We’ve all read loads of articles that talk about life lessons, and after a while, they all sound the same.
I wanted to address the unknown, simple and incredibly profound life lessons that I’ve learned. These lessons have come from the strangest of places and many of them are weird.
I like to think that hidden in the weirdness and strangeness of life is where the golden nuggets of wisdom lie.
Here are 22 incredibly weird life lessons I’ve learned:
1. Glass bottles, teapots and lava lamps hold beauty.
That’s why I have them around me when I write. They help me peer into another universe and see things up close. They are fully transparent and leave you with more questions than answers.
“Beauty exists in glass just like it exists in many other simple things you currently take for granted”
2. Watering pot plants helps you care for others.
I’ve never had kids but pot plants show me that I can care for something other than myself and do a good job. They’re green and feel good to look at. Pot plants also clean the air which is a must in any space where you do creative work and need to feel good.
3. That one sentence text message means so much.
“Congrats on the new job”
“Hope you sell your house for a good price”
“Thanks for being my mentor”
“Let me know if you need anything”
“I believe you can do it”
“I’m cheering on the sidelines for you”
You’ve probably never thought these very brief messages would mean much. You probably took these short messages for granted. Next time you’re at rock bottom though, see how these short messages can completely change everything.
That’s why I send messages like this all the time because you never know when someone is at rock bottom or may need a few words to change their perspective.
4. An immaculate desk makes your content better.
I’ve A/B tested content written with a messy desk and content written on a desk full of clutter. A clean desk always creates clearer thoughts that sound less distracted.
“Your environment does affect the content you create whether that’s blog posts, videos or audio”
5. One block of dark chocolate is all it takes.
That’s all it took for me to get addicted to sugar again. Those small temptations always lead to bigger problems if you don’t remain disciplined. Once you’re rekindled with your temptations, your body demands more.
Don’t let a quick decision ruin everything you’ve built for yourself. Keep saying no to things that don’t serve you.
6. That one insult will ruin everything.
Saying nasty stuff only brings more of that into your life. Watch how good a smile can be in even the toughest situation, and you’ll see why you should never insult someone again.
7. One beep of your car horn.
It breaks your thought pattern and creates anxiety. People will cut you off and make mistakes when you’re driving. I’ve learned to stop reacting so much which has made me calmer. Avoid the temptation to toot people. It hurts you more than it hurts them.
8. You’re one book away from a breakthrough.
“Yeah, yeah, yeah Tim, I get it – read books!”
Well yes, you’ve been told a hundred times to read more. I read heaps and sometimes it does feel pointless. The thing is that all it takes is one idea from a book to create a breakthrough. Most of the advice you read in books you’ve heard before.
Sometimes it’s that one bit of advice, told in such a way, that creates a change in you. You could be one book away from changing your career, starting a new relationship or discovering a new passion.
9. Old clothes around the house will remind you of your former self.
I had an old pair of pyjamas that always put me in a bad mood. I realized it was because these pyjamas used to be my gym clothes when I was at the top of my fitness game. If something brings you no joy, get rid of it. Try replacing old clothes with ones that you can create new memories in as your future self.
10. You’re one or two connections away from anyone.
Okay, hear me out. I did a diagram the other day and realized that even a simple kid from Australia with a relatively small network (I’m talking about me) is only one or two connections away from Gary Vaynerchuk, Richard Branson, Tim Ferriss, and the founders of Uber and Airbnb.
I’m not kidding. You’re closer to your heroes than you think. Everyone knows everyone which is a big advantage providing you don’t abuse it.
11. A car is a distraction whether you like it or not.
The same goes for many material possessions which suck up time that you could be using to crush your goals. I look forward to the day where we can all easily access a shared electric car. Cars are a distraction that rarely bring joy.
12. Complex investments subtract from your passion.
These are all investments I’ve made which have eaten up my free time that should have been used for blogging. The temptation to keep making more and more money that I’ll probably never get to spend seems alluring in the moment. Stick to simple investments unless investing is your passion.
Investments such as index funds typically beat the full-time investor and require little work to maintain. This leaves you more time and space in your brain to use on your passions in life.
13. The local park does change how you feel.
There’s something about fresh air and trees that takes you out of your head. Greenery is what’s needed when you’ve been working hard and need an escape. You don’t have to spend thousands and go overseas to have this simple escape. The local park can often be far enough.
14. The time you need does exist.
That’s why I stopped the following:
– Replying to every social media comment
– Checking emails fifty times a day
– Taking calls from unknown numbers
– Streaming TV shows
– Talking to people on the phone that piss me off
– Going to events to “make an appearance”
15. One minute activities are worth their weight in gold.
Spending sixty seconds on something is how new habits can often be formed. I tried bouncing on a trampoline for sixty seconds and loved it; I tried eating sardines for sixty seconds and saw the benefits straight away; I tried smiling for no good reason for sixty seconds and saw the impact.
