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3 Ways To Instantly Increase Your Influence By Making Others Feel Important

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Do you ever have problems getting others to do what you want? Is it hard for you to move others to action? It seems to be a common issue. It can be frustrating because so much of your ultimate success depends heavily on your ability to influence others. If you want to win in life, you have to be able to influence. It’s unavoidable.

Whether you’re a professional working at an organization, or an entrepreneur who is building your own business, your ability to persuade is essential if you want to become successful.

Here’s the good news: Becoming more influential is not difficult. There are simple things you can do to gain more influence.

The issue isn’t just being popular or more talkative. The issue is how you make others feel. It’s a common saying: “People will forget what you say, but they will never forget how you make them feel.” What would it be like if you were able to make other people want to do what you’re asking?

It doesn’t have to be difficult. You just need to make them feel what they want to feel. So how do they want to feel? They want to feel important. If you’re going to influence others, you must be able to make them feel important.

Here are 3 tips you can use to instantly become more influential by making others feel important:

1. Gratitude

Gratitude is one of the most powerful ways to show people how important they are. It’s been shown to enhance the relationships you can have with those around you.

Think about it. How often do people take time to express true, heartfelt gratitude to others? How did you feel the last time it happened to you? Exactly.

Expressing sincere gratitude is a wonderful way to get people to see that they truly matter. When you make people feel this way, they will attach these positive emotions to you.

And the great thing about this is that it’s so easy! All you need to do is find something that the other person did that benefitted you in some way. It doesn’t have to be something huge. Even the small things will work.

When you identify what the other person has done for you, take some time to let them know. You don’t even have to do it face to face. I usually do it by email because I express myself better by writing.

Regardless of the method you use, make sure you do it. It’ll increase your influence dramatically.

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” – John F. Kennedy

2. Get Them To Talk

People love to talk about themselves. If you’re trying to make others feel important, you would do well to remember this fact.

Showing people how important they are means getting them to talk as much as possible. You have to show that you are genuinely interested in what they are saying to you.

The best way to do this is to ask good questions. You need to ask questions that invite a longer answer. There are two types of questions you can ask in a conversation. These are close-ended and open-ended questions.

The difference? A close-ended question can be answered with just a “yes” or a “no” or another type of one-word answer. An open-ended question can’t be answered with just a “yes” or a “no.” The answer has to be longer.

Here’s an example of each:

  • Close-ended: Did you like the new Star Wars movie?
  • Open-ended: What did you think of the new Star Wars movie?

See the difference? The open-ended question will get the other person to go into more detail about how she feels about the new Star Wars movie.

The more you encourage other people to talk, the more important they will feel. Again, they will attribute this feeling of importance to you.

 

3. Be Sincere In Your Praise

Praising the other person is a great way to show them that you think they are important. When you take the time to talk about the qualities they possess that you admire, it shows them that you are paying attention to the things they do right.

Similar to gratitude, praise can be a very powerful way to make the other person feel like they matter. We all love it when people notice the effort and hard work that we put forth.

Here’s a caveat: it has to be sincere. Insincere praise is just meaningless flattery. If you’re not being sincere, the other person will pick up on it. This will kill your influence efforts because they will feel like they are being manipulated. Needless to say, nobody wants to feel like they are being played.

When you are looking to give praise, try to pick out qualities that others have noticed. Look for their strengths. That way, when you offer your praise, you can bring up the fact that other people have noticed that they are strong in the area you are praising. This brings a “social proof” element to your praise that will have an even bigger impact.

After all, if you’re telling them something good about themselves that others have noticed, why wouldn’t that make them feel more important? The more effectively you praise others, the more important you will make them feel.

“If you’re sincere, praise is effective. If you’re insincere, it’s manipulative.” – Zig Ziglar 

Conclusion

Being influential means having a positive impact on the people you wish to influence. The amount of influence you have is directly tied to the amount of value you bring.

When you make others feel important, you are giving them something that has immense value. That’s why it’s so effective.

Focus on showing others how much they matter to you. Not only will it make you feel more grateful, it will also make people more likely to let you influence them.

How do you make others feel more important? Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

Jeff Charles is the founder of Artisan Owl Media, which is an Austin-based company that provides sales training for entrepreneurs along with content marketing services. He is passionate about helping “non-salesy” entrepreneurs improve their skills at persuasion and influence. He runs a blog that is dedicated to providing sales tips to entrepreneurs who want to close more deals. He also enjoys spending time with his wife and kids, reading, writing, and all things nerdy. He is an entrepreneur, husband, father, and an avid Star Wars fan.

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14 Comments

14 Comments

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    True!

  12. Klaudia

    Jan 25, 2016 at 9:55 am

    Hi my family member! I want to say that this article is amazing! It is very well written and includes vital information. I’d like to see more posts like this.

