"The greatest value in life is not what you get. The greatest value in life is what you become. Major question to ask on the job is not, “What am I getting here?” That’s not the major question. The major question question to ask is, “What am I becoming here?” It’s not what you get that makes you valuable, it’s what you become that makes you valuable."

"If all of your negative relatives all turned positive, what’ll that do for your future? Not much. If prices come down a little, what’ll that do for your future? Not much. If the economy gets a little better, what’ll that do for your future? Not much. If circumstances get a little better, what’ll that do? Not much. If the weather gets a little bit better over the next few years, that’ll do? Not much. I mean you can go right down this whole scenario list.

Most people all their lives, with their fingers crossed, count on this “not much” -list. That’s why ten years from now they’ll be driving what they don’t want to drive, living where they don’t want to live, wearing what they don’t want to wear, doing what they don’t want to do, having what they don’t want to have. Maybe become what they didn’t want to become. And it all starts by counting on something that’s not going to count much.

You say, “Well, then how can my life dramatically change?” You’ve got to count on yourself. And here’s one of the things you’ve got to count on: your ability to design the future. It’s called the promise. And the promise of the future, if you’ll design it well, can have an awesome effect on your life. But if you face the future with apprehension, you’ll take hesitant steps all day, uncertain steps all day–and if you’ll take uncertain steps all day for six years, you can imagine how empty your life can be.

Now here’s what’s connected to the promise: the price. The price to pay. But I’m telling you: the price is easy if the promise is clear. One of the better notes to make today. The price is easy if the promise is clear and powerful. But the price seems almost too much to pay; too much to get over; too much to accomplish; if the promise isn’t clear; if the promise isn’t powerful. I’m telling you: people will pay the disciplines if they can see the promise of the future. But if they can’t see, they don’t want to pay. We will pay the most extraordinary disciplines if we can see the promise of the future, called setting goals.

So I’m asking you to get a handle on the future. I’m asking you not to leave it to anyone else. Don’t leave it to the company; companies got their own goals. I’m asking you to set your own goals; your personal goals. Income goals, financial goals, health goals, spiritual goals, and where do you want to go, what do you want to do, what do you want to see, what do you want to be, that’s it; the promise of the future. Design your own future. It’s within your hands and in your capacity to do so."

"Here’s how simple goal setting is: decide what you want and write it down. Make a list."

"Resolve says, “I will.” Two of the most powerful words in the language."

"Negative is normal. You’ve got to handle it. You can’t dismiss it. It’s part of the life scenario, like your white core blood cells. So don’t ignore it. Let it be part of the scenario. Here’s the key: learn to master it. Negative is not to be ignored, it is to be mastered. It makes us better than we are to wrestle with it. It makes us better than we are to be alerted to tyranny that moves into Kuwait. Or ignorance that moves in to your life, or procrastination that moves in and robs you of your fortune. You’ve got to do battle with the enemies on the outside and in the inside. "

"Disgust is a negative emotion but it can have a very positive, powerful effect. Disgust says, “I’ve had it!” What an important day that could be."

"Ants never quit. What a good philosophy. If they’re going somewhere, you stop them – guess what – they’ll look for another way. How long will they look? Till they find it, or till they die. What a great philosophy. Also, ants think winter all summer. You’ve got to be at least that bright, you can’t think summer all summer. You’ve got to do some winter thinking in the summer. You say, “well the sky is blue, the clouds are fleecy.” You can’t be faked out by that. Ancient story says don’t build your house on the sand in the summer. Why would we be cautioned not to build our house on the sand in the summer? Because it’s so easy to get faked out. So what should you do during the summer? Think winter, think storm. That’ll drive you to find a rock in the summer when the sky’s blue."

"How you’re going to identify with some people if you don’t cry with them?"

"There wouldn’t be positive without the negative. It’s part of the life scenario. Ancient scenario says it best: there’s a time to laugh and a time to cry. And you’ve got to become so sophisticated and so well educated that you don’t laugh when it’s time to cry."

"The more you care the stronger you can be. The more you care as a mother the stronger you can be with your children. The more you care as a father the stronger you can be. The more you care as a leader the stronger you can be. In helping to solve problems, getting on somebody’s case – the more you care. But you’ve got to care. Otherwise it’s a performance. Otherwise we could all dismiss it. Why? The heart’s not there. There are some conversations that don’t make sense unless they’re accompanied by tears. It doesn’t mean anything, unless it’s accompanied by a broken heart."

"Don’t shoot a cannon at a rabbit. It’s effective, but you’ve got no more rabbit."

