I recently had a conversation with a friend about the next 5-10 years and what we wanted to accomplish. We both own great businesses and are somewhat semi-retired. As we talked about the possibilities, I found myself challenging my friend and even myself as to the possibilities for us. Needless to say that by the end of the conversation, we both agreed that we weren't thinking big enough and needed to spend some more time looking at the true potential we have in front of us.
I love these types of conversations because even when you are doing well and think you have everything dialed in, there is potential to reach higher and challenge yourself.
After the conversation, I was energized and started writing down my thoughts and pushing myself to what could truly be possible. I asked myself where I was "comfortable" and thought through how I could move from comfortable to uncomfortable and raise the bar. I looked at my current trajectory and asked a lot of questions of myself about why I was on the that trajectory and how I could make it even better. I asked myself what I believe my capabilities and future. I challenged myself when it came raising the bar on total income. I also took inventory of the daily and weekly actions I am doing in my businesses and asked what I should keep doing and stop doing.
If you haven't done an exercise like this, you should every year. You should challenge yourself to think bigger and ask questions of yourself no matter how successful you are. There is a world of abundance out there and god-willing, it is yours to tap into. So, think bigger and reach higher.
I came across a great thread by @AccentInvesting on Twitter the other day of a study done on the habits of over 200 millionaires. Here are the habits that made them ultrawealthy.
In life, we are going to face many battles. We will face them in our work, personal lives, and most importantly in ourselves. The biggest battle that we must win is the one fought in our own minds.
Our mind can be the biggest obstacle to our success in all areas of life. In fact, the mind can create almost a prison for someone who does not overcome the mind's ability to sabotage them. How can this happen? The mind can manifest all kinds of scenarios and thoughts that "feel" real, but are not. It can create fear and anxiety of almost anything - and left unchecked, this can compound to a point where a person is paralyzed and becomes a shell of their former self.
Sadly, this happens way too much to good people. But, the good news is that the same forces that can sabotage an individual in the mind can be harnessed to reach a person's full potential.
The question is how does one learn to use their mind and control it in their favor?
The first step is to understand that you are in ultimate control of your mind. You decide what goes into it and ultimately what to accept from it. It begins with recognizing debilitating and sabotaging thoughts throughout the day. Do you put yourself down? Do you find yourself creating scenarios of fear over things that could happen, but are unlikely to? We all have thoughts that are negative, but it is how we recognize and act on them that matters. And ultimately, if you can recognize the thought and know that it is not one, you want to have, you can choose to change it to the thought you want to have. For example, if you find that you put yourself down frequently, you can begin to recognize when that happens and say "No" to yourself and redirect to a positive thought about yourself. This will be and is awkward at first, but you'll find that after a little while, it will become second nature, and a transformation will begin to take place.
The second step is to act on the thoughts that improve you life and choose not to act on those that sabotage your life. It comes down to action in the end. You can recognize all the negative thoughts in the world, but if you are not willing to remove them, replace them with the thoughts you want to have, and then take action on making them reality, you will not improve. The power is yours, but you have to choose to use it.
The last step is to commit to doing this exercise for the rest of your life. And don't try and eat the elephant all at once. Tackle one area first, then move the next, and so on. Tom Ziglar once said to me, "The fastest way to success is to replace a bad habit with a good habit." What is one bad habit you can take control of and act on for your betterment? Focus there first until you have mastered overcoming the old with the new and the move on to the next and so on.
Remember, the power resides in you. The hardest part is taking those first action and then sticking with it. If you do so, you can change your whole life and reach higher potential than you ever thought possible. Win the battle!
I took some time over the weekend to refresh myself on what it means to have a "Growth Mindset." If you are not familiar with what a Growth Mindset is, here is a definition, "Growth mindset describes a way of viewing challenges and setbacks. People who have a growth mindset believe that even if they struggle with certain skills, their abilities aren't set in stone. They think that with work, their skills can improve over time."
At it's core, a Growth Mindset is all about getting better and improving and realizing that you can control your effort and focus more than anything else. So, for example, if you are not good at something, it's not because you aren't capable of being good at it, but more of a lack of effort and focus on it.
