Orrin Woodward: Life Leadership

NY Times/WSJ best-selling author Orrin Woodward shares his life leadership secrets.

  • Orrin Woodward

    Orrin Woodward is a NY Times bestselling author of LeaderShift, Launching a Leadership Revolution, and sold over one million books on leadership and liberty. His first solo book RESOLVED: 13 Resolutions for LIFE made the Top 100 All-Time Best Leadership Books and the 13 Resolutions are the framework for the top selling Mental Fitness Challenge personal development program.

    Orrin has co-founded two multi-million dollar leadership companies and serves as the Chairman of the Board of the LIFE Business. He has a B.S. degree from GMI-EMI (now Kettering University) in manufacturing systems engineering. He holds four U.S. patents, and won an exclusive National Technical Benchmarking Award.

    This blog is an Alltop selection and ranked in HR's Top 100 Blogs for Management & Leadership.

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Ancient Greece’s Power Pendulum

Posted by Orrin Woodward on April 19, 2014

The Six Duties of Society (SDS) and the Five Laws of Decline (FLD) are present in every human society because it the seeds of both processes are inherent within the human heart. LIFE Leadership is a company that focuses on expanding the SDS and restraining the FLD. In a similar fashion, every successful society rises under the impetus of the SDS and eventually falls when the FLD kill it.

I promise that anyone who reads history with an SDS and FLD mindset will see it everywhere. For instance, the following video about the Greeks and the Power Pendulum is from a talk I gave last year. Listen to the video and tell me where else you have seen the FLD working within society.


Orrin Woodward

Posted in Freedom/Liberty, LIFE Leadership | 2 Comments »

Robinson Crusoe: The Entrepreneur

Posted by Orrin Woodward on April 16, 2014

Financial Fitness Pack

Financial Fitness Pack

This is part 2 of Hernando de Soto’s enlightening example of the savings process role in a non-State-interventionist’s free market economy.  LIFE Leadership has taught, since its inception, the three keys to wealth (1. Long term Vision; 2. Delayed Gratification; 3. Utilize the Power of Compounding). Unfortunately, the State does not follow these concepts and, since 1913, it has rarely attempted to apply these principles. Instead, it chooses inflation, taxation, and debt accumulation, seeking short-term bandaid fixes while the underlying issues become a greater risk to society’s future.

Needless to say, the current lack of long term vision, delayed gratification, and positive power of compounding must be changed. I believe the only way to change the political process is to change the thinking of the populace. Instead of demanding the State take care of everything, what if we put the State on a fixed budget and demanded they balance it? Imagine someone in Washington having to balance the budget like practically every household in the world must.

The State must end the temporary stopgaps (printing money and debt growth) which only mortgage our children’s financial futures to satisfy the State’s financial lunacy.

What can we do? We can start by displaying financial literacy in our own home by applying the principles from the LIFE Leadership Financial Fitness Pack. On a weekly basis, I am receiving letters, emails, and LIFE Lines describing how the Financial Fitness Pack has changed their financial future. Indeed, how can we criticize the financial mess in Washington until we model the proper behavior personally?

Let’s lead our homes first and then find leaders who will do the same in every branch of government.

If you have applied the principles from the Financial Fitness Pack and have achieved progress in your personal financial situation then please share a comment below.


Orrin Woodward

Robinson Crusoe’s production process, like any other, clearly arises from an act of entrepreneurial creativity, the actor’s realization that he stands to benefit, i.e., he can accomplish ends more valuable to him, by employing action processes which require a longer period of time (because they include more stages). Thus action or production processes yield capital goods, which are simply intermediate economic goods in an action process whose aim has not yet been reached. The actor is only willing to sacrifice his immediate consumption (i.e., to save) if he thinks that by doing so he will achieve goals he values more (in this case, the production of ten times more berries than he could gather by hand).

Furthermore Robinson Crusoe must attempt to coordinate as well as possible his present behavior with his foreseeable future behavior. More specifically, he must avoid initiating action processes that are excessively long in relation to his savings: it would be tragic for him to run out of berries (that is, to consume all he has saved) halfway through the process of producing a capital good and without reaching his goal. He must also refrain from saving too much with respect to his future investment needs, since by doing so he would only unnecessarily sacrifice his immediate consumption. Robinson Crusoe’s subjective assessment of his time preference is precisely what enables him to adequately coordinate or adjust his present behavior in relation to his future needs and behavior.

