Having a Gallon-Sized Mind


One of my greatest goals every time I bring up a new team of investors is making sure they understand how to think like a business owner.


Like most of the world, you were likely brought up to think like an employee. Everything from the education you received to the job training to the expectations of your family has molded you into an employee. You do what you’re told, work scheduled hours, see a paycheck, and occasionally check out for 2 weeks in the Bahamas if you’re lucky. You have the mentality of one whose time is owned by someone else.

I don’t believe you are content with that. You wouldn’t be here if you were.

It is my job to assist you in breaking that thought pattern and set you on a path to an enlightened understanding—an ownership understanding. Because you will never achieve the success of an owner with the mindset of an employee.

If you haven’t read it yet, I recommend starting with “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki. If you have read it, I recommend rereading it. I was making $3.90 as a grocery store bag boy when this book changed my life by expanding my “lofty goals” of one day becoming a store manager into something much greater. Upon reading Kiyosaki’s principles, suddenly my management aspirations looked very small, but my future possibilities became extremely big.

Because of the principles in the text, I was able to take ownership of a mentality that brought me to new heights and has allowed me to help thousands of people. I’m sure I would have helped some people as a store manager making $45k a year, but let’s just say I’d be in a different place in life.

To help you understand what I mean about having an ownership mentality instead of an employee mentality, allow me to share my top ownership principles.

Having an ownership mentality means you have to change the capacity of your brain.


You cannot fit the work of an owner in the brain capacity of an employee without first stretching the mind. Let’s say an employee frame of mind is like a pint glass and owning a business is like a gallon of milk. If you don’t grow your mind first to fit, you’re going to start pouring out the milk only to end up with a puddle on the ground to slip in!

This is why I teach on Funding Tours and Rehab for Riches workshops and often see glazed over faces in the crowd. I know sometimes it’s from a food coma after lunch at Popeyes. But all too often, the information we’re covering is coming out faster than the vessels can hold it. (It’s okay! That’s why I always tell you to grab a sheet of paper and a pencil so you can review the material later.)

My challenge to you is to stretch your mind each and every day. Don’t be discouraged by this principle, but inspired by it. Remember, I once had the mental capacity of a bag boy making $3.90 an hour. But I expanded, stretched, and grew. Like an exercise regimen, you shouldn’t expect to go from zero to deadlifting 200 pounds in a week, but steady growth will get you there.

“I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it.”  -Pablo Picasso

Owners don’t just aspire to make a living, owners aspire to make a difference.


Employees assume that somehow they’ll get better; that one day, they’ll be able to perform at their peak, hit their goals, afford to retire. Assumption is one of the biggest ways you can disappoint yourself in life. Show me someone who assumes and I’ll show you someone who is disappointed.

The only way to break out of the cycle of assumption and disappointment is by making a difference because in making a difference, we get better. You will perform at your peak, hit your goals, and afford to retire by making a difference.

Whether you want to build better communities, broker private money to someone in need, or provide a way for your spouse to retire, you can get what you want by helping others get what they want. Find problems and solve them. You can make a difference.

“Don’t be afraid to go out on a limb. That’s where the fruit is.” – H. Jackson Browne

Owners don’t confuse doing a lot more with getting a lot done.


Owner sees the difference. Movement doesn’t necessarily equal progress.

I can’t stand the phrase “I’m so busy.” I know it’s usually a true statement, but it’s true of most people. It’s the easiest badge to earn in life, yet it’s the one we pin to our lapel and wear with honor as if just being busy means you’ve achieved a new level in life.

An employee trades his or her hours for dollars, and thus fills their hours. If they make the same every hour they work, then to them, every job that fills those hours is worth the same. As an owner and CEO who wears multiple hats every day, I have to determine where the highest and best use of my time is. In fact, I have my day planned out so that every fifteen minutes is accounted for. As with anyone, it’s easy to just fill my day with work, but as an owner, I have to consciously choose to concentrate on the work that drives us toward progress.

“Starting a business is a lot like jumping out of an airplane and assembling the parachute on the way down.” – Unknown

Owners show up on the days that they’re “not feeling it.”


Employees can call in sick to work. Owners don’t call in sick. Owners do it anyways. Owners go through the motions, even if that’s all they’re doing, they understand that feelings don’t get the job done.

John Maxwell said that everything worth having exists up the hill, just beyond the climb. “It’s not going to come to you. It’s not going to fall in your lap. It’s always going to be difficult.”

Owners set goals: yearly goals, monthly goals, daily goals. They understand that to achieve the goals they’ve set, they must apply discipline and consistency. Not just on Tuesdays, not just when you feel like it. You have to work at it every day.

“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” -Winston Churchill

Owners understand that hard work works.


Working really hard is what successful people do.

Trust the process. There are going to be stretches of time when you don’t see the fruits of your labor. That’s how it works. It’s the principle of sowing and reaping, and it goes like this:

  1. You reap what you sow. If you sow corn, you will reap corn. If you sow into your real estate education, you’re going to reap a real estate career (not a doctorate in history).
  2. You reap in a different season than you sow. If you sow corn in the spring, you’ll reap it in the fall. If you sow into your real estate education this fall, you’ll reap the profits of your labor next spring.

“The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.” – Vidal Sassoon

When it comes to success, your mindset is your biggest asset. Each person you look up to invented themselves, and you can do the same.

I’d like you to join me so we can do this together. I’ll even remind you to grab a paper and pencil so you can review the notes later.

To Your Success;

Lee A. Arnold


The Lee Arnold System of Real Estate Investing

Follow me on Twitter: @CogoCapital  and @LeeArnoldSystem 

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