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Jim Rohn is happy and healthy! The Road to a Richer Lifestyle

Strategy 7 LEARN THE ART OF LIVING GOOD

Chapter 10. The Road to a Richer Lifestyle

“Life is for service.” – Fred Rogers

As his teacher,

Shoaff constantly challenged me.

As soon as I applied his principles in one area,

he introduced other important foundational principles.

As soon as I started to gain a foothold in the market

and make more money,

he said, “Jim, don’t just learn to make money,

learn to live!”

I didn’t understand.

In fact, I didn’t even pay much attention to it.

“This is me,”

I thought,

“working hard,

fighting for goals,

seeing success.

What is he talking about?

What does he think I’m missing?

Is there anything else?”

Reading my mind,

Shoaff laughed and said,

“Jim, some people have beautiful things around them

but only feel a little bit happy;

Others hide huge sums of money

but are poor in spirit

and have little joy.

I want you to learn the art of designing a lifestyle,

the art of learning how to live.”

“Fine,” I replied,

“I can learn this when I make a lot of money.

Right now I should only study to earn money,

don’t you think?”

“No Jim,” he said,

shaking his head,

“it is easier to learn the art of lifestyle design with little money.

In fact, it only costs two twenty-five cents.”

“Two twenty-five cents?”

I exclaimed.

“How can anyone develop a lifestyle with two 25 cents?”

Shoaff smiled.

This perfect salesman, he knew,

had my full attention.

“Let’s say you’re looking to make your shoes shine.

The shoe shine boy was doing the incredible work for him.

In fact, he got one of the most shiny shoes in the world.

When he paid for this shine,

he thought what kind of tip he would give the shoe polish boy.

He thinks,

‘Should I tip him a twenty-five-cent coin or two?

If there are two numbers in your head,

always choose the larger number;

become a man of two and twenty-five cents.”

“I must have missed something,”

I thought.

Confused,

I asked, “What difference does that make

– one 25-cent coin

or two 25-cent coins?”

“It makes all the difference in the world.

If you say,

‘Yes, I just gave him a twenty-five cent,’

it will affect you for the rest of the day.

You’ll start to feel a little guilty,

just a little insecure.

Sometimes during the day

he would look at the luster of the skin and say:

I am so cheap.

Only tip a lousy 25 cent coin for shine like this!”

“On the other hand,” he added,

“if you tip two twenty-five cents you will feel successful

and confident throughout the day.

You can’t believe the mental difference two 25-cent coins can make.”

Years later, a man in Detroit came up

to me after a seminar and said,

“Mr. Rohn, you impressed me very much tonight

with your descriptions of attitude with two twenty-five cents.

I decided to change my whole life.

One day you will hear about me.”

And then he went.

Yes, a few months later,

when I had the opportunity

to lecture again in Detroit,

the same man came up to the platform

with a big smile on his face and said,

“Do you remember me?”

“Of course I do,” I replied.

“He was the one who said he would change his life.”

He nodded and said,

“I have to tell you a story.”

“After your last seminar,

I started thinking about ways

to start changing my life

and I decided to start with my family.

I have two adorable teenage daughters

– the most amazing kids anyone could want.

They never bothered me.

However, I have always been strict with them.

Both of them love going

to rock concerts to see their favorite artists.

However, I am always strict with my children about this.

They often ask permission to go and I say,

‘No, I don’t want you to go there.

Music is too loud.

You will destroy your hearing.

Besides, it’s a no-nonsense mob.’”

Then it kept repeating itself.

They begged:

‘Dad, please, we want to go.

We won’t be bothered at all.

We are good children.

Let us go’.

After they insisted,

I hesitantly threw the money at them and said,

‘Okay, if we’re going to have to watch that terrible thing…’

That’s when I decided

to start making some changes in my life.

Here’s what I did:

I saw an announcement about a show featuring one

of my daughter’s favorite artists,

so I went to the box office

and bought the tickets myself.

When I got home

I gave them an envelope and said,

‘Here’s the ticket for the upcoming rock concert.

I know this is one of your favorite bands’.”

“Jim,” the man continued,

tears welling in his eyes,

“if only you could see their faces.

I tell them the days of begging are over.

How tight they hold me!

Then I told them to promise not to open the envelope

until they were at the show.”

“And you know what!

Since I bought the middle tenth row ticket,

I was super happy all evening just imagining their excitement.

My real rewards came

when they got home.

One of them pulled into my lap

and the other hugged my neck and we both said,

‘Dad, you’re the best’.”

What a wonderful story!

And what a compelling illustration of the possibility

of transforming one’s lifestyle

with just a small change in attitude.

It’s just learning to be open-minded and learning

to develop the mind of two twenty-five cents

in a world of twenty-five-cent thinking.

