Day Right Quote #51: The Future Starts Today, Not Tomorrow

Wisdom from the Pope, "The future starts today, not tomorrow." He's right.

We talk about what we're GOING to do tomorrow or next month when we're not so tired, busy or overwhelmed.

Meanwhile, our life whizzes by.

The truth is, we'll never have more time than we have right #now.

As John Legend says, "The future started yesterday and we're already late."

What will you do today to kick-start the future of your dreams?

pope middle

Day Right Quote #47: The Wisdom of Life Consists in the Elimination of Non-Essentials

One of the keys to enjoying my Year by the Water was that I gave away 95% of what I owned. People ask if I miss any of it?

Nope. It freed me up to focus on what really matters and lead an even more #meaningful life.

Is clutter keeping you from concentrating on what counts?

Is stuff keeping you stuck?

Ask yourself what it costs in terms of time, money and energy to purchase, clean, repair and take care of everything in your home.

Is it adding value? Is it making you happier and healthier?

Or are all those "possessions" weighing you down, holding you back from the like you're meant to lead?

What would you be freed up to do if you eliminated some of those non-essentials?lin yutang

Day Right Quote #45: It's Not Nature OR Nurture - It's Nature AND Nurture

My energy was a little flat yesterday and I wondered why. All of a sudden, it came to me. I had "inside-itus."

I had spent hours looking down at my laptop, working online, answering emails and writing a blog post.

Spending too much time indoors - and keeping our head down - is a prescription for feeling down.

So, I headed outside and LOOKED UP.

I didn't see this magnificent waterfall, but I DID see spacious blue skies, golden foothills and a serene lake park trilling with the sounds of songbirds.

Nature nourished me and lifted my spirits in minutes.

Are you overdue for some nature and nurture?

Thinks will be looking up as soon as YOU get outside and LOOK UP.

nature AND nurture - best

Day Right Quote #44: The Grass Is Green Enough

One of the most important epiphanies from my Year by the Water? “Sometimes, the grass is green enough.”

This may seem to fly in the face of being an adventurer, someone who revels in new places, people and experiences.

However, it’s not a contradiction.

NOW and NEW are opposite sides of the same coin.

There are times we’re eager to evolve and explore – and times we look around and think, “This is enough. I am enough.”

Sometimes the grass IS greener elsewhere – sometimes the grass is green enough right here, right now.

I took the picture below while exploring a new lake park near my home here in Boulder.

As I strolled through the lush grass, I laughed out loud as I realized. "I'm literally walking in clover."

It was a tangible reminder that being wealthy in what matters is not having or feeling one thing OR the other; it is a sublime blend of feeling and having BOTH.

Sometimes, we're walking in clover and loving every minute of it.

Sometimes we're seeking and appreciating new fields of clover.

They are not mutually exclusive; they are the yin-yang balance of a fulfilling life.

grass bold

Day Right Quote #38: We All Have Stories We're Living and Telling Ourselves

I think this is one of the most important epiphanies we can have - that the stories we tell ourselves determine the quality of our life. So, what are we saying to ourselves? That we don't have time, that life is "hard," that no one appreciates us, that the world is going downhill fast?"

Or, that we have all the time we need, that life is a blessing, that I appreciate my loved ones, and that every day is an opportunity to create a positive difference?

Next time you tell yourself something negative, ask, "Is that true or is that just a story I'm telling myself?

What story do I WANT to tell that will help create the world I WANT to see and be?"

bruce - middle

Day Right Quote #35: I Like To Get Myself In Over My Head

This is the sign of an entrepreneur, someone who sees life as the adventure it's meant to be. Someone who, like Marissa Mayer of Yahoo, likes to get in over your head because you welcome challenges, love being stretched, and even when things are upside down-inside out, you're confident you can figure them out.

Is that you?

BTW - this is an example of an insight-image you can create with SparkPost. If you know me, you know I believe it's important to INK IT WHEN YOU THINK IT.

Well, these days, capturing and communicating WORDS isn't enough. By matching in-the-moment INSIGHTS and attributed QUOTES with an IMAGE, you can create on-brand messages that connect with people and take your work viral.

