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7 Fatal Habits Slowing Your Entrepreneurial Success

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7 Fatal Habits Slowing Your Entrepreneurial Success

You work hard. You buy the courses, read the books, go to the seminars, but your business is still growing small or maybe even non-existent.

You just KNOW that the secret to your success is in there somewhere. If you could just copy their talent, or their skills or even some daily habit you know you will see your productivity increase and your results skyrocket. But is that really the case?

So many times when we see successful people we wonder what can we do to copy them, or what are we not doing that we could be to follow in their footsteps and see those same results. But the reality is that it is not necessarily about learning a new skill or talent, or even adding something new at all. Sometimes the biggest gains we get are from stopping or altering your current habits.

 

Fatal Habit #1: Letting others control your morning

If you are having trouble getting a lot of things done, first look at your morning routine. You probably wake up groggy almost every morning, hit the snooze button once or twice before dragging yourself out of bed, and what is the first thing you are likely to do? Probably check your phone.

That’s the problem. Right away you are putting other people’s agendas ahead of your own. Their texts, their emails, their Facebook posts. Why not make yourself the first priority in the morning? What could you do instead that puts your goals and your life as the main priority?

Here are a few options:

  • Read a book, just a chapter, heck just a few pages would be better for you than checking email. It will give you some new ideas just to start your day. It might trigger a new idea for a blog post, or someone you should be reaching out to. Either way, your business improves right from the start of the day. Your mind actually has all day to work on developing solutions for whatever ideas you got from your early morning reading.
  • Meditate, either on your own or with one of many awesome guided meditations out there (I personally love guided meditations because I struggle to sit there myself…my mind tends to wander).
  • Listen to an audio book (same benefits as reading a book without even needing to open your eyes).
  • Listen to a podcast. This might take a little bit longer than the other options, but again it will teach you some interesting things that can foster creativity and inspire new ideas for your business.

All of these are fine. They will wake up your mind and get you ready to attack your day far better than the useless junk that is probably in your inbox or on your newsfeed. In fact, try turning email off on your phone and see how much better your morning is.

The best part of this change in your morning routine is that it takes up less than 10 minutes of your morning. If you say you don’t have 10 minutes in the morning, try getting up 10 minutes earlier to get this done. The result will be huge for you.

The MOST IMPORTANT thing that you can do first thing in the morning, is to work on your biggest, most pressing challenge for at least 25 minutes before you ever think about looking at your phone or checking your email. I would recommend giving yourself a full hour. By working on your biggest challenge first thing in morning you will ensure that you are putting in enough time to eventually blow past it and move on to other tasks to continue growing your business.

 

Fatal Habit #2: Losing focus from your current project

This is one of the more common habits we face as entrepreneurs today, as there are just so many distractions: television, social media, netflix etc. And then there’s all the things going on in your social life, the text messages from your significant other, kids running around the house. Sometimes it is just hard to stay focused and it gets us knocked off track, costing us valuable work time trying to restart after each interruption.

Additionally, sometimes even when our phones aren’t going crazy and the kids are not running around the house, we still are not as productive as we could be because we are not entirely sure what we should be doing. We have all seen tons of people who recommend creating huge “to-do” lists with like 8-10 tasks on them, but this is not ideal.

Why? Because it is incredibly difficult to get 8-10 things done each day, especially if the business is not your only focus. Instead of motivating you, it ends up demoralizing you because everyday you feel incomplete because you are never completing your entire list. Try creating a list of just the three most important tasks for you to get done that day. This gives you an achievable number of tasks each day. You actually look forward to getting them all done because then you can enjoy some time with your family, your friends or a hobby guilt free.

But here’s the trick to really make sure you get things done. So many times we will write down that we need to get this done, but will stop completely when we hit any kind of resistance. So how do we ensure that we know exactly what to do to complete our three daily tasks? The night before, write them down before you go to bed.

By writing down the necessary steps to complete each task you will be able to plan out the exact steps you will be taking to complete each task. This helps you from getting stuck or being unsure what your next move is. When you complete all the steps for each task, you are done, go enjoy yourself for a bit, write your three tasks for tomorrow and do it all over again the next day.

