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14 Lessons We Can All Learn From “The Wolf of Wall Street”

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Both the book and the movie “The Wolf of Wall Street” contain many crazy, entertaining, and decadent stories. But beneath all the debauchery there are a number of key lessons for you to learn from the success of Jordan Belfort and Stratton Oakmont.

Read on for some great insight into this motivated business man that will show you how Jordan Belfort was able to build a super pumped organization before it all came tumbling down.

 

 

 

 

 

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Wolf of Wallstreet

 

 

1. Execute on Ideas

Stratton Oakmont’s initial success was based on two premises:

• That Belfort had come up with a way of teaching young, uneducated people how to sound like professional stock brokers over the phone.

• That rich people love to gamble – especially when the gamble seems like a legitimate business opportunity.
While there had been other people on Wall Street who’d had the same idea, Jordan Belfort was the first person to execute on this idea.

 

2. Simplify

The reason Belfort was able to transform young, uneducated people into charismatic stock brokers was because he was able to impart his knowledge by giving simple instructions in a way that even the most stupid employees could easily understand.

“And as word of this little secret began to spread throughout Long Island—that there was this wild office, in Lake Success, where all you had to do was show up, follow orders, swear your undying loyalty to the owner, and he would make you rich—young kids started showing up at the boardroom unannounced.” – Jordan Belfort

 

3. Put Together a Loyal Team

Guys like Kenny Greene and Danny Porush weren’t the smartest guys around. But, they were long-term friends who were fiercely loyal to Jordan Belfort.

What does this mean?

That it might be a good idea to work with old friends who knew, and liked you, before you got rich and successful. By doing this you will reduce the risk of:

• Becoming betrayed or backstabbed by two-faced people.

• Making stupid decisions because you’re surrounded by yes-men who don’t give you accurate feedback.

 

4. Diversify Competence

Why were Jordan Belfort and Danny Porush a good team?

Because they were very different:

• Belfort had sleeping problems. Porush could fall asleep everywhere – even during bumpy plane rides.

• Belfort was a highly strategic leader who specialized in delegation. Porush was a good enforcer –brutal enough to eat a gold fish to put employees in their place.

• Belfort was analytical and had a long-term orientation. Porush was emotional and short-sighted.

They were both good at different things – but together they were a great combination.

 

 

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wolf of wallstreet jordan belfort

 

5. Dress for Success

From day one, employees were instilled with the mantra that they had to act as if – starting by dressing well and looking the part. The purpose of this was to improve their self-esteem and charisma.

Jordan Belfort even hired a guy to create tailor-made suits for the up-and-coming employees of Stratton Oakmont.

 

6. Gather Intelligence on Rivals and Enemies

Belfort gathered intelligence by:

• Bugging the SEC people who were investigating Stratton Oakmont.

• Befriending FBI agent Jim Barsini and getting information about the ongoing investigation on Stratton Oakmont.

 

7. Guard Your Secrets

Jordan Belfort carefully guarded his secrets by:

• Drafting legal documents to create plausible deniability for shady deals.

• Having the office of Stratton Oakmont and the houses of the top employees swept for bugs regularly.

• Never speaking over the phone about past business deals.

• Using pay phones and other covert forms of communication to ensure that no one listened in on what was being said.

Note: While your business probably differs from Belfort’s by being legal, it’s still a good idea to gather intelligence. For example, you might meet an employee of a rival firm for drinks to learn about the internal gossip going on over there.

 

8. Study History and Learn From Past Mistakes

Said by Belfort to a Swiss “master forger” while discussing banking laws:

“I’m a student of history, Roland, and I’m a firm believer that he who doesn’t study the mistakes of the past is doomed to repeat them”. – Jordan Belfort

You should follow Belfort’s example by:

• Studying past events in your profession to see what it was that made other people succeed or fail.

• Studying the great men who came before you.

 

 

| Create an Enticing Company Culture |

jordan belfort business

 

9. Establish a Concrete Reputation

There was never any doubt to the employees, nor the public, that anyone could make a ton of money by working for Stratton Oakmont. To confirm this, the only thing you had to do was take a look at the young, racially diverse, sometimes acne-ridden, well-dressed young men that spread havoc on Long-Island.

“The very idea of Stratton is that it doesn’t matter what family you were born into, or what schools you went to, or whether or not you were voted most likely to succeed in your high-school yearbook. The idea of Stratton is that when you come here and step into the boardroom for the first time, you start your life anew. The very moment you walk through the door and pledge your loyalty to the firm, you become part of the family, and you become a Strattonite.” – Jordan Belfort

 

10. Create a Set of Core Values that is Easy to Grasp

The core value of Stratton Oakmont was to seize the day. What this really meant to the employees was to:

• Make as much money as possible.

• Compete with colleges who could spend more money and live a crazier and more luxurious lifestyle.

–And what are some common core values of contemporary companies?

• Sustainability.

• Environmental friendliness.

• Integrity.

Which core values do you think are easier to communicate to the employees and make them live by?

 

11. Lead by Example and Set the Standard

No one over at Stratton Oakmont spent more money on buying luxury items, drugs, prostitutes, or partying than Jordan Belfort. He represented the epitome of the lifestyle that the employees sought to achieve.

“It’s important to keep these guys chasing the dream. And it’s even more important to keep them broke.” I gestured over to the plate glass. “Look at them; as much money as they make, every last one of them is broke! They spend every dime they have, trying to keep up with my lifestyle. But they can’t, because they don’t make enough”. – Jordan Belfort

 

12. Create Expectations

At Stratton Oakmont employees were expected to work their asses off and make a lot of money. Anything else was frowned upon.

“A rookie stockbroker was expected to make $250,000 his first year. Anything less and he was suspect. By year two you were making $500,000 or you were considered weak and worthless. And by year three you’d better be making a million or more or you were a complete f#%$ing laughingstock.” – Jordan Belfort

 

13. Provide Incentives for Hard Work

Not only were the employees of Stratton Oakmont paid far above the going rate for stock brokers – but a select few of the hardest working employees were also eligible to branch out on their own and start brokerage firms under Belfort’s guidance.

