by Nathan Brooks
I’ve been on a mission to read two to three books a month for months now, and I’ve taken the mission seriously. I’m kind of aggressively passionate about reading books, to the point that I will talk about books and quote from them pretty much anywhere and to pretty much anyone. If I end up in a conversation for more than a few minutes, books will definitely come up. And I might also use the batman voice that I practice when I really need to make a point, just because I think it’s funny.
As an aside, it may seem crazy to read two to three books a month. Don’t panic, but rather think of how much you will learn over the course of every month. I spend a lot of time driving, so I listen to books through Audible and get my car classroom time in that way. Rather than listen to the same 10 songs they play over and over on the radio, why not get inspired (and fired up) by someone doing something incredible or notable?
This week, I’ve been enjoying The Virgin Way by Richard Branson. I really love this book. Richard covers leadership lessons, stories on many parts of the Virgin businesses (they have many billion-dollar businesses and 50,000 employees!), hiring, travel, people they’ve done business with, and even what a great prankster he is for April fool’s jokes—including the time he spent a night and the next day in prison! Anyway, there is a one-liner that keeps coming up throughout the book that captivates me:
“Screw it, Let’s Do it.”
In my career in real estate, I’ve lived this mantra from the beginning, although I’ve never used that exact language. The first day I bought a house, I bought two. My first year in real estate, we did around 10-12 deals with no experience and no money. At one point, I was working a full-time job and flipping seven houses at Christmas time. Last year in our business, having newly created our turnkey company from scratch, we flipped and sold 64 houses. And this year, we will flip well over 100 houses and top $10 million in sales with dozens of people on staff.
When we started just two years ago, if we had laid out the master plan to build the business and flip 100 houses, my partner and I would have laughed at each other and thought impossible. Well, it’s not impossible after all. We said some form of “screw it, let’s do it,” and we got after it in our business. We made 1,000,001 mistakes (approximate number and still counting) and built a business that is starting to think, operate, and run like a business should.
What’s the Worst That Could Happen?
If you are on the fence about an idea or a business venture and you keep going back over and over it, you might need to adopt or at least seriously consider this mindset. Screw it and go do it. What is the worst that could happen? Worried you won’t make any money for a month or two? Save up! Not sure what to do or how to do it? Find someone who does! Scared of not knowing the outcome? Everyone is at some point! We still have times in our business I am not sure what we will do, but I know we will figure it out.
I don’t want to look back on something I wanted to do so badly years later and wish I would have taken my shot. I’ve heard so many people talk about their dreams but are so timid and afraid that they don’t go after them. Whatever the little voice inside of you is dying to do, it’s time for you to listen a little more clearly to it. Think logically about what it would take to bring that to fruition, and lay it out.
You will not get it right all the time, and you will not make money with every business idea or every real estate deal. But get in the right attitude and believe in what you want to achieve. Surround yourself with people who also share the “screw it, let’s do it” mantra, and go do it. Keep pressing and pushing to do what it is that you want to until one day you realize, “Wait, I am doing it.”
Successful people aren’t successful because they are lucky. They are successful because they have learned to fail, to be uncomfortable, and to be tenacious. Set some crazy goals, believe in your mission, surround yourself with like-minded people who believe it and want it, and say, “Screw it, let’s do it.”
What philosophy or mantra helps you move forward and try new things?
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