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11 Ways To Become A Master Communicator – Colin James

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When we talk about success one of the biggest factors that determine whether we will reach our goals, is our communication. To make life easy for everyone on Addicted2Success, I decided to interview the world expert on the subject, Colin James.

The part of the interview that left me speechless was when Colin talked about his recent battle with cancer where he had half his bottom lip cut out and cancer on his face. He told me that we are all going to die at some point, and a lot of people live in denial of this fact.

Colin’s way of thinking is “hey I survived cancer twice… so who really cares about anything – just go for it.” I absolutely loved the way he reframed this difficult experience and how he is 100% committed to delivering the best knowledge and insights he can to help people in different area’s of their life.

The business that Colin has run for 27 years is mostly centred on teaching corporates and individuals in the areas of leadership, communication and followership. Leading up to the interview I attended one of Colin’s master classes to find out if all the talk was just marketing hype or genuine.

That night, while watching Colin, I took pages and pages of notes and laughed harder than when I used to watch Seinfeld. It usually takes a lot to make me laugh, but Colin had me thoroughly entertained and educated the whole time. Check him out; he will redefine who you are!

Below are Colin’s eleven ways for anyone to build mastery as a communicator.

 

1. Belief is part of the skill

One of the difficulties with communication is that people don’t believe that they can master it. Everything in your life that you believe is an arbitrary intellectual construct that you created and can be changed at any time.

During one of Colin’s events, he proves this by getting the audience to draw a three-dimensional, artist quality picture in sixty minutes that most believe they can’t do. One hour later, Colin, has them holding their finished portrait in their hands. Every skill can be learned.

After deconstructing the ‘talent vs skill’ paradigm (for example, the belief that artistic ability is a talent), he then tells them “if it’s possible in the world then it’s possible for you. It’s only a question of how, and a skill is just the how.”

 

2. Follow what good leaders do and pretend you know how

Good leaders pretend they know what they are doing. When you are the leader, there is an assumption or a presumption that you know what you’re doing in regards to managing the business and the strategy. This phenomenon creates an artificial sensibility that these leaders are somehow in an elite level of capability.

Have you ever been in a room when the CEO walks in? The whole vibe of the room instantly changes and people all of a sudden become self-conscious, they talk differently, they change their posture, their tonality alters, and they become more formal

The moment the CEO walks out of the room people then visibly start to relax again. What’s going on here is that a human being has walked into the room and the assumption of this person is that they have some sort of prowess or elevated state. The reality is that this human being is just making things up as they go along just like everybody else is.

“Everyone tries to make up their version of reality and then try and encourage other people to comply”

The future leaders will be the ones who have the courage to say and reflect that they too are in a state of creation on a daily basis. What the CEO has isn’t some special capability or gift, but more likely a result of circumstance and intent, rather than a gift they have been given.

This trait amongst senior leaders is a weakness because it creates a divide between the senior executives and their staff. Finding more of a sense of equality would be a lot healthier for the business.

“Millennials aren’t impressed with status anymore; they are impressed by competence”

3. Become “other conscious”

Always think and design everything you communicate from the audience’s points of view. The way you position or frame your messages needs to be within their reality.

Let’s say you have an idea or strategy you want to get across. You can’t persuade someone from your position towards theirs, you must start with their world view first. There are a couple of benefits to this way of communicating. First of all you start to think the way that they think which means you understand their frames of references and what’s important to them – this will give you the framing references for your content.

The other benefit is that you are focusing on someone other than yourself. The biggest mistake people have in communicating is that they become self-conscious, and they worry what people will think of them. I am sure everyone has been in an interview where you have thought to yourself while communicating an idea, “I hope this is making sense, and I am making a good impression.”

An internal dialogue that is self-conscious in its origins will immediately impact on your ability to communicate a concept to someone. Become what Colin calls “other conscious.”

 

4. Change the self-talk in your head

Try to get yourself familiar with the idea of consistent commitment to excellence, which is that you never have a bad day or an average meeting. Every meeting you attend, you should go in with the intent that the meeting is going to be significant rather than being in cruise control like most people.Colin James Interview With Tim Denning 2

Tell yourself that this meeting will be useful and that what you will say, do and participate in will leave the people you encounter better off as a result of your contribution – this is how reputation is built.

Most people will have good days or moments rather than having excellence as the norm. Ever noticed how in sport the great players are consistently great? The reason this occurs is because of their consistency, which ends up building their reputation.

 

5. Your smartphone determines your status when communicating

Most people are drawn to their smartphone rather than communicating with people around them. In more sophisticated countries like Japan and Korea, it’s already becoming socially embarrassing if you are looking at your device in a social context. To be on public transport in one of these countries and to be looking at your smartphone, is considered to be as bad as spitting on the ground.

“Technology has changed the way young people think, and they don’t necessarily think in hierarchies anymore but rather in networks”

In places like Singapore, if you go to a meeting and put your smartphone on the table, it instantly signifies you as low in status. This one act shows that you are a junior because you are at the beck and call of others and are not important enough to be fully present in the room.

At the start of a meeting, from now on, ask everyone if they can put their phones away and off the table. Watch how this transforms the way you communicate. By creating some boundaries around this smartphone requirement in meetings, you will find that people respect the rule.

You need to be committed in meetings to context and context means to be present. As the communicator, it is your role to set the context, and this goes for technology as well.

