Tyler Jorgenson

One Entrepreneur's Journey To Find Greatness

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Fighting Resistance

Back in April I wrote about The Battle.  The War rages on.

Resistance continues to wield it’s bloody sword in it’s effort to keep us from our potential.

But, it hasn’t won.

Remember that I’m here for the war. Join me in the fight and let’s build something epic together.

Resistance St Martin


Some quotes on Resistance:

“Resistance is always lying and always full of shit.”
Steven Pressfield,
“Rule of thumb: The more important a call or action is to our soul’s evolution, the Resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.”
Steven Pressfield,
“Most of us have two lives. The life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands Resistance.”
Steven Pressfield
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The Battle

A friend once lent me a Steven Pressfield book called The War of Art. In the book Pressfield talks about something called Resistance. Resistance is that force that keeps us away from our full potential. Somedays we encounter it as laziness and other times we find Resistance dressed in the clothes of routine. The point is that, if we want to make anything of ourselves, we must fight Resistance in this long battle of personal development.

I look back on this blog and feel a spectrum of emotions wash over me. I feel sadness for not writing more. I feel pride for many of the posts since many of them tell stories of past battles. I feel shame for some of the posts seem silly or condescending through the lens of time.  I feel joy for the times I shared about my family.  But the emotion I expected least of all, the one that is catching me off guard like a punch in the gut, is that of fear.

I’m scared.

I’m scared that Resistance has been winning.

I’m scared that I’m operating below my potential.

What scares me most of all is I’m not sure how long Resistance has been winning.

The Shift

In the 2013 movie ‘Jobs’ Ashton Kutcher, playing legendary Apple founder Steve Jobs says to a project lead:

Ok Jeff, let’s get a couple of things straight, we don’t do fine, we don’t accept things the way that they are and we don’t stop innovating.  

In the movie I was reminded of an old Steve Jobs photo where he’s on his desk and there is a simple black poster with the word THINK written in rainbow colors and block font.

Ok Jeff, let’s get a couple of things straight, we don’t do fine, we don’t  accept things the way that they are and we don’t stop innovating.

That poster along with the quote I just shared seem to have awoken something within me.

I don’t accept fine.

I don’t accept things the way that they are.

I never stop innovating.

Let the battle rage on. I’m here for the war.

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Start – 31 DoBA – Day 21

Since you got a “How to” type post yesterday you get a deep thoughts type post today.

One of the things that I battle with, as I am sure many of us do, is procrastination.  One time I was so lazy I didn’t even procrastinate for 3 whole days.  Most of the time I procrastinate by keeping busy on something else that is usually less important.  I prefer to work on stuff that matters, but sometimes other things are easier.  I read this quote the other day and it made me think about working on stuff that matters right away.

“You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” – Zig Ziglar

I’ve had an idea for a while that I haven’t been doing much with.  I feel it’s a great idea but I worry that it’s too big of a challenge for me.  I’m resolved to start and get better and better as I go along.

What are you waiting for?  The starting gun already went off.  GO!

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First Rate – 31 DoBA – Day 19

“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.” – Judy Garland

It’s easy to get caught up in wanting to be ‘like’ somebody else.  A charismatic boss, a successful friend or some other person of significance are great people to emulate.  In the end, though, remember that you are your own person.  You have a unique blend of talents unlike any other person.
Be yourself, just be your best self.

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Nonconformity – 31 DoBA – Day 18

You don’t have to live your life the way other people expect you to. You can do good things for yourself and make the world a better place at the same time.Chris Guillebeau

If you haven’t read about how Chris Guillebeau is changing the world, you need to visit his site, follow him on twitter, become a facebook fan, etc.  He has four basic tenants of his philosophy.

The essence of my philosophy is this:

1. You don’t have to live your life the way other people expect you to.

2. If you don’t decide for yourself what you want to get out of life, someone else will probably end up deciding for you.