16. The next conversation could be your soul mate.
That next encounter could be the love of your life. If you are determined to live life with the right positive attitude, then someone will find that attractive. If you tell everybody that you’ll never find someone, then that’s what life will deliver because you asked for it.
17. A comment on social media can become something.
I’ve had some followers read my stuff for years. One of them the other day introduced me to a highly lucrative new business. Always be nice to everyone on social media. You never know where your next opportunity could come from.
18. Keeping the toilet bowl clean is a must.
Always leave the world better than you found it. You would also like to find the toilet clean when nature calls.
19. Showing one person, one thing, makes you a coach.
That’s how I started my business by offering advice to a young man for free. Once you can add value to one person’s life, you can be a coach. Through coaching, you can help pass on your knowledge and wisdom to others who can use it towards their goals.
We all have it within us to be a coach.
Becoming a coach is the first step to leadership. Leaders create change.
20. Please and thank you does make you smile.
Say it and then watch what it does. You’ll feel good when you say it like you mean it. No one’s here to be your butler so be nice to everyone. Say thank you and please with passion and gratitude.
21. You’re being referenced checked 100% of the time.
That’s why lying will kill your success. Everything you do is being shared with your network so give people something inspiring, happy and positive to say about you. That’s how you attract more of what you want into your life.
22. A five-dollar donation is enough.
I was sitting at a restaurant with a friend last week and a man who had very little was selling a magazine to feed himself. My friend gave him 5-dollars and told him to keep the magazine. That five dollars changed the man’s day and he was so very happy that someone showed him kindness.
My friend also felt great after the encounter. It doesn’t take much to bring happiness to the world. It’s not the money or things that creates happiness; it’s the kindness you show when you do something without expecting anything in return.
It’s easier to be happy than you think.
If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net
If You Want to Avoid Failure Once and for All, Ask Yourself These 4 Questions
You just invested in yourself and in your business. You are taking massive action but the results are just not clicking yet. While everyone is making 10X, 20X, and even 100X ROI on their initial investment, you have made $0 return. Failure is starting to overcast your bright shining positive attitude and you are feeling the pain and shame of it. (more…)
3 Simple Hacks That Can Recharge Your Willpower and Help You Perform Better at Work
How many times did you wake up feeling like you could conquer the world? You set ambitious goals for the day, you put on your best attire and walked out the door with a big smile on your face but eventually, life took over. Traffic, emails, work, family, and everything else you have around slowly but steadily started to drain your energy and made you feel exhausted.
You run out of battery, and the only solution that seemed viable was to rely on more caffeine. When that stopped working, all the temptations around you started to look much more appealing, and that sense of drive and commitment you had before slowly faded away. This is you running out of willpower.
Willpower: what is it? Why is it limited?
The American Psychology Association describes willpower as “the ability to resist short-term temptations in order to meet long-term goals.” In the book “The Willpower Instinct”, Dr. Kelly McGonigal, explains how every person’s willpower is limited, and slowly depletes throughout the day. The more “willpower challenges” you face, the quicker your reserve drains. Dr. McGonigal divided the different types of willpower challenges you might encounter in three categories:
- I will: We face this type of challenge whenever we should do something, but we simply don’t feel like getting it done right now.
- I won’t: We face this challenge when we try to resist temptation, or we try to keep cool in stressful situations.
- I want: This is a particular type of challenge where we keep track of our long term goals, dreams, and desires. In this instance, we feel like we should take action right now to come one step closer to the goal.
It’s easy to recognize it when you face a willpower challenge because you literally “feel it in your body.” Imagine being really hungry and walking in front of a bakery. The sight and the smell of pastries quickly triggers an “I won’t” type of challenge, and it takes a severe amount of effort and energy to walk away.
Every time you manage to win one of those challenges, a little bit of your willpower reserve gets used. The more challenges you face daily, the harder it will be to stay true to your goals.
Can you train or recharge your willpower?
A growing body of research suggests that willpower should be considered a muscle. To strengthen it, you should exercise it regularly, but you should not overwork it. Therefore, we shouldn’t try to “be good” at all times. Instead, we should learn how to relax and recharge our willpower.
The general advice on how to improve willpower involves sleep, proper nutrition, and regular exercise. This broad and general recommendation is often not downright applicable by most, because it consists of changing various daily habits. Luckily, three very effective hacks have been discovered, that have an immediate effect on our willpower and take just a few minutes to apply.