  13. Addicted 2 The Grind

    Jan 24, 2016 at 4:12 pm

    I think everything in the article is very true, but people can spot BS from a mile away. You have to actually be genuine in everything you do or say and you will connect with the people a lot better.

    Great read.

    • Jeff Charles

      Jan 26, 2016 at 2:20 am

      Thanks for the comment!

      It’s true…the tips in this article only work when you actually mean what you say. As a matter of fact, if you have to BS your way through any of this, you probably shouldn’t be an entrepreneur OR a salesperson.

      Jeff

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Success Advice

A Must-Read Guide for Avoiding Burnout

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how to avoid burnout
Image Credit: Unsplash

Burnout. We’ve all been there. It happens to all “workaholic” entrepreneurs like you and me. But please allow me to provide a reality check: You’re not a machine. And regardless of how much you think you’re like Gary Vaynerchuk, you need to take breaks in order to function at maximum capacity. Non-stop hustle without ever taking a break is dumb. That’s why it’s called a “break”. Because if you don’t eventually stop, that’s exactly what will happen. You will break!

Here are 5 simple steps to avoid burnout once and for all:

Step #1: Build A Sustainable Work Schedule

Scheduling your work around your breaks (not the other way around) is the most effective way to avoid burnout. Now to be clear, I’m not saying “don’t work hard”. I’d never tell you that. But rather, to work in a sustainable fashion.

In other words: Prioritize your breaks the same way you would prioritize your work. For example, LinkedIn’s CEO, Jeff Weiner, schedules two hours of breaks throughout each of his workdays (in 30 to 90-minute blocks). How many breaks are scheduled in your day?

“Burnout is what happens when you try to avoid being human for too long.” – Michael Gungor

Step #2: Practice Gratitude

If you’re reading this, you have eyes. Be grateful for them, some people don’t. Remembering what you already have is critical, because gratitude is a divine quality and awakens our sense of true abundance. Work hard and be mindful of every gift that you have in your life. An attitude of gratitude is the path to true happiness.

Step #3: Remember Your WHY Power

Why do you do what you do? Why do you go the extra mile, get up early, stay late, and work around the clock? Only once you’ve answered this question will you have isolated your “why power”.

For instance, do you want to retire your parents? Is your why power to become a billionaire so you can fund cures for diseases? My suggestion to you would be to prepare a pocket-sized list of your whys and re-read them whenever you’re feeling low on energy (you’ll know when the list is long enough when you read it and feel recharged).

Step #4: Meditate Twice (Daily)

If you only take away one thing from this article, please let it be this: Meditate, twice daily, 20 minutes (per session). Personally, I meditate once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Like exercise for the brain, meditation compounds and is truly a life-changing activity. You’ll experience unparalleled clarity by activating your brain’s “reset” button, which will allow you to focus on your work and get infinitely more done in a fraction of the time.

But like all worthwhile things in life, it requires consistency. To help with getting on a consistent schedule, I’d highly suggest purchasing a physical calendar and making a big red “X” on the days that you meditate. How many days in a row can you meditate without fail? If you’re new to meditation, I’d suggest starting with 10-minute sessions and using a guided video (I love this one on YouTube by the Chopra Center).

“Your mind is a powerful thing. When you filter it with positive thoughts, your life will start to change.” – Buddha

Step #5: Remember That You’re Going To Die

Newsflash: You’re dying. You’re not going to be here forever, so stop acting like it. I don’t know how old you are, but I’d please ask you to take a quick moment to teleport to age one-hundred. Feel free to close your eyes right now and do this.

As you’re on your deathbed, do you have regrets that you didn’t accomplish your goals, leave a legacy, and serve more people? Which of your dreams remain unfulfilled? Now, open your eyes and teleport back to the current moment. Alright, now go make it happen — and avoid that dark future from occurring!

I hope you found this article helpful. If you did, please feel free to share with a friend or co-worker!

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Success Advice

5 Simple Mental Tricks to Help Leaders Deal With a Heavy Workload

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Entrepreneurs and other business owners put in a lot of work. In fact, many entrepreneurs report spending over 60 hours a week (or more than 12 hours each day) working on their business. These hours are busy — no extended breaks for browsing Facebook or watching funny YouTube videos. Becoming a successful entrepreneur requires a lot of work, and a lot of learning. Of course, having such a heavy workload and so many responsibilities can quickly become overwhelming.

So how do successful business owners manage? A lot of it comes down to the right mental practices. By working smarter, not harder, leaders can effectively manage even the most seemingly insurmountable workloads and achieve their company goals.

Here’s a closer look at the mental practices you can apply to better manage your responsibilities:

1. Stop Multitasking

When you have a lot of work on your plate, it can be tempting to switch back and forth between projects so you can make progress on each one. But this is actually one of the worst things you can do for your productivity. Research has consistently found that multitasking actually slows down your work, rather than speeding it up.

