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Success Advice

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

How to Use the “Small Victories” Method to Avoid Burning Out

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Have you had a goal you begin to work toward only to run out of steam? Do you know what you need to do to get to where you want to be, but the necessary work feels overwhelming? “Small Victories” is the method to eliminate procrastination, dramatically increase productivity, and to make every part of the process not just bearable, but fun.

The journey from novice to rockstar is filled with a thousand small victories. Each victory increases your skill, your confidence, your positive expectation, and is ultimately the only way to really do something truly great.

Imagine you have a band in which everything was fun- fun to practice, fun to get together and create. The first victory was writing your first song. Afterwards, some friends come to watch you practice, and they cheer you on giving you another boost. Then you play your first show, do your first band photoshoot, and create a band website. After all this hard work, you record your first song as a band, have your first major show, your first tour, and develop the best thing so far which are your first true fans.

Each victory gives you the energy to get to the next victory

If you told the kid, it was going to take ten years of work to get to the end goal, without celebrating the small important victories in between, it would be illogical for any human to hunker down and work 10 years to get there. So how is this relevant? When starting a business or following your dream, incentivizing yourself with small victories will make you far more likely to make you continue on to your end goal. Without it, your willpower only lasts so long.

The small victories are the positive fuel to make it to the next milestone. You create small victories by finding a way to interact with people as a way to have an impact even if it’s small. For example, when people try to start businesses, often they try to get everything together before selling their first product. It could be months or years of work before they are at the level of their competition.

I am a series of small victories and large defeats and I am as amazed as any other that I have gotten from there to here. Charles Bukowski

Say you’re creating a bakery, it could be a year before anyone tried your first baked good if you go the traditional brick and mortar route without any small victories. This comes with great financial cost and energy. You also lose out on the opportunity to improve your craft, your products, your image and your connections with others who can take your business to greater heights.

However, if you go with the method of small victories instead, you would start by creating a cult following amongst friends and family with your decadent treats. Next, you would bake them at home and sell them at local events, farmers markets, and maybe even at local businesses. This can give you the opportunity to create a strong local and social media following well before the opening of your first actual store.

Work and effort without small victories lead to burnout

We need to build rewards along the way into our endeavors, because this provides encouragement to keep going. Each moment is a separate gift, an experience where something was fulfilled, where something was accomplished, no matter how small, and being a recluse until the grand unveiling will have so many missed opportunities along the way.

Small victories are also an opportunity to develop your skills, get feedback – positive or constructive – and considerably increase opportunities. Small victories increase your credibility by showing a track record and the trajectory you’re on by increasing your ability to attract investors and partners.

“Success is rarely the result of one swell swoop, but more often the culmination of many, many small victories.” – Joseph M. Marshall III

The idea of celebrating small victories can be applied to any subject. In weight loss, for instance, seeing pounds melt away will give you the positive mindset to continue and even improve the choices you make to enhance your physique. Sharing your success with others will bring in the element of positive encouragement. It can also motivate others to come with you on the journey. Your small victories can inspire others to start their own journey.

What small victory did you achieve today which will bring you a step closer to your goals? Let us know below!

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

2. Work on Your Resilience

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

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

3. Focus

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

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

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

4. Be Bold

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

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

5. If You Fall, Get Back Up

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

2. Position yourself better

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

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

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

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

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

3. Take calculated risks

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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One Question You Must Answer to Ensure Personal Success

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

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

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

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

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

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

1. Lack of vision

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

2. Lack of goals

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

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

3. You don’t believe you can get there

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

4. You are lazy

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

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

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

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5 Counterintuitive Ways to Make the Most Out of Your Time

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Do you think you’ll accomplish everything you want to before you die? Do you sometimes worry you won’t reach your goals? Do you have a plan to get what you want? If you’re like most people, you often have trouble squeezing in everything you want to do during the day, week or month, let alone everything you might want to accomplish in a lifetime. Updates from friends on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat come in to your phone at all hours of the day and night. Invites to activities, events, festivals, etc. blow up your phone on a regular basis. (more…)

McVal Osborne is the author of Start Up your Life: Why we don’t know what we want, and how to set goals that really matter. McVal writes about motivation, decision making, and strategic thinking. He graduated from UC Santa Barbara in 2011 with a degree in Spanish, and has since worked as a market researcher and business consultant in Washington D.C., New York City and London. You can reach him on Twitter @mcval or on IG @mcvaliant.

