If there is one way to do something special every day, it’s leave the world better than you found it.
Like all ideas, I’d always thought about this unconsciously, but then a Youtube video reminded me of it. Shortly after I watched this YouTube video, I was on a plane drinking water. As you do, I decided to go to the bathroom before we landed.
While in the bathroom, I thought to myself, “Tim what if you left the bathroom even better than you found it.” Rather than be lazy and not think about the next person, why couldn’t I make sure that the bathroom was even better than I found it?
Why can’t we all leave the world better than we found it?
It’s early on a Saturday morning and I’m back in my hometown Melbourne. This day feels a bit different than normal. The idea I pondered on the plane stayed with me. As I did my Saturday grocery shopping I realized I had a bad habit: I threw rubbish on the ground.
Now don’t pull out your knives ready to stab me because of this bad habit. Let me explain. I found that because I’m a bit of a minimalist, I don’t like leaving rubbish in the car. So what I do is leave the used parking ticket and maybe a water bottle in the trolley at the supermarket.
If I have any receipts from the grocery shopping, I throw them on the ground next to my car. So it’s not like I’m dumping a boot load of rubbish on the side of the freeway or anything, but still, am I leaving the world better than I found it? What if everyone did this? What sort of a world would we live in?
So in my commitment to better myself and make one small positive change per day, I’ve stopped doing this bad habit. That’s right, I’m six weeks clean and feel better for it.
Leave the world better than you found it. You’ll feel better for it.
After every single conversation, we have the opportunity to leave people better than we found them. Working in a business development role means I meet hundreds – if not thousands – of people every year. Many of them are nervous entrepreneurs trying to make our planet a better place.
At the end of our catch up, I have the chance to shake hands and say goodbye or leave people better than I found them. It’s crucial to leave entrepreneurs and people better than you found them so they can go back to their life inspired.
By leaving them better than you found them, you might be the catalyst for them to do something incredible. Maybe that’s how Elon Musk came up with the idea for Tesla. Maybe he had a coffee catch up with a friend and that was the catalyst for him to do something remarkable.
“You never know the impact you are having, but I suspect that it’s much bigger than you realize”
Next time you have a meeting, tell people how much you admire them. Give them praise.
Leave the world better than you found it. You’ll help people achieve their life purpose.
At the end of a romantic relationship, you have the chance to leave the world better than you found it. You can either end things in a nasty way because that person is now yesterday’s trash, or you can leave them feeling better for having met you.
I’ve had my fair share of breakups over the last few years and I’ve made it a habit of leaving the other person better than I found them. This has resulted in former lovers finding: their ideal partner after me, their dream job, deciding to travel the world, rediscovering their spiritual side and finally executing on their passion.
It’s good karma to be there for your former lovers. You’re both going through the same pain, at the same time, so it’s the one period in your life where you should be compassionate. You should be vulnerable and not stop giving, even during this traumatic time.
How you treat your former lovers determines what love you will attract in the future. Every broken relationship is the doorway to a new and even more fulfilling relationship (or even life).
Leave the world better than you found it. You’ll help attract the love life you’ve always dreamt of.
Whenever you make a purchase using money, you’re deciding to leave the world better than you found it, or not.
“Money allows us to validate and support the businesses who are progressing our planet. Some businesses trash our planet and make us sick (soft drink companies)”
The purchase of a bottle of water used to be pretty unimpactful. Now, I get to buy ThankYou Water and support water projects in developing nations. Each bottle of water I drink helps someone who doesn’t have the same privileges I was born with.
Tom’s shoes are another quality example. Every pair of shoes I buy gives a pair of shoes to someone who has none. The amount of money I spend each time is the same. One company helps make the world a better place and one doesn’t.
The state of our world is a result of the decisions all of us make. Instead of complaining, it’s time that we take action. The small habits we practice every day can make a massive change to where the planet is heading. You can be a leader or you can be part of the problem.
Leave the world better than you found it. You’ll help fund the visions of people who can make our lives better.
