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Critical Lessons Learned Through Experience Along The Way#businessnews#criticalthinking#thoughtleadership#entrepreneurs

Critical Lessons Learned Through Experience - Sometimes Life Comes First!

life lessons


In order to succeed in business you must be full of piss & vinegar(organic vinegar of course). No, but really, you do need a drive and a focus that is not your average smart, high performing executive or key employee. Those are all great professions in their own right, but if you want to own and run a successful business, you need more!#success

The reason why I know this, is because I lived through it and experienced things that most people, even your average business owner never encounters throughout their entire careers. Now I am not writing this to sound like some "Dhali Lama" or some prophet of business. I am simply stating that many of the things I dealt with and mostly overcame were much more intense and had more impact on my family as well as myself, as I sit back and recount the past. It takes extreme stubbornness, self belief, confidence, decisiveness, the ability to live and learn from your mistakes and a super competitive mindset.

 This my fine reader's is just the tip of the iceberg of what is required to really succeed as a business owner. One thing is for sure, you need mental toughness, you must learn to effectively manage people, and you need to lead by example. I believe that enthusiasm is a very under rated trait when it comes to owning a business. It is infectious, it shows your employees that you are passionate and you care, and it builds an effective team atmosphere. You also must realize that your biggest asset is the people who work for you! Yeah, you might be an innovator, a brilliant business person possessing rare traits but, you also must treat your employees with respect, compassion and caring, sometimes.

beware what you wish for


 For years I was so focused on work and the business that I certainly lost track of life in general. I thought that naturally, my business was everything. It is after all, what provided myself and my family the ability to not worry about money, gave me the opportunity to be completely autonomous and that kind of freedom is not only amazing, it is to me anyway, its intoxicating!

The problem is I lost sight of quite a few things along the way. Mainly spending time with my family. I replaced my time or lack of it,  by giving them things. You know, buying them expensive gifts, paying for this, paying for that. Well, that is a mistake, because giving your time and attention is priceless. I unfortunately didn't do that, at least most of the time. Yet they stuck by me, and never once complained. Maybe they didn't want me around? Just kidding. What came so naturally in running my business, was not what came easy, when it came to the one's I love.

It really was an obvious lesson, that I completely dismissed. Call it selfish, self centered, whatever you want, but God damnit did I find a way to justify it? You are damn right I did! Don't make that mistake. I was lucky. My family is close and they actually put up with it, but looking back, they shouldn't have. I would certainly do many things differently looking back, but that is behind me, and if there is 1 thing I know, you can't go back, it does absolutely nothing for anyone involved! You have to commit to living in the present and planning deliberately for the future. It sounds basic, but when you are in it, it can be a very easy thing to just push it aside. Don't.#lifeadvice

Again, many of my situations, especially the first 3 or 4 years were virtually shut down the business, give up, or keep fighting, roll your sleeves up and find a way to keep going. Sure, it was important. Sure, it worked. Was there a price? You bet there was. But I guess there is a cost for every action, or choice you make in life. When I would have a decision to make about business, I would be so engrossed in it, that I would take it apart, study it, look for every possible outcome or angle there was. It was an obsession. Yet I didn't put that kind of energy into my family, I just assumed that, this was my role and they would understand. Then it all came to an end. Suddenly. I was nobody. I had no identity and when I looked for my family for support, they just weren't the people I thought I knew. It wasn't as if they just threw me away, far from it. But there was a lack of, how should I put this. A lack of actually knowing who I was. I suffered from the same thing, because when it all ended, I had no idea who the person looking back at me in the mirror was. Sure, I had a $1.5 million house, 3 Mercedes, 35 vintage guitars, anything I wanted except the people who were the most important thing in my life. The people I convinced myself I did all this for! Well I have some news for you, I was doing it all for me. 

Now I sit here, and wonder why I am so unhappy. I have a job, but it is well below anything I am certainly qualified for. I struggle to pay the bills every month, as a matter of fact, without my family working and contributing I wouldn't be able to live in the rental I am currently in! Believe me, it is not luxurious. It is a 3 bedroom split level home about 1/4 the size of our home, I lost, due to the bank foreclosing on it last March. Yes that's right, I lost my company, my income, my cars, my house, and still my family is still here! Go figure, right? 

I should be thankful. I am to an extent, but really I am still very unhappy. I failed no question, but its not only that, I have no one to blame but myself. In order for me to be "happy", I need to be a success. Now a lot of people measure success in very different ways. Not me. It is how much do you make, and are you the one responsible for making whatever it is, what it is! What a horrible thing to realize, but I couldn't be more serious. I feed off of this. It is what defines me. Why? Oh boy, that is for another post, but let's just say I'm overcompensating for some very real shortcomings in my makeup. It certainly isn't the "Napoleon" complex, I'm 6'4". It is deeper than that, and maybe some day, I'll have the balls to actually figure it all out and tell people. That time isn't now. The 1 thing I can say I never did though, was treat people with a lack of respect, or act as if I was better than anyone. I see it all the time, but thank God, I didn't do that. But anyway.....

No. I'm too busy, plotting my next venture. You see if I could, I'd try to find happiness and fulfillment in life, but I simply can't. It is not how I'm wired. I need to be driving the bus, not riding on it! I need to go to work everyday, and know that me being there is better than anyone else that could possibly be sitting in that chair. I need to count in this very way, or I will be a failure in my mind, and I can't accept that. I need to make a difference!

Now I know I have been extremely hard on myself, but I can't think of 1 successful person that isn't? What am I going to do?  The thing that I do more naturally than anything else I have ever encountered. I am going to keep searching for my next great adventure. I am going to never give up. I am going to put myself out there, and try to assist other business owner's with the knowledge I have. I am somehow, someway going to be fulfilled. There is no point in living if you aren't striving to be exactly who you are! That's not a quote, I made that up. 

After all the bumps, peaks, valleys, triumphs, losses, worry, after everything, I am still here, and I am going to significantly make my mark. What is that?

I have no idea, but I know that I will find it. How? Because I am relentless, and I never ever quit. I might feel sorry for myself, hell, I might even look for a time where I fall off the face of the earth. But in the end, I know who I am, and I will lead again. Only this time, I will do it with a world of knowledge and experience, not just energy and willingness. That will make a huge difference. I can't wait to get there!

Keep moving forward, and never give up on yourself!  Please, if you have enjoyed what you have read, leave your email address. I will not be someone who fills up your inbox. I will simply give you quality information to hopefully help you, achieve your dreams. That's a promise. Even better, just email me if you'd like with a comment or anything really. My email address is, just make the subject line, "Blog". Thank you. Joe 





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