Life Isn’t Practice

Published on December 14, 2011

My current favorite book is “Aspire” by Kevin Hall. It was a gift from a dear friend and came with a beautiful note inside from his as well as being personally autographed by the author.

The book was an easy read and had a profound impact on me right away. I found myself engrossed in Kevin Hall’s passion for certain words in our vocabulary that we often just take for granted and use without having a true sense of the real meaning behind them. I especially appreciated the lessons on Genshai and Namaste.

In the second chapter of the book Hall introduces the word, “Pathfinder.” It wasn’t the word in this chapter, however, that made the biggest impact. He used a story to illustrate the point of finding our path and that story really hit home.

The story reflected upon a study that had been done by Dr. Gerald Bell, a professor at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Yes, this is the same Dr. Bell who helped the North Carolina basketball team win the national championship when a freshman named Michael Jordan was on the team. The study conducted by Dr. Bell included studying the lives of 4,000 retired executives.

These proven business leaders were asked a question: “If you could live your life over again, what would you do differently?” Here are the answers they gave.

Important note: The first answer ranked far ahead of those that followed.

  • I should have taken charge of my life and set my goals earlier. Life isn’t practice, it’s the real thing.
  • I would have taken better care of my health.
  • I would have managed my money better.
  • I would have spent more time with my family.
  • I would have spent more time on personal development.
  • I would have had more fun.
  • I would have planned my career better.
  • I would have given more back.

If you are in the “prime” of your career like I am, it may be hard some days to really balance it all out. This study and the book, Aspire, have given me some things to think about.

I am choosing to make changes in my life now so that when some graduate student comes to me in my 70’s or beyond and asks me the question, “If you could live your life over again, what would you do differently,” I can honestly say, “Not a thing. I did it right the first time... It was the real thing.”

What will your response be?


Nikki and Chris Buckelew are recognized international real estate coaches, trainers, and speakers. Their specialty is coaching and consulting real estate agents and brokers toward creating highly profitable businesses and amazingly successful lives.  Clients who hire Nikki and Chris are often seeking assistance in increasing their profitability without sacrificing their health, relationships, and core values. For more information go to

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