Jeff Steinmann: Hello, everyone. Welcome to the How to Quit Working show. Today, my guest is David Penglase. 18 years ago, David and his wife Liz decided that they wanted to live life on their terms. They wanted to do things their way.
So, David left his high-paying consulting job, got really clear on what he wanted his life to look like and built his own business doing consulting for himself so that he could keep more of the money that he was built at. And in the process, learned a lot about business and has created a great book called Intentionomics, which he’s going to talk about here as well. David, welcome to the show. How are you doing today?
David Penglase: I’m doing really good. How are you?
Jeff: I am great, and I’m so glad to have you on the show because you’ve got – you’ve decided that you want to live life on your terms, and you’ve taken something that you really have a lot of passion for and you really care about. And you have built a business about around that. So, can you tell us a little bit about what the heck is Intentionomics?
David: Hey, Jeffrey. I think this is – one of things when I remember back on a number of years now, when I was in the corporate world, and I’ve been working for a large organization. It was a consulting firm. And I worked for them for three and a half years. And I came home one night to my wife Lizzie and I just said, “Something’s got to change and I don’t think it’s going to happen as long as I keep giving my soul to things that I don’t want to particularly do.”
And that night, we decided that we would start our own business that would allow us to live the lifestyle that we want. We had two young children, a three-year old and a one-year old at that time. And it was a bit of a risk. And it was at that stage, although I didn’t even know it then, that I was already starting to work on living up to my intention of being a better father, a better husband and a better corporate citizen as well.
So, coming back to your question, what’s Intentionomics and why am I so passionate about it? Intentionomics is about the impact that our intentions have on the way that we live and on the opportunity for us to live a better, happier, a more flourishing and prosperous life. And so that’s the business that I am in now, talking to large corporates, in fact to anyone who wants to listen about how do we live a better, a more happier, flourishing and prosperous life.
Jeff: Okay. Well and you obviously, you walk the walk because you’ve left it. Gave up your corporate career and risked the financial security of your entire family to pursue this, right? How are you able to do that? How are you able to? With two young mouths to feed and a wife and all the responsibility that comes with having a family. So many people would just say David, they’d say, “I’ve got to put my family before my happiness.” How are you able to do something different?
David: Okay so, I think the first thing is being really clear in my mind about what I did need to earn to live a happy, flourishing and prosperous life. And this is where a lot of us get caught up in this treadmill of keeping up with the Joneses.
Now, I want to be really clear here Jeffrey that when I left – and this is 18, nearly 19 years ago now, because Liz runs the business with me, that’s the two of us in the business – that we we’re really clear that there was no risk. You see, what’s the worst thing that could have happened? I give this a crack running my own corporate speaking and training business. I give this a crack. The worst thing that could have happened was it didn’t work. And how was that a bad thing? So it didn’t work, so we go and get a job.
But it did. So when you remove the fear that surrounds taking a risk, it’s no longer a risk that causes you the fear and say you can focus on doing what you need to do. And I’m a big believer that when you back yourself, that so long as you’ve got the competency that backs it out, when you back yourself, other people get that you’re doing things for the all the right reasons.
And so when I focus on – and again, when I’m clearer around, coming back to Intentionomics. When you’re clear about what your intention is, for the people that you are meeting and the different relationships that you have, they get your truth. In fact, that’s the platform principle upon which I live my life. People get your truth. That over time, your intentions, your promises, your actions and your results will either promote you or expose you. That’s true in personal relationships, it’s true in business relationships, it’s just true in life.
Jeff: Oh wow. That’s so interesting. So your point is, you could say whatever you want, right? But over time, people are going to notice that you’re not doing what you’re saying. Or that you are, on the positive side.
David: Exactly. Exactly. And so again, getting back to your question around the whole risk about stepping into a lifestyle business. We started to become really clear about what would it be for Liz and myself and our two children. What would it really be to live a happy life?
And when you strip that right down to, it’s about the loving relationship, it’s about being able to spend time together. And that’s not ‘spend money and time together’. Because there’s so many things that we can do that don’t cost us money. And yet we get caught up into – wait, the world, especially the western world, we’ve got caught up in this keeping up with the Joneses. We buy this and then it’s a treadmill. And the comparison that we make can be a real problem.
