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4 Hacks to Create a Productive Morning Routine, Even if You’re Not a Morning Person

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Waking up

You’re smart. You know how early rising can boost your chances of success and a powerful morning routine will supercharge your day and fast-track your progress towards your goals.

You’ve tried a lot of things to get up early and with a lot of energy. But somehow your morning routine is not working as well as it should. You don’t always wake up looking forward to the day. You spend a lot of time trying to motivate yourself to start working. Your mind is slow and easy to distract, and you waste valuable time and energy trying to keep it on track.

The result, your morning routine is unproductive. Forgotten tasks, unfinished projects, and deadlines are piling up, adding to the stress and sense of failure. It’s hard to establish a good morning routine if you’re not a morning person, not sleeping well or feeling sick/tired. But it doesn’t mean this is impossible. On the contrary, you can still supercharge your morning routine, even if you’re not a morning person.

I am a morning person, but I’ve been through a period of sleep problems, which resulted in me waking up with a sore back, muddled head and a hard-to-shift tiredness. But with a full-time job to go to, a side business to attend to, and a new book to write, I had to find ways to make the most of my mornings.

Here are a few hacks that can help you stay productive:

1. Start your tomorrow tonight

This strategy works particularly well if you’re more of an owl than a lark. Before you go to bed, plan your day for tomorrow. Make a list of tasks you want to work on first thing in the morning.

But don’t stop there – make it even easier for yourself. Start working on the first step of your first task before you head for bed. It may be something as simple as getting all the necessary tools ready on your desk. Or, if you’re writing a new post – opening a new document and typing the title.

The first step is the hardest, and getting over that initial hurdle the night before will make it easier for you to get on with the task in the morning.

“Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.” – Alexander Graham Bell

2. Get up to something you genuinely enjoy doing (guilt free)

There are many great strategies to start the day a winner, but sometimes, no matter how much you try to exercise, meditate, or visualise, you just can’t get going. On days like that, I rely on simple pleasures of life, e.g. my favourite brand of coffee or something special for breakfast to get me out of bed.

Whatever it is that can make you feel energised, take your time to enjoy it and do it guilt-free. Be careful not to overindulge and set yourself a time limit, so you still have time to complete at least one task.

3. Make your morning routine the default option

Do you know that decision-making drains our energy and causes us to procrastinate? The more choices you have to make, the bigger the impact on your mental energy, and hence the more likely you are to procrastinate. This phenomenon is called decision fatigue.

Many successful people understand how it works and limits their decision-making by automating some of their daily choices, e.g. always dressing the same way, or having set menus for breakfasts. This principle extends to your morning routine, too. To limit procrastination and make the most of your morning, minimise decision fatigue by limiting your choices.

Get up always at the same time, every day of the week. Have a set routine, identical for every day. Maybe you want to start your day with a meditation session, a prayer, a few jumps, or a cup of coffee while reading a book – do it every day at the same time, in the same order. No hesitation, no bargaining. Save your time and mental energy for more important decisions.

“Every day I feel is a blessing from God. And I consider it a new beginning. Yeah, everything is beautiful.” – Prince

4. Take it easy by aligning your tasks with your natural rhythms

One of the biggest mistakes people make when planning change in their behaviour is to assume they’ll be able to deal with difficulties without much problem every day. When you’re motivated, you feel you can move mountains, and you jump out of bed in the morning. But if, for whatever reason, you wake up not feeling energised and excited – it’s much harder to get up and start your day.

You can overcome it by creating a routine that fits in with your natural rhythms. If you’re not a morning person, yet want to create a morning routine, try optimising your time by tracking your energy levels (physical, mental, emotional and spiritual) during the day and week and then adjust your schedule to match your best time with the type of tasks you’re working on. The same goes for days when you’re not feeling 100% yet still want to work on your goals.

If your tasks require creativity, look for peaks in your spiritual or emotional energy. If you need to prepare a tax return, or proofread your article, you’d need a good level of mental energy. Preparing for a difficult conversation with an unhappy customer or your boss requires emotional energy. Identify which type of energy you’re able to access and work on tasks that require it.

If you’ve tried to implement a morning routine and failed before, if you’re not at your best in the morning, you can still create a winning morning routine. Choose your strategies and test them. Don’t ignore simple tweaks, no matter how small. You’ll be surprised how much you can achieve by taking those little steps. Your morning productivity will soar.

What do you do to create a productive morning routine? Please leave your thoughts below!

Joanna Jast helps career changers, entrepreneurs and freelancers accelerate their learning and personal change so they can adapt faster to the new environment. If you want to learn more about her approach to creating new habits, check her website http://www.shapeshiftersclub.com and grab a copy of her new book Hack Your Habits and start improving your habits today.

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13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Thea

    Dec 14, 2016 at 1:42 am

    Great post. It is very optimistic. I don’t consider myself as morning person but usually wake up very early. Will try this tips 🙂

  2. Sonia Voldseth

    Dec 13, 2016 at 1:10 am

    Great post Joanna, thank you. I’m far too optimistic with my time as well! It’s nice to know how much you are balancing too and that you still find (make) time to write.

  3. Mark Tong

    Dec 8, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    HI Joanna- useful tips. I especially want to do more of #2!

  4. Quinn Eurich

    Dec 8, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    All good advice and I already do some of it.

    Now if I could only get to bed at a time that will support the getting up early piece! LOL!

    Great post Joanna!

  5. Rosemary

    Dec 8, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    Great tips, Joanna. I use simpleology which I find helps get my thoughts in order, especially if I do it the night before.

