#131 Why Some People “Have It All.” (Or The Problem With A Single-Minded Focus)

I grew up thinking that only other people could have it all.

As an adolescent, I believed that only others could have self-confidence.
As an athlete, I believed only others could win the state championship.
As a young adult, I believed that only others could be wealthy.

I mean, just look around.

There are people with more money than you.
They are more fit than you.
They go on cooler vacations than you.
Their kids are smarter than yours.
Their spouse is more attractive than yours. (Not me, honey. You’re smoking hot and I love you!)
They laugh more than you.
They’re more charismatic.

There always seemed to be something missing from my life that others had. And I wanted it.

So I set out to chase it.

Jim Harshaw Jr wrestles the question, “Can you really have it all?”I started a company called Riot Sports Marketing. (Some of my readers will remember me from those days!)

This was my way out.
This was my way to freedom.
To wealth.
To total happiness and fulfillment.

Except it wasn’t.

I sunk myself into my work. I closed off other areas of my life so that I could focus on getting “there.”

For 2 1/2 years I kept my head down and worked on that company. I put everything into it.

I had an investor and so it wasn’t just all I had but some of what others had too.

After years of toil, it failed.

When I finally shuttered the business and lifted my head, my life was a mess. What I’d set out to attain was further away than ever.

My relationship with Ali was broken.
I was deep in debt.
I wasn’t spending enough time with my amazing children.
And I was in the worst physical condition of my life.


My desire to chase what I wanted ironically took me the opposite direction.

My desire to chase what I thought would bring me happiness brought me brokenness.

Trying to have it all took me in the wrong direction.

The problem wasn’t that I wanted to find happiness and fulfillment.
The problem wasn’t that I was trying to have it all.
The problem wasn’t that I worked really, really hard at something that I was passionate about.

The problem was that I’d only worked on one area of my life. I had a single-minded focus.

When I was an All American college wrestler, that single-minded focus is what helped me achieve my goal. However, no longer could I afford to use the same strategy.

Somewhere deep inside, you know that you can’t either.

You know that you have too many things pulling at you. Too many priorities.

But what are the right ones?

Through research, testing and teaching, I’ve discovered the four areas of your life where you must focus your attention in order to have it all.

Here they are (in this order):


Whether you read it in the Bible or you read it in the results of Harvard’s Grant Study, one of the longest longitudinal studies of adult life in history, the evidence is conclusive that relationships are the most important ingredient of happiness.

Simply put, if you want to have it all, you must have clearly defined relationship goals and an action plan to achieve them.


Nobody wants to be in a rut. Nobody wants to be stuck.

We all want to be growing.
We all want to make an impact.
We all want to have fun.

That’s why you must… you MUST… have goals around personal growth (learning a new skill), impact (volunteering or philanthropy) and/or fun (doing what you love to do).


It’s no secret that health and fitness are important pieces to being happy. Look at anyone who you think has it all. They live a healthy lifestyle.

Exercise and a proper diet improve brain function, focus, productivity, self-confidence as well as reduces stress, anxiety, and depression.

There’s no magic bullet. Just eat right and exercise. Apply common sense with uncommon discipline.


Everyone wants more money.

Truth is, if you’re reading this, you’re doing pretty well.

The median household income worldwide is $9,733. (Ah… yes, that means you’re already rich.)

First, recognize that you are wealthy. Stop looking around you. Stop comparing yourself to what you see on Facebook, TV or in your neighbor’s driveway.

Second, if you want to accrue more wealth, you must have a plan to do so. There’s nothing wrong with wanting more wealth so long as you don’t have evil

How To Take Over The World
Dr. Doofenshmirtz from Fineas and Ferb

plans to take over the tri-state area (a joke for those with kids who watch Fineas and Ferb

Goal Setting Compass Resource Graphic
Goal Setting Compass

While there are four areas of your life here, they are all connected (see Goal Setting Compass).

My point is, you can have it all.

You can hit your sweet spot.
You just have to define what it is, be grateful for what you currently have and continue to make progress toward what you want.
Start today. (Button)

Download the Action Plan from This Episode Here

Jim Harshaw Jr wrestles the question, “Can you really have it all?” on iTunes Jim Harshaw Jr wrestles the question, “Can you really have it all?” on Stitcher