What if Problems Are the Foundation for Happiness?
When I was a child, I dreamt of being a magician. Though I didn’t know the term at the time, I wanted to suspend disbelief. I followed that passion and was able to make a lot of money doing it. I performed at birthday parties, weddings, bar mitzvahs, quinceañeras, corporate events. My mother never told me it couldn’t be done. She gave me a very big gift by never limiting me.
I applied for a job one day never knowing “it couldn’t be done.” I’d heard that magicians work on cruise ships, so I met with Brian Langston-Carter at the place where my mother worked in the television industry. I didn’t realize how much I’d learned from her, and since no one ever told me “It can’t be done,” I just walked in with my doves, my fire torches, my equipment, my “Joel The Great” stand, and I asked the guy for a job.
His secretary didn’t know what to do. All she knew was that some oversized, 6-foot-1 kid was standing there sweating in the lobby with his doves and torches, so she called Brian. And he said, “Send him in.” So I plugged in my 8-track deck, and the next thing I knew, he offered me the job for $100 a week. It was quickly raised to $300, and then once I learned the ropes, thousands per week.
This man taught me the value of being on time. Then, one day, he wasn’t on time to introduce me onstage where I was performing as a magician on the ships, as crew staff and then assistant cruise director. He was never late. I ran downstairs and heard noises that didn’t sound right, so I kicked in his door. He was on the floor, the syringe by his side, but it was too late. He died, a diabetic without his insulin.
This was a hard lesson. I learned what loss was, and I had the desire to transcend with magic.
My brain was ticking. I wanted to learn how my brain functioned, all about psychology, and why people made decisions. So I saved up my money and I invested in the silver market. I lost all of my money. I had taken the direction of people who were not mentors.
Then my grandfather came into my life and said, “Joel, you’ll invest in real estate from this point forward. Real estate. Near the water. Spend all your money on real estate near the water, and I promise you, money will not be a concern.”
I listened to my grandfather, my new mentor. I got off the ships with everything I’d learned through the magic that had gotten me there in the first place. On the ships, I learned to organize and direct and govern and connect with people. Eventually, I learned how to present without the tricks. Then I remembered what my mother had taught me by taking me to the broadcast promotional association trade shows, and I realized that companies needed something I could provide. I had learned on the ships how to build a crowd, control the crowd, and convey a message.
Those are crucial tools for any entrepreneur:
create a crowd
convey the message
collect the leads
I had already learned to do those things, so started going directly to the trade shows, walking up to companies, and simply demonstrating my skill. I brought in many a crowd. I used my cruise direction skills, which were based upon my magic skills, which were based upon my insecurity.
My life made sense. My dream – the one I had all those years ago as a small boy watching the bubbles pop -made sense. And like my mentor, Steve Jobs at Apple, one of the companies I’ve worked with for many years, said to me, “You can’t connect the dots until you look back at your life.”
My life makes sense even though there were pain and concerns and problems along the way.
What about you? Does your life makes sense in a similar way? It was an ah-ha moment for me when I realized that if you don’t have a problem and you don’t define exactly what that problem is, then you have a much bigger problem. What if problems are the foundation for happiness?
Having mentored the top 1800 income producing speakers, coaches, authors, consultants and marketers, I have learned what works in terms of generating results. I would like for you to experience this same mentoring for free.