Saturday, May 5, 2012

Live the Dream: No More Excuses by Larry Winters

Tour Date: May 7th

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It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!



Today's Wild Card author is:


and the book:

Center Street (April 3, 2012)

***Special thanks to  Sharon Farnell  for sending me a review copy.***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


Larry Winters is an entrepreneur and popular motivational speaker. Through humor and passion, Larry has shared his life experiences and business philosophy to thousands for over twenty years – empowering them to pursue their own dreams.  He is the founder and president of Leadership Team Development, Inc., a company that provides business support materials for Amway business owners in North America.

Visit the author's website.


SHORT BOOK DESCRIPTION:

Early in his career, Larry Winters found himself in a position so many Americans are in today. At the age of 24, working with his wife at a car wash, Larry Winters was struggling to get by. His credit cards were maxed out, he lived in a run-down, 900 square foot house with his wife where they couldn’t pay their rent, and at times, they could barely scrape enough money together to eat.   Instead of giving up, Winters decided he needed to make a change for the better. He seized control of his life and, day by day, built his own business. Along the way, he learned many lessons about sacrifice, personal responsibility, determination and independence. LIVE THE DREAM: No More Excuses (Center Street, April 3, 2012, Hardcover) is Winters' inspiring story of his journey from a young man with no ambition to a man in control of his financial destiny. With personal anecdotes, hilarious narrative and insightful findings, Live the Dream: No More Excuses follows Winters’ life lessons through his brief career in minor league baseball, his opportunity to create a personal business, and his success that has led him to become a prominent motivational speaker today. He shares the business principles, people skills and spiritual revelations that changed his actions, attitude and the way he treated others. He realized he was living an excuse-filled life, and he had to face his unwarranted justifications for living an unfulfilled life.

A great tool for upcoming college and high school graduates, or anyone looking to make a change in their life, LIVE THE DREAM provides an inspirational blue-print for readers to give up excuses and achieve their life goals - all while staying grounded in what really matters: family, friends and faith.


Product Details:
List Price: $21.99
Hardcover: 208 pages
Publisher: Center Street (April 3, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1455513628
ISBN-13: 978-1455513628

AND NOW...THE FIRST CHAPTER:




Drowning in a Car Wash

Who has never tasted what is bitter does not know what is sweet.
—German  proverb


There  are  some  times  in  life  you  can  never   forget—even though you’d love  to. For me, the year  was  1985.
My wife,  Pam,  and  I were happily married and  raising a young family, yet I felt as though I was  a complete failure as a provider. Nothing  seemed to be  working, and  the  world was  crashing in.
We were living  in a nine-hundred-square-foot wood frame house that  was  built  on a tiny  lot just after  World  War  II— and  we  were three  months  behind on  the  $225  rent.  The pressure we  were under was  painful.
You  should have   seen   the  place. It  was   painted light green and  had  a driveway that held  one  and  a half compact cars  and  had  practically no  backyard. The  dirt-floor  base- ment  was  unusable. To put it mildly, it was  a mess.


2                                    Larry Winters


When  my checks bounced, the landlord would warn  me, “Larry, this isn’t working. You’ve  got to get caught up. It can’t go on like  this!”
In truth,  we  were one  sentence away from being home- less.   There   were many   times   when he  could  have   said, “That’s it. I am locking the doors  and  calling the sheriff.”
If this  had  happened, we  would have  had  to  move  in with  either  Pam’s  parents or mine.  I shuddered at the  very thought. What an embarrassment that would have  been.


