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The Seven M's of Success
In several speeches over the past few months I have had requests for a PDF of my 7M's to success. I have found that in any endeavour there are 7 areas to consider in the planning phase of a project or goal.

1. Mission
It is important to have a clear vision of what you desire to achieve. Mission is all about the “What”. What do you want to accomplish? What does it look like? What does it feel like when you have achieved this goal? When I walk around The James Project orphanage, I can see the buildings that are not yet built. I can hear the laughter and giggles of the children playing. I can sense the satisfaction of so many children rescued from the streets. My heart is happy and my soul is at peace.

2. Motivation
This is where you find your “Why”. There are times when you have to hit the reset button. Bottle necks, frustration, set backs are all due to come. You have to find that reason why you will keep going. This “why” has to touch your very soul and energize you to keep going. It stops the pity party in it’s tracks. For me, when I get frustrated trying to help orphanage children, I just have to look at a picture of a little girl in Guatemala. She reminds me why we do what we do.

3. Method
This is where you find your “how”. When Bob Bowman talked to his swimmer Michael Phelps about winning 8 gold medals in Beijing, he gave him 1000 workouts planned each day for 1000 days. Every lap, every time and every exercise. Bowman started by deciding what steps would win Phelps a Gold Medal and worked backwards, so each workout lead to those Gold Medal times. What activities today and tomorrow will lead to reaching your mission?

4. Minutes
Time is one of the most precious commodities we have. If you have an activity you must give a segment of time. Block off your day in segments that make sense to you. I block 15 minutes of each day and work to fulfill a goal in each of those 15 minutes. Decide how much time each day it will take to reach your mission. I block 15 minutes each day to study Spanish and one hour of every day to workout. You will overestimate what you can achieve in one year but underestimate what you can achieve in five years.

5. Money
Every mission has it’s costs. Determine the financial cost of your mission and then add 20%. You never want to run out of cash. Find your creative money person. Walt Disney had his brother Roy. Walt would have never built the Disney Empire without his brother Roy running the finances. This person needs to fund, manage and invest money in the right places at the right time. Remember – find your “Roy”

6. Measure
These are your metrics where you measure your progress. Every organization has 7 Vital Numbers. If you know what your 7 Vital Numbers are you can analyze the health of the organization in 60 seconds. These are the vital signs of your mission. Realtors measure listings, Baseball measures batting averages, Hockey measures ice time per player and Companies measure Net Profit. For personal finance, everyone needs to know:

  1. Monthly budget
  2. Assets
  3. Debts
  4. Net Worth
  5. Estate monthly income
  6. Disabled monthly income
  7. Retirement monthly income

Remember when you say YES to something you are saying NO to something else.

7. Mentor
Someone has, most likely, already achieved what you have set out to achieve in your Mission, or at least 80%. Amateurs know what can go right, but professionals know what can go wrong. What not to do can be as valuable as what to do. Read biographies of your hero’s. Learn from their successes and mistakes. These hero’s can be of present or in the past. For me George Müller is a man who saved 10,000 children from the streets of England in the 19th Century. I have learned much from the study of his life.

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