By Dan Lacasse, Mentor
When I was in my “searching for knowledge” days about nine or ten years ago, I went to a seminar where I met my all time favorite speaker, Jim Rohn. He was to put on an all day event right in my hometown of Edmonton, Canada.
It was called “Success in the 90’s.” I knew if I had an opportunity to attend and participate in one of his seminars and even possibly meet him, I certainly wasn’t going to miss my chance. I had something important to tell him, and an opportunity presented itself to do just that.
After the seminar was over I waited for him to come down from the stage where he was to mingle with his fans and even sign an autograph or two. He was much older and smaller in stature in real life than I’d imagined him to be. His white hair cut short and in a nice dark suit, he spoke to the crowd gathered around him. He spoke in that familiar low tone that for years pushed me further down the success track where he gave me the belief that my past does not equal my future. I just stood there in awe face to face with the man that spoke thru my dashboard for four straight years.
What made him so intriguing was that he gave good solid information with good old-fashioned humor and wit, and I loved every minute of it. I listened to his tapes everywhere I went and after a while I started to talk like him and to this day he is still my all time favorite speaker (and I’ve heard a lot of different speakers).
A gentleman in the crowd started the conversation by asking “With so much talk about making money and trying to be successful, where would you suggest I focus most of my time and effort on in the beginning stages of my new career?”
Jim slowly looked at the crowd and then at him saying in his slow, low tone;
“Watch your thoughts; they will become your beliefs.
Watch your beliefs; they will become your words.
Watch your words; they will become your actions.
Watch your actions; they will become your destiny”
and with that he grabbed a glass of water and there was a silence within the crowd, all of them comprehending what was just said.
I owe you. It was after some time with him speaking to the crowd that I made my way to the front, and it was now my turn to tell him something that was long overdue.
I introduced myself and proceeded to tell him my story that was about four years in the making. Many years ago I heard about him through an acquaintance that went on to make it big in a network marketing company.
“It was all because of Jim Rohn”, the acquaintance went on to tell me, “and after listening to him for several years my business grew to the point where I now have a wonderful life with all the toys that come with it.”
And with that he handed me a set of copied tapes. He said “Dan, I’m handing these pirated tapes over to you now, so you can go onto greatness.”
He sat down and told me a story that has forever been etched into my mind. He told me he didn’t have the money to go to Jim Rohn’s seminar in the early 80’s, so he asked a friend that was going, to copy the event on tape. When he finally got them he listened every day with out fail.
Then, many years later when he was about to receive his Gold level status in his MLM Company that he was with, he wanted to personally give Jim Rohn a certified cheque in the amount of $500 for the tapes he pirated four years earlier.
He found out that the motivational speaker was to be given a ride from the seminar to the airport by friend that had a limo. He worked out a plan to come along for the ride and present the cheque in person.
When he presented the cheque and told him his story, Jim looked at him and told him these words;
“I will not accept this cheque, because if I affected your life in a positive way, it is worth it to me for you to keep it.”
Now some eight years later standing in front Mr. Rohn myself in the late 1990’s the story was about to play out again, now for the second time. Jim reached out to shake my hand, and as he did so smiled and said “How is that gentleman doing anyway?” and I said, “He’s fine, just fine.”
I heard the crowd mumble behind me as I thanked him and offered to pay for the pirated tapes myself.
He just smiled and said, “Just go out and be successful” and with that, a woman posed a question to him and then in a flash my time with him was over. I’ll never forget it.