Using What You Have

Lightbulb Idea

I was speaking to someone right here on WordPress yesterday, and they were telling me that they wanted a change in their life, but they weren’t in the right place to get that change. It was presented to me as something they couldn’t control…and you know how I feel about that!

Here’s what I said: you’re saying you need to go somewhere else to get what you want, but there’s nothing better out there…you have to take what you have and make it better if you want anything to improve.

Not to pat myself on the back, but I think we all need to take this advice. The only things we will ever have to work with are the things we have. So these are the only things we will ever be able to use in order to bring about some change. What you need to do is take those skills, connections, that knowledge, foresight…whatever you have, take it and figure out how you can use those things to get where you want to go.

Two things to remember: 1) There is always a way to get what you want. It might take days or weeks or months or years to figure it out, but it’s worth the time if the goal means that much to you. 2) This can be done fairly systematically, which surprises some people because success in general seems like such an obscure thing. You can imagine where you are and where you want to be as two points. Then figure out as many ways as possible to move just a little closer to the place you want to be.

Think of what you have, and really give some time and effort to thinking of ways you can use those things to move closer to your goal. All you’ll ever have to work with is what you have, so use what you have to get what you want.

Success by Day – My Own Notes

This video is actually an excerpt from my notes on “Grinding It Out,” by Ray Kroc. The notes aren’t finished yet, but you can get my other notes here. I really enjoyed what I wrote…not trying to be self-serving here, but it inspired me as I was writing it! I hope you find it helpful as well 🙂

Do You Want To Walk, Or Run?

Speed Walk

I was talking to my girlfriend last night about something she learned in her Physical Therapy program. She said that they have done studies on cats (very sad, I know) in which they remove the cortex from the cat’s brain and put them on a treadmill. Despite the fact that the part of the brain responsible for thought and action was missing, the cat could still walk. They think that the acts of walking and running are “wired” in us, that is, that they are more instinctual actions.

Okay, where am I going with this? Well, we were also talking about speedwalking, and the idea that it’s unnatural because your body innately knows that it would take less energy to run after a certain speed than it would to walk.

Many times on your road to success, or to a particular goal along that road, and even in life without a plan or guidance, you’ll find yourself lost. When we are frustrated with life, or angry, or upset, or feeling lost, this is our brain telling us that there’s a problem, and things could be done in a better way. Our minds know when something needs to change, and these things we often don’t read as symptoms of that need to change are just that.

So if you’re feeling lost, or frustrated, or depressed, take that as your body’s way of saying that something needs to change. It knows when things aren’t going as well as they should be. It wants to run instead of walk. So sit down and figure out the things in your life that you feel need a change. Come up with a plan to change those, and start running.

Need help figuring things out? Email me…this is what I do! My email: irrationallivingllc@gmail.com. Let’s figure out how to pick up some speed in life!

The Incontrovertible Power Of Your Mind

Mind Power

Fair warning: this is going to be a bit of a touchy subject for some.

I’ve done quite a bit of research on the power of our minds, both the conscious and subconscious “halves.” What I’ve found is that our minds have dominion over all…that is, we can bring ourselves to do anything we really want to do, provided we believe that we can. If you can wrap your head around the ideas in this post, it will literally change your life. Most people never take responsibility for what they have, but if you make the decision to take responsibility, and take the action steps necessary to change…the possibilities are endless.

Napoleon Hill put it best: “What the mind can conceive and believe, the mind can achieve.” I believe this entirely. I believe that, regardless of the problem a person faces, they can solve it and overcome it with the use of their mind. This includes anything and everything: weight loss, poverty, even depression.

I don’t mean to belittle these problems…I know these and many others are difficult and stressful, but they all have been overcome with the use of the human mind.

There was a study done by Harvard on a group of people who were clinically depressed. Clinically depressed. Rather than taking medicine, these people were instructed to stand in front of a mirror for 20 minutes a day and smile the biggest, goofiest smile they could. By the end of the 8-week study, over 90% of them were no longer depressed.

So this is only one example, but it’s a powerful one. Clinical depression is often something people think is difficult or even impossible to cure, especially in an 8-week period. What happened was that their subconscious mind received these inputs of being happy: smiling. Since our minds don’t know the difference between real and artificial inputs, it accepted that perceived happiness as truth. It believed it was happy, so it was happy.

Now think: what could you accomplish with belief? My answer is, more or less, anything at all. Belief is the most powerful thing you have at your disposal. The question is, are you someone who believes in this power, or are you someone who doubts it and will never learn the things it can bring?

Want to learn how to train your mind and control its thoughts? My book, “Your Subconscious Mind Is Listening” is all about how to do that. As a thank you for reading and/or following, you can have it for free. Just go here and use coupon code “free ebook”

Gratitude vs. Advancement

Gratitude

I had an interesting conversation with another blogger yesterday about being thankful for what you have, and it prompted quite a bit of thought on my end. I think being thankful for what you have is a great attitude to adopt, because it provides an instant increase in happiness. On the other hand, I think we should all constantly be improving ourselves and our situations…so, where does that leave gratitude?

