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5 Elements of a Successful Single Page Life Plan
Single Page Life Plan @2013 Ballylongford Books, LLC

The five elements of a successful Single Page Life Plan are:

1. Mission or Vision Statement:

This is the overarching vision you have for your life. All other parts of your plan synchronize with this. 

2. Life Categories:

Your Life Categories are the six major highways that lead a path towards your Vision Statement. These Life Categories are what you consider to be the most vital aspects of your life.

3. Action Steps:

These are the specific, achievable, and measurable steps that you commit to take on a daily basis to remain intentional, strategic, and accountable to each of your Life Categories.

Action Steps turn your life vision into reality.

4. The Boxes:

There are four Boxes to your plan: 

Coins are small kindnesses you perform to help others you encounter along your path.

Attitudes speak to the frame of mind you adopt to stay motivated in your quest.

Potholes are hurdles and distractions that steer you away from your goals. 

Strengths are the character attributes, skills, and talents you possess that can propel you towards attaining your goals. 

5. Your Signature

This is the part of your Single Page Life Plan that will take the least amount of time, but it might have the longest term of consequence. It is the promise to yourself that you will follow the vision you have for your future.

With a Single Page LIfe Plan, priorities must earn their way to page one!

Which of these 5 elements of the Single Page Life Plan do you think is most important to you?

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The Day I Learned About Walking and Talking

The Day I Learned About Walking and Talking I had just joined a group of 25 brokers at Coldwell Banker Commercial Real Estate. One of those brokers was Wayne Harer. Wayne had played 10 years of minor league baseball for the Red Sox and Yankee organizations and, one season, actually won the AAA Batting Crown with a .350 batting average. Unfortunately for Wayne, that was not enough to replace American League MVPs Freddie Lynn and Jim Rice, or Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski from their spots on the roster. 

Copyright Ballylongford Books, LLC

I considered Wayne a 'veteran' commercial broker because he had all of 2 years of experience leasing downtown office space. One day as he was walking through the lobby, I called out, "Hey Wayne, do you have a couple of minutes?"

"Walk with me, talk with me!" he said as he got on the elevator.


"C'mon Scan. Walk with me, talk with me. Let’s go!”

Being new in the business, I jumped at the invite. Not only was Wayne a successful broker, he was the only guy I knew who had his own baseball card! 

I spent the next 2 hours tagging along with Wayne as he conducted business downtown. He visited a dozen offices, dropping off brochures, talking with tenants and owners. A business card handed out here, a “Howyabeen” there. We took elevators and escalators; we cut across parking lots and through retail stores. I kept asking Wayne real estate questions. Wayne kept walking and talking.

Five miles later, it was obvious that Wayne knew every floor of every downtown building, every owner, and every tenant. He knew everyone by name; the secretaries, the lobby clerks, even the policeman on the corner. You were never a stranger for long when ‘Wayno’ was
walking and talking.
Wayne said, “When I was hired by Coldwell Banker, they told me, ‘You are going to be an office broker.’ That sounded great to me, but I really did not know what they meant. When I asked them exactly what an office broker did, they pointed outside their office window and said, ‘Do you see all of those buildings out there? You are going to learn everything there is to know about every single floor of every single building.’ 

They told me I needed to meet with every tenant leasing agent, property manager, lender, and owner associated with those buildings; that I needed to find out all of the square footages, the rental incentives being offered, the type of tenant improvements being done and the details of every lease."

Wayne added, “That can seem like a daunting task for a new real estate agent, fresh out of professional baseball. It took me about 18 months to do that groundwork. And it is groundwork! Your energy level has to be very high. When you start at the top of the LeVeque Tower and start working, floor by floor, it can be exhausting.” 

One time someone asked Wayno, “What if there is a 'no-solicitation' sign outside the office?”

"Better yet!" he replied. “That means there is a good chance some of the other brokers were scared off. The reality is, if you haven’t been thrown out of every building in your territory at least once, then you’re not doing your job.”

