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5 Ways To Have Amazing Relationships Whilst Chasing Your Dreams

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It would be great to be motivated, achieve lots of business success and become financially free but what if you had nobody to share it with? Truly caring and understanding your loved ones on a daily basis is an invaluable skill. As you become more successful you will appreciate the time and effort you put in to your relationships.

Relationships are like any other aspect in life; if it is not going forwards the chances are it is going backwards. It is imperative that you become aware of the relationships in your life that you are neglecting.

Here are 5 Creative ways that you can have amazing relationships whilst you are chasing your dreams.

 

 

Relationship Advice For Entrepreneurs

 

1. Don’t just hear…..Listen!

Your ears are never closed, so you will always be able to hear what is being said but listening and paying attention with the goal of understanding what the other person is saying is a totally different skill. Actually listening involves maintaining eye contact, watching their body to see if they are becoming more uptight or more relaxed as they deliver their message.

Listening involves repeating information back to the person to make sure you have ‘got the message’. When you are listening properly you will not get immediately defensive if it is something that you interpret as a potential ‘criticism’.

 

2. They Can’t Argue On Their Own

The dictionary definition of an argument is ‘an exchange of diverging or opposite views, typically a heated or angry one’. The key word for me here is exchange. The word exchange means that two people have to be involved. If you remove yourself from the exchange of opposite views then it can’t be an argument anymore. It doesn’t matter whether it’s your spouse or a work colleague; you can take control and turn the argument into a discussion where you can see the situation through their eyes and turn the argument into a discussion with an actual resolution at the end of it, rather than two angry people going nowhere.

 

3. Breathe, Think, Pause….. And Respond

I know that the above approach sounds great in theory but what action can you take to make it a reality. Whenever I can feel myself on the verge of what could potentially be an argument with someone I love or a peer I think to myself “come on; B.P.T.R”. B.P.T.R stands for Breathe, Pause, Think, and Respond. If you were totally honest with yourself; if you utilized this technique in the last ‘argument’ you had it wouldn’t have happened. Most arguments escalate to the next level because you react and say something that ten minutes later you wish that you hadn’t said. True or true? Do this yourself and you’ll notice huge improvements with all of your interactions with other people and most importantly, those you love.

Next time you find yourself in a situation where someone in your life says something that could create ‘that feeling’ where you just want to ‘bite back’…BREATHE – take the oxygen in that will allow you think clearly. PAUSE – allow your conscious mind to take control. THINK – let the most useful resourceful, ‘solution-focused’ response come to you and only then should you RESPOND.

 

4. Daily Love

When it comes to our intimate relationships, we often forget the ‘little things’ that make a big difference. There are genuinely so many things that you can do EVERY DAY that have little or zero financial cost that really can make your partner feel that extra bit more loved. Introduce daily passion into the mix as well and long-term success is inevitable.

Personally, I like to write what I call a ‘little love note’ every single day, with a message of love, appreciation and gratitude. It is also crucial to make sure you make a ‘big deal’ out of the first time that you see your partner at the end of the day. Take your head out of the TV, your phone or your computer and jump up and give them a big passionate kiss. This may sound like an amazingly simple idea and I truly believe that it will make all of the difference for you.

 

5. You Need Relationship Goals

You have a goal for your body, you have a goal for your finances, you seem to have goal for every area of your life apart from what could arguably be the most important.  Think about it; for something to make progress and improve it has to be moving towards a worthy goal.

In a relationship it is very easy to get ‘comfortable’, however, this is dangerous state to be in and what was once a beautiful relationship can begin to slide backwards. As with any part of our lives the easiest way to combat this is to set a goal. You could set a goal to take your partner on a weekend away or to buy them flowers once a month or take them for a meal once a week. What you do isn’t as important as committing to actually doing something.

 

Are you an Entrepreneur with Relationship advice? Please share your experiences below.

Jermaine Harris is a Coach, Trader, Author and Speaker. He is passionate about human potential and empowering others to change their lives in the same way he did. Jermaine believes that the opposite of being ‘stuck in a rut’ is possible and explains how in his book, The Rut Buster. Get to know Jermaine better at: jermaine-harris.com

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Gun

    Feb 16, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    Does anyone have any books or recommended articles/ reading on relationships and following your dreams?
    My partner and I are not sure if our dreams align. We both love being in a relationship together but we are both also ambitious people, and are scared our relationship is holding either of us back from chasing that dream and being our own person, not just a ‘couple’ if you know what I mean?
    It would seem we would have the perfect answer if we could both be ourselves, chase our own dreams and be together and supportive of each other too, which is why I am looking for that answer as it would definitely be worth pursuing…

  2. Ruth Martinez

    Feb 2, 2015 at 2:40 am

    Very rarely do you see articles regarding love and relationships, especially for entrepreneurs. It’s too easy to neglect and forget that part of ourselves and the people we choose to share this with. Thank you!

  3. Jorge

    Feb 1, 2015 at 5:58 pm

    Great article, a key message is having relationship goals. With these goals comes the ability to communicate. It’s important in any relationship to learn to communicate in the other persons language. Meaning that we understand and explain our thoughts. There should be no assuming of the other persons thinking. Better to ask than to guess.

  4. Kyle B

    Feb 24, 2014 at 5:25 am

    Great article! These points really gave me an opportunity to reflect on my current relationships and how I might need to adjust some of my current goals. Thanks again!

  5. Everyday Power

    Feb 20, 2014 at 10:02 am

    I loved this!

  6. Nikola Gjakovski

    Feb 12, 2014 at 10:59 am

    Really nice article.I recently crossed Mark Twain’s quote : Anger is an acid can do more harm to the vessels in which is stored than to anything on which it is poured”. It completely fits with number three and two

  7. Naomi@businessstartups

    Feb 11, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    Hi Jermaine,

    I agree with Maxwell that this is a much neglected topic and a good reminder to entrepreneurs who are reading this to not forget their loved ones.