Want to know how to do that? I'm be sharing that - AND answering your questions - in our monthly ASK SAM call (no charge) on May 17th.

This is our way of staying connected with our community and sharing some of the gee-whiz stuff we're doing and want to share so you can run with it in your own business, career and life.

Contact Cheri@IntrigueAgency - at 805 528-4351 - for details and to register.

I like to get myself in over my head . mariss mayer

Day Right Quote #34: Nearly All The Best Things That Came to Me in Life Have Been Unexpected, Unplanned by Me

After an intense and rewarding week of consults, I pronounced yesterday ADVENTURE FRIDAY and decided to go to Estes Park, 30 miles away, because I'd never been there. As I drove into that stunning mountain valley, I saw a white lodge high on a hill. I didn't know what it was, but it looked intriguing, so I started taking roads that led UP until I arrived HERE.

This is the famous Stanley Hotel. You may have seen it in the movie The Shining. Remember Jack Nicholson's immortal words, "I'll be b-a-c-k."

As I strolled the grounds, marveled at the "didn't know that" history of this grand hotel, and gazed at the majestic snow-capped mountains, I was reminded all over again that SECURITY is not the spice of life, DISCOVERY is.

Do you do same-old, same-old, day in and day out? Do you feel locked into routines?

This week, DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT. Change things up. Follow an intuitive nudge to go here, do this. Re-experience the power curiosity and discovery have to put the light on in your eyes. Set something in motion and see what unfolds

Your SerenDestiny is on the other side of routine.

Carl Sandburg is right. Nearly all the best things that come to us in life are unexpected, unplanned

carl sandberg

Day Right Quote #33: Change Before You Have To

I've been SITTING a lot these days working on my book "Someday is Not a Day in the Week." I know that's a problem.

Sitting has been called the cigarette smoking of our generation, yet I've been spending 10+ hours every day at my desk.

Then, I saw this quote from Jack Welch and thought, "He's right. I want to do this differently NOW instead of waiting until something goes wrong and I WISH I'd gotten up out of my chair, gone outside and been more active while I had the chance."

So, here I am enjoying Coot Lake's water, songbirds, spacious blue skies and Boulder's majestic mountains ... changing because I WANT to instead of waiting until I HAVE to.

What's one thing you want to change NOW?

sam at coot lake - jack welch

Day Right Quote #23: When You're Different, You Can Last

Comedian Don Rickles said, "When you're different, you can last." Rickles is right. The world does't need more copycats.

How are you different from everyone in your organization or profession? How are you one-of-a-kind or first-of-your-kind?

I was just working with a client on his TEDx talk, and we took out everything that seemed obvious or that sounded like someone else said it.

I told him, "It's not enough to be TRUE. The question is, 'Is it NEW?' Does it cause people to say, "I never thought of it that way." Does it open their eyes?

THAT's when you cause a SHIFT. That's when you add enduring value.

How is what you're saying and doing different than the norm? THAT is when you stand out - for all the right reasons - and get heard, noticed and valued.

when you're different you can last

Day Right Quote #22: The Moment You Put a Date on the Calendar is the Moment Your IDEA Becomes REALITY

I'm hosting a salon in NYC next week and a friend asked how she should prepare. She asked if she should just talk about her advocacy for woman business authors or what. I said, "No, put a date on the calendar and tell us WHEN you plan to host a Tele-Summit or live event.

If you get this bandwagon out of the garage, people will jump on it.

The moment you put a date on the calendar is the moment your IDEA becomes REALITY.

the moment you put a date on the calendar

Day Right Quote #19: I am Not LOST in Thought: I am FOUND in Thought

I understand the phrase "lost in thought," but it's more accurate to say I am "FOUND in thought." Some of the most deeply satisfying, connected, creatively productive moments of my life are when I'm thinking, musing, observing, appreciating and writing.

How about you?

I am not lost in thought, I am found in thought

Day Right Quote #16: It Is Never Too Late to Be What You Might Have Been

George Eliot said, "Its never too late to be what you might have been" 150 years ago ... and it's as true today as when she first said it. When you were young, who did you want to be?

What did you want to do?

Where did you want to go?

