Hey, I hope you're having a great
day. I certainly am. You're joining me today in the mountains of Colorado.
Over my shoulder, you can see a glimpse of a lake. It's a massive 11-mile reservoir. If you want to look it up on a map, it's outside a little spot in a road called Lake George, Colorado and our property backs up to Rocky Mountain National Forest here behind the camera. There's a 360-degree view of mountains. It's just extraordinary here.
I love coming to the cabin because what tends to happen is a switch, sort of flips where I become quiet... I quiet down I guess is a way to say it. I get introspective, reflective and find some of the best thinking, my best writing, my best creative efforts happen in environments like this and I want to invite you into a conversation as though you too are sitting here on my deck and we're reflecting. We're doing a little introspection here.
I want to start with this question -- a rhetorical question actually turns into a mantra for me and that is this.
Think with me for a minute about the
chapters in your life? I think back... one of many experiences was junior high.
What a miserable chapter it was in junior high or middle school. Oh my gosh. I
was hopelessly clumsy, completely inept, absolutely mortified at every angle,
every turn. My friends were laughing at me constantly. Nothing would come out
of my mouth when I wanted to talk to a girl. I mean it was terrible, but that
was only one terrible experience or struggle or challenging experience in life.
I mean, how about your first job? How about the first time you actually failed at something that you thought you actually were going to do well.
And how about the time that you took your first job or said yes to your first career job with high expectations sporting your brand new sparkling diploma, perhaps from school? And now we're off to rake in some real money in the real world. But how did it go? How did it really go?
You see, and I could go on and on, but you have thrown yourself all of your top and see all of your talents. All of your money all of your time... into doing things that you thought were worthwhile that you had great expectation, aspirations for all to find out that life Gets you with your own insufficiency with your own incompetence, your own luck. "You haven't learned enough lessons yet, pal. Let's try again."
So if not for the second half, always the first half for? I'm going to say that all of the experiences that you've had have actually equipped you to be extraordinary at this particular point in life. Oftentimes after what we call mid-life, but here's the rub: we get taught in society, in our culture about this thing called retirement. I think the definition of retirement has shifted significantly, at least in my lifetime. I mean, when my parents grew up, the whole mission was to go find a great job and work there for a number of years, 30-40-50 years and retire with a pension and Social Security. And yeah, essentially you know you're set for life.
But here's the problem. We're living longer, aren't we? The amount of money that we need to make to live for the rest of life is bigger. It's harder to make money. It's more expensive to live now. There's an ongoing treadmill of sorts that's been created, by the way, our marketplace has evolved so that it feels like we will never get to a place where we can actually do that thing called retirement.
And guess what? I think that's good. I think it's great. Because we should be asking the question, if not for the second half, if not for the last part of our life, the first part was really a waste.
All of those experiences, all of those things that you went through, all of those things have equipped you to be powerful once and for all influence in making a difference in life. And that's why you started in the first place, whether you knew it or not.
Now as an entrepreneur, you have in your hands a wonderful vehicle, the competency, what I like to call the entrepreneur gene, the ability to calculate and manage risk - accept risk. You're uniquely equipped as an entrepreneur to actually do some things that many people don't have the courage to -- don't believe they can aren't really equipped to do, but you are.
And if not for the second half of your life, what was the first half even for?
Legacy List Challenge
So I've got a challenge for you here, as we're going to sort of enjoy the deck here in the Colorado Mountains. I want you to think, take some time with this.
Make a list. I'm gonna invite you to call it your "Legacy list," not your bucket list, as though I need to hurry up and get some things done before I die. No, no, no. Make a legacy list. A list of the things that you're going to do in your life between them now and the time that it's done to fully express yourself -- to fully explore the world that God's dropped you into. Make a list a legacy list of the things that you want to be able to talk about, to be remembered for, that people will point to and say you know... "that was something that I learned -- that was an experience that that person had that I learned something from."
If not for the second half, what was the first half for... and I'm going to say the second half of life can, and should be, and is gloriously and rightfully so, the biggest opportunity in your life to actually make a difference -- to make an impact, to create yourself as an influence to anybody and everybody that might be watching now and far into the future.
So, as you enjoy your day, wherever you happen to be, I invite you to do a little self-reflection, if not for the second half, what was the first half for?
What are you going to do now? What are the meaningful experiences, challenges, opportunities that you're going to take on so that you can leave a legacy of influence?
Have a super day, I know I will.
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