3. There is usually more than one way to accomplish something.

4. You can do good things for yourself and help other people at the same time.

Most people that I know live their life based on projected values and desires.  For example a son may become a Lawyer because his Father always told him he should.  One thing I see happen quite often is the dating/marriage/baby/home cycle.  A couple dates, then gets married because that’s the next step.  Soon they take the next step and have a baby.  Of course now they need to buy their own home because, well, that’s the next step.  Of course non of these steps is wrong, evil or bad.  They are all great steps IF it’s what the couple wants.

Recently Baker over at Man Vs. Debt packed up the few possessions he and his little family owned and jumped into an RV to travel the United States for a year.  It may not be common and the idea may scare some people but it was what they wanted to do, so they did it.  Baker got his blogging fame started by selling his ‘stuff’ and going on a global expedition.  How many people do you know that can list all of their possessions on a one page excel spreadsheet?

I was in the real estate and finance business for about 8 years.  More than once I advised my potential clients against buying a home.  Buying a home can be a great investment and can be the right thing for somebody looking to put down roots for a while.  Many times though my clients could not answer my questions about how long they plan to be there, if they liked the area for the long term or what type of home they want to raise their family in?

We get so caught up in checking things off the list we sometimes forget to evaluate the list and make sure it’s something we want.

The idea on nonconformity is not the same as being different for the sake of being different.  Sometimes what you want is to have a Mac, other times you do it because you want to be different from the guys with the PC’s.  Do things that you want, and do them the way you want.  Remember Chris’s #3. There is usually more than one way to accomplish something.

What do you want out of life?

Ok, now really. What do YOU want out of life?

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Obstacles vs Opportunities – 31 DoBA – Day 13

Day 12 of the 31 Days of Blog Awesomeness covered the idea of imaginary barriers that often stop entrepreneurs from attaining their goals.  Today is about how there is very little difference between obstacles and opportunity.

Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity and are able to turn both to their advantage. Niccolo Machiavelli

Most people think of obstacles as the barriers that prevent them from having access to the opportunities that could make them successful.  If they are pitying themselves enough they’ll even feel like they are the only one with the obstacles in their path and that others have opportunities galore.  A true entrepreneur recognizes that every opportunity comes with obstacles and that is exactly what drives them to succeed.

Obstacle: Something that impedes, stands in the way of, or holds up progress
Opportunity: A chance for advancement, progress or profit; a favorable circumstance or occasion

How can Machiavelli claim that these two are similar when they appear diametrically opposed?  An obstacle is usually present for everybody.  One of the barriers I hear the most is that many businesses and ideas take a great time investment.  Remember that everybody gets 24 hours in a day.  The successful entrepreneur knows that she can harness the power of those hours to accomplish her goals.  She also recognizes that many others will stop at the painted lines and let the opportunity slip.

Opportunity favors the bold.  Obstacles stop the slothful.

This is me on ABC’s Wipeout Season 1.  I’m in the red shirt.  A great example of how obstacles are also opportunities.  The winner of this competition got $50,000.

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Thoughts on Success – 31 DoBA Day 6

The dawn of a new year brings with it the setting of resolutions and thinking about goals.  Most of these goals and resolutions are centered around two things; losing and getting.  We want to lose weight, clutter and attitude.  We want to get health, wealth and wisdom.  Somewhere during the year we usually end up getting more weight, buying more clutter and being a [email protected]$*.  Last year I met some amazing people that gave me some great advice.  One of them was Seth Godin (who is coming to Orange County in March, buy your ticket here today as they sell out fast).  Seth talked about why our current efforts for success are often met with disappointment, especially in the wealth category.

Many people will say, ‘I have chosen (Insert your chosen occupation/business here), how can I succeed?

We should instead say, ‘I want to succeed, what should I do?’

At the beginning of 2009 I found myself owning and running a struggling Real Estate and mortgage company.  The markets had settled but the crash had left me worn out and frustrated.  I kept thinking of new ways to breath life into the business and get things going again.  Finally, I realized that I was asking the wrong questions.  I sat back and asked myself ‘I want to succeed, what should I do?’ and to my surprise the answer was to leave the career I had built over the past 8 years and close my company.

