Heard this gem from Gary Vee when he was on the Jim Rome show.
He was was talking about a question he received from a woman during one of his talks.
The question was something like: “Can you offer me motivation? I’m stuck.”
His answer: “You’re Gonna Die.”
Jarring, but it worked.
It’s something that makes me think of motivational speaking guru Tony Robbins.
He talks about how change comes when you change someones state. One of the most effective ways to do this is to shock them. A statement like this is shocking. But its also true.
When you realize that life is going to end, you drop the trivial, insignificant things and start focusing on the important.
You realize that time is short and that you need to hustle.
You realize that it doesn’t matter what others think or say about you, all that stands in the way of you and your goal is YOU.
We won’t be able to do this forever.
Over the last year, I’ve become a Gary Vee fan.
I’ve listened to his audio books and saw him speak in person.
But the one thing that stuck out is his recent appearance on a sports talk show.
He was a featured guest on the Jim Rome show. One of my favorite shows.
It sounds like an odd pairing, Gary isn’t an athlete or involved in sports.
He’s an entrepreneur.
However, one of his lifetime goals is to own the New York Jets football team.
The host, Jim Rome, hadn’t met Gary before, but he had done his homework. He asked great questions.
One of my favorite parts of the interview is when he said to Gary: “Can you tell the audience about the four words of advice that you gave to the woman in the crowd?”
Without pause, Gary responded:
“You’re going to die.”
Four powerful words. Not the ones she was expecting.
But the impact of those words is immediate.
It forces one to stop thinking about the little things.
Oftentimes its the little things that prevent us from taking action on our big goals.
Being reminded that we only have one life creates urgency.
It makes us realize that we should spend less time worrying on what we can’t do, and more time focused on what we can.
A field goal kicker has one of the most challenging jobs in sports.
It’s not the most physically demanding – far from that. Their job becomes harder almost because its not physically demanding. Teammates often resent the kicker. “They aren’t one of us,” they say. It’s a job so much different than running back, quarter back, linebacker or defensive end.
Its also a job that demands a different type of approach and a different type of personality.
Most positions in football are “rah rah.” Players come out of the tunnel before the game pounding their chest. After a big play they will jump up in excitement.
Field goal kickers aren’t like that. They stay at an even keel. Never too high, never too low. They have to.
Coming in for a chip shot field goal in the first quarter? Calm.
Even though missing the easy kick could turn the home crowd against them.
Coming in late in the game for the game winner? Calm. Have to be. Approaching it like any other kick.
Kickers are used to dealing with crowds. Home crowd cheering them on. Away crowd jeering.
But then there is another wrench.
When the coach calls a time out just before they kick. Regardless if their kick goes through the uprights and they score, they have to do it again.
They can’t get mad. Or frustrated. They just have to line back up in a business like approach and do it again.
As I’m writing this I’m thinking of a kicker that did celebrate after his kick… didn’t turn out too well for Bill Gramatica when he jumped up celebrating. He ended up tearing his ACL and was gone for the season!
I’d been off track.
I hadn’t been going to the gym. Hadn’t been jogging. Hadn’t been reading and writing in the morning – a couple of my favorite habits.
But I wasn’t mad at myself. I know that from time to time I’m going to go off track.
It was the holidays. Then it was a business trip.
But after shaking off the jet lag, it was Monday morning and I was back.
For me, Monday’s are my anchors. I know that I can get back on track by starting fresh at the beginning of the week.
So this morning I was up early. Started reading, then writing. Even got in my workout. And it’s not even 9 am.
Well, at least I know I’m on track to getting back.
It’s the feeling that you get when you see the name on the call display, or you see the facebook message or email with the persons name.
There are some people that when I see their name pop up I get a smile on my face.
Maybe its because I haven’t heard from them in awhile..
Maybe its because I know they will have a lot of positive energy shine through – even if its an email and not a call where I could hear that energy.
But oftentimes its the opposite feeling.
There are some people that only contact me when they want something.
I see their name and I’m hesitant to pick up. What is it this time? I think to myself.
The legendary motivational speaker Zig Ziglar once said “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help enough other people get what they want”
And as a motivational speaker myself, I believe in helping people.
The problem is when that becomes too much of a one way street.
I try to avoid being this type of person.
It’s the reason why I think its important to build a personal relationship with the people you do business with.
My favorite meetings – and often the most productive ones – usually are spent talking personal at the beginning. How are the kids? How’s the wife? Where have you been traveling to lately? After that, we get down to business. That part fills up about 10% of the time. But things get taken care of quick after that.
I like to think of myself as a helpful guy.
I have a passion for helping artists and I try my best to offer guidance and advice.
But sometimes I get frustrated.
I often spend more time than I think I would… or should. Sometimes it feels like its a waste of time.
This can happen a few different ways…
I can send an email to an artist saying that I need to get some information from them, for instance their bio and three Youtube links. I won’t get a response.
Or an artist can say, “Can we jump on the phone and talk about this some more?”
It’s good to touch base with someone on the phone, but in many cases these phone calls turn into: “So you you need like what you said in the email?” Me: “Yep.” “Okay and this other thing is like in the email?” Me: “Yep.”
Or it can be something that could have simply been solved by sending an email.
In either case, my initial desire to help turns counterproductive.
As a result, it can turn me off from wanting to help other artists.
If you are looking for someone to help you, the best thing is to value that persons time.
Don’t make it difficult for them to help you.
Make it easy.
Then they will look forward to helping you, instead of looking the other way.
I remember the first time I listening to Wu-Tang Clan. I didn’t like them. I didn’t get it. Their sound was different from everything else out there. But after seeing the video a few times on Rap City one day it clicked. I was hooked. I became a fan and for the next several years I devoured all of their releases.
I could say the same thing for several other artists.
It took me awhile before it clicked.
I love the definition for acquired taste because of how it includes the word “experience.”
You have to try it to get it.
As an artist you can tell people about your art but it is really about getting someone to immerse themselves in it. I say “immerse” because we want someone to experience our art without distractions. Not to simply browse over it and check it out while multitasking.
Some people are good at sales. They can convince you to check out their art.
But even then, you aren’t guaranteed to get the person to command their undivided attention.
Most good art, or good ideas, are things that are different. They will be met with resistance. The key is to keep pushing the ideas so that the audience acquires taste… and gives you the attention your art deserves.