The 3 Minute Question

We are getting close to putting a wrap on 2013 and will be making new action plans and setting our goals for 2014. With that in mind, I want to ask you a question prompted from a story that I heard on Thursday night. I was at a banquet and the main speaker was a woman named Valley, from Maryville, Tennessee. She is an engineer, wife and mother of three. She was a passenger on the plane that crashed into the Hudson River in New York in 2009. She retold her fascinating account of the events as they transpired from take-off through rescue. It was truly an extraordinary sequence of events that were ultimately life altering for those that experienced them.

I left the banquet with several interesting takeaways, but really one that stood out to me more than the others. The passengers on the plane realized there was an issue and knew that the plane was going down. They basically had three minutes from the time they realized that the plane was going down until the plane would be disintegrated upon impact. You may not have time to do this right now, but when you do, set the timer on your phone for three minutes. During that three minutes, pretend that is your last three minutes on this planet. What is going through your mind? Are you thinking about mistakes you made? Regrets? Are you thinking about great moments you experienced? The accomplishments and wins? Are you thinking about the rest of your life that you won’t be living – your son’s future graduation, your daughter’s wedding, retiring and becoming a grandparent…….?

I want 2014 to be my best year ever in the mortgage business. I want to serve more people and do more loans than we’ve ever done at Cornerstone. But when I think about what I would miss most if my life ended in three minutes, it’s funny how irrelevant my success in the mortgage world really is. I can’t help but think that I’m not alone in this thought process. So here is the question: What intentional actions can we take, as we think about what we want to accomplish in 2014 and beyond, to make sure that we improve those relationships most affected by our ultimate departure from this world?

Mike Smalling

Cornerstone  Home Lending, Inc.


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