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Motivation

5 Proven Principles for Long Lasting Motivation

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Mark Dhamma Long Lasting Motivation Principles

Motivation isn’t something I think about on a daily basis because I know that motivation isn’t everything, ACTION IS EVERYTHING.

Any ‘extra motivation’ is unnecessary because I follow a set of 5 proven effective strategies that people either don’t know about or don’t actually do. Furthermore, the most successful people I know do these 5 strategies either consciously or unconsciously.

The fact is, most people, are not using these strategies on a daily basis.

Unbeknownst to most, motivation didn’t come naturally for me, I had to consciously change my mindset to become a successful High Performance Health & Mindset Coach to celebrities and entrepreneurs in the Hollywood Hills. Now, my team and I teach these techniques and strategies to young aspiring entrepreneurs all over the world who want to be at their optimal health, both physically & mentally, while making an impact through WarriorTransformations.com

So what are the strategic steps?

Remember, reading these 5 strategies is not enough, YOU MUST DO THEM TO GET RESULTS!

“Within you right now is the power to do things you never dreamed possible….” – Maxwell Maltz

1. Visualize Your Wins

You can ask anyone from a personal development guru to an elite athlete, and each will tell you that visualizing your performance is the key to motivation and success.

Conscious Visualisation is underutilized to say the least. As popularized by Maxwell Maltz’s book, Psycho-Cybernetics, Maltz describes how visualizing what you want to achieve literally re-programs your ‘Reticular Activating System” (RAS) otherwise known as your subconscious mind to seek out opportunities to take you in that direction.

‘This power becomes available to you just as you can change your beliefs.” – Maxwell Maltz

Every human feat started out with an idea, a vision. It was the relentless pursuit of the vision that brought it forth on to existence. Everything begins with the vision, the dream, and the goal.

Getting clear on what you want and then visualizing it – DAILY – builds belief and certainty that you can achieve the goal. This belief not only provides motivation, but aligns your actions towards the goal as well.

Sports psychologists have known this for a long time. The first time I was introduced to visualization was in college while pursuing my degree in Sports Science and Physiology. My professor explained why athletes are advised to visualize a successful performance before they begin because it leads to a more successful outcome.

This visual preparation proves true, and a multitude of research evidence attests to the role of psychological factors as determinants of elite performance. Orlick and Partington (1998), for example, identified that psychological “success factors” such as visualisation as a hallmark of successful athletes. Additionally, Olympic athletes engage in more visualization than less successful performers (Gould, Diffenbach, & Moffett, 2002).

Olympic and World champions have high self-confidence and motivation because they employ visualization and self-talk to both prepare for competition and to remain focused during high-level performances (Durand-Bush & Salmela, 2002).

You too can use visualization to keep motivated and perform at your best. When visualizing, you’re re-confirming to your own mind that you are capable, you are willing, and are motivated to achieve success. Daily visualization of your goals builds clarity and certainty.

When you become certain that you will achieve such a goal, motivation becomes you. You no longer feel like you need motivation because you are motivated – you are unstoppable.

For successful visualization, set time aside at least  5-10 minutes each day to really visualize what you want and imagine yourself achieving it over and over again.

Attach positive emotions to the actions needed to achieve. This has helped me immensely in my efforts to achieve financial, physical, and goals as a mentor many times.

 

2. Mentors Are a Must

Most people realize the importance of mentors but do they actually go out and get one?

I have many mentors in my life. Three of my biggest personal mentors have kept me motivated and molded who I am today. Dr. John Berardi in health & fitness, Dr. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi in Positive Psychology and Tai Lopez in business.

Tai lopez is a major proponent of mentors and credits almost all of his success to them.

Find a mentor and spend as much time with them as possible. You must find someone who is where you want to be in life or has a particular skill you desire. For example, if you want to have a terrific athletic looking body, find someone who has that and learn from them. If you want a successful restaurant, find someone who owns a chain of successful restaurants and learn from them. I wanted to know how to reach millions of people and influence them positively so I found Tai Lopez and Joel Brown to mentor me.

A good mentor is someone who you truly look up to and respect.

A good mentor is somebody who you don’t want to let down.

 

Mentors help with motivation in 3 ways:

1) You get to see what they do and become motivated as you practice your own version.

2) You don’t want to disappoint your mentor so you’re motivated to get results.

3) A good mentor may challenge you to step up and be your best – which can be extremely motivating.

Do you have a quality mentor?

If not, get one ASAP.

 

3. Track your progress

Tracking your progress is a fantastic way to stay motivated. Most people already know this, but are you currently doing it?

17 years ago when I first started working out I used to write down every exercise I did: how many repetitions and the number of sets. Each time I would work out I would compare my progress with what I did the week before. If I could progress 1 or 2 reps each week it was deeply satisfying and helped me to stay motivated over the long run.

I remember people would often ask me how I stayed motivated. It was an awkward question for me to answer because I didn’t feel like it took any effort to stay motivated. I was in competition with myself and I could always check in on how I was doing. Seeing observable progress is motivating in whatever you do.

Give yourself specific dates to stop and monitor progress. Daily, weekly, monthly & yearly check in dates are all useful. Find out what works best for you and keep yourself accountable.

A trick I use as a trainer is to cut new clients carbohydrates immediately so that they lose a lot of water weight in the first week. This allows them to see rapid progress and provides them with a boost of motivation to continue.

Tracking your results whether it is in fitness, business, or relationships is crucial for motivation. It makes the goal or challenge a game. Set yourself up for success by tracking and defining how you will see progress early on. Look for progress and make it easy on yourself.

What you focus on grows!

What you track improves!