“Everyone’s busy. The person at the reception is as busy as the executive sitting at their desk. Somehow there appears to be a hierarchy of busyness these days “

 

6. Tell stories that meet your contention

Stories are the most powerful way to influence and a core skill that any communicator has to develop. The best stories are true, from your experience and link to your communication outcome. It’s best delivered in a punchy way without excessive detail.

Through the telling of a story it allows you to embed a recommendation around behaviour, an invitation to overcome resistance and objections, alleviate stress and anxiety, or it can be social proof to validate your argument or theory.

In other words, your story needs to have a point and link to your outcome or theory. Stories also have to have the little touches of truthful detail that give it context and legitimacy like a persons name, the time, and the location.

 

7. Stop killing people with weapons of mass destruction (Powerpoint)

“Death by Powerpoint” has become a popular catchphrase and the best way to avoid this is to rarely use it. If you must use Powerpoint slides, keep them outcome focused and make sure they validate what you’re saying, not act as a script of what you’re saying.

Love the B button!

If you have a Powerpoint showing for the whole time you are communicating with an audience, the attention of your audience will be unconsciously drawn to the slides rather than you. The best way to use Powerpoint is to display a slide that validates your point, and then once you have made your point, flick the presentation back to the all black screen.

“Powerpoint should only be on when it’s adding value otherwise it should be off”

Powerpoint is starting to become banned in large companies like Australian Banks, Yahoo and Apple because people are using Powerpoint for their own benefit, so they can remember their talk, rather than for the benefit of the audience.

 

8. Reframe your thinking to deal with public speaking nervousness

With public speaking, a lot of nervousness is linked to self-belief. This self-belief is sometimes clouded by a lack of perspective or being too focused on what the audience will think of you.

Shift your attention to the audience and only think of being generous and giving value. This one adjustment can be a significant game changer in anyone’s capacity to communicate and will immediately eliminate self-consciousness.

“Focus on what you can give, rather than what people might think”

If you have ever been in the emergency section in a hospital late at night you would have seen that there are drunks and drug addicts yelling at the nurses, but even with all the shouting, the nurses just focus on being professional and caring for them as a patient. They don’t take it personally – that’s how you need to be with public speaking. The nurses weren’t self-conscious, they were doing their jobs.

Your job in public speaking is to deliver the content. Getting that matter of fact about it can help with the nerves. While you’re thinking about presenting in front of a group, this same group hardly even know you’re alive, and they will more than likely forget that you exist the moment you leave the room.

What they want is to hear something that will make their day to day challenges easier to deal with and their outcomes, easier to achieve. Help them to do that and they will love you…they won’t care if you aren’t word perfect and polished. To demonstrate this point, Colin told me about a woman that attended his seminar who was a high profile, actuary.

Colin James AudienceBefore Colin’s training, she was terrified of public speaking and lacked communication confidence. After two days of Colin’s seminar her voice filled the room, she stood with total confidence and spoke with such eloquence that people were shocked by her transformation.

When Colin asked the woman how she changed so rapidly she said it was all about the shift in her perspective. At first she thought public speaking was all about her, but when she realised it was about the audience, she no longer felt nervous and she began to feel free and completely liberated.

Even though this woman was a subject matter expert, she learned that all she had to do was stand in her strength and deliver her content; after all she knew it better than anyone else. The shift began when she believed that she could be of immense value when she stood in front of a group and spoke.

 

9. Communication is not a perfectly practiced play

Memorising speeches is death. A good communicator does not go off and memorise text. A good communicator has a structure and free forms around this structure. This is more elegant because then you can adjust to the audience in front of you. Memorising text is a play, and that’s not communicating.

 

10. Be careful using acronyms out of context

It’s all about context. As an example, describing scientific processes can be a challenge because the full terms will make your sentences very long, and science has convoluted descriptions for almost everything. In this scenario, acronyms can be very handy when communicating your point.

Where the risk is with acronyms is that there is a presumption of understanding. When presenting acronyms to an audience, it’s always best to do it this way:

– Say the acronym in its long form description

– Introduce the acronym

– Repeat the long form of the acronym

– Reinforce the acronym

Before using an acronym ask yourself, does it serve the context and does it provide a neat shorthand, if it ticks these two boxes then its use is valid. The way you know not to use an acronym is if its use is lazy, doesn’t respect the audience’s level of knowledge or makes assumptions that people know what it means.

 

11. Your body has a language of its own – USE IT

Posture the way you carry yourself communicates something about you. All of us have been in situations Colin James - Posturewhere someone walks into the room, and you say to the person next to you, “who is that person?”

What makes you say that is because the person looks like they carry themself with dignity and authority. There is an assumption of some competence just in their physicality, and most of this is posture related (this doesn’t mean that you strut around like some arrogant peacock, though).

So if you are going to walk up to the front of the room to deliver a presentation, you should be walking as tall as you can be right from the start.

 

Gestures you need to develop a gesture vocabulary Colin says. One habit to avoid with gestures is your hands becoming a distracter. If you have ever seen someone speak who is flapping their hands all over the place, it becomes very distracting, and the hand becomes the focus instead of what the person is saying.Colin James Hand Gestures

To demonstrate this, imagine you’re in a room with a speaker and the speaker says, “are there any questions?” If they did this with their hands open (palms facing up), you would feel that they are genuinely interested in the audience asking questions.

If they did this with their palms down it means the exact opposite and that they’re closing the conversation. Your hands have their own vocabulary, and they can give very different meanings to what you are saying.