“Richer  or Poorer”


While  I was  just  getting started  in my  new  business, I had tried  selling cars  to bring  in some  much-needed extra  cash. But  the  car  business was  so  bad  in  the  mid-1980s that  I decided to give  it up and look  for something else. Of course, the  car  dealership took  back  the  Volkswagen Rabbit  they had  loaned me. Bingo!  We had  no transportation.
That  January,  my   cousin  and   I  decided  to  launch a lawn care  business with  a borrowed pickup truck.  But  the weather was  too cold  in North Carolina for the  first couple of months, so we  had  very  few  customers. Finally, I started getting twenty or twenty-five dollars to mow  a lawn or do odd  jobs,  but  since  we  had  to sink  some  cash  into  equip- ment,  my bills  were far outpacing my income.
Everything was  financed—our furniture, even  our televi- sion  set.  Before  long  I was  as much  as nine  months  behind on what  I owed Visa,  MasterCard, Household Finance, and bank  loans. The pile  of bills was  growing higher and higher, and  we  owed everybody—including Pam’s relatives.
I’d write  checks for my phone and electric bills and pray  I
could somehow cover  them  before they  bounced.


Live the Dream: No more excuses 3


I had  no credit, no car. I was  buried in debt,  barely keep- ing my head above water.
In April 1984,  our daughter, Tara,  was  born.  She was  our pride  and  joy,  and  we  scraped together what  little  we  could to buy  her  baby  food  and  diapers. We  would visit  our  par- ents’  home   on  the  weekends—basically to  get  something to eat.
Pam  and  I often  recited the  vows  that  we  made at  our wedding: “For richer  or poorer, for better  or for worse.”
Truer  words were never  spoken. We were certainly poorer—and things  were progressively getting worse!


Shake,  Rattle, and Roll!


Pam’s  parents were fully  aware of  the  financial crisis  we were going through, and  they  looked for ways to help. They told  me,  “We have  this  old  car  on our  farm  that isn’t  work- ing.  If we  can get it up and  running, you  can use  it.”
What  a sight  it was!  The 1977 Mustang II, a four-seat two door  with  over  a  hundred thousand miles   on  the  speed- ometer, had  been totaled twice and  was  sitting  there  with grass  actually growing through the  windows! It had  no air- conditioning, and  the  seats  were badly torn.  I don’t  know how  we managed, but we straightened out the frame  and somehow got it repaired and  licensed.
It was  painted primer-gray, and  there  wasn’t an ounce of gloss  anywhere—just plenty of rust on the doors,  the hood, and  the fenders.
However,  there   was   a  much   bigger  problem. When   I would reach fifty-five  miles  an hour,  the car would begin to shimmy and shake so violently that I thought I’d lose  control of the  vehicle. It felt  like  the  wheels were literally coming


4                                    Larry Winters


off! But,  hey,  at least  it was  transportation, so  I just  drove slower than I wanted to.

Our  small   rented house  had   a  hundred-gallon  kerosene heating tank.  But at $1.50  a gallon, we  could usually afford to feed  it only  about  five  gallons at a time.  On cold  nights, when the money ran out, so did the fuel.
This  happened more  than  once. One  evening when I arrived home, the  water in  the  toilet  was  frozen  solid  and the dog’s  water bowl  was  frozen  over,  too.
I vividly remember the time our dog,  unbeknownst to us, bumped into the kerosene heater in the middle of the night. The flame  went  out, but the furnace kept  blowing. We woke up the next  morning, and the entire  room was  dusted black. I looked at Pam, and  she had  black soot smudged under her eyes and  black in her nostrils. She glanced over at me, and  I asked, “Do I look  as funny  as you  do? ”
“Yes,” she said,  smiling.
The curtains were black; the walls were black. Then  the dog  jumped up on our bed—and even  the spots  around his eyes weren’t white anymore!
In my  mind’s  eye  I can  still  see  that modest house. One window had  a  broken pane for  three   years because we didn’t  have  the  money to repair it. Our  furniture probably wouldn’t have  been welcome at a garage sale.  It was  nothing but junk.
I look  back  on those  days  and  wonder how  we  ever  sur- vived. However, there  was  one  possession I had  that out- weighed all  the  pressure, all  the  stress,  and  every negative. As unlikely as  it may  seem, down deep in my  heart  I had an overwhelming, all-consuming dream that could not be denied.
In this  book  I want  to share  the  lessons I have  learned

Live the Dream: No more excuses 5


that I believe will  get you  to where you  want  to be whether you’ve experienced some  success or you’re newly struggling as I was.  I am telling my  story  in this book  because I have been out of work  and  in debt,  and  I understand all too well the feelings of despair and  hopelessness.
I reached the point  where I ran out of excuses, but I did have  a choice. I decided to live my dream rather  than remain in a rut.
Let me tell you  what  brought me to that point.



