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6 Habits That Will Boost Your Confidence And Make You Happier!

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Did you know that confidence isn’t something you’re born with? Astounding – I know!

In our every day life, we’re exposed to so many stories and images of successful, confident people, that it’s easy to assume they naturally started out like that. And, that they’re confident all the time.

Take Sheryl Sandberg, for example. Being the Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, you could easily think she’s never grappled with insecurity or self-doubt. But she revealed in her book, Lean In, that she has at times felt like an imposter.

Another example is Academy Award winning actress, Meryl Streep, who said to a reporter in 2002, “I don’t know how to act anyway, so why am I doing this?”

Despite what you may think, confidence isn’t something you’re born with. It’s something you learn through life experience, adapting to new situations, and doing those things you thought you’d never be able to do.

You can boost your own level of confidence, and here’s 6 tips to get you started.

1. Do Something New Every Day

It’s completely normal to want to stay inside your comfort zone and stick to what you know. But stepping over the barrier that separates you from “where you are now” and “where you want to be”, is a crucial step to feeling more confident.

You don’t have to take up skydiving or make a drastic move to a different country to stretch your zone of comfort. There are many simple, every day steps you can take to build your confidence just the same. Personally, if I want to add some adventure to my day, I pack up my laptop, walk into town, and visit a coffee shop I’ve never been to before.

This might seem simple, but the change of scenery and environment triggers a whole range of new ideas, new perspectives and newfound confidence inside of me. Take a few minutes to think about what you can do today to feel more alive and inspired.

 

2Wear Confident Outfits

The way you dress has a huge impact on how you feel about yourself, and how others see you. If you wear clothes that are uncomfortable, restricting, or clearly too big for you, you won’t feel comfortable, and you won’t look confident.

On the other hand, if you wear outfits that mould your body comfortably, and you incorporate a splash of colour, you’ll naturally feel and look more confident. How do you create a confident outfit? There are two important elements you should focus on.

First, darker colours convey more authority. Second, high-contrast colours make you stand out.

When you put together your outfit in the morning, find a way to add black, charcoal, or navy blue to your outfit. Then, incorporate a contrasting colour, such as white, yellow or light blue.

 

3Use Confident Body Language

We’ve all heard of Amy Cuddy’s TedX talk about power poses.

If you haven’t seen this yet, I highly recommend you check it out here:

Although some may believe that you have to feel confident inside before you can project confidence to others, let me tell you through personal experience, it can work the other way, too. Power poses are perfect for business meetings if you’re tired of never getting your opinions heard.

They can also work in social situations when you’re trying to win an argument with your friend.  The idea behind power poses is to take up more space and to use open body language postures. So instead of sitting down with your arms folded and your legs crossed, rest your arms on the armrests and claim your space.

 

4Speak With a Confident Voice

Most people overlook the importance of their voice when trying to create a confident image. You might plan carefully the words you’re going to say, but it’s how you say them that matters more.

The biggest mistake I see, even recently with a television presenter, is the upswing. An upswing is when you create a rise in intonation at the end of your statements, making your statements sound more like questions.

For example, “On Saturday I went to the movies?”, or “On Saturday I went to the movies.” Repeat these two sentences, the first with a rising intonation at the end, and the second with a downward intonation at the end.

Which sounds more decisive and powerful to you?

 

5. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

Comparing yourself to others who have taken a different path in their life and have made different decisions is a sure-fire way to a downward spiral of never feeling good enough.

This is one of the most common confidence crushers because you’re always focusing on what you don’t have, rather than on what you do have.

Here’s what I recommend: create a gratitude list of everything you have (tangible or intangible) that you are thankful for. Whenever you start to compare yourself against a friend or coworker, take out this list and read it over three times to remind yourself of all the wonderful things you have, or have achieved in your life.

 

6. Use Positive Self-Talk Every Morning and Every Night

If you’re going to take away just one piece of advice from this post, this is the most powerful piece of advice you can take with you: commit to positive self-talk every morning when you wake up and every night before you go to sleep.

When you start and end your day with positive, confident affirmations, you can really change your outlook on life. About a year ago I started this process myself. I created a mantra that I now repeat three times every morning and every night.

The mantra I use is really quite simple, and I invite you to use it too, if it’s the right fit for you. The mantra I use is, “I’m worthy of success”. If this mantra doesn’t feel right for you, you can create your own. But the most important part is to commit to repeating it every morning and every night, until it becomes a part of you.

stay positive and confident

Kara Ronin is the founder of Executive Impressions and the creator of cutting edge online training programs to help you Look, Act and Sound more confident in business. Sign up for Kara's free training session, “6 Mistakes to Avoid When Creating a Confident and Powerful Image”. Connect with Kara on Facebook.com or on Twitter.

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20 Comments

20 Comments

  1. Rocky

    Apr 13, 2015 at 5:43 am

    Hii kara,
    These statements r really helpful in our life and motivates me a lot just be continued wid it
    But I wan 2 know how can I make my daily routine to be confident and achieve my goals as I’m a b.tech graduate

    • Kara

      Apr 15, 2015 at 3:05 pm

      Hi Rocky,
      You can try to implement just one of the above tips at a time. For example, this week concentrate on doing something new. Then next week, you might want to move on to confident body language poses. If you implement all at the same time, you can easily feel overwhelmed. So concentrate just on one until you feel comfortable with that one. I hope this helps.

  2. FirstName LastName

    Apr 3, 2015 at 11:07 pm

    I love this. It’s the only motivational, non-cliche article I’ve read in a while. For the past few days, I’ve really been working on standing up straight and taking up all the space I can. I’m even gonna start appearing confident before I enter the gym instead of just after.

    But, how do you make people you’ve known for a while respect you (say I’m a high schooler) while doing this? I’ve tried appearing confident, but fact of the matter is I can’t really talk in front of my teammates at lunch without sounding stupid and I really want that to end. I want to know what to say and when to say it without it being a boring conversation.

