Archives For Mindset

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You might feel stuck, but you’re unsure why. I’ve listed 12 behaviors that are possibly holding you back from where you are now to where you want to be.

You can start to make changes now. Stop denying yourself from becoming the type of person you truly want to become. Get rid of the old you, and start allowing the real you to come through.

You need to stop…

1. Being too safe – No pain, no gain. Playing it safe gets you nowhere in life. You want to play it safe because you’re so afraid of failure. By being too safe, you don’t even try. You don’t see what’s can possibly happen.

To reach your full potential, the road will be bumpy. It’s intentionally that way to find out who wants it the most. The weak ones get left behind, while the risk takers forge ahead and see what’s further down the road. That’s where happiness is. Where there is happiness there will be success as well.

2. Doubting your own dreams. – It doesn’t matter what your dream is. It could be starting a business, writing a book, finding love, or something else. The first thing you have to do is believe in yourself. Don’t seek validation from others. Believing in yourself might be hard because you’re just beginning, but you have to believe in what you’re doing without seeing the whole road in front of you.

3. Being influenced by negative people – You cannot be a positive person if you’re surrounded with negativity all the time. Sometimes these people are long time friends, but they’ve decided to take their life in a different direction than you want. Usually it’s no direction. It’s not a healthy relationship anymore. If someone isn’t adding any value you to your life, it’s best to say goodbye.

4. Expecting everything to be easy. – Stop expecting life is going to be a smooth ride. It’s not. Life is like sailingl across the Atlantic ocean. It’s going to start off real smooth. During the journey there will be huge waves and heavy rains. It’s part of the journey. The person sailing knows that and has to prepare for moments like that. Instead of wanting a life that’s easy, become a person that can handle the choppy waters.

If you remove all struggles from your life, you’re not going to find out what you’re truly made of. Success feels even sweeter when you’ve overcome your struggles and thrived.

5. Letting everyone else decide for your life for you. – You think it’s easier to just let other people decide for you because you don’t know what you want. Maybe you’re afraid of making the wrong choice. If you let people dictate your life, you will live a life that you don’t want.

If I listened to my parents, I’d either be an unhappy doctor or lawyer. Don’t give your life away to others who put you on a path that has no meaning for you.

6. Living in the past. – Would of, could of, should of. There’s moments that you wished you could go back and have a do over. Try not to dwell on the opportunities you missed out. You can’t go back anyways. Keep moving forward and if opportunities comes again, you will be better prepared to take it.

Living in the past guarantees that not have the future you desire.

7. Ignoring the lessons – Everything happens for a reason and you can learn and grow from. When something bad happens, and it will, find the lesson behind it. What could you have done better? What would you do if faced with the same situation in the future?

8. Holding on to resentment. – If you’re carrying baggage from your past, you won’t have room for all the everything else you want. Holding onto resentment, past failures, a broken heart and hate for others is going to keep you living in the past. Let it go so you can finally move forward. You  start by writing a letter to yourself.

9. Being too hard on yourself. – If you screw up, give yourself a break. Everyone makes mistakes. When you make a mistake, it’s not the end of the world. So it’s not as bad as you think. Pick yourself up and try again. Nobody is perfect an neither are you.

10. Being so pessimistic. – You often spend way too much time why you’re not good enough, why you don’t deserve to be successful, and why you can’t do it. You waste too much time with that inner voice that won’t shut up. You walk with our head down. It’s time to turn that frown upside down.

Instead of thinking “Why me?” think “Why not me?” Why can’t you be a bestselling author? Why can’t you become an actor? Why can’t you start a million dollar company? If others have done it, why can’t you?

11. Giving up too soon. – Most people give up right before their big breakthrough. Of course they don’t know it’s coming, but they give up too soon. If you choose something you believe in, then go after it with everything you have. Someday all that hard work and sacrifice will come together.

