Does it help your kids when….

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This past weekend I held my Rainmaker Alchemist summit. Adam Kreitman from St. Louis introduced himself. I knew Adam from his story of finding my Google book, engineering a business turnaround, then becoming a PPC consultant.

He’s been independent now for 5 years. On Sunday afternoon he told me a surprising story:

“Do you remember your ritual of writing ONE positive thing in a little notebook, every single day?”

“Sure,” I said. I wrote about that several times.

“I’m terribly inconsistent at doing it,” he confessed. But for my daughter’s 9 year old birthday, I gave her a little black notebook. I told her to write down one thing she’s thankful for every single day.

“And you know what? Ever since, she’s been faithfully doing that, EVERY day. Without fail. She says it’s the best gift we’ve ever given her, by far!”

The expression on his face was a blend of joy, and unguarded, ‘I’ve got a super-soft-spot for my little girl” vulnerability.

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“Hopefully,” he says, suddenly grinning ear to ear, “We’re making a few deposits that’ll come in real handy when she’s a teenager.”

A lot of people knock business. Cuz it takes you away FROM your family, etc etc. ‘Nobody ever says I wish I spent more hours at the office’ etc etc. But people don’t give entrepreneurs enough credit for how much they contribute TO their family:

Does it help your kids when you’re NOT staring vacantly into the TV every night?

Does it help your kids when your whole orientation is conquering challenges?

Does it help your kids when you’re passionately devoted to personal improvement?

Does it help your kids when you do what you do because of your choices, instead of The Man jerking your chain?

Does it help your kids when other people rely on you and respect you for your accomplishments?

I think so.

Seize the day,

Perry Marshall

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About the Author

Perry Marshall has launched two revolutions in sales and marketing. In Pay-Per-Click advertising, he pioneered best practices and wrote the world's best selling book on Google advertising. And he's driven the 80/20 Principle deeper than any other author, creating a new movement in business.

He is referenced across the Internet and by Harvard Business Review, The New York Times, INC and Forbes Magazine.

9 Comments on “Does it help your kids when….”

  1. Perry,

    You are the man. Love how you just tell it like it is.

    It’s not just about the quantity of interaction, but the quality.

    Hating yourself and your life is not a great emotional state in which to be raising your children, unless that’s what you want for them as well.

  2. Great post Perry.

    I bet everyone who reads your blog has a similar story, if they stop for a minute to think about it.

    I remember the day my dad gave me “How to win friends and influence people”. I think I was 8 at the time… (4 decades ago)

    It literally altered the course of my life.

    Thank you for reminding me.

    I need to give dad a call and thank him.


  3. Our Daddy was a surgeon. He’s been forced into an early retirement due to a disability that was the result of many factors–among them–overwork. Our Daughters didn’t watch their Dad go out to work each day… He was usually gone before They woke up. Furthermore–I allowed Them to stay up way past what most Parents would consider a prudent bedtime for school-aged Children… but if I didn’t–They’d hardly ever get to see Their Dad. The main meal that They got to share with Him each week was dinner on Tuesday–His office day. I’d cook a meal and bring it down–with Our Girls–to the Nurses’ lunchroom so We all could eat together before He’d have to go make evening rounds at the hospital. Thank Goodness-I didn’t work an outside job–too… Or–Our Family NEVER could’ve survived His killer hours. And–Frankly–If He didn’t have the support from the home-front that I was able to provide to Him–He couldn’t have survived The Demands of His Field for as long as He did–Either.

    This IS A Tough & VERY Competitive World…

    It takes nearly All of One’s Time & Most of One’s Strength to climb the Learning Curves to Attain & THEN Maintain Marketable Skills…

    KNOW That–IN Order For You To Do The Work Necessary To Support Yourself & Your Family AND Demonstrate To Your Children The Hours & Dedication Required To Succeed–

    Must Be Supported & Relieved From Having To Manage The MANY Personal & Financial & Technical & House & Yard & Meal-Service Related Details Required To Run Orderly Households & Raise Healthy Children IN The 21st Century.

    Families ARE Teams.
    Everybody’s Got To Do Their Part & Hold In High Regard The Work & Workers Who Do The OTHER Parts.

