The Person I Could Have Been

One of the goals of anyone battling average is to “close the gap.” As a kid raised on a farm, I heard the statement, “be sure and close the gap” hundreds of times.

The gap I am closing now does not involve barbed wire and a wood post. It is the gap between “my current performance” and “my potential.” It is not about comparing my performance with others.

My favorite oldest grandson recently designed a website and it had the tagline, “A flower does not compete with the flower next to it; it just blooms.” I shared with him why I loved that tagline.

A flower, barring insects or disease, blooms to its fullest potential. It takes advantage of every bit of moisture and nutrient available. Sadly, humans do not do this. We neglect, ignore, or do not take advantage of many of the opportunities in front of us.

I recently thought about meeting the person I could have become 20-25 years from now. How close will he be to who I am? I began thinking about getting closer and closer to my potential. It inspired the following poem;

The Man I Could Have Been©2018.

There’s a man I want to meet, but I’m not ready yet.
There’s health, wealth and wisdom, still there for me to get. 

I must be in a hurry, my time I cannot take.
Judging by the flame, of the candles on my cake.

The man I want to meet, I must remove the danger.
That when he looks at me, he doesn’t see a stranger.

You see, this man I want to meet, is the man I could have been.
And when he looks at who I’ve become, I hope he sees his twin.

Greg Gilbert –

As you continue to Battle Average, “don’t forget to close the gap!”

Greg Gilbert

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Eat For The Body I Want!

“Eat for the body I want.”

I heard this on a podcast this morning while walking. I won’t look at a French fry or dessert the same again.

Here is my version; “Eat, exercise and pick your habits for the time you want to spend making memories with your family.” THIS will help me in my lifelong battle with average.

Greg Gilbert

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What Kind Of Parent Are You? Could You Go Back To Sleep?

It was so sad to hear of the passing of one of my classmates, Ray Wheelington. We had some good times in the past. When I heard of his passing, I immediately started thinking of “Ray Stories.” The one below came to mind. After typing the story, it transformed from a “Ray Story” to a “Parenting Story.” What kind of parent are YOU?

Once, when I was 15, before I had a car, Ray brought me home in that green Camaro.

It was after midnight. I got out and he sped down the road. Highway 195 was still a gravel road and I’m sure there was dust and gravel flying. I went upstairs to my room and had just laid down when I heard something hitting the roof. I opened my window/urinal door. (There was no bathroom upstairs. Mom never understood why flowers never grew beneath my window.)

I raised the window and Ray was yelling at me. He had missed a curve and was in the ditch. I didn’t want to wake my parents. I snuck outside and crossed the road to the barn. I cranked our Farmall tractor and wrapped a chain around the drawbar. I brought a flashlight and Ray rode on the drawbar holding the flashlight as we returned to the scene of the spinout. I pulled him out and he sped toward Cross Roads and Hope. Luckily, neither Ray or the car were hurt.

I thought I had pulled off this entire mission without parental knowledge. I returned home to find my dad on the porch rocking in a chair. He said he tried to go back to sleep but his curiosity was killing him. He couldn’t wait until morning to find out why I’m driving a tractor down the road at 1am. He wasn’t upset, just curious. As I explained the situation, all I remember is him shaking his head as he went back in the house.

This began as a “Ray Story” but I after I typed the story, it turned into a “Dad” story. How many of us as parents, could sit calmly on the porch as our 15 year old child drives down the road on a tractor at 1AM? How many of us would be in the vehicle following with the lights flashing and possibly honking the horn wanting to know the story?

When I think back, I guess Dad trusted my ability and common sense to handle whatever problem I was facing. I guess he knew I didn’t have enough fuel to go joy riding. He probably was on the front porch and saw us begin our journey. I wish my Dad was still around to ask these questions.

What would you do and what are your thoughts? What would the AVERAGE parent do?

Greg Gilbert

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When A Helicopter Rolls Over On Your Head!

One of the many things I love about what I do is the people I meet. One of my recent customers was retired military. He was my last appointment of the day so I stuck around and just listened to some of his stories.

