Sunday, January 29, 2017

3 Emotions All Entrepreneurs Feel (and How to Keep Them in Check)

Emotional stress can lead you to hasty decisions.
Pejman Ghadimi

Unchecked emotions are one of the main factors that can cause normal, educated and smart people to make all the wrong decisions. While under emotional stress, you can make decisions that you would never consider otherwise.
There are three main emotions that can dramatically influence the decisions we as entrepreneurs make. See how you can overcome the most common mistakes often caused by them.

1. Anxiety

It’s normal for entrepreneurs to feel anxiety as they try to launch a new business or grow an existing one, and it’s very important to learn to control it early on.
Anxiety typically comes from the fear of the unknown and our lack of confidence in the work or process at hand. Often, we haven’t created a strong enough foundation to feel confident and stable in our abilities.
Should you find yourself in a situation where anxiety consumes your brain, perhaps it’s time to take a deeper look at your business in these three core areas:
  • Analyze your structure and decipher if you have all components needed to support your customers and the team working to serve them—from IT to customer service training and protocols.
  • Analyze the core of your team by making sure you have the right people in the right positions. Everyone brings a unique set of skills to the organization. Ensure their key talents are aligned with the work they do.
  • Understand your destination and keep a clear view of it. In the earlier phases of a business, it’s easier to know where you want to go, but as revenue, teamwork and obstacles come your way years later, many entrepreneurs lose sight of the destination and instead focus on the immediate future.
Address these common issues to alleviate your anxiety.

2. Anger

Actions and decisions made in anger are automatically negative. Anger is powerful but easily controllable because time can dissipate that strong emotion. Some of the worst decisions can be made in moments of anger and can easily be avoided if you wait 30 to 40 minutes between the emotion and the action.
Keep in mind that anger can be especially dangerous when combined with pride. If you struggle with pride and ego, know that about yourself and don’t let anger dictate your actions. Take more than 30 minutes to reflect on the factors that caused you to feel this way and focus on a positive way to turn the situation around. Do not allow the immediate emotions to hurt your feelings and cause a desire for immediate retribution.

3. Fear

Fear is the emotion that keeps us from taking chances or achieving more. We either fear the outcome of what we are about to do, or we fear failing. In other words, wondering what if constantly plagues our minds and dictates our lives.
We fear the business we want to start will be too difficult or might not work. We fear investing because of the potential loss. We fear rejection, so we don’t approach potential clients at a networking event. We even fear missing out on an opportunity so we rush in too quickly.
Fear can be easily manipulated through the ability to assess risk and possible outcomes. We must look at the maximum gain and loss and then determine the proper course of action. But first we must accept the fact that without risk, no return can exist.
Next time you are afraid, take a moment and do nothing. You cannot assess risk when you are emotional and can’t clearly justify outcomes. So just pause and let the emotion settle. Then act.
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The Art of Action by Lisa Nichols

Saturday, January 28, 2017

4 Ways to Plan Your Happiness

By Patty Onderko

We put money in our 401(k)s. We take calcium supplements. We exercise. We hope these precautions will protect us as we age. But as we safeguard our money, bones and blood pressure, we forget to safeguard the one thing that can make a difference in the quality of our lives as we get older: our happiness.
Decades of positive psychology research has shown high levels of subjective well-being (the combination of overall life satisfaction and in-the-moment positive feelings) can translate into better physical health and a longer life. In a 2011 report from the International Association of Applied Psychology, Edward Diener, Ph.D., a psychology professor emeritus at the University of Illinois, analyzed over 160 relevant studies and found that while positive feelings did not improve outcomes for people with certain diseases such as cancer, the evidence that happiness leads to better health is “clear and compelling.”
Here’s how to start planning for your happy future:

1. Create meaning.

“Well-being is a state that occurs when we consistently—and to the best of our abilities—align our day-to-day actions with our values and goals,” says Beth Vagle, a certified life and ADHD coach in Denver. “As we get older, this alignment is even more crucial to our well-being. We need to feel that our lives are meaningful. And rather than search for meaning, we need to actively create it.” How do you create meaning? Take time to reflect on your values and then find activities that honor those values, Vagle says. If you love learning, for example, make a list of regular habits that would fulfill this value, such as reading before bed or visiting local museums.

2. Be specific.

The values and goals you identify in yourself will likely be broad—“I want to make art” or “I enjoy nature”—and that’s OK. But for them to be useful, you need to dig deeper. “Humans aren’t very good at following through with action on abstract ideas such as, ‘I want to help people,’ ” Vagle says. “So get specific. Which people? Help them do what? Where can you do it? That might turn into something like, ‘I want to help kids learn to read.’ ” From there, you can research literacy programs and get started.

3. Prevent regret.

A key question to ask ourselves when planning for happiness as we get older, Vagle says, is “What regrets don’t I want to have?” Write them down. Pick the one or two that feel most pressing. If you don’t want to regret not spending enough time with your children or grandchildren, for example, devise tangible steps you can take, such as playing cards with them every night or planning a special trip together.

