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What to Do When the &^%# Hits the Fan
by On January 14, 2013

Consistent successful results come with their fair share of challenges.

Some people may look like they don’t have challenges and obstacles, but the reality is that everyone encounters pitfalls.

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Here are a couple of Do’s and Dont’s that you can simply apply to your next bump in the road.

Don’t Blame Other People or Make Excuses

Someone MAY be to blame!  You might have a perfectly legitimate excuse.  Your blame and excuses aren’t going to help you get a better result, they simply pacify you from feeling uncomfortable.

Don’t Ignore Your Problems or Sweep Them Under the Rug

Sometimes you need to have difficult conversations.  Sometimes you need to take actions that aren’t fun or comfortable.

Ignoring your feelings when you are angry or sad isn’t going to fix anything.  At best you are just delaying the problem.  At worst you are letting your negative energy build and become worse.

Take the high road and get comfortable being uncomfortable.

What to Do?

Look for the Good in the Situation

There is good to be found in any situation, so matter how difficult it may be.  This may not be easy and it might not be available for you see immediately.  When you look back at even the most challenging moments in your life, you can find how that situation lead to something good.  You can see how it fostered your growth and made you stronger.  You don’t have to wait years to pass to find the good.

Take Action

The old saying that “action cures fear” holds a lot of truth.  Especially when a solution isn’t readily visible, taking action will help focus your mind on things other than the problem at hand.

Be Grateful

You can’t be negative AND grateful at the same time.  By sincerely looking at other areas in your life that ARE working, at the very least, you will balance the challenging situations that you might be facing.

Start with the obvious and the easy to find.  Your family.  Your health.  Your work or friends.  Whatever fills you with gratitude is an immediate boost to your energy and allows you more power to go chase after your existing challenges.  If you are really stuck – this video will help!

None of these suggestions are rocket-science. I also imagine you’ve heard these suggestions before.  This is not a question of do you know this stuff – it’s all about are you doing it?!?

Be Free!


Dump your New Year Resolutions & Create Amazing Goals for the New Year
by On December 31, 2012

The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to set some clear intentions and get a fresh start on creating some positive momentum in areas that may need it.

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Unfortunately, many people kick off the year with DE-motivating plans… This is easy to avoid

Don’t set a New Years Resolution

It’s unlikely that you will follow-through, and when you bail, you’ll feel worse than when you started.

Don’t focus on the time-frame of your ‘yearly’ goals

Focusing on your time-frame will limit your true capacity.  And it’s a recipe for loosing energy if you find yourself behind in your progress.

DO set a specific goal and then chase after it!  Monitor your progress (I like using a thermometer on the wall) and know that you will accomplish your goal exactly on time.  If it takes a little longer than you’d ideally like – at least you got there!  And chances are you’ll surpass what you thought possible.

DO create a fun and positive challenge.  More effective than a resolution is a commitment to make a change in your habit.  Here is a great example of how i do that.  It’s a win/win when you decide to do something for 30 consecutive days.  Pick something that is meaningful to you and don’t worry if it seems too big or too small.

Have a happy New Year!  I’m looking forward to hearing all of your success stories throughout 2013.

be free!


Navigating God
by On December 3, 2012

by Eric on December 2, 2012

Life has it’s way of offering up “curve balls” now and then.

One of my favorite sayings is that life is 10% what happens to you and 90% what you make of it.


When things go wrong it’s easy to think that the Universe is conspiring against you… What if it was exactly the opposite?  What if there is some cosmic conspiracy, but in fact, it’s all happening for your benefit.

I think one of the most important questions to have a very clear and present answer to is… “Is the Universe Kind?”  My answer is clearly yes.  I know that belief is supportive in helping create forward progress in my life.

If your answers to that question is “NO…”  I’d invite you to see if that perspective is really helping you create a life that you are thrilled with.

Either way … i’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic.

be free!


ps… for more information about Byron Katie head to

Lose Some Weight
by On August 22, 2012

If you are looking for a caloric weight loss plan, you’re on the wrong site. There are a billion places for advice on losing physical weight. Good Luck.


I am talking about emotional and energetic weight. I believe all of us have used these expressions once or twice;

“I felt a ton of weight lifted off me!”

“I’m carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders.”

