Richie Norton

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Watch my new video about Gavin’s Law here.

Gavin’s Law: Live to start. Start to live.

Since my son Gavin graduated from this life to the next, I’ve preached these words to tens of thousands of people around the world. And guess what? It never gets old. The idea is simple, yet true. Live to start those ideas that keep pressing on your mind and start living the life of your dreams.

I can’t count how many people have told me how these words have inspired them. Changed them. I love it. It makes me feel like a little piece of Gavin still lives on in this insane world and his influence is still felt for good. Thank you to all of you who have embraced Gavin’s Law and are living a little better because of it. It seriously means the world to me.

Today would be Gavin’s fourth birthday. He lived 76 days. I’ve since learned that I can do anything in 76 days. That’s a little less than three months. A little less than a quarter of the year. A little less than a full season. A little time period in the average person’s life. But with a little effort, this short time period can dramatically change your life forever.

That’s why I’d like to challenge you to do something great over the next 76 days in Gavin’s honor. Do something. Anything. This is a real challenge. A challenge to make the most of one of your greatest gifts: TIME (Today Is My Everything). I call it The 76-Day Challenge


I’ve spent months writing this free 37-page companion action guide (ebook) to The Power of Starting Something Stupid and I’ve even tested it out with a group of people to see what works so you can get the most out of it.

Can I ask you a favor? Just three things:

  1. CLICK HERE and download the free 76-Day Challenge Action Guide.
  2. Comment below about something you’d like to do (anything). I’d really like to hear what fires you up. What would you regret not doing before you’re 80? What’s your goal? A fear? A thrill? An idea that just won’t go away? What is that thing you want to do, start, be?
  3. Put a fat dent in the (your) world!


1. Stop waiting.

This slideshow is the story behind Gavin’s Law. Take a second to check out my slideshow (posted at SlideShare) to understand what it means to stop waiting and start living. I’ve adapted this from the first chapter of The Power of Starting Something Stupid.

2. Do something good TODAY. #goodforgavin

My wife, Natalie shared this with the world today:

Happy fourth birthday to my sweet angel son! Join us in celebrating him … and all the beauty life has to offer … by doing something good today! Do a random act of kindness, break an unhealthy habit (or take the first steps to implement a healthy one), mend a broken relationship, smile at the mailman, express gratitude for the people and things around you that bring you joy, acknowledge someone else for the good THEY do or have done! The sky is the limit! Just DO SOMETHING GOOD!!! Let’s fill this crazy planet with abundant goodness and love! Please, please, please post your stories and tag them #goodforgavin so my boys and I can share in all the love you spread!! Encourage others to join the fun! Let’s do this, friends! Let’s get out and do something GOOD!

3. Be grateful.

Rabbi Harold Kushner said, “If you concentrate on finding whatever is good in every situation, you will discover that your life will suddenly be filled with gratitude, a feeling that nurtures the soul.” We all go through hard things. Life is insane. Let me repeat. LIFE.IS.INSANE. No one escapes the insanity. I think it’s okay to be sad when sad things happen. I don’t believe the saying “move on.” Move forward? Yes. But, to move on?  To pretend like bad things didn’t happen? Ignore them? Let them fester? Never. That said, getting stuck in the past is unacceptable. Accepting that life is insane, that bad things happen to good people and that you can find the courage to be grateful for the good in every situation and still move forward is hard (even terrifying), but heroic.

4. Build something.

A house? Maybe. Lego fortress? Sure. But there is more to building than building blocks. Build a happy lifestyle. Build a bridge to mend a broken relationship. Build a family. Build a positive personal brand. Build a courageous attitude. Build a project. Put your heart, mind and hands to work. Be a builder. Marvin Ashton said, “Be the one who nurtures and builds. Be the one who has an understanding and a forgiving heart one who looks for the best in people. Leave people better than you found them.” Be industrious. Build. Build. Build. And in the midst of all that productivity, find your happiness, your passion, your life. Build a body of work to make your mark on the world. Leave a legacy and influence the lives of others for good. Just go and build something.