4. Be a work in progress.

“People who see themselves as works in progress are often the happiest as they age,” Vagle says. “These people always seek ways to be a better version of themselves than they were yesterday. That effort is satisfying in itself, but it also has a ripple effect on those around them.” If you’re working on being a better listener, say, it’s likely your friendships or marriage will improve, creating what positive psychologists call an upward spiral of happiness.

Tony Robbins Is Not Your Guru

But he wants to ask you life’s most important question.
by Michael Mooney

Tony Robbins taps me gently on the knee.
He has a question for me. He says it’s the most important question I’ll ever answer. He’s sitting on a couch in the library of his oceanfront mansion in Palm Beach, Florida, beneath a life-size painting of an elephant. (“Elephants are symbols of success,” a contract sound engineer working at his house noted earlier in the day. “Elephants and pineapples.”)
Robbins leans his massive 6-foot-7 frame forward. His voice is deep, gravelly, and his dark eyes are fixed and intense.
“Do you want to be happy for the rest of your life?” he asks
“Sure,” I say without thinking about it too much. There’s something about him, about his charisma and the way his voice fills a room that makes you want to agree with him. But that isn’t good enough. He wants me to think about it.
“I’m asking you,” he says. “Are you committed to being happy, or in a beautiful state? Do you really want that?”
The room is quiet for a moment, and I think about the prospect.
“Well,” I say, “I don’t know if I want to be in a beautiful state all the time, even if I’m at a friend’s funeral.”
“Why not?” he says back to me instantly. “Let’s question that thought.”
To be honest, I’d never wondered why I’m sad at funerals. It’s just always been that way. The grief, the pain of the loss, the pain everybody else is in, it’s an incredibly sad ritual. I’d never even considered the idea of not being sad at a funeral.
“I feel like if I weren’t sad, I wouldn’t be paying the appropriate tribute,” I tell him.
“Why not? Let’s question that thought,” he says again. “Why should you live in pain? Would your friend who died want you to feel that way? Or would your friend want you to be strong so you can support the other people there in a suffering state? See, you’re focused on you.”

A beautiful state can be joy or playfulness or courage or creativity or decisiveness or any other number of things that aren’t suffering.

