How to Give Yourself an Edge in Making 2013 Your Best Year Ever

I first met Robert D. Smith in 1996. He was managing Andy Andrews, a comedian who would eventually become the author of several New York Times bestselling books.

I was immediately taken by Robert’s enthusiasm and zest for life. It was contagious! I can honestly say I have never met anyone like him before or since.

Over the years Robert has become one of my closest friends. We have been involved in numerous business deals—most successful, a few not-so-successful. Regardless, my respect and love for him continues to grow.

What I have never revealed until now is that he is also one of my most important mentors. His words and life have inspired me to think bigger, push harder, and strive for excellence in everything I do.

Here are just ten of lessons I have learned from him.

  1. You can never be too generous. Give to others—and then give some more!
  2. The only difference between you and the people who accomplish great things is the way you think.
  3. Always be asking yourself, “What is important now? What is next?”
  4. Make today count. Live it like it is your last. Every minute matters.
  5. Eat dessert first. Learn to celebrate life and then live out of that celebration.
  6. Assume YOU are the problem. When you do, you quit becoming the victim and begin shaping the outcome.
  7. Embrace rejection. Every no puts you one step closer to a yes.
  8. You never really cross the finish line. Performing at a big show, publishing a book, or even getting a record deal isn’t the finish line. It’s the new starting line.
  9. Life is not about finding yourself; it is about creating yourself.
  10. Play full-out. Hold nothing in reserve.

The really cool thing is that Thomas Nelson has just published Robert’s first book. It is called, 20,000 Days and Counting: The Crash Course for Mastering Your Life Right Now. It is a distillation of everything he lives and teaches.

It’s a really short book—about a hundred pages. You can read it in less than an hour. But don’t be fooled by its size. It is packed with wisdom and inspiration. (As of this writing, the average review on Amazon is 4.8 stars—out of 57 customer reviews.)

Honestly, I can’t think of a better book to read during the first week of a new year. Do yourself a favor and buy it NOW. It will give you the edge you need to make 2013 your best year ever.

Here’s just one of the many quotes I highlighted:

Decisions you make right now can change your life forever. Literally forever. You do not choose to be born. You do not choose your parents. You do not choose the time period in which you live. You do not choose the country of your birth. You do not choose the circumstances of your upbringing. In most cases, you do not choose to die. You do not choose the time or conditions of your death.

Despite all the realms of this choicelessness, we do choose how we will live. May you have a glorious ending by beginning today.

Question: What one action can you take today to make 2013 a banner year? Share your answer on , , or .


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