“Whenever you want to achieve something, keep your eyes open, concentrate and make sure you know exactly what it is you want. No one can hit their target with their eyes closed.” – Paulo Coelho

Fatal Habit #3: Doing non-income producing activities first

Far too often we get bogged down in unimportant tasks that do not grow our business. But because we are doing something we think we are being busy and/or productive. The reality is that we are actually neither. The reality is that all tasks are not created equally and you need to know how to prioritize which tasks to do first, and which tasks can be put off until later, outsourced or scrapped entirely.

There are 4 different types of Business Activities:

1. Income Producing Activities

These are the activities that will immediately provide you with sales. This can include webinars, writing sales pages, writing email launches or creating sales videos (for a service based business this would be actually performing the service). The simple rule for this group is if it won’t make you money it doesn’t belong here, this will be your top priority tasks.

2. Asset Creation

These are the tasks that will create useful pieces of your income producing processes. This includes creating products, making website pages (for sales or products), building out new sales funnels and guest posting. These activities are generally related to either product creation or list building.

3. Active Asset Nurturing

Once you have an asset created this is when you are providing additional work/value to the asset. Tasks in this category include creating new bonus modules for courses or sending out a value adding email to your list (notice how I did not just say send out an email, a sales pitch email…whether your product or an affiliate product does NOT qualify here, that actually is higher up). Basically, these tasks are providing additional value to assets that are already up and running.

4. Everything Else

This is everything else. The basic rule here is that if it’s not one of the first three tasks you either delay it, delegate it (outsource it) or discard it. There’s nothing here that is an immediate priority and you should avoid spending as much time on these tasks as possible. Doing $10/hr work will not get you moving toward your goals.

Set up a spreadsheet with the 4 types of tasks, list all the tasks you do or need to do and put them in each category. List all the tasks that you do, whether daily, weekly, monthly or even yearly. For the category 4s, figure out what you will delay until you have free time, what you will outsource and what you will just delete from your list of tasks.

 

Fatal Flaw #4: Poor personal health habits

Many times we expect that we have to “grind” our way to success. Unfortunately that means we end up thinking we need to just work on business and ignore everything else: fun, family, friends, but the most important thing that we cannot ignore is our personal health.

Sir Richard Branson has said the number one “secret” to improved productivity is to work out. Because our body is the single most important investment in your life. Working out increases your energy, your sleep and your focus, all things that you need to do your best work. The good news is that you can work out fairly easily, because you don’t need to be the next Mr. Olympia to receive the benefits of regular exercise.

For me, I like to do some kind of quick workout right after getting out of bed to get the blood flowing, and also because getting in a light workout before eating a meal allows your body to burn more fat as it will pull from your reserves since you haven’t recently fed it anything for it to burn.

This can be a simple program consisting of stretching, pushups and body squats (or whatever types of bodyweight exercises you like to do). You can do a full workout later in the day, or after work if still at a 9 to 5 job. If you are a morning person feel free to go nuts and do your full workout first thing in the morning. Additionally you have to fuel your body properly in order to get peak performance. If you eat better your body will react better: better focus, more energy, happier.

Again, much like workout plans there are tons of options for nutrition plans online. I personally like the Tim Ferris Slow Carb Diet. It is simple, easy to follow and starts giving you immediate results (I lost 5 pounds the first week I did it, that made it easier to get past the adjustment period and keep going). This allows you to be healthy and still enjoy your cheat day (FREE TIP: Don’t drink away your calories…save that for your cheat days).

 

Fatal Flaw #5: Not taking action

It is great if you have the best morning routine, you eat the best foods, drink enough water and even find time to workout. But what about your business? It’s great that you have the entire Dan Kennedy library of products (Dan Kennedy ROCKS, by the way), but your business will not grow unless you take ACTION. The only way you will make money is by taking action.

All those “think about the money and it will come” mantras are simply woo woo crap. It takes real work to build a business that makes money versus one that is just an expensive hobby. Why expensive? Think of all those courses that we buy, hoping that each one provides that ONE secret that explodes our business. So we just keep consuming course, after course after course, and yet the results never seem to come.

A good course is not designed to be consumed in full. It is designed for you to go through a module, and then take action on what you’ve learned, and then go to the next module. Rinse, wash and repeat.