Here are the 3 ways to refill your willpower reserves:
1. Focused breathing
Breathing, when done correctly, can stimulate the release of calming hormones while reducing the release of stress hormones like cortisol and catecholamines. To make this effective, you should deeply and slowly inhale through the nose for at least five seconds. Fill your belly with air first, then your chest, and when there’s no more space for air, still try to do tiny inhalations through the nose.
You should feel a pulling sensation around your neck and trapezius muscles. Once your lungs are full, try to hold the breath for five seconds, then slowly exhale through the mouth for at least five seconds. If you repeat this process ten to twenty times, you should feel dramatically more relaxed. Use this method several times a day, especially when you’re experiencing high levels of stress or anxiety.
2. Reward yourself when you accomplish a micro goal
According to a recent study, frequent instant rewards can boost motivation, and therefore, willpower. Creating your own reward system can help you to accomplish your to-do list, and also resist temptations. Since every individual has different tastes, you should come up with creative ideas about the small and frequent rewards you will give yourself upon winning any willpower challenge.
You can see this hack in practice in Apps like the popular Duolinguo, where after completing each lesson you get presented with a chance to open a treasure chest. This rewarding system seems to keep the users much more likely to keep learning new lessons.
Your body has an autonomic response to cold water. Getting into a cold shower is a difficult (but minor) willpower challenge on its own. As I previously mentioned, winning a willpower challenge strengthens your willpower muscle. Having a morning cold shower, on top of having multiple health benefits, will set you up for a positive winning streak of further challenges.
High performance is the sum of many small habits. Successful people don’t have an unlimited reserve of willpower, but they do have a set of daily rituals that made them succeed. These three hacks are some of the most effective techniques to develop willpower, but some of them may not fit every individual. You should try to find the perfect mix of daily practices that best fits your lifestyle and likes, so that you can strengthen your willpower muscle and perform better at work.
3 Inspiring Lessons We Can Learn From Jim Carrey About the Law of Attraction
You’ve more than likely heard of Jim Carrey before. Over the years, he has starred in many popular films including The Truman Show, The Mask, and Bruce Almighty (just to name a few.)
But his personality goes a lot deeper than just his comedic persona and movie star charisma. In fact, Jim Carrey is probably one of the most philosophical individuals on the planet!
Although he isn’t in the spotlight as much anymore, throughout the years, he has credited his success and fortunes by applying the Law of attraction into his life. What’s even more inspiring is that Jim Carrey, like you and I, came from humble beginnings. No silver spoon or easy ticket. In fact, his family was very poor throughout his childhood. So what made him so successful in attracting such an extravagant and self-fulfilling life?
Here are 3 lessons you can learn from Jim Carrey when it comes to manifesting your dreams into a reality:
1. You Have To Take Action
“You can’t just visualize then go eat a sandwich”, Jim Carrey says. It goes without saying that the law of attraction does require action. You cannot simply rely on visualizing and expect to see results, especially when it comes to manifesting desires that other people would like to achieve also. E.g. Careers, scholarships, competitions, anything that involves another individual.
Visualization and positive thinking are crucial when it comes to using the law of attraction, but you have to meet the universe halfway with the steps you take as well. We are physical beings that require physical steps to get physical results. The real key is to make daily plans/goals in order to get you closer towards achieving your desires. So after that sandwich, make sure start taking action toward your dreams!
This could be working on your hobbies or passion, applying for that dream job or studying to get better grades. As long as you are moving toward your goals then there’s no reason why it can’t happen. So get out there and kick some butt.
2. Double Down On What You Love
“My father could have been a great comedian but he didn’t believe that that was possible for him, and so he made a conservative choice. Instead, he got a safe job as an accountant and when I was 12 years old he was let go from that safe job, and our family had to do whatever we could to survive. I learned many great lessons from my father. Not the least of which was that: You can fail at what you don’t want. So you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.”
If this story of Jim Carrey’s father doesn’t pull on your heartstrings and inspire you at the same time, nothing else will! This is such an undeniable life lesson that everyone needs to learn. A lesson to take risks, push comfort zones and go all-in on what you love doing. So if your dreams, hobbies or goals seem far fetched to the majority, then you are already beating the other 99%.
Be that 1% that’s willing to dream big and rise above the norm. Unfortunately, in today’s society, our ancestral instincts still rule our everyday life. Fear is one of them and controls the majority of our population. It’s scary to push comfort zones and try something new, the thought of failure is often paralyzing to many. But my question to you is, will you look back one day and regret the chances you didn’t take?
3. Keep Your Eye On The Prize
“As far as I can tell, it’s just about letting the universe know what you want and working toward it, while letting go of how it comes to pass.” Holding onto every little detail when it comes to manifesting, can conjure up more harm than good. The reason is that the universe will deliver in ways you might not expect.