On the one hand, the fact that his time preference is not absolute makes it possible for him to forfeit some of his present consumption over a period of several weeks with the hope of thus being able to produce the stick. On the other hand, the fact that he does have a time preference explains why he only devotes his efforts to creating a capital good he can produce in a limited period of time and which requires sacrificing and saving for a limited number of days.

If Robinson Crusoe had no time preference, nothing would stop him from dedicating all of his efforts to building a hut right away (which, for example, might take him a month minimum), a plan he would not be able to carry out without first having saved a large quantity of berries. Therefore he would either starve to death or the project, out of all proportion to his potential saving, would soon be interrupted and abandoned. At any rate, it is important to understand that the real saved resources (the berries in the basket) are precisely the ones which enable Robinson Crusoe to survive during the time period he spends producing the capital good and during which he ceases to gather berries directly.

Posted in Finances, Freedom/Liberty, Leadership/Personal Development, LIFE Leadership | 6 Comments »

Robinson Crusoe the Capitalist?

Posted by Orrin Woodward on April 14, 2014

Jesus Huerta de Soto

Jesus Huerta de Soto

In Hernando de Soto’s fantastic book Money, Bank Credit, and Economic Cycles, he uses a simple example from Robinson Crusoe to explain how savings is essential for the free enterprise process. Understanding these concepts at the simplest levels helps one decipher the more complicated cases in today’s modern economies. I have spent the last year really studying the fractional reserve banking (FRB) methods and now realize the highly inflationary nature of this process.

Unfortunately, the modern State’s marriage to the banking system has only exacerbated the ill effects of FRB by juicing the whole process with fiat money created through the central banks. Thus, the money supply grows precipitously during the Boom process and banks enjoy massive profits until the borrowers (both business and consumers) realize their inability to repay the debts at the now inflated prices cause the the monetary expansion. Of course, this leads to the Bust when debt defaults rapidly reverse the FRB monetary expansion.

LIFE Leadership is just months away from releasing my new book And Justice for All that reveals the SDS and FLD and how they interact within society. Increasingly, entrepreneurs are failing because they can no longer make accurate predictions based upon current prices thanks to the Boom/Bust FRB cycles. With that said, however, I am not a doom and gloom person as I believe the truth sets you free. It’s time for We the People to learn, live, and apply truth in the areas of finances (both personally, professionally, and societally) and restore the American (along with every other societies) Dream for the next-generation.

Here is part I of a two part series.


Orrin Woodward

The sine qua non for producing capital goods is saving, or the relinquishment or postponement of immediate consumption. Indeed in an action process the actor will only be able to reach successive and increasingly time-consuming intermediate stages if he has first sacrificed the chance to undertake actions which would produce a more immediate result. In other words, he must give up the achievement of immediate ends which would satisfy current human needs (consumption).

To illustrate this important concept, we will use the example given by Böhm-Bawerk to explain the process of saving and investment in capital goods carried out by an individual actor in an isolated situation, such as Robinson Crusoe on his island. Let us suppose that Robinson Crusoe has just arrived on his island and spends his time picking berries by hand, his only means of subsistence. Each day he devotes all of his efforts to gathering berries, and he picks enough to survive and can even eat a few extra daily.

After several weeks on this diet, Robinson Crusoe makes the entrepreneurial discovery that with a wooden stick several meters long, he could reach higher and further, strike the bushes with force and gather the necessary berries much quicker. The only problem is that he estimates it could take him five whole days to find a suitable tree from which to take the stick and then to prepare it by pulling off its branches, leaves, and imperfections. During this time he will be compelled to interrupt his berry picking. If he wants to produce the stick, he will have to reduce his consumption of berries for a time and store the remainder in a basket until he has enough to survive for five days, the predicted duration of the production process of the wooden stick.

After planning his action, Robinson Crusoe decides to undertake it, and therefore he must first save a portion of the berries he picks by hand each day, reducing his consumption by that amount. This clearly means he must make an inevitable sacrifice, which he nevertheless deems well worth his effort in relation to the goal he longs to achieve. So he decides to reduce his consumption (in other words, to save) for several weeks while storing his leftover berries in a basket until he has accumulated an amount he believes will be sufficient to sustain him while he produces the stick. This example shows that each process of investment in capital goods requires prior saving; that is, a decrease in consumption, which must fall below its potential level.