I recall saying these things when I had a ton of work to do. When I felt I had a ton of responsibility or tasks to do. Maybe when we feel like there might not be enough hours in the day. Why do we have these expressions?? I have been thinking about this…

Well the good news is, I believe this weight is much easier to lose than physical weight (in my experience at least). I have had a couple of experiences lately that have made a profound impact on my ability to be free from this emotional/mental baggage. Taking responsibility.

I’ve never really been scared of confrontation – it’s not fun – but I don’t run from it. In the past couple of weeks I had a couple of significant confrontations, both of which were painful. Mud was thrown from both sides, blame was pointed, and emotions were high. Ok…I guess you could call them fights.

A couple of days after these heated discussions, I did something I have never done before. I wrote an email to both parties taking full responsibility. No fingers pointed, no explaining my position, or telling the other how they made me feel. No other intention than taking full responsibility for my role and cleaning up my side of the street. What they did is none of my business. My business is being as mature and graceful as I can (as a fiery redhead anyway). My business, is all I have control over.

After I wrote those emails, I finally understood those statements. I had more energy, I had an internal presence of joy, I had more confidence, I was motivated – the difference was AMAZING. My ability to do “the right thing” has been effortless lately. The state of forgiveness and humility is like a muscle – it gets stronger when you use it.

Telling someone you are sorry for snapping at them – might be something you would normally just sweep under the rug. What would the world be like if we just cleaned it up? Admitting you were wrong. Taking responsibility for not working hard enough. Taking responsibility for breaking a promise. Saying sorry for saying something mean.

Admittance, vulnerability, openness and humility are beautiful qualities in my eyes. Cleaning up your side gives these qualities color. Not only that, but there is a ripple effect. WIN.

TRY IT. Today, tomorrow, definitely this week….try it on.

You cannot release weight until you have the courage to admit that we all have a role, and we create our lives. There might be prices to pay in your eyes for making these concessions – it might feel scary, maybe some guilt involved, hard on the old pride….perhaps. Freedom from that energetic weight and knowing you took the high road…..PRICELESS.

Want Some Guaranteed Laughs?… Watch This Video…
by On August 16, 2012

I just love this video!! Everytime I watch it, without fail, I laugh and I laugh hard!! One of the lessons I get from this video (and there are several) is that everyday we have a CHOICE to bring joy, laughter and love. What is your choice today? Share some laughs and pass this video on…

Happy Laughs!!

The Power of Owning Your Time
by On June 14, 2012

Not a whole lot to share this week with regards to my use of the 2-Hour Solution.  We are out in Bend, OR for Strategic Planning so I cleared my calendar.  That being said, I started doing something that didn’t seem like a big deal at the time but in retrospect really helped boost our productivity in these meetings.

I changed the outgoing message on my office phone to reflect my travel plans (go ahead and check it out) and to let people know that the best way to get a hold of me was via my cell.  Great, now all calls should be coming to my cell.  But I know I will be in meetings most of the mornings, and then again in the afternoons.  And these mornings and afternoons are two hours behind my clients in the Midwest.  Plus, these aren’t exactly the type of meetings that I can jump out of in order to take a call.  I need to focus on these meetings, but I also don’t want to miss a client call! (Can you feel my stress level rising?)

So here’s what I did, and it’s not rocket science.  Thanks to the genius that is my iPhone, I can change my outgoing message REALLY quickly.  I simply decided when I would make myself available on a daily basis and shared that with anyone who called.  Here’s an example:

“Hi, you’ve reached Robb, today is Tuesday and I am in Bend, OR attending meetings in the mornings and afternoons.  I’ll be available to return calls from Noon until two o’clock Pacific time so go ahead and leave me a message and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.  Make it a great day!”

This week I’ll simply update my outgoing message every morning so I can focus my energy in the mornings and afternoons.  I’m not stressing about who is calling or leaving messages because they know my plans and when they can expect to hear back from me.

Try this out.  I realize it’s just a little thing, but sometimes that’s all it takes.

What are the little things you do to every day to be totally clear with your schedule and your time?  Drop a comment below.

Roll Out The MAT
by On February 19, 2012

The other day I was forwarded a wonderful question as a result of a recent Weekly Instructor Led Development (WILD) call that I felt was appropriate to address in a blog post. It is my hope that this will be beneficial and provide some insight to all who read this:

“…how can we stay positive when we are around negative people, (specifically) family members and/or co-workers?”

