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Ignite Your Personal Revolution With The Victory Cycle

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It’s time to think seriously about your New Year’s resolution. Maybe this year it’s the goal of losing weight, starting a new career, getting a promotion, launching a new business venture, working on a relationship, or running that marathon you always wanted to run. 

Here’s a thought: let’s take this year’s resolution to the top and make it really stick.  All you need is to actually do it, right?  All too often we come out of New Year’s Day with amazing ideas of change, but what happens a few weeks into your journey? Did you make it happen? Or did you falter once again?

This time it’s going to be different, and here’s why. I’m going to share with you a solution, a system for you to maintain control, make lasting change, and begin a sustainable recipe for personal growth, and change. It’s called “The Victory Cycle.”

This idea is based on a continuous cycle of personal leadership and development. Here’s the truth: none of our New Year’s resolutions, or any goal for that matter, will work without consistent daily actions.  The Victory Cycle is based on small, daily powerful actions towards your “Personal Vision”; as you build your vision, your “Victory” will start to take form. Change your focus, improve your state of mind, and take progressive action today by stepping into The Victory Cycle!

Victory is an acronym for the 7 steps to achieve your goal:
  • V- Vision
  • I- Inspiration
  • C- Commitment
  • T- Timed Steps
  • O-Obstacles
  • R-Rejoice
  • Y-Yearlong Adjustments

1. Vision

Your personal vision is the starting point in the process. It’s a clear, compelling purpose of what you want, or who you want to become. You must see it so clear that you can touch it, smell it, and really feel it in your heart and soul as if it were real.

Leave no detail out of the picture as you create your vision; really see it as if it were right in front of you. All successful people knew who they truly were inside even in what appeared to be defeat. They rose up based on the internal belief and purpose they had within them. Find your purpose, your vision.

“Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.” – Jonathan Swift

2. Inspiration

Your why you are doing this.  All too often we forget why we’re doing what we’re doing. We get stuck in the wrong details, like numbers on a scale or how big our bank account is. Our inspiration centers more on how we feel, specifically, how we would feel if we were living our vision.

So many times our train for success is derailed from the very beginning due to lack of an understanding of why we are doing it and what we really want.

 

3. Commitment

This centers around how badly you really want it.  Without rock-solid determination, you will fail, and lose momentum. Because when it gets difficult, and it will, you need to have a warrior’s level of commitment, a complete “life or death” determination that you will succeed no matter what. This is your “how,” this is you making it happen, no one else, just you.

 

4. Timed steps

This in essence is your plan, small scheduled-out steps towards your vision, your ultimate victory. It starts today, by the way, not tomorrow. Think of what you can do right now! Then, something by the end of the week, next month, and so on.

Write it out so you can hold yourself accountable for the progress, otherwise you lose traction. Naturally you are going to adjust these benchmarks, but you likely already have an idea.

 

5. Obstacles

These are things that pop up, trip you up, and slow you down. Anticipate them beforehand; be ready for them. Don’t worry if you do get knocked down—it’s ok. Dust yourself off and build strength from it. You just learned what not to do.

This is where the fire is, the forging of who you are, and will become. Adversity builds character. Capitalize on what’s gone right and build upon it. Never ever give up on you; if you don’t believe in who you are, who else will?

 

6. Rejoice

Once you start moving forward in your progress, rejoice. Life is about living and enjoying your life right. Celebrate and rejoice in your accomplishments along the way. Just don’t stay there too long, get back to work. Remember: if you stop, it all stops moving forward. Make sure you get back on course.

7. Yearlong adjustments

Yearlong adjustments is just that—a way for you to see what’s going right and what’s going wrong and adjust it. Remember, your victory is a lifelong journey, something that you will continuously work on.

So, this is only going to make you stronger and sharpen the sword for success, your vision, and your ultimate victory. Small steps equal giant leaps over time; remember: it all comes back to your vision. Make sure it all adds up and is on track, and start over again.

“Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion.” – Jack Welch

Own who you are today and who you want to become; no matter what it is, you can do it.  It is you who needs to believe in YOU first—before you can go out into the world to accept your own victory.  The Victory Cycle is meant to be applied daily; you get up in the morning and say, “How can I take a step towards my Victory?”  And when you lay down at night, ask yourself, “Did I honor my Victory?”

Here’s the reality: you’re accountable for you—no one else is. It’s time to take that New Year’s resolution once and for all and turn it into a personal revolution within your heart and soul. Use The Victory Cycle to ignite your future, stand up and make it happen starting today.

When are you going to start to use The Victory Cycle to Ignite your future? Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

Michael Annese is a battalion chief for a South Florida fire department. Originally from the Boston area, he spent years pursuing a career in the music industry before embarking on a career in the fire service. Through fierce determination and practicing the principles he has outlined in his book, The Victory Cycle: 7 Progressive Steps to Forge a Lifetime of Everlasting Personal Growth and Change, Michael has created a successful career and fulfilling life. Michael is now paying it forward by sharing his personal life-tested techniques and experience in leadership within The Victory Cycle. For more information, please visit www.michaelannese.com.

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17 Comments

17 Comments

  1. Leah M.

    Jan 24, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    The Victory Cycle is an inspiring and motivating book. It’s a manual on how to create and achieve your goals, no matter what they are. This book helps you create your map to success, and breaks it down into very manageable steps. The author uses relatable examples and u feel like you’re getting advice from a regular guy, rather than some commercialized, larger than life person who you can’t relate to. The journal suggested by the author is an invaluable resource in your journey. It helps you stay on track and reflect. It’s a fast read and by the time you finish the book you have the tools you need to reach your own VICTORY.

  2. Joe F

    Jan 24, 2016 at 2:20 am

    I have known Mike for 20 years and he is a truthful , humble and respected professional. I had the pleasure of working with Mike in my younger years , even then so many years ago he had wisdom beyond his years. Many quotes and advice that he gave me still stick with me to this day. I serve as a captain at a South Florida fire department and many of my practices have stemmed from the motivational time that I work Mike!
    Respectfully
    Captain Joe

  3. Jack C.

    Jan 23, 2016 at 7:40 pm

    I have to say this is one is a keeper. I’ve seen a lot of this type of self help stuff but this one is on the money! I see the word Victory everyday now and all I can think of is this book and am I doing what I am supposed to do to reach my own Victory. Thank you for showing me something I can finally use and understand. Bravo!

  4. Kenia

    Jan 23, 2016 at 5:31 am

    The Victory cycle , is the most amazing book or personal manual of life, that my hands have touched,my mind and soul has experienced and saved. I have had the opportunity to read several similar books , but none like this one. Victory cycle differs from many other books on the market since every page, every word, every council is full of tenderness and true human quality as if our friend was talking directly to each of us, baring the soul and heart, and filling us with strength and hope in times we need most. Definitely I will continue reading all over, this precious gift of God
    VICTORY CYCLE , have so many beautiful qualities that forces you to take it everywhere with you, it is unique, simple, real, concise with such important content, and , easily to understand that even our children may use and can help them to conquer their victories as well and fill them with knowledge and wisdom to face any obstacle or situation into their further.

    Thank you very much!!!!

    Michael, keep lighting the world…We believe in you….
    Kenia

  5. Amber

    Jan 23, 2016 at 4:02 am

    I was skeptical, I went to the website and signed up for personal coaching. I thought this was going to be another scam but after the session I swear he has put a point on my sword and my vision is now limitless!! Love this guy!!

  6. May

    Jan 23, 2016 at 3:55 am

    YES! This is so to the point! Yes, I am going to put this in motion and start my personal revolution!!! The Victory cycle is truly what I need. I visited the website and I have already ordered the book.Thank you addicted 2 success for brinbing this kind of material to us, this is what we need to make a difference in our lives! Long live the Victory Cycle!!! Cheers and congrats!

