Make It Happen

I’m tired of people who make excuses. This is my rant.

I work for one of the most driven men on the planet…well at least the most driven man I’ve met in my short 38 years. Now that I’ve been working for Dave Ramsey for 8 years, I guess I’m a bit spoiled by how proactive everyone I work with is about their own growth and success. Dave is constantly setting an example and pushing his leadership team to grow. As a result, we push our teams. This constant push and expectation for growth is one of the things that has helped out company grow by 50% per year since 2001 when I started. For Example: Dave’s Reading List – a list of books for just about every facet of a successful life.

Now to my rant. I’ve got 2 people in my life that I love, but I get soooo irritated when talking about their futures. It seems like the excuses just keep coming. Why are people like that? I would expect it from teenagers or 20 somethings, but we’re talking about 32 year olds. Stop with the excuses. Stop watching TV, going fishing or whatever it is that is keeping you from taking that certification test!!!

There is so much opportunity in this world, we just have to set things in motion in our lives, prepare, then go for it. As I look back over my life, I could have done better. Nobody’s perfect. 🙂 If you want to be successful, it really comes down to sacrifice and time management. Sacrifice some stuff you want to do and management your time with focus on productive things like reading, etc. Here’s a comprehensive reflective list of what I’ve done and am doing to prepare for my future.

  • Travel to the bookstore at least monthly to look for new books.
  • Attend various conferences.
  • Developed relationship’s with other top level leaders in the area. Local CIOs.
  • Worked relationships with Omniture to gain speaking opportunity at the summit. Didn’t pan out, but was able to lead a table at the Mind Meld.
  • Built contacts with Omniture. Leading web analytics company. Interviewed by John Broady and placed on his blog.
  • Scheduled speaking engagements at local colleges to practice speaking skills.
  • Worked on speaking skills by reading The Execeptional Presenter and Good in a Room.
  • Pushed for leadership exchanges on our company’s leadership council.
  • Reached out to other VPs and team leaders in our company. Quarterly lunches. Quarterly business meetings.
  • Launched this blog to help build relationships with other professionals.
  • Built a LinkedIn personality profile.
  • Subscribed to various magazines related to my job and life.
  • Read various books especially those recommended by Dave’s Library.
  • Attended Dave Ramsey’s entreleadership course.
  • Lead local programmer’s user group to test and build my leadership skills.
  • Attended local programmer’s user groups to meet people and grow my skills.
  • Attended java class at local tech school after receiving my B.S.M.E.
  • Did some free web work to build my resume.
  • Bought my own copy of Cold Fusion 4.0 for $1000 to learn about programming on the web. Saw it as in investment in my/family’s future.
  • Spent $1000 on an old laser printer to help with freelance work.
  • Took a 2nd job selling Gateway computers to help pay off debt.
  • Tried my hand at some freelance work. Learned a little.
  • Worked lots of late nights as an manufacturing engineer and network administrator.
  • Learned about computers by subscribing to and reading 5 computer publications religiously.
  • Worked crappy temp jobs out of college. Floor sweeper, auto body man, stainless steel polisher at a fab plant, assembly line at Whirlpool.
  • Worked through college in the summers.
  • Went to college and studied engineering. Took the obnoxious ACT and SAT tests to get there. Didn’t spend too much time at the beach.
  • Studied hard in elementary, middle school, and high school suffered through that boring chemistry class in high school.
  • Read as a youth. Taught myself how to work on cars and rebuild engines via various car magazines.

Some things I’ve had to sacrifice / give up

  • Gave up video games. I wasted untold hours on video games through my 20s and well into my 30s.
  • Choose different friends. There are those that hold you back and those that move you forward. Choose to spend more time with the ones that move you forward.
  • My time. I like to live life on my schedule. It’s better sometimes to live it on other’s schedule.
  • My car addiction. Had to reign it in so I could spend money on better places.

Stop making excuses. Get a plan. Make some sacrifices and reap the fruit of a more fulfilled life.

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