Feeling gratitude for achieving ‘The Three Bs’ in life

September 9, 2018

My heart is so full.

I’ve had the opportunity to reflect on my life over the past several weeks as I prepared to be inducted into the WV Business Hall of Fame. I’m deeply honored by this recognition. And it was hard to condense my thoughts into a brief acceptance speech.

What came up for me was extreme gratitude for all the people in my life — and the events along the way that seemed like random loose threads, yet were woven into a rich tapestry.

The three Bs

When I think about our life journeys, I’m reminded of the three things I believe we all want in life. I call it “The Three Bs:

• To believe

• To belong

• And to be loved

To believe in something so strongly it becomes your life’s passion. To belong — and that’s where the “special sauce” of the people in your life comes in. And to be loved — which is a direct result of your relationships in all realms.

If you take a little time to reflect on all these “moving parts” in your life, I’ll bet you find some similarities.

How and why

There are defining moments in each of our lives that set our course. I’d like to say my career was built from a strategic plan — the way I always advise clients. It was more sheer drive and ambition, though — like that bumblebee who doesn’t know it’s not supposed to fly, at least according to the law of physics!

However, I did possess some of the elements that are stressed by authors who write about successful traits:

• A definite purpose

• A burning desire

• And lots of persistence

Faith and gratitude played a big part. And you can always find a “how” once you have a “why.”

Blood, sweat and tears

With the help of amazing partners, talented employees and a lot of blood, sweat, tears, heart and soul, my company, The Arnold Agency, was able to get results that kept clients coming back — and attracting others.

There was a lot of competition over the years, to be sure. And, while we didn’t win every pitch, we made up for it with energy and enthusiasm. As well as the integrity of “that man in the arena” that Teddy Roosevelt describes.

Our company tag line was “Spirit. Passion. Results.” This was embedded into our corporate DNA. And when there were setbacks, I always reminded myself of three very important rules:

1. Don’t take things personally

2. Don’t make assumptions

3. Always underpromise and overdeliver

Showing up every day

Do you realize all of us start each day with some of the same raw material:

We each think about 60,000 thoughts a day,

We each have about 70 trillion cells.

It’s how we choose to show up in our lives that makes the difference. And the frequency at which those cells vibrate.

With 70 percent of what we encounter in our world being negative, it’s so important to feed our minds positively to keep those cells vibrating at their highest frequencies — generating our energy at its optimum level.

It takes a village

My life’s work — with this column, my books, speaking engagements and consulting — fill me with passion every day. And I owe a debt of gratitude to the people who have been such a positive influence along the way, my teachers, editors, writers’ group, book club, colleagues, spiritual connections, mentors, family and soul friends.

Think about the people and groups in your life who have made a difference. My eighth grade civics teacher, for example, instilled a love of the governmental process in me. This served me so well later on — when I was privileged to serve as director of communications for Jay Rockefeller.

And then there are those soul friends. It’s been said that a good friend will help you move. And a really good friend will help you move a body!

What a journey I’ve been on ... with lots of life lessons learned along the way. At times I think I wouldn’t have scripted some of the experiences the way they occurred. Yet, those unfoldings were exactly what I needed to make important course adjustments.

You’ve likely had some of these same things occur in your life. We don’t always hear the whispers when they occur, and sometimes it takes a major event to get our attention to make necessary changes. Chances are, you may not “get it” at the time, yet six months or a year down the road it becomes more clear.

Change is hard. And, left to our own devices, we can be hesitant to rock the boat. Fortunately, this “living laboratory of life” gives us lots of chances. If we don’t get the lesson the first time, we’ll probably get another learning opportunity!

Mentors along the way

I was grateful to have two of my mentors represented at the recent induction ceremony — Bill Turner and Napoleon Hill.

Cable television pioneer Bill Turner taught me a lot about business as well as life. After his successful cable and satellite businesses, Bill launched the Wisdom Network, dedicated to areas I’m passionate about — health, wellness, mind, body and spirit.

I was grateful to be in on the ground floor of this network and to travel across the country interviewing authors and speakers as an on-air host. It was like a dream come true!

Back to those loose threads and the rich tapestry. I didn’t know it at the time, although this experience planted the seeds for my future syndicated column. Even though Bill has passed on, I still feel his influence every day. And I was honored to have his daughter, Cindy, attend the induction ceremony.

You may be familiar with the book, “Think and Grow Rich.” It’s one of the most popular business and personal growth books of all times — translated into numerous languages, with sales of more than 100 million copies.

It actually focuses on much more than money, by laying out a foundation for success in all realms, and a blueprint to follow. I was deeply honored to have Napoleon Hill’s grandson, Dr. J.B. Hill, at the induction ceremony, as well as Don Green, CEO of the Napoleon Hill Foundation.

All in the family

I was excited to have my sister, Paula, and her family with with me the other night — all the way from Montana. She gave me a book awhile back, Women Who Run With the Wolves, with an inscription that read, “To the one I’ve run with from the very beginning.” And I’ve got a hunch we’ve got a lot more howling to do!

And I have to give a major shout out to the steady rock in my life — my Renaissance Man, my husband John. He always believes in me, inspires me, grounds me, loves me unconditionally (most of the time!), makes me laugh when I take things too seriously ... and helps steer me back on course when I go astray. And, if we were ever marooned on a desert isle, he’d figure out a way to get us out of there!

The self discovery channel

All of us are at various stages in our careers and lives. I call it the Self Discovery Channel, and it’s an exciting time! I’d like to share a paraphrased version of one of the lines in my wedding vows: “The best is yet to be. May the REST of your life be the BEST of your life.”

And I’d also like to salute you, my readers, as I close out with “The Three Bs.” My heartfelt thanks, as you’ve definitely helped me to Believe and to Belong. And I sure do feeeeeel the love!

Linda Arnold, M.A., M.B.A., is a syndicated columnist, psychological counselor and founder of a multistate marketing company. Reader comments are welcome at linda@lindaarnold.org. For information on her books, go to www.lindaarnold.org or Amazon.com.

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