 

Movement if you are going to move then move with purpose – you’re not just supposed to waltz around a Colin James Movementspace. If you’re in a meeting, and you’re facing somebody, and you’re trying to influence them, everything you do should be from their left to right, not your left to right.

As an example, if you are tapping the table with your hand to signal three things that you want to talk about, you would tap them out from your right to left (their left to right). That’s the linear progression for them to follow what you are doing in the clearest possible way.

 

Facial expressions be aware that your face is another communication tool. People seek meaning and cue off your facial expressions and voice tone more than off the words you are speaking. Colin used an example of a video he saw of me where he said that my words were very passionate, but my face came across very masked and not reflecting the same passion. It could cause a person to doubt my words.

Colin James - Facial Expression (Jim Carrey)A tip Colin gave me to help solve this issue when shooting a video for Youtube, is to make my facial expressions exaggerated and animate my face. To animate my face I could say something like “I am passionate,” so my whole face now goes into an expression of passion.

This might result in my mouth opening, my eyes closing, my face lighting up. After you have the first take, you go back and have a look at what you have recorded. If you have followed Colin’s tips, your face might look over the top although sometimes, Colin says, you look fine.

The reason for this is because at first we can think we are being over the top but in fact we are being appropriate, ask others for their feedback. On the second take, you might just modify your facial expressions to be one notch back if the first take looked too over the top.

Learn your face, play with expressions in the mirror. Go for exaggeration initially and then pull back a little bit from there. Most people in a corporate environment mask their face and become very formal which is why a lot of presentations in this context become very dull.

Colin James Standards Quote

If you would like to know more about Colin’s training programs or watch some videos of him in action, then visit his website colinjamesmethod.com

Tim is best known as a long-time contributor on Addicted2Success. Tim's content has been shared millions of times and he has written multiple viral posts all around personal development and entrepreneurship.You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.net

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Success Advice

5 Steps to Financial Mindfulness

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financial mindfulness

5Financial mindfulness might sound like some vague abstraction, but it’s really a simple concept. The idea is that when you increase your awareness of not just your spending habits but your thoughts and feelings about money itself, you can have a better relationship with your finances.

Achieving financial mindfulness isn’t linear. It’s a mix of both practical and emotional approaches — building up your financial health with tangible tips, but also decluttering your mind and building up your self-esteem. Essentially, by taking ownership of your actions and thoughts, you can achieve true financial mindfulness.

Here, you’ll find just a handful of tips to get you started on the path of financial mindfulness:

1. Look at your income objectively

We often look at our paychecks disapprovingly. Maybe we wish we had made more; maybe we’re cursing Uncle Sam for taking a bigger chunk than we expected. But when it comes to financial mindfulness, you can’t get caught up in the emotion of your paycheck. When you stop worrying about how much money you don’t have and start focusing on what you do have, you can have a clearer outlook and a better relationship with your financial situation overall.

“You must gain control over your money or the lack of it will forever control you.” – Dave Ramsey

2. Assess what you’ve been avoiding

Whether it’s that credit card bill, student loan or empty savings account, look at it, and I guarantee you’ll feel less stressed about it. How so? Well, whether it’s finances or a fight with your partner, problems seem to get bigger when you avoid acting. So, when it comes to your financial health, be mindful of the things you’ve been avoiding.

For example, maybe you’ve been afraid to look at your credit score because you missed a few payments and think it’s gone down. Today, many credit card companies offer a dashboard to access your credit score and interact with it so it feels less like an arbitrary number and more like something you can control.

Many times, you can even play with metrics to see how making changes to your habits or payments can affect your score. So, whether it’s your credit score or your savings account, by confronting what you’ve been afraid to know or deal with, you put the power to take control back in your own hands.

3. Build up your financial self-esteem

Setting large financial goals are like setting New Year’s resolutions — if they’re too big, you’re never going to get around to doing them. So, if you want to start saving money, start by making the effort to put away just 5% every month. While this might seem like a small amount, the mindful act of doing so is going to kick-start your goal and build up your self-esteem. Once that happens, you’ll be able to set bigger goals, too.

4. Clean house

Literally, clean your house. Make it a seasonal habit of going through your closet, your pantry and your home and taking an assessment of what you already have. When you can see all of your possessions, it’s easier to be mindful of what you actually need and helps eliminate frivolous spending.

“All money is a matter of belief.” – Adam Smith

5. Think before you swipe

A lot of experts will tell you to carry around cash so you can be more mindful of spending. But the fact of the matter is, that’s not always practical. What you can do however, is make a mental note every time you swipe. The action of being more conscious and less distracted while swiping can really help you feel more in control.

Think about it like this — you start buying $4 cappuccinos on your way to work while commuting with a coworker. For the first few swipes, it might seem like just a few bucks. But if you start taking the time to mentally check in while swiping, you’ll start to realize what that money can add up to in the long run.

Either that’s money you could be saving and allocating towards bills, or simply be putting to use on things you’d enjoy more. When you’re mindful, you have more choices.

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Success Advice

How Video Games Made Me A Multi-Millionaire

Joseph Lazukin

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How I made $3M in 15 weeks with a brand new business.

And how video game theory made me a multi-millionaire…

First, let me clarify – this isn’t my first company, but that shouldn’t distract you from the true and honest reality that you can replicate what I am about to teach you.

Yet before I lay out a strategy, let me warn you, if you have never played an RPG video game, like Blizzard Entertainment’s Diablo II™, then the following will likely fly right over your head and you should download any RPG game that has a SKILL TREE and here is why…

In life everything you do, unlocks new opportunities, yet every single business strategy, project management system, and business framework I have seen, fail to incorporate this fundamental reality into their daily business operations.