I tried so many different online businesses and failed. When I had unbelievable success with my first app, it looked like an overnight success, but it wasn’t. I never gave up hope that I’d have an online business. I just didn’t know when it would come. I just kept trying something until it worked for me. Because of the struggles I had, I can look back and smile about how resilient I was and didn’t give up on my dream.

Get Busy Living 2014Stop. Don’t Do it. Don’t tell yourself that you’re doing to do more of _______. It’s not going to work.

In two months, you’re going to be back to where you are right now, but worse because you’re going to be upset that you already failed. Then you’ll slowly forget about it and go back to your old ways. By December, you’ll be thinking of all the changes you want to make beginning January 1, 2015.

I know because I’ve never kept a resolution.

If you’ve made a specific resolution more than once, then stop making it again. The problem isn’t with your resolution, but with your approach. You don’t change your approach and that’s why you’re making it again.

Does this sound like you? If so, I’m here to give you another solution so you won’t be like 98% of the people (an educated guess, but probably close) that start the new year with hopes of the best year ever, but fizzle out soon.

Later in this article, I’m going to tell you about a course I created last year that going to kick your butt, change you on the inside, and help change the direction of your life. If your life is good, it’ll help take it to a new level.

Don’t take my word for it. I’ll share what some of my students have said.

First I’m going to share with you seven ways to help you make 2014 your best year yet. None of them include making a New Year’s resolution.

1) Write down your goals

I told you to not make a New Year’s resolution because they don’t work, but writing down your goals is not the same as making a resolution.

There are many reasons resolutions don’t work. One reason is because it is just an idea floating around in your head. It’s easy to get lost when you have 70,000 thoughts a day. After that initial excitement, you will forget about it.

This year do something different. Write down your goals. When you write down your goals, you are making a declaration. You’re saying you want to do this and it’s not just a wish.

Write it on a sheet of paper or print it from your computer. Place this list where you will see it everyday.

2) SMART goals

Writing down your goals is better than just thinking about it, but these goals needs to be structured in a way that is going to help you.

Don’t just write generic goals. Instead set SMART goals. Those are goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely.

Saying you want to lose weight is too general. There’s no urgency. How will you know you have lost weight? How much weight? By when? It’s too weak.

New year’s resolutions are just as general. That’s why they fail to stick.

If you follow the SMART guidelines your goal will be “I will lose 15 pounds by June 1, 2014.” It’s measurable. You can step on a scale and know. It’s specific. It’s attainable. It’s something you want to do so it is relevant. It has a deadline. Without one you will just procrastinate.

Before I finish talking about goals, I do want to say one thing. I believe settings goals are so important. You might come across some articles online that say setting goals is a bad idea and they will give their reasons why.

I don’t follow that. Set some goals. If you’ve never set goals before, then definitely set goals this year. Try it out.

Goals give you direction. You set the navigation system in your brain and it helps you reach your destination. If you’re driving from Los Angeles to New York and have never driven that route before would you just get in your car and start driving or use your navigation to guide you?

If you don’t use navigation, you still could get there, but it might take you longer and you might get lost many times along the way. Why waste time when navigation can get you there faster?

Set SMART goals in 2014 to guide you.

3) What is your WHY?

Why do you want it? Why do you want to make that change or achieve that goal? If you can’t think of a strong reason why, rethink your goal. Are you doing it because someone said you should?

I bet that your past goals have failed because you didn’t have a strong enough reason why.

Whatever your goals are you will face challenges. I promise you it’s not going to all be easy. Change is hard. Doing something new is hard. You will want to quit. If you have a reason why you want to achieve it, then it’ll push you through tough times, keep you motivated, and focused on your goals.

Do you know someone who had a high school reunion or a wedding and their goal was to lose weight before the big day? I think we all know someone. It might have even been you.

I had a friend that lost 50 pounds before his wedding. Before that he struggled to lose the weight he gained from years of partying in college. He wanted to lose weight, but just never had a great reason why.

What was the difference? He had a strong reason why and a deadline.