“It was what every Strattonite dreamed of and something I touched upon in all my meetings—that if you continued to work hard and stay loyal, one day I’d tap you on the shoulder and set you up in business. And then you would get truly rich.” – Jordan Belfort

 

14. Keep People Dependent on You

To ensure that employees were not only motivated to work, but literally had to stay at the firm and continue making lots money, Belfort encouraged employees to live beyond their means.

“I want you to deal with all your problems by becoming rich! I want you to attack your problems head-on! I want you to go out and start spending money right now. I want you to leverage yourself. I want you to back yourself into a corner. Give yourself no choice but to succeed. Let the consequences of failure become so dire and so unthinkable that you’ll have no choice but to do whatever it takes to succeed.” – Jordan Belfort

Jordan Belfort Picture Quote

 

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Question:

Are there more lessons to be learned from the Wolf of Wall Street? If you have any of your own, please leave them in the comments section below.

Ludvig Sunström runs Start Gaining Momentum where he writes about practical self-development and gives no-nonsense tips for becoming more efficient and stepping up in life. He is also the author of Breaking out of Homeostasis , a book about claiming more control over your life by overcoming the brain's innate mechanism for staying the same. Feel free to connect with him on Twitter and Google+.

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75 Comments

75 Comments

  1. Afiq azizi

    Dec 5, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Sell this pen!

  2. Tim Denning

    Jun 8, 2016 at 12:14 am

    Such a good article! The Wolf Of Wall Street is one of my favorite movies of all time.

  3. Julian

    Nov 20, 2015 at 6:29 pm

    What’s up everybody? I like it that everyone here is sharing all kinds
    of knowledge. It’s nice to read these articles. I do a quick visit to this website every day.

  4. jerome

    Aug 17, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    I think you miss the point of the movie. The reality is that in his most desperate moment Jordan was able to see an opportunity where none existed and built an empire based on him. It shows that one is able to do anything if you have a plan and you execute on it

  5. David

    Jun 13, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    What I learned..? To “wh**k off twice a day ! At least !”

    Just kidding. What I learned is to drive people emotionally.

  6. Sean J Kennedy

    Apr 14, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    With joy in our hearts we are perfect…anything else is a ruse at best and tyranny at worst.

  7. Emily Filloramo

    Mar 24, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    Rob and Tony,

    I have a blog post that is almost ready to send to Joel on

    “10 Reasons Why You Are Not Happier Despite Your Successes”.

    There are points in this post that few people have ever talked about. You might be enlightened.

  8. Tony Wood

    Mar 24, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    Rob – Do you really believe that life is all about how much you make, with no regard to the damage or financial loss you cause to others along the way?
    Well, if that’s your philosophy then you go for it.
    But make sure you’re prepared to pay top dollar for the team of lawyers you’ll need to pay to feed off you.
    You ask how much I make – well, I’ve run an accounting practice for the last 25 years, recently sold it to a long-term employee who paid me less than I could have got on the open market, and I’m now retired very comfortably, secure in the knowledge that none of my clients, many of whom I’ve had for most of that 27 years, will ever sue me, as I’ve always dealt with them honestly, ethically and professionally.
    Just part of my get rich slow scheme.

  9. Rob

    Mar 18, 2014 at 2:38 pm

    Brilliant, fast money and even faster women what more can you ask for. Let me ask you how much do you make?

  10. Tony Wood

    Mar 16, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    Success – Cash, houses, cars, boats
    Bullshit.
    Success is the progressive realisation af a set of worthwhile goals which are meaningful to the individual.
    Almost all of these 14 pointers are manipulative, superficial or just bad.
    “Gather information on your enemies” – if you act ethically you don’t get enemies.
    Finally, why would I take advice from a convicted fraudster who’s a drug addict with two failed marriages, and goodness only knows the damage he’s caused his children.

    • John

      Apr 5, 2014 at 9:23 pm

      He is richer and smarter than you…

    • a_bateman

      Feb 8, 2015 at 4:00 pm

      I once heard, don’t remember where from, that if you don’t have enemies you aren’t making enough waves.

  11. J Harris

    Mar 11, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    It’s easy to be ‘financially successful’ when you lie to people to get what you want.

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Success Advice

It’s Not How Smart You Are That Defines Your Career — It’s This

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Look around the office you work in. Some people are managers. Some people make six-figure salaries. Some people are senior executives. Some people work in customer service on the frontline.

It’s a big mistake to think that where you are in your career has something to do with how smart you are.

I’ve met many smart people who crash and burn in their careers because they have to be always right or they overthink, or they know a lot about the wrong things or they have very low emotional intelligence causing them to upset many people at the same time.

If being smart made us successful then we’d all go and consume endless information and become millionaires shortly after.

Being smart is not enough.

So what does define your career and the success you have?


1. How badly you want it

The woman/man that became CEO wanted it more.

The person with the 7-figure business wanted it more.

The woman that won an Olympic Gold Medal wanted it more.

You have to want your goals really, really, really bad.

Wanting something so badly that you’re prepared to do anything to get there (ethically) is how you get the energy to overcome the rejection and failure it’s going to take to get reach that point.

I wanted to share my story and inspire people with it very badly. I thought of creating a WordPress website, but I had no idea how to and had zero technical skill. My knowledge of how to market that website was also zero.
I tried creating a Facebook Page and to date, it still has less than 3000 followers which means I fall short by a lot in terms of my target to inspire millions of people.

I tried using Twitter and reaching people that way. I was never able to get any real engagement. I’d tweet Elon Musk. I’d message Tony Robbins. I’d write the best tweet humanly possible. It all led nowhere.

I tried using a blogging platform called Medium. I was able to build a small following, but most people in my area of the world don’t use it. I still came up short of my goal.