And this is where game theory and specifically the importance of understanding how skill trees in popular RPG video games play a critical role in my past success and soon to be yours.

Every game ever, shows you the ENTIRE skill tree, and allows for you to see the end destination and the beginning of the decision you are about to make.

You put a skill point into “Firebolt” and then level it up to say level 5, and you unlock “Firewall”, repeat, and you unlock “Meteor” and so on and so forth, but because you can see the entire skill tree, you know where to put your skill points in order to unlock the most powerful skills as early as possible.

Now for those of you that are lost in all this video game jargon, essentially in video games, as you level up through quests or fighting monsters you gain experience, similar to how you do in real life reading books and reading or watching “How To” videos and articles on the internet to learn about a new skill, industry, or craft like marketing or copywriting for instance.

The more time you invest, the greater your experience and hopefully your skill, and just like how in real life your resume builds up, you unlock higher and higher paying jobs based on your skill level and accolades; In video games, specifically RPG games, it is the exact same.

This entire methodology however is simplified for children of all ages to play, and that is where the genius of game theory applies to building easy to execute business plans that anyone can follow to achieve wealth and rapid growth, while at the same time avoiding many of the pit falls and traps that kill motivation and businesses before they have a chance to truly thrive in the world.

So what is so genius about this “game theory” I keep referring to?

It is the very categorization by gaming companies and how they layout objectives in such a simple and intuitive way that a child as young as 6 years old, can recognize and make not only the correct decision, but also achieve taking the shortest path to success if they know only the starting point and the desired end result – that is so absolutely genius.

“The definition of genius is taking the complex and making it simple.” – Albert Einstein

As Albert Einstein says, genius is in the simplest of practices, but the irony is that many are mislead by gurus pushing complex solutions to create the illusion of authority and prestige, and as a consequence (even those of you reading this) will overlook simple executable systems that all age ranges and backgrounds can follow, because their simplicity makes you so wary and cautious of their efficacy because of your prior conditioning to look for complex solutions over those that simply and directly solve your problems.

This symptom of being conditioned to only give attention to complex solutions, is a corrosive dogmatic ideology that has created a disease I like to call “analysis paralysis” amongst every day people and especially entrepreneurs and business executives of whom I coach with great frequency, to help recover from this metaphorical paralysis that can cost millions or worse – their business.

So in order to help you now, to help you understand the value of the solution I am about to outline below, you have to consciously make a single commitment to me while reading this, you have to take a deep breath and blink three times.

Right now!

And while I could go into the psychology as to why this will help you remember what I am about to say, I will keep it short – you have been reading this long article of text, straining your eyes, while constantly both consciously and subconsciously connecting different phrases and key points made above against your wealth of personal life experiences to determine how well they either do or do not relate to you. You do this in order to determine if you can exact true actionable value in this post that will help you get ahead or solve a problem – all actions which naturally stress you out and lessen your attention span.

We, humans are natural problem solvers with an innate desire to win.

So by a simple micro-commitment to your future, such as blinking three times to give your eyes a short break and taking a deep breath (which you may or may not have noticed you have decreased the frequency and depth of your breathing when you started focusing on this article,) will all help combat the stress chemical (cortisol) in the brain, and increase overall retention. After all, the classes you were likely best at in high school and perhaps college (if you attended), were the classes you had the most fun in. Where you smiled and laughed the most, both two textbook reactions that release serotonin and dopamine (the happy chemicals) that kill cortisol (the stress chemical) and help you not only narrow in your focus, but also greatly retain more information.

Fascinating, right? Now STOP!

Pay attention or everything you have read to this point will vanish and be forgotten in the void a thousand new experiences, you are bound to experience today. HOWEVER, if you are committed to making a positive change in your life, if you are committed towards your future success, get closer to the screen, stop skimming the text and read WORD by WORD, for I fear if you do anything else, you may miss the simplicity of the solution I am about to provide by your haste to get to the end.

Each word I use from here on out is carefully crafted and I implore you to re-read not only the following section but the entirety of this article again, and then in the company of friends, to thoroughly retain and then talk over the strategy covered until YOU fully understand – this is for YOU – not THEM.

Step 1 – Start with the end in mind, but leap with clear conscious where others misguidedly step

In game theory and in this article, I gave you a glimpse about the depth of the topic we would dive into at the start in order to prepare you for the next set of information and the next and so on. In game theory, this is no different than you having a basic skill such as typing on a keyboard, which aids you in being able to complete more complex tasks such as navigating the internet, blogging, copywriting, and more. Every bit of prior information and experience, unlocks the next opportunity.

For those of you feeling numbed by the common sense above, thinking “of course you need to know how to type before you can navigate the internet” you have already failed this lesson. For you could never type and instead use speech or any variety of inputs such as a simple computer mouse to complete the task… and this is where you need to kill past prejudice about the simplicity of things, to allow for the genius of game theory come to life.

Having a firm and CLEAR understanding of where your starting point is (where you currently are now in your life at the time of reading this), and the resources that are available to you like money, time, and assets in the form of experience or relationships that you can withdraw from ( know that every relationship is like a bank account that can go bankrupt ) for any of the prior mentioned resources, and MAPPING all of these resources out before you, is the single most IMPORTANT action you can EVER do because…

It allows you to identify your ORIGIN, ground zero, your base, the lowest point at which you will ever be if you are truly investing in yourself and have already started taking notes with a pen and paper by this point of the article.

