by Scott Lamm    

Have you ever sacrificed a dream or a goal because of one negative sentence from someone you know? Have you ever let one small cross-eyed look douse the fire that was burning deep in your heart? Has one little sigh, or one downward curl of the mouth from someone whose approval you seek ever stopped you dead in your tracks?

It has me.

Critics abound. Sometimes they come from inside our own homes. Sometimes they are co-workers. Occasionally they are the silent voices of people long departed from our lives that speak untruth into our subconscious thought life.

If you are at the point in your life where you are ready to silence the critics once and for all, I have some ideas on how you can do just that!

APPROVAL: To sanction. To hold in favorable regard; Commendation.

Commendation always follows the accomplishment. The Detroit Pistons did not go the White House before the season began to be congratulated and honored as the NBA Champions. At the Wealth Retreats, the conference attendees don’t go up on stage and get a trophy and get recognized for what they are “going to do”! To be held in favorable regard, there must be a point of reference from which the favor or approval must be drawn. When we look to others for approval of an action or actions that we have yet to take, we are setting ourselves up for frustration. What we are really doing is seeking a commendation before anything has even been accomplished and that’s not a very realistic expectation in the real world!

All of this boils down into one simple fact: talk is cheap.

One of the chapters in my book, “Creating Your Own Economy”, deals with this very subject. We live in a society where we all want and expect everything NOW. Often times, when we don’t get the accomplishments and the accolades and the approvals immediately, we get discouraged and quit. When we hope for or expect results and commendations and approvals before anything is achieved, we are — in a very subtle way — sabotaging our earliest attempts to get to the place that we know in our hearts we are destined to be.

The only way to overcome the critics in all of our lives is to follow this sure fire recipe:

  • Take A Stand
  • Make A Plan
  • Work The Plan

Take a Stand
Taking a Stand involves the very real possibility that we will have to stand up for ourselves in spite of negative comments from those closest to us. When those come, do not respond with words of anger or defensiveness. Don’t make excuses or be defiant with your body posturing and other verbal or non-verbal communications. Let the words be like a fuel that lights the fires of action and diligence.

Make a Plan
Work with a Coach, or develop a plan consisting of a Goal and the step-by-step process in achieving that Goal. Look at your very real situation and create definable and reachable short- and long-term benchmarks.

Work the Plan
Face your Feared Things First. Create your Action Tasks and keep a daily diary of your activities and results. You will be amazed at how accountable you will become to this daily accounting of your activities. My fitness coach, Wendy Collier, got me hooked on keeping a daily food diary of what I eat. It has been amazing how accountable I am to what I write down as well as the process. Whenever I get lax in that food diary, I eat like a maniac! Then I get back to the food diary and I get right back on track. Work your plan.

All good results lay down the path we set within this 3-step process. In fact, I submit that all of the approvals and commendations we seek from those around us will be dwarfed with the feeling of self-satisfaction you will get from working your plan and achieving what you set out to achieve.

At the end of the day, our words will never win over our critics — only our actions will. The admiration and respect and approvals that we seek lay down the road of what we do — not the road of what we talk about doing. Commendations and accolades follow our achievements — they don’t precede them. Your critics will come around as you maintain your resolve and commitments to yourself and the process and results. So Take Your Stand, Make Your Plan and Work, and you will begin to see the fruits of your labor take a place in your heart and life!

And as always . . . Stay the Course.


Scott is a 1989 graduate of Robert Allen’s Wealth Training. Fifteen short years later, he has bought and sold over $36 million in real estate and currently owns nearly 100 rentals. Mr. Lamm owns nearly $5 million in real estate including single family homes, commercial properties and apartment units. He recently completed The Hampton’s — a 72-acre, 387-lot residential subdivision. Scott began speaking and training nationally in 1992, upon leaving his management job at upscale retailer Nordstrom. Scott is a featured speaker and trainer for The Robert Allen Institute. He is also a distinguished member of Robert Allen’s Millionaire Panel and regularly appears and speaks at Robert Allen and Mark Victor Hansen’s Wealth Retreats and other National Events. Mr. Lamm is a multi-disciplined professional, well versed in all aspects of real estate, sales, management, mass audience communication, financial markets and both internal and external training programs. He brings a vast wealth of knowledge and experience to bear in relationship and rapport building, overcoming fears, marketing, teaching, training and all aspects of Real Estate investments and financial and securities markets. His dynamic and unique style of teaching and training, filled with real-life learning curves and experiences, is respected and enjoyed by all; beginners appreciate his simplicity and more experienced investors value his sophistication.