Generational Success: How to leverage the pasts of others?

Generational Success: How to leverage the pasts of others?

November 11th, 2015 // 10:39 am @

Generational Success: How to leverage the pasts of others?

Here is a very personal story…

It starts with my grandfather, who came from a family of coal mining immigrants but was determined to build a better life. He flew as a pilot in WWII, most appropriate today as we honor our Veterans, for whom we are ever indebted. After the war, he returned home to start a family and a business.

My grandparents were like second parents to me, I spent a lot of time with them growing up, both my brother and I did. They were always hard working, but their view of success was much different.

For them, it was working hard to pay for the next vacation, the next Christmas, the next back to school. A business owner who was thankful to be his own boss and be in control, but whose expectations were ‘just enough’.

And that’s what most people do and get is ‘just enough’ because that’s all they know to want. Consider how someone else was raised and brought up. What they had at their disposal dictates what they consider a victory or success.

So, get this, every day both my grandparents got up and went to work all day, my grandfather sold at premium prices to affluent customers doing custom carpet laying in homes of the well-to-do. He built a reputation that led to a referral based business his entire career. His artisanship and craftsmanship was second to none. He was the best. Yet he had just enough to get by working long hours, nights and weekends to do whatever it took to accomplish the next goal and satisfy this month’s victory, and ultimately to just have the opportunity to wake up to do it another day.

That’s work ethic.

That’s what my brother and I got from him. And our mom, but that’s a different story for another time. My family fought for and worked for everything they ever had.

Still I grew up the son of a single mom, from a small town in the middle of nowhere Indiana. A life of no frills and yet I was in need of nothing, as I didn’t know there were more things to want because I had everything I ‘needed’.

I tell you this story to convey one poignant message.

Do you know what I hear every time I go back home to see my family. Every single time, do you know what they tell me, “Don’t work too hard…” , “Take some time out for yourself.”, “You never seem like you take a break.”

And yet – the only reason I am successful is because I am obsessively focused on working (smart) and hard until I achieve the goals we have set, climb the next mountain and then look up for the one new peak now in sight.

The only reason I know how to do that is because I was taught by example, from the first day I can remember, that working hard was a sign of honor and pride. It was what had to be done to provide for your family.

I learned this from my family who now tells me to slow up, don’t work so hard, take time off, and so on and so forth.

Whatever you do, remember this – you earn what you deserve and you deserve what you believe to be your desired level of success.

My family did all they knew to do because they based their lives on being a little bit better than the life they grew up and lived to get where they are today.

I talked last week about your environment and surroundings. So important, because this is what you will come to expect. They say you don’t know what you don’t know. And you will never accomplish what you don’t expect to happen.

Expose yourself to possibilities, believe in dreams, expand your awareness and build up your deserve level so you can broaden your horizons and look to the future.

There is no person who is successful that lives a life of balance before they deserve to…you only earn the right to ‘take it easy’ after you’ve put in the time and effort necessary to do it.

With every generation you can be smarter, work faster, do more, learn and arm yourself with the knowledge of those who have paid their dues and come before you to pave the way for your prosperity, but don’t be so arrogant, naïve, or feel entitled to that which you have not yet earned.

All success can be accelerated, knowledge expedited, experienced leveraged, and results fast forwarded…you can live into the future of your goals, dreams, aspirations, and desires…the prerequisite is you have to have goals, dreams, aspirations and desires that compel you to do whatever it takes to achieve them.

Next week I will give you the only ‘shortcuts’ I know on how to get from where you are to where you want to be – fast – the same approach and strategies my brother and I have used to achieve more in the first ‘working’ decade of our lives than most ever do, certainly most take 2, 3, 4, even 5 decades to figure out.

Consider it my thanks-giving gift to you. One you turn into whatever value you choose going forward.

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