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13 Keys To Success You Can Learn From The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari

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The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari Lessons

Rarely are there books that can truly transform your life. Just like Think And Grow Rich and The Alchemist, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari Book is phenomenal. It has some of the best keys to success you will ever read, and it’s very hard to put down once you start reading it.

Robin Sharma is the author, and so it’s no wonder why he uses fictional characters to shift your current way of thinking. I could really relate to being that person a few years ago who has got the job everyone would dream of, but who has still not found true fulfilment and happiness.

It’s books like this that have put me on my current path, and that will help you to reconsider what is important to you. This book has very simple concepts, but the power is in its simplicity.

Below are 13 keys to success that you will learn from the book The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari:

 

1. Trade money in for meaning

The online world is highlighting right now the shift that is happening. People are starting to look at their time more closely and making changes to their income based on doing something that has more meaning.

Companies that have a meaning or a social cause to them are beating the traditional corporations. The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari is all about two lawyers who some would say have it all, and how one of the lawyers traded in all he had to become fulfilled, happy and healthy again.

To create his own meaning, Julian Mantle from the book travels to the Himalayas to become enlightened through a group of monks. He then comes back to the western world and shares all of his wisdom with his former colleague John.

This act is the true definition of giving meaning to your life and shows the power of meaning versus money. Are you going to start to add more meaning to your own life?

 

2. Empty your cup so you can fill it with new ideas

Think about all the people you work with. Are they open to new ideas and do they want to try something new? The answer is probably no, and the reason for this is that their hypothetical cup is constantly full. The only way to be able to open your mind, take on new thoughts, and change your current position in life is to empty your cup (your mind).

The book teaches us that we can only change when we make space for change in our lives. This means that you have to be prepared to potentially re-learn everything you have been told and question everything that someone tells you from now on.

Failure to empty your cup will cause you to stand still and not grow. When the mind doesn’t grow it starts to take on more and more negative thoughts and create predictable outcomes.

 

3. You must open your own heart before you can touch other people’s hearts

Julian Mantle in the book teaches us that we can only help others, love others and inspire others if we work on ourselves first. When we reach a place where we feel centred and alive, we are able to find inspiration within.

As we work on ourselves our natural progression is to help others, and we do so often without consciously knowing – it’s what we were designed as humans to do.

 

4. Understand how powerful simplicity can be

As the book goes a bit deeper, a simple fable is revealed to the character of John. Initially, he thinks that the fable is too incomplex and dismisses it entirely. As he becomes more enlightened, he realises that the power is in simplicity.

Look at our world; the best marketing is simple, the best advice is simple, the best phone is simple – simple is the best form of anything. It’s easy for us to want to over complicate things to make ourselves feel smart, but what this book teaches us is that complexity is the enemy we should be trying to avoid.

Complexity is what puts us in an education system that gives us zero emotional intelligence and doesn’t help us to understand the operating manuals of our minds. Complexity is what makes us forget that vitality and energy come from what we put in our mouths and that simplistic eating from natural sources is the best kind.

 

5. Worry will drain your mind of its power

Modern day life contains so much worry. Our minds are exhausted by all the things we are told we must have to be happy and all the things we are told we must do by a certain deadline. What if we decided that happiness was more important than worry? What if we trained our brains to be happy with where we are right now and not to worry about what anyone else thinks?

The book clearly shows us that worry causes havoc for our inner world and that all our success is buried deep within our inner world. The only way we can remove the gravel stones of worry and unveil our success is to cultivate a tidy garden of thoughts.

Poor information is what pivots our mind from everything that is good, into worry. Worry benefits others but never really helps you. Deep down we know that worry is not good for us, but we often lack the discipline in our daily habits to stand tall and not let worry take over!

 

6. Tragedy can spark something great inside of you

One of the most powerful lessons in the book is the realisation that the real world doesn’t exist. Everything within our world is created in our mind. External circumstances like the weather can’t be controlled. What we can control is what our mind’s attitude is towards these events.

The major theme in this book is about how important our mind is in whether or not we become successful. Even the definition of success is subjective and completely created by our own mind.

When an event like tragedy occurs, which we have no control over, the book teaches us that we have an amazing opportunity. This opportunity is the realisation that while this event may seem like a tragedy to you; to an entirely different person it may seem like a celebration or a new beginning.

All great success stories almost always have some form of tragedy or pain, which becomes the seed for something much greater.

Tim Denning Success Quote
 

7. Translate negative thoughts into positive ones to banish worry forever

A skill that the book suggests is worth developing is where you learn over time to not judge events as either positive or negative but to just experience them and soak in the learning. The lessons that come from these learnings are what fuels your growth.

The book goes as far to say that you can’t afford even one negative thought. I personally have never thought of my thoughts that way, but with this new perspective, I feel like the book has made me see the world in a whole new way.

Your mind has two gears; imagination and memory. Focusing on memory will ensure you live in the past while spending time imagining will see you have a more positive outlook on what your world could be like in the future.

Imagination allows you to design the life you want, instead of being given the life you don’t want that is shaped by external forces.

 

8. Start to dream that you are more than the sum of your current circumstances

Where you are right now is not where you will be in the future if you follow the keys to success outlined in this book. The only way to change your current circumstances is to begin by dreaming that you can be more than you currently are.

Dreaming is not enough, though. Your dreams need to be followed by consistent action, but even action alone is also not enough. The book teaches you that the action you take must be done in a way where you act as if failure is impossible.

You must act as if you have unlimited power and only your mind is stopping you from getting where you want to go. You already know what you need to do; you just need to break through the fears that are blocking the path in front of you. Expect greatness from yourself and that’s what you’ll get in return.

 

9. Those who rise early have a purpose and those that don’t do not

We all know people who sleep in or her struggle to wake up. We may even be these people. Sleeping too much is caused by not having anything purposeful or fulfilling in your life to do. When you have a purpose that occupies every moment of your thoughts and causes you not to want to sleep, then you know you’re on the cusp of something big.

If you’re not there yet then that’s okay, just don’t stop until you start living that way of life. When you finally arrive, you will be glad you had the discipline to keep searching for your purpose.

Between what I learnt from this book, and a video from Eric Thomas that I watched, I have now decided to wake up at 3 am each morning to fulfil my purpose to inspire the world through personal development and entrepreneurship. The drive was always there it’s just been ignited further through books such as this.

 

10. To be noble is to be superior to your former self

In the world of personal development, so much of the advice out there traditionally says beat your competition at all costs. This book highlights that it’s not about beating your competitors or measuring yourself against others; it’s about beating yourself.

“The aim is to be superior only to your former self. Spend time each day trying to outwork and outgrow yourself not those around you”

Forget about what other people think of your life’s purpose or what others think about where you’re currently at, and focus on improving yourself daily.

The only thing that tells you you’re on the right course is you. The only person that decides if you are successful is you. The book outlines that the more time you spend worrying about someone else’s goal, the less time you have to focus on your own.

 

11. Writing goals down subconsciously triggers your mind to focus on goal orientated thoughts

The art of goal setting doesn’t make sense to everyone and for good reason. In the book, Julian shows John that we constantly have thousands of thoughts floating around our brain. He explains that when we write our goals down and then constantly look at them, we subconsciously tell our brain to red flag any thought that comes into our mind, which relates to one of our goals.

Goals allow your mind to place an importance indicator on every thought you have, from important to least important. This message is so very simple yet amazingly powerful when you reflect on it. Goals are really just focusing your thoughts on the things you want and discarding everything else – groundbreaking!

 

12. The more courage you have, the greater your fulfilment will be

In the book, Julian shows John that to have self-control and overcome failure you need to have courage. Courage is a sense of certainty about every action you take and the belief that everything you do is ultimately going to work for the best, one way or another.

