Welcome to the beginning of a new life and congratulations on your decision to make an investment of faith and belief in yourself and your future.
We are looking forward to beginning a journey that will take each of us to the next level in our lives and work. That’s exciting! We will be leading and guiding you along, challenging you at times, and encouraging you often.
Introduction and overall purpose of the Nick James Blog
You are about to experience what we believe can have the most long-lasting, positive effect on those who seek to improve their results and their lives.
What are the pieces?
Well, there are many ingredients to creating success, but we made the decision based on our observations and conversations over the years to create a program built on these core ingredients:
– Having a plan that takes into account the fact that people are very busy and have very full schedules. This is big. We want to do it all, but sometimes you have to start modestly, fall in love with the process and, as a result, make learning and growing a priority. Because of this, we will go at a pace doable for even the busiest of people.
– Long-term perspective. This will be a marathon, not a sprint (win the war, not the battle). You’ve heard the cliché, but it is true. The real success of this program will be based on the person you become and the results you have achieved one year from now.
– Having a specific focus for 30 days at a time on a core building block or pillar of success, then using that pillar as a foundation to build on the following month. This allows us to focus on these 12 individual core areas over a period of a year, without becoming overwhelmed.
– Using weekly e-mail to bring continuity, accountability and synergy. It’s easy for most of us when we don’t have to call all the plays. The weekly e-mails will help you to jump in and get going without having to create the beginning motion.
– Bonus audios and book chapters for listening in the car and reading at night. This is important, so we all receive multiple injections of ideas and strategies in a variety of ways throughout the week and month.
Our job is to deliver the above to you. And even more important is your job to take the above and invest yourself into the process. Some weeks and months you will be more involved in the process than others. That’s okay. The key here is the plan, not the amount. Just stay with the plan and as you participate you will see remarkable growth appear overall, as well as in specific areas of our focus.
We look forward to taking the journey together with you!
Nick James First Step Towards Success: Personal Development, Part One — The Invitation
First, let me welcome you to this incredible journey. I’m excited! What a great opportunity to be able to take this next step together. I’m flattered and honored and hope you have been served well. But to now take the next step and have a program that takes us through the entire next year is the missing piece I’ve been in search of.
So let’s get started on the journey. In fact, the First step to success is Personal Development and that can be defined as a journey.
It is a journey because you will not get there overnight. But you will get there. Step by step, you will get a little bit closer—a little bit further down the path. It is a journey because it is both a process and a destination (though you will find that when you get “there” you will have another destination in mind—one that is still further down the road).
It is a journey because it will be fun, just as an adventure you embark on might be. It is a journey because it will be hard at times and it will take time. You will plug away and wonder when you will get there, but you will be making progress, getting closer and closer with each passing mile you travel. This is exciting!
So what are the keys to personal development? This is a good question and one in which you should pay careful attention to the answers.
Four Main Thoughts on PD:
First, I believe the personal development road is an invitation sent to all, but recognized by few. It seems to me that those on the PD road oftentimes are somehow invited into a special banquet hall to take a sneak peek at what is possible. This glimpse invites those rare questions that most people simply don’t ask themselves. What if I decide to set and reach higher goals? What if I decide to go for my dreams? What if I can change certain unpleasant things about myself? What if I can significantly make a difference in the lives of others? It is from this special sneak preview and these new questions that a new life begins to evolve. Why? Because of your new vision and possibilities. Yes, it can be said Personal Development opens up a whole new world of potential and possibilities for you and for those you affect.
Second, Personal Development requires a plan. I’ve often said that all good things in life are upstream, but the natural flow of life is downstream. So you need a plan. You need a map to help you get where you want to go. We will cover this more in depth in Week Two.
Third, Personal Development is about association and influence. We are affected by everything around us. What we read, what we watch, who we talk with, who we spend time with; it all plays a part in how we view our world, our relationships and our opportunities, but mostly ourselves. We will cover this more in depth in Week Three.
And fourth, Personal Development is about learning and education. Over the next year we will involve with personal development, becoming a student and learning. We will cover this more in depth in Week Four.
Bonus Point—Personal Development is about having a celebration! Yes, you heard me right. Every investment needs to have a payoff. And yes, the payoff will be the person you become and the results you receive, BUT also go ahead and create your own unique, only-you-deserve-it-because-you-did-it, one-of-a-kind celebration! So yes, along the way we will encourage you to celebrate your progress. On small milestones have small celebrations. At larger milestones have bigger celebrations. And that is all part of the Personal Development equation.
We will cover each of these four points more in depth over the next month, but I want to focus on the first one this week—Personal Development, the Invitation. We have all received an invitation to a party or an event, and are then faced with the decision to go or not. Obviously, multiple outcomes can result from our decision. But here are two specific outcomes we’ve all probably experienced:
We went, in spite of our hesitations or difficulties, and it was a great, maybe even a life-changing, experience. Perhaps we met our future spouse or a lifelong friend or had an experience we will treasure for a lifetime.
We didn’t go, but our spouse or friend did and they told us how much we missed out on what could have been a life-enhancing experience.
I’m pretty sure almost everyone participating in this program is already a student of personal development and growth or you probably would not be participating. But I want to thank you and congratulate you for accepting this invitation to step out and into a program that makes so many bold promises. I want you to know we are committed to doing our part of the equation. I believe by accepting the invitation, you are taking that all-important first step. And now our journey begins, hand in hand.
As stated above, this is not a sprint and we are not in a hurry. Let’s watch as the very process and commitment itself begins to take us in the direction of high achievement, goal accomplishment and TRUE success (true success is living the life you truly desire to live—spiritually, physically, relationally and mentally—as you have defined it).
You’ve taken the first step; now let each week’s lessons and ideas take us where we desire to go!
Until next week, let’s do something remarkable!
Personal development takes place all of the time, but there are also moments of time when we are more apt and able to grow.
You have to be ready.I am sure you have heard “that when the student is ready the teacher will appear”. This is true. You are ready because of your participation in this year-long development program. You are set to go and to grow. That’s great!
As we focus this month on personal development, we want to elaborate on Nick’s point about being a student. Reading is the core of any personal development program. “Books are what you step on to take you to a higher shelf”. The higher your stack of books, the higher the shelf you can reach. Want to reach higher? Stack some more books under your feet! Reading is what brings us to new knowledge. It opens new doors. It helps us understand mysteries. It lets us hear from successful people. Reading is what takes us down the road in our journey. “Everything you need for a better future and success has already been written.”
Personal development is whole life. Some people might only want to get rich and thus allow other parts of their lives to suffer. Others might just want to be healthy, thus letting the other parts suffer. Nick’s perspective was that success in personal development is whole life: Physical, Spiritual, and Mental. All through this journey we will focus on different areas of your life so you can arrive at your destination a well-rounded and balanced person.
Here are some other things to think about regarding personal development:
It will take discipline. Each and every day you must take another step forward toward your destination. This is a discipline. Some days it may mean going to the gym. Some days it will mean listening to a CD. Some days it will mean having a difficult conversation with the goal of restoring a relationship. All of these are things we must discipline ourselves to do.
It will take perseverance. Many people start. Successful people finish. All of them hit hard times. All of them are tempted to quit. People who will always stay at the average level are those who will not persevere. Those who succeed are the ones who, regardless of the size of the obstacle, persevere. Onward they move.
It will take a plan. This is one of the key strengths of this program. We give you a plan. We keep you on track. We nudge you to work the plan and the plan WILL see you through. There is more than 40 years of knowledge and experience working for you in this plan. Take advantage of it. Follow it.
Be sure to download this week’s workbook pages to complete the Questions for Reflection and Action Points exercises.