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Positively the Worst Advice Ever if You Want to Find Your Talent

2 steps to find your talent | BIGG SuccessSaturday Night Live recently mocked the entitlement paradigm with a bit called You Can Do Anything. It’s about a talk show where the guests are encouraged to do whatever they think they can do.

No matter how good they are.
No matter if they’ve ever done it before.
It doesn’t matter.
You can do anything!

We agree.
You can do anything.
You may not do it well.
You may fall flat on your face.
You may fail.

With a little practice, you will surely get better at it.
With a lot of practice, you may even achieve some level of success.

But you won’t reach BIGG success. So “You Can Do Anything” is the worst advice you can ever receive.

Listen to this post! Click a player to hear George & Mary-Lynn on The BIGG Success Show. (Runtime 4:48)

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Mary-Lynn FosterI wanted to be an astronaut. But math and science were not strength. My mom said to me, “Math and science are going to be really important if you want to be an astronaut.” That was really important to me. I realized how much work it was going to take for me to be an astronaut.

Look at American Idol. The people who reach the finals, and ultimately win, have spent years honing their craft. They may be young, but most of the time, they’ve been singing for ten or more years.

Now we’re all about positive thinking. But sometimes the best thing you can discover is what you can’t do.

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George KruegerI was a decent athlete in a much earlier era of my life. But the problem is I played all sports – football, basketball, baseball. Now, I was never going to be a great basketball player. But I could have been a much better baseball player if I had been forced to focus.

Look at Michael Jordan. In our opinion, he’s the greatest basketball player of all time. He’s also a pretty good golfer. But he tried baseball and didn’t make it.

 

Which raises the question – will you be content with success?
Or is it BIGG success you’re after?

We can only conclude the latter since you’re here with us.
So you’re a BIGG goal-getter.

Step 1

To reach BIGG success, follow George Costanza’s example. Instead of following the advice we hear all the time – think “can” – do the opposite and think “can’t”.

That’s Step 1: to find your talent.

Sometimes it pays to think about you can’t do. Because you may find it easier to spot your shortcomings than your strengths. But you’re not going to stop there!

Step 2

You’re going to quickly move to Step 2: Think the opposite. You’re not a detail person? Okay. Are you a BIGG picture thinker?

Not good at math? Are you good at English?

This is what you often see. There’s a yin and yang to talent. We tend to naturally fall into categories.

Discovering what you can’t do often helps you discover what you can do. And leads to BIGG success.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00777-011312.mp3

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The High Cost of Instant Success

high costBy now, we all know Ted Williams – the homeless man with the golden voice. His video went viral in hours.

The media jumped all over him. Within days, he was on The Today Show. Within a week, he had appeared on The Early Show, Jimmy Fallon, Dr. Phil and Entertainment Tonight. He had job offers from MSNBC, the Cleveland Cavaliers and Kraft. It was even reported that Jack Nicholson had personally called offering a role in an upcoming movie.

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Unfortunately, personal issues rose to the surface just as quickly. Ted’s star burned bright. But it fell as quickly as it came to light.

We hope we see him in the spotlight again – when he’s ready for it.

Fame and fortune should be by-products
Many people believe that fame and fortune are the answer. They aren’t. They may be a by-product of BIGG success. However, they won’t – in and of themselves – lead to fulfillment.

They aren’t the end, either. In fact, many studies have shown they’re barely the means for achieving happiness. Fame and fortune are goals that are empty.

What would you do with your fame and fortune? When you know the answer to that question, you’re a step closer to being ready for it.
 
Natural talent is a small part of the equation
Ted definitely has a talent. He was discovered with a sign that said, “I have a God-given gift of voice.”

But he was only partially right. He received training years ago. It takes hard work. It takes time. It takes hard work over time to become proficient.

But it takes more than that. Ted says drugs and alcohol ruined his career, his life. He’s not alone. Drugs and alcohol keep many people from reaching BIGG success.

Have you discovered your gift? Are you investing time to master it?

BIGG success comes for a price
BIGG success is life on your own terms. There’s a principle of negotiation – you get to set the price or the terms, but not both. That is, unless you’re negotiating with a fool. And BIGG success is no fool!

If you set the terms for your life, BIGG success sets the price. You have to be prepared to pay it or you’ll never reach BIGG success.

