Friday, 29 May 2015
Whether you are a location independent entrepreneur, work at an office, or otherwise, you are probably spending somewhere in the range of eight hours a day at work. Perhaps when you add commuting, that goes up to 10.
Say you need to sleep eight hours a night (you really should be). That means out of your available time, you’re spending about 63% of it at work, for a large chunk of your life.
If you’re going to spend that much time on something, you better make sure you’re enjoying what you’re doing. You only have one shot at life.
How can you tell? Here are some key signs that you enjoy your work:
1. Time flies by and you lose yourself. You enter a flow state.
Flow is a nearly transcendental state where time ceases to matter–what is in front of you is all there is, and worries and other tasks slip away. It happens when you do something that is really enjoyable (like playing a musical instrumental you love) or being with someone you really care about.
It’s the same thing when you are doing work you really love. Time slips away and you look at the window swearing that the sun just came up when you see it’s dark outside.
And the best thing about the flow state–it feels good.
2. You feel like you are doing something of value. You feel fulfilled.
Humans feel happy when they are connected to others, but also when they give or create something of value. It doesn’t have to be curing cancer (of course that would be amazing!); it could be more simple like being a carpenter and building things that people want or need. Whatever the job, you feel a deep sense of gratitude for being able to help and serve people. You feel like you are giving back and giving people your unique ideas, abilities, and talents.
It’s another thing that defines how a happy person lives their life, and how you too can stay happy daily.
3. You are excited to wake up in the morning.
If you aren’t ready and raring to get up in the morning, something might be amiss. Of course, everyone has off days. But if you continuously dread going to work to a serious amount, it might be time to change.
Whatever you do should get you excited to get up and hit the ground running full speed. It might involve you focusing on something about your job that you didn’t see before, but it should get you up and excited.
4. Your co-workers and superiors are seen as partners to give and produce something.
When you see the people you work with not just as other bodies in the office or guys who give you reports to fill out, you are in the right place. You should see them as helpers with whom you can create something big. Maybe you aren’t the big boss deciding what that is, but you believe in what you’re doing, and you love that you get to work and struggle along with these people to make it a reality.
5. You do not complain.
Many people complain about their jobs:
“It’s too early.”
“It’s too far.”
“I don’t like the people I work with.”
“I hate what I do.”
If you’re constantly complaining, you either need a mindset change (start appreciating what you have, compared to say, being unemployed and struggling to pay any bill) or it’s your internal guide showing you that you need to find a different job you would enjoy more.
Whatever the case, in work you enjoy there may be times you complain about work load or an annoying task. But overall you know these are small potatoes compared to the happiness that comes from doing what you love.
6. You don’t mind the struggle.
Work can be a struggle. Writers spend hours editing and must work daily. Artists may do entire portraits and then throw them out. Engineers come up with designs that are faulty and have to go back to the drawing board of equations and figures.
But when you enjoy your work, you don’t care. You love the struggle. You love coming back, refining, and the process of progression to get what you want. The end goal of producing something amazing is worth it.
7. You get energized when you talk about what you do.
When people ask, “What do you do?”, you get revved up. You can’t shut up about it. That is a sign that you love what you do and you want everyone else to know.
8. You feel like your work is an extension of who you are; it is a part of your personality.
Work ceases to become work when it’s not just a means to an end. The perfect work is something that deeply resonates with something inside of you, and makes you able to output amazing quality and hours upon hours of production. You are expressing yourself and feel amazing and congruent with it.
9. You find yourself interested in extra items not assigned to you.
When you really enjoy your work, you’ll want to learn about your company or things that you might not be directly responsible for, but deal with the work in general. Even if you don’t have to do certain things, you want to learn more.
10. You feel tired at the end of the day, but in a satisfied way.
There’s a difference between feeling tired because you accomplished a lot, versus being tired because you had to drag yourself kicking and screaming through the day using lots of your willpower. If you feel accomplished, satisfied, happy, and like you produced something of value when you work and that makes you tired, you’re doing it right.
Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.
- Steve Jobs
Saturday, 23 May 2015
Often times when people come to you for advice, getting them to ask questions is the most effective form of finding an answer. Taking the time to contemplate a question let’s people come to their own conclusions, and is often times way more effective than just telling them how they should think, or act.
