- Thoughts for inspired living

March 3, 2014

Unwilling to Participate

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Morgan @ 8:48 am

C703875 mLike everyone, I have my hot buttons. I don’t get hooked by them as much as I used to but I still have my moments.

One of my most “sizzling” ones is the funhouse mirror logic many people have bought into that they don’t have to participate in their own success. They passively expect success without participation, as though attaining success is akin to getting a massage.

I know countless people who have gone to real estate seminars where they present all the ways you can make money in real estate. I’m only guessing here but I’m willing to bet that the number of people who actually make money in real estate as a result is less than 5%.

Did they receive bad information? I don’t think so. The methods presented all work when you work at them. How many times have you heard that someone “tried” a diet and it didn’t work? “I tried the chocolate covered snails diet and it didn’t work.” All diets, no matter how bizarre, work. You just have to continue to work at them.

What’s not being said is, “I expect results without having to do all the work.” That is a fairy tale that will never become a reality.

“I prayed and prayed and I didn’t get what I wanted.” What did you “do and do” to get what you desired? Did you participate in your own success?

Years ago, I got the best piece of advice when I was out of work. I was at a Richard Bolles seminar in 1980 and heard this: “When you’re unemployed, your full-time job is seeking employment.” He went on to add that if your normal job required 8 hours of work a day, you needed to spend 8 hours each day that you were unemployed looking for work.

“I just can’t find anything.” “No one is hiring.” “The job market is soft.”

“Did you work 8 hours a day looking for work?”

“Well, I made some calls, sent out some emails and they didn’t get back to me.”

Think about the absurdity of the next statement which I’ve heard hundreds of times: “I joined a gym but it didn’t work for me.”

“Did you go to the gym regularly?” “Did you do the exercises they recommended?” “Did you do more than pay your fee and buy a cool workout outfit?”

The level of expectation that people expect without participation is enormous, in fact, epidemic.

Just once, I’d like to hear someone say, “I’m just not willing to work that hard to get what I say I want.” That response would be rarer than a politician answering the question you asked.

If you are unwilling to participate in your own success, you will remain unsuccessful with a litany of stories as to why something didn’t work.

You and your actions are the main characters in your success story. If you’re always a bridesmaid and never a bride, the probability is high that you’ve never gotten behind the wheel – you’re just along for the ride.

There is a certain amount of luck involved in any success but it plays a cameo role compared to the star of the show – Participation.

All the best,


February 11, 2008


Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 9:11 am

What’s important to you? If the answer isn’t immediate, look on your refrigerator.

Most homes I visit have things affixed to their refrigerator – pictures, schedules, personalized magnets, school art, etc. These are important enough to display for anyone to see. They are visible priorities.

What’s displayed on your internal refrigerator – the one you can’t see?

Oftentimes our internal pictures, schedules, personalized magnets, etc. are scattered all over the place and don’t have order or a hierarchy to them. They all fire at once and cause us confusion and confliction. Reminds me of a story . . .

Back in 1980 I found myself out of a job in Kansas City and was looking for work. I happened to see an ad about a workshop that seemed tailor made for my needs. It was called: What Color is Your Parachute?
conducted by Richard Bolles, author of the book, What Color is Your Parachute?

The seminar was advertised as a practical approach for job hunters and career changers. Both my wife and I attended. The workshop got you to focus on your priorities before you began your search for a job or career. For example, one of those priorities was location. Both of us wanted to be within an hour’s driving distance to an ocean. There were many other questions designed to help you organize the internal scatter and prioritize it.

One of the exercises I learned, I still use today. It helps you prioritize what you think you know. Most often the results of the exercise come out differently than what you think. You may want to give it a spin. Consult the book for the official version, but here is how I remember it. Let’s start easy. List 10 things that you want to accomplish this week. Just write them down in list fashion as quickly as they come to you. They don’t have to be important or meaningful – just 10 things you want to take care of this week.

