I have some close friends with books coming out shortly. My friend, Mitch Joel, has a new book out called “Six Pixels of Separation“,  about social media and how to get your business connected.  Mitch has a great marketing podcast of the same name, and is also producing Media Hacks, a group podcast featuring Chris Penn, Chris Brogan, CC Chapman, Julien Smith, and the great Hugh McGuire, that’s always thought-provoking for me.  Julien Smith and Chris Brogan also have a book coming out entitled Trust Agents: Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation and Earn Trust.  I am ridiculously excited to read these books and get them in my hands, in part because they are written by people I know and respect, but also as reminders and motivators for me.

As a parent, there’s nothing more moving than seeing your kid succeed.  Watching my boys work hard towards goals and then get to the end and be able to see the long road of their accomplishments, to bask in a job well done- that is just amazing to watch.  They literally glow with pride.  And I am often moved to tears, being so proud of them I could burst.  Whether it was watching one of my sons get his black belt, or win a geeky award at school, or watching the other get recognized as student of the month, these little moments do so much to motivate them to get that feeling of success and accomplishment again.  And I feel this same sense of pride and happiness seeing what Mitch and Julien and Chris have accomplished.

A number of years ago, I got a book published on Public Assembly Facility Law as a co-author, and having a book with my name on the cover was a really amazing thing.  While I hope to repeat this with books a little more relevant to what I’m doing now, it’s often easy to get distracted from the goal by the day to day detritus.  But seeing reminders that such projects can be done- that you can, bit by bit, move yourself closer towards your goal, that you can make sure it happens increment by increment- that is truly motivating.

The number one reason people watch reality shows, from my point of view, is to see people “just like them” do amazing things.  We want to have every day heroes and see that dreams can indeed become reality.  Sometimes, we lose sight of the pathway towards that goal, or we get lost, not sure what direction we really want to go.  But if you look around you, you can find people all the time that have been successful, just by deciding not to give up.  By going to bat just one more time.  By persevering, and making sure things happened to get them that one step closer to the goal- not ten steps, but one step at a time.

Seeing my friends succeed gives me even more motivation to take on the projects I’ve set out and make them happen.  It’s not to be just like them or compete or anything like that- it’s just about feeling a renewed sense of energy to get on with it already and make it happen, and to clear the distractors and barriers out of the path.

I know you’ll enjoy these books by Mitch, Chris and Julien, in part because every conversation I ever have with them is amazing and fun, but mostly because I doubt their books can be much different from who they are as people.  They are all an insightful group of guys, thoughtful, strategic and smart- and people I feel honored to consider friends.

Way to go, Gentleman!  Congratulations!  Cannot wait to toast your success in person!