Monthly Archives: February 2014

Tommy Can You Hear Me? Listen up!!

I was driving my teenage daughter to school this morning when she pulled out her phone and cranked up “Don’t Fear The Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult. Up until this day, Daddy was an old-timer, a square, way behind the times, no taste in “today’s” trends. Smithereens play tommy from

Suddenly, for the first time in years, I found a commonality with Sydney. Next she pulls up “Carry On” by Kansas. Then Pink Floyd. What was happening? I don’t know, but this was awesome!

So I pulled out MY iPhone and saw a golden opportunity to bond with my little girl again. It was priceless.

I set it up on my car’s Bluetooth and voice commanded Siri, “Play Rolling Stones.” On comes Brown Sugar and I crank it up.

Now I had jammed to The Stones – and Brown Sugar – a thousand times over the past 35 years. But this morning it was somehow different. Horribly different.

“Gold coast slave ship bound for cotton fields,

Sold in a market down in New Orleans,

Scarred old slaver know he’s doin’ alright,

Hear him whip the women, just around midnight.

Ah brown sugar how come you taste so good?

a-ha brown sugar, just like a young girl should, a-huh”

As I realized the lyrics in a literal sense, seriously, for the first time in my life – I almost pulled a muscle forwarding to the next selection, which was on “Shuffle.” CLICK!

Cool, Billy Idol!

“Rock the cradle of love.

Rock the cradle of love.

Yes, the cradle of love, don’t rock easily its true.

It burned like a ball of fire,

when the rebel took a little child bride,

to tease yeah – so go easy – yeah . . .”

CLICK!

Holy crap. I’ve listened to these lyrics a million times (and sung them), but until this morning I’d never “heard” the lyrics with the ears of a father driving in the car with his 14 year old daughter. This is wrong.

OK, Aerosmith. Classic!

Love in an elevator

Livin’ it up when I’m goin down

Love in an elevator

Lovin’ it up til I hit the ground.”

CLICK!

Sports talk radio. Embarrassed sigh of relief.

“You know babe, these were all great songs but I guess I never listened to the words.”

“I always listen to the words, daddy.”

“Great.”

This whole horrifying car ride to school made me wonder if I was the only idiot on the planet, or did everybody just jam out and sing songs without really internalizing the lyrics. Maybe it’s a guy thing?

Then – as usual – I began to wonder about it as it relates to business, life, and (of course) to network marketing.

Do people just experience life without actually paying attention?

Do people sit in my day-long trainings and listen to everything I say, but hear nothing?

Are they jamming along to the music, enjoying the hell out of it, but not internalizing anything I’m saying?

Listening is probably THE MOST IMPORTANT quality of a successful sales person and most especially of a network marketing professional. Too often people are so busy thinking about what they’re going to say next, that they can’t hear what the person their conversing with is saying. Their message is scripted and may not even be relevant to their audience.

Have you ever been introduced to somebody and forgotten their name within 15 seconds? It’s because you’re hearing but not listening.

The most successful people don’t try to dominate a conversation and talk all about themselves. They ask questions and actually listen to the answers. If you master the art of listening, you develop the keen ability to identify your customers, your business partners, and your leaders because you hear the person you’re talking to. You’ll find that you are more magnetic and more likable.

You don’t have to posses any great skills to become a great listener because you don’t actually have to do anything. You don’t have to solve, fix, or explain anything. You simply have to listen. “Two ears and only one mouth,” right? And we can all be better.

Makes me think about my wife walking into my office while I’m in the middle of something. She lays out a few things she’d like me to do that day and I can definitely hear her voice. But the second she drives up the driveway, and I look up from my computer, I can’t remember a damn thing she said.

“Tommy can you hear me?

Can  you feel me near you?

Tommy can you feel me?

Can I help to cheer you?

Tommy?

Tommy?

Tommy?”

 

Oh well, I guess I can’t change the whole world!

I’m Glad I Drank the Kool-Aid!

Work Sucks!

“How many hours a week do you work?”  george-carlin_00386516

I get that question a lot.

Work. Interesting word. What does it mean? Does it have a single meaning?

Maybe it’s like the word “sports.” It means one thing, but there are so many different kinds of sports.