My #1 rule for success is learning to take the negative things and find the positive in them. This goes along with the idea of being thankful for what you have…you may find some situation of yours a negative one, but if you turn that around and are thankful for that situation, and find a reason to be thankful for it, you’ve done it. This is like Helen Keller using her blindness and deafness as tools to ascend her into fame, and to develop a platform to help millions of people. Or like Steve Jobs learning from his getting fired from Apple, and going on to build Pixar and NEXT instead of “running away from the valley,” as he almost did.

But I also say constantly that progression is success. As long as you are getting better and working on achieving a particular goal, you are successful. Not only as an individual in our society, but as a human being. Thinking about this from an evolutionary standpoint, this makes perfect sense. Progression is vital to survival.

What do I think? I think we should genuinely be happy with where we are and what we have, but also keep working to get better at what we do, keep working to improve our lives, our lifestyle, and our opportunities. I think we should all strive to shun complacency from our lives. Does this contradict gratitude, though?

What do you guys think? Is there a happy medium here? Do you think it’s better to appreciate what we have, or work to get what we want?

Moving On From Success

Stairs

So you’ve done something well, you’ve succeeded, you’ve reached your goal and you’re proud. Now what?

This is an important question that you should ask yourself for the rest of your life: “Now what?” I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but we are successful only when we are progressing toward something. The minute you reach your goal, you are no longer successful.

Here’s a quote from Steve Jobs: “I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what’s next.”

So we need to be in a constant state of progression in order to be successful. As an author finishes writing her book, she simultaneously goes to work on the next one. That is success. An entrepreneur develops a hit product, and as sales are increasing, he begins working on a new product or service. That is success. A fitness aficionado reaches his goal weight for dead lift, and decides to aim for a new, higher weight. That is success.

Regardless of our endeavor, we should always aim higher, and keep increasing our goals as we go.The ladder of success is really one of those mountain-climber machines, the ones where the steps keep disappearing and reappearing at the top. In order to stay on and continue to be successful, you have to keep climbing.

So think about how this relates to your life. What do you do well, every single day? How can you do it better? What could you do more efficiently? Never get complacent. Make sure you question often the things in your life and wonder about how you could improve them.

Question for the comments: Was there ever a time when you realized you had become complacent? How did you go about fixing that?

On Wealth And Money

Money

Wealth…there’s a highly debated topic. Recently I had someone on YouTube tell me that it was a shame that our society is so obsessed with money, and that success shouldn’t have anything to do with wealth.

And then I thought about that. And I think that’s ridiculous.

Here’s why: first of all, money allows us comfort. Money allows us to live the lives we want, and it lets us provide for our families and give them what they deserve. I agree that it can be used unwisely and selfishly, but…hate the players, not the game (that’s supposed to be the other way around, isn’t it?). I mean, professional baseball players take steroids, but you don’t hate the game because of it if you’ve been a fan all your life. Money allows you to live a good life and do the things you want to do.

Secondly, and this is very much related to the first point, it gives us security. I had a thought the other day…I imagined what it would be like if I had enough money to allow my family to quit their jobs. And then I thought about what it would be like if they could all do what they REALLY wanted to do. People don’t become painters or poets or authors or philosophers or business owners because those careers often lack security, at least in the beginning. And so I am working toward wealth and abundance so I can help the people around me feel secure enough to go after what they really want.

Lastly, money is nothing more than a measuring stick for the service you provide to other people. Earl Nightingale said, “we are paid in exact proportion to the service we render.” People are stingy with money; they don’t just give it away to anyone who walks by. So if they are giving their money to one person in particular, you can bet that that person is providing a product or service to them.

Money isn’t the root of all evil. The lack of money is the root of all evil. As if you needed any more convincing, poverty is closely linked with crime…

So go along in your pursuit of money. As long as your intentions are good and you don’t harm anyone else, money is just another perfectly good part of success. Not the ONLY part, of course, but I’m sure you know that!

Gung Ho! by Ken Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles

Gung Ho!

Hello everyone! I wanted to let you all know that I just finished reading this week’s book: Gung Ho!

It’s a really quick read, definitely something you could consume in a day. There’s a ton of information in here about managing a factory, but it can all be applied to managing anything, including yourself and your own work. Whether you work for a company or for yourself, I recommend this book.

What makes it most interesting is the fact that the lessons come from a Native American, so they are inspired by nature and rooted in spirituality. Also, it’s a true story, so you know the advice is real, and it works.

Here is the link to the book on Amazon if you’re interested: Buy Gung Ho! on Amazon.

Here is the link to my notes on this book, so you can learn along with me: Buy my notes on this book.

As a thank you for reading my blog, use coupon code “freeplease” to get those notes for free 🙂