Jeff: Yeah. Yeah. So it sounds like you said, what do I need to be happy? And that would that number was that number and I’m sure you came up with some sort of an annual figure. Was that number lower than what you were making in your corporate career?
David: No, here’s where it’s really interesting. It was actually higher. But the difference is, when you – I was fortunate enough that I was working for a really successful consulting firm. And of course, they build me out at a certain level of expense. So a company would have to pay. When I left, the realization was pretty quick that what they were charging me out, I wasn’t getting paid that. I got a percentage of that. And so straight away, when I start my own business and being able to charge at a price that that organization was charging me out, that was three times than what I was earning.
Jeff: Oh, okay.
David: The way I looked at it, I could work if I chose to. I didn’t. But if I chose to, I could work a third less and earn the same amount, or I could work the same and earn three times. And the first few weeks we got somewhere in between the two.
Jeff: I see. I see. All right. And the things that were important to you, you got really clear on what was important to you, and how much money was it going to take to get there. And actually, the independence of being in business allowed you to close that gap.
David: Exactly. See, one of the things that a lot people know – or they think they know what they don’t want in life. But what I’ve learned over the years is that many people haven’t really defined clearly what is a prosperous life. And I don’t mean money here, it’s the whole thing. What is a happy, flourishing and prosperous life really look like for them? Because if you’re not clear on that, then how can you ever put a figure of what you got to earn to be able to live it?
And it’s not, again, not just the money, it’s about all of the things that we want to do that would help us live a happy, flourishing – because once you’ve defined it, then it’s a simple case of being able to take stock of what your true fears. Where are you right now in living that? And then it’s a case of going on and taking some intentional action to adjust whatever needs to be adjusted.
Jeff: I see. I see. Now I love what you were talking about earlier. You said that – you were talking about kind of to get yourself over that risk of leaving your corporate job, you were talking about “Well, what’s the worst thing that could happen?”
So it sounds like what you did was you really challenged what – and I’m sure that on some level, this was going through your mind, you were thinking something like, “Oh my gosh. If this doesn’t work out, I’m not going to be able to feed the kids and there’s going to be this problem and that problem.” But you challenged those thoughts and you really kind of took yourself to task on that and said, “No, let me think more realistically. And the realistic answer is that if it doesn’t work, I’ll get another job.” Right?
David: Yeah. Again, when you take the fear out of risk, then your focus can be channeled towards just getting things done. And doing the things that are going to give you the kind of lifestyle that you want.
Now, I know that’s not everyone is able to do that. But I’m really clear about the thing that drove us more than anything else was knowing what would be the minimum things that we would need to do in our lives that would make us happy. And you know what? It’s about relationship. Most of us are blessed that we’ve got a roof over our head, we can actually feed our family. Just strip all the other things away. And then everything becomes bonus after that, doesn’t it?
Jeff: Sure. Sure. Yeah well, so talk a little bit about what does lifestyle mean for you? What does it look like on a weekly basis when you’re doing the things that you want to be doing?
David: Yeah. One of the key things that we’ve been able to do over the years was we created a leveraged based business, and what I mean by that is we’ve got an online business. We built membership site before people knew what membership sites were. So I’m going back to 2007.
And so, we built a community around that. And so, people paid to become members and so we’ve got this leveraged side of the business. And then we’ve got the corporate speaking business and the training business that I do. And Lizzie runs the business and I go into all the speaking and the training. So what does a week look like for us? It never looks the same.
Jeff: Everybody – I love that answer because everybody says that. And you love that, right? You love that they never look the same.
David: Of course. Of course. Because if we get, for many people – and we’re really clear about this, Liz and I, is we don’t want to live our life in habit. And for many people – and Jeffrey, you think about this for a sec. I wonder in the last three to four months, how many people have ever said to you or maybe you’ve even said to yourself, “I can’t believe how fast this year is flying.”
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Jeff: Oh, yeah.
David: Yeah. Well, I used to think as – because I’m in, what am I? I’m 53 years of age now – and I used to think as I’m getting older, that time just went quicker. But of course it doesn’t, it’s still 24 hours in a day. So I’ve worked out that what it is, is that many of us are routinely living our lives. We’re not mindfully in as many moments as we possibly can be through the day. And because of that, time flies. And not time-flies-having-fun time flies, because it just flies and we’ve missed it, we’ve lost it, it was routine.