In 2010 I closed my last real estate transaction and am officially ‘retired’ from the industry.  I am not at the pinnacle of my success goals yet, but I finally am making progress up the right trail.  On the last of the 31 DoBA I will share with you some of the projects I’ve been working on along my new path.

Every New Years Day my family and I go down to the beach and meet up with friends to enjoy the day and watch the first sunset of the year.  This year when we got to the beach the tide was lower than I can ever remember seeing it.  My wife I and took the kids out on the rocky tide pools of Laguna Beach and saw countless sea stars, sea urchins, mussels, crabs and all sorts of ocean animal life.  I took the picture below and was reminded of another thing Seth Godin said,

“Just because the tide is out doesn’t mean there is any less water in the ocean.”

The opportunities we need to be successful are out there.  Are you on the right path?

Read 31 DoBA day 1
Read 31 DoBA day 2
Read 31 DoBA day 3
Read 31 DoBA day 4
Read 31 DoBA day 5

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Tell Me Who Your Friends Are – 31 DoBA – Day 2

“Tell me who your friends are, and I will tell you who you are.”

The words hit me like a bag full of Idaho potatoes falling off of a pick up truck.  I was in High School and was sitting at a leadership conference with a couple of hundred ‘future leaders of America’ or whatever the tag line was for the conference that day.  I was lucky enough to have been in the Associated Student Body (ASB, Student Government… whatever they call it where you are from) and one of the perks was getting out of class to go and socialize with teens from other schools.  I remember a lot of these pep rally type motivational speakers that ran the school circuit.  There was ‘Mr. Chocolate’ the gangster that turned his life around and morphed in front of our eyes from a saggy pants, head band and big shirt wearing gang banger to a yuppie.  There was the guy that could rip through a phone book, who even taught one of our classmates to rip through a small white pages too.  Mr. Belding from Saved by the Bell even made an appearance at my school.

I remember a lot of the people that came and spoke.  So, why talk about this guy?  I don’t remember his name or what his shtick was.  I remember a few other bits of his speech about stereotypes and such but this is the quote that hit me.  So what?  Why am I sharing it with you now?

I’ve read it a few times, and you can google for some sources if you’d like, that your income will be very close the the average of the 5 people who you are the closest with. Is it an exact science, no.  But I’ll bet it’s a pretty fair assessment unless you’re an outlier.

“It costs nothing to ask wise advise from a good friend…” – Bansir from The Richest Man of Babylon

You wouldn’t go to your Dentist for advise about a curious mole and you wouldn’t go to your CPA for advice on the proper way to raise  orchids.  You shouldn’t seek advice on how to succeed from those whom you don’t view as successful.  Success is a lose term because it all depends on your paradigm but if you make $30,000 and want to make $90,000 it doesn’t make much sense to take the advise of the guy making $45,000.  Find a mentor, or 5, and glean, glean, glean.

In High School I didn’t have bad friends but the main group of guys I was hanging out with weren’t guys I wanted to be like.  I didn’t drink or party and they did.  I sought out friends that had interests more in line with mine and who were more like what I wanted to be.

I’m not telling you to call up your 5 closest family members and friends and drop a Trump style ‘You’re Fired’ on them.  What I am saying is that although Bansir is right that it costs nothing up front to ask the advice of a friend, bad advice can end up costing you a lot of time and money.

Chose your mentors wisely.

Originally posted at http://blog.tylerjorgenson.com/2011/01/tell-me-who-your-friends-are/

Read 31 DoBA – Day 1

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Judge our own strength

I read a lot of great books this year, a few of them I read on my phone.  Whenever something struck me I would take a screen shot of the quote.  I was going through pics on my old phone and came across this gem.

The quote is from Robinson Crusoe.  At one point while stranded on the island Crusoe cuts down a large tree and then carves it out into a good sized boat.  The entire ordeal takes Crusoe a considerable amount of time and energy.  Crusoe stays motivated through the work with the hope that the boat will carry him away to freedom.  After finishing the boat Crusoe realizes that he’s built it too far away from water and, try though he may, the boat is destined to be landlocked.

