Whats Your Why

Whats your Why? What keeps you up late at night and wakes you up early in the morning? What keeps you going on the days things seem impossible and you want to give up?

Finding our Why is what gives us our purpose, our drive, our hunger. Our Why is a symbol of our beliefs and that is what people relate to. As long as we never forget our Why we can keep going.

Your Life Is Now

Whether we choose to acknowledge it or not, life is happening now. Not tomorrow, not yesterday, not in fifteen minutes but right now.

All to often we get caught up in the “if this happens I will be happy.” We tell ourselves if we get that promotion at work then we will be happy, or if I can get that new car then I will be happy, or if I can date my dream girl I will be happy.

When we choose to live like this, pushing off our happiness until that something happens, we will never be happy. The truth is happiness is free. We can make the choice today to be thankful for what we have and where we’re at. We can work hard for the things we truly desire but we also have to make the choice to live in the moment and be content.

I recently had the opportunity to go to a Tony Robbins seminar this past week and one of the biggest things he said that stuck with me was; “success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure.” He says the art of fulfillment is the ability to feel happiness and joy in the process and to delight in the experience of life.

We all have huge expectations for our lives, but if we can’t be fulfilled in the process then chasing success and happiness will be like chasing a Ferrari on a bicycle… it will never happen! Robbins says we need to trade expectation for appreciation and enjoy the experience.

Don’t wait until tomorrow to let yourself be happy and fulfilled. Don’t stop chasing your dreams but also don’t forget to take a breath and be grateful for where you’re at and how far you’ve come.

Embrace The Grind

One thing I wish I would have learned when I was younger is to embrace the grind. I used to never want to put in more than a 40 hour week. I was one of the TGIF people who lived for the weekend.

Now I understand the importance of putting in more work than what your paid for. Show up early, stay late, work when you don’t need to work. Doing this day in day out, week in and week out is what gets us ahead.

If we haven’t achieved the things we want to achieve and haven’t reached the goals we want to reach, we have to take a look at how much work we are putting in. We can’t point fingers at anyone else if we aren’t embracing the grind.

Someone told me once to work harder than what you thought you did the last week. If you feel like you gave 110 percent and you were on your grind all week last week, then give 150% this week. If you worked 50 hours last week then work 60 this week.

If you want to avoid working 40 hour weeks when your 65 then put the work in now so you can rest later.

It All Starts With…

Take a look back over a hundred years ago to guys like John Rockefeller or Andrew Carnegie. Fast forward a few decades to the guys like the Wright Brothers and Henry Ford. Fast forward again and look at guys like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs and the current day Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and countless others. What do all of these people have in common besides being extremely wealthy?

Each one of these people started with an idea and a belief. They had a belief that they could create something different, something that could change the world. Jeff Bezos’s parents thought he was crazy at first and didn’t believe in what he wanted to do. Luckily for him he didn’t believe the same thing his parents did. Bezos went on to build one of the largest companies in the world with Amazon.

The first step before anyone else will believe you is you have to believe it yourself. Henry Ford said “The man who thinks he can and the man who thinks he can’t are both usually right.” I’m not a big advocate of “The Secret” where just by thinking and believing, something will magically happen. I do however think it all starts with an unshakable belief in yourself followed by massive action.

Other people aren’t going to share the same belief in your dream that you have, but who cares! Its your dream not theirs. It’s up to you to decide how its going to be. It’s up to you to believe in yourself and believe in your idea, then show the world. Nobody is going to have your passion, your desire and your drive, so be confident that it IS possible.

Remind yourself every single day that no matter how hard it is or how hard it gets that you WILL make it. People are going to doubt you and people are going to talk behind your back, who cares. Believe that you can make it happen, take constant action and prove to the world that you CAN.

The Small Stuff

William James said; ” The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude.” This quote was from the introduction of a book I can’t believe took me so long to pick up called “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff and its all small stuff” by Richard Carlson.

I think we all struggle sometimes with the “small stuff” in life. For me I’ve always had a hard time with letting little things get to me. If someone cuts me off in traffic I get upset. I’m a planner and if things don’t go according to planned it kills my mood. If my to do list isn’t finished by the end of the day I feel accomplished. I could go on and on.

This book had a few big takeaways for me. The first was that life isn’t an emergency. The problem is that we turn the small stuff into emergencies. We create the emergency in our own mind. Once we accept that one little hiccup isn’t the end of the world we can be much happier. Life goes on when things don’t go according to plan.

One of the other big takeaways I got out of this book was that life isn’t always fair. “It’s not life’s job to make everything perfect, that’s our own challenge.” When we don’t accept that fact we start to feel sorry for ourselves and we have pity for ourselves when something doesn’t go right. These are self-defeating emotions that just making us feel worse. It’s hard to swallow but once we accept the fact that life isn’t fair we no longer have to feel sorry for ourselves if something doesn’t go according to plan. We can give ourselves the benefit of the doubt knowing we tried our best instead of complaining to everyone that life just isn’t fair.

Little things come up for all of us every single day and that’s never going to change. But just like William James said, we can change our lives by changing our attitude and how we react to the small stuff. Once we stop obsessing over the things we can’t change and stop worrying about the what ifs our lives become much less stressful.

Giving Back

One of the biggest ways that your life will become better is by making other people’s lives better.

