My $21,000 Success (and Life) Lesson
“This is the vision and the dream I have for my life…” I told my business coach as she sat across the table from me.
I had paid eleven thousand dollars to meet with her for a four hour VIP day—and another ten thousand for her year-long coaching program.
Twenty-one thousand dollars invested and her reply on that VIP day was that I couldn’t make the money I wanted living my dream. Instead, if I was serious about building a successful seven-figure business, I had to set it up a certain way.
Never mind the fact it wasn’t what I wanted or that it wasn’t aligned with the vision I had for my life.
Several weeks later, while sitting in one of her workshop intensives and trying to convince myself to be excited about my business (and subsequently my life), I recalled a conversation I’d had almost a year earlier.
It was with a successful businessman whose company I helped him sell for a hundred million dollars. We were sitting in his living room five years after the sale and he revealed that at only fifty years old, he had been diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Then, he confessed that despite all the luxuries, the travel, the money and what appeared to be a solid marriage and family life, he wasn’t happy.
He wasn’t living the life he really wanted.
As I recalled this conversation, the utter ridiculousness of my current situation suddenly hit me. I realized I’d forgotten the definition of success expands far beyond achievement, material stuff and money (although these are all great things!).
That success also means living our potential, experiencing vibrant health, creating awesome relationships, experiencing increased happiness and using our unique talents to change the world.
In a nutshell, success is about being who we want to be and living the life we want to live.
As a result of my unexpected trip down memory lane that day, and as I sat at the workshop intensive with my bank account now $21,000 lighter, I knew this coach was wrong—as was I for listening to her.
So I left the program, changed my path to match the vision I had for my life and success has followed.
Because sometimes the moral of a story is not the expense of the lesson, but whether or not we apply the lesson learned to change our lives for the better going forward.
In this case, my $21,000 success (and life) lesson—one that applies to each of us no matter our past decisions or our current situation—is that this is our life.
That means we decide who we want to be, how we want to live and what we can or cannot do with our lives, including our dreams.
This also means that if we don’t assume full responsibility for what we want or for shaping the life we want to live, there is one thing that is absolutely guaranteed…someone else will gladly shape it for us.
And in the end, that’s an expense none of us can truly afford.