Day 10: I am a Millionaire. Reading doesn’t work.

Welcome to Day 10.

Ok let’s switch gears. I asked you to desk search <How to become a millionaire> everyday for about seven days, seven minutes a day.  Before we go any further, did you do that? This is me you are talking to. Did you do seven minutes a day on desk searching that topic?

Let’s say you did. What did you discover? What did you find? What jumped out at you? Did you engage with the material?

I am going to tell you something that is so widely known you will probably roll your eyes.

Your brain has a left and a right hemisphere. Left processes words; right processes pictures. This blog engages your left brain. Reading, reading, reading. Very smart people do lots of reading desperately looking for new ideas. Desperately looking for the key that unlocks the bank vault, that turns on the money tap.

You can read all you want. You will not turn anything on by just reading. Getting more information is a left brain thing. If more information did it I’d be telling you to read more. I want you to read more but importantly I want you to engage with what you are reading.

Reading does expose you to what’s out there.

When I was doing my psych degree I had to read extensively. It was a prerequisite for any assignment. Honestly, when you do a psych degree you’d better get the message that you have a massive obligation to your clients to be well read. Psych work is a huge responsibility.

I get very annoyed with people who have done a two week coaching course and the topic of ethics was never discussed. Ethics like do not give advice you are not qualified to give. I know a LOT about abnormal psychology but I know enough to not treat dysfunctions and clinical issues. I refer.

I recently heard someone telling a client that depression was made up. All in the head. The person is not a GP. I heard of a coach who advised his client to leave his wife. That is unethical. I heard another coach advising his client to have multiple sex partners. That advice is unethical. Over five years of HARD study I think ethics, duty of care and my oath to do no harm was firmly implanted. Cowboys believe they know everything and can fix everything.

Sorry, I need to get off my soapbox and back to the topic!

I discovered a lot of lecturers simply flip to your bibliography to see how much reading you put into the assignment – then they look to see exactly how those references were used in your assignment. And how you made sense of those references.

Here’s what I found.

Most of the information I needed for my assignment showed up in the first 8-12 articles. After that whatever I read was simply reinforcing that material. But the more widely I read the more grounding I had for the topic and ironically the better informed and the more deeply I understood the basics.

Then I started to see patterns of information. And themes and categories. And then I started getting my own ideas.

For example, because I am a leadership specialists I read a lot about leadership. I’ve studied personality and style. I’ve read Lewin et al (1940) on the three types of leader that still underpins most people’s views on leading. Most don’t even know where that idea actually came from.

So the more I read the more insights I had about coaching business leaders.

One day in 1998,  I had an epiphany about leading as it relates to life and limb, high compliance scenarios. What do highly effective leaders do under extreme pressure? I developed a simple model then tested my model and over time discovered it works wonderfully in life and limb and less stringent scenarios. And I have used that model of developing leaders ever since to help my clients make enormous strides forward in effectiveness as a boss or a manager or a leader.

But the topic to hand is being a millionaire. So do the reading. Did you start to see patterns, and themes? Did you find stuff you disagreed with? Stuff that sparked you up? Did you start getting millionaire ideas?

Here’s the ting. It’s not what the ideas mean, it’s what the ideas mean … to you.

At some point you need to STOP reading, shut your eyes – if that helps – and start engaging with what you just read. See you self using those ideas.

I did not give you that activity to stockpile general knowledge.

Being a millionaire is quite easy – sell something worth a million. Deliver something of value worth a million over whatever time it takes. Or all at once. A mate of mine brokered the sale of an passenger aeroplane and his commission was $1.3M.  Another mate sold $12M worth of $19.97 e-books over four years.

But engage with the information.

Did you skim read for concepts or did you reread and engage? Of what you read, what engaged you? and how did you engage with the information you read?

What did you think?

Importantly, what did you see?

And: what did you feel?

Pay attention. Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT) gets you to tune into the thoughts, feelings, emotions, urges and memories mindfully. The primary tool is noticing. Notice what happened. Notice what you felt. Pay attention.  You must learn to pay attention.


So lets start Exercise 2.

I want you to do 10 minutes desk search on YOUR industry. If you are a plumber desk search plumbing companies. If you are a management consultant, desk search management consultants. If you are a personal trainer desk search personal training.

See what people in your industry are doing that works. That inspires. That is fresh.

I recently worked with a finance firm with a specialty niche and I did a thorough desk search of over 400 finance firms in London. Trust me I learnt a LOT about the niche I was searching – what worked, what didn’t.

It’s called immersion.

But from that search emerged ONE good idea that is turning on the money tap.

I am going to give you a great tool soon to fast track this part but for now ten minutes of desk search of your industry. Get creative. Try out any variations of search word combinations but search. If you are based in San Francisco add that city to your search. If you are a personal trainer in Wolverhampton include Wolverhampton in your search.


Your turn

Do not skimp or skip. Make no mistake this is a priming activity. Ten minutes only today. But for the next seven days I want you to increase the desk search time by ONE MINUTE only per day. So today ten minutes. Tomorrow 11 minutes. The day after 12 minutes and so on for the next seven days.



People have emailed complaining I missed a day. So what? If I do a no-show, do the desk search that day, go back and revise. Lean in. Get creative.

Some people say they are already successful and are just looking for one idea that works. Great – you won’t find it here. Nothing I am sharing works. None of my ideas work. There are no silver bullets or jigsaw pieces. There are no smart cuts or short cuts. Just yet. I have already given you several amazing smart cuts and I am convinced that some people missed them.

I received an email from someone that has already got a multi-thousand pound idea. It leapt out at him!

So no free ride. You work the ideas.

You cannot be an Olympian training one day a week. Priming does not work one day a week. Training is about repetition and building neurones. If you cut corners you are building neurones for cutting corners. This blog is not about cutting corners. Its about doing the work.

Being a millionaire is grown-ups work.

Look at ACT – search Steven Hayes – watch his videos on mindfulness as it applies to commercial ventures. Pay attention. By the way, if you think it doesn’t apply, it won’t.

Start priming yourself that you will get what you want from these blogs.



Andrew Priestley is an award winning business coach, best selling author of The Money Chimp, Awareness, and Starting! and listed in the 2017 Top 100 UK Entrepreneur Mentors.

Check out and @ARPriestley on Twitter.

Disclaimer: It goes without saying that this is for information only and does not constitute clinical, legal, business or financial advice. The author is not responsible for any losses or damages that occur as a result of reading this material.

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