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Life comes at us like a bullet these days—fast...unforgiving. But these times are full of amazing possibilities for people who rise to the occasion.

The pressing challenge is to get better, quicker.

This new era demands more rapid responses. Immediate adaptability. Fast results. Above all, it requires a personal growth rate that at least can match the growing pace of change.

We must speed up our adjustments to frequent career shifts and new work roles. We must find a formula that helps us pull far more of our raw potential into play. We must figure out how to make a contribution that really counts. Only by applying ourselves differently can we deliver the kind of outcomes the world has come to expect.

The skill sets that made us successful last year can leave us defenseless tomorrow. The education we thought we'd "completed" soon quits protecting our careers. Even a good base of experience provides little safety, because it so easily becomes outdated.

Deep inside, we know something more is needed now.

The situation calls for a powerful new strategy. We need a methodology for rapidly mobilizing ourselves to measure up against the career flash points we constantly encounter.

The secret is accelerated personal growth...a deliberate, disciplined routine that produces dramatic performance gains.

Follow the guidelines given in this handbook, and you'll push your personal effectiveness to all-time highs.


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Chapter 1—
Invest heavily in the now.

Fast growth requires a keen awareness of what you're doing with yourself. You need a strong sense of "now-ness." Or to put it another way, it's important for you to maximize the value of the moment.

Time is one of your most precious resources, and you don't get a second chance to use it. Your first shot is your last one. No do-overs. You only get one crack at using any given time period for performance improvement.

So pay attention. Consciously watch how you're spending the fleeting now, and consider the payback you'll get. Are you making a good investment of your hours and minutes? Or are you wasting these scarce resources . . . spending time on stuff that offers little return . . . fumbling the opportunity for fast growth?

By the way, this is a far bigger issue than it used to be. Speed can be more important for your success than twenty more IQ points might be.

The slower you go in developing yourself today, the faster you'll need to move tomorrow. Today's world refuses to wait on anyone. We must learn to grow more rapidly, or we'll fall further and further behind. We need to accelerate our adaptability because change keeps picking up speed.

And let's not kid ourselves—this is a personal problem. It belongs to each of us, privately, as individuals. Nobody can fix it for us. We can't delegate our use of the now to someone else. We own it—completely.

Of course, this means each person is in a position to handle the situation. You're in control. You can do something. You're the one living your life, and you can choose to live it more powerfully.

Just remember, growth can only occur in the present. So you need to show a high respect for now. Fill it with the right behaviors, and you'll be rewarded with fast results.

"I was in the drug store the other day trying to get a cold medication . . . Not easy. There's an entire wall of products that you need.

You stand there going, 'Well, this one is quick acting but this is long lasting... Which is more important, the present or the future?'"

- Jerry Seinfeld


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