Steve Harvey Believes the Right Dream Comes With the Right Love Connection


‘Act Like a Success’ Book Notes and Reader Commentary (part 6 of 6)

How many times do we read stories of ‘first loves’ becoming true love? We hear about high-school sweethearts who became lifetime partners. But there’re those who ditched their first love for their true love later in life. Steve Harvey believes the right dream comes with the right love connection.

His recent TV special gave a snapshot of some significant ‘dates’ on his rise to the big times. Harvey shared how he didn’t make it past his junior year in college. He dropped out and went to sell insurance. Because of his physical height, he thought his ticket to success would have been playing ball in the NBA.

They say passion is doing something you love. Many of us pursue careers that are ‘first loves.’ But we later find out success that fulfills is more than the luck of the draw. Some might say it’s the draw of love around our gift. This way our ‘true love’ achievements lead to success experiences at greater heights.

As with any romantic relationship there’s a love dimension. That means there’s something eye-catching, heart-grabbing or more deeply and mutually felt. This is also true with having the right dream. The trick is figuring out whether the draw of our dream is about a love to compete, to create or to connect.

It’s safe to say that most pro athletes have a love to compete. Their juices get going as the drive to win gets flowing. Even though Harvey’s dreams didn’t take him to the basketball court, he’s still showing the gamesmanship of a winner. His talk show Emmy award and NY Times Bestsellers speak for themselves.

There’s creative genius waiting to be unleashed by our dreams. This could mean taking something from nothing to becoming many things. Harvey describes his gift as taking-in information and turning it into many things. He’s taken his comedic ‘first love’ and gifting into unchartered territory of higher earnings.

Harvey doesn’t mince words about his true love. Beyond the Creator who’s the ‘shot caller’ in his life, he also gives props to his wife. Maybe the draw of our dream is about a love to connect. That’s why social media and networking are valuable parts of building dreams. They feed-off connecting and collaborating.

Whether as first love or true love Harvey says “never be afraid to reinvent yourself.” He’s had to shift gears personally and professionally. His success is less about being self-made and more about a love connection. Plus, it helps to have the right dream with the right love starting out from an ‘audience of one.’

Footnote: The love in our passion is the draw to our careers. The love in our gift is the draw to our dreams. Put them together and we get to experience success at greater heights.

#ActLikeaSuccess Book Notes and Reader Commentary (part 5)


What standard do successful people hold themselves to? Well, it might depend on how they’re judged in their professional game. Athletes might look at their box scores. CEOs might look at their balance sheet. In the case of media professionals, they as well as advertisers will look at the Nielsen results.

Steve Harvey is doing the same. He wants to bump his ratings and raise his grade to the next level by increasing his Nielsen numbers in the millions. Without getting too technical, he wants to increase his average daily viewers by almost a full percentage point. This will put his talk show in a higher ad bracket.

He did give hints of one or two actions he’d take. If this were us, the usual response that we might have is ‘work smarter not just harder.’ Beyond that there’s a bigger picture success-minded people use for motivation that brings more ‘joy and juice’ as a result of applying imagination, insight and instinct.

It’s like how our kids might play video games. After powering-up the console they grab a chair and put their hands to the wheel or joy stick. As the game unfolds their skill-set is more engaged and attuned to the degree of difficulty. They eventually get in a groove to keep the score climbing and adrenalin rushing.

Boosting their video game score takes a sense of imagination. They see things not just for what they are but for what they can become. As they grow in skill they gain new insights about how to beat the enemy or avoid making mistakes. But they also see gains in advancement by playing the game out of instinct.

Most of us might not be video game gurus but the same is true for boosting our career ratings or taking our dreams to the next level. This means adding a sense of imagination to the situation. We might also fine-tune our game with winning insight. We’ll get to the point of operating ‘in the zone’ based on instinct.

Not only will our performance rating rise but we’ll also get to reap the benefits at the next level. It’s a lot like what happens when breakout scores are achieved on the video game. New games become unlocked or new features become unsealed. Professionally, new skills are unlocked and new perks unsealed.

So at the end of day which comes first, ‘acting like a success or thinking like a success?” Maybe that’s for the ‘Ask Steve’ segment. Walt Disney used imagination for his wildest dreams. Stephen Covey turned ‘7 Habits’ into universal insight. And Bishop TD Jakes says instinct is how we roll to our unlocked potential.