The questions I had for Wayno were insignificant compared to the education he gave me that day, walking and talking. This is what it is all about; getting face-to-face and personal with the people with whom you want to do business.

He not only became familiar with the product, inside and out, but also grew to know the individuals who would later become his customers. Certainly, there were scores of agents “working the phones”, making calls to potential clients, but there is no substitute for meeting face-to-face the way that Wayne demonstrated.

Today, Wayno still sports a couple of AAA World Championship Rings from his days with the Columbus Clippers in the early 80s. Now with Continental Real Estate, he has been honored 12 out of the last 13 years as the Highest Volume Commercial Sales Leader in Columbus…walking and talking!

Has the internet made walking and talking extinct?
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Smile When They Say You're Too Old
     Ronald Reagan at age 70, at Camp David with Nancy Reagan                                    Photo courtesy of Ronald Reagan Library

Excerpt from Lead Like Reagan - Principles of Dynamic Leadership:

“One of my favorite quotes from Thomas Jefferson is when he said, ‘We should never judge a president by his age, but by his acts.’ And ever since he told me that…”
                                                        – Ronald Reagan, Annual Salute to Congress Dinner, February 1981.

Imagine that you are Ronald Reagan when he was 65 years old. You have just spent the last 20 years of your life dedicated to implementing a policy of political leadership that you believe will help your country, and the world. All of your efforts to touch hearts, garner support, and gather the votes necessary to further your vision, come down to a single vote at the national convention in 1976. The vote is 1,187 to 1,070. And you lose.

This is what happened to Ronald Reagan. He had just lost the convention vote to be the nominee for president of the United States to incumbent president Gerald Ford. He was 65 years old and had the financial security to retire in style. He had a large family, lots of friends, good health and many interests. He loved to spend time on his beautiful ranch in California, riding horses and working chores. I often wonder if Ronald Reagan was tempted to ride off into the sunset and spend the rest of his days in well-earned retirement.

Instead, he summoned the energy to put forth yet another campaign, and 4 years later became the oldest man to be elected President of the United States of America.

Why did he do it?  And why should we put forth the effort to establish one more relationship, or begin one more project, or create one more company?

Maybe Reagan was motivated by the notion of fulfilling the reason he was put on earth. In May of 1988 at Moscow State University he said this: “Freedom is the recognition that no single person, no single authority or government has a monopoly on truth, but that every individual life is infinitely precious, that every one of us put on this world has been put there for a reason and has something to offer.”

Reagan had a respect for serving others and believed that we make a living by what we get – and a life by what we give.

And Reagan had a respect for those who served others. Both Reagan and Mother Theresa were 74 years old when he presented her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, at the White House in 1985. He said, “This is the first time I’ve given the Medal of Freedom with the intuition that the recipient might take it home, melt it down and turn it into something that can be sold to help the poor.”

Mother Theresa would go on to live another 12 years, accomplishing incredible things throughout the world.

Reagan did not associate maturity with age. At his commencement address to the young college graduates at Eureka College in 1982, Reagan said, “Maturity is a matter of becoming comfortable with yourself with the world around you as time moves on and circumstances change.” Ronald Reagan certainly saw many circumstances change over his long life.

Reagan liked to make fun of his age, as he did on his birthday in 1986: “I did turn seventy-five today, but remember, that’s only twenty-four Celsius.”

And when he signed into law the Alternative Motor Fuels Act of 1988 Reagan said, “This bill is a landmark in the quest for alternative forms of energy. And believe me, when you’re my age, you just love hearing about alternative sources of energy.”

In reality, Reagan had a huge amount of energy. Many people half his age were unable to keep up with his physical regimen. Contrary to reports, and Reagan’s own self-effacing humor, Reagan never felt the need for taking naps. (On a side note, also contrary to other reports, he never wore makeup – even when acting, and he never dyed his hair.)  But he did stay physically active each day, whether doing physical work-outs in the White House or working hard at his ranch.