Then, I tried writing on a blog that already had lots of viewers called Addicted2Success and began posting on LinkedIn daily.

Everything changed. I wanted to inspire people so badly that I kept trying until I found a platform that worked for what I had to say. Wanting it badly enough was what helped me keep going from 2014 until now. It didn’t stop there, though.

When my career took a turn down a black hole, my motivation died. Suddenly, writing on Addicted2Success and LinkedIn became hard. I didn’t want it as bad because the pain caused by my work life was too much. I let things slip temporarily for about 3 weeks. Engagement went to an all-time low.

It didn’t last long, though. Why? My thinking changed when I reminded myself how upset I would be if I didn’t achieve my goal. It meant far too much and in the back of my mind, I still wanted it badly.

I went back over all the emails from people I’d helped and that spark came back. Deep down, I still wanted it badly. I still wanted to inspire millions of people.

Wanting it bad was what helped me to revive my blogging career and continue helping millions of people.

Wanting it badly will define your career.


2. What you think is possible

I met a guy earlier in the year that came from a farm in the middle of Outback Australia.

He’d sold his digital marketing business for a lot of money and banked a huge amount of coin as a result. He had no tech background. He had no business knowledge. He didn’t have seven-figure friends that drove Bentley’s.

What he had was an uncanny ability to think anything was possible. He saw himself rising above his circumstances even though he had no evidence to prove that he could do so. He worked long hours and built up a team of cult followers. They learned together how to get businesses exposure through social media and search engines.

For many of the people on his team, it was their first job. He didn’t pay them well because he couldn’t. All he thought was that one day, together, they’d do something incredible — and they did.

A lot of what happens in your career is based on how you think. If you think you can never be a manager, entrepreneur or executive, then you won’t be.

If you think you can be good at public speaking, you might.
If you think you can hit your sales target, you might.
If you think you can start a successful business, you might.
If you’re not successful right now, you will be.

It’s only a matter of time until one of the bets in your career pays off

It’s a combination of being ready, being humble, thinking right and having the skills to execute. Not thinking you can achieve big will rob you of whatever it is that you want in your career.

I shouldn’t be a successful blogger because I can’t write that well, I have bad spelling/grammar skills, I don’t own a blog and I’m not filthy rich. Despite all that I’ve achieved my blogging goal.

I saw my goal become possible before anybody else did.

I told myself that every major challenge was necessary for me to eventually get what I wanted. I thought my goal was possible even though all the facts suggested it wasn’t. Instead of relying on data I relied on my own mind to lead me down the right path.

I chose to believe when no one else did.

This very way of thinking is not unique to me. Many of the leaders around the world that shape the human race think in the same way.

What you think is possible in your career will define what goals you can achieve.

Your thinking defines your career.
Being smart isn’t enough.

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Success Advice

How to Create Your Own Version of Success

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Success is in the eye of the beholder. And because every human being sees life and all the things that come with it through their lens of experience, everyone’s individual idea of life, growth and success is defined by what they see, hear, think, feel and taste. This means that you have the power to determine what success means to you.

Many of the greatest thought-leaders, business people and influencers throughout history have provided their thoughts and opinions about success –  how to achieve it, how to manage it and how to be it. They’ve written books that are supposed to share with the world how success is merely a feeling and a wish. While many of the most successful people have warned that success is what you make of it, society has coined “success” as being wealthy, influential, famous, and lavish.

You may be thinking, “I’m not rich, but I’m well off,” or “I’m not a social media influencer, so I don’t have much clout.” But here is the truth: You, just the way you are, are already a success. Here’s why. Think of all the things that have happened in your life – the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful. Up until this very moment, you have made a series of choices that have shaped your reality.

Therefore, you have created the life you have, and you have set the terms of how you decide to live your life. Not to suggest that your life is perfect because no ones life is exactly as they want it, but the fact that you have created your reality shows that you are a creator. It also shows that you are in charge of creating the success you desire.

“Success is not in what you have, but who you are.” – Bo Bennett

Even if you feel like you should be so much further along than you are today, you still made it to today and that’s a good thing. If you are reading this feeling like you need to shift things around in your life so that you can feel like a success, try these three things below.

  1. Jot down all the words that you think of when you read the word “success,” and mark the words that align with who you are. Ask yourself what you believe you need to feel like a success. Only write down what resonates with you, not what you think people expect of you. Remember, that you are defining your journey, so you get to make up all the rules.
  2. Now, write down all the words you think about when you read the word “unsuccessful,” and mark all the words that may describe some aspect of you that you want to eliminate. Don’t just consider the big stuff, small stuff matters too! Procrastinating to get out of bed in the morning, drinking too much soda, or even spending too much time watching television are all examples of habits that could in some way affect your personal growth.
  3. Lastly, create an SAP (Success Attack Plan) to align yourself with more of the descriptive words that you associate with success and start to eliminate the characteristics you may possess that depict you as less than who you desire to be.

Your Success Attack Plan doesn’t have to be elaborate. It can start with an actionable idea as simple as, “Read one book this month about personal development,” or “Connect with someone who can mentor me.” Sometimes, you have to look to those who have been where you are to help you get where you desire to be. Just remember, your journey won’t look like theirs so pay attention to your inner being at all times and do what feels natural and right to your situation.

“There are only two mistakes one can make along the road to truth; not going all the way and not starting.” – Buddha

When you create your lists, be as imaginative as possible. Consider those people, places and things around you. Think about what you like and don’t like. Ponder on energy you want to attract that you do not already have and things you want to repel.

Don’t worry about setting a timeline for this. Creating a vision for your life starts with setting an intention at this moment and allowing that intention to lead you in the days to come. To see yourself five years from now, you have to do the things today that will help you get to the future.

Don’t allow others to tell you what you should aspire to be when it comes to success. You are in command, and you are in charge of your present and your future. Own it, own your success and own you.