I love this inquiry for two reasons: One, it is specific and two; it is something we can all relate to at least one point in our lives. It’s not uncommon to have that one family member who undoubtedly, by their mere presence sucks the vitality out of us with their negativity. I would go so far as to say nearly all of us have at least one in our family (If you are in complete disagreement than that negative person may be you). It is also not unusual to work with someone who brings us down by his or her constant doom & gloom attitude. I call the people above Positive Energy Sucking Twits (PESTs).

In any scenario I would recommend we simply avoid spending any length of time with that person, but I realize in this situation it poses a challenge since avoiding our family members or co-workers completely is not too likely.

So, what do we do? I have three ideas that I’ve been fortunate to pick up both from wiser individuals then myself as well as trial and error that will be of help. When we find ourselves in this dilemma, I encourage us to roll out (what I’d like to call) the MAT system for them.  (M = Model preferred behavior, A = Avoid engaging & T = Tell them)

1) Model the Preferred Behavior you’d like to see from them. Put another way, be the change you’d like to see. If you would like a different result you must take a different approach and it may mean showing the troublesome family member or co-worker how to behave around you by acting in the manner you wish to see from them. It will require patience and positive encouragement, but is absolutely possible.

2) Avoid Engaging in their Drama. Have you ever found yourself stooping to the level and mindset of the person you are with? When we jump on the “complaining bandwagon” with these PESTs we are encouraging more complaining and tying them closer to us. Conversely, when we stop engaging in their drama and, either ignores the antics entirely or finds something positive to add our PEST will most likely move onto someone else and join their bandwagon.

3) Tell Them. Sometimes we simply need to confront the person and tell them. If they are someone we truly want to be around, rather than subject ourselves to more mental anguish and turmoil, it is essential that we take the time and energy to relate to our difficult family member or co-worker what we are experiencing and would we would like to see happen. Once that is accomplished the “ball is in their court.” It is possible that this person had no idea they were being such a PEST. Most people we care about are not deliberately trying to bring us down and until we have the courage to let them know, they may continue to act in a way that is incongruent with what we would like to occur.

So, when we apply one or all elements of the MAT system then we are maximizing the possibility of having the outcome we desire with regards to our PEST. By applying these steps, it removes the victim mindset that tends to accompany our feelings towards our PESTs. By taking responsibility for our actions and behaviors we have more control and therefore are less subject to erratic emotions and ultimately we feel better more empowered.

I hope this has been beneficial and thank you to our courageous friend for asking such a wonderful question in which to create this blog post. Have a great week.

Be free.

David Shoup

NW Regional Director

Freedom Personal Development

Thank You Mister Gardener
by On September 19, 2011

I firmly believe the adage, “When the student is ready the teacher will appear”. This has happened to us all on countless occasions during our lives and often from the most unexpected of teachers. Whether it was a lesson learned from a failure, or something a mentor shared that finally took root in our mind; to the day you learned the value of loyalty from Han Solo watching the first Star Wars movie at the age of six…. Okay, that last one might only be specific to me, but there is no way I (or anyone) would learn these lessons without being ready to finally hear the message being sent. Last week, my teacher was a proud gardener.

While I was walking in my neighborhood I had the good fortune to come across an amazing garden. Now, I know it was amazing because I don’t spend a lot of time noticing gardens and if I noticed it, it must be pretty good. This was the kind of garden you see in magazines. Looking at it, you would guess the owner spent hours and hours of time each day to keep it in the shape it was. It was truly beautiful.

The reason this is even important is because the next house I passed had a garden that was almost the polar opposite of its neighbor. Simply put, it was a wreck. The owner happened to be at this house and was diligently picking at the weeds, which seemed to me a futile effort because they were everywhere. In passing, she said with frustration that she “waited to long to prepare the garden for the season” and that she “was going be playing a lot of catch up on this garden from hell.” I agreed, and wished her luck in her efforts, but knew she was in for a lot of disappointment.

