The Importance of Networking & Masterminding

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While you may be able to create tremendous success on your own, traveling the path of success with networking groups makes the journey more enjoyable.

Plus, the added accountability will propel you to success faster and further than you originally envisioned. This is where the importance of networking and masterminding comes into play.

It’s Not Just What You Know, It’s Who You Know

Success is a team sport.

It’s not what you know, it’s also who you know.

In my career, success in any undertaking has come down to not just who I know—but also who I have on my team.

Along the way, I’ve learned many success principles that can help you build your own network of influencers, mentors, and experts. Developing a business network of people can help you succeed.

Nurture Your Network

One of the most important skills for success in today’s world, especially for entrepreneurs and business owners, is networking.

In my life, this has proven to be true.

The more time I have spent consciously building and nurturing my business network of advisers, colleagues, clients, students and fans, the more successful I have become.

Businesses and careers are built on relationships. Relationships form when people meet and interact with each other in an authentic and caring way.

Effective Networking is Dependent on Trust

Statistics confirm over and over that people prefer to do business with people they know, respect, and trust.

"Effective networking is all about developing relationships."

In creating your own personal network groups, your job is to seek out people who know things you don’t. These people can help you connect where you can’t.

Developing Relationships Takes Time

Initially, your goal shouldn’t be to make a sale. Instead, it should be to seek advice, connections, recommendations and insights. To the extent that you can provide something in return, do so.

Remember that developing genuine relationships takes time and consideration.

It requires careful thought and a mindfulness for others.

Three Steps to Building a Reliable Networking Group

Think of these three steps:  

  1. Visibility
  2. Credibility
  3. Profitability

First show up, participate, and get seen,

Second, ask others how you can help them and then deliver on their requests if you can.

Then, when you have developed a relationship of trust and service, you can ask for referrals and assistance.

Two Heads Are Better Than One

Networking and building meaningful relationships with others brings success quickly.

This is where mastermind groups come in.

We all know that two heads are better than one when it comes to solving a problem or creating a result.

Imagine having a permanent group of five or six people who meet once every week or two to problem solve, brainstorm, network and motivate each other.

This is masterminding.

The Basic Philosophy of Masterminding

The basic philosophy of a mastermind group is that more is achieved in less time when people work together.

A mastermind group is made up of people who come together on a regular basis (weekly, biweekly, or monthly) to share ideas, thoughts, information, feedback, contacts, and resources.

Getting the perspective, knowledge, experience, and resources of the others in the group greatly expand your own view of the world. It can also advance your own goals and projects more quickly.

Find People Outside of Your Field

When you form your mastermind group using your networking skills, consider bringing in people from different professional arenas.

Find people who are “above” or “ahead” of you professionally or financially. These people can introduce you to a network of people and resources you normally wouldn’t have access to.

Though the benefits of masterminding with people outside your field may not seem obvious now, the truth is that we all tend to get stuck in our own field of expertise.

We see through the same narrow lens and do things the same way everyone else in our industry does.

Build Your Own Mastermind Group

When you assemble people from different industries, professions, or fields of study, you get lots of different perspectives on the same subject.I don’t know anybody who has become super successful without employing the principles of both networking and masterminding.

I don’t know anybody who has become super successful without employing the principles of both networking and masterminding.

This is because building meaningful relationships with others both inside and outside of your field of expertise forms valuable connections and expands your resources.

You never know when these connections will come in handy on your journey to success.

Take Action

Make a list of 5-6 people who you know that you could potentially build a mastermind group with, and ask them if they are interested. 

One of the most powerful ways to learn anything is to teach it to others. That's why having a mastermind is so important.

Teaching forces you to clarify your ideas, confront inconsistencies in your own thinking, and more closely walk your talk. But most importantly, it requires you to read, study and speak the information over and over again. The resulting repetition reinforces your own learning. I've created a free webcast for people who want to learn to train others, lead mastermind groups, and conduct powerful learning sessions with others. 

If training and empowering others is something that inspires you, click the button below to watch my webcast The 7 Pillars of True Life Transformation.

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How to Use Your Tax Return to Invest in Yourself

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Tax season is right around the corner, which means you may be getting a tax return. It may seem like a good idea to invest your refund into a dream vacation or a shopping spree, something you deserve after all your hard work. Instead, I urge you to invest in yourself, a pay off much greater than a week in the sun.

If you have ever wanted to become more financially responsible, this may be the perfect time to start. I want to discuss the best ways that you can invest in yourself this year.

Change The Way You Think and Act With Your Money

One of the best ways to invest in yourself starts with changing the way you think and act with your money.daily-affirmations-for-success-guide-2

The truth is that being financially healthy is an essential part of a well-balanced life.

You may be saving your money for several reasons. Maybe for a dream vacation, expand your business, buy your first home, or simply have peace of mind.

No matter the reason, you first need to assess, diagnose, and cure your financial health.

Take the time to meditate and reflect on the limiting thoughts and beliefs that you have about money. You may experience fear, hopelessness, shame, or even guilt.

What are the attitudes that are holding you back?

Confront, Release and Replace Negative Feelings

Once you have identified the root of your early programming, it’s time to let go.

A very effective technique I teach is to experience the negative feeling, confront it, and release it. Finally, replace it with a powerful affirmation. The affirmation will drive your everyday actions and motivate you to keep striving forward.

It is also very helpful to visualize your dream life with a vision board. Feature images of what your life will look like when you create financial success.

Make a complete and honest assessment of your current financial situation.

Just as your physical health is critical, your financial health is also vital in many aspects. Especially in simply giving you peace of mind!

Identify Where You Are Now and Where You Want to Be

Take the time to identify where you are now, and where you want to be.

If you’re at the beginning stages, maybe you’d like to learn how to set and keep a budget.

You might have already established your net-worth by now. You may need additional resources to assess your business’s financial statements.

It’s crucial to have clarity about the condition of your financial health.

We are creatures of habit. You’ll need to make the conscious decision to change whatever is necessary to achieve your next goal.

Focus on Your Relationship With Money

Use visualization techniques to focus on the relationship between money and you.

This might mean adopting a debt reduction plan, establishing a family savings plan, or figuring out the next steps to reduce your expenses and increase your cash flow.

If you are getting some money back on your tax returns, this may be the perfect time to save it.     

This is possibly the most important step of the process to create financial success.

Determine the “How?”

You have determined the “Why?”, the “What?”, and the “When?”  Now you have to determine the “How?”

Establish a step-by-step plan to reach your immediate goals.

Ask yourself some of the following questions: What is the next step? How long will it take until it’s completed? How will I monitor my progress? Do I need to seek additional resources to help myself?  When will I start?

Don’t worry about getting it “perfect” the first time. It’s an ongoing process and you will undoubtedly make adjustments as you move along.

Invest in Others to Invest in Yourself 

No matter what your goal is, if you drive your results with an attitude of service, you will absolutely receive success.

Acting from a place of service will complete your journey towards creating good and sound financial health. It will also make others happy in the process.

These are the perfect ways to invest in yourself this year.

So I want to leave you with a bit of homework, ask yourself the following: How can I help others? How can my product help others? Could I volunteer my time and help a great cause? What principles am I teaching my children? What will my legacy be?

In order to receive, you must first give.

Answer some of my questions in a comment below, and I’ll be sure to follow up with you! Get my free Daily Affirmations for Success Step-By-Step Guide. Discover how you can use affirmations to change your self-image, replace your limiting beliefs, and achieve success. Use this guide to elevate yourself to new levels of happiness and success in every area of your life.

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Powerful Goal-Setting Tips for Creating Your Extraordinary Life

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Goal-setting is an absolute must for people who want to succeed, find their true purpose, and create joy in their lives.

Without clear goals, you will not have a clear direction on where you're heading in your life. When you know your life purpose, determine your vision, convert your desires into achievable goals and then act on them, you're virtually guaranteed success.

"If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes." - Andrew Carnegie

When you're finished reading this article you'll understand the importance and science of goal-setting, how to set goals, and how to achieve the goals you've set for yourself.

Goal-Setting Theory & Science 

After decades of research into how the human brain works, scientists now know that for our brains to figure out how to get what we want, we must first decide what we want. Once we lock-in our desires through goal-setting, our mind and the universe can step in to help make our dreams a reality.

