In October, I attended the third annual Financial Blogger Conference. At FinCon, I hosted the second annual Ignite FinCon speaking event, and took to the stage for my own five minutes of glory. Enjoy!
Something that comes up again and again in my life is the question of how I have time to do everything I do. I have a lot of thoughts on time management and cutting wasted time, but a big part of it comes down to priorities and jumping in head first.
A lot of people are afraid to make big changes in their lives. I know exactly how that feels. Once upon a time, I seriously considered moving to Israel. I had everything I needed to do it ready to go. I had the money, I had family and friends there, I was single and on the verge of a layoff from an old job. The timing was perfect.
However, I didn’t do it. Everything was just too comfortable at home to risk moving to the other side of the world. My family and close friends were all in Denver. I had a new job prospect, which led to my current job. It was safe and comfortable.
So, I didn’t make the big change. But I have made other changes in my life. I bought a condo, I have traveled internationally alone, I took the jump off of a cliff in Costa Rica. There are many scary things in the world, but if the opportunity is great enough and the risk is low enough, we take the step.
On the other side of the coin, if something is inspiring us more than we are afraid of the change, we are more likely to take a step. Whether it is your career, where you live, traveling, starting a business, or making a lifestyle change, you need to be inspired to do it.
I have had many grand ideas in my life. Some of them, like Narrow Bridge Finance, I started on the whim of an inspired moment. Others, like my new project Pinboard Maps, have taken a lot more planning.
The key to doing these projects is to be inspired either by the idea or the result. If you find the right thing to do in life, you will know it. You will do it. There is just one trick.
Just Do It Already
For many years Nike said “Just Do It” in their advertising. They were on to something. At the end of the day, the only person stopping you from doing awesome things is you.
I once had a conversation with a friend about going on a trip overseas. We were talking about planning it, and she said that there is no way it could happen for at least a few years. I asked why. She didn’t have an answer.
In the time since, I have been to four new countries plus a handful of Caribbean islands. She hasn’t.
If you want to do something amazing, don’t wait for an invitation. Don’t wait for it to feel comfortable. Just take the inspiration you have and do something. It could be an amazing experience. It could change your life.
Image Friar’s Balsam/flickr
This has been quite a year in the life of Eric Rosenberg. I have ventured through exciting trips, new projects, non-profit volunteering, entrepreneurial adventures, and keep ramping up for more as the year comes to a close.
While this blog ebbs and flows, I have had a successful blogging year overall. Narrow Bridge Finance has become a real income source for me and I will be incorporating my blogging projects into an LLC in January.
- 100,000th page view on Narrow Bridge Finance
- Roughly tripled traffic on Narrow Bridge over 2010
- Published 1,800th post at The Israel Situation
- Welcomed 150,000th unique visitor to The Israel Situation
- Welcomed nearly 3,500 readers on my personal blog
Denver Flash Mob
I took this group from a partnership to my own LLC for reasons you can find on this site. It was a challenge moving on as a solo project, but partners and friends made it an amazing year.
- Had 250 dancers for Born This Way dance flash mob
- Welcomed new sponsors to keep the company alive
- Built a following of over 3,000 fans
DJ Yofi Project
I marked learning how to DJ off of my life list, and I made incredible steps forward. I recently released my 13th episode of the Yoficast (free download at DJYofi.com). I also had live events at X Bar, Bar Standard, and Heebonism 2011 at City Hall. I helped hundreds of people dance the night away and have no plans to stop in 2012.
I finished out my term as Treasurer of B’nai B’rith Denver, the oldest Jewish organization in Colorado, and was elected for a second year. I must not have done too bad of a job. I also served on the growing young professional committee where we planned a cemetery cleanup, camping trip, “slosh-dallah,” and have a full list for next year.
I was a new addition to the board of E-3 Events (I claimed the title “E4”), where I work with amazing people to plan fun, Jewish, social events in Denver. Our highlight was this week’s Heebonism where hundreds of Jewish young people danced and socialized on Christmas Eve.