  7. Lynn M

    Jan 23, 2016 at 3:54 am

    I love the cycle! It is easy to remember, to do and to be accountable to. Michael is right! It is all up to me! He showed me how to create my vision and work towards it and get results!

  8. Adria

    Jan 23, 2016 at 12:55 am

    The Victory Cycle is an inspiring read! It is a straightforward plan that can be applied to any defeat challenges you face in life or just achieve a personal goal. If you are looking for a new strategy… this is the one!!

  9. Brian Warner

    Jan 22, 2016 at 11:48 pm

    If anyone wants to truly lead themself to a better life, then this is the book to read. Be prepared to learn a simple 7 step process to overcome the obstacles that life presents, all while gaining valuable leadership skills and tips on how to manage and overcome the fear of failing. This book is an easy read that will help you set and obtain goals with tips on how to self analyze and make adjustments along the way to being a more resilient and confident person. I highly recommend this book. The Victory Cycle is a very practical resource on goal setting and being victoriuos in any endeavor you choose while learning to be all you were meant to be in life.

  10. Ernie Ayon

    Jan 22, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    Very creative! I love seeing acronyms like this as they make it easy to remember. I did the same with mine, SHARK Belief. I like where you say “It is you who needs to believe in YOU first—before you can go out into the world to accept your own victory. ” Belief in yourself is paramount to success!

  11. Jeff

    Jan 22, 2016 at 9:01 pm

    I have read this engaging book and am really excited by it’s message. It is easy and fun to read but really puts it out there. The author riles you up for the long run. Thanks for writing it…………

  12. Matt

    Jan 22, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    The victory cycle is awesome. A really helpful strategy for setting goals, keeping them and for inspiration throughout the year. Small change or big, this book is a helpful guide to planning and attaining your goals.

  13. Ida

    Jan 22, 2016 at 5:42 pm

    I read this book twice and get something new from it everytime. Its a Must read!!

  14. Susan Tyne

    Jan 22, 2016 at 5:34 pm

    I absolutely love this story, I love the acronym for Victory! I am ordering my copy today and going to reach my Victory!

  15. Susan

    Jan 22, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    Absolutely love this article!!! It’s really hits a cord with the Victory acronym!! I am planning on getting the book immediately!

  16. Shane Kelly-Woodward CPS, CRSS, BAT, CFE

    Jan 22, 2016 at 4:08 pm

    As a Mental Health/Substance Abuse professional one can never have too many tools to navigate through this complicated thing we call life. This is a well written, easy to read and understand book that would be beneficial to anyone of any age. The principles are simple and easy to understand. I think this book would be helpful to people in recovery from any addiction. The recovery world speaks of KISS (Keep it simple) and this book would be of great benefit to those moving forward in recovery from addiction. In addition people suffering from mild depression to major mental illness may find these simple, easy steps extremely helpful in guiding them towards a more serene and tranquil life. Modern society tends to want to complicate things when in reality taking simple, small steps to improving one’s life whatever may be the rut they may be in. I would highly recommend this book to anyone in general as the principles for daily living and moving forward are nicely defined. Two thumbs up!!

  17. Anthony Sulli

    Jan 22, 2016 at 4:06 pm

    This is a great way to get on the right track to succeed and better yourself in all ways of life! The VC has helped me to eat healthier, have the drive to start and push through workouts and also grow my business in just a short time! Everyone needs to follow these 7 steps!!

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Success Advice

A Must-Read Guide for Avoiding Burnout

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

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

Step #1: Build A Sustainable Work Schedule

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

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

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

Step #2: Practice Gratitude

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

Step #3: Remember Your WHY Power

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

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

Step #4: Meditate Twice (Daily)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

1. Stop Multitasking

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

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

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

2. Start Your Day With the Hardest Tasks

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

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

3. Know Your Limits

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

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

4. Plan Out Your Day

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

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

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

5. Understand Proper Delegation

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The Power of Positivity

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

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

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

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

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

What Does It Mean to Be Accountable?