    AND–IF You DO Feel That Your Work HAS Taken You So Far From Your Family… That You Feel Disconnected From THEM–And The People At Work NOW Feel MORE Like Your REAL Family…

    THEN–Houston, We Have A Problem…

    And At A Minimum…
    Start Paying Attention To What Your Kids Are Working&Playing Hard ON–IN Their Lives…

    1. It’ll Do Y’all A World of Good…

    2. Observing Your Kids Interacting With Each-Other & Their Friends IS One of The Highest Octane Sources of Inspiration EVER/ANYWHERE…

    And 3. Believe IT or NOT…
    Watching Your Kids At Play&Work IS Entertainment!… NOT cheap Entertainment–But Great Entertainment… never-the-less.

    And Don’t Let ANYONE Tell You Otherwise…
    or make you feel small for preferring your kids’ company to Theirs…

    You’ll Meet OTHER Adults Worth Knowing & Learning From–AT–The Kids’ Events !!

  4. Thanks Perry,

    I so appreciate the inspirational posts. Just this morning, I told my wife that I feel like one of the luckiest people in the world. Because I have my own consulting business, I get to work hard from 8:30-2:30 every day, then pick up my kids from school, helping them with homework, and taking them to soccer most days. Do you think my kids benefit from that?

    It’s fun explaining to my six year old why daddy does not have a job. Even though he does not remember a time when I was working a job, it is still his context. After several explanations, he now understands that daddy helps other people grow their businesses, and that is how we have such a nice life.

    Thanks for all of the great stuff you put out into the world!

    1. Not long ago I asked my 7 year old what marketing is. He replied, “Marketing is selling stuff, making money and making progress.”

  5. Awesome article Perry. I sometimes feel like entrepreneurs are looked at, as not spending time with family and only focusing on work. This is a really good angle on being a business person. Thanks Perry

  6. So I walk out of meeting and have a voicemail from a woman who says “I just ready about you in Perry’s email and want to find out about your services.” Then I check my email and find this!

    Thank you for sharing that story Perry…the $9 we spent on that notebook and pen will probably have the best ROI of any investment we ever make.

    And thanks again to you and your team for putting on an incredible seminar last weekend. The content and contacts were amazing and I think all of us walked out of there feeling 10 feet tall.


    P.S. Susan, what a great story. What a fantastic lesson to learn at that age (or any age for that matter!).

  7. Dear Perry,

    I’v followed you for seven years now. I am always inspired and heartened by your “tell it like it is” style.

    But your email today really touched my heart. I have been struggling for years with issues of self-worth, but this just said it all for me.

    YES, it helps my kids, even though they (and their Dad) can’t see what is happening inside. Yes, we are making deposits for them in the Bank that keeps track of things money can’t buy.

    Thanks Perry!

  8. I couldn’t agree more!

    While in Hawaii for one of your seminars, my seven year-old son, Mark, and I were walking along the beach one morning. We noticed a wide, vacant piece of property right on the beach. I was surprised that such a prime spot of real estate was unoccupied. Mark asked why I found that so surprising, so we had a conversation about real-life Monopoly.

    I didn’t get very far when my wise little man picked up the conversation himself…”Then, when you build a business you not only make money, but you make jobs for other people to make money…and POW! You can change the world!” he exclaimed.

    “Yes, Mark, that’s exactly right,” I said as we kept walking.

    He then asked, “Are we changing the world with SOAR?”

    I stopped, lifted him up on a small side wall so were eye-to-eye and said, “Mark, we certainly are working to change the world. Your dad and I work to live our lives in the top 1% of ‘excellence.’ That means that we are always trying to learn more, be kind, do things for others, and build a business that can be a successful as possible…for us and others. It’s a lot of work and can be a little lonely sometimes, but we think it’s worth it. Whaddya say…are you in?”

    “HECK, YEAH!” he said as he lunged down from the wall and into my arms with a big ‘ol hug!

    Yeah…that wouldn’t have happened if his father and I were still in the classroom every day. (Of course, his principal that threatened me with “educational neglect” charges over taking him out of school for that trip has no clue. NO CLUE.)

    Like I said…it can get a little lonely sometimes. But, it’s so worth it!

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