So, I’m not locked into a Monday to Friday mentality. Sometimes I will – and nor the 9 to 5 mentality. Because when you run your own lifestyle, and this is where I – I’ve just seen some people get into their own businesses and pretty much cause themselves to fall back into the corporate kind of structures. And I just don’t understand it.
If I’m, at the moment as I’m speaking with you, I’m looking at over 180 degree views, a place called Cogra Bay. A beautiful bay in Sydney. Today is a beautiful day, and after our interview – and I’m not saying this to be smart or anything, it’s just the reality – I’m going to take my kayak out, and I’m going fishing for a couple of hours. Then I’ll come back and I’ll focus on doing some writing. Then I’ll come back after I finished the writing and then I’ll do some visits in town that I’ve got organized with some clients.
That’s pretty much what my week looks like. If I’m not out on the kayak, I might be going for a run, I’ll be doing some weights, there’s no time limits because I know how many visits I need to have in a week with how many of my clients to generate the kind of revenue that I want to generate to live the lifestyle.
Jeff: I see. I see. And I love that. It’s very early in the morning there, right?
David: Yeah, right. It’s just after 8am and the Sydney fog has just started to leave.
Jeff: That’s awesome. So now, I’ve got to ask you some more questions about something you said. Now you said you know exactly how many calls you have to make in order to make the living that you want to make, right? Or how many visits you have to make. Can you talk a little bit about that? And how did you figure that out? How do you know though? How do you know all that?
David: Yeah, it’s a great question, Jeffrey. And a lot of people in business aren’t really good at the business side of the business.
Jeff: So true.
David: And I was blessed again when I joined this organization back in 1990, and I worked with them for three and a half years. They really taught me the numbers side of the business. And it’s a pretty simple math, really.
When you work, when you start to think about what do I want to earn in any one year, and let’s say whatever the figure is, then you say, “Okay, if that’s the case, what would be the average amount of income or revenue I can generate on any job that I win? Any piece of work that I can do. Or on selling whatever product it is that I need to sell or service or whatever it is.” Once you’ve worked that out, then you say, “Okay if that’s the average, how many sales do I need to make to be able to generate that revenue?”
And once you’ve worked that out, you then ask yourself. In this way you’ve got to really be honest with yourself, how many people would I need to see to win that number of jobs? Or sell that number of products or whatever it is. Because then, once you’ve got that, you’ve got to then ask yourself, if that’s the number, what’s the likelihood, what’s my sales ratio, my success this year. And once you’ve worked that out, then it’s simply multiply that out and you work out, I need to see that many people over the next month to be able to generate the income that I need to generate.
Jeff: I see. I see. So at the end of the day, what you’re saying is that, you have to know, if I meet with 10 prospects, you have to know on average that you’re going to sell to maybe five of them. And then knowing the average sale or what you’re going to make on each one of those five that you sell. That is how you back into how much revenue you’re going to make. So that ultimately says is if you make a thousand dollars on each one of those five, and you want to make $5,000 a month, that means you have to meet with 10 people a month, right?
David: You got it. You got it. And once you’re clear on that, then it’s just holding yourself accountable for making sure that you get in front of that number of people. And that’s where it starts with doing amazing job everytime. Because when you have that as your intention, it’s kind of like, when I go out to see a client – this is coming back to Intentionomics, Jeffrey – when I go out to see a client, and for the listeners it’s really important, when you start to think about living a lifestyle type of business, or even if you’re not, if you’re in a corporate world whatever it is, you’ll have your own intention of what you want out of life.
And I’m really clear about what Lizzie and I and our boys want out of our life. And I’ve got a clear intention around that. However, when I’m sitting with a potential client, the last thing they care about is what my intention is for me. They want to know what’s my intention for them.
And so when they get – because as I’ve said earlier on, people get your truth. Over time your promises, your intentions, your promises, your actions and results will either promote you or expose you. This is so true in the corporate world. But they listen to your questions, they watch what you do, they listen to how you say, what you say. And they get your truth.