    • Kara Ronin

      Apr 5, 2015 at 4:33 pm

      Thank you for your really kind comment. I’m so glad you found this article helpful and the tips useful. Keep up with the body language changes you’ve made. After a while, this will become a natural part of your demeanour. As for conversation tips you can use with your teammates at lunch, my recommendation here is to be the person who asks the questions. People love to talk about themselves and their life, so think of 2-3 questions you can ask people at lunch and have these prepared in your mind before you go. You will feel more prepared and it makes you the conversation leader. Bonus! Questions could be about their weekend, friends, sports, latest movies, etc. And if you really want to impress, find out an interesting fact or piece of news and tell your friends about it at lunch. They’ll think of you as somebody who is knowledgeable and interesting.

      I hope these tips help.

  3. Divsdivya

    Mar 29, 2015 at 7:31 am

    I loved da way u stressed each n every point in da post…especially points 5 and 6….v do compare ourselves knowingly or unknowingly wid odrs….n v hardly spend tym wid ourselves for building a positive personality….a truely inspiring article….thank u…

    • Kara

      Mar 30, 2015 at 10:31 am

      Thank Divsdivya for your honest comment. It’s always motivating to know you’ve written an article that really resonates with people. I hope these tips will help you to build a positive personality.

  4. pranjal malgave

    Mar 24, 2015 at 7:04 am

    Great .

  5. James Simwanza

    Mar 23, 2015 at 9:02 am

    Am learning something here

    • Kara

      Mar 24, 2015 at 7:52 am

      Thanks James!

  6. Rose Costas

    Mar 16, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    Thanks for that post. Many times self confidence is faking it until you’ve made it. These are very simple things people can do but are very effective.

    • Kara

      Mar 18, 2015 at 10:01 am

      Hi Rose. Thanks for reading! Faking it ’til you make it can work, but I also believe we need to build our inner confidence to have a level of confidence that is sustainable – even through tough times. I’m glad you found these tips useful and simple.

  7. Kenneth

    Mar 15, 2015 at 8:33 am

    Great piece of advice..

  8. Peter

    Mar 15, 2015 at 3:18 am

    I love points 3 & 4 Kara! I have been a student of NLP for quite a while and I have seen how effective these methods can be.

    • Kara

      Mar 15, 2015 at 12:52 pm

      Hi Peter. NLP is a really interesting area to learn about, and can be very effective in our day-to-day life. Do you learn through school, or online?

      • Peter

        Mar 15, 2015 at 4:47 pm

        Hi Kara,
        I attended a program in NLP a few years back – it was a workshop. I continue to try to apply it myself as well as recommend a few NLP methods to my clients. Since there really is no end to learning, I still consider myself a student.

  9. surajkashyap

    Mar 13, 2015 at 6:38 am

    its very nice…..
    its make me motivate.

    • Kara Ronin

      Mar 13, 2015 at 8:03 pm

      Thanks so much! I’m glad you enjoyed reading it.

  10. Kara Ronin

    Mar 12, 2015 at 8:20 am

    I’m so glad you enjoyed this article. I truly believe (like Eve Michaels) that you can instantly make yourself feel more confident and happier by wearing something that makes you feel great. I’ve just checked out Eve’s web page, thanks for letting me know about her. And yoga – absolutely. Practice those power poses. Great idea Stefanie.

  11. stefanie

    Mar 12, 2015 at 7:45 am

    Thanks for bringing up these helpful points. In 2012, I’ve heard Eve Michaels speaking about creating your image and it’s influence on your success – it literally opened my eyes! Her statement: Our success starts in our inner world which is influenced by our appearance.
    I would like to add that practicing yoga regularly helps a lot to increase the body awareness and to get used to power poses.

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Success Advice

Setting Up Your Mindset to Win: How to Achieve Success in Your Life and Career

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How did Usain Bolt become so successful? He seems superhuman, doesn’t he? Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, Paul Bocuse… all these people have something special in them. They became the stars in their niche. Have you ever wondered why? No, they do not have any superhuman capacity. They are simple people, just like you and I. They, too, had flaws. Their mindset, however, is what set them apart. If you want to win in your career and in life, generally, you need the mindset of a winner. You have to think like a true champion, so you’ll overcome your flaws and emphasize your strengths.

So how do you set the mindset to win? Here are 5 suggestions to get you started:

1. When You Can’t Achieve a Goal, Get Help

Have you heard of Paul Bocuse? He was one of the most famous chefs of his time, and he was named as the chef of the century. This is a good example of the point we’re about to make. Even the best are not almighty, they have to learn from someone. Paul Bocuse learned from another famous chef. He constantly worked to improve his skills and he learned along the way.

The lesson is: you cannot do everything on your own. This is the first thing you have to do: learn and find the right person to learn from. Are there any books by the champions of your chosen niche? Get them and read them. Can you get a mentor? Of course, you can! Start connecting with people on LinkedIn. Your alumni network is a great source of mentorship opportunities, too. Don’t be afraid to reach out and say that you want to learn from someone.   

“Don’t let the fear of losing be greater than the excitement of winning.” – Robert Kiyosaki

2. Work on Your Resilience

Here’s the most important life lesson you’ll ever learn: things don’t always go as expected. When you strive towards a particular goal, the chances of failure are real. When Usain Bolt started training, he wasn’t the fastest man on Earth. He worked towards that goal and he was resilient enough to go through all the obstacles he faced. We couldn’t possibly assume that such success came easily for him.

The journey towards a successful life is not a straight line, it’s a bumpy road full of difficulties and setbacks. The average person would give up along the way, but a champion would stay resilient. It’s the mindset that makes a true difference. The good news is that the more obstacles you overcome, the more resilient you become.

3. Focus

What do you want in your career and in your life? This is not something that can go with the flow. You cannot simply live your life one random day after another and expect great things to come your way. You have to focus on particular goals and work your way up there.

