On Gratitude, A Letter From Our CEO

There’s a point in everyone’s life where their story begins, and I am not referring to when one is born.  A moment when something happens and you become who you are as a result, whether you realize it or not.  Just over 15 years ago, on January 13th, 2003, my story truly began.  My story isn’t defined by who I was then, or even what I overcame, but rather about who I became because of the series of events that transpired at the time.  This is the moment that shaped me into the person I am today. 

As most, or potentially all, of you know, 15 years ago, I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.  Forget about a family, children, a future, ambition; none of those things were going to be in the plans for me.  At that moment, I could’ve laid down and died.  I was just made aware of my bleak diagnosis; I could’ve just let it happen.  That was a realistic option; a real potential for me.  But thankfully, that’s not the sort of person that I am, and that’s why that story doesn’t define me.  This story isn’t about that story.  This is the one I rewrote for myself; the same story we all have the ability to write for ourselves.

The number one thing I find most annoying now, since this experience wandered into my path, is how much people complain.  Someone asks how you are and you immediately launch into your litany of complaints.  Your joints, your in-laws, your weight, your finances; everything is one, giant complaint.  It’s the most common relational element, it seems: people relating over negative or stressful factors or events in their lives.  Someone who is downtrodden, annoyed or stressed doesn’t want to hear about your good fortune; they don’t want to wallow deep in their own personal misfortune only to hear that everything with you “is GREAT!!!” Negativity breeds negativity and so on and so forth.  But once you’ve faced some serious adversity, some life-threatening, life-altering challenge, you realize that there’s no reason for the petty concerns to even exist inside of you.

Most of you know, because of the way I structure some of my coaching, that I start off each day with gratitude.  I create my list of three things: 1) What am I grateful for?  2) What is my number one focus for the day? and 3) What are my top 3 priorities for the day?  But I am also grateful for the things that some people take for granted: my legs for allowing me to walk and be strong, my mind for never failing me, my passion, my focus, my ambition, etc., etc. I’m reminded every day of the battle that I went through, and I am most thankful for it because my purpose since then is to share with others so they don’t have to wait for something like that to happen to them to learn to embrace and take advantage of every moment.

If you can create a shift in the way you look at the world and everything in it, it will create a huge and monumental shift in who you are, as a person.  Great example: The average person is always looking at things as happening “to” them, versus happening “for” them. This unconscious but crucial difference shifts the person from being a responsible, effective and purposeful person into a victim; a victim of circumstance, negative or bad energy or karma.  We need to realize that a subtle shift of realizing that things aren’t happening “to” us but perhaps “for” us or because of us or because of something we are doing or aren’t doing has huge consequences and responsibilities for us all.  We aren’t owed anything. Whatever your set of beliefs, or higher power, or energy, or whatever it is, doesn’t owe you.

And the best way to ensure success is drive, ambition, a plan, pursuit, motivation and execution.  All you are owed is this day, and even that is a gift.

My biggest fear in life is when I get older and look back over my whole life and realize there is no tomorrow.  It’s done.  I no longer have time to accomplish what I was put on this world to accomplish.  I no longer have the energy the put in the hours.  People always say, “Oh, I’ll just do it tomorrow,” but once you’re faced with life-changing adversities, you realize that tomorrow isn’t promised. The beautiful thing about life is, you never know when it’s going to end and you want to squeeze as much out of it as you possibly can.  “Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today” is one of my mottos.  Rewards are only given to people who are constantly in motion.  You need to have the never ending commitment to move forward. Fail forward. Fall forward. Press forward. Push forward. Your commitment to do one more thing every day is the reason you will benefit from all that this wonderful life has to offer.  You need to commit to achieve.

Don’t get in your own way.  Don’t let the weight of the daily grind paralyze you from achieving your own success.  And don’t wait for monumental and life-changing or potential life-ending events to occur in your life to wake you up to your own personal passions and potential for success.