Courage allows you to take action when other people trying to achieve a similar goal would give up. The act of courage gives you hope even when hope may not seem obvious in certain situations.

 

13. Your thinking is what makes something painful

We can all identify with experiences that we have gone through that have felt painful. What Julian teaches in the book though is that your thinking about something is what makes it feel a certain way.

The loss of a loved one may seem in the moment like the ultimate pain. This same loss could be perceived as a celebration if that loved one was in agony from their illness. Both scenarios are right, and it’s your thinking that decides which one you choose to experience.

“You will become luckier every day if your mind is prepared and conditioned to think of the world as filled with opportunities, and to think of pain as part of all journeys of success” – Tim Denning

Others around you will start to see you as lucky, whereas you and I (and those who have read this book) will know that it’s the way you have conditioned your mind that has made you appear by magic to be lucky. Fill your world with an abundance of positive emotions and that’s how you will feel daily.

What lesson did The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari teach you? Let me know in the comments section below or on my website timdenning.net and my Facebook. 

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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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Ruchit Shah

    Jan 18, 2017 at 10:07 am

    Robin Sharma writes a beautiful book that truly appeals to the soul. It says about living Life to the fullest. As we grow up, we tend to get busy in our work & daily chores. Today’s fast paced world has led us to forget some of the most important things in our lives, such as being grateful for this wonderful life or spending some quality moments with our parents or kids. The Monk who sold his Ferrari reminds us to live a life rich in health, wealth & spiritual being. It speaks in an effective yet non-preachy manner to lift us from mediocrity and show us a path towards living a fulfilling life.

    The writing is really Inspiring and its a book for everyone who would like to live a simple, Happy and purposeful life.

  2. amgy

    Jun 1, 2016 at 5:36 pm

    Dear Tim
    The Review of Robin Sharma book by you is highly applaudable. I am trying to pour simplicity in my life when I realised its actual benefits.
    From that day when I finished “The Monk who sold his Ferrari “book, I am continuously in practice to get bliss by the simple rule of life .
    thanks once again .

    • Tim Denning

      Jun 6, 2016 at 12:54 am

      Amgy, thanks for reading and best of luck with your quest for simplicity.

  3. Toño

    May 14, 2016 at 7:01 pm

    Tim, you listed three books I have read during my time, and all of them had some particular impact on my life. But there’s something special about Monk Who Sold His Ferrari. And you were spot on about it’s very hard to put that book down once you started reading it. Exactly. I’ve finished it for a few days I think and only because I was reading during my early mornings and had to attend my job. Without it I would have done it in a day. It was so addictive!

    Taking down the lessons I can certainly relate to every single one of them. Are people I work with opened to new ideas? Most likely not indeed. I had been talking about that book with so many of them, and not a single one had listened. I even offered one girl my copy of book and we were about to meet after my swiming pool session but she never came. And you know, it’s just funny how easily you can turn a great opportunity to learn and educate yourself. For free and with pleasure. I offered her a free one-on-one talk so to just help and understand things better, to help her bring positivity and change the attitude. And again, she never came.

    I am recharging my mind now and constantly trying to empty my cup. Even though with so huge amount of knowledge I recieve every day it is very tricky. Sometimes I feel like give up everything and re-connect with nature, to go live somewhere in the wilderness. One of my wild dreams 😉

    I also believe that tragedy will guide to a better live like never before. I agree with your explanation here completely, Tim. Ain’t that just the way? And I feel like I am on the edge of some sort of tragedy myself. Like the inner one. My body gives messages every day yet I’m still like a blind person cannot see them properly. But I can feel something is about to change very soon.

    I also love and adore you spoke about Eric Thomas, as I am watching one guy on youtube regularly who also speals about ET very high. And he also wake up at 3-3:30 am every day because of him. I feel like it was all about synchronicity again, and that we have some things in common 🙂 I started to wake up at 5 am after Tony Robbins first book and then I saw Robin Sharma’s video where he talked about waking up early. I abandoned that habbit due my work schedule because otherwise I will have very limited sleep time which is not healthy so now I wake at 5.20 am three days a week when I go to the gym at the morning. But now, seeing you do the same thing (3 am wake up) I want to try it as well. You are my inspiration there, Tim.

    And this. This is simply awesome saying I gotta quote and remember: ‘Courage is a sense of certainty about every action you take and the belief that everything you do is ultimately going to work for the best, one way or another.’

    One of the main message of this book was simplicity, and one of the greatess minds of this worl, Albert Einstein has said: ‘If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough’.

    It was amazing read, my friend, and I agree with Evan Teague, it was a knockout. You are on a different level, my man. For a few days I have been thinking about this article. Much love and appreciation for your knowledge.

    Now I actually want to re-read this book again.

    • Tim Denning

      May 15, 2016 at 5:28 am

      Toño we have similar tastes my friend. I love your dedication to squeezing out every ounce of greatness from everything I write and talk about. If you believe you are on the cusp of tragedy then that can only be a good thing. It means your life is going to change for the better. Based on what you have told me, you are changing into someone that has the power to do great things.

      Remember that not everyone will share your vision or think that this book is powerful. Ignorance is bliss and everyone deserves whatever they want to believe. Simple books like this is where you learn to be successful and happy at the same time. Before I started waking up at 3am my previous bedtime was 5:20 – that’s freaky!!!!

      • Toño

        May 16, 2016 at 8:41 am

        I value time and effort wise people invest in their work, I am a big sucker for knowledge and things that can help me to grow and be a better person, so I try to absorb every bits and pieces that greatness 😉 Not every time though. But I loved to learn right from my childhood.

        I know that not everyone will share my ideas and view but sometimes it’s just too frustrating to see how reasonably smart people refuse to get better and educate themselves. I’m getting better at it however and it can actually be a good sign I am going up. I appreciate your support, Tim, very much. For the last couple of weeks you helped me a lot and been a massive boost for me to keep on going. Funny thing, recently I realized people I’ve never met in person, or just far far away, helps me more than those who around every time. Amazing, isn’t it?

        I would also like to know, what time you go to bed now as you wake up at 3am? And how much actual time healthy sleep requiers? Do you find it hard wake up so early every day and do you feel the change from waking at 5.20 am ?

  4. Vishnu

    May 14, 2016 at 4:37 am

    Good stuff Tim. You’ve done a great review of the book and pulled out the key lessons. I love the simplicity concept. The best things in life are simple. We make it much more complex than necessary. There is power, wisdom and greatness in simplicity. Over the years I’ve tried to simplify all areas of my life.

    • Tim Denning

      May 15, 2016 at 5:22 am

      Vishnu thank you for your message. Simplicity is the key to life and business. Since I started reading Joshua Becker I discovered that the way to declutter your mind is simplify your life and most importantly, simplify your possessions.

  5. Evan Teague

    May 12, 2016 at 6:33 am

    Tim,

    Another knockout.

    What spoke to me specifically would be #3, 5 and 12.

    3 – I used to have a lot of anger in my heart which I had to release in order to reach my full potential and open my heart up to help others. By focusing on other people and their needs, we’re more centered and purposeful anyways.

    5- Worrying will kill us too because we’re using potent visualization AND imagination in the wrong direction. No matter if we think & talk about something we DON’T want, we’re still creating it. Think the opposite from what you don’t want, and create only what you want.

    12 – I had to learn this by moving across the world by myself and networking with the right people. At the moment, it just looked like a huge tunnel with a question mark at the end. After all, it’s bloomed to a full-fledged E-commerce business of my own, a personal development and mindset website to share with others, and freedom to travel and live anywhere.

    Fantastic work.

    – Evan

    • Tim Denning

      May 12, 2016 at 8:28 pm

      Thank you Evan. Moving across to the other side of the world when you don’t know anyone is a gutsy move and I applaud you for having the courage to take action on your vision. Speak soon mate.

