

4) You're Boring!
George C. Fraser, Founder of FraserNet
Unveil your passions. Talking only about business is boring. Your passions make you interesting. Good networkers unveil their passions after they get to know you. Great networkers lead with their passions. If you met me my passions are golf, reading, biographies, and jazz.

5) You're Uninformed!
Be informed. Read voraciously – not just business publications. You need a broad base of knowledge so that you will have access to a vast array or information during conversations. Even if you are a pathetic, passionless person, at least be a well-read one who can talk about a variety of topics beyond the weather and sports.

6) No Follow-up
Follow-up, follow-up, follow-up – please! In my career, I've given away thousands of business cards. If all those people called or e-mailed me, I'd never get anything done. The funny thing: Hardly anyone ever follows up. Great networkers follow up within 24 hours – a short e-mail will do. "Nice to meet you. I hope we can do something together." Thank you for recommending Confessions of an Economic Hit Man. I'm a member of Canterbury Golf Club; let's hit the ball together before the end of the season; on my dime."

7) No Business Cards
Please carry business cards, especially if you are in business or a professional. Make it easy for me to contact you. Don't give me your information on a piece of toilet paper. Make sure your card has a phone number, e-mail address and address. Please have it in 12 point type if you want old, famous, rich and powerful people to call or e-mail you.

8) Take First
Those that give first (give favors), win. One of my greatest pleasures in life is helping other people; I believe there's a big spiritual scoreboard in the sky. God is keeping track of the good that you do, and is particularly pleased when you give favors without expectation of return from the recipient. The scoreboard always pays back.

9) No Agenda
Have an agenda... in other words "Why are you there?" "What do you really need?" It's okay to ask for favors in return. Good networkers give favors and return favors. But great networkers ask for favors to be returned. But they never ask before they know the person and they never ask for something that the other person can't deliver. Finally, they never do for the other to keep them indebted to them. Life is give and take, so is effective networking.

04 May 2012

HRJR's Daily Diamond:

When you are walking in your purpose and you are both true to yourself and true to your game; God, the universe (or whatever you deem your higher power to be) will provide for your needs.

YOU will know how your bills are paid, but to those who do not share in your vision it will appear like you're not working as hard as they are, but having more fun and being rewarded more than they are. #

03 May 2012

Am I successful as a Motivational Speaker? OH HELL YEAH!!

About a week or so ago, a mother who was at a speech I made a couple years ago tracked me down and e-mailed me. She informed me that when her son was going through some rough times away at college, he had her overnight my book to him to help get him back on track. If that wasn't enough, he has a friend who wants to become a speaker. So ... that mother, her husband, son and friend took me out to dinner & I had a great conversation with them.

You know how people always say, "If I could just help ONE person ... If I could change the life of just ONE person for the better ...?" Well, two years ago I affected a young man so deeply that when the chips were down, he looked for ME & MY words to set him straight.

It's not about the money.
The money will come.
THAT is why I am successful!

18 April 2012

HRJR's Daily Diamond

"Do you know want to know where people go wrong? They always want to compare things in terms of better or worse. How can something be better or worse if there are people on both sides who believe they are better than the other. Sometimes you just have accept things just being different and keep it moving." ~ HRJR.

17 April 2012

Something NEW! ... HRJR's Daily Diamond

How successful do you see yourself becoming? Most people tell you that success is not worth venturing after are unsuccessful themselves. Misery loves company, but so does prosperity & good times. The only difference is that more people are unsuccessful because it takes no effort at all. There's a reason why the "VIP" section is only a small section of the club.

16 April 2012

I Really Need to Begin Counting the Epiphanies in My Life

HRJR & Jim Hernandez

It was Sunday night, about 11:45pm. I was in bed reading a book recommended to me by my trusted friend and colleague, Jim Hernandez. Now often I don't mind sharing what books I'm reading, but I gave Jim my word that I would not share the title of this book because when he shared it with me he told me it was in part very instrumental to his success as a speaker (hey ... "insider sharing" isn't illegal). Anyway, I copped the book earlier in the day and figured I'd crack it open before going to bed because one of the two times when the mind is most receptive to stimuli is before going to sleep (the other time is immediately upon waking up).

