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Motivation

Positive Motivation vs. Negative Motivation: Which One Works Better?

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It’s not uncommon to struggle with motivation. It’s a tricky beast to tame, but it’s also incredibly powerful. A bout of motivation every day is all you need to sustain a career move or pursue a personal goal over the long-term.

For most people, motivation is fleeting. It drives you to complete a whole week’s worth of work over the weekend without realizing it, but disappears on Monday when you really need to get started with something new at work. It’s hard to control and keep alive when you need it most.

Scientists seem to define motivation as the willingness to do something. It’s a very intrinsic and natural drive to take something new on and complete it successfully. Digging deeper it seems every action and thought we have is guided by our built-in motivations. Psychologists believe that the basis of human behavior is the sticks and carrots the mind associates with different activities. Every decision and behavior is rooted in the mind’s perception of pleasure and pain.

It appears that the mind and body will simply not act till the pain of not doing something outweighs the pain of doing it. Similarly, the rewards of doing something must outweigh the temporary reward of not doing it. This means there are two forms of motivation – negative and positive. But which one works better?

Positive Motivation

Positive motivation comes from an internal drive to seek out pleasure. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs explains this well. You’re more likely to act when the results of an action are a direct impact on one of your needs – like the need for self actualization or self esteem.

Some people respond very well to positive stimulation. Thinking about the pleasures of being financially independent or well recognized within an industry can push people to achieve impossible feats in their career.

You can create positive motivation by either reminding yourself of the benefits of a task or by setting up rewards for yourself for completing something. It’s the equivalent of setting up carrots or thinking about the carrots as you go about doing what you need to do.

For example, visualizing a thinner, better looking version of yourself could push you to get up and exercise in the morning. At the same time, you could probably reward yourself with a bottle of wine if you meet your weekly targets at work. Both these methods are positive and can really get you to meet the targets you set.

“Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.” – Lou Holtz

Negative Motivation

Negative motivation is about punishment and fear. It’s the sort of motivation that gets you to quit smoking because you’ve witnessed someone struggle with cancer. Of course, not every motivation needs to be dramatic or dreadful. You could be motivated to stay at your job because you don’t want to lose the house, or could be paying the bills on time because you want to avoid the penalty.

Negative motivation is likely to work just as well as positive motivation, but for some people it’s a lot more effective. Certain people are driven by fear and anxiety. The looming threat of loss is too much to bear for some individuals and they tend to take action more quickly in such scenarios.

You can apply negative motivation by reminding yourself of the consequences of not doing something. You could also apply this sort of motivation by setting up punishments for not completing some task. Working over the weekend because you didn’t complete an assignment over the week or seeking out criticism from friends to help you improve your work are both examples of negative motivations that propel action.

“Success is not built on success. It’s built on failure. It’s built on frustration. Sometimes, it’s built on catastrophe.” – Summer Redtsone

Which one is better?

So, which of the two types of motivation work best? The good news is this is an area of psychology that has been well researched and there is a definite answer. In the 1940’s B.F. Skinner published a number of academic studies that showed the effects of what he called “positive and negative reinforcement.” Skinner’s studies were based on experiments on lab mice that indicated how human beings responded to reinforcement.

The research found that both types of reinforcement were abundant in the systems created to extract work. Some people responded better to positive reinforcements like rewards, while others responded better to negative reinforcement like punishments. Researchers Kelly J Bouxsein, Henry S Roane, and Tara Harper expanded on this study and found that a combination of the two types worked best. It seems the average person is best motivated when there is a little bit of reward and a justified amount of punishment for completing or not completing the task at hand.

You can apply this knowledge to better motivate yourself in the future. At work and in your personal life there’s likely to be a system of checks and balances that motivate you to do things. But you need to go beyond this and create a sense of personal motivation. Take the time to understand yourself and set up a system of rewards and punishments that will push you to achieve more.

Which type of motivation works better for you? Please leave your thoughts below!

Alan Morris is a blogger from San Diego,California. Alan believes that a positive mindset leads to a positive life. He enjoys talking about health, motivation, and personal development. Talk to Alan on Facebook or Twitter.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Nicholas Marchwinski

    Apr 6, 2017 at 2:44 am

    Interesting Article Alan. I agree with the study in the sense that a combination of positive and negative motivation is typically the best answer. Everyone is unique so there will be cases in which an individual crumbles under the pressure of negative motivation while there are others who thrive from it. Those individuals who love to prove someone wrong are an example I can think of immediately.

  2. Ewen Munro

    Feb 3, 2017 at 11:14 pm

    Great read, Alan! 😉 #keepgrowing #keepcreating

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Motivation

The Letter I Wrote To A Broken Man

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Every day I get lots of emails from readers asking me how to solve a major life issue.

I got one last week and realized that my advice is often the same. I thought that it might be easier to write my advice about how to stop being so broken. That way, every time I get one of these emails I can point people to it.

Here’s the advice I gave this broken man that wrote to me:

 

1. Find someone who is going to change your thinking

This man had a whole list of problems that he tried to tell me were impossible to solve. He listed them in such detail and made each one sound beyond impossible to solve. He was hoping that he would bamboozle me and that I’d reply and say “Mate you’re right, those problems are impossible to solve and I can’t help you.”

The first step I always tell these so called “broken people” is that they need to get out of their head. They’ve become obsessed with their challenges and they need to interrupt their thinking. The easiest and quickest way to do this is to find someone to change your thinking.