A Lesson  from Dad


As a young teen  growing up  in  west-central New  Jersey, I remember a particular day  when I was  standing beside my dad  while he  was  shaving. He paused for a moment, then looked at me in the reflection of the mirror  and  said,  “Larry, you  are  smaller than  most  kids.   But  that  just  means you are  going to have  to try a little  harder than  the  next  guy. It doesn’t mean  you  are  any  less  of a person—you’ll just have to work  more.”
His  words were etched in  my  mind  from  that  day  for- ward. After all,  I was  about  five feet five,  so I knew I could never  dunk  a basketball, and  I couldn’t sing  or dance—so there  was  no future  in sports  or as an entertainer.
My first exposure to self-employment was  my  father.  He owned his own  Atlantic  Richfield gas station  (now ARCO) at the corner  of Baird  Boulevard and  Marlton  Pike  in Camden, New Jersey.
Growing  up,   I  remember  that  practically  everybody  I knew and  liked bought gas from my dad’s  station. Ours was a family  business—and people supported us as if we  were their relatives. If you  needed a tune-up or a new  set of tires,

6 Larry Winters


there  was  only  one  place for our friends  to go: Dad’s service station.
Unfortunately, today  such  loyalty has almost  disappeared. Instead,  people, feeling  the  economic crunch, look  at  the price   of  gas  on  the  huge signs   before deciding where to fill up.
In 1973,  times  were changing, and  my dad  sold  his busi- ness  (which had  expanded into  towing and  auto  salvage), and  he announced, “We’re moving to North Carolina.” I was sixteen years old  and  wasn’t exactly excited about  leaving everything I knew and  loved. But this wasn’t my decision to make.
During  my  teen  years, Dad was  always telling me,  “Son, you  need to work  for yourself and  own  your  own  business. It’s the only  way  to go.”
However, I couldn’t relate to his  advice. At school I was being told  just the  opposite: “Get a good  education so you can  find a good  job.” In other  words, go to work  for some- one  else, don’t  quit,  and  maybe you  can  retire  when you’re sixty-five.
Education wasn’t exactly  my  thing.  In  school, the  only subjects I excelled in  were recess and  gym.  I hated  math and  science. To me,  homeroom was  the  place to close  my eyes and  take  a nap.
I spent   practically all  my  spare time  playing baseball, and  I even  convinced myself I had  enough talent  to make the pros.  I told my folks,  “I’m going to be a millionaire someday”—and  I honestly believed I would make it to the major  leagues.
After we  settled into our new  life in North Carolina, one summer I worked at the Bonanza Sirloin  Pit as a busboy. At least  it kept  me busy  and put a few dollars in my pocket. But there  were Saturday afternoons when, during a break after

Live the Dream: No more excuses 7


lunch, I would stand  on the back  porch  and  look  up at that clear  Carolina blue  sky  dotted  with  white, puffy  clouds.
Drinking in  the  fresh  air,  I would think,   If only I was waterskiing, out on the golf course, or riding dirt bikes with my buddies.
Reluctantly, I’d go  back  inside and  be  all  smiles, trying to do a good  job, but it was  almost  more  than  I could take. Why am I trapped in this restaurant?  I wondered. Here  I was,  scraping food  off of dirty  dishes when all  I wanted to do was  to be outdoors enjoying a beautiful day.  But my day- dreaming was  futile  because I needed the money to pay  for the used  car I had  bought.
Even at the age  of sixteen, I longed to be free!