    I admit, I’m guilty of being neglectful not just in partnerships but with family and friends too. When in reality they are part of the reason I have the motivation to keep pushing forwards in my life and business.

    Who’s life is fuller? The lonely rich man or poor man surrounded by family who love him?

    I don’t believe there is a right or wrong answer – just personnel preference for what’s important.

    Great read

    Naomi

  8. Abdul Rauf

    Feb 11, 2014 at 10:41 am

    In any kinda relationship, daily dose of love is a must. If you dont show your love with your partner, sooner or later, your relationship will be boring and drab. So I highly recommend to focus on #4 way to have amazing relation. Thanks for your words, Jermaine. Love it!

  9. vlb6x6

    Feb 11, 2014 at 4:02 am

    TIME! My partner and I own and run a small indie movie company together, so we’re together a LOT…..but, every week we set aside about four hours, maybe six, to just be a couple. We cuddle, daydream, chat, etc….but mostly we just “be” together. We stick to the schedule as religiously as we do our workouts, everything else gets planned around our day. Its delightful, and what’s interesting is that by taking that time away from actively doing, we’re seeing our company grow in so many ways.

  10. maxwell ivey

    Feb 10, 2014 at 8:06 pm

    hi; this is an often neglected topic so thanks for the suggestions. although i have trouble following my own advice when it comes to my immediate family but then i think this would be different if i didn’t live with them. thanks again, max

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Success Advice

7 Steps to Conquering the Fears That Are Holding You Back From Success

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I remember the day in vivid detail. I was on a weekend trip visiting my girlfriend at the time in Arizona. She had decided that we should join her friends to go “cliff jumping.”  We were early on in our dating and she obviously had no idea that I was not fond of heights. So “cliffs” and jumping off of them… No thanks!

I inevitably found myself on the edge of a 40-foot cliff peering down at a vast blue canvas of water. Then I realized if I didn’t jump, I’d have to start the walk of shame back down the cliff. This was a lose-lose situation for me.

Fear had me. I didn’t want to jump, but I also didn’t want to look bad in front of my girlfriend’s friends. So I jumped and in that moment, I had defied my brain and my neurochemistry.

Our brains are wired to protect us, not to push us towards our goals. Our brains are wired to look for anything that could be potentially dangerous or threatening and keep us as far away from it as possible by using fear. The problem is not all situations warrant fear.

There is a saying in neuroscience that says, “the brain wires the way it fires”, meaning the more you do a certain activity, the more the brain lays down wiring to make that action or activity easier.

‘Fears are educated into us, and can, if we wish, be educated out.’ – Karl Augustus Menninger

When we let fear keep us stagnant and we continue to do the same things that are comfortable, our brain gets “hardwired” to stay comfortable. We become “stagnant.” This can become debilitating for some of us and prevent us from encountering the very experiences we need to grow and succeed.

When we, in spite of our fear, do the challenging things that are outside our comfort zone, we begin to hardwire into our brain change, adaptability, creativity, growth, perspective, and happiness because we stretch the boundaries of our brain’s capabilities and force it to adapt rather than “playing it safe.”

An elite athlete didn’t make it where they are today by going into their training and never pushing past their comfort zone. They constantly pushed their limits of comfort to force their bodies and minds to grow to that of a top performer. The same principle applies to our brains. If we let fear dictate our actions in any area of our lives, it will stunt your growth in that area.

So what’s the first step? How do we go about conquering our fears whether it’s public speaking, starting a business, or launching the product or service? See below:

1. Journal Your Fears

Write down all the fears you have, big or small. Contrary to opinion “size does not matter.” Your brain still operates the same with all types of fear. The key is to first acknowledge what you are fearful about and bring it to light. Be as specific as possible.

2. Prioritize Your Fears

I then rank my fears from highest to lowest in terms of how often I think about this fear and/or how much it disrupts my life. You may find some fears combine into a broader category and that’s ok — we’ll get to that. So for now identify your biggest fear.

3. Support Your Belief in Yourself

I don’t mean just “believe in yourself.” What I mean is to build in support systems that will support your belief in yourself, so that when you start taking action, your support systems will solidify those new experiences and form deeper, more meaningful, and lasting beliefs in yourself.

It may look like building a list of affirmations that you say every morning or a meditation. Whatever it is, it needs to be uplifting and empowering you towards conquering your goals.

4. Take Action & Start Small

Look at your list and identify what your biggest fear is. That’s the beast we’re going to tackle long term, but for some that may seem like a big stretch at first. So instead, see what your 5th biggest fear is, and that’s where you’ll start.

What we will then do is build our way up and take a ride on the “Momentum Train.” Starting small with taking actions toward your lower priority fears and then building up helps your brain build momentum, which provides your brain with plenty of courage and motivation to tackle the #1 fear on your list.

‘Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold.’ – Helen Keller

5. No Time Limit, Just Consistency

Most goals should be limited to a time domain. For the goal of tackling a fear, time can be a challenging factor to set. Some of these fears may have been unknowingly building up for decades without your knowledge. So I don’t recommend setting a time on when you are “going to conquer your fear.”

Instead set appointments to regularly meet and address your fear. If you’re fear is public speaking, then go to a local Toastmasters once a week. The more consistent you can be, the better.

6. Reframe and Reinforce

As you begin to address these fears, make sure you are reinforcing the experiences you have in a positive perspective. For instance, if you want to be less fearful of public speaking and decide to try out a local toastmasters group, your first time speaking to the group might feel like a train wreck, but when you look back on the situation you can acknowledge that that actually pushed past your fear and accomplished your goal.

7. Rinse and Repeat

This isn’t a quick fix. It may take some time. There’s always a new fear or challenge awaiting us. The key is to have systems like this in place to address those challenges properly rather than allowing ourselves to succumb to fear and derail our lives from their fullest potential.

