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Chris Miller's Big Five for Life

Chris Miller's Big Five for Life

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Published by Chris Miller

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Published by: Chris Miller on May 31, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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A Letter to My Board of Advisors
The purpose of this letter is to let you know of my continued commitment to improving upon myself. I amrevamping my board of advisors that includes successful individuals from various industries and all walks of life toexchange ideas, critique my strategies, and help me learn the necessary skills to accomplish both my personal andprofessional aspirations. I have a deep respect for your success and would like to draw upon your experience andwisdom as I take on the project of continuous improvement of myself and the world around me.Your participation would require that you meet with me individually once a year for lunch or dinner
(unless I’ve
already arranged more frequent meetings with you in particular). At this meeting, I will do my best to pry more onthe topic of you rather than the contrary. Given enough time we will discuss my vision and introduce my strategiesfor the coming year. In addition, I will share with you the problems that I am facing and would like for you to helpme find ways around these problems to allow me to continue to grow.In exchange, you get a free meal and my undivided attention as to how in the world I could help you and yourorganization move forward as well.Most of the following will be discussed in the first meeting, however writing it down sure helps me stay on track.
If I Had $200,000,000…
At the age of 19 years old I picked up a book called Tested in the Trenches. TNT was written by Ron Carson, one of the top 100 financial advisors in the world, just so happened to have his office a few streets away from the bank Iwas working at the time so I was curious. Rather than getting lessons on investing and time management, thebook hit more on the subject of life priorities. A question was posed in the book that has forever changed my life.If you had $200,000,000 (Two Hundred Million) and 5 years to live, what would you do? And a further catch is thatyour to-do list can only be 5 items long.
Choose Wisely…
 A self-imposed bucket list of sorts designed to guide your life in a more meaningful way. As instructed, I took out apiece of paper and wrote down my list, made a bunch of revisions, and eventually came to:1)
Make Sure all the People in My Life I Care About Most Know What they Mean to Me2)
Quit my Job3)
Buy a House4)
Buy a Corvette5)
See the WorldAfter I finished my list I got to it right away (I only had 5 years and the clock was ticking!!!) I began typing an emailto the girl of my dreams who had recently broke up with me. That email turned into my first published book thatgave credit to my family, my siblings, and my closest friends for being the wonderful people they are. The bookalso achieved its underlying purpose, which was to force myself to be in a position where personal shame andhesitation to chase after what I wanted became a thing of the past.That one house I bought after I quit my job working at the bank has turned into my first baby business that is nowall grown up and taking care of itself. It afforded me the opportunity to buy a shiny yellow corvette that I have put50,000 miles on in less than a year and a half seeing as much of the world as possible. I made the promise to seeall fifty states before I used my passport, so I intentionally handicapped my geographic reach. Although we havesome unfinished business with the last item, I am blessed to have had the opportunities and am proud I took
advantage when action was needed, and in turn I have been able to cross off every item of this list. I have zero,zilch, none, not even a sliver of regrets of the things I have done with my life ever since I put together that list.Mistakes were inevitable and I may have set a record for how many mistakes can be made in such a short timespan. But they were important to be made and I am glad to have made them early.Besides making a dumb promise to wait to use my passport, I feel I made two tragic mistakes with my original list.
First, the goals weren’t big enough. I bargaine
d with life for a penny, and that is all it was willing to bear. Second,the to-do list items all had an end game, a finish line, a stopping point (although one house has turned into ahandful, and lord only knows what my corvette collection will turn into) at any rate I need a new to do list that willkeep me out of trouble for the rest of my life, one that may never be fulfilled.Part of my quest to cross off #5 led me to spend much of my time living in Tampa, FL. There I bumped into anangel of a human being in meeting Carissa Caricato. Little did she know about my own list, we had dinner onenight and she shared with me a philosophy called the Big Five. The phrase Big Five game was coined by big gamehunters and refers to the five most difficult animals in Africa to hunt on foot. Subsequently the term was adoptedby Safari tour operators for marketing purposes. The term is still used in most tourist and wildlife guides thatdiscuss African wildlife safaris. The idea is that no one flies halfway around the world to eat a Big Mac and to get asun tan. More important things are to be had, like seeing the Big Five! This is a philosophy that should be applied
