-Jim RohnCommonly called, "The mentor to mentors," Jim Rohn's teachings have had a profound impact on my life. Among many other valuable life-lessons, Mr. Rohn teaches us that in life (just as in farming), you have different stages of growth and development. First, you have to plant a seed. Then, time passes and cultivating occurs. Then, there's a harvest. What's critical is understanding not only the process, but exactly what our role is in the process.
To quote Mr. Rohn, "A major challenge faced by us all is that we must learn to experience the changing of life's cycles without being changed by them; to make a constant and conscious effort to improve ourselves in the face of changing circumstances."
2009 is the season of victory. Everything that you have experienced... all the people you have met... all of your setbacks... all of your accomplishments and blessings... This has all been the planting and cultivating of various seeds in your life, before your harvest. The cultivating process, the step between planting the seed and the harvest, will be the most difficult. It's where most people will give up on their goals or convince themselves it's acceptable to settle for less than what they really want. These goals may be related to one's career, an exercise or diet program, or maybe even looking for that special someone. There isn't a single area of your life where this concept doesn't apply. In the ever-changing seasons of your life, it will take a lot of inner strength, determination, and patience, for you to continue to press on during those cold "winters." But for those individuals who do press on, reminding themselves that winter always turns into spring, a bountiful harvest of wealth and abundance in every area of life is possible and should be expected... as long as the necessary cultivating efforts are made.
One common law of life that we are all governed by (regardless of your spiritual or religious beliefs), which can be applied to every single area of our lives is: What we put into this world, we get back from it.
Regardless of the results, take full responsibility for your "fields." Your crop is your crop. Once you have accepted full responsibility for your life, you can now begin to live and function at your highest potential. One thing we must understand is that you should reap all you deserve, without justification, if you have done well. And, without remonstration if you have not. All the while, holding steady to what you want to accomplish.
2009 is the season of victory... even if your 2008 more closely resembled the Detroit Lions' (0-16) most recent campaign. And as the NFL playoffs commence this weekend, excitement is building as football fans await the crowning of a new champion. Likewise, 2009 could be your championship season. Winning in the Super Bowl of life is what will define 2009 as the season of victory for yourself.
What exactly does a championship consist of? You will have to decide. We all have our own definition of a championship season in life. When I ask myself that question, I immediately think of having wealth and abundance... but not just in the way you are probably thinking. While living in a state of financial abundance is important, true wealth, as taught to me by one of my mentors, means living in abundance in every aspect... physically, emotionally, socially, spiritually, and financially.
You could compare your success in previous years/areas of your life to winning a division title; or maybe "getting into the playoffs..." You were close to winning it all... but maybe all of the "pieces" had not yet come together. For example, maybe you met and fell in love with your soulmate... but you were experiencing health issues because you hadn't been taking proper care of yourself. Maybe you have a flourishing career and want to be in a fulfilling relationship, only to be disappointed with who you attract, time after time. Bottom line is, you've had good years before. Very good years. But maybe not a championship year. The New England Patriots won their first 18 games last year (regular season and playoffs combined). They had an outstanding year. But, they weren't champions, when the season came to a close.** (for those of you who have already earned championship rings, congratulations!! Go for a repeat... Create a dynasty!! Or better yet, use your blessings to be a blessing to others, and help them reach this same level of success.)
If using my mentor's definition of wealth (which is wealth in every single area of your life), you can take pleasure in recognizing that you have already undergone all of the "sowing" you need, in every single one of those areas. Think about it for a second... you know exactly what you want, don't you? All that's left is to finish the cultivating part... to bring about the harvest.
Join organizations and surround yourself with people that encourage (if not require/force) you to continually grow and improve in every area of your life. The number one thing you can improve on at any given time, after all, is yourself.
As Mr. Rohn explains, "Work harder on yourself, then you do on your job. If you work hard on your job, you can make a living, which is fine. But if you work hard on yourself, you'll earn a fortune... which is superfine."