By Casey Grey
When I was a kid, my step dad ran his business from our home. I remember coming home from school and regularly having to sit patiently at his desk while he finished a phone call before I could ask him whatever I needed to ask him. It was likely 2 minutes but it seemed like an eternity at that age.
Now it feels as though days, weeks and months fly by. Knowing that reminds me to continue to exercise that skill I was learning as a kid.
Easier said than done (just like when I was a kid).
I want the nice house, fancy car and regular trips down south now. I want this blog and podcast to help millions of people today. I want The Conscious Builder Show to have millions of subscribers now. I want Younion to have thousands of members benefiting from all the amazing classes and programs now.
But we're not there yet.
And that's okay.
Everything is happening exactly as it's supposed to. The universe is working for me. The universe will give me what I'm ready for.
It's my job to make sure I'm prepared.
And so the journey (and my training) continues...
P.S. Last night we celebrated the journey so far with The Conscious Builder team. Here are some facts/stats from 2019 that I shared with the team to show we ARE making an impact:
On January 8 of 2019 I committed to a Daily Blog and I kept that commitment. 365 days of a posting a blog every single day!
Not only have I kept it but I will continue to write every day. I will commit to another year and I suspect it will continue on after that.
But that’s not my commitment for 2020...
Today, January 8, 2020, I am committing to something new...
I’m committing to a daily podcast.
I will make sure that everyday you will hear my voice (if you choose to subscribe to Lean In with Casey Grey).
Just like when I committed to writing daily, I am doing this because I want to be better than I was yesterday (or in this case, last year). I want to become a better speaker and storyteller so that I can help people find that inspiration inside of them and release it!
I said it last year and I’ll say it again. New Year's Resolutions are useless unless you are committed.
What are you going to commit to today?
I know I need to eat healthier.
I know I need to exercise more.
I know I need to spend more time with my spouse and kids.
I know I work too much.
I know I need to sleep more.
I know I need to read more.
I know I need to meditate more.
I know I need to quit my job.
I know I need to start this new business.
I know, I know, I know...
Knowing is not enough. You need to take action.
What are you actually going to DO this year? Make 2020 a year of action.
Brian and I are starting the year off with a bunch of recording today. Watch out 2020! Here we come!
2020 will be a year of focus. 20/20 vision so to speak.
Focus is a powerful skill although it needs to be directed properly. If you are focused on the wrong things, the outcome may not be what you were hoping for.
"What's the one thing I can do that will make everything else obsolete or easier?" is a good question I learned from The One Thing. It gets your brain thinking about what's most important as oppose to what's easiest.
Another way of thinking of this is in terms of energy. Here's the analogy of the field mice and the antelope by Newt Gingrich from Tools of Titans:
"A lion is fully capable of capturing, killing, and eating a field mouse. But it turns out that the energy required to do so exceeds the caloric content of the mouse itself. So a lion that spent its day hunting and eating field mice would slowly starve to death. A lion can’t live on field mice. A lion needs antelope. Antelope are big animals. They take more speed and strength to capture and kill, and once killed, they provide a feast for the lion and her pride. A lion can live a long and happy life on a diet of antelope. The distinction is important. Are you spending all your time and exhausting all your energy catching field mice? In the short term it might give you a nice, rewarding feeling. But in the long run you’re going to die. So ask yourself at the end of the day, “Did I spend today chasing mice or hunting antelope?"
What are you going to focus on today?
Over this past year, writing every day has been a powerful experience and something I plan on continuing for the foreseeable future.
As we role into 2020 I'm contemplating what I would like to commit to for my next personal journey.
Something I would like to get better at is storytelling. A good storyteller can captivate an audience. They can get your attention and keep it. They get you to WANT more.
Perhaps I will commit to one podcast episode a week where I share something powerful. Where it forces me to become a better storyteller and ultimately a better speaker.
The world is full of labels.
Passive House, Energy Star, R-2000, LEED Certified, FSC Certified, CSA Approved and HVI Certified are ones that come up often for me in the construction world.
Vegan, Gluten-Free, Vegetarian, Paleo, Raw and Flexitarian are all labels for different types of diets (and I know there's more).
Mental disorders are a whole other game. There's a 3" thick book called the DSM-5 that explains all the shit that's "wrong" with us.
I'm not a fan of labels but I understand and appreciate the importance they play in our society.
As somebody who primarily eats a vegan and gluten-free diet, I appreciate seeing those labels.
As somebody who builds healthy and sustainable homes, I see the value in having a third party certify a home and prove that it was built to a certain standard.
