When I saw Erin’s statement I immediately reduced that to be A=M+N (I actually said in my head ‘AMEN’).
Erin’s formula is the Answer (big A) is always (=) Me (big M) and (+) Now (big N).
Millions of people visit the PickTheBrain blog every month, it is one of the most popular self-development sites on the Internet. I was fascinated by what had made Erin choose a mantra that was guaranteed to thrust her into the middle of situations where other people would simply choose to go in the other direction?
Erin had tried a number of mantra’s before settling on the on the one she uses now. Previous ones included…
The sky’s the limit.
Go big or go home.
Aim for the stars.
All of which were admirable, and suggested that she was someone who was aiming for the biggest and brightest of goals. There was only one problem. At the time she didn’t feel all that encouraged by them; quite the opposite in fact! She was too busy dreaming of future triumphs, and feeling that she was constantly in a state of readiness waiting for her life to start.
Then reality hit her hard! She woke up one day and realised (and I quote) “I had no money, no car and my house was about to be foreclosed”. Now, for many people in such a situation it would have been just too much to handle.
As I said… for most people, but not for Erin.
You see what makes Erin different to 99% of people out there (and in fact it’s what also differentiates many successful people) is when reality bit, the pain of that bite made her not only wake up to the threats in her life, she also became aware of the positives that she had been overlooking… she didn’t go unrealistically super-positive (that had been half of her original problem) but neither did she spiral into uncontrollable remorse. She kept perspective!
So what were those positives that she had been overlooking?
There were a few, but the one that Erin realised she could do something with and would start to help her to overcome the pressing financial challenges in her life was the little blog she was running.
To quote Erin, “I had been given this little, pretty unknown, blog called PickTheBrain to run. Sure, I wasn’t holding a casting session to discover the lead heroine staring opposite Brad Pitt, in my latest film. But I was getting emails from around the world on a daily basis from people inquiring about or giving praise to this little self-improvement blog.
It felt wonderful. I was putting in very little effort — and what effort it was, was very enjoyable. And the results were, well very impressive for that very little bit of effort. I decided to test this out. So I put in a little more effort. Very quickly, the results multiplied — almost instantly. More traffic, more feedback.”
So where does that leave Erin today?
In my estimation it leaves her as the embodiment of last week’s formula a≠D (away from is not a destination). She chose not to run away from her situation. She chose to address it. She stopped trying to dream up a fantastic future life and started to work with what she had to build that fantastic future life!
As a professional motivational speaker, I sometimes address entrepreneurial start-up groups. They are full of enthusiasm and they love to talk about where their business will be in two to three years from now. I do my very best to encourage them to be brave and to strive for their goals, but I also quote a very successful business contact of mine who likes to remind people that “On the road to getting rich, you have to avoid going broke”.
The reason I love Erin’s mantra is because it keeps her grounded in reality, it keeps her brave and most importantly it keeps her moving forward.
3. What are the positives in your life that you may be overlooking as you dream your dreams of the future?
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Click HERE to read my PickTheBrain guest post on Mantra’s
Click HERE to read my PickTheBraion guest post on Gratitude.