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Santa's Helpers

Yesterday, Santa stopped by our studio and told us 75 how he stays so jolly].  Today, we want to share a story about two of Santa’s helpers – you may or may not be familiar with it.

It all began 27 years ago. Larry Stewart was broke. He was also very hungry. He saw a little diner. He went in. He admits that he planned to order breakfast, and then when it was time to pay …. he planned to pretend that he’d lost his wallet. 

The owner of the diner must have had a sixth sense. As Stewart had finished eating, the owner came out from behind the counter and bent down to pick something up from the floor. “Here,” he said to Stewart, “you must have dropped this.” It was a $20 bill!

Stewart made a vow that day. He would help others whenever he could. He did just that. He started immediately. When he had some spare money, he would find someone in need and share his good fortune.

As time passed, Stewart started and succeeded in his own business. But every year, at Christmas, you could see him looking for people who needed a lift. He would give them cash … asking only that they help someone else in return. He became known as “the secret Santa.”

That’s because he did all of this anonymously. We only learned his identity last Christmas, as he realized it would be his last – you see, he was losing his fight with cancer. We lost Larry Stewart in January. During his life, he managed to give away about $1.3 million as the secret Santa.

But his legacy isn’t over. As Stewart lay dying in his hospital bed, a fellow businessman and friend promised Stewart that the mission would be carried on – the businessman vowed to be the next secret Santa. This year, he has crossed the United States going to thrift stores, laundromats, bus stations, and the like handing out $100 bills – maybe one, maybe more – to people in need.

By Christmas, he will have given out $75,000 of his own money. He says he gets a great return – the joy that it creates for him and the people who receive his gift. They know that they’ve received an unconditional gift – based on nothing more than one human being caring for another.

Here’s the secret Santa in action. A couple lost one of their four children to a rare form of cancer in November. They faced incredible medical bills. They warned their remaining kids that Christmas might not come this year.

One day, they heard a knock on their door. Standing there was the secret Santa. He handed them $1,000!

We thought it appropriate today to quote the new secret Santa. 

“Secret Santa lives in each and every one
of us, it’s just a matter of letting him out.”

The good news is that this idea is catching on. More and more people are contacting the new secret Santa. Even interning with him to see how he does it. You can see too in this special report from CBS.

Next time, we’ll discuss the timeless secret for overcoming all the odds … for making your star shine bright.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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W.Clement Stone’s Success System

By Bigg Success Staff
December 06, 2007

Timeless Principles

W. Clement Stone was a student of success. This paper boy eventually became the head of a billion dollar insurance company. Along the way, he overcame extreme poverty, a tough neighborhood, the loss of his father at the age of three, and many other obstacles.

In his great book, The Success System That Never Fails, he describes the three things he learned as a frightened six-year old boy selling newspapers. These three things propelled him to success.

3-Step Success Formula

  • Inspiration to action
  • What motivates you? Not because you have to do something, but because you want to do it. Are you unhappy with your current situation? Then change it by changing yourself. Do you want more out of your life? Find your passion and pursue it relentlessly.Stone opens the book by writing about his days as a paperboy. He was motivated to do well because he needed the money. He had invested all of his savings in newspapers. Newspapers that would be worthless at the end of the day. He had to sell them. So he kept pushing.

  • Know-how
  • Know-how is knowledge applied successfully. You learn your craft by trying again and again. Every time you try, you either succeed or fail. Either way, you learn. When you succeed, you know what to do the next time. When you fail, you learn what not to do next time.Stone learned that patrons of a corner diner would buy papers to read while they ate their dinners. However, the owner of the restaurant didn’t like this child peddling papers in his place. He kept kicking Stone out. Stone would sneak back in and sell papers. He learned to be persistent.

  • Activity knowledge
  • It’s important to learn from your own successes and failures. It’s even better if you can learn from the successes and failures of others. Get to know your product. Learn the methods that have and haven’t worked for others.Stone knew what to say, because he watched other successful paper boys shouting out the day’s headlines to get their customers’ attentions.