How do you handle your fears? Comment below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

30 Straightforward Reminders to Help You Supercharge Your Life in 2018

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This time of year it’s easy to be overwhelmed by well-meaning advice. Everyone seems to have a solution to your procrastination or a remedy for your lack of motivation. Unfortunately, most advice is either too general or irrelevant because it doesn’t address your main concerns.

I’ve spent the last year trying to hone in on some of the best tips and tricks I’ve learned to stay ahead and maintain a positive mindset.

Here are 30 straightforward reminders and tips to help you supercharge your life in 2018:

1. Get the basics right. Take care of your body, your mind and your soul. Make a list of what you know is good for you and what you know is bad for you in each category. Consider ways to reduce the bad and increase the good.

2. Reduce distractions that sap your energy. When you’re planning big changes, it’s easy to get pulled into many different directions. You get excited about a certain idea which pulls you down the rabbit hole into numerous other directions. Focus on one thing at a time.

3. Make a new friend. Start a conversation with a stranger in the elevator. Compliment someone. Provide some positive reinforcement. Do something without expecting anything in return.

4. Smile more. Smiling takes less effort than frowning. It’s also scientifically proven to make you feel better even if you don’t necessarily feel like smiling.

5. Walk 30 minutes a day. Just 30 minutes of exercise a day can help you stimulate your immune system, increase your metabolism and improve your mood.

6. Do one push-up for every year old you are. Or do twice as many sit-ups for every year old you are. Making sure you work the muscles in different parts of your body stimulates hormone production and helps increase fat burning.

7. Find your intrinsic drivers. Intrinsic drivers are what inspire you based on internal motivation, rather than external motivation. Find something you think of as beautiful, peaceful, relaxing. Embrace it. Appreciate it. Try to understand why you like it

8. Speak to an old friend. Reach out in an email, a text, a phone call. Check in and just let them know you’re thinking about them.

“Friendship is the only cement that will ever hold the world together.” – Woodrow T. Wilson

9. Invest in your health. Join a gym. Buy some type of sports equipment or clothing that is comfortable and that you enjoy being in. Consider joining a pick up sports team.

10. Study something that interests you. Buy a book about someone you admire. Pick a time period that you’re fascinated with. Make a point of becoming an expert on something that matters to you.

11. Teach someone something. Take a topic, any topic, and try to break it down into its component parts so that you can teach someone how to do it. The concentration and the effort it takes to teach someone something is often exactly the kind of effort that is required to truly understand it for yourself.

12. Delegate to someone. Find a task that needs to be done that you could do. Don’t do that task. Instead, look for someone you can ask to help you. Pay them or ask them for a favor. The key is to learn to delegate actions to others.

13. Meditate. Mindfulness and meditation are trending right now, but that’s not the reason you should consider adopting a meditation practice. The real reason is that meditation will help you focus on your key goals while cutting out the noise in the world around you.  

14. Learn to manage your personal finances. One of the biggest causes of stress that we as humans experience is the pressure to make money and control our finances. There are tons of free resources available online to help you learn about finances and help get your money in order.

15. Read more. No, I’m not talking about reading your Facebook News Feed. Read more books. Try to read a book a month, either fiction or nonfiction. At the beginning of the month choose a book and break down the number of pages. See how many you have to read a day to finish… then get started.

16. Cook at home at least 5 days a week. Cooking at home is cheap, easy and fun. You can hone skills in creativity and planning all at once, and it’s a great way to save money.

“My New Year’s resolution is to stick to a good workout plan that will keep me healthy and happy.” – James Lafferty

17. Sell someone. No, not into human bondage. Sell someone on an idea or a product. Learn to market yourself and your skills. Everyone sells as they move through life, but most of us are average salespeople.

18. Hone your principles. What principles define your life? What are your strongly held beliefs? Be honest with yourself and what principles you feel you must uphold.

19. Embrace the power of positive thought. Listen to positive audio tapes, surround yourself with positive people. Look at the positive side of life. Easier said than done, but truth be told one of the best ways to improve your mood is to look for sources of positive mood and inspiration.

20. Practice willpower. Habits are formed over time. Willpower is one of the most important habits you will ever build, so it is integral you continue to practice it through all aspects of your life. Look to the stoic philosophers for a primer on how to tackle this.

21. Write better hooks. A hook is the bit of a song that catches a listener’s attention and repeats your core message in an intriguing way. Similarly, in writing a hook is the quirky or fascinating intro that makes readers want to continue to read. Think about your own hooks and how you can get people interested in what you have to say.

22. Don’t sweat the small stuff. We often become obsessed with daily minutiae and avoid thinking about the big picture. Don’t let yourself worry too much about the small day-to-day struggles. Instead, put your head down and get to work.

23. Don’t overthink the big stuff. Too often we avoid taking leaps of faith because we’re worried about making a mistake on something big. We don’t buy the new house. We avoid marrying the person we love. We put off going to the doctor for that regular scan. Try not to overthink the big decisions (or seemingly small decisions) that may have larger ramifications. If it’s not overly dangerous or illegal, take the plunge and go for it.

24. Learn a new word a day. Increasing your vocabulary helps you see the world in different ways and makes you rethink your core beliefs.

“You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.” – Richard Branson

25. Become a moderate. Extremists are divisive and often at odds with a large portion of the population. Look for ways to bring people together through collaboration and consensus rather than through division.

26. Think big(ger). Many self-help books talk about setting big goals or envisioning massive success in your lifetime. If you want to become a true leader and attain greater fulfillment. Look for ways to think beyond creating success in your lifetime. Think about the legacy you’ll leave for future generations.

27. Learn universal processes. Assess how you work best and find ways to carry standardized processes over into other aspects of your life.

