Prepare For Takeoff

Over the past three months, we have been focused on MINDSET

  • How you think will determine what you do.
  • What you do will determine how you live.
  • How you live determines who you are.

Are you a person of greatness? Are you a success? Do you have significance? Your journey all starts with how you think. Your mindset will either make you or break you.

I believe you want a life of success and significance. I believe you have the mindset to
become great. Today, I want to share a foundational key to success. It is found in one
word: PREPARATION. As Russell Wilson says, “The separation is in the preparation.”
You will never rise above your level of preparation, so let’s talk about how to prepare
yourself for a life of success. There are two areas: preparing the mind and preparing the

As a success coach, I see the need for prior planning every day. People fail because they
did not prepare. They fail because they moved forward before they had the knowledge
necessary to do so. Too often the lure of the goal causes people to move before they
are ready. I’m cautioning you against that impulsive behavior. Yes, we want to get
started. Yes, we need to see action. And yes, we feel that we are not really “doing
anything” if we are not moving. But preparation is what will set you apart. Being
organized, informed, and equipped will pay off many times over. Your foundation of
knowledge and practice will give you an advantage over your competition and will
propel you to the forefront. So, get ready to prepare. It’s what winners do.

Bobby Knight, the championship-winning basketball coach said, “The key is not the will
to win. Everybody has that. It is the will to prepare to win that is important.”
To be
great at anything, you must put effort into the preparation.

The old saying “Look before you leap” is very true, and so is “Learn before you leap.”
Learn everything you can about your area of passion. Learn about your competition.
Learn the conditions of the economy. Learn about the person. Do your homework.
Complete your groundwork. Armies do not march into war without an enormous
amount of preparation. Olympians do not reach the games without an astonishing
quantity of time spent in training.

Knowledge is the foundation of success. People who are successful know things that
other people don’t. They know more about their subject matter than the other people
in their profession. They know more about the laws that affect them than the other
people who are impacted by those same laws. They know more about politics in the
workplace. They know more about the latest trends in the market and in technology.
Knowledge is power. In fact, it is more powerful than money or a title or the
connections a person may have in the marketplace of competition.

Consider this: Why do you pay a mechanic hundreds of dollars to fix an oil leak in your
car? Because he knows how to fix it, and you don’t. Why do you pay a doctor hundreds
of dollars just to check your vital signs and write you a prescription? Because he knows
what is causing your fever and what drug can best cure it, and you don’t.

People who know things succeed; people who don’t know things fail. So, if you are wise,
you will continue to learn throughout your life. You will constantly add new facts to the
information you already have. You will attend seminars, listen to lectures, go to school
at night, and read books. Remember this: Poor people have big televisions while
wealthy people have big libraries.
If you want to succeed, you will do whatever it takes
to gather the information you need to grow and to flourish in the areas of life that
interest you.

If you have failed in the past at any endeavor that was important to you—marriage,
business, investment, or anything else—you probably failed, not because you lacked the
ability to execute your plan and not because you lacked the talent to win, but because
you lacked the knowledge to develop the right kind of plan. You failed because you did
not have the information you needed to succeed. That lack of knowledge can often be
linked to a lack of preparation.

So, if you have failed in the past and you want to succeed in the future, you must
understand the obstacles that await you. Prepare yourself for the challenges ahead.
Understand the nature of the conflict, and learn about the costs you must pay to win.
Understand your competition, and have a plan that addresses every foreseeable
contingency. Keep gathering information, and keep learning.

John Wooden was probably the greatest college basketball coach of all time. He
prepared his players to win in life as much as he prepared them for victory on the court.
And Wooden believed in learning. He believed in the power of knowledge. Wooden
often told his players, “If I’m through learning, I’m through.”

Life is made up of thousands of little moves and thousands of small decisions that come
together to create a picture of your future. And this is where the preparation of both
mind and body comes into focus.

Learn and rehearse. Educate and train. You see the pattern – it’s about knowledge and
practice – which is practical experience. Your knowledge, together with your practice,
will determine your success. You must put your knowledge to work, and to do that
means to practice. And practice provides experience. Anyone who has tried to become
great – whether it is in a sport, playing an instrument, or some other activity can
certainly relate to Joyce Meyer’s statement, “The way anything is developed is through practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice and
more practice.”

There is simply no substitute for experience. You need the knowledge and you need
practical experience. You also need the knowledgeable and experienced input of those
who have made the journey ahead of you.