According to the American Psychological Association, “Although switch costs may be relatively small, sometimes just a few tenths of a second per switch, they can add up to large amounts when people switch repeatedly back and forth between tasks. Thus, multitasking may seem efficient on the surface but may actually take more time in the end and involve more error … even brief mental blocks created by shifting between tasks can cost as much as 40 percent of someone’s productive time.”

“The key is not to prioritise what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” – Stephen Covey

2. Start Your Day With the Hardest Tasks

Each task and responsibility you’re faced with will have varying degrees of difficulty and time commitment. It’s all too easy to save the hardest tasks for last, but if you wish to maximize your productivity and get through your workload, you should actually start with the tougher challenges.

Many of the most successful entrepreneurs take care of their toughest tasks first thing in the morning. For one thing, most of us have more energy when we first start the workday. The later in the day it gets, the harder it becomes to maintain that same drive and focus, making it all too easy to procrastinate. Knocking out a hard assignment early in the day also brings a sense of accomplishment, which can provide additional energy for powering through future tasks.

3. Know Your Limits

While hard work is essential for entrepreneurial success, you don’t want to run the risk of burnout. Continually pushing yourself beyond your boundaries can cause chronic exhaustion, anxiety, relationship problems and even heart disease.

“Everyone has different limits,” notes Jason Bliss, co-founder of Healthy Living Network. “As a serial entrepreneur myself, I’ve seen far too many people overwork themselves to the point of exhaustion, thinking it will help them succeed. In reality, overwork usually makes their results worse, not better. Learning the warning signs of burnout has helped me know when to step back — even for a short break — so I can come back later when I’m feeling refreshed.”

4. Plan Out Your Day

Knowing which task you want to start your day with isn’t enough — you also need to plan out the rest of the day. Catherine Adenle recommends “breaking your day into sessions, of maybe two or three hours. Take regular walk breaks after each session. First thing in the morning, when you get to the office, begin your day with a plan and assign tasks to each session.”

By dividing your day into more manageable chunks and planning corresponding activities, your workload won’t feel as overwhelming. You’ll be more likely to stay on track with everything that needs to get done. For best results, organize tasks based on urgency, deadline and the time they’ll take to complete.

“Plan your work for today and every day, then work your plan.” – Margaret Thatcher

5. Understand Proper Delegation

As a business leader, you have a significant resource that few others enjoy: a support staff that can assist you with your responsibilities. Asking for help or delegating tasks can help you maintain focus on the activities that matter most for your business. Though you should be mindful of your employees’ pre-existing workloads and clearly communicate project expectations, delegation can significantly improve company productivity.

The problem, however, is that many leaders are reluctant to delegate. They worry about employees’ abilities to complete a task, or feel they could handle the work quicker and more effectively on their own. It is essential that you develop the humility needed to delegate to your staff.

Research from Gallup has found that employers who delegate, effectively experience significantly higher growth than their competition. By leveraging employee strengths to lessen your load, you can enjoy major improvements to your bottom line.

Adapting the way you approach your workload will require a fair amount of effort. There may even be some failures and setbacks as you change how you manage your work. But if you wish to obtain lasting success, few things will be more important than improving your mental approach. By implementing these tactics, you’ll be able to work more effectively and achieve higher-quality outcomes.

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Success Advice

Positivity & Self-Ownership: Your #1 Factor for Success

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positivity
Image Credit: Twenty20.com

Leaving a reliable 9-5 job and risking a steady, biweekly paycheck to live out a dream and pursue a totally different lifestyle can be terrifying. However, there is no reason to fear, aspiring entrepreneur!

All successful entrepreneurs understand a few simple principles that enable them to achieve their goals, including how positivity along with taking ownership and accountability for your attitude, actions, and outcomes play a major role in your success.

The Power of Positivity

Never underestimate the power of positivity. Thinking positive thoughts, embodying a positive and healthy lifestyle, and reciting positive affirmations everyday enable you to tap into a higher level of your subconscious.

This is in line with the law of attraction, which says we attract into our lives what we manifest and put our energy into. You attract the energy that you put out into the universe, so the more positivity you put out, the more positivity comes back.

Here are some examples of positive affirmations that are meant to promote success:

  • I have the power to create change.
  • I refuse to give up because I will succeed.
  • I deserve the best and I accept everything that has happened up until now.
  • I am unstoppable and I will achieve all of my goals.

Replace your “I can’t”s with “I can.” Replace your “I won’t”s with “I will.” Speak positive things into existence, and watch your life turn around and have those positive thoughts come about. When you make the effort to make a positive change, the universe will conspire to help you succeed.

What Does It Mean to Be Accountable?