Experts on the science of goal-setting and success know the brain is a goal-seeking organism. Whatever goal you give to your subconscious mind, the brain will actually start looking for information, for resources, and for opportunities and other ways to achieve the "want" you have identified. While this may sound like an impossibility given your current situation or circumstances, we've seen countless individuals "suddenly" get what they want -- often from a source or opportunity that already existed in their life or sphere of influence, but that they had never instructed their brain to find it before.

Learn 6 steps to achieve ANY goal during my webinar. Start creating the life you want.

Now to effectively engage the powers of your subconscious mind, a goal has to be specific and measurable. How much, by when. When there isn't any criteria for measurement, it is simply something you want... we call it a wish, a preference, or a just good idea, but it does not register in the mind as a goal.

Some people call specific, measurable goals SMART goals.

What is a SMART Goal?

No matter what you call your goals, they must be specific and measurable. One of the best methods of goal-setting is setting SMART Goals. Ensure that your goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bounded. You have a bigger chance of achieving SMART goals than those that are vague and too broad or don't have a specific target date for completion.

goal setting smart goals

S- Specific

Your goal must be very clear and defined not only to you but to others as well. It should be precise, detailed, and capable of answering questions instead of creating more.

M- Measurable

Include dates, exact financial numbers, and amounts in your goal. Your goal shouldn’t be, “Make more money,” it should state a specific amount, by a specific time. “I will make $10,000 extra dollars by January 1st, 2018.” If the goal is broken down into steps, each step must be measurable, as well.

A- Attainable

Your goal must be achievable. You should be able to accomplish it within the constraints of time, money, environment, as well as your skills and abilities and other important factors. I do however, recommend you set a couple goals for yourself that I call “breakthrough goals” or a goal that is really going to push you to attain.

R- Realistic

Goals should be in line with the direction that you’re heading in life. Keep your goals in line with your true purpose. Don’t waste time with unrealistic goals.

T- Time-Bounded

Always set specific deadlines for the completion of your goal. Creating a target date of completion creates accountability and gives you more motivation. If you don’t achieve your goal by your specific date, that’s ok, adjust and keep moving forward. Always set a date to your goals.

How to Set Goals

The first step to goal-setting is to decide exactly what you want.

  • What do you want to accomplish?
  • What do you want to experience?
  • What do you want to acquire?
  • Who do you want to be?

One of primary reasons most people don’t get what they want is that they aren’t clear about what they want. Others will recognize what they’d like to have, but when they can’t see how it’s possible to get what they want, and they dismiss their desires as foolish and unattainable.

Don’t sabotage yourself this way!

1. Set Goals in Important Areas of Your Life

We start the goal-setting process by getting clear about what you want in order to create the life you want.

What do you want? To create a balanced and successful life, write down a minimum of 3 goals in each of the following 7 areas:

  1. Financial Goals
  2. Career/Business Goals
  3. Free Time/Family Time
  4. Health/Appearance Goals
  5. Relationship Goals
  6. Personal Growth
  7. Making a Difference

If you have more goals than this, don’t limit yourself – write them down! On the other hand, if writing down 21 goals seems like a lot, remember that we can have a mix of long-term and short-term goals.

For a goal-setting example, in the financial area, you may have a short-term goal of paying off a $5,000 credit card balance, as well as a long-term goal of amassing a net worth of $5 million dollars.

You want to keep both goals present in your mind, even though you’ll be working more actively on the short-term goal first.

2. Set a “Breakthrough” Goal

When setting goals, it’s important to include a few that will make us stretch and grow to achieve them. These might be learning a new skill or trying something that is uncomfortable and maybe a little frightening, such as public speaking. It also helps to set a breakthrough goal that would represent a quantum leap.YELP_Webinar_Blog_Sidebar_250x300

Examples goals that require a breakthrough include: publishing a book, starting a business, getting on Oprah, winning a gold medal at the Olympics, or getting elected president of your industry association.

Material goals are important, but the ultimate goal is to become a master at life. In the long run, the greatest benefit we receive from pursuing our dreams is not the outer trappings of fulfilling the dream, but who we become in the process.

The outer symbols of success can all be easily lost. Houses burn down, companies go bankrupt, relationships end, cars get old, bodies age and fame wanes, but who you are, what you have learned, and the new skills you have developed never go away. These are the true prizes of success.

Motivational philosopher Jim Rohn advises that:

“You should set a goal big enough that in the process of achieving it, you become someone worth becoming.” - Jim Rohn

Once you are clear about what you want, write them down and turn each item into a measurable objective.

3. Decide How to Measure Your Goals

Measurable means measurable in space and time – how much and by when. You cannot set goals without a proper way to measure it.

As soon as you commit to a big dream and really go after it, your subconscious creative mind will come up with big ideas to make it happen. You’ll start attracting the people, resources, and opportunities you need into your life to make your dream come true. Big dreams not only inspire you, they compel others to want to play big, too.

You’ll also discover that when your dreams include service to others – that is, accomplishing something that contributes to others – it accelerates the accomplishment of that goal. People want to be part of something that contributes and makes a difference.

4. Work on Your Goals Daily

To keep your subconscious mind focused on what you want, read your list of goals every day. For an even more powerful approach, close your eyes and focus on each goal and ask yourself, "What is one thing I could do today to move toward the achievement of this goal?" Write down your answers and take those actions.

As the old joke goes, “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.” Steady progress in bite-sized chunks puts even the most audacious goals into reach.

Create Your Own Life Goals List

One of the most powerful things you can do is create a life goals list for yourself. This is a list of all of the things that you want to accomplish in your lifetime. It always changes, it's always updating itself BUT you must write your most important goals and dreams down.

Goal-Setting Examples

Let’s go through some goal-setting examples to explain why your goals need to be specific.

For example, "I want to lose weight" is vague. But it might become... "I will weigh 135 pounds by August 1st at 5 PM." Or "I will increase my income to $80,000 year by December 31st at midnight." Or I will live in a 35,000 square foot home, as big as the one Bill Gates has, by December 31st at midnight." Now, notice in these examples, they all stated how much, by when. A specific amount that you can measure by a specific time that can be measured.YELP_Webinar_Blog_Sidebar_250x300

For instance, if you were to tell me that you wanted more money, I might pull out a dollar and give it to you. You would probably protest, saying “No, I meant a lot more money, like $20,000!” But there is no way I’d know how you’d define “more money” unless you tell me, right?

Similarly, your boss, your friends, your spouse, your brain, God, and the Universe can’t figure out what you want unless you tell them specifically what it is. What exactly do you want and when do you want it by?

Now an easy place to start when you're setting goals is to simply look at one area in your life that you would like to be different. It might be where there is something that is negative or disturbing that you'd like to eliminate, or it might be where there's something missing that you'd like to create. Something you'd like more of...more money, more love, more time.

Now once you've decided what you want you can either do something about it...or not. It is your choice and you have responsibility for your choices.

But bear in mind that you have to be willing to change your behavior and do something different if you want to create a different outcome. You have to be willing to take whatever risks are necessary to get what you want.

A Goal VS. A Good Idea

When there are no criteria for measurement, it is simply something you want, a wish, a preference, a good idea. To engage your subconscious mind, a goal or objective has to be measurable. Here are a few examples of good goals to give you more clarity.

I will own a 4,000-square-foot house on Pacific Coast Highway in   Malibu, Califonia, be noon, April 30, 2018.

GOOD IDEAGOAL OR OBJECTIVE
I would like to own a nice home on the ocean.
I want to lose weight.I will weight 185 pounds by 5PM, January 1, 2018.
I need to treat my employees better.I will acknowledge a minimum of 6 employees for their contributions to the department by 5PM, the Friday.

How to Achieve Goals

Setting goals are only the first piece of the puzzle. Once you’ve set goals you must take immediate, everyday action to accomplish them. Sometimes, when things don’t happen for you as fast as you’d like

1. Check Your Expectations

When we admire someone's success, we tend to focus on the end result and overlook the time and effort it took to get there. This can cultivate unrealistic expectations and lead to the idea knowing how to be successful happens overnight.

But the thing is, overnight success is a myth. REAL success typically follows a series of small events and achievements that can seem to take an eternity, include a number of disappointments along the way, and challenge you to the core: your stamina, courage, integrity, and even your willingness to keep going.