28. Develop support structures. What do you do if things aren’t going according to plan? Do you reach out to friends for support, meditate on the problem alone, or use some mixture of different coping mechanisms? Be aware of what works for you, and what doesn’t.

29. Don’t compare yourself to others. We fall into this trap far too often. We use others as a benchmark for our own progress, but we must remember that it is unhealthy to put too much weight on comparisons, as everyone has their own background and their own perspective.

30. Know when to let go. At the end of the day, you must try your best and let the cards fall as they may. All you can do is put your heart and soul into your effort and learn from the results.

Which one of these things are you going to implement into your life immediately? Comment below!

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Success Advice

5 Things Generation Z Needs to Know in Order to Succeed

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If you were born from 1995 through 2012, you are part of a special demographic—Generation Z. Congratulations! You are a very important person. First, you make up the largest percentage of the US population at 25.9 percent. Second, you’re an iGeneration kid, which means people like you write product reviews, click web ads, and build online businesses. In short, you run the Internet show.

Finally, you contribute $44 billion to the American economy. You have great potential, but your Internet addiction and reckless behavior are your biggest roadblocks to success. How do you limit the time you spend on Snapchat, focus on building a career, and break through the bars that block your way to success?

Try these five hacks for success:

1. Have a bold vision

Your life is your business. If you’re serious about making it profitable, you’ve got to have a bold vision and work tirelessly to achieve it. Start by redefining yourself. Just because you grew up with Snapchat and YouTube, doesn’t mean you have to use them carelessly. Of course, you can watch the dancing cats on YouTube, but you’ll have to find time for that.

Be a doer, not a chatter, watcher, or browser. Great visionaries are doers, not chatters. If you want success, examine your purpose in life, just like a CEO spends time crafting his company’s mission, then start doing.

Create your vision. Once you make sense of your goal in life, you can set a vision so high that it scares you. Finally, keep working—not chatting—to realize your vision.

2. Never dilute your vision

When I was in high school, I always had the highest grades in my class. However, a new student came to my school, and she began to outshine me in class, answering every question and making me look dumb. One night, I told my mom that I had disappointed her.

I told her that I had new competition, and didn’t have the intellectual capability to face the new girl in the arena. My mom’s response? She laughed out loud before saying anything. She then reminded me, “You told me, remember, that you’ll always be the top student. Why let this girl, a stranger that I believe is no match for you, change your mind?”

Those few words changed my mindset completely. I ended up taking the first position for that year. The moral of the story? Never dilute your vision. It’s scary to face competitors or naysayers who laugh at your idea, but bear in mind that all masters were laughed at before they were revered.

“The only limits are, as always, those of vision.” – James Broughton

3. Win big with small tasks

How do you keep winning and moving closer to realizing your vision? You win the small tasks. I get it, you truly want to create your own app making you the next success story in your industry. In addition, you want to start blogging and profit in the gig economy.  

However, accomplishing these things, all of them, is not possible. They are bigger projects that you can’t accomplish all at once. What is possible is to pick only one thing and work fiercely on it. Deconstruct the dream job.

If you have decided to become a successful blogger, break down that blogging job into smaller tasks. Determine your niche, buy a domain name, design your WordPress site, and start writing and publishing your posts. Successful people move from zero to hero by accomplishing the smaller tasks first. So, get each task done, one step at a time.

4. Stay laser focused on one task

Focus is the secret key that will unlock the code for your success. Unfortunately, for post-millennials living in the world of instant notifications, staying focused is hard. How can you stay focused, for one whole hour, on the single most important task of your day?

Well, here are some simple tips that worked for me:

  • Dedicate certain days to your work. These are your creative days. Whether it’s weekdays or weekends, whatever you choose, just make sure that you do nothing but work on those days.
  • Go tech-free on your creative days. Turn off your Wi-Fi. Power off your Smartphone (or leave it in another room on silent). Divorce the Internet before you sit down to work because too much online activity is dangerous for your physical health, mental faculty, and productivity.
  • Pick one task, only one task, and work on it for an hour.

Of course, you can’t get it done flawlessly when you first start. You’ll feel the urge to look at your phone and possibly check your social media feed or play a game. However, you must keep focusing on the task at hand over and over until it becomes a habit. Consider limiting your Internet time on your non-work days, too.

“The biggest challenge is to stay focused. It’s to have the discipline when there are so many competing things.” – Alexa Hirschfeld

5. Stay consistent

One of the most crucial success hacks is consistency. The rule is to show up every day and do the work required if you truly want to succeed.

Learn from the former American tennis champion Andrea Agassi. Before he made a name for himself, Agassi’s father instructed him to hit 5000 balls every day. Just lace some sneakers, show up at the court, hit 5000 balls, and go home to relax.

Show up and do the same tomorrow. This consistent routine was what elevated Agassi to becoming “the biggest worldwide star in the sport’s history.” If you want to achieve that level of success, set down your smartphone and get to work. “The doing,” as Arthur Ashe beautifully puts it, “is more important than the outcome.”

Which one of these tasks is more challenging for you? How will you improve on it this year? Let us know so we can help!

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Success Advice

I Had To Give Up A Lot To Get Here – And That’s A Powerful Advantage You Should Consider.

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A business I loved.
A network of friends that partied hard.
A negative, useless mindset.

A set of rules that I didn’t create.
A routine of daily habits that made no sense.
Saying yes to stuff I didn’t care about.

 

Giving up stuff gives you focus to work on your goals.

If you want to achieve a big, audacious goal that makes us all sit back in our chairs – that will change the world – you have to learn to give up more. Sounds counter-intuitive but it’s not.

This is not about being a crybaby and giving up as soon as things get a little tough. This is about doing less so you can achieve more. It’s about focusing rather than letting your attention be played with like a set of marbles lying on the floor that have no home to go to and are fun to play with.

It’s about rejecting more and being okay to say “Enough is enough, I’m giving up so I can win more.”