To make this broken man’s life easy, I gave him the answer of who to start with. He needed a rapid change of thinking and the best person I know to do this is Tony Robbins. Now I could have let him find his own person to assist, but it would have ended up becoming another excuse.

What he needed to hear was something radically different to the story that he’d memorized and become an expert narrator in. Tony sure knows how to change the way you think and slap you in the face when you need it. This is always the beginning.

 

2. Quit your job

This broken man blamed a lot of his problems on his job. This is common in all the letters I get from people who think they’re broken. They all have an issue that stems from what they do for a living.

What’s crazy is that your job or business is your decision. If you don’t like the result, then quit. It’s not rocket science; it’s just the reality.

“Quitting something you hate is the best decision you’ll ever make”

You can always find another source of income. The best thing about quitting is that you’ll be forced to find a new way to make a living pretty quickly so you can pay your bills.

Make it a slow transition if you need to, but just know that you must quit. Don’t let anything piss you off anymore. Stop doing what you don’t love. If your work doesn’t light you up, then quit!

 

3. Failing a lot is good. Stop being afraid.

My friend, the broken man, tried to tell me that he was failing a lot. I stood up in my seat and gave him a metaphorical round of applause (he obviously couldn’t see me do this). If you’re failing a lot, then that’s the best bloody news I’ve ever heard! Don’t be down about it; be excited about it.

This means your giving it a go and taking action. That’s better than 99% of other people who are doing nothing and sitting on the couch hoping to get lucky. You’ll eventually find a way if you keep failing. It’s inevitable.

Being afraid is unnecessary and it’s delusional. You’re not supposed to know exactly what to do and no one who is successful does.

“You’re supposed to take action, and then learn from the outcomes and adjust the sails of your ship as you go”

 

4. Go and volunteer at a homeless shelter

I’ve said this one a lot because I’ve personally found it very effective – In fact, I was just at the homeless shelter again last week. It’s the idea that you need to see problems far bigger than your own. I’ve never seen anyone walk into a homeless shelter and spend a day there, who hasn’t come out the other side with a new way of looking at life.

You’re forced into helping others and you do whatever you can because many of the people you’ll meet are beyond desperate. In reality, your problems are not desperate where as there’s is. Once you’ve seen the worst there is to see, then you’ll be able to break your pattern of misery.

 

5. Your problems are the same

This broken man was so stuck in his circumstances that he couldn’t see the rest of the world. He stopped seeing the hardships that others are going through and he somehow believed the lie that he was the only one facing these problems. I told him something he didn’t expect: “Your problems are the same as every other email I get.”

This was true. Every email I get with these so-called “impossible challenges” is the same. It’s the same issue with a different character playing the lead role of the story. Your problems are not unique or special. Your problems yesterday were vanilla and my problems today are strawberry. They’re all flavors of the same milkshake.

 

6. You’re being selfish

The last very blunt thing I said to this broken man (out of love and respect) was: “You’re being selfish.” I told him that his entire story was about him and his own selfish desires.

Nowhere in the story was there room for anybody else. Nowhere in the story was there a purpose to unite people, or serve people or give something to someone. It was all just about him and how important he was and how he must have all the answers.

“The way you become broken in the first place is when you’re 100% focused on yourself”

Selfishness is at the heart of so many life problems. It’s not all about you, you know. I’d go as far as saying that you should make your life about much more than you.

Once you move away from being entirely selfish, new opportunities start to find their way to you. These opportunities are not luck; these opportunities are the result of you moving beyond just caring about yourself. Until you give a damn about other people, you’re going to continue to be broken.

You started to become broken in the first place when you forgot about everyone else and became obsessed with yourself. Kill the obsession and you’ll find the answer to your dreams.

These are the things I told this young man. These are the same tools you can use if you feel broken.

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

Don’t Hurt Your Future Self By Quitting

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“Every decision you make affects someone very special: your future self”

You’ve never met this person, but they are carrying the torch of your dreams. Life is hard for them too except their further along the timeline of life than you. Have you ever wondered what the future you will be like?

It’s something worth contemplating through deep and inward thinking.

When you give up on your dreams and quit, you’re not just hurting you right now, you’re killing the future you as well. That future you is bound by the decisions that you make today. One day you will become that future you and wish you could change that decision to quit. By then, it’s too late to change the past. There ain’t no rewind button on life.

 

Do you really need to quit?

I know you think it’s impossible and your only option is to quit, but that’s because you’ve reached your breaking point. I’ve been there too. I’ve reached a level of failure that has become insurmountable. I too have felt like I couldn’t go on and life had no meaning.

All of your emotional states, at times, can get like this. We’re human after all and don’t you forget that. We live in a flawed body, but that’s why humans are so beautiful in the first place. You don’t need to quit right now; there’s always another way.

 

The best thing to do when you want to quit

This is going to sound cliché: take a break and get out of your head for a few weeks. Go somewhere far, far away and contemplate the meaning of your life and why you’re still here. I say this because your life is a choice. You can decide to end your life at any point, but you haven’t.

You’re not a coward and you’d never do that. You have courage and you’re here for a reason.

 

Quitting may be the best option

Sometimes quitting is a good thing. Sometimes you have too many things on the go and when you quit, you free up time to focus on something that means more to you. My only plea is that you think about your future self when you quit. Think about whether your future self will be affected and whether you’ll be happy with the result.

