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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Optimism Reminder – 31 DoBA – Day 14

I am cheating a bit today since I fell behind. I posted this video back in January of 2009. It’s one of my all time favorite commercials.  Life is a lot easier when you have a great attitude. Don’t let other people ruin your day.

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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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Email Excess Elimination – 31 DoBA – Part 4

It is vain to do with more what can be done with less. – William of Occam

This is one tip that I am still working on but since I believe it is so important I’m willing to share it with you before I’ve perfected it myself.  I blogged about eliminating excess a while back (http://blog.tylerjorgenson.com/2010/05/eliminating-excess/) but in this post I want to talk less about physical clutter and more about the digital clutter that steals our time.

Digital Clutter Thief #1 – Email

How many hours a day do you spend ‘doing’ email?  How many times a day does your phone buzz, chime, ring or otherwise alert you that you have a new email?  Here are my rules for fighting back this vicious time thief .

Check your email, don’t let it check you!

Unless you are a doctor and you are on call you probably don’t have anything so urgent that it can’t wait until you sit down at your desk and to actually read and respond to emails.   So, right now, turn off the email push function for your email to phone app.

Set up 2, 3 or 4 times per day when you open, read and respond to email.

Email has become the great productivity paralyzer.  When I first started doing this I was amazed at how I could get through 10-15 emails in the same amount of time I used to respond to 1 or 2.  The thing was but clustering the activity together I opened up time to be creative and productive.

Tell Facebook to keep out of your email!

There is no reason in the world that you need an email to tell you somebody wrote on your wall, tagged you in a picture, commented on your post, etc.  You will be notified of these things when you log in to facebook the next time.  The only exception I have is that if somebody sends me a message in facebook it comes to my email since it is often an email-like message.

Filter, Filter, Filter!

I use gmail and I don’t know why anybody uses anything else.  I plan to cover gmail tips in a later 31DoBA post but this much you can do in most email clients.  Set up filters for family, work, urgent, ads and any other recurring group you receive emails from.  By setting up filters you can read work emails during work time, family emails during family time and even have urgent emails sent to an email account that you allow to push to your phone.

These may not be earth shattering concepts but don’t let the simplicity fool you.  If you’re productivity doesn’t improve after applying these rules then I’ll eat a bug*.

Read 31 DoBA day 1
Read 31 DoBA day 2
Read 31 DoBA day 3

*disclaimer – I will NOT eat a bug.

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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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The Big Announcement

This isn’t it.  But this is a precursor to the big announcement, and it can still be fun.

Introducing the 31 days of Blog Awesomeness!

31 days of blog awesomeness

Each day in January I will have a blog post on something that you, my wonderful readers, want to learn more about.  If you don’t ask or share with me what you want to hear I’ll just post something that I think is cool.  It will be more fun if you give me the topics.  Do you want to learn more about facebook fan pages? Facebook adverstising?  Setting up a website? Motivation? Manufacturing? Hypnosis? Training your dog? If I don’t know the answer off hand (I have zero dog training experience) I’ll research it or bring in an expert to help.

Leave a comment here on this post (If you’re reading this on facebook or elsewhere visit http://blog.tylerjorgenson.com/2010/12/the-big-announcement/ to leave a comment) with what you’d like to learn more about and I’ll see if I can’t work it into the lineup.

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Speedreading – Update

In January I posted that I planned to read a lot this year so I figured that an update is required.

Books read:

The Four Hour Work Week

This is without a doubt the book with the most influence on my life this year. I have read the original edition once, the expanded update three times and listened to the audio book at least three times. I strongly recommend this book for anybody looking to live a little more and stress a little less.

Atlas Shrugged

Can somebody please explain why these books haven’t found their way into my life sooner?  Sure, it’s over a thousand pages but this book is amazing.  To many it seems prophetic since it was written in 1957 but mirrors the issues of our times so well.  This book motivates me and inspires me more than any other novel I’ve read.  My main takeaway is to take personal responsibility and to not make excuses.  A movie by the same name is currently in production.  Who is John Galt?

