You Need To Vision Your Future

Do you want better health? Maybe a higher income? Do you want greater success in life? Do you wish to achieve more happiness? Well, you need to start visioning your future. I’ll give you 3 steps, to start boosting your life to a new dimension.

First step – Ask For What You Want. Most people are too afraid to ask for what they want, because they fear the disappointment of not getting it. Well, if you don’t ask for it- you’ll probably won’t get it. It’s as simple as that. If you have a dream, the first thing you need to do is to write it down. Take a clean sheet of paper and write down everything you wish to accomplish. For each wish you write, you need to set a deadline for achieving that wish. The deadline turns the wish into a goal and slowly turns it into reality. I have 2 boards in my home, where I write down my goals. On one board I wrote all my major goals for 2009 (I picked the 10 that were most important for me) and on the other board (which is on my bedroom) I pasted photos of all my desired goals for the next few years. I can say for sure that I am heading towards achieving my dreams and I owe much of it for my 2 boards. Some of my goals are financial, some are spiritual, some are related to fitness or hobbies and some are related to making this world a better place.

Second step – Go To Work. Work on your goals every day. Do something every day that will take you one step closer, towards achieving your dreams. I love the sentence that ‘the harder I work, the luckier I get’. It’s true…I believe in leisure and spending quality time with your partner or friends. But, I also believe that moving towards a worthy goal is something you need to work hard on, in order to achieve. In fact, achieving a challenging goal has 2 benefits. The first is great satisfaction, that will give you drive for achieving more worthy goals. The second is – the person you become in order to achieve it. You can’t stay the same and hope to achieve things, that are currently beyond your limit. You need to grow and develop in order to close that gap. In fact, the road you go through, makes you a better person and that is the greatest benefit. Jim Rohn said in one of his lectures that- ‘You should set a goal to make a million dollar, for what it will make of you to achieve it’.

Third step – You Need Faith. Faith is the driving force of this life. After doing your best, you need to have faith that things will work out. We can’t know what the future will bring and even though we try our best to predict every single detail, we hardly succeed. Faith and positive thinking will carry you to happiness and the fulfillment of your goals.

For conclusion- What are your dreams? Write them down….Feel free to post some of them at the comments. Good Luck!

Find Something You Are Passionate About

If You don’t want to work another day in your life- the solution is pretty simple. When you find something you love to do – it doesn’t feel like work at all. Your work becomes a play and you just love it. How can you tell what is suitable for you?

Well, experience is a major factor. Look at your past experiences and your current situation. Ask yourself, are you really happy right now? Are you excited to go to work every morning, or is it just another day? I work about 80 hours a week and the main reason is that I love my work. I try to learn something new every day and I do my efforts to become the best at what I do. When you are passionate about your work – You will enjoy doing it and you will probably be successful too.

Don’t be afraid of change. Change is inevitable in life and it may be the most common factor in our life. Nothing stays the same – we are growing older, our circumstance change and we grow and mature as time passes. It’s important to go with your dreams, even if there is some courage involved in getting it. No major accomplish was ever achieved without a proper amount of courage and determination. Keep in mind that nothing in life is permanent and the best thing you can do is not to resist it. Don’t be a victim – make benefit changes in your life to adjust your new states of mind. If you always had a dream of another exciting career – maybe now is the time to reconsider it. Take out the old dreams and polish them – they might become your new reality.

See the route for success. Although I love what I do, I don’t love every minute of it. There are some things that just don’t hold my attention and it’s perfectly normal. You need to make an effort to minimize the things you don’t like to do and do more of the things you love doing. But, keep in mind that it is a process and you need some patience. When you remember your end goals and you can vision the route for success, you will have a much easier time when you pass through some of the obstacles along the way.

For conclusion, I wish you will find something you love to do (If you haven’t already). I wish you will wake up every morning with excitement and growing passion about your life. I wish you all the best.

How to Raise Your Self Esteem?

