Today is my 42nd birthday…if you read my last email you’re probably rolling your eyes and saying.

“Yeah, Yeah Vince, We know…it’s your birthday.”

If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s better to give than to receive. 

Because of that I’ll be unpacking a host of life and business lessons I’ve learned over the course of this weekend.

I’m not sure how many I’m going to share as I plan to have some fun this weekend but stay tuned. 

I’ll share each lesson in three parts:  

Part 1: The Lesson

Part 2: The source I learned it from 

Part 3: My viewpoint on the lesson

Lesson 8: Comparison is the Thief of Happiness

Source: My longest standing coaching client, Kyle Newell from Hillsborough NJ

My Viewpoint: If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree it will always feel stupid. If you want to feel bad about yourself, reduce your confidence level and diminish your self esteem, compare yourself to your neighbor, your brother in law or the people that post on social media…and wish you had just a little of what they did. If you want to be happy, focus on the progress you’re making in life. If your not happy with your progress…you’re in the driver seat to change that.

Lesson 9: What other people think of you is none of your business

Source: One of my Therapy Sessions

My Viewpoint: There’s a great chance that the more success you have the more you’ll get criticized. I’ll never forget the email response where some guy told me to F off. I’m guessing he unsubscribed from this list but if you’re still here I’d just like to thank you for strengthening my immunity to criticism muscles. 

The more you put yourself out there the greater likelihood people won’t like, disagree with you or say harsh things to your face…at the end of the day..what they think is irrelevant and none of our business. 

Lesson 10: Create Your Own Version of Success

Source: Jim Loher interview on the Tim Ferris Podcast 

My Viewpoint: I used to define my success in direct correlation with my business…to make matters worse, our revenue was a big driver in that definition. When business was up I felt successful, when business was down, so was I. 

I freed myself when I changed my definition of success. It’s been a life changing decision. Success has a multi part definition for me that includes my health, marriage, finances, relationship with my kids, my impact, my business and some others. 

Success is NOT a universal term…My definition of success will be different than yours. Only mine matters to me and only yours should matter to you. 

Lesson 11: Hyper Local Newspapers are a Tremendous Place to Market a Gym

Source: The recent success of the newspaper ads we’ve been running at Gabriele Fitness 

My Viewpoint: The only marketing media that should be off the table is the one that your clients never see.  If NOT one of your clients are on Tik Tok, don’t bother. 

The only dead media is the media that your clients no longer use. Direct mail will die when the US Postal service goes under…which will never happen.  Newspapers will stop working when they go out of print.  Facebook still works, it’s just more expensive than it used to be. 

The worst number in marketing is one.  If you want to grow your business you need many ways to get people to call you.  Don’t underestimate media methods based on people saying it’s dead, that’s just a cry for attention.  My favorite is people saying email is dead.  You can’t stop the cockroach of marketing!

Lesson 12: The definition of Focus is Saying NO. 

Source: Gordon Blocker, Consultant at the Table Group 

My Viewpoint: At a company off-site I was silenced by what Gordon said to me.  While trying to argue that we should have 10 goals instead of 7, he looked me dead in the eyes and said, “Vince, when everything is important, nothing is.” 

Seth Godin has 2 rules for success: 1) Show-up and 2) Be Focused. Being focused is all about deciding on one thing and then repelling everything else for that moment. 

The best tool for focus is a digital kitchen timer.  Sit down with your work, put your phone away, set your timer, and work…on ONE thing until the timer goes off…You’ll be completely amazed at what you get done. 

When you do this you’re saying no to people needing a second of your time, you’re saying no to the text you got, you’re saying no to all other work you could be doing. When you do this…you’re focused. 

Lesson 13: Build Marketing Assets 

Source: The professor of harsh reality, Dan Kennedy

My Viewpoint:  Recently, I launched a series of Father’s Day emails.  I wrote them in 2019.  I pulled them out, dusted them off and spent 45- minutes tweaking the subject lines, adding an email or two, and a few other things. 

The majority of them remained untouched from 2019.  The result was our most successful Father’s Day campaign ever. That Microsoft Word file that holds those 7 emails is an asset…not a campaign.  An asset that can make my business money year after year with very minimal effort each time we pull it out. 

When you market your business, you should be creating assets at the same time…so you can create something great once that will multiply. It makes the case for slowing down and doing really great work the first time. 

Build lots of these and you will create a small fortune. 

Lesson 14: You get paid to think

Source: Keith Cunningham, The Road Less Stupid

My Viewpoint: I think the women in my neighborhood think I’m a trust fund baby.  While they are walking their dogs, sipping coffee and having casual conversation…it’s common for them to see me walking backwards, very slowly on my street at 10 AM on a Tuesday…Their husbands left for the office hours ago. 

As a business owner, the faster you understand the goal to do less work IN your business and spend more time thinking about how to make it better…the faster your business will grow. 

The best ideas never come while you’re working, they come while you’re intentionally thinking.  Don’t forget to schedule that.

Ok that’s it for the morning…Off to go fishing. 

Be back in a few hours around 4 PM.

Vince Gabriele

P.S. What’s the one business or life lesson you’ve learned over the years that stands out to you most?

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