In order to stay motivated by tracking progress first get clear on your goal and then identify your Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s), the items that if you focus on will take you towards your goal.

When I started working out, my KPI’s were how much weight I lifted, how many reps and sets I did, how many workouts per week I performed and how much water I drank per day.

What are the most important things for you to track?

What are the best progress indicators you could track in your health, mindset and business?

Dr. Berardi would encourage me to set outcome goals, like put on 10lbs of muscle, but focus on the behavioural goals like eating every 2-3 hours. The outcome goal is the result you want but you get there by focusing on the daily actions that will take you to your goals.

Figure out your outcome and bag your goals and then…….TAKE ACTION NOW!

 

4. Celebrate small wins

High achievers like you and I have big ambitions, which is great but you know what, it can also hold us back IF we allow it to cause frustration.

“Frustration can lead to stagnation!” – Mark Dhamma

If things are not coming as fast as we like we may lose patience, give up, or distract ourselves with other things. In order to keep momentum place a high value on celebrating small wins.

When you accomplish mini goals or small achievements celebrate and savour the moment. We know from positive psychology research that accomplishments are a pillar of wellbeing. Robbing ourselves of accomplishment by not celebrating the small wins can rob you of momentum.

Dr. Fred Bryant is the lead positive psychology researcher on savoring. Savoring is the use of thoughts and actions to increase the intensity, duration, and appreciation of positive experiences and emotions. The concept of savoring can be used as a way to maximize the potential benefits that positive experiences and emotions can have on your life.

Savoring small wins and allowing yourself to feel good about them helps to build positive emotions and momentum. When you reward yourself with positive emotions for completing a task my research shows that you’re more likely to feel motivated to complete another task.

We also know from positive psychology studies that positive emotions build psychological assets like creativity and allow you to spot more opportunities in your environment. Savoring produces positive emotions, reinforces positive actions and can give you the emotional juice to keep you motivated on achieving your goal.

 

5. Spend more time around people who are more successful than you

Most people understand this one too but, again, do they actually do it?

From reading over 300 books about success and personal development I thought I knew the importance of spending time with people more successful than yourself.

Jim Rohn is famous for saying:

“Show me the 5 people you hang around with and I will show you your future.”

I have known about this phenomenon for many years. Being a trainer for celebrities and entrepreneurs, I’m very familiar with the study of Framingham, MA by Christakis and Fowler that show what happens to a Framingham resident when they became obese – his or her friends were 57 percent more likely to become obese too.

I’ve told my clients for years that if they want a quick shortcut to getting the body and health they want, then hang out with people who already have it and reduce the time spent with their unhealthy friends.

One of my mentors, Bill Walsh, the famous business speaker told me:

“If you hang around with your 4 poor friends Mark, you will be the 5th.”

Mark Dhamma and Bill Walsh

Likewise, if you hang around with 4 successful friends, you’ll be the 5th.

Christakis and Fowler also found that a Framingham resident was roughly 20 percent more likely to become obese if the friend of a friend became obese.

“People are connected, and so their health is connected”, Christakis and Fowler concluded when they summarized their findings in a July 2007 article in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Drinking and smoking, they discovered, also appeared to spread socially — in fact, a friend taking up smoking increases your chance of smoking by 36 percent.

From studying high performance I knew of the 2,000 study of dorm mates at Dartmouth College by economist Bruce Sacerdote. He found that they appeared to influence each other with good and bad study habits — such that a roommate with a high grade-point average would drag upward the G.P.A. of his lower-scoring roommate, and vice versa.

One thing’s for sure, your friends have a huge influence over you, so you can choose to hang around with unmotivated, unsuccessful people and become unsuccessful yourself or you can spend time with motivated successful people and become successful yourself.

I only really grasped the importance of this when I moved to Hollywood and started hanging around with people like Tai Lopez, James Swanwick, Eli Wilhide, RSD Tyler, Brandon Carter, Michael Morelli Jr and all of the celebrities and entrepreneurs I train. It completely changed my reality and motivation.

When you’re the most successful person in your peer group it’s difficult to get motivated, because you’re already King of the Hill. That’s why they say in athletics that it’s easy to get to the top but difficult to stay there. When you know you’re number 1, how do you stay motivated?

However, if you’re the runt of the litter and all of your friends are way more successful than you thats an UNCOMFORTABLE place to be. And what motivated humans even more than pleasure? PAIN!

You will be more motivated to move away from pain than you will be to move toward pleasure. Being the least successful person in your network is painful, it motivates you, but also it inspires you because you know if your friends can do it you can do it too.

It’s funny, the incident that really proved to me the effects of the people you spend time with and motivation happened when I was working for Tai Lopez as part of my mentorship. He asked me to call all of his business coaching clients, because I’m a qualified Executive Performance Coach, to check up on them to see how they’re doing. I spoke to hundreds of Tai’s clients and very quickly I started to notice a pattern.

It got to the point that within 3 minutes of the call I knew if the person I was speaking to took the 5 people rule seriously. It was laughably easy. If the person answered and I asked them if they completed their tasks and I could hear energy, motivation and determination in their voice I would simply ask, who are the people you spend the most time with? 9 out of 10 times it was people more successful than they. If the person was noncommittal in their answers, wishy washy, hadn’t really got anything done I knew that they spent the most time with people who are at their level of success or less successful people. They were too comfortable.

The Enemy Of SUCCESS Is COMFORT! – Mark Dhamma

P.S. Work like crazy to get into a more successful social circle. Find a mastermind group of winners, or go to events and network like crazy with like minded people.

Remember, motivation is just the starting point, it’s habits and the right environment that carry you through.

