What Would You…

What would you write…

If your name never showed?
If you couldn’t be rated or reviewed?
If no one could comment?

What would you say…

If no one could respond?
If you didn’t fear rejection?
If you didn’t crave acceptance?

What would you do…

If money didn’t factor?
If time didn’t shackle?
If no one knew it was you?

Fear inhibits our writing, speaking, doing.

At times it should because there are things we shouldn’t write or say or do. But they are few.

There are other things, however, which need to be published, shouted and shared. But fear strangles. It breeds caution. It invents and imagines the reaction of the world. It whispers, “Amateur.” It slips into our minds, takes up residence, and consistently points out why it’s just better to stay quiet.

And then. With two small words, fear gives us hope. A way out. The right to remain silent.

Fear leans in, and right against our ear so we can feel it’s breath, it exhales, “For now.”

“Don’t write that… for now. You’ll be better one day. After years of writing in the dark you can step into the light.”

“Don’t say that… for now. You’re time will come when you have more credibility and more authority and more right to say something so bold.”

“Don’t do that… for now. Leadership is granted, not grabbed. Be content to follow until you are positioned by another.”

O fear. You’re so sly like that. Not killing the dream just telling us to wait. Assuring us that our patience will be rewarded. Hinting at the bright future.

Fear you liar you. You know we will always be insecure. We will always doubt. We will always feel we are not good enough.

Fear here’s where you messed up. You blew it.

You didn’t pay attention to the other voices.
The voices of encouragement. The ones who grew from the words we were scared to send out, but did anyway. The ones who thanked us after the knee knocking speech. The ones who shook our hands after taking a feeble stand.

Terrified, yet driven by passion, we released our imperfection and lives were touched. Support came to us in our weakness.

Our “time” may never come. And that’s ok. We won’t be content while we wait “for now.”

We will write… now.
We will speak… now
We will act… now.

Success is NOT an Accident!

Explore. Dream. Discover.

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
― Mark Twain

We waste far too much time thinking. Trying to predict the outcome. Then remaining exactly where we are.

People worry. Contemplate. They think about the reaction of others. What the others will say. How they will be treated by the others.

That all seems exhausting.

Hop in the boat.

Toss off the rope.


The biggest regrets come from staying tied to the dock.

Success is NOT an Accident,


Don’t Join

Don’t join the crowd.

Don’t join the pity party.

Don’t join the misery.

Don’t join the revolt.

Don’t join the naysayers.

Don’t join the negative.

Don’t join the brigade.

Don’t join the blind followers.

Don’t join the cult.

Don’t join the victims.

Don’t join the abusers.

Don’t join the dreamless.

Don’t join the freebie seekers.

Don’t join the clique.

Don’t join the clowns.

Don’t join the mess.

Don’t join the hate.



Potential… one of the most lethal words in the success dictionary.

“Why don’t you live up to your potential.”

“You’ve got so much potential.”

“Don’t limit yourself. Reach your potential. You could do so much more than you’re doing now.”


First of all, those phrases make it sound like, “Hey, you’re worthless now, but you could be valuable!”

Second, even though words of “potential” sound complementary they’re not always. They can make a person feel like they are not living up to some unseen standard. And because it’s based in potential it’s almost impossible to nail down when a person arrives at the destination.

Which is actually impossible anyway.

Potential is Fluid.

For example… take a person who can’t read. What’s his or her potential in today’s world?

Well, you really can’t answer it, can you? We haven’t talked about intelligence, athletic ability, skill set, etc.

Most would say his potential to become a successful CEO would be severely hampered if not impossible. His potential in this area is low.

But what happens if he learns to read? What happens to his chances then?

His potential radically shifts because of a new skill.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t shoot for the stars or dream big. But let’s take some of the pressure off and stop encouraging people with their potential.

If we see something inside someone and we believe they could achieve great things if she applied herself, then let’s HELP her instead of telling her what she could be. The vast majority cannot see in themselves what others see in them. Let’s help them see by helping them take the steps.

Success is NOT an Accident,


So What?

A simple, brutal, two word question.

“So What?”

Asking that question helps us measure our actions and conversations. It can also help us challenge people around us.

And I’m not talking about grand gestures. We should ask even in the mundane.

Ask while filling the tank in your auto, “So what?”

  • Now I can pick up Johnny and make sure he makes it to soccer on time.
  • Now I can make it all the way to Kelly’s without having to stop again after it gets dark.
  • Now I won’t have to fill up on the way home when traffic is thick.

Ask when you’re in a restaurant, “So what?”

  • Service is slow, so what, maybe he’s having a rotten day.
  • The meal is fantastic, so what, I need to be thankful.
  • Tipping is usually 20%, so what, I’ll do 30% and maybe life gets a little easier for the server.

When someone starts to share the juicy ask, “So what?” Literally.

  • Did you hear what happened to Fred? “So what? Are you helping or just spreading?”
  • Did you hear the one about the priest and the nun? “So what? Is this a dirty joke or actually funny?”
  • You won’t won’t believe how I got stabbed in the back! “So what? Are you just gonna bleed or get some stitches?”

That last set seemed especially rough, right? Maybe so. The point is that we need to be measuring life better and encouraging others to do the same.

We need to see that the mundane actually counts for something.

We need to know that something as simple as leaving an extra 10% makes a difference.

We need to realize we can stop hurtful or inappropriate or victim conversations.

So what? let’s us weigh the impact no matter how heavy or light.

Employee or Entrepreneur?

Becoming an online entrepreneur begins in your mind.

Not with a website.

Not with an autoresponder.

It begins in your head. Entrepreneurs think and process differently than the mass population.

The masses want to make cash online. Believe its overnight. And think they have a right to it. Then get upset when it does not happen immediately.

Entrepreneurs want to build businesses. They know it will take time. They know work is involved. The results are their own.

The masses want to sell an ebook (and think that’s all they will ever need to do). The entrepreneur wants to create an empire.

As you can tell, there is different processing happening between these very opposite groups.


Because one group has been trained as an employee. The other as the owner.

One group is used to being TOLD what to do (employee).

While the other is used to DECIDING what to do (owner).

You can follow the herd or set the course – it’s your choice – and it starts in your mind.

Success is NOT an Accident!

Stand Firm

Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm.
Abraham Lincoln

The two keywords… “right place.”

What’s right seems to vary from individual to individual.

But it’s not that difficult to set our feet in the right place. With a little thought our actions and vocabulary change. With a little thought we move from being reactive to being responsive. With a little thought we take the high road, the road less traveled and the road that leads to a desired destination.

Success in NOT an Accident,



Have A Go

“Sure, I’ll have a go.”

Five words.

Spoken at 1:03 am from London.

Answering the question.

“Would you host the Oscars?”

Asked by Steven Spielberg to Hugh Jackman.

Steven woke Hugh with that call and that question. Hugh went on to be one of the best hosts in the history of the Oscar Awards. His ability to sing, dance, tell stories and handle any impromptu situation made the night a success. He’s a massive talent.

A couple of years ago I was in the audience for Hugh Jackman: Back on Broadway. The show was fantastic and Hugh told the above story.

“Have a go,” He said, “Is an Ausie expression. Basically, ‘go for it.’ Because it’s not the failures we regret in life it’s the things we never attempt.”

Life makes those choices difficult.

One the one hand we’re filled with hopes and dreams. On the other hand we’re a little scared to make the move. We’re afraid to “have a go.”

There are hundreds of tiny reasons why we hold back, and maybe even a few large ones.

What’s tugging at you right now? What have you mentally planned to do or accomplish, but the brakes are on? Or perhaps there’s a dream from the past that you released and refused to think about any longer.

What have you wanted to do or accomplish, but haven’t made a move on, yet?

What would it take to make it real? What’s your plan?

What’s the very first step you need to take?

What’s the date of that first step?

Have a go.

Success is NOT an Accident,



5 Stones Goal Slaying includes…

* Webinar Replay

* Video Download

* Enhanced transcript

* MP3 for listening on the go.

* Milestone achievement planning sheet.

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“Writing down Cornerstones sounds powerful to me.  Have done goal setting for years–have never heard of this.” Dianne

“I like the deathtraps.  I never plan for those! Thanks Paul – I definitely needed this!!!!!! Heard things today that I haven’t heard before.”

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Wouldn’t It Be Great If “They” Were The Problem?

What will “they” think?

“They” won’t like it.

“They” told me no.

Guess what. “They” ain’t going anywhere and “they” don’t matter anyway.