So, I wasn't even five pages into this book. In fact, I hadn't even hit Chapter One yet ... I was still in the introduction when I came across a quote that floored me! This one quote moved me so much that it was like the original speaker of the statement flipped a switch in my mind and got the wheels that were simmering down in preparation for sleep all fired up. It was all I could do to finish reading the introduction so I could get to my computer and write this article. What happened was I had an epiphany. An epiphany is a discovery that comes upon you as a total surprise, but is usually something that was in front of you all along ... you just happened to open your eyes - or rather - open your mind to what was obvious, and now it is obvious to you. Being that I am on a journey of personal development and honest self-discovery, Over the past several years, I have had many epiphanies, or as Oprah Winfrey calls them, "Ah-HA! moments." I was so moved by this one that I felt the urge to share it with you.

I now know why I make people uncomfortable. I now know why people perceive me as arrogant.

You see, I believe in the saying, "wherever you go, there you are;" so wherever I am, that's my environment for however long I'm there. In my former profession as a police officer, it was paramount to control my environment as much as possible - and there were ways to do this covertly as well as overtly. So there have been and are times that I may give off a certain vibe that will attract some, but may push away others. Those who are attracted prove themselves to be quality people. Those who are pushed away are people I never really needed anyway ... Yet I digress.

Steve Jobs
The source of this revelation became crystalized to me in the words of Steve Jobs ... "Some people are not used to an environment where excellence is expected." I have always said that I hold myself to a high standard, and I hold those with whom I associate to an equally high standard. I have changed the positions of many of the people in my life, adding some while purging myself of others. When I read that statement by the late Mr. Jobs, it was as if he was also telling me that there are more people who have to go. Either that or they will have to truly step their games up if they are to have a place in my environment, because in my environment, "excellence IS expected."

Now if you're reading this, you may or may not know where you stand in my life. Know this ... I may not be happy where I am, but I'm happier than I was before I got here, and when I get to where I'm going I'll be even more happier than I am today. When I'm joking, I'm joking - but when I'm serious, I'm serious. The only way I'll be able to someday play as hard as I want to will be because I worked harder than I wanted to. If you can't hang with that, you might as well cut yourself loose right now and save whatever kind of friendship we may have.

04 April 2012

How Do You Define Your Personal Brand?

When people hear the word "entrepreneur" their minds go off into God only knows how many different directions, and most of them will more than likely fall under the category of "not me." However, I want you to understand something.

Everyone is an entrepreneur. We all have a product to sell and a service to provide. You are your product, and whatever you do with your life is the service you provide. However, when you sell your product and provide your services to the benefit of others more so than yourself, you then become an employee. Now, there's nothing wrong with being an employee, there's a job and a place for everyone. Better stated, somebody has to do the work that not everyone wants to do. That's not to say that those who do the work that other people don't want to do are at the bottom. In fact, such people exist on every rung on the vocational ladder. There are people who are happy at the bottom, in the middle, at the top, and at every level in between. And then there are people who are unhappy where they are, but won't do anything to better their situation. These are the people who give stink to the words "employee" and "entrepreneur" alike. Where you fit in the vocational spectrum is based on how you feel about yourself and the work you do. How you do that work and the conduct you display go to define your brand.

"Branding" in this sense is new to no one. It's just the modern day verbiage for developing and exhibiting your reputation. Simply put, your brand is your reputation and it extends far beyond your vocation. When you think of yourself as an entrepreneur, imagine yourself as a company. As was stated earlier, you are your product. How do you want people to see you? How do you want people to receive you? What qualities do you want people to be thinking of when they're thinking of you? All of these things make up the definition of your personal brand.

Establishing and maintaining a positive and productive brand is something that could very well take a lifetime; however, all it takes is one discretion ... all it takes is one second to decide to go left or right when you know you should be staying on the straight and narrow, and your brand could be irreparably damaged. When Chris Brown assaulted Rihanna, he damaged his brand. When Tiger Woods' infidelity became public knowledge, he damaged his brand. Even when Michael Jackson's inability to let go of his childhood to where he genuinely thought in his mind that it was fine for a man his age to share a bed with children who were not his own ... he damaged his brand.

