The Impossible Dream
500 people; $100 Trillion combined net worth. This is my impossible dream. To support you, the dreamers of the world, in finding your billions. How is this even remotely possible? I've no idea. Can and will it be done? I've bet my life on it...because that is why I am here on earth.
It was in the spring of 2012 and I was asked to be interviewed by our new marketing department training manager at that time. I had recently been replaced as the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) of my company and he asked if I could shed some light to the marketing team on the history of the organization I had co-founded and the marketing department which I had built. While volleying back and forth with questions/answers, the interview was going as expected until he asked, "what do you see that your personal future holds?" I paused for a moment, closed my eyes and without thinking said, "to support a minimum of 500 people worldwide to discover their full potential. In benefit to all of humanity; the expression of their gifts, talents, dreams and abilities will be measured by their creating a combined net worth of one hundred trillion dollars." Immediately after uttering these words from my mouth, I literally started crying.
"WTF did I just say?", I remember clearly thinking. One hundred trillion dollars?! Aghast, in my mind I attempted to recant what I'd just said as my absolutely stunned brain started doing the math backwards. Divided by 500 people, I could wrap my head around a trillion. I could even...almost; wrap my head around $10 Trillion. But $100 Trillion? Not a snowballs chance in hell. While still consumed in my own shock, I semi-composed myself to finish the interview and surrendered. I knew all to well these two facts that I learned from my mother. One-God doesn't put a dream within you that you also don't have the ability to accomplish and two-we are hung by the tongue. If that's what came out of my mouth then that's exactly what I'm meant to do.
Most that read this 'beyond audacious seemingly impossible dream', may dismiss it as a pie in the sky you've lost your everlasting mind wishful thinking. If that's you, it's entirely OK for you to stop reading this right now and move on with your day. Some will continue reading this blog post because it's so outlandish, it's piqued your interest enough to see 'how' this can and will occur. If that's you, you'll be disappointed because as I shared earlier; I don't know exactly how this will happen? This dream is not about me, it's about supporting you and your ambitions. A very limited few of you are reading this going, "I want to leave a legacy, change the world and be one of the 500!" Like me, you are the believers and entrepreneurs crazy enough to know it's possible and want to make a magnificent difference through your contributions to humankind. If this is you, read on because I'm certain, somehow, someway, I can assist you.
I got crystal clear on my desire to assist others in discovering their full potential in 2004 during a weekend seminar my company hosted called 'Life Path'. I did the work to gain clarity on both my highest values and purpose. I learned that most of us live our lives by values we assume 'should' be important to us rather that what our lives demonstrate are 'really' important to us (evidenced by where we spend our time and money). When at first asked to list my hierarchy of seven life values from most important to least important I wrote 1-Spiritual; 2-Family; 3-Vocation; 4-Financial; 5-Mental; 6-Physical; 7-Social. Being raised in a strong Christian family, I was taught that God always comes first, followed by family thus ranking them one and two. Both of my parents instilled a tremendous work ethic in me thus vocation being ranked third. However regarding money, I had a love/hate relationship with it as a result of my religious upbringing (money is the root of all evil), yet I also knew of its value and importance; just not before God, family and work. Though having a goal to be a millionaire after watching "The Strangest Secret" by Earl Nightingale in 1977 and making $100,000 a year since graduating from college in 1989, I had done neither at this point in my life.
However, when I looked at where I spent my time and money, my true hierarchy of values were 1-Mental; 2-Vocation; 3-Financial; 4-Physical; 5-Social; 6-Family; 7-Spiritual. When I recognized this I thought I was going straight to Hell. How in the world could the values I thought were supposed to be most important be last? After believing I had done something wrong, I learned and realized there are no right/wrong answers. Our values that are highest are simply those we feel we lack the most, thus why we spend an inordinate amount of time and money on them. Those we value least are those we're the most complete with and don't feel like something's missing. Once I had this breakthrough, I gave up feeling guilty about working so hard and wanting to be wealthy and accomplished both lifelong financial goals within the next 30 months.
Regarding my purpose, after spending intensely focused time during this weekend retreat on clarifying and verbalizing it, this is what showed up for me. "I Brett Anthony Penager hereby declare before God, myself and others that my primary purpose in life is to be a man of total integrity, love and excellence in every area of my life and share freely the universal laws of success that God has granted me the wisdom to learn and use in creating extraordinary success for myself and others." This is my 'why' and I've lived it fully expressed ever since. Which brings us back to the 500 people/$100 Trillion dilemma.