Personal growth, development, achievement is a lot more about what’s inside of you and me than what’s outside.

The real battle takes place in our mind.

The war of perception, acceptance, success and/or failure. It rages, doesn’t it?


You get a bad Amazon review and want to hide because of what “they” said. Your mind goes crazy. It begins to imagine that you’re the worst writer in the history of language. And you have proof! A complete stranger that you know zero about has said so.

A family member makes a passing comment about your tight pants. You panic. The world knows about your affair with Little Debbie!

Those mind games derail us.

1. Write, speaking, produce without fear. Just let it go.

2. Center on positive feedback. If 80% of your readers, buyers, etc are thrilled, then be happy. Ignore the 20%. (I know that’s tough advice since right now you are consumed by the .0001%)

3. Being accepted across the board by everyone is fantasy. Even Mr Rogers had his critics.

4. Stop magnifying “them.” Stop making their voice louder than it is. Stop making them bigger than they are.

Do your work. Make your art. Publish your writing. Don’t let them hold you back.

Action Talker or Action Taker?

Stop talking. Start doing.

We looooooooove to talk about what we are GOING to do.

“I’m going to learn Spanish.”

“I’m going to hit the gym and lose ten.”

“I’m going to call him up and tell him what’s on my mind.”

“I’m going to finish that addition to the house.”

“I’m going to start a savings account.”

“I’m going to drink less sodas.”

“I’m going to launch a blog.”

“I’m going to create an online business.”

All of that is action talking.

And it feels so gooooooood. It feels great to broadcast all those intentions. It feels like a step has been taken since the first step is making a decision.

But a decision hasn’t been made most of the time. It’s just talk. Stuff we think about that helps us believe we’re really going to do something.

Instead of talking about the gym… GO.

Instead of talking about saving money… SAVE.

Instead of talking about ________ … DO IT.

Stop talking. Start moving.

Time In

Waaaaaaaah. I want to be great right now!!!!

Don’t you feel that way?

Don’t you want to blink and be awesome?

This morning I opened a series of public speaking lessons I wrote back in 2000. Only 13 short years ago.

At the time I thought they were incredible.

Today, not so much. I’m rewriting. Sigh.

Twenty-five years ago I thought I was a pretty good speaker. I put an old tape in (Yes, tape. No. Not eight-track).

How did people listen? It was brutal. Sigh.

I’m still not the writer and speaker I want to be. But compared to decades ago – I’ll admit there’s been improvement! 🙂

It took time in to make the difference.

Let’s stop looking for all the silly shortcuts and just put in the time.

The book won’t just happen. Sit down and type. It will emerge.

The body won’t just happen. Hit the road and be careful with the fork. The body will appear over time.

Time-in that’s how we become great right now.

Yaaaawwwwnnnn Boooooooring

In the beginning was the dream. It flooded your mind. Created action. Produced momentum. You were happy because you could see the finish line and the result. You were engaged.

Then the newness wore off.

The shine dulled.

The dream dimmed.

It became… boring. Yaaaawwwwwnnnnnnnnn.

You started to question the dream. You began to wonder if it was too big, or too crazy, or too out there.

The truth is this. Your mind craves the new. Craves the fun. Craves the interesting. Craves the shiny.

When it wears thin you begin the search again.


Success comes in the bore of the day to day. Success waits just around the corner of the next yawn.

The next pound will come off by showing up to the boring gym and yawning thru another workout.

The next chapter will be written on that plain, boring laptop as you yawn thru all those key strokes.

The next sale will be made by pursuing those boring leads and yawning thru the presentation you’ve given 10,000 times.

You and me, we are too addicted to the fun experience. If it doesn’t feel like a thrill-ride we want to get off and find something that does.

Meanwhile, we’re getting passed by the slow lane, simply because “they” kept going.

All. The. Way. To. The Finish.

I’ll Have What He’s having

Be you.

No, it’s not as easy as it sounds because we are borrowers.

We see something that works for someone else and we want to do or be that same thing.

In the beginning…

Writers tend to write in the voice of their favorite author, so they will become the next _________.

Singers tend to sing like their favorite vocalist.

Speakers tend to borrow from their favorite presenters. Style. Gestures. Gulp… sometimes even stories.

But why are we drawn to those people in the first place? Because they are simply being. Their style, voice and more puts their core on display. We like it. In fact, we like it so much that we try to emulate. Copy. Clone.