The same way you think about your favorite snack, soda, and restaurant ... even your favorite toilet paper ... you want people to think as favorably about you as you think of those things. And why do you think so favorably of those things? Because they make you feel good. Because they have proven themselves. If you want to have a brand that is desired and admired by others, then it's up to you.

It's up to you to present and carry yourself in a dignified manner. When you go to work; whatever it is you do, do your job and do it well. If you do just enough to get by, don't think that just because your superiors aren't saying anything to you that they aren't saying things about you. If you actually are an entrepreneur and you provide a product or service, then you must certainly be cognizant of how you present who you are and what you do.

You have to realize that in the minds of the people around you, perception is reality, but you are the only one responsible for creating and exhibiting the perception that makes up that reality. How you do this goes to define your personal brand.

03 April 2012


One thing that really amazes me is how people function on what they think they know more so than on what they actually know. A lot of times; dare I say more than 90% of the time we learn new words by hearing them around us. We'll hear a new word on television, on the radio, overhearing someone else's conversation; or in direct conversation, and we may not know the literal definition of the word, but we get a feel for the word based on the context of the conversation. If the word resonates with us, we will add it into our vocabulary and we will go on using it, and often without ever looking up the word. Now, a good portion of the time people get away with this, but then there are those occasional times when a person throws a word out there that they have absolutely no business using. This is a prime example of ignorance.

As a matter of fact, the word "ignorance" in and of itself is an even better example of what I am saying. One sure fire way to insult someone is to call him or her "ignorant." However, if the context in which the word is being used is factual; it's not an insult, it's a simple fact. Contrary to popular belief, "ignorance" does not mean an absence of intelligence. It means an absence of knowledge. The difference may be subtle, but then to better solidify the difference we'll have to examine the difference between intelligence and knowledge. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, intelligence means, "the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new or trying situations; also, the skilled use of reason." The word knowledge means "the fact or condition of knowing something with familiarity gained through experience or association." Therefore to be ignorant simply means not knowing about something ... NOT not knowing anything.

The fact of the matter is that there are a great many things of which people are ignorant, but because they misunderstand the true meaning of the word, you will not likely come across someone who's readily willing to acknowledge their ignorance. However, this is yet another reason why so many people fail to reach new levels of success. If you do not admit or acknowledge that a problem exists, how can you go about solving or correcting it? 

Something I always say is that when people make mistakes and suffer self-caused setbacks, it's basically because either they made a mistake of ignorance or they made a mistake of arrogance. When you make a mistake of ignorance, you simply didn't know any better. However, a mistake of arrogance occurs when you actually do know better than to follow a particular course of action, but act anyway. This is the cause of most people's failures in life. Just ask any convict who has accepted accountability for his or her present condition behind bars.

There is a Chinese proverb that says, "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear." The value of ignorance is in seeing it for what it is ... a lack of knowledge. Once you find yourself lacking in knowledge, you can go about filling that void and improving your life.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with acknowledging your ignorance. In fact, the acknowledgement of one's ignorance is the dawn of one's intelligence.

07 March 2012


One reason why so many people fail to meet their goals is that they spend
 more time focusing on overcoming the obstacles than on achieving the goal.
This video goes to show that WHEN you succeed is none of your business.
If you have a goal, you don't stop until you have nothing left.

22 February 2012

The "1st Commandment" of Professional Speaking

Many people think about going into the speaking industry thinking they're going to just cake out and make mega-bucks. They think they'll be the next Les Brown or Tony Robbins because they have memorized a couple of positive affirmations. Sorry ... It just doesn't work that way. Like anything else worthwhile in life, you're going to have to start at the bottom and work your way up.

Having said that, allow me to introduce you to the "1st Commandment" of Professional Speaking ... "Thou must go from FREE to FEE!" Seriously, it was John C. Maxwell who said, "People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care." The best way a total stranger can show you that they care about what you know is paying you their hard earned money for you to share what you know. However, the only way they're going to do that is if they know it's going to be worth it.

Starting out, you're going to need to build an audience and a following. If you have a great message to deliver, and people are getting it for free at churches, schools, and Toastmasters events (to name a few), they're going to talk about you and word will spread. Coincidentally, IF YOU SUCK they're going to talk about you and word will spread, so DON'T SUCK!