Once Robinson Crusoe has saved enough berries, he spends five days searching for a branch from which to make his wooden stick, separating it from the tree and perfecting it. What does he eat during the five days it takes him to prepare the stick, a production process which forces him to interrupt his daily harvest of berries? He simply consumes the berries he accumulated in the basket over the preceding several-week period during which he saved the necessary portion from his handpicked berries and experienced some hunger. In this way, if Robinson Crusoe’s calculations were correct, at the end of five days he will have the stick (a capital good), which represents an intermediate stage removed in time (by five days of saving) from the immediate processes of the berry production (by hand) which up to that point had occupied him.

With the finished stick Robinson Crusoe can reach places inaccessible to him by hand and strike the bushes with force, multiplying his production of berries by ten. As a result, from that point on his stick enables him to gather in one-tenth of a day the berries he needs to survive, and he can spend the rest of his time resting or pursuing subsequent goals that are much more important to him (like building a hut or hunting animals to vary his diet and make clothes).

Posted in Freedom/Liberty, LIFE Leadership | 20 Comments »

Anti-Federalist Fears are Today’s Reality

Posted by Orrin Woodward on April 8, 2014

The Federalist/Anti-Federalist debates at the founding of America have some of the best insights into government and society that have ever been written. Unfortunately, few have read both sides of the debate. I am working on a book project that will provide the main points from both sides and discuss where history has proven each side right.

LIFE Leadership is about providing truth for one to learn how to think and reason in order to better his/her life. I am so thankful I get to do what I do with the greatest compensated community and customer base in the world! :) Below is a short segment from the upcoming work.


Orrin Woodward

The Anti-Federalist

The Anti-Federalist

“[C]onstitutions are not so necessary to regulate the conduct
of good rulers as to restrain that of bad ones.”
—Robert Yates (Brutus), Anti-Federalist

What the Anti-Federalists Had to Say

The Anti-Federalists had a number of very important things to say about the powers of the sword and the purse. For example, as one Anti-Federalist wrote in the Pennsylvania Minority Report: “[T]he new government will not be a [cooperation] of states, as it ought, but one consolidated government, founded upon the [federal control] of…the states…”

In other words, one huge problem with the Constitution was that it gave too much power to the federal government, swinging the nation in the direction of Coercion—as I have already discussed. But the really interesting thing is exactly how the Pennsylvania Minority Report predicted that this would happen:

The Federalists

The Federalists

“The powers of Congress under the new constitution, are complete and unlimited over the purse and the sword, and are perfectly independent of, and supreme over, the state governments, whose intervention in these great points is entirely destroyed. By virtue of their power of taxation, Congress may command the whole, or any part of the property of the people.

“They may impose what imposts upon commerce; they may impose what land taxes, poll taxes, excises, duties on all written instruments, and duties on every other article that they may judge proper; in short, every species of taxation, whether of an external or internal nature is comprised in section the 8th, of article the 1st [of the Constitution], viz., ‘The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and excises, to pay the debts, and provide for the common defence and general welfare of the United States.”

This was a major concern for the Anti-Federalists. They predicted that the federal government would use the power of the sword as an excuse to increase the federal power of the purse, and then just keep increasing their powers until the federal government did much, much more than protect our national defense.

They saw that the federal powers of sword and purse would lead to federal involvement in every facet of our lives. This is exactly what happened.

Posted in Freedom/Liberty, LIFE Leadership | 17 Comments »

America’s Power Pendulum

Posted by Orrin Woodward on April 2, 2014

American society is moving away from concord and quickly into coercion. Where people used to function with leadership and service to others, it is now functioning more and more under compulsion and threats. Unfortunately, this is the normal outcome when the State assumes responsibility for society’s roles.

In my soon-to-be-released book And Justice for All, I cover the roles of the force State and free society. Anytime the roles get mixed up the Power Pendulum moves into either chaos or coercion. LIFE Leadership is an all-volunteer community based upon leadership and service to others. Our goal is to build compensated communities and teach people entrepreneurship and the principles of a healthy civilization.