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Success Advice

The Best Way to Accelerate Your Success According to James Altucher

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James Altucher

I recently interviewed author and serial entrepreneur James Altucher and asked him a simple question:  What is the best way to accelerate success in any endeavor? To which James gave me a golden nugget. Or maybe 3 golden nuggets. He gave me what he calls the plus (+), equals (=), and minus (-) process and it blew me away. So simple yet so profound.

The +: Find People who are far ahead of you in your field of endeavor and learn from them

There are 4 kinds of people who fall under this category: Real Mentors, Virtual Mentors, Coaches and stars. We need all of them in order to be able to accelerate our progress.

Real Mentors are people who you personally know, and they help you out in giving you guidance and feedback. Mentors are usually emotionally vested in your success and can be called upon to guide you when you need that help.  

Virtual Mentors are usually people you do not personally know but they still have a huge impact on your lives. They can be historic figures, great current figures, titans of industry or anyone you look up to but do not have any contact with. You can read their books, watch their videos and just absorb any knowledge they put out there.

Coaches are people who have an obligation to guide you in your journey. It could either be that they have been hired by you or your organization to help you move forward. In sports, coaching is a well established phenomenon. In fact, every team and every great sports figure has one or multiple coaches.

Stars are people who are crushing it in your field of endeavor. They are operating at a much higher level than you are. Your job is to find them and associate with them. What you will find is that when you start spending time with them, you will automatically start stepping up your game. When you see that someone else is able to do something, suddenly that becomes possible for you and you are able to break through that barrier.

This is something I also learned from Tony Robbins at one of his live seminars. He kept on saying that he had given us a lot of strategies to accelerate success, but there was one strategy that stood above all else. He called it “compressing decades into days.”  He said in order to compress decades into days, we must find people who are much better than us in that field of endeavor and learn from them.

“Without a mentor in life, one can easily succumb to folly. Without a mentor in life, one can easily become self-centered, capricious and arrogant.”

The =: Find equals in your current field of endeavor and work/grow with them

In order to grow fast, you must find peers who are at similar level to you in the field of endeavor and find ways to:

  • Associate with them
  • Spend time with them
  • Exchange ideas with them
  • Ask for their help
  • Help them
  • Compete with them

The reason this works so well is because your peers are going through similar challenges as you are. What you are struggling with, someone else might have figured out. What someone else is struggling with, you might have figured out.

Napoleon Hill talked about the power of mastermind in one of the greatest personal development books ever written called “Think and Grow Rich.” He defined it as “Coordination of knowledge and effort in a spirit of harmony, between two or more people, for the attainment of a definite purpose.” He goes on to say that masterminds have been the basis of nearly every great fortune.

One of the best things you can do for yourself is to start a mastermind group with your peers. If you are starting a business, go find people who are at a similar level to you and start a mastermind group with them. A mastermind group can be something as simple as a weekly meeting with 3 of your peers where each of you talk about the progress you made and the challenges you encountered.

The –: Find someone you can teach and help them

You might have often heard the saying that one of the best ways to learn something is to teach it. When you read something or listen to it or watch it you only absorb less than 50% of it. However, when you start teaching those ideas, your learning goes to a whole new level. That is because, in order to teach something you have to be able to break those ideas down, simplify them, and organize them into coherent structures.

In order to be able to teach, you need to have clarity in your own head about the ideas. Teaching requires a complete understanding of the concept. You can’t just “wing it.” Your student’s questions will force you to think deeper.

Teaching has a multitude of benefits which go beyond learning. Helping others can be incredibly gratifying and can make us feel much more fulfilled in our journey of life. Go find your protege.

“Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.” – Dalai Lama

So, if there is any area of life where you feel that your progress is slower than what you want in to be, examine your +/=/- and make changes accordingly.

How are you making sure you achieve your goals? Comment below and let us know!

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Success Advice

10 Part Action Plan for Writing Your Very First Book

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writing a book

There’s no doubt that writing a book is an excellent way to bolster your credibility and establish yourself as an authority. A book can also help you spread ideas and is a mechanism for people to connect with you. It’s a self-contained product that you can monetize, but it can also be a vehicle to sell your products and services. In many ways, your book can be your ticket to new income streams and opportunities.

Use these 10 steps below to get going on your first book:

1. Ask Yourself How You Can Help

Your book requires an idea, but the masterpiece depends on the value you will provide to the reader. Start by asking yourself, “how can I help?” You may have experience in a particular field or a passion for a specific topic, but either way, you need to first answer this question.

In my situation, I knew I could help entrepreneurs finish things because I was already familiar with the demands of the lifestyle and regularly work in that environment. How can you help your readers?

2. Formulate Your Main Idea

Once you know how you can help your reader, the main idea should be easy. The main idea addresses how you will approach the subject. Will your book be a step-by-step guide or will it inspire your readers to higher levels? If you’re stuck figuring out your main idea, think of it in terms of a plan – you’re going to provide a specific plan to your readers to accomplish something. That becomes the main idea.

3. Remember the Three Act Play

In story writing, there’s a character arc, where the protagonist winds up in a setting, encounters tension, and then resolves that tension. You want to set up your book in the same way, even if it’s a nonfiction work. Begin by laying out the context for your reader. What problems are they facing? What obstacles are in their path? Then help them break through those problems and overcome those obstacles. Finally, don’t leave them hanging. Create a resolution that enables your readers to finish your book with a clear vision for moving beyond.

4. Title 15 Chapters

I’ve found that most failed author’s miss this strategy and it can make all the difference in finishing your first book. Open up a new document and give yourself numbers one through fifteen. After each number, give it a title that communicates the idea of that chapter. “1. Sleep’s Role in Weight Loss.” “2. How to Respond to a Micromanaging Boss.” You get the idea, but by giving each chapter a title, you’re essentially creating a roadmap for the completed book.

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” – Benjamin Franklin

5. Write a One Sentence Summary of Each Chapter

As you come up with titles for each chapter, you will want to start creating one sentence summaries for each. Think of these as the miniature Christmas trees that will eventually have ornaments hanging on them when Christmas rolls around. The one sentence summary will also help you remember what you wanted to write about as you proceed through each chapter.

6. Divide and Conquer

Take 50,000 words and divide it by 15. Fifty-five thousand is the target number of words in your book. Fifteen is the number of chapters. Do that math and you’ll quickly see that you’ll only need about 3,300 words for each chapter. When we see a blank screen and the need for 50,000 words, most new authors tend to give up. Can you write 3,300 words? Yes, you can. It’s almost like writing a couple of magazine articles for each chapter.

Breaking up your book into smaller chunks will give you the psychological advantage of seeing light at the end of the tunnel. Conquer one chapter at a time, and before you know it, you will complete an entire book.

7. Spell Check

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read a manuscript and it’s obvious the author never even bothered to spell check. If you don’t think your writing is worth the effort, why do you think your readers will take the time? It’s a fundamental rule of writing and will go a long way in proving to your readers you care about your craft.

8. Do a Table Read

Actors will often sit around a table reading a script prior to acting out a scene. Why? It ensures the dialogue is well-developed and makes logical sense. While you don’t necessarily need to read your book out loud, you do need to actually read it before you finalize it.

If you’re like most authors, your writing will take place over weeks or months, and involve many different emotional states. You don’t want your book to sound like it was written by a schizophrenic person, so read it through in one sitting at least once before you consider it complete.

“Read your paper backward, sentence by sentence, as a final proofreading step. This technique isolates each sentence and makes it easier to spot errors you may have overlooked in previous readings.” – Claire B. May Gordon S. May

9. Don’t Forget to Edit

The table read I described above is going to highlight problems with the flow and language in your book. That’s why you will want to follow immediately with a round of edits. Editing will also give you the opportunity to improve your material and eliminate the possibility of lingering mistakes in the manuscript.