He is explaining to me that every experience in life can be divided into two categories: Either you’re suffering—stressed, overwhelmed, depressed, angry—or you’re in a beautiful state. He says a beautiful state can mean happiness, but that’s not all. “If you’re happy all the time, your face hurts,” he says. A beautiful state can be joy or playfulness or courage or creativity or decisiveness or any other number of things that aren’t suffering.
Robbins is probably the biggest name in the history of the personal-development field. At 56, he’s been coaching people for nearly four decades, since he worked for Jim Rohn in the late 1970s. He’s advised presidents and business geniuses and some of the greatest athletes in history. He still talks to hundreds of thousands of people every year, in countries all over the world, with attendees paying up to $10,000 per seminar. He’s an incredible salesperson, and although I’m skeptical by nature, he’s selling me now on the idea of walking through life in a beautiful state.
He tells me that when he goes to a funeral, it’s to pay homage to that person. “The best way to pay homage is to bring the best part of their spirit to the people there and remind people that there’s a part of this person we can all take in. And the best way to honor them is to take that in and live that part as part of us.”
Most of our expectations around grief—how we should feel when someone dies and for how long—are cultural constructions, he explains.
“I’ve had the same thoughts as you. Some people stay depressed for a year, because that’s their belief system. It’s nothing but conditioning. It has nothing to do with reality. They believe, I should suffer for a year and then I can be happy. But when you suffer for a year, it’s pretty hard to rewire yourself from that.”
He points out that in other countries, funerals are different. In the Indian city of Varanasi, for example, they are often celebrations, because Hindus believe dying in that city will bring salvation. Robbins has been there several times with his wife, Sage, and they marveled at the joy people felt walking by towering stacks of bodies. He also stresses that helping other people is one of the few things that always feels good, and if you’re suffering, it will be much harder to lift other people, to give.
“A beautiful state is infectious when it’s real,” Robbins says. “I’m not talking about the manufactured, I’m-happy-no-matter-what type of thing. It’s not just happy. It could be having the courage to say, ‘None of us should sit here and suffer. Death happens to all of us and none of us knows when it’s here, so let’s use this to live more fully.’ ”
No matter what I ultimately decide, he says the most important thing anyone can do is re-examine all of those fundamentally unquestioned thoughts: Why do I believe certain things? Why do I expect certain things? Why do I behave in certain ways? Why do we get sad at funerals?
“All my suffering, it didn’t come from the past,” he says, his voice softening. “It just came from believing certain thoughts. And now I just question those thoughts.”
Robbins has been trying to live in a beautiful state for about a year and a half, since a friend explained the concept. “If you’d asked me then what my life was like, I’d have said, ‘It’s unbelievable, magnificent, such a blessing. I’ve worked my ass off and I’ve earned it and there’s been grace.’ But I still wanted to take it to another level.”
As soon as he made that decision, though, it was put to the test. After a snowboarding injury, he went in for what he thought would be routine rotator cuff surgery and was told his spine was severely compressed and he was at risk of paralysis. Not long after that, he says he started having small memory lapses for the first time in his life, and he was told that years of eating tuna and swordfish had left him with off-the-charts high mercury levels in his body.
“The doctor looked at me,” Robbins says. “He told me: ‘We have no great solutions.’ ”
Robbins’ house is a monument to successful living. His pool has an infinity edge facing the beach, and there’s a hot tub and an all-weather putting green a few feet away. He also has a small cold-plunge pool, a 2-foot by 3-foot tank maintained at 57 degrees, in which he completely submerges himself for one minute every morning. (When he’s staying at his house in Sun Valley, Idaho, he takes his daily dip in the snowy river.) Every room inside the mansion, from the foyer to the game room, is well-appointed, with art collected from all over the world. In addition to the elephant painting, there’s an even bigger painting of a horse, hanging over the winding staircase. A new addition on the front of the house will comprise another 12,000 square feet, including indoor basketball and squash courts.
The entire estate is a testament to his durability. Most of the other people who were making infomercials in the 1980s aren’t living like this now. And it’s been a long evolution: from fresh-faced self-help coach in his early 20s to infomercial star to leadership coach to general celebrity—and a memorable guest-starring role in the Jack Black movie Shallow Hal (2001). These days he’s still putting on seminars, but he’s a businessman with diversified interests. Robbins owns a part of more than 30 companies, with more than 1200 employees and $5 billion in annual sales, in fields ranging from sales coaching to Major League Soccer. (He’s a named investor in the new Los Angeles franchise scheduled to begin play in 2017.) He “actively manages” 12 of those companies, which means there’s always another email or phone call or meeting or flight to the other side of the world.
Over the last decade, he’s focused much more on teaching financial lessons. For his 2014 No. 1 New York Times best-seller, Money: Master the Game, he interviewed 50 financial experts—largely self-made billionaires—with the goal of condensing the most important concepts in a way regular people could understand. The resulting 650-page hardcover version sold over a million copies. He donated the $5 million advance he received for the book, and secured partnerships to provide over 100 million meals through Feeding America. After seeing so many people lose their homes and retirement savings in 2008, he says he wanted to find a way to help. Robbins has a follow-up book, about strategies to invest in an unpredictable market, due out Feb. 28. The title: Unshakeable: Your Financial Freedom Playbook ... Creating Peace of Mind in a World of Volatility.
“I’ve experienced visceral changes over the years,” he says. “In the very earliest days, it was ‘Hey, do I know you?’ And then ‘Hey, you’re Tony Robbins.’ And then in the infomercial days: ‘Oh you’re the guy who sells real estate.’ Now it’s ‘I’ve been listening to your stuff for 35 years.’”
A Netflix documentary released in 2016, Tony Robbins: I Am Not Your Guru, has added another new chapter to his life, too. At a UFC fight he went to not long ago, there were young men in their early 20s approaching him all night, all talking about the movie. A live Facebook chat garnered more than 500,000 live viewers on the first night the documentary was available to stream.
The film is directed by Joe Berlinger, whose career has consisted largely of documentaries about murders and mobsters and Metallica. (Robbins had no editorial say and didn’t profit.) It follows Robbins and an audience of thousands through an intense six-day seminar in Boca Raton, Florida. Watching it, you get a sense of Robbins’ approach to coaching. There are flashing lights and loud music, and the massive crowd is encouraged to dance and sing. You see Robbins working himself up and spinning in place before he comes onstage, and then you see him singing, too. The entire thing feels like a high-energy church revival.
You also get to see the way Robbins works with individuals: talking to people in front of the entire group about suicide, about how their deepest problems manifest in daily frustrations, about bad relationships with spouses and parents and children and co-workers. The interventions are condensed for time, but the drama is both engaging and cringe-worthy. There are tears and a variety of breakthroughs throughout.
Robbins says he’s been inundated with messages from people who’ve been touched by the movie, including one from the filmmaker Michael Moore. “He told me it changed his life,” Robbins says. “Michael Moore is not a big personal-development guy. He thinks it’s all [B.S.]. But he said, ‘This made me a better person. This made me a better filmmaker. This movie will change lives.’ ”
Robbins says Moore “apologized for being so judgmental.”

Don’t call Robbins a “motivational speaker.” He hates it.

Don’t call Robbins a “motivational speaker.” He hates it. He’ll tell you that by the time someone gets to him, by the time someone has paid for his seminar or book, that person is already hungry.
“People get hungry for different reasons,” he says. “But that’s the common denominator. I’m not here to motivate anyone. That’s such [B.S.]. I’ve never done that. But I do believe in energy. If your energy is low, nothing’s gonna happen. So I create an environment that’s like a rock concert. Only instead of 2½ hours, it’s 50 hours or 72 hours.”
He says that energy is part of his goal of effecting real, lasting change in people. If you have more energy and emotion, you’re more likely to remember any breakthroughs and introspective experiences. He says emotion is the reason you can probably remember where you were on Sept. 11, 2001, but you probably can’t remember where you were on Aug. 11 of the same year.
“Information without emotion is barely retained,” he says.
The energy is also part of the entertainment factor. It’s vital for Robbins to entertain. “People don’t want information,” he says. “They don’t want education. They want entertainment. So you’ve got to entertain them first. If I can make you laugh, cry, move in ways you never thought possible, and time disappears, then I’ve earned the right to educate you.”