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

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

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

What It Means to Take Control of Your Life & Business

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

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

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

Here are three factors that personally helped me succeed:

1. Becoming more organized

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

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

2. Starting my off my day with positive affirmations

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

“Make each day your masterpiece.” – John Wooden

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

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

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

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

Here are the 3 P’s of irresistible leadership:

1. Passion

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

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

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

2. Persistence

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

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

3. Panache

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

A Must-Read Guide for Avoiding Burnout

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

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

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17 Comments

17 Comments

  1. Leah M.

    Jan 24, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    The Victory Cycle is an inspiring and motivating book. It’s a manual on how to create and achieve your goals, no matter what they are. This book helps you create your map to success, and breaks it down into very manageable steps. The author uses relatable examples and u feel like you’re getting advice from a regular guy, rather than some commercialized, larger than life person who you can’t relate to. The journal suggested by the author is an invaluable resource in your journey. It helps you stay on track and reflect. It’s a fast read and by the time you finish the book you have the tools you need to reach your own VICTORY.

  2. Joe F

    Jan 24, 2016 at 2:20 am

    I have known Mike for 20 years and he is a truthful , humble and respected professional. I had the pleasure of working with Mike in my younger years , even then so many years ago he had wisdom beyond his years. Many quotes and advice that he gave me still stick with me to this day. I serve as a captain at a South Florida fire department and many of my practices have stemmed from the motivational time that I work Mike!
    Respectfully
    Captain Joe

  3. Jack C.

    Jan 23, 2016 at 7:40 pm

    I have to say this is one is a keeper. I’ve seen a lot of this type of self help stuff but this one is on the money! I see the word Victory everyday now and all I can think of is this book and am I doing what I am supposed to do to reach my own Victory. Thank you for showing me something I can finally use and understand. Bravo!

  4. Kenia

    Jan 23, 2016 at 5:31 am

    The Victory cycle , is the most amazing book or personal manual of life, that my hands have touched,my mind and soul has experienced and saved. I have had the opportunity to read several similar books , but none like this one. Victory cycle differs from many other books on the market since every page, every word, every council is full of tenderness and true human quality as if our friend was talking directly to each of us, baring the soul and heart, and filling us with strength and hope in times we need most. Definitely I will continue reading all over, this precious gift of God
    VICTORY CYCLE , have so many beautiful qualities that forces you to take it everywhere with you, it is unique, simple, real, concise with such important content, and , easily to understand that even our children may use and can help them to conquer their victories as well and fill them with knowledge and wisdom to face any obstacle or situation into their further.

    Thank you very much!!!!

    Michael, keep lighting the world…We believe in you….
    Kenia

  5. Amber

    Jan 23, 2016 at 4:02 am

    I was skeptical, I went to the website and signed up for personal coaching. I thought this was going to be another scam but after the session I swear he has put a point on my sword and my vision is now limitless!! Love this guy!!

  6. May

    Jan 23, 2016 at 3:55 am

    YES! This is so to the point! Yes, I am going to put this in motion and start my personal revolution!!! The Victory cycle is truly what I need. I visited the website and I have already ordered the book.Thank you addicted 2 success for brinbing this kind of material to us, this is what we need to make a difference in our lives! Long live the Victory Cycle!!! Cheers and congrats!

  7. Lynn M

    Jan 23, 2016 at 3:54 am

    I love the cycle! It is easy to remember, to do and to be accountable to. Michael is right! It is all up to me! He showed me how to create my vision and work towards it and get results!

  8. Adria

    Jan 23, 2016 at 12:55 am

    The Victory Cycle is an inspiring read! It is a straightforward plan that can be applied to any defeat challenges you face in life or just achieve a personal goal. If you are looking for a new strategy… this is the one!!