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Success Advice

What It Really Means to Be a High Achiever in a Culture of Lazy

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Keeping employees interested in their work has been an increasingly difficult challenge for today’s employers. Whether it’s due to a generational shift of Millennials fully entering the workforce or an increasingly distracted society across the board, the vast majority of American workers are not passionate about their work.

This dispassionate workforce is causing large-scale problems, for both workers and the companies that employ them. When young people become immersed in cultural laziness, it can be hard to become a high achiever, but there is a path for those willing to do what it takes to be a top performer, and it’s simpler than you might think.

Laziness by the Numbers

According to a recent Gallup poll, nearly two-thirds of American workers are either unengaged or actively disengaged in their job. This leaves only a third of Americans who are actively engaged and passionate about their work. This lack of interest has enormous financial ramifications for companies due to all of this lost productivity.

Research from McLean & Company, estimates that a disengaged employee costs a company $3,400 out of every $10,000 in annual salary, or 34% of their wages. That means a disengaged employee who earns $75,000 costs their organization $25,500 per year due to a lack of productivity. If roughly two-thirds of workers are disengaged, this adds up to billions of dollars lost across the economy.

“To understand the heart and mind of a person, look not at what he has already achieved, but at what he aspires to.” – Khalil Gibran

Motivation: Whose Job is it Anyway?

There are two schools of thought when it comes to employee motivation: Either managers need to actively motivate their employees, or employees need to step their game up and figure out what they actually like doing. Stefan Aarnio, a highly successful real estate investor, author, coach, and speaker, falls squarely into the second camp. He attributes his company’s success to the culture of high accountability and high performance he cultivated over the years.

It all began with Aarnio honing his own intrinsic motivation over the years by discovering, and then doing, exactly what he loves to do. In Aarnio’s own words, “you don’t need the resistance of waking up every day and doing things that you hate doing, life is too short for that”, and he expects those he hires to follow the same logic. When you love what you do, you don’t need a manager to constantly poke and prod you to gin up some motivation, however fleeting it might be.

It may seem like common advice that only works for the wealthy, but doing what you love really is the simple solution to the scores of dispassionate workers plaguing the workforce of today. People are trained to believe that they should get the highest paying job they can get regardless of how it makes them feel.

“You don’t build a business, you build people, and then people build the business.” – Zig Ziglar

Aarnio believes this is shortsighted and will ultimately lead to a sad and dispassionate life. By being attuned to what makes him passionate, and expecting the same from his employees, Aarnio has been able to flip the script and develop a culture of passion and high achievement.

How do you motivate your team to want to show up every single day? Comment below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

How To Improve Yourself In The Next 6 Months With Very Little Effort.

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Sounds like a huge claim doesn’t it? That Tim Denning Self-Help idiot is at it again isn’t he?

Wrong. Improving yourself in 6 months so that you can achieve all your big goals is easier than you think. A word of warning though, the advice is brutal but effective at the same time.

I’ve recently gone through this process myself and it’s changed everything in my life. My top four fears before the 6 month challenge were the following:

  1. Career change
  2. Getting married/kids
  3. Becoming a people leader
  4. Health issues

I overcame these fears by working on myself for the last six months.

Here are the steps I took:


Confront your fears head-on.

I’ve just told you my top four fears and you probably have your own list.

Unless you are honest with yourself and acknowledge your fears in writing, you’ll never conquer these invincible demons.

Harden up. Acknowledge your fears.

My top four fears were something I avoided for years. I was embarrassed to share them and even talk about them. I thought they’d magically take care of themselves.

I thought the fairies would come through my window at night and whisper in my ear the answer to my biggest fears. I was wrong”

Writing down my top fears and then writing down how each of them was ridiculous and full of false evidence is how I freed myself from them.

I conquered each one head on. You can do the same and you must if you want to improve in the next six months.


Stop giving a damn.

This next one is tightly linked to the first point. You can’t confront your fears or make progress unless you stop giving a damn.

Holding on to your BS stories and ways of doing things in the past is screwing everything up for you.

As of tomorrow, stop giving a damn.

Don’t waste any of your energy caring about useless things like what could happen if you make changes in your life, or sell your car, or make a bold move.

Before making a few changes in the last six months, I gave a damn about too many little things. Things that just don’t matter like what my family thought of my girlfriend or where I lived. It just didn’t matter.

When I gave in to my stupidly, insane, stubborn ways of the past and did what I knew I had to do, things got easier. I could go about my day without caring about so many small things that had previously distracted me from my dream of inspiring the world through personal development and entrepreneurship.

You can have the same beautiful realization as me if you stop giving a damn about all the small things.


Reduce everything.

The major improvements in your life will come from taking stuff away not adding more into your life.

Reduce Netflix time.
Reduce your belongings down by at least 25%.
Reduce your expenses by cutting off things you don’t need or that don’t serve your primary goals.

All of us have too much of everything and it’s sucking up the time we need to improve ourselves.

You can’t truly turn your life around unless you commit to focusing big chunks of time on just a few commitments.


Select one thing you’re going to achieve.

Not ten goals. Not twenty-five. One.

For the last six months my one goal has been to double down on my blogging. No more podcasts, speaking opportunities or coffee catchups I feel I must do. I took one goal, and I did it every single day — including my recent holiday to Europe where I posted something daily that could inspire people.

Even if I was on the train going between Rome and Florence, my daily habit was achieved no matter what. It was easy to remember because I’ve only committed to achieving one thing.

The power of doing one thing that matters the most to you will give you the fastest transformation and sense of fulfillment.

The challenge is to discover what that one thing is going to be for yourself.


Commit to discipline.

Fat? Stop eating sugar and exercise.

Smoke too much? Quit.

Bored of your job? Get a new career.

Friends dragging you down? Divorce them.

Nothing in your life will change in the next six months unless you commit to discipline and follow through with action. Everything you need to improve in the next six months is pretty straight-forward.

To make progress requires discipline. Not discipline for five out of seven days a week but every day. Not “I’ll eat clean during the week and then binge on the weekend.”