There are no absolutes in life, only decisions that you make which are guided by your heart. There is no one answer. No one’s right and no one’s wrong. Our circumstances and how we think about them, more importantly, determine the meaning we give to any situation.

 

Who do you want your future self to be?

As you imagine your future self, what is he or she doing? Can you picture where they are? When I asked this question, I got an instant response which reaffirmed what I do today. I instantly saw myself on stage giving speeches to thousands of people.

I saw myself as the person that helps find people’s why and motivates them towards their dreams. I saw myself with a family and writing a best selling book. Strangely enough, I saw my future self as I always have: doing something inspiring to help others. I saw myself unleashing emotion in others to help them push through their limiting beliefs.

 

Now that you know your future self, how can you help them today?

So we’ve done a bit of visualizing in this article already. It’s a powerful way to see what you can become when you don’t quit. It’s a great way to fall in love with the person that you can create in the future by using the power of today’s decisions.

“I think we all need to become dreamers every now and then. If we don’t, we get stuck in today, and in our head full of possibilities”

If I had one tip when it comes to dreaming up the future, it would be this: try and see your future better than it is. Be outrageous and think of possibilities that today would scare you. You’ll be surprised how what you dream up today can become a reality.

I remember suffering from anxiety and trying to dream what it would be like to be rid of it. I remember being scared of flying and always wanting to travel. I remember having never found love and wondering what that would be like. I remember not being able to get in front of lots of people and do any form of public speaking. I remember being too scared to be vulnerable and share the real me.

Now, I’ve completely eliminated my anxiety, I can fly whenever I want with no issues, I have experienced real love, I am on my way to successfully being able to speak in front of larger audiences, and I’m happy to be vulnerable and share my story with everybody. That’s what can happen when you treat your future self with respect.

 

So now what?

Now I want you to do the hard part: take action. Follow the steps above and have some fun. Leave the present for the moment and get to know who you want your future self to be. Your future self is you after all, so you need to treat them like a king or queen.

Write a list of decisions you need to make in order to create the best future you that’s humanly possible. Like I always say, “Don’t be afraid to have big, audacious, crazy dreams.” If you can’t dream it, then you can never achieve it. Remember that next time someone tells you that dreams are BS.

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

We All Start With Zero Followers – Comprehenday?

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For the record: followers mean jack, attention is king.

With that said, all of us (including me) started with zero followers. You’re not alone. Whatever your big idea is you are probably going to need people to know about it. The sad truth is that it’s now done via social media.

You’ll need a combination of shares, likes, views, recommends or whatever other form of measurement these crazy social media platforms decide to implement. These metrics equal attention and that’s how people are going to know about what it is that you do.

Let’s not pretend that social media is useless. That would be naïve.

In this bustling, new age world, everyone owns content now. Anyone can go viral and anyone can be heard. Some find this reality a sad fact, but then these same people find something to cry about no matter what so ignore them.

The journey from zero followers to thousands and even millions looks like this:

 

1. We all started somewhere

Quit your complaining we’ve all started at zero followers at some point. Starting with nothing and then building your community up is an amazing feeling. Embrace the journey of creating a following.

The game of comparing follower counts with others will distract you from creating content and force you into consumption mode. Then you’ll over consume and regurgitate all over yourself. Yuck!

 

2. Stop trying to game the system

You can’t buy followers and not have people notice. We can all scan your follower list and see that you cheated. More importantly, the number of followers doesn’t matter.

3. Engagement is everything

Ever seen a social media account with millions of followers and one or two likes/comments per post? That’s because the followers were paid for or tricked into liking the page. I’m going to say it again; the number of followers doesn’t matter.

What matters – if you are creating a community or awareness – is engagement and whether people care about what you’re posting. This can’t be gamed. People will only interact if you are doing and saying stuff that is of value. How do you do that? See the next point.

 

4. It’s not about you and your ego

That’s right. I don’t care, nor does anyone else, about what you had for lunch or who you met at the basketball. What we all care about is what’s in it for me buster?

If you answer that question and do so regularly, people will follow and engage you. That’s how you go from zero followers to millions.

 

5. It takes a while

Zero to a million followers takes times. Like interest on your bank account, your results will compound once you cross the tipping point.

What’s the tipping point?

It’s the point at which you have nailed the following:

– Your message to the world is clear
– It’s consistent (ideally daily)
– It’s unique (not better but different)
– It’s not about you and your ugly ego
– You give more than you ask for (Jab Jab Jab Right Hook)

When you do those things, your follower count and engagement will regularly start to increase.

 

6. You need a breakout moment

The way you do that is my channeling all of your energy and emotion into every piece of content you create. If you do this for long enough, then you’ll eventually have a standout moment. That’s a moment where the world listens and you go viral. It takes time though. You could be waiting five years young Power Ranger.

 

7. Followers like to follow stories

Don’t throw boring stats and pictures at your followers all day, every day. It should come as no surprise that social media works best with stories. The best stories I’ve found are personal stories. Rather than produce content that feeds your ego, put yourself into every story you tell.

 

8. Tell stories that inspire

There are hundreds of types of stories. If I were to encourage you to do one type and one type only it would be to tell inspiring stories. Stories that inspire people to take action, think differently or be emotional about something.

 

9. Say it quickly now!

A story is great but people have a low attention span. This means you’ve got to be able to communicate succinctly. There is a lot of waffle on the Internet. The way to stand out is to plan what you are going to say and cut out the filler. People will love you if they can get value from you and have it delivered in a brief manner. I get this compliment in the form of feedback all the time and I love it.

