Interesting quote from Mike Tyson to start a blog post, I know.  But it makes you laugh, cringe and at the same time relate to the man and the brutal sport that chose him.  And much like Mike’s sport of boxing, life can and will be brutal to all of us.  And it is the harshness, the unfair and unjust times that make us who we are.

Investing in real estate is no different.  It’s never ending days of negotiation, problem solving, searching, number crunching, and dealing with the people who don’t believe you can do it.  Most times those are the people closest to you who you care about the most unfortunately.  Well, after reading this blog post hopefully you will learn to ignore what they say, or use it as fuel for your daily fire that you need to retire wealthy with real estate.  I know I’ve been told hundreds and hundreds of times that I’m crazy for wanting to invest in real estate.  But am I crazy?  I’m the one that has control of my life – I’m not punching a clock for someone else 5 days a week.  I’m living life on my terms.  A life that I can create my own schedule and spend time where, when and with who I choose.  To all those nay sayers, I say, thank you for making me the person I am today!

Yes, we all start life off from our earliest recollections of how we want to live our lives.  As a kid I can remember what I wanted to be when I grew up, and I’m sure you do to.  Mine ranged from a professional athlete to a police officer and many things in between.  You share your goals and visions that were so close to your heart with anyone at a young age because you feel that everyone supports you and wants you to get to where you want to be in life.  Then the first one comes – SMACK!  Left hook, nicely landed right in the middle of your face.

Probably it sounded something like, “You, a pro athlete?  You would have had to have been national level years ago to secure a career as a professional sports team.” Or, “You a cop?  You’ll never be a cop.  You aren’t XYZ enough to get that job.  Do you know how hard it is to land a job in law enforcement?”

This is an example of the first punch that you remember taking – a time where you were belittled, made fun up, embarrassed or ignored in life.  Hopefully nothing too abusive, but it made an IMPACT on you.  It didn’t feel good.  You questioned why people would say those things?  What is wrong with you?  How can you find a way to still be liked in that person’s eyes?  It made you feel sad and a bit empty I bet.

And worst of all I’m sure it made you think to some extent “Maybe they are right.  Maybe I shouldn’t strive for what I really want to be.  Maybe my dream is TOO big.”

But if you flash back to the times that you can’t even remember, there were hits that came your way and you took them with grace.  For example, all those times you fell down and got back up before you were 2 years old.  The times where you cried and your parent didn’t come as quickly as you would have liked.  The moments when everyone around you is laughing and you don’t know why.  Were they laughing at you or something else around you?

Being too young to care you kept keeping on and hit your goals at the time.  You learned how to walk.  You learned how to self soothe inside and outside of your crib.  You learned how to laugh when others were laughing, even if it was at you.

So what’s the difference between the two examples?  Well, I make up at some point you became intellectually in touch enough with your mind to question what you thought of yourself, even if deep down what others were saying wasn’t true.  You began to think of society and how society saw you.

And at that point you have two choices – believe what you experienced, or don’t believe what you experienced.  Whether you were 4 years old or 40 years old you DO have CHOICES, and those choices have consequences – both positive and negative.

Unfortunately many times in life we have believed in these limiting experiences (what we heard/felt/saw) merely to conform with society and we have stopped having big dreams, big goals and big plans for our lives.  We have stopped making progress towards those bigger visions.  We have stopped adapting, changing our approach and trying again before we throw in the towel.  In essence, we have stopped fighting back and throwing punches when life throws them at us.  The once bright vision of the future slowly fizzled out like a camp fire that has no more wood or oxygen to keep it going and now it is a part of the past.

Luckily, you can decide to change.  You can change the thoughts that you believe.  You can change who you surround yourself with.  There are people out there doing exactly what you want to do.  Better yet, there are people out there who are doing it even bigger and better.  You can wake up with the attitude that fighting back isn’t a bad thing, it is natural, it is a way of life and in fact it is an instinct in all of us that we’ve been conditioned to suppress.

Now I’m not telling you to go out and start picking fights with everyone who says you can’t do something.  I’m also not telling you to ridiculously set unrealistic goals in a time frame so short that will discourage you from even getting started.  All I’m saying is that you can make a decision that you are going to draw a line in the sand and not look back any more.  Drawing the line in the sand means that you are not going to let others rule your life.  You are in charge.  You are a leader.  You can put your big boy or big girl pants on at any time and tell the current captain to take a hike and you can start steering your own ship.

Use the frustration from the past as fuel to drive the “ship” called YOU forward towards more of what you want and less of what you don’t want.

You will need many more things than some fuel in your tank and a line in the sand, but reaching a breaking point or a low is actually a great place to build a new foundation.  You need a solid foundation to build the rest of your life on.

And as you have realized, many of the things you need to get ahead in life start are mental skills at first.  To be the owner of your thoughts.  To be the filter and compass to the thoughts, beliefs and stories that come in and out of your head.  To not be afraid to keep planning, keep fighting and keep making progress towards your goals every day with as much enthusiasm as possible.  And yes, there will be some days where progress might just be sharpening the blade of the saw to work harder and smarter the next day.  The themes will change each day, but progress and moving forward should be your motto.

I’m in your corner.  Imagine that you’ve just had some rest between rounds and have found your second wind.  Let’s keep going with the fight until it doesn’t seem like a fight anymore – because eventually it will become more like a movie that you are in charge of.  It all starts with controlling your own thoughts and the future vision that you focus on.  Are you willing to make those two things the most important items that you manage?  If the answer is yes, then we have something awesome starting here.

So remember to keep adapting to life with YOUR plan and learn to slip away from those punches that can “punch you in the mouth” if you aren’t ready for them!