You need to write down, all of the resources I mentioned above, how you spend your time, your income, the valuable assets you have from the device you are reading this on, to your car and any other miscellaneous valuable things in your possession including junk which could be repurposed ( this list will be LONG ) and any valuable connections, etc.

STOP! Remember how I said genius is in simplicity?

Why are you falling into the SAME TRAP of pursuing complex solutions?

Consider for a moment, how can you know what is valuable or what you should write down when you DO NOT EVEN KNOW YOUR GOAL?!

I gave you a NEW PROBLEM disguised as a solution that you believed would advance you closer to your GOALS, without giving any context as to what is considered valuable. Subconsciously in your innate desire to win and solve the problem, you already started thinking of things – or worse, already committed to writing them down without knowing the END GOAL of why you are writing anything down to begin with.

Again, and this is the last time I will test you, as any room for future confusion will only hurt your ability to learn what you need to from this experience, you need to LISTEN and become a student. Kill any and all form of ego, pride, and status you believe you have – only through abandoning those distractions will you reveal your ORIGIN and with complete and total CLARITY, understand that you are truly at the STARTING point and no closer nor farther away.

It is incredibly important that for the purpose of the remainder of this article you think about nothing else but YOURSELF and reflect on everything I will say in the context of where YOU want to go with YOUR LIFE in the context of the two following questions :

What fulfills YOU, makes you HAPPY?

Who do YOU want to be in the FUTURE?

Take your time to answer both of these before continuing to read the remaining steps to understanding the genius of game theory and how to apply it in the context of YOUR LIFE, because any LACK OF CLARITY will cause you to misstep, instead of take the actions that will progress you by LEAPS and bounds closer towards your goal.

Once you have a CLEAR idea of what the answer to both of these questions is, write them down. It doesn’t have to be organized in any way, it doesn’t need to be even in complete sentences or even words at all, it can be in any form that makes sense to YOU. Remember, this is not for others, this is for YOU and how YOU hit your life goals.

Once you have your answers written down, a FUTURE is created. Now we can get to work – as you now have both pieces that are NECESSARY to successfully utilize game theory to it’s fullest extent as I have to achieve success.

You have an ORIGIN and a DESTINATION, the two points that even a 6 year old can connect the dots between to find the shortest path.

Remember how I said ego, pride, and the status you believe you have would only serve to distract you?

Do any of those things truly matter if a 6 year old is on the same playing field as you at being able to connect the dots between two points?

That is why I told you, to be a student, a BLANK SLATE, as are children who are still eager to learn how the world works.

Now get ready for the GAME part of the theory.

Final Step – Work Backwards From Failure

This is how NASA put a man on the moon, they used game theory, defining the two points above, to discover their ORIGIN and their END POINT, and then proceeded to work backwards from failure.

Luckily, achieving your goals is likely easier than putting a man on the moon. If what you are about to read is properly followed, you will learn the system by which even NASA and the billionaire elite operate, as well as 6 year old children who all realize that FAILURE is only the temporary status of a MISUNDERSTOOD dependency of SUCCESS.

Consider for a moment, you have both the INPUT and OUTPUT of a PROBLEM, does it matter what you put in-between as long as the ORIGIN equals the DESTINATION in the end?

If I have a desire to make 382.18 equal 3,000,000 does it matter whether I use multiplication, division, addition, subtraction or any other process in-between to make the numbers equal one another in the end?

NO!

And when you realize how powerful that concept is, you will have fully grasped the power of game theory and how anything becomes possible for anyone with the willingness to UNDERSTAND that FAILURE is only a TEMPORARY status of a MISUNDERSTOOD dependency of SUCCESS.

To put it plainly, the secret to success is not wealth, money, status, or power – it is through finding fulfillment through understanding failure.

It may take you a few years to fully grasp that last statement, but if you know the ORIGIN and the desired DESTINATION of any given problem, then all that’s left is to work backwards from failure.

Pay special attention to what I am about to say next.

Most people when they start a project, they just dive in and try to build as they go versus looking at the entire landscape to see where the points of resistance, obstacles, and death traps are.

DO NOT BE ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE!

Furthermore, most business owners and consultants tend to create roadmaps for businesses from the ORIGIN, however this is an incredibly TOXIC and limiting approach to scaling any company.

Why?

Consider this, if I asked you how to build a $100M million dollar company right now, would you know which questions to ask yourself and which actions you should do first in order to have the GREATEST IMPACT for the LEAST amount of capital or resources?

No, because you are thinking from the BOTTOM UP, you essentially are forced to think small because you are likely looking at your available resources and going “what can I initially build with X tiny budget to make more money so I can afford the next step”.

And just that question alone, can create “analysis paralysis” where you are so caught up in trying to make the right decision with what little funds or resources you may have, that you unintentionally stress yourself out as a result, and make rash emotionally clouded decisions.

However, if you follow game theory and instead worked BACKWARDS from your DESTINATION/GOAL, and repeatedly asked yourself the question of, “What ways can I achieve this?”, then instead of having to constantly try and figure out what the next step is or even beat yourself up whether you are asking the right question, all you have to do is continuously list actions that are necessary to achieve the last step.

You solve for failure.

To achieve this GOAL, I can do A, B, or C action to get there, and to A,B, or C action, these are the things I need to do in order to make sure those happen, and so on and so forth. You KEEP DOING THIS until you can not break down the dependencies (requirements) of any one action any further.