The above 5 secrets are excellent habits to have that will keep you focused and motivated.

P.P.S. For reading this article to the end, you qualify to get instant access to my free video training – a special gift for readers of Addicted2Success – where you’ll discover the truth about success and my proven secrets to how you can always feel motivated to take massive action, starting today.

Mark-Dhamma-Mindset-Coach
 

Click The Picture Above to access my new success training. It will be taken down soon, so claim instant access to your free gift today.

 

Mark Dhamma is an ex-Men’s Fitness model who now coaches celebrities and entrepreneurs around optimal health, fitness & mindset. Mark has a Bachelors degree in Sports Science & Physiology and a masters Degree in Positive Psychology and is the Founder of Warrior Transformations, an online and in person mind and body transformation program for entrepreneurially minded men who want to be at their best in every area of their lives.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Ramesh Sawant

    Oct 25, 2015 at 11:59 am

    It is happy to read article on motivation on this site. It is a bare fact of life everything is possible with motivation from within. Lack of motivation will take you nowhere . Great article.

  2. Esther Mellar

    Sep 22, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    Hi Mark,

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge. It is very inspiring. It was clear for me the kind of impact the peer group has on a teenager, but that it is true for us adults I was not conscious about. Finding your purpose, why you want to achieve something would be a further point I would ad to your list. What those wins would really mean at a deeper level.
    When it comes to launching a business, what is the best way track your progress? Thank you in advance for the advice.

  3. Theodore Nwangene

    Sep 21, 2015 at 6:51 pm

    Hello Mark.
    You’re so correct on all the points you made you and i agree with you. Motivation without action is entirely meaningless because, that motivation will still leave you exactly the same way it met you.

    Great success lies in taken action towards that which you desire. If you keep on looking to be motivated before you start acting on your goals then, you might never start after all.

    Also, finding a good mentor and also associating with like minded people is equally necessary for success.

  4. Shailendra Zade

    Sep 20, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    Hey Mark,
    Thank you for the article. Motivation is need now these days.

  5. Ross

    Sep 17, 2015 at 4:45 pm

    AWESOME article Mark!

    Keep them coming bro! 🙂

  6. rachel akito

    Sep 16, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    Mark
    This article is really made to perfection. Thank you for sharing this. You’re right strategies aren’t enough unless you do it. I really appreciate that you put up the importance of mentors. Mentors can and will definitely provide guidance and inspiration. I also like the idea of celebrating small wins. Appreciating the little things can give us a positive outlook in life.
    Rachel

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Motivation

You Snooze, You Lose! 4 Hacks to Get Out of Bed When That Alarm Goes Off

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Did you know that more than 57% of Americans hit the snooze button? That adds up to 3.5 months of our lives just snoozing! Why would we waste time snoozing when the intention is to actually get up to get things done? Is it laziness, a lack of discipline, motivation, or commitment? It doesn’t actually matter.

The fact is, you can’t be as productive as you want when you are getting out of bed late!  That is the obvious part. The not so obvious part is how to actually get of bed, when every part of you is screaming to sleep a bit longer. Let’s create a bit of pain first, because I’m assuming you actually don’t see the downsides to snoozing, or you are being ignorant and ignorance will never get you the results you want.

Sabotaging Success

Did you know that every time you set yourself an intention to wake up early and you don’t follow through with it, you dramatically lower your confidence and belief in yourself? Your word to yourself start to mean less and less. You can say to yourself, I will do this, but you know you probably won’t.

Nothing will sabotage your success more than losing faith in your own word. You need confidence to get results in life! Are you somebody who follows through with their word or not? You either are or you aren’t.

The second consequence, is that you are losing income and awesome results you could be having sooner. Why choose the easier things now and have a harder life later on, when you can choose the harder things now and have an easier life later on?  Don’t settle in life, this will never ever fulfill you.

4 Hacks to get out of bed when that alarm goes off:

1. Don’t negotiate with your brain 

If you start negotiating with your brain, you will always lose. So don’t go there, don’t even start that conversation in your mind! If you have decided to get out of bed, then do it, follow through with your word. Why change your mind in the morning? 

The ‘pleasure seeking’ part of your brain is always on automatic and it’s so strong, your ‘pre-fontal’ cortex doesn’t have much chance of winning this battle when you are half asleep in bed. Once you are out of bed, habit stack. It’s the 5 second rule – you are up already – don’t you dare go back.  Do exactly what you would do habitually. Do you go straight for the shower or do you get a glass of lemon juice? Know what you are going to do already to take any thinking out of it!

“Lose an hour in the morning and you will spend all day looking for it.” – Richard Whately

2. Look at your identity 

You behave according to what you believe. You believe what you repeat. Look at your own language, what do you say to yourself about getting up? Do you say things like; “It’s so hard to get out of bed in the morning” or “I’ve never been a morning person.” What you say becomes your reality of yourself and either motivates or demotivates you.

What you want to be saying to yourself is: “Just get out of bed. It’s easy, just get up. I can do this because I want to, I decide and control my actions. I am in control.” I can almost guarantee, if you struggle to get up when your alarm goes off, there is a part of your identity that believes this is who you are. If you change how you talk to yourself, about who you are, and tell yourself you can do anything, because you said so, your actions will be completely different.

3. Leaping out of bed

Unless I have a very compelling reason, I know it would be hard to get out of bed. We need to use our minds to motivate us into action, and the best way to do this, is to get excited the day before. Write down at least 5 reasons on a piece of paper; list why you want to leap out of bed tomorrow. This can take 2 minutes! The next morning, when your alarm goes off, look at that piece of paper, immediately so you know what awaits you and get up.