As a society, we seem to have bought into the fallacy of instant success. Kids dream of being stars. Adults play the lottery while dreaming of how they would spend the money. Yet most people who win the lottery end up in worse financial shape within years.

We think shows like American Idol demonstrate instant success. But they don’t – do you ever see a contestant who gets deep into the competition without years of training?

The internet does occasionally produce instant stars – like it did with Ted. Unfortunately, as has been demonstrated in this case, BIGG success demands a price even if you are an instant success.

And the price is usually a lot higher when fame and fortune come quickly. So if you’re struggling to reach BIGG success, count yourself lucky!

Cinderella stories usually turn out much better in the movies than they do in real life. Prepare, prepare, prepare … so you’re ready for BIGG success!

Just a note: If your heart goes out to people like Ted, check out Invisible People. Mark Horvath is doing some BIGG things bringing light to the plight of our nation’s homeless people.
 

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00606-071210.mp3

(Image in today's post by ljleavell)

Idols are Not Idle

american_idol.jpgLast night was the Grand Finale of this season’s American Idol. Once the votes were counted, Kris Allen was crowned the new Idol.

He’s a great singer and seems like an all-around nice guy. He really came into his own over the course of this season. There were so many really good singers in the group, including Adam Lambert who seemed to be the odds-on favorite.

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The ten-year rule

One of the challenges we have in reaching bigg success is thinking that it happens overnight. American Idol certainly gives that impression. After all, how many people had heard of Kris Allen five months ago?

Not many. However, he did a lot of work out of the spotlight to get to this point. He’s had formal training and been singing for about sixteen years.

So although it may seem that he’s an overnight sensation, a lot of blood, sweat and tears led to his crowning achievement.

That’s usually the case in any field. In fact, psychologists talk about the ten-year rule: it takes roughly ten years to develop the skills needed to reach bigg success in any endeavor.

The cost of thinking it’s a gift

While the debate rages on – is it natural talent or developed skills – there’s more and more evidence that hard work, with focus, over a span of time, is what usually produces the extraordinary successes we see.

In our culture, we see people like Kris who become media darlings overnight. So there’s a tendency to think he just has that certain something.

The problem with buying into that thought-process is that you lose your resiliency in the face of adversity. If you think that bigg success just happens, you’ll be more likely to give up when things don’t come easy. And you know it don’t come easy!

There’s more than one 3 o’clock in a day

We recently attended SOBCon, the business school for bloggers, and met Jon Haydon. Jon had a great blog post about seeing his social media idol, Chris Brogan, speak at the conference. Chris is an idol to a lot of people including us.

For those of you who don’t know who Chris is, first of all – he’s a super person. Second, he has reached the heights of influence in social media circles everywhere you look – from Ad Age to Technorati and beyond.

Jon’s post was fantastic. He got a number of great comments. We found one particularly revealing. It was by Lewis Howes, who we also met at SOBCon. Lewis commented about a conversation with Chris, who said that “he stayed up until 3:00 every morning for four years to get to where he is!”

At SOBCon, we heard Chris asked about how he got started. He said it goes back ten years to the early days of chat rooms.

Lewis added in his comment, “He didn’t just pop up out of no where and ascend to the heavens … No! He worked his butt off every day and didn’t let others hold onto his string.”

Well said! Bigg success takes time and hard work. It doesn’t just happen overnight. It won’t be easy. Just keep the faith and keep on plugging … you will be a bigg success!

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Please join us next time when we discuss a fun way to clear out the clutter. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00399-052109.mp3

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(Image in today's post from American Idol)

Take Me Out to the Free Ball Game

george_marylynn_baseball.jpbA one. A two. A three. Take me out to the ball game …

We can hear Harry Carey singing it right now! (We’ll warn you: If you listen to our show today, you can hear why we could never be on American Idol!)

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Bigg success is life on your own terms. There are five elements of bigg success – money, time, growth, work and play. Today we’ll focus on play.

If you’re a regular reader, you know we’ve confessed that play is the thing we struggle with the most. We love our work. We’ve found that thinking about the five elements of bigg success helpful because we make sure we schedule some play time.

We love baseball, but going to a Major League Baseball game can be a real budget-bender. By the time you buy the tickets, pay for parking, and grab a hot dog, you can spend some serious smack!

You don’t have to throw your budget a curve ball to have fun at the old ball game

We feel fortunate to live in a University town. We have some bigg time sporting events, including a baseball team that is doing very well this year. Go Illini!