While  in  high  school, to make a few  extra  bucks, I began working at the Constan  Car Wash  for $2.30  an hour.  It was  a brick  structure on Old Wake Forest  Road  in Raleigh, North Carolina, that  had  a hundred-foot pull-through tunnel, five full-service bays, and  a cashier’s booth.
You  should have  seen  me  in  those  high  school days. I wore   long  hair  down to  my  shoulders and  was  trying   to grow  a mustache—but my upper lip looked like  a catfish!
The  car  wash was  a valuable experience. I had  to show up on time, work  hard,  and practice plenty of self-discipline.
After graduation, my only  dream was  to head for Florida the following spring and  try out for a major  league baseball team.  That was  exactly what  I did.
It was  tough, but  I was  given a chance. I played in  the International League  for twenty-five dollars a game. I kept saying to myself, I’ve got the talent, and I’m going to make it. I just know it!
But as the days  and weeks passed, there  weren’t any solid offers.  Well, maybe next year, I consoled myself.


8                                    Larry Winters


At home, my  car  wash job  was  waiting for me—yet my heart  was  still in baseball.
That fall,  however, I damaged my knee while having fun at one  of my  other  passions, motocross bike  racing. When the accident happened, I knew in an instant: There goes my knee. There goes my speed. There goes my baseball.
Instead  of  another  spring  training  on  those   fields   of dreams in  Florida, my  future  seemed tied  with  a  rope  to the car wash. Where else  was  I to go? At that point  I was  a young man without much  of a future.


“Obnoxious and a Real Jerk!”


The woman who  would eventually become my wife  had enrolled in a local  college, but because of an illness missed so many  classes she decided to drop  out.
That’s when a friend  asked her if she would like  to take  a job as a cashier at a local  car wash. Needing an income, she quickly jumped at the opportunity.
So  this  is  how  Pam  and  I met.  She  was  a  good-looker and  brightened up  the  day—not just for me,  but  for all  the employees.
Her view  of me,  though, was  somewhat different. As she describes it, “I thought Larry was  obnoxious and  a real  jerk! In fact, I didn’t  want  anything to do with  him.”
Let’s face  it:  I was  far  from  being a  great  catch.  At that time  in my  life,  I used  foul  language, drank too much, and was  definitely rough  around the edges.
But as the Good  Book  says, “The Lord works in mysteri- ous ways.”
In those  days  I was  dating some  other  girls,  but none  had


Live the Dream: No more excuses 9


the exceptional qualities of Pam. She was  a supernice, sweet girl,  and  I wasn’t used  to that.
When  we  first  started   hanging out,  there  was  a  fellow who  was  interested in  her,  but  I’m not  sure  if she  trusted the  guy. So  on  Friday  and  Saturday nights  she  would ask if I would tag  along with  the  group. After  a  while, since we  were spending so much  time  together, we  realized that maybe we  were meant  for each  other.
Pam  and  I dated for five  years before getting married— we  were both still working at the car wash. As she tells  it, “I finally realized that deep down inside, Larry had  a heart  of gold  and  truly  loved people.”
I don’t  know how  I deserved her,  but I thank  God every day  that Pam fell in love  with  me.
When  I was  promoted to assistant manager, then  man- ager, I thought I had  it made. It was  all  I knew, and  I felt I was  on my way. But the pay  was  small, and  the future  was not  much  on  which to  pin  my  hopes. But  what  were my options?  This seemed to be my lot in life, and I was  going to make the best of it.
I tried  to look  important, wearing a huge key  ring  on my belt.  Security became crucial when we  joined a corrections department program and had convicted felons  working for us at the car wash. A van  would drop  the men  off at 7:30  a.m., and I was  responsible for those  guys  for the rest of the day.
By  now  I was  making $320  a week take-home pay,  but I was  risking my  life!  One  day,  I walked into  my  assistant manager’s office  to find  him  on  the  floor  being choked by a disgruntled prisoner who  thought he wasn’t being treated fairly.
I thought, This is nuts! Surely there  must have  been a bet- ter way  to make a living.


