Life's Golden Ticket: A Story About Second Chances

Life's Golden Ticket: A Story About Second Chances

by Brendon Burchard


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The classic inspirational parable from the top motivation and marketing trainer and #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Millionaire Messenger—a triumphant tale of personal growth and change that will inspire anyone who has ever wished for a second chance.

What if you were handed a golden ticket that could magically start your life anew?

That question is at the heart of Life’s Golden Ticket. Brendon Burchard tells the story of a man who is so trapped in the prison of his past that he cannot see the possibilities, the choices, and the gifts before him. To soothe his fiancée Mary, clinging to life in a hospital bed, the man takes the envelope she offers and heads to an old, abandoned amusement park that she begs him to visit.

To his surprise, when he steps through the rusted entrance gates, the park magically comes to life. Guided by the wise groundskeeper Henry, the man will encounter park employees, answer difficult questions, overcome obstacles, listen to lessons from those wiser than he, and take a hard look at himself.

At the end of his journey, the man opens Mary’s mysterious envelope. Inside is a golden ticket—the final phase in turning his tragic life’s story of loss and regret into a triumphant tale of love and redemption.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062456472
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 05/03/2016
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 130,804
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Brendon Burchard is a prominent life coach, leadership speaker, and change management consultant: his clients have included Fortune 500 companies, startups, nonprofits, universities, and thousands of individuals in seminars across the country. Brendon donates a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book to Kiwanis International, Junior Achievement, and the YMCA. He lives in Northern California but still calls Montana, where he grew up, home.

Read an Excerpt

Life's Golden Ticket
An Inspirational Novel

Chapter One

The Envelope

I was standing in the bathroom shaving when I heard the voice from the television: "We interrupt this program to report breaking news on the Mary Higgins disappearance."

I dropped the razor in the sink, threw a towel around my waist, and bolted for the living room. Mary's picture filled the left half of the screen. The stoic local evening news anchor said, "Miss Higgins, who mysteriously disappeared forty days ago, has reportedly been found. . . ."

Oh my God. I waited for the worst.

". . . A spokesperson for the Highway Patrol said Higgins was taken . . ."

The telephone rang, and I scrambled for it, still keeping an eye on the TV.

". . . hospital just fifteen minutes ago, where she is reportedly . . ."

I snatched the phone in mid-ring. It was Mary's mother, Linda, talking so quickly I could catch only half of what she said.

"Linda, slow down," I said. "What's going on?"

". . . We're here with her . . . you've got to get down here . . . they found her. . . . They found Mary!"

I glanced at the picture of Mary on the screen. "Jesus, Linda," I breathed. "It's on the news. Is she okay?"

"We're at the hospital. You've got to get down here . . . now!" she said.

"Linda, is Mary okay?"

"Just come over as fast as you can. Room four-ten. I gotta go. Hurry."

The line went dead.

I burst into the hospital lobby and was blinded by camera flashes. A wall of reporters surrounded me, shoving their cameras and microphones inmy face, barking questions.

"What is Mary's condition?" . . . "Do you know what happened?" . . . "Have you spoken with her parents?"

I'd never been so glad to see a nurse in my life. A sturdy woman in white pushed through the reporters and grabbed my forearm. "Give the man some privacy!" she commanded. "You—out of the way." She pulled me forward, parting the reporters with a running back's stiff-arm. Guiding me to the elevators, she shoved me in one and turned, blocking off the reporters behind her. "Fourth floor," she mouthed.

I pushed the button and felt a chill of dread at seeing the words next to it: Intensive Care.

The doors closed, muffling the reporters' shouted questions. I breathed in the sterile bleach-and-ether hospital smell, thinking how much I hated these places. Images of my grandfather, then my mother, flashed in my mind. Please don't let it be like that, I thought.

The doors opened. A nurse was at the desk.

"Ma'am, I'm looking for room four-ten. I'm—"

"I know," she said. "Go down the hall and take your first right. Fifth door on your left."

By the time she had said it I was halfway down the hall.

Rounding the corner, I saw Mary's mother, Linda, crying in her husband Jim's arms. A doctor was speaking to them quietly. A respectful distance away, Detective Kershaw, the officer in charge of the missing persons unit, stood staring at his feet.

I took a deep breath and tried to slow my heart. As I walked toward them I told myself to be strong.

Jim saw me first and whispered in Linda's ear. She wiped her tears, pulled away, and looked at me with sorrow-filled eyes.

Oh, no, I thought. Please don't . . .

My face felt numb as I reached them.

"Linda, is she alive?"

Kershaw sat across from me, fidgeting with his notepad and glancing up every so often at one of those awful seaside paintings that seem to be the required decor on waiting room walls. He probably knew that if he looked me in the eye I'd take a swing at him. In a contrite voice, he said, "Look, I got you all wrong—I admit that. Finding Mary the way we did, it proves you had nothing to do with her disappearance."

"It's about time you figured that out, you—"

"Whoa, now," Kershaw said, leaning back and putting his hands in the air, palms out. "I know you're upset. But like I said, I was just doing my job. You can't blame me for thinking you had something to do with it. . . ."

Still seething, I said nothing.

"Okay," he said. "Look—I don't blame you. Let's just start over. Let's talk like two people who want to figure out how Mary ended up on that highway. I know we've been through this a thousand times, but can you tell me once more about the last time you saw her? Can you tell me exactly what she said again? Now that we know where she ended up, maybe there's a clue in your last conversation."

Our last "conversation," I'm sad to say, was a shouting match. Shame and regret flooded my heart when I thought about it.

We were screaming at each other in the kitchen. Mary was on another of her we've-got-to-change-our-lives rants. The same old fight—every night, it seemed, right after dinner, for the past six months. She was tired of me sitting in front of the TV after work, tired of my being "distant," tired of my cynicism, tired of feeling weak, tired of living a life that she considered below us. Tired, she said, of being tired.

"We're drowning here," she said. "Drowning in despair, in our own pools of pessimism." That was her favorite phrase in combat: "pools of pessimism."

"You don't know how lucky we have it," I shot back. "My folks would have killed for a pool."

A line like that usually broke her stride and cooled her down—I was always good at making her laugh and changing the subject. But not this time. Her face sagged, and she started to cry. After a few moments of sobbing, she looked up and said, "I think I need to go away for the weekend. . . . I was going to ask you to come with me, but I don't think you're ready."

She'd never said anything in a voice that serious before.

Life's Golden Ticket
An Inspirational Novel
. Copyright © by Brendon Burchard. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Life's Golden Ticket: A Story About Second Chances 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Full of wonderful life lessons and makes you think of how you can improve yourself and your own life.
Boomer Perrault More than 1 year ago
Not usually a big fan of fiction books, but this one was fantastic. Entertaining with lots of life lessons.
Boomer Perrault More than 1 year ago
Not usually a big fan of fiction books, but this one was fantastic. Entertaining with lots of life lessons.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm about to re-read this right away! It has lots of life themes and opportunities for thought and reflection, so this time I'll be reading for meaning. Really enjoyed this book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This e-book was 182 pages and a nice feel good book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderfully written! Part of it made me feel as if the story was about my own life. If you are searching for answers or feel like you are "stuck" in yourself a favor, read the book. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.