More money might be your reason why, but think about why you want more money. What will it do for you? How will it help? How will you use that money when you have it? Go deeper than the desire to just have money because that isn’t enough to keep you focused and motivated.

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Stop Wishing for Life to be Easier

There’s a big problem out there and it is inside many of us. The problem is many of us want life to be easier. We want change to be easier. We want to lose weight easier. We want to have more confidence easier. We want money to be growing on trees. We want everything to go right.

Technology has helped make it easier in certain areas, but in other areas it isn’t going to help us. It’s dangerous to want everything in life to be easier. It can lead to a life that we don’t want.

Let’s take a look at the definition of easy

“achieved without great effort; presenting few difficulties”

Yes it would be wonderful if the life that we dream about came without great effort. That’s why diet pills are a $3 billion a year industry. We get bombarded with get rich quick offers. Happiness can be had for four easy payments of $19.95.

The desire for an easy life with everything we want is a problem. We haven’t always been this way. We didn’t start off wanting an easy life.

Since we were born, life has presented difficulties for us, but we were resilient. We tried to talk, but it made no sense. If we were hungry, we couldn’t say anything so we cried.

We started to crawl. We tried stand, but it wasn’t easy. We didn’t give up. If we fell, we got back up. If we hit our head running into a wall, we’d be back running near that wall one minute later. We weren’t born quitters.

Then something happened, but it didn’t change overnight.

We now are expected to be rational adults. A rational adults wouldn’t do anything crazy. We’ve been taught to be more safe. Take less risks. Go for security. Don’t ruffle any feathers. Don’t make a scene. Blend in.

Life will be easier that way.

A job is better than no job is what we hear, despite knowing how much we hate that job. It’s easier to stay in a miserable job than to quit and search for another.

As we have gotten older, we’ve lost that sense of fearlessness. We think before we do. Sometimes we think so much that we do nothing. We’re not fighters. We are more easily to quit.

What happened?

We have become brainwashed. We have listened to what our parents, friends, relatives, and society have told us. We hear it so much we believe that is the only reality. We didn’t change overnight. It happened slowly overtime.

We rationalize too much. The freedom we have is actually a bad thing. Too many choices can paralyze us. We want some guidance, but when we follow what others say we should do, instead of listening to our hearts, it kills us on the inside.

We feel that life sucks. It isn’t easy anymore. Those instincts we were born with are still a part of us, but buried by layers of conformity.

It’s a shame

This time is the best time in our life. It doesn’t matter how old we are. What matters is that we’re still alive. That’s why it’s an amazing time. There is so much in the world for us.

One of the biggest problems is that we want success and happiness, but we want it to come without effort. We don’t want to struggle, fail, or face embarrassment. We don’t want to be rejected.

We want everything to be perfect. We want our first business idea to be the big one. We want anything we do for the very first time to be THE one. The one that brings in money, successful, and recognition. We want it and we want it now.

Never mind that we have never started a business in our life. Never mind that we are just a beginner. We want it to be easy. It’s stupid to think we get everything right the first time to do it, but that’s what we hope for.

This kind of thinking leads to getting nothing done. If we expect perfection, we’re creating a impossible reality. Since we know perfection will not happen, we do not even begin. A great life isn’t going to come easy. That’s the reality.

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No Success without Failure

People of greatness share a common attribute: failure. That might surprise you but if you go back and look at anyone that has had success, in any field, you will see that an important part of success is learning how to fail and how to rise above it.

Failure is something the average person does everything to avoid. They believe that successful people got there because they got lucky. Having that luck would meant an express pass to success and avoiding all failure.

The fact is successful people use failure, not as a reason to quit, but as a learning experience and motivator to achieve something bigger.

Nobody wants to fail. Just because failure is actually a good thing for you doesn’t mean that you should do everything you can to fail. If you start with the mindset that you’re going to fail, then you will. It also means you will just give it half your effort because you anticipate failure.

Successful people hate to fail. They just don’t fear it. The risk is worth it. They also understand how to view failure so it lessens the impact and use it to become better.