So if you’re feeling particularly challenged right now, don’t worry! It’s all part of the process. The important thing is to learn the lessons you need to learn and keep moving forward.

2. Focus on What is Working – NOT on What Isn’t Working

When you’re frustrated because you’re not progressing as quickly as you’d hoped, it can be easy to focus on the negative instead of the positive.

You may even find yourself entertaining self-destructive thoughts like "I'm not good enough," "It will never work," or "Something must be wrong with me."

But one of the great laws of the Universe is, you get more of what you focus on. So if you pay more attention to the things that aren’t working, you’ll encounter more negative experiences, people, and results. And there’s not much success in that!

On the flip side, if you focus on what IS working, you will be able to see where you’re getting the best results for your efforts, and will start identifying new ways to get even better results! 

3. Keep a Written Record of Success

YELP_Webinar_Blog_Sidebar_250x300Humans have a built-in negativity bias. It’s an evolutionary thing – it helped us stay alert to danger back in the prehistoric days when everything was out to kill us!

In modern times, this negativity bias causes us to feel and remember the bad things much more powerfully than we feel and remember the good things. It really helps to have a written record of what’s working so you can keep track of your positive achievements and remember them at the end of the day.

That’s why I recommend you keep a daily success journal. It’s a great way to focus your attention on the positive and continually stay on track with your vision for your ideal life.

Spend a few minutes each morning writing a list of what you’re grateful for in your life. Then, at the end of the day, write some notes on what went right that day. Be sure to write down everything, no matter how small it may seem. When you train yourself to recognize and acknowledge your own achievements, you are guaranteed to attract even more success into your life.

4. Use Meditation to Cultivate a Positive Mindset

Meditation can be a powerful tool to help you find solutions to problems and shift your attitude so you can attract success sooner rather than later.

Meditation shuts down your judgmental, highly critical brain and allows your unconscious mind to take over – so you can enter a deeper state of inner peace and joy and tap into a higher level of creativity that will help usher in the results you want.

(NOTE: If you’re new to meditation or if you’ve struggled when meditating on your own, Awakening Power is a step-by-step guided visualization and meditation program that will provide you with a deeply satisfying experience.

5. Use the Rule of 5

My favorite way to get more done every day is to follow the Rule of Five. Here’s how it works: every day, identify 5 specific things you will accomplish to get closer to your goal – then don’t call it quits for the day until you cross each one off your list.

Not only will this give you a proven structure to ensure you get more accomplished every day, it will also give you a clear sense of what’s actually achievable in a day – and you can round up your goals or scale them back so they help you move forward consistently without exhausting yourself by working until midnight every night.

6. Don’t be Afraid to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone & Take BIG Action

Let's say you're doing ALL these things, but you still aren't happy with your results...

Here’s a question to consider: have you taken any BIG ACTION to launch yourself out of your current situation and closer to the life of your dreams?

You may be taking action – but it might be the same kind of action you’ve ALWAYS taken. If you keep doing what you've always done, you'll keep getting the same results you've always gotten.

If you want to create a new life for yourself, you have to practice some new behaviors. Shake things up a bit and see if you can take new actions or modify existing ones. And don’t be afraid to do something BIG.

Setting Goals Can Change Your Life

You see, it's very liberating when you finally realize that you have the power to make your life whatever you want it to be. It's a wonderful feeling knowing that your success does not really depend on anyone else.

So if you're looking for one thing to do different today than you did yesterday, make it this: Commit to taking 100% responsibility for every aspect of your life. Then choose what it is you want. Decide what actions you're going to need to take to create it and then take those actions one step at a time.

There are a lot of things you can learn to do to accelerate your success.  But the basics that will move you from where you are to where you want to be are simply this: Decide what you want, take control of your thoughts, visualize what you want, make a plan and then take action. Start with these simple steps and I promise you that you'll start seeing the results you want.

If you're committed to goal-setting and truly want to achieve I teach a free webinar where I'll show you 6 steps to achieve any goal. I want the true goal-getters on the webinar and we can learn to achieve success together. Join me in creating Your Extraordinary Life Plan here!

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Are You Lying to Yourself?

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The person most likely holding you back from success is you.

How? Self-deception. Lying to yourself is the simplest way to ignore the challenges and situations that push you to achieve more.

Today, I’m going to talk to you about how to get out of denial and come to terms with the things that are holding you back from success.

Face What Is Not Working in Your Life

If you are going to be successful, you have to get out of denial and face what isn’t working in your life.

Do you make excuses for the lack of results in your business or your career? Do you defend or ignore how toxic your work environment is?

Maybe you make excuses for a bad marriage? Are you in denial about your lack of energy, your excess weight, your ill health, or your level of physical fitness?

Successful people face these circumstances head on. They heed the warning signs and take appropriate action, no matter how uncomfortable or challenging it might be.

How to Recognize Denial

What does denial look like?

Though some situations in our lives can be uncomfortable, embarrassing, and painful, we often live with them. Worse, we hide them behind myths, accepted views, and platitudes.

We don’t even realize we are in denial.

We use phrases such as, “It’s just what guys do.” “You can’t control teenagers these days.” “He’s just venting his frustrations.” “It’s got nothing to do with me.” “It’s none of my business.” “It’s not my place to say.” or “I don’t want to rock the boat.”

Lying to Yourself is NOT the Easy Route

Occasionally, we'll even pretend a situation is working when it isn't. We don't realize that if we acknowledge the bad situation sooner, it is often less painful to resolve.daily-affirmations-for-success-guide-2

Acknowledging the situation is cheaper, and the circumstances might be more beneficial. Likewise, the problems would be easier to solve and we could be more honest with everyone concerned. In turn, we would feel better about ourselves, and we would certainly have more integrity.

The problems would be easier to solve and we could be more honest with everyone concerned. In turn, we would feel better about ourselves, and we would certainly have more integrity.

But in order to accomplish this, we have to get past our denial.

Acknowledge the Bad Situation

Successful people are more committed to finding out why things are going wrong and fixing them. They do not defend their own position or maintain their ignorance.

A big part of not lying to yourself is recognizing bad situations and then doing something about them.

Often denial is the notion that something even worse will happen if you stop lying to yourself and take corrective action.

In other words... We’re afraid to face the truth.

Solutions Do Not Always Require Drastic Change

Therapists can tell you that in spite of overwhelming clues that their spouse is having an affair, many patients will not confront their cheating partner.

They simply don’t want to face the fact that the marriage might be over.

It could be they don’t want to deal with the emotional stress and the physical inconvenience of a divorce. Or they don’t want to deal with the financial upheaval or the possibility that they might have to move or get a job.

Many of the situations I described may require drastic changes in how you live, work, and relate to others. Remember that the solution to your problems isn’t always to quit your job, get a divorce, fire the employee, or ground your teenager.

It may be more productive to choose less extreme alternatives.

These alternatives can be a discussion with your boss, marriage counseling, setting boundaries with your teenager, coworkers, friends and family, scaling back your expenditures, or seeking competent professional help.

Face Your Fears and Take Action

Of course, these less drastic solutions still require you to face your fears and take action.

But you have to face what isn’t working first.

The good news is that the more you face uncomfortable situations, the better you get at it. When you face one thing that isn’t working, the next time you face a challenge, you are more likely to take immediate action.

And the sooner you take action, the easier it is to handle.

Choose an Area of Your Life to Improve

As usual, I want to leave you with a bit of homework to complete. Take the time right now to make a list of what isn’t working in your life.

Start with the seven major areas where you would normally set goals:

  1. Financial
  2. Career or Business
  3. Free Time or Family Time
  4. Health and Fitness
  5. Relationships
  6. Personal Growth
  7. Contribution or Making a Difference

Make a Plan 

Ask yourself:

“What’s not working? How can I improve it? What requests can I make? What action steps can I take to get each of these situations to work out the way I would like them to?”

Do you need to talk to someone? Call a repair person? Ask someone for help? Learn a new skill? Find a new resource? Read a book? Call an expert?

Just choose one and make a plan to fix it. Hold yourself accountable, and leave a comment below of at least one thing you’re going to fix right now. I’ll be sure to follow up with you.

Affirmations can help you to improve all areas of your life. They will help you attract into your life all the love, appreciation, success, and abundance you desire and deserve. Learn more from my step-by-step affirmations guide to replace your limiting beliefs and achieve success. Click below to learn more. 

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You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com

How to Meditate for Clarity, Intuition & Guidance

learning how to meditate by ocean with jack canfieldLearning how to meditate can help you to achieve success faster, because when your mind is clear and focused, and your body is relaxed and calm, you can access information, both internal and external, that can help you make better decisions.

Do you ever find yourself irritated and it gets in the way of your performance? Are you ever so stressed out that you can't sleep at night? Are you ever so overwhelmed you just can't seem to stay focused? Do you ever have to make a major decision and just don't know which way to go, or you're looking for a solution to a problem and you just can't find it? Meditation can help with all of these things.

The more you meditate, the more access you have to your intuition. Keep reading and I’ll show you how to meditate with a guided meditation exercise that I enjoy using. This is something that even beginners can use.

What is Meditation?

block quote, meditation is a powerful tool Meditation is a practice where you train your mind or induce a state of consciousness. You can meditate to realize some benefit, such as relaxation, stress reduction, healing, or strengthening your life force. Or for developing certain qualities such as love, patience, generosity, and forgiveness.


Focusing on breathing, visualizations, mantras or meditation music can help bring mindfulness to the present moment. This sets the stage to calm your mind.

Meditation can also be used to access inner wisdom and insight from your own higher unconscious or from a Universal power often referred to as God, infinite Intelligence, Universal Consciousness, or Source.

It is also a powerful tool for accessing your creativity, your inner wisdom, and developing your intuition.

For most people, this means to close your eyes, slow down your breathing, focus your goals by repeating a phrase without being distracted by anything else.

Does Meditation Work?

Most people have a resistance to meditation. They think it's too weird at first. Or they say they're too busy to take the time to learn how to meditate.

After reading this post, and discovering the simplicity, and many benefits of meditation, my hope is that you will try it in your own way.

Three of the sources of my greatest successes came to me while I was meditating – the title for Chicken Soup for the Soul, which has become a brand worth several hundred million dollars and the inspiration for the creation of the Transformational Leadership Council and for our Online Train the Trainer Program which teaches people how to teach the success principles.

There are many different forms of meditation that have been developed over thousands of years in many diverse cultures. I teach several of them in my Awakening Power audio program and you can learn one technique from the guide below.

Learning to meditate is a journey, this guide will help you take the right steps. Download my free 4-Step Meditation Guide.

The Benefits of Meditation

In general, through meditation, you can do many things better. You make better decisions. A few of the mental health benefits of meditation include greater productivity and focus, less stress throughout the day, anxiety relief, and better sleep at night. Meditation helps reset your hormones, promotes faster healing, and getting sick less.

It can help create longevity for a better life, build intuition, and discover your higher purpose.

Some of the spiritual benefits of meditation include, greater awareness of the world around you and a deep connection to yourself and your purpose.

All those things sound pretty great, right?

a woman practices meditation on the beach at sunset

What Happens During Meditation?

The reality is that you're focusing on one thing so that everything else begins to drop away. During meditation, your mind quiets. You’re able to access your subconscious mind.

When you first start meditating, you may notice that your mind begins to wander. If you sit with your eyes closed, trying not to think a thought, you’ll probably end up pretty frustrated, because your mind will tend to wander and you’ll think you’re failing. This is ok.

Remember: Meditation takes practice.

It's much easier when you have a guidance, when there's meditation music, when someone's voice is guiding you through the steps.

Your mind doesn't wander as much, and it's much easier to follow along and not get lost in all the stories and the to-do lists and the thinking about the past and worrying about the future that we normally do.

That’s what I want to do for you.

The Best Meditation Positions

Let’s start by getting into a position to meditate.

What are the best meditation postures for success? It’s much simpler than you might think. You can meditate while sitting naturally in a chair.

You can meditate sitting on the floor. You can even do it lying down. If you lie down you have the tendency to fall asleep, but do whatever is most comfortable for you.

Benjamin Franklin used to meditate holding a hammer about half an inch above his head so that if he fell asleep the hammer would hit his head and wake him up. He didn’t hold it so high that it would hurt him, but he was that committed to meditation.

Simple Meditation for Beginners: The 4-Part Meditation Technique

There are hundreds of different forms of meditation.  I have explored in depth at least 20 different forms of meditation, including 10-day silent meditation retreats. I now practice 3 or 4 different forms on a regular basis.  Each of the meditation techniques accomplish different things in my experience.meditation-guide

Some are calming and centering. Some energize and analyze the body. Some develop neutral witness or allow insight and wisdom to emerge.

There is a form of meditation that combines all these into one that I teach in my Breakthrough to Success Training.  

I call it the Betty Bethard’s 4-Step Meditation. Since I learned it from Betty and have been teaching it in my groups ever since.

I find this technique to be one of the most simple ways to meditate.  It is also, profoundly effective.  May it support your inner peace and wisdom.

Let me talk to you about what each step entails, then I’ll guide you through the entire meditation.

Step #1: Preparing to Meditate

Physical Preparation: Avoid meditating on a full stomach, when overly tired, or while wearing restrictive clothing.  Do not meditate while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.  Use your own judgment when using prescribed medication.

Mental Preparation: It is helpful prior to meditation to prepare yourself mentally.  For example: you may read, discuss, or listen to or think about something of an inspirational nature.

Environmental Preparation: Find a quiet time when you will not be disturbed by the telephone, doorbell or other interruptions.  When you have moved into the inner stillness, all your senses are heightened, and a sudden noise can be a shock to your system.

This meditation can be done sitting cross-legged on the floor, or as most people find more comfortable, sitting in a chair. Keep your body erect, feet flat on the floor, hands together in your lap. Let your hands touch together, fingertip to fingertip.

Relax.  It is helpful if your spine is straight. It is surprisingly easy to relax in an upright position. Imagine a string tied to the top of your head pulling straight up toward the ceiling.

Take several deep breaths through your nose and exhale through your mouth. Then let your breathing become steady, rhythmic and relaxed.

Imagine a pure white light coming up through your left foot, up the left side of your body, all the way to the top of your head, across to the right side of your body, and down the other side. Do this three times.

You can also ask to be shown the way to truth, wisdom, and understanding.

Step #2: Repetition

Repetition is simply the focusing of your mind on a single point. It is an essential part of meditation. It clears away the mental cobwebs and stills your active conscious mind.

You can do repetition with your eyes open or closed, whichever proves better for you. If you use the eyes open method, fix your gaze on a single object.  

A tiny light or candle in a darkened room, a picture, a religious symbol, a mandala, the word Love. These and many other things have been used successfully as the focal point of repetition.

A great many people, including myself, have better success in concentration with their eyes closed, visualizing a word, face, object or symbol in their mind’s eye. It can be a religious symbol, a mandala, a flower, or a peaceful scene in nature such as a still lake.  You may wish to focus on a word, a seed thought, or a phrase that has special meaning to you.

There are many, many phrases that come from different spiritual traditions. If you don't want to go into that, you can simply imagine inhaling the sound "re," exhaling, "lax." Like "relax." You're giving yourself a subliminal command.

Ones that I have used, with great success, are “I Am Love, or Sat Nam," or simply, "Re-lax”. You can just inhale as you say to yourself "Re" and exhale as you say to yourself "lax."

Repeat the phrase over and over without letting any other thoughts come into your mind.  Whatever focal point you choose on which to concentrate, let it represent your highest spiritual idea, never something materialistic.

At first, your mind will quite likely want to stray. Bring it gently back to the focal point of your concentration.  As it strays again, bring it back again. Almost everyone finds their mind much too active to settle down to a single point at first.  But, soon you will find your ability to discipline your mind to one point growing stronger and stronger.

Step #3: Receptivity

meditation-guideAfter a few minutes of repetition, you shift gently to receptivity for the next few minutes. Separate your hands and turn them palms upward in your lap. Keep your body erect and relaxed.  

Now let the mind you have been disciplining so vigorously relax. Do not exert any conscious effort to think about anything.  

Just set your mind free. If you did repetition with your eyes open, you must close them as you go into meditation. You have opened the various consciousness centers of your being.  Remain relaxed and passive, yet alert.

Thoughts and mental images may cross your consciousness.  Examine them placidly as they come and go.  You may “see” images and scenes or “hear” mental messages.  