  6. Stephen Roe

    Dec 7, 2016 at 12:10 pm

    Thanks for the advice, Joanna! Great to see you here. 🙂

    I’ve just recently (in the past week or so) started to wake up early–consistently. It’s incredible how much more I accomplish when I start the day off correctly. Tip #2 (enjoy the first thing you do), is something I need to be more mindful of. Gotta figure out how to include that in my morning routine. 😛

    • Joanna Jast

      Dec 7, 2016 at 4:59 pm

      Hello Stephen – great to see you here 🙂

      Having been waking up early consistently for about 20 years, I can vouch for the ‘wake up to something you enjoy’ strategy. So definitely, find something – a cup of coffee (or a healthier drink), a little bit of peace and quiet, sunrise.

      All the best

  7. Joanna Jast

    Dec 7, 2016 at 6:04 am

    Hello Natalia

    Thanks for your kind words.

    It’s great to hear you’ve also found the-night-before planning helpful.

    And I can relate to that ‘being too optimistic with your time’ – I always think I’ll have more time in the future and commit to many things and then find myself always superbusy – and again thinking: I’m too busy right now, but I’m sure I’ll have more time next week…

    🙂

  8. KeriVandongen

    Dec 7, 2016 at 1:13 am

    Interesting thoughts Joanna.
    You suggest reinforcing yourself for getting up early, and tacking tough motivation tasks later on. This differs from most success habits.
    I like it.
    Perhaps we should alter habits to suit our personalities and daily energy.
    ~Keri

    • Joanna Jast

      Dec 7, 2016 at 5:45 am

      Thanks Keri 🙂

      I agree with you – I think if people are struggling to adapt their lives to fit with good habits, they should try to alter their habits to suit their personalities and daily energy.

      Being someone lazy by nature and with rather poor willpower and drive to achieve success, I’ve come up with my own little system to establish habits – just as you say.

  9. Charlene

    Dec 7, 2016 at 12:24 am

    Hi Joanna,
    Such a good article. I use to be a morning person and as I aged I no longer hop out of bed. I loved your term decision fatigue, I find that works well for me when it comes to meal planning, the easier the more likely I am to eat well. I will try to implement the start your tomorrow tonight as that will have me half way there. Thanks for the tips!

    • Joanna Jast

      Dec 7, 2016 at 6:01 am

      Hello Charlene

      Thank you for your kind words.

      Decision fatigue does affect our ability to live the life we want to live, so I agree with you – the easier, the better, because we’re more likely to actually do it. It may not be perfect, but hey, it gets us to do what we want to do: eat healthier, exercise, get up in the morning.

      All the best and I hope my little tips will help you

  10. Natàlia

    Dec 6, 2016 at 6:19 pm

    Great tips, Joanna. I’m a morning person although too optimistic with my time, so I always struggle with trying to fit everything I want to do in my schedule. Planning ahead the night before is what has worked the best for me so far.

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Life

2 Vital Keys to Having a True Breakthrough This Year

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breakthrough

Every person has a great deal of potential within them. However, the majority of people will never tap into that potential because something hinders them from getting it done whether that be a traumatic event that plagues their mind, or a negative mindset. This can be due to fear, insecurities, or of feelings of not deserving or not being good enough.

The list is literally endless because every person has different challenges in life. We are all different people, with different pasts, experiences, backgrounds, belief systems, but one commonality we all share: the pain of NOT DOING in our past.

If you’ve ever been to a conference for business, professional, or spiritual development, you know the feeling of getting fired up, motivated and inspired to go forward and DO! When you get home, the fire in your heart and mind is still burning. Nonetheless, this feeling tends to be short lived, as the reality of life sets in: bills, relationship problems, office issues, etc. and your fire begins to go out and you are back at square one… again.

There are some people that go to an event and then truly have a breakthrough in life. They explode in their business, family life, spiritual life, and health. The one thing that separates these people from the rest of us is their willingness to go deeper within themselves.

If you have attended an Anthony “Tony” Robbins motivational lecture, you know there are many reported success stories of people that he has inspired. Tony has stated in the past that individuals are able to “breakthrough” because they do not accept surface level BS; these successful people go deeper within themselves to determine the root cause of their issues or shortcomings. He also explained that by doing so, they would experience a true “breakthrough.”

If this year is going to truly be different for you, and you are going to see expansion and advancements in all parts of your life, you will need to go deeper.

Here are two important keys to help you have a breakthrough year:

1. Get Real With Yourself

Self-reflection is a powerful character building tool. However, when inspecting your life and who you are, you must go deep into this process. Don’t stay surface level and just think about what you need to improve on. Make the extra effort to think about the why of it all. Why are you weak in certain areas? Why do you seem to always fall short when doing certain tasks? Why do you dislike specific types of people and or places? Most importantly, why do you lack motivation in crucial aspects of your life?

When you start asking these types of profound questions and digging deeper, you are able to realize that there may be hidden reasons for your life constraints. Sometimes, pain in our past and heart-rending experiences of life are responsible for our weaknesses.

The challenge is to visit these places mentally and resolve root causes. Having these moments of reflection enables us to experience some very personal and self teachable moments. It is in these moments that true clarity will come and you will make decisions about where to go from here based on level headed logic rather than simply pure emotion.

Getting to know yourself better will help you in your personal and professional growth and help you to fast-track the breakthrough you desire.

“Self awareness is the ability to take an honest look at your life without any attachment to it being right or wrong, good or bad.” – Debbie Ford

2. Get Real with Others

Knowing yourself is vital, but knowing the people and the environment around you is also crucial. We’ve all heard the old saying, “hang around dogs with fleas and you’ll soon have fleas as well.” If you’re going to breakthrough this year, you better get to doing not only some self-reflection but also some social-reflection. Look around yourself and find out who and what is having a positive or negative impact on your life.