What does fear do to you?

Fear physically will stop you from doing any behavior that seems risky. It doesn’t matter if you’re writing your first book, asking a guy or girl for a date, or trying to start your own business. Your brain’s reaction is the same. It thinks, “I don’t know about this. It’s scary. Think of the worst possible results. Don’t take a chance.” It will stop you before you even get started.

Our brain wants to protect us from something that is new. It doesn’t like surprises and it definitely doesn’t like risks. However, doing that prevents us from taking chances to be successful or go after a big dream.

If we fail, we like to assume the worst will happen. The world will end! The whole will know! If I quit my job, I’ll run out of money. If I talk to that girl, she’s going to laugh at how stupid I am. If I start that business, I will lose time and money if it fails.

We let fear hold us back because we see the worst possible scenario as more important than the idea of any success. What that means is we do not want the worst possible scenario to happen. We will do whatever we can to avoid it and we believe the only way is to not take the risk. Even if that means missing a chance to succeed.

These days nobody has the time keep track of our failures. They have enough of their own problems to worry about. If we fail, at worst a small number of people will know and they will soon forget about it.

(Those that do have the time to constantly remind you of your failures are people you need to distance yourself from. Now.)

The only person we have to face every single day is ourself. Look in the mirror and ask if is it better to give it our best shot, and fail, or to live with regret knowing that we never tried at all?

Those that decide to take action will find amazing resources available for them to reach their goals.

Anything we want to learn is a Google search and a few clicks away. It is contained in books and courses. We have resources now to be a filmmaker (Youtube and Vimeo), a podcaster (iTunes), an author (Kindle), a writer (blog), an online instructor (Udemy) and more.

If we need money for a project, we don’t have to go to sell the house, borrow money from friends and family, or max out our credit cards. We can post our project on Kickstarter or Indiegogo.

Anyone has access to this, but it is fear that stops so many from using it.

How to overcome fear of failure

Almost all our fears are now self-created. We scare ourselves by imagining negative outcomes to any activity we might pursue or experience. Because we are the ones imagining, we are also the ones who can stop fear and bring ourselves into a state of clarity by facing the actual facts, rather than giving in to our imaginations. Psychologists like to say that fear means:

Fantasized
Experiences
Appearing
Real

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who are you to deny greatness? If you deny it to yourself, you deny it to the whole world

I got an email from a woman who told me about her fear of rejection. She has always had a passion for writing, but fear being rejected. She wanted to convince herself that her writing talents were good enough to share with the whole world.

The whole world? That’s a lot of people to please. How could I help her?

I started typing and words were just flowing out. I hit send and then realized she’s not the only one who fears creating something and putting it out there. If it is not perfect and loved by all, we don’t want to do it.

Perfection is the killer of many dreams.

We can’t please everyone

If we write, blog, sing, act, dance, cook, or create anything, the reality is not everyone will love it. We have no idea how something we create will be received and we definitely cannot please every single person.

I told her don’t convince herself her writing was great enough for the whole world. That is the wrong approach. Don’t even think about what others will think.

Just write because that’s what she wanted to do.

“We must do our work for its own sake, not for fortune or attention or applause.” – Steven Pressfield

Do what makes you feel alive

When I was younger I loved to draw. I would use photos of baseball players in magazines and sketch them. I built model airplanes. I took a drawing class and photography class in high school. I took an acting class in college. I loved all of it.

When I felt stuck in life, I know one of the biggest reasons I didn’t feel happy. My creativity was missing from my life. After college, I didn’t do as much. When I wasn’t working, I watched a lot of TV.

My job at the restaurant didn’t allow me to be creative in the way I really enjoyed. I was just a robot doing the same thing every time.

When I started this blog, I felt excited again. I was able to use my creativity for all aspects of this blog. Though I had never developed a iPhone app, it was so cool to take an idea in my mind and start to see it come to life. That is the type of creativity I enjoy.

