Give Someone a Standing Ovation
Listen to last week’s interview with Robert D Smith here: Life is Short, Eat Dessert First In this week’s episode of the Successful Life Mindset, host Tracy J Trost sits down with author Robert D Smith to talk about his new book 20,000 Days and Counting and why it’s so important to live each day as if it was your last.
But Who’s Counting?
Robert has often had friends tell him about their latest app for their phone. One does this and another does that, but when Robert heard about the Countdown Calendar, an app that could tell you how many days until Christmas or until your next birthday or until…..you name it, he was intrigued and got it. One day he wondered if it counted backwards. He put in his birth date and was amazed to see that he had been living more than, at that time, 18,000 days! When the number neared 20,000, he decided he was going to do something to celebrate. After all, having been blessed with 20,000 days of life was something to celebrate.
As the day approached, Robert called Andy and Polly Andrews and told them he was going to take a few days off. The first question was where are you going, but for the first time in his life, Robert had no destination. He packed a bag and drove. When he reached a certain point, he stopped and stayed at a luxury hotel. He felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude for the life he had been given. He looked up several Bible scriptures about how our days are numbered and how only God knows the number of days allotted to each of us. He sat down at his PC and checked emails. He decided to write a personal email to Andy and Polly and tell them how much he enjoyed his relationship with them and how much he appreciated the opportunity to have them in his life. He sent it. They responded telling him they felt the same way, blessed to have him in their lives. He wanted to share that same sense of gratitude with others in his life. Over the next 18 hours, he wrote and emailed 48 more people about the excitement he had after 20,000 days of life. He was astounded to receive 48 responses.
A couple of years later Andy’s team was looking for an e-book. Robert was asked if he had anything they could use. He said he had notes for himself about how we’re supposed to live and how to accomplish what we’re supposed to be doing. A team member took the notes and read them. He thought they were perfect. He shared them with the rest of the team, about 6 or 7 people, and they loved it. Everyone wanted to make this into a book, but half wanted the e-book and half wanted it to be published. Robert called Andy’s publisher for a second opinion, but he was out sick. Robert emailed the outline of what he wanted to know and sent it off. He received three emails over the next hour. First, the publisher was surprised that it was Robert’s manuscript and not Andy’s. He emailed again after reading it and wanted to know if it was all right to share with his team. Robert assumed it was a small team, much like the one he worked with, but found out it was shared with the entire publisher’s management team and they too were unanimous. They wanted to publish. That book is now Robert’s book, “20,000 Days and Counting”.
Yes and No!
Tracy likes the way Robert looks at life. How he helps people put things into perspective. Tracy asks Robert how he helps people get past rejection. Robert tells of Andy’s first book. It took 3 ½ years and 3 Literary Agents to get it to press. Robert and the agents got 51 NOs, before they got the one YES they needed to achieve their goal. Ask yourself, “How many NOs are you willing to go through to get that one Yes”? Don’t let the NOs stop you. Keep moving forward looking for that YES. Don’t build your self-worth strictly on your accomplishments-to-date. Do your best every day. Live your life so you can feel good about your effort every day. Look for that “well done” at the end of every day. If you did your best today, then you did a worthy job. Do it again tomorrow.
It’s all about focus. Don’t focus on the NOs. Focus on the progress-to-date. Focus on your goal for tomorrow. Don’t focus on yourself. Focus on others. We miss the importance of others when we can’t see past ourselves. We are never so blessed as when we focus on and reach out to help others.
Robert learned at an early age that each day could be your last. In 9th grade, a friend died during a basketball game accident. He was greatly affected. As a result, he became the best brother to his sisters, the best son to his parents that he could be. He didn’t really go through those weird teenage years. He wants to leave no work behind that he could have done, so he keeps all work up-to-date each day. He makes his bed each day. He leaves nothing that others couldn’t come in and pick up where he left off.
Adults celebrate each time a baby takes its first step or says its first word. We need to celebrate others in our lives in the same way. Give a virtual or literal standing ovation to those we love; those that we treasure; those people that we appreciate and admire. Say thank you and I love you to everyone that matters. Live each day as if it were your last!
Things to Remember
- Use your days wisely!
- It’s all about focus.
- Celebrate life!
Connect with Robert D Smith
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Remember, live your life to its greatest potential!
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