Same amount, different style

Here’s an important thought:

Be happy with

what you have while pursuing what you want.

I try to live this way every day of my life.

Actually, it is not too difficult

to learn the art of living.

Even those with the most modest means can experience a refined lifestyle.

They simply save money buying a few bottles of carbonated water

to buy a good bottle of wine.

Or they skip going to the cinema

to go to the theater for one.

Or they save money all year round

to have enough money for a trip to Europe.

Don’t waste your money even a 25 cent coin.

Save and buy something special

– high quality,

lasting value or something that will give you lasting memories.

Remember,

all the money for candy can add up to a small fortune.

And to a sophisticated person,

quality is much more important than quantity.

Better to have a few treasures than a house full of junk.

Lifestyle, as I define it here,

is a matter of awareness,

values,

education,

and discipline.

It is an art to bring joy to practice.

It is a deliberate decision to savor

and enjoy all of life’s experiences and possibilities.

Living in style means expanding your knowledge

and experiences through the influence of books,

people,

movies and new adventures.

So be careful to enjoy and learn from everything

and everyone you come into contact with.

Think of a few things you can do today

to make you feel richer,

better for yourself and your life;

Call to book concert tickets,

buy some good music,

send flowers,

send thank you cards,

plan a trip,

start reading classics.

Still can’t think of what to do?

I bet within a radius of about 20 kilometers

from where you are standing there are places you’ve never seen,

some foods you’ve never tasted,

some experiences you’ve never experienced.

That is also true for me.

As you know,

I grew up in Idaho,

which is part of the great Yellowstone National Park.

Yet I’ve never been to Yellowstone.

Imagine watching! Millions of people

from all over the world flock here to see the grizzly bears

and Old Faithful’s hot springs,

and I,

an Idaho,

have never been there.

I’ve been to Africa

but not to Yellowstone.

Do you have the “Yellowstone” story of your life?

Are you a New Yorker

but never been to the Statue of Liberty?

Or are you a Texan but never been to Fort Alamo?

Then, like me,

you’re missing out on some great opportunities

to experience an open lifestyle.

Let’s set new goals so that we don’t miss anything,

especially the things that are within our reach.

It may take some initiative from us,

but think about the rewards that await us!

All we need to do is allow a purposeful action

to be carried out from an unconventional thought.

And this act will bridge our dreams

with the realization of a new experience.

Now you know that I have great respect

for the value of material wealth in life.

But sometimes money is overrated,

even revered.

It is often attributed to many powers

that it does not actually possess.

I remember saying to Shoaff,

“If I had more money I would be happy.”

But he replied:

“The key to happiness is not more.

Happiness is an art that must be learned and practiced.

More money just makes you have more than what you already have.

More money only brought him faster to his destiny.

So if you tend to be unhappy

then you will only grieve magnificently

when you have more money.

If he has a malevolent disposition,

wealth will make him a ferocious god.

And if you have a tendency to drink a little too much,

more money will only help you waste yourself on alcohol.

“Conversely,

if you master the art of lifestyle and happiness,

more money will help you amplify your happiness and inner wealth.”

Lifestyle is an art

– the art of living.

You cannot buy style with money.

You can’t buy good taste with money.

You can only buy more with money.

If you don’t look at the goal,

you only see obstacles. – Aysa Hazan

*****************

Life style is literature

culture – the enjoyment of music,

dance,

art,

sculpture,

literature and drama.

It is a personal taste for what is good,

unique and beautiful.

Mortimer Adler,

the philosopher,

said: “If we do not go to higher tastes,

we will accept lower tastes.”

So let’s rethink what we need to look for.

That’s how to get the best out of our available time.

It’s not the quantity,

it’s the value.

Lifestyle also means rewarding excellence

wherever you find it

by not taking the little things of life for granted.

Let me illustrate this with a personal anecdote:

My friend’s grandmother

and I were on a trip to Carmel,

California to shop and explore.

On the way we stopped at a rest station.

As soon as I parked the car in front of the pump,

a young man about 18

or 19 quickly approached the car

with a wide smile and said,

“How can I help you?”

“Yes,” I replied.

“Fill the tank up, please.”

I was not prepared

for what happened next.

In an age of self-service and poorer customer service,

this young man checks every tire,

washes every window –

even the roof

– singing and whistling all the time.

We couldn’t believe both the quality of his service

and his upbeat attitude about his work.

When he brought the bill back,

I said to the guy,

“Hey, you took good care of us.

I appreciate that.”

He replied,

“I really enjoy working.

It is a joy for me

and I also get to meet kind people like you.”

This boy is so special!

I said, “We’re on our way to Carmel

and want to buy some milk.

Can you tell us where the nearest supermarket is?”

