355: Isaac Lidsky: Overcoming Obstacles and Recognizing Opportunities in a World that Can’t See Clearly

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Isaac Lidsky “may possess the most eclectic resume in entrepreneurship” according to Inc. Magazine.

He played series regular “Weasel” on Saved by the Bell: The New Class; graduated from Harvard College at age nineteen with a degree in mathematics and computer science; graduated from Harvard Law School magna cum laude; served as a law clerk for Supreme Court Justices Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg; argued more than a dozen appeals in federal court on behalf of the United States and never lost a case; started a tech company that sold for $230 million; transformed a struggling $15 million concrete subcontractor into an industry-leading $150 million construction services company in five years; and founded Hope for Vision, a nonprofit organization that funds the development of treatments and cures for blinding diseases.

Lidsky was born with Retinitis Pigmentosa, a rare degenerative disease of the retina that caused him to gradually lose his sight. Lidsky lives in Windermere, Florida with his wife, Dorothy; their triplets, Lily Louise, Phineas, and Thaddeus; and baby Clementine.

Favorite Success Quote

“Try not to become a man of success, rather become a man of value” ~Albert Einstein

Key Points

1. Make Your Own Definition of Success

Each and every day, we are bombarded by images, videos, and social diatribes about what it means to be a success.

Fancy cars overtake us in traffic, well-dressed men dating beautiful models captivate our attention, and the “Houses in the Hills” earn both our scorn and envy.

And most of us allow this societal autopilot to determine our goals, dreams, and ambitions.

We all want to make millions, sleep with beautiful women, and have a luxurious lifestyle, but we never stop to ask ourselves why.

We define our success by the world’s standards instead of our own, and as a result, most of us are angry, confused, and frustrated.

But there is another way.

You have the power to create your own definition of success.

To decide for yourself what is important and what is not.

To create your own goals based on your deepest values and desires.

Forget what society says.

Success is subjective.

If you wake up each morning, happy, fulfilled, and full of life, then you are a success.

The only question that remains for you to answer is “What is my definition of success”?

2. Your Reality is Determined by Your Choices 

If you are drawing breath and reading this paragraph right now, then chances are, you have been through the ringer.

And if you haven’t, then you might want to put on your raincoat, because there are a couple of storms on the horizon that are headed in your direction.

Struggle is an axiom of the human experience.

Everyone has challenges, problems, and setbacks.

So why is it that two people who are faced with exactly the same circumstance can create massively different results?

One simple word.

Choice.

In each moment, you have the power to choose how your circumstances will affect you.

You can choose to believe that life is happening for you, that everything happens for a reason, and that you will achieve your goals and dreams.

Or you can choose to believe that life is happening to you, that people are all inherently evil and trying to hurt you, and that you are doomed to a life of failure.

The choice is yours.

But as the Knight in Indiana Jones said “Choose wisely.”

3. There is No Tomorrow 

Yesterday no longer exists.

It is nothing more than a series of mental projections that often occurred in a completely different manner than you remember.

Tomorrow has not yet arrived and never will.

All that we have is right now.

This present moment.

Take a minute to appreciate it.

Enjoy the next breath you take, feel the chair underneath you, listen to the sounds around you.

Each moment that we have is a gift, you must learn to appreciate it and be grateful for it instead of waiting for a tomorrow or “Someday” that may never come.

4. Reframe Fears as Fiction

In AA, they define fear as “False evidence appearing real”.

And truthfully, that is all that it is.

Most of the things that we worry about, lose sleep over, and allow to paralyze us will never come to fruition.

The worst case scenarios almost never happen, and when they do, they are rarely as awful as we initially imagined.

Fear is nothing but fiction.

Every fear that is holding you back and preventing you from achieving your greatness is little more than fiction.

It is a projection that your 10,000+ year old brain is creating to try and keep you safe from an imaginary fate.

Realize this.

Embrace this.

And step into your fear and take massive action.

5. Get Congruent with Your Values 

We live in a world that utterly and completely lacks integrity.

I don’t mean this in the sense that we all run around lying and breaking our promises, but rather in the sense that what we think, say, and do rarely align.

Most people think that they want to be rich, they say that they want to be well-off, and then they act like they want to be poor.

People say think that they want to be shredded and healthy, they say that they want to be in “Decent shape”, and then they act like their body is a playground to use and abuse.

People are rarely congruent and almost never in integrity with their values.

You need to realize that you cannot have your cake and eat it too.

You cannot say that you value health and well being and then abuse your body, skip the gym, and deprive yourself of sleep.

You cannot say that you value wealth and then spend every penny you make and waste hours on end in front of the television.

If you want to be successful, whatever your definition of success is, then the first step is to get in integrity with your values.

What do you want? Say it.

And once you say it, go and do it.

It’s that simple.

Influential Book

1. Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

2. Shogun by James Clavell

3. Call for the Dead: A George Smiley Novel by John le Carre

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Connect with Isaac Lidsky

http://www.lidsky.com/

Eyes Wide Open

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