10. Make a Plan to Distribute

If you plan to write a book but make no plan to get it out into the world, you will probably stop short of finishing. After all, why finish if no one will ever read it? At the very least, you should self-publish the book in digital format which is inexpensive and easy to accomplish.

The worst that could happen is that you’ve completed your first book! Best case scenario is that your book is picked up by a major publisher and sells millions of copies. Either way, you’re unlikely to finish what you start without a plan for distribution.

Now what? Start writing. There’s no way to finish your first book without some words on the page.

Have you ever wanted to write a book? If so, let us know in the comments below!

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Success Advice

Why The 5-Second Rule Made Me Unstoppable And How It Will Do The Same For You.

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5-Second Rule

What a massive few weeks. I discovered this life hack called “The 5-Second Rule.”

What a rollercoaster of a ride!

 

A simple definition of the 5 Second Rule:

5-Second RuleTo push yourself out of your head and into action by counting down 5-4-3-2-1 and then taking immediate action towards a goal, or instinct to take action towards something you think of.

It’s a rule that forces you to make a 5 Second Decision. 5-Second Decisions do not allow your brain to be involved and it all comes from your heart combined with your instinct. If you wait longer than 5-seconds, you’ll talk yourself out of making the decision.

The 5-Second Rule is a bias towards action instead of overthinking and been taken over by fear. In that 5 seconds, you get the opportunity to be courageous. It’s a small window of courage that you can access for free. After 5 seconds, your days are numbered and your brain will sabotage you.

“Hesitation is the kiss of death”

 

The crazy thing about the 5-Second Rule!

I was using the 5 Second Rule already without knowing it. I was using the 5 Second Rule because I was petrified of forgetting something important so I always forced myself to take action towards something that mattered to me straight away.

You’re probably the same. You’re probably using some of the 5 Second philosophy already. By the end of this blog post, you’re going to be using the 5-Second Rule consciously to live your dream life.

Here’s what happened when I tried the 5-Second Rule:

 

A) Changed my career.

That’s right; I knew it was time to changed my career. It had been building and finally, I knew it was time to make a change. Two opportunities were presented to me and they both felt right. They encompassed my passions although I was underprepared, unqualified and fearful of whether I would succeed.

When asked to make a decision, I used the 5 Second Rule and trusted my instincts. I said yes to both opportunities and I’m so glad I did. I’ve never felt so electric and it was all because I came from a place of courage. I told myself “You got this!”

“You get one life and it’s not going to begin again”

 

B) Became a professional in public speaking.

I was asked to join a public speaking competition at my local Toastmasters club. I always said no and regretted it because I knew I could use it as another platform to inspire people. This year, when the offer came up, I used the 5-Second Rule and said in my head “5-4-3-2-1, I’m in, sign me up!”

I went with my heart rather than letting my brain tell me how horrible I was at public speaking and how I’d never win.

The crazy thing is I won the competition. I beat people who were doing public speaking on the world stage and took the spotlight from them. All in a split second, 5-Second Decision.

“Confidence is built through one 5-second move at a time”

 

C) Joined the gym.

I used the 5-Second Rule to finally, after five years, make the decision to sign up again. It was after midnight and the gym was closed.

To make sure I took action, I left multiple inquiries on a few gym websites so that I was guaranteed not to forget what I had committed to.

The next day, I took my lazy ass to the gym, and I signed up. I’ve never felt better and my energy levels have started to pick up again.

 

D) Went to a country where I couldn’t speak the language all by myself.

This was a big deal for me because I’ve always traveled with other people and to places where I could speak the language. All of a sudden, I was going to be alone in a foreign country and unable to communicate in English.

Then one Friday, I was forced by work to take two weeks off. I used the 5-Second Rule to book a trip to Japan. It’s the best thing I’ve done this year. I learned so much and it got me right out of my comfort zone.

I’m sure there are some travel plans you’ve put off too. Next time you get the urge to travel somewhere like I did, at that moment, use the 5-Second Rule to take action and push through all the BS reasons why you think you can’t do it.

 


E) Met my girlfriend’s parents.

My girlfriend’s parents live overseas and they were in town for a few weeks. To me, meeting the parents is a big deal. I felt a bit nervous and when she asked me if I would have dinner with them, I felt the fear, counted down from 5, and said yes.

I’m so glad I did. The parents were great and I stopped myself from procrastinating.

Romantic relationships are the best when you go deep and do what you know is right. The 5-Second Rule will ensure you don’t back down.

 

F) Stopped the junk food temptation.

While I eat healthy most of the time, recently, I found myself letting my guard down and eating unhealthy food every now and then. It was upsetting me because I’ve been so disciplined for more than five years.

With a new commitment to going to the gym, I decided to eat food that would fuel my new exercise routine. Every time I looked at a packet of chips, I’d count down from 5 and then eat something that was good for me. I still eat junk food every now and then, but I have it under control again.

The decisions you make about eating are made in a split second. Use the 5-Second Rule to stop yourself from temptation. You’ll feel better in the long run and have more energy when you make the right choices.

 

G) Blogging when I don’t want to.

You may find it hard to believe but there are plenty of times when I don’t feel like blogging. I’ve found it challenging to overcome. That is until I discovered the 5-Second Rule. Now, when I feel lazy and don’t want to write, I count down from 5 and then start writing anyway.

I disconnect myself from the outcome and make sure I keep up the habit of blogging.

Whatever your passion is, it’s the same. There are regular times when you can’t be bothered and these moments are when you have to push through and use the 5-Second Rule the most. You’ll never achieve greatness unless you do what is sometimes not what you feel like doing.

 

Last Hack: Burn The Boats.

Made famous by Tony Robbins, the Burn the Boats Hack will give you leverage and destroy your Plan B. The story is simple. There was this army trying to take an island and they kept failing.

The leader in charge told them to go to the island and burn the boats behind them. This way, the only opportunity to survive was to take control of the island because they now couldn’t retreat back to their boats and sail home. Failing was not an option. There was no Plan B.

By combining the 5-Second Rule with the Burn the Boats Hack, you’ll not only force yourself to make decisions and stop things like fear, procrastination and overthinking takeover – you’ll also burn your Plan B and create leverage.

Leverage keeps you accountable to these 5-Second Decisions and stops you from backing out. When there’s no way out, you’ll find a way to get through the darkness and shine brightly at the end of the tunnel that is your goal.

 

***Final thought***

If I can achieve all of those goals in the mater of a few weeks, imagine what you can do. This 5- Second Rule will change your life. It’s the one life hack I’ve learned that has given so much success in such a little time. It only takes seconds to learn and seconds to implement.

These are the tools I love: Tools that are dead simple and can be used right away. No study is required, no mentors are needed, no books need to be read. It all starts with you.

Now you have the one tool, the one hack, to change your life.

Go use it right now! Tell me how you go.

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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Success Advice

7 Ways to Achieve Success by Starting Where You Are & With What You Have

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how to achieve success

Let’s face it, most of us love over-complicating things and often shun simple information because it’s basic. We really don’t know how to KISS (Keep It Simple, Silly!). We are drawn to things that boggle our minds and consider straight forward information boring or too simplistic for our liking. Don’t believe me? How many times have you written off someone’s advice or their solution to a problem because you considered it’s simplistic nature suspect?

Have you ever felt cheated out of money you spent on a self-help book because you felt there had to be ‘more to the story’ after reading it? Our need to over-complicate things is often what keeps us stuck in life, delays some of our progress in life and hinders us from pursuing our goals and dreams. We often imagine that everything has to be perfect or make absolute sense to us in order for us to even consider investing ourselves into whatever it is we desire to do.

People who make things happen don’t believe in perfection when it comes to pursuing their goals and dreams, because they are aware that our life’s circumstances will never be entirely perfect or favorable for us to pursue some of our endeavors. Therefore, they don’t allow external factors to dissuade them from pursuing their goals and dreams because they know that reasons will always present themselves to excuse our inability to make things happen at some juncture in our lives.