A good rule of thumb is that for every one hour of training you should take 3 hours worth of action. Now some will take longer and some will be shorter, but that should be the goal (especially since you should end up having some ongoing tasks that you will have to keep doing over and over again, such as writing emails, making sales funnels or writing guest posts).

“Never confuse motion with action.” – Benjamin Franklin

Fatal Flaw #6: Allowing negative influences into your life

Honestly, I was tempted to make this #1, because one of the biggest flaws that we make is keeping negative influences in our life, this can include television, radio or even other people. To be successful we need to RUTHLESSLY keep those negative influences away from us. They can be poison to our mood, our minds, and our productivity.

Both television and radio have too many things you cannot control. Things like commercials or news stories that will not help you. Food commercials that give you unhealthy food cravings, medicine commercials about different diseases and side effects…it is all just really sad and depressing. And they both hurt you physically, mentally and emotionally.

But I’m also not going to tell you that you have to cut it out entirely (although that is obviously ideal), as I’d be a hypocrite because I love Shark Tank, The Profit, and Major League Baseball. As for the radio, that one is much easier to replace. You can listen to an audio book from a source like Audible or your local library, or use an app to listen to one of your favorite podcasts. By turning your car into a classroom you can get literally days worth of extra learning in during the down time of driving.

But use it as a welcome break from your hard work rather than something that you do out of habit. Treat it like a small reward for a good couple days of work rather than an everyday event.

The worst negative influences of all, can be our friends and family. While you cannot let them try to destroy your dreams (and they will if you let them). So you really have two options: Avoid spending time with them as much as possible (understanding that they are your family and friends so you will likely see some of them a bit even if they don’t support your business goals) or try to turn them into an ally by asking them for advice, put them in your shoes and then asking what they would do if they were you.

And finally there are those people who are just so negative that you may just need to cut them out of your life entirely. I had former teammates who I haven’t spoken with in years now because of how unsupportive they were about my entrepreneurial ventures.

“Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.” – Oprah Winfrey 

Fatal Flaw #7: Not measuring your progress & results

Baseball great Yogi Berra once said “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else.” This is true with our businesses as well. We can do all this work to try and get results, but how do we know what is working and what isn’t? One word; metrics.

But not just any metrics, pick metrics that are based on your goals. For example, if you want to get to 1000 subscribers on your email list, you will likely care about metrics such as total subscribers each month, and your conversion rates from your opt-in page or other lead capture devices. If your goals are mostly based on income then our metrics will be based more along sales and expenses.

But the key is to give yourself specific numbers to shoot for: 1000 subscribers, 25% conversion rate, $100k in sales etc. Then give yourself specific time frames to measure (I personally like monthly, quarterly and yearly goals). This gives you a few short term goals to make changes on, as well as the full year goals that give you a full picture of your business.

 

Thank you for reading my article! I would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below!

BJ Pivonka is the founder of Athletic Entrepreneurs (bjpivonka.com), where he helps former college and professional athletes successfully transition from their playing career into their own profitable entrepreneurial venture. At his website you can get hisFREE 5-day email course to get your first profitable idea and start earning money even if you do not have an idea yet.

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26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. Alexander

    Sep 27, 2017 at 10:08 am

    Great article, it help everyone to be more focus
    benz service

  2. Matt Lancaster

    Jan 21, 2017 at 7:41 pm

    Habits can be very powerful – or destroying, holding you back.
    Really Really nice article.
    Thanks

  3. MD Farhad Hussain

    Jan 7, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    Great Article. I was suffering with #6. Even though I know what to do, this article clarifies all things again.

  4. Geraldo Angel

    Jul 11, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    That was amazing! Sometimes one of those habits happened to me but with the time I get better and better

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 12, 2015 at 9:48 pm

      Geraldo,

      Thanks for the kind words.

      And yes, as long as you know about the habits, you can work on fixing them and continuously getting better.

  5. Mohinish Nirwal

    Jul 11, 2015 at 2:08 am

    Great article. I had my tongue in teeth on 4th one… From past few years I am not able to do physical exercises the way I used to do in college and later… I’ll stick to it.
    Thanks BJ Pivonka.
    Mohinish Nirwal

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 12, 2015 at 9:50 pm

      Thanks Mohinish!