It's only too late if you don't start now. George Eliot

Day Right Quote #14: Old Ways Won't Open New Doors

Are you happy with your current life? Satisfied with your relationships, health, finances and career? Congrats! If there are things that are not yet the way you want them to be, the answer is simple.

Do things differently. Old ways won't open new doors.

Select one area of your life you want to improve.

What is one thing you can start doing or stop doing today that is different than your norm?

How will you change things up by NOT doing things the way you always have?

Dulce Ruby said, "Just like the moon; we go through different phases."

What a new phase? Try some new ways. old ways - day right 14

Day Right Quote #12: There Is More to Life Than Increasing Its Speed

Gandhi was right. There IS more to life than increasing its speed. Many of us are working, working, working, rushing, rushing, rushing.

We're heading into a spring weekend.

Instead of going for a run, workout or power walk to get your heart rate UP, could you go for a stroll instead?

The trees are budding.The flowers are blossoming. Breathe it all in.

Appreciation for the miracles that surround us is available anytime we want ... for a moment's NOTICE.

gandhi

Day Right Quote #9: Life is a Window of Opportunity

Life is a window of opportunity. Have you ever thought of it that way?

We are here for a certain amount of time.

Are you taking advantage of your precious window of opportunity to pursue your dreams, connect with loved ones, do what makes you happy?

Henry Miller said, "Life is, for most of us, one long postponement."

What is something you're postponing?

How will you start that, do that, bring more of that into your life THIS WEEK instead of putting it off?

Life is a window of opportunity

Day Right Quote #8: Abundance Comes in Many Forms

Abundance is about so much more than money. Anything that enriches us contributes to our abundance.

That includes new and enduring friendships, enjoyable discoveries, being active outdoors, achieving important goals, connecting with loved ones, learning new skills, contributing to our community.

Anytime we do something that puts the light on in our eyes, we are richer for it.

Anything we do that contributes to our physical and mental well-being results in us being wealthy in what really matters.

How about you? Are you wealthy in what really matters? Are you appreciating the abundance in your life in all its forms?

abundance comes in many forms

Lesson #10. It Wasn't a Mid-Life Crisis; It was Mid-Life Clarity

When I announced my plans to embark upon my Year by the Water adventure, most people were happy for me and said something along the lines of, “Take me with you!” A few, however, expressed “concerns. A meeting planner cautioned me with, “Sam, I hope you know you’re taking a risk by taking yourself off the grid. You need to control this story or the business you’ve worked so hard to build may not be here when you come back. You know, you can’t put the genie back in the bottle.”

A highly successful investor told me, "I'm envious, but I could never just do nothing. I'd go crazy if I didn't work."

Another wanted to know, “Is something wrong?” In other words, “Are you sick, on your deathbed or just having a mid-life crisis?”

I listened to their concerns, and then assured them my decision to take my business on a road trip wasn’t a mid-life CRISIS, it was mid-life CLARITY. I was clear that:

I wasn’t QUITTING work – I was doing a different KIND of work.

I wasn’t doing NOTHING – I was doing SOMETHING that put the light on in my eyes just thinking about it.

There wasn’t anything WRONG with my life – I was taking steps to create a more RIGHT life.

And I certainly wasn’t going to hide this from my business community, I was going to invite them to come along so they could vicariously experience the adventures and insights with me.

What helped me get this mid-life clarity?

Well, a lot of things. One was something my son Andrew told me. Another was a health scare and the doctor warning me I better take better care of myself or my body would do something more drastic to get my attention.

Another was a variety of quotes that served as wake-up calls and motivated me to “get a move on.”

They included Paulo Coelho’s sober reminder, “One day you’re going to wake up and there won’t be any time left to do the things you’ve always wanted to do.”

Another was my clarity of how fortunate I am to be in a position to answer what called me.

I’m not one of the 65 million people (29% of the U.S. population) taking care of a chronically ill, disabled or aged friend or family member. I can operate my business from anywhere. And while I’m not independently wealthy, I’m wealthy in what matters. I have the health, freedom and autonomy to disrupt my life and do things differently.

