Tuesday, 30 April 2013

When Working Smarter is Dumber

This article comes from an idea by Edward Shapard at EdwardShapard.com about how to work smarter, not harder which you can read here. It had a profound affect on me, and I'm sure it will on you.

The moral of the story is that it's all very well developing systems to help you get more done, but are you factoring in the time (read: down-time) it takes to perfect your system? It takes time to get things off the ground so ensure the project you intend to spend your valuable time on warrants it. This applies to many scenarios, and I'm sure you can of a few of your own.

Take the plethora of "successful" internet marketers these days who brag about their huge incomes from zero to $zillions in a matter of days, even hours. But again, like the character in Mr Shapard's story, they fail to inform us that it took four or five, even ten years to perfect their "system" before it made a cent. Get the picture? And what were they doing before that? Developing, tweaking, designing, troubleshooting etc. (again think Mr McDuck!)

Any kind of personal development is a case in point.

Let me explain. I can recall (with some discomfort when I look back at it) the reams of notes and exercises I performed diligently as part of my personal development "education" process prescribed in some of the books I read. Although many of the exercises were useful, my point is, don't get bogged down with the 'how to's.' I discovered the 'system' could be, and is in fact, never ending!

Sounds silly. It's not.

Think more in terms of Herbert Spencer's famous quote "The great aim of education is not knowledge but ACTION."

Look at your own life and identify if the time you spend on attempting to work "smarter" is, in fact dumber. I wasted hours (and numerous notebooks!) looking for answers I didn't really need. I got caught up in the system instead of the action part. The system was the action and it had zero tangible results. Less is more is certainly true for me, what's true for you?

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Can 'The World's Most Influencial Thinker' Help Us Succeed? (The answer is far more surprising, and more fascinating, than we could ever have imagined)

Do we really need another book about success?

In his book 'Outliers' Thomas Gladwell defines success as '...this perennially interesting question; and there are so many different answers depending on who you ask and when you ask them. And that is why we keep returning to it. If there was some simple little algorithm we could apply, it wouldn't capture our imagination in the same way.'

The Economist says 'A compelling read with an important message; by understanding better what makes people successful we should be able to produce more successful (and happy )people'

William Leith of the Evening Standard adds 'It will make you feel happy. It will make you realise that if you're not successful it might not be your fault'

Time says 'Makes geniuses look a bit less special, and the rest of us a bit more so'

Gladwell argues that there is something profoundly wrong with the way we make sense of success. In fact, you may never look at some sports in the same way again. 'Outliers' is a book you won't want to put down. It's easy to read and Gladwell goes to great lengths to evidence his conclusions. Many times I found myself reading past my daily cut-off point just to get to the next chapter and the conclusion of his next revelation!

I first discovered the book from a close friend. We often discussed careers over the years and this was one such occasion. We had been discussing the length of time and the amount of work we had been putting into our present careers when my friend remembered a figure from Malcolm of 10,000 hours (or ten years) to become expert enough in your chosen field before a breakthrough to success! This number seemed about right (ask my wife!) What's more, Gladwell cites many examples from sports teams, software programmers, and rock stars to name but a few!

Before you can become an expert in your chosen field, you need the opportunity to learn how to be an expert - and this takes time. Many people look for a quick solution to bypass the amount of time it takes to succeed, but this is only part of the equation as Gladwell skillfully explains.

'Outliers' by Malcolm Gladwell discusses the eternal question of why some people achieve so much more than others. The answer is far more surprising, and more fascinating, than we could ever have imagined.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Do You Really Want What You Say You Want?

Eric Thomas is somewhat of a phenomenon. Here is a guy who passionately tells it how it is! Eric gets down to the nitty-gritty and puts the 'real' reasons in your space as to why you may not be achieving the kind of success you say you want. Take note, Eric pulls no punches here (I was even a little shocked myself).

Winston Churchill famously once said "Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened."  This is one such truth.

I trust this brief video gives you that extra impetus to go after that which you say you want. If nothing else, I'm confident you'll be looking up more of Eric's dynamic videos!

The Story of Self-Talk And How To Empower Yourself

Shad Helmstetter provides proven evidence about how our programming during our childhoods is responsible for the people we are today. More importantly, he offers practical suggestions and exercises on how we can change and improve our chances of success today in his book called 'What To Say When You Talk To Yourself.' I highly recommend it.

