In 2004, personal development master, Jim Rohn, gave a list of 15 challenges to pursue at his Jim Rohn Weekend Leadership Event. No one knew it at the time, but it ended up being his last recorded weekend event. Even though this great man is no longer alive today, we have his recorded and written word to guide our lives.
In today’s blog, I wanted to share with you 15 challenges that Jim dared that audience to pursue in their own lives on that weekend. Even though they were given 9 years ago, those challenges are just as applicable to our lives today as they were to the audience that day.
My plan is to go through each of these 15 challenges (1 blog per challenge) and go into more detail about what I think Jim is saying and practical ways we can achieve these challenges in our own life. Over the course of these 16 blogs, I think that we can learn a great deal about ways we can really make strides in the type of people we are and how we live our lives.
Jim Rohn’s words have been very influential in my life and I think that these 15 challenges get right to the heart of everything he stood for and everything that he ever hoped for our society to embrace. I hope you find his challenges as meaningful as I did.
15 Challenges to Pursue
excerpted from the 2004 Jim Rohn Weekend Leadership Event—his last recorded weekend event.
Review Your Performance
Whether it’s communication, whether it’s activity, whether it’s a CEO, whether it’s on the job. Here’s what my father said: “Always do more than you are paid for to make an investment in your future.” Now some unions would argue with that. My father was so unique. Review your performance—your language with your children. Say, “Have I been too harsh, too strong, too stubborn? Should I have learned to be easier and mixed more compassion with the tough stuff I have to deal with?” And yes, prayer will help. Ask for help to say the right thing, not to ruin it all by poor communication.
Face Your Fears
That’s how you conquer them. Don’t dismiss them; face them. Say, “Here’s what I’m afraid of. I wonder what I could do to change that.”
Exercise Your Willpower to Change Direction
You don’t have to keep doing what you’ve been doing the last six years if it’s not yielding the benefits you want. My mentor helped me review the last six years so I wouldn’t repeat those errors the next six. Pick a new destination and go that way. Use your willpower to start the process. You don’t have to repeat last year. Clean up the errors. Invest it now in the next year. Watch it make the difference.
Admit Your Mistakes
Sometimes you have to admit them to others. Parents have to do it. We ask our kids to do it. We have to do it. Here is one of the best phrases in the English language: “I’m sorry.” The reason those are good words is because they could start a whole new relationship. It could start two people going in a whole new direction. Simple, not easy. You get this done, the turnaround can be dramatic. The early years can be big in payoff. Here’s the big one. Admit your mistakes to yourself. You don’t have to babble about them to everyone in the neighborhood. But it doesn’t hurt to sit down and have a conversation with yourself and say, “There’s no use kidding myself. Here’s where I really am. I’ve got pennies in my pocket and I’ve got nothing in the bank.” That’s what I said after a Girl Scout left my door. I had a conversation with myself and I said, “I don’t want this to happen anymore.”
Refine Your Goals
Start the process. Set some higher goals. Reach for some higher purpose. Go for something beyond what you thought you could do.
Believe in Yourself
You’ve got to believe in God and you’ve got to believe in the community. You’ve got to believe in the possibilities. You’ve got to believe in the economy. You’ve got to believe that tomorrow can be better than today. Here’s the big one. Believe in yourself. There isn’t a skill you can’t learn; there isn’t a discipline you can’t try; there isn’t a class you can’t take; there isn’t a book you couldn’t read.
Ask for Wisdom
This is communication of the highest source. Ask for wisdom that creates answers. Ask for the wisdom that creates faith to believe things are possible. Ask for wisdom to deal with the challenges for today and tomorrow, to deal with the challenges your family brings you. Don’t wish it was easier; wish you were better.
Conserve Your Time
Sometimes we get faked out. Bill Bailey says the average person says, “I’ve got twenty more years.” No, Bill says you’ve got twenty more times. If you go fishing once a year, you’ve only got twenty more times to go fishing, not twenty years. That fakes you out.
Invest Your Profits
Here’s one of the philosophies that Mr. Shoaff gave me. Profits are better than wages. Wages make you a living, profits make you a fortune. Could we start earning profits while we make a living? The answer is yes.
Protect Your Family
These are troublesome times. At school—troublesome times. Protect your family as best you can from the hidden dangers, the lurking evil one.
Live with Intensity
You might as well turn it up a notch or two. Invest more of you in whatever you do. Be a little stronger; be a little wiser. Step up your vitality contribution. Put everything you’ve got into everything you do and then ask for more vitality, more strength and more vigor, more heart and more soul.
Find Your Place
If you just work on a job, find the best place you can serve well, and sure enough they’ll ask you to occupy a better place. And if you keep doing a job well, do the very best you can. That’s your best way out. Here’s a Bible phrase. If you work on your gifts, they’ll make a place for you.
Demand Integrity from Yourself
Integrity is like loyalty. You can’t demand it of someone else; you can only demand it of yourself. Be the best example of loyalty, and you’ll get some loyal followers. Be the best example of integrity, and you’ll have people around you who have integrity. Lead the way.
Welcome the Disciplines
Can’t give you much better advice than that because disciplines create the reality. Disciplines build cities. A well-disciplined activity creates abundance, creates uniqueness, productivity.
Fight for What’s Right
It’s a fight we’re in. The storyteller says “And there was a great war in heaven.” One of the writers of later Scripture said, “I fought a good fight.” That’s extraordinary to be able to say. I fought for my kids, and I fought for what was right and I fought for good health, and I fought to protect my company and I fought for a good career that would bless my family. I fought a good fight. It’s good to fight the encroachment. Opposites are in conflict, and you’re in the middle. If you want something valuable, you’ve got to fight for it. Then this writer also said, “I fought a good fight and I kept the faith.” See, that’s the deal. Keep faith with your family. Fight the enemy and keep faith. Fight the illness and keep faith. Fight the evil and keep faith. I can’t give you much better advice.