"Ancient scenario says there are shepherds, and there are sheep, and there are wolves. What a good life scenario. But it doesn’t stop there. This ancient scenario says, also, that some wolves are so clever they’ve learned to dress up as sheep."

"One who became an Apostle – leader of the Christians, Saul of Tarsus – hater and killer of the Christians. After he was converted, he became a leader, he became Paul Apostle–revered. Why was he so effective in his language and in his ability to touch people with his words and with his presence? He gave an account of his own life and said here’s why I think I’m so effective: “I remember the pit I came from. Sure, they call me Apostle, but I used to kill these Christians, and I never forget that.” If I want to get in touch with other people’s difficulty, I’ve got to remember my own difficulty."

"One of the best ways to identify with a child who’s twelve when you’re forty is to remember when you were twelve. Go back, go back, remember the scenario, and let it hit you again, let it touch you again. I remember almost every day being twelve. It's a unique year. For one, you're not thirteen."

"You’ve got to understand where people are coming from, where they’ve been, what’s going on. Sensitivity training is so important. People not like you. People who've got challenges, and problems, and difficulties. You got to do your best to be sensitive to other people – where they find themselves, and the pit they might be in currently."

"Think of more disciplines. Think of more ways and means in which to use your own wisdom and your own philosophy, and your own attitude, your own faith, your own courage, your own commitment, your own desires, your own excitement–invest it, invest it, invest it, invest it in disciplines so that it’s not wasted."

"What you’ve got to read is both warnings and examples. We need both sides of the scenario. We need balance–both sides–good and evil. You need a book on Gandhi, and you need a book on Hitler. One to illustrate how high a human being can go, the other to illustrate how low and despicable a human being can become."

"The shortest history lesson: opportunity mixed with difficulty."

"Don’t sell out. Ancient phrase says, “Count the cost.” An ancient story says, “Judas got the money.” You say, “Well, that’s a success story.” No, no! It’s true, thirty pieces of silver in those days was a size of a fortune. You say, “Well, if a guy’s got a fortune, right, that’s a success story.” No, you don’t understand–his name was Judas, doesn’t that ring a bell? Judas! You say, “Oh, yes, Judas–Judas the Traitor.” That’s right! The Traitor got the money! Doesn’t that change the story? The answer is: of course it changes the story. Interestingly enough, after Judas gets the money from becoming a traitor, he’s got the money in his hot little hand and now he’s unhappy. Someone says, “Well if you had a fortune, how could you be unhappy?” Well, he wasn’t unhappy with the money. He was unhappy with himself. Key phrase: the greatest source of unhappiness is self-unhappiness. The greatest source of unhappiness doesn’t come from outside–the greatest source of unhappiness comes from inside. And here’s where the erosion starts: doing a little less than you could. That’s where the beginning–little infection of unhappines starts–doing a little less than you can, not feeling that good about yourself. So don’t let that happen. Judas is unhappy, says, “What will I do?” He says, “Oh, just take money back!” Walked in where he got the money and said, “Here, take this money, I’m unhappy.” They said; “Heck with you, Judas–we got what we wanted, you got what you wanted–out!” They threw him out, with his money. Judas says, “Well, what will I do now?” He says, “Oh, clever, should’ve thought this first–I’ll just throw the money away!” And he proceeded to throw his fortune away. Why would he throw his fortune away? He was so unhappy with himself. And that’s not even the end of the scenario. After he threw his fortune away, he couldn’t change what he had became–a traitor–and now in total abject frustration, he goes out and hangs his worthless self. Why such a tragic end? Because he was so unhappy with himself. He sold out, he paid too big a price. Ancient script sums it all up, “What if you gained the whole world and it cost you your soul?”"

"Here’s a key word: beware. If Judas could speak back, he’d probably say, “Beware.” Two good words from ancient script. One, “behold”; the positive word. Behold the possibilities, behold the opportunity, behold the drama, behold the awesomeness, behold the uniqueness, behold the majesty, behold–behold. What a good word. But here’s the other word: beware. Beware. Don’t sell out. Mark well what you become in pursuit of what you want."

"In the beginning Jehovah God spoke and said, “Let there be light.” And what? There was light. Wow! It looks like words create light. Is that possible? Humans can get pretty close. What if somebody can’t possibly see how they could do well, how they could transform their lives, their health, their future, their finances, spiritually, and every other way–they can’t see!–and you come along and share your story and maybe borrow some other stories. And by the time you get through with a good presentation to this person, they say, “Now I can see. Before you got here I was blind. I was in the dark. And while you were talking some things dawned on me.”"

"Let life touch you. Let sad things make you sad. Let happy things make you happy. I’m telling you–you give in to the emotion."