Discipline is taking the action which you know is good for you and not being tempted to shy away from that. After being disciplined for 6 months, you’ll find it hard to go back. The hard part is creating the habit.


Read a lot.

Many of the answers you need to improve yourself will come from reading books not watching what the Kardashians had for dinner last night.

Aim to read a few books a month on problems you want to solve.

If you’re trying to build a company, then read The Lean Startup.

If you need brilliant mentor advice, then read Tribe Of Mentors.

If you need a radical transformation, then read Unlimited Power or Think And Grow Rich.

Each person has their own challenges and the answers can be learned through someone else’s experience. Someone else has gone through what you’re going through — read about the solution, then radically implement it.


Get your phone, turn off all notifications except SMS and incoming calls.

This was a big one for me. My phone had taken over my life and I had no blank space to think.

“I deleted Facebook, WhatsApp, Telegram, Instagram, WeChat and Slack”

Damn, it felt good.

Life is effortless when you’re in control and that will come from being insanely focused on the tasks you need to execute on.


Come up with a why for your entire life.

Now to be fully transparent I had this one in the bag over a year ago, but during the last six months, it was the pillar of everything else I did.

Unless you know why you need to change and why you exist, it’s hard to achieve anything. Whenever I look at my to-do list, I sort it by the tasks that are linked to my why above everything else.

This makes managing my calendar simple. I ask myself this question: “Does the request of my time support my why?”

You can ask yourself the same question once you know the why for your entire life. This why will evolve over time, so my recommendation would be to start somewhere. Don’t overthink your why in the beginning.


Have one life-changing moment.

Radical change (especially in the next 6 months) usually needs a defining moment. These moments can come from life naturally, but the trouble is it could take years. I chose to manufacture my one life-changing moment.

I attended an immersive event that was about lifestyle design. During that process, there was so much emotion linked to what I uncovered that I had several breakthroughs.

Putting aside time to work out what you’re going to do and to reflect on the past is how you find your one defining moment.

If you want a few suggestions of events that might trigger a life-changing moment for you than send me a note and I’m happy to tell you a few I’ve attended.


Invest some money in your future.

Most of us (including me) typically only save for the present or the near present financial goals we have.

Investing for the future is how you set yourself up to win. I chose three buckets to put my money in:

  1. A long-term index fund (5+ years until any withdrawal)
  2. Personal development courses and events
  3. Books from Amazon

By having a plan for the future, I’m setting myself up to win. Even if you don’t have a lot of money, you can still set up a few similar buckets and start filling them up right now.

Within 6 months, you’ll have more invested in your future than you thought was possible.


Make a stand and forget what people think of you.

Maybe people don’t like the way you dress. Screw them.
Maybe people think your dream career is stupid. Screw them.
Maybe people will think your poor based on your current financial situation.

Take their opinion and shove it where the sun don’t shine.

It’s time to make a stand and stop letting what everyone thinks of you and your goals hold you back. People that have time to judge you probably suck at their own goals. Remember that.

The fastest way to go nowhere in the next six months is to sit there daydreaming about what every person you know might think of you. You don’t need permission”

In fact, you don’t need endless advice either.

Most advice is biased and most people are not you, don’t understand you and have no idea how you feel. So with that freeing thought right there, go out and make the next six months the period of your life that defines you.

Take my last six months and use them as inspiration for your next six months.
You can improve yourself and do so with very little effort.

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

Lacking Self-Discipline? Do This One Thing Everyday to Change Your Life

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What’s holding you back? This is the question that I asked myself after repeatedly falling short of my goals. In my mind, I had these crazy hopes and aspirations, but in reality, there was a gap between my intentions and my actions. Having read dozens of personal development and business books, I already had the knowledge. I already knew what I needed to do. The problem? A lack of follow through. (more…)

Mo Saleem is an independent men’s health researcher and publisher of TripleYourT.com. Having overcome the symptoms of depression, chronic fatigue, and a lack of drive, his mission is to empower men with the strategies and tactics to live with more energy, purpose, and power. Use the FREE T-Analysis Tool to figure out if your testosterone level is where it should be.

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75 Comments

75 Comments

  1. Afiq azizi

    Dec 5, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Sell this pen!

  2. Tim Denning

    Jun 8, 2016 at 12:14 am

    Such a good article! The Wolf Of Wall Street is one of my favorite movies of all time.

  3. Julian

    Nov 20, 2015 at 6:29 pm

    What’s up everybody? I like it that everyone here is sharing all kinds
    of knowledge. It’s nice to read these articles. I do a quick visit to this website every day.

  4. jerome

    Aug 17, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    I think you miss the point of the movie. The reality is that in his most desperate moment Jordan was able to see an opportunity where none existed and built an empire based on him. It shows that one is able to do anything if you have a plan and you execute on it

  5. David

    Jun 13, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    What I learned..? To “wh**k off twice a day ! At least !”

    Just kidding. What I learned is to drive people emotionally.

  6. Sean J Kennedy

    Apr 14, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    With joy in our hearts we are perfect…anything else is a ruse at best and tyranny at worst.

  7. Emily Filloramo

    Mar 24, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    Rob and Tony,

    I have a blog post that is almost ready to send to Joel on

    “10 Reasons Why You Are Not Happier Despite Your Successes”.

    There are points in this post that few people have ever talked about. You might be enlightened.

  8. Tony Wood

    Mar 24, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    Rob – Do you really believe that life is all about how much you make, with no regard to the damage or financial loss you cause to others along the way?
    Well, if that’s your philosophy then you go for it.
    But make sure you’re prepared to pay top dollar for the team of lawyers you’ll need to pay to feed off you.
    You ask how much I make – well, I’ve run an accounting practice for the last 25 years, recently sold it to a long-term employee who paid me less than I could have got on the open market, and I’m now retired very comfortably, secure in the knowledge that none of my clients, many of whom I’ve had for most of that 27 years, will ever sue me, as I’ve always dealt with them honestly, ethically and professionally.
    Just part of my get rich slow scheme.