There are two kinds of players in the game of life. There is the one who attempts to
succeed though connections, through charm or charisma, through bluffing or through
doing just enough to get by. Eventually, without substance, this person fades. Then
there is the person who avidly seeks knowledge, who learns everything he can and
applies it. He works long hours and he works diligently, many times in the face of
opposition and criticism. But he has the will to prepare, the expectation of hard work
and the vision of his goal. And he is the one who will last.

So, do you want to separate yourself?

  • Then determine what you need to know to improve your game and to score in a
  • big way your next time out.
  • Read, study, prepare, do your research and your due diligence.
  • Put that knowledge to work and gain practical experience in your field of
  • competition.
  • Practice, practice, practice.
  • Surround yourself with people who have already done what you want to do or
  • people who have done it better.
  • Learn from others.

Then move forward with the confidence that comes from being fully prepared for

I hope you enjoyed this episode! Please share it with friends and colleagues, or on social media. 

If you liked what you heard, I’d love it if you would leave a five-star review on iTunes here. 

The Fear Factor

Many of you have heard the question, “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?” But have you ever really thought that through? What would you do? What dream do you have that you would ‘go for’ if you absolutely knew that you would make it?

Now, let’s talk about what is holding you back. As a coach, I have to get to the root of the problem. The issue here is not that you can’t, it’s that you won’t. Is that right? And why won’t you try? Why won’t you step out? I have found that the most common reason across the board is simply fear - fear of the unknown, fear of failure, fear of what people will say, or fear of being hurt.

Today, I want to tell you about these four fears you must get past before you can move toward your purpose. My goal is that you will recognize yourself in one of these areas of fear, that you will understand what is holding you back, and that you will break the cycle in your mind of wishing and move into doing. See, it all comes back to your mindset. Your success hinges on your thoughts and the messages you are telling yourself. If you want to change your life, start by changing your mindset. And today, start by changing the mindset of fear. 

Fear #1 is fear of the unknown.

When you talk about your dream, you may hear yourself say, “I’ve never done this before,” or “this is completely outside of my comfort zone.”  Fear of the unknown is huge.  Many people have serious concerns about venturing into new places and being among people they do not know.   We are all creatures of habit.  When you go to the grocery store, the gym, or the church, do you park in the same location every time?  When you are invited to a social event, would you go alone, or is it important to you to have your spouse or a friend with you?  Fear of the unknown can hold you back from realizing a dream or a goal.  The world is large and often you will need to expand your borders.  Think of the most important person in your life.  Where did you meet?  Most likely they did not walk up to your front door.  At least one of you was in a location or situation with unfamiliar people and perhaps new surroundings.  Look at the benefit your life has gained by expanding your borders that day.  What is more important to you?  Staying where you are comfortable or setting out on a lifetime adventure?

Fear #2 is the fear of failure. 

Most people are afraid of failure and the disappointment that accompanies it. The pain of failure is often crippling and the weight of criticism is destructive.  This is why so many people settle for mundane lives that bring them no fulfillment. Instead of facing the possible embarrassment of making a public mistake, they accept the runner-up trophy for a safe and predictable existence that takes them nowhere near their goals.

All of us have failed at something in our lives. All of us have made mistakes. If you have honestly tried to do something meaningful to push your dreams forward, then I commend you, because you have already distinguished yourself. You have already set yourself apart from the vast majority of people out there who will never take that critical first step.

Michael Jordan once said, “I have missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games.  On 26 occasions, I have been entrusted to take the game winning shot… and missed.  And I have failed over and over and over again in my life.  And that is why I succeed.” 

Jordan, like all other great players, knew how to rebound and to shoot again and again until he finally hit the goal. He wouldn’t give up. He wouldn’t go away. He didn’t even pay attention to the cheers or the jeers of the crowd. He just focused on the ball and focused on the rim and kept shooting and rebounding and shooting again until he overcame his misses and did what he was trying to do. He was fearless.

Fear #3 is the fear of criticism, ridicule or rejection.

Think about that for a few minutes.  Do you truly think the people you love and trust might laugh and belittle you?  Would you do the same to them?  Is that fear really founded in reality, or is it a monster in the darkness of your imagination? 

People fear many things when they consider taking that big step into their goals. Perhaps the most dreaded is the fear of criticism. They fear looking foolish in front of other people, especially when those other people have predicted their downfall. They fear rejection.

