Are you struggling financially? Here’s the good news. . .


financial challenges strengthen youBlack Friday. Some great deals out there. But for many, today is simply a reminder that they don’t have money to spend, no matter how good the deals.

The economy has hurt a lot of people. You may be just fine but I’ll bet you have clients or friends who are struggling. You may not know what to say to them (or to yourself) at a time like this, but there is something they need to hear.

They need to know that while financial problems can be painful, they can also help you grow.

Financial setbacks, no matter what the cause, are great teachers. They help us to see what does not work, on the path to discovering what does.

For some, hitting bottom is the only way they will change. It’s a wake up call that finally motives them to take action to improve their situation. The sooner they bottom out, the sooner things will improve.

No one wants to have money problems, but no one is immune to them. The ones who overcome their challenges and go on to thrive are those who learn from their problems and refuse to be defined by them. As actor Mike Todd famously noted, “Being broke is a temporary situation. Being poor is a state of mind.”

You can allow your financial situation to inspire your creativity or you can allow it to smother you. You can learn what does not work and never repeat it or you can make the same mistakes over and over again. You can dwell on your unpaid bills or you can focus on increasing your income.

The tree planted on the corner of our lot, in the path of the wind, is bigger and stronger than the tree tucked into a corner next to our house where the wind is not nearly as strong. The buffeting of the wind has made the tree on the corner grow stronger.

Like the wind, financial challenges push you and challenge you to grow. But unlike trees, you have free will. You can allow financial problems to break you or you can allow them to make you stronger.


Marketing legal services: doing things you don’t want to do


Conventional wisdom says that success lies outside of your comfort zone. If you want something you don’t have, you have to change what you are doing and this will probably be uncomfortable, as is anything new. Over time, you will become comfortable with your new activities and you may actually enjoy them.

But then, you will have a new comfort zone. To get to the next level in your growth, you will once again need to go beyond your comfort zone into new territory.

Success, therefore, requires continually being uncomfortable.

This is what we are told, but is it true?

Let’s take marketing for example. Let’s say you really don’t like networking. You’re shy, you don’t like being away from your family, you’re not a “people person”. Whatever. You just don’t like it.

But networking is a proven way for attorneys to build their practices. So what if you don’t like it, there are lots of things we have to do in life that we would rather not do. Shouldn’t you just get out of your comfort zone and do it anyway?


If you tried it and truly don’t like it. . . you don’t like it. Don’t do it.

There are other ways to bring in clients. You don’t have to continue to do things that make you uncomfortable, you can do something else.

Ultimately, success lies inside your comfort zone.

When you like something, you’ll continue doing it. The more you do it, the better you get at it. The better you get, the more successful you will be and the more you will enjoy doing it. And the cycle will continue.

In contrast, when you force yourself to do something you despise, you are miserable. You’ll find ways to avoid going to your networking event, even to the extent of getting sick. You won’t get better at it and your lack of results will only frustrate you and make you hate it even more.

Doing what you enjoy doing is the recipe for success.

Don’t fight how you feel, don’t try to talk yourself into it, and don’t do it because you think you must.

There, did I just hear a big sigh of relief from you?

Good. I’m glad I could help. Just don’t be too quick in deciding what is and what isn’t inside your comfort zone.

Often, we decide we don’t like something based on too little information. Sometimes, we never try at all, basing our opinion on what we’ve heard from others or what we imagine. Sometimes, we try it once, have a bad experience, and never try again.

Don’t give up too soon and don’t assume that when you try something and it is uncomfortable, it will always be so.

Give it a fair try. Study and learn how to do it better. Find mentors who can counsel you. Give the new experience enough time for the newness to rub off.

If it really isn’t your cup of tea, relax, you don’t have to do it. On the other hand, you might discover some things you thought you hated that you’re actually quite good at and now enjoy.

My wife and I grew up with dogs in the house. Cats? Not for us. We don’t like them. All that changed when our daughter was young and wanted a pet but nobody wanted to walk a dog. So we got a cat. Then another.

We gave them a chance and today, Seamus and Andre are like members of the family. That’s Andre in the photo with me, sharing some love with his daddy.