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E+R=O Can Change an Auto Repair Shop Owner's Life


E + R = O by Lucas Underwood

I want to talk to you about an equation, a very simple equation that changed my life. Listen, I know some of the last two talks I've heard some of you. I get it. I understand this works for me. And some of you say, “That'll never work for me, Lucas. That's too simple.” Well, that's the whole point. People change their lives with simple, small decisions.  We don't make giant decisions that change the world. They are all very small decisions. And we improve our lives with these small decisions.

 Today I want to talk to you about a very simple equation. It's E + R = O.  The E stands for EVENT and the R stands for your REACTION. The O stands for OUTCOME. This goes right along with the other things we've talked about and I get it.  You're all saying, “Lucas. That is really, really simple. I don't understand.” You see, we get in these mental ruts.  It's not easy to just step out of a mental rut. This can be really tough. 

 It's all about our thought process. It's all about how we see things. I'm going to show you something right here on my bracelet.  If you’ve ever been to a trade show with me, you know that I’m always wearing it.  This little bracelet says, “I own my response.” And on the backside, it says “E + R = O.” Notice the R is the big part.  If you were to be riding down the road and a car swerved in front of you, you wouldn't just let go of the steering wheel and say, “Oh, it's happened. I'm going to hit the car.” No, you would take action. You would move. You would jerk the steering wheel to the side.  You'd slam on the brakes. You do something to avoid the car. But in life things come our way. And what do we do?  We lock up and accept what happens as it is what it is.

No, that's not the case. We must work on our reactions. E + R = O was really a light switch for me. It's something that triggers. I'll flip this switch when it comes time to really think about a situation that I don't know the answer to. I don't just accept it. I think about what my reaction needs to be. You know, one of the most powerful things I've ever heard somebody say was Warren Buffet.  He said, “I realized that my decision is mine to make.”  No one's going to force me to make that decision. It's mine.” My reaction is my reaction. I have time to make it.  I'm not going to rush through it. I will slow down. I will make a decision. I will make some faults around this reaction.  I will think about it for a minute.

And when we really think about it, we find ourselves making better reactions, better choices.  We begin to move the outcome where we want it to be. We don't have to accept the outcome as it is.

Maybe you had a tech quit and you say, “My gosh, he quit. It was really just because he was burned out.”  But, that's not always the case. Did you find out why? Did you do some discovery? Did you understand? Did you change your reaction? 

Don't just accept, change your reaction. This is a super simple concept. I get it, but it will change your life. What most folks do when they get into a scenario like this is what a major cultural coaching company said.  I’ve watched some of their videos.  One of the things they talk about is when you're supposed to be working on your action, you turn into BCD.  What does BCD mean? It means Blaming, Complaining, and Denying or becoming Defensive.

Let's work on this, everyone. This is a super simple tactic. When something comes your way, work on your reaction. We talked about the circle of control. We talked about extreme ownership.  This comes right back to this topic. It comes back to deciding I'm not going to hit that car head-on. I'm going to swerve. I'm going to move my reaction. I'm going to get my reaction in line with my desired outcome. 

Why do you think Rick is always focusing on the outcome? He's not focusing on the event. Why? Because we can't control it.  There's nothing we can do about the event. The event just is. Why do you think he's focusing on the reaction? Why do you think he's focusing on the outcome? Because it's the only thing we have that can change things. It's the only opportunity we have to make things better. And isn't that what we want to do. We want a better life. We want fewer problems. We want a better situation for our families. We want a more profitable, productive business.

It starts with our reactions to the situation, our life. It starts with our reaction to those struggles that come our way. And listen, if you don't think that folks like Jeff Bezos and these really high-end elite billionaires have problems, you're crazy. They have the same kind of problems. And probably worse than we do. If you're starting to get into running a very successful business, you realize the problems don't go away. But just like Rick taught me years ago, we want the problems to improve. How do we improve problems? We improve problems by improving our responses.

I'll leave you with one little thought. Andy Andrews did this really great video. I have watched it for years. And in it, he said, “Your best thinking got you to where you are right now.” I get how tough that can be. Some of you are going through some really tough stuff. I know some folks are going through divorces. Some folks are going through bankruptcies. Those are really tough things. But the good news is, if you're thinking got you there, better thinking will get you somewhere better. And it also means that you're in control of the direction. You're in control of your life. Your thinking gets you where you're going.

Let's have some good reactions. Let's get some good thinking up here. Let's spend some time thinking about what we're thinking. Let's get our attitude and our positivity where it needs to be.

I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. I think Rick will be back for the next Just One Thing. I'm so honored to have had this opportunity to come talk to you and share some of the things I've learned from Rick and others.  I just want to say thank you for listening to me. I'm sure you're really excited for Rick to be back. Until next time, I hope you have a fantastic Thanksgiving.

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