G Letter - SPRING 2019 - Make Observations Rather Than Assumptions

“The explanation requiring the fewest assumptions is most likely to be correct.”―William of Ockham

We all naturally use patterns to help us understand the world around us.  Making assumptions allows us to use past experiences to recognize patterns and save time and mental effort when we make decisions.  In fact, the reticular activating system (RAS) in our brains helps us filter out things that aren’t important to help us preserve energy and focal power.  Without this ability, we’d likely by overwhelmed by all the stimuli and information we encounter every day.

Despite their obvious usefulness in our daily lives, assumptions are imperfect short cuts that are often inaccurate.  We can overuse assumptions or make an inaccurate assumption about a person or a situation. Assumptions are often driven by emotion instead of actual evidence which is why assumptions can retard our ability to think, discern and make good decisions.

If all our preconceptions and assumptions turned out to be true, life would seem to be more stable and predictive than it really is.  Like it or not, nobody can predict the future. It takes more effort to look, listen and ask questions than it does to sit back and make assumptions.  To make matters worse, after we make assumptions, we often feel the need to defend them. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter what we thought was going to happen or what was supposed to happen because in life we will always be forced to deal with what actually happens. Prioritize discovering the truth over protecting your ego.  Assumptions limit your inquiry and cloud your judgement, so whenever possible make observations rather than assumptions.


G Letter - WINTER 2018 - If You Follow The Herd, You’ll End Up Scraping Shit Off the Bottom Of Your Shoes

Social proof is a powerful heuristic that drives human behavior and fuels social media giants like yelp. Following what everyone around us is doing is easier than thinking independently and in the short run may seem like the smartest and safest thing to do.  

Human beings are social creatures and we follow others and seek consensus for very practical reasons.  For example, avoiding a poisonous food by copying the behavior of the majority of our peers made perfect sense for hunter gatherers trying to survive in dangerous surroundings.  Furthermore, being ostracized or banished from our peer group at that time may have been a near certain death sentence.

Nevertheless, you don’t have to examine human history for very long to see how dangerous groupthink can be.  Although human beings generally live in less threatening times today, the instinct to conform is still with us and can have very negative consequences for us when we blindly follow peers when we invest our money or make life’s most important personal choices about how, where and with whom we live.   

You often hear adults implore children not to succumb to peer pressure by derisively asking, “if your friends jumped off a bridge would you follow?”  Sadly, adults are generally no better than children when it comes to blindly following their peers whether it’s buying the same car they saw the Jones family drive by in or frantically buying their kids the same toy they saw the Jones family kids playing with.   

Following the herd may have been a necessity in our recent evolutionary past but as we ideally improve our lives by climbing Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, we have to ask ourselves if we really want to live or just exist?  For those of us fortunate enough to live comfortably outside of famine-ravaged or war torn areas, life is for living...not just surviving. Really living requires making decisions deliberately not accidentally by using the analytical and decision-making abilities we all possess rather than mindlessly following all the other lemmings over the cliff.


G Letter - FALL 2018 - Never Underestimate Your Potential Or Overestimate Your Competence

Most people never come close to realizing a fraction of their innate potential.  When we’re young we naturally look to adults for validation and guidance. It’s during these formative years where major damage can be done to us psychologically by someone in authority like a guidance counselor who may try to predict our future or decide what we can or can’t do or accomplish.  

The only person who gets to decide what you can accomplish is you. Fortunately, other people’s opinions have absolutely no bearing on what you can achieve. Your potential is limitless, however, there’s a catch….the realization of your goals requires skill and competence that you must painstakingly develop over time.  Your actual expertise is determined by experience which is driven largely by your focus and work ethic.

You don’t become competent in any endeavor through affirmation, you develop expertise through sweat and hard work.  Tangible progress is normally achieved through trial and error which necessitates doing the best you can every day then looking at your results and making appropriate adjustments.  It’s self-destructive to delude yourself into believing you are experienced and competent in some area when you are not. Just because you’re good at one thing doesn’t mean you’ll be good at something else-competence is not universally transferable.  For example, there are many men I know who think they can do home renovations only to find out how difficult it is to do anything for the first time. Over time you can certainly become competent in most areas because your ultimate potential is limitless but not before you put in the work to turn that potential into expertise and tangible accomplishments and results. Onward and upward!

G Letter - SUMMER 2018 - Now Is Always The Right Time

“Procrastination is opportunity’s assassin” Victor Kiam

 

The biggest obstacle to accomplishing your goals isn’t lack of money, personal connections, skill or experience.  The biggest obstacle to you getting what you want done is procrastination. Every goal or task you set out to accomplish can be broken into 2 parts: 1) part one is thinking about doing it 2) part 2 is actually doing it.  Part 1 is easy and effortless, part 2 creates more natural resistance that you must confront if you really want to get something done.  Waiting for the 'right time' is an escape and an excuse--a procrastination enabler.  You're either going to do it or not--if you decide to do it, there's no reason to put if off til later.