  9. Rob

    Mar 18, 2014 at 2:38 pm

    Brilliant, fast money and even faster women what more can you ask for. Let me ask you how much do you make?

  10. Tony Wood

    Mar 16, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    Success – Cash, houses, cars, boats
    Bullshit.
    Success is the progressive realisation af a set of worthwhile goals which are meaningful to the individual.
    Almost all of these 14 pointers are manipulative, superficial or just bad.
    “Gather information on your enemies” – if you act ethically you don’t get enemies.
    Finally, why would I take advice from a convicted fraudster who’s a drug addict with two failed marriages, and goodness only knows the damage he’s caused his children.

    • John

      Apr 5, 2014 at 9:23 pm

      He is richer and smarter than you…

    • a_bateman

      Feb 8, 2015 at 4:00 pm

      I once heard, don’t remember where from, that if you don’t have enemies you aren’t making enough waves.

  11. J Harris

    Mar 11, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    It’s easy to be ‘financially successful’ when you lie to people to get what you want.

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Success Advice

It’s Not How Smart You Are That Defines Your Career — It’s This

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Look around the office you work in. Some people are managers. Some people make six-figure salaries. Some people are senior executives. Some people work in customer service on the frontline.

It’s a big mistake to think that where you are in your career has something to do with how smart you are.

I’ve met many smart people who crash and burn in their careers because they have to be always right or they overthink, or they know a lot about the wrong things or they have very low emotional intelligence causing them to upset many people at the same time.

If being smart made us successful then we’d all go and consume endless information and become millionaires shortly after.

Being smart is not enough.

So what does define your career and the success you have?


1. How badly you want it

The woman/man that became CEO wanted it more.

The person with the 7-figure business wanted it more.

The woman that won an Olympic Gold Medal wanted it more.

You have to want your goals really, really, really bad.

Wanting something so badly that you’re prepared to do anything to get there (ethically) is how you get the energy to overcome the rejection and failure it’s going to take to get reach that point.

I wanted to share my story and inspire people with it very badly. I thought of creating a WordPress website, but I had no idea how to and had zero technical skill. My knowledge of how to market that website was also zero.
I tried creating a Facebook Page and to date, it still has less than 3000 followers which means I fall short by a lot in terms of my target to inspire millions of people.

I tried using Twitter and reaching people that way. I was never able to get any real engagement. I’d tweet Elon Musk. I’d message Tony Robbins. I’d write the best tweet humanly possible. It all led nowhere.

I tried using a blogging platform called Medium. I was able to build a small following, but most people in my area of the world don’t use it. I still came up short of my goal.

Then, I tried writing on a blog that already had lots of viewers called Addicted2Success and began posting on LinkedIn daily.

Everything changed. I wanted to inspire people so badly that I kept trying until I found a platform that worked for what I had to say. Wanting it badly enough was what helped me keep going from 2014 until now. It didn’t stop there, though.

When my career took a turn down a black hole, my motivation died. Suddenly, writing on Addicted2Success and LinkedIn became hard. I didn’t want it as bad because the pain caused by my work life was too much. I let things slip temporarily for about 3 weeks. Engagement went to an all-time low.

It didn’t last long, though. Why? My thinking changed when I reminded myself how upset I would be if I didn’t achieve my goal. It meant far too much and in the back of my mind, I still wanted it badly.

I went back over all the emails from people I’d helped and that spark came back. Deep down, I still wanted it badly. I still wanted to inspire millions of people.

Wanting it bad was what helped me to revive my blogging career and continue helping millions of people.

Wanting it badly will define your career.


2. What you think is possible

I met a guy earlier in the year that came from a farm in the middle of Outback Australia.

He’d sold his digital marketing business for a lot of money and banked a huge amount of coin as a result. He had no tech background. He had no business knowledge. He didn’t have seven-figure friends that drove Bentley’s.

What he had was an uncanny ability to think anything was possible. He saw himself rising above his circumstances even though he had no evidence to prove that he could do so. He worked long hours and built up a team of cult followers. They learned together how to get businesses exposure through social media and search engines.

For many of the people on his team, it was their first job. He didn’t pay them well because he couldn’t. All he thought was that one day, together, they’d do something incredible — and they did.

A lot of what happens in your career is based on how you think. If you think you can never be a manager, entrepreneur or executive, then you won’t be.

If you think you can be good at public speaking, you might.
If you think you can hit your sales target, you might.
If you think you can start a successful business, you might.
If you’re not successful right now, you will be.

It’s only a matter of time until one of the bets in your career pays off

It’s a combination of being ready, being humble, thinking right and having the skills to execute. Not thinking you can achieve big will rob you of whatever it is that you want in your career.

I shouldn’t be a successful blogger because I can’t write that well, I have bad spelling/grammar skills, I don’t own a blog and I’m not filthy rich. Despite all that I’ve achieved my blogging goal.

I saw my goal become possible before anybody else did.

I told myself that every major challenge was necessary for me to eventually get what I wanted. I thought my goal was possible even though all the facts suggested it wasn’t. Instead of relying on data I relied on my own mind to lead me down the right path.

I chose to believe when no one else did.

This very way of thinking is not unique to me. Many of the leaders around the world that shape the human race think in the same way.

What you think is possible in your career will define what goals you can achieve.

Your thinking defines your career.
Being smart isn’t enough.

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Success Advice

How to Create Your Own Version of Success

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Success is in the eye of the beholder. And because every human being sees life and all the things that come with it through their lens of experience, everyone’s individual idea of life, growth and success is defined by what they see, hear, think, feel and taste. This means that you have the power to determine what success means to you.

Many of the greatest thought-leaders, business people and influencers throughout history have provided their thoughts and opinions about success –  how to achieve it, how to manage it and how to be it. They’ve written books that are supposed to share with the world how success is merely a feeling and a wish. While many of the most successful people have warned that success is what you make of it, society has coined “success” as being wealthy, influential, famous, and lavish.

