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13 Tips To Create A Viral Blog – Joshua Becker

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Joshua Becker blogger minimalist

One of my favourite types of people to interview is other bloggers who have had a worldwide impact. A person who fits this category perfectly is Joshua Becker from the blog Becoming Minimalist. His blog gets more than 2.2 million views a month, and he has gone on to be a best-selling author.

Before getting into the topic for our interview, I asked Joshua if he started out thinking of himself as a writer or blogger. His reply to me was “definitely not Tim.” He started his blog because he wanted to journal his family’s transition from middle class America into minimalism.

It’s this very distinction, that I believe after talking with Joshua, made him so successful at blogging. Many people start a blog to become millionaires or attract lots of people, but like Joshua, my reason and his reason for blogging are totally different to the traditional approach.

Both of us believe the following statement about successful blogging; if you’re starting a blog to have lots of social media followers and make heaps of money then quit now – you will fail!

The following thirteen tips are what Joshua told me you need to start a viral blog just like his.

 

1. Add viral elements to every post

It’s no secret that lists posts (like this very article) are a key element to viral blogs. List posts tell the reader what to look for, what to expect and allow them to skim to the points of post that are most relevant to them.

The other element is that your headlines must engage the reader right from the start. Joshua told me that your headline needs to offer a promise of some sort. What can you guarantee by the end of the article to the reader if they invest the time in reading what you have to say? Titles that offer this promise and then deliver on it by the end of the post are the ones that are most shareable.

Having said all of that, Joshua says that often the posts you write at the last minute with the least amount of planning, end up being the most successful – this has been true for me as well.

 

2. Flip the perspective of your writing

If there was another defining moment in my interview with Joshua it was this one; if you want people to start reading your articles then flip the perspective of your writing from being about you, to being about helpful advice that can help your audience.

For the first two years, Joshua blogged in relative obscurity. At the start Joshua was writing what he calls very “me centred content” about what he was doing each day in his niche of minimalism. About two years in Joshua decided to change his blogging and write articles that could help another person.

As an example, a simple article about how he was getting rid of his clothes, turned into how someone else could get rid of some of their clothes – same topic, different perspective.

 

3. Destroy the belief that blogging is dead

When Joshua was starting his WordPress blog everyone was saying that blogging was dead. Even now, seven years on, he says that people are still saying that blogging is dead. According to Joshua, the truth is that blogging is more relevant than ever.

The common misconception is that social media has replaced the need for blogs. In reality, blogging provides a totally different opportunity that social media does not. With social media sites like Facebook, you can’t have longer form conversations with readers.

Most users on these sites are scrolling through on their mobile phone and are not interested in sitting down and reading something. On social media, the behaviour is more about reading the first paragraph of something and then scrolling onto the next post.

With a social media platform it’s not your space whereas with a blog you can set the tone, theme, culture and design of everything from the buttons to the sidebar.  If you look at Joshua’s blog, it’s all about minimalism and the layout of his blog follows the same theme. It would be impossible to try and replicate this format on social media from scratch.

Joshua Becker Social Media Blog Quote
 

4. Define the success of your blog early

Another successful attribute of Joshua’s blog is that he defined what success looked like early on. As I said earlier, you can’t just tell yourself you want to build a following and then start blogging. The outcome of Joshua’s blog was to journal about his family so this kept him motivated.

For your own blog, success might be, achieving a goal that you are working hard for, or documenting your life’s work (this is one of mine). These are real goals and they are very achievable. If you define success as something like money or the number of followers, then you won’t be able to stay motivated.

In Joshua’s case, he blogged for almost 18 months with no one reading. Is your blogging goal strong enough to do the same? If not, then now’s your chance to redefine it.

 

5. Use some beginner tools to attract readers

One of the most common questions that all successful bloggers like Joshua get asked is “how do I build traffic from nothing?” I asked the same question to Joshua and he told me that it’s about the little things.

When you create a blog post on wordpress you get the option to add tags. This simple tool is how people found him in the early days. Once Joshua had a few posts on the site, he then shared new posts on Facebook with family and friends

He then began leaving comments on other people’s blogs that were in the same niche so that people could click his name and find his blog. The next step was to email other bloggers and let them know that he was writing in a similar field to them. After that, he began sharing their work on his blog.

When he wrote an article that was relevant to something on another bloggers site, he would link out to it in his post. Surprise, surprise, other bloggers started returning the favour and doing the same for him.

The final step he took was to have a few guest posts a couple of times a month from other bloggers. That meant that the guest blogger got exposure to Joshua’s audience and vice versa. So that’s how Joshua built traffic early on. It’s pretty simple and something that anyone could do right?

 

6. Blog 2-3 times per week (it’s been tested)

At the start of Joshua’s blogging career he tried to write posts every single day.  By trying to achieve this difficult goal Joshua found that his posts were very short and rushed because he was trying to write something new every single day.

He ended up cutting back and writing three times a week instead. In reality, no one is coming to your website every single day so you shouldn’t feel like you need to publish something new every day. By cutting back to three times a week Joshua found that he had longer, better quality posts.

These posts were being enjoyed more and better still, they were being shared a lot more than before. After a year of blogging three times a week, Joshua cut down to writing two times per week. The level of quality in his posts got even better and they begun getting shared even more.

Joshua did try blogging only once per week but he found that his blog numbers started to decrease and that once per week was not enough. So there you have it, the blogging frequency myth has been demystified for you and you now know how many times per week you need to write to have success.

 

7. Find the time away from distractions

I asked Joshua during our interview what the basics were that someone needed to blog. His reply was that you need a topic you are passionate about, a platform to publish your writing on and the time to write.

Joshua said to me that the last one (time) is the most important because finding the time to blog and making the commitment to do it is the real challenge. The easiest way to find time is to stop watching TV and write instead!

