As some of you know I have just completed a 38-day fast to cure myself of chronic illness. I was inspired by Tyler Tolman’s interview here on Addicted2Success to give it a go. It’s changed my life, and I have learnt so many vital lessons. Surprisingly, many of those lessons are directly linked to the basics of success.
It’s been a hell of a ride with ups and downs. I have learnt a lot about myself and who I want to be. I have released years worth of toxins and toxic emotions that just sat there. I always thought that when I changed the way I lived in 2012 after a Tony Robbins seminar, that this change would be enough.
What I have learnt is that you can start eating healthy and living better today, but if you don’t release all the years of bad food and toxic emotions, you won’t get the true benefits. You deserve to be the best version of you each day, and you deserve to be successful – let me show you how you do that.
Below are the eleven lessons I learnt from doing my 38-day fast.
1. Energy will change the game for you
The first and most important lesson I learnt was all about energy levels. Most of us think we have high levels of energy but compared to what I have now; we really don’t. After the first four days of fasting, once all the toxins were released, I had a new kind of energy.
I found myself being able to work longer than other people at a peak state consistently. I started to see that to live the life I wanted; I needed more time. The only way I have found to have more time is to have more energy.
By having more energy, it means that every minute is not wasted lounging around, and I can achieve my goals consistently. I also found that my passion for what I do increased because the new levels of energy allowed me to show more emotion and be more vulnerable.
The way I chose to be more vulnerable was to put myself out there and share my story with over 40,000 colleagues. For days, I was inundated with emails and messages from people who connected with my story and wanted to be around me to learn some of what I know.
What can high levels of energy do for your own life? How can you change the game?
2. Food is so good
So it’s no surprise that after the 38-day fast I now have a new perspective on what food means to me. Just having an avocado now is the most amazing thing I have ever tasted. Whereas before, unless it was full of salt and came from a takeaway shop, it didn’t excite me.
Most of my fast involved eating nothing but fruit (which is basically water) and so I started to see fruit in a completely different light. The fruit was very detoxing, and it was also sweet (the good kind). I began to look forward to getting home and pigging out, except this time it was on fruit.
That first moment when I broke the fast and ate something other than fruit again is something I will never forget. It’s a very mindful experience because rather than just scoffing down the food, you savour each bite.
Now that the fast is over, food has become something I love, even more, and I have a new sense of gratitude about it.
3. You will see if you have willpower
The other highlight lesson for me was around willpower. In 2011, I went from 65kg to over 100 kg’s by training with a personal trainer. One thing that I will never forget is that my trainer said to me, “Tim I have trained a lot of people, but you have determination and willpower like I have never seen before.”
For over one year I trained every single week, even through public holidays, winter storms, temperatures of more than forty-five degree’s to achieve my goal. Most people that try to do the same thing would have days off, holidays and time when they couldn’t make it to training – I never allowed this to happen (sacrifice).
From this gym experience to my recent experience of fasting, I have again seen my willpower and determination shine through. It’s an attribute I never thought I had, but there is no way that these two situations are a coincidence.
While you may not have the same willpower as me, if you can do something like a fast, you can certainly build it as a strength. The way that I stopped myself from breaking the fast was to think about all the hard work I had put in thus far and all the rewards I would miss out on if I gave up.
I mean I sacrificed four days of holidays to even begin the fast, if I had to start all over again, I would have to give up another four days. What I have just described to you here is the process of reframing that was taught to me by Tony Robbins.
It’s the most powerful success tool I know, and it’s what allowed me to conquer my fear of fasting.
4. All food addictions can be abolished
Like most of us, for many years, I have suffered from sugar and salt addictions. By doing the fast, I was forced to abolish both of these things. When you don’t consume salt and sugar for a long time, your body stops craving it and it’s a great way to change your eating habits.
Now when I eat something, if it has even a bit of salt I can taste it straight away. It’s not that I don’t want salt or sugar anymore, it’s just that it doesn’t serve me on the path to success that I am creating for myself.
5. Let your body heal
All of our lives we are told to eat lots of fruit and vegetables and we never eat enough. We put things like alcohol consistently into our body and never give ourselves a chance to heal. While our bodies rest at night-time, just as we are starting to clear toxins from the body, we wake up and stuff more food into our mouths.
What I learnt from my 38-day fast was that when you give your body nothing but nutrients and vitamins for a prolonged period of time, your body thanks you in so many ways. During a fast you are giving your body a chance to heal and to break down all the old cells and create new ones.