In his 70’s Ronald Reagan seemed a young man, both physically and mentally. And, when the matter of age came up, he promised not to make a campaign issue out of his opponent’s youth and inexperience. After that, nobody else did either.

Lead Like Reagan investigates the leadership techniques that Ronald Reagan followed to become one of the greatest leaders of the 20th Century.
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4 Things All Great Real Estate Pros Have In Common!

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In my first book, Walking and Talking - 57 Stories of Success and Humor in the Real Estate World of Business, I recounted stories from some of the top real estate professionals in the Midwest. After observing their careers and listening to their stories, I asked myself this: Other than their sheer success, what do all of these winners in real estate have in common?  This is what I learned:

First, each one of them is very good at creating structure in an otherwise very unstructured environment. Real estate is not your typical 9 to 5 job, where opportunities are clearly identified and day-to-day responsibilities are well-defined. It is up to the real estate professional to identify the problems and opportunities; to set a plan of action that will bring success. They are not told how to allocate their time, or which deals to pursue or ignore.

The successful ones create a great framework for activity. 

Secondly, all of them share the characteristics of creativity, optimism, confidence, and persistenceNot all of the contributors to Walking and Talking were particularly good students in school. Surprisingly, not all of them are consistently hard workers. Nor are they all exceptionally talented. But, all of them share the traits mentioned above.

Each one is also very good at: 

a.)  Teaching themselves what they need to know to excel, 

b.) Focusing their energy on the most important tasks at hand, and 

c.)  Working effectively with other people.

Thirdly, they demonstrate a willingness to incur risk. There is little, if any, guaranteed income. 

Their time and effort is always at risk. They incur the costs of failure and enjoy the rewards of success that come from choices they make, efforts they put forth, and conditions in the marketplace. They are not deterred by this.

Fourthly (and most importantly!)without exception all successful real estate people seem to succeed in very unique and different ways from each other. They all take different paths, thereby taking advantage of their individual skills and talents

There is not one formula for success to follow, but hundreds! 

This is why it is almost impossible to predict, out of a group of newcomers to the world of real estate, which individuals will ultimately succeed. 

The commonality among these high achievers is that they all take a unique approach to their business. If their shoes fit, they wear them, and keep walking and talking!

What common trait or skill do you believe successful real estate professionals share?

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32 Questions To Ask Before You Buy Apartments!
I was in my office one day, when a real estate investor called me on the phone.  He said, "Garry, I just had one of my tenants move out - and they took the refrigerator with them! They said it was theirs." Uh oh. 
I immediately called the seller, who explained that those particular tenants had previously sold their home, and so they had brought their own refrigerator with them. He had simply forgotten, and there was no mention of it in the lease. 

"Garry, I just put the fridge that was in their apartment into storage, and used it the next time one of my other ones broke down." The seller delivered a replacement-refrigerator, which was included in the sale of the apartments, and everyone was happy. 
If we had asked the seller, prior to closing, if he owned his appliances, it might have prompted his memory and helped us to avoid all of the hassle.  Attached is a checklist that has some of the questions you can ask an owner prior to writing a contract.  What questions do you ask before buying apartments?
Attachment: 32 Seller Questions Attachment.pdf
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Your Life Plan Should Not Be P.O.S.H.
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The brilliance of a Single Page Life Plan lies in its simplicity. It must never be Perfect, Overloaded, Set in stone, or Hidden.

Perfect - Your life plan is not the Magna Carta! It is an important document—but it’s different. Your life plan is a blueprint of how you want to live your life. It forces you to identify your goals and strategies, and it makes it easier for you to gauge results and to stay accountable. However, it is not meant to be all-inclusive or perfect.

Mark Twain once said, “Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection.” So, don’t get mired down searching for a grand epiphany here. Just get things going in the right direction. 

Overloaded - Peripheries are not Priorities! Peripheries in your life have to earn their way to Page One! Until then, they are distractions; they are clutter. They are second and third ideas that keep getting in the way of your first good idea. Place a laser focus on your most important goals. Don’t let your laser beam be diffused by a wide array of useless, energy-zapping activities. 

