It was an intense rival game, and our student crowd made a big mistake.

They got cocky a bit too early.

We were up by 10 with 2:20 left in the game, and they started chanting, “Nail in the coffin!”

We were playing Margheretta, which had special significance because our former Junior Varsity Coach, Greg, took the head coaching job there.

A little about Greg: Greg had a bit of an ego problem.

Who am I kidding – He was the cockiest human I had met up to that point of my life. Our entire school saw it, so we badly wanted to dish him a slice of humble pie.

But their best player got into the zone and just wouldn’t miss. Margheretta came back stronger than ever and made our crowd eat the pie.

Two years prior, during my Sophomore year, I was inserted into the final varsity game of the season with two minutes left and down 20 points. I shot an airball – my very first shot on the Varsity. That event alone was completely embarrassing, and further compounded by Greg saying in the hall the next day, “nice airball!”

What a Fucker (yes, with a capital “F”).

In the next rematch, of course, we wanted revenge.

But we came out real slow in the 1st half. We were not playing to our potential. I had zero points.

Lackluster, at best.

But the halftime speech from our head coach, Tom Bodager, changed it all. It was the single greatest motivational speech I’ve experienced so far in my 45 years.

Typically quiet and reserved, Coach Bodager unleashed the fury on us that we deserved.

I only remember 1 thing he said: “What do you want them to do, hand you the trophy?? You’ve got to go out on the floor and fucking EARN IT!” (I’m not sure he cussed, but it makes the story better so let’s go with it).

That was the single best stretch of basketball I’ve ever played. I scored fifteen points within three minutes and broke the game open. We never looked back.

We went out on the floor and earned it, and went on to win the Conference Title.

Sadly, Coach “B”, affectionately called by his players, passed away from cancer just over a year later. But the hundreds of players who played under him over a long successful career always fondly hold him in our hearts.

In today’s issue, I want to recognize that 2022 was a tough year for many of you. If you have any investments, they are most certainly down. If you have a business, it’s likely down too.

I’m going to lay out 3 things we can do in 2023 to go out into the marketplace and “earn it”.

Consuming Versus Producing

Let’s talk about your business. A couple of mine are down, and I know from conversations, many of yours are too. It’s a natural part of the business cycle.

The mentality that I see, especially from young entrepreneurs, is when it’s going up, they think it’s going to go up forever, and when it’s down, they feel like it’s never going to come back.

So, here’s my question:

If you honestly look back on 2022, did you consume more content than you created?

When I say content, I mean social media posts, emails, marketing videos like short form, and blogs and podcasts, if you do them.

Never before in human history has the “little guy”, the small business owner or solopreneur, had a marketplace where you can reach thousands and thousands of people with your message for free or very low cost.

The price of admission is discipline and thinking time. Thinking is the hardest work humans can do. That’s why most don’t engage in it, and instead, aimlessly and mindlessly scroll through their social media feeds for hours every blessed day and then whine about their situation.

Although I produced a lot of content in 2022, I spent a great deal consuming it too. The Russia/Ukraine war has captivated my attention for most of the year.

It’s truly a fascinating tale of good versus evil. I love reading about the Ukrainian successes on the battlefield. It stokes the same feelings as reading about the Allied battles against Hitler and his evil ways.

But at the end of the day, I cannot do anything to help the Ukrainian citizens getting pounded mercilessly by Putin. It only invokes hatred and vengeance.

Instead, if I take that same time and energy and invest it into creating positive, value-based content that can help people solve a problem, clear an issue, or understand a new concept, I can certainly make more money.

I pledge $10,000 to the people of Ukraine in 2023. And I’m going to earn that extra $10,000 by staying focused on my zone of genius, and instead of merely reading about them or praying for them, I’m going to help them as best I can.

By doing what I do best.

The amount of quality content that I’m going to put out into the marketplace and earn the right to have my best year ever, despite whatever’s going on in the economy, is going to be serious.

What are you going to do?

Let’s double or triple down. Bear markets have historically produced insane wealth. I suspect this time will be no different.

Enhancing Your Most Valuable Resource: Energy

We all know that money doesn’t necessarily buy happiness, but having abundance can give you the financial freedom to make decisions that improve your quality of life.

How do you get there?

One key factor is Energy. Having more energy means being able to work longer hours and be more productive with your time. Increased productivity can lead to higher wages or promotions at work, allowing you to make even more money in the long run.

Investing in ways to increase your energy levels could end up paying off financially in the future.

Having more energy is essential if you want to achieve financial freedom. There are several ways to increase your energy and get on the path towards greater financial security.

From adopting healthy eating habits and exercising regularly, to getting enough sleep each night and managing stress effectively, you will undoubtedly boost your energy so that you can maximize your potential for success.

There are reasons my wife and I are in very good shape for the ages of 45 & 43. We do not have six packs and have never had them. We don’t care.

We eat a healthy breakfast, prepare our lunches, and cook our dinners at home. We workout several times a week. And we take high quality supplements and use technology available today in meal replacements.

Yes, we have plenty of cheat meals and strive for balance. I enjoy pizza, cookies, and a glass of bourbon quite often.

Friends, it’s going to be a hard slog to make 2023 your best, most productive year yet when your energy is low and you’re carrying around an extra twenty or so pounds. You simply cannot operate at your peak potential.

Attack it.

Consider getting some help. My wife is an excellent coach and you can use the same system that we have for the past two decades. Message her on Instagram @mybodytransformationcoach and start making some changes.

Hold On Or Buy More

We’ve covered what to do with your business and your energy, so let’s tackle your investments. For anyone in the stock, bond, or crypto markets, it’s been one terrible year. But this is not the time to sell.

I can understand why anyone would want to get out and stop the carnage. Even traditional safe haven assets like bonds are down 30%. There has literally been nowhere to hide, except for certain segments of cash flowing real estate.

There’s a good possibility we have not seen the worst of it yet, as scary as that sounds.

It can be tempting to sell off stocks or crypto when the markets are down, but this could be a costly mistake. Although it may seem like you’re protecting yourself from further losses in the short term, you’ll miss out on future gains when the markets eventually recover.

Selling your investments when prices are low only locks in your loss and eliminates any chance of recouping your money later.

Making the rash decision to sell off all of your holdings during times of uncertainty can leave you feeling regretful afterwards as well. It’s important to remember that investing is about having patience and taking calculated risks; selling during market dips should not be done hastily or without careful consideration of potential outcomes.

I’m not selling anything. I’m HODLing (Holding On for Dear Life).

I cannot time the markets in the short term. Very few can. But I know where the markets are eventually headed.

I know that many great companies are severely undervalued and have the potential to go up. I know that crypto will absolutely rise again.

When it comes to investing, one of the most important strategies for success is selling your stocks or crypto into market strength and not into market weakness. This means that when prices are rising and there is a strong demand for the asset, you should be selling some of your holdings in order to capitalize on the gains.

On the other hand, if prices are declining and there is a weak demand for the asset, you should avoid selling as this will likely result in losses. By following this strategy of selling into market strength instead of market weakness, investors can maximize their returns while minimizing their risks.

It’s easy to say, but extremely difficult to do.

The fear of further losses or missing out on potential profits can cause investors to panic and sell off their assets quickly without fully understanding the implications of their actions.

In addition, media coverage about stock prices falling can also create more anxiety for investors and prompt them to take action even if it’s not in their best interest. Ultimately, these knee-jerk reactions from panicked investors tend to drive down prices even further which only exacerbates the problem.

That’s the key: Don’t panic.

Either buy more, as the assets are on sale and you make money when you buy.

Or hold on. For dear life.