What I’m sharing with you today, I hope you share with everyone.  I hope you forward this to everyone you care about.  My dream is to have a world of people that don’t complain about the things they don’t have and thankful about all the opportunities they do have.  I am one step closer to reality today by sharing my story with you.  Everyone you know deserves to know that a death sentence isn’t the end.  Everyone you know deserves to know that there might not be a tomorrow, so do it all today.  Everyone you know deserves to know not to get caught up in the minutia, the mundane, the distracting details that can drag them down and tear them away from their ultimate potential.  Everyone you know deserves to know that making small adjustments can make huge differences.  And everyone you know, including you, deserves to know that they are capable, they have insurmountable potential and they are in charge of their own destiny and how they look at it is up to them.  I have reached the highest heights, higher than I ever thought I possibly could, especially as I laid in that hospital bed, 15 years ago.  But part of the reason I made it through, I hope, is this moment right here, right now.  To be present, to look forward, to move forward, and to pay it forward.  Your accomplishments are our accomplishments and your experiences are our experiences.  And vice versa.  Thank you all for allowing me this moment to speak into your lives.  I hope my story changes your story. That’s the most I can hope for.

-HK

About Harout Keuroghlian

After working with, and for, many different real estate firms, it became apparent to Harout that there was a major disconnect between what consumers needed/wanted and the service that was being provided to them. It was upon this realization that Harout founded and opened JohnHart Real Estate; and as the CEO/Principal Broker he has continued to break from the norm and redefine real estate with an insatiable appetite to give his clients the service and attention they deserve.

12 comments

Hey Harout, Thanks a lot for sharing. Takes a lot of courage to share that from the heart. I respect you for who you are and the man you’ve become through these challenges. I’m really grateful to know you and grateful to you for the way you impacted my life by being a role model and continue to be an example to emulate. Cheers cunado..! There should be a part 2 of this blog or even better… a book by Harout Keuroghlian. : )

I truly believe that God has ways of changing people by connecting them with others who inspire and teach them. I’m very thankful that God brought you into my life Harout because you make me a better person every day.

Thank you for sharing your story Harout! As everybody else, I am grateful to know you. My life has been changing for the better since I met you. It is because our attitudes change under your influence. Thank you for inspiring us! And yes, a book by Harout is a great plan!

Truly inspiring, Harout. Be present, look forward, move forward, and pay it forward.
Thank you for sharing your story. Thank you for your support. Thank you for your friendship.

Thank you for sharing your story with us Harout, you are amazing and a True Inspiration. I have great respect for thoes who have been faced with major health or life issues yet instead of giving up they manage to move forward not just for themselves but, for all their friends and family mainly for their children. You guys are the perfect role model.

You are and always will be amazing as a Broker and Friend. You are an inspiration and mentor for me and the rest of your agents. We have nothing but lots of respect for you, because you care enough to help each and every one of us get better every day. You push us farther than we thought we could go and support us no matter what is going on in our lives. Thank you for all that you do for us. I enjoyed the story, and I will be sharing it with man people.

Harout,
Thank you for sharing your story. You truly are an inspiration. God has given you a special gift. I don’t know if you realize how many lives you touch. I’ve known you for a short time and my life has done a 180 turn for the better. I love how involved you are with your agents and how you push us to better ourselves. Our daily affirmations and thinking about what we are greatful for is awesome! Well I am greatful that God kept you here with us to lead us to be all that we can be. Thank you for humbling yourself and sharing such a personal time in your life. Through your story it helps so many others stop and think. Once again you are helping so many others. I am honored to know you and to be working with your company.

Such an inspirational story! WOW! You’re absolutely correct…we ALL complain WAY too much! I will stop it NOW. I will focus on the positives and seek more positive things in my life. Thank you for the sweet reminder of how grateful we should be each and every moment we breathe. You’re truly a great mentor, broker and friend! Love ya!!

Thank you Harout for sharing your story, it is by reading it that I realize I sometime play a victim and don’t own up to my own accounts. I am sad that I have to be reminded of how lucky I am everyday, this is something I should know from the get go. However Life does take a toll on my and I am lucky to be reminded by your words of strength and encouragement that only I write my own endings and only I can manifest my own miracles in my life. By being focused, strong, persevering, having the desire and passion for accomplishment gets me going and builds me up to create my own future…Thank You.

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