This is precisely why now is always the right time to begin doing what you want to get done.  Not tomorrow, next week or next month--now, period. Delay is the enemy of getting things done.  Delay reduces your desire and therefore the likelihood that you will do anything at all.  This starts a vicious cycle where you procrastinate and delay and then feel guilty about doing so.  The irony is that it actually takes time to procrastinate-it takes time to think about something and then choose to postpone it once again!  The next time you're tempted to delay, try this instead: as soon as the thing you want done enters your mind, stop what you're doing (assuming you're not driving a car!) and start doing it right then and there.  Then immediately block out time on your calendar on a regular basis to devote to that goal or project until it's completed if it's a one time thing or until it becomes habitual and secondary if it's an ongoing goal like exercising.  After it becomes a habit, action doesn’t require as much self-propelled motivation because starting creates momentum!  If you’re thinking about doing it, proceed immediately to part 2 and get 'er done. But in order to get 'er done, you have to get 'er started. Don’t wait, just think then act...not later....NOW because now is always the right time!

G Letter - SPRING 2018 - Stop Saying Yes When You Want to Say No

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“The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say no to almost everything.” Warren Buffett

 

Saying yes too often results in overbooking your time.  When flights get overbooked, passengers get bumped--it’s that simple, because there are a fixed number of seats on a plane just like there are a fixed number of hours in a day.  What this means practically speaking is that you will disappoint other people whether you say no upfront or later on.  It’s better to disappoint people up front than to pull the rug out from underneath them down the road when you are forced to renege after making a commitment you shouldn’t have made.  

Saying yes to too many people makes things harder both for you and for the people you’ve committed to.  It can create resentment that can manifest itself in lots of toxic ways and it puts the people you say yes to in a tough bind if and when you have to back out at the last minute.

Cultivate the willingness to say no in the face of social pressure.  As Napoleon Hill said, “fear, the worst of all enemies can be effectively cured by forced repetition of acts of courage”.  Start small, say no to things that aren’t very important so you’ll be comfortable saying no when it really matters.  It’s natural to not want to disappoint people, particularly the most important people in your life.  Fear is at the root of this fear--fear of being judged, rejected or disliked.  Unfortunately, not setting healthy boundaries almost always results in disappointment, so learn how to say no with kindness from the beginning.

3 Tips For Saying No:

  1. Be honest, direct and polite.  Don’t apologize but make clear that you don’t make commitments unless you are sure you can live up to them

  2. Don’t waffle, be firm and final

  3. Practice saying no in situations where you’re dealing with people you don’t know--this will make it easier when you are confronted with saying no to people who are an integral part of your life

G Letter - WINTER 2017 - Personal Growth Should Be A Lifelong Pursuit

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"One can choose to go back toward safety or forward toward growth. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again."-- Abraham Maslow

 

Personal growth is the foundation of emotional health and is a vital part of maturation, success and happiness.  Personal growth is an ongoing process that should continue throughout your life not just when you are very young or in school.  Richard Branson said that “every success story is a tale of constant adaption, revision and change.”  Becoming a better person not only benefits you it also benefits the people around you as well.

Sometimes other people misinterpret change and growth as a threat and may act as an impediment to your personal development.  Jim Rohn insightfully said that “you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”  If the people around you aren’t willing to commit to grow with you, it’s time to replace them with those who can.  Cutting back and redefining your relationship is often more productive than cutting people off completely but you can’t afford to allow others to retard your progress.  

Personal growth starts with a positive mental attitude.  This positive mental mindset inspires us, increases our energy level and confidence---it gives us an avenue to become the greatest version of ourselves possible by expanding our awareness of the possibilities and opportunities that surround us every day.

G Letter

November 2016

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Tuesday, November 8, is Election Day — not a day too soon for many of you! It’s easy to get jaded and pessimistic about our elections. I often hear people of all political stripes gripe about

how corrupt politicians are, how bad their choices are, and how their vote doesn’t matter. There is some truth to those critiques. Although circumstances could always be better, remember that they also have the potential to be a whole lot worse. Democracy can be slow and frustrating, but if you study history, you’ll find that the alternative to democracy is normally worse.

It is OK to complain though — you can voice your complaint in the voting booth. Politics are much simpler than many people think. Convince enough other people of the merits of your position, and you can make a change. It’s easier said than done, but certainly not complicated. People who look like me used to have to guess the number of jelly beans in a jar or bubbles on a bar of soap to register to vote. Luckily, many very brave people risked their lives to remove those barriers.

Regardless of who or what you support, remember that, as George Jean Nathan said, “Bad officials are elected by good citizens who don’t vote.” If you don’t vote, you lose the right to complain. Voting boils down to simple math. If you don’t vote, you magnify the vote of everyone else who does. Elections are decided by the people who show up, so vote like your right to vote depended on it. You never know; it might.

Onward and Upward!

I’m Looking for an Elite Group to Reveal My Most Profitable Real Estate Investing Techniques To

If you’re coachable, open to instruction, and will take what I share and put it into action immediately, complete the application by visiting www.tinyurl.com/glcoachingapplication.

After you complete the application, here’s what will happen:

I will personally review your application to make sure you’re a good fit for my program.

If your application passes, then either I or someone from my office will call or email you to set up a one-on-one interview and strategy session with me. 