Ken Chenault, CEO of American Express, has a nice tip for everyone who wants to become successful: “Dedicate yourself to a core set of values. Without them, you will never be able to find personal fulfillment, and you will never be able to lead effectively.”

Simple and straight to the point, right? So set your goals! Find that major goal you want to achieve and break it up into smaller achievements. Then, start accomplishing things on a daily basis. You need to devote your life to achieving that goal.

4. Be Bold

Steve Jobs wasn’t focused on getting an average job, achieving average results and living an average life. He had big dreams and bold goals. All successful people have something in common at the starting point, a bold dream. Being afraid to dream big is a huge mistake. Set your imagination free! What’s the biggest thing you’d like to achieve? If you believe in yourself and you start working towards that goal one day after another, you’ll unlock your true potential. You’ll realize that not many things are impossible. You can achieve much more than you believe you’re capable of.

“If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.” – Steve Jobs

5. If You Fall, Get Back Up

Have you ever wondered why Richard Branson became so successful? The answer is simple: never gave up, no matter what hardships he faced. His first company didn’t make money. The test flight of Virgin Atlantic Airlines almost crashed because of a flock of birds. Virgin Cola, his soda company, failed miserably. He almost got himself killed during his trip around the world. Richard Branson has done many things, but do you know what he never did? Give up. No matter how serious the failure was, he always found the strength to get back up on his feet and carry on with life. That’s the mindset of a champion!

Never allow yourself to get disappointed from failure. Do not fall back into average just because your big dream doesn’t seem to be working. Failure is not a big deal. It’s just part of the journey, and everyone has to face it. If you carry on, you’ll find success along the way.

So you want to be a champion? You better start working towards that goal without wasting any time. The first step is changing your mindset. Hopefully, the tips above inspired you to do that.

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3 Important Principles You Need to Know That All Billionaires Have in Common

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I’ve always been highly interested in the similarities amongst the world’s wealthiest. Their habits, successes, mindset, and failures have fascinated me. The journey to great prosperity can seem overwhelming, but if you apply success principles to any endeavor you can quickly and efficiently overcome challenges and expand.

Michael J. Gabrielli, founder of WeRunAds, has spent hundreds of hours and tens of thousands of dollars studying billionaires and their habits. Michael has also studied over 2000 different billionaires and from this experience he’s found three principles they all had in common.

Here are the 3 principles the billionaires all had in common:

1. Be in a rapid growth industry at the right time

Timing is so important. Billionaires know when the time is right to enter a market. Most billionaires do not enter first or second into a market because of the inherent risks involved. Many billionaires let the pioneers pave the way and then leverage the knowledge gained to innovate and optimize in order to create something that works.

The key is to find an industry that is soon to take off. Stepping in at the right time is important. Let’s take a real life example that is known all too well– the founder and CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg. When he entered the scene, the idea of a social network was moderately known, but it was still not quite predicted to be the monster it is today.

Others like Friendster, Myspace, etc. had made some headway into this fledgeling industry and then Facebook entered leveraging the knowledge and expertise gained from the early pioneers. Zuckerberg saw the huge potential of social networking, took what was done previously and made it better.

He is presently worth over $66 Billion and the company has surpassed the 2 billion users mark with 1.4 billion using the platform daily. Not surprisingly, many billionaires were not the first to pioneer the industry they would later find success in. They came in at the right moment, learned from the mistakes and triumphs of their predecessors, and made a lasting final product.

Here’s a practical 3 question exercise you can do to judge if you have the right timing with your current venture:

  1. Look at your industry and say—is this brand new?
  2. Am I trying to invent something that doesn’t exist?
  3. Am I too late to the party?

2. Position yourself better

In addition to finding the right industry and getting in at the right time, billionaires position themselves in the best way. They provide the solution to the need and they think outside the box to do it. Optimal positioning is a commonality amongst billionaires. For example, during the California Gold Rush, people rushed to mine for the gold itself blinded by the promise of large profits.

However, it turned out that Sam Brannan had the better idea for how to position himself for success. He knew the chances of finding gold were risky, so instead he committed to a sure thing. He manufactured the tools that were needed by all the miners to mine gold. As each new miner migrated West, they were happily met by Brannan and his company who were ready and waiting to sell these new hopefuls the shovels and tools they’d need to strike it rich.

Digging for gold seemed to be the most profitable route, however, greater returns were yielded in the supplying of materials required to mine for gold! A good company that also illustrates this concept is Microsoft. They did not seek to create their own computer, but the software that computers would run on. Most people mistakenly think they have to “go for the gold” to attain wealth, but it’s evident in history that selling the necessary tools to the gold miners can be far more profitable.

The two questions you need to ask yourself to see how you could position yourself correctly are, “What industries will need the supplies that I could provide? And, “Am I following the trend instead of innovating?

“Big shots are only little shots that keep shooting. I can see your sun rise out of obscurity. Keep shooting” – Ikechukwu Joseph

3. Take calculated risks

Most people choose the safe bet that is secure, however, this is not common among billionaires. Billionaires take big calculated risks in order to propel themselves to higher levels of influence and success. The most important thing to note here is that while to others the risks seem big—to billionaires, they are calculated.Risk and Calculated Risk are not the same. Calculated risk is measured and well-thought-out. Risk is impulsive and immeasurable. Understanding the difference between the two is a commonality among billionaires. The world’s most prominent figures have at some point in their lives disagreed with the ordinary and took a shot at the unknown. Proper calculation and clever thinking certainly accompanied the bold moves they made in their careers.

Howard Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks, is a great example of this. He had grown up in poverty and made his way out to earn a comfortable wage as an executive at a company that manufactured coffeemakers.

“Risk more than others think safe.” – Howard Schultz

He risked it all when he discovered a small coffee shop named “Starbucks” in Seattle that prompted him to quit his job and step out to create a company that was inspired by the Italian coffee culture and personal relationship people could have with their coffee.