Giving up is not the traditional self-help advice you’d read in any book produced by someone that has a top-ranking iTunes podcast. That’s because giving up is really hard and it can make you look ridiculous. How you look doesn’t matter so much anyway.

“No one is going to slap you in the face, throw iced water on you, and tell you to focus on fewer things. No one is going to tell you to stop doing what you don’t love and that’s why you must be the one to make the decision to give up”

I can’t make that decision for you. Instead, you have to be honest with yourself and decide to give up on a few things that no longer serve you. You have to get clear on what does matter, so you can give up on what it’s pointless, useless, not working and stealing your time.

This means you’ll have some short-term pain but you’ll get the longer-term benefits. Those benefits may take a while to surface and show their beautiful face though. Patience is needed.

People that follow me on social media think it’s about what I’ve achieved. What they don’t know is what I had to give up. They don’t know how challenging it was to be on my knees, with nothing, going for broke, being tired, emotional and worn out, and still believing that I had it within me to change the world in some significant way.

I get that no one knows your struggles quite like you do and that can be frustrating at times. Complaining won’t help you make progress or have more time; giving up will. Giving up will get you back in the game.

The battle your fighting is the same for every one of us too. Your problems are not unique. We all have to sacrifice stuff we love and things we like doing to get the time we need to focus. It’s so cliché but unless you put in the work, do less and do a few things really well, you’ll be forever scratching your head like a loser wondering why life is passing you by and you’re not feeling fulfilled.

You’ll be forever searching for motivation or external forces rather than understanding that it’s your fault that you didn’t give up X sooner.

Giving up is perfectly fine. It’s what I did to get where I am and it’s what you must do to live the life you’ve always dreamt of.

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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5 Things You Must Have in Order to Succeed as a Freelancer

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Up until about 3 years ago, I honestly had no idea what a freelancer even was. It sounded like a cool job title and I secretly envied people who could call themselves one. Didn’t they get to travel the world with a laptop and go sailing and sip margaritas beside some of the most beautiful beaches on the planet? Yup, I wanted to be a freelancer. (more…)

Iva Ursano is a retired hairstylist turned freelancer from Northern Ontario Canada living a life of freedom, peace and joy in sunny Guatemala. Her two main goals in life are to inspire people around the world with her blogs and to feed hungry little bellies in the poor town she now calls home. Follow her on her fast growing FB page Amazing Me Movement or head on over to her website and sign up for weekly in your face inspiration!

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Gun

    Feb 16, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    Does anyone have any books or recommended articles/ reading on relationships and following your dreams?
    My partner and I are not sure if our dreams align. We both love being in a relationship together but we are both also ambitious people, and are scared our relationship is holding either of us back from chasing that dream and being our own person, not just a ‘couple’ if you know what I mean?
    It would seem we would have the perfect answer if we could both be ourselves, chase our own dreams and be together and supportive of each other too, which is why I am looking for that answer as it would definitely be worth pursuing…

  2. Ruth Martinez

    Feb 2, 2015 at 2:40 am

    Very rarely do you see articles regarding love and relationships, especially for entrepreneurs. It’s too easy to neglect and forget that part of ourselves and the people we choose to share this with. Thank you!

  3. Jorge

    Feb 1, 2015 at 5:58 pm

    Great article, a key message is having relationship goals. With these goals comes the ability to communicate. It’s important in any relationship to learn to communicate in the other persons language. Meaning that we understand and explain our thoughts. There should be no assuming of the other persons thinking. Better to ask than to guess.

  4. Kyle B

    Feb 24, 2014 at 5:25 am

    Great article! These points really gave me an opportunity to reflect on my current relationships and how I might need to adjust some of my current goals. Thanks again!

  5. Everyday Power

    Feb 20, 2014 at 10:02 am

    I loved this!

  6. Nikola Gjakovski

    Feb 12, 2014 at 10:59 am

    Really nice article.I recently crossed Mark Twain’s quote : Anger is an acid can do more harm to the vessels in which is stored than to anything on which it is poured”. It completely fits with number three and two

  7. Naomi@businessstartups

    Feb 11, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    Hi Jermaine,

    I agree with Maxwell that this is a much neglected topic and a good reminder to entrepreneurs who are reading this to not forget their loved ones.

    I admit, I’m guilty of being neglectful not just in partnerships but with family and friends too. When in reality they are part of the reason I have the motivation to keep pushing forwards in my life and business.

    Who’s life is fuller? The lonely rich man or poor man surrounded by family who love him?

    I don’t believe there is a right or wrong answer – just personnel preference for what’s important.

    Great read

    Naomi

  8. Abdul Rauf

    Feb 11, 2014 at 10:41 am

    In any kinda relationship, daily dose of love is a must. If you dont show your love with your partner, sooner or later, your relationship will be boring and drab. So I highly recommend to focus on #4 way to have amazing relation. Thanks for your words, Jermaine. Love it!

  9. vlb6x6

    Feb 11, 2014 at 4:02 am

    TIME! My partner and I own and run a small indie movie company together, so we’re together a LOT…..but, every week we set aside about four hours, maybe six, to just be a couple. We cuddle, daydream, chat, etc….but mostly we just “be” together. We stick to the schedule as religiously as we do our workouts, everything else gets planned around our day. Its delightful, and what’s interesting is that by taking that time away from actively doing, we’re seeing our company grow in so many ways.

  10. maxwell ivey

    Feb 10, 2014 at 8:06 pm

    hi; this is an often neglected topic so thanks for the suggestions. although i have trouble following my own advice when it comes to my immediate family but then i think this would be different if i didn’t live with them. thanks again, max

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Success Advice

7 Steps to Conquering the Fears That Are Holding You Back From Success

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I remember the day in vivid detail. I was on a weekend trip visiting my girlfriend at the time in Arizona. She had decided that we should join her friends to go “cliff jumping.”  We were early on in our dating and she obviously had no idea that I was not fond of heights. So “cliffs” and jumping off of them… No thanks!