Are you exposed to people who are constantly complaining, talking bad about others, criticizing people, belittling others, and just outright being negative? If so, their negative viewpoints need to be either dismissed in your mind, and/or you should minimize the amount of time and attention that they take from you.

Tasks, habits, and extracurricular activities which provide no greater value for you should be reconsidered. Not that you shouldn’t have some down time and moments to recharge, but be careful about scrolling social media aimlessly and indulging in online window shopping. Such activities are not adding to your expansion or ascension up to the next level of life; rather they are wasting your time.

We have a total of 100% energy to give per day (a cellphone example). Just like the apps we have running in the background, they tend to drain us of our energy. Everything we take part in requires some percentage of energy investment from us. You must choose to dedicate energy to things and people that are part of your solution in helping you move the needle towards your goals. One simple question to ask yourself, and that all true leaders must ask themselves is: Does THIS propel me closer TOWARDS my goal or AWAY from it?

“Surround yourself with people who are only going to lift you higher.” – Oprah Winfrey

So, get real with the situation at hand: you either want to have a breakthrough year or you don’t. If you do, you should size-up your expectations, and key on these two important areas of your life: who you are on the inside, and the people and things around you that impact who you are.

What are you going to do this year to make sure you have the best year of your life! Comment below and share your goals.

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Life

5 Steps to Help You Overcome Your Limiting Beliefs & Live Your Most Powerful Life

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overcoming limiting beliefs

When it comes to finding success in life our limiting beliefs can be one of the biggest trip-ups we face. They wall us in and continually place a ceiling on our potential. What’s more, as success begins to evade us because of these limited thoughts, we unknowingly strengthen them. It’s as if they look back at us to say, “I told you so.” In this manner, limiting beliefs are self-reinforcing.

They grow stronger and we feel weaker and less empowered to find success. It’s understandable that if they go unchecked for too long we can begin to feel deep frustration and hopelessness which can eventually lead to anger, self-hatred, and even depression.But it is possible to put our limiting beliefs in-check and find the freedom to pursue our purpose and maximize our potential.

If you’re ready to overcome your limiting beliefs and live your most powerful life, try these five steps:

1. Identify Your Limiting Beliefs

The first step to rectifying any situation is to get a clear handle on what’s wrong. It’s no different here. To overcome your limiting beliefs you first need to shine a spotlight on them. Most of your limiting beliefs will be relatively easy to identify. They should be—these are the types of beliefs you regularly beat yourself up over, after all.

But once you have your limiting beliefs identified make sure to write them down. There is something about “seeing” our problems in a tangible way that empowers us to better respond to them. In some cases, they begin to immediately lose their effectiveness over us just because we can see them for the illusions they are.

“You begin to fly when you let go of self-limiting beliefs and allow your mind and aspirations to rise to greater heights.” ―Brian Tracy

2. Acknowledge Them

Having the ability to view our limits helps us advance to the next step, acknowledgment. In this phase, we don’t just see our limiting beliefs in simple black-and-white—we acknowledge them for what they are, the harm they have done, and admit that we have taken part in their creation.

It’s almost as if we can have a dialog with them. By doing so we open the lines of communication and, as we all know, communication is crucial for any breakthrough. This step helps us understand our limiting beliefs better allowing us a clearer path moving forward.

It is also an especially critical step because by acknowledging our responsibility, we empower ourselves to change. No one ever gains victory over problems without taking responsibility for having them or for doing the work to resolve them.

3. Confront The Beliefs

We can only conquer our limiting beliefs by confronting them. The reason they grow so troublesome for us in the first place is simply that they go unchallenged. We often “assume” them without question.

Rather than deal with the struggle of this confrontation we develop an almost co-dependent relationship with them. We guard our limiting beliefs and justify them if they are ever questioned. But our beliefs will continue to grow and strengthen unless we challenge them.

If this is a difficult process for you to do by yourself, a counselor or coach can be helpful. If not with a professional, then at least let your beliefs be open to scrutiny by a trusted friend or significant other.

With your written list, work through as many reasons to call B.S. as you can think of. Write them out and present your argument. This doesn’t have to be a quick process, take as much time as necessary to make your case. Especially with the help of another person, you will begin to see all of the ways in which your beliefs aren’t true and find all of the reasons you need to believe you can succeed.

4. Replace Them With Unlimited Beliefs

To move forward effectively, you can’t just drop your limiting beliefs and get back to life as usual. In order to reach your most powerful life, you’ve got replace the old, limiting beliefs with new, empowering ones.

If one of your limiting beliefs was, “I don’t deserve success because of xyz,” you need to replace it with, “I do deserve success because of abc,” and then list out all the reasons why.

It’s such a simple step but so many people neglect it. They’re just so happy to be rid of their old limiting beliefs, I guess. But what good is it to just be neutral? You’ve got to create an upgrade for every belief you just tore down. You’ve got to replace the limited ones with unlimited.

On that list, you created earlier, or on a new page if you’ve run out of room, write out your empowering, replacement beliefs. Keep going until each one is now optimized with a belief that removes those old limits you placed on yourself.

“Do the uncomfortable. Become comfortable with these acts. Prove to yourself that your limiting beliefs die a quick death if you will simply do what you feel uncomfortable doing.” ―Darren Rowse

5. Use Your New Beliefs To Find Success

You’ve got just one more step to go and that is to implement your new beliefs. Put your full faith in them as if they will succeed because they will. Use your fresh, new enthusiasm to push you through to success in areas where you only saw limitation before.

You will not fail because when we truly believe we are capable of success that is what we achieve. Be encouraged—every new success you have will only strengthen your beliefs. Congratulations, you are now on your way to living your most powerful life!