And without you even knowing it, you will have discovered that the actions that are all listed at the very bottom of what will look like an upside down tree, have become so granular and simple, that any one of them have become STARTING points, that all lead to your DESTINATION.

Do not be afraid to spend a week or more doing this, it is by far a lot more efficient and smarter to spend a day to sharpen your axe to cut down a tree in a few short swings, than spend an entire day hacking away at a tree with a blunt axe.

By the time you get done, it should look like a really large triangle of sorts, with rows that have the least amount of steps at the top and dozens if not hundreds of steps or actions on the very bottom row.

Now, you might consider you are done and that you have the most thought out business plan in the world and there is no possible way you could fail, and while you will certainly out perform others who do not plan, still have skipped an incredibly important step.

You haven’t written down what any of these actions will COST you in terms of time and money.

You likely don’t want to retire and start living your dream life at 65, when you’re so old that you can break a hip riding a jet ski. So now the question becomes, which path will get you to your DESTINATION the fastest for the least amount of time, money, and effort?

Right now, just by looking at the web of possible futures you have created for yourself there is no context or way of telling which path is the easiest and which one will cost you the most or stress you out the most.

What you will read next, is the MOST IMPORTANT step of game theory, and if followed incorrectly will render everything you have done up until this point useless.

In order to add context to this massive web of possible actions and steps before you and to make the entire thing so easy to understand that even a 6 year old can answer the question of “Where do we start?”, we need to add two values.

The first, the time it will take to find and have SOMEONE ELSE do that task.

The second, the amount of money it will cost to have SOMEONE ELSE do that task.

Consider for a moment, what is the #1 trap you hear most entrepreneurs and business owners falling into?

That they get so caught up IN their business instead of ON it, right?

So why would I have you write down the amount of time or money it would cost YOU to do any of the tasks that you have written out?

If you don’t know the time or cost it would take to do a task on your decision tree, ask someone who would know, utilize your network. If you do not have someone in your network, jump on LinkedIn and look up people who are in positions at companies who can.

Make educated estimates, but do not GUESS.

The goal of game theory is to give you the shortest executable path to achieve your end DESTINATION/GOAL and to answer the question that has probably been nagging in the back of your mind of “Where do I start?”.

Once you have filled out the answers to these two questions above for every action you have in your decision tree, have likely made all of your friends feel like you’ve fallen off the deep end and become some mad genius – the real fun starts.

It is time to find the shortest path to success.

You have thousands of ways you can succeed, thousands of ways you can solve the problem of how to get from where you are now to where you want to be, and there is NO WRONG ANSWER, just a series of shorter and longer paths that will get you there.

It’s time to get out a blank notepad and a calculator and get to work. Start adding up which path will take the LEAST AMOUNT OF TIME AND MONEY to get you to your desired end DESTINATION.

Sound like a lot of work? Work smarter, not harder.

Do not calculate paths from the bottom up, start from your DESTINATION and then work backwards yet again. Only follow the path that has the SMALLEST time and monetary commitments, and repeat until you get to the end.

I suggest that you highlight this path as you go in green, as this is the SHORTEST possible path. When you reach the very last action at the bottom, which should be the easiest action you can do today to start on the path of SUCCESS, you have officially found your point of ORIGIN.

In doing everything above, you have literally created a roadmap and system so simple, that if you were to show a 6 year old, they would be able to follow it, and in doing so you have freed yourself from every possible entrepreneurial trap and mental block that would ever get in-between you and the future you are trying to create.

As a consultant, public speaker, and as a serial entrepreneur myself, the greatest barrier I have found that prohibits people from achieving any form of success, is that they (especially business owners and executives) mistake action for progress.

By following game theory and the exercise above, you’ve fundamentally done what 99.9% of people in this world have failed to do. You have predicted the future.

It sounds wild, but in life nearly every person you meet, never considers the consequences of their actions beyond any immediate sense.

That is why 99.9% of people happily exchange time for money, they wake up and go to work because the immediate result is money.

They are too distracted or stressed by relationships, money, how they look and what people think of them, that they never take a moment to step back and consider if the actions they are doing each and every day lead to any true progress. That is the cause of every major world problem.

There isn’t a single school in the nation that teaches you to THINK like this article does. They all teach you to REACT, instead of carefully predict each move you make with calculated precision.

Following the traditional way of thinking will make your life progress no differently than if you were to have a single bow and arrow and fire it with all your might, only to then spend time chasing down the arrow (the direction of your life) to fire it again, only to end up wherever it is that you end up.

Whereas game theory and methodology that I have explained above will allow for you to accomplish each and every desire you ever have in this life.

It is like having that same bow and arrow, but having a clear and defined target to aim for. Instead of exerting all of your effort and strength into aimless progress, your life becomes a series of precise and calculated accomplishments, that all line up to the culmination of the ultimate goal in life – fulfillment.

Whatever you seek in life, whether you seek to create multiple multi-million dollar businesses as I have, to travel the world, to be present with friends and family, or to press the boundaries of human ability or imagination, the drive you have to achieve that goal, the thing you are seeking is called fulfillment.

No book, nor article, nor advice by any “guru” has ever come as close to answering how to achieve the true success or fulfillment as well as game theory does.

This is not just a theory, it is act, the dedicated craft of predictive thinking that is not taught in universities or schools, nor by the internet’s most followed influencers nor business gurus, but the one trend you will find amongst all billionaires and top performers of any industry or craft, is that they all do it.