So once you’re out with your clients, that’s when it all starts to just roll through this process of people trusting you and trust matters. Trust matters. And that’s why when I speak in corporate gigs around the world, the key thing that I keep saying to people is, if you work on your character, if you work on your truth, people will get your truth. And it’s better that you know what your truth is first before someone finds it out and tells you.
Jeff: Sure. Sure. Well how do you, David, when you’re meeting with a prospect, how do you know or I should say, how do you make sure they know what your intention is? And I know that your intention is to get them the best possible result that you can. But how do they know that?
David: Yeah. Now get ready for this, Jeffrey, because this is rocket science. I’m about to tell you this.
David: You ready?
Jeff: I’m ready.
David: You ready? Okay.
Jeff: I’m going to sit down for this.
David: Okay. I tell them what my intention is. See? And this is – and I know I’m trying to make light of it, but the reality is many people, when they go out to see a client, they are not clear. And this is true not just with clients. This is life.
If people, if you follow me on this, people get your truth. If we live our intention just for the client for example, to pick up along the way, it takes time. It takes time. However, for you to be able to, with clarity, with conviction, not just saying something off the top of your head. Because you’ve written it down and read it a hundred thousand times or whatever.
But when you are with conviction and integrity, with honesty and truth, when you can say to a client, “I just I’d like you to know that my intention here today is to understand what it is that your issues are and if I or some of my colleagues that I know, can help you, it’s worthwhile you and I are having a conversation.”
Jeff: And you know David, it’s not a coincidence I’m sure that you said “if”.
David: You bet. Because I don’t know. I never presume that I’m going to be able to. I’ve got a fair idea in my mind because most – about 90% of every person that I go and see would have been a referral. After 18 years, that’s where we’ve got to in the business now. It hasn’t always been that way. But I’ve learned very early in my consulting and business career, that when I meet with somebody, the last thing they want to see is you’re assuming you’re going to do a business.
Now I’ve read and heard other speakers and other sales trainees and business specialists say you want to go in with the belief you’re going to get the job. That’s not – I just totally disagree with that. I want to go in with the intention that they get that my intention, it is to understand them first before assuming anything.
Jeff: Awesome. Awesome. Well so, you said you’ve been at this for 18 years. And 18 years ago, the business landscape in particular the internet, was not what it is today. And it sounds like probably if everything dried up for you, if they followed your advertising and all of your marketing went away, you’d probably would still have one heck of a business just from referrals. But as you said, it hasn’t always been that way. So how did you get those wheels moving?
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David: Activity. And again, it’s one of those simple things that a lot of people tend to do, I think, without clarity. We can get really busy at just doing things. But you want to get really clear about which things are going to generate the kind of lifestyle that you want quicker. And so being really clear – first and foremost, what started out for me again in my first year, was an absolute clarity that always going to deliver value early, deliver value often, and deliver more value than any client would ever expect.
Jeff: Oh, wow.
David: Easy words to say, Jeffrey. Easy words to say. But to live up to that and to have that as your base takes courage and it also takes process. And that’s where we have – you mentioned the internet, because my sons, when they’re 23 and 20 but… and I laugh when they said, “Back in the day Dad, isn’t?” That’s right, back in the day.
But back in the day before the internet, we weren’t lazy. Many of us – and I’m not saying any of your listeners, of course it’s all the other people – we get lazy and instead of picking up the phone and talking to someone, we send an email. Instead of writing out a little note to say thank you and sending something through to a client, we send an email. We’ve got email lazy as opposed to client focused. And whether that’s for prospecting, whether it’s for staying in touch with your clients.
So coming back to the idea of how do you really get that momentum going in the early days, it’s do the things that you do well but do them beyond what the client expects. And see, we get the business that we deserve. I know that sounds harsh, but we get the repeat, the new and the referral business that we deserve. I’ve seen that. And if we don’t believe we’re getting the business that we deserve, then we’ve got to look at ourselves and ask ourselves what else can we do?
Jeff: In what way?
David: Okay so, if I’m not getting – if I’m not seeing enough clients this week for example, if I get it down to something really basic like this. If I’m not seeing enough client this week, and I expect that next week, I’m not seeing enough clients. To think that something’s going to change without me doing something different is just nonsense.
Jeff: Yup, sure.
