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The Secret Ingredient for Financial Advisors: Grit

Financial advisors can learn many lessons from the history of Ernest Shackleton.

Allyson Lewis, 09/27/2012

"I will never quit. I persevere and thrive on adversity. My Nation expects me to be physically harder and mentally stronger than my enemies. If knocked down, I will get back up, every time. I will draw on every remaining ounce of strength to protect my teammates and to accomplish our mission. I am never out of the fight."

--Navy Seal Ethos/Creed

With the recent anniversary of 9/11, we have all been reminded of the difficulties of the last 11 years. We remember the bravery of our men and women in the military, the loss of life from terrorism on our own soil, the economic turmoil of slowdowns and recessions. We remember the decline of the S&P from a high of 1565 on Oct. 9, 2007, to a low of 666 on March 6, 2009. We remember walking into the office each day wondering what would happen next. And yet, as financial advisors, we were and still are faced with how to help our clients navigate their future by not looking backward, but by deciding what is most prudent to do from this point forward.

As a time strategist, I wonder how many hours of each day are lost to that feeling of being "frozen." When something happens, you find yourself scared, angry, exhausted, or all three. In these difficult times, it is often the lack of knowing what you need to do next that keeps you stuck.

First ask, "Do I have the grit and determination to move beyond the hard times life brings? When I'm faced with obstacles, will I push forward, or will I quit?"

A Man's Life of Grit
When I am invited to go across the country to speak to audiences from companies of all kinds regarding how they can improve their time strategies and dramatically increase their daily productivity, I will often share one of my favorite stories from the book Endurance by Alfred Lansing.

Sir Ernest Shackleton was a British explorer who wanted to be the first man to walk across the Antarctic by foot. His dream turned into a battle to survive against unimaginable conditions. His remarkable perseverance, dedication, and grit inspired his crew to do whatever it had to do to survive. I have read and listened to this book over and over again--each time learning new lessons of how to develop the beliefs and determination it takes to walk day by day through the most difficult parts of life.

Here are 10 key principles that you may find helpful for mustering grit in your life.

Time strategy expert and best-selling author Allyson Lewis has spent the last 29 years developing and teaching concrete, actionable business ideas all over the country. In her latest book, The 7 Minute Solution, she shares strategies to help you Prioritize, Organize and Simplify® your life for greater meaning and productivity. Take advantage of the worksheets, webinars, and more--subscribe to the FREE Member Tools area of our website http://www.The7MinuteLife.com and follow her on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/AllysonLewis.SevenMinutes and Twitter: @allyson7minutes

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