Set in Stone - Your plan is a working plan that you will want to continually update, edit, and change; sometimes in very dramatic ways. Circumstances are always changing. Like airplane pilots, we are sure to experience cloudy days, unexpected headwinds, and high-pressure systems along our journeys.  We need to be nimble and able to adapt quickly as we keep our focus on our destinations.

Your life plan is to be used as a tool, not adored! Be prepared to take a pen or pencil and scratch up your life plan. 

Hidden - Share your plan with others! Studies show that people are more likely to achieve success while on a diet, for example, if they share their goals with friends and family. Similarly, it will be a formidable yet positive challenge for you to share your life plan with others. 

This will accomplish two things. First, it will motivate you to stay accountable to your goals and aspirations. Secondly, it will empower your friends, family, and colleagues to help and assist you in achieving your quest.

If your Single Page Life Plan is not POSH, you will use it. You will refer to it regularly and utilize it to help you change course when necessary. It will be fast, simple, and life-changing! 

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A SP Checklist for Buying Apartments
Copyright 2013 Ballylongford Books, LLC
In my book, Single Page Life Plan there is a chapter on the importance of extending single page planning to all of your important projects and ventures. Unlike your Single Page Life Plan, your checklist is meant to be more encompassing; a 'catch-all' that you can review regularly to make sure that you are considering every aspect of your endeavor. 

The Single Page Checklist: Investing In Multifamily Real Estate, summarizes on a single page the 4-color, 6 page laminated flyer I created that explains:

How to build your team of advisors.

Things to consider in putting together contracts.

Important questions you need to ask the seller of apartments you are buying.

The important questions to ask to obtain favorable financing.

How to select a good property management company.

The types of insurance you need to consider.

Criteria of good multifamily property.

Ways to continue to learn more about investment real estate.

This format can work for all of your projects.  Priorities must earn their way to page one!

Attachment: Sp Checklist Investment property.pdf
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12 Things You Didn’t Know About Ronald Reagan
Photo courtesy of Ronald Reagan Library
Ronald Reagan ...
1.  As president, he relished riding his jeep around his ranch, which was the one place the Secret Service felt comfortable protecting him as he drove his own vehicle. He had a tireless passion for working outdoors.
2.  Had an extraordinary memory and was called 'One Take Reagan' in Hollywood.
3.  Was a voracious reader.
4.  Never wore makeup – not even as a Hollywood actor or on television.
5.  Was the only top leader of a labor union to become an American president.
6.  Was known for treating everyone the same, regardless of their station in life, color of skin, or their level of fame. 
7.  Was always underestimated by his adversaries.
8.  Liked to target-shoot. 
9.  Enjoyed a single glass of wine each day.
10.  Was severely nearsighted, and one of the first people in America to wear contact lenses.
11.  Kept a personal diary while in the White House. 
12. Was class president in high school and student body president at Eureka College, where he majored in economics and played football.
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"I Wish I Had Smoked More Cigarettes!"

When I speak to young adults in 8th grade or in high school, I promise them this:


Nobody ever looks back on their high school or college years and says ... 

“I wish I had smoked more cigarettes. I could be up to a pack a day smoker by now!”

“I wish I had spent more nights, staying out drinking 'til out 2:00 am in the morning.”

“I wish I had bought more drugs while in school.”

They don’t. And you won’t either.

Many people use drugs, alcohol, and tobacco because they think they are going to miss out on something if they don’t. They think that they will look back and regret that they didn’t partake when they had the chance!

I promise you absolutely, that you will never look back and feel as if you missed out on anything.

Nobody looks back and wishes they had spent more days fighting off hangovers, sleeping in past noon.

Nobody likes the 6 months they spend paying off the attorney they hire to defend their DWI.

And you will not either!

But you might look back with serious regrets. Did you hurt someone? Did you waste a lot of time and money? Were you distracted from goals that are important to you? Did you adversely influence your brother or sister’s behavior? Did you form an addiction? Did you jeopardize a career opportunity? Did you do a hundred things that you never intended to do? 