There was nothing holding me back … so I took eighteen months to swim with dolphins, watch the sun rise over Diamond Head, take a photography workshop in Monet’s Garden, sail the Chesapeake Bay, drive the back-roads of America (and almost over a cliff on California’s Pacific Coast Highway) ... write about my experiences and epiphanies.

I will always be grateful for that adventure. It was one of the most deeply satisfying experiences of my life.

What I didn't anticipate was My Year by the Water ended up NOT being about the water.

Yes, I visited some of nature's wonders - oceans, waterfalls, mountain streams - but what made this experience so memorable and pivotal wasn't the places I visited; it was the disruptive epiphanies that challenged everything I thought I knew about what it takes to lead a meaningful life.

Aristotle said, “An unexamined life is not worth living."

Well, after going 24/7 for the past few decades, this trip gave me the time and space to reflect on my life.

What I discovered, much to my surprise, was that many of my life-long beliefs and behaviors like “It’s better to give than receive” and “Winners never quit and quitters never win” "Hard work is the secret to success" – were not contributing to a quality life; they were compromising it.

As a result of having time to examine what was working, what wasn’t and what I was going to do differently; my life has been enriched in ways that are better than I could have imagined.

I know you’re busy and may not have the incentive or resources to take a road trip.The good news? You don’t have to quit your job, win the lottery, get a divorce or walk away from your obligations to embark upon a "virtual" road trip. In my upcoming book Chase Meaning Not Clicks, you can vicariously experience those put-you-in-the-scene adventures in short chapters, all which can be read in under 10 minutes.

What's even better, ou don't have to wait for the book to come out in early 2018 to benefit from those insights. Here are my top ten lessons-learned. Hope they give you the CLARITY, incentive and inspiration to do more of what puts the light on in your eyes starting today ... not someday.

1. A Life We Love Is Often One Small Change Away

2. We’re Not Torn Between Two Worlds – We Have the Best of Both Worlds

3. Why Do We Keep Driving Into Hurricanes?

4. If We’re Lonely, We’re Not Paying Attention

5. Courage Is Trusting We Can Figure Things Out Along the Way

6. It’s Not Selfish To Put Yourself in Your Own Story

7. There Is No Present Like The Time To Do More of What Puts The Light On In Your Eyes

8. Figure Out What You Want to Do NEXT and Start Doing It NOW

9. Fun Is Not a Four-Letter Word

- - - -

One of the great joys of my life is having the opportunity to share my adventures/insights at conferences. If you're planning a program and would like a presentation that gives your participants an opportunity to connect, reflect, and identify what they can do to stop waiting and start creating a life where the light is on in their eyes, contact Cheri@IntrigueAgency.com. It'd be a pleasure and a privilege to share these inspiring stories with your group so they're creating the quality of life and work they want now, not someday.

it wasn't mid life crisis - it was midlife clarity image

Lesson #9 From My Year by the Water: Fun Is Not a Four-Letter Word

When people ask what prompted me to give away 95% of what I owned and take off for a Year by the Water, I often tell them what Andrew said, “Mom, you’re created a life where you can do anything you want, and you’re not taking advantage of it.” He helped me realize the clock is ticking. Not in a morbid way. In a motivating way. But I was also ready to do the opposite of my always. I love my work, but I was pretty much going-going-going seven days a week. I was exhausted. (Sound familiar?)

Then, like many busy people I know, I came down with a respiratory illness that wouldn’t get better. I “soldiered through” for weeks (got to keep my commitments, right?) until I was so sick I could hardly get out of bed.

A friend took me to Urgent Care. After checking my lungs, the doc diagnosed walking pneumonia, prescribed bed rest and antibiotics, and then said, “I don’t understand why so many people are working themselves to death. You’re lucky we can treat this with a Z-pack. You’ll be fine in ten days. But if you don’t start taking better care of yourself, your body will do something else to get your attention.”

Hmm. What is it with this Puritan Work Ethic? Why do so many of us believe hard work is noble? Why do 55% of Americans NOT take all their paid vacation days? (Fact!) Why do so many of us feel it’s only okay to “play” when all our work is done? Since, for many of us, our work is never done, we never find time to have fun. We just get more and more run down.

