(For free excerpts, chapters, and info about our NYT Best... book – now available in paperback, e­book, audio­book and audio­download ­­ Dear ML2s (ML2 E ­Newsletter #80: 2/26/01 – "Success in... Contents:

Dear ML2s (ML2 E ­Newsletter #80: 2/26/01 – "Success in Sevens") ­­
Contents: (For free excerpts, chapters, and info about our NYT Best Selling ML2
book – now available in paperback, e­book, audio­book and audio­download ­­
go to http://www.ml2.com/books.php.)
Shameless Promotions: Free One­Hour ML2 Teleclass and More
Seven Kids' Tips on Love and Marriage (Humor)
Seven Facts about Children (Humor)
Seven Viruses (Humor)
Seven Lessons from a Business Winner
Success in the Seventh Year
1. Shameless Promotions: Free One­Hour ML2 Teleclass and More
"Never invest your money in anything that eats or needs repainting."
­­ Billy Rose, songwriter
• With the success of the free one­hour of ML2 coaching, we are now adding to
our services due to popular demand. Free One­Hour Teleclass: "Your Perfect Life
­ Are You Ready?" on Wednesday, March 6th at 8:00 p.m. Eastern Or Thursday,
March 7th at 12 noon Eastern. Teleclass is co­facilitated by ML2 Coaches.
In this class you will be guided to create a vision of your perfect life. We will
examine what may be holding you back, and learn tools and techniques for
moving forward. For complete information and registration, send a blank email
with "yourperfectlife" in the subject line to: [email protected]
And in other news (unsolicited promotions because I like them!):
• The Corporate Social Research Center's new Website allows investors to access
information about the CSR practices of over 1000 companies. Check it out at
• The Council on Foundations has developed a Corporate Philanthropy Index, a
tool designed to measure the views of several stakeholder groups on corporate
philanthropic activity. Check it out at http://www.cof.org.
• TripleE has become the first U.S. travel agency certified to offer "climate
neutral" air travel. The company plans to offer a line of climate neutral travel
options, including car rental, hotel rooms, and vacation packages. They have
affiliate relationships for your Website. Check it out at http://www.TripleE.com.
I appreciate all your e­mail responses on your personal definition of success. I
will be dedicating a newsletter in the near future to some of those e­mails. For
this edition, however, since it is still winter in the Northern Hemisphere, I felt we
should have a bit more humor than most. Hoping that we will be lucky enough
to have a short winter, here are some tips based on the lucky number seven.
"Why do they report power outages on television?"
­­ Steven Wright
2. Seven Kids' Tips on Love and Marriage (Humor)
"The perfect lover is one who turns into a pizza at 4:00 am."
­­ Charles Pierce, age unknown
Our relationships are a big part of how most of us measure success. One of our
most popular sections has been our kids' tips. In honor of Valentine's day this
month, here are some of the best of our kid's tips on love and marriage.
Kids' Tips on Love:
"No one is sure why it happens, but I heard it has something to do with how you
smell. That's why perfume and deodorant are so popular." (Jan, 9)
"I think you're supposed to get shot with an arrow or something, but the rest of it
isn't supposed to be so painful." (Harlen, 8)
"If falling in love is anything like learning how to spell, I don't want to do it. It
takes too long." (Leah, 7)
"One of you should know how to write a check. Because, even if you have tons
of love, there is still going to be a lot of bills." (Ava, 8)
"Tell them that you own a whole bunch of candy stores." (Del, 6)
"One way is to take the girl out to eat. Make sure it's something she likes to eat.
French fries usually works for me." (Bart, 9)
"Spend most of your time loving instead of going to work." (Tom, 7)
Kids' Tips on Marriage:
"It's better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need somebody to clean
up after them." (Lynette, 9)
"Eighty­four. Because at that age, you don't have to work anymore, and you can
spend all your time loving each other in your bedroom." (Judy, 8)
"Twenty­three is the best age because you know the person FOREVER by then."