I inevitably found myself on the edge of a 40-foot cliff peering down at a vast blue canvas of water. Then I realized if I didn’t jump, I’d have to start the walk of shame back down the cliff. This was a lose-lose situation for me.

Fear had me. I didn’t want to jump, but I also didn’t want to look bad in front of my girlfriend’s friends. So I jumped and in that moment, I had defied my brain and my neurochemistry.

Our brains are wired to protect us, not to push us towards our goals. Our brains are wired to look for anything that could be potentially dangerous or threatening and keep us as far away from it as possible by using fear. The problem is not all situations warrant fear.

There is a saying in neuroscience that says, “the brain wires the way it fires”, meaning the more you do a certain activity, the more the brain lays down wiring to make that action or activity easier.

‘Fears are educated into us, and can, if we wish, be educated out.’ – Karl Augustus Menninger

When we let fear keep us stagnant and we continue to do the same things that are comfortable, our brain gets “hardwired” to stay comfortable. We become “stagnant.” This can become debilitating for some of us and prevent us from encountering the very experiences we need to grow and succeed.

When we, in spite of our fear, do the challenging things that are outside our comfort zone, we begin to hardwire into our brain change, adaptability, creativity, growth, perspective, and happiness because we stretch the boundaries of our brain’s capabilities and force it to adapt rather than “playing it safe.”

An elite athlete didn’t make it where they are today by going into their training and never pushing past their comfort zone. They constantly pushed their limits of comfort to force their bodies and minds to grow to that of a top performer. The same principle applies to our brains. If we let fear dictate our actions in any area of our lives, it will stunt your growth in that area.

So what’s the first step? How do we go about conquering our fears whether it’s public speaking, starting a business, or launching the product or service? See below:

1. Journal Your Fears

Write down all the fears you have, big or small. Contrary to opinion “size does not matter.” Your brain still operates the same with all types of fear. The key is to first acknowledge what you are fearful about and bring it to light. Be as specific as possible.

2. Prioritize Your Fears

I then rank my fears from highest to lowest in terms of how often I think about this fear and/or how much it disrupts my life. You may find some fears combine into a broader category and that’s ok — we’ll get to that. So for now identify your biggest fear.

3. Support Your Belief in Yourself

I don’t mean just “believe in yourself.” What I mean is to build in support systems that will support your belief in yourself, so that when you start taking action, your support systems will solidify those new experiences and form deeper, more meaningful, and lasting beliefs in yourself.

It may look like building a list of affirmations that you say every morning or a meditation. Whatever it is, it needs to be uplifting and empowering you towards conquering your goals.

4. Take Action & Start Small

Look at your list and identify what your biggest fear is. That’s the beast we’re going to tackle long term, but for some that may seem like a big stretch at first. So instead, see what your 5th biggest fear is, and that’s where you’ll start.

What we will then do is build our way up and take a ride on the “Momentum Train.” Starting small with taking actions toward your lower priority fears and then building up helps your brain build momentum, which provides your brain with plenty of courage and motivation to tackle the #1 fear on your list.

‘Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold.’ – Helen Keller

5. No Time Limit, Just Consistency

Most goals should be limited to a time domain. For the goal of tackling a fear, time can be a challenging factor to set. Some of these fears may have been unknowingly building up for decades without your knowledge. So I don’t recommend setting a time on when you are “going to conquer your fear.”

Instead set appointments to regularly meet and address your fear. If you’re fear is public speaking, then go to a local Toastmasters once a week. The more consistent you can be, the better.

6. Reframe and Reinforce

As you begin to address these fears, make sure you are reinforcing the experiences you have in a positive perspective. For instance, if you want to be less fearful of public speaking and decide to try out a local toastmasters group, your first time speaking to the group might feel like a train wreck, but when you look back on the situation you can acknowledge that that actually pushed past your fear and accomplished your goal.

7. Rinse and Repeat

This isn’t a quick fix. It may take some time. There’s always a new fear or challenge awaiting us. The key is to have systems like this in place to address those challenges properly rather than allowing ourselves to succumb to fear and derail our lives from their fullest potential.

How do you handle your fears? Comment below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

30 Straightforward Reminders to Help You Supercharge Your Life in 2018

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This time of year it’s easy to be overwhelmed by well-meaning advice. Everyone seems to have a solution to your procrastination or a remedy for your lack of motivation. Unfortunately, most advice is either too general or irrelevant because it doesn’t address your main concerns.

I’ve spent the last year trying to hone in on some of the best tips and tricks I’ve learned to stay ahead and maintain a positive mindset.

Here are 30 straightforward reminders and tips to help you supercharge your life in 2018:

1. Get the basics right. Take care of your body, your mind and your soul. Make a list of what you know is good for you and what you know is bad for you in each category. Consider ways to reduce the bad and increase the good.

2. Reduce distractions that sap your energy. When you’re planning big changes, it’s easy to get pulled into many different directions. You get excited about a certain idea which pulls you down the rabbit hole into numerous other directions. Focus on one thing at a time.

3. Make a new friend. Start a conversation with a stranger in the elevator. Compliment someone. Provide some positive reinforcement. Do something without expecting anything in return.

4. Smile more. Smiling takes less effort than frowning. It’s also scientifically proven to make you feel better even if you don’t necessarily feel like smiling.

5. Walk 30 minutes a day. Just 30 minutes of exercise a day can help you stimulate your immune system, increase your metabolism and improve your mood.

6. Do one push-up for every year old you are. Or do twice as many sit-ups for every year old you are. Making sure you work the muscles in different parts of your body stimulates hormone production and helps increase fat burning.