Distractions are another part of the time component. Try writing in 45-60 minute blocks and you will find that you can write for longer. If social media is another distraction for you then do what Joshua does and use some software, like Ommwriter to block out distractions.

Having the time is one thing but consider what time of the day you write best. For Joshua and I, we both write best in the morning. Ask yourself, what time do you write best?

 

8. Think carefully about the number of words

Word count is all about training your audience to expect a certain number of words. For Joshua, he typically writes 600-900 works, which works best for his site’s audience. Bloggers like Seth Godin write very short posts of 200 words or less, but the quality of the content is very high and his audience are trained for his short bursts of brilliance

Other well-known bloggers like James Clear tend to write longer posts and again, the audience have come to expect this from him.  If you can combine the way you write with how long your audience want to read you will have the optimal word count.

 

9. Find a relevant photo

Given the type of blog that Joshua has, photos are not as relevant as maybe some other sites. Needless to say, Joshua still thinks that the photo matters. He says that you need to find a photo that loosely represents what you’re talking about and is inviting.

The other point to consider is what photographers call “eye-flow.” Joshua typically looks for photos where your eyes tend to scan down as you look at it, which will lead reader’s eyes to the post text. Some websites that Joshua uses to find photos are Unsplashed, Pixabay and Minimography.

 

10. Mailing lists are about conversions – nothing else

Mailing lists are something that every blog has but Joshua has an interesting view on how to use one. He says that a lot of people offer a free eBook or free course to capture readers email addresses. The problem Joshua has with this method is that you attract hundreds of email addresses but the conversion rates on any emails you send to them in the future are crummy.

The reason for this result is quite obvious; these methods will only get you a one-time subscriber who just wanted your free product. What Joshua does is have a subscribe button at the bottom of every page and then that way he is only capturing people that have enjoyed his writing and want to know when there is new content.

The other point that Joshua raised was that you should avoid having annoying pop-ups on your site trying to force people to subscribe. His view is that you put a subscribe box where it can be found, but don’t jam it down the readers throat.

 

11. Be patient your tipping point will come

As you can see from Joshua’s story so far, patience is a big part of blogging. If you do it for the right reasons and you’re patient, your tipping point will come. There were two very clear tipping points for Joshua where his blog traffic started dramatically increasing.

The first one was when Leo Babauta from Zen Habits wrote a blog about minimalism and referenced Joshua’s site as a good blog to read on the subject – this sent a lot of traffic his way. As you can see the law of reciprocity is at work again (there is a reason we harp on about this on Addicted2Success).

The second part of Joshua’s tipping point was when he made the clever decision two years in to take all the major posts from his blog and turn them into an eBook. This eBook became a way for Joshua to reach out to other blogs and say, “hey I just wrote this eBook, if you want to check it out or send people to it then here it is.”

After both of these events occurred, Joshua discovered that Facebook was well suited to his theme and he began sharing his posts on there, which saw his numbers increase further.

 

12. Monetise your blog (Joshua’s formula)

Before I go into this point I need to make it clear that this is Joshua’s formula so it doesn’t mean you need to follow this exact method. So what you’re all wondering is how did he quit he job and make money fro his blogging?

Your beliefs form a big part of your monetisation strategy. For Joshua, he has never had any advertising or Google Adsense on his blog. He believes that advertising on a website is merely selling a readers attention and he wants his readers attention on what he is writing, not on ads.

All of Joshua’s income comes from book sales and Amazon affiliate links for books he has recommended to his readers. Even though Joshua makes a lot of his money from book sales, he says “it’s easy for people to see a book on the New York Times bestseller list and think wow I wish I could be that lucky.”

This thought often occurs without really understanding how many late nights, early mornings and vacations were sacrificed to write the book.  For this monetisation model to work, he has learnt that the only way is to self-publish his books because traditional publishers will pay fairly small royalties.

The places he recommends to self-publish books are Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, iBooks and Kobo Books (good for international sales). To publish your book on these sites you will need to have your Word Document converted into the various file formats. Joshua uses 5JDesign to do this process.

Once you have the different file formats, you can just go to each website yourself and upload the book, write a description, upload your cover and set price. These tasks will take you an afternoon to do yourself.

While PDF books are not as common anymore, there are sites like eJunkie where you can set up affiliates to help sell your book. Joshua sold one of his early books for $10 and gave the affiliate a very generous $5 for each sale they helped him make.

The other reason to have a PDF version of your book is so you can send it to other bloggers who might be interested in it for free. To be successful at this, you have to have the mindset that you will lose one sale, but that the blogger who gets your book will help you make many more sales.

Some other sites that Joshua has used to sell PDF books through are Smash Words and Gumroad.

Joshua Becker - Author Quote - Becoming Minimalist
 

13. Build more traffic by promoting your book

Just publishing a book will help your blog traffic a bit, but Joshua recommends that you take it further by promoting your book using some of the simple tips he has used.

As I mentioned in the previous tip, offer the book free to bloggers but make sure you insist on a review from them that they put on their own site.  You should also find yourself a team of readers to read your book in exchange for leaving a review on Amazon (the reviews are honest so you don’t know what you will get).

Get into the mindset that the more free books you send out, the more reviews you will get, and the more people you will have talking about your book.

To find the team of readers Joshua suggests you do a blog post and say, “hey I’m looking for 50 people to read my book, leave your email address here if you’re keen.” You can then use a simple WordPress contact form to capture the email addresses or use something like Mailchimp to link to your WordPress blog.

If you’re mailing list is big enough, you could send an email out to your database with the same message instead of doing a blog post or do both.

If you’re blog has a very small audience then websites like GoodReads are another great place to post your book. Experimenting with “Sponsored Facebook Posts” is another way you could promote your book. Don’t be afraid to also jump on Twitter and let people know and ask them to retweet it for you.