David: See, I’m going to get the result that I deserve. And for that reason, if this week I haven’t seen enough clients, then I’ve got to ask myself what can I do differently. What can I seen? Who can I talk to? Who can refer me? Who haven’t I spoken to for a little while? And it’s doing something different, but keeping on coming back to the reason why I want to do is short. It’s about my lifestyle. But the reason that I want to, everytime I pick up the phone, everytime I send an email, everytime I send a letter, whatever it is that I’m doing, I want to stop for that moment and say what’s my intention to this person right now?
Jeff: I see. Well so, what about before you have any clients? What would you recommend to someone who… they’re still in their corporate career or maybe they’re making that transition and they don’t have any clients yet?
David: Well, they actually do. Now, there’s a paradox that a lot of people when they’re about to start off on their own business. Especially if they’re – because there’s two different avenues here.
One is, let’s use the scenario that someone starting a business, their own business, in something they’re already skilled at and they’ve been doing. So for example they’ve been in a consulting business, and now they’re going to go and start their own consulting business. Now, they may not be able to go and see their clients because there could be some kind of restriction based on the company’s terms and conditions, when you label, that kind of stuff. But there’s nothing to stop clients coming to see you.
David: There’s nothing to stop. So I believe, now I know, that when you do an amazing job within your existing business for your clients, when your clients love you, despite what any corporate would want you to really think, clients buy you as well as buying the company, as well as buying products and services. They buy you. And if you work on that trust level, when you leave, when you leave down now you’re gone and now they will contact you. Why? Because they will want to. So, we’ve already got clients if we’ve done and continued to focus on doing an amazing job.
Jeff: I see.
David: Then it’s a process of talking to people. Because I’m not a big believer in the big networking events where you go and shake hands and put out business cards, and all that kind of stuff.
Jeff: Oh, that is so annoying.
David: It just saps your soul.
Jeff: It does. It sure does.
David: So, when you leave, the way that you start the process is through using either local media, your network that you already have established. Now, it’s much easier because you can put your website up straight away. People can find you much easier. You set up all the social media networking things that you can do and it’s much easier. So when you leave when you’re doing a job that’s very similar to what you were doing beforehand, I believe you already do have clients, they just haven’t found you yet. And so, the start-up process is while you’re looking for where you believe your clients are going to be, it’s these three things that I look at when I’m looking at building the business from start. This is what I actually do. The first one is I needed to ask myself this question. Who do I need to be seen by that will help me generate the income that I want to generate? Now obviously, clients is one. But then, it’s who else though? Who want the influences of my clients?
And so for example, if you’ve got a particular market whether it’s the teaching pretendee whether it’s engineers, whether it’s pharmaceuticals, whatever it is. The first question that I would be asking when I ask myself that question around who do I need to be seen by, well I need to be seen by the people who influence the people who I need to be seen by.
So, I would be looking at how do I write an article for a particular magazine that they’re going to read? How do I get on to some kind of broadcast that they might be listening to or watching? Who do I need to see to get into those kinds of things where others will see me and then will want to get in contact with me. So that’s the first question that I always ask.
Jeff: Yeah, and I love your answer to that because one of the greatest services that I think you’re doing for our listeners here, David, is you’re giving that pre-internet perspective. And the reason I think that that’s so important is because the people, who are right now trying to do what you did 18 or 20 years ago, are getting bombarded with information from internet marketers and social media experts that just keep telling you, you don’t have to do some of these fundamental stuff that you’re talking about.
When in reality, just getting in touch with – and I love how you put it. You ask the question, “Who are the influencers that I need to get in front of?” And whether it’s local media or something completely offline or whether it is internet based, that’s the question that you need to be asking is, “Who are the people that can influence my potential clients?” I think that’s an awesome insight.
David: Because the last thing we want to do is stalk people. S-t-a-l-k. I know my Australian accent might not come across the right way. Because that’s what it ends up looking like. But when you ask the question, what do they read where I can create value? What do they listen to where I can create value? Where do they congregate? What industry association meetings?