      You don’t even need to go crazy and do some instanity type stuff, James Altucher just goes for walks everyday. I know guys who do sprints.

      And then there are sites about doing five minute workouts to do some high quality exercisein a short time.

      You have tons of options, just find something that works for you and keep doing it.

  6. Sija Mafu

    Jul 10, 2015 at 9:09 am

    Geez! I see a lot of my own flaws in this article. I’ll do what I need to in order to adhere to them. Thanks for sharing,

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 10, 2015 at 1:39 pm

      Sija,

      Glad you enjoyed the article. It’s a matter of just taking small steps to keep getting better in each area. Once you keep that up you’ll starting disproportionate results.

  7. Ernie

    Jul 10, 2015 at 12:56 am

    Very wise advice my friend! Even correcting just one or two of these flaws is enough to build some solid momentum. Great article.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 10, 2015 at 2:28 am

      Thanks Ernie!

      glad you enjoyed the article.

      And I agree, you don’t need to fix all 7 right away. Fix one or 2 at a time and you’ll start seeing huge results.

  8. Janette

    Jul 9, 2015 at 11:01 pm

    Oh wow! #1 is definitely talking to me! ” Right away you are putting other people’s agendas ahead of your own. Their texts, their emails, their Facebook posts” that’s exactly what I do…but not from tomorrow morning that’s for sure!

    Thank you! Mwah x

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 10, 2015 at 2:29 am

      That is what I’m talking about Janette!!

      Great start.

  9. Adrian

    Jul 9, 2015 at 10:28 pm

    Yes, negativity is one of the worst thing ever if you want to start good life.

    I started making money online because my goal was that $$$ per day and I reached it in 12 months.

  10. Arnold Chitwa

    Jul 9, 2015 at 6:57 pm

    I think i want to use this article as a daily guide, to make improvements on areas that i have been underachieving, its reaching out to me in practical and Big ways, i have to give a shot to every piece of advice i have received here.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 9:23 pm

      Thanks Arnold. Glad you found this useful.

      Come back here and let us know how it went.

      or just shoot me an email with the results: bj@bjpivonka.com

  11. Muqadas

    Jul 9, 2015 at 4:44 pm

    Woho, What an article. Agreed on each of it’s point.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 9:25 pm

      Muqadas,

      Glad you enjoyed it. Each point is CRUCIAL.

      Let me know what kinds of results you get.

  12. Matimba Ngwenya

    Jul 9, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    This article hit me hard. Fatal Flaw #5 speaks to me most. I know what to do, and how to do it. My follow through however is not consistent, and I have not been prioritizing my action. Thanks for the wake up call Pivonka

  13. ssenyonjo wilberforce

    Jul 9, 2015 at 9:49 am

    wow!!!!!,its a good information en it has given me courage.

  14. Stefanie

    Jul 9, 2015 at 7:46 am

    Great article! I totally agree, that habits can be very powerful – or destroying, holding you back. Your article reminded me it’s important to continuously check my own habits. Thank you!

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 4:48 pm

      Thanks Stefanie, glad you enjoyed it.

      I picked out these specific habits for a reason. They can not only set the tone for you day, but determine your energy level for the rest of the day when you should be doing income producing activities.

      Thanks for your support!

  15. Lawrence Berry

    Jul 9, 2015 at 12:56 am

    This is some great information and I completely agree with everyone of them. I think your morning routine is what will determine if you make it in business or not. The morning is the foundation for your day, so you should really take care of yourself and your mindset. I have read about alot of successful people and they all do something in the morning that get them started for the day, such as meditating, exercising, or just eating a great breakfast. Take care of yourself and your mind. Great post.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 4:49 pm

      Lawrence, YES. That is exactly the case. The morning routine sets the tone for the rest of the day and also determines what kind of energy you have left for the rest of the day. That’s why I made it #1 on the list.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  16. Heitem Ak

    Jul 8, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    Nice one Pivonka!

    I completely agree on the metrics.

    Specific goals keeps you on track through hard times!

    Just like jogging, if you run without metrics, you are likely to stop running as soon as you start getting tired!