An image that helps me is to imagine I am standing on the bank of the river simply watching boats fly by.  I am just watching the thoughts and sensations that arise.  The trick is to "watch" the thoughts and sensations as they arise.  

If you get lost and suddenly realize you are thinking rather than watching, just "climb out of the boat", get back on the bank and become the watcher, the observer or the witness once again. It takes a while to develop this witness position, but the rewards of peace, calm, and insight are well worth the effort.

Step #4: Closing Down from the Meditative State

At the end of your meditation, close both hands into fists and imagine a luminous white light surrounding you, filling, you and protecting you.

The main idea is that you are learning to place yourself in an environment of protection, guidance, and control. This can be done in a variety of ways. For example, imagine yourself in a ball of white light, or in a white balloon, just so long as the white environment totally surrounds you. This procedure will close down the centers of your consciousness that you have opened during concentration and meditation, leaving your inner being protected from outside influences.

Use this phase to visualize yourself achieving any goal you might choose. You could simply visualize yourself whole and healthy, or you might visualize yourself having achieved a particular goal. If you use an affirmation during the repetition phase and do a related visualization during this phase, this is very powerful.

Your Inner Wisdom: After a while of meditating you will begin to discover that you have a great deal of wisdom inside. It is simply a matter of taking the time to listen to what is within, and your intuition, sensitivity, and alignment with the universe all begin to grow.

It is as though all the powers of your mind and the secrets of the universe start to become available to you. You will grow in strength in these gifts so long as you seek them for service to your fellow man rather than for selfish, material ends.

How Long Should You Meditate For?

You can divide any amount of time into these 4 segments.  I usually meditate for about 20 minutes during the week and for 40-60 minutes on the weekend. On a 20 minute session might look like this: Preparation (3 minutes), Repetition (7 minutes), Receptivity (7 minutes), and Closing Down (3 minutes).

guided meditation on the beach at sunset

Summary of The 4-Step Meditation for Beginners

1) Find a quiet place, close your eyes, and focus on slowing down your breathing

First, find a quiet place, close your eyes, focus on slowing down your breathing by taking four long, deep, slow breaths, and then imagine white or golden light starting in your left foot slowly moving up through the entire left side of your body and then down your right.

2) Repeat an uplifting word or phrase

Repeat an uplifting word or phrase such as "re-lax," "so-ham," "I am love," or, "I am in the universe and the universe is in me," silently over and over, for about 3 to 4 minutes.

3) Move into a state of quiet

Third, you stop the repetition of your word or phrase and just move into a state of quiet, receptive observation, just noticing any thoughts, feelings or physical sensations that arise in your consciousness.

4) Imagine yourself surrounded by a sphere of light

Fourth, spend a few minutes imagining yourself surrounded by a spotlight or sphere of white light. After a minute or two of that spend the remaining minute or two visualizing your life goals as already achieved.

Learning How to Meditate Effectively Takes Practice and is a Natural Progression

The thought of learning how to meditate can be intimidating to some beginners as there are several types of meditation, such as Mindfulness, Concentration Transcendental, Kundalini, Qi Gong, Zazen and Vipassana... but new practitioners should not get lost in complicated details. What I’ve just taught you is a combination of all of these meditations. It is extremely simple to learn and practice so you won’t become overwhelmed.meditation-guide

Just focus on improving one session at a time.

Whatever form of meditation you do, remember that you can’t do it wrong. Whatever you are experiencing is fine. Don’t expect to have a totally clear mind or to achieve enlightenment overnight. Meditation is a daily discipline that you practice for years, but the benefits are so profound.

When you first start, a few minutes is plenty. Over time you will find that you will want to meditate longer. It is a natural progression. I usually set the timer on my iPhone for 20 minutes.

If you don’t have 20 minutes, just 5 minutes of concentrating on the sensation of your breath either by focusing on the sensation of the air coming in and out of your nose or the sensation of the rise and fall of your chest is better than nothing.

Eventually, you will notice these instructions become second nature and your mind will be easier to calm by using the exercises. Be sure to focus on your breath and the sensations of inner peace and relaxation will follow closely.

Meditation Will Help Calm Your Mind

Try it for yourself. Get into a comfortable position and focus on your breath. You can focus your mind on one of your personal affirmations.

Another way to calm the mind is by visualizing a peaceful scene such as clouds floating by or the waves on a windy lake growing calmer and calmer. Start by doing this for at least 5 minutes every day, then build on the amount of time you spend meditating, and in a few weeks, reassess how you feel mentally and physically.

In addition to peace of mind, I guarantee you’ll notice increased clarity and energy in your life when you figure out how to meditate.

Leave a comment below and let me know if you’ve ever tried meditation and, if so, in what ways it has it benefited you?

Learning how to meditate is a journey, this guide will help you take the right steps

The process of figuring out how to meditate correctly doesn’t need to be overcomplicated. Due to its simple nature, the proven psychological benefits will gradually grow stronger and stronger, improving your emotional and mental health with every session. As a result, you will make room for more success in your life by removing mental clutter that weighs down your cycle of completion.

If you would like to start practicing meditation, then I strongly encourage you to download my free 4-Step Meditation Guide. It will help you understand the techniques used to reduce stress, overcome anxiety, clear your mind and listen to your intuition so you can tackle any challenge in life with clarity and ease.

a lady raises her arms in front of sun, 4 step meditation guide offer

 



WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEBSITE?
You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com

 

Stop Using These Affirmations Now

stop-using-these-affirmations

Life is full of obstacles and roadblocks. It is easy to slip into negative self-talk when faced with these setbacks. This pessimistic outlook has a greater impact on your mindset than you’d think. I want to share a few common affirmations that you should stop using immediately and some positive replacements for them.

The Law of Attraction is at Work Right Now

The Law of Attraction is the most powerful law in the universe. Like gravity, it is always in effect, always in motion. It is working in your life at this very moment.

Simply put, the Law of Attraction says that you will attract into your life whatever you focus on. Whatever you give your energy and attention to will come back to you. If you focus on lack and negativity, then that is what you will attract into your life.

Replace These Negative Affirmations Now!

The negative messages that you feed yourself can lead to depression, lack of self-esteem and low self-confidence.

If you are using any of these affirmations you should stop, and replace them right now, instead choose from this list of positive affirmations.

1) "Money is the Root of All Evil."

The first affirmation you need to stop using now is “Money is the root of all evil” or “Having money creates more problems in life.”

There is nothing wrong with desiring financial wealth. You can do a lot of good in the world with greater financial assets. It is only the attachment to money that becomes problematic.

Replace this with:

"My life is abundant in every way."

2) "I Don't Want to Be Angry."

The second affirmation to stop using now is “I don’t want to be angry.”daily affirmations for success guide 2 offer

It’s important to focus on what you do want, not on what you don’t want. State your desires in a positive way.

Your mind works in pictures. If you say “I don’t want to be angry,” you are creating the picture and the vibration of being “angry.” The universe only receives the frequency of “angry” and responds to that.

You must focus on the opposite of what you don’t want. In this case, it would be a better choice to say

“I want to be more loving and accepting of the way things are.”

3) "I Don't Want to Get Sick."

The third affirmation to stop using now is “I don’t want to get sick.”

We have a tendency to focus on what we don’t want in so many areas of our lives, even when it comes to our own health.

When faced with an illness or disease, we become completely preoccupied with the problem rather than the desired outcome. We tend to give our complete focus to the illness, and all that it entails, instead of focusing on being healthy.

Use an affirmation like

“I always enjoy being vibrant, healthy, energetic and strong.”

Since what you focus on expands, you want to direct your energy and thoughts to those of being well. Keep your thoughts positive and optimistic, and see yourself as healthy and whole.

Your positive energy, thoughts, visualizations, affirmations, prayer and meditation combined with whatever holistic, natural integrative or traditional medical treatments you choose to seek will serve to enhance the healing process.

4) "I'm Losing Control."

The fourth affirmation to stop using is, “I am losing control.”

There are times in life where you may feel like you can’t control the things that are happening around you. Remember that you are always responsible for how you react to the things happening around you.

Negative thoughts often cause feelings of hopelessness and distance. Begin to think positively about the things happening around you and acknowledge that you are responsible.

A positive affirmations to replace this is:

“I am grateful for every experience in my life.”

Think Differently and Positively

I want to leave you with a bit of homework to complete upon reading this post.