What makes you feel alive? Do you have a passion for something, but too scared to do it?

“If you find yourself asking yourself (and your friends), “Am I really a writer? Am I really an artist?” chances are you are. The counterfeit innovator is wildly self-confident. The real one is scared to death.”  - Steven Pressfield

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36

The last two years I’ve had great responses to the posts I’ve done for my birthday. Two years ago I wrote 34 Life Lessons I’ve Learned in 34 Years, and last year I wrote 35 Things I’ver Never Told You or Many People Actually.

It’s that time again because on July 21st, I turned 36.

It’s hard to believe I’m six years into my 30s. I remember when I turned 30 I told myself the next 10 years were going to be better than the last 10. They had to be because I entered my 30s more lost and confused than any point in my life.

I didn’t have a plan though. I didn’t know what I was going to do. I was still searching for a way to make money so I could leave my job working at the family restaurant. I was still searching for what would make me happy and excited about life.

I was determined though because I didn’t want these next 10 years to feel like a waste.

Amazing things have happened these last six years. I finally have direction in my life. I feel excited about my future. I’ve had some great success. I found true love.

I have listed 36 reasons my life has changed since I turned 30. These weren’t all done at one time. They’ve happened over the last six years. All were pivotal to changing me, getting results, and becoming the person I am today.

They are listed in no particular order of importance.

1. Became the person I wanted to be

Before I had tried to follow steps A to Z to achieve my goals. We all do that, but it never worked out for me so I had to try something different. Instead of asking “What do I need to do?”, I learned to ask myself, “Who do I need to become?”

Makes such a big difference. Instead of just following the steps, I had to become the person that would achieve the goals I wanted. I needed to change myself FIRST, so I could have success. Not the other way around.

I achieved #1 because of all the reasons below.

2. Stopped reading and watching the local news

I used to read the local paper every day. Now I don’t. “But Benny you should be a good citizen and know what’s going on in your city!” I don’t need to know what’s going on. Honestly it doesn’t help me. Plus if I opened the newspaper, it is mostly about all the bad stuff that is going on. Since I’ve stopped reading it, I feel so much better.

3. Cut back on watching TV

I used to have the TV on all the time. Even if I wasn’t watching it, I’d have it on. By cutting back on watching TV, I’ve gained so many hours where I could be doing something productive. I still watch TV, but not as much. Sometimes I go days without turning it on.

4. Kept a gratitude journal

Before I turned 30, I was not thankful for anything in my life. I had money, a house, car, and my health, but I was always focused on what I didn’t have. When I was 33, I started a gratitude journal. I wrote in it every morning for a few minutes. I enjoyed it so much, I developed an iPhone app, Gratitude Journal 365.

5. Exercised

In my 30s, I’ve found my biggest transformations have happened when I was physically at my best. I took kickboxing class in Taipei, and was by far in the best shape of my life. My confidence was sky high and eventually I met my wife at a club, which I used to hate going to because I felt I didn’t belong. (Turns out to be lots of fun).

In 2010, feeling stuck in life and out of shape, I trained for my first ever half marathon. I ran my first one in December. Then in February I ran a second one. It was around this time I began this blog and started work on my first iPhone app, Photo 365.

I always feel more focused and productive when I do exercise.

6. Wrote a letter to myself

I didn’t understand the power of writing letters, but it was something I felt would help me. One night in October 2010, after a terrible night at work, that’s what I did. I needed to get stuff off my chest, and have a reminder to stop wasting my life and take action. I typed it on my computer, printed it out, and taped it to my wall. From that day on, I was going to start making changes in my life that I wanted.

I still have that letter on my wall.

I’ve found other stories of people writing letters and how it’s helped them get out from terrible situations in life.

7. Took 100% responsibility for my life

If I wanted to have the type of life I dreamt of, it was up to me to get it. I had to stop waiting for someone else, and stop blaming others. If I was going to be happy and wealthy, it was because of me. If I was going to be unhappy and poor, it was because of me.

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