Last year, we kept talking about going to a game but never made it. They start early when it’s too cold for us to watch a game outside.

This year we made a commitment to go, so we were keeping an eye on their schedule. Lo and behold, they ran a bigg promotion – you could get into the game for free (it normally costs $5) and you could even get free food.

Now that’s a bigg deal!

And the promotion was a bigg success! They had a record attendance. In fact, so many people showed up, we decided it was worth buying food from the concession stand instead of waiting for the free stuff.

It was a great game. We had lots of fun and some good time together as a couple (see pictures on our Flickr page). That’s the best part. The second best part was that Illinois came back to win in the ninth inning!

But what if you don’t have a University team in your area? Can you still take in a ball game on the cheap? Baseball, you bet!

Summer college baseball leagues. College baseball players finish their collegiate schedules early. They want to keep playing without jeopardizing their amateur status. So college leagues have sprung up. We have a team about thirty miles from us (ticket prices are $6 – $9). Check the National Alliance of College Summer Baseball site for the team closest to you.

Minor leagues. Future professional baseball players have to train somewhere. There are minor league teams all over the country. We have a AAA team fairly close to us ($6 – $10 for a ticket). If you don’t know of one in your area, check out the Minor League Baseball site.

Amateur leagues. We have several teams in our area like this. You can take in a game for a few bucks plus any food and drinks you may want.

Little Leagues. We love watching the Little League World Series on television. Check out the raw talent in your area to a Little League game. You can’t beat the price and there are games all over. We have a field within walking distance of our house.

So what’s the bigg idea? Tap into your local community and have a bigg day out at the ball park!

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Get the tips and tools you need to be a BIGG success.
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thanks so much for reading our post today. Please join us next time when we discuss how some friends of ours taught their teenage daughter the value of money. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00395-051509.mp3

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The Work-Play Tradeoff

(Image in today's post from our Flickr page our Flickr page)

The Most Important People of 2008

new_year Michael Bailey recently wrote a post about an e-mail you may have received before. It was very timely and got us thinking about events of 2008. Let’s test your memory …

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Who won the World Series? We know it was NOT the Chicago Cubs. Will that ever happen? The Philadelphia Phillies won it this year. Maybe baseball’s not your thing, so let’s try this one …

Who won the Super Bowl last year? The New York Giants.

What movie won the Oscar for best film?    No Country for Old Men

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georgeI have to admit that I haven’t seen this movie. On the other hand, I don’t have a country either!

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marylynn
You aren't an old man either…yet!

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Who topped the Forbes 400 this year? Warren Buffett overtook Bill Gates to be named the richest person in the world. Of course, this was long before the recent financial turmoil. We’ll see how he rates this next year.

Who was the American Idol? You may say, “Who cares?” You may not, but millions do. It was David Cook.

So how did you do? We found it interesting that we didn’t really remember many of these events without some prodding.

The surprising list of the most important people of 2008

We had to look many of these up. For example, as soon as we realized the Giants won the Super Bowl, we could picture in our minds the pass from Eli Manning, escaping the nearby defenders, to David Tyree, who caught the ball on top of his helmet. That catch allowed the Giants to keep the drive going that ultimately lead to the winning touchdown.

As we discussed it, we realized there are people who you remember without having to really think about it. So here are a few questions for you to think about to help discover the most important people of 2008:

  • Name a friend who helped you through a difficult time in 2008.
    They deserve a toast!
  • Name a person who taught you something worthwhile in 2008.
    Roll out the red carpet for them!
  • Name someone who made you feel special in 2008.
    Give them a bigg party horn toot!
  • Name a person who you particularly enjoyed spending time with in 2008.
    Reach out and touch them – figuratively, not literally!

This list is not exhaustive. Feel free to add categories. But you get the point – in spite of the fact that there are people who accomplish bigg things, who excel in their chosen field, we often don’t remember it.

It’s the people who affect us individually that we remember. We recall those little acts of kindness, that one-to-one help, individual caring and sharing. These things may seem small and inconsequential, but they’re not because they affect us personally.

So here’s one more question: Who would put you on their list?

We do! You’re on our list of the most important people of 2008 because you take time to check in on us. We thank you so much and wish you a peaceful, prosperous, and happy New Year! Here’s to your bigg success in 2009!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00298-123108.mp3

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(Image in today's post by Tinneketin)