Accountability means to take responsibility and accept ownership for your actions and decisions. This means that you are responsible for the fate of your business. Do you feel that things aren’t taking off as quickly as you originally hoped? Work harder. Not selling thousands of products? Sell harder. Don’t have enough clients? Conduct more cold outreach. Keep your word.

Set goals and intentions and follow through with them. Be responsible and hold accountability for your actions. When you accept responsibility for your actions, you’ll feel rewarded when things work out, and you’ll close more deals, sell more products, and your dreams will come true.

“The price of greatness is responsibility.” –  Winston Churchill

What It Means to Take Control of Your Life & Business

In order to take control of your life and the fate of your business, you must understand your purpose in life and be willing to fulfill that purpose. It’s not enough to only desire a certain lifestyle.

You must stay true to what you really want to do in life. This means that you are mentally prepared to take on everything you need to in order to succeed. You follow strict self-set rules and guidelines that will help to keep you on track toward those dreams and goals. You don’t give up.

You keep going when things get tough, and you never see failure as an obstacle. You aren’t discouraged. You accept minor bumps in the road on the way to your destination, because you know you will ultimately reach your goal, and you won’t stop until you get there.

Here are three factors that personally helped me succeed:

1. Becoming more organized

Prior to organizing my tasks and goals, I was just flying by the seat of my pants and wondering why I wasn’t progressing at all. That’s because I didn’t have a set direction.

Becoming more organized helped me to prioritize what needed to get done in order to grow my business to the place where it’s at today.

2. Starting my off my day with positive affirmations

Positive affirmations are more powerful than you may believe. I started each day reading and reciting a quote that was positive and inspiring in nature, which exponentially increased my motivation and mentally prepared me to take on each day.

“Make each day your masterpiece.” – John Wooden

3. I developed long-term goals and stuck to them

Instead of working every day toward the unknown, I decided to set long-term goals. The kicker in helping me stick to these goals was creating smaller milestones that kept me on track and focused which gradually led me up to the ultimate goal.

Although I recognized that the ultimate achievement (of growing my business) was still at hand, my behavior was reinforced by a consistent sense of accomplishment upon completing these smaller goals.

If you are willing to stay focused, motivated, commit the time, effort, and energy toward reaching your goals, and you truly believe that you can and WILL achieve them, then there is nothing that will stop you in your path toward success.

As William Earnest Henley’s famous poem “Invictus” states, “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.” You are the master of your fate and the captain of your soul. Once you wholeheartedly believe this, then you will harness your true power, unlock your full potential, and begin to live out your truth and reach the level of success you’ve always dreamed of.

What is success to you? Let us know in the comments below!

Image credit courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

The 3 P’s of Irresistible Leadership: Passion, Persistence, and Panache

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Image Credit: Unsplash

If any of you reading this have ever studied the theoretical underpinnings of leadership, you will have come across several theories such as the great man theory and charismatic leadership theory. Over the decades, leadership has evolved more from an art of telling people what to do to that of subtle influence, suggestion, and rendering by example.

In my new e-book “High-Octane Leadership: Pole Position Performance,” I mentioned that the goal of the manager is to create followers, but the goal of a leader is to create new leaders! This is a relatively new concept in leadership! There are many new and emerging micro theories of leadership that can be expounded upon and useful to individuals looking to assimilate a leadership style.

Here are the 3 P’s of irresistible leadership:

1. Passion

No great achievements, no illustrious undertakings, and no works of genius have ever occurred without the infusion of passion. Passion creates connections where none existed before.

Passion heightens the desire in the individuals who have opted to follow, and it has moved individuals forward toward a common vision. Leaders such as Steve Jobs, have to demonstrate a sense of passion in everything. Although his passion could be somewhat subdued, there is no doubt that when it came to any Apple products, he was the number one salesperson, champion, and evangelist.

“When you’re surrounded by people who share a passionate commitment around a common purpose, anything is possible.” – Howard Schultz

2. Persistence

For years when I was in direct sales, I had an 8.5 x 11 sheet with a cartoon on it hanging over my desk. It was a crane (that’s the bird, not the machine) who had a frog in his rather ample bill. However, the frog’s arms came out of the side of the crane’s mouth and were clutching the crane by the throat so that he (the crane) couldn’t swallow the frog. Underneath this caption where the words, “never, ever give up!

Leaders persist! They understand that there is always a way to solve the problem. Following this understanding, there must be subsequent action that follows, and this can lead to enthusiasm and optimism!

3. Panache

Leaders are self-confident people. They have systematically developed confidence over the years. In situations where they don’t feel confident, they make themselves feel confident. Confidence is learned. It’s a mental model and a cognitive mindset of how we approach problems.

Leaders understand and know that they will solve the problem before them; it’s not a matter of guessing, it’s a matter of knowing.