If you want to accomplish anything in your life, you have to be willing to start where you are and with what you have. The journey of a thousand miles definitely begins with one step. Allow yourself to take the first step and build upon it.

Utilize whatever resources you currently have available to jump-start and move your life and pursuits in the direction you want them to go with the belief that everything you need will materialize in one way or another as long as you keep taking action and remain committed to your endeavors and the process.

Below are tips, advice and insights you can follow and ponder that will help you get started where you are and with what you have on your journey towards success:

1. Don’t wait anymore

Don’t wait to have money to make money, to fully master what you want to do before doing it, or for circumstances and external factors in your life to perfectly align in order for you to act on your pursuits because in some instances, they never do.

Step out in faith and be willing to take a risk on your dreams. You will discover that the universe will open up doors for you and present you with opportunities you otherwise would have never received had you allowed your perceived limitations to immobilize you.

2. Focus on the things you can control

Don’t become consumed by things and circumstances you can’t control or have absolutely no control over. Instead, use to your advantage those that you can, to move you in the direction of your dreams.

Most successful people would tell you a story or two of the great things they were able to achieve in life in spite of some of their humble beginning. Don’t be averse to starting where you are, using whatever you have, and doing whatever you can; the secret to getting ahead is getting started – you don’t have to have great beginnings to start, you have to start in order to eventually become great.

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” – Maya Angelou

3. Be willing to take the first step

Determine what action you can take today that will move you one step closer to your goal or dream and make its possibility appear that much more real to you. If your dream is to start your own business, simple acts such as choosing a business name, registering your business name, having someone design a business logo for you and so on, will be enough to inspire and motivate you to take further action which will help you achieve your desired outcome.

4. Find the resources that are available to you

Determine what free resources are currently available to you that you could use to jumpstart your goal or dream as you work on making circumstances more favorable for it.

If your dream is to purchase a home in the near future for instance; you might consider attending free homeownership workshops in your area to learn about the home buying process, meeting with a mortgage broker to determine what type of loan you could qualify for or possibly attending open houses of homes comparable to that which you would like to purchase, etc.

5. Let go of your need for perfection

Don’t let the need for perfection hinder you from stepping out into your destiny or doing the things that you need to do. Start where you are and with what you have and allow whatever little progress you make to create momentum and motivate you to keep going.

For instance, if your goal is to own a bakery someday; don’t limit yourself by believing that you have to wait until you own a brick & mortar store to get your product out there — consider selling your goods online, at a farmer’s market or to friends and loved ones, determine if you can supply to local bakeries, participate in events that allow you to showcase your products and so on.

“I understand that I’m not perfect. I made mistakes and I had a hand in everything that’s happened to me, good and bad.” – Dwyane Wade

6. Don’t overwhelm yourself with information overload

Don’t expect to know or learn everything all at once; stay open to learning as you go. As you step out in faith and take a chance on yourself and your pursuits, the information you need will become available to you through the people and situations you attract into your life. Trust in the process and find contentment with learning how to crawl first before you walk.

7. Don’t wait for the ‘right’ time; make the time right today

Don’t put off until tomorrow what you know you can do today or fool yourself into believing that a later time will be more favorable and opportune for your pursuits. If you start today, you will be one year into whatever it is you want to do by this time next year and closer to fulfilling or having fully achieved your goals. Don’t procrastinate; start today!

If you choose to employ the above simplistic approaches in your endeavors, you will soon discover that accomplishing whatever you want in life isn’t complicated or rocket-science in any sense.

In no way am I trying to minimize the fact that some pursuits will present more challenges than others or require more of and from us than some; what I am trying to relay across is the fact that where there’s a will, there’s a way. Whatever myriad of excuses or reasons we adamantly offer to support our inability to do one thing or another, are really just delay tactics to avoid doing what we know we need to do.

How will you set yourself up for success starting today? Let us know in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

The Best Way to Accelerate Your Success According to James Altucher

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James Altucher

I recently interviewed author and serial entrepreneur James Altucher and asked him a simple question:  What is the best way to accelerate success in any endeavor? To which James gave me a golden nugget. Or maybe 3 golden nuggets. He gave me what he calls the plus (+), equals (=), and minus (-) process and it blew me away. So simple yet so profound. (more…)

My name is Mani Vaya and I am the founder of 2000 Books where we publish summaries of business and self-help books for entrepreneurs. We also have a podcast where we interview today’s top business & self-help authors. We also have a youtube channel where we publish book summaries in video format. Before starting 2000 Books, I spent 13 years in High-tech industry rising from the ranks of a software engineer to managing Billion $+ cellphone project launches at a Fortune 500 company. Please find my company online at www.2000books.com . You can also find me on youtube at https://www.youtube.com/c/2000books.

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Ruchit Shah

    Jan 18, 2017 at 10:07 am

    Robin Sharma writes a beautiful book that truly appeals to the soul. It says about living Life to the fullest. As we grow up, we tend to get busy in our work & daily chores. Today’s fast paced world has led us to forget some of the most important things in our lives, such as being grateful for this wonderful life or spending some quality moments with our parents or kids. The Monk who sold his Ferrari reminds us to live a life rich in health, wealth & spiritual being. It speaks in an effective yet non-preachy manner to lift us from mediocrity and show us a path towards living a fulfilling life.

    The writing is really Inspiring and its a book for everyone who would like to live a simple, Happy and purposeful life.

  2. amgy

    Jun 1, 2016 at 5:36 pm

    Dear Tim
    The Review of Robin Sharma book by you is highly applaudable. I am trying to pour simplicity in my life when I realised its actual benefits.
    From that day when I finished “The Monk who sold his Ferrari “book, I am continuously in practice to get bliss by the simple rule of life .
    thanks once again .

    • Tim Denning

      Jun 6, 2016 at 12:54 am

      Amgy, thanks for reading and best of luck with your quest for simplicity.

  3. Toño

    May 14, 2016 at 7:01 pm

    Tim, you listed three books I have read during my time, and all of them had some particular impact on my life. But there’s something special about Monk Who Sold His Ferrari. And you were spot on about it’s very hard to put that book down once you started reading it. Exactly. I’ve finished it for a few days I think and only because I was reading during my early mornings and had to attend my job. Without it I would have done it in a day. It was so addictive!

    Taking down the lessons I can certainly relate to every single one of them. Are people I work with opened to new ideas? Most likely not indeed. I had been talking about that book with so many of them, and not a single one had listened. I even offered one girl my copy of book and we were about to meet after my swiming pool session but she never came. And you know, it’s just funny how easily you can turn a great opportunity to learn and educate yourself. For free and with pleasure. I offered her a free one-on-one talk so to just help and understand things better, to help her bring positivity and change the attitude. And again, she never came.

    I am recharging my mind now and constantly trying to empty my cup. Even though with so huge amount of knowledge I recieve every day it is very tricky. Sometimes I feel like give up everything and re-connect with nature, to go live somewhere in the wilderness. One of my wild dreams 😉

    I also believe that tragedy will guide to a better live like never before. I agree with your explanation here completely, Tim. Ain’t that just the way? And I feel like I am on the edge of some sort of tragedy myself. Like the inner one. My body gives messages every day yet I’m still like a blind person cannot see them properly. But I can feel something is about to change very soon.

    I also love and adore you spoke about Eric Thomas, as I am watching one guy on youtube regularly who also speals about ET very high. And he also wake up at 3-3:30 am every day because of him. I feel like it was all about synchronicity again, and that we have some things in common 🙂 I started to wake up at 5 am after Tony Robbins first book and then I saw Robin Sharma’s video where he talked about waking up early. I abandoned that habbit due my work schedule because otherwise I will have very limited sleep time which is not healthy so now I wake at 5.20 am three days a week when I go to the gym at the morning. But now, seeing you do the same thing (3 am wake up) I want to try it as well. You are my inspiration there, Tim.