If you are concerned about the criticism or rejection of others, take heart.  Don’t be afraid of criticism.  Remember the source of the words. The ones who criticize you for having ambitions are people who have fallen short of their own goals in life.  They used to dream, but now they live safely in a predictable, average life, because they failed once, and they are afraid to try again.  Deep inside they don’t want you to succeed either, because your success would show them up and bring to light their own surrender to fear.  They want you to conform to their mediocrity. 

Don’t conform.  Absolutely do not.  Ignore the criticism and the pessimism. Instead, do something meaningful, so your life is never so small that you belittle someone from secret resentment and envy.

Fear #4 is the fear of getting hurt.

You think, “I might get hurt – maybe emotionally, perhaps financially.”  Yes, you might.  But you might not.  Do the benefits outweigh the risks?  Would you rather sit immobile, watching others play the game, wishing it was you and wondering what might have been? I will tell you this.  If you have set goals and dreams that are worthy of pursuing, you will not reach them without some bumps and bruises.  Somewhere along the way, you will be hurt.  You will be knocked off your feet, and you will feel real pain.  But that does not give you a reason to quit.  Instead, it gives you a reason to move on and to move through the trial. 

You have talent, you are created in the image of God, and you have vast potential. Don’t ever set aside your ideas and dreams saying, “I can’t do it.  I’m afraid.  What if….”

C. Joybell, the Scottish journalist and author, said, “Don’t be afraid of your fears. They’re not there to scare you. They’re there to let you know that something is worth it.”

Something is indeed worth it.  If it’s in your heart and it won’t go away and you can’t find satisfaction until you so something about it, then that dream within your heart is God’s destiny for your life.  Don’t expect its achievement to be easy.  Rather, expect the battle for that worthy prize to be difficult and lengthy.  Expect opposition.  Expect criticism. But don’t let that deter you, discourage you or daunt you.  Go for it.  Do something about that business opportunity that’s in front of you.  Pursue that college degree if it will help you get where you want to go. Write that book you’ve always wanted to write. Record that song.  Launch that business. Quit talking about it, quit worrying about it, quit thinking about it, and just do it.

The world rewards action, not thought. So, adjust your mindset, set your fears aside, and take action!

I hope you enjoyed this episode! Please share it with friends and colleagues, or on social media. 

If you liked what you heard, I’d love it if you would leave a five-star review on iTunes here. 

Seize The Day Devotional on YouVersion

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How can you have a successful, fulfilled life? You must have successful years and before that, thriving months made up of winning weeks. Ultimately, the way to have a wonderful life is to have fulfilled days. How do you have those days?

Three words – SEIZE THE DAY!

Dr. Dave Martin’s new three-day plan provides three ways to own your day and gives practical tips to build a successful, fulfilled life. You can download Dr. Dave’s featured Bible Plan on the YouVersion Bible app.

Get the free Bible app for your phone or tablet by clicking on the button below.

Success Deconstructed


Have you noticed the trend in deconstructed food lately? It is…interesting, to say the least! (Google ‘deconstructed food,’ if you have missed out so far.) Some of you may find this idea rather fun, but I must say that if I order a burger or sushi or a dessert, I’d like it to come fully constructed, completely put together, and ready to eat!

What does it mean to ‘deconstruct’ something, anyway? Basically, it is to take it apart and look at the pieces and parts that make up the whole. So, while I enjoy an apple pie, all put together and topped with ice cream, sometimes I do find it enlightening to look at the various ingredients or the components of an idea. Today, I’d like to look at SUCCESS and let’s deconstruct this idea for a few minutes. When we do, I believe we will have a better understanding of what makes up success and we will know what success looks like to us individually.

What is success?  We hear that word all the time. Books have been written about it in every generation.  Other people have it.  We want it.  But what is it? 

I recently conducted a quick poll in my office to see what my team thought about the definition of success.  I asked them, to give me three indicators of success.  If they had these things in their life, they would know they were successful.  The responses were intriguing, because five themes seemed to be most common.  According to my latest poll, the biggest indicators of success are these:

  • Healthy relationships
  • Legacy
  • Money
  • Purpose
  • Happiness

Although you may have other items to add to this list, I think this is a good start.  The question now becomes, how do you achieve these things?  Where do you start with developing healthy relationships, establishing a positive legacy, creating wealth, fulfilling a purpose and becoming happy? 