(Camille, 10)
"You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like if you like sports, she
should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip
coming." (Alan, 10)
"If you want to last with your man, you should wear a lot of sexy clothes,
especially underwear that's red and maybe has a few diamonds on it." (Lori, 8)
"You can be sure of one thing ­­ the boys would come chasing after us just the
same as they do now." (Roberta, 7)
"There sure would be a lot of kids to explain, wouldn't there?" (Kelvin, 8)
"I've learned that if you want to do something positive
for your children, try to improve your marriage."
­­ Nora, 61
3. Seven Facts about Children (Humor)
"In America there are two classes of travel – first class, and with children."
­­ Robert Benchley
We often say that we measure our success by the way I children turn out. We
say we want them to be happy and to be good people (then forget this desire
when enacting our own adult life). My teenager, Amanda, sent me these facts to
remind me of the realities of raising children:
• You spend the first two years of their life teaching them to walk and talk.
Then you spend the next sixteen telling them to sit down and shut­up.
• Mothers of teens know why animals eat their young.
• Grandchildren are God's reward for not killing your children.
• Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is
like clearing the driveway before it has stopped snowing.
• Children are natural mimics who act like their parents
despite every effort to teach them good manners.
• The main purpose of holding children's parties is to remind
yourself that there are children more awful than your own.
• Be nice to your kids. They'll choose your nursing home.
"When his child requests a car, a father will wish that he were
the member of some sect that hasn't gone beyond the horse."
­­ Bill Cosby
4. Seven Viruses (Humor)
On a tombstone: "I TOLD YOU I WAS SICK."
Along with the Anna Kournikova virus, there have been several, less publicized
new viruses that are wreaking havoc. Courtesy of former IBMer Deb Imershein,
here's a list of seven of them, ones I feel were a little more "PG" than others:
THE AL GORE Virus: Causes your computer to just keep counting and counting
THE ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER Virus: Terminates some files,
leaves, but will be back
THE JACK KEVORKIAN Virus: Deletes all old files
THE MIKE TYSON Virus: Quits after two bytes
THE OPRAH WINFREY Virus: Your 300mb hard drive shrinks to 100mb,
then slowly expands to restabilize around 200mb
THE PROZAC Virus: Messes up your RAM, but your processor doesn't care
THE RONALD REAGAN Virus: Saves your data, but forgets where it is stored
"Always go to other people's funerals, otherwise they won't go to yours."
­­ Yogi Berra, Yankee catcher
5. Seven Lessons from a Business Winner
FACT: If you invest $2000 per year for 8 years and then stop, assuming a 10%
compound annual return, after 40 years that $16,000 would grow to $515,000. If
instead you invested nothing those first 8 years, then $2,000 annually for the 32
years after that, your $64,000 would grow to $378,000.
Sid Ghose sent me the acceptance speech delivered by Mr. Azim Premji,
Chairman, Wipro Ltd., (NYSE) upon receiving the Businessman of the Year
award by India's leading business magazine, Business India. Forbes Magazine has
listed him as one of the wealthiest people in the world. He is known to be an
unassuming man, devoid of the trappings of corporate privilege, who walks his
talk, and knows what it takes to succeed. The speech is edited for length.
"Life is a succession of lessons that must be lived to be understood."
­­ Helen Keller
#1 ­ Always have the courage to think big. An achievable vision has a
tremendous capacity to ignite the collective imagination and passion of your
team. It must not be an impossible dream and one must be prepared to work for
it with a single­minded dedication. If powerful enough, the vision enables you
to tap inner strengths, resources and potential that you didn't know existed. It
can crease enthusiasm that is contagious to those working with you and build
the resilience to take risks. A vision cannot be safe. Strategies must de­risk it.
#2 ­ Never compromise on fundamental values, no matter what the situation is.
Values not only lead to success, but also make success worthwhile. The only way
to create an organization based on values is to demonstrate them transparently
and walk the talk. All actions with integrity can stand public scrutiny.
#3 ­ Build self­confidence, as it is fundamental to success. It is needed most
when things do not look bright. But if you are convinced you are right, then go
ahead and do what you set out to do. Ignore pessimists along the way. If you
don't have confidence in yourself, there is no way that you can expect your
employees, your customers and your investors to have confidence in you.