 

10. There is no one big break

If I look at my online success, there is no one single moment. Going from zero followers and beyond is made up of a whole lot of factors which you’ll never quite work out. What I can tell you though is that all those factors require you to show up.

“Each day you have to show up with something of value to say”

 

11. It doesn’t need to be new necessarily

People think you have to say something new every day. You don’t. Sometimes it’s about saying something in a slightly different way. Sometimes it’s taking a popular idea and saying it in a better way. For me, it’s often about taking something that already exists and saying it in my way, with my story attached.

“Saying something new doesn’t create followers; saying something different does”

12. Find your channel

Everyone’s channel for creating followers is different. Try them all and see which one resonates the best for your niche. Facebook doesn’t really work for me, but Medium and LinkedIn are phenomenal. I would have never known this if I didn’t try them. Experiment like you’re playing with play-doh.

 

13. Quit being romantic

Don’t wait until you have tons of followers to get started. Be the same as you are with zero followers, as you are with a million followers. Being romantic about social media doesn’t work. When I say romantic, it’s kind of the same as saying being precious.

You think you need influence right now. You don’t. You think you need money and lots of it. You don’t. You think you’ll try harder when you’re like Gary Vaynerchuk. You won’t.

So now do you understand that we all start with zero followers and that’s cool bananas?

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

5 Empowering Statements That Will Get Rid of Your Fears Once and for All

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In an instant, you go from being nowhere to being -now here- in the land of the living! Ever wondered how that all happens? In the morning when you wake up, isn’t it just another ordinary miracle how we all of a sudden find ourselves lying in bed, on planet earth and all the stored data of our lives just comes pouring in. One minute you were “who knows where” the next you’re back into “planet earth.”

This is all fascinating, but have you ever had one of those days when as soon as you awaken to the new day, you almost wish it was already over? I mean the thought of crawling out of bed and facing your day is just daunting.

That used to be my kind of morning not sometimes,  but every single day. No matter what I told myself, I just abhorred the new day or the thought of getting out of bed. The muscles in my body ached although it didn’t make sense. I wasn’t sore from exercising because back then, I didn’t even know what exercise was.

“Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves.” – Cheryl Strayed

Each morning that same sick feeling in my stomach would show up, yet I wasn’t sick. In my head, being awake was just as awful as being asleep because the nightmare that was tormenting my life seemed to follow me everywhere, like a dark shadow.

That was the theme of my life back when all I knew was survival and painstaking hustle. It wasn’t until I made some very major decisions in my life that I started to experience a life free from pain, depression, constant sadness and anger.

And while today I live an extremely different reality from what once tormented me, I do realize that many people are still struggling with irrational fears. As far as their reality is concerned, there’s nothing irrational or trivial about how they feel and what they have to deal with each day.

The burden of life is weighing on their shoulders. Whether or not they are occupying a leadership position or simply just want to survive the current upheaval our society is facing, there is a great need for humanity to be reminded of what’s real.

“It’s okay to be scared. Being scared means you’re about to do something really, really brave.” – Mandy Hale

This is why I want to share with you statements which will work for you if you have been feeling tormented by the burdens of life and false conditioning. Even if you didn’t grow up in the midst of poverty and harsh conditions like I did, there’s so much junk in one’s mind often clouding your path of prosperity and success.

So on those days when you wake up and your morning feels anything other than miraculous, feed your mind with these 5 statements:

1. I overcome my fear of anything and everything and I live life courageously.

2. I need not to fear. Because fear is not of the present but of the past and future, both of which do not exist in the now.

3. I believe this situation/condition will work out for good and all those concerned. Though I may not know how, I still choose to believe this for myself today and I step into my day eager to find opportunities rather than obstacles.

4. I will not be discouraged or let outside forces dictate what I know to be true in my own heart. I will not allow the opinion of another to kill my dream or wound my heart. This is about being myself, expressing my authentic voice and recognizing that no one else can do it for me.

5. I am no longer a victim and I cease blaming my situation and the people around me for how I feel as this only robs me of joy and success. Because I know I was born to win and succeed, I will press on, firmly grounded in my own power to change my life for the better and empower others to do the same.

Share with us below your special statements and empower those like you who are striving for a better life!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Startups

Your Competition Is Magnificent – Quit Being A Sook

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I’ve got this friend and he’s always crying about the competition. He spends a lot of time sooking about them and coming up with plans to take them down.

I’ve put up with it for a while, but now it’s driving me nuts. I started to think: how can we learn to love our competition in business?

Here are some thoughts I had about your competition:

 

Thought #1 – You say they’re lying. Good!

My friend says his competition is lying. Many businesses lie and that’s fantastic news for you. When a business lies, they are playing the short game.

“The long game in business is about being so vulnerable, authentic and real that it punches your ideal customer in the face every time they hear about your brand”

Trust in business, leads to incredible progress. All those marketing campaigns your competitor’s use are mostly to make them sound like something they are not. When your business is trustworthy, you don’t need to market as much.

Being honest cuts through the hype and because it’s so rare, your ideal customer runs towards you at 110km, with their arms wide open. Right behind them are all of their network who are begging to hear from a business that is a real – a business that is like you and me.

Don’t hate your dishonest competition: learn to love them from the bottom of your heart. See the love in your competition.

 

Thought #2 – There’s enough room for everyone

This scarcity mindset that you have to own 100% of the market in your first three years of operations is bulldust. There’s room for you and your competitors. It’s not a sprint; it’s a marathon to reach the unicorn status that is success/world domination.