But what if it is you that is seeking advice? Here is a list of questions to ask yourself that will set your mind free.
1. If you didn’t know how old you were, what would you guess your age to be?
2. In the end of your life, will you have said more, or done more?
3. If the average human lifespan was only 40 years, how would you live differently?
4. If happiness was money, what would make you rich?
5. Would you rather do the right thing, or do things right?
6. What is better: a worried genius, or a joyful idiot?
7. Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or not be able to make new ones?
8. Can you know the truth without challenging it?
9. Have you ever actually encountered your greatest fear? If not – why is it your greatest fear?
10. Are you simply alive, or truly living?
11. What did you do today that you’ll actually remember?
12. Are you doing what you believe in? Or simply getting by?
13. How much have you actually controlled the path of your life?
14. If you could offer someone one piece of advice, what would it be?
15. Do you see the line between insanity and creativity?
16. If you could change one thing about the world what would it be?
17. Would you give up 10 years of your life to be attractive or famous?
18. Would you rather have less work to do, or more work doing what you love?
19. Do you ever feel like you’re re-living the same day over and over?
20. If we learn from mistakes, why are we so afraid to make them?
21. How comes what makes you happy doesn’t make everyone happy?
22. Why are you, you?
23. What would you do differently if there was no one to judge you?
24. What is it in life that you truly love?
25. In the decisions you are making right now: are they for you? or for someone else?
26. Knowing I will die, how should I live?
27. Which is worse: failing or never trying?
28. What am I holding that I need to let go of?
29. Does something that upset me 5 years ago even matter anymore? Why?
30. If not now, when?
Friday, 15 May 2015
1. “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein
2. “Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes.” – Sigmund Freud
3. “In seeking happiness for others, you will find it in yourself.” – Unknown
4. “Love is a verb. Love – the feeling – is a fruit of love, the verb.” – Stephen Covey
5. “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” – Viktor Frankl
6. “He who fears he will suffer, already suffers because he fears.” – Michel De Montaigne
7. “Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill
8. “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Gandhi
9. “When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.” – Helen Keller
10. “Challenges is what makes life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.” – Joshua J. Marine
11. “If you want happiness for an hour – take a nap. If you want happiness for a day – go fishing. If you want happiness for a year – inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a life time – help someone else.” – Chinese proverb
12. “Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of meaning and purpose.” – Viktor Frankl
13. “A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes
14. “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” – Confucius
15. “Many people are passionate, but because of their limiting beliefs about who they are and what they can do, they never take actions that could make their dream a reality” – Anthony Robins
16. “True success is overcoming the fear of being unsuccessful.” – Paul Sweeney
17. “The only way that we can live is if we grow. The only way we can grow is if we change. The only way we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we are exposed is if we throw ourselves into the open.” – C. Joybell
18. “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it.” – Mary Engelbreit
19. “A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.” – George Bernhard Shaw
20. “Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.” – Henry van Dyke
21. “I would rather die a meaningful death than to live a meaningless life.” – Corazon Aquino
22. “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” – Reinhold Niebuhr
23. “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” – Stephen Covey
24. “We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy this kind of poverty.” – Mother Theresa
25. “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift of God, which is why we call it the present.” – Bil Keane
26. “Falling in love is not a choice. To stay in love is.” – Unknown
27. “The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” – Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
28. “The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” – Albert Einstein
Sunday, 10 May 2015
Gandhi said, "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others."
And one of the most effective ways to serve is through small acts of kindness developed into everyday habits. They may seem like little things, but most of us can recall a time when a seemingly little thing — a kind word, a helping hand — has made a memorable mark and a big difference.
Here are some simple ideas on how you can leave your mark:
1. Give your undivided attention. Be present and available to those you're with.
2. Be a problem solver. Become known as a person who has solutions and answers — or who knows where to find them.
3. Remember people's names. It makes them feel valued and leaves a great impression.
4. Ask "How can I help?" Be the person who is always willing. Just the offer communicates that you value someone.
5. Set high standards. Let others always see you doing and giving your best.
6. Make your contribution greater than your reward. Always give a little more than you get.
7. Lead with integrity, no matter how much it costs. It's the right thing to do in any case, but it also makes it easier for those who see you to do the same.