Now is time for you to be intentional; to decide.


As parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, teachers, and mentors, it is sometimes helpful to consider the perspective of a high school student when offering them good advice that they can use. Projecting their perspective a bit into the future might help them to do what is so hard to do at that age; Seeing Past Friday Night.

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Simple Isn't Easy … Only Better!
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Don’t mistake simple for easy. It takes a lot of effort and creativity to reduce things to their most simple form.

The genius of Albert Einstein was not that he could comprehend so many of the complexities of space, time, gravity, and light. All scientists can do that. His genius was in his ability to simplify those complexities into an understandable theory of relativity.

He often commented that unlocking the greatest mysteries of the universe would be useless unless you were able to make them understandable to a young student.

Einstein discovered the simple. He sculpted away the clutter and left us with the meaningful. He chopped away at row upon row of mathematical calculations and left us with E=mc². 
He simplified complexity! It was not easy—but it was better.

The Single Page Life Plan is designed to bring the simple back into your life in a fast, fun, and creative way. Hopefully, it helps you to identify the truly meaningful things in your life; the significant things that matter most at work, home, or play.


The successful people I observe and try to learn from do not compartmentalize your life. They synchronize every aspect of their life to achieve the overarching goals they have. They get in sync!


There are 5 elements to the Single Page Life Plan:

• Mission/Vision Statement

• Life Categories

• Action Steps

• The Boxes

• The Signature

We’re not juggling String Theory here, but we are talking about adding energy to your life. You could almost say that E=SPLP. Try wrapping that around your head, Mr. Einstein!

What is the best thing you do every day to simplify and focus your efforts on the truly-important?
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Live Prosperously So That Others May Prosperously Live

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Excerpt from Lead Like Reagan

I remember the first time I saw a bumper sticker that read: Live simply so that others may simply live.  My first thought was to place another bumper sticker next to that one, that read: Live prosperously so that others may prosperously live. While it is generally agreed that the love of money is not a good thing, below are 4 reasons why economic prosperity is a good thing. 

One day, while addressing a class of 8th graders about the benefits of living in a prosperous economic system, I asked the students, “Can you think of any reasons why it might be a good thing that doctors are able to earn a lot of money?”

One student said that our health is very important to us, and that earning a good income is an incentive for talented people to make the effort to attend medical school.

Another student took a poke at me. “I know why you like that they make a lot of money. Because then you can sell them real estate!” We all laughed, and I agreed that it was true.

I then asked if anyone else could think of a reason why it was a good thing that doctors earned a high income.

Suddenly, an arm shot up and started waving back and forth. “Oh! Oh! Oh!” He could hardly contain himself before I called on him.

“Because my dad’s a doctor!”

That’s a great reason too. Here are 4 other benefits Americans experienced from the phenomenal economic prosperity of the 80s.

1.) More Control: During the economic boom that took place during the prosperous 80s, Americans were left with more control over their hard earned dollars. True to form, they responded with tremendous generosity to those less fortunate. 

2.) Increased Charitable Giving: Americans all over the country joined volunteer programs, and in the ten years that some labelled as a decade of greed, private charitable giving more than doubled.

3.) More Jobs and a Better Environment: Jobs were available again. 21% interest rates were cut in half and new homes became affordable. The misery of high inflation was brought under control. And, during this enormous economic expansion, the largest ever experienced by our country during a time of peace, the air quality in our physical environment was made cleaner!

4.) Prosperity Becomes Contagious!: By pointing to the success happening in America, England decided to pass reforms in their country that also brought great prosperity to the British people. It proved that prosperity is contagious!

Sometimes, we give into the temptation of assigning a sort of romanticism to a slow and sputtering economy. One of the reasons for this might be due to the tremendous respect we have for the courageous people who demonstrate such awe-inspiring behavior while facing economic hardship. But it is a mistake to ignore the incredible suffering and loss of freedom that results from unprosperous conditions.