“The marketing of a book doesn’t start the week before it comes out or even months in advance. Ideally, it should start years in advance where you have been helping other writers, promoting other people’s books, and being a cheerleader and supporter for them. If you have done this then, you will have some strong supporters at the start of the book launch”

***Final Thought***

 So you now have all the tips you need to go off and start your own blog. I hope that you’re inspired and please share your blog creation with me once you get going.

Joshua’s Favourite Book – More Or Less by Jeff Shinabarger

Joshua’s Favourite Quote – “In every encounter we either give life or we drain it; there is no neutral exchange.” – Brennan Manning

If you got value from Joshua’s blogging advice, then I strongly encourage you to check out his new not for profit organisation The Hope Effect that is going to change orphan care around the world.

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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12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Evan

    Dec 24, 2015 at 9:07 am

    Hey Tim!

    Great article, studying someone who’s got in-depth experience from supplementing his income with blogging and gathering the most valuable lessons from it.

    This post has been super helpful for me since I’m writing for the benefit of other people too and growing an audience of success-chasers. There are great tips for lifting other people up and supporting their movements while you build your own!

    Thanks!

    – Evan

    • Tim Denning

      Dec 30, 2015 at 2:22 am

      Thanks Evan. I also learnt a lot of Joshua and his tips were really clear and simple for any blogger to follow. I hope you use them to grow the reach you are looking for on your own site. Cheers

  2. Doug

    Nov 1, 2015 at 4:47 am

    Great article Tim! A theme I picked up on throughout was that of patience and persistence… necessary things to hear for a new blogger such as myself. Thanks for the good read!

    • Tim Denning

      Nov 2, 2015 at 10:27 pm

      Thanks so much Doug. When talking to Joshua I also got the same theme which is that you just need patience. If your writing is good then even if you’re niche is done to death it doesn’t matter because you can provide a fresh take on what already exists. Best of luck with your blogging Doug.

  3. Ifeanyichukwu Miracle

    Oct 31, 2015 at 9:57 pm

    Thanks so much. Am inspired by this article to start off. Please Joshua i will need more help, more on step by step involved. To blog has been my hunger and dreams. I’m very excited to meet this post this night. God bless you.

    • Tim Denning

      Nov 2, 2015 at 10:25 pm

      Thanks for your comment. My advice and Joshua’s advice is just go for it and write about your passion. Let us know how you go.

  4. Esther Mellar

    Oct 31, 2015 at 5:21 pm

    Hi Tim,

    Thank you for advising me to read this article, it is very helpful. I also heard saying that writing a blog today without readers is like talking in an empty room, therefore it is advised to have some followers already before staring a blog. What are your thoughts about this?

    Cheers,

    Esther

    • Tim Denning

      Oct 31, 2015 at 8:08 pm

      Hi Esther, I personally don’t think you need any followers to start a blog. Organically through Google and WordPress you will pickup a few by tagging topics in your post. Once you have even one person reading your posts, all it takes is for you to write amazing content and that one person will share it with everybody else. The focus should never be how many followers you have, it always should be about the quality of the content. I would also argue that everybody has an audience already. People like yourself have at least 100 friends on Facebook and Twitter right? So you have followers already. You have to be prepared to do what Joshua did and write because you love it not because you are trying to get followers. If the content is good, the followers will come. Tim

  5. Stephen Osoko

    Oct 30, 2015 at 8:49 pm

    This was a truly helpful article for me.

    I also have a personal development blog and am very passionate about it.

    • Tim Denning

      Oct 31, 2015 at 8:31 am

      Thanks Stephen for reading. Best of luck with your blog and I hope we can give you some inspiration.

  6. Brad DeVore

    Oct 30, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    Great article Tim! A solid checklist to determine why a blog isn’t thriving. This post also delivered all the sources to cut research time in half for publishing a book. Thanks for the value! -Brad

    • Tim Denning

      Oct 30, 2015 at 9:27 pm

      Thanks Brad and glad you liked the article. Joshua is very switched on and gave me so many tips that I hadn’t thought of before.

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Success Advice

What If You Never Took Another Selfie Again?

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That’s the question I want you to ponder right now.

What if taking a selfie only made the world ignore you?
What if life is not all about you?
What if no one cares who you took a photo with?

And finally, how did we ever live without selfies before the front-facing camera got invented?

Instead of taking a selfie do this:

Try focusing on other people.
Try not to document every moment.
Try to think about life before selfies.

We all take selfies because that’s what we were told to do.
And that’s exactly why we need to question this habitual flaw that we’re now indulging in.

 

I have A/B tested selfies vs. no selfies.

The result? When I took photos of cool stuff like mountains in Japan and shared a profound thought, people liked that more than a selfie with my overly large head in it. I’ve done this test multiple times over the last few years.

The result is always the same. People are over you and your selfies.

 

It’s not about “I” it’s about “We.”

Sounds cliché, and that’s because most brilliant advice is.

Selfies have deluded us into thinking that life is about us and our big audacious goals. Where life will change for you is when you focus on the “We.”

Everything I write is for the audience I want to inspire. It’s not to show off or to share dumb selfies of me in a weak attempt to appear superior.

 

Selfies cause your followers to compare themselves to you.

And that’s not fair. If each of us tried to be the same, then society would be pretty dull.

“We don’t need a selfie to teach us how to copy each other and be jealous little so-and-sos who want to win a beauty pagan of nothingness”

You’re so much better than a selfie.

I believe you care about your followers so let’s stop drowning them in selfies. Selfies are proving nothing to no one. Selfies stop you from standing out in the crowd and inspiring others.

 

The time you spend “selfieing” could be used for…..

Enjoying this current moment and the breath you have in your lungs. One day that breath is going to stop and all that time selfieing won’t matter. You’re literally using up magical moments trying to take a hundred selfies that you filter and post, hoping for perfection.

Perfection is ugly.

“Right now, is the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen if you’ll only stop selfieing and notice it”

 

Life before selfies….