Self-esteem is so important, yet we tend to neglect this issue so many times. When we are more confident, we believe we are worthy of a good health, a fulfilling job, a wonderful partner etc. When we are not, we believe we deserve only mediocre results or less. Keep in mind, that there is no such thing as too high self-esteem. It is like saying you have a too strong immune system. Being confident and loving towards yourself, can only cause you to live more joyfully. How can we raise our self-esteem? I will describe some of the reasons for low self-esteem and what you can do to start raising it.

What might harm our self-esteem?

Our inner dialog- The things we say to ourselves on a day to day basis, are the ones that will determine our self-esteem level. Those simple words, are the ones that can predict how high we will rise or how low we might fall. It’s not other people’s words that hurt our self-esteem, it is only the way that we choose to interpret them, that can hurt us. We can hear great compliments, yet we might choose to ignore them, thinking that they don’t really reflect our true nature. It’s important to realize that we are the only ones that are in charge of our inner world. Only our thoughts can cause us to lose faith in ourselves and not any other word that came from someone else.

Generally speaking, there are 10 thinking patterns that most damage your self-esteem (you can read more about them in David D.Burns’s wonderful book- ‘Feeling Good’). I will describe 3 of those thinking patterns that are very common.

Wrong Conclusions: You might be in a hurry to reach conclusions, that have no actual facts to support them. This distorted thinking has two forms- “mind reading” and “predicting the future”.

“Mind reading”- You might be so certain that other people don’t appreciate you, that you don’t even bother to check the facts. For example: In the middle of an excellent lecture you give, you spot a man in the first raw sleeping. This man was awake all night long, but of course you have no way of knowing this. You immediately think that you are boring the crowd. This is obviously a wrong conclusion.

“Predicting the future”- you feel that something bad might happen, even though there is not any fact for supporting this prediction. For example: You need to give a lecture for your co-workers at work. You keep on preparing, yet you are sure it is going to be a disaster. You choose to ignore the fact that your co-workers really appreciate you and will keep on respecting you no matter what. You choose to keep on predicting the future in the way you see it.

Black and White thinking: This thinking pattern is characterized by the tendency to see everything as very good or very bad (black or white, without any other colors in between). Those kinds of thoughts lead us to an endless race towards being perfect. A race that will never be over, since being perfect is not a real option, it is just a fantasy you have created in your mind. Not being aware of that fact, will cause you to keep running towards the perfect life you desire and fearing the mistakes that might harm it. Every mistake you will make, might seem as the one that will cause you to lose everything you worked for. You fear mistakes, since you fear not being perfect. You might irrationally assume that the failure to achieve perfection, can imply that you are worthless. Unfortunately, the reality tends to ignore your plans and it keeps being as it is- not perfect.

It is easy to see how this sort of thinking can damage your self-esteem. For example: A top student, who gets only 90 or above, got a 70 once and immediately decided that he is a total failure. The example shows, how irrational this type of thinking really is.

“Must do” and “Must not do”: must sentences can cause many disturbances during our everyday life. When reality doesn’t fit our expectations, the must sentences that you keep throwing at yourself, might cause you to feel tremendous shame or guilt. Even other people’s behavior will not always fit your expectations and then you might feel anger and frustration.

It is your choice- if you don’t wish to spend your life being bitter, you will have to make some changes to your “must sentences”. But how can you make the changes? How can you change any of the thinking patterns listed above?

In order to make the change, you need to keep a journal. Spend 15 minutes every day, writing your disturbing thoughts (the ones that harm your self-esteem and damage your happiness). Write them on one side of the paper. Name that column – “Automatic thinking”. On the other side of the paper, write a logical answer for each disturbing thought. Name that column – “logical thinking”.

Example: let us assume that you have just got back from a date. It was terrible and you feel very disappointed. You keep saying to yourself that you are a looser and you might never find a partner. Write this thought on one side of the paper. Now, it is time to write a logical response to this thought. Keep in mind, that you need to do it on writing, since those thoughts are flying extremely fast in your mind and only when you write them you can give them the proper attention and gradually wipe them. Now, for an example of a logical response that you can write: “I had many great dates on the past and one bad date isn’t going to change everything. I am still pretty young and quiet attractive, so there is a good chance that I will find a partner and get married. I am definitely not a looser, only because one date went wrong. It is only natural that some dates will be better and some won’t be as successful.” That’s it… It’s an example for a logical response. It’s important to write things that are true and that you really believe in, so it will be easier for you to adopt this new logical thinking pattern.

