What Would You Do For Free?

“No, my son, do not aspire for wealth and labor only to be rich. Strive instead for happiness, to be loved and to love, and most important to acquire peace of mind and serenity.” – Og Mandino

At the start of my transition following a 25-year tenure in the world of advertising and publishing, I spent a lot of time trying to determine what my next career would look like. Finding my next big opportunity became my mission, the only thing that mattered.

I became obsessed with this mission. What company would I work for? What position would I have? What would my salary and benefits look like? All I cared about was finding the biggest title and compensation package I could get my hands on.

And my approach was all wrong. At first, anyway.

That was back in my old Keeping Up with the Joneses days. After running into one wall after another, I began seeking counsel from those friends, colleagues, and family members I trusted most. One of them asked me a paradigm shifting question that I’ll never forget. He asked: “What would you do for free if money were not an issue? Find that and go do it.”

Wow! This friend really challenged me to stop looking for my next job and start looking for my calling … that thing I was made to do. Friend and mentor Bob Shank, founder of The Master’s Program, would say it like this: “it’s the difference between what you’re paid to do and what you’re made to do.”

This thinking revolutionized my way of thinking, particularly about my career approach. Rather than starting with questions related to how much I wanted to make, I started with goals related to what I wanted most from life. I remained focused on ensuring my career supported rather than competed with these goals. To give you a peak under the hood, here are some of the top goals that made my list:

  • Become a better husband and father
  • Learn what “abiding in Christ” means and move towards that
  • Live a life of generosity and service
  • Seek joy, impact, and balance

These and other goals now keep me focused and serve as a filter for all decisions I make. Without these at the forefront, it would be too easy to slip back into my old pattern of life choosing me rather than me choosing life. And I don’t intend to ever go back.

So, let me ask you these questions. What top goals have you set to guide your life, family, ministry, and career? Are they serving as true filters for all that you do? Do others know about your goals and help hold you accountable to them?

Setting and living by effective goals is not something that happens overnight. It’s hard work. Contact me if you want some pointers.

Blessings on your continuing journey,

Bob Karcher

Author | Speaker | Coach

www.WhoAreTheJonesesAnyway.com

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Because It Really Does Matter

“Every instant of life matters. Humility is knowing so. Passion is feeling so. Wisdom is living so.” – Unknown

This past week has been disturbing as we were all shocked by the shooting rampage in Las Vegas, the largest mass shooting in our country’s history. We remain dumbfounded on exactly how to process the reality that these types of events are escalating in America, a land blessed with so much.

In our last blog post titled How to Do What Matters we asked a question that we now ask again: “Is life choosing you or are you choosing life?”

We have been reminded in dramatic fashion that living life fully every day matters, it really matters!

In the past two weeks, we received word that three, yes three, of our family / friends passed away. And you want to know the really unsettling part? All three were between 53 and 60 years old. That is way too soon for anyone to lose their life.

Of course we had no idea when we wrote that blog post that we would be sitting through three memorial services in such a short time or be faced with the Las Vegas massacre. A certain passage from the Bible (James 4: 13-15 MSG) speaks to the brevity of life and has been ringing in our ears all week. It reads:

13 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”

Greg Murtha, former president of Halftime Institute, personally lived and learned the meaning of this Bible passage. In a past blog post, we wrote about Greg’s struggle with cancer. After multiple surgeries, 75 rounds of chemo, and two heart attacks, cancer took Greg’s life this past June. He was 52.

Before passing, Greg was able to share his thoughts on life and what he learned through his struggle in his book, Out of the Blue. This book, which we highly recommend, published a few weeks after Greg’s passing.

We don’t mean for this blog post to be all negative, but we do hope to shatter the perception that our days in the distant and immediate future are guaranteed. The events above should, if nothing else, prove this. None of us are promised tomorrow but we often live as though we are.

If you knew your life was coming to a close, what would you do differently? What would you do more of … less of? How would spend your time, your love, your money? Who would you spend time with? What would you tell them? What impact on the world and personal legacy would you work towards?

Go ahead, take some time (soon) to seriously ponder these questions. And then start living like you aren’t promised tomorrow … because none of us are.

Drop us a note and share how you are going to live differently starting today than you were yesterday. Then, go make a difference.

Blessings on your continuing journey,

Bob and Susan Karcher

Authors | Speakers | Coaches

www.WhoAreTheJonesesAnyway.com

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