Footnote: Imagination is a ramp to our wildest dreams. Insight is a highway on our road to greatness.  And instinct is how we roll to the next level of our unlocked potential.

#ActLikeaSuccess Book Notes and Reader Commentary (part 4)


Who knew that Hans and Franz from SNL fame would make a comeback? Their TV ad roles played by alum Kevin Nealon and Dana Carvey are seen getting Green Bay Quarterback Aaron Rodgers pumped-up for the NFL season. Harvey’s also using the airwaves to pump-up careers and dreams for getting paid.

His professional travels have taken him to comedy clubs, TV/radio studios and the White House. The first thought of what he might do for a living came in elementary school. The teacher asked the class to share what they wanted to do as a career. Harvey said he wanted to be on TV. His teacher wasn’t buying it.

There’re different jobs that people have on TV or any other career field. Some are behind the scenes while others out front. Some are in management while others are regular workers. Where we are in our careers is likely built around some professional training. It’s related to skills, talents and ‘gifting’ intellect.

At times we get visions of our professional paths in different ways. Most of us as kids have big ideas and lofty dreams. Harvey has seen his vision evolve and expand over time. He explains in a tweet that he’s come to learn that your career is what you’re paid for but your calling is what you’re made for.

Sometimes a calling comes across as being only for certain people. But one way to move beyond that limiting view is to consider our purpose. In one sense our calling is how we make the Creator look good. Our purpose is how we serve some earthly good. Our career turns passion into us being damn good.


Harvey has taken his career from insurance salesman to talk show anchorman. With all the money-making roles he’s had over the years he reminds us that success is also about having our professional life be complemented by purpose. This way each day becomes more than just bringing home the bacon.

Moreover, where we are in making a contribution is not limited to the workplace. How we maximize our cred goes beyond the paycheck to the payback. It’s even in matters of public service. Harvey’s foundation provides mentoring opportunities to boys because he sees this as a way of serving the community.

OK, so the NFL season is about halfway thru. Some teams will likely not make the playoffs. The calendar year is almost done and maybe some people are looking ahead. Harvey’s take on getting pumped-up for going to the next level might mean doing a ‘double check’ on where we are and where we hope to be.

Footnote: If purpose is why we’re here then career can help get us there. This way getting paid is more than just filling in the blanks day after day and year after year.

#ActLikeaSuccess Book Notes and Reader Commentary (part 3)


What does your last name say about your roots? In some cases it could be about your heritage or it could be about your celebrity appeal. There’re times it reflects cultural history while other times it’s about current glory. Well Steve Harvey built the case and pushed the limit, getting his name to a top notch level.

Harvey remembers the time of having his first open mic gig. He visited the club to check things out, knowing he wasn’t on the schedule for another week or two. Then he found out that the comedian on tap for the evening cancelled last minute. So his friend pushed him to do his routine on the spot that night.

At different times in life most of us have to shake self-doubt. Maybe that was one of his moments. We have to step-up in situations that give us second thoughts. The thing we find is that what’s already inside of us is good enough to save the day. But we will only find out if we not let self-doubt get in the way.

This could mean having to reduce outside interference. Think about how cell phones work. When you make a call, a signal is sent via cell towers to the receiving end. Your call goes from tower to tower with the signal repeated and its power boosted so that it’s not affected by noise interference or is dropped.

Shaking self-doubt and reducing noise interference in life works a lot like that. We have to find ways to repeat the signals for keeping us focused and on track. We also have to find ways to empower the signal so that the message is not affected by factors that could come from haters or other life challenges.


While we’re training the voice within to keep us on point, we’ll also have to upgrade our skill appeal. It’s like the HGTV show Curb Appeal. There’s some visible transformation work, at work. Sometimes it’s a new landscaping design or front porch redesign. The ‘before and after’ pictures speak for themselves.

Getting to the next level personally or professionally brings an upgrade in market appeal. One place this is found is our résumé of accomplishments. It shows how we built the case, pushing beyond our comfort zone to top notch caliber. Harvey might agree that it also takes catching a few breaks along the way.

He tells how his first Kings of Comedy routine bombed. He knew it and people said it. So for the second show he was nervous as hell. Harvey caught a break just before his turn when the curtain briefly got stuck. That gave him the time to shake any self-doubt, reduce interference and upgrade his stage appeal.

Footnote: ‘Gifts unleashed’ are a reminder to ‘gifts unsung’ of what’s possible when your service bell gets rung.

