The Gap and The Gain

By Dan Sullivan
Image of the cover of The Gap and the Gain by Dan Sullivan. Wesley Donehue's book reviews and recommendations.

I have so much.

A beautiful, smart, driven, and giving wife. Three awesome boys who are everything to me.

A gorgeous home. The car I wanted. Money in the bank, the market, real estate, and crypto.

Multiple successful businesses producing positive cash flow and badass teams running them.

The ability to travel the world and do stupid endurance events.

I could go on but it would sound braggy and douchey and that’s not the point of this post. The point is that I’ve come a long way from that Section 8 housing in North Charleston. That’s called the Gain. It’s where we started to where we are now and all the great achievements in between.

When we focus on the Gain and how much we have achieved we are in a better mental space because we are so much more grateful for what we have.

Unfortunately, that’s now where most of us are. We are in the Gap. That’s when we focus on where we are today compared to all the things we want. We become dissatisfied with our lives because we are focused on what we do not have.

That’s not to say we shouldn’t have big goals. The problem is that we get into this comparison game with others and we start thinking that our lives suck because we don’t have what they have. Social media, and especially Instagram, have made this all so much worse.

With complete honesty and transparency, that’s me. I live in the Gap. I compare myself to my competitors or other entrepreneurs like the ballers in my mastermind group and I start losing confidence. I ask myself why I’m not killing it like them. Why am I not printing cash, bringing home $1 Million every month, buying a yacht, flying private, and driving a Ferrari?

What I really need to do is take a step back and ask myself where those guys started compared to where I started. Did they grow up on welfare and live in single-wide trailers with holes in the floor? Did they grow up in a violent home with addicts? Maybe they did but I’m guessing it wasn’t many of them.

Even then, why does it matter where they came from? That’s when I have to take yet another step back and realize the only thing that matters is me. I should be comparing ME to ME only.

When I do that I realize HOLY SHIT, life is absolutely AMAZING! Look what I have! Look what I’m doing! I’m hopping on a plane with my family in just two days to do a full Ironman in Cozumel!!! I’m living the freaking dream. I’m in a place I never thought I would be. Anything from here on out is just icing on a badass cake.

And just like that, my mind goes from being unsatisfied to satisfied. From pessimistic to optimistic. From depressed to excited. That’s the difference between living in the Gap and in the Gain.

I strongly recommend this book to everyone. It’s a real mental game changer.

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