Oreo-on-the-porch-300x225Lots of people ask me all the time why the heck do I live where I live, and what am I thinking with all the farm animals! Well I thought it was time to give it all a little perspective.

wait… can I come in?

You see I get a lot of insight from it. Aside from the fact that I love where I live, the outdoors, the small town, I actually have the best airport in the country. It is 10 minutes away, I know everyone there and can call the station at O dark thirty when I am running late at 5am so they know I am coming and will still check my luggage. When you travel as much as I do, that is a luxury nobody has. And I appreciate it!
This year on Thanksgiving morning I called them – asked what kind of pie they wanted and made them a homemade chocolate pie and delivered it before their turkey dinner while they were working. We have a good relationship.

That is taking me off the point of this blog post though… I have this goat, her name is Oreo. She is a big pain in the “you know what” but I love her just the same. This winter she is sleeping on the front porch because it is cold and she does not like it up in her nice shelter in her very nice pen.

She sleeps on the porch at my front door just waiting for someone to skip a beat so she can sneak into the house. This is her latest “focus”. She is a one-minded goat. She sets her sights on something and never sees anything else.

It dawned on me that we all do this a lot in life. Set our sights on something – set a goal and don’t look back, or sideways or any other way for that matter. Just at the goal. I mean isn’t that what we are taught at all these seminars we produce, teach, go to? Set your goal, write it down, visualize it, dream it, create it. The law of attraction will make it so! Hog wash, or in my case “goat wash”.

I watched Oreo over the summer set her sights on the greenest of the grass. She has a great fenced area to graze in but kept jumping the fence, so I opened up the back gate and gave her access to all of the pastures. Yep, the greener grass on the other side of the fence was all hers.

Well she kept wanting the other side of the fence and the next fence and the next. It was like she could not see anything around her. Not even what she was standing in the middle of. So what did she do? In her one-minded focus to get to the other side, she stuck her head through the fence to get the prize. Then because she did not think things through or look to the side or right in front of her she got stuck.

She has a little set of horns you see. And when you stick your head through a wire fence they go through with ease. Not the same when you want to get back out. Say to get a drink of water (another essential in life). Nope – those horns just catch that wire and keep you there all day until someone notices that you haven’t moved since they peeked out the window earlier in the morning.

Stuck in the fence

So out I go with the wire cutters in hand. Clip the wire above her head and get her out. Well over a period of a couple weeks I clip a lot of wire. Not only does she keep sticking her head through the fence, but it’s never the same spot twice.
Either she is a brilliant goat working to get me to cut the entire thing down or she is so focused on getting to the other side she needs to try a different spot every single time.

Here is a picture of Oreo – look at all the beautiful grass all around her.

What greener grass?

This whole situation made me think of what we all have a tendency to do. Focus on the goal and never take a moment to look around to see what is right there in front of us.
In the speaker and seminar industry, for instance, there has been a trend to create multi-speaker events that have a ton of people selling. Some people have decided that it is the best way to make a few bucks. And they forget that without the audience and the learning that is supposed to be going on in the first place people stop showing up.

Audiences get smaller, marketing gets tougher, and events that once drew 500+ people end up with 50 people in the audience. It is painful to watch and it is happening everywhere. People are getting their head through the fence and can’t get it out because they did not think/look ahead.

Just something to think about… Are you so focused on something right now that you are not looking around you to see what other options there are? Are you listening to your peers or seeing what they are doing that works and what isn’t working?

I do believe in goal setting, making sure that you reach the goal, but remember… there is more to look at than just then final outcome. How are you going to get there, be successful and be able to continue to move forward?

One of my favorite people in this crazy sandbox we play in is John Carlton – aka the Marketing Rebel. He always seems to have his feet planted squarely and is a kinda crazy voice of reason in my head sometimes. I can actually hear his voice say things to me like “Seriously – a helmet is required for kids to crab?”

Well one thing John is about is taking Action. Create the goal, see it, feel it, smell it and then DO something about it. He does an event once a year called “John Carlton’s Action Seminar” Check it out here and if you need a plan, want to hang out with me, John and some of the smartest marketers in the world then do whatever it takes to get there. Check it out!