“I don’t teach people just to solve their problems. I help them solve what caused the problem in the first place.”

He sees himself as a strategist, a sort of all-purpose consultant for all aspects of life. “I don’t teach people just to solve their problems,” he clarifies. “I help them solve what caused the problem in the first place, which is their beliefs and values and goals.”
This is why he also doesn’t like the term guru. The title of the Netflix documentary is taken from something Robbins says often. He says the word conjures a cultlike figure, telling people what to believe and what to do.
“I’m the exact opposite,” he says. “If you watch what I do, it’s ‘What do you believe? What do you value? What’s most important to you compared to how you’re living, and let’s shift that so that you’re living consistent with what matters to you.’ My life is not your model. You’ve got to figure out what matters most to you. I’m here to help people have a more extraordinary life. I think most people already have one; they’re just not appreciating it fully.”
Still, he often gives examples from his own struggles in life: the fact that his mother hit him and poured soap down his throat, the time his father was so stubborn that he argued with the charitable man giving the family a free Thanksgiving dinner on a day they otherwise wouldn’t have eaten, the fact that he developed a possibly fatal tumor on his pituitary gland—which is why he’s so large, a man our ancestors would have called a giant.
As he talks, he makes goals and dreams seem possible, or at least he makes the idea of working toward them seem more worthwhile. I spent five hours with him in his house, talking about everything from psychology to writing habits to what kind of protein bars he eats (a Canadian brand I’d never heard of before). He’s had a lot of ups and downs in life, but he strikes me as someone who earnestly wants to help people, to ease some of the suffering in the world. Maintaining a focus on philanthropy, Robbins is active in multiple charities, most notably providing a grand total of 250 million meals through a partnership with Feeding America (they’re on target to feed a billion people over the next eight years). There’s something about his confidence that makes you believe you can be a better person.
I left his house trying hard to maintain a beautiful state the way he described it to me. In the next few days, I had both long airport delays and a hellacious stomach bug. I tried to remember the idea of a beautiful state. When I was feeling bothered by something, I challenged my own expectations.
The delayed flight was annoying at first, but then I thought about what an incredible achievement air transportation truly is, how fortunate I am to get to fly so inexpensively, and how only a few generations back this journey would have taken weeks. And although I’d land a few hours later than originally expected, I got to watch a pretty impressive storm from the large airport windows and have a drink with some equally stranded strangers.
While my stomach bug was physically unpleasant and quite disruptive to my plans, it didn’t take long before I was looking for things to appreciate. I started thinking about how wonderful my wife is for taking care of me while I was feeling so bad, and how much knowledge I gained after I was inspired to spend a day reading and learning about norovirus.

Robbins says there’s nothing that he really fears. He has a list of things he’d really like not to happen—like loved ones dying, for instance—but he says that being emotionally and mentally fit means being ready to deal with hard times, too.
“It’s not that you’re happy only when things go your way,” he says. “You’re happy when it rains on your parade. You’re happy when it [defecates] on your parade. You’re happy when people betray you. Not happy—beautiful state. Because you found out that they screwed you, and now they’re out of your life. It might be painful, but you can deal with it. It’s not going to drag out another 10 years.” He adds: “That isn’t positive thinking. That’s intelligence.”
As we’re discussing Robbins’ idea of the beautiful state, Sage walks into the room. A former acupuncturist and phlebotomist, they met at one of his seminars and married in 2001. She came in to remind him that he has a photo shoot to get to, but soon she’s sitting next to him on the couch, sharing her experiences living in a beautiful state.
“It was such a perceptual shift that affected my inner reality, which therefore affected my life on a massive scale,” she says. “I wasn’t aware of what I wasn’t aware of. I thought my problems were all outside of me. I thought it was everything else. It’s easier to look at your husband: He’s never this, he’s never that. You look at your mother: She’s always complaining, she’s always telling me what to do.”
Sage says she often describes it as “caring less and loving more.” She talks about her grandmother’s funeral, and how the room was filled with the laughter of people remembering good times and stories from the past. “It was really a beautiful thing,” she says.
One of the things she used to worry about most was her husband’s health. She’d see him come offstage after 60 or 70 hours of talking and moving around and leading emotional interventions, and it was like he’d run an ultramarathon. She’d beg him to stop—something Robbins says he never wants to do.
“I eventually eliminated the expectation that he’d do that,” she says. “Now I’m just present, loving him.”
They both agree the philosophical shift prepared them for his most recent health issues, what he refers to euphemistically as “this [stuff] with my body.” Not only was his back collapsing, but he had so much mercury in him that he says the police came out to interview his wife and staff to make sure nobody was intentionally poisoning him.
He’d always prided himself on his memory, but now he’d find himself in the middle of a long story and wonder why he began telling it. And the mercury was causing a type of anxiety that made him want to run no matter where he was or what he was doing, something he’d never dealt with before.
“In the beginning, there was suffering,” he says. “I had to get my [stuff] together, honestly on the verge of tears. But I was like, Could I die?
He started a series of detox therapies, including hyperbaric chambers, chelation and colonics. Six, seven hours a day dedicated to this. He says he quickly began to see it as a gift, though. Like the universe gave him the opportunity to practice a beautiful state, even under difficult conditions. He compares it to a weightlifter upping a bench press by a few hundred pounds.
“I’ve lived in a beautiful state, in those little oxygen tubes they put you in, it feels like a freaking coffin,” he says. “You’re stuck there for two hours, and if you have to pee it takes eight minutes to get out.”
Maybe he should be scared or worried, but he questions those thoughts. He tells me he’s feeling better these days, he’s still detoxing. It hasn’t kept him off the stage, he says, and he hasn’t canceled any events. And now when he talks to people, he reminds them to get their metals checked—and to eat less fish. He smiles, living in a beautiful state.
“It’s another way I can help people that I never knew about before.