On my way back around the owner of the “amazing garden” (who I’ll call Mr. Gardener) happened to be out watering his plants. So, after I congratulated him on his beautiful work I asked him what he did to keep his garden is such good shape. He chuckled and said, “This is going to sound crazy, but I don’t do much anymore.” He could tell by my confused expression I didn’t believe him so, he quickly elaborated. “Of course, I spend time on upkeep, but I only need to do a little each day now to maintain what I have created.” I asked him if there was anything else he did to keep it so sharp looking and without a second thought he said “Don’t you know, this is a prize-winning garden?”  “Really?” I asked with excitement. “No, not literally, but I treat it like it was. I believe my garden is the best in the neighborhood and as a result it is.”

Well, I thanked him for his time and, in my mind, I thanked him for the wonderful lesson he gave me and rushed home to write it down. From the most unlikely of situations and the most unlikely of people, thank you Mr. Gardener, I learned (re-learned is more like it) these three things:

1) Get Your Hands Dirty Early

The main difference between Mr. Gardener and his counterpart was that he put all his hard work on the front end so; he could reap the benefits on the back end. Albert E.N. Gray says that successful people “form the habit of doing things that failures don’t like to do.” What made Mr. Gardeners yard a success was that simple rule.

2) Weed Your Garden NOW!

Whenever Mr. Gardener saw a weed he took care of it immediately. He took action and did not let any unwanted plant take root. The more we wait to accomplish the simple tasks, whether in business or in life, the more pain it causes you in the future and the bigger and more daunting the task becomes.

3) Treat Your Business like a Prize-Winning Garden

Our hero had a clear vision of what his garden was going to look like and as a result settled for nothing less than a prize-winning garden. When he got it he was not surprised because he had been treating it that way from the beginning. Here is a quote I am bringing back that was extremely helpful as I started my business. “I am the best! Some may be as good as me, but no one is better. I am the best!”

Thank you, Mr.Gardener.

Four Keys to Busting Loose
by On September 14, 2011

During the past several weeks (actually months) I have been doing a great deal of soul searching and have been attempting to parse out what the difference has been between the times of feast and famine in my business. I believe I have come up with something that may be beneficial to those of us either experiencing a similar challenge or are interested in reducing the duration of the famine.

Looking back to the time in my business when I was really rolling, particularly my first two years as a speaker at FPD. Here are my top 4 Keys that allowed me to break records and bust loose.

1) Attitude:    Simply put, from the beginning I believed that I was the best. I would be willing to wager one of the reasons Alan Mong kicks so much tail is because he has a very healthy belief in his skills. I actually, stole this idea from Roger, who is responsible for teaching me the phrase: “I’m the best, I’m the best. Others may be as good as me, but none are better. I’m the best.” I challenge you all to find your own phrase or mantra and say it everyday for an entire month and than see how much it impacts your performance.

2) Work Harder than Anyone: This does not necessarily mean work more hours although at the time, I have confidence I put in more hours than the majority of our company if not all. The difference is I focused on putting in as much productive hours as possible. That meant if I was not doing speeches, making booking calls or visiting offices prior to the presentation I was listening to recordings of my work and talking to those in the business who were top sales people. What in your business can you do to be more productive in your work hours?

3) Have a Target: Some of you know that my 1st two years I spent my time focusing on beating the stats of the top salesperson in our company. At the time, it was Brian Qualls. Specifically, I focused on four major categories: Dials, Bookings, Kept Speeches & Referrals. I charted Brian’s numbers for every single week of the year and my only focus was to try and beat each of those four categories. I figured if I matched or beat each one of those weekly targets I was bound to have a pretty good year. Feel free to check the stats of your favorite top salesperson and work to match their work efforts. I bet you’ll be glad you did.

4) Focus on Service: I could write an entire blog article on this one point but, I will keep this brief and quote one of my mentors, the great Zig Ziglar: “You can have everything you want out of life if you help enough others get what they want.” This idea of service has calmed, excited, relaxed & at times focused me during my presentations cause the saying is true, “It is hard to be nervous when your mind is on service.” I will close with asking, who are you being of service to?

I hope these 4 Keys have been helpful. Let me know your thoughts and if I can be of any help as you break your own records.

Be free.

David Shoup

Freedom Fest Sold Out in Chicago IL
by On November 10, 2010

Freedom Personal DevelopmentFreedom Fest 201 in Chicago, IL is officially sold out!

We are busy getting dates and hotels set up for two more Freedom Fests planned for the beginning of next year.

If you would like to be the first to know about the next Freedom Fest, call 888-233-0407 and we will add you to the wait list.

Be Free!