I’m sure, like most of us, we all have good ideas. The trouble is that we often want to keep them to ourselves. Working in tech, I see this every day. People want you to sign non-disclosure agreements and they are very protective of their idea.
I tell them in my Aussie accent “Mate, ideas are a dime a dozen, everyone has them. Forget your non-disclosure agreements and get on with collaborating and executing on your vision. You’re never going to spend years in court, and thousands in legal fees to defend yourself anyway.”
When we try and execute on ideas by ourself, I’ve found, that we don’t get that far. When we collaborate with a common purpose to make the world a better place, we can achieve the impossible. A lot of the ideas we have, we end up doing nothing with.
Why couldn’t we share these ideas so someone can use them to create change? Do any of us really want to be the richest man in Babylon with no inspiring individuals around us, feeding our fat stomachs with food, to numb the pain of loneliness?
Leave the world better than you found it. You’ll help co-create the ideas that can create change and impact.
I’ve been in the workforce for a while. This means I have a pretty large network of people that I know. I’m not saying this to sound popular and for you to think “Wow this Tim guy has so many friends, how do I be so popular?” That’s not my point folks.
Having a large network allows me to partner like-minded people together who have a common purpose. A recent example was a venture capitalist I know well. For a tech company wanting to raise money, this individual would probably be at the top of the list.
He’s funded some of the most iconic tech companies that exist and he’s a very inspiring man. I had the choice as to whether I would share this person with the rest of my network. Two people asked me for an intro and I was at that stage in my life where I had to think about it.
What if I want to have this man fund my idea? What if he only has so much money to invest and I miss out? These thoughts are selfish and had the potential to ruin my success. Leaving the world better than you found it requires you to share the greatest resource our world has: people.
By not sharing this venture capitalist, I was potentially stopping some incredible businesses from getting access to the tech titans of this world. As such, I forgot about my scarcity mindset and did the intro to the first founder that asked me.
Because of this intro, this founder is now having his tech company funded, we all went away together, and now it has brought all of us even closer together. This founder has returned the favor ten-fold and the family has grown. He can now change the world with his business.
What are you stopping by not sharing your network? Half the time you have people in your network that you’re doing nothing with anyway. There’s no point letting quality contacts sit there idle. Next time someone needs an introduction, if you feel their reasons are valid, do the intro!
Leave the world better than you found it. You’ll allow collaboration that can create wonderful, new possibilities for all of us.
Much of the world’s challenges are a result of us not all making the decision every day to leave the world just a tiny bit better than we found it. I’m not asking anyone to do anything significant or time-consuming. I’m asking you all to do little things each day that will progress us as a society.
These little acts that you perform will help you to grow consistently and make you a getter person. After all, what stops us from being unhappy is the feeling that we are growing. What stops us from being unhappy is the feeling that we are making a difference.
Start making the world a better place. You have the power!
If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net
How to Stay Motivated to Achieve Your Goals
Time is the raw material of our lives. How we choose to spend it, shapes our life accordingly. So having the motivation to spend it on achieving goals is crucial to creating a life we want.
What is Motivation?
The Oxford dictionary defines motivation as the desire or willingness to do something – our drive to take action.
Scientifically, motivation has its roots in the dopamine pathways of our brains. When we do something that feels good, that’s dopamine kicking in. Our actions are driven by the desire for that reward (the good feeling).
Author Steven Pressfield describes motivation more practically. He says we hit a point where the pain of not doing something becomes greater than the pain of doing it. He sees motivation as crossing the threshold where it’s easier to take action than it is to be idle. Like choosing to feel awkward while making sales calls over feeling disappointed about a diminishing bank account.
However you choose to think about it, we all want to harness motivation to achieve our goals.
How to Get Motivated
James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits, says that most people misunderstand motivation. They think that motivation is what gets us to take action. In reality, motivation is often the result of action, not the cause of it. Once we start a task, it’s easier to continue making progress. Like Isaac Newton’s first law: objects in motion stay in motion.