G Letter

October 2016


‘Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.’

– Thich Nhat Hanh 


October 7 is World Smile Day, a holiday established by Harvey Ball, an artist who created the smiley face in 1963.

The act of smiling activates neural messaging that benefits both our health and our overall happiness.

Smiling is literally contagious — when you smile at someone, they can’t help but smile back because the part of your brain that is responsible for your facial expression resides in the cingulate cortex, an unconscious automatic response area.

Smiling makes us appear more attractive to others. Researchers at the Face Research Laboratory found that both male and female subjects were more attracted to images of people who smiled than those who did not.

Smiling also lifts our mood, and current research suggests that smiling makes us healthier and may even lengthen our lifetimes. Smiling releases neuropeptides that fight stress. When we smile, dopamine and endorphins — the body’s feel-good neurotransmitters — are released, which in turn relaxes our body and can lower our blood pressure and heart rate. These endorphins relieve pain naturally and the serotonin released when you smile can act as an antidepressant. Take that, big pharma!

So, as the late, great, Zig Ziglar said, “Be helpful. When you see a person without a smile, give them yours.”

Onward and Upward!

I’m Looking for an Elite Group to Reveal My Most Profitable Real Estate Investing Techniques To

If you’re coachable, open to instruction, and will take what I share and put it into action immediately, complete the application by visiting http:// tinyurl.com/glcoachingapplication.

After you complete the application, here’s what will happen:

I will personally review your application to make sure you’re a good fit for my program.

If your application passes, then either I, or someone from my office will call or email you to set up a one-on-one interview and strategy session with me. 



G Letter

September 2016

“The moment you commit and quit holding back, all sorts of unforeseen incidents, meetings, and material assistance will rise up to help you. The simple act of commitment is a powerful magnet for help.”

— Napoleon Hill

“Do not wait; the time will never be “just right.” Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.”

— Napoleon Hill


In the 1980s, Robert Ronstadt conducted a study that found that the most successful entrepreneurs leveraged what is known as the “Corridor Principle.” 

The corridor principle can be described like this: Imagine you’re looking down a long, dark corridor. Without knowing what’s in front of you, you walk forward, and as you move along the corridor, new doors open up on both sides of you — doors that you would not have been able to see had you not started walking down the corridor in the first place.

In a nutshell, the Corridor Principle affirms that the mere act of starting enables you to see and take advantage of opportunities that you wouldn’t be able to see or take advantage of if you stayed put where you are now, waiting for circumstances to be perfect. In order to follow the Corridor Principle to success, you must be willing to launch yourself down the corridor of opportunity without any guarantee of what will happen, because that’s when truly uncommon opportunities manifest themselves.

The truth is that circumstances will never be picture perfect, and let’s be honest — even if they were perfect, we could easily convince ourselves otherwise. So the key to getting your real estate business going or getting anything that you really want started is to launch yourself from wherever you are right now, then look at your results and make adjustments as you go. The Chinese philosopher Laozi, who was a contemporary of Confucius, said that “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” Onward and upward! 

I’m looking for an elite group to reveal my most profitable real estate investing techniques to. If you’re coachable, open to instruction, and willing to take what I share and put it into action immediately, complete the application by visiting tinyurl.com/glcoachingapplication.

After you complete the application, here’s what will happen: I will personally review your application to make sure you’re a good
fit for my program. If your application passes, then either I
or someone from my office will call or email you to set up a one-on-one interview and strategy session with me. 



G Letter

August 2016

“There are always people who will be better at something than you are. You have to learn to be a follower before you become a good leader.” – Charlie Munger, Vice Chairman, Berkshire Hathaway

“Know the rules well, so you can break them effectively.” – Dalai Lama

I’ve been a rebel for as long as I can remember — at least going back to age 4 when I copied an entire children’s book, page by page, with a stack of paper, a stapler, and box of Crayola crayons and then went door to door trying to sell my “recreated masterpiece.” I’ve never liked to play by other people’s rules, but have learned over the years — sometimes the hard way — that there are rules to every game, and even if you want to break the rules, you should learn and master the rules first.

When I was in high school, my Juilliard-educated classical violin teacher, Norman S. Goldblatt, told me, “Gerald, learn it my way first, then you can play it any way you want.” A few years later, I performed at Carnegie Hall and The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Legend has it that Picasso learned to “draw like Ingres,” the French portraitist, before he learned to draw like Picasso. 

You should, too. Become an expert in real estate or whatever trade you choose and learn how to color within the lines. Know the details about how your business works — this knowledge will allow you to spot weaknesses in the old model so you can create a new one. View the world from 30,000 feet in the air, as well as from ground level. At high altitude, you can plan your big picture strategy; while on the ground, you can actually set your plans into motion.

Onward and Upward!

I’m looking for an elite group to reveal my most profitable real estate investing techniques to. If you’re coachable, open to instruction, and willing to take what I share and put it into action immediately, complete the application by visiting www.tinyurl.com/glcoachingapplication.

After you complete the application, here’s what will happen: I will personally review your application to make sure you’re a good fit for my program. If your application passes, then either I or someone from my office will call or email you to set up a one-on-one interview and strategy session with me.