8. Smile. A smile is an invitation to connect.
9. Compliment the person in the first 30 seconds of the conversation. Pick something specific and personal. It will make the person feel valued.
10. Make people feel good about themselves. Acknowledge their gifts and talents.
11. Listen silently. Listen is an anagram of silent. Try to listen without interrupting.
12. Make eye contact. As the saying goes, the eyes are the window to the soul. When you can look someone square in the eye, you are saying you value the person and want to connect.
13. Show respect. It's the bottom-line due of every person you meet.
14. Share the credit. When something important has been accomplished, share the credit. Remember, nothing great was ever accomplished alone.
15. Talk with people, not at them. Engage people by truly connecting with them.
16. Send it. When you discover an article, blog post, or book that you think someone can benefit from, send it with a personal text or note. Forward information that adds value and brings benefit to others, and let them know why you thought they would find it helpful.
17. Dream big for others. Instill a passion in them that they can be more and do more.
18. Stay away from toxicity. Help others learn what is toxic in their lives and how to avoid it.
19. Don't hesitate. Try to be the first person to reach out to someone when you think the person might need help.
20. Keep a positive attitude. Attitude is contagious, so spread only good feelings.
21. Celebrate special occasions. Remember people's birthdays and anniversaries; make a point of sending them a note or a card, giving them a call. Even a quick text is thoughtful. Use technology to help you remember.
22. Help people focus on their strengths, not their weaknesses. Point out their strengths and unique qualities, and gently help them with the parts they are struggling with.
23. Send handwritten notes. It's much more personal and shows you have invested time in expressing yourself.
24. Give without being asked. As long as you know it's appropriate, do something helpful without being asked.
25. Always bring something to the table. Resources, ideas, opportunities — even an article or a good quote can communicate your interest and investment.
26. Give people your trust. It is the foundation of all great relationships.
27. Communicate appropriately. Adapt your communication to fit the time, place, and person. Not everything deserves the same attention.
28. Highlight what may be overlooked. Make a point of noticing the things that others may not notice.
29. Make meaningful connections. Don't always talk about work; ask about something personal that is meaningful and appropriate.
30. Be on time. When you are on time, you show respect for others.
31. Go the extra mile. If you're already in the habit of performing small acts of kindness, think of ways to go further. Extra effort makes people feel extra good.
32. Be a sounding board. Be available if someone wants to run ideas or think things through. Offer help when blind spots occur or new ideas are needed. Help take someone else's thinking to a new level.
33. Give someone a special task and watch the person accomplish it. Let people know you believe in them by making them stretch. Valuing someone goes a long way.
34. Express deep appreciation for the ways that people add value to your life. People often have a hard time taking compliments, but acknowledging their strengths and work is a concrete way of making them feel good.
35. Renew confidence. Everyone struggles; find ways to bolster someone's confidence.
36. Treat people the way you want to be treated. This is the most fundamental rule of being with others.
37. Be sincere in your sincerity. It's not something you can fake.
38. Pay it forward. Model generosity and kindness always.
39. Offer constructive feedback. Feedback is a gift when it's presented positively.
40. Delegate. It makes people feel valued and empowered.
41. Catch people doing something right. And then praise them for it or otherwise show that you noticed.
42. Invite people to be part of a cause that is greater than they are. Invite them to dream big and play even bigger.
43. Don't keep score. Give because you want to give and not because you're adding up the tally.
44. Make it win-win. Supporting others isn't a zero-sum game.
45. Don't let people down. Keep your promises and commitments.
46. Bring your best. Give everything you do your best effort. It matters.
47. Meet people halfway. There is always a way to work through a conflict.
48. Add value constantly. It takes discipline and sacrifice, but it's worth the effort.
49. Start a movement. Inspire others to inspire others.
50. Live every day like it was your last. Show that you cherish your life and those around you.
Imagine what could happen if we spend our time bringing value to others — even if we do one thing on a daily basis. Remember, the smallest gesture can make a big difference and leave the deepest mark.
Sunday, 3 May 2015
We all feel like failures from time to time. While this is a normal feeling, you have to find a way to see yourself and your life from a different perspective. Sometimes we ignore the “little things.” Just because you are not a millionaire, don’t live in a mansion, and you don’t drive a fancy car, that doesn’t mean you’re a failure. In fact, it’s quite the contrary.