“Positivity, confidence, and persistence are key in life, so never give up on yourself.” – Khalid

If you buy the notion of passion, persistence, and panache as attributes of irresistible leadership, the question before us now turns on how do we develop those skills?

Here are a few behaviors that leaders use on a consistent basis to develop new skills:

  • Awareness – Great leaders and irresistible leaders always have their antennae up. They are always looking for ways to improve. They understand that self-improvement is a never-ending process to be embraced, even if the execution of the new behavior is difficult!
  • Repetition – Irresistible leaders practice their new skills. They will practice them in front of their subordinates, their family, and in front of themselves while staring at their face in a bathroom mirror! They understand the way to install a new habit of behavior is like with any habit, repeating it over and over again.
  • Feedback – Irresistible leaders are not afraid to ask how they are doing. And, they are not afraid to hear the answer. They understand that the best answer is that they are doing well but the next best answer is that they are not doing well, instead of not being told about their potential flaw. They understand that input in terms of behavioral awareness is one of the singular most important things one can attribute to leadership performance and style.

Try this: take an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper and draw three columns. Atop each column write passion, persistence, and panache. On the left-hand side in the margin of the page, write awareness and 1/3 of the page down, write repetition, and then at the bottom one third the word feedback.

Writing solidifies thought, and it is that solid thought that motivates us into action. You will find yourself becoming more aware of opportunities to develop in each of the 3 P’s of irresistible leadership. Document them! Then jot down ideas down about how you can repeat those new behaviors. Finally solicit feedback and document what you’ve heard.

In the span of several weeks you will have developed new and exciting leadership attributes. Continue this new and exciting habit for other leadership development opportunities.

Which one of the 3 P’s do you need to work on most and why? Let us know in the comments below!

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Success Advice

A Must-Read Guide for Avoiding Burnout

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how to avoid burnout
Image Credit: Unsplash

Burnout. We’ve all been there. It happens to all “workaholic” entrepreneurs like you and me. But please allow me to provide a reality check: You’re not a machine. And regardless of how much you think you’re like Gary Vaynerchuk, you need to take breaks in order to function at maximum capacity. Non-stop hustle without ever taking a break is dumb. That’s why it’s called a “break”. Because if you don’t eventually stop, that’s exactly what will happen. You will break! (more…)

Alex Edson is a 19-year-old entrepreneur from Phoenix Arizona who has scaled two multi-million dollar companies from nothing. Alex began his entrepreneurial journey during his sophomore year of high school, founding a YouTube talent management agency from his apartment that would later grow to over 10 billion annual views. Today, Alex is the Founder and CEO of MailTag.io, a startup that helps sales and business people track their emails in real-time, for free. You can connect with Alex on his company’s blog https://blog.mailtag.io or by email Alex@MailTag.io.

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14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Cole

    Jun 22, 2016 at 5:36 am

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  6. HCA Trim weight loss supplement

    Feb 16, 2016 at 11:56 pm

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  11. Kat

    Jan 26, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    True!

  12. Klaudia

    Jan 25, 2016 at 9:55 am

    Hi my family member! I want to say that this article is amazing! It is very well written and includes vital information. I’d like to see more posts like this.

  13. Addicted 2 The Grind

    Jan 24, 2016 at 4:12 pm

    I think everything in the article is very true, but people can spot BS from a mile away. You have to actually be genuine in everything you do or say and you will connect with the people a lot better.

    Great read.

    • Jeff Charles

      Jan 26, 2016 at 2:20 am

      Thanks for the comment!

      It’s true…the tips in this article only work when you actually mean what you say. As a matter of fact, if you have to BS your way through any of this, you probably shouldn’t be an entrepreneur OR a salesperson.

      Jeff

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Success Advice

A Must-Read Guide for Avoiding Burnout

Published

on

how to avoid burnout
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Burnout. We’ve all been there. It happens to all “workaholic” entrepreneurs like you and me. But please allow me to provide a reality check: You’re not a machine. And regardless of how much you think you’re like Gary Vaynerchuk, you need to take breaks in order to function at maximum capacity. Non-stop hustle without ever taking a break is dumb. That’s why it’s called a “break”. Because if you don’t eventually stop, that’s exactly what will happen. You will break!

Here are 5 simple steps to avoid burnout once and for all:

Step #1: Build A Sustainable Work Schedule

Scheduling your work around your breaks (not the other way around) is the most effective way to avoid burnout. Now to be clear, I’m not saying “don’t work hard”. I’d never tell you that. But rather, to work in a sustainable fashion.

In other words: Prioritize your breaks the same way you would prioritize your work. For example, LinkedIn’s CEO, Jeff Weiner, schedules two hours of breaks throughout each of his workdays (in 30 to 90-minute blocks). How many breaks are scheduled in your day?