Written by on October 24, 2013 | Permalink | Trackbacks (0)
21 Comments post a comment
  1. Natalie norton Oct 24th 7:14 pm

    i want to write a book. and I love you.

  2. Shelly Oct 24th 7:44 pm

    I loved every word of this.

  3. Scott Christley Oct 25th 2:18 am

    Thanks Richie and Natalie. I am going to learn how to program mobile apps and build some awesome apps to educate and help people. Just 76 days. That’s doable.

  4. Emily Capito Nov 02nd 11:57 am

    I love this concept. Thank you so much for turning Gavin’s story into an inspiring challenge! 76 days…time to pick a high impact project :)

  5. Kate Nov 06th 9:01 am

    I want to tell a story that will make a positive impact on the reader. Now, I just have to determine what that story is! Thank you for all aspects of the 76 day challenge – it has impacted me tremendously!

  6. Josh Eastburn Nov 15th 10:30 am

    Sorry, I’m just getting started on this and I have a boring logistical question. Is there a way to figure out where the page number references map to if I have a kindle version of TPoSSS?

    • Richie Norton Nov 15th 10:37 am

      Hi Josh! Great question. There isn’t a a reference for book page #s compared to Kindle locations. However, you could probably find the content in the book you’re looking for as it relates to the questions/references in the 76-Day Challenge by searching for key words. For example, “mission matching.” Wish I could be more helpful. Ah…the luxuries and challenges of technology. :-)

  7. erica sanchez Jan 28th 9:09 pm

    You guys Are truly amazing People! This book is exactly what I need in my life right now. All i gotta do now is Take what I learned and live it!! Thank you for inspiring me! God Bless you and your precious family!
    P.s. I wanna start a dog rescue shelter. :-)

  8. Jennifer Apr 17th 2:36 am

    thank you so much for inspiring me!

  9. bob morley Jan 21st 4:18 pm

    Thanks for this video Richie. the message was powerful and I appreciate you using this experience to teach an important principle of starting to live now.

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  18. Natalie Critchley Dec 25th 6:29 pm

    Great post! Loving this challenge. Thank you for sharing Gavin with the world.

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  20. Kristin Gastineau Aug 12th 12:41 pm

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ARE CRITICS STEALING YOUR LUNCH?: Critics and What to Do About Them


Critics steal our thunder

Are critics stealing your lunch? Picture source: NORTH NEWS .

Had a great chat with a friend today who described how she is paralyzed by the fear of critics. I understand how she feels and I think many of us share this same fear. Sad to think how much creativity and life are lost on fear of what someone might say. I often have an inner battle with myself when my work is criticized. Sometimes it’s healthy. Sometimes it’s not.

Here’s what I have to say about critics:

The best advice is to ignore them.

My fear in ignoring critics, however, is that I can’t use the feedback for improvement–if I’m not listening, how can I improve? This thinking is flawed. The definition of a critic is “a person who expresses an unfavorable opinion of something.” A critic isn’t out to help me, he’s out to hear himself talk. Scary.

The second best advice (if you can’t ignore the critics) is to realize two things:

  1. They don’t get it. They don’t have the background and experience and understanding to get it.
  2. They are not your market. It’s ok. It’s better to be noticed (and criticized) than to be obscure.

I like what the rappers Kris Kross once said, “when ya diss it just let’s me know I’m on your mind and it’s alright.”

It’s not the critic who counts.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt

Read this post by Seth Godin.

Here’s the link. Here’s an excerpt: “No one has ever built a statue to a critic, it’s true. On the other hand, it’s only the people with statues that get pooped on by birds flying by.”




Written by on October 14, 2013 | Permalink | Trackbacks (0) Topics:


Goal Setting


2 Comments post a comment
  1. liz petersen Oct 16th 6:22 pm

    I must say Richie, for every one negative comment you may receive, a dozen more in the positive can be found. Insecurities stem from giving people control over how we feel or react. Take back that power and continue to use it to better yourself and those around you. Your words have an Awesome power, keep on writing them so others can learn to take back control.

  2. Kaleb Oct 17th 6:21 am

    “Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.” -Albert Einstein


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