Traits We Admire: Perseverance

We love this story, and we’re sorry if you’ve heard it before, but, well, too bad.  It’s worth sharing again.

There once was a lady who had a dream to become a writer.  Life didn’t work out so well, and eventually she found herself as a single mom working days and writing while sitting in restaurants at night so she and her daughter could be warm. 

Three years later, she finished her first story, and shopped it around.  After many rejections, an agent took it on; he shopped it around to many publishers, and again after many rejections, one took it on.  In fact, they even offered her the tidy sum of $4000 dollars for the rights.

Not exactly a major success story, right?  No “discovered” moment or blazing overnight world renown. 

But that writer’s name is J.K.Rowling, and the movie based on her seventh such story is due in theaters in five months.  And, oh yeah, her Perfect Life is a blazing brilliant example to all of us.

Just in case you’re starting to get a little tired of the effort.

The Gurus of Get It



Published in: on June 30, 2010 at 11:42 pm  Leave a Comment  

Challenge: ‘Think’ It Forward


Many people who plan their Perfect Life do so with the idea that part of that will be financial comfort.  But when the going gets rough–and it will–we all start to imagine what parts of our Perfect Life we could do without.  Perhaps you will say to yourself at some point that financial comfort would be nice, but it’s optional.  The problem with that is when we start dropping parts off of our Perfect Life, it’s easier to drop the whole Vision.   So, to keep you focused, we want to take this opportunity to ask this: 

What will you do with that comfort?

Success happens when you begin to act for a purpose bigger than yourself;  what, exactly, is bigger than yourself?  Is there something you could do with extraordinary wealth that would make the world better for something bigger than yourself?

For example: one charity near and dear to both of our hearts is the Make-A-Wish Foundation.  Extreme wealth for us would mean hundreds more children having a wish come true because that is where we would dedicate some of our resources if we could.

So . . . who else is going to benefit when you reach your Perfect Life?  So get busy!

The Gurus of Get It

Published in: on June 27, 2010 at 12:18 am  Leave a Comment  

A Word Of Advice: STOP!!

We were having a conversation today with somebody who does a lot of consulting work for organizations around the country, and the conversation turned in the direction of trends she’s noticing.  In particular, she was noticing how much more time she has to spend getting organizations through what should be simple conflicts which blow up out of proportion for one reason: overload.

Think about it.  When you have too many projects sitting on your desk, what happens to the quality of your work or of your relationships while you are trying to get your work done?  There is a tendency, when we shift into Overload Mode, to simultaneously shift into CYA Mode.  The problem, of course, with Covering Your  . . Behind is that it usually happens by dragging someone else into the proverbial line of fire.  Suddenly little disagreements or misunderstandings become conflicts, and the unity of the organization breaks down.

So . . . STOP!!  You need time to think, to plan, and to Vision your Life, but you also need time to connect to the people who will help with that Life.  Every once in a while, stop whatever is URGENT sitting at your desk, and attend to what is truly Important.

The Gurus of Get It

Published in: on June 24, 2010 at 1:07 am  Leave a Comment  

Keep Fighting!

As many of you are aware, both of your Gurus are quite the sports fanatics.  We try to keep the sports analogies to a minimum in case our readers are not quite as fanatical.  Sometimes though there are great lessons to be learned from sports.

Take the recently crowned NBA champ Lakers as an example.  The finals came down to one “ugly” game.  The winner of the game was not their “best self” (in fact they were both horrible).  But, the championship trophy did go to the team who would not give up and who just kept fighting.

In order to reach your vision and accomplish all that is important to you, that same mentality will have to be perfected.  Nothing is easy and most of the time, regardless of whether it is work, a relationship or any other aspects of your life, the need to fight and claw for something will be necessary.

So next time you are faced with adversity be sure to reach down deep and be ready to keep fighting no matter how difficult it may be.

The Gurus of Get It!

Published in: on June 22, 2010 at 4:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

Weekend Challenge: Learn Your Past

Father’s Day is a great idea.  Typically, it is commemorated with leisure, or play, or at the very least a barbecue and good social contact.

We propose a different idea this year.

Ask your father about one thing from their past that you want to know about, but have never had the chance.  For instance, one of us had the opportunity a couple years ago to talk with our dad about his experience in the Korean War.  Now, understand, veterans of older wars–World War II and Korea–are far more reticent to talk about their experiences than later-day soldiers.  So to learn that part of the Korean War was 8-hour slogs through rain-soaked jungles maintaining complete radio silence was a revelation.

Your dad has some revelations buried in his memory.  Take an extra hour this weekend to plumb those memories and learn a little more about where you came from.

For those of you that sadly do not have that opportunity any more, take a more circular route: ask your mother what it was about your father that brought them together. 

And for those of you without that option either, sit down and start writing your story, so that when your children ask the same question of you someday you have something ready to tell them.