Life was much the same. The selfie didn’t put us on Cloud 9 with a bunch of our fantasies and an unlimited amount of cash being shot up into the sky via an air cannon.

Life before selfies was fun.
We ate our food instead of looking at it with our phones and letting it get cold.
We had phenomenal conversations with our friends instead of taking endless, mindless selfies.

Life before selfies was not about one’s self.
You took photos of other people. Often, you took two photos max instead of fifty in a row.

I’d like you to imagine a life without selfies.

What does the selfie really mean to you and can you live without it?

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

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Success Advice

Build From Within – Why Success Is All About People

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happy team

What is it that makes a company successful? Money? Technology? A driven CEO? While money certainly doesn’t hurt, technology is essential and it’s nice to have a well poised leader. These things are not what guarantees success in a corporation. It is all about the people. The employees working for an organization are the backbone of the company. Without great people, success can only go so far.

And if this is indeed true, successful business models should revolve around people – attracting top talent, and retaining them. Before ever serving external customers, companies should serve internally. This is where true success is built.

Walid Halty, founder of Dvinci energy, explains 3 reasons as to why people are the bottom line of success and how to build a team for continued growth:

1. Success Comes From Within

How do you continuously create an impeccable experience for your customers? While you may start listing out things such as innovation, efficient delivery and quality, you’d be wrong. All of those factors are quite necessary to attract and retain happy clients. At the same time, you never have to worry about any of that if you have a dedicated and talented team behind your organization or business. When your employees are happy with their work and love what they do, they automatically do great work every single day.

So, how do you get dedicated and talented individuals in your business, and how do you retain them? Dedicated and talented people all share a couple commonalities. They love to be challenged, and they love to grow. You need to challenge your people and give them opportunities to grow: “We have a culture that demands the best out of people. We offer them world class training and give opportunities for growth within our company. We invest in our people: ”Challenge and grow your people, and they will challenge and grow your business.

2. A Balancing Act

Gone are the 12 hour work days and good riddance! There is a new reality in the interconnected and digital world that we live in today. That reality is that there is an abundance of opportunity for anyone who strives for it. People don’t want to miss soccer games, dance recitals and family dinner time. They want balance. They want to do fulfilling, good work at a place where they feel valued, engaged and share a common vision. If this is not the case, then they will be willing to explore other opportunities if they don’t get exactly what they’re looking for.

“Your people don’t need your company’s way of making money, they need a community that creates purpose and order in their lives and an environment that empowers them rather than tries to hold them down out of fear.”

Find out what your people want and then do your best to give it to them. Flexible programs like remote work and adjustable schedules go a long way in making your employees happy and bringing balance: “At Dvinci, we consistently ask our people, what can we be doing better? How can we better serve you? How do WE make doing your job easier?”

You have to care about your people and what they experience on a daily basis when they come to work for you. Deliver a positive people experience, and you will retain your top talent, and they will share your vision and your success.

3. Happiness is a Choice

Emotions are at the root of all the decisions we make. We make hundreds of choices a day, and we make those decisions based off what we think will make us happy. They are why our customers buy from us, and it is why our employees stay with us. We all want to operate in a world (and a place of work) where we have the ability to control our happiness and improve our lives. This simple truth is one of the foundations companies should build their business models around.

Give your people a choice. Allow them to make decisions on how successful they want to be, how much money they want to earn, and what kind of impact they want to have based on what they believe will make them happy. Put the ball in their court. Allow your people to decide to be happy. By doing this, your top talent will excel and your employees will be happy.

“When people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.” – Simon Sinek

In case you’ve ever been curious about how to make your business more profitable, more innovative or have a bigger impact, the answer lies within. Serve your people first. Build a community of inspired, engaged and talented employees.

Build your business model around people. The rest will fall into place naturally. When you focus on people, they will care about your business, they will care about your mission and they will care about your customers.

Do you think building from within will equal more success? Share your thoughts with us below!

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Success Advice

You Need To Be Real And Authentic, I’m Sorry – Here’s How.

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With me, there are no games.
There’s no fakery.
What you see is what you get.

It’s taken a long time to get to this level of authenticity. I don’t tell you I’m real to brag; I tell you because you can be too. The reality is you need to be if you want the good life.

 

Your individuality is what’s real.

If you’re into comic magazines, tell us. If you’re into punk rock, then that’s great too. Your individuality is what brings out your authenticity. It’s what makes you different and it’s how we can learn a different set of lessons from the ones our own life teaches us.

Sometimes I watch those reality TV shows that show off musical talent. As a grown man, that might sound weird…. who cares. It’s what makes up who I am.

“Hiding who you are only damages your true purpose and the value you can deliver to the world”

We need to see who you are so we can find ourselves. Loud and proud is the best way to live. That’s why I voted for gay marriage because I don’t ever want anyone to hide who they truly are.

 

I’m not out there to become famous.

That’s what makes each of us real. The moment we chase fame, we become lost in a game that we can never win. We’ll never be the most famous.

Fame is not what it’s cracked up to be. It’s designed to make you someone you’re not. You’re supposed to be perfect because all of a sudden, you’re now a role model. The thing is that role models mess up too.

Authenticity comes from not giving a F and trading in fame for being real instead.

I don’t spend half my day on social media trying to make you feel bad through my content. My goal is to use the lessons from my life to inspire yours.

 

I’m only competing against yesterday’s version of me.

“Beating you is not my goal; helping you win is”

The only person I want to beat is yesterday’s version of myself. I want to beat yesterday’s version so I can deliver more of my authentic self today. Increasing the value of my advice and life experience is all that I’m about. With this tool, I can give more. Who are you competing with?

 

I’m not afraid.

I’m not afraid to tell you I don’t have a blue Lambo – only a model car one.
I’m not afraid to tell you I get scared when I do public speaking.
I’m not afraid to tell you that I wish I could always be young.
I’m not afraid to tell you I got my first grey hair the other day.