You may be thinking, “I’m not rich, but I’m well off,” or “I’m not a social media influencer, so I don’t have much clout.” But here is the truth: You, just the way you are, are already a success. Here’s why. Think of all the things that have happened in your life – the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful. Up until this very moment, you have made a series of choices that have shaped your reality.

Therefore, you have created the life you have, and you have set the terms of how you decide to live your life. Not to suggest that your life is perfect because no ones life is exactly as they want it, but the fact that you have created your reality shows that you are a creator. It also shows that you are in charge of creating the success you desire.

“Success is not in what you have, but who you are.” – Bo Bennett

Even if you feel like you should be so much further along than you are today, you still made it to today and that’s a good thing. If you are reading this feeling like you need to shift things around in your life so that you can feel like a success, try these three things below.

  1. Jot down all the words that you think of when you read the word “success,” and mark the words that align with who you are. Ask yourself what you believe you need to feel like a success. Only write down what resonates with you, not what you think people expect of you. Remember, that you are defining your journey, so you get to make up all the rules.
  2. Now, write down all the words you think about when you read the word “unsuccessful,” and mark all the words that may describe some aspect of you that you want to eliminate. Don’t just consider the big stuff, small stuff matters too! Procrastinating to get out of bed in the morning, drinking too much soda, or even spending too much time watching television are all examples of habits that could in some way affect your personal growth.
  3. Lastly, create an SAP (Success Attack Plan) to align yourself with more of the descriptive words that you associate with success and start to eliminate the characteristics you may possess that depict you as less than who you desire to be.

Your Success Attack Plan doesn’t have to be elaborate. It can start with an actionable idea as simple as, “Read one book this month about personal development,” or “Connect with someone who can mentor me.” Sometimes, you have to look to those who have been where you are to help you get where you desire to be. Just remember, your journey won’t look like theirs so pay attention to your inner being at all times and do what feels natural and right to your situation.

“There are only two mistakes one can make along the road to truth; not going all the way and not starting.” – Buddha

When you create your lists, be as imaginative as possible. Consider those people, places and things around you. Think about what you like and don’t like. Ponder on energy you want to attract that you do not already have and things you want to repel.

Don’t worry about setting a timeline for this. Creating a vision for your life starts with setting an intention at this moment and allowing that intention to lead you in the days to come. To see yourself five years from now, you have to do the things today that will help you get to the future.

Don’t allow others to tell you what you should aspire to be when it comes to success. You are in command, and you are in charge of your present and your future. Own it, own your success and own you.

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Success Advice

What It Really Means to Be a High Achiever in a Culture of Lazy

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Keeping employees interested in their work has been an increasingly difficult challenge for today’s employers. Whether it’s due to a generational shift of Millennials fully entering the workforce or an increasingly distracted society across the board, the vast majority of American workers are not passionate about their work.

This dispassionate workforce is causing large-scale problems, for both workers and the companies that employ them. When young people become immersed in cultural laziness, it can be hard to become a high achiever, but there is a path for those willing to do what it takes to be a top performer, and it’s simpler than you might think.

Laziness by the Numbers

According to a recent Gallup poll, nearly two-thirds of American workers are either unengaged or actively disengaged in their job. This leaves only a third of Americans who are actively engaged and passionate about their work. This lack of interest has enormous financial ramifications for companies due to all of this lost productivity.

Research from McLean & Company, estimates that a disengaged employee costs a company $3,400 out of every $10,000 in annual salary, or 34% of their wages. That means a disengaged employee who earns $75,000 costs their organization $25,500 per year due to a lack of productivity. If roughly two-thirds of workers are disengaged, this adds up to billions of dollars lost across the economy.

“To understand the heart and mind of a person, look not at what he has already achieved, but at what he aspires to.” – Khalil Gibran

Motivation: Whose Job is it Anyway?

There are two schools of thought when it comes to employee motivation: Either managers need to actively motivate their employees, or employees need to step their game up and figure out what they actually like doing. Stefan Aarnio, a highly successful real estate investor, author, coach, and speaker, falls squarely into the second camp. He attributes his company’s success to the culture of high accountability and high performance he cultivated over the years.

It all began with Aarnio honing his own intrinsic motivation over the years by discovering, and then doing, exactly what he loves to do. In Aarnio’s own words, “you don’t need the resistance of waking up every day and doing things that you hate doing, life is too short for that”, and he expects those he hires to follow the same logic. When you love what you do, you don’t need a manager to constantly poke and prod you to gin up some motivation, however fleeting it might be.

It may seem like common advice that only works for the wealthy, but doing what you love really is the simple solution to the scores of dispassionate workers plaguing the workforce of today. People are trained to believe that they should get the highest paying job they can get regardless of how it makes them feel.

“You don’t build a business, you build people, and then people build the business.” – Zig Ziglar

Aarnio believes this is shortsighted and will ultimately lead to a sad and dispassionate life. By being attuned to what makes him passionate, and expecting the same from his employees, Aarnio has been able to flip the script and develop a culture of passion and high achievement.

How do you motivate your team to want to show up every single day? Comment below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

How To Improve Yourself In The Next 6 Months With Very Little Effort.

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Sounds like a huge claim doesn’t it? That Tim Denning Self-Help idiot is at it again isn’t he?

Wrong. Improving yourself in 6 months so that you can achieve all your big goals is easier than you think. A word of warning though, the advice is brutal but effective at the same time.

I’ve recently gone through this process myself and it’s changed everything in my life. My top four fears before the 6 month challenge were the following:

  1. Career change
  2. Getting married/kids
  3. Becoming a people leader
  4. Health issues

I overcame these fears by working on myself for the last six months.

Here are the steps I took:


Confront your fears head-on.

I’ve just told you my top four fears and you probably have your own list.

Unless you are honest with yourself and acknowledge your fears in writing, you’ll never conquer these invincible demons.

Harden up. Acknowledge your fears.

