The book you now hold in your hands was written over the course of three years. I never set out to write my memoir, though I have long been fascinated with those of others. I just assumed that the mass audience would have no interest in investing money and time in learning more about...well, me. What I find particularly captivating are the characteristics of those that we consider to be successful and fulfilled. I say ‘and’ fulfilled because it is not possible to be successful without also feeling fulfilled. The secrets to happiness that allow some individuals to walk through life with a perpetual smile are a treasure most would like to discover. What do these people know that we have yet to learn? Why do the trials and tribulations of everyday life seem to roll off of their backs like raindrops from a duck? If we are all born with feathers, I’m curious why some ‘quack’ louder than others.
In the past decade, I’ve performed and/or presented everywhere from New York to LA, from Pahrump, NV, to Plantation, FL, and most towns in between. I’ve spent a minimum of three nights of my life in every state except North Dakota. This exclusion is unintentional, I assure you. I guess there just isn’t much demand for a motivational speakin’, hypnotizin’ game show host in Grand Forks.
I’ve stayed in five star resorts and shared toilets with non-English speaking travelers in foreign hostels. I’ve stretched out in first class and lost the feeling in my legs from being jammed in the coach middle seat. Wherever my travels have taken me, this book has been by my side. Hardly a single page was written while at home. Every word, every thought, every emotion comes your way from someplace different. What started out as simply a collection of thoughts to pass on to my children when they got older has, over time, become a labor of love that I now wish to share with many.
Just as every one of us knows what needs to be done to lose weight, so do we possess the innate knowledge of what it takes to get more out of life. Its not so much a case of being lost as it is being lazy. We must take it upon ourselves to leave the unacceptable version of ourselves behind and step into the shoes of the person we want and deserve to be. This is true for you, me and the corner grocer. Sometimes all it takes is someone to point us in the right direction, wind us up and send us on our way. Thats my job. When you’ve had enough of not having enough, you need someone to light your fire. I’m the guy holding the matches.
The older we get the more we evolve. I’m nothing like the person I was ten years ago. Even with all of my imperfections, I am in love with the current me. I am no longer a young man out to prove myself to the world. I am a father, a son, an established professional, a thinker and a humanitarian. I love my family and I care deeply about the future of my planet. I have achieved a respectable level of success in my chosen field yet still feel as if I’m just firing up the engines. I don’t do drugs and have never spent a night in jail. I enjoy bar food and tell the truth approximately eighty five percent of the time. I did not graduate from college yet still managed to get inducted into the school’s Walk of Fame. I talk too much, listen too little and occasionally curse when it is not appropriate. I’ve been in eleven fistfights and won seven of them. I love the sound of a tattoo parlor and the feel of custom tailored suits. I don’t believe in God but put my faith in mankind. In other words, in spite of our differences we are very much alike.
I would never attempt to convince you that my way is the only way or what has worked for me will work for everyone. Far from it. The internet is full of self help gurus who will show you how to meditate your way to wealth or give you the ten steps to look great in a bikini. Although I undeniably have an enormous ego, I never claim to be the prettiest or most intelligent fish in the tank. I do, however, possess incredible common sense and the curiosity of a child. That’s why I have written a book that shares rather than instructs. This is the kind of book I’ve searched for in my own quest for personal growth. As an author I write about what I know and read about what I don’t. The day I stop seeking new information is the day they tag me and bag me.
I have not produced a textbook containing the meaning of life. That meaning can only come from incorporating the value of one experience into the next. If your last bite of scrambled eggs accidentally mixes with the ketchup from your hash browns and you like the way it tastes, then you now have a tool to make tomorrow’s breakfast even more enjoyable than today’s. ‘Life In The Bonus Round’ is not a guaranteed pathway to success. No such guarantee exists. Instead, it is a collection of things I have done, people I have met and lessons I have learned that have brought me to where I now stand. It is the ketchup on my eggs.
I encourage you to absorb the pages that follow with your mind open to new strategies and new ideas. Some stories may seem outlandish and unbelievable while others you will find easily relatable. Whether you gain inspiration from my successes or laugh at my misfortunes, I hope they unlock new ways of thinking and introduce you to new behavioral tools that bring you that much closer to your ideal self.