Of the 242 people he spoke to, 217 said no to investing with him. Despite the discouragement, lack of agreement, and investment, Schultz kept pushing on. Fast forward to present time, and Starbucks’ is a massive success. Strong intuition and unshakeable belief is common among high achievers. Many successful billionaires risked their safe jobs, personal assets, and even their reputation to take calculated risks that they knew would pay off huge in the end.

The questions you need to ask yourself now are, “where can I take a calculated risk? Am I holding back when I should be going forward? What tangible steps can I take today to move forward?”

These 3 success principles are staple elements that are common among many billionaires. Now, there are more principles that you must discover and implement in order to become a billionaire. Work diligently and do all that can be done each day. Be inquisitive and study those that you wish to emulate.

Which one of these principles do you need to work on more this year? Let us know in the comments below!

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One Question You Must Answer to Ensure Personal Success

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I don’t believe in quick fixes, in get-rich-quick schemes, or any other system that guarantees instant success with only a modicum of effort. But, I do believe it’s possible to condense great strings of logical thought and intellectual algorithms into basics. I like to keep things simple! Many of my clients love the fact that I don’t overly complete things, and frankly, so do I! I like to ask simple questions whose answers can be had quickly but require some focus in obtaining the outcome.

Here’s the question I always ask: What is standing between your current reality (where you are now) and your ultimate vision (where you want to be)? Are the impediments psychological, physical, emotional or some other reason?

Until you answer what is causing the difference between your AS IS and your SHOULD BE, you will be stuck spinning your wheels in the mud and the muck of the former. This is an important question that requires a level of mental self-examination. And the answer to this question may require a lifetime of introspection. It is an important question to answer because if you know where you want to go that provides direction but examining why you are not there yet can provide momentum. (In other words, by answering the question it may get you there faster!)

“Success is not final; failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston S. Churchill

It’s just like following a road map. A map is useless unless you know two things, where you are, and where you want to go. What might be stopping you (or at least slowing you down) from the ultimate destination of your passion and life’s fulfilment?

I’ve asked many people about this over the years and have heard these four reasons that keep people from moving forward.

1. Lack of vision

How do you plan to get there, if you don’t know where “there” is? The most difficult undertaking in the world is to sit quietly with a blank sheet of paper and chart out your life. I know, I have many blank sheets of paper to prove it. However, I also found out that it only takes one sheet, with a few well-crafted lines of thought to give you the direction you need. But you need to start!

2. Lack of goals

So, you know where you want to go, you just don’t know how to get there. The second hardest thing in the world is to have a sheet of paper with your ultimate destination on top, and the rest blank as you ask yourself, now what or how do I get to my vision? The process of functional decomposition means breaking down the larger process into steps that are both actionable and motivational. In other words, the steps are small enough to do and you remain motivated because they are so small.

“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do. Don’t wish it were easier; wish you were better.” – Jim Rohn

3. You don’t believe you can get there

You want to, but there is a script running through your head telling you to go home, make some chicken soup and don’t leave the house until these foolish notions of greatness are gone. Think about it, your parents never did what you are trying to do, no one in your family has ever done it, you are far too old (or too young) to do that, you don’t have the right education…your rationalizing can go on for a lifetime! Here is my suggestion when it comes to running those self-deprecating scripts: STOP IT!

4. You are lazy

You won’t admit this to yourself, but perhaps you are just plain lazy. I’ve seen it so many times; individuals majoring in minors. Performing high fun, low payoff activities instead of the low fun, high payoff activities. (And, by the way, who ever said that a high payoff activity can’t be fun? There’s that darn script again.) As a species we are inclined to take the path of least resistance, but that path may not lead us to our vision, but you must admit, we are having a great time NOT moving toward our vision! Laziness is not “doing nothing.” It’s doing the wrong thing because that’s what you want to do, and, very often, we know it’s the wrong thing to do!

There you have the four possible things that might be holding you back from the realization of your vision. Are any of them hitting home? Answer this question before you move on:

What is standing between my current reality and my ultimate vision of success?

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4 Character Traits Blocking Success From Entering Your Life

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Some days you wake up full of energy and ready to face the day. The challenges you gave yourself the day before seems almost too easy. However, there are also other days where you find yourself without the desire and energy to move forward. Operating from this mindset, you lose productive time, counted first in minutes, then hours. Sometimes your loss of productivity can be measured in days, weeks and months of missed opportunities.   

Since you will not wake up every day bursting with excitement, you must find a way to summon the energy necessary to pound out another story for a publication, work on your social media content plan and write new copy for your website.

To understand why you are unable to take the actions required for success, you must first identify what blocks you. You can’t overcome challenges you aren’t aware of, and this is the juncture separating those who succeed from those who don’t.

Here are the four main character defects that block success:

1. Apathy

Apathy is exhibited as a lack of concern. It shows up when you are tired or stretched too thin. Many entrepreneurs work one or more jobs while attempting to launch a business, whether online or brick and mortar. When progress can’t be seen, it is easy to stop caring and give up.

2. Procrastination

Procrastination can occur when you get up ready to give all you’ve got to your endeavor, but first you check out an episode of your favorite Netflix show while you have coffee. After eight hours of binge-watching, your productive mindset is gone which leaves you demoralized. This in turn brings you back to apathy, triggers fear and causes more procrastinating.

3. Fear

Fear is a corrosive emotion everyone struggles with, and if you are not careful, it will absolutely stop you in your tracks. Fear will say you cannot obtain your dreams. The most successful entrepreneurs and business leaders grapple with anxiety, worry and apprehension, yet you rarely see them paralyzed by their fearfulness. Like them, you can’t defeat your fear unless you identify it. With an insightful mentor, you can easily determine what you are afraid of. Once it is recognized, you’ll find the strength to walk through it.   