If you ask me how to be authentic, it starts with being vulnerable and sharing things. The same fears you have are in common with many of us.

“Your deepest fear is my deepest fear. So, let’s share those fears and help each other crush them”

Life doesn’t need to be a solo journey. Show up being real, authentic and wearing your fears on the outside.

 

I’m not about the high life.

The Benz or the Bimmer is not who I am. I write these words in my office with a lava lamp turned on. I’m kind of old school in that way.

Instead of the fake high life, I put my soul into these words I write. Authenticity can buy you the high life, but once you’ve lived a life that is real, you won’t be that interested in gold chains and diamond rings.

On the surface, loads of cash seems appealing. The reality, having lived it, is that I’m my most authentic without all of the distractions and materials possessions. These things take away my focus and stop me from seeing my vision.

I don’t ever want you to lose sight of your vision which is why I remind you of the perils of money so much. Once you get over six figures, it’s all the same mostly. Money doesn’t make you real.

 

Authenticity breeds a killer network.

Cutting out the fake life and being authentic has bought the same kind of people to my life. People that are real, I’ve found, tend to be successful in the true sense. They’re fun to be around and they’re loyal like a puppy dog.

Your network around you will inspire you towards your goal or distract you from that which you seek. People are naturally attracted to people that are real and you can be that way with discipline. Avoid bragging (although celebrate your wins) and say what’s on your mind.

 

Authenticity requires no validation.

You just do it by being honest. Being real is about being honest with the world, and most of all, yourself. Ditch the habit of lying and you’ll get rich on the life you’ve always wanted. No one has to give you permission to be real.

Try saying what you think with respect.

I did so via my blogging and it turns out people can learn from you when you’re real.

 

Final Thought

I’ve given you a ton of reasons to be authentic. No more excuses.

Be who you were always meant to be.
Who you know you can be.
Who you know you should be.

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

A Timeline That Shows How To Find Yourself.

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March 2009

I had just bought my dream car, was making loads of cash and chicks thought the fact I was a DJ and Music Producer was cool. My ego was big, I’d never given to a charity or volunteered for anything and I loved to talk my mouth off at anyone who questioned me.

At this point, I had no idea who I was. I honestly believed I could end up discovering drugs and losing myself.

 

June 2011

Nothing had changed except the business I had spent five years creating died.

Along with the death of what I thought was going to be my entire life, and my one big success. Rock bottom came quickly. I couldn’t face the world. I thought I was a failure that would never recover and would work some $15 an hour job for the rest of my life.

At this point, I was even further away from finding myself. The money had gone to my head.

 

April 2013

I’d spent the last two years reading every self-help book and watching lots of Ted Talks. I was more self-aware but still had no idea what I was doing. The fear I had in my life combined with the anxiety was crippling. My health started to fall off a cliff.

Through all of this self-help content, somehow, I discovered Tony Robbins. I went to his seminar by flying 45 minutes to another state of Australia. Flying was a massive fear and I thought I was going to die mid-air.

I got to the seminar and within minutes felt stupid. It seemed like some sort of cult where you drank the cool-aid and then gave your life (literally) at the end.

By that night, I was walking on fire and had a major breakthrough.

At this point, I still had not found myself, but I’d discovered a catalyst for the discovery to begin.

 

June 2014 (roughly I forget what month)

A mate shares a link to a blog called Addicted2Success. The name of the website gets my attention. On the bottom of the site is a phone number which I ring. I talk to the founder’s girlfriend, get the correct mobile number, fly to Perth with no meeting booked, and call him.

He meets me for coffee. There’s no agenda and no topic of conversation. I offer him something for free that he wants and then he asks me to write for his blog. I’ve never written anything professionally and the word ‘writer’ appears lame.

At this point, I had an opportunity but still had no idea who I was.

 

March 2015

My first blog post goes viral and I experience some success. It feels good. The success becomes the validation that I can be a blogger and inspire the world through personal development and entrepreneurship.

I believed in myself before this moment through the self-improvement work but this success compounded the results and my own belief.

At this point, a glimpse of who I was started to shine through. It was satisfying.

 

April 2015

I go to the doctor for a routine check after a few stomach aches, and he sends me to the hospital. While asleep for a few hours, the surgeon finds a lump the size of a golf ball in my guts which was months away from being cancerous.

My whole life changes. Nothing else matters. I begin feeling the following:

– What is my purpose in life?
– Will I be single forever?
– What will be my legacy once I’m gone?
– How can I give back and create more joy?
– Could I inspire millions of people?

These five questions changed everything. These questions were how I began to discover my true self.

 

January 2016

More publications wanted me to write for them. I did and as a result, had more viral blog posts. The daily emails of thank you’s was overwhelming. Inspiring others through my two passions of entrepreneurship and personal development became the pillar of everything I did.

At the same time, I also started crushing my fear of public speaking. This gave me the confidence boost I needed to believe in myself and to continue to discover who I wanted to be.

 

2018 and beyond

I learned the following:

– You’ll never know what will be the catalyst that will change your life
– The things you think you’ll never do, you will
– Once you understand the power of time and legacy through a near-death experience, you’ll never live life the same way again
– Whatever you find your true to self to be, you’ll end up giving back in some way

 

Finding yourself is a lifelong journey.

That’s right! You never arrive. You’re always going to evolve.

What I’ve learned is that once you know who you are and it’s tied to some meaningful purpose – like inspiring millions of people online – the rest will take care of itself.

“It’s the discovery process and being prepared to try new things that will help you uncover that purpose”

Nothing is static. Suffering is guaranteed. In the end, finding yourself is fun when you look back. Thinking about all my ridiculous fears and mistakes makes me laugh. Without them, though, I’d never be who I am today.

And I now know that tomorrow’s potential is created by what you do today.