When labeled with a mental disorder, it can be beneficial in the sense that the person may gain access to additional resources and realize that they are not alone.
The issue is that most of us have no idea what the labels mean.
If I were to show the general population the Passive House label, chances are they would not know what it meant. If I were to show people at a Green Building Show that same label, most people would likely recognise it but I guarantee you a lot of them would have no idea what was required to get that label.
People who do not put a lot of attention into the food they put into their bodies won't necessarily know what vegan is or where gluten comes from or what foods contain what. Personally, I'm still not sure what a paleo diet is...
Since I have no education in the mental disorder world, when I hear somebody is labeled with something specific I have to do research if I want to understand what that means (a.k.a. I ask my wife because she does have formal education here).
The other important factor to understand is that labels often only account for one aspect.
A Passive House does not mean it was built with healthy products (it puts the attention on performance).
A LEED Certified house does not mean it is energy efficient (it puts a lot of attention on materials).
A Vegan diet does not mean it's healthy (refined sugar and vegetable oil is vegan).
A diagnosis of ADHD does not mean the person is not smart or can not focus (most entrepreneurs I know would fall under this category).
Don't get caught up in the labels. Although they tell us important information, it's not the whole story.
You remember Little Red Riding Hood, right? Do you remember the lesson at the end of the story?
[Sorry if I'm ruining this for anybody who has been living under a rock.]
In the version I read to my son tonight, the book ends with this:
"As long as I live," said Little Red Riding Hood to her mother, "I shall never again leave the forest path when you have warned me not to do so."
Personally I think this is terrible advice.
In fact, Little Red Riding Hood only met the Big Bad Wolf because she was on the path in the first place. When she ventured off the path after meeting the Big Bad Wolf, she realized that there was so much more. She noticed the birds, the light dancing through the trees and the pretty flowers on the ground.
In life, if you stay on the path most travelled, the chances of running into a Big Bad Wolf are high. It may feel safer because you can see further ahead but so can the wolf. There is less beauty to take in and when you do find something beautiful, chances are there will be a crowd around it and it may even be gone by the time you get there.
If you venture off the beaten path, yes, you may run into a Big Bad Wolf but there is also way more beauty to take in. It's your own path you are creating. When you find something, you will be able to take in all of it's beauty without the crowd. It's then up to you to decide whether or not you want to share it with the world.
Create your own path in life and you may just end up with some followers.
Why do you buy what you buy?
Why do you shop where you shop?
We all like to believe that we spend our money in logical ways but the truth is that it's always for emotional reasons.
If I want to go somewhere for a coffee, I could go to Tim Hortons or I could walk into 692 Coffee & Bar where the owner says "Hey Casey!" Could I get coffee cheaper at Tim Horton's? Yes, but...
It's not about the coffee, it's about the feeling.
I feel good when I walk into 692 Coffee & Bar. They know me and they're a new business that I want to support. I feel like I'm part of the community.
When people come into Younion, it's not about meditation. It's about the feeling they want. We see them at Younion. Natasha makes sure of this. They are part of something bigger than themselves. We're all in this together.
Most importantly, these local businesses are a place where a face to face connection happens. Sure you can connect with people all over the world thanks to technology but there's nothing more powerful than being with somebody in real life.
Who are you going to connect with today?
What do you do really well?
Perhaps you do it so well that you don't even know that you are doing it.
It just comes naturally to you.
Figure THAT out and do more of THAT.
The universe will reward you for it.
This morning I attended a workshop. I was asked to be a part of a group to test out a pricing tool that could be used to figure out the price increase for building to NetZero Energy (a new building certification). Without getting into the nitty-gritty details, it was obvious that a lot of work and resources (and money) were put into creating this tool.
This group of people is attempting to create something for builders to help them get their homes to NetZero.
For myself, I do not see this tool being of much use for my business. Even for large builders, I'm not convinced it's going to be useful.
What's happening is a bunch of researchers are getting together and putting data together, creating spreadsheets and graphs and getting all exciting about what excites them.
But most people who buy houses are not like them...
Most people do not buy homes for logical reasons. They buy homes for emotional reasons.
In fact, most things we purchase are for emotional reasons. We may trick ourselves into thinking it's logical, but that's a lie.
If all I needed was a roof over my head, I would be living somewhere very different.
If all I needed was transportation to get from point A to point B, my vehicle would be different.
If all I needed was a good, healthy meal, I would never eat at a restaurant.
If you are in business, stop thinking about what people "should" do and starting thing about what they "actually" do.