“Curiosity will conquer fear even more than bravery will.” – James Stephens

4. Overwhelm

Overwhelm occurs when you commit to more than you are capable of doing. Balance and giving the appropriate amount of time to all aspects of life is a tremendous challenge. Have you found yourself overwhelmed when a friend asks a favor of you while you are trying to meet a deadline at work and maintain focus on your entrepreneurial side project? Do you worry how you’ll ever find the time to get it all done? Often when this occurs, we may mentally shut down and accomplish nothing.

To counter the deficits listed above, you must identify, then develop the opposite, positive traits necessary for success. It’s important to understand the “why” of each attribute because only then can you fully tap into the power they offer to help you accomplish your goals.

Here are the four traits to counter the above traits with:

1. Purpose

Purpose gives voice to why you are alive. It tells you and others what you are working toward and why. Living out your purpose is the single greatest weapon against apathy. Knowing your purpose gives you a standard with which you can measure your progress. It motivates you to think, act and ultimately, to succeed.

2. Action

Action is the opposite of procrastination. When your effort is focused on achieving an objective, action propels you forward. Breaking a large project down into small, manageable steps, you’ll gain the needed traction to successfully reach your goal!

3. Courage

Courage is built by first facing, then walking through your fears. Courage gives you strength to do what you think is impossible. Developing a relationship with a mentor, someone willing to tell you the truth about what they see, is crucial to success in this area. With help, you can first identify, then make the adjustments necessary to identify and release the fear blocking you.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston S. Churchill

4. Focus

Focus is the final attribute. What you give your attention to is the single most important factor influencing your success. You become what you focus on. When you focus on your purpose, take the necessary actions and develop the courage to bust through, you win!

This is not an all-inclusive list, it’s simply a starting point. As you tackle and overcome your grosser defects, the subtler ones will begin to surface. Slowly, with help from your trusted mentor, you will work and grow through these challenges.  

As you become stronger, you’ll be able to withstand additional demands. You meet them head-on with the new skill set you’ll develop as you let your old ones go. You will be more effective, positive and energetic along with ready to take any action necessary. You are a winner!

Which one of the character traits above do you need to focus on most in order to achieve success? Let us know in the comments below!

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Setting Up Your Mindset to Win: How to Achieve Success in Your Life and Career

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How did Usain Bolt become so successful? He seems superhuman, doesn’t he? Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, Paul Bocuse… all these people have something special in them. They became the stars in their niche. Have you ever wondered why? No, they do not have any superhuman capacity. They are simple people, just like you and I. They, too, had flaws. Their mindset, however, is what set them apart. If you want to win in your career and in life, generally, you need the mindset of a winner. You have to think like a true champion, so you’ll overcome your flaws and emphasize your strengths. (more…)

Warren Fowler is a marketing enthusiast and a blogger at UKBestEssays.com, who loves music. If he doesn’t have a guitar in his hands, he’s probably embracing new technologies and marketing techniques online! You can meet him on Twitter and Facebook.

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20 Comments

20 Comments

  1. Rocky

    Apr 13, 2015 at 5:43 am

    Hii kara,
    These statements r really helpful in our life and motivates me a lot just be continued wid it
    But I wan 2 know how can I make my daily routine to be confident and achieve my goals as I’m a b.tech graduate

    • Kara

      Apr 15, 2015 at 3:05 pm

      Hi Rocky,
      You can try to implement just one of the above tips at a time. For example, this week concentrate on doing something new. Then next week, you might want to move on to confident body language poses. If you implement all at the same time, you can easily feel overwhelmed. So concentrate just on one until you feel comfortable with that one. I hope this helps.

  2. FirstName LastName

    Apr 3, 2015 at 11:07 pm

    I love this. It’s the only motivational, non-cliche article I’ve read in a while. For the past few days, I’ve really been working on standing up straight and taking up all the space I can. I’m even gonna start appearing confident before I enter the gym instead of just after.

    But, how do you make people you’ve known for a while respect you (say I’m a high schooler) while doing this? I’ve tried appearing confident, but fact of the matter is I can’t really talk in front of my teammates at lunch without sounding stupid and I really want that to end. I want to know what to say and when to say it without it being a boring conversation.

    • Kara Ronin

      Apr 5, 2015 at 4:33 pm

      Thank you for your really kind comment. I’m so glad you found this article helpful and the tips useful. Keep up with the body language changes you’ve made. After a while, this will become a natural part of your demeanour. As for conversation tips you can use with your teammates at lunch, my recommendation here is to be the person who asks the questions. People love to talk about themselves and their life, so think of 2-3 questions you can ask people at lunch and have these prepared in your mind before you go. You will feel more prepared and it makes you the conversation leader. Bonus! Questions could be about their weekend, friends, sports, latest movies, etc. And if you really want to impress, find out an interesting fact or piece of news and tell your friends about it at lunch. They’ll think of you as somebody who is knowledgeable and interesting.

      I hope these tips help.

  3. Divsdivya

    Mar 29, 2015 at 7:31 am

    I loved da way u stressed each n every point in da post…especially points 5 and 6….v do compare ourselves knowingly or unknowingly wid odrs….n v hardly spend tym wid ourselves for building a positive personality….a truely inspiring article….thank u…

    • Kara

      Mar 30, 2015 at 10:31 am

      Thank Divsdivya for your honest comment. It’s always motivating to know you’ve written an article that really resonates with people. I hope these tips will help you to build a positive personality.

  4. pranjal malgave

    Mar 24, 2015 at 7:04 am

    Great .

  5. James Simwanza

    Mar 23, 2015 at 9:02 am

    Am learning something here

    • Kara

      Mar 24, 2015 at 7:52 am

      Thanks James!

  6. Rose Costas

    Mar 16, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    Thanks for that post. Many times self confidence is faking it until you’ve made it. These are very simple things people can do but are very effective.

    • Kara

      Mar 18, 2015 at 10:01 am

      Hi Rose. Thanks for reading! Faking it ’til you make it can work, but I also believe we need to build our inner confidence to have a level of confidence that is sustainable – even through tough times. I’m glad you found these tips useful and simple.