Prosperity, of course, comes in many forms, and most of them transcend mere economics. Most people agree that economic health is but one small aspect of prosperity we should aim towards.

Be motivated by the fact that, as the leader of your family and organization, the healthier you become financially, physically, and spiritually - the more prosperity you can share with others. 

Who benefits from the prosperity you create?

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Do You Salute Your Troops?

Photo Courtesy of Ronald Reagan Library

“We will always remember. We will always be proud. We will always be prepared, so we may always be free.”

                           - Ronald Reagan, Speech at Omaha Beach on the 40th Anniversary of D-Day, June 6, 1984.

Few people realize that Ronald Reagan was the first president in modern times to salute the troops. Even General Eisenhower did not do this when he became commander-in-chief. It simply was not the custom.

When Ronald Reagan took office, he inherited a military that had been taken for granted; had been neglected. Little respect had been given to the men and women in uniform, and morale among the troops was very low. America was still suffering from the divisive results of the Vietnam War that had ended eight years earlier. By some estimates, half of the military planes and ships were in unworkable condition in 1981 due to a lack of spare parts. 

And then Reagan began saluting the troops.

It was a simple gesture, but one of enormous importance and effect. Word spread like wildfire throughout the military and civilian population alike. Reagan was saluting the troops. It was a common topic of conversation at restaurants, boardrooms and barbecues: “Did you see Reagan salute that marine?”  Without a single word being spoken, The Great Communicator sent the strongest of messages:

We respect you as the men and women of our military.

We honor your service to our country.

You have our back, and we have yours.


We are a team!

If you were born before the mid 60’s, you are old enough to remember the great impact Reagan’s salutes made on those serving in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, and Secret Service. Military and law enforcement personnel everywhere took notice. The effect of this leadership is evident by the fact that all of Reagan’s successors have followed the precedent he set.

Other examples of non-verbal actions that spoke volumes include when Reagan laid a wreath at the grave of a fallen soldier and when he attended funeral services along with the families of those brave astronauts who lost their lives aboard the Challenger. He conveyed true compassion, genuine affection, and moral understanding without uttering a single sentence.

In my book Lead Like Reagan I suggest you take an inventory of those ways in which you currently present yourself to others. Then, list ways you can improve your non-verbal skills to motivate and inspire your troops. Remember, for Reagan, a simple salute did wonders!

Do you remember when President Reagan began saluting the troops?

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The Power of a Single Action Step
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If you could add an hour to every week of your life, how would you spend those extra 52 hours every year that you pick up? Exercising? Reading? Enjoying some quiet time?

Because, if you choose Stop Hitting the Snooze Button as one of your Action Steps of your Single Page Life Plan, you will gain 52 extra hours, because most snooze alarms are set for nine minutes. Those 9 minutes, multiplied by 7 days, adds up to over an hour per week! This illustrates the power of a single Action Step.
A time-management consultant once told me that some doctors often run 15 minutes behind schedule all day long, for the simple reason that ... (continue)
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The American Front Yard

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My dad did such a great job on our front yard in the 60s and 70s. He would seed and fertilize it every year. And the grass around the circle of dirt we called a pitcher’s mound was so green! And you couldn’t find a single weed on either side of the base path that we created between home and first base!

We could learn a lot just from looking at old photographs of a typical neighborhood from the late 50s to the early 70s. Back then there were ball gloves, kickballs, and frisbees all over the place. There were bicycles laying on their sides (no need for bike locks). There were basketball hoops and badminton nets, along with an occasional teatherball pole. In the back yard would be croquet mallets, horse shoe pits, and maybe a tent set up during the summer where the kids kept their Daniel Boone stuff. It was not the least bit unusual for you to drive down the street and see a basketball or football that had rolled down to the curb. They’d be there for a couple of days, until the parents told the kids to “Clean up the yard, before you come in.” 

Think of how freeing that was. Certainly for the kids, and even for the parents who could go about their day, knowing that there were games going on all around them in the neighborhood. No worries about what the kids were doing. And for that matter, no worries about maintaining a manicured lawn, or the time and expense of having lavish landscaping. 