He had been shot, blown up, was in a helicopter crash and lived to be telling me about it. Come to think of it, maybe that’s why he bought an accidental death policy from me.

The helicopter crash story was one for the books….or the blog. They crashed but no one was killed. As it crashed, one of his crew members was thrown from the helicopter. The helicopter then rolled over on his head where he couldn’t move. He evidently was not hurt too bad as he was screaming to get him out before the helicopter blew up.

My customer, I’ll call him Sgt. Doe, got everyone out of the helicopter. One crew member began to pull on the legs of the trapped soldier as the rest of the crew tried to rock the helicopter. As they were rocking the helicopter, one young Private, began tapping Sgt. Doe on the shoulder and screaming “Sgt. Doe, Sgt. Doe.” Sgt. Doe told him to shut up and rock the helicopter.

He complied but quickly began yelling again, “Sgt. Doe, chin strap, chin strap.” Again, Sgt. Doe told him to shut up and rock the helicopter. He complied but quickly began yelling again, “Sgt. Doe, chin strap, chin strap.” Sgt. Doe told me, “I controlled my emotions long enough to pay attention to what he was saying. I reached down and unbuckled the trapped soldier’s chin strap and he immediately popped out of his helmet, unhurt.

I was amazed by this story. I told him I would write this with his permission. I came up with many morals to the story before I left the house. 

Since this is the Battling Average Blog and Online Radio Program, I will address some of the morals of the story from an Unaverage standpoint.

  1. What is your chinstrap? Honestly, what has you trapped under Average? Is it a habit, addiction, hobby, TV, credit cards, debt, anger problem?
  2. Whatever is holding you at average, more than likely, it is something that is above your chinstrap.
  3. Not everything has to be handled with brute strength. Sometimes we are better served to use our head.
  4. When emotions are high, it is very difficult to really, truly listen.
  5. Sometimes the one in charge doesn’t have the best ideas.
  6. A buckled chin strap could save your life.

I’m interested in what your moral of the story could be? Please send me your ideas and keep on Battling Average!

Greg Gilbert

Margin Financial Group

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Is Average In Your Windshield, Passenger Seat or Rear View Mirror?

Welcome to Battling Average, the Blog and online radio program of Margin Financial where we create margin by battling average.

The young man stuck around after a presentation. He was the first of three with a question. He wasn’t much older than my oldest grandson. I am very seldom without words but his question deserved my full attention. He asked;

“How does an average person get ahead in life?”

I asked if he was in a hurry and he said no. I asked him to have a seat and I would be right with him. I answered the two questions of the other attendees and sat down with the young man.

Below is a short summary of my suggestions to the young man;

“The first thing you must do is not ever refer to yourself as average again. Your performance will never exceed your opinion of yourself.

You must do whatever you can to put average in your rear view mirror and press the gas. Average people are overextended, overweight and over stressed.

The only way to remove yourself from average is by reading, listening to, attending and watching what average people will never read, listen to, attend or watch. You must also limit your time around average people.

There will always be average people and there is nothing wrong with average unless you want more out of life. Divorcing yourself from average must be intentional; it cannot be accidental. Once you separate yourself from average, you will be amazed at the opportunities that will come your way.

Being Unaverage has very little to do with your income. If you live within your means, you have already separated yourself from the average American.”

I suggested a few books, YouTube videos and podcasts that were part of my personal growth journey. We discussed some other items and we parted ways.

There is an old saying that when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. That afternoon, I was the teacher. Later that night and as long as I am able to speak or write, I will be the student of that young man. He made me realize I must fight average every day of my life or Average will win. I must become UnAverage and it MUST be intentional and daily.

I have begun to look at each aspect of my life. My Faith, Family, Finances, Health, Career and social life. Where am I average and what can I; 

  1. Stop
  2. Start
  3. Improve
  4. Repeat

Click HERE for a graphic of the average American’s finances.

My future writing and programs will be dedicated to helping every willing reader, listener and attendee become UNAVERAGE. You can join us at

Thank you for your time as we Battle Average together.

Greg Gilbert

Margin Financial Group

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