Feeling like you’re drowning in competition is exactly that. Focusing on your competition 24/7 makes you feel like absolute garbage after a while. It stops you from having a good night sleep full of dreams that contain growth, prosperity, optimism and triumph towards your businesses mission.

I used to be that guy that couldn’t sleep because of competition. Every time someone brought out the same product that was cheaper than mine, I cracked it. I thought that business was so hard because there were so many people that wanted to cut my lunch.

What I forgot is that despite all the competition, people were still buying. Even if we weren’t the cheapest, it didn’t matter. Some people would find us and buy, and others wouldn’t.

The competition can only cut your lunch for so long. If you stick at it and not let the thoughts of their horrible shadows upset you, you’ll be soon making the lunches and cutting theirs.

 

Thought #3 – It’s ugly

Sooking like a pissed off brown bear with a crown on its head is ugly. You’re showing everyone you work with that you are a sore loser. Winners worry about their own business first.

“Winners know that their business isn’t an immaculate diamond on day one”

Every time my friend complained about his competitors; it made his business seem ugly. I stopped becoming drawn to it as I did at the start. The conversations became more about his competitors than his own business. The focus was lost on competitors which he couldn’t control.

 

Thought #4 – You can’t win every deal

No business wins 100% of the opportunities that are presented. There’s this lie that you have to be always winning to be successful. There’s this belief that some people have that says their business is unique and therefore it’s only normal that when they pitch, they will always win.

Again, this is total BS. Your business might have some unique strengths, but there’s always competition. Some deals you’ll win and some deals you won’t. You don’t need to win all the time to put food on the table and be successful.

I’m also competitive by nature and I’ve had to settle sometimes for the simple fact that I won’t win all the time. Sometimes losing a deal is only the beginning. The opportunities you lose are where all the lessons are.

“Your lost opportunities are what strengthen your entire value proposition to the market”

 

Thought #5 – Seeing your competitors suck is inspiring

When a competitor of yours has a major failure, you should be inspired. What I mean is that you should never want your own client base to suffer the same gunshot to the head. Instead of trash talking your competitors for their mistakes, use them as inspiration to not be like them.

Your competitors should form part of the reason why you exist. You should exist not to make the same dumb mistakes they do. You should exist so your customers have a better alternative. Having horrendous companies within the same industry has inspired many businesses like Uber and Airbnb.

Being a business full of inspiring people is easier when everyone else sucks.

 

Thought #6 – Complaining shows insecurity

By my friend complaining about his competition, what he revealed to me was his insecurity. He was showing me that he lacked the confidence in his own product and so it made sense for him to talk down everyone else’s.

The thing is when you love your product and genuinely believe it’s the best in its field, you forget about everyone else’s. Believing in your product offering comes from the confidence that as a business you believe in yourselves.

If you believe, your ideal customer will believe. Bagging your competition may make you feel better in the short term, but it will never make your business grow.

Thought #7 – You only have so much thinking space

Don’t waste it thinking about your competitors. Use your thinking space to come up with new ideas, to innovate and to WOW your customers. These habits will stop you from living in the scarcity that comes with being obsessed by your competition.

Thinking about your competitors is not going to make them go away. Complaining about them will not improve your product or service. To have a good business, you have to operate from a place of creativity. Being creative is hard work and so you don’t want throw away your thinking space.

Dreaming about your competitors puts you in a spiral of negative thoughts. These thoughts start to overtake the positive ones and pretty soon you can’t be relentlessly optimistic anymore. It’s this optimism that helps you come up with ideas that will change the world.

Much like we compare ourselves to the lives we live through looking at other people’s social media, focusing on your competitor’s forces you to always believe you don’t have enough.

I’m here to say you are good enough. Your business is good enough. Your business can be one of the great’s.

 

Thought #8 – You can actually do business with your competitors

Here’s the really stupid thing: You can actually do business with your competitors. See, your business can’t fulfill every customer need. Instead of saying “We don’t do that,” use your competitors as referral partners.

I can remember in a business that I was a part of, where we used our competitors over the road to supply us with stock when we ran out and had items on back order. We would do the same thing for them when they ran out of stock. As a result, we always had stock.

“Our competitors over the road taught us lots of things we would have never known if we tried to play the solo game. Business is a team sport”

 

***Final thought***

Your competition is not the problem. They’re not the reason why you are losing sales. The real reason you are focused on your competition is because something is wrong with the way you are thinking. Your competitors can force you to sabotage your own success if you don’t stop focusing on them.

Complaining about your competitors never get’s you anywhere. The way to fast-track your success is to get intimate with your competitors and find a way to be uniquely you. Find a way to be bold, authentic, real, sexy and unwavering in your businesses values. Be the honest, cool company that is friends with everybody. That’s how you go from being a sook to being the best in your field.

I want you to use your competition to be world-class. You deserve it.

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

Tim is best known as a long-time contributor on Addicted2Success. Tim's content has been shared hundreds of thousands of times and he has written multiple viral posts all around success, personal development, motivation, and entrepreneurship. During the day Tim works with the most iconic tech companies in the world, as an adviser, to assist them in expanding into Australia. By night, Tim coaches his students on the principles of personal development and the fundamentals of entrepreneurship. You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.net or through his Facebook.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Nicholas Marchwinski

    Apr 6, 2017 at 2:44 am

    Interesting Article Alan. I agree with the study in the sense that a combination of positive and negative motivation is typically the best answer. Everyone is unique so there will be cases in which an individual crumbles under the pressure of negative motivation while there are others who thrive from it. Those individuals who love to prove someone wrong are an example I can think of immediately.