But even with sports, the word itself has a very loose definition that can be left open to interpretation.

Watching the ice dancing on the Olympics the other night, for example, I began debating on whether or not it should even be classified as a sport. Some of these Olympic events like curling are not sports in my world. Curling is life-sized shuffleboard.

George Carlin had the best comedy routine about what is and isn’t a sport.

“Swimming isn’t a sport!” he said. “Swimming is a way to keep from drowning!”

Let’s get back to the word “work.”

I think, as a society, we’ve been raised to think of the word as a negative one. “I can’t play. I have to go to work.”

Our belief is that we have to work to live, and then – if we’re lucky – we get to take a vacation from work. Again, bad thing.

“I need more money, so I have to work a second job.”

The actual definition of the word “work” is:

1- activity in which one exerts strength or faculties in order to perform something.

2- sustained physical or mental effort to overcome obstacles and achieve an object or a result.

3- the labor, task, or duty that is one’s accustomed means of livelihood.

4- a specific task, duty, function, or assignment often being a part or phase of some larger activity.

5- energy expended by natural phenomena.

6- the result of such energy.

 

So I guess work is kind of like sports!

If I watch Sports Center while walking on a treadmill, did I spend all day at work?

If I lay on the couch and watch documentaries on television – as long as I “exert my faculties” (really think about what I’m seeing) then am I working my ass off all day?

I’m calling BS on all those definitions.

The real definition should be:

Something one does, or someplace one goes, (normally against their will) to perform a task in exchange for money. 

It’s the opposite of play.

A lifetime of conditioning has led 99.9% of people to that very definition.

Anthony Robbins says that people do everything for one of two reasons: either to gain pleasure or to avoid pain.
I submit that most people don’t consider “going to work” something they’re doing to “gain pleasure.” It’s normally the latter.
Don’t even get me started on the word “homework.”

 

Full disclosure – I have always admitted that I am an inherently lazy guy.

My strongest character trait is that I HATE BEING TOLD WHAT TO DO!

Therefore, I absolutely refuse to work. (At least, by the word’s true definition . . .  which I just exposed).

I had 22 different jobs from age 17-23, mostly for the reason stated above. I quit most of them, and got fired from the rest (for indifference). But my last job, I kept from age 23-33.

It wasn’t so bad. I think lots of people get stuck in the “my job’s not so bad” rationalization.

Their conditioning tells them that everybody has to work, so if you can find a job that’s not so bad you can convince yourself that you love it. Then the years start to evaporate behind you.

When I was first offered an opportunity to start my own business – and work (uggh) from home – my first though was “why would I want more work?” Why would anyone?

I quickly learned that working in your own business is night-and-day different than working for somebody else. In fact, it’s a different definition completely.

It’s kind of like vacuuming the pool. I really enjoy vacuuming my pool, but I will NEVER vacuum your pool! I like it because it’s mine!

I used to hate mowing the lawn when I was a kid, but as soon as I bought my first house I loved mowing the lawn (that wore off BTW). The difference is that it’s not really work when it’s yours. It’s only work if you’re doing it for somebody else! Hmmm.

I have nothing against “traditional” business and I certainly don’t intend to offend anyone. I’m not one of those whacko’s who denounces jobs and work. I know that there are several great professions, and many many people have become very successful going to work. My litmus self-test, though, would be the following question: Do you have to go to work on Monday? Or do you get to go to work on Monday?

One of the most beautiful things I discovered about network marketing, is that it’s a way to help people out of that box. It gives “get-out-of-the-box thinkers” the ability to keep their full-time jobs – which pay the bills – and work for themselves part-time until the income from their part-time work (which doesn’t feel like work), reaches or surpasses the income from their full-time work. Then your work becomes your play. Kind of like sports!

I better quit before I completely murder this metaphor!

George Carlin says, “Oh, you hate your job? Why didn’t you say so? There’s a support group for that. It’s called EVERYBODY, and they meet at the bar.” Wow, two Carlin quotes in the same blog post.

Oh well, as the Seven Dwarfs sang . . . “Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to work I go!”

I’m Glad I Drank the Kool-Aid! 

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