What are you doing today to make the most of your life? Comment below!

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Life

3 Purchases Of $100 Or Less That Have Changed My Life.

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A popular question made famous by a certain 4-Hour Work Week author has been doing the rounds a lot lately. It’s an incredibly powerful question and I want to share with you my answer.

By the way, my answer is not some cheap product placement or a dodgy infomercial in case you were wondering.

3 purchases of $100 or Less that changed my life are:

 

Purchase #1 A meditation app.

The app called Calm to be more specific. It won Apple’s App Of The Year and it’s helped me chill the F out after tackling every fear I have. We all need to get out of our head more.

 

Purchase #2 A wireless computer keyboard.

Buy a wireless keyboard and use it with your laptop, tablet or phone wherever you are. Every day, aim to write one thing that inspires someone else. Post your written words on a blog (ideally someone else’s who has a large audience).

While you’re at work during the day, observe your surroundings as they are. Single out the positive things you see and share them online for all of us to see. When you type those words on your little wireless keyboard, pour every ounce of emotion you have into them.

Wake up one night, write something inspiring, and feel the tears drip from your eyes as you make yourself emotional because you know you’ve given it everything you’ve got. Know that every word you write for someone else is how you can give back to the world.

You can’t sit at home on your computer all day long and play games, watch porn and scroll your social media like a hamster going around and around on its wheel. Your keyboard is how you take the problems of our society and do something about them.

Know that the words you type will be most valuable when they are positive and instructive. There’s enough negativity in the world and your little wireless keyboard gives you the chance to do something about that injustice.

Wake up early in the morning (5 am) and make it a habit of writing something. “How To’s” work best. As you continue this habit, be vulnerable. Tell stories with your little wireless keyboard and share your biggest fears. Make your words human because that’s what you are after all.

Tell everybody how you had your heart broken, suffered mental health issues, lost someone you love, battled a health issue – these situations and what you’ve learned will help others the most.

Everything you’ve experienced to this day has brought you to these words you type to inspire others. Write about what makes you happy and fuse your passion together with your words.

Know that you’ll get emails after you type these words for at least a year, from people who have benefited from your writing. Reply to these emails and help where you can. Know that one day you’ll get an email from a reader that will cause you to break down and get emotional.

This email you eventually get will be the trigger for you to stop and evaluate what you’re typing these words for. When that moment comes, you’ll pick up your wireless keyboard again and continue writing because you’ll know you’re helping people. These words are actually making you fulfilled.

Along the way, as your readers increase, you’ll come across the evil species we call trolls and some critics too. The words that these people type on their wireless keyboards will hurt you at first and take you by surprise. You’ll eventually realize that everyone faces these same demons.

It’s not you; it’s them. Don’t let these haters stop you from writing words on your little wireless keyboard and keep pouring your heart out.

Your big viral moment thanks to your wireless keyboard will come at some stage. Don’t let this moment sidetrack you from the reason why you bought this wireless keyboard and started typing. Your newfound celebrity status will encourage your big fat ego, and that will take away all of the good your words have done.

Now that your life has been changed forever by your little wireless keyboard, keep going. You can change the world with your keyboard if you keep going and never give up your habit. Typing these words daily is the best kind of therapy there is for the troubles and challenges this life will throw at you.

One day, you’ll know what it’s like to be a leader, creator and inspiration for others thanks to your little wireless keyboard. Until then, keep typing those words. Your words matter and they can inspire others, and change the world at the same time.

 

Purchase #3 A pair of kid’s soccer boots for $79.95

This purchase works best when given to a kid that comes from a broken home and it will show them that strangers care. When the mother comes over and thanks you with tears in her eyes, you’ll understand the power of kindness. This will change your life.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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Life

41 Fundamental Life Truths I Have Discovered This Year.

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This year has taught me so much about life and what it really means. It surprises me how little I know and how much there still is to learn. A truly fulfilled life is only possible when you commit to continuous learning.

Who knows, in a few years I’ll probably look at this article and think to myself how amateur I was at this moment in my life.

Here are 41 truths about life I have learned this year:

 

1. You must love yourself first and talk nicely to yourself. Self-talk changes everything.

2. Minimalism will help accent what you love. Too much stuff will distract you.

3. Forgiveness is power. Holding onto stuff hurts you more than anyone else.

4. Most of the answers you seek are right in front of them. You’ve been ignoring these answers because they seem cliché and obvious. Stop doing this.

5. No one has all the answers

6. The success you see in other people is only 1% of their life. Most of what you can’t see is the negativity and failures they endure. Spend more time going beyond people’s success.

7. Your mind is determining how you feel. If you feel crap, change the inputs of your mind.

8. Happiness is found in the simple stuff. If you’re not happy, you’re trying to overcomplicate it.

9. Being kind to people always feels good.

10. Anyone can be inspiring including you.

11. Business is about rallying people together. It’s not about an idea, or one person, or even coming up with something entirely new. Understand people and you’ll master business.

12. Time is the currency you should guard with your life. Measure and watch your time.

13. Sometimes, lack of planning is the best thing you can do. You can’t predict every outcome and spontaneity adds to the fun of life.

14. We need balance. Balance between work, travel, love, family and everything in-between.

15. You have advice that can help people. Share it and be a part of other people’s journeys.

16. The workforce has changed. Emotional intelligence, life experience and leadership are now at the top of desirable business traits.