4. Use accountability and peer pressure

Create a game with your friends, family members, coach, colleagues, or business partner, I don’t care who it is, as long as you know that person will hold you accountable. Have fun with it, take a picture fully dressed and showered and send to your accountability partner, or call a ‘penalty’ if you don’t, like taking your friend out for dinner or spouse every time you sleep in. Get creative and use your support system.  The point is, it doesn’t matter what system you set up, how crazy it might seem, what matters is if it works!

Remember, you don’t need to make big changes from the outset, if you feel like an hour or 30 minute change is too much, start with 5 minutes earlier each day or 10 minutes earlier each week. You must be getting enough sleep and not over sleeping either. You have one life and if you are a business owner, I know you are missing out on results and lowering your confidence indirectly too.

“Life is getting up an hour early to live an hour more.”

You can have the best intentions to get up earlier every day, but if you let that snooze button control you, you will never follow through with your intentions or get your results! It is the small changes that can give us the biggest results. Try one these hacks to finally get out of that bed in the morning and finally take back your time! Don’t allow it to be more powerful than you.

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Motivation

Why It’s a Great Thing for Adversity to Push You to Your Breaking Point

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If you are not finding challenges that knock you flat on your back then you are missing out. A darker side of success that some have touched on is that you need to fail more. In addition to this, we should consider finding the challenges that punch us in the mouth and knock us unconscious.

The easiest place to be in life is one of comfort and knowing what tomorrow will bring. This brings little growth and requires very little effort because it’s safe. However, if we look at our role models who have done great things, then we will surely see that they have failed spectacularly.

Michael Jordan locked himself in his room and cried after he didn’t make his varsity basketball team as a sophomore. Walt Disney’s second business that failed miserably was called Laugh-O-Gram. JK Rowling was rejected by 12 literary publishers before she found any success.

Most likely you can think of some challenges that you rose up to beat in your own life. I would venture to say that the most difficult challenges that meant the most to you knocked you on your back right before you conquered them.

“Every adversity, every failure, and every heartache, carries with it the Seed of an equivalent or greater Benefit.” – Napoleon Hill

These obstacles are there for a reason. They are an important part of the puzzle for you. So if you find yourself in a place where you feel stuck or overwhelmed by a burden that seems insurmountable then this is a very good thing.

Life gives you everything you need

Life will give us everything we need, including the message that you have to get back up and go back at it with more determination, more will, and more fight than what you had before. Sometimes the moment we are down and out is the moment we have to regroup, reorganize, and come up with a new strategy to overcome those impending obstacles.

The reason the challenge knocks us down is because we need it. Just like an ocean wave knocks down an inexperienced surfer, it’s just a sign that the young surfer has to grow and become better.

Just like a surfer, the same is true for you and wherever you are at now. You have faced many things in your life which force you to become stronger for what is now in front of you.

However, what is most important in all this is having a challenge that can move you. For the surfer, the thrill of riding that perfect wave is worth the cost of getting beaten down by ocean waves again and again. For the man creating a business and putting his heart and soul into it, the reward of being a success and changing lives is worth battling each and everyday to get his enterprise up and off the ground.

For the woman who runs a marathon, the thrill of running across the finish line and having that experience was worth all the training and the grueling exhaustion she had to endure so that she could get to that point.

These experiences are the ones that can move you, but if your goal can have such a positive affect on you, then it can also have a dramatically negative affect as well. This is why you need challenges that can break you.

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.” – J. K. Rowling

Why you need failure

The surfer is devastated after breaking his arm and having to spend time away from his passion, but after his recovery he is reinvigorated. The business fails and the man is crushed, but he comes back stronger and more experienced with another business. The runner fails at finishing her marathon, but trains harder and comes back even better.

For this reason, failure is only feedback and something to be used as a positive for getting to where you want to go. If you get knocked down you might just need to rest and try again. Or it could mean that you should go get some help and try again.

Remember, failure isn’t final and success within failure is having the opportunity to try again.

You should only be alarmed when you have failed challenges that aren’t breaking you. This means that you are playing it safe and need something more compelling to propel you forward.

If the challenge breaks you then you know it means something to you. Even more importantly, you have the opportunity to go again, harder and even more determined.

How do you handle failure? Let us know in the comments below!

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Motivation

What To Tell Yourself During A Tough Time.

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We all go through tough times.

A few examples of mine are:

  • Multiple consecutive breakups
  • Walking away from a business that could have made me a lot of money
  • Having my career come to a grinding halt
  • Dealing with mental illness

The list is very long and I’m sure yours is similar. It’s not about the tough times we go through though because they are guaranteed and you already knew that before you clicked this article.

What matters during tough times is what you tell yourself.

This is what I say to myself during tough times — well there’s actually four things I say to myself depending on the tough time I’m facing:


“This will pass”

No event in your life lasts forever. Today may be a really tough day, but that won’t last forever. We delude ourselves at times by saying in our head “I’m always going to be like this.”

“Why does this always happen to me?”

“Here we go again.”

These negative phrases tell our brain that things are never going to get better. When we say these phrases to ourselves enough, we start to believe them. During a difficult period in your life, in that moment, things will suck.

The way to get out of your head is to see the truth: this will pass. In one day, one month, or one year this tough situation will have passed and you’ll be onto the next part of your life.

Nothing lasts forever unless you allow your mind to trap you in the moment and believe a lie which is that this moment won’t pass. It will. You will come out the other side.


I’ll be stronger having dealt with this situation

When you reframe your tough times into strength building exercises, they take a whole new meaning.