And then we get lost. We wander.

What’s the solution?

Learn the skill and then deliver it your way.

Waaaaaaaaay back in 1976 or so I picked up a bodybuilding magazine at a “pac-a-sac” in Central, Alabama (if you don’t know where that is, it’s right past Santuck.)

I saw a giant bicep and knew that’s what I wanted. The bi belonged to Arnold schwarzenegger in his Olympia prime. I never knew a human being could grow muscles like that.

You might not believe this next part, but I wasn’t able to build biceps like Arnold. I know – shocker! However, I could use his exercises. I could borrow his nutrition plan. I could learn the skills it would take to expand my skinny arms.

No matter how much I wanted those biceps my genetic coding only allowed them to grow to their own size and shape. Larger than my start. Stronger than my start. Not Arnold, but Paul. In the process of training, Paul developed.

The same is true with our business, art, parenting – whatever. We study, practice, train, work and along the way we find ourselves. It’s turns out that we don’t have to be like someone else, we simply need to allow ourselves to emerge.

Mom’s Bible

As a kid mom woke me every morning. “Paul. Time to get up. Breakfast is ready”


Well. You never had to say breakfast twice!!

My place was set. Breakfast waiting. And across the table was an open bible.

Mom had been up. Had her coffee. Read the word.

I don’t remember being preached to or at. But I do remember the example.

Henry Blackaby said, “What you do reveals what you believe, regardless of what you say.”

5.5.5 Ways to Impact Children You Sponsor

It’s never been easier to impact the life of an orphan. With the internet, fast global shipping and cheaper travel seasons you can make a personal difference.


1 Visit

My family sponsors Jose, Ciudad de Angeles. One of the things that makes the organization unique is that they want you to visit your sponsor child at least once a year. Nothing impacts a child like one on one time. And if you have children it’s one of the biggest life changers in their lives as well. Sam and Steven have loved visiting Jose and working at the campus.

2 Write

At least once a month write a letter. Email is fine, but at least once a quarter send a letter or card by mail.

3 Skype

If the orphanage has internet, and your child is old enough, then get face to face a few times a year by Skype.

4 Social Media

I know it seems crazy that the child you sponsor would have a Facebook account, but it happens! Commenting on their posts and liking their picks is cool. Thinking that it’s your personal message board to post something daily is not cool.

5 Take a Friend

Twice I’ve visited Ciudad while on a cruise – both times cruise friends went with me to the campus. This is a great way to introduce others to the work and for your child to see another aspect of your life.

5.5 Gifts

Jose just turned 15. Think he wanted something for his birthday? You know it!! Fortunately, I got to deliver the presents personally and take him out for a birthday lunch.

5.5.5 Family

You are family to the child you sponsor. It’s not simply about sending money, but giving your time and focus.


5.5.5 Reasons to Read Daily

Crack open a book and change your life.


#1 Knowledge

People who read learn more and know more. Which just helps you be cooler with crowds and folks in need.

#2 Attitude

If you’re reading the right kind of books (not sure vampire romance novels count,) you will have a better attitude about life and people.

One of my buddies, Dain, said, “I don’t understand much in the Bible, but I think I’m a better person just for reading it.”

I get that.

#3 Escape

It’s good to shut the world out sometimes. It’s ok to read lighter just for breaks and to get away.

Bestselling author Patsy Clairmont said, “A good light read is like dessert to your brain.”

#4 Answers

I know… we have Google for answers. So what? Get a book and dive deep on a subject.

In fact, my best friend Carrie’s dad built a second story to their house using Time Life books as his guide.

#5 Health

Reading helps keep your mind from atrophy. Just like muscle shrink with less use, the same happens to our brains.

Reading is the perfect mind activity to keep it strong and healthy.

#5.5 You spent 3-4 years learning to read so do it!

You know the quote: “The person who does not read is not better off than the person who cannot read.”

#5.5.5 Reading makes you sexier.

Ashton Kutcher said. “The sexiest thing in the world…is being smart, generous and thoughtful.”

Not sure how much Ashton gets right, but that ain’t bad.

Read on.


5 Keys to Becoming an Optimist

Do you want to know one of the secrets of success?

It’s this: Become an optimist.