“There’s a supermarket a few blocks away,” he said,

pointing us in the right direction.

Then he added:

“Don’t park in front of the supermarket

– park somewhere next to

it so your car doesn’t hit the side.”

What a great guy!

When we went to the supermarket,

bought milk

and instead of buying two we ordered three glasses.

Then we drove back to the station.

Our young friend rushed over to greet us.

“Ah, you have already bought milk.”

“Yes, and this glass is yours!”

He gasped, “For me?”

“Of course.

With all your wonderful service to us,

I can’t leave you without a glass of milk in return.”

“Rub!” he was amazed.

As we drove away

I could see him in the rearview mirror standing blankly,

smiling from ear to ear.

How much does this act of generosity cost me?

Only about two dollars.

(This number has a way to appear, right?)

You see, it’s not about money,

it’s about style.

I was particularly excited that day.

When we got to Carmel I drove straight to the florist.

As I stepped inside, I said to the florist,

“I need a long-stemmed rose for my lady to carry

when we shop in Carmel.”

The florist, of the slightly unromantic kind, replied,

“We sell them by the dozen.”

“I don’t need a dozen,” I said, “just one.”

“All right,” he replied,

“you have to pay two dollars.”

“Great,” I exclaimed.

“There is nothing worse than a cheap rose.”

Choosing the rose with some care,

I gave it to my friend.

She is extremely impressive!

And costs?

Two dollars. Just two dollars.

(A moment later she looked at me and said,

“Jim, I must be the only woman in Carmel today with a rose.”)

Besides the twenty-five-cent lesson,

Shoaff taught me another lesson about tips.

He explained to me that the word “tip” comes

from the phrase “guarantee of timeliness”.

“Now,” he said,

“if tipping means a guarantee of timeliness,

when should a tip be?”

I know what he’s trying to lead,

but I’m still thinking “average”.

“When he had a meal and was well served,

he left a tip.

If you get bad service, no tip,”

I replied.

“No, Jim, you don’t understand.

Savvy people don’t bet on good service.

They guarantee good service by giving money up front.”

Let’s try.

The next time you have a special meal at a restaurant,

ask the waiter to come to your table,

put his arm around the person’s shoulder, and say,

“Here’s five dollars.

Will you serve me and my friends well?”

As Shoaff said,

“You never knew what would happen.

They will always hover around your table.

You don’t have to wonder where the waiters are

or wait for a second cup of coffee.”

Did you get this message?

Same amount,

different style.

Friendship has to be nurtured,

not naturally. – Aysa Hazan

************

Love and friendship

Living a life of style also means living a balanced life.

And one of the most important components

of a balanced life is having someone

to love and that person to love you.

If you have someone

to take care of then nothing is more valuable.

The fact that

one person takes care of another represents life at its fullest.

Do all you can to protect your love.

Do not allow anything in the way.

If there is a roadblock chair go,

I suggest you destroy the chair.

Don’t allow anything to stop love.

There has long been a wise saying:

“There are many treasures,

but the greatest of them all is love.”

In other words,

it is better

to live in a shack on the beach

and know love than to live in a castle

that is completely alone.

Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden.

Time, effort and imagination must be used regularly

to keep the garden blooming and green.

After love,

friendship is the most important thing.

It is priceless.

Great friends know everything

about you and still love you.

Friends are the people

who come to you

when all the others leave.

And since life is not guaranteed,

be sure,

while you’re on the move,

make friends with people

who will be by your side

when you’re in trouble.

Life is full of ups and downs and friends,

true friends will make the ups

and downs more fun

and the hardships less severe.

I really have a friend like that.

If I had something terrible,

he was the one I would call.

Do you know

why I called him?

That’s right, because he’s coming.

Only then is a friend who will be there

for you in the worst of circumstances.

And I know

that if it takes a fortune to save me,

he will.

And if it takes a long time,

he’ll keep pursuing it no matter how long it takes.

That’s a real friend.

I hope you have a friend like that.

I also have a few casual friends,

who I know often say,

“Call me when you get back to America.”

I guess we all have friends like that.

The problem only comes

when we are confused about their role in our lives

when a real friendship is needed.

To conclude, remember this:

The good life is not about quantity;

it is attitude,

action,

idea,

discovery,

search.

The good life comes from a fully developed lifestyle regardless

of your bank account balance;

from a lifestyle that fuels your aspirations

to become a person of deep values

and accomplishments.

After all,

where is prosperity

without personality,

hard work without art,

quantity without quality,

business without satisfaction

and possession without pleasure?

You can become a cultural person

that complements the overall culture.

You can be an unusually rich and powerful person

with a style and personality

that can benefit your children

and those around you.

Rich stand above their problem. – Aysa Hazan

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