All of a sudden, your current situation that may be wearing you down becomes like reps at the gym. The reps are a struggle and it hurts, but if you keep moving forward, you end up with mental toughness and strength.

“Exchange your tough times for mental toughness”

See this challenging situation for what it is. It’s the chance to come out the other end stronger.

Stack your tough times up like gold medals.

Have you dealt with cancer? Good, then you won’t take your health for granted ever again.

Have you lost a loved one? Then you’ll never take the rest of your family for granted and care for them more than you did before.

Did you lose your job? Amazing! Now you can work somewhere else and discover more of your hidden talents!

Without tough times, you won’t have the strategies you need to deal with the impossible. Your heroes are your heroes because they’ve used their tough times to become stronger.

Failure and rejection are the building blocks to whatever your definition of success is. Tough times make you hungryand that’s a good thing.


Keep taking baby steps forward

Tough times can feel like quicksand sometimes.

If you don’t keep moving forward though, you’ll eventually sink into the quicksand. The best thing you can do during the toughest of challenges is take baby steps.

When I battled severe anxiety, I took baby steps such as these:

  • Walked 15 minutes a day
  • Drank an extra glass of water each day to hydrate my body
  • Read one book a month on anxiety
  • Exposed myself to one small fear each day. It started with going two levels in a lift (something I couldn’t do before). Then I’d go three levels the next day and so on.

That last dot point is critical. Overcoming tough times requires you to take baby steps in the form of being uncomfortable. When you’re growing each day, you don’t have time to be too concerned about a particular tough time.

My battle with anxiety eventually led me to flying long distances (another thing I couldn’t do before) and then speaking on stages in front of a lot of people.

As you can see, the first few steps — like going two floors in a lift — are quite small. Then the steps get bigger and bigger until what used to seem impossible becomes a piece of cake.

Take baby steps.


“It only takes one person”

Tough times often require someone to believe in you. From my experience, you only need one person.

One person to believe in your idea.
One person to love you.
One person who has gone through the same tough times as you.

This one person exists. You have to go out there and find them. That one person for me was a team leader when I was working in a call center. He believed in me enough to take me aside and coach me one on one.

He believed I was going to go on and change the world through personal development. He was right and I did!

Don’t give up. Your one person exists as well.

<<<>>>

These four things are what I tell myself during a tough time. One of these phrases will always be the right one depending on the circumstance.

Believe that there is a way out and you’ll find one. It’s during the tough times that you’ll develop the skills and experience to help others.

What I’ve learned is that to get through the tough times, one of the best hacks is to focus on helping others. When you’re focusing on how you can serve, your own selfish problems become insignificant.

Seek out people who have even bigger problems than you do and listen to them. See if you can help them.

That’s how you deal with the tough times.

Tell yourself the truth. You deserve to hear it.

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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Motivation

This Can Be Your Life If You Choose It.

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I was sitting down last week with a friend for lemongrass and ginger teas — because that’s how we roll in Melbourne.

My friend was telling me his recent life challenges and why he’d stopped replying to everybody’s messages.

I’ll get to the point: he’d got stuck in the daily grind.

Your life is not this:

  • Wake up
  • Eat breakfast
  • Go to work
  • Have lunch
  • Come home
  • Ask your partner how their day was
  • Play with kids (if you have them)
  • Look forward to the weekend
  • Go to bed
  • Rinse and repeat

If this is how your life is, chances are you’re going to have challenges. Not because these daily activities are a problem but because there’s so much more to life.

When every day is the same, and you don’t know why, you become lost.


What do I mean by lost?

You go back to old ways. In my friend’s case, his mental health issues kicked in again. He started feeling sorry for himself. He lost his way.

For me, getting lost looks like going back to a state of negativity. A state where the world is against me and everything feels impossible.


Your life can be different if you choose it to be.

This is not hyperbole. Your life can be different.

How?

By not getting stuck in the daily grind. The way you do this is by being present. Noticing right now instead of looking down at your phone.

You can also break your routine. Don’t do the same thing every dayAdd some small twists and turns to how you do things.

Your life doesn’t have to be boring and full of routines. Habits are good to have as long as they don’t become 99.9% of your day. Having nothing but habits takes the variety out of your day.

You end up thinking the same way day in and day out. This stops you from seeing the endless opportunities that are available to you if you can only see them.


There has to be meaning.

No matter how big or how small, meaning gives you a reason to wake up outside of just following some pre-defined routine.

My friend that was going through issues last week didn’t have a meaning. He’d forgotten why he came to work. To shake up his reality, I told him about the day before where I’d volunteered at the local homeless shelter.

He asked me why I did it.

I told him It gets you out of your head. It makes you think and feel completely different. You stop feeling sorry for yourself. It reminds you of what it’s like to have a meaning.


We make the mistake of thinking everyone’s life is perfect except ours.

“I get this all the time. People think I live some rockstar blogging lifestyle full of free lunches, endless high-fives, smiles and opportunities. The reality couldn’t be further from this fake idea”

I have the same battles and challenges.
I get stuck in routines too.
I sometimes chase productivity over meaning as well.

No one has a straight flush of perfect days where all their hopes and dreams come true. Rejection, punches to the face, and disappointment affect us all.

The way you choose the good life is to acknowledge and push through the difficult parts of life.

As hard as I try, some days just suck. Some days I don’t feel like writing or my career is in the dumps.

The only difference is what you choose.

For me, I choose to keep moving forward. I choose optimism even when nothing makes sense and all the chips are stacked against me.

There’s no secret hack other than choosing to not settle for a life of routine and one that contains no variety.

You get to make that choice. That’s the difference.

The life you want is your choice. It’s not made for you.

Choose to change things up.