For those who seek to complete a project, launch a business or complete a goal it is always good to begin with the end in mind.  Sometimes we have to go at it alone, like Crusoe, and it’s really important to know our strengths and weaknesses.  Luckily we aren’t stranded on an uninhabited island when we endeavor on a new venture.  We can build a team, learn from a mentor or otherwise ask for help.

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Quiet Time

Yesterday morning I had a conversation with a group of young men about the power of our thoughts.  As an exercise I gave them the ‘homework’ assignment to pay attention to how they felt when they listened to different types of music.  They were supposed to pay attention to emotions and physical changes more than just whether or not they liked the music.

Later that afternoon my wife thought it would be a good idea to pile all the kids on the couch for quiet time.  She turned on a movie… Hannah Montana.  I wasn’t overly excited.  My wife was out cold pretty quickly with our 3 month old so I was left to maintain quiet time order with the other 3.  It worked out ok, and I had a chance to do my homework.

Most of the music in the movie is pretty bubble gum country pop but not as bad as I like to pretend.  One song affected me in a motivating and uplifting manner.  The Climb.  Video and lyrics are below but it’s about the general concept that life is a journey and not a destination.  Sometimes we’re so focused on where we want to be that we lose focus on the beauty all around us.  We just returned from a long drive (Southern California – Las Vegas, NV – Provo, UT – Capitola, CA – Southern California) and I was pretty worried about the longest leg of our journey from Utah through the Nevada high desert back into California as I heard it was a barren wasteland.  I did the drive once as a kid but slept the whole way.  I ended up really loving the drive and found great beauty in the different climates we drove through.  The song and the drive combined to remind me that a lot of life is about perspective.

The Climb lyrics
Songwriters: Alexander, J; Mabe, J;

I can almost see it
That dream I am dreaming
But there’s a voice inside my head saying
“You’ll never reach it”

Every step I’m taking
Every move I make feels
Lost with no direction
My faith is shaking

But I gotta keep trying
Gotta keep my head held high

There’s always gonna be another mountain
I’m always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be a uphill battle
Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose

Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb

The struggles I’m facing
The chances I’m taking
Sometimes might knock me down
But no, I’m not breaking

I may not know it
But these are the moments that
I’m gonna remember most, yeah
Just gotta keep going

And I, I got to be strong
Just keep pushing on

‘Cause there’s always gonna be another mountain
I’m always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be a uphill battle
Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose

Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb, yeah!

There’s always gonna be another mountain
I’m always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be an uphill battle
Somebody’s gonna have to lose

Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb, yeah!

Keep on moving, keep climbing
Keep the faith, baby
It’s all about, it’s all about the climb
Keep the faith, keep your faith, whoa

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Today’s Quotes

I like quotes that inspire and make me want to do and be better.  Today started with a few golden quotes.  I’ve compiled them here for me to remember them and hopefully they can touch at least one other person.

1. You stand up for your teammates. Your loyalty is to them. You protect them through good and bad, because they’d do the same for you. Yogi Berra

2. joshbladh@tylerjorgenson #Yogi also said “If you don’t know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else” #quote

3.  Eddie Torbati Your behavior & your beliefs are in your control. If you’re negative, you’re choosing negativity. That’s fine, just stay away from me. :)

4. It’s never a bad time to start a business unless you’re starting a mediocre business. #crushit

5. Alice: Oh, no, no. I was just wondering if you could help me find my way.
Cheshire Cat: Well that depends on where you want to get to.
Alice: Oh, it really doesn’t matter, as long as…
Cheshire Cat: Then it really doesn’t matter which way you go.

In summary: Be loyal, be positive, be remarkable and begin with the end in mind.

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Happiness

Yesterday’s post reminded me of a great quote.

Realize that true happiness lies within you. Waste no time and effort searching for peace and contentment and joy in the world outside. Remember that there is no happiness in having or in getting, but only in giving. Reach out. Share. Smile. Hug. Happiness is a perfume you cannot pour on others without getting a few drops on yourself.
Og Mandino

When I find that it’s hard to reach out and help somebody I find it’s usually because something isn’t right with me and not the other person.  When we seek to happy, which is a choice and not a result of our environment, we put ourselves in a position to positively impact the world around us.

