The Real Measure of Success

The Real Measure of Success

I don’t often get excited by bronze statues.

To be honest, bronze statues of basketball players are even less interesting. Despite being 6’4” tall, I’m more of a baseball guy.

But this statue of John Wooden, sitting just outside of Mackey Arena at Purdue University, had me reaching for camera. Not because he played basketball for my Alma Mater (though that is awesome), but because of the Success Pyramid that he developed before being named the “greatest coach of all time” by The Sporting News in 2009.

If you don’t know who John Wooden is, I’m not going to tell you. Look him up. You need to know about him, his legacy, and the principles he stands for.

You Just Gotta Do You

You Just Gotta Do You

She literally wouldn’t look at the camera.

I tried calling her name. I tried whistling. I tried making that funny clicking noise... you know, when you smile, press your tongue to the roof of your mouth, and suction air through the sides of your teeth (what the hell is that called?)

But when it’s photo time, Dottie turns her bulldog head to show her “good side.” She will not look at the camera. And there’s nothing any human being can do about it.

That’s just one of the quirks that make Dottie, Dottie. When you know that about her, you love her even more for it.

Dottie wasn’t trying, but this stubborn bulldog quirk of hers contained a bit of advice:

How Much Planning Should You Really Do for a Creative Project?

How Much Planning Should You Really Do for a Creative Project?

Some projects, like building a house, cleaning a garage, or building a military helicopter can be scheduled in great detail from start to finish. 

Most projects cannot. 

So does that mean you should give up? Should you run your next project ad-hoc, dealing with issues as they arise and hoping for the best?

How to Crush Your Day Without Another Silly Life Hack

How to Crush Your Day Without Another Silly Life Hack

There’s a feeling you get at the end of the day when you know you’ve crushed it.

You’ve accomplished everything you wanted, maybe more, and now have time to relax, recharge, get a good nights sleep, and head into another victory tomorrow.

Those are the good days.

On other days though, you don’t even know what went wrong.

You spend all day ridiculously busy, yet feel you’ve accomplished nothing. That increases the pressure on you to get more done tomorrow. You feel overwhelmed by everything that needs your attention. What's worse, you can’t get to sleep quickly because you’re up worrying about what a stressful day tomorrow will bring.

What is the difference between those two days?

Using Your Authority to Help Others

Everyone is an authority on something.

Even if it's obscure. Even if it's unknown. You have authority.

Authority grants you the freedom to advise, help, and correct others. It stems from insider knowledge and more experience than the next guy.

With authority, people will look you for guidance, for advice, for your opinion.

Unless you give that authority up.

The problem with authority is that others will steal it. Not to be mean. They simply want what's best for themselves and so will work hard, learn more, and position themselves as a natural replacement for all you've done.

If that happens, you become irrelevant.

Don't become irrelevant.

Share what you know, with anyone who needs your advice, freely. Don't shy away from speaking up, taking charge, showing others that you can help them with your experience and know-how.

And above all, don't stop learning. Always work hard to stay a step ahead of those who would rush to help themselves by displacing you.

Everyone is an authority on something.

Remember what you are an authority on and take steps to maintain that authority so you can help others for years to come.

About the Author


Michael Mehlberg


I help high-achieving entrepreneurs live their passion and achieve their dreams by consistently saving time, getting productive, and being more efficient and organized.

Subscribe to my free, short, 60-second newsletter for tips, tricks, links, products, and other discoveries to becoming a more purposeful, passionate, and productive human.

Fighting Phone Distractions? This Obscure Kitchen Device Will Help

Fighting Phone Distractions? This Obscure Kitchen Device Will Help

Phones aren't the only distraction. Your laptop, a good book, the TV, anything can prevent you from doing those important tasks that will drive your business forward.

There is a simple solution to lock those distractions away, enabling you to get done what you need to get done and move closer to your goals…

One Life Hack Every High Achieving Entrepreneur Should Know

One Life Hack Every High Achieving Entrepreneur Should Know

It was 4 am, and the house had long since settled into its frame after a day of heavy traffic. Every creak had worked itself out. Every computer had gone into hibernation. Every child had sunken into their slumber.

It was calm. Peaceful. Silent.

My sleep, however, was interrupted by a deep, unsettling feeling that something was wrong. I gasped for air, sucking in oxygen quickly as if my head was forcefully plunged into a bucket of cold water. My eyes shot wide open, searching for the source of trouble, unable to find it in the black of night.