7. Find your intrinsic drivers. Intrinsic drivers are what inspire you based on internal motivation, rather than external motivation. Find something you think of as beautiful, peaceful, relaxing. Embrace it. Appreciate it. Try to understand why you like it

8. Speak to an old friend. Reach out in an email, a text, a phone call. Check in and just let them know you’re thinking about them.

“Friendship is the only cement that will ever hold the world together.” – Woodrow T. Wilson

9. Invest in your health. Join a gym. Buy some type of sports equipment or clothing that is comfortable and that you enjoy being in. Consider joining a pick up sports team.

10. Study something that interests you. Buy a book about someone you admire. Pick a time period that you’re fascinated with. Make a point of becoming an expert on something that matters to you.

11. Teach someone something. Take a topic, any topic, and try to break it down into its component parts so that you can teach someone how to do it. The concentration and the effort it takes to teach someone something is often exactly the kind of effort that is required to truly understand it for yourself.

12. Delegate to someone. Find a task that needs to be done that you could do. Don’t do that task. Instead, look for someone you can ask to help you. Pay them or ask them for a favor. The key is to learn to delegate actions to others.

13. Meditate. Mindfulness and meditation are trending right now, but that’s not the reason you should consider adopting a meditation practice. The real reason is that meditation will help you focus on your key goals while cutting out the noise in the world around you.  

14. Learn to manage your personal finances. One of the biggest causes of stress that we as humans experience is the pressure to make money and control our finances. There are tons of free resources available online to help you learn about finances and help get your money in order.

15. Read more. No, I’m not talking about reading your Facebook News Feed. Read more books. Try to read a book a month, either fiction or nonfiction. At the beginning of the month choose a book and break down the number of pages. See how many you have to read a day to finish… then get started.

16. Cook at home at least 5 days a week. Cooking at home is cheap, easy and fun. You can hone skills in creativity and planning all at once, and it’s a great way to save money.

“My New Year’s resolution is to stick to a good workout plan that will keep me healthy and happy.” – James Lafferty

17. Sell someone. No, not into human bondage. Sell someone on an idea or a product. Learn to market yourself and your skills. Everyone sells as they move through life, but most of us are average salespeople.

18. Hone your principles. What principles define your life? What are your strongly held beliefs? Be honest with yourself and what principles you feel you must uphold.

19. Embrace the power of positive thought. Listen to positive audio tapes, surround yourself with positive people. Look at the positive side of life. Easier said than done, but truth be told one of the best ways to improve your mood is to look for sources of positive mood and inspiration.

20. Practice willpower. Habits are formed over time. Willpower is one of the most important habits you will ever build, so it is integral you continue to practice it through all aspects of your life. Look to the stoic philosophers for a primer on how to tackle this.

21. Write better hooks. A hook is the bit of a song that catches a listener’s attention and repeats your core message in an intriguing way. Similarly, in writing a hook is the quirky or fascinating intro that makes readers want to continue to read. Think about your own hooks and how you can get people interested in what you have to say.

22. Don’t sweat the small stuff. We often become obsessed with daily minutiae and avoid thinking about the big picture. Don’t let yourself worry too much about the small day-to-day struggles. Instead, put your head down and get to work.

23. Don’t overthink the big stuff. Too often we avoid taking leaps of faith because we’re worried about making a mistake on something big. We don’t buy the new house. We avoid marrying the person we love. We put off going to the doctor for that regular scan. Try not to overthink the big decisions (or seemingly small decisions) that may have larger ramifications. If it’s not overly dangerous or illegal, take the plunge and go for it.

24. Learn a new word a day. Increasing your vocabulary helps you see the world in different ways and makes you rethink your core beliefs.

“You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.” – Richard Branson

25. Become a moderate. Extremists are divisive and often at odds with a large portion of the population. Look for ways to bring people together through collaboration and consensus rather than through division.

26. Think big(ger). Many self-help books talk about setting big goals or envisioning massive success in your lifetime. If you want to become a true leader and attain greater fulfillment. Look for ways to think beyond creating success in your lifetime. Think about the legacy you’ll leave for future generations.

27. Learn universal processes. Assess how you work best and find ways to carry standardized processes over into other aspects of your life.

28. Develop support structures. What do you do if things aren’t going according to plan? Do you reach out to friends for support, meditate on the problem alone, or use some mixture of different coping mechanisms? Be aware of what works for you, and what doesn’t.

29. Don’t compare yourself to others. We fall into this trap far too often. We use others as a benchmark for our own progress, but we must remember that it is unhealthy to put too much weight on comparisons, as everyone has their own background and their own perspective.

30. Know when to let go. At the end of the day, you must try your best and let the cards fall as they may. All you can do is put your heart and soul into your effort and learn from the results.

Which one of these things are you going to implement into your life immediately? Comment below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

5 Things Generation Z Needs to Know in Order to Succeed

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If you were born from 1995 through 2012, you are part of a special demographic—Generation Z. Congratulations! You are a very important person. First, you make up the largest percentage of the US population at 25.9 percent. Second, you’re an iGeneration kid, which means people like you write product reviews, click web ads, and build online businesses. In short, you run the Internet show.

Finally, you contribute $44 billion to the American economy. You have great potential, but your Internet addiction and reckless behavior are your biggest roadblocks to success. How do you limit the time you spend on Snapchat, focus on building a career, and break through the bars that block your way to success?

Try these five hacks for success:

1. Have a bold vision

Your life is your business. If you’re serious about making it profitable, you’ve got to have a bold vision and work tirelessly to achieve it. Start by redefining yourself. Just because you grew up with Snapchat and YouTube, doesn’t mean you have to use them carelessly. Of course, you can watch the dancing cats on YouTube, but you’ll have to find time for that.

Be a doer, not a chatter, watcher, or browser. Great visionaries are doers, not chatters. If you want success, examine your purpose in life, just like a CEO spends time crafting his company’s mission, then start doing.