10                                   Larry Winters


* * *
I hung  out with  people who  drank beer, burped, and  played
softball. After a game the  guys  would send  their  wives and girlfriends home, and we’d  head to a bar where we sat around and  bragged how  great  we  were in high  school or American Legion  ball.  Of course I would tell exaggerated stories  of my spring training escapades in Florida. We  thought they  were the “glory days.”  The weeks and months  drifted  by, and I had no real  direction in my life. I was  on a path  going nowhere.
At my job, I had been promoted to district  manager of the car  wash chain  over  four  locations, and  I was  resigned to the fact that this would probably be my career. Between my income and  Pam’s  take-home pay  of $280  a week we  were getting by.


What Did I Have to Lose?


In August  1980,  just  three  months  after  we  were married, a friend  asked if we  would like  to take  a look  at a business opportunity. I didn’t  even  think  twice.
“Why not? ” I responded. I knew deep down that no mat- ter  how  long  and  hard  I worked at the  car  wash, I had  to face the fact that it would eventually lead  to a dead-end street—even if I stayed there  my whole life.
The  presentation I was  shown that  night  was  simple. I could become an independent business owner, selling exclusive and  national-brand products—items people  use every day,  such  as vitamins and  household supplies. There was  a compensation plan  that would reward my efforts and plenty of support to guide and encourage me along the way. Plus,  if I built  an organization of men  and  women working with  me, it could produce a stream  of income with  effort.


Live the Dream: No more excuses 11


I wasn’t sure  about  having others  join  me,  but  when my friend  said,  “All a person can say is yes or no,” that somehow clicked with  me.
However, almost  immediately, a tug  of war  began play- ing  in my  mind.  It was  as if I was  hearing two  voices: one cheering, You  can do this, the  other  warning, Stay  where you are. But  I knew in  my  heart  I could work  for the  car wash until they  dragged me out feet first and still never  own the business.
“Sign me up,” I responded. What did I have  to lose? Financially,  I knew that  even  with  an  opportunity to be
my own  boss,  it wouldn’t happen overnight, and I needed to keep working at my day  job.


Nothing  Else Mattered


During  the  next  few  weeks and  months, because of what  I was  learning about  this new  enterprise, I became so excited for the future  that nothing else  seemed to matter.
I went  to work  every day  and  put  in my  hours, but  my mind  was  spinning like  a top.
Before   long,   every possible moment I was  sharing the business opportunity with  those  I knew—and even  those I didn’t.  From the beginning, my belief in the products and the strength of the organization gave  me a determination to build  a business that would change my future.
I was  totally  unfamiliar with  the  techniques of qualify- ing  potential associates; mine  was  a shotgun approach, and I targeted anything that moved. What  I lacked in strategy I made up for in enthusiasm!
For Pam, however, it was  different. She saw  a spark in my eyes but was  personally too shy  to get  involved. To say  she


12                                   Larry Winters


had  a poor  self-image is an understatement. Pam  had  been abused as  a  young teen  and  was  living   with  shame. Her deep-seated problems were linked and  layered—so much so that her confidence was  shattered.
She would make excuses about  why  she couldn’t go with me to share  this new  business. “I’m too tired.” Or, “I’ve really got to stay home  and do some  cleaning.” One excuse was  as good  as the next.
The truth was  that Pam was  absolutely terrified of speaking—not just  in  public, but  sometimes  one-on-one. The very  thought would make her break out in hives!
I can  still  remember the  nights  I would whisper in  her ear,  “Pam, you  are a winner. You can do anything.”
Little  by  little,  I was  raising her  self-esteem. Her  belief was  growing, and  we  were becoming a team.
As the  days   rolled by,  I found  myself reading self-help books, attending business events, and  applying the  princi- ples  I was  learning to my  daily life.  Principles dealing with goal   setting,  personal  development,  team   building,  and more  that we  will  discuss later  in this book.
My optimism knew no bounds, and  I threw  myself head- long  into building what  I believed was  our answer.
Nights,  weekends, it didn’t  matter.  My calendar was  full, and  the  dream for my  future  became a burning fire.  Then came  a moment of decision.


