"The Man, The Mission, The Passion" Husband, Father, Attorney, CPA, Steward Leader, Entrepreneur, MBA, Author, Builder, HBS OPM 25 Class, Mentor, Teacher

Waste Your Spare Time = Derail Your Success

have time

“I don’t have time” or “I couldn’t find the time” are some of the most common excuses for not moving forward. The truth is, we DO have the time, we just fritter it away in odd moments or meaningless pursuits or undirected idleness.

You don’t “find” time, you CREATE time by prioritizing those high leverage activities that propel you onward into the life you WANT to live and casting aside wasted distractors. Key word there is “WANT”: you MUST create the vision, the plan, flesh out the details of the dream that stirs you, that floats your boat, that makes your juices flow, that makes you WANT to get out of bed in the morning and hit the ground running. Once you discover your WANT Power, your WILL Power will follow. Once you are on YOUR path, following YOUR Passion, you will find energy and motivation to fully utilize those moments that before seemed to slip through your fingers.

Closing Quote:

“Working hard for something we don’t care about is called stress; working hard for something we love is called passion.” – Simon Sinek, “Find Your Why”

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier


Single Greatest Reason

belief in yourself robert collier

What would you say is the single greatest reason for your business achievements?

Poverty is a great motivator! For an extended period of time as a youth, we were poor, utilities cut off, powdered milk/powdered eggs, landlord beating on door poor. It was truly a blessing in disguise for it left me with a burning desire to change my circumstances: “As God is my witness, I’ll never be hungry again.” – Scarlett O’Hara, Gone with the Wind

Also, about 9th grade, my custody was transferred from my biological mother to my father who was an incredible positive role model, as powerful a “moving toward” value as Elizabeth was a strong “moving away” from value. My Dad believed in me, encouraged me, and was an awesome source of emotional support which helped create self-confidence and a good self-concept as being a capable individual who could succeed at whatever I put my mind and energy fully into. As a civil engineer he taught me problem solving, critical thinking skills, and the value of hard work and determined effort. Dad was also one of the kindest, most patient, community-oriented individuals I’ve ever met and he taught me Emotional Intelligence by the life he lived.

Somewhere along the way I picked up the idea that I wanted to “Live no ordinary life”, that I wanted to pursue “The Life ExtraOrdinare”. In summary, Desire and Self-Concept; all else flowed from those.

Closing Quotes:

“Your chances of success in any undertaking can always be measured by your belief in yourself.” – Robert Collier, 1885-1950

“The first principle of success is desire – knowing what you want. Desire is the planting of your seed.” – Robert Collier, The Secret of the Ages

“You can do anything you wish to do, have anything you wish to have, be anything you wish to be.” – Robert Collier, Riches within Your Reach

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier


Critical Thinking Skills and The Cycle of Inquiry


“There is very little difference between people but that little difference makes a big difference.” – W. Clement Stone

One little difference that makes a big difference is possessing/acquiring CTS: Critical Thinking Skills and a fundamental part of Critical Thinking Skills is asking ambitious, focused, intelligent, provocative questions which in turn involves understanding the “Cycle of Inquiry”.

The Cycle of Inquiry involves sequentially asking “Why, What if, and How”, often over and over.

Asking “Why?” or “What is Our True Goal?” focuses on the desired outcome, the ultimate purpose we wish to direct our energies toward, the underlying meaning of the inquiry: why there is a problem, why it is a problem (for some or from another perspective it may not be a problem), why it still exists i.e. why it hasn’t been solved already.

Asking “What if?” or “How Might We?” or “What other paths lead to the mountain top?” helps us clear away obstacles in our mind, free our imaginations, and lets us see a different world. A variation of this is “Clean Sheeting” i.e. imagining that we are starting from scratch, building from the ground up versus attempting to modify an existing system or situation. If we were starting all over, what would we do different?

Asking “How?” or “What Would it Take?” leads us to the practical stage: creating action plans. When folks tell me something can’t be done, I sometimes ask “Could you do it if you had a million dollars?” Often the answer changes to “Sure, if I had a million dollars I could.” I then say “Well, then it is possible, we just need to find a more economical, cost effective way to do it!”

Questions are the “Engines of the Intellect”, leading us to challenge the status quo and seek new, different and better ways. The act of formulating questions enables us “to organize our thinking around what we don’t know.” The most effective questions are open ended (i.e. do not contain presumptions or constraints), solution-focused, action-oriented that concentrate our creative energies on transforming possibility into reality.

Closing Quotes:

“The most important part of my personality as far as determining my success has been my questioning conventional wisdom, doubting experts, and questioning authority.” – Larry Ellison

“Don’t just teach your children to read. Teach them to question what they read, teach them to question everything.” – George Carlin

“We live in the world our questions create.” – David Cooperrider

“Asking the right questions takes as much skill as giving the right answers.” – Robert Half

“To be able to ask a question clearly is two-thirds of the way to getting it answered.” – John Ruskin

 “If you do not ask the right questions, you do not get the right answers. A question asked in the right way often points to its own answer.” – Edward Hodnett 

“Successful people ask better questions, and as a result, they get better answers.” – Tony Robbins

“For true success ask yourself these four questions: Why? Why not? Why not me? Why not now?” – James Allen

“I found I wasn’t asking good enough questions because I assumed I knew something.” – Alan Alda

“The uncreative mind can spot wrong answers, but it takes a very creative mind to spot wrong questions.” – Anthony Jay

“We thought that we had the answers, it was the questions we had wrong.” – Bono

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier