Failure – it is such a hard word for us to swallow. We are always resisting failures and why we shouldn’t – it does not make us happy or give any sense of accomplishment. For some, going through a failure is the end of the world. We are all so programmed to be success conscious all the time that going through failure can be really detrimental. Most of us do not know how to handle failures in life; some of us wallow in self-pity, lose self-confidence, have low self-image and the list can go on and on. If one does not get help at the right time, it could completely mess up their whole life.
How does one get to success without failures? I am yet to understand that. Why is failing such a big deal – if someone wanted everything to be perfect in their lives, do they understand that this privilege is only of the person who is buried six feet under the earth, in another way someone who is dead. I think if you read or listen to most successful people, all of them will tell you that they are where they are because they have made more mistakes in their lives. I believe, if you are a person who is scared of failure, you are not a risk taker. This is because you are afraid of rejections. If this is your trait, then you can never be an entrepreneur. Period!
Whether be it a day today living or in corporate and business environments – we are conditioned to measure our success. For example, the success of a sales person is measured by how many deals he is able to bring in. Have you ever thought – what it would be like, if you were to switch the dynamics? Instead of counting how many successful calls, flip the measure to the most number of rejections a person went through in the day. You will be amazed to see how magical the results would be. By doing this, not only have you have taken away the fear of failure, but also given people the permission to fail and be applauded for it. Try doing this and watch the magic happen in your sales team.
Learn from your failure. Every failure is an opportunity for you to learn. A great resource on this is the book by John Maxwell “Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.” Take the risk, try new things, and unlearn to learn because it is OK to make mistakes.
We have always heard this – slow and steady wins the race. From the story of the race between tortoise and hare and so many more examples given to us. I think it is time to defy that adage and tweak it a bit to achieve success. In my opinion, it is not slow and steady but fast and steady who wins the race. The world and technology are changing so rapidly, so are the learnings and ways of doing business. If you work at a slow and steady pace, you are never going to make it. You need to have a steady pace backed by consistent and persistent work ethic. As easy as it sounds, it is that much difficult to have the discipline to keep on keeping on.
If you are one of the people who believes you need no motivation to succeed, and you are self motivated, you are in for a big fall. Life happens to all of us, and we need to find resources that will keep you motivated so you can put in the consistent and persistent work. We have our highs, and we have our lows; we have things that get us distracted from the task in hand, or it could be just sheer laziness. Whatever the reason might be; we need a system in place much like the GPS we use for our cars to keep us on track.
Here are some ways I have been able to keep my fire up and come back with a bigger resolve every time life happened to me, or I slipped in my work ethic:
Association –you will need to surround yourself with people where you want to be. I hope you understand that these people are not going to come to you and invite you to hang out with them. You need to seek them out. Be it forms of seminars, online or at networking event; you need to find a way to get closer to them. As you get the opportunity to mingle with them, observe and learn. Watch how they talk, behave, what is their thought process, how they are handling situations? I have learned so much by just keeping an open mind, listening and taking notes.
Reading – This is in my opinion the biggest tool you can have in your hand and the most under rated. I am sure you spend enough money on yourself to look good, smell good and not to forget to eat well too. How about the three-pound brain that can give you all the things you are looking for in your life. How much do you spend on that? Do you realize there is not much difference between a ditch digger and a successful entrepreneur from the neck down? It is another story if we consider neck up. So feed that brain with good books and information. I can list out a ton of books but one book that you must have in your collection is Think and Grow Rich by Napole0n Hill
Faith – I know some of you are probably already raising your eyebrows on this sub head, but you need to be spiritually aligned to a higher power. I am not here to preach you or sermon you, but you need to have an unshakable faith. The faith in yourself will only come when you have faith in a higher power and know that universe is aligning itself to make things happen for you. Higher faith results in higher emotional stability which is critical element in achieving success. A great book that has really helped me is Magic by Rhonda Byrne
Disciplined Work Ethic – haven gotten the ability to watch successful people from close proximity, I can tell you that they are disciplined in every area of their lives. You need to be disciplined about your health, your habits, your work ethic, your spends, etc. as everything is interlinked. Without a proper road map, you cannot succeed. You need to be disciplined to work your plan EVERYDAY, I mean everyday without fail. Happiness is in the process of accomplishing and not the final accomplishment. When you are disciplined and follow your plan, there is no way you will not be succeeding and motivated.
Self Talk – Pay attention to what you talk to yourself. Get the book What to say when you talk to yourself by Shad Hemlstetter. It is a book that will teach you the power of self-talk. It has personally helped me a lot in staying upbeat and motivated.
Persistency can definitely be developed; we need to find people who show great persistency and spend time with them; we need to understand what it is that drives them to keep going. From my personal experience, I know that some of my own persistence comes from having experienced success through not giving in, so clearly persistence and success are a self-feeding cycle. The more we persist, the more we will be successful and the more belief we will have in persistence. So we only need to start the circle, we can either do this through our own innate determination or stubbornness, or we can work alongside someone who has it and learn it from them.
One way or another, in order to be successful we need to develop persistence.
As the month is drawing to a close, my heart is sinking. I wish time would go by slowly, and August would never end. The reason being, our daughter is heading off to University on the first week of September. She will now have to live on her own and far away from us. I know she is probably so excited about her new journey and the chance to be away from home. We as parents, especially a “mom” cannot stop worrying about our children.
The more I think of it, the more my heart sinks and dollops of tears swell up in my eyes. I am fighting very hard to not get emotional as I am penning down my thoughts even now. It is just too many memories, too much time spent together and the amazing bond we share. I cannot imagine my house without my girl – she, and I are like long lost friends to whom I can open up my heart and talk without being ever judged. So you see, it is one of the hardest things I am fighting with. As I spent few days getting emotional and crying my heart out, I saw a post from one of my friends who lives in India on Facebook. The post was about her daughter who studies in USA wishing her well for the upcoming year.
Suddenly, I felt so small. Here I was, living in Costa Rica and getting all emotional about my daughter going back to Canada for her studies, which is a few hour’s flight, and on the other hand, I see a person who is miles apart putting up a brave front. I reached out to her and expressed myself and thanked her for giving me strength. Her response to my message just blew me apart. Suddenly, my reference point changed. Up until now, I was only thinking of my friends who live in Canada, and their kids were going to Universities in Canada. Hence, to me my challenge seemed way bigger. In other words, my reference point was so small. As soon as my reference point shifted, I could handle my situation way better.
Whether we are consciously aware of them or not, we all have reference points. These points dictate what we do in our life and who we become. We have reference points for every area of our existence. They are what we look up to and what guides us. These reference points play a very critical role in shaping our path or towards fulfilling our own destiny. Our mind is so much more capable than what we think. The only difference between a successful person and who is not is the way they think and act.
The key to increasing your performance, in whatever area it might be, is to alter your reference points. You want better grades in school? Don’t study for a C+ or a B, study for an A. You want to be in better shape? Work out to have the best body, not just enough to get by. You see; most people simply want to “get by.” This is why they struggle along that line. For example, people that make an insane amount of money have a vastly different reference point than people just getting by when it comes to money. Success is all about having greater reference points. There is a big difference between someone who just wants a job to make some money and someone who wants to be rich. The point of reference is what can help you unravel this enigma.
If you want to be successful and want to create massive changes within your life, you have to change what is acceptable to you. Increase the threshold to a level where you will experience enormous improvements. Alter what is considered OK for you and aim higher. People that lose weight or stop smoking dramatically are people that have drastically changed their reference points. No longer is it acceptable for them to be out of shape and in poor health. They now have a point of reference that challenges them to be that much better. It is via changing what you are comfortable with and what is acceptable to you that you will achieve significant milestones within your existence.
Entrepreneurship is great for so many reasons. From having more flexible work hours to being your own boss and everything in between, it’s no wonder more and more people are starting their own businesses, especially women. Because women are so good at multi-tasking, this trend is on its rise and going to stay. So more power to you women out there who are running your own business.