#4 ­ Surround yourself with the best people. Neither a plan nor an organization
really accomplishes anything. Organizations succeed or fail because of the
people involved. Look for people who have the capacity to anticipate and see
around corners. Also look for people with loyalty, integrity, a high­energy drive,
emotional maturity and an overpowering desire to get things done.
#5 ­ Have an obsessive commitment to quality. Customers want more quality for
less cost. That is an absolute global truth. A great contribution of globalization
has been a demand for higher quality. Quality is an absolute pre­requisite for
survival, leave alone success. Like integrity, there can be no compromise.
#6 ­ You must play to win. Too long we have suffered from an ideological
hangover which made people feel a little guilty about making profits or
succeeding. Playing to win is one of the finest things you can do. It stretches you
and everyone around you. It gives you a new sense of direction and energy. It
does not mean playing dirty. If you cut corners, you will miss out on personal
satisfaction of winning. Winning means reaching the depth of your potential
and utilizing it to its fullest. Ultimately, your only competition is yourself.
#7 ­ The most important facilitator of success is the blessing of a force beyond us.
We can call it luck, we can call it God. Let me illustrate this with a story.
One night, a man had a dream. He dreamt he was walking along the beach with
the Lord. Across the sky flashed scenes from his life. For each scene he saw two
sets of footprints in the sand, one belonging to him and the other to the Lord.
When the last scene flashed before him, he looked back at the footprints in the
sand. He found that many times along the path of his life there was only one set
of footprints. He also noted that it happened at the most difficult and saddest
times in his life. This really disturbed him and he questioned the Lord.
"Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you, you would walk with me all
the way. But I noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, there is
only one set of footprints. I don't understand why when I needed you most, you
would leave me."
The Lord smiled and gently replied, "My precious, precious child. I love you and
I would never leave you. During your times of trial and suffering, when you see
only one set of footprints, I carried you in my arms."
"Invoked or not invoked. God is present."
­­ Latin inscription over Carl Jung's Swiss home
6. Success in the Seventh Year
"Freedom is actually a bigger game than power. Power is about
what you can control. Freedom is about what you can unleash."
­­ Harriet Rubin, writer
This Native American myth comes from Ken Aung, who can be reached at
[email protected] It addresses the dualistic nature of goals. Edited for length.
Many moons ago before the white man set foot on this great continent, there was
a renowned shaman in a tribal village who attracted the best warriors from
across the land. Young warriors from far and near regarded the shaman as a
legend who understood the workings of the universe and possessed
supernatural powers. All sought to learn from him. He took only the best
students, those who have proven to be courageous, intuitive and strong.
Of all the students, one stood out. He could hunt the buffalo with the greatest of
speed; he could go into a trance and see through the eyes of the eagle. All other
students were in awe of him. They assumed would one day succeed the shaman.
One day the shaman announced that it was now time for his students to leave
the tribe and experience the vision quest. The students would be sent far away for
five years to seek unique experiences and return to share them. From the day the
exceptional student left, the others were constantly talking about how he would
return with great powers and take his place as the new shaman.
But the fifth year came and went, and no one had heard from this great student.
One day on the seventh year he strode into the settlement ­­ older, yet filled with
a serene glow. The master walked in quickly and asked, "Oh, student, gone for
many years, please share with us the knowledge you have received. But more
importantly, what have you learned about the meaning of life?"
The student replied, "I wandered toward the great mountains far away. Finally, I
came to the great river that ran through. It was the greatest river I had ever seen.
Along the great river lived a small tribe that took others across in big canoes. For
the river was so wide that only these special canoes could be used. The boat
people asked for ten beads to take me across. Instead of paying, I decided to
walk across the river! Each day I practiced. I started by walking two feet across,
then ten feet. One day I was able to walk across the entire width of the river!"
A stark silence fell over all the students. Here was the successor to the shaman.
He could walk on water. He achieved the greatest of goals.
All realized the meaning of this feat and fell silent awaiting the response of the
teacher. But there was only silence. The great shaman finally rose and looked at
his star pupil. With a deep love from his eyes, he said, "You know you could
have just given the boat man the ten beads and saved yourself seven years."
"A tragic irony of life is that we so often achieve success…
after the reason for which we sought it has passed."
­­ Ellen Glasgow
ML2: Making a Life, Making a Living®, dr. Mark
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