We can’t recover from medical issues unless we let the healing process begin. This healing process will never start with hamburgers and deep fried food so let your body heal once in a while through something like a fast.
6. You won’t die from fasting
The biggest fear I had about fasting was that I was going to waste away and become skin and bone. After doing the fast, I can tell you this is completely false. Think back to the cavemen, their bodies were programmed by nature to go through feasts as well as famines. This same programming still exists in humans today but we just never use it.
Someone said to me a few weeks ago that they didn’t think they could go three hours without food otherwise they would get sick. I too believed this once before and now after fasting, I know this to be entirely untrue.
Most of what we are eating is creating our sickness and then feeding it when we are sick. Consider a new perspective and maybe try a short three-day fast to see for yourself. Many people asked me why I chose 38-days and not another duration. The reason for this is that the human threshold is about forty days, and I wanted to come in just below the extreme.
Now you will lose a few kilograms but most of this will be fat and all the stuff stuck in your colon, liver and kidneys. Once you complete your fast, and your body is healthy again, you will put a good level of weight back on pretty quickly so don’t stress!
7. There are going to be real lows
During any extreme task like a 38-day fast you are going to experience some lows. For me, my biggest lows were day three and day four. I was walking down the street on day three and then all of a sudden I started wanting to vomit and I couldn’t stand up.
Having never experienced these sensations before all at once, I wasn’t sure what to do. I checked with the online fasting group, and they told me this was perfectly normal. As toxins leave the body in a hurry, they come up to the surface and make you feel very unwell.
On the night of day three, I could feel the toxins coming up through my mouth, and there was this liquid that went onto my tongue and tasted horrible. Day four was much the same, and I was starting to panic. I figured that everyone was right and that not eating normal food was what was causing the sickness.
Using the self-development techniques I have learnt over the years, I decided that anything worth doing was going to be tough, and I stuck it out. By day five the sickness had passed and I started to feel better.
“Success is something that is going to have real lows, and you need to be prepared to face them, and overcome them with courage, patience and determination”
8. Whole foods are really good for you and cheaper
My 38-day fast had a number of different types of fasting built into the program. For thirty days of the fast, I ate nothing but fruit every single day (not really what we consider as food because of the high water content).
I expected that this diet of eating whole foods would be much more expensive. Per item it was, but overall, it was much cheaper than the junk food and takeaway food. The fact I didn’t get sick and had higher levels of energy also meant that my capacity to add value (and make money), was drastically increased. So, overall, I believe that whole foods are not only better for you but also cheaper.
9. People will judge you
An unexpected outcome of my 38-day fast is that I found some people really wanted to judge me. They either thought I was crazy, different, not normal or a freak. The way I see it, the road to greatness is not for everyone so the people that achieve it stand out in lots of different ways.
Standing out is a good thing because it means you are not going to achieve the same results as everyone else. People continually told me that they thought fruit must be so hard to eat and so boring. Actually, it was quite the opposite. Fruit has natural sugar and tastes really nice.
On top of that, the fast was helping me heal my body and feel amazing, so there was no way I could view it as hard or boring.
10. Proper hydration is life changing
A few years ago I was introduced to a book called “The Body’s Many Cries For Water.” The basic message of this book is that when your stomach is rumbling, or you want food, what your body really wants is water.
During my 38-day fast I learnt pretty quickly that this statement was so very true. Every time I got hungry and drank lots of water the hunger went away. I often found that eating a bowl of fruit would make me very full.
This book teaches us that when you are full from fruit, it’s actually not the case, it’s just that the fruit’s water has properly hydrated you and now you don’t feel like any more food. I found it phenomenal just how crucial water was during the 38-days.
The level of water I drank directly reflected how I felt. So the lesson here is to do what we have always been told, drink more water and consume more water-rich food.
11. You’ll never let yourself get backed up again
The final lesson I learnt is that once I went through this gruelling 38-day process, I realised that I never wanted to become backed up and unhealthy again. Seeing all the poisons and years of abuse I put my body through, was kind of enlightening and made be decide to think twice from now on.
Once my body was clear and I could think straight again with high levels of energy, I began to see a new level of what I believed to be possible. Life changing events like a 38-day fast can rewire your neural pathways for life and leave a lasting effect on you.
8 Things You Can Do to Rise Above Failure and Attain Success
Highly successful people have tasted failure more than success. Whether its Nikola Tesla or Michael Jordan, everyone had his/her fair share of failures before rising to the pinnacle of success. Yet, most people I know are averse to the idea of failure.