Having said that, it does comes with its own set of things to manage. Especially for a women entrepreneur who is constantly trying to strike that perfect balance between the business and family responsibilities. He are some tips to empower you to make sure your business run successfully:
Get social through social media – An extremely powerful tool when used effectively. If you are a small business owner, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest are tools you need to know and use effectively. There’s no doubt that social media presence is important to a business’s marketing strategy. And if you’re not familiar with social media, you take online courses to understand how to use such platforms to build up your business. A great place to learn is www.lynda.com
Use your networks – Being a small business owner is stressful, so use your network to form a reliable support system. By joining industry groups, you can have access to valuable information and experiences of others. Almost all the time, people are there to help you and at times lead you to your first client. Don’t have the free time to network in person? Try turning to online communities instead. Here is one such community if you are in the salon business http://www.summitsaloncommunity.com/
Learn to delegate –If you are an amazing at managing your house all by yourself, delegation can be a really tough one for you. However, you have to come to terms with the fact that in order for you to have a successful business, you need to delegate. As a small business owner it is important to be flexible to the demands of your work and it is equally important to learn how to create flexibility in work to have the balance. You can hire trustworthy people, and initially could be temporary or part time help to manage your business with a balance. It always helps to make your team bear responsibility of important projects as it creates a sense of belonging.
Let your home life inspire you – Regardless of whether you own a business, most of you already hold the title of CEO in your home. Managing multiple demands of household, children, spouse, social obligations, and schedules is almost like running a business. All you need to do is to transfer those skills and passion into your business and manage it run smoothly.
Never stop searching –No big business is built on using your existing network and resources — you always have to stay on the prowl for new business leads. Meeting new people and reaching out to different groups and forums should be a constant strategy to build new leads.
Invest in tools – Make sure you invest in tools that make your business run smoothly. Create systems in place, as the business grows, there are no challenges of scalability. There are tools that will make sure that you start your business on the right foot from the beginning especially when it comes to accounting, time trackers (if you have part-time workers), payroll etc. Make the tools your slave and let them work for you.
I know what you are thinking – has she now changed over to Ophthalmology? Just because you have a set of great working eyes through which you can see clearly, does not mean that you have a clear vision. Even bible says that a man without a vision shall perish – my goal is to not get spiritual here. However if Bible thinks every man needs to have a vision, imagine what would what successful principle book would say?
Nothing big can be achieved without a vision. Every significant thing that has been created or achieved was first conceived by someone in their minds. They saw it happening in the eyes of their mind and then worked hard to make it a reality. It is so unfortunate to see so many people who just go through life one day at a time without any dreams, aspirations or a desire to do anything significant. Statistics shows that only 20% of people in the world have
Here is a story of an amazing visionary. Phillip Petit is a French high-wire artist who gained fame in 1974 for his high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. At an early age, the boy discovered magic and juggling. He loved to climb, and at 16, he took his first steps on a tightrope wire. Petit learned everything by himself, during a period when he was also expelled from five different schools. In his teens, Petit learned about the World Trade Center construction project in New York City. He read about the project that proposed building of the twin towers while waiting in a dentist’s office, and spent years planning to walk a high wire between the two buildings. Before he went to New York, however, Petit took on several other amazing tightrope challenges. In 1971, he traveled between the towers of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris on a wire. Two years later, he crossed the Sydney Harbor Bridge in Australia. In each instance, he had the help of friends in pulling off these impressive stunts.
In late 1973, Petit traveled to New York City. He spent months studying the World Trade Center’s twin towers. To visit the site, Petit assumed a number of disguises, including being a reporter and a construction worker. He took photographs and made measurements. With help of friends, Petit started hiding his equipment in the towers in early August. He and accomplices then tucked themselves away in the buildings on August 6, 1973, to prepare for the big event. In the morning of August 7, Petit stepped onto the tightrope, which was suspended between the two towers. A crowd of thousands soon gathered to watch the man on the wire more than 1,300 feet above them. For 45 minutes, Petit practically danced on the thin metal line.
It took Philip 6 years of planning and practicing to master that walk. The most important thing is Phillip conceived the idea by just looking at the picture of World Trade Center, it was not even built. That is what is called an absolute clear vision. In order for anyone to achieve anything significant, it is imperative to have a clear vision. When the vision is clear, you will be able to put the work behind it to make it come to fruition. The path will not always be easy but if our vision is crystal clear and we know for sure what we are after, nothing can stop us. No set back will be big enough to keep you away from achieving our vision or goal.