Here are 20 signs that you are succeeding in life:
1. Your relationships are less dramatic than they used to be.
Drama is not maturity. As we age, we should develop maturity. So maybe your relationships were drama-filled in your past, but if you have moved beyond that, then you are successful.
2. You are not afraid to ask for help and support any more.
Asking for help does not equal weakness. In fact, it is a strength. No person has ever succeeded in isolation. It takes teamwork to accomplish goals. Asking or help is a sign that you have grown as a person.
3. You have raised your standards.
You don’t tolerate bad behavior any more – from other people, or even yourself. You hold people accountable for their actions. You don’t spend time with the “energy vampires” in your life anymore.
4. You let go of things that don’t make you feel good.
No, this is not narcissistic even though it might seem like it. Self-love is success. Love yourself enough to say ‘no’ to anything that doesn’t make you happy, doesn’t serve your purpose, or drags you down.
5. You have moments where you appreciate who you see in the mirror.
Ideally, you should appreciate who you see in the mirror at every moment. But even if that doesn’t happen, if you do it more than you used to, then that is success. Love yourself. You are awesome.
6. You have learned that setbacks and failure are part of self-growth.
Not everyone can have success 100% of the time. That’s just not realistic. Life is about victories and losses. So look at your setbacks as stepping stones to something better. In reality, there really is no such thing as as setback. It’s all just part of a wondrous journey.
7. You have a support system that includes people who would do anything for you.
If you have figured out the people who “have your back” and recognized the ones who only pretend that they do, then you have succeeded. This is a painful realization, but once you learn to see the signs of betrayal, you can stay away from those people.
8. You don’t complain much.
Because you know there really is nothing to complain about. Unless you really have gone through some horrific life experience and had unimaginable losses, most of what we all experience on a day-to-day basis is just mundane. And successful people know that. And they live in a space of gratitude.
9. You can celebrate others’ successes.
Just because other people succeed, that doesn’t make you a failure. Applaud the people who rise to the top. The more positive energy you give to other people’s victories, the more you will create your own.
10. You have passions that you pursue.
You are not stagnant. You know you have something wonderful to contribute to the world. You have unique talents and gifts. Not only do you know that, you pursue it.
11. You have things to look forward to.
If you don’t have exciting things going on in your life that you are eagerly anticipating, then you are slowly dying inside. Successful people create goals that they are passionate about pursuing. They let this excitement drive their life.
12. You have goals that have come true.
Even though “failures” are a part of life, you have stuck to your goals and dreams long enough to make them come to fruition. You have some tastes of victory. It fuels you.
13. You have empathy for others.
A person without empathy is dead inside. Empathy equals spreading love and positive energy into the world. Successful people know this. They love others as if they are family.
14. You love deeply and open yourself up to be loved by others.
Love is risky, and sometimes scary for people. It’s the one thing we all strive for, but it’s also intimately tied to the one thing we fear the most – rejection. If you open your heart enough to love and be loved, then you are successful.
15. You refuse to be be a victim.
You know that life doesn’t always happen to you. Many times, you are a co-creator of your life experiences. Successful people know this and refuse to be kept down by life experiences. The rise up and conquer anyway.
16. You don’t care what other people think.
You know you can’t please everyone. You know that the standards with which society judges people is many times unrealistic. So you just keep true to yourself and love the person you are.
17. You always look on the bright side.
Life can be full of disappointments – if you choose to see them that way. Otherwise, they are learning opportunities. No negative experience is ever wasted as long as you learn from it.
18. You accept what you can’t change.
Let’s face it – there many things you can’t change in life. All you can change is how you view what happens. If you can change your negative perspective on situations to a positive one, then you are successful.
19. You change what you can.
And let’s face it again – there are many things you can change in life. Successful people don’t sit around accepting the negatives that are changeable. They get out there and do something about it!!
20. You are happy.
This is the ultimate definition of success. It doesn’t matter what the balance is in your bank account, how big your house is, or how many fancy vacations you take. If you are happy, then you are succeeding in life.
Even if you don’t see yourself in many of these 20 things, don’t fret. It’s okay. Be happy that you see yourself in just a few. In time, the rest will come. You just need to keep moving onward and upward.