“Burnout is what happens when you try to avoid being human for too long.” – Michael Gungor

Step #2: Practice Gratitude

If you’re reading this, you have eyes. Be grateful for them, some people don’t. Remembering what you already have is critical, because gratitude is a divine quality and awakens our sense of true abundance. Work hard and be mindful of every gift that you have in your life. An attitude of gratitude is the path to true happiness.

Step #3: Remember Your WHY Power

Why do you do what you do? Why do you go the extra mile, get up early, stay late, and work around the clock? Only once you’ve answered this question will you have isolated your “why power”.

For instance, do you want to retire your parents? Is your why power to become a billionaire so you can fund cures for diseases? My suggestion to you would be to prepare a pocket-sized list of your whys and re-read them whenever you’re feeling low on energy (you’ll know when the list is long enough when you read it and feel recharged).

Step #4: Meditate Twice (Daily)

If you only take away one thing from this article, please let it be this: Meditate, twice daily, 20 minutes (per session). Personally, I meditate once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Like exercise for the brain, meditation compounds and is truly a life-changing activity. You’ll experience unparalleled clarity by activating your brain’s “reset” button, which will allow you to focus on your work and get infinitely more done in a fraction of the time.

But like all worthwhile things in life, it requires consistency. To help with getting on a consistent schedule, I’d highly suggest purchasing a physical calendar and making a big red “X” on the days that you meditate. How many days in a row can you meditate without fail? If you’re new to meditation, I’d suggest starting with 10-minute sessions and using a guided video (I love this one on YouTube by the Chopra Center).

“Your mind is a powerful thing. When you filter it with positive thoughts, your life will start to change.” – Buddha

Step #5: Remember That You’re Going To Die

Newsflash: You’re dying. You’re not going to be here forever, so stop acting like it. I don’t know how old you are, but I’d please ask you to take a quick moment to teleport to age one-hundred. Feel free to close your eyes right now and do this.

As you’re on your deathbed, do you have regrets that you didn’t accomplish your goals, leave a legacy, and serve more people? Which of your dreams remain unfulfilled? Now, open your eyes and teleport back to the current moment. Alright, now go make it happen — and avoid that dark future from occurring!

I hope you found this article helpful. If you did, please feel free to share with a friend or co-worker!

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5 Simple Mental Tricks to Help Leaders Deal With a Heavy Workload

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Entrepreneurs and other business owners put in a lot of work. In fact, many entrepreneurs report spending over 60 hours a week (or more than 12 hours each day) working on their business. These hours are busy — no extended breaks for browsing Facebook or watching funny YouTube videos. Becoming a successful entrepreneur requires a lot of work, and a lot of learning. Of course, having such a heavy workload and so many responsibilities can quickly become overwhelming.

So how do successful business owners manage? A lot of it comes down to the right mental practices. By working smarter, not harder, leaders can effectively manage even the most seemingly insurmountable workloads and achieve their company goals.

Here’s a closer look at the mental practices you can apply to better manage your responsibilities:

1. Stop Multitasking

When you have a lot of work on your plate, it can be tempting to switch back and forth between projects so you can make progress on each one. But this is actually one of the worst things you can do for your productivity. Research has consistently found that multitasking actually slows down your work, rather than speeding it up.

According to the American Psychological Association, “Although switch costs may be relatively small, sometimes just a few tenths of a second per switch, they can add up to large amounts when people switch repeatedly back and forth between tasks. Thus, multitasking may seem efficient on the surface but may actually take more time in the end and involve more error … even brief mental blocks created by shifting between tasks can cost as much as 40 percent of someone’s productive time.”

“The key is not to prioritise what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” – Stephen Covey

2. Start Your Day With the Hardest Tasks

Each task and responsibility you’re faced with will have varying degrees of difficulty and time commitment. It’s all too easy to save the hardest tasks for last, but if you wish to maximize your productivity and get through your workload, you should actually start with the tougher challenges.

Many of the most successful entrepreneurs take care of their toughest tasks first thing in the morning. For one thing, most of us have more energy when we first start the workday. The later in the day it gets, the harder it becomes to maintain that same drive and focus, making it all too easy to procrastinate. Knocking out a hard assignment early in the day also brings a sense of accomplishment, which can provide additional energy for powering through future tasks.

3. Know Your Limits

While hard work is essential for entrepreneurial success, you don’t want to run the risk of burnout. Continually pushing yourself beyond your boundaries can cause chronic exhaustion, anxiety, relationship problems and even heart disease.

“Everyone has different limits,” notes Jason Bliss, co-founder of Healthy Living Network. “As a serial entrepreneur myself, I’ve seen far too many people overwork themselves to the point of exhaustion, thinking it will help them succeed. In reality, overwork usually makes their results worse, not better. Learning the warning signs of burnout has helped me know when to step back — even for a short break — so I can come back later when I’m feeling refreshed.”