How to become an achiever ? - Brian Tracy

The journey to success!

How To Step Into Your Purpose | Lisa Nichols

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Your January Action Plan: 10 Tips to Build Your Best Future

This year, make your efforts count.
by Cecilia Meis

Your Action Plan is a monthly to-do list of tips straight from SUCCESS magazine—10 things you can do right now to improve yourself and your life.
This month, start fresh by leaving your old, unproductive habits in 2016. Make the new year about polishing your strengths, your bank account and anything that will bring you closer to having the best year of your life.

1. Live Courageously

Fear is a natural and necessary part of growth. Choose to embrace uncertainty by reminding yourself what you lose when you give in to your fears.

2. Articulate Your Happiness

Write down your top five happiness goals. Be specific. For example, if you want to be more present and supportive in your relationships, list out each action step to get there.

3Alter Your Mindset

Whenever you encounter a problem, make a list of the positive ways you could perceive it. Focus on those good thoughts and watch your happiness increase.

4. Practice Deliberately

Tonight, list your three biggest weaknesses. Select the one holding you back the most and make a plan to improve a little each day. Change doesn’t happen overnight; be patient but persistent.

5. Reflect

This week, make time to hike a new trail or visit a nature preserve. Leave technology at home and revel in the opportunity to reflect on your life free from distractions.

6. Find Your Strengths

Analyze your greatest successes. Identify what you did to accomplish those goals and how it was different from the times you failed. Commit to implementing that skill every day.

7. Choose Wisely

Struggling with making sound decisions? Gather as many facts as you can, and surround yourself with trusted peers before making your next big decision.

8. Impact Others

Money is a great tool to ensure a life of opportunities, but it can’t provide happiness. Focus your efforts on impacting the lives of those around you to create happiness in your life and theirs.

9. New You

As you plan your New Year’s resolutions, list three levels of your goal: A, B and C. Dream big on A, but stay realistic with B and C. Don’t forget to celebrate your milestones, no matter how small.

10. Be Accountable

Write down every dollar you spend to identify bad habits. Focus on reducing or eliminating one category. Store those savings for unexpected hardships.

Matthew Hussey on Dating, Attraction, and Creating Desire with Lewis Howes

4 Questions That Will Change Your LifeWhat are you doing to invest in yourself?

by Mick Ukleja 

Nothing stands still. Things either get better or they get worse. You are either getting better or worse. It’s a universal principle starting with the universe itself: That which doesn’t expand, contracts. You are either going forward or backward.

Stephen Covey referred to this kind of thinking as sharpening the saw. Just coasting along creates backward momentum and we end up using more effort to accomplish less.

How can you develop a life that will give you a great return on investment? What are you doing to invest in yourself?

Here are four questions to position you for great returns. Good questions lead to information. Great questions lead to transformation.

1. Who are you and what do you want?

“A ship in the harbor is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for.” —William Shedd

We all experience imagination gridlock. That’s the place of stuckness that keeps us from going after our most meaningful aspirations. It’s easy to simply drift in safety mode, living out the scripts we’ve picked up along the way. This question helps you start with the end in mind. What do you want? What are your strengths? What are your passions? How are these two integrated into what you are doing? Are they reflected in your schedule?

2. Where are you and why are you there?

“We can forgive a child for being afraid of the dark. The real tragedy is when grown adults are afraid of the light.” —Plato

If you try to download driving directions for a trip, the guiding system won’t begin until you enter a starting point. As you create a life map, you’ll better understand how you arrived at your current place. You can build on the good choices and clearly see why some weren’t as productive—identifying faulty thought systems and behaviors. First discover the facts, then face them. We can’t manage what we don’t know.

Where are you in relation to where you would like to be? The creative tension between your vision and your current reality will start to pull you in the right direction. When you know where you are, you discover it’s a lot easier to get where you want to go.

3. What will you do and how will you do it?

“We are repeatedly what we do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” —Aristotle

Purpose and passion are essential for creating your best possible life. Yet purpose and passion without a plan are fantasy. When our dreams collide with reality, reality wins. A dream becomes more than an illusion when goals are set and supporting habits are formed. There is a chasm between knowing where you are and where you want to be. Your plan is the bridge that links the two.

