10 Life Lessons from a Legend

Key Takeaways

  • Make as many connections as you can through your work, travel and daily life. Connections are key to making your own luck.
  • Never take shortcuts, choose your friends carefully and always get plenty of sleep.
  • Be unique and find work that’s enjoyable regardless of the pay—and never stop working entirely, even in retirement.

*** Don’t forget about our Tech Night on Thursday, October 6, at the Wyndham Hotel in Glenview and stream us live on Facebook. 

When I reflect on my life, I realize that the majority of my successes can be attributed to lessons I learned from the great mentors, counselors and leaders I’ve had. A recent Barron’s article about Wall Street legend Byron Wien, the 83-year-old co-chair of Blackstone Advisory Group, reminded me of the influential people in my life. In the article, Wien shared his 10 life lessons, which I think are very applicable to people of all ages, but especially young people. I’ll try to summarize them for you below:

  1. Network intensely. Go out there and create more luck in your life by meeting as many people as you can.
  1. When you meet someone new, treat them like a friend and assume they’re a winner in your eyes.
  1. Read all the time. First have a point of view, then see if your position is confirmed or refuted by the author.
  1. Get enough sleep. Wien recommends seven hours of sleep every night, eventually increasing it to eight or nine hours as you get older. He believes that’s the amount of sleep you need to provide the energy required to get through the day.
  1. Travel extensively before you wear out. But an important part of traveling is meeting people with whom you can stay in touch throughout your life.
  1. Engage in philanthropy. Wien’s view on giving is about relieving pain, not just spreading joy.
  1. Don’t take shortcuts. The hard way is always the right way, in Wien’s opinion.
  1. Don’t try to be better. Be different. I love this tip because people really do notice the differences.
  1. When seeking a career, always look for something that’s enjoyable. Don’t worry about what you’re getting paid. Look for something that’s enjoyable and rewarding, advises Wien. That’s especially important for young people.
  1. Never retire. “If you work forever, you live forever,” says Wien.

I thought you would find Wien’s life lessons interesting. And speaking of learning, don’t forget about our Tech Night on Thursday, October 6, at the Wyndham Hotel in Glenview. We’re available to answer all your technology questions about digital information, cybersecurity and more! Can’t make it? You can stream the event live on Facebook.

Until next time, enjoy.


gary-w-klabenGary Klaben is in our Glenview, IL office and serves our clients who are now located all over the country.  He has over 30 years of experience and is the author of Changing the Conversation, The Wealth Sanctuary and co-author of The Business BattlefieldWhether advising his clients, mentoring his team, or coaching entrepreneurs, he is always simplifying complexity and motivating others to take the next action that’s right for them.
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