17. Nothing stays the same so don’t expect it to (especially as you get older).

18. Learning to say no will give you the time to pursue your dream.

19. Be honest no matter what. Tell people what you think respectfully and they’ll love you for it.

20. Ideas mean nothing. Execution trumps all.

21. The ability to make decisions quickly will help you progress in life much quicker.

 

22. Reality is different for everyone so quit expecting people to see exactly what you see.

23. No one has time to dwell on your problems. They have enough of their own. So, make as many mistakes as you want and don’t be afraid what people think.

24. Fear can be controlled and once you get started, you’ll forget about it anyway. Let fear excite you and tell you that you’re breaking your comfort zone which is phenomenal.

25. Money is boring. Wisdom is far more exciting.

26. There’s no time like the present to do that thing you’ve always dreamed about. Stop delaying as you may not get the chance to do that one thing ever again.

27. Your career is defined by who you are as a person and nothing else. Experience and skills can be learned.

28. Courage takes guts and it’s the first step to being a leader.

29. Criticism and negative opinions about your life’s work are a sign that you’re making progress.

30. Doing things that inspire you is the best feeling in the world. Chase that.

31. The game of racking up possessions never ends. You can never own everything and everything you collect will get boring quickly. The best collection you can have is enjoyable memories.

32. Your dream, passion, goal is not going to find you. You must find it and that takes work.

33. The stuff you’re the most scared of is the very thing that will help you grow. Growing is a must.

34. Lying never helps you win in the long-term. The damage it causes is often hidden, but its effect will ruin your life if you don’t stop it.

35. The notifications on your devices are screwing with your head. Turn all of them off and see the difference it makes.

36. Your life is a piece of art so use it to do something creative.

37. Sabotage TV for books and podcasts. That’s how you learn and get new ideas.

38. Remember that rules are just a guideline and they are open to interpretation. Nothing is absolute.

39. What will improve your life is giving up those things you know deep inside of you are bad for you. You know what they are. Kill them off one by one.

40. Quotes are profound and they can give you your own unique mantra to live your life by. Find a few that have meaning to you and put them where you can see them.

41. There’s no limit on greed. There’s no such thing as quick money. If you win once, you’ll get complacent and lose next time around or the time after that.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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5 Things You Must Have in Order to Succeed as a Freelancer

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successful freelancer

Up until about 3 years ago, I honestly had no idea what a freelancer even was. It sounded like a cool job title and I secretly envied people who could call themselves one. Didn’t they get to travel the world with a laptop and go sailing and sip margaritas beside some of the most beautiful beaches on the planet? Yup, I wanted to be a freelancer. (more…)

Iva Ursano is a retired hairstylist turned freelancer from Northern Ontario Canada living a life of freedom, peace and joy in sunny Guatemala. Her two main goals in life are to inspire people around the world with her blogs and to feed hungry little bellies in the poor town she now calls home. Follow her on her fast growing FB page Amazing Me Movement or head on over to her website and sign up for weekly in your face inspiration!

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13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Thea

    Dec 14, 2016 at 1:42 am

    Great post. It is very optimistic. I don’t consider myself as morning person but usually wake up very early. Will try this tips 🙂

  2. Sonia Voldseth

    Dec 13, 2016 at 1:10 am

    Great post Joanna, thank you. I’m far too optimistic with my time as well! It’s nice to know how much you are balancing too and that you still find (make) time to write.

  3. Mark Tong

    Dec 8, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    HI Joanna- useful tips. I especially want to do more of #2!

  4. Quinn Eurich

    Dec 8, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    All good advice and I already do some of it.

    Now if I could only get to bed at a time that will support the getting up early piece! LOL!

    Great post Joanna!

  5. Rosemary

    Dec 8, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    Great tips, Joanna. I use simpleology which I find helps get my thoughts in order, especially if I do it the night before.

  6. Stephen Roe

    Dec 7, 2016 at 12:10 pm

    Thanks for the advice, Joanna! Great to see you here. 🙂

    I’ve just recently (in the past week or so) started to wake up early–consistently. It’s incredible how much more I accomplish when I start the day off correctly. Tip #2 (enjoy the first thing you do), is something I need to be more mindful of. Gotta figure out how to include that in my morning routine. 😛

    • Joanna Jast

      Dec 7, 2016 at 4:59 pm

      Hello Stephen – great to see you here 🙂

      Having been waking up early consistently for about 20 years, I can vouch for the ‘wake up to something you enjoy’ strategy. So definitely, find something – a cup of coffee (or a healthier drink), a little bit of peace and quiet, sunrise.

      All the best

  7. Joanna Jast

    Dec 7, 2016 at 6:04 am

    Hello Natalia

    Thanks for your kind words.

    It’s great to hear you’ve also found the-night-before planning helpful.

    And I can relate to that ‘being too optimistic with your time’ – I always think I’ll have more time in the future and commit to many things and then find myself always superbusy – and again thinking: I’m too busy right now, but I’m sure I’ll have more time next week…

    🙂

  8. KeriVandongen

    Dec 7, 2016 at 1:13 am

    Interesting thoughts Joanna.
    You suggest reinforcing yourself for getting up early, and tacking tough motivation tasks later on. This differs from most success habits.
    I like it.
    Perhaps we should alter habits to suit our personalities and daily energy.
    ~Keri

    • Joanna Jast

      Dec 7, 2016 at 5:45 am

      Thanks Keri 🙂

      I agree with you – I think if people are struggling to adapt their lives to fit with good habits, they should try to alter their habits to suit their personalities and daily energy.

      Being someone lazy by nature and with rather poor willpower and drive to achieve success, I’ve come up with my own little system to establish habits – just as you say.

  9. Charlene

    Dec 7, 2016 at 12:24 am

    Hi Joanna,
    Such a good article. I use to be a morning person and as I aged I no longer hop out of bed. I loved your term decision fatigue, I find that works well for me when it comes to meal planning, the easier the more likely I am to eat well. I will try to implement the start your tomorrow tonight as that will have me half way there. Thanks for the tips!

