Our lives flick from one conversation to another. Chats with friends, family, colleagues and acquaintances – it all matters. After all, the right conversation with the right person could be the difference between success and failure.
The thing is, when our goals change, we sometimes forget to start new conversations as well. Worse, when many people discuss their future goals, they do it with a passive aggressive or complaining tone. They gloomily imply that life is unfair, or they lack opportunities, and that’s why they’re unsuccessful. By comparison, listening to successful people can be intoxicating because they talk with a tone of empowerment and personal responsibility. The only complaint they have is that they didn’t act sooner.
When I was 20, I decided to go to USC. I wanted to meet people and have experiences. Burdened by my disabilities, I knew this was a big risk and my rationale sounded a bit foolish at the time. But it turned out my brain...
I usually like to kick off each New Year by writing about achieving your goals. Everyone has something to say about the dreaded “New Year’s Resolution,” but I want to go a different way.
This post will bring together five of my biggest ideas shared over the past few months. These ideas aren’t antagonistic to the garden-variety New Year’s Resolution concept. They are meant to be complimentary to the conventional wisdom and strengthen your mental foundation to maximize any decisions you make in 2022.
I picked these ideas because they reflect some of the best lessons I learned during my big and bold business moves this year. Top amongst them is that instead of making a wish list, I deployed the process of analyzing if I was ready to make real changes to my life. I’m happy to say this approach generated enormous value, so let’s dig into the details:
For the last couple of months, I have been getting ready for some exciting, new changes in my business. We are going to launch a new website and new programs next year. I decided to make some organizational changes so I can focus on something I love- creating content.
In this, my last post of 2021, I want to share with you a few tactical ideas to start the new year right. Instead of frantically setting goals around the first of the year, be intentional about your goals. Traditionally, this is a time where people change their focus from being dedicated to working on their goals to enjoying the holidays. However, instead of totally disengaging from your work, spend a little time just planning for next year.
This does not have to be a long process that takes hours and hours. You don’t need a personal manifesto. You don’t even need to break out spreadsheets. Make it an enjoyable process. Take time to journal for...
Every year at Thanksgiving, I write about gratitude. When I first started this trend, each post listed everything I was grateful for. But my understanding of gratitude has since evolved. I now believe gratitude is a guiding principle for success, not just a feel-good concept.
As time ticks by, I learn a bit more about my disability and how to navigate its many challenges. The world wants me to concentrate on all my challenges at the same time. After all, how can I ignore a disobedient hand, a speech impediment, needing help with daily activities, or any other challenge. Just like people should not ignore chest pains, my car’s check engine light, the call from a schoolteacher, an awkward silence from someone I love and, I don’t know… a pandemic. But worrying about every negative thing is a rotten way to live. It diminishes my trust in others, creates unnecessary enemies and ultimately causes me to miss out on amazing opportunities.
Only by using gratitude as...
Successful people are easy to spot. In fact, the cheat-sheet method of achieving your goals is simply to focus on what successful people are doing and emulate their actions.
After all, successful people are always displaying their attitudes, habits and work ethic for all to see – if only we pay attention. On top of that, the libraries and internet are chock full of books, videos, blogs and other information about achieving success. If we are willing to do the work to learn, success is possible for everyone.
But the important point about a narrative is that it entirely in your mind, which means getting the right mindset is crucial to success.
Messages about what will make us happy bombard our brains every day from endless directions. And yet happiness can never come from external sources. Happiness is a personal journey that is always evolving, not a goal or something that can be found like a pebble on the beach. Happiness must be created and no...
When you hear the word “success,” where does your mind go?
For many, success is something that happens to a person, not what a person does. The first things that pops to mind when thinking about someone’s success is they must have had “raw talent,” “good connections” or “grew up in a better social environment.” This mindset may be partially correct, but it can also be used as a defense mechanism to explain away our own failure to work hard.
Everyone constructs their own narrative about success which is influenced by our peer groups, the encouragement we receive during our life and our own gut reactions when seeing the success of others. But the truth is, success is more often a result of hard work, discipline and cooperation than it is about luck (although luck does play a role).
The values we prioritize to reach that success can vary even between people aiming for the same goal. For example, a young salesperson might value...
Nothing happens in a vacuum. Every human action is a reaction to something else, so it’s important to find or maintain your own source of motivation and inspiration.
Unfortunately, motivation and inspiration can be a diminishing resource. What works on one day will slowly stop providing the same kick over time. Motivation comes and goes in waves. You might be raring to go in the morning, but an untimely work email can sap your energy. It’s understandable to blame outside factors in situations like this. Then again, it’s impossible to feel happy, motivated and inspired all the time. The goal instead must be to find motivation and inspiration no matter where you are and no matter how crappy the day is.
What Do Motivation And Inspiration Mean?
Let’s clarify these vague terms “motivation” and “inspiration” with a simple framework.
Motivation and inspiration come in two forms: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic motivation refers to...
It’s typical, isn’t it? The moment we set a goal, all the little obligations and priorities of normal life jump up to get in the way. Then we naturally go with the flow which ends up maintaining the very lifestyle from which we hoped to escape when setting that lofty goal in the first place. Typical.
But because this is so normal, intelligent people have figured out how to stay on track with reaching our goals. I want to outline a few of these gems in this essay.
First, it’s important for every goal to be based in reality while also reflecting what others need of us. Divorcing these from each other is a recipe for failure. For example, it is tough to create a business product that goes “viral” without any marketing. If planning for serendipity in business was easy, then everyone would be doing it. Going viral depends on a lot of things that are permanently out of any person’s control, so planning a business around this strategy isn’t a wise...
My life is filled with amazing people and amazing experiences. I have traveled, nurtured deep friendships, relaxed at countless dinners, found a wonderful woman and fathered two beautiful sons. Along the way, I also met dozens of entrepreneurs, authors, athletes and other amazing people. I am also a highly experienced speaker and writer.
Bottom line is, I have a truly blessed life.
On the other hand, I was born with cerebral palsy. My disability means I need always need help eating, getting ready in the morning, typing, showering and performing other basic tasks. The disability also affected me psychologically.
For instance, I often daydream about what my life might be like without cerebral palsy; even after all these years, I still cannot shake the feeling of embarrassment when asking for help; and watching others effortlessly perform basic tasks reminds me of how much more energy and time I must spend on those same tasks. I often feel robbed of a deeper human essence.
I take pride in what I write and publish. I absolutely love the process of writing since it is a part of my life over which I have control. Due to my disability, I will always need help doing basic tasks, including eating and showering. While I still need help getting my words onto a page, I’m always writing in my head.
The internet is a hugely valuable tool for someone in my position. It lets me publish whatever I want, whenever I want. But the internet has its downsides. After all, if anyone can publish at any time, it is now easier than ever for sneaky people to bend the truth to fit a certain narrative.
That’s not how I approach writing. I try to respect the truth and only add my strong opinions when I’m sure of the facts. To learn what’s true, I am constantly reading books or articles and watching online explanatory videos about personal development. Although I have unique insights, when I write something that builds on other people’s work, I...