Good to Great
I really enjoyed the first few parts of the book and then it sort of died off for me.  I guess it went great to good.  My main takeaway was in making sure you have the right people on your team.  The concept of ‘first who, then what’ is something I consider whenever approached about a business opportunity.

The Purple Cow
This is one of Seth Godin’s 12 best sellers.  Each one that I’ve read is good but I enjoyed this one for reminding me that you have to do something different if you expect the market to notice your product or service.

Linchpin
This is Godin’s most recent, and possibly last traditional, book.  I had the pleasure of meeting Godin in Orange County and the advice he gave me when we spoke altered the course of my business and I am eternally grateful.  You can read more here about the concepts of the book Linchpin.

Robinson Crusoe
I started to read some classics and found a lot of great wisdom buried in their stories.  This book is about self discovery, survival, loyalty and determination.  It’s a classic for a reason.

Pride and Prejudice
Yes, I even read a Jane Austin book.  Pride and Prejudice was a great book.  For me it’s about being yourself and allowing others to be themselves as well.  It’s handle on the topics of pride and the prejudicial judgment is what makes this a must read classic.

Treasure Island
I read this just after I took a sailing class and so my increased sailing vocabulary added to my enjoyment of this book.  This was a quick and easy read but I enjoyed the journey.

There are a few other books that I’ve read portions of, even most of, but that I don’t feel need a summary.  Think & Grow Rich, Crush It, and a few select sections of my finance, stats, accounting and marketing textbooks.

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What Is Your Time Attitude?

Ever since watching Back To The Future in the 80’s and learning about the space/time continuum I’ve had an awareness of time.  There is a lot of discussion in business on how one spends their time, eg if they  are productive, but this video helped me think about time in a different manner.

What is your attitude about time?  Are you future oriented?

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Eliminating Excess

extra shoes Earlier this year I read ‘The 4-Hour Workweek’ by Timothy Ferriss and it’s been making ripples in my life ever since.  I’ve listened to the book on tape, read the 2nd edition and read the author’s blog.  I bought the book about a year and a half ago when a friend blogged about it, but it just got stacked on the pile of books to read.

Of the many bits of wisdom I got from the book one was to eliminate clutter and excess from our lives.  I talked about the concept of choice paralysis a while back.  I started in my closet and eliminated these 10 pairs of shoes.  Why did I have an extra 10 pairs of shoes?  Anybody wear a size 12 and need some gently worn kicks?

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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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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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Disruptive Behavior

While discussing business plans and ideas with a friend today the concept of causing a market disruption was introduced.  Reference was made to Clayton Christensen, a Harvard professor and author of whom I had not yet been acquainted.  Upon visiting Christensen’s site I found this key concept:

Disruptive innovation, a term of art coined by Clayton Christensen, describes a process by which a product or service takes root initially in simple applications at the bottom of a market and then relentlessly moves ‘up market’, eventually displacing established competitors. 

As readers of this blog know, I am a big fan of Seth Godin.  Seth often quotes a banner he saw in Wal-Mart that says,

“You can’t out Amazon, Amazon”

What that means is that you can’t beat them at their game, their model or their business plan.  To become a major player in that marketplace you have to disrupt the market and cause a shift.  If you think of companies that have made it big in the last 5 years I doubt you will think of any that are following an old business model or operating under and aged paradigm.  To make it big a company must shift the market through innovative ideas and brilliant execution.  It certainly isn’t easier, but it’s certain to be a short cut.

Consider this concept in your job or in a relationship.  If you truly want to get things to the next level can you really expect to get there by doing the same old thing?  ‘If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got’.

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Seth Godin – Low Tide

During his amazing presentation at LinkedOC Seth Godin shared this bit of inspiration with the crowd.

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

If Twitter is a good indicator, it hit a chord with a lot of people.

Consider this quote in relation to today’s economy or job market.  Sometimes it’s a matter of changing where you are looking rather than giving up.  It wouldn’t make much sense to cast your lines from the side of a boat that was beached.  Get the boat back in the water, then go fishing.

Here’s to your success!  Happy fishing!

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