    • Joanna Jast

      Dec 7, 2016 at 6:01 am

      Hello Charlene

      Thank you for your kind words.

      Decision fatigue does affect our ability to live the life we want to live, so I agree with you – the easier, the better, because we’re more likely to actually do it. It may not be perfect, but hey, it gets us to do what we want to do: eat healthier, exercise, get up in the morning.

      All the best and I hope my little tips will help you

  10. Natàlia

    Dec 6, 2016 at 6:19 pm

    Great tips, Joanna. I’m a morning person although too optimistic with my time, so I always struggle with trying to fit everything I want to do in my schedule. Planning ahead the night before is what has worked the best for me so far.

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Life

2 Vital Keys to Having a True Breakthrough This Year

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Every person has a great deal of potential within them. However, the majority of people will never tap into that potential because something hinders them from getting it done whether that be a traumatic event that plagues their mind, or a negative mindset. This can be due to fear, insecurities, or of feelings of not deserving or not being good enough.

The list is literally endless because every person has different challenges in life. We are all different people, with different pasts, experiences, backgrounds, belief systems, but one commonality we all share: the pain of NOT DOING in our past.

If you’ve ever been to a conference for business, professional, or spiritual development, you know the feeling of getting fired up, motivated and inspired to go forward and DO! When you get home, the fire in your heart and mind is still burning. Nonetheless, this feeling tends to be short lived, as the reality of life sets in: bills, relationship problems, office issues, etc. and your fire begins to go out and you are back at square one… again.

There are some people that go to an event and then truly have a breakthrough in life. They explode in their business, family life, spiritual life, and health. The one thing that separates these people from the rest of us is their willingness to go deeper within themselves.

If you have attended an Anthony “Tony” Robbins motivational lecture, you know there are many reported success stories of people that he has inspired. Tony has stated in the past that individuals are able to “breakthrough” because they do not accept surface level BS; these successful people go deeper within themselves to determine the root cause of their issues or shortcomings. He also explained that by doing so, they would experience a true “breakthrough.”

If this year is going to truly be different for you, and you are going to see expansion and advancements in all parts of your life, you will need to go deeper.

Here are two important keys to help you have a breakthrough year:

1. Get Real With Yourself

Self-reflection is a powerful character building tool. However, when inspecting your life and who you are, you must go deep into this process. Don’t stay surface level and just think about what you need to improve on. Make the extra effort to think about the why of it all. Why are you weak in certain areas? Why do you seem to always fall short when doing certain tasks? Why do you dislike specific types of people and or places? Most importantly, why do you lack motivation in crucial aspects of your life?

When you start asking these types of profound questions and digging deeper, you are able to realize that there may be hidden reasons for your life constraints. Sometimes, pain in our past and heart-rending experiences of life are responsible for our weaknesses.

The challenge is to visit these places mentally and resolve root causes. Having these moments of reflection enables us to experience some very personal and self teachable moments. It is in these moments that true clarity will come and you will make decisions about where to go from here based on level headed logic rather than simply pure emotion.

Getting to know yourself better will help you in your personal and professional growth and help you to fast-track the breakthrough you desire.

“Self awareness is the ability to take an honest look at your life without any attachment to it being right or wrong, good or bad.” – Debbie Ford

2. Get Real with Others

Knowing yourself is vital, but knowing the people and the environment around you is also crucial. We’ve all heard the old saying, “hang around dogs with fleas and you’ll soon have fleas as well.” If you’re going to breakthrough this year, you better get to doing not only some self-reflection but also some social-reflection. Look around yourself and find out who and what is having a positive or negative impact on your life.

Are you exposed to people who are constantly complaining, talking bad about others, criticizing people, belittling others, and just outright being negative? If so, their negative viewpoints need to be either dismissed in your mind, and/or you should minimize the amount of time and attention that they take from you.

Tasks, habits, and extracurricular activities which provide no greater value for you should be reconsidered. Not that you shouldn’t have some down time and moments to recharge, but be careful about scrolling social media aimlessly and indulging in online window shopping. Such activities are not adding to your expansion or ascension up to the next level of life; rather they are wasting your time.

We have a total of 100% energy to give per day (a cellphone example). Just like the apps we have running in the background, they tend to drain us of our energy. Everything we take part in requires some percentage of energy investment from us. You must choose to dedicate energy to things and people that are part of your solution in helping you move the needle towards your goals. One simple question to ask yourself, and that all true leaders must ask themselves is: Does THIS propel me closer TOWARDS my goal or AWAY from it?

“Surround yourself with people who are only going to lift you higher.” – Oprah Winfrey

So, get real with the situation at hand: you either want to have a breakthrough year or you don’t. If you do, you should size-up your expectations, and key on these two important areas of your life: who you are on the inside, and the people and things around you that impact who you are.

What are you going to do this year to make sure you have the best year of your life! Comment below and share your goals.

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Life

5 Steps to Help You Overcome Your Limiting Beliefs & Live Your Most Powerful Life

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When it comes to finding success in life our limiting beliefs can be one of the biggest trip-ups we face. They wall us in and continually place a ceiling on our potential. What’s more, as success begins to evade us because of these limited thoughts, we unknowingly strengthen them. It’s as if they look back at us to say, “I told you so.” In this manner, limiting beliefs are self-reinforcing.

They grow stronger and we feel weaker and less empowered to find success. It’s understandable that if they go unchecked for too long we can begin to feel deep frustration and hopelessness which can eventually lead to anger, self-hatred, and even depression.But it is possible to put our limiting beliefs in-check and find the freedom to pursue our purpose and maximize our potential.