Of course, today, if we see our neighbor’s kid hitting golf balls against the trunk of that tree in our front yard, we’re mortified. “Get out of here you nutball!” It really is true that there were a lot of broken windows back then; and yes, you really did get in trouble when that happened.  But, so what?

Today, if you want to know about the changing landscape of America, you don’t have to look any further than the change of landscaping in America, where front porches have been replaced by elaborate backyard decks that are rarely used because everyone is too busy driving all over town to their ‘sporting events’. 

‘Sporting events’ are where you hand your kid a $160 baseball glove and a $300 bat and chauffeur him or her to a ball field that is only slightly nicer than Fenway Park. There you will find 2 umpires (3, of course, if it is a tournament game), more parents with cameras than there are players, and Mrs. Johnsen who is scheduled this week to provide the after-game treats for the famished little athletes. There are 4 assistant coaches, which is usually enough to insure that the kids will stay off their cell phones and begrudgingly thank Mrs. Johnsen for her efforts.

Five and a half hours later, you pull back into your driveway and admire how pristine the yard looks. “Honey, do you think the mulch is fading?”

How did all this happen? Not that these changes to playing games are necessarily a good or bad thing, but were they made intentionally? Did we think about how these changes would impact our lives, or did we just kind of follow along? Are we once again just following along with the latest trends? Maybe it is time for us to take back the reigns of leadership; to be a bit more intentional and think about the best way to lead our children – the best way to show a good example. Maybe Sundays should stay closer to home. Cincinnati is a long ways to go for 2 groundouts and a pop-up to second base.

Maybe its time to go back to the American front yard. 

What do you think?

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How To Explain the Value of Experience to the Young Person in Your Life

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Sometimes it is difficult for young adults in high school to have an accurate appreciation for the value of experience. Like most of us when we were in high school, they think they have all the answers, and can do anything as well as their parents.  One way you might want to explain the nature of experience to a young adult is to begin by asking: 

"Do you consider yourself to be a good automobile driver, or someone who will be a good driver as soon as you get your license?" And then give them a vote of confidence:

"With all of the driving instruction and testing that you take, and the fact that you are a conscientious person, you are probably a good driver. How am I doing so far?"

You will probably not hear any disagreement. My guess is that 90% of the kids believe that are among the top 10% of drivers in America. Now to your main point:

"Will you be an even better driver in the future, after you’ve had another year or two behind the wheel?"

Regardless of age, everyone knows the answer to that question. The more time you spend driving on different roads in rain, ice, snow, hail, sleet, high winds, blinding sun, fog, etc., the better driver you become. 

Because that is how experience works. 

Basically, you are asking the young person to compare themselves, not with another person who has more experience than they do, but instead with themselves - as a more experienced person. They are more open to that concept. 

You think you’re brilliant at 16? Wait until you’re 20! They get that.

Once you have established the importance of experience, you can now address how time can give added experience that they can use to make better choices in other aspects of their life. 

"Do you consider yourself to be good at dealing with the challenges of drugs, alcohol, tobacco, and other risky behaviors that have recently been thrust your way? My guess is that you have done some reading, and have participated in many conversations on the subject. You probably are good at dealing with those challenges. How am I doing so far?"

"Now, do you think you will be even better at dealing with these challenges a couple of years from now?"

In the back of my book, Seeing Past Friday Night, there is an agreement that a parent, mentor, or guardian can make with a young adult to deal with the challenges of high school in a positive way.

What do you say to the young adults in your life to help them keep themselves safe?

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Be Described A Gentleman

Photo courtesy of Ronald Reagan Library

Excerpt from Lead Like Reagan …
In doing research for my book on the leadership style of Ronald Reagan, time and time again I recognized in Reagan some of the same strengths and attributes I saw in my father, James Scanlon. They were both gentlemen.