When you do get these "free" gigs, make sure you have some way of getting people's contact information. Have a sheet that people can put their names, phone numbers and e-mail addresses on. If you're on Facebook, create a fan-page and direct people to it. This way, when you have new gigs coming up you can spread the word and there is how you get your "following," because those who were really moved by your message will do just that, follow you. 

The first money I ever made as a speaker!
$150 cash for a 20 minute speech.
Now when do, or should you begin charging people? That's hard to say because that's a decision you will have to make for yourself. But when you feel the time is right, here are a few tips:

(1) ALWAYS make it known that you're a "professional" speaker (even when you're speaking for free). You never know when someone will see you, who will pay you straight from the gate. Always be ready to get paid! I got paid for my first speech, and specifically told the people I wasn't charging them! 

(2) People respect what they see. Carry yourself as a professional and people will treat you as a professional. Those who don't aren't worth doing business with anyway, so don't give them a second thought.

(3) Create a Speakers Agreement (contract) for yourself. It outlines what you require as well as what services you will provide.

(4) In that Agreement, add a "Confidentiality Clause" that prohibits both you and your client from divulging how much you're charging and they're paying for your services. What you charge and what you actually make may be different from one client to another and for any variety of reasons. You may negotiate a lower honorarium for a particular group that has a lower budget, but you still wish to speak for them, or you may donate a portion or all of your honorarium back to the organization. You want to protect yourself as much as possible and not create friction should people talk about you when "comparison shopping" for speakers. Everyone is looking for a break (or a "hook-up"), and when people feel they are catching one, they're not likely to share that information if doing so means they might not catch a similar break in the future.

There is nothing more gratifying than to receive a nice check for what seems to be a few minutes of speaking, but keep in mind that you're not just getting paid for the minutes you spend on stage behind the microphone. You're getting paid for the time you spend researching, writing and rehearsing your presentation. Look at it like this ... You may only see professional athletes during game time on the weekends, but during the week, they're training and practicing and spending countless hours watching videos of previous games and matches.

Professional speaking is an industry that requires you to pay some dues in order to rise up. You can make a good living for yourselves, but you've got to make your bones. You're going to have to hone your skills and be true to your craft. The time you invest in the beginning of your career as a professional speaker will pay off massive dividends down the line, but you're going to have to create a foundation for yourselves. The stronger and deeper your foundation, the higher you can go in your career.

17 February 2012

Being a "Professional Motivator" is More than Just Being Happy

There are many people who call themselves "motivational speakers" but all they do is portray an "All is sunny in the world and will always be sunny if you just keep smiling and think happy thoughts" philosophy. I suppose that's good for whoever wants to buy it. I don't get down like that. I have a philosophy that I call "Embracing the Darkness."

The source of MY motivation comes from overcoming my struggles and obstacles. When the times are GREAT, I'm being rewarded. When the times are just smooth, then I know things are cool, and I'm kind of on cruise control. But when times are hard, that's when I know I'm being taught something. That's when I know my character is being structured. You can't have a testimony if you've never been tested and you can't possibly have a message if you haven't been through some mess. You can share a "Pollyanna" type message with children because you want to keep them excited about life, but adults have been through some "thangs." If you want to motivate them, you've got to give them something to relate to.  In fact, depending on the environment, there are a great many young people who have been through some "thangs."

John C. Maxwell says, "People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care," and Jim Rohn taught that you have to meet people in their struggle. He said, "Here's the clue to really affecting people ... Start with where they are before you try to take them where you want them to go."

Be wary of people who call themselves "Motivational Speakers," but have no struggles to share. Be wary of the speaker who gives you nothing but happy shiny smiles. Genesis 1:3 says "(out of eternal darkness,) God said, "Let there be light, and there was light." There is no triumph without trouble.

If you've got a speaker standing before you, and all he or she has for you is a variety of ways to say "YOU CAN DO IT!" (sounding like the Cajun guy in the movie "The Waterboy"), you just might want to reconsider staying there. The fact of the matter is you CAN do it, but in order to do it, you're going to have to GO THROUGH IT.

There's just no way around it.

15 February 2012

The Top 7 Reasons Why People Don’t Focus

Every successful person has a Coach or a Mentor to guide them. The most successful people have had Coaches and Mentors from the very beginning of their journeys. 

