Here is a lesser known fact about me: I went to the same high school as Jon Bon Jovi.
I can remember when his career exploded. As proof of being a fan, I lifted weights in my basement to one of his original demo cassettes (yes cassettes!), took a half day off school when they gave away his childhood home on MTV, and go with “Living On A Prayer” when a karaoke mic is in my hand. Every time I visit another country and one of his songs come on, it puts a smile on my face. Watching him become one of the biggest Rock Stars in the world has inspired me.
Today I am sitting in the Lufthansa Lounge in the Munich Airport. The last 5 days have been a whirlwind of emotion from “putting on a show.” During these 5 days in Germany, I performed for over 25 hours in front of almost 1000 total people in a time zone that forced me to start each day at 1am “my time.” After presenting like this you might think I would be tired. But if you want to be a Rock Star, you know you are only as good as your last show.
Yes, I said it: Rock Star. On this trip, I didn’t want to make a “presentation,” I chose to put on a “performance.” I wasn’t holding a workout. I was conducting a ROCK SHOW. And with the music blasting, my special costumes and the goosebumps of adrenalin rising, I got a taste of what rocking a crowd was all about.
When the peformances finished, I was covered with sweat and got to smile for photos, sign autographs in my books and celebrate into the night with the attendees. Before bed last night I wondered if that was what being a rock star was all about. Little did I know I would get lessons from a real ROCK STAR the next morning.
When The Student Is Ready, The Teacher Appears
While standing in the security line today, I was staring at my phone playing “catch up” on emails and I heard an interesting accent in front of me. Since I was in Germany, an English accent was rare. For some reason I had to see who was this energetic guy with blond spiky hair and all dressed in black. He turned and I was starstruck: it was rock legend, Billy Idol.
Like Bon Jovi, Billy’s music had an influence over me when I was younger. I bought hair gel, spiked and (even at one time,) colored my hair! I punched to the side while singing “White Wedding” watching his videos. And just last week checked out his new book to learn more about his life. And there he was standing right in front of me! I knew this was no accident. It was time for a lesson.
I introduced myself, said I loved his work and congratulated him on his achievements. I wasn’t sure what to expect. Maybe he would shrug me off. He had to be busy and tired. But instead of the cold shoulder, he just lit up with warm energy. I asked him a few questions and the answers were profound.
5 LESSONS FROM A ROCK STAR
1. You have to write the music that is important to you.
Billy mentioned in the early days his style was not all that popular, but that was “his style.”
Lesson: Find your passion and do what you love. Do this with all you’ve got and the world will have no choice but to notice.
2. Sometimes you put things out there For The World To See.
When congratulated on his success, he simply said he put his best work out there. He had no idea if the world was going to like it or not, but he wasn’t going to keep it inside.
Lesson: There is greatness inside you and you can’t keep it to yourself. If you don’t let the world see who you are, you can’t make an impact.
3. Keep Pushing and something will explode.
In his new book, the photos show that after years of playing tiny shows, his career finally skyrocketed. He said that is exactly how stardom happens.
Lesson: Nothing happens overnight. You have to put in the time to reap the reward.
4. You Will feel Great when someone appreciates your work.
When I told him I checked out the book, he was geniunely shocked. He asked, “Did you think it’s good?” When I said yes, again he was authentically excited.
Lesson: Billy showed that by putting in the time, there are few cooler things than hearing from someone else who enjoyed your work.
5. Always remember your fans make it all possible.
Billy didn’t have to take time for me, but he did. Even just a few minutes of his time was a gift I won’t forget.
Lesson: You have fans too. Your family, friends and co-workers that support you on your way to the top are important. Make sure you give them the time they deserve.
Want to see one of my Rock Shows? Here are the final five TFW Cert dates for 2015:
Life is a stage and you might as well be a star. This doesn’t just mean you have to get on a real stage. You can be a rock star in your home to your family. You can be a rock star at work and inspire your team. Use the lessons above and remember this: wherever you decide to be a star, your responsibility is to give your best and always put on a show.