None of their actions are by chance. Each decision is carefully crafted to set themselves up in the best possible position to achieve the next goal.

If I can give any more of my parting wisdom in this post than I have already, it is that anything easily earned is never truly valued. Our goals are our goals in life because they are hard, because they are worth earning. If they were easily obtained, we wouldn’t task ourselves with trying to accomplish them for they would have no value to us.

The true secret of success, is that success isn’t about having a lot of money, it is about finding fulfillment, a sense of purpose and meaning and pride, in every action you do.

How could you not be happy with a life like that?

A life where you never regret any decision?

That is the true meaning of success, the pursuit of happiness.

Utilizing this way of predictive thinking as I have outlined in the article above, will help you diagnose any problem you have in your life, allow for you to achieve anything you can imagine, and the only limitation of what you can achieve or become in this life, is the belief that you can.

This is the very process I go through with all of my clients, business partners, managers within my companies, and entrepreneurs and executives I coach at private masterminds that I frequently host.

Now that you have the keys to success, and the very blueprint for what has helped me become a multi-millionaire and hit $3M in 15 weeks with my latest company (as was the original title and reason why you clicked on this article), what will you do with it?

Will you study this article and use it to achieve your dreams?

Or will you let life’s distractions distract you from this little gem and will everything you read fade away in time with life’s every day events?

You decide.

Nobody in this world will ever care about your dreams coming true, so if you don’t make them real, who will?

Thanks for reading!

I can’t wait to see how you apply game theory and this model of predictive thinking in your own life, and if you understand the importance of immersing yourself in the right environment and people, and want to immerse yourself deeper in a culture of select people who think this way, then you can use this very theory to figure out how to get ahold of me and become part of the community of people I surround myself with.

Don’t worry it’s not that many steps to achieve success there 😉 I’m pretty easy to get ahold of…

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Success Advice

5 Non-Negotiable Things Millionaires Do Every Day

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habits of millionaires
Image Credit: Unsplash

No matter how busy you are, if you’re an entrepreneur, there are some things you should aim to do every single day. With that in mind, there are some habits that millionaires do on a daily basis that you can adopt in your days.

Below are 5 non-negotiables to include in your daily routine every single day:

1. Reviewing Your Goals

Every morning successful people review their goals to keep focused on what they are waking up for; so they can align their tasks for the day with their goals. Viewing your goals means that you have to write them down first so you’re clear on what you want to achieve.

Looking at them only once a week or once a month isn’t good enough because you will lose focus easily since there are many distractions in this day and age. Writing down your goals for the day and viewing them regularly is a good habit to form. When you’re going to set your schedule for the day and have your goals in front of you always ask yourself, “Will this task get me closer to my goals?” If not, then perhaps you shouldn’t be doing it at all.

“Review your goals twice every day in order to be focused on achieving them.” – Les Brown

2. Completing Your MIT First Thing

MIT stands for Most Important Task. This is the task that has the greatest impact on your bottom line and propels you dramatically closer to your goals. This can change throughout your life as your goals change or you and your business go through different stages of maturity.

There’s an important thing to note here, doing your MIT first thing after you wake up and after your morning routine is essential, as you never know what distractions could come up throughout the day. It also keeps you productive since after completing it you will feel fulfilled knowing that you have completed the most important task of the day.

In fact, in most cases, completing your MIT of the day in the morning means that you could do whatever you want for the rest of the day if you choose to do so.

3. Learning

Learning isn’t optional if you want to keep growing throughout your life. Surely, you wouldn’t want to stay in the same spot where you are right now for the next 10 years would you?

Learning is not about just reading books. In fact, many millionaires consume their knowledge through audiobooks on fast speed so they can consume more in less time and during a commute. It’s no wonder audiobooks have become more popular in recent years.

Nonetheless, this isn’t about audiobooks or physical books. It’s about not letting your hate for reading that most people have stop you from learning and growing. You can be creative about the way you consume your knowledge. Ideally you want to spend at least 60 minutes per day learning and growing your mind so you can enhance your skills and creativity to do different things.

4. Physical Wellbeing

If you want to be a high performance individual then you must take care of your body. The last thing we want is for your body to fail you when you most need it. Be careful about what you put into your body and make sure you are active throughout the day to keep your energy up.

One of the ways I’ve found to be helpful to keep your energy up throughout the day is to jump around, do some jumping jacks or some pushups whenever you are feeling a bit low on that energy.

Exercising 2 or 3 times a week is good, yet that’s not what we are talking about here. What I’m talking about here is just being active everyday, whether it’s a rest day or not. You can go out for a walk or do something light each day.

“Training gives us an outlet for suppressed energies created by stress and thus tones the spirit just as exercise conditions the body.” – Arnold Schwarzenegger

5. Viewing Your Finances

Yes, everyday have a look at your bank account. If it depresses you to look at then perhaps that’s something we need to work on, don’t you think? Not looking at them isn’t the solution, it’s just trying to pretend the problem is not there. The point of looking at your finances is similar to when you look at your goals, except with one slight difference.

When you look at your finances it’s not only to keep you focused on growing them, but also to keep track of how you’re doing financially and whether they’re getting better or worse over time.

You can act successful and pretend your business is doing fine but your finances never lie. By looking at your finances you’re giving yourself a reality check and you’ll be able to know if what you’re doing is working or not.