I’m supposed to know better than this.

Guess what my major was in college? Recreation Administration! Career counselors kept suggesting I study law or medicine to make the most of my brain, but I grew up playing sports and believed they're at the center of a happy, healthy life. Even though some people told me this was a “joke degree for slackers,” I worked my way through college coaching swim teams, running community centers, organizing sports leagues and was a walking/talking advocate of the benefits of being active outdoors.

Yet, for a number of reasons, for the past couple of decades, I’ve spent more time sitting and spectating than being active. Let’s unpack that for a moment.

As parents, it’s easy for our days to become filled with chauffeuring kids to practices, games and activities while we sit in the car. on the bleachers or on the sidelines. Yet, when I think about my athletic career growing up, my mom came to one of my swim meets and my dad came to one of my tennis matches. That was it. And I didn’t feel bereft, abandoned or unloved. They had their life, I had mine.

As entrepreneurs, or if we have financial and family care-taking responsibilities, we can be in constant biz dev mode, constant got-to-work two jobs to pay bills mode, or constant “It’s selfish to go off and do something my own thing when my parents, kids, friends, neighbors (fill in the blank) need me.”

One of the most important epiphanies from My Year by the Water is, “It’s NOT SELFISH to do something that makes up happy; it’s SMART. It’s not indulgent or frivolous to do something each week that fills us with joy; it’s an investment in a more fulfilling life ... now and in the years to come.”

Please understand, I’m not suggesting we abandon our obligations and only do what we want. I’m suggesting we balance our responsibility to others with a responsibility to our selves to stay happy, healthy and in love with life.

My Year by the Water was SO MUCH FUN. Swimming with Zach the Dolphin. Seeing the sun rise over Diamond Head while riding the waves off Waikiki. Exploring Monet’s Garden. Reveling in a road of my own. Never knowing what was over the next knoll, around the next bend.

Now that I’m on to my next adventure – spending time with my sons, their wives and their brand new babies – I’ve promised myself to NOT let the rubber band of routine snap back and return to being a desk potato.

Like today, for example. I spent a good eight hours at the computer prepping for consulting appointments and working on my new book; but then the mountains called. A friend told me about Colorado Chautauqua I jumped online and discovered it was less than five miles away. I jumped in my car and fifteen minutes later was hiking the golden foothills, exploring the Flatirons and checking out this historic national landmark -which Theodore Roosevelt called “The Most American Thing in America.

So, here’s to fun NOT being a four-letter word. Here’s to fun being an active part of our life (intentional play on words) so we’re enjoying our lives, taking care of ourselves and making the most of our health … now, not someday.

fun is not a four letter word - beach

Lesson #8 From My Year by the Water: Figure Out Your NEXT and Start Doing it NOW

I had an opportunity to speak for a national convention on the topic of "Is the Light On In Your Eyes?" The conference theme was "Reflections on Success" and I started by saying many of us spend more time reflecting on what movie to watch this weekend than on what we're going to do with the rest of our life. Sound familiar?

Many of the people in the audience were successful entrepreneurs who have so many different projects and people counting on them, they feel they can't take time off. Many work 60-70 hour weeks and haven't taken a vacation for years. Some are ready to retire, but can't imagine what they're going to do NEXT that could be as satisfying and productive as what they're currently doing.

I told them we were going to spend the next ninety minutes reflecting on what's working, what's not and what we're going to do about it NEXT. I shared a quiz that can help anyone figure out in 4 minutes what's supporting their happiness, what's sabotaging it.

One of the options we talked about is how to make our passion - what puts the light on in our eyes - part of our profession. Many people told me they're too "busy" to do the hobbies that used to bring them joy. I told them, they can COMBINE their recreation WITH their work in a win-win way - instead of seeing them as being mutually exclusive.

Here's what I mean.

Several years ago, I had the pleasure of sharing breakfast with Ivan Misner, founder of BNI, the largest networking organization in the world. After hearing about my full calendar of #speaking, #consulting and #traveling, he asked, "What do you do for fun?"

Long pause. I finally dug deep and came up with "I walk my dog around the lake."