  9. Brian Warner

    Jan 22, 2016 at 11:48 pm

    If anyone wants to truly lead themself to a better life, then this is the book to read. Be prepared to learn a simple 7 step process to overcome the obstacles that life presents, all while gaining valuable leadership skills and tips on how to manage and overcome the fear of failing. This book is an easy read that will help you set and obtain goals with tips on how to self analyze and make adjustments along the way to being a more resilient and confident person. I highly recommend this book. The Victory Cycle is a very practical resource on goal setting and being victoriuos in any endeavor you choose while learning to be all you were meant to be in life.

  10. Ernie Ayon

    Jan 22, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    Very creative! I love seeing acronyms like this as they make it easy to remember. I did the same with mine, SHARK Belief. I like where you say “It is you who needs to believe in YOU first—before you can go out into the world to accept your own victory. ” Belief in yourself is paramount to success!

  11. Jeff

    Jan 22, 2016 at 9:01 pm

    I have read this engaging book and am really excited by it’s message. It is easy and fun to read but really puts it out there. The author riles you up for the long run. Thanks for writing it…………

  12. Matt

    Jan 22, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    The victory cycle is awesome. A really helpful strategy for setting goals, keeping them and for inspiration throughout the year. Small change or big, this book is a helpful guide to planning and attaining your goals.

  13. Ida

    Jan 22, 2016 at 5:42 pm

    I read this book twice and get something new from it everytime. Its a Must read!!

  14. Susan Tyne

    Jan 22, 2016 at 5:34 pm

    I absolutely love this story, I love the acronym for Victory! I am ordering my copy today and going to reach my Victory!

  15. Susan

    Jan 22, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    Absolutely love this article!!! It’s really hits a cord with the Victory acronym!! I am planning on getting the book immediately!

  16. Shane Kelly-Woodward CPS, CRSS, BAT, CFE

    Jan 22, 2016 at 4:08 pm

    As a Mental Health/Substance Abuse professional one can never have too many tools to navigate through this complicated thing we call life. This is a well written, easy to read and understand book that would be beneficial to anyone of any age. The principles are simple and easy to understand. I think this book would be helpful to people in recovery from any addiction. The recovery world speaks of KISS (Keep it simple) and this book would be of great benefit to those moving forward in recovery from addiction. In addition people suffering from mild depression to major mental illness may find these simple, easy steps extremely helpful in guiding them towards a more serene and tranquil life. Modern society tends to want to complicate things when in reality taking simple, small steps to improving one’s life whatever may be the rut they may be in. I would highly recommend this book to anyone in general as the principles for daily living and moving forward are nicely defined. Two thumbs up!!

  17. Anthony Sulli

    Jan 22, 2016 at 4:06 pm

    This is a great way to get on the right track to succeed and better yourself in all ways of life! The VC has helped me to eat healthier, have the drive to start and push through workouts and also grow my business in just a short time! Everyone needs to follow these 7 steps!!

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Success Advice

A Must-Read Guide for Avoiding Burnout

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

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

Step #1: Build A Sustainable Work Schedule

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

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

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

Step #2: Practice Gratitude

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

Step #3: Remember Your WHY Power

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

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

Step #4: Meditate Twice (Daily)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

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

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

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

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

1. Stop Multitasking

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

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

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

2. Start Your Day With the Hardest Tasks

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

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

3. Know Your Limits

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

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

4. Plan Out Your Day

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

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

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

5. Understand Proper Delegation

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

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

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

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

The Power of Positivity

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

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

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

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

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

What Does It Mean to Be Accountable?

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

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

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

What It Means to Take Control of Your Life & Business

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

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

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

Here are three factors that personally helped me succeed:

1. Becoming more organized

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

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

2. Starting my off my day with positive affirmations

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

“Make each day your masterpiece.” – John Wooden

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

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

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

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

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

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

Image credit courtesy of Twenty20.com

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Success Advice

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

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

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

Here are the 3 P’s of irresistible leadership:

1. Passion

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

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

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

2. Persistence

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

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

3. Panache

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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