<<<>>>

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

How You Can Effectively Achieve Your Goals by Using the Puzzle Analogy

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Image Credit: Twenty20.com

I was building a 500 piece puzzle the other day with many tiny little pieces. When I opened the box, I was completely overwhelmed. There were so many pieces and many of them were very similar in color. I took a breath and thought “just do one piece at a time”. I knew that I had to come up with a plan and organize the pieces into groups before I got started. This helped me to focus and take away some of the overwhelming feelings that were coming up. I came up with a plan and executed that plan. (more…)

Meghan Olsgard is the creator and writer of www.infinitesoulblueprint.com where she writes articles about self-empowerment and creating a fulfilling life. She shares her personal experiences and the obstacles she has overcame to help and inspire others to do the same. You can get more information at her website or follow her on Facebook.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Ramesh Sawant

    Oct 25, 2015 at 11:59 am

    It is happy to read article on motivation on this site. It is a bare fact of life everything is possible with motivation from within. Lack of motivation will take you nowhere . Great article.

  2. Esther Mellar

    Sep 22, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    Hi Mark,

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge. It is very inspiring. It was clear for me the kind of impact the peer group has on a teenager, but that it is true for us adults I was not conscious about. Finding your purpose, why you want to achieve something would be a further point I would ad to your list. What those wins would really mean at a deeper level.
    When it comes to launching a business, what is the best way track your progress? Thank you in advance for the advice.

  3. Theodore Nwangene

    Sep 21, 2015 at 6:51 pm

    Hello Mark.
    You’re so correct on all the points you made you and i agree with you. Motivation without action is entirely meaningless because, that motivation will still leave you exactly the same way it met you.

    Great success lies in taken action towards that which you desire. If you keep on looking to be motivated before you start acting on your goals then, you might never start after all.

    Also, finding a good mentor and also associating with like minded people is equally necessary for success.

  4. Shailendra Zade

    Sep 20, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    Hey Mark,
    Thank you for the article. Motivation is need now these days.

  5. Ross

    Sep 17, 2015 at 4:45 pm

    AWESOME article Mark!

    Keep them coming bro! 🙂

  6. rachel akito

    Sep 16, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    Mark
    This article is really made to perfection. Thank you for sharing this. You’re right strategies aren’t enough unless you do it. I really appreciate that you put up the importance of mentors. Mentors can and will definitely provide guidance and inspiration. I also like the idea of celebrating small wins. Appreciating the little things can give us a positive outlook in life.
    Rachel

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Motivation

You Snooze, You Lose! 4 Hacks to Get Out of Bed When That Alarm Goes Off

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Did you know that more than 57% of Americans hit the snooze button? That adds up to 3.5 months of our lives just snoozing! Why would we waste time snoozing when the intention is to actually get up to get things done? Is it laziness, a lack of discipline, motivation, or commitment? It doesn’t actually matter.

The fact is, you can’t be as productive as you want when you are getting out of bed late!  That is the obvious part. The not so obvious part is how to actually get of bed, when every part of you is screaming to sleep a bit longer. Let’s create a bit of pain first, because I’m assuming you actually don’t see the downsides to snoozing, or you are being ignorant and ignorance will never get you the results you want.

Sabotaging Success

Did you know that every time you set yourself an intention to wake up early and you don’t follow through with it, you dramatically lower your confidence and belief in yourself? Your word to yourself start to mean less and less. You can say to yourself, I will do this, but you know you probably won’t.

Nothing will sabotage your success more than losing faith in your own word. You need confidence to get results in life! Are you somebody who follows through with their word or not? You either are or you aren’t.

The second consequence, is that you are losing income and awesome results you could be having sooner. Why choose the easier things now and have a harder life later on, when you can choose the harder things now and have an easier life later on?  Don’t settle in life, this will never ever fulfill you.

4 Hacks to get out of bed when that alarm goes off:

1. Don’t negotiate with your brain 

If you start negotiating with your brain, you will always lose. So don’t go there, don’t even start that conversation in your mind! If you have decided to get out of bed, then do it, follow through with your word. Why change your mind in the morning? 

The ‘pleasure seeking’ part of your brain is always on automatic and it’s so strong, your ‘pre-fontal’ cortex doesn’t have much chance of winning this battle when you are half asleep in bed. Once you are out of bed, habit stack. It’s the 5 second rule – you are up already – don’t you dare go back.  Do exactly what you would do habitually. Do you go straight for the shower or do you get a glass of lemon juice? Know what you are going to do already to take any thinking out of it!

“Lose an hour in the morning and you will spend all day looking for it.” – Richard Whately

2. Look at your identity 

You behave according to what you believe. You believe what you repeat. Look at your own language, what do you say to yourself about getting up? Do you say things like; “It’s so hard to get out of bed in the morning” or “I’ve never been a morning person.” What you say becomes your reality of yourself and either motivates or demotivates you.

What you want to be saying to yourself is: “Just get out of bed. It’s easy, just get up. I can do this because I want to, I decide and control my actions. I am in control.” I can almost guarantee, if you struggle to get up when your alarm goes off, there is a part of your identity that believes this is who you are. If you change how you talk to yourself, about who you are, and tell yourself you can do anything, because you said so, your actions will be completely different.

3. Leaping out of bed

Unless I have a very compelling reason, I know it would be hard to get out of bed. We need to use our minds to motivate us into action, and the best way to do this, is to get excited the day before. Write down at least 5 reasons on a piece of paper; list why you want to leap out of bed tomorrow. This can take 2 minutes! The next morning, when your alarm goes off, look at that piece of paper, immediately so you know what awaits you and get up.