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

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Life

5 Simple Things to Do Right Now if You Feel Stuck in Life

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feeling stuck in life

As a success-blogger, I normally have a great deal of clarity about what I need to be working on. I’m also really driven by a sense of purpose in helping others get unstuck and make an impact in their lives. There aren’t many times that I find myself at a loss for what to do next.

Nonetheless, I recently hit a dry spell. I felt entirely stuck and a little burnt out. It felt like I was in a pit, emotionally unempowered and unable to move forward. Due to this, I decided to sit down and write out a list of ways that I could get myself moving and build up some momentum again. (more…)

Aaron Force is a blogger from Seattle, Washington. He writes to help others live their most powerful life by allowing them to find their purpose, get unstuck, and impact the world. He can be found at www.aaronforce.net or at https://www.facebook.com/aforce01/.

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12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Evan

    Dec 24, 2015 at 9:07 am

    Hey Tim!

    Great article, studying someone who’s got in-depth experience from supplementing his income with blogging and gathering the most valuable lessons from it.

    This post has been super helpful for me since I’m writing for the benefit of other people too and growing an audience of success-chasers. There are great tips for lifting other people up and supporting their movements while you build your own!

    Thanks!

    – Evan

    • Tim Denning

      Dec 30, 2015 at 2:22 am

      Thanks Evan. I also learnt a lot of Joshua and his tips were really clear and simple for any blogger to follow. I hope you use them to grow the reach you are looking for on your own site. Cheers

  2. Doug

    Nov 1, 2015 at 4:47 am

    Great article Tim! A theme I picked up on throughout was that of patience and persistence… necessary things to hear for a new blogger such as myself. Thanks for the good read!

    • Tim Denning

      Nov 2, 2015 at 10:27 pm

      Thanks so much Doug. When talking to Joshua I also got the same theme which is that you just need patience. If your writing is good then even if you’re niche is done to death it doesn’t matter because you can provide a fresh take on what already exists. Best of luck with your blogging Doug.

  3. Ifeanyichukwu Miracle

    Oct 31, 2015 at 9:57 pm

    Thanks so much. Am inspired by this article to start off. Please Joshua i will need more help, more on step by step involved. To blog has been my hunger and dreams. I’m very excited to meet this post this night. God bless you.

    • Tim Denning

      Nov 2, 2015 at 10:25 pm

      Thanks for your comment. My advice and Joshua’s advice is just go for it and write about your passion. Let us know how you go.

  4. Esther Mellar

    Oct 31, 2015 at 5:21 pm

    Hi Tim,

    Thank you for advising me to read this article, it is very helpful. I also heard saying that writing a blog today without readers is like talking in an empty room, therefore it is advised to have some followers already before staring a blog. What are your thoughts about this?

    Cheers,

    Esther

    • Tim Denning

      Oct 31, 2015 at 8:08 pm

      Hi Esther, I personally don’t think you need any followers to start a blog. Organically through Google and WordPress you will pickup a few by tagging topics in your post. Once you have even one person reading your posts, all it takes is for you to write amazing content and that one person will share it with everybody else. The focus should never be how many followers you have, it always should be about the quality of the content. I would also argue that everybody has an audience already. People like yourself have at least 100 friends on Facebook and Twitter right? So you have followers already. You have to be prepared to do what Joshua did and write because you love it not because you are trying to get followers. If the content is good, the followers will come. Tim

  5. Stephen Osoko

    Oct 30, 2015 at 8:49 pm

    This was a truly helpful article for me.

    I also have a personal development blog and am very passionate about it.

    • Tim Denning

      Oct 31, 2015 at 8:31 am

      Thanks Stephen for reading. Best of luck with your blog and I hope we can give you some inspiration.

  6. Brad DeVore

    Oct 30, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    Great article Tim! A solid checklist to determine why a blog isn’t thriving. This post also delivered all the sources to cut research time in half for publishing a book. Thanks for the value! -Brad

    • Tim Denning

      Oct 30, 2015 at 9:27 pm

      Thanks Brad and glad you liked the article. Joshua is very switched on and gave me so many tips that I hadn’t thought of before.

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Success Advice

What If You Never Took Another Selfie Again?

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That’s the question I want you to ponder right now.

What if taking a selfie only made the world ignore you?
What if life is not all about you?
What if no one cares who you took a photo with?

And finally, how did we ever live without selfies before the front-facing camera got invented?

Instead of taking a selfie do this:

Try focusing on other people.
Try not to document every moment.
Try to think about life before selfies.

We all take selfies because that’s what we were told to do.
And that’s exactly why we need to question this habitual flaw that we’re now indulging in.

 

I have A/B tested selfies vs. no selfies.

The result? When I took photos of cool stuff like mountains in Japan and shared a profound thought, people liked that more than a selfie with my overly large head in it. I’ve done this test multiple times over the last few years.

The result is always the same. People are over you and your selfies.

 

It’s not about “I” it’s about “We.”

Sounds cliché, and that’s because most brilliant advice is.

Selfies have deluded us into thinking that life is about us and our big audacious goals. Where life will change for you is when you focus on the “We.”

Everything I write is for the audience I want to inspire. It’s not to show off or to share dumb selfies of me in a weak attempt to appear superior.

 

Selfies cause your followers to compare themselves to you.

And that’s not fair. If each of us tried to be the same, then society would be pretty dull.

“We don’t need a selfie to teach us how to copy each other and be jealous little so-and-sos who want to win a beauty pagan of nothingness”

You’re so much better than a selfie.

I believe you care about your followers so let’s stop drowning them in selfies. Selfies are proving nothing to no one. Selfies stop you from standing out in the crowd and inspiring others.

 

The time you spend “selfieing” could be used for…..

Enjoying this current moment and the breath you have in your lungs. One day that breath is going to stop and all that time selfieing won’t matter. You’re literally using up magical moments trying to take a hundred selfies that you filter and post, hoping for perfection.

Perfection is ugly.

“Right now, is the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen if you’ll only stop selfieing and notice it”

 

Life before selfies….