Leave a comment below of a negative affirmation that you’ve been using and what you’re going to replace it with. I’ll be sure to follow up with you!

Make a conscious effort to restructure the way you think and speak. Avoid giving any unnecessary energy to the things you don’t want in your life. Avoid subjecting yourself, your thoughts, and your emotions to the negative people and influences in your life.

Conclusion

Now is your chance to begin thinking differently! Changing from negative to positive affirmations is the first step in the right direction.

Remember, nothing will change for the better until you do. I've created a step-by-step, daily affirmations guide to help you learn to use affirmations and recharge your inner power. Click the banner below to learn more.

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WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEBSITE?
You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com

5 Overlooked Steps on Your Path to Success

path-to-success

The path to success does not look the same for every person. However, there are milestones for success that are common on everyone's paths. These are milestones that let you know that you're on to something amazing. People often tend to make the same mistakes on their paths to success which block the road ahead.  

Today I’m going to share the 5 steps many people overlook on their journey towards success.

If you feel like you’ve veered off from your plan, don’t panic! Find out what went wrong and get back on track using these clues for success.

The Clues to Success Are Right in Front of You

Students ask me all the time, “Jack, how do I know if I’m on the right path? Am I doing the things I should be doing to be successful?”

These are good questions to ask, but the fact is, the clues to success are always hiding in plain sight.

You need to be aware of how to identify them.

Learn to become an unstoppable success in every area of your life. Sign up for my FREE Webcast.

Recognize “Yellow Alerts”

The first way to train yourself to see these clues to success is to recognize and respond to all the yellow alerts in your life.

When I say, “yellow alerts,” what I’m talking about are the advance warnings you get. They come in the forms of telltale signs, gut instincts, intuition, and comments from others that alert you to problems and impending danger.

These signs give you time to prevent the unwanted outcome from happening.

You know when you suddenly get a “bad feeling” about something, or you become aware that people are acting differently around you? Or you develop a niggling awareness that there’s something you’re ignoring or overlooking?

THOSE are yellow alerts.

Trust Your Gut

The faster you’re able to recognize and respond to yellow alerts, the easier you’ll be able to avoid obstacles, overcome challenges, and reach higher levels of success.

The 5 Overlooked Steps on the Path to Success

Now that we’ve identified how to recognize yellow alerts, let’s talk about what those missed steps might be and how to correct them to get back on your accelerated path to success.

Step 1: Face Problems Head On

The first step you might be missing is that you’re not facing a problem head-on.

Many people choose to ignore yellow alerts because they don’t want to feel any sort of discomfort. Acknowledging and responding to yellow alerts usually involves doing things you would rather not do – such as...

Having an awkward or difficult conversation with someone.  Admitting that you made a mistake or that something isn’t working. Taking the time to have that mole on your shoulder checked out by a doctor. Or taking your car to the mechanic to check out that noise in the engine that doesn’t sound right.

Be Willing to Ask a Challenging Question

You pretend not to see the yellow alerts. Maybe because it’s easier, more convenient, or less uncomfortable. Ignoring them protects you from having to take what feels like a risk.

Successful people, on the other hand, face problems head on.

They’re willing to experience being uncomfortable, ask a challenging question, ask for feedback, or have a difficult conversation.

They know that yellow alerts are signals that if ignored, often develop into much bigger problems that can fester and grow into huge roadblocks that can prevent you from moving forward toward your goals.

Step 2: Respond to Problems QuicklyPower_Of_Believing_Webcast_Blog_Sidebar_250x300 

The second step you might be missing is that you aren’t responding quickly when a problem arises.

When you develop the habit of responding quickly and decisively to yellow alerts as they happen, life becomes easier. You’re able to eliminate problems before they occur and achieve greater levels of success much faster.

But, learning how to recognize and respond to yellow alerts isn’t always easy.

It requires awareness, dedicated discipline, and a willingness to experiment and take risks.

You have to prepare to look at your own shortcomings and be willing to hear uncomfortable truths. It’s only when you face what isn’t working that you’re able to explore better options. You can come up with a better way of getting the results you want.

Step 3: Take Responsibility For Your Life

The third step you might be missing on the path to success is that you aren’t taking 100% responsibility for your life and your results.

We both know that there is only one person responsible for the quality of the life you are living.

And that person is you!

Everything you are experiencing is a result of your doing or not doing; your income, your debt, your relationships. Your health and your level of fitness. Even your happiness or lack of happiness.

Create the Life YOU Want to Live

If you’ve been ignoring the yellow alerts in your life, take responsibility for that. And if you’ve been dragging your feet about taking action on those yellow alerts, take responsibility for that too.

It’s only you that you are scaring by imagining negative outcomes instead of positive outcomes by taking those actions.

Successful people take full responsibility for their thoughts, images, and actions. They don't waste their time and energy blaming and complaining.

Instead, they evaluate their experiences and decide if they need to change them or not. Successful people face the uncomfortable and take the necessary actions to create the life they want to live.

Steps 4 & 5: Believe It’s Possible & Believe in Yourself

The next steps you might be missing are that you don’t believe it’s possible and you don’t believe in yourself.

If you are going to be successful in creating the life of your dreams, you have to believe that YOU are capable of making them happen.

Whether you call it self-esteem, self-confidence, or self-assurance, it is a strong belief that you have what it takes. You have the abilities, inner resources, and talents to create your desired results.

You have to choose to have an unwavering faith in yourself. Make the decision to embrace the belief that you create all your experiences—both the good and the bad. You will experience successes. However, you will also experience pain, struggle, suffering, and strife thanks to you.

Obstacles Are Part of the Process

I know that sounds a little strange, but accepting this level of responsibility is the only true path to success and in turn, personal power. It means you can do, change, and be anything you want. 

Stumbling blocks become little hills to hop over.

There will always be obstacles to overcome. They are there to test your commitment and to require you to get better to overcome them. They are there to help you grow.

Accepting that you have the power to create change and overcome obstacles is just a big a part of the puzzle as learning how to be successful.

Resisting a Goal is Resisting Your Growth

Every resistance to your goals is an assistance to your growth. And your growth – the achievement of personal mastery – is the ultimate goal in life.

Make a commitment to replace complaints with positive, encouraging language. Examine the things you complain about and do something about them.  

Take Action TODAY!

Remember to take a deep breath, and trust that gut feeling. Once you are able to recognize the warning signs, you can eliminate obstacles from impeding your path to success. Make the choice to believe in yourself and what you are doing. In the end, the “hurdles” you have faced will seem minuscule compared to your achievements.

Keeping these 5 overlooked steps in mind, I want to leave you with a bit of homework to complete. Write down 2 yellow alerts you have been ignoring or 2 obstacles you are currently confronted with. Write down 2 ways you can begin taking action on them TODAY.

Hold yourself accountable and leave a comment below with the 2 solutions you plan on implementing. I’ll follow up with you guys to make sure you’re staying on track!

Join my FREE Webcast and Become an Unstoppable Success

I'd like to invite you to my free webcast: The Power of Believing: How to Become an Unstoppable Success in ANY Situation

Imagine if you could increase your confidence and self-esteem while achieving your ultimate success. Would that dramatically change your life? I'll be going in depth into many of my key Success Principles including some other often overlooked areas on the path to success.

You'll learn some easy, yet powerful strategies that will increase your confidence and give you an unshakeable belief in yourself. Click the button below to learn more.

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WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEBSITE?
You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com

3 Reasons That Could Be Keeping You From Becoming Wealthy

becoming-wealthyMany people try to find a big break or the secret to becoming wealthy. The internet is full of “How to Get Rich Fast” articles, but your paycheck remains the same.

Sadly, there is no quick and easy route to making it big. Attaining wealth takes time, patience, and the know-how.

Here are three reasons that could be keeping you from becoming wealthy…

1. Replace Negative Beliefs About Money

Like everything I’ve said about transforming your life, financial success also starts in your mind.

So first, you’ll have a hard time becoming wealthy if you don’t surface, identify, root out, and replace any negative or limiting beliefs you have about money.

Things like:

  • "Money doesn’t grow on trees."
  • "You have to have money to make money."
  • "Money is the root of all evil."
  • "You can’t buy happiness."