I Had a Choice


I had  been building my new  sales  and  marketing enterprise for about  two years when my boss at the car wash called me into his office.  What  he said  caused me to stop  dead in my tracks. “Larry, we  need to put  you  on a new  schedule, and


Live the Dream: No more excuses 13


it means you  will  be  working every other  night  and  every other  weekend.”
My  heart  sank. How  could I build   my  dream if all  my spare time was  suddenly being yanked away from me? It was as if everything I had  worked toward was  coming to a halt.
He told me about  a car wash location with  problems that needed to  be  straightened out,  and  he  let  me  know that would be part of my assignment. “I think  you  are the one  to handle this situation.”
Instantly, I responded, “I’m sorry.  I can’t do that.” My words fell on deaf  ears.
“I have  already talked with  upper management, and  you don’t  have  a choice. Either  take  the  new  schedule or we’ll have  to fire you,”  he bluntly told me.
“Sir,” I replied, “I do have  a choice!”
He smiled. “I know you  have  a little  business going on the side,  but I also know you’re not making enough at that to pay  your  bills.” He thought he had me over a barrel. Looking him straight in the eyes, I said,  “If I have  to work  every other night  and  every other  weekend, I’ll never  be  able  to build my business. And anyway, my future  is not in washing cars.” My  answer seemed to  startle  him,  and  immediately he
shot back, “Larry, don’t you  know I have  to fire you? ” “I’ll save  you  the time,” I quickly responded. “I quit!”
He  was   shocked when I reached down, unlocked the ring  of keys from  my  belt,  handed them  over  to him,  and repeated, “You heard it. I quit! I’m out of here!”
My decision was  absolutely final.  There  was  no  turning back.
Logically,  it made no  sense. Here  I was,  a husband and father   with   serious  financial obligations,  yet  I  was   walk- ing  away from  my  only  steady source of income. My new business was  just getting off the  ground—but was  far from


14                                   Larry Winters


producing the kind  of money I needed to survive. I learned in a hurry  that there  was  no “get rich quick”  scheme.
In my heart  and mind,  however, it all made perfect sense. My  dream for  success as  an  independent business owner was  growing by  the  day—and I wasn’t about  to spend my life drowning in a car wash!


A Little Chilly


If I was  going to be  successful, I had  to put  things  in high gear  and share  my opportunity with as many  people as pos- sible. There  was  no time to waste.
In starting a venture of any  kind,  momentum is essential. But I had  the  extra  pressure of creating enough income to replace the paycheck I had  left behind.
One  evening, shortly after  I began my  new  enterprise, the phone rang  at about  7:30. A friend  in the business asked, “Do you  think  you  can show  the plan  tonight? ”
Without  hesitation, I told  him,  “Just tell  me  the  time.  I’m ready.”
“Well,  the fellow gets  off work  at 11:30.  How  about  11:45 tonight  at your  place? ”
Wouldn’t you  know it: just before they  arrived, our heater ran  out  of kerosene and  I didn’t  even  have  five  dollars to run  out  and  buy  some  more.  I wasn’t about  to cancel the meeting just because I didn’t  have  enough cash.  No more excuses!
Pam  was  in  the  bedroom with  an  electric blanket, so  I brought our little  electric heater into the living  room—but it was  far too small  to adequately do the job.
I prepared the best I could, even  putting on a second layer

Live the Dream: No more excuses 15


of underwear beneath my  three-piece suit.  Plus,  I drank a few cups  of hot chocolate to warm  up.
When  my associate and his friend  arrived, I apologetically said,  “I know it’s a little chilly in here, but we’ll  be fine.”
I set  up  a small  whiteboard and  began to diagram how the  business worked. Then  I began to explain how  people would be  interested because everybody needs some  extra money. Plus,  it’s  a  great  way  to form  new  friendships and prepare for long-term financial security.
At first, the men were sitting a few feet apart on the couch. But  it  seemed that  every time  I turned around, they  had moved closer together. Finally, they  pulled the afghan from the back  of the couch and  wrapped themselves together.
At the end  of my presentation I bravely asked the fellow, “If you  decide to become an  independent business owner making $60,000 a  year   and  could travel  anywhere in  the world, where would you  go? ”
“Someplace warm!”  he answered.