to everyone’s lives, not
just to our African itineraries.The collection consists of the African elephant, black rhinoceros, Cape buffalo, lion, and the leopard. The membersof the Big Five were chosen for the difficulty in hunting them and the degree of danger involved, rather than theirsize. Much like a safari, our lives may be better served focusing on chasing down our own Big Five, and the higherthe difficulty, the higher the fulfillment once caught!Shortly after I had begun to see my old list completed, I started to get bored, depressed, bitter, and a bunch of other unpleasant things. After taking some time to step away from the hustle and bustle of my life, I havedetermined it was time to throw out my old list and create something new.
Without further ado, I give you…
#1 - See the World!
No better way to start off the next list with what you feel didn’t get fully completed off of the last list (one way
management consultants and efficiency coaches have taught me to make my daily to do lists). Although I havetraveled nearly every interstate our great nation has to offer, will have stepped foot in all 50 states by the end of this summer, and seen things I never thought I could imagine without ever leaving the borders of the United Statesof America, the time has come. I must use my passport. Bring on the new languages, new currencies, and possiblynew diseases my body can in no way prepare for on its own. I could not be more excited at this point in my life todo anything else. Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Czech Republic, Brazil, Ecuador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Venezuela,and Australia round out my top ten list
. I can’t wait!
 #2 - Invest Quality Time with Those That Are Moving Boldly Forward in Life
 Besides traveling, nothing brings me more happiness than being around other people that make me feel like I ammoving too slow or being too cautious. Nothing brings me more frustration or pain than being around those wholive their lives in fear and caution and try to impose that fear and caution onto others, regardless of how educatedor caring their opinion is.
Although the pedal can’t be placed to the medal at all times, it is obvious which
individuals live their lives in a fulfilled, outwardly way rather than in a way that makes them and everyone aroundthem shrink. If nothing else happens the rest of my life other than meeting more wonderful people that are boldlymoving forward, I believe the rest of my life will be assuredly exciting, fulfilling, memorable, and meaningful.
#3 -
Find “Her”
and Catch “Her”
Over the years I’ve been kicked in the teeth and al
l for the better when it comes to women. I have learned finding
the one isn’t all that difficult, it’s the sticking together and having them love you back the same way is the tricky
part I have yet to master. Three times I have had found the one and was prepared to spend the rest of my life withthem. They had other plans, and I congratulate them for moving on at the time and doing what their heart toldthem was right, even though it busted mine into two. As business proceeded and my personal developmentmatured, I have become somewhat picky, but extremely sure of what I am looking for in a better half. Previously, Iwas after someone who had the qualities of confidence, tact, and humor. Pick two out of the three and you have awonderful girl, but two
and only two leaves problems… being passive or weak without confidence, being cocky and
rude without tact, and being no fun without a little bit of humor! I see so many of my peers settle down with
significant others that didn’t seem to have everything they were after
, and I hear them find ways to justify how
they didn’t have forever to pick
a the perfect one or had to settle for this reason or that or justify ways of how sheis perfect for him, the clock was ticking and they had to choose or lose
I don’t subscribe to that nonsense. Findexactly what you want or don’t settle with anything at all!
(But do die trying).Add to that list of characteristics my biggest pet peeve in life where
 people know what they want, have it right in front of them,
but don’t take action
to get it 
. Well, when you apply action:
Confidence Becomes
A Strong Leader
Tact Creates Someone with
A Big Heart
Humor Blossoms into
A Free Spirit
 These are the three biggest things I try to facilitate not only in my life, but also in the lives of others, and I believethey are the things I would value above everything else when it comes to a relationship. My aim is to find awoman that naturally embodies these three values and recognizes and appreciates them in me just as I do in her.

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