  7. Kenneth

    Mar 15, 2015 at 8:33 am

    Great piece of advice..

  8. Peter

    Mar 15, 2015 at 3:18 am

    I love points 3 & 4 Kara! I have been a student of NLP for quite a while and I have seen how effective these methods can be.

    • Kara

      Mar 15, 2015 at 12:52 pm

      Hi Peter. NLP is a really interesting area to learn about, and can be very effective in our day-to-day life. Do you learn through school, or online?

      • Peter

        Mar 15, 2015 at 4:47 pm

        Hi Kara,
        I attended a program in NLP a few years back – it was a workshop. I continue to try to apply it myself as well as recommend a few NLP methods to my clients. Since there really is no end to learning, I still consider myself a student.

  9. surajkashyap

    Mar 13, 2015 at 6:38 am

    its very nice…..
    its make me motivate.

    • Kara Ronin

      Mar 13, 2015 at 8:03 pm

      Thanks so much! I’m glad you enjoyed reading it.

  10. Kara Ronin

    Mar 12, 2015 at 8:20 am

    I’m so glad you enjoyed this article. I truly believe (like Eve Michaels) that you can instantly make yourself feel more confident and happier by wearing something that makes you feel great. I’ve just checked out Eve’s web page, thanks for letting me know about her. And yoga – absolutely. Practice those power poses. Great idea Stefanie.

  11. stefanie

    Mar 12, 2015 at 7:45 am

    Thanks for bringing up these helpful points. In 2012, I’ve heard Eve Michaels speaking about creating your image and it’s influence on your success – it literally opened my eyes! Her statement: Our success starts in our inner world which is influenced by our appearance.
    I would like to add that practicing yoga regularly helps a lot to increase the body awareness and to get used to power poses.

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Success Advice

Setting Up Your Mindset to Win: How to Achieve Success in Your Life and Career

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How did Usain Bolt become so successful? He seems superhuman, doesn’t he? Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, Paul Bocuse… all these people have something special in them. They became the stars in their niche. Have you ever wondered why? No, they do not have any superhuman capacity. They are simple people, just like you and I. They, too, had flaws. Their mindset, however, is what set them apart. If you want to win in your career and in life, generally, you need the mindset of a winner. You have to think like a true champion, so you’ll overcome your flaws and emphasize your strengths.

So how do you set the mindset to win? Here are 5 suggestions to get you started:

1. When You Can’t Achieve a Goal, Get Help

Have you heard of Paul Bocuse? He was one of the most famous chefs of his time, and he was named as the chef of the century. This is a good example of the point we’re about to make. Even the best are not almighty, they have to learn from someone. Paul Bocuse learned from another famous chef. He constantly worked to improve his skills and he learned along the way.

The lesson is: you cannot do everything on your own. This is the first thing you have to do: learn and find the right person to learn from. Are there any books by the champions of your chosen niche? Get them and read them. Can you get a mentor? Of course, you can! Start connecting with people on LinkedIn. Your alumni network is a great source of mentorship opportunities, too. Don’t be afraid to reach out and say that you want to learn from someone.   

“Don’t let the fear of losing be greater than the excitement of winning.” – Robert Kiyosaki

2. Work on Your Resilience

Here’s the most important life lesson you’ll ever learn: things don’t always go as expected. When you strive towards a particular goal, the chances of failure are real. When Usain Bolt started training, he wasn’t the fastest man on Earth. He worked towards that goal and he was resilient enough to go through all the obstacles he faced. We couldn’t possibly assume that such success came easily for him.

The journey towards a successful life is not a straight line, it’s a bumpy road full of difficulties and setbacks. The average person would give up along the way, but a champion would stay resilient. It’s the mindset that makes a true difference. The good news is that the more obstacles you overcome, the more resilient you become.

3. Focus

What do you want in your career and in your life? This is not something that can go with the flow. You cannot simply live your life one random day after another and expect great things to come your way. You have to focus on particular goals and work your way up there.

Ken Chenault, CEO of American Express, has a nice tip for everyone who wants to become successful: “Dedicate yourself to a core set of values. Without them, you will never be able to find personal fulfillment, and you will never be able to lead effectively.”

Simple and straight to the point, right? So set your goals! Find that major goal you want to achieve and break it up into smaller achievements. Then, start accomplishing things on a daily basis. You need to devote your life to achieving that goal.

4. Be Bold

Steve Jobs wasn’t focused on getting an average job, achieving average results and living an average life. He had big dreams and bold goals. All successful people have something in common at the starting point, a bold dream. Being afraid to dream big is a huge mistake. Set your imagination free! What’s the biggest thing you’d like to achieve? If you believe in yourself and you start working towards that goal one day after another, you’ll unlock your true potential. You’ll realize that not many things are impossible. You can achieve much more than you believe you’re capable of.

“If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.” – Steve Jobs

5. If You Fall, Get Back Up

Have you ever wondered why Richard Branson became so successful? The answer is simple: never gave up, no matter what hardships he faced. His first company didn’t make money. The test flight of Virgin Atlantic Airlines almost crashed because of a flock of birds. Virgin Cola, his soda company, failed miserably. He almost got himself killed during his trip around the world. Richard Branson has done many things, but do you know what he never did? Give up. No matter how serious the failure was, he always found the strength to get back up on his feet and carry on with life. That’s the mindset of a champion!

Never allow yourself to get disappointed from failure. Do not fall back into average just because your big dream doesn’t seem to be working. Failure is not a big deal. It’s just part of the journey, and everyone has to face it. If you carry on, you’ll find success along the way.

So you want to be a champion? You better start working towards that goal without wasting any time. The first step is changing your mindset. Hopefully, the tips above inspired you to do that.

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Success Advice

3 Important Principles You Need to Know That All Billionaires Have in Common

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I’ve always been highly interested in the similarities amongst the world’s wealthiest. Their habits, successes, mindset, and failures have fascinated me. The journey to great prosperity can seem overwhelming, but if you apply success principles to any endeavor you can quickly and efficiently overcome challenges and expand.