“Have You Been Drinking?”


Fulfilling my  dream often  meant  driving long  distances to present the plan  and  attend  conventions.
One night  I was  returning to Raleigh at about  two o’clock in  the  morning. It had  been a  long  day,  and  I was  really tired.  Then,  coming down a hill,  my Mustang must  have  hit fifty-five  miles  an hour  because it began shaking and swerv- ing  all  over  the  road.  It was  like  wheeling a shopping cart filled  with  bowling balls!
Suddenly, I saw  a flashing blue  light  in my rearview mir- ror, and  a patrolman pulled me over.



16                                   Larry Winters


Shining a  flashlight in  my  face,  he  asked, “Mister,  have you  been drinking? ”
“No, sir,” I told  him  truthfully, “I haven’t had  a drink  in years.”
He  was  puzzled. “I thought you  were the  worst  drunk driver  I had  seen  in weeks.”
Once   he  spoke with   me,  he  realized I  had   not  been drinking.
I finally convinced the officer  that the car had a mechani- cal  problem and  could not go over  fifty-five  miles  per  hour without uncontrollable vibrations. He let me go.
The  challenges seemed almost  overwhelming, but  noth- ing was  going to dampen my spirit  or slow  me down.


Our Only Answer


One  of my  darkest days  was  when Pam  and  I had  made a commitment to attend  a business rally  in the  organization, and  we  were doing everything in  our  power to scrape up enough money for the event.
From  our   landscaping  business  we   had   put   together about  $600  in cash  that Pam was  to deposit in the bank  the next  day.  That evening we  spent  time  writing out checks to several companies we  owed and  put them  in the mail.
However, when my  wife  made it to the  bank, the  $600 was  nowhere to be found. She absolutely panicked. The sympathetic teller  went  out to the car with  her to search for the cash  because she  understood the dire  situation we  were in. But the money was  never  found.
To us,  this was  like  losing $1 million, because every one of those  checks bounced.
To this day,  I don’t  know how  we  managed to keep our

Live the Dream: No more excuses 17


word  and  attend  that event, but  even  through our  tears  we knew we had to be there.  We scrounged up every dollar  and dime  we  could find.  In the long  run it was  the only  answer we  could see  to learn  how  to correct  our desperate financial situation, and  I was  totally  committed to doing whatever it took to reach our objective.
Pam  wondered, “Will  success ever  happen for  us?  Will our circumstances ever  change? Is it always going to be this way? ”
Day after day,  month  after month,  I reassured her:  “Trust me.  I know in my heart  we  are  on the right  path.  What  we have  found  is bigger than  you  can  ever  imagine. I won’t  let you  down—I promise.”
There  were no more  excuses for failure. We  were going to live  our dream. The question wasn’t if, but when.



This is an excerpt from LIVE THE DREAM by Larry Winters. Copyright © 2012 Larry Winters. Reprinted by permission of Center Street. All rights reserved.

5 comments:

Sophia said...

I really love night clubs thankyou so much for sharing this nice blog ..
Night Clubs

Renee said...

set to post

Vic said...

All posted at 5:31am

Great motivation

Pamela Black said...

http://lifeasmomceo.blogspot.com/2012/05/live-dream.html post is up and live to read

Janna said...

Posted with review - my blogger was down last night and it wouldn't let me post but it is up this morning. I have met Larry Winters and admire his tremendously - inspiring story!