  2. Ewen Munro

    Feb 3, 2017 at 11:14 pm

    Great read, Alan! 😉 #keepgrowing #keepcreating

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Motivation

The Letter I Wrote To A Broken Man

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Every day I get lots of emails from readers asking me how to solve a major life issue.

I got one last week and realized that my advice is often the same. I thought that it might be easier to write my advice about how to stop being so broken. That way, every time I get one of these emails I can point people to it.

Here’s the advice I gave this broken man that wrote to me:

 

1. Find someone who is going to change your thinking

This man had a whole list of problems that he tried to tell me were impossible to solve. He listed them in such detail and made each one sound beyond impossible to solve. He was hoping that he would bamboozle me and that I’d reply and say “Mate you’re right, those problems are impossible to solve and I can’t help you.”

The first step I always tell these so called “broken people” is that they need to get out of their head. They’ve become obsessed with their challenges and they need to interrupt their thinking. The easiest and quickest way to do this is to find someone to change your thinking.

To make this broken man’s life easy, I gave him the answer of who to start with. He needed a rapid change of thinking and the best person I know to do this is Tony Robbins. Now I could have let him find his own person to assist, but it would have ended up becoming another excuse.

What he needed to hear was something radically different to the story that he’d memorized and become an expert narrator in. Tony sure knows how to change the way you think and slap you in the face when you need it. This is always the beginning.

 

2. Quit your job

This broken man blamed a lot of his problems on his job. This is common in all the letters I get from people who think they’re broken. They all have an issue that stems from what they do for a living.

What’s crazy is that your job or business is your decision. If you don’t like the result, then quit. It’s not rocket science; it’s just the reality.

“Quitting something you hate is the best decision you’ll ever make”

You can always find another source of income. The best thing about quitting is that you’ll be forced to find a new way to make a living pretty quickly so you can pay your bills.

Make it a slow transition if you need to, but just know that you must quit. Don’t let anything piss you off anymore. Stop doing what you don’t love. If your work doesn’t light you up, then quit!

 

3. Failing a lot is good. Stop being afraid.

My friend, the broken man, tried to tell me that he was failing a lot. I stood up in my seat and gave him a metaphorical round of applause (he obviously couldn’t see me do this). If you’re failing a lot, then that’s the best bloody news I’ve ever heard! Don’t be down about it; be excited about it.

This means your giving it a go and taking action. That’s better than 99% of other people who are doing nothing and sitting on the couch hoping to get lucky. You’ll eventually find a way if you keep failing. It’s inevitable.

Being afraid is unnecessary and it’s delusional. You’re not supposed to know exactly what to do and no one who is successful does.

“You’re supposed to take action, and then learn from the outcomes and adjust the sails of your ship as you go”

 

4. Go and volunteer at a homeless shelter

I’ve said this one a lot because I’ve personally found it very effective – In fact, I was just at the homeless shelter again last week. It’s the idea that you need to see problems far bigger than your own. I’ve never seen anyone walk into a homeless shelter and spend a day there, who hasn’t come out the other side with a new way of looking at life.

You’re forced into helping others and you do whatever you can because many of the people you’ll meet are beyond desperate. In reality, your problems are not desperate where as there’s is. Once you’ve seen the worst there is to see, then you’ll be able to break your pattern of misery.

 

5. Your problems are the same

This broken man was so stuck in his circumstances that he couldn’t see the rest of the world. He stopped seeing the hardships that others are going through and he somehow believed the lie that he was the only one facing these problems. I told him something he didn’t expect: “Your problems are the same as every other email I get.”

This was true. Every email I get with these so-called “impossible challenges” is the same. It’s the same issue with a different character playing the lead role of the story. Your problems are not unique or special. Your problems yesterday were vanilla and my problems today are strawberry. They’re all flavors of the same milkshake.

 

6. You’re being selfish

The last very blunt thing I said to this broken man (out of love and respect) was: “You’re being selfish.” I told him that his entire story was about him and his own selfish desires.

Nowhere in the story was there room for anybody else. Nowhere in the story was there a purpose to unite people, or serve people or give something to someone. It was all just about him and how important he was and how he must have all the answers.

“The way you become broken in the first place is when you’re 100% focused on yourself”

Selfishness is at the heart of so many life problems. It’s not all about you, you know. I’d go as far as saying that you should make your life about much more than you.

Once you move away from being entirely selfish, new opportunities start to find their way to you. These opportunities are not luck; these opportunities are the result of you moving beyond just caring about yourself. Until you give a damn about other people, you’re going to continue to be broken.

You started to become broken in the first place when you forgot about everyone else and became obsessed with yourself. Kill the obsession and you’ll find the answer to your dreams.

These are the things I told this young man. These are the same tools you can use if you feel broken.

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

Don’t Hurt Your Future Self By Quitting

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“Every decision you make affects someone very special: your future self”

You’ve never met this person, but they are carrying the torch of your dreams. Life is hard for them too except their further along the timeline of life than you. Have you ever wondered what the future you will be like?

It’s something worth contemplating through deep and inward thinking.

When you give up on your dreams and quit, you’re not just hurting you right now, you’re killing the future you as well. That future you is bound by the decisions that you make today. One day you will become that future you and wish you could change that decision to quit. By then, it’s too late to change the past. There ain’t no rewind button on life.