Include Money In Your Daily Affirmations

These beliefs are subconsciously putting out the wrong vibrations. They conflict with your conscious intentions of becoming wealthy. Tackle these beliefs and turn them into positive turnaround statements like:

"When it comes to me, money is the root of love, joy, and good works."

And remember to include money into your daily visualizations and affirmations.

Visualize all your financial goals as already accomplished. See your desired paychecks, rent checks, bank statements, stock reports, and real estate portfolios. Feel the feelings you think you would feel when each of these becomes a reality.

Learn more about daily affirmations here.

2. Start Spending Less

The second reason becoming wealthy is hard for you is you’re not spending less.

Spending too much keeps you in debt, prevents you from saving, and focuses you on consumption.

Try this: Go through every closet, drawer, and cabinet in your house and take out everything you haven’t used in the past year.

I’ve encountered people who found expensive clothes and equipment with the tags still attached, literally used once.

Add up the cost of these items, and you’ll probably find that the total is more than your current credit card debt.

Pay Cash For Everything

To get yourself to spend less, I am going to suggest – except for things like your car or your home - paying cash for everything.

It’s immediate and it makes you think about what you’re buying. Since it’s tangible and visible, you’ll start to consider every purchase much more carefully.

Have the Lifestyle You Want For Less

Also, try living the lifestyle you want, but paying a whole lot less for it.

Try to buy things on sale. Ask for deals. Research the lowest price on the internet. Buy designer clothes at vintage shops and so on.

I know many people who do this to maintain an aggressive saving and investment program - and most success coaches will agree, too!

3. Pay Yourself First

Lastly, before you pay your debt and for the lifestyle you want, you’ll never become wealthy if you don’t pay yourself first.

There’s a book written in 1926 by money leader, George Classon called, The Richest Man in Babylon, which said the first principle of creating wealth is: “A part of all you earn must be yours to keep.”

Start by putting at least 10% of all your earnings aside. Make that money inaccessible for expenses and you’ll see this amount build over time. In turn, it will start earning money on its own.

Live on What’s Left

The world’s most aggressive savers make investing money as important as paying their debt. Get in the habit of immediately putting a predetermined percentage of your paycheck in a savings account.

This will save you some money every month. Do not allow yourself to touch it. Keep adding to that account until you’ve saved enough to move it into a mutual fund or bond account.

You can even invest it somewhere else.

Pay yourself first, then live on what’s left. Trust me, this will force you to find ways to earn more money to afford things you want to buy or do.

You can also use a vision board to stay focused on your goals and attract the resources and opportunities you need to achieve them!

Create New Money Habits

If any of the three reasons I provided resonated with you, it is clear why you are not becoming wealthy. There is no quick fix, but putting in the work and making slight adjustments to your money habits will pay off. You have the power to transform your life. It all starts in your mind.

Here is your homework: if you’re doing some of the things I’ve listed that are hindering you from creating wealth, work on creating a new money habit. Use one of my suggestions.

To help hold you more accountable, comment below on what you’re planning to do and I’ll follow up with you to keep you on track! 

If creating better money habits, achieving your goals, and becoming more successful sound appealing to you, click the button below to download my free success planner. You'll receive a daily, monthly, and yearly planner that uses my time-tested success principles as well as daily guidelines and inspirational quotes to ensure you live with passion and purpose. Don't wait a second longer to transform your destiny.

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You. Me. Italy. (And a DRAGON)

How would you like to sit down with me one-on-one and get my personal advice on how to make your most ambitious dreams a reality?

Here’s your chance to make it happen – in a 17th-century villa in Italy!

This June, I’m inviting 26 highly motivated individuals to join me and my team of handpicked success mentors on an intimate luxury retreat in the heart of Tuscany’s breathtaking Chianti region.

Over the course of four life-changing days, participants will get the elite one-on-one mentorship and support they need to align their life and business goals with their deepest passions... find more joy and balance in all areas of their lives... create a step-by-step plan to achieve their biggest goals and dreams... and start playing at a much higher level than ever before.

I would love for you to join us!

Meet the Dragon and the Code Breakers

Sean Gallagher, one of Ireland’s top entrepreneurs, will be one of my amazing co-facilitators at the retreat. He’s co-founder of Ireland’s largest home technology company, Smarthomes, and was a popular investor on Dragons’ Den – the UK version of the U.S. television show, Shark Tank. He’s famous for championing start-ups and emerging entrepreneurs and I KNOW he’ll breathe fire into your business.

You’ll also get the chance to work with one-on-one with Sandra and Daniel Biskind, authors of the The Code-Breaker Platinum Series and amazing facilitators of transformational growth. They work with conscious business owners and professionals to master shifting their state instantly and solve seemingly unsolvable problems. They have blown people away at our past retreats!

 What do you *MOST* want to accomplish in your life?

Maybe you’re hoping to reignite passion for your business or career – or looking for a roadmap on how to double your profits in the next year.

Maybe you’re feeling called to steer your life in a completely new direction – but don’t know how to proceed, and aren’t getting the support you need from the people around you.

Maybe you hunger for more freedom, balance, and love in your life – or maybe you’re searching for deeper purpose and meaning.

Whatever it is you’re looking for, my amazing team of success mentors and I will help you find it.

If you’re ready to experience “your own personal renaissance” in the cradle of Italy – and launch yourself to a higher level of personal brilliance – join me in Tuscany this June. I guarantee it will be an experience you will never forget!

You can learn more and apply for your invite here: GET PERSONAL MENTORSHIP WITH JACK IN ITALY.

Here are some photos from our past two Tuscany retreats:

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If you would you like to experience the personal transformation of a lifetime in a place like this, apply for your invite today.

 

How To Find Your Soulmate Using the Law of Attraction

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There is something to be said about the power of positive thinking. 

The basic definition of the Law of Attraction states: "What you think about, you attract." 

Positive thoughts have the power to transform our lives for the better, especially our love lives. Today I want to share a simple technique that focuses on using the Law of Attraction to find your soulmate. 

How to Find Your Soulmate By Focusing On What You Want 

In our romantic relationships, we tend to focus on the things we don’t want in a partner rather than the things we do.

Give deep thought to what you want to create in your life. Consider the relationships in your life and focus on what you do want, not what you don’t.

Get in touch with your inner truth, your authentic dreams, your goals, and your heartfelt desires. Honor these and own them without fear, shame, or inhibition.

Define Your Dreams

Your dreams and desires are not subject to anyone else’s approval.

They are yours and yours alone, but you have to define them to achieve them.

Your dreams and aspirations should serve to ignite the passion within you. This passion will not only inspire you to achieve them, but will also send a positive vibrational frequency out into the world.

Through the Law of Attraction, the universe will respond accordingly.

Learn to Activate The Law of Attraction, Achieve All of Your Goals, and Find Happiness.

Make an “Ideal Relationship” List 

One effective way to activate the Law of Attraction in your love life is to create a dream list of your ideal relationship. Your dream list will be a comprehensive overview of your dreams, goals, and desires. It will represent what you want to be, do, have, and achieve in all areas of your life including relationships. Here are the steps to make an ideal relationship list:

1. Create a T-Chart for Your Ideal Relationship

The first technique is the creation of “T-chart.” This type of chart is a very effective way to identify what you do want in your life by looking at the things you don’t want in a soulmate.

Start by drawing a line down the middle of a sheet of paper. Label the left column “What I don’t want.” and the right column “What I do want.”

For instance, within the relationship category of your life, you may want to focus on a topic such as “My Ideal Romantic Relationship.” Start by writing down what you don’t want in one column. Then in the other column, turn it around into an opposite statement, saying what it is that you do want.

2. Cross Off the "Don't Want" List  

Begin to fill out your T-chart. If you don’t want a partner who smokes, write that down on the left. Then write the opposite of that on the right side: a partner who lives a healthy lifestyle. If you want a partner who enjoys an active outdoor lifestyle, write that down on the right.

When you have completed your list, go back and cross off the “don’t want” list on the left side of your chart.

From now on, use the right side of each list and stay focused on what you do want in your life. There is no need to give any further attention or energy to the list of what you don’t want.

By the way, the simple act of crossing out what you don’t want is empowering, and it feels good!

Realize What You Want in a Soulmate

Completing this exercise will help activate the Law of Attraction in the relationship area of your life. Completing this also helps you to realize what you want in an ideal partner.

I suggest completing your own “T” chart for the relationships that you want to attract in your life.

