I’m evaluating the things that I want to achieve and what actions I’m taking towards them. What I realised is that great achievement requires great commitment. The question I ask myself is “How badly do you want this?”
A couple of things:
- I want to be a brilliant, world-class public speaker. A good way for me, to measure this is to win competitions in Toastmasters International. Guys like Steve Pavlina and Derren La Croix and even my friend Christof committed to doing at least 3 Toastmasters speeches every week in order to achieve the level of excellence and intuition in front of a crowd that’s necessary to win a competition of that magnitude. My next action is to book myself to speak at more Toastmasters clubs, and then SHOW UP. Another action I will take is to do stand up comedy, and keep doing it till I’m great at it.
- My energy and ferocious creativy and courage in business are enhanced by an excellent foundation of health. The next actions to take are to set up an excercise routine and stick to it, make the healthiest food choice every time, and to stop social smoking.
- I want to feel and be more confident in my body and my looks. In fact, I want my body to be exceptionally fit and strong, which forms a foundation for confidence, speed, energy, discipline and so much else. The next action is to commit to absolute excellence in my gym and fitness. I will also be running the Knysna half-marathon this year (in July, I think).
“Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, magic and power in it”. – Johan Wolfgang Von Goeth
What distinguishes a great marketer is his ability to grow a business.
Niche is the new mass-market… otherwise known as the Long Tail.
A great way to take advantage of this is to enable your customers to customise your product or service easily to their wants.
Cynical people always seem to notice the flaws in ideas, and why a product or concept won’t work. These people are, in my opinion, almost incapable of innovation.
Cynics are rooted in the past. They will usually only applaude an idea based on what they’ve seen working elsewhere previously. And they’re also too ready to ctiticize an innovative idea because there isn’t a precident for it.
I have been reminding myself for the past two years to be more positive and optimistic. I look at the bright side. Especially when it comes to my industry and my work… I far prefer to give applause and acknowledgement than criticism, so my eye is out for what is working. The result is that I’m more successful and influential.
To reinforce this concept, think of someone who you know is cynical. They’re usually intelligent people, but yet they don’t seem to achieve their potential.
As is said in HipHop: “Don’t playa-hate. Congratulate.”
Nothing happens until someone makes a sale.
Sales is a discipline. On needs to live a lifestyle around selling… You need to know your product and your industry inside out. Good salesman can facilitate the growth of an industry by facilitating good business (through smooth processes) and and the spread of good ideas and products.
I’m a salesman. I sell marketing products and services. Essentially I’m an aggregator of information and connections, and I help match people with the solutions that they need to succeed in their business. This is mutually beneficial – the better I am at my job, the better they do.
I don’t just sell marketing software and products though, I also sell ideas.
I maintain a networks of prospects, referrers, suppliers and clients, and I organise industry events to network and grow my industry. This is the proactive approach to sales, and it is what makes me so successful at what I do.
This is the path to success and world-changing excellence.
Excellence is my only standard. Excellent health, excellent fitness, extreme wealth, excellent relationships.
Seldom do extraordinary results come from ordinary efforts.
(I take this philosophy from some good friends who I admire personally and professionally. These people inspire me.)
I just read an article in Fast Company entitle “Change or Die“. It reminded me that most of America’s health problems come down to 5 preventable causes: too much smoking, drinking, eating, and stress and not enough exercise.
The thing is that we know these things are not good for us, but we go ahead with that ridiculous behaviour anyway. Even after recieving bypass surgery, 90% of people fall back into their old habits, even though they know they have a life-threatening disease. The odds for change are stacked against us 9-to-1. The problem is backsliding.
Change is not just limited to health though. Behavioural change in business is also difficult.
Preventative steps are required. Two principles apply:
- Prevention is better than cure.
- The wise man does at once what the fool does eventually.
The article also highlights that the most effective way to make any change is to nurture a positive lifestyle, filled with life’s little joys. The most effective way to change is to make life more pleasurable in constructive ways – regular walks, time in nature, wholesome food, positive work evironment and habits, respect, gratitude for small and large things… and so on. Change is driven my positive emotions and experiences that support the change.
Ironically, making small incrimental changes in our diet, work habits or lifestyle is more difficult than making radical change! The reason being that we often don’t see the benefits of the small, incrimental changes soon enough for it to be emotionally engaging enough to reinforce the changes. This is why stopping smoking can’t be an isolated act – it needs to be a part of a lifestyle makeover which might include yoga, raw food and daily meditation!
Lastly, fundamental to change is the ability to learn. The stronger our learning muscle, the better we’ll be at change. Take up a language or learn to play an instrument. Everything is related.
We get into bad habits that don’t serve us, although we could just as easily get into healthier ones that do. As my karate instructor often reminds me: “Practice makes permanent“
A principle of life success I prescribe to is “Clean up as you go along”. This is the ultimate way to be more productive.
Saying “I’ll do that later” causes a build-up of tasks, which eventually becomes overwhelming. Doing it now, however, is the most effective way to keep a clear head and space.
A simple example is keeping your home clean… It’s far easier and more productive to clean up your mess as you go along, rather than letting it build-up. You might take slightly longer preparing a snack in the kitchen because you’re cleaning up as you go along, but you’re relieveing yourself of a small unconscious stress which would otherwise play on your mind if you leave a mess behind that you will have to clean up later anyway.
It’s the same with work. Emails, articles or whatever else. Do not differ stuff indefinately… I used to find myself with a backlog of unfinsihed tasks which eventually caused me to ignore some of my duties in favour of less important stuff. The princple here is – when you have the opportunity to start something and get it done, do it! If you differ it indefinately, it’s likely to cause you more stress than it’s worth.
- “Screw it, let’s do it” – Richard Branson
- “The wise man does at once what the fool does eventually”
I’ve just listened to the audio version of “The Tipping Point“, and was reminded of the cumulative effect of our small daily actions.
For example, I bought a clipper for R300 and started shaving my own hair instead of going to a hairdresser every week. The saving each month is about R400. Over a year, that adds up to a ±R4800 saving!
Other examples include eating at home a few more times a week rather than going to a restaurant. Over a year, that will save thousands!
Other small examples are the details of the way we present ourselves… For example, having ironed clothes, polished shoes and keeping your office and desk neat and clean.
How about swearing? Can you imagine someone as dignified as Nelson Mandela swearing? That little detail wouldn’t befit his character in my eyes.
Today, and every day, I am commmitted to improving my health, wealth, relationships and spirit by paying attention to the SMALL things… because they’re the easiest, and yes, they do all add up.
I had such a sense of awe at the power and dignity of the person who is second in charge of our beautiful and diverse country.
I’ve met business leaders, like Sir Richard Branson, and various music stars through my charity events… but strangely, I was never in such awe.
Perhaps that’s what I was supposed to feel…. She expects people to treat her with dignity and utmost respect. We teach people how to treat us.
Next time I meet her I’m going to suggest that she start blogging!