Life was much the same. The selfie didn’t put us on Cloud 9 with a bunch of our fantasies and an unlimited amount of cash being shot up into the sky via an air cannon.

Life before selfies was fun.
We ate our food instead of looking at it with our phones and letting it get cold.
We had phenomenal conversations with our friends instead of taking endless, mindless selfies.

Life before selfies was not about one’s self.
You took photos of other people. Often, you took two photos max instead of fifty in a row.

I’d like you to imagine a life without selfies.

What does the selfie really mean to you and can you live without it?

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

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Success Advice

Build From Within – Why Success Is All About People

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happy team

What is it that makes a company successful? Money? Technology? A driven CEO? While money certainly doesn’t hurt, technology is essential and it’s nice to have a well poised leader. These things are not what guarantees success in a corporation. It is all about the people. The employees working for an organization are the backbone of the company. Without great people, success can only go so far.

And if this is indeed true, successful business models should revolve around people – attracting top talent, and retaining them. Before ever serving external customers, companies should serve internally. This is where true success is built.

Walid Halty, founder of Dvinci energy, explains 3 reasons as to why people are the bottom line of success and how to build a team for continued growth:

1. Success Comes From Within

How do you continuously create an impeccable experience for your customers? While you may start listing out things such as innovation, efficient delivery and quality, you’d be wrong. All of those factors are quite necessary to attract and retain happy clients. At the same time, you never have to worry about any of that if you have a dedicated and talented team behind your organization or business. When your employees are happy with their work and love what they do, they automatically do great work every single day.

So, how do you get dedicated and talented individuals in your business, and how do you retain them? Dedicated and talented people all share a couple commonalities. They love to be challenged, and they love to grow. You need to challenge your people and give them opportunities to grow: “We have a culture that demands the best out of people. We offer them world class training and give opportunities for growth within our company. We invest in our people: ”Challenge and grow your people, and they will challenge and grow your business.

2. A Balancing Act

Gone are the 12 hour work days and good riddance! There is a new reality in the interconnected and digital world that we live in today. That reality is that there is an abundance of opportunity for anyone who strives for it. People don’t want to miss soccer games, dance recitals and family dinner time. They want balance. They want to do fulfilling, good work at a place where they feel valued, engaged and share a common vision. If this is not the case, then they will be willing to explore other opportunities if they don’t get exactly what they’re looking for.

“Your people don’t need your company’s way of making money, they need a community that creates purpose and order in their lives and an environment that empowers them rather than tries to hold them down out of fear.”

Find out what your people want and then do your best to give it to them. Flexible programs like remote work and adjustable schedules go a long way in making your employees happy and bringing balance: “At Dvinci, we consistently ask our people, what can we be doing better? How can we better serve you? How do WE make doing your job easier?”

You have to care about your people and what they experience on a daily basis when they come to work for you. Deliver a positive people experience, and you will retain your top talent, and they will share your vision and your success.

3. Happiness is a Choice

Emotions are at the root of all the decisions we make. We make hundreds of choices a day, and we make those decisions based off what we think will make us happy. They are why our customers buy from us, and it is why our employees stay with us. We all want to operate in a world (and a place of work) where we have the ability to control our happiness and improve our lives. This simple truth is one of the foundations companies should build their business models around.

Give your people a choice. Allow them to make decisions on how successful they want to be, how much money they want to earn, and what kind of impact they want to have based on what they believe will make them happy. Put the ball in their court. Allow your people to decide to be happy. By doing this, your top talent will excel and your employees will be happy.

“When people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.” – Simon Sinek

In case you’ve ever been curious about how to make your business more profitable, more innovative or have a bigger impact, the answer lies within. Serve your people first. Build a community of inspired, engaged and talented employees.

Build your business model around people. The rest will fall into place naturally. When you focus on people, they will care about your business, they will care about your mission and they will care about your customers.

Do you think building from within will equal more success? Share your thoughts with us below!

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Success Advice

You Need To Be Real And Authentic, I’m Sorry – Here’s How.

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With me, there are no games.
There’s no fakery.
What you see is what you get.

It’s taken a long time to get to this level of authenticity. I don’t tell you I’m real to brag; I tell you because you can be too. The reality is you need to be if you want the good life.

 

Your individuality is what’s real.

If you’re into comic magazines, tell us. If you’re into punk rock, then that’s great too. Your individuality is what brings out your authenticity. It’s what makes you different and it’s how we can learn a different set of lessons from the ones our own life teaches us.

Sometimes I watch those reality TV shows that show off musical talent. As a grown man, that might sound weird…. who cares. It’s what makes up who I am.

“Hiding who you are only damages your true purpose and the value you can deliver to the world”

We need to see who you are so we can find ourselves. Loud and proud is the best way to live. That’s why I voted for gay marriage because I don’t ever want anyone to hide who they truly are.

 

I’m not out there to become famous.

That’s what makes each of us real. The moment we chase fame, we become lost in a game that we can never win. We’ll never be the most famous.

Fame is not what it’s cracked up to be. It’s designed to make you someone you’re not. You’re supposed to be perfect because all of a sudden, you’re now a role model. The thing is that role models mess up too.

Authenticity comes from not giving a F and trading in fame for being real instead.

I don’t spend half my day on social media trying to make you feel bad through my content. My goal is to use the lessons from my life to inspire yours.

 

I’m only competing against yesterday’s version of me.

“Beating you is not my goal; helping you win is”

The only person I want to beat is yesterday’s version of myself. I want to beat yesterday’s version so I can deliver more of my authentic self today. Increasing the value of my advice and life experience is all that I’m about. With this tool, I can give more. Who are you competing with?

 

I’m not afraid.

I’m not afraid to tell you I don’t have a blue Lambo – only a model car one.
I’m not afraid to tell you I get scared when I do public speaking.
I’m not afraid to tell you that I wish I could always be young.
I’m not afraid to tell you I got my first grey hair the other day.