Create your vision. Once you make sense of your goal in life, you can set a vision so high that it scares you. Finally, keep working—not chatting—to realize your vision.

2. Never dilute your vision

When I was in high school, I always had the highest grades in my class. However, a new student came to my school, and she began to outshine me in class, answering every question and making me look dumb. One night, I told my mom that I had disappointed her.

I told her that I had new competition, and didn’t have the intellectual capability to face the new girl in the arena. My mom’s response? She laughed out loud before saying anything. She then reminded me, “You told me, remember, that you’ll always be the top student. Why let this girl, a stranger that I believe is no match for you, change your mind?”

Those few words changed my mindset completely. I ended up taking the first position for that year. The moral of the story? Never dilute your vision. It’s scary to face competitors or naysayers who laugh at your idea, but bear in mind that all masters were laughed at before they were revered.

“The only limits are, as always, those of vision.” – James Broughton

3. Win big with small tasks

How do you keep winning and moving closer to realizing your vision? You win the small tasks. I get it, you truly want to create your own app making you the next success story in your industry. In addition, you want to start blogging and profit in the gig economy.  

However, accomplishing these things, all of them, is not possible. They are bigger projects that you can’t accomplish all at once. What is possible is to pick only one thing and work fiercely on it. Deconstruct the dream job.

If you have decided to become a successful blogger, break down that blogging job into smaller tasks. Determine your niche, buy a domain name, design your WordPress site, and start writing and publishing your posts. Successful people move from zero to hero by accomplishing the smaller tasks first. So, get each task done, one step at a time.

4. Stay laser focused on one task

Focus is the secret key that will unlock the code for your success. Unfortunately, for post-millennials living in the world of instant notifications, staying focused is hard. How can you stay focused, for one whole hour, on the single most important task of your day?

Well, here are some simple tips that worked for me:

  • Dedicate certain days to your work. These are your creative days. Whether it’s weekdays or weekends, whatever you choose, just make sure that you do nothing but work on those days.
  • Go tech-free on your creative days. Turn off your Wi-Fi. Power off your Smartphone (or leave it in another room on silent). Divorce the Internet before you sit down to work because too much online activity is dangerous for your physical health, mental faculty, and productivity.
  • Pick one task, only one task, and work on it for an hour.

Of course, you can’t get it done flawlessly when you first start. You’ll feel the urge to look at your phone and possibly check your social media feed or play a game. However, you must keep focusing on the task at hand over and over until it becomes a habit. Consider limiting your Internet time on your non-work days, too.

“The biggest challenge is to stay focused. It’s to have the discipline when there are so many competing things.” – Alexa Hirschfeld

5. Stay consistent

One of the most crucial success hacks is consistency. The rule is to show up every day and do the work required if you truly want to succeed.

Learn from the former American tennis champion Andrea Agassi. Before he made a name for himself, Agassi’s father instructed him to hit 5000 balls every day. Just lace some sneakers, show up at the court, hit 5000 balls, and go home to relax.

Show up and do the same tomorrow. This consistent routine was what elevated Agassi to becoming “the biggest worldwide star in the sport’s history.” If you want to achieve that level of success, set down your smartphone and get to work. “The doing,” as Arthur Ashe beautifully puts it, “is more important than the outcome.”

Which one of these tasks is more challenging for you? How will you improve on it this year? Let us know so we can help!

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Success Advice

I Had To Give Up A Lot To Get Here – And That’s A Powerful Advantage You Should Consider.

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A business I loved.
A network of friends that partied hard.
A negative, useless mindset.

A set of rules that I didn’t create.
A routine of daily habits that made no sense.
Saying yes to stuff I didn’t care about.

 

Giving up stuff gives you focus to work on your goals.

If you want to achieve a big, audacious goal that makes us all sit back in our chairs – that will change the world – you have to learn to give up more. Sounds counter-intuitive but it’s not.

This is not about being a crybaby and giving up as soon as things get a little tough. This is about doing less so you can achieve more. It’s about focusing rather than letting your attention be played with like a set of marbles lying on the floor that have no home to go to and are fun to play with.

It’s about rejecting more and being okay to say “Enough is enough, I’m giving up so I can win more.”

Giving up is not the traditional self-help advice you’d read in any book produced by someone that has a top-ranking iTunes podcast. That’s because giving up is really hard and it can make you look ridiculous. How you look doesn’t matter so much anyway.

“No one is going to slap you in the face, throw iced water on you, and tell you to focus on fewer things. No one is going to tell you to stop doing what you don’t love and that’s why you must be the one to make the decision to give up”

I can’t make that decision for you. Instead, you have to be honest with yourself and decide to give up on a few things that no longer serve you. You have to get clear on what does matter, so you can give up on what it’s pointless, useless, not working and stealing your time.

This means you’ll have some short-term pain but you’ll get the longer-term benefits. Those benefits may take a while to surface and show their beautiful face though. Patience is needed.

People that follow me on social media think it’s about what I’ve achieved. What they don’t know is what I had to give up. They don’t know how challenging it was to be on my knees, with nothing, going for broke, being tired, emotional and worn out, and still believing that I had it within me to change the world in some significant way.

I get that no one knows your struggles quite like you do and that can be frustrating at times. Complaining won’t help you make progress or have more time; giving up will. Giving up will get you back in the game.

The battle your fighting is the same for every one of us too. Your problems are not unique. We all have to sacrifice stuff we love and things we like doing to get the time we need to focus. It’s so cliché but unless you put in the work, do less and do a few things really well, you’ll be forever scratching your head like a loser wondering why life is passing you by and you’re not feeling fulfilled.

You’ll be forever searching for motivation or external forces rather than understanding that it’s your fault that you didn’t give up X sooner.

Giving up is perfectly fine. It’s what I did to get where I am and it’s what you must do to live the life you’ve always dreamt of.

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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