    Keep them up,

    Heitem Ak

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 4:50 pm

      Heitem, absolutely. You need to know what direction you are headed so you know whether to change course or not.

      Otherwise you’ll just wander around aimlessly doing things that won’t get the results you want and never actually get there.

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Success Advice

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

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

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

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

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

Being smart is not enough.

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


1. How badly you want it

The woman/man that became CEO wanted it more.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wanting it badly will define your career.


2. What you think is possible

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

I saw my goal become possible before anybody else did.

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

I chose to believe when no one else did.

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

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

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

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Success Advice

How to Create Your Own Version of Success

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

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

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

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

Laziness by the Numbers

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

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

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

Motivation: Whose Job is it Anyway?

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

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

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

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

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

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

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

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

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

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

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

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

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

Here are the steps I took:


Confront your fears head-on.

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

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

Harden up. Acknowledge your fears.

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

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

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

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


Stop giving a damn.

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

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

As of tomorrow, stop giving a damn.

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

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

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

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


Reduce everything.

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

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

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

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


Select one thing you’re going to achieve.

Not ten goals. Not twenty-five. One.

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

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

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

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


Commit to discipline.

Fat? Stop eating sugar and exercise.

Smoke too much? Quit.

Bored of your job? Get a new career.

Friends dragging you down? Divorce them.

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

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

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


Read a lot.

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

Damn, it felt good.

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


Come up with a why for your entire life.

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

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

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

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


Have one life-changing moment.

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

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

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

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


Invest some money in your future.

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

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

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

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

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


Make a stand and forget what people think of you.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. Alexander

    Sep 27, 2017 at 10:08 am

    Great article, it help everyone to be more focus
    benz service

  2. Matt Lancaster

    Jan 21, 2017 at 7:41 pm

    Habits can be very powerful – or destroying, holding you back.
    Really Really nice article.
    Thanks

  3. MD Farhad Hussain

    Jan 7, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    Great Article. I was suffering with #6. Even though I know what to do, this article clarifies all things again.

  4. Geraldo Angel

    Jul 11, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    That was amazing! Sometimes one of those habits happened to me but with the time I get better and better

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 12, 2015 at 9:48 pm

      Geraldo,

      Thanks for the kind words.

      And yes, as long as you know about the habits, you can work on fixing them and continuously getting better.

  5. Mohinish Nirwal

    Jul 11, 2015 at 2:08 am

    Great article. I had my tongue in teeth on 4th one… From past few years I am not able to do physical exercises the way I used to do in college and later… I’ll stick to it.
    Thanks BJ Pivonka.
    Mohinish Nirwal

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 12, 2015 at 9:50 pm

      Thanks Mohinish!

      You don’t even need to go crazy and do some instanity type stuff, James Altucher just goes for walks everyday. I know guys who do sprints.

      And then there are sites about doing five minute workouts to do some high quality exercisein a short time.

      You have tons of options, just find something that works for you and keep doing it.

  6. Sija Mafu

    Jul 10, 2015 at 9:09 am

    Geez! I see a lot of my own flaws in this article. I’ll do what I need to in order to adhere to them. Thanks for sharing,

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 10, 2015 at 1:39 pm

      Sija,

      Glad you enjoyed the article. It’s a matter of just taking small steps to keep getting better in each area. Once you keep that up you’ll starting disproportionate results.

  7. Ernie

    Jul 10, 2015 at 12:56 am

    Very wise advice my friend! Even correcting just one or two of these flaws is enough to build some solid momentum. Great article.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 10, 2015 at 2:28 am

      Thanks Ernie!

      glad you enjoyed the article.

      And I agree, you don’t need to fix all 7 right away. Fix one or 2 at a time and you’ll start seeing huge results.

  8. Janette

    Jul 9, 2015 at 11:01 pm

    Oh wow! #1 is definitely talking to me! ” Right away you are putting other people’s agendas ahead of your own. Their texts, their emails, their Facebook posts” that’s exactly what I do…but not from tomorrow morning that’s for sure!

    Thank you! Mwah x

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 10, 2015 at 2:29 am

      That is what I’m talking about Janette!!

      Great start.