If you’re ready to overcome your limiting beliefs and live your most powerful life, try these five steps:

1. Identify Your Limiting Beliefs

The first step to rectifying any situation is to get a clear handle on what’s wrong. It’s no different here. To overcome your limiting beliefs you first need to shine a spotlight on them. Most of your limiting beliefs will be relatively easy to identify. They should be—these are the types of beliefs you regularly beat yourself up over, after all.

But once you have your limiting beliefs identified make sure to write them down. There is something about “seeing” our problems in a tangible way that empowers us to better respond to them. In some cases, they begin to immediately lose their effectiveness over us just because we can see them for the illusions they are.

“You begin to fly when you let go of self-limiting beliefs and allow your mind and aspirations to rise to greater heights.” ―Brian Tracy

2. Acknowledge Them

Having the ability to view our limits helps us advance to the next step, acknowledgment. In this phase, we don’t just see our limiting beliefs in simple black-and-white—we acknowledge them for what they are, the harm they have done, and admit that we have taken part in their creation.

It’s almost as if we can have a dialog with them. By doing so we open the lines of communication and, as we all know, communication is crucial for any breakthrough. This step helps us understand our limiting beliefs better allowing us a clearer path moving forward.

It is also an especially critical step because by acknowledging our responsibility, we empower ourselves to change. No one ever gains victory over problems without taking responsibility for having them or for doing the work to resolve them.

3. Confront The Beliefs

We can only conquer our limiting beliefs by confronting them. The reason they grow so troublesome for us in the first place is simply that they go unchallenged. We often “assume” them without question.

Rather than deal with the struggle of this confrontation we develop an almost co-dependent relationship with them. We guard our limiting beliefs and justify them if they are ever questioned. But our beliefs will continue to grow and strengthen unless we challenge them.

If this is a difficult process for you to do by yourself, a counselor or coach can be helpful. If not with a professional, then at least let your beliefs be open to scrutiny by a trusted friend or significant other.

With your written list, work through as many reasons to call B.S. as you can think of. Write them out and present your argument. This doesn’t have to be a quick process, take as much time as necessary to make your case. Especially with the help of another person, you will begin to see all of the ways in which your beliefs aren’t true and find all of the reasons you need to believe you can succeed.

4. Replace Them With Unlimited Beliefs

To move forward effectively, you can’t just drop your limiting beliefs and get back to life as usual. In order to reach your most powerful life, you’ve got replace the old, limiting beliefs with new, empowering ones.

If one of your limiting beliefs was, “I don’t deserve success because of xyz,” you need to replace it with, “I do deserve success because of abc,” and then list out all the reasons why.

It’s such a simple step but so many people neglect it. They’re just so happy to be rid of their old limiting beliefs, I guess. But what good is it to just be neutral? You’ve got to create an upgrade for every belief you just tore down. You’ve got to replace the limited ones with unlimited.

On that list, you created earlier, or on a new page if you’ve run out of room, write out your empowering, replacement beliefs. Keep going until each one is now optimized with a belief that removes those old limits you placed on yourself.

“Do the uncomfortable. Become comfortable with these acts. Prove to yourself that your limiting beliefs die a quick death if you will simply do what you feel uncomfortable doing.” ―Darren Rowse

5. Use Your New Beliefs To Find Success

You’ve got just one more step to go and that is to implement your new beliefs. Put your full faith in them as if they will succeed because they will. Use your fresh, new enthusiasm to push you through to success in areas where you only saw limitation before.

You will not fail because when we truly believe we are capable of success that is what we achieve. Be encouraged—every new success you have will only strengthen your beliefs. Congratulations, you are now on your way to living your most powerful life!

What are you doing today to make the most of your life? Comment below!

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Life

3 Purchases Of $100 Or Less That Have Changed My Life.

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A popular question made famous by a certain 4-Hour Work Week author has been doing the rounds a lot lately. It’s an incredibly powerful question and I want to share with you my answer.

By the way, my answer is not some cheap product placement or a dodgy infomercial in case you were wondering.

3 purchases of $100 or Less that changed my life are:

 

Purchase #1 A meditation app.

The app called Calm to be more specific. It won Apple’s App Of The Year and it’s helped me chill the F out after tackling every fear I have. We all need to get out of our head more.

 

Purchase #2 A wireless computer keyboard.

Buy a wireless keyboard and use it with your laptop, tablet or phone wherever you are. Every day, aim to write one thing that inspires someone else. Post your written words on a blog (ideally someone else’s who has a large audience).

While you’re at work during the day, observe your surroundings as they are. Single out the positive things you see and share them online for all of us to see. When you type those words on your little wireless keyboard, pour every ounce of emotion you have into them.

Wake up one night, write something inspiring, and feel the tears drip from your eyes as you make yourself emotional because you know you’ve given it everything you’ve got. Know that every word you write for someone else is how you can give back to the world.

You can’t sit at home on your computer all day long and play games, watch porn and scroll your social media like a hamster going around and around on its wheel. Your keyboard is how you take the problems of our society and do something about them.

Know that the words you type will be most valuable when they are positive and instructive. There’s enough negativity in the world and your little wireless keyboard gives you the chance to do something about that injustice.

Wake up early in the morning (5 am) and make it a habit of writing something. “How To’s” work best. As you continue this habit, be vulnerable. Tell stories with your little wireless keyboard and share your biggest fears. Make your words human because that’s what you are after all.

Tell everybody how you had your heart broken, suffered mental health issues, lost someone you love, battled a health issue – these situations and what you’ve learned will help others the most.

