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The quality and quantity of your sleep are essential for your physical, emotional, and mental health. Are you making sleep a priority in your life? Or are you cutting back on sleep because you feel that other things are more important?

This article will motivate you to make sleep a priority in your life. I’ll also talk about the different types of sleep and some simple things you can do to improve your sleep quality.

Sleep is the ultimate form of rest and recovery. It is essential for our mental and physical health. It seems to be so underrated. Few people think of making it a priority in their life.

After a good night’s sleep you will feel great. You’ll feel that you can take on the world! You will focus better and face your challenges with confidence. A poor night’s sleep will leave you feeling tired, grumpy, and easily distracted. Even simple tasks can seem hard and take more time to finish. You may also make silly mistakes.

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The Effects of Not Getting Enough Sleep

There is a lot of useful information on how to improve your sleep. But this won’t help if you don’t have the motivation to do it. So I will start by covering the adverse effects on your body and mind that can occur from regularly sleeping less than 6 to 7 hours a night.

1. Increased Risk of Cancer and Dementia

Sleeping for less than 6 to 7 hours a night regularly, dramatically reduces your immune system. It doubles the risk of cancer. It increases your chances of getting Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia. Margaret Thatcher, the UK prime minister in the 80s, used to thrive on 4 or 5 hours of sleep. She ended up getting dementia. Ronald Reagan did the same thing, and he got dementia as well.

2. Being Diagnosed as Pre-Diabetic

If you sleep less than 6 hours a night for just one week, you could be diagnosed as being pre-diabetic. This really surprised me! Just one week of poor sleep can affect your blood sugar so much that you could be mistakenly diagnosed as pre-diabetic.

3. Increased Risk of Heart Attack and Stroke

A lack of sleep is not good for your heart. It increases the chances of your coronary arteries becoming blocked. This can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

4. Hormone Imbalances

Not getting enough sleep switches off certain hormones and increases other hormones. For example, when you lack sleep, the “I’m hungry” hormone increases, and the “I’m satisfied” hormone decreases. If you don’t sleep well, you’re going to feel hungry and eat more. That’s important if you are trying to lose weight. Also, you will lose lean muscle rather than fat. I believe the body wants to keep the fat so it can convert it into energy, if you continue to deprive yourself of sleep.

5. Increased Anxiety and Depression

Lack of sleep can dramatically affect your mental health. Just 3 nights of poor sleep can massively increase your anxiety. Sleep deprivation is also linked to depression.

Pretty much every organ in your body enjoys good quality sleep and is negatively affected by persistent poor sleep. If you don’t sleep enough, you are at risk of dying at a younger age or developing specific health problems. I hope you now realize how essential it is to make sleep a priority in your life.

The 3 Types of Sleep

Not all sleep is the same. During the night, we typically go through 3 phases of sleep.

1. Deep Sleep

Deep sleep is rejuvenating. It allows your body to heal. Your body requires deep sleep. Your brain will prioritize deep sleep over the other types of sleep. Therefore, deep sleep happens earlier in the night.

2. REM sleep

REM stands for Rapid Eye Movement. REM sleep is your dream sleep. This type of sleep is vital for your mental health. It’s almost like your in-built therapy system. Your thoughts of the day are being processed and put into different places, for example, your long-term memory. It happens later in the night.

3. Light Sleep

Light sleep is somewhere between deep and REM sleep. Around 50% of your total sleep is light sleep.

There are a few different ways to track your sleep, and I have tried some of them. I have used a Fitbit tracker and sleep apps on my phone. Now, I use the Oura ring. The Oura ring is great because it tracks the different types of sleep, but also your heart rate and body temperature. If you’re interested in finding out more about the Oura ring, you can check it out here.

How to Improve Your Sleep.

So you’ve decided to make your sleep a priority. What next? Well, there is a lot of great content online on how to improve your sleep. Therefore, I will not go into too much detail here. I’m just going to share with you a few tips that have helped me personally.

1. Avoid Computers and Phones Before Going to Sleep

One thing I’ve noticed is that being on my computer or phone too late into the evening seems to affect my sleep. There are a couple of reasons for that.

The first is mental stimulation. When I work too late into the evening on my computer, I find that my mind is more active, and this affects the quality of my sleep.

The second is the light from computer or phone screens. This is known as blue light. It tricks your body into thinking it’s still daylight. There are many products, like glasses and screen filters, that you can use to reduce the blue light.

2. Relax 1 Hour Before Bed

It is always good to relax an hour before going to bed. The things that can help are meditation, physical relaxation, taking a bath, or reading. If you are reading, choose a book that doesn’t require too much thought or brain stimulation. I avoid personal development books and read something lighter.

3. Go to Sleep and Get Up at a Regular Time

If a good night’s sleep is a priority to you, this can be very helpful. But I’m not super strict about it. I’ll typically try to be in bed around 10:30pm and get up at around 6:00am. At weekends, I often go to bed later at 11:30pm and get up at 7:00 or 7:30am, particularly if I feel a need to catch up on sleep.

4. Think Positive Thoughts

I like to think positive thoughts or list things I’m grateful for just before going to sleep. I’ve found that this works very well for me. The thoughts you have when you go to sleep, are often the same thoughts you have when you wake up in the morning. They can also influence your dreams.

When you go to bed, focus on what you want, on your dreams, goals, and vision.  Your unconscious mind will start looking for ways to achieve them. For example, you may come up with a dream that gives you the answer to your problem. Also, think about the things you are grateful for.

5. Do Not Eat Too Late

When you eat a large meal less than 2 hours before you go to sleep, your body will still be busy digesting food. As a result, your heart rate will be higher when you go to sleep. And to get quality deep sleep, you need your heart rate to be lower, especially during the first 4 hours of the night. A lower heart rate increases the quality and quantity of your deep sleep which normally occurs earlier in the night.

6. Avoid Alcohol

Many people think that drinking some alcohol will help them get to sleep. It will help you initially. You might get some deep sleep, but you will get virtually no REM sleep. This means that your mental health will suffer. Your brain will not get the opportunity to process things and put them into long-term memory. I have also found that drinking alcohol before going to sleep increases my heart rate and body temperature.

My Recommendations


To learn more about sleep, I highly recommend reading the book “Why We Sleep” by Dr. Matthew Walker.

If you would like to monitor your sleep, then I highly recommend the Oura ring.  I use the Oura ring every night to track my sleep phases, heart rate, body temperature and the overall quality and quantity of my sleep.  It’s been a game-changer for me. 

I can now see the influence of working or eating late on my sleep. I can proactively work on improving my sleep and get accurate feedback the following morning. 

The Oura ring will also tell you when you need to rest and take it easy.  As it tracks your body temperature, it can also tell you when you’re coming down with an illness. 

I hope I convinced you to make your sleep a priority. If you do that, you will certainly notice the benefits. Positive thinking is much harder when you’re doing it on less than 6 hours of sleep. So make sleep a priority and see how your mental health improves.

Your body will be grateful too, and your thoughts will naturally be more positive. It’s incredible how such a small thing like improving your sleep, can have a huge positive impact on your life.

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Thank you for reading this article.  I hope you are having a wonderful day!

Paul

In this article, I go behind the scenes and reveal some of my achievements in business and in life during 2019. I’ll also cover travel, music and some of the people that inspired me and that I learned from during 2019. I’ll include some courses that I went on, gadgets that I bought, and books that I read. So this article is all about me! However, it contains a lot of information and resources to help you achieve your big goals in 2020. I hope it will also motivate and inspire you to change your life for the better in 2020.

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Self Help for Life

Self Help for Life started in October 2017. In 2018, I was still finding my way and spending a lot of time learning and building the foundations. In 2019, I really increased the amount of content that I was producing and this is now starting to pay off!

YouTube Channel

In 2019, we published 46 videos on the Self Help for Life YouTube channel. This was almost one a week and double the number of videos published in 2018.

The most popular video by far is How to Hypnotize Yourself with almost 5,000 views. Other popular videos published in 2019 are listed below.

The number of YouTube subscribers tripled from 167 to over 500. At the beginning of the year, I set a goal to have over 500 subscribers by the end of 2019. Back in January, this goal seemed extremely challenging and I had doubts over whether I could achieve it. However, I kept the goal in mind and focussed on producing high-quality videos every week. I hit 200 subscribers during April, 300 during July, 400 during September and 500 in early December.

Podcast

Each YouTube video is turned into a Podcast Episode and published on the Self Help for Life Podcast. So that was 46 podcast episodes during 2019. The number of weekly podcast listeners has grown from 580 to over 1500. Each episode typically gets over 1000 plays with some being closer to 2000. Far more people listen to my Podcast Episodes than watch my videos. The podcast is now entirely managed by my virtual assistant Judy. I give her an audio file of the video and she does the rest! Here is a screenshot showing some Podcast stats.

Blog Articles

In 2019, we published 35 blog articles on the Self Help for Life website. This was roughly one every 10 days. For the first half of 2019, I was writing the blog articles myself and this took a lot of time. One of my goals for 2019, was to hire a professional writer that could do this task for me. I started off using iWriter with mixed success. One of the challenges with a service like iWriter is that you get a different writer each time, so the quality can vary quite a lot.

I then advertised for a writer on Upwork. I interviewed people from all over the world and it was quite a fun process. I decided to hire Irina and she lives in Serbia. I give her a transcript of the video and my original video research notes and she writes most of the blog articles. However, I decided to write this one myself, so I could keep my hand in.

The number of website visitors has increased massively during 2019. It started at around 250 visitors per month in January. It’s now at over 2,000 visitors per month. See the chart below for further details.

100 Visitors a Day Goal

A goal for 2019 was to have over 100 people per day watching my videos, listening to my podcasts or reading my articles. I achieved this with the Podcast with over 300 daily listeners. I fell short on this goal for YouTube. It’s currently at around 60 people watching my videos daily. I did achieve this goal for my website by the skin of my teeth with 101 daily readers during December 2019.

Social Media

One of the things that I learned during 2019 is that Social Media can be a very time-consuming way to build a business and brand. For this reason, I haven’t been proactively taking action to increase the number of followers on these platforms.

However, Judy (my Virtual Assistant in the Philippines) continues to post new videos and blog articles on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. She also reposts older videos and articles and motivational and inspirational image quotes on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

It’s definitely worth following me on Social Media as I do provide content that does not appear elsewhere. Here are the links.

Thank You!

None of this would have been possible without your support, so I would like to thank you for reading my articles, watching my videos and listening to my podcast episodes. It means a lot to me!

Hypnotherapy

The hypnotherapy practice that I run in Sydney continues to thrive. In November, I achieved over 500 hours of client sessions. This is an important milestone as it allows me to become a Clinical Member of the Australian Hypnotherapists Association. This gives me several additional perks and benefits. It also demonstrates to people seeking my help that I have a lot of experience and have dealt with a wide variety of different issues.

I delivered over 280 hypnotherapy sessions this year. Many of these sessions were for help with weight-loss, drinking less alcohol or quitting smoking. However, people also came for hypnotherapy to stop nail-biting, reduce the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and for help in reducing physical pain. I also helped people resolve Intrusive thoughts, OCD behaviors, a fear of flying and many other issues.

I started running more online hypnotherapy sessions using Skype or Zoom. I found these to be as equally effective as face to face sessions. In some cases, they were more effective! This is a wonderful way to work with people that live in other parts of the world and is something that I want to do more of in 2020.

If you would like some hypnotherapy to help resolve an issue that you are having at the moment, then do get in touch. For further information, please visit my hypnotherapy website.

Key Influencers

I follow many people online for help, motivation, and inspiration. I have benefited immensely from these 3 people during 2019.

Alex Haynes

Many personal development and business experts stress the importance of hustle. They say that you have to do whatever it takes and there’s no gain without pain! Having done this in the past, I have found this to be a recipe for burnout and unhappiness!

Alex is different! He talks about the importance of following your intuition whilst developing good success habits. He stresses the importance of doing what feels good and enjoying the process along the way. Alex has a 6-figure online business, but he very rarely spends more than 3 hours a day on his business. He proves that you can be successful by focussing on the most important things, using your intuition and creativity and having fun along the way.

I highly recommend that you check out his YouTube Channel. He focusses on personal development topics and includes many of his own life stories. He is also the author of the book Master the Day which as become a top seller on Amazon.

Marissa Peer

Marissa is an extremely successful hypnotherapist in the UK. She has worked with celebrities and even members of the royal family. She shows you how to have success in all areas of life. What would it be like to have a wonderful career, an amazing relationship, and fantastic health? She talks about living the life of the 1%. Those that have it all.

I watched her free masterclass earlier this year. This included a hypnotherapy session that was probably the most powerful one I had experienced this year! It was all around overcoming rejection and it went right to the heart of the issues and then a process to release them. I highly recommend that you check out Marissa’s Free Masterclass.

Stefan James

I have been following Stefan at Project Life Mastery now for 4 years. His website and YouTube channel are all about mastering all areas of your life, including your health, wealth, mindset, business and finances. Stefan really goes the extra mile in providing extremely helpful content, that is motivating, inspiring and actionable.

Much of the way that I run Self Help for Life comes from Stefan’s Affiliate Marketing Mastery program and the way he runs Project Life Mastery. However, his information on morning rituals, success habits, and emotional resilience helps me in many other areas of my life.

Travel

2019 was a great year for travel with several great holiday adventures!

Borneo

This trip actually started in late December 2018. We flew to Kota Kinabalu which is on the north-west side of Borneo. We then joined the Intrepid Classic Borneo tour and this took us across Borneo to Sandakan in the east.

The highlight of the trip was the Kinabatangan River where we saw over 10 wild Orangutans, many of them on Christmas Day. We also saw many wild Probiscus Monkeys which are native to Borneo.

Malaysia

We flew into Kuala Lumper on New Year’s Eve to see the New Year in at Marini’s bar which is on the 57th floor. It’s very close to the Petronis Towers and where the New Year fireworks take place. It was a wonderful atmosphere in this bar with great music and a chance to watch the fireworks from above, rather than below. On New Years Day, we flew to Langkawi, one of the Malaysian islands for a relaxed start to 2019.

Singapore

For my wife’s 50th birthday, we met up with my mother and sister-in-law and treated ourselves to a few nights at Marina Bay Sands. This is the place to stay in Singapore! The top of the hotel is in the shape of a boat and is supported by three towers. The biggest attraction is the infinity pool in the boat-shaped section at the top. No one swims in this pool. Instead, it’s all about getting the perfect selfie!

Ko Samui

Ko Samui is an island that is part of Thailand. It’s a popular holiday destination and a great place to hang out if you enjoy an alternative and more chilled out lifestyle. It was extremely hot, so any walking or cycling was done before 9 am! I bumped into someone who knew me from school! – Small world! A highlight was finding a vegan yoga cafe that also has co-working spaces with a lovely view of the beach. Perhaps in the future, I’ll run Self Help for Life from there for a few weeks!

Health and Fitness

For me, health and fitness are quite different. You can be very healthy inside, but not particularly strong or flexible. You could also be super fit, muscular, ripped with 6-pack abs, but be unhealthy on the inside. I like to focus more on health, but physical fitness is important too, especially as I’m getting older.

I started having green smoothies most mornings. It’s my way of getting a good hit of vegetables early in the day. My typical green smoothie consists of cucumber, celery, kale, spinach, mango (to make it a little sweeter) and sometimes a greens powder that might include wheatgrass or other green superfoods. I find this to be an excellent way to detox and a great way to start the day. I use the Nutribullet 1200 Series blender to create my morning smoothies.

My weight has been stubbornly at 57kg (125lb) for most of 2019, despite eating more food to try and gain weight. It’s a good problem to have, especially as most people are trying to lose weight. I believe the solution is resistance training and I have been doing that off and on. It’s hard to fit this into my busy schedule, but I know that if I had a good enough “why”, I would make the time. Let’s see what happens in 2020!

Courses

100 Day Challenge

I completed the 100 Day Challenge program for the fourth time. This is a hard-core goal setting and achievement program that I do every year. It’s one of the best ways to make massive progress towards your business and life goals. This year, I used the 100 day challenge to double the number of hypnotherapy clients and recruit a professional writer for Self Help for Life. Both of these goals were successfully achieved. I missed my third 100 Day Challenge goal which was to increase my weight to 60kg.

The 100 Day Challenge is currently open for enrollment. In my opinion, it’s the best program to help you take massive action on your 2020 goals. You can also read my 100 day challenge review right here.

Virtual Gastric Band Hypnotherapy

I also attended the Virtual Gastric Band Hypnotherapy training course in Sydney. This was a face to face training course run by Sheila Granger. She is a very experienced hypnotherapist from the UK and delivers this hypnotherapy training program worldwide. It’s designed to help people lose weight by eating less food. It’s a great alternative to dieting and I have been using this approach very successfully with my weight loss hypnotherapy clients.

Cool Things I Bought

I don’t tend to buy many things these days. I prefer travel and other experiences. However, here are a couple of cool electronic gadgets that I obtained this year.

Muse Brain Sensing Meditation Headband

My wife bought me the Muse Brain Sensing Headband as a birthday present in July. The Muse headband senses your brainwaves during Meditation. It will tell you when your mind is calm and focussed and when it has wandered off. This is all done through the Muse smartphone app and a pair of headphones. When your mind is calm, you hear calm weather and perhaps the sound of birds tweeting. When your mind wanders, you will hear wind, rain and wilder weather. This helps you notice when your mind has wandered, so that you can refocus on your breathing or meditation mantra.

This is a wonderful gadget and certainly makes meditation much more fun. Through the app, you can set meditation goals and monitor your meditation progress. The App is available for iPhone and Android phones.

Sony MX1000mk3 Wireless Headphones

I love to listen to music, podcasts, audiobooks and training programs on the move. I generally walk or use public transport and like to put this time to good use. I’ve always used wired earbuds in the past, but when my last ones stopped working, I decided to treat myself to a pair of over the ear noise-canceling headphones instead. I listened to quite a few different ones in my local hi-fi store and loved the sound of the Sony MX1000mk3 headphones.

I’ve had these for a couple of months now and really love them! The noise-canceling cuts out so much background noise and I feel like I’m in my own bubble! I’ve been relistening to some of my favorite artists and revisiting albums from my childhood. Even the Self Help for Life Podcast sounds great with these headphones!

Music

As you might have guessed from talking about headphones, I have always had a real passion for music ever since I was a child. It’s varied over the years from pop, rock, classical, dance and indie, but it has always been there in some shape or form.

Gigs

It’s always great when international bands come to Sydney. This year, I got to experience U2 performing their Joshua Tree album and many of their other hits live. This was the first time I had seen U2 live and I was so glad I did!

Earlier in the year, I saw Mumford and Sons live. They play a mixture of folk, rock and indie music. They switch between acoustic instruments such as the banjo and double bass to electric instruments. It was fascinating to see this all happening live in front of my eyes!

Artists and Albums

In today’s world of Spotify playlists, I always appreciate the fact that artists still create albums. There are two albums that I’ve played over and over again this year! The first is by Canadian indie band Metric and is called Art of Doubt. It’s my favorite combination of deep, meaningful lyrics, strong songs, and some electronic sounds. My favorite track on the album is “Now or Never Now”

The second is from the UK band Keane and is called Cause and Effect. I’ve been a fan of Keane since they started back in 2004. Its been 5 years since their last album and I really missed their music during this time. Keane are different because they are a rock band without the lead guitar. Piano and synthesizers are used instead. My favorite track is “The Way I Feel”, especially the lyrics about “the voices in your head”

Click the links below to listen to these albums on Spotify

Metric – The Art of Doubt

Keane – Cause and Effect

Books

I’m not a big reader. I generally prefer online courses that have a combination of video, audio, and written material. I have been reading the Barefoot Investor to help improve my financial situation. I’ve covered this in another blog post that you can read here.

I do love reading autobiographies! For me, it’s a great way to get inside the minds of successful people. I especially enjoy reading autobiographies by musical artists. This year I read If I Was by Midge Ure. He talks about his humble beginnings as a child in a council flat in Glasgow with no inside toilet! He covers his Ultravox years and what it was like to achieve massive success almost overnight. He goes into co-writing the Band-Aid Song – Do they know its Christmas with Bob Geldof and how he got the top musicians of the 80s (and their egos) into one studio to record the song!

Things got very challenging for Midge in the 90s and 00s. His records weren’t selling, he lost his confidence, became quite depressed and addicted to alcohol. This is actually really common for music artists and celebrities. They want to recreate what they once had and feel unable to. A highlight is his story of how he stopped drinking alcohol completely. He finally found a good enough reason to stop. He found his “why”.

So What’s In-store for 2020?

My plan is to keep doing what I’m doing, especially now that I’m seeing consistent growth in my blog, YouTube channel, and Podcast. I’m considering developing my own online course or Kindle book. I’m keen to do more online coaching and hypnotherapy, so if that interests you, then do get in touch.

It’s my 50th birthday in July, so there is likely to be a big party and some travel. I plan to work a little less hard and keep a healthy balance between achieving more and enjoying what I already have.

So that was my review of 2019. I hope it helped you gain some insights into my life and what I get up to. I’m looking forward to helping, supporting, motivating and inspiring you in 2020!

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Thank you for reading this article.  I hope you are having a wonderful day!

Paul

You’ve probably already heard about the importance of affirmations and how they positively influence the subconscious mind. But, do you really know what affirmations are and how they work? If you don’t, you’re in the right place. If you have already used them, but they didn’t work for you, let me explain how to create affirmations that can work extremely effectively for you.

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What Are Affirmations?

Affirmations are positive phrases that you repeat often. They can be:

  • Extrinsic – about something you want to achieve, a specific outcome or goal. For example, earning $100,000 a year or losing 20 kg.
  • Intrinsic – about who you want to be or who you want to become. For example, being a more confident, sensitive, extravert or outgoing person.

Why Are Affirmations Useful?

1. Positive thoughts replace negative thoughts

Around 60,000 thoughts pass through your mind every day. Many of these are the same thoughts repeated over and over again. Any thought that you consistently repeat is an affirmation!. So you are already repeating affirmations whether you realize it or not.

The problem is that many of the consistent thoughts that you unconsciously repeat to yourself are negative. By beginning to repeat positive affirmations that work, you can make positive changes and feel much better. You can start having optimistic thoughts about the things that you want to achieve.

2. Helps you focus on what you want

Repeating affirmations that work can also help you focus on what you want rather than what you don’t want. After a while, it changes the way you think. When you change your thinking, your beliefs change as well. Over time, these beliefs become your reality. So your reality changes as well.

3. Rewire your brain

There is a link between affirmations and neuroplasticity – the idea is that you can rewire your brain to think differently automatically. When you repeat affirmations that work, things change at an unconscious level. You create new neural pathways in your brain, so that over time you unconsciously begin to act differently.

Related Article: How to Write Affirmations that are Believable and Get Results

The Main Reason Why Affirmations Don’t Work

The number one reason why affirmations haven’t worked for you until now is cognitive dissonance. This is the conflict between your new affirmation and the thoughts, beliefs, or attitudes that you already have.

How Do You Identify Cognitive Dissonance?

There are several ways to recognize cognitive dissonance. These include:

1. Contradictory self-talk

When you repeat an affirmation, your self-talk contradicts it. It says something like, “no, that’s never going to happen”.

2. Uncomfortable feeling

When you start repeating affirmations, you may get a feeling inside that seems to tell you that what you are saying is not true.

3. Negative imagination

While repeating an affirmation, you start imagining something contrary to what you’re affirming.

Let’s say you are a shy person, and you are repeating the affirmation: “I am very confident when interacting with others”. The contradictory self-talk could be, “no, you’re not. You are shy, and you can’t talk to anyone”. You may also sense an uncomfortable feeling. Or you start imagining yourself being shy in a specific social situation.

Another example could be saying the affirmation “my business is a success” when you know it isn’t. You’re going to get that contradictory self-talk and perhaps an uncomfortable feeling. Or you’ll start imagining and remembering times when it wasn’t successful.

How to Overcome Cognitive Dissonance

You need to make your affirmations believable. To help you do this, I am going to give you 9 phrases that you can use to create more believable affirmations that will work for you.

A good place to start is the “I am” affirmation. Here are some examples

  • I am confident.
  • I am earning $100,000 per year.
  • I am attractive.
  • I am in excellent health.

When you repeat these “I am” affirmations, do you hear negative self-talk or an uncomfortable feeling? Or do you imagine something that goes against what you’re affirming? If you notice any internal conflict, then here are some other phrases that you can use instead.

The 9 Phrases to Create Affirmations That Work

1. I want to

The phrase “I want to” is believable. For example, “I want to become confident”. That’s believable because all you’re saying is that you would like to become confident. Your unconscious mind hears the words “become confident,” and it starts to get the feeling of the word “confident.” Here are some other examples:

  • I want to earn $100,000 per year.
  • I want to be attractive.
  • I want to be in great health.
  • I want to find my soul mate.

Are you noticing any cognitive dissonance now? If you are, try the next phrase.

2. I can

When you say “I can”, you affirm that it’s possible and that you can do it. And that’s true. It’s harder to question whether you can or can’t do something if you haven’t done it yet.

  • I can be confident.
  • I can earn $100,000 per year.
  • I can become attractive.
  • I can be in excellent health.
  • I can find my soul mate.

If in the past you couldn’t do certain things, then you might get a bit of cognitive dissonance. If that’s the case, then move on to the next one.

3. I choose to

This one gives an element of choice and intention. This can make the affirmation more believable.

  • I choose to be confident.
  • I choose to earn $100,000 a year.
  • I choose to become attractive.
  • I choose to be in great health.
  • I choose to find ways to meet my soulmate.

4. I am learning to

This phrase is very believable. As long as you are taking some time to learn, then that critical voice in your mind can’t contradict you. It’s very, very believable. Here are some examples.

  • I am learning to become confident.
  • I am learning how to become confident.
  • I am learning how to earn $100,000 per year.
  • I am learning ways to become more attractive.
  • I am learning how to be in great health.
  • I am learning how to find my soulmate.

With this one, it’s beneficial to use words like “how” or “the best way.” For example, “I am learning the best way to earn $100,000 a year”, or “I am learning multiple ways to be in great health”.

5. I am becoming

This phrase gives you the feeling that your goal is a process or a journey. Each day you’re getting a little bit closer to achieving it. With this affirmation, it can be helpful to add words like “more and more.” Here are some examples:

  • I am becoming more and more confident.
  • I am becoming more capable of earning $100,000 per year.
  • I am becoming more and more attractive.
  • I am becoming healthier each day.
  • I am becoming more capable of finding my soulmate.

6. I can find a way

This one is great when you are motivated, but you still don’t know the exact solution or method. It can get you out of that feeling of hopelessness or overwhelm. You can say:

  • I can find a way to be more confident.
  • I can find a way to earn $100,000 a year.
  • I can find a way to be more attractive.
  • I can find a way to be in great health.
  • I can find a way to meet my soulmate.

7. I deserve to

This phrase is useful if cognitive dissonance comes from a lack of self-worth or self-esteem. It’s often the case when you want something, but don’t feel you deserve it.

  • I deserve to be more confident.
  • I deserve to earn $100,000 a year.
  • I deserve to be more attractive.
  • I deserve to be in great health.
  • I deserve to find my soul mate.

The phrase “I give myself permission” can be an excellent alternative.  For example, “I give myself permission to be more confident.”

8. I am open to the possibility

Let me give you an example first: “I am open to the possibility that I could be more confident”. I use this one a lot in my hypnotherapy sessions when people have very deep-rooted beliefs that create cognitive dissonance. When they are not able to use any of the other phrases that I’ve covered earlier, this one is the best. It’s a good idea to add the words “I can” or “I could.” Let me go through the examples:

  • I am open to the possibility that I could become more confident.
  • I am open to the possibility that I can earn $100,000 per year.
  • I am open to the possibility that I could be more attractive.
  • I am open to the possibility that I could be in great health.
  • I am open to the possibility that I can find my soulmate.

9. I will

I’m personally less keen on this one because the words “I will” could tell your unconscious mind that you are talking about the future. And if it feels that it will happen in the future, not now, then it won’t necessarily take the steps towards making it happen. However, if the “I will” phrase feels right to you, and you don’t feel cognitive dissonance, then give it a go. The most important thing is to make it believable. I would suggest combining it with similar affirmations that use some of the other phrases. So running down our list again:

  • I will be more confident.
  • I will earn $100,000 a year.
  • I will be more attractive.
  • I will be in great health.
  • I will find my soul mate.

Find Affirmations That Work for You

So I have covered 9 great phrases that will make your affirmations more believable and compelling. Make use of these phrases and find affirmations that work for you. Bear in mind that everyone is different. Experiment! Find those that are the most effective for you!

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Paul

An amazing life doesn’t happen by chance. It will happen when you use your time, energy and focus intentionally, deliberately and purposely.

An amazing life can be hampered by distractions, less important goals or a shortage of time or money. However, the biggest obstacle is often the lack of a clear goal. However, this and other things preventing you from living an amazing life can be solved with a little effort.

Here are 10 fantastic ways to create an amazing life. One that is meaningful and exciting to you.

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1. Decide on Your Priorities

Wanting to be an olympic athlete, astronaut and concert pianist in one lifetime is unrealistic.  The time and effort involved in mastering all three would be too great.  I love this quote from David Allen that states “You can do anything, but you can’t do everything“.

Warren Buffett recommends writing down the 10 goals that you most want to achieve in your life. Then scrubbing out numbers 4 to 10 and focusing purely on the first 3.   You can always come back to goals 4 to 10, once you have achieved your top 3 goals.

2. Get Started

The first step towards achieving any meaningful goal can often be the hardest.  A lot of people have reasons or excuses for not getting started. This could be a lack of money, lack of time or lack of knowledge. It might also be a feeling that you’re not good enough or worthy enough to achieve this goal. However, it’s important to realize that you already have everything you need to take the first logical step.

Perhaps you believe that this is not the best time to start. If that’s the case, remember that there is never a perfect time to start anything.

If you struggle to get started each day, then commit to doing a difficult but necessary activity for 10 minutes and see what happens. And do this even when you don’t feel like doing it. Once the motivation kicks in, you’ll find that one hour swiftly passes by and you’re now successfully doing something that is taking you closer to the life you want.

3. Spend Your Time Wisely

There are lots of ways to complete the same activity.  Sometimes the easiest way takes longer. Sometimes the easier way works in the short-term, but has negative consequences in the longer term.

Sometimes the quicker or best way requires more courage, feels uncomfortable or involves a higher level of skill.   However, if this allows you to do more in a shorter space of time and get better long-term results,  then it’s worth the effort.

4. Remove things that aren’t necessary

Start by removing whatever isn’t necessary. This could be responsibilities, distractions, less meaningful activities or people that drain you emotionally.

A few years ago, I was attending yoga classes regularly and also doing many other things to improve my health. The yoga classes helped a little, but I really didn’t enjoy it. So I ditched the Yoga and started leading bush walks or hikes around Sydney instead. I enjoyed this so much more. I was getting some exercise, meeting new people and doing something that made me happy and fulfilled. I was doing something for me!

So take a look at your life. Remove activities that seem to provide little value or benefit or that you don’t enjoy. It’s pointless doing all these things if they make you unhappy.

5. Deal with Negative Thoughts and Emotions

Achieving an amazing life can be challenging at times. Those big goals and aspirations will bring up negative thoughts and emotions and also feelings of self-doubt. That’s normal. It’s part of the journey and is to be expected. Just remembering this can help a lot.

When the road is bumpy, stay positive and solution-focused. Keep focussed on what you’re going to achieve. When you focus or pay attention to the negative and what’s not working, this will sap your energy and fuel procrastination.

6. Forgive

Forgive and let go of the past. Remember that past experiences (even the challenging ones) have helped you become who you are today. They gave you strength, resilience, empathy, and helped you build better habits and become a better person.

Also, forgive other people. This might include your family, friends or colleagues. Remember that they were trying to do the right thing, based on what they know and their mental state at the time. If their mental state was poor, they may have said or done something that you didn’t like and that you now resent. They may even regret their actions towards you, but find it hard to apologize or share that with you.

7. Replace Resentment with Compassion

Similar to forgiveness, you want to let go of any resentment for things that have happened in the past. This could be resenting other people or even yourself. Holding on to resentment will never make you happy. It can even create disease in your body.

So replace resentment with compassion and you’ll feel happier and your life will be more amazing.

8. It’s Not That Difficult

There is less competition than you think.  Look at how the average person wastes time at work and at home.  Most people do not have goals.  Most people fail to prioritize their time or get distracted easily.  The average person lives a comfortable life and then regrets it later.

You’re only competing against a small minority of people that have the same mindset as you, so success may not be as difficult as you think it’s going to be.

9. Adapt, but Don’t quit

It’s important to adapt and sometimes make dramatic changes in direction. Never quit, because there is almost always another way or another approach that will work better. People that live an amazing life adapt to changing circumstances, but never quit on their ultimate goals and dreams.

10. Be Happy Right Now

So many people think that happiness is like a deferred payment plan. They say “I will be happy when….”. Here are some examples.

  • I will be happy when I graduate from college and have some money.
  • I will be happy when I find my soul mate and get married.
  • I will be happy when I buy a house.
  • I will be happy when I become a manager or executive in this company.
  • I will be happy when I retire!

These things will make you happy in the short-term. However, after a while, they will become familiar and your level of happiness drops. You then start looking for the next thing that will make you happy.

Happiness is ultimately a feeling. There are things you can do to feel happier right now. I often find that it’s the really small things that make me happy, such as quality time with my wife, a good friend or walking in nature. It’s also the contrasts in life, such as having a day to yourself after being very busy for a few days.

Think about the little things that make you happy right now. It’s still important to strive for the things that will make your life amazing, but enjoy the journey along the way.

So in closing, if you would like your life to be more amazing, start by setting goals, establishing priorities, and removing distractions. Work on your emotions, especially resentment, and do the things that make you happy right now. Remember, there is plenty of time to have the life that you’ve always wanted. So use your time wisely and start applying these 10 secrets to an amazing life.

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Paul

What is the best way to develop a wealth mindset and become wealthy? Well, a good start is to find out what wealthy people think and do and start applying this to your own life.

Besides having a great wealth mindset, wealthy people also adopt specific behaviors that other people don’t do. Start modeling these behaviors and you can have what they have too!

In this article, you will learn the 8 specific factors that predict how wealthy you will be. Discover the mix of wealth mindset traits and specific behaviors that wealthy people do. Then start doing these too!

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So let’s kick off with some questions:

  • What behaviors do most millionaires have in common?
  • What are their main personality traits?
  • What does it take to become a millionaire?
  • What does it mean to have a wealth mindset?
  • Can an ordinary person build extraordinary wealth?

To answer these questions, I’m going to share the research results from two great authors. The first is Chris Hogan, who studied 10,000 millionaires. The second is Sarah Stanley Fallaw who studied 600 millionaires in the US.  Here are the links to their books on Amazon.

These researchers uncovered 8 behaviors or wealth mindsets that almost every millionaire has. These 8 factors can predict how wealthy someone will become in spite of their age, background, or current income.

So here are the 8 factors that you can use to predict how wealthy you are going to be.

1. Frugality

The first one is frugality – a commitment to saving and spending less than you earn. It’s sticking to a budget and resisting lifestyle creep. What is lifestyle creep? It’s spending more when you start earning more. Frugal people typically spend about 80% of their income. The rest, they invest.

Frugal people know that becoming rich or financially independent is not about how much you earn. It’s about spending less than you earn. That’s the crucial thing. They’re creating a financial buffer for their future. The money they save might be used to start a new business or retire early.

True financial freedom or financial independence means having time as well as money. To have time, you need income from passive sources. It can be rental income, income from investments, or from an online business. That income doesn’t need to be very high. It just needs to be high enough to exceed your expenses.

2. Confidence

Confidence is essential if you want to be frugal. You’re going to get pressured from other people to spend money. It takes courage to say no. You have to be determined to stick to your budget.

Being confident also means being able to invest with your head and not your emotions. Whether it’s investing in a property or stocks and shares, it’s easy to get emotional and not think realistically. Rich people are very good at taking a detached perspective. They have the skill of weighing up the pros and cons logically.

They also act on opportunities quickly. Rich people seem to have the ability to recognize an excellent opportunity when they see one. They don’t procrastinate on decisions. They take action immediately because they have that wealth mindset. They’re confident in their skills and abilities. This gives them resilience, persistence, and self-belief.

3. Taking Responsibility

If you’ve read some self-help books, you probably know that taking responsibility for your life is extremely important. So, it’s not surprising that one of the crucial traits of wealthy and successful people is taking personal responsibility. They don’t count on other people to help them get rich. They take action by themselves. They don’t blame others either. They won’t even blame the economy when they fall short.

Sometimes millionaires lose their wealth when the economy changes. But what’s interesting about these people is that they are capable of coming back and making money again. They are taking responsibility and not blaming the economy. Even if the economy affects them in the short term, they know they’re going to get back on track.

A part of taking responsibility is being flexible. You must be willing to try different things. It’s also about focusing on what you can control. In any situation, it is essential to know what you can manage and influence, especially when other people are involved. It’s also about aligning your daily habits with your own goals. Rich people have consistent daily habits that are taking them towards their goals.

Interestingly, most millionaires are self-made. They have not achieved their wealth by luck, through inheritance, or by having wealthy parents. There are so many stories about self-made millionaires that were just like anybody else. Still, they had that something that led them to success. And that was not given to them by birth. They had the wealth mindset that you can develop and cultivate too.

4. Goal Setting & Achievement

Successful and wealthy people are goal-orientated. They set short-term and long-term goals for their financial future. Researched showed that 92% of wealthy people had a long-term plan for their finances. And 97% of these people accomplished almost every goal they set. So they rarely fall short. They set goals, and they achieve them. They’ve mastered the art of setting goals and, most importantly, accomplishing them.

5. Focus & Tenacity

This one is about seeing tasks through to their logical conclusion. Not being distracted by other things or other opportunities. Resisting the shiny object syndrome. Successful people generally stick with one business idea or venture for a significant amount of time. They might see other, perhaps even better opportunities. But they decide to stick with the one they started. Especially if they can see some signs of success.

There might be times when switching to another business venture, or opportunity is the right thing to do. But generally, this will be the last resort for a person with a wealth mindset. They are aware that taking action on their current venture is much more critical. It means staying in the game for the long term.

They’re also a lot less focused on immediate gratification. Their willingness to give up spending time and money on things now is helping them to achieve better results in the future. They are capable of avoiding the “I need to have things now to be happy” mindset and focus on long-term gratification. They are long-term thinkers. They are thinking 2, 5, even 10 years in advance.

If I’d started saving when I was 20, I could well be on the way to being a millionaire now. But I didn’t have that long-term vision in my early 20s. If you are in your early 20s, understand how important this is. What you do financially in your early 20s can make an enormous impact on your financial future. Start planning for your future right now!

6. Social Indifference

People with a wealth mindset don’t feel a need to keep up with the Joneses. When your neighbor buys a particular car or something else, do you feel the need to do the same? Genuinely successful people don’t feel a need to do that. They don’t feel the pressure from others to buy the latest iPhone or some other gadget. Sometimes they have older technology because they use their money for other things.

When I first started working, I moved into my first shared house in London. I was talking to my flat mates who were making a good income compared to me. I asked if they were saving some of that extra money for the future. They said no, they just spent more instead! So they earned more, but spent more too! As I mentioned earlier, this is known as “lifestyle creep”. I didn’t want that to happen to me, but it has, although I’m addressing this now!

7. Working Hard

The next thing that productive, successful and wealthy people do is work hard. They’re always willing to do whatever it takes even when it’s not easy. They’re eager to challenge themselves. They’re ready to stretch themselves. And 93% of people who became millionaires achieved that with hard work. It was not about knowing the right people or being in the right place. It was sheer hard work that got them to where they were.

These people are continually working on improving themselves. They won’t settle for what they have or who they are today. They’re always looking for more. Even though they are very successful now, they’re always looking for ways to improve themselves. They develop themselves further so that they can be even better tomorrow. Investing in their education and skills makes them capable of embracing the latest technologies or business trends. They have that wealth mindset that there’s always more to learn. And they have the curiosity that drives them.

One more thing that is significant is to take on jobs that you are passionate about and that you love doing. When you work on something that you’re excited about, it’s a lot easier to do the hard work. You’re much more motivated, and it’s much easier to keep going when the going gets tough. If you love what you are doing, you’re more likely to do it very well. You are always going to perform better at something that you enjoy, and you’re happy doing.

8. Being Consistent

To be consistent means doing the same thing day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, even decade after decade. If you want to be consistent, you need to be patient. You have to be able to let go of immediate gratification and focus on the long-term goals. Having a good focus is essential. You need to have the ability to stay focused on your plan and your goals for financial wealth and freedom. If you have a passion for what you’re doing, that should make everything easier.

So, these are the 8 behaviors and wealth mindset traits that the vast majority of millionaires have, based on extensive research.

To learn more, I highly recommend reading the following two books.

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Paul

Having too much to do or a feeling that you are overwhelmed is the most common form of stress in today’s world. I call it time poverty. There are not enough hours in the day to do all the things we need to do. This lack of time can be a hard one to crack because it feels like you have no control over it.  There are only a certain number of hours in a day and we can’t change that.

Recently, I’ve had a few hypnotherapy clients that have been experiencing this problem. I really wanted to help them. And I want to help you as well if you feel overwhelmed because of having too much to do.

Most probably, there are many things that you think you should be doing. For example, exercising, eating healthily, doing yoga, or working on your self-improvement. Maybe you think you should be spending more time with your children, friends, or family. The pressure can also come from your work.

Technology can make that feeling even worse. Nowadays, thanks to technology, we can do so much more quickly and efficiently. Consequently, we have more to think about. There is more mental noise in our minds. That noise creates additional pressure.

How do you know when you have too much to do or that you are overwhelmed? Usually, it’s pretty obvious. Sometimes it’s not so easy to tell. Think about the tasks that are generally rewarding and enjoyable. If you stop enjoying them and all you can see is a long list of things you need to do, then this is a key sign that you’ve got too much on.

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Now I’m going to cover the 10 ways to effectively deal with having too much to do.

1. Write Everything Down

It is essential to write everything down on a piece of paper or on your computer. I used to keep all the things I had to do in my head. One evening, I came home, looking busy and stressed. My wife asked what are all the things you need to do? Even though I had all these things in my mind, I struggled to answer her question. I couldn’t recall most of the things that I needed to do.

What helped me was writing all my tasks down. When you write them down, you get a clear visual picture of what you need to do. This gives you a sense of perspective, and often you can find the cause of your stress. The overwhelming feeling usually reduces. You may also feel an emotional release. Just the act of writing all these things down can help release that stress emotion.

2. Prioritize

Once you write your tasks down, it’s time to prioritize. You’ve got to put them into an order. First, focus on what’s urgent and what needs to be done immediately. After that, add tasks that you want to do and are important to you. These are the tasks that give you a sense of fulfillment and happiness. They help you achieve your long-term goals. When you feel happy and fulfilled, you’re more likely to get those other tasks done.

Next, there are tasks that you don’t want to do. See if you can get some help. Or, find a way to delegate them to somebody else.

Some tasks are of low priority. I’d almost call them the don’t do’s. Maybe, it’s not necessary to do them. If they’re not adding much value to your business or your life, perhaps you could skip them. This might go against your work ethic. However, the reality is that you’ve got too much to do. So you have to prioritize in a way that ensures that the most important things get done.

3. Change Your Self-Talk

This one comes from a video by Bernadette (known as “B”) at the Daily Positive. She says that when you have too much to do and feel overwhelmed, don’t say things like, I’m so busy, I’m so stressed out, or I don’t have enough time. Why? Because your unconscious mind gets that message loud and clear. And it will put you into fight or flight mode. This creates a vicious cycle, where you’re more stressed and less productive. Your work begins to pile up even more.

Remember that your unconscious mind can’t make choices. It just imprints whatever you regularly say to yourself. So if you keep saying to yourself, I’m so busy, I’m so stressed out, I don’t have enough time, your unconscious mind is going to believe it. Instead, you want to say the direct opposite. Tell yourself things like:

  • I am calm,
  • I am in control.
  • I am focused.
  • I am effective.
  • There is more than enough time to do everything I need to do.

Even if you don’t believe these, when you say them, your body will begin to feel calmer. You’ll feel more in control. You’ll be able to think more clearly, and you’ll be more productive.

Over time, these new affirmations and this new self-talk will become more believable. You will start to take them on more and more naturally.

4. Banish the Words Should, Must, and Have To

The vast majority of us live in a free society. We have freedom of thinking and freedom of speech. We also have freedom of choice. We can choose what to do or what not to do. So rather than saying I should go to the gym today, say I choose to go to the gym today. Or I can go to the gym today. And in the same manner, I choose to stick to this diet, I can stick to this diet, or I want to stick to this diet.

Can you see that you now have a choice? It might seem like a play on words, but again, your unconscious mind will pick up on the harsher feelings behind words such as should, must or have to. So use softer words, such as want to, choose to, and could do. When you do this, you’ll see a difference. You’ll feel more in control.

5. Make Time for What Matters Most

Think about the things that are very important to you, the things that you would regret if you didn’t do them. When you get older and look back on your life, what are you going to care about? What are you going to regret not doing? Probably not many things that are on your current to-do list!

You must make time in the day to do what’s super important. The things that you value. Maybe it’s exercise because you want to have a great body and long-term sustainable health. Maybe, it’s meditation so you could feel more focused as life goes on. Perhaps, it’s self-improvement – becoming the best person you can be. It could also be learning new skills or setting up a part-time business.

If you can find a way to make time to fit those into your day, you will feel much better about yourself. And when you feel better about yourself, you tend to get more of those other things done as well.

6. Watch Out for Perfectionism

Quite a few of my clients that have wanted help with stress and overwhelm have one thing in common. They are perfectionists. They want to do things to a very high standard. And that requires much more time.

It helps to know the difference between something being perfect and good enough. You might spend 20% of your time and effort to get something to be good enough, and then the remaining 80% to get it to be perfect. So we have the 80/20 rule here. When you strive to make something perfect, think about what else you could do with that time? What are the tasks that you’re not going to do at all if you do this one task perfectly?

It’s not easy to let go of perfectionism. I know that because I have perfectionism tendencies myself. I believe that there is an underlying fear of not being good enough behind perfectionism. Everything has to be perfect so that I can feel I’m good enough.

It is helpful to think about when it’s important to be a perfectionist and when it isn’t. If you are performing brain surgery, then you must do your best because it’s a life or death situation. But if you’re at home preparing a salad, maybe that doesn’t need to be completely perfect. Some things may need to be perfect, but there are others where it’s fine to be good enough. Make sure you can distinguish between the two. Don’t try being a perfectionist at everything.

7. Don’t Take on New Activities

When you have too much to do, it’s essential not to take on any more activities. It could be a new project at work or maybe joining a committee with a meaningful cause. Perhaps it’s buying a new course, doing a new exercise program, or a new diet. It feels good doing new things. You get a dopamine hit! But remember, that it is another thing to do.

When it comes to new courses, there are always 2 questions I ask myself. Firstly, is this course going to be of good value to me? And secondly, have I got the time to do it? Quite often, the answer to the second question is no. Make sure that you ask yourself these two questions when you consider buying a course or paying for something that will take more of your time. It’s vital to balance that reward and dopamine hit with having some space in your life. Create space to relax and take some time out.

8. Learn to Say No

When you’ve got too much to do, the last thing you want is to take on more. When people ask us to do something, we often say yes without thinking about the consequences. We don’t think about what that work is going to involve. Then we begin to regret it later. Here are a few tips for saying no.

Firstly, be direct and keep it simple. Say things like, no, I can’t do that or no, I don’t want to do that right now. Always be polite. Say thanks for asking, but I can’t do this at the moment. Practice saying no in your imagination.

Next, buy time. Sometimes rather than saying no, say, can I get back to you. That gives you time to think about how much time you would need, and if you can really fit it in. If you cannot do it, you have enough time to think about the best way to say no. Remember that when you say no to someone, you’re rejecting their request. You’re not rejecting the person. That’s very important.

Bear in mind that if you get into the habit of saying yes to everything, people will start asking you to do more and more. They will expect that of you. They’ll see you as a person who’s always going to say yes. They might take advantage of you because of that.

It’s always better to say no now than be resentful later for saying yes. Remember, your self-worth is not dependent on pleasing others.

9. Have a Mindful Moment

I learned this from Leo at Zen Habits. When you have too much to do, and you feel overwhelmed, use it as an opportunity to practice mindfulness. Mindfulness means being completely in the here and now. Not thinking about the past, not worrying about the future, just being completely in the present.

There are 2 ways you can practice this. The first is to focus completely on the one thing you’re doing right now without thinking about anything else. If you find this hard to do, you can try what Leo calls Mind Jumps.

Take 1 or 2 minutes out. Notice how your body feels while your mind is spinning. You’re going to feel the stress. And that’s not going to be a pleasant feeling. However, it’s not going to be the end of the world either. It’s just going to be a little bit uncomfortable.

 As you do that, observe how you feel. Then, start observing your surroundings. What can you see? What can you hear? What can you feel? Notice the thoughts that are coming up in your mind. How are they affecting your feelings? Maybe you’ll notice words like should or must or some negative phrases. Start becoming more and more aware of these.

10. Let It Go

The last one is to practice letting go. This also comes from Leo at Zen Habits.

When you have a big to-do list, and you have a high desire to get it all done, this desire can get in the way of actually doing it. This desire can affect your concentration and focus. Leo recommends letting go of the idea that you’re going to get it all done and accepting the reality. The reality is that you can do only one thing at a time. He also says, be grateful for the moment that you have right now instead of wishing for the moment that you don’t have. I believe this is very important.

Many people go through life just thinking about the future. They never really think about this actual moment. Practice being grateful for where you are right now. The only thing we can be certain of in life is that there’s always going to be more things on our to-do list! That’s the only constant. Taking time to be grateful for where you are right now is extremely important.

I found these 10 ways to deal with too much to do to be very effective, both for myself and my clients. I hope you will put them into practice and realize how powerful and helpful they can be for you too. 

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Thank you for reading this article.  I hope you are having a wonderful day!

Paul

In July 2019, I published the 50th video on my Self-help for Life YouTube channel. I want to share with you what I have learned from creating and publishing just over 50 YouTube videos. This is a chance for you to see me applying the success principles that I talk about quite a lot.

The Self Help for Life YouTube channel started in September 2017. Now in August 2019, it has about 275 subscribers and about 1,500 monthly views. The success principles I used to achieve that could be applied to almost any goal in life. Whatever your goal is at the moment, you can make use of the success principles I used to create my first 50 YouTube videos.

Watch the video below:

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Consistency is the Key

The first thing that made a massive difference to my YouTube channel was becoming consistent. For the first 15 months, I recorded only 21 videos. I was pretty inconsistent. There was a month when I did 1 video per week. But sometimes, a whole month would go by without a video. In the chart below, you can see my productivity and the results.

The little squares at the bottom of the chart show the time when I recorded and uploaded videos. Significant gaps represent the time I didn’t record and upload any videos. The spikes happened when I promoted those videos to my email list subscribers. I realized that when I was not promoting videos to my email list, nobody was really watching them.

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Have you ever set a goal, and after a year’s gone by, nothing much has changed? When you’re inconsistent with anything in life, it’s unrealistic to expect any long-term success or any real change.

From December 2018 up until now, I have been very consistent with recording and publishing 1 YouTube video per week. And that has added up to 34 videos. During that time, I missed only one week in April because I was on holiday. Let’s look at the chart now.

Again, spikes can be seen after the promotion of a new video to my email list. There are more spikes now because there are more videos to promote. But what you’ll start to notice from June onwards is that there’s an upward trend. That’s because people are also finding and watching my videos by other means. YouTube has started rewarding me because of my consistency by showing those videos to more people. And that’s why that growth has begun to increase.

Think about other goals you want to achieve in life. Let’s say you have a goal to build muscle. If you increase the number of trips to the gym, you’re going to start seeing longer-term muscle growth. So the key to being successful in anything is consistency!

Don’t Give Up If Results are Not Immediate

Between the time you start doing something, and the time you start seeing the results, there’s usually a delay. The key here is not to give up during that time.

Think about 2 people that both set a New Year’s resolution to get fit. The first person goes to the gym 3 times a week for the whole of January, then starts to drop off in February. By March he is going only once a week. The second person consistently goes 3 times a week in January, February, March, and for a whole year. Think about the results the second person is going to have over the first person. If the second person continues his 3 gym sessions per week routine for several years, the difference is going to be huge.

When mastering a sport or a musical instrument, the consistent practice is what will get you the results over time. When you are consistent for years, the results are going to be outstanding. In the case of my YouTube channel, I would say that 50% of my success came from being consistent.

Be Accountable to Someone

The next thing that made a significant change in my process of creating 50 YouTube videos was accountability. Back in November 2018, I hired a virtual assistant. A virtual assistant is someone that lives in another country and usually works from home. If you have an online business, hiring a virtual assistant can be very useful. They can help you with all kinds of tasks that you don’t have time for.

I hired Judy from the Philippines. Judy helps me with social media. She also creates the thumbnails for my videos and helps more people find my videos on YouTube. She also takes the audio from the video, adds an intro and an outro and turns it into a podcast episode.

I’m accountable to her now because if I don’t record a video, then she has less work to do. Since I’ve had Judy working for me, I’ve wanted to create a video every week. To some degree, she is earning a living from me. If I don’t give her enough work, that affects her, and I feel bad about that.

There are lots of different ways you can have accountability. You can be accountable to a good friend or on social media. Whatever your goal is, think about a way that you can be accountable. Accountability makes you more committed and more motivated to achieve your goal.

Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

One important thing I learned from creating 50 YouTube videos was how to expand my comfort zone.

Creating YouTube videos isn’t easy. Talking to a camera and not getting immediate feedback is quite hard. It feels like you’re talking to yourself at times. I’ve done some live presentations in the past. I could see if people were smiling, nodding their heads, and approving. I could also see if they were getting bored – falling asleep or looking at their phones. That allowed me to take immediate action to make the presentation more engaging.

It’s completely different when you make YouTube videos. You don’t see reactions, and you don’t get immediate feedback. There’s also a potential for rejection or criticism because people can leave negative comments. I haven’t had that experience yet, but I’m sure it will come at some point.

Very often, it’s when you go out of your comfort zone that you get the results faster. So think about what that could be for you. What is the one thing you could do that would take you out of your comfort zone and help you achieve your goals faster?

Have Patience

The next thing I learned from creating over 50 YouTube videos is that you’ve got to have incredible patience! Most people give up before they record and publish 50 videos. Why is that? Because they see no results or they see minimal progress. They come up with excuses or justifications, and they believe that they are the problem. In reality, they just didn’t give it enough time.

Let’s use affirmations as an example. A lot of people believe that affirmations don’t work. They repeat affirmations for 2, 3, or 4 weeks, and then give up. Think of affirmations as a bit like creating YouTube videos. What would it be like if you repeated affirmations daily for a whole year? I can pretty much guarantee that you would notice a significant change in your life.

The same goes for meditation. Let’s say you’re highly stressed and anxious. You want to give meditation a go. You meditate every day for 3 or 4 weeks, and you don’t see much benefit. Your stress levels are still quite high. Again, you’re not giving it enough time.

Consider the things in your life that you have given up in the past. Did you think that you weren’t good enough? Or you thought it wouldn’t work for you? Ask yourself, if I kept doing this, if I had given it more time, could I have got a better result? And if that’s the case, I encourage you to give it another go.

Compounding Effect

Creating over 50 YouTube videos taught me about the compounding effect. You put in the same amount of work week after week, but over time the results or the benefits from that work start to grow.

In the above Excel spreadsheet, you can see some of my YouTube statistics. Look at the second row, that’s the monthly subscriber increase. In January, I gained 6 subscribers. In February, it was up to 10; in March, I gained another 14. It dropped a little bit in April, down to 8. In May, it was 16, then June – 22, and July – 31. So by July, I was getting 5 times the number of YouTube subscribers as I was getting in January.

The number of views almost tripled. Impressions, which is the number of times that YouTube displays my video, increased nearly 5 times. So the same amount of effort – 1 video a week – but a massive increase in subscriber growth, views, and video reach.

What the compounding effect also gives you is momentum. If I stopped recording videos for two or three weeks, those figures would likely continue to increase.

The same could apply to the goal of becoming fit. For example, you work out regularly for a year and get really fit. Then you take a break for two or three weeks. You’re still going to have all the benefits of that strength and a good looking body.

Another example of a compound effect could be earning someone’s trust. When you start working for a new boss, or you’re in a new relationship, you put a lot of effort into earning that person’s trust. Eventually, you get to a point where they trust you completely. Then you can relax. You don’t need to put as much effort into maintaining that trust as you did into building it. So the whole idea is to put the same amount of effort in but to get better results over time.

Focus on Continual Improvement

The next thing I learned from creating over 50 YouTube videos is to focus on continual improvement.

My first videos didn’t have good sound quality. I used the internal microphone on the camera, and I sounded a bit tinny. Over time, I realized I could improve that. Now I use a Rode SmartLav+ microphone, which is connected to my iPhone. I record the sound separately and then sync it to the video. This gives me far better sound quality.

Also, I feel that my videos are tighter and more concise now. Certain filler words that I used to say quite a lot, I don’t say anymore. I watched and listened to my older videos to work out how I could improve. I kept learning from experience, practice, and feedback from other people. So over time, my videos improved quite a lot.

Measure Your Progress

After creating over 50 YouTube videos, I realized how important it is to measure your progress. That means to check in on a weekly or a monthly basis, figuring out what is working and what is not working. I typically check in on YouTube once a month. I like to see which videos are performing the best. For example, the video called How to Hypnotize Yourself is doing much better than any other at the moment.

What if you have a goal that is a little bit harder to measure? Let’s say it’s reducing stress or anxiety. You decide you’re going to do a few different things. Maybe you’re going to repeat some affirmations or meditate for 10 or 15 minutes a day. When you check in weekly, you can see if the symptoms of anxiety are starting to reduce. If so, you know that the activities that you’re doing are helping. If there is no significant change, maybe you should give it a bit more time, as I mentioned earlier. After that, you can try a different approach.

Whatever your goal is, there is usually some way that you can measure your progress. I highly encourage you to do that.

Re-purposing

The next thing that I learned from creating over 50 YouTube videos is something called re-purposing. That means doing the work once and then using it for other purposes or benefits.

Before I record my videos, I do a certain amount of preparation. I create an outline of what I’m going to say. Sometimes I do some further research on the internet. I try some things out on myself first. I think about examples from my own life that I could share. Then I record, edit and publish the video. After that, Judy turns that video into a podcast.

So I have already used the same work for two purposes. Once that’s done, I get the video transcribed. and turn it into a blog article. I used to do this myself. However, now Irina (my Virtual Writer) does this for me. So, for the same amount of research and preparation, I now have a video, a podcast, and a blog article. The same amount of effort but 3 different types of content.

Think creatively about how you could do that in some aspects of your life. Maybe you’re training up a new staff member. You could record the training. Then the next time you have a new staff member, you can send them the recording. Then they can ask you any questions they have. Or you could create what’s called a Standard Operating Procedure ( SOP) that has all the steps that they need to do to learn the task. Once you do that, next time you train someone, it will be much easier.

Modeling Other People

The last thing I learned from creating over 50 YouTube videos is modeling other people.

I’ve watched many other YouTubers in a personal development niche. I’ve learned a lot from them, and I’ve incorporated some of the things I learned into my videos. Sometimes it’s their presentation style or the way they hold themselves. If I see some great content on another video, I share it on mine. By watching other You Tubers, I realized that I rarely provided examples from my own life in my videos. So I’m starting to do that more now.

I also learned how long my videos should be, how to promote them and how to get more people to see them. So it’s vital with any goal to see who you can model and who you can learn from. It’s great if you can find someone that has already achieved that goal or is further ahead than you. You can learn so much from them.

I hope you found this article about my experience of creating my first 50 YouTube videos useful. As you can see, it’s a little bit different from my other articles. I thought it would be interesting to give you a case study of how I apply the success principles to something quite specific. Hopefully, you can see how the things I covered in this article can be used for almost any goal you want to achieve.

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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In this article, I will cover the crucial difference between reacting and responding. Once you know this and apply it to your life, your relationships with other people will improve immensely.

When you know the key difference between reacting and responding, you can deal calmly with other people, even the drama queens in your life!

When I learned the important difference between reacting and responding, several things changed in my life. I had far fewer arguments. I was able to take a step back and consider all the possible options. Situations where I would say something that I regretted later became less and less.

Keep reading to learn how to respond instead of react and notice your relationships with others improve dramatically.

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Reacting and Responding may sound similar, but they are very different.   Learn the differences and notice big changes in relationships with your partner, work colleagues, family, and friends.

Reacting tends to be emotional and impulsive. It’s something we do instinctively. It’s close to an animal-like behavior.

Responding is considering the situation with thought and intelligence. It’s having an awareness of the consequences of any action you might take.

What problems have been created in your life by reacting instead of responding so far? At the extreme, our prisons are chockablock with people that reacted. People that acted without thinking about the longer-term consequences.

Relationships are especially sensitive to reactive behavior. What have you said in the heat of the moment that you later regretted? Imagine how responding effectively could improve your relationships and give you greater happiness and peace.

Apply the strategies below to ensure that you’re responding and notice how your relationships improve.

1. Notice your Emotions

When you are with another person, notice any emotions that flare up, especially the negative ones. Having an awareness of your emotional state in these situations is an important first step. Why? because it gives you the ability to choose to respond differently before the emotions get too high.

It allows you to nip these emotions in the bud as soon as you notice them and then behave differently. It’s so important to do this before the emotions get too strong or intense. If you don’t, it’s very easy to act instinctively and in the same way that you acted before. This happens because blood flows away from the logical thinking part of the brain (the pre-frontal cortex) to the emotional brain (the amygdala).

2. Step Away

When you notice an emotion such as anger flaring up, step away from the situation if you can. This will give you some breathing space, even if it is just for a few seconds.  Use this time to analyze the situation and see it more objectively. It will also help you calm down and clear your head. A great thing to do during this time is my rapid relaxation exercise.

3. List Your Options

There are nearly always more ways to deal with something than you think.  You will find that the more relaxed you are, the more options appear. This is why if you can step away from the situation first that will always help.

Now ask yourself, what are the other ways that I could deal with this? What are the other ways that I could respond to this situation? There are often more ways than you previously thought. You just needed the mental space to find them.

4. Breathe

Just the act of breathing deeply and slowly will help you diffuse negative emotions, calm you down and clear your head. Contrary to popular belief, your mind can only focus on one thing at a time.  If you focus on breathing and nothing else, then you have no choice but to relax and calm down.  This will take some practice but it can be done.

When you take long, slow, deep breaths, you reduce the hormone cortisol in your body by up to 70%. That’s great for relieving stress. When you’re relaxed, you will naturally respond to other people in a level-headed way.

5. Consider the Consequences

I’m sure there have been times where you have said something or done something that you have later regretted.  If you can consider the consequences before acting, then you will act differently. This will then save you and the other person the pain of the old negative behavior. This will be much better for the relationship in the long-term.

Relationship conflicts can also arise when you think and act with a short-term view. In today’s instant society, we often focus on short term goals and outcomes. However, we often ignore the longer-term impact that this might have on our relationships.

Most people don’t think about the long-term effect of their behavior on others. So if you can do this, you’re immediately going to stand out from the crowd and have much better relationships with other people. You’ll develop great relationships built on trust and respect and you will have a more peaceful and happier life as well.

6. We are Humans, not Animals!

Animals only know how to react. They can’t step back and determine the best course of action like we can. If a cat sees a mouse, it will chase it without thinking. If a mouse sees a cat, it instinctively runs away.

Reacting instantly, automatically and unconsciously is rarely a good choice for us, unless it’s a life or death situation.

As humans, we can consider all the options and then make a conscious choice in how to respond. This will come with practice. Once you start responding to situations rather than reacting, it will begin to feel more familiar and automatic.

In stressful situations, it can be very easy to switch back into reacting. So remember to just take a step back and respond rather than doing that old reacting behavior.

7. Use Emotion to Your Advantage

When you are emotional about something, it means that its important or meaningful to you. It means that you care. So feeling emotional is a good thing, as long as it doesn’t lead to actions that could harm others or cause you to say or do something that you later regret.

Therefore listen to your emotions and give them your full attention. However, don’t let strong negative emotions overwhelm you.  They are there to give you a message. They exist to tell you that something is potentially wrong. So examine the situation objectively and then make a new considered decision and take a different course of action.

To Sum Up

Reacting too quickly is rarely the best option. Responding appropriately is so important in creating a successful and enjoyable life.

If you’re reacting, make the effort to respond to life’s challenges more intelligently and thoughtfully. It will benefit you more than the other person!

I hope these tips will help you when you next deal with difficult people at work or at home or in any other area of your life.

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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What is the key thing to having a good life and feeling happy? Many people believe that it’s the ability to spend as much money as you want. If there is a need to scrimp, save, or budget, that’s not a good life. It takes the fun out of it and can lead to unhappiness. To some degree, I believed this myself, until I read a book called The Barefoot Investor by Scott Pape.

The Barefoot Investor and Scott Pape have become household names within Australia. Back in 2014, Scott lost everything due to a bush fire – his home, farm, and business. But he was able to recover and get his life back on track relatively quickly compared to other people in the same situation. How come? Well, thanks to some good financial decisions he made before that misfortunate event.

I want to share with you how The Barefoot Investor helped me learn that it was not so hard to spend less than you earn. I’ve only read about a quarter of the book. So at the moment, I want to share with you some of the crucial components that I’ve implemented. These helped me save an extra $500 per month without a lot of effort. And certainly without any effect on my happiness.

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I am now going to cover the Barefoot Investor 6-step approach to budgeting and explain how to handle your money effectively. Once you learn and apply this, you’ll find it much easier to spend considerably less than you earn.

Step 1: Save an Initial $2,000

The Mojo Account

Having $2000 in a savings account is an essential first step. There is always a chance of some unexpected financial costs occurring. If you have that $2,000 buffer, you’ll be able to cope to at least some degree. Also, when you claim on your insurance, there’s often an excess to pay. So it’s good to have that backup money.

Scott Pape calls this money Mojo. He recommends putting it in a savings account – the Mojo account. When you have that money in a separate account, in a time of need, it will help you get your Mojo back. It gives you financial confidence. It makes you feel that you can cope if something unexpected happens. It also provides a head start in a financial crisis.

No Money for the Mojo Account?

What if you don’t have $2,000 in the bank right now? What can you do to get it? The first most obvious thing is to sell some of your stuff. Look around your home. Look for the things that you don’t use very much and sell them.

If there’s nothing you could sell, find a second job for a few weeks until you earn that $2,000.

For me, this step was very easy. I already had more than $2,000 in savings.

Step 2: Live on 60% of Your Income

Can You Do It?

You’ll need to do a bit of research to find out whether you can spend less than you earn. Basically, look at your outgoings. Look at your rent or your mortgage payments. Find out the cost of your utility, phone, and internet bills. Pay attention to your car, house, health, or life insurance. Calculate how much you spend on food each month and look at any loan repayments that you have. Ideally, they should all add up to only being 60% of your income.

What If You Can’t?

If you find that your living costs add up to more than 60% of your income, what can you do? There are only two things – earn more or spend less.

Earn more – You could find a second job for a while, or try to get a promotion at your current work. You could rent out a room, or start some part-time business.

Spend less – You could also try to save some money. Review your monthly expenses. See if there’s something that you could reduce or lose altogether. Maybe move to a smaller place and save on rent. You could also review your insurance premiums and your cover. Quite often, you can increase the excess and get a lower monthly premium.

Here in Australia, we have health insurance that comes with what’s called extras. These extras cover things like dentists, chiropractors, therapists, personal trainers, massages, or acupuncture. Typically, you can get 20 to 25% of the cost of those back.

It would be good to check how much you claimed back for those services in a year. Then look at how much you’re paying for the extras cover. I found I was paying more for the extras cover then I was claiming back. It just didn’t make sense to continue paying that, so I saved some money there.

My Experience

I’m going to give you some personal experience here. I found it reasonably easy to live on 60% of my income. My income does fluctuate from month to month because my business as a hypnotherapist means that I have good months and bad months.

So I did some things to reduce my costs. I reviewed my health insurance and changed my insurance company. I reviewed the internet service to see if we could make some savings there.

And for the last three months, I’ve been able to live on 60% of my income comfortably. The fact is, you can spend less than you earn more easily than you think.

Step 3: Find a Bank with No Fees

When I lived in the UK, free-banking was normal. But when I moved to Australia, it was common to pay $5 a month for running a current account. And also quite common to pay an annual fee on credit cards. If you use another bank’s ATMs, you pay a surcharge on that as well. This might be the case in your country also.

So an important step is to find a bank that doesn’t charge those fees. Another thing to watch as well are international transaction fees. I assumed that, when traveling to another country or buying things online, it was normal to pay some surcharge on my credit or debit card. But Scott Pape says in The Barefoot Investor that you shouldn’t be paying these. Some banks will refund or not charge international transaction fees. Here in Australia, one of the banks that does that is ING. It’s an online bank that doesn’t have any branches.

So do some research. If you’re paying any fees, including international transaction fees, find a bank that refunds them or doesn’t charge them in the first place. Look for online banks. See if you can find one in your country that has no bank fees and offers refunds for international transactions.

Step 4: Open 2 Current Accounts

Once you found a bank that charges no fees, you’re going to want to open two current accounts. With both of these bank accounts, you should have a debit card for transactions.

The Daily Expenses Account – 60% of Your Income

With online banking these days, you can often give bank accounts nicknames. So the first one you’re going to call Daily Expenses. This is the account where all your income is going to go. And this is also the account where 60% of your income will stay and cover your living expenses. Remember, we are talking about living on 60% of what you earn. The other 40% is going to go out of this account to other accounts. The goal is to spend less than you earn and save the rest of the money.

I’ll give you a really helpful tip here. Pay for everything with a debit card. I used to pay cash for a lot of little things, like coffees and lunches. Now I’m paying for everything by card. Why is this an excellent idea? Because it’s much easier to keep track of how much you’re spending. You just have to look at your statements. I highly recommend that you start paying for everything using your debit card.

The Splurge Account – 10% of Your Income

The second current account that you’re going to open is called Splurge. The Splurge account is for guilt-free spending on fun things. These would typically include eating out, drinks at the pub, massages, maybe buying books, CDs, or DVDs. It could also be for your Netflix or your Spotify subscription. Basically, for those things that make life enjoyable and fun. They’re not essential; you could manage without them. But those are the things that put a smile on your face and make you feel happy. The key here is, it’s guilt-free spending. This account should also have a debit card. A recommended guideline is to put 10% of your income in your Splurge account.