What would you like to do that you aren’t doing right now? What’s hindering your progress? What steps today will help you get to where you want to be tomorrow? Are your daily actions adding up?

4. Who are your allies and how can they help?
“Two are better than one because they have a good return for their work: if one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the one who falls down and has no one to help him up.” —King Solomon (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10)

Our journey sometimes appears to be a solitary one, but that’s not the case. We can leverage the strengths, insights and wisdom of those around us. Our tendency is to beat ourselves up for struggling or not having all the answers. Our natural reaction during tough times is to pull back and isolate ourselves.

But that’s when we need our mutual supporters the most. If you were struggling in the ocean and in danger of drowning, would you call out to a lifeguard for help or start berating yourself for all the swimming classes you didn’t take? It’s not only nice but also essential to have mutual supporters who are insightful, useful and helpful.

Greatness begins with a profound understanding of yourself. It’s referred to as positive self-regard. Self-understanding allows you to manage your strengths and not get sidetracked by your weaknesses.

These four questions never grow old. They just grow deeper. They keep you on track for the best of your life. They help turn information into transformation.

How are you investing in yourself? What are you doing today that will bring great returns tomorrow?

(This  is based on the book Who Are You? What Do You Want?: Four Questions That Will Change Your Life that Mick Ukleja co-authored.)

Monday, January 23, 2017

THE WINNING MENTALITY - Powerful Motivation 2017

12 Ways to Turn Stress Into Productivity

Harness difficult situations to work for you, not against you.

Stress is a natural part of being human, and though some people do the best they can to avoid it, the most ambitious among us recognize that a life without stress means a life avoiding some of the most exciting and rewarding challenges available. That said, even the ones who put stress down as a necessary evil are missing an important opportunity: Stress can be hacked. You’ve felt the power of stress for sure, but if you’ve always marked it as a negative power then you’ll have overlooked the possibility of taking that energy and using it to enhance your achievements.
Take for example the stress involved with starting a new job. Whether you’re nervous about meeting new people or of being unprepared for the challenges you’ll face, try to redirect that energy toward tasks to counter those notions. Before your first day, do some research into the sector, the company and, if appropriate, the tools and software. When you arrive on your first day, don’t let your shyness or fear of saying something wrong prevent you from making an impact. Rather, ask questions and listen hard, and you will learn quickly about the people and the business, all while making an impression as a determined and inquisitive new colleague.
If you’re a bit further on the journey, and it’s a clash with a colleague that’s causing the stress, use it as an opportunity to assess the situation from your point of view and theirs. Hold a pen and paper in your hands and you are far more likely to start noting problems, patterns and solutions, rather than just sitting and fuming. Once that stage is over, you can approach the individual.
Whatever the stressful situation, if you can harness your energy toward practical solutions, then stress can actually help you through. For more ideas on how, check out the infographic below and start focusing your fears today.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

3 Reasons to Forget the 80/20 Rule and Focus on the 4 Percent

The number one mistake entrepreneurs make is that they don’t know the ROI (return on investment) of their time. As an entrepreneur I’m guilty of that as well. It’s easy to get distracted and focus on a billion things at once and not see much success from it. In fact, we feel compelled to dip our hands into many different projects.

It wasn’t until recently that I figured out how to leverage my time to see an insane ROI. I would never have figured it out if I hadn’t sat down with the Freedom Entrepreneur himself, Chris Duncan. Christopher Duncan is the embodiment of the freedom entrepreneur. In fact, that’s the slogan by which he lives. He works smarter and not harder which allows him to run eight companies- three of which do seven figures a year- and still be able to work wherever he wants.

When he says that you can live a life with total freedom, that’s exactly what he means, but because people usually don’t know the ROI of their last hour or the ROI of their staff members they are not able to grow their businesses as fast as they’d like. The problem with not measuring output and productivity is that life can become an endless, unproductive hustle. Here’s a new concept I learned from Chris. Most entrepreneurs know the 80/20 rule- that 80% of your results will come from 20% of your efforts. However, if there’s an 80/20 rule then there must be an 80/20 of that 80/20 which is the 4% that will bring you 64% of your results. This means that you only need to know the needle movers of your business that make most of the difference. You don’t need to do everything else that people think they need to do.

The 4% is what Chris calls the money-making activity. It’s what you can do repeatedly to make all the money. Here are three things you can do to make sure you’re utilising the 4% concept to its fullest potential.

1. Anything outside of the 20% must be delegated.

Now the question becomes how to figure out what that 4% is. The answer is quite simple. The 4% is the money-making activity which I mentioned above but if you don’t know what that is, you should track where you’re spending your time and what activities bring you the most money.

Put a timer on your phone for every 30 minutes between the time you wake up and the time you go to bed. Every time the timer goes off, write down what you did that past half hour. The point is not to change your daily routine just because you have the alarm. The point is to track what you do on a daily basis so that you can figure out where you’re wasting your time and what you can delegate.

Here’s an example.

12:00 pm
Hired someone on Fiverr to make a media package form.
Created some part of form.
Wrote down services for future reference.
Created Google Drive for web developer w/ info.