I have several Coaches and mentors who give me all kinds of advice and counseling. I am better able to move and inspire my audiences as well as my own clients because of the insight given to me by my Coaches and Mentors and my willingness to receive it. Today, I'd like to share some words of wisdom from one of my business coaches, Andrew Morrison.

The Top 7 Reasons Why People Don’t Focus

1. Lack of training. They were never taught how to focus their time, money and business relationships toward one activity. Their role models were constantly juggling several projects therefore this became the norm for them.

2. The Beginners Syndrome. Have you ever built an organization from zero to a million dollars in sales? If you have never done it personally or have trusted advisors who have reached that goal then you are constantly searching for the next big idea and never realizing that you already have what it takes to be successful.

3. An Addiction to Struggle. Now this concept is truly amazing. People who claim they want to reach a goal are addicted to the process of achieving the goal but never truly want the goal because they would no longer have the struggle of pursuing the goal. (I know that’s a mouth full.) Their self-identity has become wrapped up in “the struggle.” With just one yard to the touchdown they self-destruct and snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

4. Low Self-Esteem. Do you really love yourself? I love being a Black man in the wilderness of North America. Hey, it’s a challenge at times. But I am ready to be an agent of change and bring forth beauty amidst chaos. Given your situation, can you say something similar? Look yourself in the mirror today and say … I love you!

5. The Appearance of Progress. You don’t have to be at every award show and be seen by all the VIPs. Quiet work that seeks no recognition is the most pleasurable and fruitful.

6. No Plan. Do you know the steps to raising $1 million for your non-profit? People who lack focus are constantly searching for the next step. Booker T. Washington reminds us that, “Success leaves clues.” Your only job is to learn from others and implement.

7. Inability to Be Still. Take a deep breath. How did that feel? That’s the real you. Release your claim to the rushed and breathless life. Remember to breathe! Life will become richer.

I hope you can recognize the above symptoms in yourself and begin to take corrective action.

Cheers to your future success!

- Andrew Morrison
Small Business Camp

22 January 2012

Don't Lose Yourself in a Job That Won't See Losing You as a Loss

The most winning college football coach ever, former Penn State football coach, Joe Paterno has passed away. It is reported that he succumbed to lung cancer. While that may very well be the physical cause of his death, I suspect that it was his scandalous and shameful termination from his job that accelerated the cancer.

One's emotional state of mind has a great deal to do with one's health and physical well-being; and I think it goes without saying, to have a career as prolific and extensive as Paterno's - for it to end the way it did, could weigh very heavily on the mind soul and spirit. Joe Paterno was known to have once said something along the lines of without football in his life, his life would be over. As things have unfolded he spoke his reality into existence.

On one of the interludes of her album "Velvet Rope," Janet Jackson says, "How empty of me to be so full of you." What happened to Paterno happens to so many people on a variety of levels every day. People lose themselves in all sorts of things that do not return equal or greater value. In the end, they find themselves in various states of hopelessness and depression. Look at the woman who puts her dreams on hold to support her husband and raise their children. Look at the man who falls in love with a woman, gets married and counts his own friends in that part of the vow that says "forsaking all others." These are people who after years have gone by, find themselves resenting the very people they invested so much of themselves into.

Careers that can be very consuming emotionally, can take a heavy toll on people. Police officers & firefighters, for example tend to die within 10 years after retiring from the job. Why is that? The human body & mind  endure and carry a great deal in those professions. Imagine the person as an empty container that over the course of 20-25+ years fills up with eating certain foods at certain times, ripping and running, and dealing with all kinds of different people and situations - good bad and ugly ... and then it stops. The person is no longer in control. There are no more bad guys to lock up, fires to put out, tickets to write, or ladders to climb. And because they did not have many if any other activities or interests outside of and away from the job, when the job is gone, as Paterno alluded, life is over. It's just a matter of waiting for the clock to stop ticking.

I retired from Law Enforcement last year; however, I'm not afraid of my clock stopping anytime soon. In fact - for ME - it's like MY clock just got extended! Why? Because, recognizing what was stated above, I began building something different and separate from the job over five years ago. I began speaking and writing as something I would do after 25 years on the job. I wasn't really expecting to retire from the job 15 years early, but even still ... Because I had built other interests and developed other friendships away from the job, I was able to cross-over into civilian life almost seamlessly. In fact, I have a fond appreciation for NOT having to fulfill the responsibilities of my former obligation!