If you are too busy wondering when your desires will manifest, comparing yourself to others, or ignoring every sign that doesn’t look like your detailed plan you’ve written down, then you may be missing out on opportunities that are right in front of you! Your visualizations don’t have to be perfect, in fact, it’s better to just let go altogether and focus on the result itself rather than dwelling on every little detail. This doesn’t mean to simply forget about what you want but instead having the confidence it will happen in time.
An example of this is when Jim Carrey wrote himself a check for 30 million dollars. The only detail he knew was that he would earn it through his acting career, and he did indeed achieve this goal! So make sure to tell the universe what you want, but try not to hold onto every little detail!
Jim Carrey is just another person like you and me, with his own personal ups and downs in his road to success. He is someone to look up to when applying the law of attraction in your life too. It doesn’t matter if your goals or desires are different because the core foundation will always stay the same. You can and will do this if you think, feel and act as if it will happen!
Meditation for Beginners: How It Works and Where to Start
Meditation was first developed in India many years ago (around 5000-3500 BCE). It took quite some time to become popular in the western world, but today, it is celebrated as a therapeutic tool to ease stress, anxiety, depression, and addictions. In the past years, it has also become recognized as helping to improve mental performance, and consequently became a multi-billion dollar business. If you’ve never tried it, you may be wondering how something so simple as sitting with your eyes closed could deliver such incredible benefits.
How meditation works
Meditation is about training in awareness and getting a healthy sense of perspective over one’s thoughts. Many think that meditating is about trying to achieve a zen state of mind, but that’s not the point. Observing one’s thoughts, and then letting go of them so that eventually you may start to better understand them, is the real goal of each meditation practice.
There are different techniques to go through this mental process. Some focus on the breath and bodily sensation, others make you visualize an object, and others help you to channel your thoughts towards acts of love and kindness.
A typical meditation session involves you sitting on a chair or cross-legged on the floor with your eyes closed. Once you assume a comfortable position and focus on your breath, you should start noticing your thoughts. At this point, according to what type of technique you’re using, you will try to let those thoughts go away by focusing on something else (this could be your breath or a mental image you created).
With time and practice, you may be able to reach a state of mind where very few thoughts (or none) are present. Despite the simplicity of this process, meditating for more than ten minutes is extremely tough for most. Many people that try meditation get discouraged by the fact that “they can’t stop thinking.” In fact, it has been proven that people spend most of their days being anything but mindful and peaceful.
In a 2010 study, Harvard researchers asked more than 2000 adults about their thoughts and actions at random moments throughout their day via an iPhone app. People’s minds wandered 47% of the time, and mind wandering often triggered unhappiness, the scientists reported.
They also observed that spending time observing our thoughts without getting stuck on them, may help to better understand oneself, and possibly being able to reduce the number of negative thoughts one experiences.
“The mind is definitely something that can be transformed, and meditation is a means to transform it.” – Dalai Lama
What science says about meditation
People have practiced meditation for thousands of years, but scientists have studied its effects for only a dozen. In the past few years, many studies have been published about the neurological benefits of meditation, proving it to improve brain function in many different ways.
Meditation’s benefits range from preserving the aging brain, to improving happiness by reducing the activity of the brain’s “me center” (monkey mind). A more recent study has even proven that meditation is as powerful as antidepressants in treating depression, anxiety, and pain. Many more studies are being conducted every day on meditation, and we can expect to gain a lot more insight in the near future.
Can anyone meditate?
Millions of people are practicing mindfulness meditation every day with great results, but there are also as many people that have tried meditating and didn’t like it or didn’t manage to be consistent with their practice. The most important part of developing a meditation practice is consistency. You don’t have to meditate every single day, but the benefits are tied to regular, consistent practice.
Some studies claim that some benefits of meditation such as improved mood, decreased stress and decreased blood pressure, can be felt after a single session. Some other benefits like increased focus and decreased anxiety may be experienced after a few weeks and others take longer to develop.
Some people claim that as little as five minutes of meditation per day can make miracles, but research shows that a regular practice associated with benefits involves 10-20 minutes of meditation at least three times per week.
“Be happy in the moment, that’s enough. Each moment is all we need, not more.” – Mother Teresa
What’s the best way to begin a meditation practice?
A good place to start for aspiring mediators is Headspace. Andy Puddicombe, a former English student in sport science, dropped his studies to travel to Asia and trained as a Buddhist monk. He created Headspace with the goal of helping millions of people to live a more mindful life. Over 30 million people have downloaded and use headspace. This is due to his simplicity and its beautiful design and animations.
Do you meditate? If so, what’s your favorite aspect of it? Share your thoughts below!
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