And I go to those meetings. See, not to do the ‘here’s the business card network, network, network, network”, I go – I remember reading a book by Dr. Henry Cloud called Integrity many, many years ago. And in there he says this, something like is I’m paraphrasing – but he said, become an expert on your clients. So that doesn’t mean you have to be the expert of what your clients do. But become an expert on your clients. So for example, probably one of the largest groups of my client base is in the financial sector. So, just made sense to me, I don’t want to become a finance expert. I hire people to do that for me.
Jeff: Sure. Sure.
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David: But what I want to know is, what are they worried about? What do their clients, what are they constantly asking of them? So I’ve become an expert in the client, not in what the client does but an expert in the client.
So I attend the association meetings. Not necessarily to end up on stage although that quite often does happen. But to just understand what’s the legislative issues that they face. What’s taking their mind away from being able to do what they do well? Because for any of us, if we can help our clients stay more mindful on helping their clients, then they become more successful.
And it’s so easy to say something like, if we can tap into what keeps the client awake at night. But that’s – it’s too glib. You’ve got to give context around all of this stuff. It’s in a business. In a business, one of their concerns. You can’t learn that without a bit of work. The internet makes it easier but you can’t do it without a little bit of work.
Jeff: It’s still work. It’s still work, yeah. Well so, if you’re not carpet bombing people of these networking events, with business –
David: That is a great term.
Jeff: So if you’re not doing that, then how do you interact with somebody? Like, say like, you met me at a financial networking event, how would you interact with me?
David: Yeah. Well look, the first thing I always ask people, and the great part about that question, Jeffrey, is when I go to a networking event, well, when I go to networking events, when I go to an association meeting, where I’m constantly going to places where I can learn about my clients.
So let’s step right at two things here. I go to meetings and conferences to feed my soul and my creativity and my knowledge. That’s a separate thing altogether. But when I go with the purpose of trying to learn more about my clients, if you were at the meeting and you and I met, the first thing I always ask someone at one of those meetings is, “What brings you here?”
I’m always interested. I’m here to discover what’s really going on in the industry. I’m kind of interested what brings you here. And we start that conversation. And I’m not looking for who else I need to be talking to. Yeah, I don’t know where that’s ever happened to you, but when you’re talking with somebody at a meeting, and they’re looking over your shoulder, looking for who else could I be talking to? Or is it that’s just what people do to me? I’m not sure.
Jeff: No, no, they do it. They do it to everybody. And whenever I go to these events, I generally wear a blazer. And the thing I love about the blazer is that it has a left pocket and it has a right pocket. And different business cards go in different pockets. For a very specific reason. And I won’t reveal which pocket is which because who knows who I may run into somebody listening and their business …but no, I loved it. It’s awesome that you separate going to conferences for you and going to conferences to learn about your prospects.
David: Yeah. Because look, there are some people I think get mixed up about what their intention is when they go to different association meetings. And mine’s always clear, I’m there to learn. And while I’m there learning, I’m not trying to meet a hundred people. That’s never been my aim. And it’s here I tell you, it’s really worked for me. At any function, I make it really clear. If I’m sitting, I get a choice. When I sit next to somebody, and I start the conversation with a genuine and with the integrity of having an intention of discovering, so what’s going on for them here today? Not because I think I can do business. Not because they might be the next person that can connect me with a large corporate, but because I’m sitting next to them.
David: And so rather than trying going meet a hundred people, whoever I’m with, I’m with them. And sometimes they may be the kind of person that doesn’t really want to interact, and I mean, I get that. And so then I go and move somewhere else. But typically, I’m going to say, that very rarely happens. When you’re focused on somebody else, they’re focused – you’re starting with a mutuality of purpose. Because their purpose was about themselves. And so you start with that. It’s a pretty good base.
Jeff: Yeah. Yeah. Now, that’s awesome. And this has been an awesome crash course on networking. So thanks. And thanks for that. So what was interesting, when we were first talking, you didn’t say “I” very much. You said “Liz and I”. Liz is your wife. So you clearly, this isn’t what you’re doing for yourself. This is a journey that you and Liz are on together.
David: We’ve been married 30 years next year. We’ve been together 32 years.
David: Yeah, thank you. It is interesting is that we always do that, don’t we? We do say congratulations, and I think there’s a lovely sensitivity around being congratulated for being married for so long. And I think it’s because the world, the cynicism of the world, we go, “Wow! You’re still together?”