Below is a portion of a talk I gave last year in Saginaw, Michigan.


Orrin Woodward

Posted in Leadership/Personal Development, LIFE Leadership | 14 Comments »

Dan and Lisa Hawkins: Communication Skills

Posted by Orrin Woodward on March 30, 2014

Dan and Lisa Hawkins share the Communication Code

Dan and Lisa Hawkins have become two of the most dynamic and effective communicators in LIFE Leadership. The popular demand for their leadership materials is expanding around the world. Why? Because Dan and Lisa treat leadership as their profession. Leadership is not a part-time, nor full-time, but a lifetime assignment for both of them. For instance, the video below is just a short segment of an amazing talk that would help marriages across the globe.

This talk, plus hundreds of others are available on Rascal Radio for the unbelievably low price of under 50 dollars per month. LIFE Leadership is changing the world one life at a time. Thousands of people per month on signing up as customers and members because they understand the importance of leadership in every area of life. Are you one of them?


Orrin Woodward

Posted in Leadership/Personal Development, LIFE Leadership | 14 Comments »

Jesus Huerta de Soto: Booms/Busts Part II

Posted by Orrin Woodward on March 22, 2014

Here is part II of de Soto’s impressive summary of the Boom/Bust cycle at work in America. Those who fail to learn from history end up repeating it and American leaders seem intent on not learning from history. LIFE Leadership, on the other hand, is intent on teaching people the principles behind the processes at work within the world. I believe the more truth one applies to life, the more capable he/she becomes in navigating the rough spots.


Orrin Woodward

Jesus Huerta de Soto

Jesus Huerta de Soto

At present, numerous self-interested voices are demanding further reductions in interest rates and new injections of money which permit those who desire it to complete their investment projects without suffering losses. Nevertheless, this escape forward would only temporarily postpone problems at the cost of making them far more serious later. The crisis has hit because the profits of capital-goods companies (especially in the building sector and in real-estate development) have disappeared due to the entrepreneurial errors provoked by cheap credit, and because the prices of consumer goods have begun to perform relatively less poorly than those of capital goods.

At this point, a painful, inevitable readjustment begins, and in addition to a decrease in production and an increase in unemployment, we are now still seeing a harmful rise in the prices of consumer goods (stagflation). The most rigorous economic analysis and the coolest, most balanced interpretation of recent economic and financial events support the conclusion that central banks (which are true financial central-planning agencies) cannot possibly succeed in finding the most advantageous monetary policy at every moment. This is exactly what became clear in the case of the failed attempts to plan the former Soviet economy from above.

To put it another way, the theorem of the economic impossibility of socialism, which the Austrian economists Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich A. Hayek discovered, is fully applicable to central banks in general, and to the Federal Reserve—(at one time) Alan Greenspan and (currently) Ben Bernanke—in particular. According to this theorem, it is impossible to organize society, in terms of economics, based on coercive commands issued by a planning agency, since such a body can never obtain the information it needs to infuse its commands with a coordinating nature. Indeed, nothing is more dangerous than to indulge in the “fatal conceit”—to use Hayek’s useful expression—of believing oneself omniscient or at least wise and powerful enough to be able to keep the most suitable monetary policy fine tuned at all times.

Hence, rather than soften the most violent ups and downs of the economic cycle, the Federal Reserve and, to some lesser extent, the European Central Bank, have most likely been their main architects and the culprits in their worsening. Therefore, the dilemma facing Ben Bernanke and his Federal Reserve Board, as well as the other central banks (beginning with the European Central Bank), is not at all comfortable. For years they have shirked their monetary responsibility, and now they find themselves in a blind alley. They can either allow the recessionary process to begin now, and with it the healthy and painful readjustment, or they can escape forward toward a “hair of the dog” cure. With the latter, the chances of even more severe stagflation in the not-too-distant future increase exponentially. (This was precisely the error committed following the stock market crash of 1987, an error which led to the inflation at the end of the 1980s and concluded with the sharp recession of 1990-1992.)