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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

How to Use the “Small Victories” Method to Avoid Burning Out

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Have you had a goal you begin to work toward only to run out of steam? Do you know what you need to do to get to where you want to be, but the necessary work feels overwhelming? “Small Victories” is the method to eliminate procrastination, dramatically increase productivity, and to make every part of the process not just bearable, but fun.

The journey from novice to rockstar is filled with a thousand small victories. Each victory increases your skill, your confidence, your positive expectation, and is ultimately the only way to really do something truly great.

Imagine you have a band in which everything was fun- fun to practice, fun to get together and create. The first victory was writing your first song. Afterwards, some friends come to watch you practice, and they cheer you on giving you another boost. Then you play your first show, do your first band photoshoot, and create a band website. After all this hard work, you record your first song as a band, have your first major show, your first tour, and develop the best thing so far which are your first true fans.

Each victory gives you the energy to get to the next victory

If you told the kid, it was going to take ten years of work to get to the end goal, without celebrating the small important victories in between, it would be illogical for any human to hunker down and work 10 years to get there. So how is this relevant? When starting a business or following your dream, incentivizing yourself with small victories will make you far more likely to make you continue on to your end goal. Without it, your willpower only lasts so long.

The small victories are the positive fuel to make it to the next milestone. You create small victories by finding a way to interact with people as a way to have an impact even if it’s small. For example, when people try to start businesses, often they try to get everything together before selling their first product. It could be months or years of work before they are at the level of their competition.

I am a series of small victories and large defeats and I am as amazed as any other that I have gotten from there to here. Charles Bukowski

Say you’re creating a bakery, it could be a year before anyone tried your first baked good if you go the traditional brick and mortar route without any small victories. This comes with great financial cost and energy. You also lose out on the opportunity to improve your craft, your products, your image and your connections with others who can take your business to greater heights.

However, if you go with the method of small victories instead, you would start by creating a cult following amongst friends and family with your decadent treats. Next, you would bake them at home and sell them at local events, farmers markets, and maybe even at local businesses. This can give you the opportunity to create a strong local and social media following well before the opening of your first actual store.

Work and effort without small victories lead to burnout

We need to build rewards along the way into our endeavors, because this provides encouragement to keep going. Each moment is a separate gift, an experience where something was fulfilled, where something was accomplished, no matter how small, and being a recluse until the grand unveiling will have so many missed opportunities along the way.

Small victories are also an opportunity to develop your skills, get feedback – positive or constructive – and considerably increase opportunities. Small victories increase your credibility by showing a track record and the trajectory you’re on by increasing your ability to attract investors and partners.

“Success is rarely the result of one swell swoop, but more often the culmination of many, many small victories.” – Joseph M. Marshall III

The idea of celebrating small victories can be applied to any subject. In weight loss, for instance, seeing pounds melt away will give you the positive mindset to continue and even improve the choices you make to enhance your physique. Sharing your success with others will bring in the element of positive encouragement. It can also motivate others to come with you on the journey. Your small victories can inspire others to start their own journey.

What small victory did you achieve today which will bring you a step closer to your goals? Let us know below!

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Success Advice

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

2. Work on Your Resilience

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

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

3. Focus

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

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

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

4. Be Bold

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

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

5. If You Fall, Get Back Up

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

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

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

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Success Advice

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

2. Position yourself better

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

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

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

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

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

3. Take calculated risks

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Success Advice

One Question You Must Answer to Ensure Personal Success

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

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

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

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

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

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

1. Lack of vision

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

2. Lack of goals

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

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

3. You don’t believe you can get there

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

4. You are lazy

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

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

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

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