Now that they are all listed, compare number 1 on your list to number 2 and decide which one is more important to take care of. You have to pick one over the other. Once you’ve done that put a check mark next to the one you picked. Next, compare number 1 to number 3 and put a checkmark next to the one you picked. You continue comparing number 1 to all other numbers and checking the more important one. Next, you compare number 2 to number 3 and then to number 4 etc. and put a checkmark next to the one you picked. As you probably can imagine, you next compare number 3 to all the ones below it. This continues until you are finally comparing number 9 to number 10.

This exercise can take less than 5 minutes and the results can be eye-opening. The objective is to reorder your list when you’ve done the exercise. Put the thing with the most checkmarks at the top of the list and the thing with the second most checkmarks next until all the things you listed are in a hierarchical order by checkmark. You have now arranged the items on your internal refrigerator and put them in a visible display – your prioritized list.

This is an exercise that also works with deeper issues other than picking up the dry cleaning. List the things you think you really want and then start doing the comparing exercise. You may find that something that has been occupying a lot of your thinking may be close to the bottom of your list or vice-versa.

When you take the time to discover your personal priorities, you get a clearer focus on what’s important to you and then you can direct your efforts in that direction. The result is the wheat berries will drop by your feet and the chaff will blow away.

All the best,


February 27, 2008


Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 9:32 am

There is a pattern of behavior that people learn that has been labeled as “Polarity.” Seems everyone has it to a degree.

The garden variety version of full blown polarity is when you say “white” and the person with tons of polarity says “black.”

Polarity begins at around 2 years of age when a child begins to say, “No.” It’s when resistance begins to form in a human being. A child figures out, other than consciously, that they can exact some form of control over these big, scary adults by being contrary.

As we grow older, this polarity pattern calms down for most and seeks a manageable level. For some, it remains at the 2 year old level. I’m sure you have plenty of experience with some people who have high polarity.

There is even a sales training method that uses peoples’ polarity as the foundational piece of their teaching. Sandler Sales Institute
uses people’s natural polarity when they ask questions that, on the surface, sound like statements. One of those techniques that my old pal, Terry Butler used to get past the secretary with was this:

The secretary or assistant would answer the phone and say, “Hello, this is Bob Smith’s office.” The normal response to that greeting would be something like this: “Hi, this is John Morgan and I’d like to speak with Bob.” That response may get you a version of this: “I’m sorry Bob’s in a meeting. Can I take your name and number and have Bob get back to you or would you like me to put you through to his voice mail?” The secretary may be trained to say that, no matter what, unless it’s Bob’s girlfriend on the line.

Terry would respond to the secretary’s greeting like this: “Bob’s not in.” The natural polar response to that is an unguarded answer, like yes or no. Terry used the person’s polarity to establish that Bob was there. He would then move forward with something like: “This is Terry Butler. You probably can’t put me through right away.” Again, Terry worked the polarity. It’s a highly effective strategy when used judiciously.

I got an email from marketing guru, Dan Kennedy yesterday that put another spin on polarity. He wrote:

“I’ve often said that everyone on Earth is here for a

purpose even if only to serve as poor example. If you

had no successful example to emulate you could observe

the bad examples and do the opposite. In terms of

marketing strategies that’s a pretty good approach.”

This blog is to get you curious about your own polarity. We all have some. Taking Dan Kennedy’s marketing strategy and applying it to your own life could provide some eye-opening perspective.

Take a peek into the areas of your life that lack success. You will notice, if you are honest with yourself, that there is a pattern of behavior that supports each area that you are lacking in. Make a list of the patterns of behavior that are contributing to your continued lack. Next, list the opposite or polar behavior right next to it – the behavior that would support success. Prioritize your list (see prioritizing method here). Then go to work on the polar behaviors one by one. Start with the easiest one first so you can build comfortably and gain confidence in the process.

Just the recognition of the polar pattern needed may be enough to get you curious about creating a new strategy that gets you what you want.

I doubt you could begin this process today.

All the best,