Success needs to be simple.  That does not mean it is easy.  But the concepts are not a mystery and they are achievable.  You must first develop a mindset and hone a skill set to position yourself where you are able to recognize and to take advantage of every opportunity. 

Becoming a success is very intentional.  It requires discipline and perseverance and the intentional pursuit of the foundational qualities which set great achievers apart.  Greatness is not based on performance, but rather on character.  It is not what a person does, but rather what a person is and how that person influences the people around him. 

A successful person is anyone who is pursuing a predetermined, worthwhile goal and doing a good job at it because that is the goal he has deliberately set in his sights. But sadly, only about 4 in every 100 people will ever set a goal for their lives and then work intentionally toward it. And they will fail to do this because they are more interested in popularity than success. They are more interested in being accepted than being right. They want to be part of the flock instead of being ahead of the flock, though they would never admit it. They want to play it safe and not take the risks associated with sticking out from the crowd.

This desire to fit in causes people to give up on their dreams and to abandon the goals they have had since childhood. They learn quickly how to think like the people around them and how to settle for the lifestyle and lack of significance that others have gradually adopted. They learn to complain and blame. They learn to envy and compare. But they rarely stop to think that they have the power at any point in their lives to turn things around and to head in a different direction in spite of what other people think and in spite of what other people are doing. They rarely stop to think that they hold the reins of their own lives and that they write the scripts of their own personal history.

If you want to be great, you have to stop being average. If you want to be uncommon, you have to stop being common. If you want to go places where few people have gone, you have to stop following the herd to the places in life that they frequent. If you want to be different, you have to think differently.

I hope you enjoyed this episode! Please share it with friends and colleagues, or on social media. 

If you liked what you heard, I’d love it if you would leave a five-star review on iTunes here. 

It All Starts In Your Head

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God gave you two ends, one to sit on and one to think with. Success depends on which one you use.  Heads you win, tails you lose. If you want to be a winner, get off your tail and use your head.

I would like to help you change your thinking today. If we can change your thinking, we can change your life. That’s what the Success Made Simple podcast is about - teaching you secrets and principles that will help you to win in life.  Believe you can and you can. Not only you CAN, but you WILL. If you listen to what I’m telling you -  the priceless wisdom, values, understanding, and teaching that I’m going to share with you - I believe you’ll develop the mindset of a winner. You’ll learn how to mind your head, because successful people think differently than unsuccessful people.

Growing up I used to think that if you were wealthy, you were selfish. I had to change the way I thought about things, the way I looked at things, and that’s what I want to help you do. I believe if you think like winners, act like winners act, do what winners do, you can be a winner.

I want to tell you about minding your head and how winners are different from the crowd. All year we’ve been talking about developing your mindset and how to develop the right kind of thinking.

Winners are different from the crowd. They don’t just survive their failures, they refuse to place the blame on others. They see possibilities and they know that all things are possible.

This doesn’t mean that they never make mistakes - some of the most wealthy and successful people have made some of the greatest failures. In fact, most successful people have a few failures on their resumes. But, failure in life can be the greatest teacher

Winners are those who learn from their mistakes, but never quit. They let the obstacles in life propel them, not steal their dreams. Winning begins between your ears. 

Our goal is to develop a new mentality, a new picture of ourselves, our life, our family, our business, and our finances. Begin to see it differently than you see it right now.

Most of us have been conditioned to blame something outside of ourselves for the parts of our life we don’t like, but if you want to be successful, if you want to be wealthy, if you want to have healthy relationships, if you want to be fulfilled, you’re going to have to take 100% responsibility for everything you’ve experienced in your life. That includes the level of achievement you’ve reached and the results that you’ve produced. The quality of your relationships, the state of your health, your physical fitness, income, debt, feelings... everything! We blame our parents, bosses, friends, media, coworkers, spouse... we can blame everything on everyone. We never look at where the problem really is and that is ourselves, and our own thinking.

If you want to create the life of your dreams, you’re going to have to take responsibility for where you are and what you’re thinking. That means giving up your excuses and your victim stories, all the reasons why you haven’t and why you can’t. Until now.

Make a decision today, right now! Say out loud,

“I am deciding to change the way I look and think about things!”

“I am going to develop the mindset of a winner!”

“ I am going to get the mentality!”

“ I am going to mind my head!”

YOU already have the ability and the power to make it happen, SO DO IT!

I hope you enjoyed this episode! Please share it with friends and colleagues, or on social media. 

If you liked what you heard, I’d love it if you would leave a five-star review on iTunes here.