I've chosen to focus on supporting the relative few (500 people) because I've seen and experienced what one person who lives into their full potential and gives it away to the world can accomplish. Examples such as Martin Luther King, Tony Robbins, Oprah Winfrey, Mahatma Ghandi, Barrack Obama, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, Quincy Jones, Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and many more; show us all the impact their dreams expressed to humanity have had on the world at large for the better. Though they show up as rare measurably, they are all human beings just like you and me.
I am a living example of exactly what I'm sharing. I failed in 10 businesses before I finally made a profit in my 11th. It took me 18 years of working full time before I made my first $100K in a calendar year. I've been broke, busted and disgusted; had a car I couldn't afford repossessed; got evicted from an apartment I couldn't pay the rent for and have been in near bankruptcy multiple times in my adult life. The mindset that pulled me through all of these challenges is one that I learned from wrestling. At the end of the day, the only person responsible for your success or failure is you. It's not your coach, parents, the ref, opponent, etc....it's you. When you learn to take responsibility for your failures and learn from them rather than playing the victim and assigning fault to cause outside of yourself, then you will be a light of inspiration in an otherwise dark world where most people live lives of quiet desperation.
Despite these failures, the companies I've co-founded with remarkable partners that did work have benefitted tens of thousands of families with jobs and the resultant income to reach their dreams and goals; over a half million patients benefitted from health they otherwise didn't think was possible for them and couldn't attain any other way; and these companies have pumped hundreds of millions of tax and real dollars into our national economy supporting our children's education, charitable causes, unemployed citizens, communities and the unparalleled lifestyle we enjoy here in the great US of A. One person's dream can impact millions of lives for generations and why your dream needs to bless the world.
I'm aware there's a lot of rhetoric today about the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer or the inequity of income in the United States. In this discussion, some are focused on redistributing wealth so there is more equality for the masses. All are entitled to their own opinions and I have no judgement if you agree or disagree with me as I respect your opinion regardless. For your understanding of my come from, I would like to share some thoughts as it regards my impossible dream dilemma. Money in and of itself is neither good nor bad. It's simply a measurement of value exchange. How it's used can be defined as good or bad depending on your point of view but the reality is it's energy that flows from those who value it least to those that value it most.
In building a business, money is only created when providing value to people that need/value your product or service more than the money being exchanged for it. If you provide enough value and multiply the number of people who can receive it, the accumulation of money is simply a byproduct of serving. If you want to make more money, all you have to do is increase your value and share that with as many people as possible. The more people that agree with a product or service that provides them with a solution to a problem they face, at a price they feel is worth it; the more money that's created for those whom provided the solution/product/service.
Most entrepreneurs aren't successful in building businesses because the rewards are great but the risks are greater. All great fortunes are made by those who provide solutions to challenges we face as human beings and are willing to risk it all to have their dreams come to fruition. This is capitalism at its finest and why the United States at only 245 years old is the greatest and most prosperous country the world has witnessed to date. Though the examples I've mentioned, including myself, are singular names; none of us do great things by ourselves. However, the intensity in which one person chooses to make a positive difference in the world by providing tremendous value to humanity and is willing to do whatever it takes to succeed despite the risks, falls onto the shoulders of the individuals who believe in their dreams. Their impact is perfectly summarized by this quote from the developer of chiropractic BJ Palmer, "you never know how far reaching something you think, say or do today will impact the lives of millions tomorrow."
I don't know how in the world we're going to pull this off but I plan to live until I'm 113 years old and am not even halfway there. When the "why's" big enough, the "how to" figures itself out. If you'd like to be one of the 500 that change the world for the better through an idea, business or dream and think I may be able to support you, reach out to me and let's make this and your impossible dream a reality. Together, we've got another 58 years to make a run at this craziness. I'm proud of what I've done to date and wrestle with knowing there is so much more to do and more that I don't know than that which I do. Though 55 years young, experientially I feel like a kindergartner in life. Like that young child, I have far more questions than answers as too 'how life should be' and know I don't know it all. I'm also beyond humbled to all of my great mentors and teachers who have poured their lives into me so today could even be possible. As you have given unto me, it is my desire and purpose to pay it forward to you. Give me a call, write me an email or respond to this post. The world awaits your genius as we will all benefit from what only your magnificence can provide.
All that's needed is for you to simply Believe...