  9. Adrian

    Jul 9, 2015 at 10:28 pm

    Yes, negativity is one of the worst thing ever if you want to start good life.

    I started making money online because my goal was that $$$ per day and I reached it in 12 months.

  10. Arnold Chitwa

    Jul 9, 2015 at 6:57 pm

    I think i want to use this article as a daily guide, to make improvements on areas that i have been underachieving, its reaching out to me in practical and Big ways, i have to give a shot to every piece of advice i have received here.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 9:23 pm

      Thanks Arnold. Glad you found this useful.

      Come back here and let us know how it went.

      or just shoot me an email with the results: bj@bjpivonka.com

  11. Muqadas

    Jul 9, 2015 at 4:44 pm

    Woho, What an article. Agreed on each of it’s point.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 9:25 pm

      Muqadas,

      Glad you enjoyed it. Each point is CRUCIAL.

      Let me know what kinds of results you get.

  12. Matimba Ngwenya

    Jul 9, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    This article hit me hard. Fatal Flaw #5 speaks to me most. I know what to do, and how to do it. My follow through however is not consistent, and I have not been prioritizing my action. Thanks for the wake up call Pivonka

  13. ssenyonjo wilberforce

    Jul 9, 2015 at 9:49 am

    wow!!!!!,its a good information en it has given me courage.

  14. Stefanie

    Jul 9, 2015 at 7:46 am

    Great article! I totally agree, that habits can be very powerful – or destroying, holding you back. Your article reminded me it’s important to continuously check my own habits. Thank you!

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 4:48 pm

      Thanks Stefanie, glad you enjoyed it.

      I picked out these specific habits for a reason. They can not only set the tone for you day, but determine your energy level for the rest of the day when you should be doing income producing activities.

      Thanks for your support!

  15. Lawrence Berry

    Jul 9, 2015 at 12:56 am

    This is some great information and I completely agree with everyone of them. I think your morning routine is what will determine if you make it in business or not. The morning is the foundation for your day, so you should really take care of yourself and your mindset. I have read about alot of successful people and they all do something in the morning that get them started for the day, such as meditating, exercising, or just eating a great breakfast. Take care of yourself and your mind. Great post.

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 4:49 pm

      Lawrence, YES. That is exactly the case. The morning routine sets the tone for the rest of the day and also determines what kind of energy you have left for the rest of the day. That’s why I made it #1 on the list.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  16. Heitem Ak

    Jul 8, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    Nice one Pivonka!

    I completely agree on the metrics.

    Specific goals keeps you on track through hard times!

    Just like jogging, if you run without metrics, you are likely to stop running as soon as you start getting tired!

    Keep them up,

    Heitem Ak

    • BJ Pivonka

      Jul 9, 2015 at 4:50 pm

      Heitem, absolutely. You need to know what direction you are headed so you know whether to change course or not.

      Otherwise you’ll just wander around aimlessly doing things that won’t get the results you want and never actually get there.

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Success Advice

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

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

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

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

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

Being smart is not enough.

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


1. How badly you want it

The woman/man that became CEO wanted it more.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Wanting it badly will define your career.


2. What you think is possible

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

I saw my goal become possible before anybody else did.

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

I chose to believe when no one else did.

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

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

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

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Success Advice

How to Create Your Own Version of Success

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

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

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

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

Laziness by the Numbers

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

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

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

Motivation: Whose Job is it Anyway?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

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

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

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

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

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

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

Here are the steps I took:


Confront your fears head-on.

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

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

Harden up. Acknowledge your fears.

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

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

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

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


Stop giving a damn.

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

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

As of tomorrow, stop giving a damn.

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

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

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

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


Reduce everything.

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

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

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

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


Select one thing you’re going to achieve.

Not ten goals. Not twenty-five. One.

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

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

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

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


Commit to discipline.

Fat? Stop eating sugar and exercise.

Smoke too much? Quit.

Bored of your job? Get a new career.

Friends dragging you down? Divorce them.

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

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

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


Read a lot.

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

Damn, it felt good.

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


Come up with a why for your entire life.

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

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

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

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


Have one life-changing moment.

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

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

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

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


Invest some money in your future.

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

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

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

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

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


Make a stand and forget what people think of you.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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