If you have knowledge in a certain area and can help someone else why wouldn’t you? A successful person believes that there is plenty of room at the top and believes in helping others get ahead.

In 2016 I think we can all give more. This year, do something for someone who will never be able to repay you. Give your time volunteering for something you believe in. Help someone achieve a goal they are working towards without expecting anything in return.

This year, make it a point to do at least one thing a day to make someone else’s life better. It could be a simple act of kindness or something bigger than they could have imagined. Practice unselfishly giving and watch what happens in your life!

100 Percent

I saw a quote a few weeks ago and its something I haven’t been able to get out of my mind. The quote was; ” If you give me 100 percent, I will give you 200 percent in return. But if you give me 99 percent I will give you nothing.”

For some people, that might sound a little harsh. Most people believe that 99 percent is pretty damn good. The reality is it’s not. You get what you give. If you aren’t giving it your all then you can’t expect anything from anyone else. 99 percent is a cop-out. How can you expect someone else to give you their all and more if you can’t make the same commitment?

That 1 percent lack of commitment is the difference between getting a promotion or losing your job. It’s the difference in loosing those extra few pounds and not. It’s the difference between your business taking off bigger than you could imagine or barely surviving.

When we give 100 percent to everything we do it’s either going to reveal more opportunity or we’ll find out we should be doing something else. When we give 100 percent to someone in our life, they are either going to appreciate it and give us even more in return or we find out we need to move on.

We owe it to ourselves to give 100% to everything we do all the time. Are you giving 99 percent or are you all in?

Write That Down

The last few weeks with 2015 drawing to a close I’ve noticed myself reflecting more on some of the goals I set for myself at the beginning of the year. Some goals I blew out of the water and others I didn’t even come close on.

With 2016 almost upon us hopefully everyone has at least a good idea of what they want to achieve for the new year. While I am not someone who believes you need a new year to make a change, I do believe it does something in us subconsciously that draws inspiration. We start to believe that the new year is going to be different, that its going to be our year.

We all know and probably have been the New Years resolutioner who has big dreams and aspirations they want to achieve. They are fired up on January first but by March all of their inspiration has fizzled out. So whats the difference between these resolutioner who’s motivation tanks 2 months in and someone who seems to climb all year?

I think we can answer that question once we answer the question of the difference between a dream and a goal. The only difference between a dream and a goal is a goal is just a dream with a deadline.

The most important thing in achieving anything is setting clear goals and putting a timeline to them. We need to figure out exactly what we want, figure out the steps we need to get there and then decide what date we want to have it done by. Whether you want to lose 20 lbs or launch your new website, figure out what you need to do and stick to the date!

However, its one thing to have goals but the second important part is writing them down. The difference in the people who continue to climb is they are clear about their goals and they write them down. They also review them day after day. Write your goals down in a place you will see every day and do it in your own handwriting not on a phone or computer. Something just clicks better in our brains when we physically write things down and we look at our own writing each day.

2016 can be different for you, it can be your year. You can do anything your heart desires this year! Write your goals down, put a plan together and be consistent daily until you hit that time frame you set. I wish big things for each and every one of you in the coming year. Now go out and make it happen!

Speak Up

When we were growing up and someone handed us a coloring book, what was the next sentence that followed? It was probably “here you go, make sure you color inside the lines.”

It’s always play by the rules, follow directions and color inside the lines. We are taught since early childhood to fit inside a mold just like everyone else. We are taught what to say, what to think and what to do. Its sad these days if you ask someone a question of any sort of substance and they only rattle off something they heard on the news or on their Facebook feed.

Society doesn’t teach us to be individuals and think for ourselves. But nothing great has ever come from coloring inside the lines. Ask any successful entrepreneur and I can almost bet you will hear the same story. Their story most likely started with people telling them not to do it, that there is no market for their product or service. For them it was about breaking the rules and coloring outside the lines.

The world needs more people who aren’t afraid to break the mold and who aren’t afraid to speak up. I am not taking any sort of political stance but the reason Donald Trump is in the lead in the political race is because he’s raw, he’s bold and he doesn’t just tell people what they want to hear. If you want to know what he thinks about something just ask. You will be given an uncensored, unapologetic and most likely a bit outlandish answer, but people appreciate that.

Whether you love him or hate him he has broken the mold in politics. He may err on the side of being a bully but he brings a confidence that we can all appreciate. I am not advocating that anybody act like The Donald but the point is, don’t be afraid to speak up, don’t be afraid to do your own research and take a stand. Be original and most importantly don’t be afraid to color outside the lines.

The Most Important Things In Life Aren’t Things

Wealth doesn’t just have to do with the size of your bank account. You can be rich in health, rich in love, rich in knowledge and rich in your relationships.

The older I get the more I realize the most important things to me aren’t actually things. For most people this time of year is about gifts and getting great new things. Sure shiny new things are great but I think whats most important is the moments we get to spend with the people we love.

A new Mercedes, a nice apartment and all the money in the world doesn’t really matter if you have no one to share it with. Over the past year I have been blessed to meet a few people who have become like family to me. And whats worth more than any material gift is the time that I am able to spend with all of them.

We seem to forget that the most precious commodity is not money, its time. We can always make more money but time is something we will never get back. And time spent with the people who mean the most to us is time well spent.