The Gurus of Get It

Published in: on June 19, 2010 at 9:36 am  Leave a Comment  

Traits We Admire: Adventure

We have been fascinated by the story of Abby Sunderland, the 16-year old California girl who was trying to sail around the world by herself.  Unfortunately, her effort fell short last week when storms in the Indian Ocean damaged her boat too much to carry on.  Nonetheless, we applaud the spirit that drove her to even make the attempt.

The human creature is strangely driven to find what lies behind the closed door, over the distant hill, and beyond the next horizon.  But we have become somewhat insulated from that spirit, here in latter-day America, where we tend to seek out assurances of safety, security and fairness.  We forget that the people who formed this country braved a perilous journey across dangerous waters (all without GPS or satellite weather forecasts) to arrive in a strange land with no amenities and nary a chauffeur or concierge to be seen. 

Not everybody is built to sail around the world or climb Everest.  But it sure is exciting when we hear about somebody who casts off all assurances and takes a bold leap of faith into the great blue emptiness!  And maybe, in some small way, they will inspire your own adventure.

The Gurus of Get It

Published in: on June 16, 2010 at 10:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

Life Is Not Fair!

We write in our book about a speech Bill Gate’s does where he discusses the 11 rules for life.  Number one on that list is “Life is not fair.”  We are not saying that as a negative statement, but rather as a fact.

We all know the people who grumble about life not being fair.  It starts as a kid, goes through your teenage years, continues through college, work and life.  Those are the people who let their thoughts and perceptions bring them down and let it affect future success.

On the opposite end are the people who understand that life may not be fair, but they will make the best of it.  If they do not get a desired result, than they will figure out what they need to do differently to get what they want.  If someone is being a road block for their vision and goals, they will figure out a way to succeed in spite of them (and not because of them).  It is the “Get It’s” who will rise above the “unfairness” in the world to achieve any desired result.

As we like to say, life may not be fair, but it is good!

The Gurus of Get It!

Published in: on June 14, 2010 at 3:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

Challenge: Find Value

In case you haven’t noticed, we love movies.  Every once in a while one of them strikes us enough to creep into this article–tonight is one of those times. 

There is a line late in the movie Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, in which the powerful mentor-figure looks at the star and says “Harry, you are, as your mother always was, unfailingly kind.  It is a trait I find people never fail to undervalue.”

What a powerful statement.  And it’s true:  in a world that glorifies glib and dramatic and obnoxious, simple traits like kindness, generosity and compassion tend to be overlooked or even mocked.

But that’s not the way forward towards your Perfect Life.

So this weekend take a few extra moments along the way to recognize the little values that are a big part of everyday life, and recognize their role in your own life. 

By the way, if you need some help finding this, go to a neighborhood playground and watch the children at play. Children to do and to value these things by instinct, which we adults need years of therapy and self-help books to appreciate.

The Gurus of Get It!

Published in: on June 12, 2010 at 3:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

Traits We Admire: Simplicity

There is a tendency in American life to try to add complexity to everything.  It’s not enough to have a hamburger, we have to have two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions and a sesame seed bun.  It’s not enough to get up on stage and sing our favorite songs, we have to bring along four backup singers and 15 dancers.

You get the picture.

On the other hand, your Perfect Life is likely to have enough complications of its own without you working too hard to create new ones of your own.  So take a page from a few of our favorite philosophers:

From Abe Lincoln:  the Gettysburg Address is one of the most famous speeches ever delivered, and it comes in at a grand total of 269 words.

From middle-ages philosopher Ockham:  All things being equal, the simplest solution is usually the best (warning: heavy paraphrase).

And from the Unknown Philosopher:  Keep It Simple, Stupid!

The Gurus of Get It

Published in: on June 10, 2010 at 12:44 am  Leave a Comment  

Challenge: Meditate

We write in the book of the importance of meditation–it helps you maintain your equilibrium, your sense of perspective, and has numerous other health benefits, as well.  But too often when we think of meditation we think of a mystical trance with chanting and burning incense, and for some people that’s just a little to “out there.”

We understand.  But meditation doesn’t have to be that way.  The type of meditation we described above uses the repetitive nature of breathing to generate the state of calmness.  It turns out there are a lot of other types of activities that can generate that state of calmness.

For instance, Gen. Collin Powell writes that he would come home from a long day and spend a couple hours in the garage working on his old cars.  Something about the simple nature of that work cleared his head and allowed him to solve problems that had eluded him.  We have read of other people who find that same effect from running or bicycling, crocheting or even cooking.

This week, try to find something to do for yourself at the end of the day that allows you to turn your brain off.  It doesn’t matter what it is, just find a moment to “reboot” your brain.

The Gurus of Get It

Published in: on June 7, 2010 at 12:25 am  Leave a Comment