If you ask me how to be authentic, it starts with being vulnerable and sharing things. The same fears you have are in common with many of us.

“Your deepest fear is my deepest fear. So, let’s share those fears and help each other crush them”

Life doesn’t need to be a solo journey. Show up being real, authentic and wearing your fears on the outside.

 

I’m not about the high life.

The Benz or the Bimmer is not who I am. I write these words in my office with a lava lamp turned on. I’m kind of old school in that way.

Instead of the fake high life, I put my soul into these words I write. Authenticity can buy you the high life, but once you’ve lived a life that is real, you won’t be that interested in gold chains and diamond rings.

On the surface, loads of cash seems appealing. The reality, having lived it, is that I’m my most authentic without all of the distractions and materials possessions. These things take away my focus and stop me from seeing my vision.

I don’t ever want you to lose sight of your vision which is why I remind you of the perils of money so much. Once you get over six figures, it’s all the same mostly. Money doesn’t make you real.

 

Authenticity breeds a killer network.

Cutting out the fake life and being authentic has bought the same kind of people to my life. People that are real, I’ve found, tend to be successful in the true sense. They’re fun to be around and they’re loyal like a puppy dog.

Your network around you will inspire you towards your goal or distract you from that which you seek. People are naturally attracted to people that are real and you can be that way with discipline. Avoid bragging (although celebrate your wins) and say what’s on your mind.

 

Authenticity requires no validation.

You just do it by being honest. Being real is about being honest with the world, and most of all, yourself. Ditch the habit of lying and you’ll get rich on the life you’ve always wanted. No one has to give you permission to be real.

Try saying what you think with respect.

I did so via my blogging and it turns out people can learn from you when you’re real.

 

Final Thought

I’ve given you a ton of reasons to be authentic. No more excuses.

Be who you were always meant to be.
Who you know you can be.
Who you know you should be.

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

A Timeline That Shows How To Find Yourself.

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March 2009

I had just bought my dream car, was making loads of cash and chicks thought the fact I was a DJ and Music Producer was cool. My ego was big, I’d never given to a charity or volunteered for anything and I loved to talk my mouth off at anyone who questioned me.

At this point, I had no idea who I was. I honestly believed I could end up discovering drugs and losing myself.

 

June 2011

Nothing had changed except the business I had spent five years creating died.

Along with the death of what I thought was going to be my entire life, and my one big success. Rock bottom came quickly. I couldn’t face the world. I thought I was a failure that would never recover and would work some $15 an hour job for the rest of my life.

At this point, I was even further away from finding myself. The money had gone to my head.

 

April 2013

I’d spent the last two years reading every self-help book and watching lots of Ted Talks. I was more self-aware but still had no idea what I was doing. The fear I had in my life combined with the anxiety was crippling. My health started to fall off a cliff.

Through all of this self-help content, somehow, I discovered Tony Robbins. I went to his seminar by flying 45 minutes to another state of Australia. Flying was a massive fear and I thought I was going to die mid-air.

I got to the seminar and within minutes felt stupid. It seemed like some sort of cult where you drank the cool-aid and then gave your life (literally) at the end.

By that night, I was walking on fire and had a major breakthrough.

At this point, I still had not found myself, but I’d discovered a catalyst for the discovery to begin.

 

June 2014 (roughly I forget what month)

A mate shares a link to a blog called Addicted2Success. The name of the website gets my attention. On the bottom of the site is a phone number which I ring. I talk to the founder’s girlfriend, get the correct mobile number, fly to Perth with no meeting booked, and call him.

He meets me for coffee. There’s no agenda and no topic of conversation. I offer him something for free that he wants and then he asks me to write for his blog. I’ve never written anything professionally and the word ‘writer’ appears lame.

At this point, I had an opportunity but still had no idea who I was.

 

March 2015

My first blog post goes viral and I experience some success. It feels good. The success becomes the validation that I can be a blogger and inspire the world through personal development and entrepreneurship.

I believed in myself before this moment through the self-improvement work but this success compounded the results and my own belief.

At this point, a glimpse of who I was started to shine through. It was satisfying.

 

April 2015

I go to the doctor for a routine check after a few stomach aches, and he sends me to the hospital. While asleep for a few hours, the surgeon finds a lump the size of a golf ball in my guts which was months away from being cancerous.

My whole life changes. Nothing else matters. I begin feeling the following:

– What is my purpose in life?
– Will I be single forever?
– What will be my legacy once I’m gone?
– How can I give back and create more joy?
– Could I inspire millions of people?

These five questions changed everything. These questions were how I began to discover my true self.

 

January 2016

More publications wanted me to write for them. I did and as a result, had more viral blog posts. The daily emails of thank you’s was overwhelming. Inspiring others through my two passions of entrepreneurship and personal development became the pillar of everything I did.

At the same time, I also started crushing my fear of public speaking. This gave me the confidence boost I needed to believe in myself and to continue to discover who I wanted to be.

 

2018 and beyond

I learned the following:

– You’ll never know what will be the catalyst that will change your life
– The things you think you’ll never do, you will
– Once you understand the power of time and legacy through a near-death experience, you’ll never live life the same way again
– Whatever you find your true to self to be, you’ll end up giving back in some way

 

Finding yourself is a lifelong journey.

That’s right! You never arrive. You’re always going to evolve.

What I’ve learned is that once you know who you are and it’s tied to some meaningful purpose – like inspiring millions of people online – the rest will take care of itself.

“It’s the discovery process and being prepared to try new things that will help you uncover that purpose”

Nothing is static. Suffering is guaranteed. In the end, finding yourself is fun when you look back. Thinking about all my ridiculous fears and mistakes makes me laugh. Without them, though, I’d never be who I am today.

And I now know that tomorrow’s potential is created by what you do today.

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

Continue Reading

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