Furthermore, the reintroduction of a cheap-credit policy at this stage could only hinder the necessary liquidation of unprofitable investments and company reconversion. It could even wind up prolonging the recession indefinitely, as has occurred in Japan in recent years: though all possible interventions have been tried, the Japanese economy has ceased to respond to any monetarist stimulus involving credit expansion or Keynesian methods. It is in this context of “financial schizophrenia” that we must interpret the latest “shots in the dark” fired by the monetary authorities (who have two totally contradictory responsibilities: both to control inflation and to inject all the liquidity necessary into the financial system to prevent its collapse).

Thus, one day the Federal Reserve rescues Bear Stearns (and later AIG, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac or Citigroup), and the next it allows Lehman Brothers to fail, under the amply justified pretext of “teaching a lesson” and refusing to fuel moral hazard. Then, in light of the way events were unfolding, a 700-billion-dollar plan to purchase the euphemistically named “toxic” or “illiquid” (i.e., worthless) assets from the banking system was approved. If the plan is financed by taxes (and not more inflation), it will mean a heavy tax burden on households, precisely when they are least able to bear it.

Finally, in view of doubts about whether such a plan could have any effect, the choice was made to inject public money directly into banks, and even to “guarantee” the total amount of their deposits, decreasing interest rates to almost zero percent.

Posted in Freedom/Liberty, Leadership/Personal Development, LIFE Leadership | 11 Comments »

Jesus Huerta de Soto: Boom/Bust Cycles

Posted by Orrin Woodward on March 21, 2014

Jesus Huerta de Soto

Jesus Huerta de Soto

I have read one of the best books on the Boom/Bust cycle yet in Jesus Huerta de Soto’s book Money, Bank Credit, and Economic Cycles.  Although a very thick book and not one I would recommend to start an economic journey, with the proper Austrian Economic foundations, this book reveals the reason for the predictable boom/bust inflationary cycle. Further, it reveals why the State and its cronies self-interests makes it difficult for society to end the State’s madness.

Like a druggie that constantly needs another hit to ease his troubles, the American economy is addicted to cheap money that only exacerbates its problems. Instead of pyramiding fiat money on top of fiat money (which is what the State supported Big Banks do), money should be subjected to the free-market forces that would temper the gambling nature of today’s Big Banks who know that the profits are privatized and the losses are socialized thanks to the State. I believe the State/Big Bank partnership is the greatest money scam against society in the world.

Think about it. If a business knew that its losses would be transferred to the people, but its gains would be enjoyed by the owners of the business, what behavior would one expect from the business? Predictably, Big Banks can make rash investments locally and internationally knowing all the while that they are “Too Big to Fail” and most of society is “Too Ignorant to Care”. LIFE Leadership is a group of people who care about all areas of leadership truth and justice. America was founded upon the principle of justice for all and that means no special deals for anyone regardless of how big or small they might currently be.

The Western ideal dreams of creating a land where there is opportunity for everyone, not a land of special deal bailouts and handouts for copouts and dropouts! Simply stated, the working Middle Class is being squeezed. The Bible states, “He who will not work, will not eat.” It is time for the West to relearn the value of hard work for a worthy cause. Isn’t our children’s future worth the effort?

Here is Part I of the introduction to de Soto’s book.


Orrin Woodward

The policy of artificial credit expansion central banks have permitted and orchestrated over the last fifteen years could not have ended in any other way. The expansionary cycle which has now come to a close began gathering momentum when the American economy emerged from its last recession (fleeting and repressed though it was) in 2001 and the Federal Reserve reembarked on the major artificial expansion of credit and investment initiated in 1992. This credit expansion was not backed by a parallel increase in voluntary household saving. For several years, the money supply in the form of bank notes and deposits has grown at an average rate of over 10 percent per year (which means that every seven years the total volume of money circulating in the world could have been doubled).

The media of exchange originating from this severe fiduciary inflation have been placed on the market by the banking system as newly-created loans granted at very low (and even negative in real terms) interest rates. The above fueled a speculative bubble in the shape of a substantial rise in the prices of capital goods, real-estate assets and the securities which represent them, and are exchanged on the stock market, where indexes soared. Curiously, like in the “roaring” years prior to the Great Depression of 1929, the shock of monetary growth has not significantly influenced the prices of the subset of consumer goods and services (approximately only one third of all goods).