Choose to be happy, then spread it.

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1 Simple Rule For Success

I read an article recently that talked about the primary reason, in the authors opinion, that some people are successful and others not despite having apparent similar talents and looks.   The answer didn’t surprise me too much but did seem to be worth sharing.  The key distinguishing point is this:

Those who fail want other people to make him feel good about himself.

Those who succeed makes other people feel good about themselves.

The author was specifically talking about being successful in dating, but I think it’s on point no matter what the relationship.  Whether you’re wanting to make a connection with the cute Barista at your local Starbucks or make a memorable connection with a sales prospect the same thing applies.  I once wrote about the Rules for a Perfect Day and this part stands out:

I will treat everyone I meet today the way I would like to be treated. I will strive to have them like themselves better when they’re with me.

It’s not always easy to focus on other people and their needs, especially when we may feel needy, but it’s much more rewarding.  It’s the small and simple things that touch people’s lives.

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Pride Versus Vanity

At night I read Fiction books to clear my mind and escape a little.  Recently I finished my first ebook by reading Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen on my iPhone.  Although it is the favorite book of a large percentage of women I found it to be enjoyable to somebody such as myself, who is a man.  One quote struck me early on.  It was said by the female protagonist, Elizabeth Bennett, who had a sharper eye and keener wit that the other women in the book.  Speaking about a man that was handsome, bright and wealthy some of the ladies commented that he was vain.  Elizabeth Bennett commented that:

“Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.”

I am not a supporter of unfounded pride, or the type of pride that causes one to look down upon others.  This is more of a post on the vice of vanity.  I’ve spoken with a lot of people that have had a hard time at work, or some other interpersonal situation, where they felt criticized and discouraged by the opinion of others.  If you are doing your best work and you are proud of what you’ve accomplished do not let others take that away from you.  Most likely they’re being critical because they aren’t doing their best and they don’t like seeing you do yours.

The rub to all of this is that if you aren’t doing your best, if you are doing the average and the ordinary, then you deserve to be the recipient of all the fiery darts of criticism.  Allow yourself to feel the pain of doing something mediocre, then resolve never to do so again.

Should a Lion Have Pride?

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Be Excellent To Each Other

1989 introduced the world to Bill & Ted, a couple of misfits from San Dimas, CA that ended up having a most excellent time traveling adventure.  My Father quoted a line from the movie for some years later.

“Be Excellent To Each Other.”

Sure, it’s the 80’s version of the rule “do unto others as you would have others do unto you” but there’s something more involved.  What can you do in your next interaction with a co-worker that would be excellent?  The next call you answer for work, how can you treat that customer with excellence?  When you get home from work how can you be excellent to your loved ones?

Too often the vice of apathy and complacency robs us of rich experience and weakens the connections we have with the world around us.

“Be Excellent To Each Other.”

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Don’t Get All Simon Cowell On Me

I don’t normally even open email forwards, but I did the other day and found this gem. 
Quick Lesson in Judgment

I was shocked, confused, bewildered
As I entered Heaven’s door,
Not by the beauty of it all,
Nor the lights or its decor.

But it was the folks in Heaven
Who made me sputter and gasp–
The thieves, the liars, the sinners,
The alcoholics and the trash.

There stood the kid from seventh grade
Who swiped my lunch money twice.
Next to him was my old neighbor
Who never said anything nice.

Herb, who I always thought
Was rotting away in hell,
Was sitting pretty on cloud nine,
Looking incredibly well.

I nudged Jesus, ‘What’s the deal?
I would love to hear Your take.
How’d all these sinners get up here?
God must’ve made a mistake.

‘And why is everyone so quiet,
So somber – give me a clue.’
‘Hush, child,’ He said, ‘they’re all in shock.
No one thought they’d be seeing you.’

Judge not & Remember…

Just going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in your garage makes you a car.

Every saint has a PAST…
Every sinner has a FUTURE!

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