My top four fears were something I avoided for years. I was embarrassed to share them and even talk about them. I thought they’d magically take care of themselves.

I thought the fairies would come through my window at night and whisper in my ear the answer to my biggest fears. I was wrong”

Writing down my top fears and then writing down how each of them was ridiculous and full of false evidence is how I freed myself from them.

I conquered each one head on. You can do the same and you must if you want to improve in the next six months.


Stop giving a damn.

This next one is tightly linked to the first point. You can’t confront your fears or make progress unless you stop giving a damn.

Holding on to your BS stories and ways of doing things in the past is screwing everything up for you.

As of tomorrow, stop giving a damn.

Don’t waste any of your energy caring about useless things like what could happen if you make changes in your life, or sell your car, or make a bold move.

Before making a few changes in the last six months, I gave a damn about too many little things. Things that just don’t matter like what my family thought of my girlfriend or where I lived. It just didn’t matter.

When I gave in to my stupidly, insane, stubborn ways of the past and did what I knew I had to do, things got easier. I could go about my day without caring about so many small things that had previously distracted me from my dream of inspiring the world through personal development and entrepreneurship.

You can have the same beautiful realization as me if you stop giving a damn about all the small things.


Reduce everything.

The major improvements in your life will come from taking stuff away not adding more into your life.

Reduce Netflix time.
Reduce your belongings down by at least 25%.
Reduce your expenses by cutting off things you don’t need or that don’t serve your primary goals.

All of us have too much of everything and it’s sucking up the time we need to improve ourselves.

You can’t truly turn your life around unless you commit to focusing big chunks of time on just a few commitments.


Select one thing you’re going to achieve.

Not ten goals. Not twenty-five. One.

For the last six months my one goal has been to double down on my blogging. No more podcasts, speaking opportunities or coffee catchups I feel I must do. I took one goal, and I did it every single day — including my recent holiday to Europe where I posted something daily that could inspire people.

Even if I was on the train going between Rome and Florence, my daily habit was achieved no matter what. It was easy to remember because I’ve only committed to achieving one thing.

The power of doing one thing that matters the most to you will give you the fastest transformation and sense of fulfillment.

The challenge is to discover what that one thing is going to be for yourself.


Commit to discipline.

Fat? Stop eating sugar and exercise.

Smoke too much? Quit.

Bored of your job? Get a new career.

Friends dragging you down? Divorce them.

Nothing in your life will change in the next six months unless you commit to discipline and follow through with action. Everything you need to improve in the next six months is pretty straight-forward.

To make progress requires discipline. Not discipline for five out of seven days a week but every day. Not “I’ll eat clean during the week and then binge on the weekend.”

Discipline is taking the action which you know is good for you and not being tempted to shy away from that. After being disciplined for 6 months, you’ll find it hard to go back. The hard part is creating the habit.


Read a lot.

Many of the answers you need to improve yourself will come from reading books not watching what the Kardashians had for dinner last night.

Aim to read a few books a month on problems you want to solve.

If you’re trying to build a company, then read The Lean Startup.

If you need brilliant mentor advice, then read Tribe Of Mentors.

If you need a radical transformation, then read Unlimited Power or Think And Grow Rich.

Each person has their own challenges and the answers can be learned through someone else’s experience. Someone else has gone through what you’re going through — read about the solution, then radically implement it.


Get your phone, turn off all notifications except SMS and incoming calls.

This was a big one for me. My phone had taken over my life and I had no blank space to think.

“I deleted Facebook, WhatsApp, Telegram, Instagram, WeChat and Slack”

Damn, it felt good.

Life is effortless when you’re in control and that will come from being insanely focused on the tasks you need to execute on.


Come up with a why for your entire life.

Now to be fully transparent I had this one in the bag over a year ago, but during the last six months, it was the pillar of everything else I did.

Unless you know why you need to change and why you exist, it’s hard to achieve anything. Whenever I look at my to-do list, I sort it by the tasks that are linked to my why above everything else.

This makes managing my calendar simple. I ask myself this question: “Does the request of my time support my why?”

You can ask yourself the same question once you know the why for your entire life. This why will evolve over time, so my recommendation would be to start somewhere. Don’t overthink your why in the beginning.


Have one life-changing moment.

Radical change (especially in the next 6 months) usually needs a defining moment. These moments can come from life naturally, but the trouble is it could take years. I chose to manufacture my one life-changing moment.

I attended an immersive event that was about lifestyle design. During that process, there was so much emotion linked to what I uncovered that I had several breakthroughs.

Putting aside time to work out what you’re going to do and to reflect on the past is how you find your one defining moment.

If you want a few suggestions of events that might trigger a life-changing moment for you than send me a note and I’m happy to tell you a few I’ve attended.


Invest some money in your future.

Most of us (including me) typically only save for the present or the near present financial goals we have.

Investing for the future is how you set yourself up to win. I chose three buckets to put my money in:

  1. A long-term index fund (5+ years until any withdrawal)
  2. Personal development courses and events
  3. Books from Amazon

By having a plan for the future, I’m setting myself up to win. Even if you don’t have a lot of money, you can still set up a few similar buckets and start filling them up right now.

Within 6 months, you’ll have more invested in your future than you thought was possible.


Make a stand and forget what people think of you.

Maybe people don’t like the way you dress. Screw them.
Maybe people think your dream career is stupid. Screw them.
Maybe people will think your poor based on your current financial situation.

Take their opinion and shove it where the sun don’t shine.

It’s time to make a stand and stop letting what everyone thinks of you and your goals hold you back. People that have time to judge you probably suck at their own goals. Remember that.

The fastest way to go nowhere in the next six months is to sit there daydreaming about what every person you know might think of you. You don’t need permission”

In fact, you don’t need endless advice either.

Most advice is biased and most people are not you, don’t understand you and have no idea how you feel. So with that freeing thought right there, go out and make the next six months the period of your life that defines you.

Take my last six months and use them as inspiration for your next six months.
You can improve yourself and do so with very little effort.

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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