4. Plan Out Your Day

Knowing which task you want to start your day with isn’t enough — you also need to plan out the rest of the day. Catherine Adenle recommends “breaking your day into sessions, of maybe two or three hours. Take regular walk breaks after each session. First thing in the morning, when you get to the office, begin your day with a plan and assign tasks to each session.”

By dividing your day into more manageable chunks and planning corresponding activities, your workload won’t feel as overwhelming. You’ll be more likely to stay on track with everything that needs to get done. For best results, organize tasks based on urgency, deadline and the time they’ll take to complete.

“Plan your work for today and every day, then work your plan.” – Margaret Thatcher

5. Understand Proper Delegation

As a business leader, you have a significant resource that few others enjoy: a support staff that can assist you with your responsibilities. Asking for help or delegating tasks can help you maintain focus on the activities that matter most for your business. Though you should be mindful of your employees’ pre-existing workloads and clearly communicate project expectations, delegation can significantly improve company productivity.

The problem, however, is that many leaders are reluctant to delegate. They worry about employees’ abilities to complete a task, or feel they could handle the work quicker and more effectively on their own. It is essential that you develop the humility needed to delegate to your staff.

Research from Gallup has found that employers who delegate, effectively experience significantly higher growth than their competition. By leveraging employee strengths to lessen your load, you can enjoy major improvements to your bottom line.

Adapting the way you approach your workload will require a fair amount of effort. There may even be some failures and setbacks as you change how you manage your work. But if you wish to obtain lasting success, few things will be more important than improving your mental approach. By implementing these tactics, you’ll be able to work more effectively and achieve higher-quality outcomes.

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Positivity & Self-Ownership: Your #1 Factor for Success

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Leaving a reliable 9-5 job and risking a steady, biweekly paycheck to live out a dream and pursue a totally different lifestyle can be terrifying. However, there is no reason to fear, aspiring entrepreneur!

All successful entrepreneurs understand a few simple principles that enable them to achieve their goals, including how positivity along with taking ownership and accountability for your attitude, actions, and outcomes play a major role in your success.

The Power of Positivity

Never underestimate the power of positivity. Thinking positive thoughts, embodying a positive and healthy lifestyle, and reciting positive affirmations everyday enable you to tap into a higher level of your subconscious.

This is in line with the law of attraction, which says we attract into our lives what we manifest and put our energy into. You attract the energy that you put out into the universe, so the more positivity you put out, the more positivity comes back.

Here are some examples of positive affirmations that are meant to promote success:

  • I have the power to create change.
  • I refuse to give up because I will succeed.
  • I deserve the best and I accept everything that has happened up until now.
  • I am unstoppable and I will achieve all of my goals.

Replace your “I can’t”s with “I can.” Replace your “I won’t”s with “I will.” Speak positive things into existence, and watch your life turn around and have those positive thoughts come about. When you make the effort to make a positive change, the universe will conspire to help you succeed.

What Does It Mean to Be Accountable?

Accountability means to take responsibility and accept ownership for your actions and decisions. This means that you are responsible for the fate of your business. Do you feel that things aren’t taking off as quickly as you originally hoped? Work harder. Not selling thousands of products? Sell harder. Don’t have enough clients? Conduct more cold outreach. Keep your word.

Set goals and intentions and follow through with them. Be responsible and hold accountability for your actions. When you accept responsibility for your actions, you’ll feel rewarded when things work out, and you’ll close more deals, sell more products, and your dreams will come true.

“The price of greatness is responsibility.” –  Winston Churchill

What It Means to Take Control of Your Life & Business

In order to take control of your life and the fate of your business, you must understand your purpose in life and be willing to fulfill that purpose. It’s not enough to only desire a certain lifestyle.

You must stay true to what you really want to do in life. This means that you are mentally prepared to take on everything you need to in order to succeed. You follow strict self-set rules and guidelines that will help to keep you on track toward those dreams and goals. You don’t give up.

You keep going when things get tough, and you never see failure as an obstacle. You aren’t discouraged. You accept minor bumps in the road on the way to your destination, because you know you will ultimately reach your goal, and you won’t stop until you get there.

Here are three factors that personally helped me succeed:

1. Becoming more organized

Prior to organizing my tasks and goals, I was just flying by the seat of my pants and wondering why I wasn’t progressing at all. That’s because I didn’t have a set direction.

Becoming more organized helped me to prioritize what needed to get done in order to grow my business to the place where it’s at today.

2. Starting my off my day with positive affirmations

Positive affirmations are more powerful than you may believe. I started each day reading and reciting a quote that was positive and inspiring in nature, which exponentially increased my motivation and mentally prepared me to take on each day.

