Another Year Older – Not Necessarily Wiser

birthday-cake-2I gave up celebrating my birthday years ago. Once you reach my age, the thrill of blowing  out a bunch of candles looses its appeal. Besides, I’m so old you can’t get a cake big enough for all of them. I have my parents to thank for my good health because the only pills I take are vitamins. Birthdays for me are a time for reflection. A time to look back on the year that was and think about the lessons learned. I figure if you aren’t learning anything new you are robbing yourself of the opportunity to grow. It’s a time to plan for the year ahead. Life is a planned event. Wishing and hoping won’t make it so. But mostly my birthday is a time to celebrate my accomplishments and think about all those things that I am thankful for.

I am thankful for:

  • A very special someone in my life who loves me – faults and all
  • Musical friends and the love of music.
  • What I get to do for a living
  • My son
  • My grandchild – who I get to hang out with
  • My ex-wife who is one of my closet friends
  • My siblings – Greg, Terry, Jerry, Randy and specially Laurie
  • Golf – playing and watching – but mostly playing
  • Movies
  • Red wine
  • Friday night date nights with my special girl Chloe
  • Quite alone time
  • Coffee
  • Spending time with the love of my life. Nothing in this world beats that
  • NFL football
  • College sports
  • A great italian restaurant
  • French fries with mayo
  • Hamburgers with bacon and cheese
  • Friends and family – too many to mention them all
  • Loving parents who are no longer with me but still watch over me
  • My girls – Minnie and Calley
  • Today
  • Tomorrow
  • Blue skies, green grass and sunshine
  • September weather
  • Four seasons, although I’m not really big on winter.
  • Being another year older – Not Necessarily Wiser

I could go on and on and on. I have a great deal to be thankful for. My life is still a mystery to me. There is no way I would have predicted being where I am at this juncture in my life. It’s been filled with both highs and lows. The lows have made me stronger. I know that there is nothing that I can’t overcome. The highs have taught me to be humble and not to get too full of myself.  Reality has a way of bringing you back down to earth.

What are you thankful for? In spite of all the craziness that is going on in your life, take a moment and make a list of all those things you are thankful for. You’ve got a lot going for you – you just may have forgotten them.

Copyright (c) 2016. Brian Smith – Voted Top 100 Leadership Expert, Management Consultant and Author. specializing in soft-skills training and leadership development. To find out more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization visit. https://briansmithpld.com

We Are All Just Passing Through

7-ways-your-wasting-timeAs I approach my sixty-sixth birthday, I’m reminded that I have more years behind me, than what lies ahead of me. Time, unfortunately, is not a renewable resource. We all have just 168 hours in the course of a week, approximately 672 in a month and 8,064 in a year. No more, or no less. Are you spending your time wisely? If someone told you that you had just one more year to live – what is the one thing on your to-do list that you’d want to accomplish? What is that one thing that you’ve always wanted to do, but kept putting it off, thinking that you had all kinds of time? Shoulda, coulda, woulda, should not be part of your vocabulary.

Take a moment and write down that one pressing thing you’d like to accomplish. Would you like to go on a world cruise, learn to play guitar, write a book or skydive? Make it a BIG one. No sense thinking small here.Remember, you only have a year. What’s it going to take to accomplish that goal? I want you to write those things down as well. Once you’ve written all of them down I want you to put a plan together to accomplish each one. Anyone can eat an elephant one bite at a time. Keep your eye on the prize and work your plan.

As you start to work your plan I want you to think of these 2 things.

(1) Only do those things that move you forward. If it won’t move you closer to accomplishing your goal then you need to be disciplined enough to say no. If it won’t move you closer to accomplishing your goal then you are wasting valuable time. Time that you can’t afford to give up. You need to manage your time well.

(2) You need to eliminate all the distractions in your life. You need to walk away from those who are robbing you of your time. That includes family, friends and acquaintances. You know who the time wasters are. You need to be selfish here. Now don’t get me wrong. All work and no play does make for a dull life. Life is a journey that should be enjoyed. So when it’s time to work – work. And when it’s time to play – play a little – and then get back to work. Focus, focus, focus.

This post is dedicated to Lucille Smith, a wife, good mother to her 2 children, and a great grandmother to her 2 grand children. Lucille passed away suddenly. Taken from her family, friends and loved ones way too soon.She is gone, but will never be forgotten. She lives on in the hearts and minds of those she left behind.

Copyright (c) 2016. Brian Smith, Reformed Control Freak. Not to be reproduced without permission. Subscribe to Brian’s Blog and receive a “Free” copy of Brian’s book – “Confessions of a Reformed Control Freak – The Top Ten Sins Most Managers Make & How to Avoid Them”. Visit https://briansmithpld.com to find out more.

On Your Mark – Get Ready – Set – Now Go

2016 - 3It’s that time of year again when we look back on the year that was and direct our attention to the year ahead. Instead of making resolutions the way you’ve always done – try something different this year. Write down 3 action words that will help you focus on your goals. Every action you take this year should be a reflection of what you want to accomplish. If they aren’t – then don’t do it. Resolutions won’t work unless you do. Your life is a planned event. Put a plan together and then work your plan.

Once you decide what you want to accomplish, you need to develop the how. Last year I wanted to improve my golf swing so I took some golf lessons and managed to take 15 strokes off my average score. I wanted to spend more time with my family and friends so I took some vacation time – rare for me because I’m a workaholic. The last thing I wanted to accomplish in 2015 was to expand my circle of influence so I spent one hour a day developing and executing a social media strategy on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and Google +. I accomplished all 3 in 2015 because I had a game plan and stuck to my plan.

My action words for 2016 are Health, Speaking and Finance. What 3 things would you like to accomplish in 2016? What 3 action words will help you stay focused and accomplish those 3 things that are most important to you? What 3 action words will give you the best return on your time investment? You only have 168 hours in the course of a week. No more or no less. Those who accomplish the things in life that are most important to them have learned to invest their time wisely. Spending your precious time on things that won’t get you closer to accomplishing your goals in 2016 is a total waste of your time. Any time is the right time to start a new beginning. On your mark – get ready – set – now go!!! – Make 2016 your best year yet.

Copyright (c) 2016. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Are you or someone you know looking for a keynote speaker who can entertain and inform on a variety of soft-skills topics? Visit http://briansmithpld.com