 

Do you really need to quit?

I know you think it’s impossible and your only option is to quit, but that’s because you’ve reached your breaking point. I’ve been there too. I’ve reached a level of failure that has become insurmountable. I too have felt like I couldn’t go on and life had no meaning.

All of your emotional states, at times, can get like this. We’re human after all and don’t you forget that. We live in a flawed body, but that’s why humans are so beautiful in the first place. You don’t need to quit right now; there’s always another way.

 

The best thing to do when you want to quit

This is going to sound cliché: take a break and get out of your head for a few weeks. Go somewhere far, far away and contemplate the meaning of your life and why you’re still here. I say this because your life is a choice. You can decide to end your life at any point, but you haven’t.

You’re not a coward and you’d never do that. You have courage and you’re here for a reason.

 

Quitting may be the best option

Sometimes quitting is a good thing. Sometimes you have too many things on the go and when you quit, you free up time to focus on something that means more to you. My only plea is that you think about your future self when you quit. Think about whether your future self will be affected and whether you’ll be happy with the result.

There are no absolutes in life, only decisions that you make which are guided by your heart. There is no one answer. No one’s right and no one’s wrong. Our circumstances and how we think about them, more importantly, determine the meaning we give to any situation.

 

Who do you want your future self to be?

As you imagine your future self, what is he or she doing? Can you picture where they are? When I asked this question, I got an instant response which reaffirmed what I do today. I instantly saw myself on stage giving speeches to thousands of people.

I saw myself as the person that helps find people’s why and motivates them towards their dreams. I saw myself with a family and writing a best selling book. Strangely enough, I saw my future self as I always have: doing something inspiring to help others. I saw myself unleashing emotion in others to help them push through their limiting beliefs.

 

Now that you know your future self, how can you help them today?

So we’ve done a bit of visualizing in this article already. It’s a powerful way to see what you can become when you don’t quit. It’s a great way to fall in love with the person that you can create in the future by using the power of today’s decisions.

“I think we all need to become dreamers every now and then. If we don’t, we get stuck in today, and in our head full of possibilities”

If I had one tip when it comes to dreaming up the future, it would be this: try and see your future better than it is. Be outrageous and think of possibilities that today would scare you. You’ll be surprised how what you dream up today can become a reality.

I remember suffering from anxiety and trying to dream what it would be like to be rid of it. I remember being scared of flying and always wanting to travel. I remember having never found love and wondering what that would be like. I remember not being able to get in front of lots of people and do any form of public speaking. I remember being too scared to be vulnerable and share the real me.

Now, I’ve completely eliminated my anxiety, I can fly whenever I want with no issues, I have experienced real love, I am on my way to successfully being able to speak in front of larger audiences, and I’m happy to be vulnerable and share my story with everybody. That’s what can happen when you treat your future self with respect.

 

So now what?

Now I want you to do the hard part: take action. Follow the steps above and have some fun. Leave the present for the moment and get to know who you want your future self to be. Your future self is you after all, so you need to treat them like a king or queen.

Write a list of decisions you need to make in order to create the best future you that’s humanly possible. Like I always say, “Don’t be afraid to have big, audacious, crazy dreams.” If you can’t dream it, then you can never achieve it. Remember that next time someone tells you that dreams are BS.

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

We All Start With Zero Followers – Comprehenday?

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For the record: followers mean jack, attention is king.

With that said, all of us (including me) started with zero followers. You’re not alone. Whatever your big idea is you are probably going to need people to know about it. The sad truth is that it’s now done via social media.

You’ll need a combination of shares, likes, views, recommends or whatever other form of measurement these crazy social media platforms decide to implement. These metrics equal attention and that’s how people are going to know about what it is that you do.

Let’s not pretend that social media is useless. That would be naïve.

In this bustling, new age world, everyone owns content now. Anyone can go viral and anyone can be heard. Some find this reality a sad fact, but then these same people find something to cry about no matter what so ignore them.

The journey from zero followers to thousands and even millions looks like this:

 

1. We all started somewhere

Quit your complaining we’ve all started at zero followers at some point. Starting with nothing and then building your community up is an amazing feeling. Embrace the journey of creating a following.

The game of comparing follower counts with others will distract you from creating content and force you into consumption mode. Then you’ll over consume and regurgitate all over yourself. Yuck!

 

2. Stop trying to game the system

You can’t buy followers and not have people notice. We can all scan your follower list and see that you cheated. More importantly, the number of followers doesn’t matter.

3. Engagement is everything

Ever seen a social media account with millions of followers and one or two likes/comments per post? That’s because the followers were paid for or tricked into liking the page. I’m going to say it again; the number of followers doesn’t matter.

What matters – if you are creating a community or awareness – is engagement and whether people care about what you’re posting. This can’t be gamed. People will only interact if you are doing and saying stuff that is of value. How do you do that? See the next point.

 

4. It’s not about you and your ego

That’s right. I don’t care, nor does anyone else, about what you had for lunch or who you met at the basketball. What we all care about is what’s in it for me buster?

If you answer that question and do so regularly, people will follow and engage you. That’s how you go from zero followers to millions.

 

5. It takes a while

Zero to a million followers takes times. Like interest on your bank account, your results will compound once you cross the tipping point.

What’s the tipping point?