Everything you’ve experienced to this day has brought you to these words you type to inspire others. Write about what makes you happy and fuse your passion together with your words.

Know that you’ll get emails after you type these words for at least a year, from people who have benefited from your writing. Reply to these emails and help where you can. Know that one day you’ll get an email from a reader that will cause you to break down and get emotional.

This email you eventually get will be the trigger for you to stop and evaluate what you’re typing these words for. When that moment comes, you’ll pick up your wireless keyboard again and continue writing because you’ll know you’re helping people. These words are actually making you fulfilled.

Along the way, as your readers increase, you’ll come across the evil species we call trolls and some critics too. The words that these people type on their wireless keyboards will hurt you at first and take you by surprise. You’ll eventually realize that everyone faces these same demons.

It’s not you; it’s them. Don’t let these haters stop you from writing words on your little wireless keyboard and keep pouring your heart out.

Your big viral moment thanks to your wireless keyboard will come at some stage. Don’t let this moment sidetrack you from the reason why you bought this wireless keyboard and started typing. Your newfound celebrity status will encourage your big fat ego, and that will take away all of the good your words have done.

Now that your life has been changed forever by your little wireless keyboard, keep going. You can change the world with your keyboard if you keep going and never give up your habit. Typing these words daily is the best kind of therapy there is for the troubles and challenges this life will throw at you.

One day, you’ll know what it’s like to be a leader, creator and inspiration for others thanks to your little wireless keyboard. Until then, keep typing those words. Your words matter and they can inspire others, and change the world at the same time.

 

Purchase #3 A pair of kid’s soccer boots for $79.95

This purchase works best when given to a kid that comes from a broken home and it will show them that strangers care. When the mother comes over and thanks you with tears in her eyes, you’ll understand the power of kindness. This will change your life.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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Life

41 Fundamental Life Truths I Have Discovered This Year.

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This year has taught me so much about life and what it really means. It surprises me how little I know and how much there still is to learn. A truly fulfilled life is only possible when you commit to continuous learning.

Who knows, in a few years I’ll probably look at this article and think to myself how amateur I was at this moment in my life.

Here are 41 truths about life I have learned this year:

 

1. You must love yourself first and talk nicely to yourself. Self-talk changes everything.

2. Minimalism will help accent what you love. Too much stuff will distract you.

3. Forgiveness is power. Holding onto stuff hurts you more than anyone else.

4. Most of the answers you seek are right in front of them. You’ve been ignoring these answers because they seem cliché and obvious. Stop doing this.

5. No one has all the answers

6. The success you see in other people is only 1% of their life. Most of what you can’t see is the negativity and failures they endure. Spend more time going beyond people’s success.

7. Your mind is determining how you feel. If you feel crap, change the inputs of your mind.

8. Happiness is found in the simple stuff. If you’re not happy, you’re trying to overcomplicate it.

9. Being kind to people always feels good.

10. Anyone can be inspiring including you.

11. Business is about rallying people together. It’s not about an idea, or one person, or even coming up with something entirely new. Understand people and you’ll master business.

12. Time is the currency you should guard with your life. Measure and watch your time.

13. Sometimes, lack of planning is the best thing you can do. You can’t predict every outcome and spontaneity adds to the fun of life.

14. We need balance. Balance between work, travel, love, family and everything in-between.

15. You have advice that can help people. Share it and be a part of other people’s journeys.

16. The workforce has changed. Emotional intelligence, life experience and leadership are now at the top of desirable business traits.

17. Nothing stays the same so don’t expect it to (especially as you get older).

18. Learning to say no will give you the time to pursue your dream.

19. Be honest no matter what. Tell people what you think respectfully and they’ll love you for it.

20. Ideas mean nothing. Execution trumps all.

21. The ability to make decisions quickly will help you progress in life much quicker.

 

22. Reality is different for everyone so quit expecting people to see exactly what you see.

23. No one has time to dwell on your problems. They have enough of their own. So, make as many mistakes as you want and don’t be afraid what people think.

24. Fear can be controlled and once you get started, you’ll forget about it anyway. Let fear excite you and tell you that you’re breaking your comfort zone which is phenomenal.

25. Money is boring. Wisdom is far more exciting.

26. There’s no time like the present to do that thing you’ve always dreamed about. Stop delaying as you may not get the chance to do that one thing ever again.

27. Your career is defined by who you are as a person and nothing else. Experience and skills can be learned.

28. Courage takes guts and it’s the first step to being a leader.

29. Criticism and negative opinions about your life’s work are a sign that you’re making progress.

30. Doing things that inspire you is the best feeling in the world. Chase that.

31. The game of racking up possessions never ends. You can never own everything and everything you collect will get boring quickly. The best collection you can have is enjoyable memories.

32. Your dream, passion, goal is not going to find you. You must find it and that takes work.

33. The stuff you’re the most scared of is the very thing that will help you grow. Growing is a must.

34. Lying never helps you win in the long-term. The damage it causes is often hidden, but its effect will ruin your life if you don’t stop it.

35. The notifications on your devices are screwing with your head. Turn all of them off and see the difference it makes.

36. Your life is a piece of art so use it to do something creative.

37. Sabotage TV for books and podcasts. That’s how you learn and get new ideas.

38. Remember that rules are just a guideline and they are open to interpretation. Nothing is absolute.

39. What will improve your life is giving up those things you know deep inside of you are bad for you. You know what they are. Kill them off one by one.

40. Quotes are profound and they can give you your own unique mantra to live your life by. Find a few that have meaning to you and put them where you can see them.

41. There’s no limit on greed. There’s no such thing as quick money. If you win once, you’ll get complacent and lose next time around or the time after that.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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