Stone promises a lot, even in the title to this book. He also promises that his system will work if you work his system. What’s your inspiration to action right now?

(Image of sprinter by Gio JL )

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The Young And The Restless Seniors

By Bigg Success Staff
December 07, 2007

Success Stories

80_over_80_jpg30_under_30_jpg

What’s the best age to own your own business? That’s a tough question to answer judging by two recent profiles.

33 Success Stories
You’ll see that age is not an issue because Inc. focuses on octogenarians (and then some) in business with their profile of 8 business owners over 80. These entrepreneurs are about 87 years old, on average, although Jack Weil is the sage of the group at 106. He runs Rockmount Ranch Wear, which sells western apparel.

Business Week looked at the other end of the age spectrum in their third annual profile of 25 entrepreneurs under 25. On average, they’re just over 22 years old, with the youngest entrepreneur profiled being 16-year old Jasmine Lawrence. She is the founder and CEO of Eden Body Works, which sells all-natural personal care products.

So what can you learn from these 33 success stories?

  • You’re never too young to start your own business. You’re never too old, either!
  • If you’re too young to be trusted with major responsibilities, start your own business. Now that’s responsibility! If you’ve reached that age where no one will hire you, start your own business and hire yourself!
  • You have to take risk, but make it manageable. If you read between the lines, you’ll see most of the entrepreneurs in these two profiles started small, often from their home or apartment.
  • On a related note, you don’t need a lot of money to start a business. Let’s not kid ourselves – money may help. However, many of these entrepreneurs started businesses that required relatively little money or were in industries desirable to capital providers.
  • More people, of all ages, are launching their own business. Why not you?

Bonus: 30 more success stories
If you’d like to see more profiles of young people starting their own business, check
out 30 under 30: America’s Coolest Young Entrepreneurs from Inc. While not as timely as the other two (it was released in July of this year), you’ll get even more ideas and inspiration from this slide show.

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The Art Of Seeing Opportunity In Adversity

By Bigg Success Staff
November, 25 2007

John Bramblitt jpg 

Success Stories 

John Bramblitt is an unusually gifted painter. More importantly, he is an inspiration to countless numbers of people. We think you’ll be as inspired by him as we have been.

You see John has dealt with adversity for most of his life. He first experienced a seizure over twenty years ago. He had a kidney removed as a kid. He endures hearing loss. At eleven, he required glasses.

If all that wasn’t enough for a young man who had just turned thirty, he began noticing that his friends’ faces weren’t clear. A doctor diagnosed that he was going blind. The cause of his blindness is still unknown.

In the six years since, John has experienced a lot. At first, he was sad, frustrated, and
angry. He turned to painting, in part, to symbolically give God the finger. That’s when he made an amazing discovery.

He sees better now than he did before.

He says he sees with one hand, while feeling the paint with the other. The more he painted, the less angry he was. He found that, what he thought was a curse, has turned into a blessing.

So what can we learn from John Bramblitt?

Use all your available senses. You possess more abilities than even you know. Look at each day as an opportunity to discover gifts you didn’t know you had. To practice this, check out our 8 visualization exercise.]

Become adept at adapting. John learned that he could distinguish colors by their feel. He developed his memory so he could picture the painting in his mind as he touches it with his hands. Get excited about all you can learn when challenges come your way!

Know when to quit. John knows a painting is done when doing any more would take away from it. We recently discussed John Wooden’s 6 definition of success.] We said that
you must do all you can, but that’s all you need to do. When you do that, you have peace of mind. John achieves this with every one of his paintings, then he quits.

To learn more about John, check out the following links:

See John’s paintings. You’ll be amazed at this young man’s talent.

View John’s documentary video. It’s fairly large, so be patient while it loads. It’s worth the wait!

View the Texas Country Reporter video on You Tube. It’s shorter than the previous video, but still tells the story well.