When ambition fuels your desires, you become so conscious about avoiding failure that you forget to learn how to cope with it when you actually experience it. So, when you come face-to-face with adversity, it often overwhelms you.
This brings us to the question, how can you train yourself to overcome these difficulties and use them to your advantage? Here’s how:
1. Acceptance is important to overcome failure
When the going gets tough, one of the most frustrating things you may get to hear is “stay positive.” The idea of positive thinking has been misconstrued, misused, and abused continuously. Contrary to popular belief, positive thinking has nothing to do with smiling and being happy with everything that happens to you all the time. Anyone who preaches that is either lying or crazy.
Use positive thinking to learn, grow, and evolve from the experiences we gather in life. Positive thinking simply means that if you are faced with a setback, you work hard to overcome the challenges. When you experience hardships, it is alright to feel upset and disappointed. Our objective, however, is not to stay down.
2. Be honest with yourself
The most crucial part of dealing with a failure involves pausing for a couple of minutes and pondering over what happened. You need to be completely honest with yourself on why it happened.
It is easy to pull out the Smartphone, turn on the laptop or find other forms of distraction. Most people would do anything to distract themselves and keep their eyes shut to the mistakes they have made.
However, if you don’t confront, you don’t learn. And if you don’t learn, then you are setting yourself up for failure again. Albert Einstein famously stated that it was insane to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different outcome. If you don’t derive a lesson out of mistakes and failures in life, then you are doomed to keep repeating them, whether you realise it or not.
“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” – Henry Ford
3. Don’t beat yourself up over a temporary setback
When you have experienced a setback, many of you may succumb to the feeling that you’ll always keep failing. It is easy to convince yourself that you are indeed a failure. Don’t let such destructive ideas or thoughts creep into your head. Instead, keep reminding yourself that just because you failed today, it doesn’t mean you’d fail the next time as well.
It is also important that you treat your failure as a passing phase. When you keep moving forward, focus on the right things, and keep learning. Perceiving the setback as a temporary phase rather than something permanent is vital to developing an optimistic attitude in life.
4. Focus on nurturing and improving yourself
Failures don’t discriminate, and it comes to everyone at some point. The trick lies in learning to deal with it and what you do about it that makes all the difference. In many cases, failure happens because a person wasn’t prepared, didn’t invest time on planning or was ill-equipped. It can also be because Lady Luck decided not to shower her favours.
Except for the last one, the rest of the issues can be fixed. Prepare a list of all the things that you think resulted in your failure. Start working on them one at a time. Do everything in your capacity to rectify, improve, resolve, and develop.
5. Find inspiration and support in abundance
Interacting with someone close can be more helpful than you think. You can also learn from people who have been through similar situations and have achieved what you hope to. Gain insights on how they managed to sail through the setbacks or low-points before and during the moment of success.
Or you can gain the motivation or enthusiasm by listening to someone else from an audiobook or podcast for maybe 30-60 minutes. It doesn’t have to be focused on your current setbacks. Change your mood and mindset back towards optimism again.
6. Adopt a constructive approach and learn from the adverse situation
Consider it as valuable feedback and take home something you can implement in the process of overcoming your failure. The following are some of the questions you need to ask yourself:
- What is the lesson for me?
- How can I rectify myself to avoid making the same mistake and do better next time?
- What can I do to enjoy guaranteed success?
You don’t need to rush through the process. Some of the answers may be immediate, while others might take an hour, a day or even a week to pop up. The significant thing is to start thinking about the situation from this perspective. Also, you need to be constructive about things rather than getting stuck with denial, negativity and apathy.
7. Stop mulling over and move on
Processing the situation and accepting it is the ideal way to deal with failures. Any individual who has experienced failures will know that it is quite easy to stay stuck in the loop of similar thoughts. In fact, this may go around and around for weeks or even months.
Now, in order to be free from this trap, the one habit that might help you is the set of questions like the ones shared above. You can also create a rough plan for how you wish to move forward from here. So, take some time to sit down and write them down.
“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill
8. Purge out all the negativity
Another impactful way to handle the emotional meltdown and the thoughts that emerge from experiencing failure is to purge out all the negativity. In order to let everything out, you need to confide in someone close to you. There are two ways to go about it: Engaging in a conversation with someone will allow you to see it from a different perspective. The person you talk to can assist you in grounding yourself in reality again and motivate you to look for a way forward.