End Distracting Texts Once and For All (Without Turning Off Notifications)

End Distracting Texts Once and For All (Without Turning Off Notifications)

Yes, texts are an amazing instant communication tool. No, I'm not suggesting we turn text messaging off completely. It's just that the assumed commitment to a conversation is what often derails from our work. And losing focus is exactly what separates the busy from the productive. 

So, how do we keep our ability to stay in immediate touch without disabling texts completely? 

How to Prioritize When Everything Feels Important


If there's one thing that can confuse you, make you procrastinate, or cause undue stress in your day, it's thinking of all the things you should do.

I should meditate.

I should floss my teeth.

I should wake-up early.

Keep a gratitude journal. Plan my day. Update my website. Should, should, should.

It's downright exhausting. And what's worse, it's counterproductive.

Because people rarely do what they should do. But they always do what they have to do.

Take note though, I'm not talking about having to email someone back. I'm not talking about having to take out the garbage. I'm talking about something deep in your soul, telling what you have to do... what you MUST do.

Sure, maybe you should meditate. But if you have to update your sales funnel to convert a higher percentage of customers for your new product, then that becomes your priority.

Yes, sending that email is what you should do, but if you have to create a new Facebook Ad to generate new leads that will drive your new product sales to new heights, then that is your priority.


Should is not your priority. The things you should do are those nagging tasks that would be nice to have done, but not critical. Given enough time, the things you should be doing will turn into things you might want to do if you have time, which then  will transform into things you know you'll never do because they really aren't all that important.

The things you have to do are your priority. And focusing on those tasks will bring you clarity, relieve you of undue stress, and make procrastinating an artifact of the past.

Forget about what you should do and start working on that which you have to do

About the Author

Michael Mehlberg


I help high-achieving entrepreneurs live their passion and achieve their dreams by consistently saving time, getting productive, and being more efficient and organized.

Subscribe to my free, short, 60-second newsletter for tips, tricks, links, products, and other discoveries to becoming a more purposeful, passionate, and productive human. 

Why You Should Spare No Expense on the Right Tools for the Job

Why You Should Spare No Expense on the Right Tools for the Job

My neighbor is being fitted for a bike.

Fitted. For a bicycle.

Not only was I surprised that such thing was possible, I wondered why anyone would do such a thing. That is until I learned that she was trying to win enough triathlons to make the Women's United State Triathlon Team.

Now, it all makes sense. She could train the most powerful legs in the world and lose every race riding a tricycle. Those with the right tools would speed by.

Finding Clarity with a Line of Sight

Finding Clarity with a Line of Sight

She shifted her weight hastily from one foot to the other, clearly irritated.

I was too. Irritated, that is.

Her, a hundred other travelers in front of me, and I had chosen the wrong line at the airport, and security was moving us through their checkpoint at a snails pace.

The line to my left seemed like a racetrack by comparison. Each of the travelers walked confidently toward the checkpoint faster than American Pharoe to the Triple Crown. They seemed happy, almost cheery (or so my imagination told me).

That’s when this woman in front of me made her break for freedom.

Be a Witness to Your Time

Be a Witness to Your Time

Your time comes, and then it goes, never to return.

Most people don’t even watch it pass. They simply notice, one day, that they (and everyone around them) are older. They look back fondly on their memories, wondering why they seem so distant, amazed at how quickly they came and passed.

This is not how you treat a non-renewable resource. It's not even how we treat some renewable resources!

Success Doesn't Make Sacrifices, It Make Choices

Success Doesn't Make Sacrifices, It Make Choices

Your mind is an incredible transportation tool. 

In it, you can travel the world. You can put yourself in others' shoes. You can envision a future, more successful version of yourself. 

Your mind can also flip a bad situation on its head. You can see the good side of things, figuring out how to benefit from a regretful experience. 

Choosing how we view the world is a superpower. One that every human-being shares. 

This power is what incredible athletes, winning entrepreneurs, and high performers use to outperform their competition. They transport themselves into a world where there is only one path: Their path to achieving their goals. 

On this path, they don't make sacrifices. They make choices

Your Free Time is Disappearing... Here’s How You Reclaim It

“Zed, don't you guys ever get any sleep around here?” - Jay

“The twins keep us on Centaurian time, standard 37 hour day. Give it a few months. You'll get used to it... or you'll have a psychotic episode.” - Zed, Men in Black

37 hours in a day. Sounds nice right? An extra 13 hours to get shit done.