Please don't get me wrong. I love what I do and I am grateful to have the opportunity to do work with smart talented people who are making a positive difference in the world ... it's just that I was going 24/7.

That conversation and several other wake-up calls motivated me to set out on a Year by the Water. I didn't abandon my business ... I just took it on the road. As James Taylor said when he took a break from touring to compose new lyrics and produce a new album; "I didn't quit work - I did a different kind of work. " I went from non-stop productivity to full-time creativity. I did the opposite of my always and the contrast filled me with joy.

What I learned on my travels is that you don't have to be torn between two worlds - you can have the best of both worlds. You don't have to put aside what puts the light on in your eyes - you can integrate it into your work so you feel more balanced and blessed. You don't have to lose your "hobby" because you're always working, you can leverage your hobby to make your work fun and productive.

Want an example of how this works?

When I lived on#Maui, I had a friend named Kathy who was a 4.5 tennis player and a Realtor. We played a couple times a week until the economy slumped and she told me she was too bus" finding clients to play tennis anymore.

I suggested her hobby wasn't an indulgence she do only when she had spare time - it was a competitive edge that could give her access to ideal clients. I suggested she approach the concierges at the Four Seasons and Grand Wailea Resort (both 5 diamond properties catering to affluent travelers - Kathy's target demographic) and let them know they could recommend her to guests looking for a good game of singles. They eagerly did this because Kathy had lived on the island for years, was a respected member of the community, and they trusted her to make this a good experience for their resort guests.

This turned into a win for everyone. Within a month, Kathy was back to playing tennis 3-5 times a week AND had several new clients buying houses. She didn't offend anyone with hard selling. It was natural while sharing an iced-tea after a satisfying match for guests to ask "What do you do?" When they found out she was a Realtor, they'd often ask if she had any available properties for a good price. Not only was Kathy back to being active outside doing something she loved - it became an organic marketing tool that kept her visible and became her secret sauce to success in a down market.

Want other ways to figure out how you can integrate your passion into your profession and keep the light on in your eyes? Want to leverage your years of experience into a new NEXT that makes a positive difference for all involved?

I'm working on a book that shows how to do that, and will be sharing some of the steps on my www.SamHorn.com site and on my LinkedIn page.

You're invited to check out these sample posts to access some of the specific steps on how to create a unique niche ... and shape work you love that matters NOW, not someday ... so you're creating a life-work integration that is personally and professionally satisfying.

Hope you'll visit those sites. You will never regret clarifying what's important to you and bringing more of that into your life ... you will only regret not doing it sooner.

what is your next - do now

Is It Time to Put Yourself In Your Own Story?

Do you know what my son Tom said when I told him I was taking my business on the road for a Year by the Water? “So, you’re finally going to put yourself in the story.”

Wow. What an interesting and astute observation.

I'm not the only one who took myself out of my own story.

I encountered many people on my travels who were putting everyone else first, themselves last.

They wistfully talked about the dreams they’d put on hold.

Many said they’re so busy taking care of everyone else, they don't have the time or energy to take care of themselves.

They had bills to pay, kids to raise, projects at work, parents with health challenges …the list goes on.

Some seemed to think it’s selfish to do something – even once a week – that makes them happy.

Sound familiar?

One of the most important epiphanies from my Year by the Water is that doing something that puts the light on in our eyes is not selfish; it’s smart.

And we don’t have to quit our job, win the lottery or walk away from our obligations to do this. We can do something that puts the light on in our eyes even if it's once a month. Even if it’s for an hour or two.

It’s not indulgent to do more of makes us happy – whether that’s to curl up with a good book or get back into a hobby we used to love - it’s inspiring. It sets a precedent and gives the people around us permission and incentive to do the same.

What did you give up because you got busy or were told it was selfish?

What used to bring you joy you no longer have time for?

What did you abandon because you were told it "wouldn't pay the bills?"

Bring it back into your life.

It's not too late to become, as Charles Bukowski says, "the person you wanted to be before the world told you what you should be."

Trust that everyone wins when you take responsibility for doing something that lights you up.

You will never regret putting yourself back in the story of your life; you will only regret not doing it sooner.

put yourself in your own story