Or you can simply vent about it while the other person who is listening can sort things out for you. He/she can help you accept what happened and boost your spirit by instilling a sense of hope.
The significant thing to remember is that while you can’t stop obstacles from appearing in life, you can devise smart ways to handle them. If you persevere, you can easily discover opportunities that have been waiting for you on the other side. Now, as you become more efficient at dealing with the failures, you will allow yourself to see the positive side in even the toughest of scenarios.
How Stress Can Actually Improve the Quality of Your Life
Naturally, those of us who experience less stress in our lives are more likely to succeed. So, it’s important that you learn how to reduce your daily level of stress, right? Maybe not. Recent research has shown the common wisdom about stress might be dangerously inaccurate. Psychologists tracked the health of 30,000 adults in the United States over an 8-year period. Participants were asked two important questions:
1. “How much stress have you experienced in the last year?”
2. “Do you believe stress is harmful to your health?” (more…)
The Truth About the Law of Attraction
When we want something, we generally imagine the form it will take when it manifests. If we’re not careful, however, we can find ourselves attached more to the imagined form than the actual desired outcome. This is like placing an online order and expecting it to come in a blue box shipped by UPS. If we then receive a red box delivered by FedEx, we might not realize that it’s what we ordered, and never even open it!
For example, most of us say that we want money, but when money comes in the form of a free coffee or a gift or a discount, we don’t see it for what it is. We overlook it, and maybe we even say “No, thanks” and decline the gift which is, in one way or another, still money. In doing so, we fail to appreciate the value of the discount, the gift, or the freebie. If it isn’t cash being handed to us, we don’t see it as a manifestation of our desire.
The law of attraction is a funny thing.
It is much more complex and much more intricate than what it seems to be and yet, at the same time, it’s so very simple: We always get what we want. We always receive more of the energy at which we vibrate. Always.
However, if we’re acting from the energy of “I don’t deserve it” or “I don’t think I’m worthy,” then whatever it is that we receive will be negated and essentially unseen. On the other hand, if we are open, observant, and maintaining an abundance mindset, we will receive our request on numerous levels and from plentiful sources!
“Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” – Napoleon Hill
This is because we “place our order” not only through our words, but through our actions, our beliefs, and our thoughts.
Last month, I was open to receiving a new client. I didn’t know how it would happen, but I’d set my intention: I was going to get a new client. That night, out of nowhere, I got a message from an old student of mine. She was looking to hire me again as her coach for the upcoming college entrance exams in the U.S. But wait! I didn’t want an entrance exam client.
What I actually wanted was to get life and business coaching clients. This student was my “red box from Fed Ex.” I wanted to decline at first, but as I was about to reply, something made me stop. I asked myself, “Why am I rejecting this?”
This student is an amazing client. She pays on time. She’s not needy. She does her part. Best of all? She doesn’t short-change me. So I said yes, because I realized that the Universe was simply responding to the essence of my desire.
You see, my “Big Why” in everything I do has always been to facilitate an accelerated personal and business growth for my clients, and this student fit the bill in every way. She wanted the personal growth, she was ready to go all in and she reached out to me.
It didn’t look like the package I was expecting so I didn’t recognize it at first—and I nearly turned it away—but she was the perfect answer to my request.
Serving people like her has always been a driving force in my life.
The Universe knows that. It also knew that I wanted a client asap so that I could re-invest the money into my business, so it responded in the most ideal way… but in an unexpected form. And I came so close to missing it!
How many times have I missed other opportunities like this? How many times have I dismissed a “red box” because it wasn’t “blue?” I’ll never know. But I do know that, had I not stopped myself from sending a “No, thanks,” I would have felt as though the Universe wasn’t listening.
That’s the thing: the Universe is always listening.
The more open we are in receiving, the more we thrive. The more open our energy is, the greater the possibilities. Don’t just return that red box to the post office and keep waiting on a blue one. Ask yourself, first and foremost, if what you’re receiving at the moment matches up with your underlying desire.
See yourself living in abundance and you will attract it.” – Rhonda Byrne
The key is to be willing to receive anything and everything. How? Keep on reading1
1. Get clear on your “underlying desire.”
Identify exactly what it is that you really want—in my case, it was an ideal client (underlying) as opposed to a coaching client (surface)—and focus on that. Clear out all the mental noise and static that clouds your awareness.