Dr Helmstetter reckons the average 18 year old has been told 'No' or what they could not do more than 180,000 times! And during his speaking engagements he has met people who could not recall a single instance of being told what they could do!

Isn't it about time you started programming yourself for positive change in a way that's already familiar to you? Dr Helmstetter shows you how you can re-program any part of your life that has been holding you back.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

What To Do When Faced With The Irresistible 'Work-From-Home' Online Offer

Ah, the irresistible 'Work-From-Home' online offer:

"When I Told My Friends I Was Going To Earn $1,000 A Week, They Just Laughed At Me. Now They're Begging Me For My Secret."

Well, you might say, I'm big enough to make my own choices, and you'd be right! But what if all the information you needed to make an informed choice just wasn't available? Even a little research online often brings up a full page of reviews by the same company and its employees, with links back to the same videos and sales page!

So what then? By the time you reach the end of the skillfully prepared sales spiel, you're already half convinced (often against your better judgement) and your credit card is ready to make payment.

I wanted to mention this especially after all my years online I should have known better! I recently watched one of these skillfully crafted and drawn out videos (one hour+) in which the 'seller' pushes all manner of emotional buttons to give a truly heart-wrenching rags to riches story of how they overcame incredible odds to become a success.

And (for a limited period, of course) they're offering their entire 'system' free to show you how you can do the same. And all this can be achieved with no effort (naturally) taking only 2 hours a day 'working' from your soon-to-be-acquired beach front property (probably in your swimwear!). You get the picture!

Often these tales are SO compelling you find yourself sitting through the whole shenanigans just to see what's on offer at the end! This type of presentation is highly engaging, persuasive and well-polished. But have you ever noticed they NEVER tell you what you have to do to earn the riches they claim? All you have to do is give your email address, a small payment and bingo!

So, why do we fall for these types of ads? Are we so naive and desperate to earn our riches that we think some 'magic, no-work-needed system' will do the work for us? Often we want to make up for lost time and get suckered in to the promise of a better lifestyle seemingly in a matter of several months. Who wouldn't want that?

Tip: if something sounds too good to be true, it IS too good to be true! And, if it looks like a duck and sounds like a duck, it IS a duck no matter what anyone is trying to tell (read 'sell') you!

These sales pages and ads often appeal on an emotional level which is so hard to resist, especially as their audience (most folks in fact wanting to earn additional income from home) often have important reasons for wanting to earn an additional income. You have your reasons just like me.

These offers have a single purpose; to separate you from your hard-earned cash with little or no regard for your success. By the time you sign up, you realise the reality is far from the sales pitch, and you've spent your money and you're angry for being suckered in, vowing to be more careful in future.

So, what should we do. Use a little common sense. Remember the duck! Don't be suckered in by the 'limited time' offers and call to immediate action. After all, this is your life, your money and your future.

The sort of information to look out for in any potential offer online should tell you: 

  • exactly what's involved before asking for a single penny
  • should let you poke around for as long as you want to find out as much information as you need, educating you in the process without bothering you at the same time
  • should offer a money back trial and guarantee with no catches
  • access to tons of real-life testimonials made by actual business owners for you to check out yourself - no carefully selected stories from the company
  • be able to do your own research to find out the truth about the business, its history, owner(s) and what it takes to succeed - honestly
  • be able to build your own picture (without persuasion) to decide if the business is right for you, and your lifestyle (yes, work will be involved)
  • you should be able to see yourself working and enjoying your business as a result of your own findings
  • all the tools and resources to build this business should be in one place without the need to buy anything else to achieve the results you want, and should do the job the company claims
  • ideally a live community where you can connect with like-minded people who are already achieving the results you aspire to, who want to help you succeed because they were once exactly where you are right now.
  • a track record of success

Decide for yourself is what I'm saying.

Make an informed choice. This is the sort of information I've been talking about with no bells and whistles to temp you out of your hard-earned cash. Just sound, proven evidence of success and a how-to system that leads you every step of the way and delivers.

Just remember, it's YOU who has to do the work! But you knew that already right? I hope this information has helped you like it has helped me. Please let me know what you think...