4. Use accountability and peer pressure

Create a game with your friends, family members, coach, colleagues, or business partner, I don’t care who it is, as long as you know that person will hold you accountable. Have fun with it, take a picture fully dressed and showered and send to your accountability partner, or call a ‘penalty’ if you don’t, like taking your friend out for dinner or spouse every time you sleep in. Get creative and use your support system.  The point is, it doesn’t matter what system you set up, how crazy it might seem, what matters is if it works!

Remember, you don’t need to make big changes from the outset, if you feel like an hour or 30 minute change is too much, start with 5 minutes earlier each day or 10 minutes earlier each week. You must be getting enough sleep and not over sleeping either. You have one life and if you are a business owner, I know you are missing out on results and lowering your confidence indirectly too.

“Life is getting up an hour early to live an hour more.”

You can have the best intentions to get up earlier every day, but if you let that snooze button control you, you will never follow through with your intentions or get your results! It is the small changes that can give us the biggest results. Try one these hacks to finally get out of that bed in the morning and finally take back your time! Don’t allow it to be more powerful than you.

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Motivation

Why It’s a Great Thing for Adversity to Push You to Your Breaking Point

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If you are not finding challenges that knock you flat on your back then you are missing out. A darker side of success that some have touched on is that you need to fail more. In addition to this, we should consider finding the challenges that punch us in the mouth and knock us unconscious.

The easiest place to be in life is one of comfort and knowing what tomorrow will bring. This brings little growth and requires very little effort because it’s safe. However, if we look at our role models who have done great things, then we will surely see that they have failed spectacularly.

Michael Jordan locked himself in his room and cried after he didn’t make his varsity basketball team as a sophomore. Walt Disney’s second business that failed miserably was called Laugh-O-Gram. JK Rowling was rejected by 12 literary publishers before she found any success.

Most likely you can think of some challenges that you rose up to beat in your own life. I would venture to say that the most difficult challenges that meant the most to you knocked you on your back right before you conquered them.

“Every adversity, every failure, and every heartache, carries with it the Seed of an equivalent or greater Benefit.” – Napoleon Hill

These obstacles are there for a reason. They are an important part of the puzzle for you. So if you find yourself in a place where you feel stuck or overwhelmed by a burden that seems insurmountable then this is a very good thing.

Life gives you everything you need

Life will give us everything we need, including the message that you have to get back up and go back at it with more determination, more will, and more fight than what you had before. Sometimes the moment we are down and out is the moment we have to regroup, reorganize, and come up with a new strategy to overcome those impending obstacles.

The reason the challenge knocks us down is because we need it. Just like an ocean wave knocks down an inexperienced surfer, it’s just a sign that the young surfer has to grow and become better.

Just like a surfer, the same is true for you and wherever you are at now. You have faced many things in your life which force you to become stronger for what is now in front of you.

However, what is most important in all this is having a challenge that can move you. For the surfer, the thrill of riding that perfect wave is worth the cost of getting beaten down by ocean waves again and again. For the man creating a business and putting his heart and soul into it, the reward of being a success and changing lives is worth battling each and everyday to get his enterprise up and off the ground.

For the woman who runs a marathon, the thrill of running across the finish line and having that experience was worth all the training and the grueling exhaustion she had to endure so that she could get to that point.

These experiences are the ones that can move you, but if your goal can have such a positive affect on you, then it can also have a dramatically negative affect as well. This is why you need challenges that can break you.

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.” – J. K. Rowling

Why you need failure

The surfer is devastated after breaking his arm and having to spend time away from his passion, but after his recovery he is reinvigorated. The business fails and the man is crushed, but he comes back stronger and more experienced with another business. The runner fails at finishing her marathon, but trains harder and comes back even better.

For this reason, failure is only feedback and something to be used as a positive for getting to where you want to go. If you get knocked down you might just need to rest and try again. Or it could mean that you should go get some help and try again.

Remember, failure isn’t final and success within failure is having the opportunity to try again.

You should only be alarmed when you have failed challenges that aren’t breaking you. This means that you are playing it safe and need something more compelling to propel you forward.

If the challenge breaks you then you know it means something to you. Even more importantly, you have the opportunity to go again, harder and even more determined.

How do you handle failure? Let us know in the comments below!

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Motivation

What To Tell Yourself During A Tough Time.

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We all go through tough times.

A few examples of mine are:

  • Multiple consecutive breakups
  • Walking away from a business that could have made me a lot of money
  • Having my career come to a grinding halt
  • Dealing with mental illness

The list is very long and I’m sure yours is similar. It’s not about the tough times we go through though because they are guaranteed and you already knew that before you clicked this article.

What matters during tough times is what you tell yourself.

This is what I say to myself during tough times — well there’s actually four things I say to myself depending on the tough time I’m facing:


“This will pass”

No event in your life lasts forever. Today may be a really tough day, but that won’t last forever. We delude ourselves at times by saying in our head “I’m always going to be like this.”

“Why does this always happen to me?”

“Here we go again.”

These negative phrases tell our brain that things are never going to get better. When we say these phrases to ourselves enough, we start to believe them. During a difficult period in your life, in that moment, things will suck.

The way to get out of your head is to see the truth: this will pass. In one day, one month, or one year this tough situation will have passed and you’ll be onto the next part of your life.

Nothing lasts forever unless you allow your mind to trap you in the moment and believe a lie which is that this moment won’t pass. It will. You will come out the other side.


I’ll be stronger having dealt with this situation

When you reframe your tough times into strength building exercises, they take a whole new meaning.

All of a sudden, your current situation that may be wearing you down becomes like reps at the gym. The reps are a struggle and it hurts, but if you keep moving forward, you end up with mental toughness and strength.