I have always thought that "anything can be learned." But the key comes down to how big of a desire you have to learn it. For example, if you want to become a rocket scientist, you can do it. It will take massive effort and focus over time, but it is possible. You will stumble and not understand things are times, but that means you are actually pushing your brain to learn which is growing your capability. That the essence of Growth Mindset. The struggles and stresses you go through actually help you level up if you keep at it.
Ironically, this is pretty much the message of the book, Think and Grow Rick by Napoleon Hill written almost a century ago. He stated that "whatever a man can conceiver, he can achieve." But the key was desire - you have to want it bad enough so that you are willing to put the effort in to get it.
So, how about you? Are there things you have shied away from because you thought that your capabilities weren't there to be good at them? What if you started putting your best effort forward and focusing? Where could you be in a month? 6 months? A year?
Remember, you can control your focus and your effort and using these will help you to grow in the areas of your choosing if you desire it enough. And if you truly want to succeed and level up, you must do so.
If you have been in the game long enough as an entrepreneur, you've had a taste of success. And at some point, you may reach a level of success where you have hit your biggest goals or may be financially free. It's at this point where things can actually get harder...
When you've worked almost non-stop for years to reach your goals and finally get there, it is natural to take some time to enjoy the spoils of your victory, but this is where entrepreneurs and really anyone that reaches high levels of success in an area of their lives has to be careful.
It is at this point where it becomes easier to become complacent or not operate at the same level(s) that got you the success. In short, we can become "fat and happy." We must be keenly aware of this success killer. Because when we give in to it, it not only hurts our future success, but it lowers our potential in all areas of our lives.
For example, I train every day for long periods for Ironman. I've been doing it for years and I've reached a lot of my goals. I have competed in the Ironman World Championships. I have reached levels where I am Top 5% in the world rankings. I have achieved more than I thought from where I started out. And racing for me is not a job. I have a few sponsors, but I'm not paid to do it. It's something that I am afforded the ability to be able to put the time, effort, and money into because I found success in other areas. In short, I don't have to do it.
So, it's natural that there are times where I just don't want to do the things I know I need to do. The things needed to remain competitive and fit enough to keep competing at the levels I have built my capabilities to. It's in these moments that I have to be my strongest mentally. It is so easy to skip a workout or not perform a workout at the intensity it calls for. What 's the harm right? It's only one work out or just slacking a little bit - no big deal. But, that is the slippery slope.
Once you begin to give into these impulses, it gets easier and easier to do it the next time and so on. I've seen it with athletes, entrepreneurs, and people in general. Once you give in, you begin to set the bar lower and lower for yourself. And eventually, you lose your edge. The edge that brought you the success in the first place. It is in these moments where I have these thoughts or feel like giving in to this success killer that I have to push through and go harder and break myself of it. And I do. And it has made me a better man, husband, father, and entrepreneur.
Everyone has these moments where we can fall prey to this success killer. You can probably think of a few right now or are may be going through one. The question you need to ask and answer is what are you going to do when this happens in your life? How are you going to handle it and overcome the urge to give in and not operate at your best? Decide now, so you are ready to push through and keep your edge.
I came across this great thread the other day with simple and very effective tips on how to talk to anyone based on a book by Leil Lowndes. It was posted by @MindWisdomMoney. Check it out below!
We all have times in our lives where we encounter serious fear. It could be a true danger to our well-being or a situation where there is great uncertainty like the loss of a job or a business.
Fear comes in many forms and we all experience it. The key is how we handle it when we do.
Fear is real. It is part of the human psyche and it can have a great impact on our lives. Fear is one of the best motivators - it just may not be motivating us to do the right thing. It can also paralyze us and keep us from taking action or making decision. If left unchecked, it can take over our lives.
I experience times of fear like everyone else, but over the years I've learned a few secrets of dealing with it and getting to the best outcome.
First, when you encounter fear, see it for what it is and recognize it's reality. It's OK to be afraid.
Second, you must separate the emotional side of fear from the logical side. This is very hard to do, but if you want to create the best outcome, you must do so. The reason fear is such a great motivator, good and bad, is because it drives emotion. For most people, all sense of logic and reason leaves them when they are afraid and emotion runs everything. This leads to bad outcomes. Instead, take a timeout and if it helps, a pen to paper and ask yourself, "What am I afraid of here? What is the worst that can happen? What makes the most logical sense to deal with this? What are the steps I should take?" Doing this will help you to center yourself and cut through the emotion. It will also help you work through and find the right acitons to take.
