Last Tuesday, I celebrated my birthday.

My chronological age may or may not be of interest to you, but perhaps more significantly, my biological age is twenty years younger, just 2/3 of my actual age.  I’m grateful for, proud of that, work hard at it every day.

A few days beforehand, I hiked up Bear Peak, just west of Boulder, where I live.  The trail to the top features a steep climb – 2400 feet in 1.8 miles that’s even tougher going down than coming up.   The trail ends in a magnificently rewarding experience – 360 degrees of breathtaking views – at the pinnacle.


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It was truly a “peak” experience, no pun intended.

But, just like the fitness level I’ve achieved, it required sacrifice, mostly in terms of time.  There were plenty of unfinished tasks waiting when I got back.

The biggest mental hurdle I had to overcome to get myself out and up the mountain was not concerns about hiking alone in mountain lion and bear country, nor getting lost on a trail I’d never hiked, nor getting injured tripping over some tree root or worse yet on a rock near a precipice…

No, the biggest challenge was convincing myself to take the time off from more “practical” pursuits in favor of this one, a goal I’d set out to achieve by the coming Tuesday. 

Entrepreneurs struggle with this all the time.  How to find balance in an all-consuming effort to make their dream a reality.  I.e., building a successful business.

Barbara Corcoran, who spoke at the GKIC Superconference in Orlando and who I was fortunate enough to joke with briefly before getting photo’d with her had what was perhaps for me the biggest takeway of the event.

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She grew up in a family of 17 – Irish Catholic – in a one bathroom house in New Jersey, just south of New York City.  She went from divorced waitress to building a multi-billion dollar real estate company in arguably the toughest, most cutthroat competitive place in the world to peddle real estate – New York City.

Here’s what she said that struck me: “Balance is a dream. You can have a great family life or a great business.  But you can’t have both at the same time.”

She sold her business and is now raising a family.  

I’ve rebelled against that notion, and absolutely subscribe to the idea that a properly built business serves you, not the other way around.  You concoct your own recipe for balance, including health and fitness, family and friends, money and purpose.  You select the ingredients, you choose the recipe.  Consciously, or unconsciously.  And you get to eat what you fixed, like it or not.

So here’s my takeaway: It’s okay to seek balance – just don’t count on it.  And don’t beat yourself up if you aren’t there yet.  Just keep climbing.

To your wildest success,


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