If you’ve spent any time thinking about your retirement account or other investments you may have, you’re probably familiar with the concept of asset diversification. The idea is to not over-invest in one particular company or class of investments but to balance your portfolio across different types of assets. As a simple example, it makes sense for many people to invest in both stocks and bonds since when one of the two is up the other is often down. You don’t get crazy high returns when you invest this way, but you usually avoid catastrophic losses. Over time, the balanced investment approach of asset diversification has proven to yield reasonably predictable rates of return. Not super sexy rates of return, but rates in which you can have some degree of confidence.

And, by now, you may be asking yourself, “I thought this was a leadership blog. What’s up with the investment strategy tutorial?” There’s a connection and it comes from a client I’m working with in one of our leadership development programs. On a recent group follow-up call, she and her colleagues were sharing what they’d been working on since our last in-person session on building personal leadership presence.  As I’m writing about in the upcoming third edition of The Next Level, the essence of personal presence is to manage yourself by reflecting on where you are and preparing for what’s next. That’s exactly what this client had been doing in the month between our in-person session and the conference call.

When I asked her what she had been up to she said, with excitement in her voice, “I’ve been diversifying my happiness!” She then went on to explain that the discussion we had had in the session about creating a Life GPS® (you can read more about that here), caused her to reflect on what was missing from her life. She loves her job and is great at it, but concluded that she was over-invested in it. Her self-reflection made her realize that she was under-invested in exercise and giving back to the community in some way. She jump started the exercise by riding her bike every day on a recent week-long vacation. The truly inspirational part of her story was on the giving back to the community front.

Using a program similar to the one at VolunteerMatch, she started searching for a cause that matters to her and that she could be personally involved in. In a month, she’s been trained to provide support to families transitioning out of homelessness who have one or more children on the autism spectrum. She’s been matched with a family who has a six year old son who’s on the spectrum and will be meeting with them on Sundays since that fits in best with her busy schedule for work. She’s already had her first meeting with the family and is very excited about getting to know them better and providing support.

My client provides a great example of how to diversify your happiness. In her case, she used the three questions behind the Life GPS® to do some self-assessment and reflection. Those questions are:

How am I at my best?
What are the routines – physical, mental, relational and spiritual – that enable me to be my best?
What outcomes would I hope to see at home, work and in my community if I was regularly leading and living at my best?

Then, she asked herself, “What’s missing for me?” and quickly identified some gaps. Then, and this is key, she took immediate action on the exercise gap and prepared herself to close the community gap by doing some research to find an opportunity that she cared about and was do-able for her.

In one of those cases of the student has become the teacher, my client has inspired me to take a fresh look at what’s missing in my life and what I can do to diversify my happiness. Through this post, I hope she’s done the same for you.

If you liked what you read here, subscribe here to get my latest ideas on how to lead and live at your best.

Read more: eblingroup.com

Believe it or not, you can become motivated to take the wrong action. You need a coach or mentor to get the right knowledge and get you pointed in the right direction.

Every great person has had a coach or mentor.  Learn from those who have gone before you or you are destined to make the same mistakes they made.

TAKE ACTION: (Do all of these, but pick one at a time.)

1. Find a mentor. Do some research and find someone in your industry.  Ask to meet them for coffee or find someone outside of your area to chat with via Skype.  You can find some great support from organizations like SCORE.

2. Read a book.  Increase your knowledge in a specific topic of your industry and outside of your industry.  Read a biography of a successful person or a story about how a business became successful.  When you look outside of your industry you will find some great ideas that could revolutionize your business.  (Hint: Go to the library in your area for a great selection of free books!)

3. Find a teaching resource.  If you are struggling in a particular area, find a training course that covers the information that you need.  Visit our resource page for some examples.  Or you can visit an online training environment like Curious.com.

4. Find a coach.  It will be worth your investment to find a business coach.  Business coaches come in all varieties and price ranges.  Some focus on systems, others on leadership, others on marketing.  Make sure you get the coach that fits where you are.  Take time to interview the coach and see if there is a good fit.

Business coaches give undivided attention for your business and for you. If you don’t have anyone you know personally, use our contact page to get in touch with one of our business coaches.  We will point you in the right direction and make sure you are lined up with the coach that you need the most.


“We cannot become what we need by remaining what we are.” John Maxwell

There is nothing wrong with being happy about where we are in life, but that does not mean we have to be satisfied.  Being satisfied means that we accept that things will never be better and we will begin to stagnate.

When we begin to stagnate, we actually begin going backwards.  If you are comfortable with where you are, you will never grow to become the great leader you were created to be.


TAKE ACTION: Give yourself a grade to see if you have settled.

(A=great improvement; B = some improvement; C= stayed the same; F=worse than before)

STEP 1: Check last month:

___ Am I more healthy this month than I was last month? (Consider weight, energy, the amount of time you spend in exercise, the amount of sleep you are getting, the healthiness of the food you are eating, etc.)

___ Do I have more quality time with my family now more than last month? (Consider date nights with your spouse or meaningful conversations with a significant other; quality time spent with children doing things that they enjoy; time spent away from work on weekends; time spent with parents via phone or visit, etc.)

___ Is my business growing more this month than last month? (Consider what Key Performance Indicators are important to your business like money, employee satisfaction, customer retention, customer acquisition, web site traffic, etc.)

STEP 2: Have a business partner, mentor or family member check your work to see if they agree.

STEP 3: Make a plan of action to get A’s next month.

Today’s EXAMPLE:

Bob feels like he is doing pretty well.  His business is going Ok and things seem to be going smoothly overall.

STEP 1: When he takes a moment to really think about himself in the three categories, he sees that maybe he needs some improvement.

Health: In health, he noticed he has been eating out a lot and has gained a few pounds.  He has not been exercising, so he had to give himself an “F.”

Family: As he looks at his family, he notices that he has spent lots of time with his wife and even implemented a date night.  He has made a special effort to go to at least one daytime event with each of his kids.  Bob is pretty happy about his efforts and gives himself an “A.”

Business: When Bob looks at his business, he sees that the financials look great.  He starts to give himself an “A,” when he notices that some of his clients have not been contacted recently.  One of his sales guys has not met his quota, but another sales person has increased his quota.  Overall things are about the same, but the financials have increased, so Bob gives himself a “B.”

STEP 2: His business partner looks over and agrees with his assessment.  They brainstorm ways to work on the business and Bob asks him to hold him accountable to working out and eating healthier.

STEP 3: Bob now sees a simple assessment about where he is.  He knows he needs to work on his business, but his health is a high priority.  He enrolls in a gym and sets some goals.  Plus, he implements a buddy system allowing top sales people to help some of the others sales team that is not making quotas.  He also decides to continue to work on his family and get an “A” for next month in all three areas.


The only way to really know if you are progressing or regressing is to do a simple check up.  These three parts are a quick evaluation.

If you have read materials from Zig Ziglar, he suggests using 7 categories.  Feel free to evaluate all 7 categories: personal, physical, family, mental, career, financial, and spiritual.  We just trimmed it down to three to make it easy.

So go out there and do it. I believe in you.  Now you just have to believe in yourself!

If you need a resource to help on your entrepreneur journey, check out our success tools.  If you have any questions or would like to suggest a topic for discussion, use our handy contact page.


Be bold and grade yourself from last year with the same parameters as above, then plan to evaluate yourself monthly!

___ Am I more healthy this month than I was last year?

___ Do I have more quality time with my family now more than last year?

___ Is my business growing more this month than last year?