Those who were closest to Ronald Reagan are very consistent in the words they choose to describe the type of person he
was, and the type of person he was not. There seems to be a wide consensus of what Ronald Reagan was not, by those who worked with him, wrote about him, protected him, fought for him, and lived with him. Ronald Reagan was:

Not condescending to others,

Not arrogant,

Not rude,

Not ungracious,

Not disrespectful to his wife,

Not egotistical,

Not boastful,

Not quick to anger.

He was not one to use foul language, or be ill-mannered.

He was not impolite or disrespectful of others.

He was not prone to put on airs.

He was not one to complain about personal setbacks or physical ailments.

He did not treat people differently because they were rich or poor, powerful or not powerful, of a different color, race, or creed.

And, like my father, Ronald Reagan did not like to gossip about others.

Therefore, it was no surprise to discover that, at his funeral, so many people used the same words to describe Ronald Reagan as they did my father; a true gentleman.

As you read this, I am sure you have known people who fit the same bill. And, you know how unique they are. What a wonderful way to lead their life, and to lead others.

Are you slow to anger, do you avoid coarse language, have you stopped complaining about the small stuff? Do your friends, family, and coworkers see you as a gentleman or a gentlelady?

Maybe we would all benefit from working on the “nots.”
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About Me
Hi, my name is Garrett Scanlon
and I represent clients in the
purchase and sale of investment
real estate.
I speak to companies, schools,
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Walking and Talking is a collection of 57 stories of success and humor in the real estate world of business.
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“As a business leader himself, Garrett is able to identify the best principles of leadership in others. His books are filled with entertaining stories that help us make use of those same strategies of leadership.”
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Single Page Life Plan for Realtors contains everything found in Single Page Life Plan, but also includes a Single Page Checklist for real estate agents and brokers and another checklist for investing in multifamily property. To order the book, click here!  
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Seeing Past Friday Night! After years of speaking as a volunteer at elementary and high schools, listening to the dreams and aspirations of young adults, I wrote this book in hopes of providing unique tools to help them deal with the challenges of drugs, alcohol, and tobacco during their high school years. In this book, I a.) promise they will never look back and wish they had smoked more cigarettes, b.) give advice on how to prepare for their future polygraph test, and c.) provide an agreement at the end of the book that they can sign with a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, or mentor to provide added incentives for making responsible decisions. Learn more ...
See related video about Seeing Past Friday Night. 
Lead Like Reagan - Principles of Dynamic Leadership is a non-political book about the principles President Ronald Reagan followed to help restore morale in the military and become The Great Communicator! To learn more about the book, click here.
What others are saying ...
“One does not have to be of any particular political party to read and appreciate Lead Like Reagan”. You can apply many of the dynamics of Reagan’s leadership style to your personal or professional life. Thank you Garrett for providing us some great reading material on an individual who truly changed the world we live in today”
Michael Jokovich | Area Vice President Northern California | Hyatt Hotels Corporation
“Professionalism, knowledge and candor are all terms that I could use to describe the outstanding program Mr. Scanlon presented to our company’s top clients and business associates here in Columbus, Ohio. His dynamic background and personal experiences enabled him to naturally connect to everyone in our audience. He creatively incorporated both humor and relevance to today’s current issues. We will definitely be inviting Mr. Scanlon to present again and it is a pleasure knowing him.”
Leslie A. Biskner, CCIM | Senior VP/Business Development | Cooperative Business Services, LLC
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About Me
Hi, my name is Garrett Scanlon. I am author of Walking and Talking - 57 Stories of Success and Humor in the Real Estate World of Business, Lead Like Reagan-Principles of Dynamic Leadership, Seeing Past Friday Night, and my new release, Single Page Life Plan. 
I represent real estate clients in the purchase and sale of investment real estate in Columbus, Ohio. 

I speak to companies, brokerages, schools and groups on the topics of business and life-planning, leadership, and real estate. I draw on real-life stories that inspire you, me, and your team to greater success. Included are tangible “takeaway” tools that you can use to increase your productivity and add time to your day.
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