This means most of the resistance when working on your goals comes right before we start. Since motivation naturally occurs after we start, we need to focus on making starting easier.
4 Ways to Make Starting Easier
1. Schedule it
One reason people can’t get started on things is that they haven’t planned when to do it.
When things aren’t scheduled it’s easier for them to fall by the wayside. You’ll end up hoping motivation falls in your lap or hoping that you’ll muster enough willpower to get it done.
An article in the Guardian said, “If you waste resources trying to decide when or where to work, you’ll impede your capacity to do the work.”
2. Measure something
It’s easy to feel uninspired when you don’t know if you’re making progress or what you’re even working towards. That’s why you need to make your success measurable in some way. Starting is easy when you know exactly how much closer your current actions will bring you to achieving your goal.
3. Extrinsic motivation
This type of motivation is from external factors. It can be either positive or negative. Positive motivation consists of incentives like money, prizes, and grades. Negative motivation consists of deterrents like being fired, having a fight, or being fined. Extrinsic motivation doesn’t work effectively long-term, but it can work well in the short term to get you started on something.
4. Make it public
Keep yourself accountable by telling friends and family your goals, or even sharing them on social media. This makes it easier to start something because you’re pressured to not let others down.
How to Stay Motivated Long Term
When we say we want to feel motivated to do something, we don’t want to be pushed or guilted into doing a task. We want to be so attracted and drawn to the idea that we can’t resist not taking action. That’s why it’s important to build a foundation that will set you up for consistency.
These are 5 techniques that will help you do just that:
1. Stay in your goldilocks zone
The goldilocks zone is when a task is the perfect level of difficulty—not too hard and not too easy. In this zone, we reach peak motivation and focus.
For example, let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against a 4-year-old. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become bored and not want to play. Now let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against Serena Williams. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become demotivated because the match is too challenging.
The Goldilocks zone is in the middle of that spectrum. You want to face someone with equal skill as you. That way you have a chance to win, but you have to focus and try for it. Adjusting your workload and goals over time to stay within your Goldilocks zone keeps you engaged and motivated long-term.
2. Pursue intrinsically motivated goals
Being intrinsically motivated to achieve a goal is when you want to achieve it for what it is. There are no external factors like a reward or the risk of being fired. The drive behind your actions is coming from within.
For most intrinsic goals we pursue them because they will enrich our lives or bring us closer to fulfillment. That makes these goals extremely sustainable long-term because they directly affect our quality of life and the things we care about.
3. Use “chunking”
Chunking is the technique of breaking down a goal into smaller short-term targets. By doing this you achieve multiple successes in your pursuit of the main goal. This triggers the brain’s reward system and drives you to keep going.
Traditionally, you may set a goal that you expect to achieve in one year. That’s a long time to commit without seeing any results along the way. By chunking your goals into monthly or quarterly targets, you get the consistent positive reinforcement you need to stay motivated long-term.
For example, instead of trying to lose 50 pounds in one year, try to lose 4 pounds every month for 12 months.
4. Be flexible
We’re all victims of circumstance. Things happen along our journey that we can either adjust to or quit because of. That’s why it’s important to have leeway and flexibility when you’re pursuing a goal. If you expect everything to go perfectly, the inevitable failure can make you disengaged and desireless. When you plan for things to go wrong, you make sure you can keep up for the long haul.
5. Pursue your goals in a sustainable fashion
Don’t lose hope when you’re not an overnight success. Overnight successes are the 1%—for the most part, they don’t exist. What we see as an “overnight success” is actually countless hours of work behind the scenes finally hitting a tipping point. Pursuing goals is a story of patience, persistence, and unseen effort.
Don’t compare yourself to others. Comparison is a recipe for a drop in self-confidence and satisfaction. It also cultivates a mindset where you think you haven’t done enough. As a result, you may raise your expectations and put more pressure on yourself.
This is pointless because things worth achieving take time. So we obviously won’t compare to the things around us when starting.
Mastering motivation is a superpower. With that ability at your fingertips, you can accomplish your goals and shape a life you want to live in.
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