    And this. This is simply awesome saying I gotta quote and remember: ‘Courage is a sense of certainty about every action you take and the belief that everything you do is ultimately going to work for the best, one way or another.’

    One of the main message of this book was simplicity, and one of the greatess minds of this worl, Albert Einstein has said: ‘If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough’.

    It was amazing read, my friend, and I agree with Evan Teague, it was a knockout. You are on a different level, my man. For a few days I have been thinking about this article. Much love and appreciation for your knowledge.

    Now I actually want to re-read this book again.

    • Tim Denning

      May 15, 2016 at 5:28 am

      Toño we have similar tastes my friend. I love your dedication to squeezing out every ounce of greatness from everything I write and talk about. If you believe you are on the cusp of tragedy then that can only be a good thing. It means your life is going to change for the better. Based on what you have told me, you are changing into someone that has the power to do great things.

      Remember that not everyone will share your vision or think that this book is powerful. Ignorance is bliss and everyone deserves whatever they want to believe. Simple books like this is where you learn to be successful and happy at the same time. Before I started waking up at 3am my previous bedtime was 5:20 – that’s freaky!!!!

      • Toño

        May 16, 2016 at 8:41 am

        I value time and effort wise people invest in their work, I am a big sucker for knowledge and things that can help me to grow and be a better person, so I try to absorb every bits and pieces that greatness 😉 Not every time though. But I loved to learn right from my childhood.

        I know that not everyone will share my ideas and view but sometimes it’s just too frustrating to see how reasonably smart people refuse to get better and educate themselves. I’m getting better at it however and it can actually be a good sign I am going up. I appreciate your support, Tim, very much. For the last couple of weeks you helped me a lot and been a massive boost for me to keep on going. Funny thing, recently I realized people I’ve never met in person, or just far far away, helps me more than those who around every time. Amazing, isn’t it?

        I would also like to know, what time you go to bed now as you wake up at 3am? And how much actual time healthy sleep requiers? Do you find it hard wake up so early every day and do you feel the change from waking at 5.20 am ?

  4. Vishnu

    May 14, 2016 at 4:37 am

    Good stuff Tim. You’ve done a great review of the book and pulled out the key lessons. I love the simplicity concept. The best things in life are simple. We make it much more complex than necessary. There is power, wisdom and greatness in simplicity. Over the years I’ve tried to simplify all areas of my life.

    • Tim Denning

      May 15, 2016 at 5:22 am

      Vishnu thank you for your message. Simplicity is the key to life and business. Since I started reading Joshua Becker I discovered that the way to declutter your mind is simplify your life and most importantly, simplify your possessions.

  5. Evan Teague

    May 12, 2016 at 6:33 am

    Tim,

    Another knockout.

    What spoke to me specifically would be #3, 5 and 12.

    3 – I used to have a lot of anger in my heart which I had to release in order to reach my full potential and open my heart up to help others. By focusing on other people and their needs, we’re more centered and purposeful anyways.

    5- Worrying will kill us too because we’re using potent visualization AND imagination in the wrong direction. No matter if we think & talk about something we DON’T want, we’re still creating it. Think the opposite from what you don’t want, and create only what you want.

    12 – I had to learn this by moving across the world by myself and networking with the right people. At the moment, it just looked like a huge tunnel with a question mark at the end. After all, it’s bloomed to a full-fledged E-commerce business of my own, a personal development and mindset website to share with others, and freedom to travel and live anywhere.

    Fantastic work.

    – Evan

    • Tim Denning

      May 12, 2016 at 8:28 pm

      Thank you Evan. Moving across to the other side of the world when you don’t know anyone is a gutsy move and I applaud you for having the courage to take action on your vision. Speak soon mate.

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Success Advice

The Best Way to Accelerate Your Success According to James Altucher

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James Altucher

I recently interviewed author and serial entrepreneur James Altucher and asked him a simple question:  What is the best way to accelerate success in any endeavor? To which James gave me a golden nugget. Or maybe 3 golden nuggets. He gave me what he calls the plus (+), equals (=), and minus (-) process and it blew me away. So simple yet so profound.

The +: Find People who are far ahead of you in your field of endeavor and learn from them

There are 4 kinds of people who fall under this category: Real Mentors, Virtual Mentors, Coaches and stars. We need all of them in order to be able to accelerate our progress.

Real Mentors are people who you personally know, and they help you out in giving you guidance and feedback. Mentors are usually emotionally vested in your success and can be called upon to guide you when you need that help.  

Virtual Mentors are usually people you do not personally know but they still have a huge impact on your lives. They can be historic figures, great current figures, titans of industry or anyone you look up to but do not have any contact with. You can read their books, watch their videos and just absorb any knowledge they put out there.

Coaches are people who have an obligation to guide you in your journey. It could either be that they have been hired by you or your organization to help you move forward. In sports, coaching is a well established phenomenon. In fact, every team and every great sports figure has one or multiple coaches.

Stars are people who are crushing it in your field of endeavor. They are operating at a much higher level than you are. Your job is to find them and associate with them. What you will find is that when you start spending time with them, you will automatically start stepping up your game. When you see that someone else is able to do something, suddenly that becomes possible for you and you are able to break through that barrier.

This is something I also learned from Tony Robbins at one of his live seminars. He kept on saying that he had given us a lot of strategies to accelerate success, but there was one strategy that stood above all else. He called it “compressing decades into days.”  He said in order to compress decades into days, we must find people who are much better than us in that field of endeavor and learn from them.

“Without a mentor in life, one can easily succumb to folly. Without a mentor in life, one can easily become self-centered, capricious and arrogant.”

The =: Find equals in your current field of endeavor and work/grow with them

In order to grow fast, you must find peers who are at similar level to you in the field of endeavor and find ways to:

  • Associate with them
  • Spend time with them
  • Exchange ideas with them
  • Ask for their help
  • Help them
  • Compete with them

The reason this works so well is because your peers are going through similar challenges as you are. What you are struggling with, someone else might have figured out. What someone else is struggling with, you might have figured out.

Napoleon Hill talked about the power of mastermind in one of the greatest personal development books ever written called “Think and Grow Rich.” He defined it as “Coordination of knowledge and effort in a spirit of harmony, between two or more people, for the attainment of a definite purpose.” He goes on to say that masterminds have been the basis of nearly every great fortune.

One of the best things you can do for yourself is to start a mastermind group with your peers. If you are starting a business, go find people who are at a similar level to you and start a mastermind group with them. A mastermind group can be something as simple as a weekly meeting with 3 of your peers where each of you talk about the progress you made and the challenges you encountered.

The –: Find someone you can teach and help them

You might have often heard the saying that one of the best ways to learn something is to teach it. When you read something or listen to it or watch it you only absorb less than 50% of it. However, when you start teaching those ideas, your learning goes to a whole new level. That is because, in order to teach something you have to be able to break those ideas down, simplify them, and organize them into coherent structures.

In order to be able to teach, you need to have clarity in your own head about the ideas. Teaching requires a complete understanding of the concept. You can’t just “wing it.” Your student’s questions will force you to think deeper.

Teaching has a multitude of benefits which go beyond learning. Helping others can be incredibly gratifying and can make us feel much more fulfilled in our journey of life. Go find your protege.

“Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.” – Dalai Lama

So, if there is any area of life where you feel that your progress is slower than what you want in to be, examine your +/=/- and make changes accordingly.

How are you making sure you achieve your goals? Comment below and let us know!

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Success Advice

10 Part Action Plan for Writing Your Very First Book

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writing a book

There’s no doubt that writing a book is an excellent way to bolster your credibility and establish yourself as an authority. A book can also help you spread ideas and is a mechanism for people to connect with you. It’s a self-contained product that you can monetize, but it can also be a vehicle to sell your products and services. In many ways, your book can be your ticket to new income streams and opportunities.