12:30 pm
Set up Calendly.
Created contact page w/ Calendly.

1:00 pm
Talked with client about his press.
Scheduled more calls.
Friend came over.
Created my own form instead of Fiverr.

This provides a clear picture of what you do day in and day out. You can eliminate the activities that aren’t beneficial for your business and delegate repetitive tasks that don’t do much to grow your business.

2. The 4% is cashflow.

The 4% is the needle movers in your business- the few activities that if you did more of would grow your business exponentially. Chances are if you track how you use your time, you’ll find that the 4% is cashflow. Make sure that the money coming into your business is more than the money going out of your business. This way your business will survive and thrive. If you don’t master cashflow then you will be simply getting by. After identifying what you should be doing and what should be delegated, you should do double what makes the money.

It can be easy for entrepreneurs to get sidetracked by doing things that don’t yield many results. Here’s an example I recently found on Facebook that shows the difference in results by only focusing on what matters.

3. Double what works.

Once you know that you should live by the 4% rule, you need to focus more of your time and energy on that. It’s one of the reasons successful entrepreneurs like Gary Vaynerchuk say that you should focus completely on your strengths- not your weaknesses. It’s the reason why other entrepreneurs tell their followers to increase what works. That’s the way to build a business faster.

In the previous paragraphs I talked about how to identify what the 4% is and how to leverage it in your business. I’m going to use Chris as an example. Chris knew that in his business he was getting massive results- crushing 60K- by putting on webinars and not doing the traditional blog posts to generate leads. Since he knew this was the moneymaker for him, all he needed to do was to get more people on the webinar or put on more webinars to make more money. He grew his business to six-figure months by solely focusing on partnerships and webinars. Anything outside of that activity he hired or delegated.

If you know that 4% of your efforts bring in most of the results, then you should double the amount of time you spend on the 4% to increase your results.

How To Skip the Small Talk and Connect With Anyone | Kalina Silverman | ...

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

If you are not already practicing yoga it might be time to give it a try. The practice of yoga is more than simply stretching! Done properly, it's an awesome workout for your body, mind and soul. Here's why!

10 Reasons to Try Yoga

1. De-stress. Slow, deep breathing eases workday tension. And bonus! It's healthier than downing a couple of martinis.
2. Increased flexibility. Increased muscle elasticity helps protect your body against injury.
3. Improved balance. Virtually everything we do, from walking downhill to toting groceries to riding a bike — they all require balance.
4. Range of motion (ROM). Could your golf swing use a little oomph? How about your jump shot? An increased ROM can give you a powerful edge in sports.
5. Builds stamina. If you can successfully hold this pose for five minutes, you can do anything!
6. Improved digestion. Yoga's twists and bends massage the internal organs and help to detoxify the system. These poses help relieve bloating and stimulate the digestive system.
7. Enhanced focus. The concentration you develop in yoga translates to other areas of your life and you become a better listener.
8. Better posture. When you have body awareness and a strong core you can't help but have good posture.
9. Improved circulation. Poor circulation can lead to fluid retention, acne breakouts, brain fog and more!
10. Superior oxygen intake. Controlled breathing teaches your body to use oxygen more efficiently and improves your level of cardiovascular fitness.
Want More?
Yoga's transformative qualities don't stop there. A regular yoga practice offers emotional and spiritual benefits, too! Practitioners report a better quality of sleep, fewer mood swings and enhanced energy levels. Their practice reminds them to live mindfully and helps them to cultivate patience toward themselves and others.
Don't be afraid of those first few awkward classes. Jump on the mat and see how far a yoga practice can take you!

Image Source: Fit Bottomed Girls

10 ways to have a better conversation | Celeste Headlee

Best way to master a conversation!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

3 Keys to Becoming Wealthy

Plan for tomorrow instead of living for today.
By Jim Rohn

A man I knew had an MBA from Harvard and an engineering degree from MIT. Smart guy. When he retired, he started doing what he liked best: teaching college courses in economics and business planning. But when he taught economics, he also taught personal economics. This is the philosophy that he started his classes with: Decide how you want to live now, versus how long you want to work.
This means that if you spend everything you make now, you’ll have no choice but to work longer and harder. But if you start investing in your financial future now, you’ll have many choices. You can retire early, travel more, continue your career or start a new career later in life. Once again, it all comes down to choices. Think tomorrow today… and live better tomorrow.

