12/11 PM – Back in a Working Groove

Worked all day today (as I am sure most of you did as well) and I am kind of tired this evening. Had a lunch meeting in Edgewater and an afternoon meeting in Basking Ridge with a detour in East Hanover to pick up a FedEx package that we shipped to the wrong address.

I love what I do for a living. I have been doing it a long time and without tooting my own horn I’m pretty darn good at it. Lately, particularly pre-cancer, I have felt that I haven’t really been at my best at it. Effort was there, results were there (relatively speaking if not personal bests) but something was missing. The passion that fueled success was waning. I usually can work all day then spend 2-3 hours at night on my laptop following up, emailing, taking care of admin stuff. That went missing for a time because I was fighting this fucking disease that I didn’t know I had. I was exhausted at the end of the day and just chalked it up to the fact that I was working so hard.

I felt (and still feel) guilty about missed opportunity due to my lack of focus or follow up. How many more clients could I have helped, how many more sales could I have made had I been more present and fought through the fatigue. I am a “high touch” guy. My family, my friends, my business partners and clients mean the world to me and if I am not talking or touching them all the time I am empty.

That’s my SILVER LINING today. I am thankful for the great business relationships that I have. As I work my way through the first cycle of treatment and weave this into my daily business life I have started sharing my MM diagnosis with clients. The response has been OVERWHELMING. Every one of them has been so supportive and positive. The SILVER LINING of this is that it has allowed me an opportunity to communicate more openly and personally with people who may never have seen that side of me. And because they don’t see that side of me I may never have seen that side of them. I really wanted to offer my journey through this to them as a way to set expectations and apologize for being less than my best over the past couple of months. What I found in return was the next level of a relationship with people and an opportunity to learn more about them and their struggles – sometimes personal, sometimes family, or sometimes a struggle they shared with another random person in their life. I think by the end of December we might have every financial advisor in New Jersey wearing a #bradstrong bracelet.

I always thought I had deep relationships with my clients – we all think that – but the experience of sharing a personal struggle has opened the possibility to get to know these people in a much different way. I hope that my clients never have to deal with personal struggles – but if they do – I hope they know I can be counted on to offer the same support and love they have given me.

That’s it. Sleepy tired. Bones feel fine. Appetite good. I am blessed. Still.

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