It’s about time that you create a clear vision for yourself. If you are not able to do it, ask for help, get mentoring or guidance from a person who has the fruit on the tree and not your family or neighbor. Clear your cobwebs, carve a vision for yourself, and then all you got to do is to dig deeper within you. Keep digging deep and keep enjoying the journey!
We all have knowingly or unknowingly set a bar for ourselves that holds us back. It tells us how much is our limit, how far can we go, how big can we think and achieve. Some of us work diligently to raise that bar and some of us are not even aware that we have one. Get concious of your limits, work on increasing it through books and surrounding yourself with people who refuse to limit their capabilities.
As I continue my journey for my book and have the honor, pleasure and priviledge to meet with bold, beautiful, confident, fiery, limitless powerful women, I cannot help but notice that all of them have one major thing in common – they have never limited themselves. The road they were walking was not always easy and who says it will be, but these women did not let anything come in their way. Each one of them had every reason to throw in the towel, because it the going did get tough, but every time they faced a challenge, they became even stronger. I am really thankful that they did not because if they did, there won’t be a story today. They would have never reach where they are.
We all know that diamonds are girl’s best friend. Have you ever thought that in order for a diamond to be pretty and nice and be the most valuable ornate that everygirl/woman aspires to have, the metal has to go throughheat (thousands of degrees) and pressure (130,000 atmospheres) that can typically only be found about 90 to 100 miles below the surface of the Earth, deep within the mantle. So you see, all good things in life comes from some hard work and pressure. This is the law of nature. If that is so, then why worry when you go through trials and tribulations in your life on your journey to accomplish your dreams and goals.
The one thing that I have taken away from all the six interviews that I have done so far is that we are the architects of our own life. We are the only one who limits ourselves . We put barriers and limitations to the level of success we can achieve.
It’s about time we confront our limitations. Don’t settle for average or mediocrity. We are all made for greatness and we can have it just like many others. So dig deep within, bring out the dormant desires, the aspirations, and the dreams and work hard and get them.
Last week I talked about a simple truth of success which we all know but conveniently forget, which is the fact that success comes from discipline, the daily habits and actions. In order to be disciplined, you need to have set some goals and worked out a plan to achieve it. Because goals without a deadline and plan is just wishful thinking.
The “plan” we all need one for every area of our life, we all “plan” to have one. Whether be it a plan to go on a vacation, finances, life or to lose weight. All of us are always looking for that magical plan for success. We forget that the magic is “planning to plan”. You will be suprised how many people just live life one day at a time, they have no milestones to achieve and hence never feel the need for a plan. They fit the line ” if you aim at nothing, you sure will hit something” perfectly. There was a time, I use to wonder why is that only a small percentage of people are successful, what do they do so different that they achieve success and I can not.
After reading numerous books, I can tell you that successful people always take time to plan their “plan”. In fact their planning is not for next year, or two but 10 – 15 years ahead. The most important part is that they have it written down with the minutest details and is updated regularly to have a clear idea of where they stand in time. If we all can work on getting that degree of clarity for our plan and go ahead and execute it to the best of our abilities, we will be successful. Will the plan always work perfectly – not necessarily, however even if we fail, we will fail forward. we will be better off than where we started. Have you ever noticed that we never forget to plan our vacation or an important event of our life (i.e wedding) but when it comes to planning life, we somehow seem to take it lightly.
I am a person who cannot preach what I do not practice. So before I sat down to write this article, I took the time to write down what I will achieve at the end of every single month from now till the end of this year. It will not only help me see clearly the task I have in hand but will also help me measure my progress. Not to mention, I just did not keep the plan with me but decided to go ahead and share it so I can be held accountable for my words.
As they say proper planning prevents poor performance – so why not take the time to implement it in our day to day life. Be accountable to yourself and your goals. I am so excited to announce that I interviewed one of my features for my book yesterday. I have line ups of interview starting next week and this is the most exciting part of my journey as an author. You will always have stuff happening in your life, you can either use them as distractions or a reason to stay on course. The choices we make, makes us. Plan well, prepare and progress, because we are indvidually responsible for where we end up. We all are made same, so there is no reason why we all cannot be successeful. It is just a matter of digging deep within and bring out the best of you. Dig deep in to yourself and plan your success!!