Here’s the next thing to think of when you’re planning your future of wealth: Be careful with your credit cards. Selling money is big business. You probably get invitations in the mail to sign up for a new credit card a couple of times a month! Having some credit cards is important. Especially if you travel. They’re safer and easier to track than cash.
But be careful; credit is the easiest way to get into debt. When you buy something with a little piece of plastic, you don’t feel the effect until you get the bill. So make sure that whatever you buy, you’re still happy with your purchase after you get the bill.
 Make sure that whatever you buy, you’re still happy with your purchase after you get the bill.
Here’s another point to remember in becoming financially independent: It’s hard to get rich quickly. It’s easy to get rich slowly. It doesn’t happen overnight. With conservative investments, it takes a while. It takes discipline to keep adding value to your future, a little every month. It takes time to build your fortune and become wealthy.
There’s a saying about investing: “Time, not timing.” It takes time. If playing the stock market is what you do, then you know that timing is a whole different ball game. But for the average person, it’s time.
A study was done a while back that analyzed stock market investments. The study took two scenarios into consideration. In the first scenario, stocks were bought at the very worst possible time and sold at the very worst possible time. Bough high and sold low. And after 40 years, the average return was around 10 percent. Scenario one dealt with time.
In the second scenario, stocks were analyzed over a 10-year period. Stocks were purchased at the best possible time and sold at the best possible time. After 10 years, the average return was… about 10 percent. The second scenario dealt with timing. So timing might not be all it’s cracked up to be.
Be patient in building your financial independence. It will come small steps at a time. It’s hard to be patient sometimes, but it’s just like achieving your goals: It happens one step at a time.
What about those situations when patience has nothing to do with becoming wealthy? What about those trust-fund babies who are handed their financial independence on a silver platter? They never have to work a day in their lives, if that’s what they choose. Their first car is a Porsche. Their first house is a mansion. Their first job is at their father’s company. What about those people born rich?
Some guy says, “It isn’t fair that I’m working like crazy all day, all week, all month, all my life…. It just isn’t fair! I’ll never have that kind of money.” Well, some things aren’t fair. Inheriting money might not seem fair. But what does that have to do with you? Really?
If your dream is to have greater wealth than some people you know, then you’d better start working harder and smarter on your own goals, your own visions, and stop pondering what’s fair and what isn’t. Start examining what’s keeping you back instead of what’s keeping them ahead. Start looking at what you’re doing. There are plenty of stories and examples and experiences of people who began their careers destitute and had enough resolve to do it until they had more than they ever dreamed of. Study the experiences of others who built their way to the top instead of those born there. And you’ll not only reach the top, you’ll truly deserve it.

Why we do what we do | Tony Robbins

What makes the difference in peoples lives?

Monday, January 16, 2017

Your body language shapes who you are | Amy Cuddy

Fake it until you make it!

You Only Need 3 Months To Become A Brand New You (With This Self-Improvement Approach)

You’re sitting in your living room watching a new Tony Robbins motivational documentary about changing yourself. By the end, you’re so excited about the prospect that you rush to the nearest Barnes & Noble book store. You comb the self-help section looking for the one book or audio book set that will change your life in five easy steps. Sound familiar?

You may have read a book cover to cover and even accomplished some of the required steps, but it hasn’t delivered the immediate results you expected. The disappointment you feel makes you disregard the improvements you’ve achieved. After a while, the old habits resurface and take over, and the struggle to restart the process of change is even more difficult.
The Reasons We Set Unrealistic Goals (It’s Not What You Think)

It doesn’t matter how bright, competent or determined you are. Personal transformation is a long-term process, and shortcuts are not part of the recipe. It’s easy to set unrealistic goals when you’re excited and optimistic about the outcome. You actually use willpower on yourself in a futile attempt to force success. “This time I’m going to do it,” or “I’m going to keep going until I get it done,” you say. Unfortunately, the odds of that happening are very low.

When it comes to goal setting, the idea of extreme change is a motivation killer. Research proves that our brains are hardwired to resist extreme change. Rapid change causes our bodies and minds to resist and seek a familiar comfort zone. But this is what we usually do to ourselves. We set the types of goals that require changes in our life that are simply unachievable.
The Kaizen Approach – Your Blueprint For Long-Term Success

Rooted in Japanese philosophy, Kaizen is a long-term approach to change based on implementing changes in small increments. Used by many different businesses, like manufacturing plants, it seeks to improve efficiency and quality by applying small, incremental process changes. By applying continuous incremental improvements, the business will grow and thrive.

The word “kaizen” is derived from “kai” meaning change, “zen” meaning good. The history of Kaizen began after World War II when Toyota applied the concept in its production process. It became very popular in Japan in the 1950s, and it continues today as Kaizen groups.

Although Kaizen was developed for the improvement of business, it can be applied to personal goal setting as well. In a similar fashion, if you apply short-term, incremental achievements toward your goal every day, you will eventually build better habits over the long-term to accomplish the goal you’ve set for yourself.
Start Accomplishing Your Goals The Kaizen Way

Good habits are fundamentally linked to effective goal setting. The Kaizen approach helps us to build good habits by teaching us to apply a small step every day toward our goal. Eventually the good habits will replace the bad ones and you will maintain consistent gains.

Start by breaking down your goal into small parts. Each day, accomplish a very small percentage of each part. For example, if you are writing a book, decide on a writing schedule and stick to it every day. Set a realistic number of words you will write each day and write at least that amount every day. These small steps will be more manageable for you and a lot less intimidating.

If you apply small percentage increments each day, the changes will build on each other until you will eventually notice a major gain. Try it yourself. Set a 3-month goal for yourself. Start by getting just 1% accomplished each day. Yes, it’s a tiny amount but it’s doable. Focus on the practice instead of the performance. Each small percentage will build on the last, and in three months’ time you will notice a 100% improvement from where you started.