I spent the past half hour or so sending a response to a long-time friend who thought I owed him a phone call.
A phone call isn’t much to ask. This person has done many things for me over the last decade or more, but I’ve been crazy busy with the launch of the movie and planning for my Impact 20 Years of Impact Celebration Event and I just didn’t want to get on the phone and talk yesterday.
A lot of people who are in the public eye have this kind of issue. Another friend was asking me about the response of Dan Zitofsky when they offered to take him out to lunch, and I also remember it coming up at some of my events when people like Mike Koenigs or Brendon Burchard were speaking and people wanted to take them to lunch to “pick their brains.”
If you are offering, it’s a really nice thing to offer and many times I would LOVE to have lunch. In fact, I had done that for this friend before.
But, I really need to watch my waistline and lunch can turn into half a day. A phone call takes 20 minutes plus and I have seemingly hundreds to make.
I don’t have a huge crowd of people that want to talk on the phone or go out to lunch with me, but I do maintain relationships of various depths with literally thousands of people.
I love that!
And it’s great when we can get together in person and spend time together. I love that!
That’s why I do events. And yes I even love to eat! Please come to my event!
My friend has followed my events and has called me a mentor, but my friend hasn’t purchased coaching or mentoring from me.
But, my friend was telling me that I owed him a phone call because of all that he had done for me.
So why am I sharing this?
Well, I took a half-hour to respond and I like to repurpose the things I write.
And it’s because you may not understand my philosophy on receiving and giving gifts and
I want to make it clear to all of the wonderful people who are kind enough to do wonderful things for me.
Here’s a small part of what I replied to my friend.
I have to admit that I got a little frustrated with your reply on Tuesday.
We have a long history and so often you have called me your mentor, so I’m going to take the invitation to do a bit of mentoring.
This is unsolicited advice, so please feel free to take it or ignore it at your choice.
Most free advice isn’t worth much and all of the choices are yours.
You have the freedom to live your life the way you want to live it.
The only advice I can give comes from my own experience and your experiences will by definition be different than mine as will your choices.
Thank God we have the freedom to make our own.
In your comments, you mentioned all of the times you have helped me.
I genuinely appreciate those things.
You said, “I am behind you,.. 1000%, but I ask the same of you.”
This is where I have a philosophy that many people don’t understand.
I believe that gifts are for the giver.
If you choose to give a gift, it makes the world a better place and you should feel good about that.
If you expect something in return …
It’s not a gift.
It’s a debt.
I love getting gifts, but I never really liked being in debt.
Here’s the way, I live my life.
I’m really good at giving gifts and accepting gifts because I know that true gifts make the world so much better.
But, if you are expecting to give me something and receive something in return then that’s either a business transaction or a debt.
If we both see a win/win for a transaction then we can create an agreement and make it happen.
The idea of giving to get is not one I personally live by and I don’t recommend it.
I hope this explains how I feel.
I appreciate you and I want all the best for you.
I want to be able to give freely to you.
I just don’t want to be in debt to you.
All the best,
Best-Selling Author and Producer