Third, take action with a plan. Write down the steps you are going to take and then follow them. This helps to keep emotion in check and keep you from getting sidetracked. In my trading business, we have rules for our trading strategies. Trading is a very emotional business and when things don't go as planned, it is very easy to react emotionally and get yourself into even more trouble. That is where rules come in. Rules help me to set emotion aside and just follow the plan. Are there times where I could have bent the rules and made more money? Sure. But, over the years, I've found the majority of the time, when I don't follow my rules, I get into more trouble. It's just not worth it. I follow the rules and over time, they help me to succeed consistently.
It's the same for any other situation in life where fear takes hold. Recognize it for what it is, separate emotion from logic, and the write down a plan for the best outcome and follow it. If you do this, you will find it much easier to handle fear and succeed.
Most people don't want to be confronted with the truth. Sometimes, it is because they are afraid of what it will sbhow or mean to them. Other times, they just don't want to deal with it and/or are afraid of what they might have to do to be able to cope with it.
This past weekend, I was asked to give a presentation on where things are going with the economy and the trends to watch. While I discussed my optimism in the ability of the individual to succeed and find ways to thrive no matter what type of economy we face, the data does not look good long term. First an foremost, I showed data from the United States annual financial report that came out in February (yes, the Government produces a financial report just like a corporation produces their annual report). In the report, there are some very disturbing things for example, the actual "Net Income" for the government is -$34.1 Trillion. On top of that, Social Security is -$75.9 Trillion in the hole. To put this in perspective, the Universe that we live in is 13 Billion years old. The US debt is is hopelessly, rediculously so large that it can never be paid back and it won't.
After discussing this and several other topics, we spoke about what we can do to prepare and ensure we can succeed in the future as these problems grow and inevitably impact out lives. One person said to me, "As you presented, I found myself feeling scared and helpless, but now I see that I'd rather have the knowledge and truth and prepare now, than stick my head in the sand like most people. I can prepare and set myself up to succeed and be in a position to help others...and if things don't come to pass, I'm still in good shape. Thank you!"
I was very excited to hear this as that was the point I wanted to make. We must seek knowledge and not be afraid of the truth our lives. We may not like what the truth tells us, but that gives the knowledge and ability to prepare and make better decisions to help our success - in all areas of life.
If you want to make a bigger impact on your success and put yourself in a position to make a bigger difference in your life and that of those around you, seek truth and knowledge and help share it with others.
Everywhere you look, AI is taking the world by storm. It is the buzz on every social media site. Major companies, especially in tech are using it in almost every sentance talking about the future of their company, and ChatGPT as well as other initial AI solutions are being used more and more. But, have we taken any time to think about what this means for out future, or are we just full steam ahead without regard to the potential ramifications of allowing this technology fully out of the box? I came across an excellent video with some of the top minds in the world on AI called the AI Dilemma. If you want to understand the benefits and challenges of AI and be on the edge of what is happening with this technology, they this is a must watch. Check it out below!
Over the last week, I have had several instances where someone wronged me or showed themselves not who they made themselves out to be. This happens, it is part of life.
My initial reaction internally in these instances was anger and a desire to "get even." And while, I know that is not the right action to take, it took every fiber of my being not to follow through.
Afterthe Battle of Gettysburg, Abraham Lincoln composed a letter to General Meade in which he expressed his major disappointment in Meade's inability to pursue and defeat Robert E. Lee's army. It was a scathing letter. One that would have probably caused Meade to resign. But, Lincoln did not send the letter--he instead left it in his desk. In the end, Meade served to help Grant win the war and defeat the south.
If Lincoln had send the letter and Meade had resigned, it may have changed the course of the war.
I remembered this lesson over the last week and while I wanted to act in a certain manner in my own situations, I realized the best thing to do was to forgive these people and move forward. In doing so, I felt a weight being lifted off my shoulders removing the burden of being angry or in a negative state of mind. I found clarity and I believe the should I need to interact with these people in the future, their better side will come out and we can find common ground. I wish them well and hope that I others will forgive me when or if I make mistakes in my life. This is the gift of forgiveness in our lives and we should use it as often as needed.
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