In addition to the DJ goal, I took my trip to London (with Paris and Amsterdam as a bonus) and had laser eye surgery. My only missed goal in 2011 was to climb 3 new 14ers. I will have to put that one on hold until the summer. (I have plans to tackle a new one with Aaron Ralston and my sister over the summer!)
This was a year of Omaha, New York, Chicago, Kansas City, London, Paris, Amsterdam, and Costa Rica. My favorite thing to do is see new parts of the world and experience new things in new places. It was a huge success.
I have spent time with family and friends. Become closer with great people, purchased a condo, moved in with a new roommate, danced till dawn, and made it out feeling more alive than ever before.
I will count down to 2012 with my parents in San Jose, Costa Rica. From there I will travel through the rain forest and spend a few days relaxing on the beach. It is a fitting start to a new year with new adventures ahead.
I have marked off my life list goal of learning to DJ. I am about to have my third gig of the year and have only heard good reviews from my past work. I bought my Traktor Kontrol S4 DJ system, learned how it works, and use it reguarly.
My first step was to practice. I spent hours learning the ins and outs of the buttons and knobs on my S4. It is a powerful mixer and I love it.
The next step was to learn the intricacies of electronic music and DJing. I have listened to hundreds of hours of DJ mixes to find what sets the best DJs apart from the rest. I have seen legendary DJs such as Tiesto, Paul Oakenfold, BT, ATB, Sharam, Robbie Rivera, and Sydney Blu live. I have tried to learn from their performances too.
Now, with my next gig lined up for Friday (that is two in two weeks) and a hopeful bar gig in the works, I would call myself a DJ.
Thanks to my friends and family who have been patient and supportive as I have learned to DJ and completed a long time dream.
Learn to DJ: Check
We all have dreams. When we are young, we want to be firefighters and astronauts. As we get older, we want to be athletes and rock stars. Eventually, some of us dream of wealth, others dream of travel, some dream of retiring early, others dream of meeting Mr/Mrs right and having a family. We all dream, but what are you doing to make them come true?
Recognize Your Dream
The first step to making all of your wildest dreams come true is to realize what they are. If you daydream in the shower or think about your life when lying in bed at night, that is fine. Wherever you find inspiration, go there.
I took the time to write down a list of my dreams. As I said above, everyone’s dreams are different. Never judge someone else’s life goals and never feel ashamed of yours.
Writing a physical list is the best way to keep tabs on your ideas and you can use that list later on when coming up with a dream plan.
Come Up With a Real Timeline
Be realistic but do not be overly generous with the timeline. I set concrete deadlines to accomplish the things on my life list. I gave myself a tough set of goals for 2011, but I was half way there when the year was a third over. I should be done with the entire list for the year by August.
I wanted to be conservative to ensure I could really achieve each goal, but I was too easy on myself. It turns out that you can do a lot more than you realize if you give yourself a deadline and put your mind to it.
Take Concrete Steps
Want to go to London? Schedule a date and buy a plane ticket. Want to learn to golf? Sign up for a class. Want to lose weight? Start a diet and exercise routine.
You get the idea. Talk is cheap. You can say you are going to do something for years and never make any real progress. This is true in all aspects of life. The reason some people are successful and others fail is most commonly linked to hard work.
Create and action plan and follow it.
Live Your Dreams
If you followed the simple steps above, you can’t help but be successful. You really do have the power to do anything. It is that simple and it is that easy. The only thing stopping you from living your dreams is you.
There are always excuses. You can say that you don’t have enough money. Earn more. You can say that it is not a good time. When is it a good time? The real reason people do not follow their dreams comes down to one of three things. You are too lazy, don’t really want to do it, or are afraid of some consequence or result.
It is time to move past your excuses and start your action plan. What are you waiting for? Start today. Let me know when you did something about it (in the comments or by e-mail). If you don’t send me a note, I will know that you are in the majority of people who will always dream but never see them come true.
Image by Melody Campbell.