What I Want for the Next Ten Years
“Nothing splendid has ever been achieved except by those who dared believe that something inside themselves was superior to circumstance. To choose the sure thing is treason to the soul.”
As someone who is abandoning the sure thing, those words rang true from Bruce Barton’s book The Man Nobody Knows (an excellent character study of the real Jesus Christ, written by an ad man back in the 1920s).
Throughout my life I have had clear goals of what I wanted to accomplish by the time I was 25, 35, 45, and 55. Never have I chosen “the sure thing.” Just ask my wife and partner Vikki. The good news is I exceeded these goals every step of the way. The bad news is when I was 55 I had no clear goal about what I wanted to accomplish by the time I was 65. I felt my soul withering a little every day.
Fortunately, that changed. In September of 2013, at the age of 56-and-a-half, I received total clarity about what I want in the next ten years. My wife Vikki and I are taking early retirement from the University where we both work to pursue our goals. I am taking urgent action to accomplish the following by the time I am 65.
- I want to return to the freedom of working for me. No bosses, only appreciative clients. Although many think I am crazy, I have stepped down from the sure thing “dream job” as assistant dean of continuing education at my alma mater — the University of California, San Diego. My intent is to work for UC San Diego Extension one day per week. I will always love the university and be a part of it.
- I want to continue teaching at UC San Diego, but shift to teaching only professionals and consultants.
- I want in the next decade to work with at least one thousand consultants one-on-one and help them get to where they want in the sweet spot of $100,000 to $400,000 annual income. To do this I have joined my very good friend Mark LeBlanc’s team of Small Business Success coaches.
- I want to publish a book with Mark LeBlanc in early 2014 titled The Science of Attracting High-Paying Clients. We are tweaking the manuscript now.
- I want to go on a whistle stop tour of Canada, traveling my train and giving seminars from Vancouver to Halifax
- I want to host my Marketing With a Book & Speech Summits with Mark LeBlanc on a monthly basis, with tour stops in New York City, Chicago, Nor Cal, So Cal, Seattle, Portland, Denver, Nashville, Baltimore, Washington, DC, Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Minneapolis, and Orlando.
- I want to be a joint venture partner with my great friend Mark LeBlanc, founder of the Small Business Success team of coaches, in a new venture.
- I want to be a popular speaker on the Vistage circuit, which are monthly meetings of CEOs throughout the United States, Canada and England.
- I want to be co-author of a New York Times best-selling business book with my friend Dean Minuto. We are working on the proposal in first quarter of 2014.
- I want to be debt free and build a nest egg for semi retirement when I am 66.
- I want to return to being very active in my congregation
- I want to tell others the good news from the Bible on a weekly basis
- I want to be an active asset to my congregation by taking the lead in helping it run
- I want to be hospitable to the friends in my congregation
- I want to weigh 197.
- I want to eat a diet devoid of gluten, peanuts, dairy, sugar and sweeteners, and easy on the dairy.
- I want to be an avid daily hiker.
- I want to play tennis on a weekly basis.
- I want to show my wife Vikki the best parts of America and Europe.
- I want us to travel throughout the United Kingdom.
- I want us to travel throughout Italy.
- I want us to travel to the Netherlands and Germany
- I want us to travel to Australia
- I want us to travel to Hawaii
If you are still reading or are curious, here were my decade goals.
By 25, I wanted to work in sports public relations. By 1982 I covered the Padres for the Associated Press and was a marketing consultant to the Padres. In the next decade or so I would work with the Super Bowl, Steve Garvey, PGA players, NASCAR, the Indy 500, the Holiday Bowl, the NFL Quarterbacks Club, and the Pro Bowling Tour.
By 35, I wanted to run a large corporate public relations department and be a published author. By 1992 at Foresters I managed an international 10-person PR team with an annual budget of $2 million. My first book, Self-Marketing Secrets, was published in 1992.
By 45, I wanted to have an MBA to run my own marketing communications agency. I earned the MBA in 1998, founded my own boutique agency in 1999, and attracted an impressive team and client roster by 2002.
By 55, I wanted to be a thought leader in marketing for consultants and align my practice with a university. I spent eight years and $2 million studying the science of attracting clients. I earned two certificates at the Harvard Business School. In 1997 I was offered an academic/administrative position with UC San Diego. By 2012, my Marketing With A Book and Speech summits had completed a 14-city national tour, my book How to Close Deals Like Warren Buffett was an award-winning best seller, and I had an academic/administrative position at UC San Diego. In the last six years I have helped as a writer or editor with 60 book projects for consultants.
So now on to the next ten years. Once I accomplish this, then I get work on clarity for what I want by the time I am 75.
If there is anything I can do to help you get what you want, please let me know. “You can get whatever you want in life,” the great Zig Ziglar would say, “If you just help enough other people get what they want.” The trick is knowing what you want and then pursuing it with persistence. If you never quit, then you never lose.