For conclusion, I hope you will enjoy a high self-esteem, since you deserve it. Take the time and give yourself a little compassion. As always I wish you happiness! Feel free to leave your comments.

When You Don’t Get What You Want

Have you ever had a strong desire to reach a certain goal? Was there a time that you really wanted something and you just couldn’t have it? It might be a car, a relationship, a house, a deal, a test score, a job, a career etc. The questions are, what to do when in spite of all our efforts, we don’t get what we want? How to face the frustration of not reaching our goals? And how to face failure when it comes our way?

Be kind to yourself– see things in the right perspective. As Zig Ziglar said “Failure is an event, never a person”. You still deserve love and respect for trying your best. The willingness to rise after every wrong attempt, is our greatest glory.

Keep trying– If you are really eager to succeed you should “go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm” (Sir Winston Churchill). I know from my own experience at work, that seven or eight out of ten new attempts to make a profit, end up as failures. In order to succeed, I work hard and I just keep trying, until getting it right.

See the positive aspect– “Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently” (Henry Ford). Take the time and think how you can improve your next attempt. Our failures force us to become better, whether we like it or not.

For conclusion, I can only wish you happiness! Leave your comments and share your opinion with me.

How to Become an Entrepreneur?

Maybe you are already a successful entrepreneur and maybe you are not even considering becoming one. I will share with you my own story.

Well, not long ago, about a year ago, I was working 16 hours a day, fighting to make a living. In fact, when I started as an online marketer, it took me 2 months, only to make my first $30. It was tough…

I believe you need 3 things in order to succeed as an entrepreneur in any field. It doesn’t matter if you want to build your online business or you are going to open a coffee shop- The principals remain the same to my opinion.

First Thing You need is persistence. Jim Rohn said it so well: “Resolve is promising to yourself, you will never give up”. A long the way, you will find many good reasons to quit. However, if you are really determined- they won’t matter so much.
When I worked around the clock and could barely make a living, friends and relatives constantly told me I should quit. I had only one thing on mind- If other people I knew, could reach the goals that I had and it has been done before, I can do it too (It’s only a question of time and persistence).
So how can you convince yourself to keep moving forward, when success seems so far away? Well, I love Thomas Edison famous quote, that articulate it so well: “If I find 10,000 ways something won’t work, I haven’t failed. I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward”.

You need Passion for what you do. When you love what you do– it won’t seem as work at all. Passion will help you to grow your business and look for more ways to strengthen it. When you have many solid pillars to sustain your business, you will be more successful.

And last – you must have Faith. All of this is not possible without faith and positive thinking. You need to believe that you can reach your goals and that you deserve the best in life. Low self-esteem can many times damage your faith. When you feel worthy of your goals, you will have faith in yourself and you are more likely to reach your destination.

For conclusion, I wish you happiness and success.

How To Feel Great All The Time?

Well, that’s a tough question, But in the following post I will try to give you some answers. What leads me to write this post? In the past few days I have been working like crazy. I can certainly say that I was sometimes very enthusiastic (when coming up with new ideas) and sometimes quite discouraged (when working a lot and not getting results). Why we have different emotions and how can we tune our state of mind? Read on…

Well, the common belief is that it’s natural to have different emotions and we have minimum or no control over them whatsoever. Well, that is not quite true. We do have a variety of emotions and they are all legitimate, but we do have control over our general feeling, as I will describe. Emotions don’t just pop up and ruin our day or vice versa turn it to a great one. There is a reason for each emotion to rise to the surface and the reason is our thinking. Yes! that’s the reason and our life events play only a small role in the process. You may think that you are feeling great, because of your brand new car or your loving relationship. That’s part of it, But the truth of the matter is that your thoughts caused you to feel great. The point is that you respond to your daily events with different thoughts and those same thoughts cause your emotions. It’s not your emotions that lead you to have wonderful thoughts, but positive thoughts that started this whole magic process. So, the conclusion so far is that if you want to feel great all the time, you need to have positive thoughts all the time that will lead you to feel this way. Is that possible?