2. Be flexible
Keep your eyes and mind open for anything that fits the description. When you ask for money, recognize that free coffee for what it is: $3 you were going to spend anyway, that can now remain in your pocket. Every penny on the ground, every coupon, it’s all money.
3. Keep an attitude of gratitude.
The more you appreciate what you have, the more that comes your way. Your grateful mindset opens the energetic door for more to flow your way, because “where attention goes, energy flows.” The more you focus on the things you want, the more you will draw them into your experience.
Remember, that the Universe responds to our requests in whatever way fits best within the big picture.
It’s a picture so big that we couldn’t possibly begin to see how it comes together. Trust it. Know that when you ask, you will receive. It may not come in the form you anticipate, but always in a form that responds to your underlying desire. You just have to be ready to see it.
7 Simple Ways to Master Your Emotions When Making Decisions
A lot of people have big regrets when lying on their deathbed. These regrets are often related to bad decisions or decisions not taken. Thus, as it turns out, decision-making is dependent on great self-confidence. A person who has confidence in their decisions has an easier time making them.
Emotions also play a big role in all of this. This is a debate that has confronted two great thinkers. According to Descartes, “decisions are the product of the rational mind.” In other words, decision-making is essentially based on facts and mathematics.
But this thesis was refuted and proven to be wrong by Antonio Damasio in one of his works called “The Error of Descartes”. This was partly based on the story of Elliott, a kid that was very smart, who had above average rational capabilities, but incapable of making a decision, after a surgery to remove a brain tumor on the surface of his frontal lobes. After all his work in that matter, he concludes that a person who is incapable of emotion is incapable of making the most rational decisions.
The management of emotions is therefore completely inherent to good decision making, especially when making the most important decisions. To this end, here are 7 tips to put into practice to really master your emotions thus making the best decisions possible and never regreting them.
1. Take a step back
You must learn to take the time to identify and understand your emotions. Since physical reactions are emotionally related, also take the time to detect the reactions you have to some of your emotions. To be able to take the distance necessary to make decisions, it’s important to refer to your prefrontal cortex. This is the area of the brain responsible for reasoning. To do so you need to put yourself in a stress-free environment for a few minutes.
The best way to do this is to learn to breathe deeply. This will allow activating your prefrontal cortex again, therefore, to have better control of your emotions so you do not react to them, let alone to the event that causes these emotions. Do this exercise for at least 15 minutes. It’s amazing how you can train yourself never to react, no matter what the situation. Ideally, let at least 24 hours go by before responding to a situation that would normally cause tension.
3. Pay attention
Once you are in the prefrontal cortex, put one hand on your abdomen, at the level of your intestines, and the other hand on your heart, and take the time to listen. These two parts of the body are the two major centers of vibrations and emotions. This is why it’s important to listen and pay attention to them.
The purpose of this exercise is to become aware of your gut and heart. What you need to remember is that the only person you need to trust is yourself. By practicing this exercise, one thing will become very clear: what the emotion you feel seeks to convey to you about the decision you have to make.
Since everything is energy, first make sure that the vibration of the decision you are about to make and that of your heart and gut are in sync. You will then know whether to go ahead with your decision or reject it based on whether you feel serenity or heaviness.
4. Discern untruths
It is important to know whether your nervousness is the result of an untruth you’ve told yourself. These can corrupt the vibrations that should help you make the right decision. You have to throw out all of these untruths and come to the decision-making without any filter. Stop thinking that you’re unlucky, that you’re in a bad situation, that your life is a failure, or that you are a victim.
5. Become aware of your emotions instead of avoiding them
To become aware of your emotions, you must learn to coach yourself. Ask yourself questions: How did you feel the last time you had to ask these types of questions? What did you get in return? Rename what you felt and the result you obtained from what you decided to do. You will thus be much better at assimilating, understanding, and welcoming your emotions.
6. Be as present as possible
There is no point in focusing on the big events surrounding the decision you want to make. Concentrate instead on the present moment, without analyzing the events. Judge based on emotions rather than the event. By being more present, you will be better able to listen to your emotions and feel them.
7. Make your emotions your allies
Each of your emotions speaks to you through the physical and physiological reactions that they generate in you. Look to the weight of their impact on you as an indicator. Only by listening to them, using them, and managing them can you manage your emotions.
Habit comes with practice. With time, these 7 points will become much more natural and will become automatic. You will make better decisions for yourself. This is one of the best ways to not end up with one of the big regrets.
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