The last decade, like the 1920s, has seen a remarkable increase in productivity as a result of the introduction on a massive scale of new technologies and significant entrepreneurial innovations which, were it not for the injection of money and credit, would have given rise to a healthy and sustained reduction in the unit price of consumer goods and services. Moreover, the full incorporation of the economies of China and India into the globalized market has boosted the real productivity of consumer goods and services even further. The absence of a healthy “deflation” in the prices of consumer goods in a stage of such considerable growth in productivity as that of recent years provides the main evidence that the monetary shock has seriously disturbed the economic process.

As I explain in the book, artificial credit expansion and the (fiduciary) inflation of media of exchange offer no short cut to stable and sustained economic development, no way of avoiding the necessary sacrifice and discipline behind all high rates of voluntary saving. (In fact, particularly in the United States, voluntary saving has not only failed to increase in recent years, but at times has even fallen to a negative rate.) Indeed, the artificial expansion of credit and money is never more than a short-term solution, and that at best. In fact, today there is no doubt about the recessionary quality the monetary shock always has in the long run: newly-created loans (of money citizens have not first saved) immediately provide entrepreneurs with purchasing power they use in overly ambitious investment projects (in recent years, especially in the building sector and real estate development).

In other words, entrepreneurs act as if citizens had increased their saving, when they have not actually done so. Widespread discoordination in the economic system results: the financial bubble (“irrational exuberance”) exerts a harmful effect on the real economy, and sooner or later the process reverses in the form of an economic recession, which marks the beginning of the painful and necessary readjustment. This readjustment invariably requires the reconversion of every real productive structure inflation has distorted. The specific triggers of the end of the euphoric monetary “binge” and the beginning of the recessionary “hangover” are many, and they can vary from one cycle to another.

In the current circumstances, the most obvious triggers have been the rise in the price of raw materials, particularly oil, the subprime mortgage crisis in the United States, and finally, the failure of important banking institutions when it became clear in the market that the value of their liabilities exceeded that of their assets (mortgage loans granted).

Posted in Leadership/Personal Development, LIFE Leadership | 9 Comments »

20 Leadership Habits to Break: Part II

Posted by Orrin Woodward on March 20, 2014

Here is part II of a presentation based upon Marshall Goldsmith’s book What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There. Leaders must break free from self-focus to truly lead others with a servant’s heart. Sadly, few leaders ever reach this ideal. Consequently, few communities reach their potential because everyone is protecting personal turf instead of serving others’ needs.  This isn’t just a corporate phenomena, as the same self-centered leadership occurs in charities, and churches. Nonetheless, this must change if North America truly wants to rebound from its economic malaise.

LIFE Leadership is this change. Teaching principles of leadership that have stood the test of time, LIFE is growing faster than ever. LIFE Leadership chooses to compete through serving customers instead of creating lawsuits, pyramid schemes, or leadership scams. If one truly wants to grow his/her leadership, then serving compensated communities is the best avenue. With world-class products to offer the world (Mental Fitness Challenge, Financial Fitness Pack, and Rascal Radio), LIFE’s future is bright.

Improve your leadership by breaking these bad habits and moving to the next level. Please share which areas you are working on.


Orrin Woodward

Posted in Leadership/Personal Development, LIFE Leadership | 11 Comments »

Chris Mattis: Thinking is the Difference

Posted by Orrin Woodward on March 17, 2014

Chris Mattis shares an important principle of success in life, namely, one’s thinking. A person’s thinking is what limits the level of success more than any other factor in modern society. Unfortunately, few realize this crucial principle. Thus, the vast majority live Emersonian “lives of quiet desperation” because they do not accept responsibility for increasing the level of their thinking. David Schwarz book Magic of Thinking Big changed my life because it encouraged me to stoke my dreams that I was on the verge of surrendering. 

Today, I realize that God used compensated communities to fulfill His plan he had for my life. Indeed, LIFE Leadership is doing that for thousands of individuals who are tired of living Emersonian lives. Chris Mattis changed his life and now is changing tens of thousands of others. Instead of seeking life scams, pyramid schemes, or lottery tickets, why not focus on growing personally so that you can expand your influence for good? Money is temporary, but positive influence is forever. 


Orrin Woodward

Posted in Leadership/Personal Development, LIFE Leadership | 17 Comments »