‘Act Like a Success’ Book Notes and Reader Commentary (part 2)


Steve Harvey Rewinds His Fame and Replays His Dream From a “Common Man’s” View

How do mega-stars see their Hollywood rise? Well, for some it might be “1 for the money, 2 for the show, 3 for the setbacks and 4 to grow.” They, including Harvey, might point to their struggles personally and professionally. In his book, Harvey rewinds his fame and replays his dream from a “common man’s” view.

The book talks about catching “dream transfers.” It’s like getting off the bus and using the transfer stub for the next bus. The full dream trip is not always on the same vehicle you got started. It can be direct, have detours, transfers or zig-zags. Harvey faced his fears going from stand-up to sitcom, to radio, to TV host.

The experts say most of our fears are learned. In moving beyond the fears Harvey says take bold actions. This begins by getting past any nervousness even if we have to confess them. Bold doesn’t necessarily mean brash. We can be bold about our dreams without having to tear down another person’s dream.


Harvey was bold in leaving his job for the comedy circuit. He shares advice on how someone might make a move today. Taking the next step towards our dreams requires bravery. But we need not be blind. A free-fall jump from a plane is brave. A free-fall jump without a parachute is blind (or even worse).

During vacation a few years ago I did the parachute ride on the beach. My family was surprised I had the courage to do it. Taking this ride was a bucket-list-stretch in my book. But for others a stretch might be doing a parachute jump from a plane. Both situations involve some amount of bravery and excitement.

When the going got tough Harvey focused on the grind. If the bills are due but the opportunities are few it comes down to the bottom-line. In one sense that means putting more dough in our cashflow. But in another sense it might mean putting more hustle in our game or else we just might bottom-out.

Harvey talks about the wake-up moment when he felt “sick and tired” of himself. Whether it’s because of excuses we make or feeling like we’re not handling our business, we have a choice to make. We have to take action on change. The challenge is to not dwell in the moment but to rise above the moment.

So someone asks, what are your dreams? The heights our dreams take us are not about comparison. It’s really about personal growth and fulfillment. The benefits and rewards are great (who wouldn’t want to enjoy the finer things in life). Plus the bonus memories will be etched in our own hall-of-fame timeline.

Footnote: Let our gifting do the lifting just as helium keeps a balloon rising.

Steve Harvey’s Story Shows How to Keep Your Dream Alive by Any Means Necessary


Remember the game ‘Simon Says’ we played as kids? We listened and responded to instructions that began with those words. Let’s imagine that Steve Harvey’s new book ‘Act Like a Success’ represents Simon’s voice. Then Harvey’s story shows how to keep your dream alive by any means necessary.

He makes clear that we show-up in life with a gift and related talents. In computer lingo, our gift is similar to a computer chip. It’s like our ‘intel inside.’ It’s our unique intellect or God-given success factor. That gift allows us to go from nothing to something or from zero to sixty in whatever area we focus our passion.

The book reminds us that the gift is freely given and cannot be bought, sold or stolen. It represents something we do almost effortlessly that can bring lasting value. When we put our gift to work like Oprah, Steve Jobs and Harvey, at home, in the marketplace or community, it leaves a ‘gift mark’ as our legacy.

It’s one thing to discover our gifts but we also have to develop our goals. This becomes the vehicle for getting from here to there in our dreams or career. Harvey talks about S.M.A.R.T. goals that take us out of our comfort zone but not cause us undue harm. It’s a way to stretch towards the horizon of our dreams.


Goals guide our growth personally and professionally. So if folks had a choice which would be preferred, a half-baked potato or a twice-baked one with all the fixings? Based on Harvey’s success we should consider the same thing. Would we prefer a half-baked life or a twice-baked one with all the blessings?

Life has a way of taking us down roads we didn’t see coming. Sometimes we have a choice of taking the road less travelled. Keeping the dream alive by any means necessary involves driving confidently towards our greatness. We have to let the onboard navigation get us there using the gift as our GPS for success.

The GPS in our cars works by having a chip in the device that sends/receives signals with the satellite. This way we can get to our destination because the device can handle east, west, north and south at the same time. When we use our gift as GPS for success it moves us in the direction of our greatness.

Our human greatness varies from person to person just as the houses on a block aren’t the same. They might have different colors or windows or sizes. In living up to our full potential or keeping our dream alive we’re not distracted if we remain committed to the gift and goals for getting to our ultimate destination.

Footnote: If life is a song worth singing then our God-given gift brings out the best ever in us.