Michael J. Gabrielli, founder of WeRunAds, has spent hundreds of hours and tens of thousands of dollars studying billionaires and their habits. Michael has also studied over 2000 different billionaires and from this experience he’s found three principles they all had in common.

Here are the 3 principles the billionaires all had in common:

1. Be in a rapid growth industry at the right time

Timing is so important. Billionaires know when the time is right to enter a market. Most billionaires do not enter first or second into a market because of the inherent risks involved. Many billionaires let the pioneers pave the way and then leverage the knowledge gained to innovate and optimize in order to create something that works.

The key is to find an industry that is soon to take off. Stepping in at the right time is important. Let’s take a real life example that is known all too well– the founder and CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg. When he entered the scene, the idea of a social network was moderately known, but it was still not quite predicted to be the monster it is today.

Others like Friendster, Myspace, etc. had made some headway into this fledgeling industry and then Facebook entered leveraging the knowledge and expertise gained from the early pioneers. Zuckerberg saw the huge potential of social networking, took what was done previously and made it better.

He is presently worth over $66 Billion and the company has surpassed the 2 billion users mark with 1.4 billion using the platform daily. Not surprisingly, many billionaires were not the first to pioneer the industry they would later find success in. They came in at the right moment, learned from the mistakes and triumphs of their predecessors, and made a lasting final product.

Here’s a practical 3 question exercise you can do to judge if you have the right timing with your current venture:

  1. Look at your industry and say—is this brand new?
  2. Am I trying to invent something that doesn’t exist?
  3. Am I too late to the party?

2. Position yourself better

In addition to finding the right industry and getting in at the right time, billionaires position themselves in the best way. They provide the solution to the need and they think outside the box to do it. Optimal positioning is a commonality amongst billionaires. For example, during the California Gold Rush, people rushed to mine for the gold itself blinded by the promise of large profits.

However, it turned out that Sam Brannan had the better idea for how to position himself for success. He knew the chances of finding gold were risky, so instead he committed to a sure thing. He manufactured the tools that were needed by all the miners to mine gold. As each new miner migrated West, they were happily met by Brannan and his company who were ready and waiting to sell these new hopefuls the shovels and tools they’d need to strike it rich.

Digging for gold seemed to be the most profitable route, however, greater returns were yielded in the supplying of materials required to mine for gold! A good company that also illustrates this concept is Microsoft. They did not seek to create their own computer, but the software that computers would run on. Most people mistakenly think they have to “go for the gold” to attain wealth, but it’s evident in history that selling the necessary tools to the gold miners can be far more profitable.

The two questions you need to ask yourself to see how you could position yourself correctly are, “What industries will need the supplies that I could provide? And, “Am I following the trend instead of innovating?

“Big shots are only little shots that keep shooting. I can see your sun rise out of obscurity. Keep shooting” – Ikechukwu Joseph

3. Take calculated risks

Most people choose the safe bet that is secure, however, this is not common among billionaires. Billionaires take big calculated risks in order to propel themselves to higher levels of influence and success. The most important thing to note here is that while to others the risks seem big—to billionaires, they are calculated.Risk and Calculated Risk are not the same. Calculated risk is measured and well-thought-out. Risk is impulsive and immeasurable. Understanding the difference between the two is a commonality among billionaires. The world’s most prominent figures have at some point in their lives disagreed with the ordinary and took a shot at the unknown. Proper calculation and clever thinking certainly accompanied the bold moves they made in their careers.

Howard Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks, is a great example of this. He had grown up in poverty and made his way out to earn a comfortable wage as an executive at a company that manufactured coffeemakers.

“Risk more than others think safe.” – Howard Schultz

He risked it all when he discovered a small coffee shop named “Starbucks” in Seattle that prompted him to quit his job and step out to create a company that was inspired by the Italian coffee culture and personal relationship people could have with their coffee.

Of the 242 people he spoke to, 217 said no to investing with him. Despite the discouragement, lack of agreement, and investment, Schultz kept pushing on. Fast forward to present time, and Starbucks’ is a massive success. Strong intuition and unshakeable belief is common among high achievers. Many successful billionaires risked their safe jobs, personal assets, and even their reputation to take calculated risks that they knew would pay off huge in the end.

The questions you need to ask yourself now are, “where can I take a calculated risk? Am I holding back when I should be going forward? What tangible steps can I take today to move forward?”

These 3 success principles are staple elements that are common among many billionaires. Now, there are more principles that you must discover and implement in order to become a billionaire. Work diligently and do all that can be done each day. Be inquisitive and study those that you wish to emulate.

Which one of these principles do you need to work on more this year? Let us know in the comments below!

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Success Advice

One Question You Must Answer to Ensure Personal Success

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I don’t believe in quick fixes, in get-rich-quick schemes, or any other system that guarantees instant success with only a modicum of effort. But, I do believe it’s possible to condense great strings of logical thought and intellectual algorithms into basics. I like to keep things simple! Many of my clients love the fact that I don’t overly complete things, and frankly, so do I! I like to ask simple questions whose answers can be had quickly but require some focus in obtaining the outcome.

Here’s the question I always ask: What is standing between your current reality (where you are now) and your ultimate vision (where you want to be)? Are the impediments psychological, physical, emotional or some other reason?

Until you answer what is causing the difference between your AS IS and your SHOULD BE, you will be stuck spinning your wheels in the mud and the muck of the former. This is an important question that requires a level of mental self-examination. And the answer to this question may require a lifetime of introspection. It is an important question to answer because if you know where you want to go that provides direction but examining why you are not there yet can provide momentum. (In other words, by answering the question it may get you there faster!)

“Success is not final; failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston S. Churchill

It’s just like following a road map. A map is useless unless you know two things, where you are, and where you want to go. What might be stopping you (or at least slowing you down) from the ultimate destination of your passion and life’s fulfilment?

