645. Growing Elite Leaders by Choosing "Different"
Jake was in a career that was mostly satisfying. When his tightly scheduled life made him miss most of his daughter’s gymnastic performance, he realized he and his career were just not in sync anymore. A simple question from his wife was all it took to launch a dream they had both put off too long.
Jake Carlson is a business leader, inspirational speaker, and 9-to-5 dropout. After 11 years as a tax attorney, he chose “different.” Taking his three kids out of school for the adventure of a lifetime, they spent a year living in 12 countries from Bagan, Myanmar to Paris, France, overcoming robbery, redeye flights and eating haggis, while learning to love the rich cultures of the world. All of which he expected. What he didn’t expect was the journey of leadership this decision would create. From the high-rises of London to the nipa huts of Malaysia, the need for strong leadership is everywhere. But where are the leaders? Jake is on a mission to help elite achievers become leaders by mastering the CIA of Influence: Conviction, Irresistibility and Accountability.
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
“When I was at the formative age of eight, I remember sitting in the car next to my dad, listening to a cassette tape of the great Zig Ziglar. Here was a guy who gives you the idea that you can do anything if you really focus on what you believe in and what you want to change in the world. He said you can have an impact. As I look back, that is where it all began for me, this journey of personal development and leadership.”
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
“My daughter was competing in a gymnastics tournament. I had planned my day and had told everyone. I scheduled everything and did it all perfectly, but then I went five minutes over on my timing. I had scheduled myself too tight and got there just as she had finished and everyone was clapping. I had missed seeing it. That’s the part of an otherwise satisfying career that wasn’t working for me. I wanted to spend time with my kids—while they were still young—and get to know their personalities. I had always told my wife, ‘Someday we’re going to try international traveling as a family.’ Around that time, my wife asked me, ‘What if we try living overseas for a while?’ Right away, I was at the computer typing in different travel schedules. All I needed was for her to open that door a little bit and I was sticking my foot in.”
The Most Powerful Lesson Learned?
“I think people arrive in your life right when they’re supposed to. If you’re out there looking, putting yourself into positions where people can guide you, and if you’re open to advice, there are people out there who are willing to help you, to guide you. If you are honestly asking which doors you should go through, life kind of puts you on a path.”
Steps to Success from Jake Carlson
1. Take a deep dive internally to find out what makes you tick. What is it that excites you? When your talent is aligned with what the world needs, there is no stopping you.
2. Find a mentor or coach who can help you see the best options for you.
3. Avoid analysis paralysis by carefully distilling your career choices to a manageable number that lets you make wise decisions. Too many choices can be overwhelming.
4. Do not be deluded by the superficial images on social media that make you think everyone else’s life is better than yours. If you are “keeping up with the Joneses,” recognize you’re only seeing a mirage.
Connecting With Jake Carlson
Leadership Superpower Assessment, a free assessment to find out what platform of leadership you lead from, whether its inspiration, accountability, adaptability, problem solving, or confidence. Download at: https://jakeacarlson.com/DYT
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