Use these 10 steps below to get going on your first book:

1. Ask Yourself How You Can Help

Your book requires an idea, but the masterpiece depends on the value you will provide to the reader. Start by asking yourself, “how can I help?” You may have experience in a particular field or a passion for a specific topic, but either way, you need to first answer this question.

In my situation, I knew I could help entrepreneurs finish things because I was already familiar with the demands of the lifestyle and regularly work in that environment. How can you help your readers?

2. Formulate Your Main Idea

Once you know how you can help your reader, the main idea should be easy. The main idea addresses how you will approach the subject. Will your book be a step-by-step guide or will it inspire your readers to higher levels? If you’re stuck figuring out your main idea, think of it in terms of a plan – you’re going to provide a specific plan to your readers to accomplish something. That becomes the main idea.

3. Remember the Three Act Play

In story writing, there’s a character arc, where the protagonist winds up in a setting, encounters tension, and then resolves that tension. You want to set up your book in the same way, even if it’s a nonfiction work. Begin by laying out the context for your reader. What problems are they facing? What obstacles are in their path? Then help them break through those problems and overcome those obstacles. Finally, don’t leave them hanging. Create a resolution that enables your readers to finish your book with a clear vision for moving beyond.

4. Title 15 Chapters

I’ve found that most failed author’s miss this strategy and it can make all the difference in finishing your first book. Open up a new document and give yourself numbers one through fifteen. After each number, give it a title that communicates the idea of that chapter. “1. Sleep’s Role in Weight Loss.” “2. How to Respond to a Micromanaging Boss.” You get the idea, but by giving each chapter a title, you’re essentially creating a roadmap for the completed book.

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” – Benjamin Franklin

5. Write a One Sentence Summary of Each Chapter

As you come up with titles for each chapter, you will want to start creating one sentence summaries for each. Think of these as the miniature Christmas trees that will eventually have ornaments hanging on them when Christmas rolls around. The one sentence summary will also help you remember what you wanted to write about as you proceed through each chapter.

6. Divide and Conquer

Take 50,000 words and divide it by 15. Fifty-five thousand is the target number of words in your book. Fifteen is the number of chapters. Do that math and you’ll quickly see that you’ll only need about 3,300 words for each chapter. When we see a blank screen and the need for 50,000 words, most new authors tend to give up. Can you write 3,300 words? Yes, you can. It’s almost like writing a couple of magazine articles for each chapter.

Breaking up your book into smaller chunks will give you the psychological advantage of seeing light at the end of the tunnel. Conquer one chapter at a time, and before you know it, you will complete an entire book.

7. Spell Check

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read a manuscript and it’s obvious the author never even bothered to spell check. If you don’t think your writing is worth the effort, why do you think your readers will take the time? It’s a fundamental rule of writing and will go a long way in proving to your readers you care about your craft.

8. Do a Table Read

Actors will often sit around a table reading a script prior to acting out a scene. Why? It ensures the dialogue is well-developed and makes logical sense. While you don’t necessarily need to read your book out loud, you do need to actually read it before you finalize it.

If you’re like most authors, your writing will take place over weeks or months, and involve many different emotional states. You don’t want your book to sound like it was written by a schizophrenic person, so read it through in one sitting at least once before you consider it complete.

“Read your paper backward, sentence by sentence, as a final proofreading step. This technique isolates each sentence and makes it easier to spot errors you may have overlooked in previous readings.” – Claire B. May Gordon S. May

9. Don’t Forget to Edit

The table read I described above is going to highlight problems with the flow and language in your book. That’s why you will want to follow immediately with a round of edits. Editing will also give you the opportunity to improve your material and eliminate the possibility of lingering mistakes in the manuscript.

10. Make a Plan to Distribute

If you plan to write a book but make no plan to get it out into the world, you will probably stop short of finishing. After all, why finish if no one will ever read it? At the very least, you should self-publish the book in digital format which is inexpensive and easy to accomplish.

The worst that could happen is that you’ve completed your first book! Best case scenario is that your book is picked up by a major publisher and sells millions of copies. Either way, you’re unlikely to finish what you start without a plan for distribution.

Now what? Start writing. There’s no way to finish your first book without some words on the page.

Have you ever wanted to write a book? If so, let us know in the comments below!

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Success Advice

Why The 5-Second Rule Made Me Unstoppable And How It Will Do The Same For You.

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5-Second Rule

What a massive few weeks. I discovered this life hack called “The 5-Second Rule.”

What a rollercoaster of a ride!

 

A simple definition of the 5 Second Rule:

5-Second RuleTo push yourself out of your head and into action by counting down 5-4-3-2-1 and then taking immediate action towards a goal, or instinct to take action towards something you think of.

It’s a rule that forces you to make a 5 Second Decision. 5-Second Decisions do not allow your brain to be involved and it all comes from your heart combined with your instinct. If you wait longer than 5-seconds, you’ll talk yourself out of making the decision.

The 5-Second Rule is a bias towards action instead of overthinking and been taken over by fear. In that 5 seconds, you get the opportunity to be courageous. It’s a small window of courage that you can access for free. After 5 seconds, your days are numbered and your brain will sabotage you.

“Hesitation is the kiss of death”

 

The crazy thing about the 5-Second Rule!

I was using the 5 Second Rule already without knowing it. I was using the 5 Second Rule because I was petrified of forgetting something important so I always forced myself to take action towards something that mattered to me straight away.

You’re probably the same. You’re probably using some of the 5 Second philosophy already. By the end of this blog post, you’re going to be using the 5-Second Rule consciously to live your dream life.

Here’s what happened when I tried the 5-Second Rule:

 

A) Changed my career.

That’s right; I knew it was time to changed my career. It had been building and finally, I knew it was time to make a change. Two opportunities were presented to me and they both felt right. They encompassed my passions although I was underprepared, unqualified and fearful of whether I would succeed.

When asked to make a decision, I used the 5 Second Rule and trusted my instincts. I said yes to both opportunities and I’m so glad I did. I’ve never felt so electric and it was all because I came from a place of courage. I told myself “You got this!”

“You get one life and it’s not going to begin again”

 

B) Became a professional in public speaking.

I was asked to join a public speaking competition at my local Toastmasters club. I always said no and regretted it because I knew I could use it as another platform to inspire people. This year, when the offer came up, I used the 5-Second Rule and said in my head “5-4-3-2-1, I’m in, sign me up!”

I went with my heart rather than letting my brain tell me how horrible I was at public speaking and how I’d never win.

The crazy thing is I won the competition. I beat people who were doing public speaking on the world stage and took the spotlight from them. All in a split second, 5-Second Decision.

“Confidence is built through one 5-second move at a time”

 

C) Joined the gym.

I used the 5-Second Rule to finally, after five years, make the decision to sign up again. It was after midnight and the gym was closed.

To make sure I took action, I left multiple inquiries on a few gym websites so that I was guaranteed not to forget what I had committed to.

The next day, I took my lazy ass to the gym, and I signed up. I’ve never felt better and my energy levels have started to pick up again.

 

D) Went to a country where I couldn’t speak the language all by myself.

This was a big deal for me because I’ve always traveled with other people and to places where I could speak the language. All of a sudden, I was going to be alone in a foreign country and unable to communicate in English.

Then one Friday, I was forced by work to take two weeks off. I used the 5-Second Rule to book a trip to Japan. It’s the best thing I’ve done this year. I learned so much and it got me right out of my comfort zone.

I’m sure there are some travel plans you’ve put off too. Next time you get the urge to travel somewhere like I did, at that moment, use the 5-Second Rule to take action and push through all the BS reasons why you think you can’t do it.