But I married my best friend. Yeah, we were best friends first before we became romantically involved. And we’re still best friends today. And that’s a pretty special place to be.
And so the book Intentionomics, the whole concept of Intentionomics, Liz and I, I’ll mention our two boys, for whatever reason we don’t know why but we always kind of do. Our boys turned 21 and 18 on the same weekend. Matthew turned 21 two years ago on the Saturday and Anthony turned 18 on the Sunday in May.
And a better year before that, Lizzie and I just got talking about – it’s a pretty important sort of time. I am into adulthood, 21, standing that place and for all of these kinds of things. And I said, how about we start talking and just thinking about what are the key lessons we’ve learned in our lives? That we could share with.
And so what ended up happening, I wrote a letter. Lizzie then added her little bits and pieces to it. We put it together. And then later, was going to be the speech at their 18th and 21st birthday party. But the letter, as we’re writing this, it grew into a big body of words. And that’s where Intentionomics came from.
Jeff: Wow. That just gave me goosebumps. That is so cool.
David: Well, we’ve been blessed in so many ways and are grateful for so many things that have happened in our life. None more than the fact we’ve got two young men. And sometimes people don’t understand when I say this. We are so blessed that we’ve got two average – whatever that really means – but two average young men. They’re not global scientists. They’re not going to potentially change the world. But they’re just two good, solid, values-driven young men who, like all of us do, we fail every now and then, and we threw amazing things every now and then. But they do a great job.
But what I wanted to do was leave a legacy. And so, when Lizzie and I started talking about that, we came up with nine truths. Nine inescapable truths that we’ve looked at in our own lives and that’s the key, these key things that we gave to the boys. We call it the Intentionomics blue print of having a flourishing, prosperous life.
And these simple things, they’re not necessarily simple to put into place. We mentioned this earlier on. To define a prosperous life. And we’ve said to the boys, “Be clear on what you want out of life.” Not things. Not things. But what you want out of life. And hold yourself accountable for your truth.
Think about what your intentions are for your mom, for your dad, for your brother, for your cousins, for the people that you’re meeting all through your life. Listen to what your voice is saying to yourself. Make sure you’ve got good habits. Make sure you’re setting good goals. Build trust. And continually learn and make good choices. They’re the nine things. I mean, it’s simple wisdom but I tell you what, it’s a journey to try and live up to those nine simple things.
Jeff: Yeah. Yeah. That’s awesome. Well so, how do you think that…how do you think your boys’ lives are going to be different? Because of the way that you raised them. Because I mean, they, for the most part I mean, they don’t remember any lifestyle other than the one that you live now.
David: That’s right. Yeah. Here’s how, and I’m really clear on this. My dad, I’m not sure, Jeffrey, whether you know what a sleeper cutter is.
Jeff: I don’t.
David: Yeah. Okay so, think of the railway tracks. The planks of wood that the railway tracks sit on. Over here in Australia, we call those sleepers. Because a lot of the railway tracks now have gotten cement underneath them, that kind of stuff. But these planks of wood – that’s what my dad did all of his life. He went up to a forest, he cut down trees and he cut out logs, square logs and they went to the railway and that’s what he did all of his life until he retired.
Now my dad said this to me, he gave me this piece of advice, it was, “Put your money in the bank. Pay cash for everything. Stay out of debt. Work really hard. And life will look after you.” Now dad turns 80 in about two weeks time, but my dad retired with nothing. Now, I only say that because that was the wisdom that he was given by his dad, who went through the depression years. I didn’t buy into that wisdom.
When it came to managing finances and stuff, and I know I’m going around the subject because I want to get to it. I hire a financial – whenever I don’t know something, I go and hire experts. I’m really clear on what I’m good at. So we hired a financial expert early in our marriage. And so here’s the point that I’m trying to make: with our boys, the biggest difference is this. Because we’ve taught them from a very early age, regardless of how much money you earn, it’s how to create wealth from that money. So they’ve got really clear in their mind, for every dollar they earn, they’re not earning a dollar. That a third of it is what they’re earning. The other two-thirds, they going to use to create wealth.