It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about one tiny business project or you’re talking about a plan for your personal life, optimism is essential to your success. When you focus on being optimistic, you just feel better. And when you focus on good things in your life, you’ll suddenly realize that even more good things start flowing towards you.

However, most people can’t just say, “I’m going to be an optimist” and see their life change. You need to work at it. You need to consciously make a few changes to your mindset and your environment.

Here’s how…

Key #1: The Right Sight

The first thing you need to do is focus on the good things in every situation and every part of your life. Look for the win in every situation, even if it is a small win. You’ll quickly realize that things could have been worse.

Example: Sometimes people complain at tax time about how much money they have to pay to the government. If they’re self-employed, they may even worry about whether they’ve paid enough money for estimated taxes throughout the year. And so tax time becomes a burden, because they’re focusing on the negative aspects.

Do you ever do that? If so, time to turn things around. Instead of worrying about money and thinking about how much you hate to pay taxes, look at the positive side of the situation. Namely, you have to pay taxes because you’re making money. And the bigger your tax bill is, the more blessed you’ve been in the income department.

Point is, look for the positive (the win) in every situation. Be grateful for these wins. Look at them as blessings. Because you can train your mind to turn even a seemingly negative situation into a positive one.

Key #2: The Right Surrounding

Take a look around your life – are you surrounded by positive things? This includes:

• Listening to empowering music.

• Watching feel-good movies.

• Reading uplifting books.

• Putting positive and inspirational quotes in front of you.

• Browsing motivational websites.

• Hanging inspirational artwork.

See, you’re heavily influenced by your environment.

If you’re “feeding” your mind and soul with negative influences, then it will be no surprise when you find your mind tends to focus on negativity. But surround yourself with positive music, art, reading material and more, and you’ll find yourself feeling happier and more productive in your environment.

Key #3: The Right Standard

You have dreams and goals, and that’s a good thing. But your expectations are every important.

If your goals are unrealistic, you’re going to start feeling down when you don’t reach those goals. In turn, you’re going to become negative. You’ll start believing that you can’t do it. And negativity will settle over you like a toxic cloud.

So what do you need to do instead?

Simple: You need to be reasonable when you set goals.

Yes, it’s great to dream big. And yes, it’s awesome to “reach for the stars” when you’re setting goals.

But if you find yourself habitually falling far short of your goals and then falling into despair as a result, then it’s time to dial back your goals a bit. The idea is to lower the bar to rack up wins and build confidence.

Key #4: The Right Solution

Sometimes you’re going to fail. Sometimes you’re going to have disappointments. But in order to keep the right mindset, you need to learn how to deal effectively with these setbacks.

Here are two steps to take:

• Create a Plan B. No, you shouldn’t expect failure – but you should create an alternate plan in case things don’t work out the way you originally planned. That way you can get right back on track quickly, without letting negative thoughts interfere with your progress.

• Learn from your mistakes. Ask yourself what went wrong and how can avoid this mistake in the future. When you take responsibility for your mistakes and then learn from them, you become a better, stronger person.

Key #5: The Right Support

Earlier I mentioned creating a positive physical environment. However, one of the most important ways to create a positive environment is to be sure to surround yourself with positive, supportive people.

These are people who:

• Believe in you.

• Encourage you.

• Support your dreams.

• Make you feel good about yourself.

• Communicate in positive ways.

On the flip side, this also means that you need to eliminate or otherwise avoid the negative people in your life.

These include people who:

• Doubt you.

• Talk negatively about your dreams (naysayers).

• Talk negatively about other people’s dreams.

• Talk negatively about their own dreams.

• Seem to always look at the negative side of any situation.

• Demand a lot of your time and attention. (Energy vampires.)

• Seem to have a lot of drama in their lives.

If it’s impossible to completely eliminate those in your life who drag you down, then at a minimum you need to spend less time with them. And when you do spend time with them, avoid talking about any topics that bring out their negatively (especially your own plans). Instead, stick to light topics like hobbies, sports, etc.

If you look around, you’ll likely notice that people who’re really successful are also really optimistic and positive people. Chances are, they didn’t become optimistic and positive as a result of becoming successful. Rather, they probably became successful as a result of cultivating a positive environment and mindset.

The good news is that you too can create a more positive environment for yourself and start being more optimistic. And all you have to do to get started is follow the five keys to optimism that you just learned about.