“Exchange your tough times for mental toughness”

See this challenging situation for what it is. It’s the chance to come out the other end stronger.

Stack your tough times up like gold medals.

Have you dealt with cancer? Good, then you won’t take your health for granted ever again.

Have you lost a loved one? Then you’ll never take the rest of your family for granted and care for them more than you did before.

Did you lose your job? Amazing! Now you can work somewhere else and discover more of your hidden talents!

Without tough times, you won’t have the strategies you need to deal with the impossible. Your heroes are your heroes because they’ve used their tough times to become stronger.

Failure and rejection are the building blocks to whatever your definition of success is. Tough times make you hungryand that’s a good thing.


Keep taking baby steps forward

Tough times can feel like quicksand sometimes.

If you don’t keep moving forward though, you’ll eventually sink into the quicksand. The best thing you can do during the toughest of challenges is take baby steps.

When I battled severe anxiety, I took baby steps such as these:

  • Walked 15 minutes a day
  • Drank an extra glass of water each day to hydrate my body
  • Read one book a month on anxiety
  • Exposed myself to one small fear each day. It started with going two levels in a lift (something I couldn’t do before). Then I’d go three levels the next day and so on.

That last dot point is critical. Overcoming tough times requires you to take baby steps in the form of being uncomfortable. When you’re growing each day, you don’t have time to be too concerned about a particular tough time.

My battle with anxiety eventually led me to flying long distances (another thing I couldn’t do before) and then speaking on stages in front of a lot of people.

As you can see, the first few steps — like going two floors in a lift — are quite small. Then the steps get bigger and bigger until what used to seem impossible becomes a piece of cake.

Take baby steps.


“It only takes one person”

Tough times often require someone to believe in you. From my experience, you only need one person.

One person to believe in your idea.
One person to love you.
One person who has gone through the same tough times as you.

This one person exists. You have to go out there and find them. That one person for me was a team leader when I was working in a call center. He believed in me enough to take me aside and coach me one on one.

He believed I was going to go on and change the world through personal development. He was right and I did!

Don’t give up. Your one person exists as well.

<<<>>>

These four things are what I tell myself during a tough time. One of these phrases will always be the right one depending on the circumstance.

Believe that there is a way out and you’ll find one. It’s during the tough times that you’ll develop the skills and experience to help others.

What I’ve learned is that to get through the tough times, one of the best hacks is to focus on helping others. When you’re focusing on how you can serve, your own selfish problems become insignificant.

Seek out people who have even bigger problems than you do and listen to them. See if you can help them.

That’s how you deal with the tough times.

Tell yourself the truth. You deserve to hear it.

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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Motivation

This Can Be Your Life If You Choose It.

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I was sitting down last week with a friend for lemongrass and ginger teas — because that’s how we roll in Melbourne.

My friend was telling me his recent life challenges and why he’d stopped replying to everybody’s messages.

I’ll get to the point: he’d got stuck in the daily grind.

Your life is not this:

  • Wake up
  • Eat breakfast
  • Go to work
  • Have lunch
  • Come home
  • Ask your partner how their day was
  • Play with kids (if you have them)
  • Look forward to the weekend
  • Go to bed
  • Rinse and repeat

If this is how your life is, chances are you’re going to have challenges. Not because these daily activities are a problem but because there’s so much more to life.

When every day is the same, and you don’t know why, you become lost.


What do I mean by lost?

You go back to old ways. In my friend’s case, his mental health issues kicked in again. He started feeling sorry for himself. He lost his way.

For me, getting lost looks like going back to a state of negativity. A state where the world is against me and everything feels impossible.


Your life can be different if you choose it to be.

This is not hyperbole. Your life can be different.

How?

By not getting stuck in the daily grind. The way you do this is by being present. Noticing right now instead of looking down at your phone.

You can also break your routine. Don’t do the same thing every dayAdd some small twists and turns to how you do things.

Your life doesn’t have to be boring and full of routines. Habits are good to have as long as they don’t become 99.9% of your day. Having nothing but habits takes the variety out of your day.

You end up thinking the same way day in and day out. This stops you from seeing the endless opportunities that are available to you if you can only see them.


There has to be meaning.

No matter how big or how small, meaning gives you a reason to wake up outside of just following some pre-defined routine.

My friend that was going through issues last week didn’t have a meaning. He’d forgotten why he came to work. To shake up his reality, I told him about the day before where I’d volunteered at the local homeless shelter.

He asked me why I did it.

I told him It gets you out of your head. It makes you think and feel completely different. You stop feeling sorry for yourself. It reminds you of what it’s like to have a meaning.


We make the mistake of thinking everyone’s life is perfect except ours.

“I get this all the time. People think I live some rockstar blogging lifestyle full of free lunches, endless high-fives, smiles and opportunities. The reality couldn’t be further from this fake idea”

I have the same battles and challenges.
I get stuck in routines too.
I sometimes chase productivity over meaning as well.

No one has a straight flush of perfect days where all their hopes and dreams come true. Rejection, punches to the face, and disappointment affect us all.

The way you choose the good life is to acknowledge and push through the difficult parts of life.

As hard as I try, some days just suck. Some days I don’t feel like writing or my career is in the dumps.

The only difference is what you choose.

For me, I choose to keep moving forward. I choose optimism even when nothing makes sense and all the chips are stacked against me.

There’s no secret hack other than choosing to not settle for a life of routine and one that contains no variety.

You get to make that choice. That’s the difference.

The life you want is your choice. It’s not made for you.

Choose to change things up.

<<<>>>

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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