Now it’s a really disciplined approach, but here’s the thing. I’ve got two young men – and I’m really proud of this – neither of them are pursuing jobs that they don’t love. They get that money is not going to be the issue for them. Because we’ve already put them on the path where they know how to create wealth. We haven’t given them wealth. We’ve taught them how to create their own wealth and they’re well then at par.
So Anthony’s pursuing being a graphic designer and artist. Matthew’s pursuing being an actor. Now you talked about in sales, how resilient you need to be. Here’s Matt. 90% of every job that he turns up to, every audition that he turns up to, he’s getting a no.
Jeff: Sure. Sure.
David: And he bounces back. So, the difference between how I was brought up and because my first job was as a bank teller, and so typically that was a cradle to grave type of career. But they’re pursuing, they get that they can pursue jobs that aren’t jobs. I mean, I don’t call what I do work.
David: I have to work on what I do, but I don’t call it work. I mean, my dad was a sleeper cutter. That was hard work. That was hard work. I’ve got the privilege of being able to make money from speaking and writing. How blessed am I? And our boys are pursuing that. They get that they don’t have to. That doesn’t mean that everyday is going to be rosy for them. And that they are always going to be in something that they love. But they get that they can pursue that.
And I think that’s the difference today than what it was when I was first growing up. The options of what people can do. Not just because of the internet, but simply because of the way the world is. There’s so many opportunities. People that ask themselves the question, what am I passionate about? And it doesn’t mean that my hobby becomes my business. But the fact that they can have a job and the job could be anything. But that they can still pursue their passion in some way.
Jeff: Yeah. I love it. That’s awesome. This has been just a tremendous amount of awesome insight. But David, what is the – what thought would you like to leave folks with who might be looking to do something like what you’ve done with your life?
David: The first thing that I would say is make sure that you’ve got the platform already in place. Work first on the love that you have in your relationships and set your intention. Be really clear about, no matter what, no matter what, that that’s first.
I will say that my first priority in life is me. Now I know that sounds egotistical, but if I’m not healthy, if I’m not looking after myself, I can’t look after my wife and my children. And so number one is get you right. Take stock of your truth around that. Because to go out and do all the things that you want to do by yourself or with your partner or whoever, you’ve got to have the energy, mental and physical energy. So that’s the first thing. Get your relationships right. And then get your intention right. Be really clear on who you are and what you can be. And how that will create value for other people.
My favorite quote comes from Aristotle. And Aristotle said that we are the sum of our actions. In other words, what we do. And he says that therefore thou habits that make all of the difference. So we need to develop really good habits in life. But then he says this, Jeffrey, and this is the piece that I – if you’d like, this is where Intentionomics came from.
And when I was studying philosophy, I saw this. It jumped out of the page at me, and it’s the last piece of this quote from Aristotle. He said that our actions and our behaviors are our morals shown in conduct. Our actions and our behaviors are our morals shown in conduct. Everything we say, everything we do, sends loud and clear messages to the world about who we are and what we represent. In my language, people get your truth.
Jeff: Yeah. Yeah, I love it. And I loved what you said earlier which was that – it was something to the effect of, figure out who you are and what value you can bring to the world. That’s such a powerful statement right there.
David: And it doesn’t have to be huge. It’s just figure out that you are who you are and what value can you bring and then, deliver it early and deliver it often.
Jeff: Yeah. What an awesome note to end on. But before we go, David, where can we get more information about your book Intentionomics?
David: Well, you could go to intentionomics.com. And it’s just as it sounds intention, omics. Intentionamics.com, and there’s a whole bunch of resources on there. I live by what I say that delivering value early. There’s a whole bunch of things that you can download for free. You don’t have to give me your contact name, you don’t have to do any of that kind of stuff. Just jump on. And if you like what you see, come say hello, let me know who you are. And I look forward to hopefully meeting you and your listeners sometime. Not just online but maybe even in person.
Jeff: Definitely. Well, there’s going to be a link below the show that is going to go to David’s website which is intentionomics.com so get more information there. Reach out to David if you want any more information, if you would like to introduce yourself.
And David, it’s been a pleasure having you on the show, and I learned a ton from this one, and I know our listeners are going to get a lot out of it. And I look forward to staying in touch and hearing about what new and awesome things you’re doing next.
David: Jeffrey, it’s been a blessing. Thank you so much.