 


E) Met my girlfriend’s parents.

My girlfriend’s parents live overseas and they were in town for a few weeks. To me, meeting the parents is a big deal. I felt a bit nervous and when she asked me if I would have dinner with them, I felt the fear, counted down from 5, and said yes.

I’m so glad I did. The parents were great and I stopped myself from procrastinating.

Romantic relationships are the best when you go deep and do what you know is right. The 5-Second Rule will ensure you don’t back down.

 

F) Stopped the junk food temptation.

While I eat healthy most of the time, recently, I found myself letting my guard down and eating unhealthy food every now and then. It was upsetting me because I’ve been so disciplined for more than five years.

With a new commitment to going to the gym, I decided to eat food that would fuel my new exercise routine. Every time I looked at a packet of chips, I’d count down from 5 and then eat something that was good for me. I still eat junk food every now and then, but I have it under control again.

The decisions you make about eating are made in a split second. Use the 5-Second Rule to stop yourself from temptation. You’ll feel better in the long run and have more energy when you make the right choices.

 

G) Blogging when I don’t want to.

You may find it hard to believe but there are plenty of times when I don’t feel like blogging. I’ve found it challenging to overcome. That is until I discovered the 5-Second Rule. Now, when I feel lazy and don’t want to write, I count down from 5 and then start writing anyway.

I disconnect myself from the outcome and make sure I keep up the habit of blogging.

Whatever your passion is, it’s the same. There are regular times when you can’t be bothered and these moments are when you have to push through and use the 5-Second Rule the most. You’ll never achieve greatness unless you do what is sometimes not what you feel like doing.

 

Last Hack: Burn The Boats.

Made famous by Tony Robbins, the Burn the Boats Hack will give you leverage and destroy your Plan B. The story is simple. There was this army trying to take an island and they kept failing.

The leader in charge told them to go to the island and burn the boats behind them. This way, the only opportunity to survive was to take control of the island because they now couldn’t retreat back to their boats and sail home. Failing was not an option. There was no Plan B.

By combining the 5-Second Rule with the Burn the Boats Hack, you’ll not only force yourself to make decisions and stop things like fear, procrastination and overthinking takeover – you’ll also burn your Plan B and create leverage.

Leverage keeps you accountable to these 5-Second Decisions and stops you from backing out. When there’s no way out, you’ll find a way to get through the darkness and shine brightly at the end of the tunnel that is your goal.

 

***Final thought***

If I can achieve all of those goals in the mater of a few weeks, imagine what you can do. This 5- Second Rule will change your life. It’s the one life hack I’ve learned that has given so much success in such a little time. It only takes seconds to learn and seconds to implement.

These are the tools I love: Tools that are dead simple and can be used right away. No study is required, no mentors are needed, no books need to be read. It all starts with you.

Now you have the one tool, the one hack, to change your life.

Go use it right now! Tell me how you go.

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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Success Advice

7 Ways to Achieve Success by Starting Where You Are & With What You Have

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how to achieve success

Let’s face it, most of us love over-complicating things and often shun simple information because it’s basic. We really don’t know how to KISS (Keep It Simple, Silly!). We are drawn to things that boggle our minds and consider straight forward information boring or too simplistic for our liking. Don’t believe me? How many times have you written off someone’s advice or their solution to a problem because you considered it’s simplistic nature suspect?

Have you ever felt cheated out of money you spent on a self-help book because you felt there had to be ‘more to the story’ after reading it? Our need to over-complicate things is often what keeps us stuck in life, delays some of our progress in life and hinders us from pursuing our goals and dreams. We often imagine that everything has to be perfect or make absolute sense to us in order for us to even consider investing ourselves into whatever it is we desire to do.

People who make things happen don’t believe in perfection when it comes to pursuing their goals and dreams, because they are aware that our life’s circumstances will never be entirely perfect or favorable for us to pursue some of our endeavors. Therefore, they don’t allow external factors to dissuade them from pursuing their goals and dreams because they know that reasons will always present themselves to excuse our inability to make things happen at some juncture in our lives.

If you want to accomplish anything in your life, you have to be willing to start where you are and with what you have. The journey of a thousand miles definitely begins with one step. Allow yourself to take the first step and build upon it.

Utilize whatever resources you currently have available to jump-start and move your life and pursuits in the direction you want them to go with the belief that everything you need will materialize in one way or another as long as you keep taking action and remain committed to your endeavors and the process.

Below are tips, advice and insights you can follow and ponder that will help you get started where you are and with what you have on your journey towards success:

1. Don’t wait anymore

Don’t wait to have money to make money, to fully master what you want to do before doing it, or for circumstances and external factors in your life to perfectly align in order for you to act on your pursuits because in some instances, they never do.

Step out in faith and be willing to take a risk on your dreams. You will discover that the universe will open up doors for you and present you with opportunities you otherwise would have never received had you allowed your perceived limitations to immobilize you.

2. Focus on the things you can control

Don’t become consumed by things and circumstances you can’t control or have absolutely no control over. Instead, use to your advantage those that you can, to move you in the direction of your dreams.

Most successful people would tell you a story or two of the great things they were able to achieve in life in spite of some of their humble beginning. Don’t be averse to starting where you are, using whatever you have, and doing whatever you can; the secret to getting ahead is getting started – you don’t have to have great beginnings to start, you have to start in order to eventually become great.

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” – Maya Angelou

3. Be willing to take the first step

Determine what action you can take today that will move you one step closer to your goal or dream and make its possibility appear that much more real to you. If your dream is to start your own business, simple acts such as choosing a business name, registering your business name, having someone design a business logo for you and so on, will be enough to inspire and motivate you to take further action which will help you achieve your desired outcome.

4. Find the resources that are available to you

Determine what free resources are currently available to you that you could use to jumpstart your goal or dream as you work on making circumstances more favorable for it.

If your dream is to purchase a home in the near future for instance; you might consider attending free homeownership workshops in your area to learn about the home buying process, meeting with a mortgage broker to determine what type of loan you could qualify for or possibly attending open houses of homes comparable to that which you would like to purchase, etc.

5. Let go of your need for perfection

Don’t let the need for perfection hinder you from stepping out into your destiny or doing the things that you need to do. Start where you are and with what you have and allow whatever little progress you make to create momentum and motivate you to keep going.

For instance, if your goal is to own a bakery someday; don’t limit yourself by believing that you have to wait until you own a brick & mortar store to get your product out there — consider selling your goods online, at a farmer’s market or to friends and loved ones, determine if you can supply to local bakeries, participate in events that allow you to showcase your products and so on.

“I understand that I’m not perfect. I made mistakes and I had a hand in everything that’s happened to me, good and bad.” – Dwyane Wade

6. Don’t overwhelm yourself with information overload

Don’t expect to know or learn everything all at once; stay open to learning as you go. As you step out in faith and take a chance on yourself and your pursuits, the information you need will become available to you through the people and situations you attract into your life. Trust in the process and find contentment with learning how to crawl first before you walk.

7. Don’t wait for the ‘right’ time; make the time right today

Don’t put off until tomorrow what you know you can do today or fool yourself into believing that a later time will be more favorable and opportune for your pursuits. If you start today, you will be one year into whatever it is you want to do by this time next year and closer to fulfilling or having fully achieved your goals. Don’t procrastinate; start today!

If you choose to employ the above simplistic approaches in your endeavors, you will soon discover that accomplishing whatever you want in life isn’t complicated or rocket-science in any sense.

In no way am I trying to minimize the fact that some pursuits will present more challenges than others or require more of and from us than some; what I am trying to relay across is the fact that where there’s a will, there’s a way. Whatever myriad of excuses or reasons we adamantly offer to support our inability to do one thing or another, are really just delay tactics to avoid doing what we know we need to do.

How will you set yourself up for success starting today? Let us know in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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