Now, I'm not saying don't put your best efforts into your vocation. What I am saying is that one should not put all his or her emotional being into anything that is not repaying him or her in kind. There is a word for people who break their backs - be it physically or emotionally - yet get little to nothing in return ... And that word is "SLAVE." Don't be a slave to your occupation. Don't be a slave to your marriage or other relationships.

Whatever you invest yourself into will produce a return. Just as you must over see how the market handles any money you may have invested into it, you must pay close attention to what's going on in your life so that you can see if you're getting back all that you're putting in. The only time one's life should be over should not be based on whether or not there's a job left to do, but based on there not being any living left to do.

03 January 2012

Welcome to 2012 ... M.C.E. ... Money Changes Everything

Happy New Year!

This is my primary motto for 2012. One thing that I have noticed over the past couple of years is that whenever  I have speak about or post anything about money and or becoming wealthy; without fail, someone would always post some kind of response about how "money can't buy happiness" & "money isn't everything." What's worse, they tend to fall back on the Bible as if that gives them justification for having an impoverished mentality. Well, I beg to differ. As Zig Zigler says, "Money isn't everything, but it's right up there with oxygen.Where is the "heavenly joy" in being broke as hell?

I really wish I could say that, for the life of me, I can't understand the mindset people have in that there is some kind of nobility in being broke, but the fact of the matter is I understand it all too well. You see, it takes a certain mindset and a certain level of discipline to attain wealth. Most people don't have what it takes to be wealthy, let alone strive to become wealthy. Personally, I have more respect for people who genuinely strive to become wealthy but don't quite make it than I do for those who do nothing but stay in their same old funky conditions.

I am not (yet) financially wealthy; however, my life has unfolded in such a way that I am quite better off than most people my age in similar circumstances. Things have and continue to unfold in my life because I strive to make moves and meet people who can help me better myself. There's a famous quote that's been said by so many people that I look up to that I can't rightfully nail down the original owner; however, the quote is "If you're the smartest person in your circle, then you need a new circle."

The reason why this quote is so powerful is because you can replace "smartest" with any other adjective and the statement won't lose it's power. In fact, it strengthens whatever adjective you use. Having said that, I firmly believe that if you're the richest person in your circle, then you need a new circle. By that I mean, the only way you can improve your situation is to surround yourself with people whose situations are better than yours. When you immerse yourself in environments that you wish to dwell in, over the course of time, you will learn things that - if you take heed and implement them, you will likely someday discover your rightful place in those environments.

If you want to have more in your life, you're going to have to do more in life, and while most people want more out of life, they're not willing to do more. So when people come along and get the things they want in life, the person on the sidelines finds themselves resenting such people. However, the uncomfortable reality is that these people resent themselves. When they see others succeed, they are reminded of their own lack of drive and instead of taking stock and accountability in themselves, they project that resentment; or "hate," outward towards the people who are succeeding.

Why do you think so many people have so many opinions about how much money entertainers and athletes make and what they do with their money? People pass judgment because they're using their imagination to spend the money entertainers and athletes make instead of using their imagination to make the money that entertainers and athletes spend. But what happens is, when reality and imagination meet, imagination comes up short and reality comes up empty.

But you know what? Money changes everything! Money makes it possible to have more things, do more things, and help people who genuinely need and deserve help. Has money, the little I've made and continue to make, changed me? Hell yeah! Money has changed where I live and where I have been able to provide a home for my family. Money has changed the car I drive, the clothes I wear and the kinds of food I eat. Money has allowed me to make charitable contributions. Money has allowed me to travel the country; and most importantly ... Money allows me to meet and learn from people who can teach me how to make more money so I can do all of the above even better and better.



"Many poor people believe they are better people because they are poor. Somehow they believe they're more pious or spiritual or good. Baloney! The only thing poor people are is poor.

What good do you do poor people by being one of them? Whom do you help by being broke? Aren't you just another mouth to feed? Wouldn't it be more effective for you to create wealth for yourself and then be able to really help others from a place of strength instead of weakness?"

                                                                                                                             T. Harv Eker