I am not sure. I know that I definitely don’t feel great all the time, But being aware of the process described earlier, I do my best to get rid of negative thoughts (less negative ones, leaves more room to the positive ones). How to get rid of negative thoughts?

First of all don’t fight them. Be aware of them and try to notice when a negative thought is running in your mind (In fact this little thought left untreated can cause you to feel worried or stressed a few days later- one tiny thought starts the whole process…). Now, each day take some time alone to analyze the negative thoughts you found running in your head during the day. Write each thought down and see if it is truly logical and worth having (I have described this process in a lot more details in the self-esteem post, that I encourage you to read). Afterwards, rephrase each negative thought in to a more logical and positive version. This process must be in writing and Yes it takes time. However, aren’t 15 minutes of your day worth your good feeling? Think about it….

For conclusion, if you make the effort to live a better and happier life, you will be rewarded (not always instantly, but it will pay off). Taking the time and shining your mind is a really good investment. Giving more awareness to your thoughts, will gradually lead you to have less negative thoughts (By writing the thoughts down as I described above). I can only wish you success and also that you will feel great (as often as possible) while facing your own life events, circumstances and challenges.

Time Management – Covey’s 4 Quadrants

Well, every day there is a limited number of hours… 24 to be exact. Since I am quite busy in the last days- from working, volunteering and much more, I have thought of writing about time management. In this short post, I will explain the four-quadrant matrix for importance and urgency, which is the basis for managing your time right. So, what are Covey’s 4 quadrants?
Covey’s quadrants organize our life activities into 4 different quadrants, that differ in importance and urgency. The first one represent the things that are both important and urgent for us to do (you need to do them now). The second represent the things that are important, but not urgent (you can decide when to do them). The third represent the things that are not important, but urgent (you should delegate them and not do them yourself). The last quadrant represents the things that are neither important or urgent (you should dump them!).

Covey’s 4 quadrants give us a valuable lesson- we should stay focus at our important tasks. Even though it’s quiet tempting to handle our urgent tasks all the time- that won’t leave us much time to do the really important things… We should try and stay focus at quadrants 1 and 2.

For conclusion, I Think that Randy Pausch’s (The late and very inspiring American professor) time management lecture is truly excellent (It’s a bit long, but very recommended). I have watched this lecture a few times and I encourage you to watch it. Enjoy…

You Can’t Hit a Target That You Can’t See

Well, the sentence above sounds quite obvious. However, only a few times in our life we stop and think whether or not we are heading towards the places we desire. Have you ever thought about the direction you are moving towards?

You should start doing so. Time is at the essence. It’s your most valuable resource. When you move through life without no awareness, you are sleep walking. In fact, most people go through life, without no innovative thinking. Most people do the regular things most people do. They do the same things and think the same thoughts. They don’t know that they have a choice in life. Greatness is a choice. Happiness is a choice. What should you do?

Define the things you want. I truly believe that the greatest goal is genuine lasting happiness. You should set a goal to become as happy as you can. When you start analyzing the things you do – you will see that you might need to do a couple of changes in order to get to where you want. You might need to do some work on your thinking patterns and start cultivating more positive ones. You might decide that you need a different job or another relationship. It’s up to you. After you have made your thinking, take out a plain sheet of paper and start writing exactly what you want. Define the route you need to take and don’t save on the details. Think how you will feel after you will make the change. Also, try to visualize what changes are needed from your part, in order to take this unknown route. You may need to take some risks and stare life straight in the eyes.

For conclusion, I hope that you have a well-defined target. It’s perfectly normal to change them every now and then. However, when you know your targets, you have a much better chance of actually hitting them. I wish you happiness.

Volunteering Is for The Soul

Not long ago, a few months ago to be more exact, I started to volunteer. I have set this goal 3 years ago, but only recently had the chance to fulfill it. After filling an application and going through interviews, I was accepted and got the chance to make a good impact on other people’s lives. In a way, it’s one of the more meaningful things I have done in my life, if not the most meaningful one. So, what do I do?