I’ve asked many people about this over the years and have heard these four reasons that keep people from moving forward.

1. Lack of vision

How do you plan to get there, if you don’t know where “there” is? The most difficult undertaking in the world is to sit quietly with a blank sheet of paper and chart out your life. I know, I have many blank sheets of paper to prove it. However, I also found out that it only takes one sheet, with a few well-crafted lines of thought to give you the direction you need. But you need to start!

2. Lack of goals

So, you know where you want to go, you just don’t know how to get there. The second hardest thing in the world is to have a sheet of paper with your ultimate destination on top, and the rest blank as you ask yourself, now what or how do I get to my vision? The process of functional decomposition means breaking down the larger process into steps that are both actionable and motivational. In other words, the steps are small enough to do and you remain motivated because they are so small.

“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do. Don’t wish it were easier; wish you were better.” – Jim Rohn

3. You don’t believe you can get there

You want to, but there is a script running through your head telling you to go home, make some chicken soup and don’t leave the house until these foolish notions of greatness are gone. Think about it, your parents never did what you are trying to do, no one in your family has ever done it, you are far too old (or too young) to do that, you don’t have the right education…your rationalizing can go on for a lifetime! Here is my suggestion when it comes to running those self-deprecating scripts: STOP IT!

4. You are lazy

You won’t admit this to yourself, but perhaps you are just plain lazy. I’ve seen it so many times; individuals majoring in minors. Performing high fun, low payoff activities instead of the low fun, high payoff activities. (And, by the way, who ever said that a high payoff activity can’t be fun? There’s that darn script again.) As a species we are inclined to take the path of least resistance, but that path may not lead us to our vision, but you must admit, we are having a great time NOT moving toward our vision! Laziness is not “doing nothing.” It’s doing the wrong thing because that’s what you want to do, and, very often, we know it’s the wrong thing to do!

There you have the four possible things that might be holding you back from the realization of your vision. Are any of them hitting home? Answer this question before you move on:

What is standing between my current reality and my ultimate vision of success?

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Success Advice

4 Character Traits Blocking Success From Entering Your Life

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Some days you wake up full of energy and ready to face the day. The challenges you gave yourself the day before seems almost too easy. However, there are also other days where you find yourself without the desire and energy to move forward. Operating from this mindset, you lose productive time, counted first in minutes, then hours. Sometimes your loss of productivity can be measured in days, weeks and months of missed opportunities.   

Since you will not wake up every day bursting with excitement, you must find a way to summon the energy necessary to pound out another story for a publication, work on your social media content plan and write new copy for your website.

To understand why you are unable to take the actions required for success, you must first identify what blocks you. You can’t overcome challenges you aren’t aware of, and this is the juncture separating those who succeed from those who don’t.

Here are the four main character defects that block success:

1. Apathy

Apathy is exhibited as a lack of concern. It shows up when you are tired or stretched too thin. Many entrepreneurs work one or more jobs while attempting to launch a business, whether online or brick and mortar. When progress can’t be seen, it is easy to stop caring and give up.

2. Procrastination

Procrastination can occur when you get up ready to give all you’ve got to your endeavor, but first you check out an episode of your favorite Netflix show while you have coffee. After eight hours of binge-watching, your productive mindset is gone which leaves you demoralized. This in turn brings you back to apathy, triggers fear and causes more procrastinating.

3. Fear

Fear is a corrosive emotion everyone struggles with, and if you are not careful, it will absolutely stop you in your tracks. Fear will say you cannot obtain your dreams. The most successful entrepreneurs and business leaders grapple with anxiety, worry and apprehension, yet you rarely see them paralyzed by their fearfulness. Like them, you can’t defeat your fear unless you identify it. With an insightful mentor, you can easily determine what you are afraid of. Once it is recognized, you’ll find the strength to walk through it.   

“Curiosity will conquer fear even more than bravery will.” – James Stephens

4. Overwhelm

Overwhelm occurs when you commit to more than you are capable of doing. Balance and giving the appropriate amount of time to all aspects of life is a tremendous challenge. Have you found yourself overwhelmed when a friend asks a favor of you while you are trying to meet a deadline at work and maintain focus on your entrepreneurial side project? Do you worry how you’ll ever find the time to get it all done? Often when this occurs, we may mentally shut down and accomplish nothing.

To counter the deficits listed above, you must identify, then develop the opposite, positive traits necessary for success. It’s important to understand the “why” of each attribute because only then can you fully tap into the power they offer to help you accomplish your goals.

Here are the four traits to counter the above traits with:

1. Purpose

Purpose gives voice to why you are alive. It tells you and others what you are working toward and why. Living out your purpose is the single greatest weapon against apathy. Knowing your purpose gives you a standard with which you can measure your progress. It motivates you to think, act and ultimately, to succeed.

2. Action

Action is the opposite of procrastination. When your effort is focused on achieving an objective, action propels you forward. Breaking a large project down into small, manageable steps, you’ll gain the needed traction to successfully reach your goal!

3. Courage

Courage is built by first facing, then walking through your fears. Courage gives you strength to do what you think is impossible. Developing a relationship with a mentor, someone willing to tell you the truth about what they see, is crucial to success in this area. With help, you can first identify, then make the adjustments necessary to identify and release the fear blocking you.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston S. Churchill

4. Focus

Focus is the final attribute. What you give your attention to is the single most important factor influencing your success. You become what you focus on. When you focus on your purpose, take the necessary actions and develop the courage to bust through, you win!

This is not an all-inclusive list, it’s simply a starting point. As you tackle and overcome your grosser defects, the subtler ones will begin to surface. Slowly, with help from your trusted mentor, you will work and grow through these challenges.  

As you become stronger, you’ll be able to withstand additional demands. You meet them head-on with the new skill set you’ll develop as you let your old ones go. You will be more effective, positive and energetic along with ready to take any action necessary. You are a winner!

Which one of the character traits above do you need to focus on most in order to achieve success? Let us know in the comments below!

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