Step 5: Open 2 Savings Accounts

These accounts should be with a different bank to your Mojo account. Look around and see which bank has the highest interest rate on their savings accounts. Here in Australia, the typical interest rate is 1% at the moment. That is very, very low. But there are online banks that are willing to pay up to 2%. When you find a good deal, open two savings accounts. Some banks require you to have a current account to take advantage of any bonus savings interest. If this is the case, open your Daily Expenses and Splurge accounts with the same bank. Just check they don’t charge any fees first!

The Smile Account – 10% of Your Income

The first savings account you can call Smile. Why is that? This account is for longer-term purchases, things like holidays, a new computer or a new TV. It’s for items that you can’t save up for in one month. And as the name suggests, those are the things that will make you smile.

You should put 10% of your income into this account. So every month, you are going to transfer 10% of your income from your Daily Expenses account to this high-interest account. For me, the money from the Smile account is primarily used for holidays.

The Fire Extinguisher Account – 20% of Your Income

The second savings account you’re going to call Fire Extinguisher. Why? Because this account will be your financial fire extinguisher. You point it at whatever your financial fire is. If it’s paying off debts, point it at your debts. If it’s saving for a down payment or deposit for a house, then use this account for that.

If you don’t have debts and you already own a house, then you can point it towards unexpected costs. These could be health challenges, redundancy, or an economic downturn. You can also use it for different types of investments. Once you build up a bit of a nest egg in this Fire Extinguisher account, you can start using some of the money to invest in stocks and shares, or additional properties.

When Scott lost everything, he had a significant amount of money already set aside. That’s why he was able to recover fast even though he lost his house, farm, and business. He put that money towards rebuilding his life. The crucial reason to spend less than you earn is to have the money saved for unpredictable situations like these.

Sometimes it’s not possible to have two accounts with high-interest rates at the same bank, at least not in Australia. If you have to choose, use the higher interest rate account for Fire Extinguisher. You’re most likely to have more money in this than in your Smile account. A good recommendation is to put 20% of your income into the Fire Extinguisher account. That’s what I do. You can adjust it according to your needs.

Step 6: Automate!

Now set up regular automatic payments from Daily Expenses to all the other accounts. You can set these to go out the day after your salary comes in. That way, before you get a chance to spend this money, it will already have gone into other accounts.

Scott recommends setting 10% to be transferred to your Spurge account, 10% to your Smile account, and 20% to your Fire Extinguisher account. These percentages can be different for you, depending on your priorities. Now you can see what’s left in Daily Expenses and how much money you have for your living costs. You will realize it’s not that hard to spend less than you earn.

Let’s Summarize!

So let’s summarize the 6 steps. Step 1, find a way to save $2,000 and put that in a separate bank account called Mojo.

Step 2, find a way to live on 60% of your income by earning more and/or spending less

Step 3, find a bank account that has no fees, and this may well be an online bank.

Step 4, open 2 current accounts. One called Daily Expenses. This is where your salary goes in, and this is where your expenses go out. The second current account is called Splurge. This one is for your guilt-free expenses. Make sure you have a debit card for both of these accounts to track your spending.

Step 5, open two high-interest accounts. One is going to be called Smile. It’s for your holidays and other things that take a few months to save up for. The other one’s going to be called Fire Extinguisher, which is for your longer-term financial fires. It could be for paying off debt, saving up for a down payment for a house, or just putting towards unexpected costs in the future.

Step 6, automate to make the whole process easier.

My Results

I’ve been doing the barefoot investor process for three months now. While doing it, I’ve been able to save an extra $500 into my long-term savings. And that’s been relatively easy. I’ve been able to do it while enjoying my life pretty much at the same level as before. I’ve just been a bit more aware of what I’m spending money on. So I find this very useful. It’s helping me feel more confident now about my longer-term financial future.

So, I highly recommend that you check out The Barefoot Investor by Scott Pape. I ‘m sure you’ll find it extremely valuable, especially if you’re in Australia. The examples are Australian based, but if you live in another country, the principles are the same. You’ll just need to do a bit of your own research to find the best banks and policies for things like insurance.

You’ll soon realize that it’s very possible to spend less than you earn and still live a happy and fulfilled life. You will be amazed by the results!

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Thank you for reading this article.  I hope you are having a wonderful day!

Paul

The process of achieving big goals in your life consists of several crucial steps. As the benefits and rewards from achieving a big goal do not come immediately, a different approach is required.

When achieving big goals, you need the motivation and desire to stick at it for several months or even years. It involves cultivating success habits and following success principles. It is important to combine this with consistent and effective action that continues until you achieve your big goal.

In this article, I cover the 7 secrets to achieving big goals. You will also learn what a big goal is and why it requires a different mindset to other goals in your life.

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What is a big goal? I would define a big goal as something like starting a new business, changing career or losing a significant amount of weight. It could also include gaining a new qualification, especially if you’re doing this part-time whilst maintaining a job or career. It’s any goal that is going to be life-changing for you and is probably going to take months or possibly years to achieve.

So here are 7 ways to help you achieve your big goals.

1.  Measure your Progress

With a big goal, the reward doesn’t come until you’ve either completed the goal or you’re close to the finish line. This could be quite a while into the future. In the meantime, you will want to break the big goal into smaller steps so that you can measure your progress. You can then check whether you are achieving the smaller steps or not.

That’s how you will measure your progress and check that you are getting closer to achieving your big goals. Also, give yourself a small reward when you complete each step. What gets rewarded gets repeated.

2. Perseverance

Perseverance is the ability to keep going when the results are not immediate.  This is often the case with larger long term goals. To create and fuel perseverance, get a clear vision of the end result and remind yourself of it regularly.  This will really help you do the work involved to achieve this goal.

Also by measuring your progress (as mentioned in step 1), you will enjoy seeing the completion of the smaller steps.  This will confirm that you are on the right track and will help you to keep persevering.

3.  Flexibility

This is the flexibility to change tack. If you continue doing the same thing, you’re likely to continue getting the same result. Now it’s important to do the same thing consistently for a while because it can sometimes take time to get results. I feel that 6 months is a good timeframe to evaluate if what you’re doing is working. Measure your progress and be prepared to change when a different approach is required. Your Why can stay the same, but sometimes the How needs to change. So it’s important to be flexible and to do different things whilst always keeping your end goal in mind, so you don’t go off track.

There is a balance here between being flexible and dabbling. When being flexible you give your approach a reasonable chance to succeed before changing tack. You can then make an objective decision on whether to try a different approach or not.

Dabbling, on the other hand, is trying something for a couple of months until something that seems better comes along. This happens a lot with diets, exercise programs, and online business opportunities. Doing something new is exciting, it gives you hope, a dopamine hit or adrenaline rush! This motivates, inspires and gives you the energy to take action. But it doesn’t last. You need to keep going long after these feelings disappear to determine objectively if what you are doing is working. So make sure you don’t dabble!

4.  Quieten the Noise

When attempting something new, or that stretches your comfort zone, your subconscious mind will try and protect you.  It does this through negative self-talk. Or by questioning why you’re doing this big goal or the work involved. Negative thoughts and self-talk then lead to negative feelings such as doubt, fear or a sense of not being good enough or worthy enough.

When this happens, remind yourself that this is okay and quite normal. It happens when doing new things, challenging yourself and striving to be more.

Here are some other great strategies to quieten the mental chatter. Use these when negative thoughts and self-talk continue to dominate your mind.

  • Mentally say the word “STOP” when you notice a negative thought. You can even say “STOP” out loud if you prefer.
  • Put a rubber band on your wrist. When you notice a negative thought, pull the rubber band and let go, so it snaps on your wrist. It will hurt a little. But it will force your mind back into the present moment.
  • Imagine turning down the volume of a negative thought. Visualize using a volume control knob or remote control device to reduce the volume of the self-talk.
  • Replace any words such as “should”, “have” or “must” with softer words such as “could”, “can” or “choose”.
  • Ignore the thoughts and take action anyway. This works great with negative feelings too, such as procrastination. Simply ignore the feelings and take action anyway. Act and the feeling you want will come.

I also encourage you to focus more on your goal and your dream. This is key to achieving big goals. Your brain then has less time to think about worries, fears, and doubts. And the same for when you experience negative feelings such as procrastination or a lack of motivation. Again, just ignore these feelings and take action anyway.

Remember, you have a choice over which thoughts and feelings to listen and pay attention too.

5. Daily Habits

This is a big one!  It involves taking consistent action on your goal every day. First thing in the morning can be a great time.  You’re fresh and there are fewer distractions.  That’s when I take the most action on the big things in my life. It’s a great way to start the day. I love the feeling of having done something towards the most important goals in my life early in the day.

Most people tend to overestimate the number of things they need to do in a day and underestimate what they can achieve in 2, 3 or 5 years. Take consistent action for months or even years at a time and amazing things start to happen!

Initially, you need qualities such as motivation, perseverance, and tenacity to get going. However, as you keep going, it will become a habit. Once you get into the habit of working on a particular goal it becomes easy to do the work involved consistently.

Related Article: How to Set and Achieve Your Goals

6.  Patience

Big goals rarely go to plan and sometimes they take a bit longer than you would want them to take.  I struggle with this one because I like things to happen fast! However, it is important to accept and be grateful for where you are now and the progress you have already made. 

With patience comes calmness and clear-headedness, two things you really want when you’re working on achieving big goals.

7.  Never Give Up!

I’m sure you’ve heard this many times before. Never give up on your ultimate goal or dream. This can be the single difference between someone that is successful and someone that’s not.  The people that fail simply give up, often extremely close to achieving the goal.

Sometimes you will need to make a dramatic change in direction to achieve your ultimate goal. That’s okay. If you have given something a fair shot, sometimes a dramatic change in approach is necessary. You will always retain the learnings, experiences, and how the previous approach helped you develop as a person. You can never lose that. So change your approach if you need to, but never give up on your ultimate goal or dream.

So these are my 7 tips for achieving big goals. I hope you found these useful. I wish you every success in applying these strategies to the big goals that you have in your life right now.

If you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful, please leave a comment or question below.  I would love to hear what you think!   Please also click on the stars below to rate this post. Also, feel free to share this article with other people or on social media.

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Thank you for reading this article.  I hope you are having a wonderful day!

Paul