I volunteer in giving mental assistance (sort of a ‘first aid’ assistance), for people who are on the break of suicide (In fact, I’m still going through a 4 month intensive training period, during which I only volunteer with guidance) . For me, being raised as a pretty spoiled boy, it was quiet shocking to be exposed to some of the content during the training or some of the stories that I have seen on my shifts. Violence, sexual harassment and other great hardships are the daily reality of some of the people who arrive at our door. So why should someone get his head into all of that stuff? Why bother?

There are a few good reasons. First of all, You can make a huge difference in other people’s life and that is a true gift. Another good reason is to learn how to be more empathic and patient. Those traits are being strengthened while you volunteer and will be handy for you, when you or someone close to you feels down. Moreover, being able to totally focus on other people’s problems, that are much bigger than your own problems, causes you to be aware to your relatively good fortune in life. So, should you volunteer?

That is a good question. I don’t think that you need to volunteer in order to make a great change in people’s life. Being kind to one another, whenever possible, is a great way to make an impact. However, if you find some worthy goal you are passionate about and you are willing to contribute from your own time to promote it- I believe that you are really lucky. Contributing your time is a privilege. I feel very lucky, that I was fortunate enough to have free time to promote things that I care about. For me having this privilege is a part of successful living. I wish you will enjoy this great privilege too.

Should You Leave Your Day Job?

Not long ago, I had a 9 to 5 job. Everything was good, but something was missing. Since November last year I am self-employed and I am loving it (even though there are many challenges). In this post I will give you some guidelines, that can help those of you who are interested in leaving their day job. Taking an entrepreneurship route is not for everyone. In fact, some will claim that only 1% of the population can succeed as self-employed. I think that it doesn’t matter if you think of leaving your day job or not- it’s always good to have a plan B ready to launch. Why should you read this post?

  • I don’t think you should leave your day job, But you should definitely know that there are more ways to earn money. If you can earn some money part time, while you work full time at your day job, you can gradually build a small fortune.
  • Confidence. I think it’s a key element in work and life. When you build more streams of income part time, you will be less worried from your financial state and you will generally feel more confident.
  • If you will ever hate your day job, this post might come out handy .

The guidelines to leaving your day job:

  1. Build a steady stream of income, while you are working at your day job. How to do that? Well, there are many ways to earn money part time. If you have a certain talent or a unique skill, I would probably think at that direction. However, if you don’t, in today’s economy and the rapid pace that everything is moving- I would focus on the Internet. How can you earn money online? There are serval ways- joining affiliate programs (if you don’t know what it means, you can read in this Wikipedia), blogging and more. If you are a beginner, I would recommend blogging on a subject you are passionate about. By getting a loyal audience of readers, you can gradually increase your income (that will come from putting advertisements and banner ads in your blog). Bear in mind that if you wish to earn money online, you will need to learn a few subjects- seo, html, css, ppc and more as the time goes by.
  2. Think long term. Some of the projects I did part time are very small, yet today they run on auto pilot. Each one of them gives me a little stream of income, but that is a steady income, that is added to each month’s earnings. You should think of things that can produce you some amount of money on a steady basis, with not much effort from your side. From that reason, I think that a good internet site, that truly gives value to its visitors, is like a good real estate piece. They both produce money each month on a steady basis. A good website that you own is a property and that’s good to remember.
  3. Go to work on your part time fortune. If you have a day job from 9 to 5 pm, you still have a lot of time to invest in developing your part time streams of income. You will gradually become better and better at your part time work. “Success is doing ordinary things extraordinary well” Jim Rohn.
  4. Really think of giving more value to other people. Think of the people that will gain from your new part time activity and make the best you can do. Zig Ziglar said it so well (this quote is hanged on my office door): “If you help enough people get what they want, you can have everything you want”.
  5. Don’t think of quitting your day job, before you can double your salary part time. Yes, you need to double it. When you can make significantly more money at your part time work, you will have some money saved on the side and a reasonable amount of confidence that you can make it on your own. Only when I doubled my salary, I thought of quitting my day job and I think that’s the only way to go.

Good luck!