Remember to remain focused on what kind of person you do want in your life, rather than on the person you don’t. Once you release your positive thoughts into the universe, you give it the power to transform your dream mate into a soulmate.

Conclusion

Was it easy or was it difficult to construct this dream list? Why? Let me know in the comments, and I’ll be sure to follow up with you.

Positive thoughts have a wonderful way of not only shaping our love lives but every aspect of our lives. To fully utilize the Law of Attraction in your life, you have to become a vibrational match with whatever it is you want to attract into your life. This means creating and maintaining an emotional state that matches the one you will experience when you actually get the thing you are focusing on. You can do this by appreciating what you already have, and continually finding more and more things to be grateful for.

I've written a short FREE guide to help activate the Law of Attraction in YOUR life.

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WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEBSITE?
You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com

3 Keys to My Successful Marriage

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A successful marriage is one of the most wonderful things you can share with another person.

Throughout my career, I’ve emphasized the importance of creating intimate connections with others. The same holds true with your marriage.

Because of this, I have developed 3 keys to my successful marriage that can also help YOU create more fulfilling and authentic relationships with your spouse, family members, or anyone in your life. In turn, you will see that achieving happiness in this sphere of your life will bring you success in all other areas.

The Greatest Source of Joy in My Life

My relationship with my wife, Inga, is the greatest source of joy in my life. I adore her for how much she understands me and what I am about in life:

My purpose, my mission, and my priorities.

Additionally, for her unceasing love, support, humor, and encouragement.

My 3 Keys To Maintaining a Successful Marriage

Partners often drift apart because they never develop the deep sense of connection required to overcome the stumbling blocks that happen in every relationship.

They share a bed…but not a life.

They sit next to each other… but never share their deepest thoughts and feelings with each other. Then one day they wake up to a stranger sleeping beside them.

Good relationships are key to getting what you want from life. But what most people don’t understand is creating and maintaining a successful marriage or relationship takes commitment, time and energy.

Key #1: Express Your Authentic Self

So the first key to stronger, happier, and more fulfilling relationships is committing to being and expressing your authentic self.

And that’s a lot easier said than done.

The truth is that most people put on masks and different personas depending on the people they are with and the situations they find themselves in. They become chameleons in order to be accepted, liked or loved.

Finding the Courage to Voice Your Feelings

In addition to time and energy, it takes courage and the willingness to be vulnerable – to tell the truth about your thoughts, feelings, and desires to maintain a successful marriage.

It takes courage to admit that you feel lost, scared, overwhelmed and discouraged if you are supposed to be the boss at work or the breadwinner at home.

It takes courage to admit you are unhappy or dissatisfied with the relationship, that you are not getting your needs met, or that you are thinking about quitting your job or that you find yourself being attracted to another person.

Revealing Your Flaws is Worth It

Revealing your flaws makes you more appealing to your partner and to others. And taking off all your masks to express the parts of yourself that you’d rather keep hidden is going to naturally bring up feelings of awkwardness and discomfort—even fears of rejection.

But it’ll be worth it because it’ll bring greater authenticity and awareness to your relationships.

I can remember a few years back being frustrated that my wife would often criticize my eating habits – the food I chose to eat, the amounts I was eating, and so on.

I began to feel irritated and resentful of her criticism, but in my commitment to being a positive person, I didn’t bring it up, but inside I was still feeling angry and like I wanted to get away from her when she did this.

Telling the Uncomfortable Truth

As uncomfortable as it was, I told her that I needed her to be less critical and more supportive of me whatever my behavior was, and that I would take responsibility for my body and she should take responsibility for hers.

At that point, she told me that underneath her critical comments were her fear about my health and my longevity. She didn’t want to lose me to a heart attack or an early death.

Her concerns and her fears touched me deeply. As a result, I started eating even more consciously than I had been, and she made a commitment to support me and accept me with less judgment in whatever I was doing.

The Formula For Effective Feedback

Now that I eat better she has become a lot less critical in every area of my life.  That uncomfortable conversation of truth-telling helped transform the quality of our relationship.

By the way, a powerful communication tool that we now both use, instead of criticizing the other person, is this formula for effective feedback that helps avoid defensiveness and counterattack.

It goes like this.

"When you ____, I tell myself ____, and then I feel ____, and my request is that you ____."

For example, instead of saying: "I hate it when you criticize my eating, especially in front of other people."

Say this instead: “When you eat bread and butter before dinner and then order dessert, I tell myself that you are going to have a heart attack, and then I feel scared that you are going to die and I will be left alone, and my request is that you eat fewer refined carbohydrates.”

It’s amazing how powerful this tool is for creating conversations that actually bring you closer together rather than creating separation.

Learn to Activate The Law of Attraction, Achieve All of Your Goals, and Find Happiness.

Key #2: Quality Time Forms Connections

The second key to my successful marriage is quality time.

You and your partner’s definition of quality time may be different, but you need to constantly set aside time to connect with each other in the best way that works for each of you to continually build upon your relationship.

When I spend quality time with Inga, I give her my full attention with the TV off, and my computer and phone put away. I give her full eye contact and actively listen and respond to what she is saying.

She loves going on long walks together with me or sitting by our pool and having long conversations. When we do this, she feels seen and heard and ultimately deeply connected.

Key #3: Set Goals

The third secret is to set goals.

It’s one of the most powerful of all the Success Principles, and while people use it at work and in their professional life, I notice people rarely use it in the context of achieving healthy intimate relationships.

Believe it or not, goal setting is sexy. Defining what you want and going for it with gusto is very appealing to your partner.

But remember…

It’s not enough to say that you want to spend more quality time together.

Setting Relationship Goals

As I’ve stated many times, vague goals produce vague results. If you want real results, you have to be specific and state your goal in a way that’s measurable.

You have to state how much or how many, and by when.

For example: “I will take my spouse out for dinner at least once a month and schedule one evening a week to hang out together without any TV or cell phones, so we can spend more time talking and enjoying each other’s company.”

Just like with being yourself, setting relationship goals means probably confronting some long-standing fears and roadblocks.

There is a Solution to Every Obstacle

Maybe setting the goal of spending more quality time with your spouse makes you realize that you’ll need to say “no” to your boss when he asks you to stay late or come in on the weekends.

Or maybe you’ll have to confront your fear of talking about your feelings.

It’s important to remember that there is always a solution to any obstacle — you just have to look for it. Perhaps you can ask your boss if you can come in a couple hours early on one or more of the weekdays so you can make sure you get your evenings and weekends off.

Give Each Year a Focus  

Every December, Inga and I take an afternoon or evening and set life goals for the next year.

These include how many vacation days we are going to take, how many evenings we are going to schedule with friends, how many days we are going to spend with our children and grandchildren, how many days we are going to attend a meditation or spiritual retreat, and what quality we are going to focus on for the year—

Such as love, acceptance, authenticity, fun, or courage.

One year we agreed to reread Don Miguel Ruiz’s book The Four Agreements and practice implementing one of the four agreements (be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, and always do your best),

So that by working on one each quarter, we could master them in one year.

A Successful Marriage Takes Patience

Obviously, there’s a lot more that goes into creating more successful and authentic relationships, but I want you to try one of these as your homework assignment.

Whether you’re married, in a relationship, or just want to work on your general relationships overall, I guarantee this will bring more joy into them.

The main marriage tip for you to keep in mind on this journey: Be Patient!

It may take your spouse, partner, family member or friend time to face their own fears or roadblocks before being able to meet you halfway.

If you are committed to being your authentic self, spending quality time with your partner, and setting focused goals, you’ll solve the problem together.

Conclusion

Leave a comment below with one of the relationship goals you and your partner are planning to set for 2017. I’ll follow up with you to make sure you’re staying on track! 

The Law of Attraction states that you will attract into your life--whether wanted or unwanted--whatever you give your energy, focus, and attention to. If you're feeling excited, enthusiastic, passionate, happy, joyful, loving, appreciative, abundant, prosperous, relaxed and peaceful, you will attract these same things.

Learn how to use the Law of Attraction in your life and it will change your relationships with the people you care about the most. Click the button below to learn more about harnessing the power of effortless success!

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WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEBSITE?
You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul® and a leading authority on Peak Performance and Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make more money, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Jack Canfield now at: www.FreeSuccessStrategies.com

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