Remember to focus on your daily goals, complete your most important tasks, learn every day, take care of your wellbeing ,and review your finances to ensure you’re progressing every single day.

Which one of these 5 non-negotiable routines resonated with you the most and why? Let us know your thoughts below!

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10 Secrets to Success From Clickfunnels Top Affiliate Spencer Mecham

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Spencer Mecham
Image Credit: Spencer Mecham

Are you looking to be an affiliate? You have to acquaint yourself with a couple of tips which guarantee great success. Affiliate marketing you will not get paid until some kinds of actions are taken by the readers.

Identified and explained hereunder are ten secrets for successful affiliate marketing which are proven to guarantee higher values to your readers and the likely maximization of success:

1. Aim at meeting the needs of your target market

Your reader is by far your best asset. When appropriately satisfied, the chances of them taking the necessary courses of actions are raised. For this to happen, you have to understand them inside and out. Do so by inquiring about their pain points, their tastes and preferences, and their expectations of your blog.

Yogita Aggarwal avers that promoting the wrong product is a sure path to failure. To mitigate this, you have to conduct thorough market research.

2. Maintain a fair degree of trustworthiness

Readers are generally smart, and they can easily spot an affiliate link when they come across one. You should not attempt to promote an irrelevant product or bombard them with too many adverts. They will just lose interest, leave and possibly never come back.

You should hence aim at building a pool of repeat visitors. They are the ones who are more likely to drive traffic to your site, place orders and refer others to your site. You can only build good relationships by marketing quality content.

As you do this, be sure to prioritize value addition by sharing only those products which you are confident of being relevant, valuable and sincerely helpful to your readers. Make it a point of disclosing any links or relationships you have with your vendors. This will go a long way in solidifying the trust.

3. Be passionate about what you are doing

It is essential to be passionate about what you are doing or attempting to do. It is almost impossible to succeed in what you do if you don’t truly love it. Avoid marketing only for the sake of money. It is only then that you will be able to generate new ideas and marketing perspectives which are crucial for the success in the field.

“Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.” – Oprah Winfrey

4. Approach the issue one step at a time

Do you desire to manage $5,000 in your first month? Hold on! You will first and foremost have to achieve $1 then $10 and eventually someday to $5,000+. This requires time. You will have to comprehend the psychology and behaviors of your client base first and foremost. After doing that, you will be able to build on that information for higher profit margins.

5. Be helpful

To maximize the possibility of eliciting positive responses from your readers, you have to go further than just letting them know of the existence of your products. Take some time to provide in-depth reviews of the products on sale. Highlight their features and offer brief explanations of just how beneficial they could be to the user.

Preferably, share a personal testimonial or case study in the affiliate link in your review. These build trust and verification which in turn enhance the experience of the visitors considerably. Higher sales will naturally follow after that.

6. Be an ambassador

Instead of promoting the products as a marketer, you are strongly advised to develop them as though they were your own. To do this:

  • Review the products by laying particular emphasis on why you think they are better than their competitors.
  • Produce tutorials showcasing their use or services.
  • Put in place a landing page to enlighten your referrals rather than merely pointing them to your site.
  • Recommend one product alongside why you prefer it. This will help undecided buyers make rational decisions.
  • Enforce some bonuses for the high-value affiliates and joint ventures deals

The steps above will let your affiliates make their decisions from a more informed position. On the same note, they will enable you to gain added influence and authority for your own, not to mention deepening relationships between your provider and you.

“Trust is built with consistency.” – Lincoln Chafee

7. Uphold great transparency in your affiliate relationships

It is necessary that you uphold a significant degree of transparency in your affiliate relationships. Your readers will definitely appreciate your honesty and will gladly contribute to your earnings. They will often track any dishonesty readily. This will definitely scare them away from your site and drive them to the websites of your competitors.

To further stand out of the crowd, you might want to offer a bonus for any action taken from your site. This is extremely useful when in a field that is saturated with many other players.

8. Choose the various affiliate products keenly

Take some time to go through the list of various products that are available. In particular, match them with the expectations, tastes, and preferences of your target market. As you promote them, alter the ads every now and then, attempt different graphics and texts to find the most effective ones.

You will have to spend some time before arriving at the best formula possible. While at it, you will also realize the need to rotate or alter ads from time to time to captivate the attention of the audience well.

Generally speaking, digital ads are better options. They have higher conversion rates and generate higher commission rates. For maximum profits, consider promoting products that are highly priced and those that renew each month.

9. Work on a strong reputation within your niche

Affiliate marketing is generally more sophisticated and highly profitable. Rather than building one-page campaigns, focus on putting in place a sales funnel, assets, and other things which have a higher value. Identify the best niche and stick to it. These steps will not only earn the trust of your visitors but also develop stronger relationships with your advertisers.

10. Generate and post high-quality content

Your content marketing strategy should be your highest priority. The content serves as the foundation and the lifeblood upon which your site is hinged. Readers will only be interested in your site if it contains helpful and valuable content.

This being the case, you should aim at excellent furnishing contents and effective monetizing strategies which are proved to work out well. You will lose readers if you make the slightest attempt to compromise your content. That, of course, will lead to the forfeiture of the opportunity to make any money from your adverts like referral-based and cost-per-click.

All said and done, the quality of your content is the single most contributing factor of the credibility of your blog, website, or business. Hence it is in your best interest to invest heavily in it if you ever hope to make any meaningful success!

Which one of the above 10 secrets to success from Spencer Mecham resonated most with you? Let us know your thoughts below!

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