It’s the point at which you have nailed the following:

– Your message to the world is clear
– It’s consistent (ideally daily)
– It’s unique (not better but different)
– It’s not about you and your ugly ego
– You give more than you ask for (Jab Jab Jab Right Hook)

When you do those things, your follower count and engagement will regularly start to increase.

 

6. You need a breakout moment

The way you do that is my channeling all of your energy and emotion into every piece of content you create. If you do this for long enough, then you’ll eventually have a standout moment. That’s a moment where the world listens and you go viral. It takes time though. You could be waiting five years young Power Ranger.

 

7. Followers like to follow stories

Don’t throw boring stats and pictures at your followers all day, every day. It should come as no surprise that social media works best with stories. The best stories I’ve found are personal stories. Rather than produce content that feeds your ego, put yourself into every story you tell.

 

8. Tell stories that inspire

There are hundreds of types of stories. If I were to encourage you to do one type and one type only it would be to tell inspiring stories. Stories that inspire people to take action, think differently or be emotional about something.

 

9. Say it quickly now!

A story is great but people have a low attention span. This means you’ve got to be able to communicate succinctly. There is a lot of waffle on the Internet. The way to stand out is to plan what you are going to say and cut out the filler. People will love you if they can get value from you and have it delivered in a brief manner. I get this compliment in the form of feedback all the time and I love it.

 

10. There is no one big break

If I look at my online success, there is no one single moment. Going from zero followers and beyond is made up of a whole lot of factors which you’ll never quite work out. What I can tell you though is that all those factors require you to show up.

“Each day you have to show up with something of value to say”

 

11. It doesn’t need to be new necessarily

People think you have to say something new every day. You don’t. Sometimes it’s about saying something in a slightly different way. Sometimes it’s taking a popular idea and saying it in a better way. For me, it’s often about taking something that already exists and saying it in my way, with my story attached.

“Saying something new doesn’t create followers; saying something different does”

12. Find your channel

Everyone’s channel for creating followers is different. Try them all and see which one resonates the best for your niche. Facebook doesn’t really work for me, but Medium and LinkedIn are phenomenal. I would have never known this if I didn’t try them. Experiment like you’re playing with play-doh.

 

13. Quit being romantic

Don’t wait until you have tons of followers to get started. Be the same as you are with zero followers, as you are with a million followers. Being romantic about social media doesn’t work. When I say romantic, it’s kind of the same as saying being precious.

You think you need influence right now. You don’t. You think you need money and lots of it. You don’t. You think you’ll try harder when you’re like Gary Vaynerchuk. You won’t.

So now do you understand that we all start with zero followers and that’s cool bananas?

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

5 Empowering Statements That Will Get Rid of Your Fears Once and for All

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fears

In an instant, you go from being nowhere to being -now here- in the land of the living! Ever wondered how that all happens? In the morning when you wake up, isn’t it just another ordinary miracle how we all of a sudden find ourselves lying in bed, on planet earth and all the stored data of our lives just comes pouring in. One minute you were “who knows where” the next you’re back into “planet earth.”

This is all fascinating, but have you ever had one of those days when as soon as you awaken to the new day, you almost wish it was already over? I mean the thought of crawling out of bed and facing your day is just daunting.

That used to be my kind of morning not sometimes,  but every single day. No matter what I told myself, I just abhorred the new day or the thought of getting out of bed. The muscles in my body ached although it didn’t make sense. I wasn’t sore from exercising because back then, I didn’t even know what exercise was.

“Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves.” – Cheryl Strayed

Each morning that same sick feeling in my stomach would show up, yet I wasn’t sick. In my head, being awake was just as awful as being asleep because the nightmare that was tormenting my life seemed to follow me everywhere, like a dark shadow.

That was the theme of my life back when all I knew was survival and painstaking hustle. It wasn’t until I made some very major decisions in my life that I started to experience a life free from pain, depression, constant sadness and anger.

And while today I live an extremely different reality from what once tormented me, I do realize that many people are still struggling with irrational fears. As far as their reality is concerned, there’s nothing irrational or trivial about how they feel and what they have to deal with each day.

The burden of life is weighing on their shoulders. Whether or not they are occupying a leadership position or simply just want to survive the current upheaval our society is facing, there is a great need for humanity to be reminded of what’s real.

“It’s okay to be scared. Being scared means you’re about to do something really, really brave.” – Mandy Hale

This is why I want to share with you statements which will work for you if you have been feeling tormented by the burdens of life and false conditioning. Even if you didn’t grow up in the midst of poverty and harsh conditions like I did, there’s so much junk in one’s mind often clouding your path of prosperity and success.

So on those days when you wake up and your morning feels anything other than miraculous, feed your mind with these 5 statements:

1. I overcome my fear of anything and everything and I live life courageously.

2. I need not to fear. Because fear is not of the present but of the past and future, both of which do not exist in the now.

3. I believe this situation/condition will work out for good and all those concerned. Though I may not know how, I still choose to believe this for myself today and I step into my day eager to find opportunities rather than obstacles.

4. I will not be discouraged or let outside forces dictate what I know to be true in my own heart. I will not allow the opinion of another to kill my dream or wound my heart. This is about being myself, expressing my authentic voice and recognizing that no one else can do it for me.

5. I am no longer a victim and I cease blaming my situation and the people around me for how I feel as this only robs me of joy and success. Because I know I was born to win and succeed, I will press on, firmly grounded in my own power to change my life for the better and empower others to do the same.

Share with us below your special statements and empower those like you who are striving for a better life!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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