In reality, this would mean one of two (untenable) things:

  1. Your day would be the same length and your hours shorter, squeezing 37 hours in a standard 24 hour period.
  2. Your hours wouldn’t change but your days would expand by 13 hours, quickly reversing day and night. Your circadian rhythm would get all fucked up and you’d be a hot mess, or have a psychotic episode.

As it stands, you, your friends, Warren Buffet, and I have the same 24 hours in a day. No more. And sometimes it feels like less.

It feels like less because your free time is disappearing. And despite what I hear you saying, yes, you do have free time. The problem is, you’re spending it on activities of which you are not aware and for which you don’t account.

Translation: You have hidden, uncalculated free time in your day. Here’s how to extract it: 

1. Draw a circle and split it up into 24 segments... a pie chart with one segment for each hour.

2. Color in the number of segments representing how many hours of sleep you got.


3. Color in how many hours of meetings you had.


4. Color in how many hours of eating (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks) you had.

5. Color in time taken exercising.

6. Color in time spent in emails and working on projects.

7. Color in time spent commuting.

8. Color in any other time you can account for.


Don’t guestimate when you’re doing this. If you spent three hours emailing, but were really heads down for an hour, color in one hour, not three.

When done, you should have an accurate representation of where your day went and how it was spent. More importantly, you should see a free block of time remaining.


This “free time” you see may come as a surprise since, of course, this wasn’t time you spent playing video games, relaxing, or otherwise bullshitting today. This free time was sucked out of your day because of distractions or poor planning. And there’s no way you could have known...

So where did this time go? Perhaps menial activities like Facebook, standing in front of an open fridge, or some other time-waster. It’s impossible for me to say, but with a bit of awareness tomorrow, you’ll easily see where your time is burnt on unimportant activities.

This is the time you can reclaim. This is the time you can budget tomorrow for important activities that will help you get closer to your goals. Even if it’s only 30 minutes, that’s 15 hours a month and 180+ hours a year! The possibilities for what you can do with that much extra time in a year, when used effectively, are endless.

Draw your 24 hour pie chart, identify where your time is being spent, find the free time, and utilize it more effectively tomorrow.

About the Author


Mike Mehlberg

Efficient Time Waster Extraordinaire

Mike just went through this exercise, as he occasionally does, to identify where his time is most effectively spent, and where it’s being wasted. If you are a high-achieving entrepreneur looking to get more done and achieve more in your life and business, contact him to see how he can help.

Need a Breakthrough? Try Working the Impossible...

For the longest time, I couldn’t squat more than 200 pounds. Though training 5 days a week had quickly pushed me from squatting zero to 195 pounds, adding five extra pounds to the bar felt like adding 1000.

I knew this limit was artificial, manufactured in my brain that tried as best as it could to preserve itself by not taking risks. Regardless, I couldn’t break through. So I looked to a friend and fitness coach for some expert advice:

“Throw 300 pounds on the bar,” he said. “Don’t try to squat it, just put it on your shoulders. Feel the weight, hold it, then re-rack it. Do this a few times, then drop back to 200 lbs and try squatting again.”

It worked.

In theory, nothing had changed. I hadn’t gotten any stronger. I hadn’t learned a new technique or used some new device to artificial increase my lift. I had simply forced my mind to believe that it was possible to hold more weight. And after holding 300 lbs, squatting 200 felt much, much lighter.

What seemingly impossible task are you dealing with right now? What is holding you back from taking that next step towards your goals?

Acknowledge it, but move quickly to build tasks that challenge you. If someone has achieved what you are trying to achieve before, study them. Open your mind to the possibility that, if they can do it, so can you. Push yourself to operate at a new level, even if only briefly. When you come back to your work, what seemed impossible before may be that much easier.

Sometimes, when you get stuck and can’t seem to break through to the next level—when you hit a plateau that prevents you from furthering your goals—showing yourself the impossible is possible can be the breakthrough you need.

About the Author

Mike Mehlberg

In Search of Breakthroughs

Mike is constantly searching for breakthroughs for high-achieving entrepreneurs. Contact him to find out how you can get more productive, align your passion with your vision and purpose, and crush your goals with a balanced, achievable plan for success.