“Make each day your masterpiece.” – John Wooden

3. I developed long-term goals and stuck to them

Instead of working every day toward the unknown, I decided to set long-term goals. The kicker in helping me stick to these goals was creating smaller milestones that kept me on track and focused which gradually led me up to the ultimate goal.

Although I recognized that the ultimate achievement (of growing my business) was still at hand, my behavior was reinforced by a consistent sense of accomplishment upon completing these smaller goals.

If you are willing to stay focused, motivated, commit the time, effort, and energy toward reaching your goals, and you truly believe that you can and WILL achieve them, then there is nothing that will stop you in your path toward success.

As William Earnest Henley’s famous poem “Invictus” states, “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.” You are the master of your fate and the captain of your soul. Once you wholeheartedly believe this, then you will harness your true power, unlock your full potential, and begin to live out your truth and reach the level of success you’ve always dreamed of.

What is success to you? Let us know in the comments below!

Image credit courtesy of Twenty20.com

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The 3 P’s of Irresistible Leadership: Passion, Persistence, and Panache

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If any of you reading this have ever studied the theoretical underpinnings of leadership, you will have come across several theories such as the great man theory and charismatic leadership theory. Over the decades, leadership has evolved more from an art of telling people what to do to that of subtle influence, suggestion, and rendering by example.

In my new e-book “High-Octane Leadership: Pole Position Performance,” I mentioned that the goal of the manager is to create followers, but the goal of a leader is to create new leaders! This is a relatively new concept in leadership! There are many new and emerging micro theories of leadership that can be expounded upon and useful to individuals looking to assimilate a leadership style.

Here are the 3 P’s of irresistible leadership:

1. Passion

No great achievements, no illustrious undertakings, and no works of genius have ever occurred without the infusion of passion. Passion creates connections where none existed before.

Passion heightens the desire in the individuals who have opted to follow, and it has moved individuals forward toward a common vision. Leaders such as Steve Jobs, have to demonstrate a sense of passion in everything. Although his passion could be somewhat subdued, there is no doubt that when it came to any Apple products, he was the number one salesperson, champion, and evangelist.

“When you’re surrounded by people who share a passionate commitment around a common purpose, anything is possible.” – Howard Schultz

2. Persistence

For years when I was in direct sales, I had an 8.5 x 11 sheet with a cartoon on it hanging over my desk. It was a crane (that’s the bird, not the machine) who had a frog in his rather ample bill. However, the frog’s arms came out of the side of the crane’s mouth and were clutching the crane by the throat so that he (the crane) couldn’t swallow the frog. Underneath this caption where the words, “never, ever give up!

Leaders persist! They understand that there is always a way to solve the problem. Following this understanding, there must be subsequent action that follows, and this can lead to enthusiasm and optimism!

3. Panache

Leaders are self-confident people. They have systematically developed confidence over the years. In situations where they don’t feel confident, they make themselves feel confident. Confidence is learned. It’s a mental model and a cognitive mindset of how we approach problems.

Leaders understand and know that they will solve the problem before them; it’s not a matter of guessing, it’s a matter of knowing.

“Positivity, confidence, and persistence are key in life, so never give up on yourself.” – Khalid

If you buy the notion of passion, persistence, and panache as attributes of irresistible leadership, the question before us now turns on how do we develop those skills?

Here are a few behaviors that leaders use on a consistent basis to develop new skills:

  • Awareness – Great leaders and irresistible leaders always have their antennae up. They are always looking for ways to improve. They understand that self-improvement is a never-ending process to be embraced, even if the execution of the new behavior is difficult!
  • Repetition – Irresistible leaders practice their new skills. They will practice them in front of their subordinates, their family, and in front of themselves while staring at their face in a bathroom mirror! They understand the way to install a new habit of behavior is like with any habit, repeating it over and over again.
  • Feedback – Irresistible leaders are not afraid to ask how they are doing. And, they are not afraid to hear the answer. They understand that the best answer is that they are doing well but the next best answer is that they are not doing well, instead of not being told about their potential flaw. They understand that input in terms of behavioral awareness is one of the singular most important things one can attribute to leadership performance and style.

Try this: take an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper and draw three columns. Atop each column write passion, persistence, and panache. On the left-hand side in the margin of the page, write awareness and 1/3 of the page down, write repetition, and then at the bottom one third the word feedback.

Writing solidifies thought, and it is that solid thought that motivates us into action. You will find yourself becoming more aware of opportunities to develop in each of the 3 P’s of irresistible leadership. Document them! Then jot down ideas down about how you can repeat those new behaviors. Finally solicit feedback and document what you’ve heard.

In the span of several weeks you will have developed new and exciting leadership attributes. Continue this new and exciting habit for other leadership development opportunities.

Which one of the 3 P’s do you need to work on most and why? Let us know in the comments below!

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