Sunday, April 29, 2012

Pruning Relationships that Don’t Serve You
Written by Jack Canfield

Everything we want to achieve in life involves relationships. While it’s important to learn how to build successful relationships, it’s equally valuable to choose wisely when determining which connections to nurture.

Drop the Anchors

Achieving goals and greater levels of success require energy – sometimes an enormous amount. Negative people are like psychic vampires. They drain us of the precious energy we need to grow and achieve, making relationships with these individuals toxic to success.

Until we reach the point in our self-development where we no longer allow people to affect us with their negativity, it’s best to avoid toxic people at all costs. They will hold us back with their victim mentality and mediocre standards.

To identify which relationships are draining you, make a list of all people you spend time with on a regular basis. Go through the list and put a minus sign (-) next to the people who are negative and toxic. Put a plus sign (+) next to the people who are positive and nurturing.

Then stop spending time with the people on the negative list! If you don’t believe that is possible – for example, if you are surrounded by negative people at work – do your best to dramatically decrease the amount of time you spend with them.

Identify Your Best Investments

Another way that relationships can drain our energy is when we feel overwhelmed by the number of relationships we have to maintain.

The first thing to explore is the feeling of “have to.” Remember, there are no “have to’s” or “shoulds” in life. There are only “choose to’s.” We get to choose where we invest our time and energy – and that includes determining which relationships we want to maintain.

“Have to” indicates that our motivation to maintain the relationships is based on fear. But to create greater success, we want to make decisions that are motivated by joy and excitement, as well as our purpose and goals.

We are equipped with a handy inner guidance system that tells us when we are making decisions that are in alignment with our higher good: Joy. When we are not spending a lot of time feeling joyful, it is a clear sign that we are off course.

Review your list of relationships again, this time with a different set of criteria. Identify the people who bring you the greatest joy, as well as financial and professional success. Which relationships are critical to your bottom line? Which people are you most excited to spend time with? Which people are most important for you to keep in touch with? These are the relationships to cultivate.

Dan Sullivan, president of the Strategic Coach, teaches his clients to identify their top 20 relationships, as well as a “farm team,” which are 20 additional relationships that should be nurtured as future additions to the Top 20. Create this list for yourself, using joy as the measuring stick for personal relationships and bottom-line success for professional relationships.

Once your key relationships are identified, put the names into a chart, with the names prioritized in the first column. In the second column, add contact information so that it is readily available when you want to reach out to one of these key contacts. In the third column, answer the question, “What result(s) do I want to achieve with this person in the next 90 days?” Do you want them to hire you? Attend your seminar? Buy your book? Send referrals to you? Use this chart to guide your actions over the next three months as you nurture the key relationships.

You Get to Choose

In business particularly, you may feel that you are required to stay connected with more people than you would normally choose.

Remember that you get to choose not only which relationships you want to nurture, but also how close each relationships will be and how you will stay connected. More than 235,000 people around the world have subscribed to my mailing list to stay in touch with me. I can’t develop personal relationships with everyone, of course. I choose to stay connected with my subscribers via tools such as my blog, e-zine and Inner Circle Club.

As world-renowned marine artist Wyland once said, “There are two types of people – anchors and motors. You want to lose the anchors and get with the motors because the motors are going somewhere and they’re having more fun. The anchors will just drag you down.” Carefully choose the relationships in which you invest your precious time and energy to ensure that your success isn’t slowed … and so that you experience a positive return on your investment.

Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul©Inspirational Books)© 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/.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Two Things All Parents Should Know About Money - For Their Kids

There seems to be a myth that kids have to wait until their twenties or later to start investing. I want to let you know that this can be no further from the truth. As parents, there are things that we can do now to start our kids on a firm financial foundation so that they will be responsible with their money and have good financial habits before actually leaving the nest and venturing out on their own. Also, it is important to know that the earlier we start teaching our kids about money, the cheaper the lesson will cost.

In the following video, I explain, based on my own experience, the two things all parents should know about money and I offer an easy idea on how you can implement these two things with your kids.

I hope you find this helpful and please leave me your comments below!



If you cannot view the video please click on this link

I'm so excited to share this information with you. If you have enjoyed the information or feel that it would benefit someone else, please share it. If you have any comments, please post them below, otherwise, feel free to contact me.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Facing the Enemies Within
Written by Jim Rohn

We are not born with courage, but neither are we born with fear. Maybe some of our fears are brought on by your own experiences, by what someone has told you, by what you've read in the papers. Some fears are valid, like walking alone in a bad part of town at two o'clock in the morning. But once you learn to avoid that situation, you won't need to live in fear of it.

Fears, even the most basic ones, can totally destroy our ambitions. Fear can destroy fortunes. Fear can destroy relationships. Fear, if left unchecked, can destroy our lives. Fear is one of the many enemies lurking inside us.

Let me tell you about five of the other enemies we face from within.

The first enemy that you've got to destroy before it destroys you is indifference. What a tragic disease this is. "Ho-hum, let it slide. I'll just drift along." Here's one problem with drifting: you can't drift your way to the top of the mountain

The second enemy we face is indecision. Indecision is the thief of opportunity and enterprise. It will steal your chances for a better future. Take a sword to this enemy.

The third enemy inside is doubt. Sure, there's room for healthy skepticism. You can't believe everything. But you also can't let doubt take over. Many people doubt the past, doubt the future, doubt each other, doubt the government, doubt the possibilities and doubt the opportunities. Worst of all, they doubt themselves. I'm telling you, doubt will destroy your life and your chances of success. It will empty both your bank account and your heart. Doubt is an enemy. Go after it. Get rid of it.

The fourth enemy within is worry. We've all got to worry some. Just don't let it conquer you. Instead, let it alarm you. Worry can be useful. If you step off the curb in New York City and a taxi is coming, you've got to worry. But you can't let worry loose like a mad dog that drives you into a small corner. Here's what you've got to do with your worries: drive them into a small corner. Whatever is out to get you, you've got to get it. Whatever is pushing on you, you've got to push back.

The fifth interior enemy is over-caution. It is the timid approach to life. Timidity is not a virtue; it's an illness. If you let it go, it'll conquer you. Timid people don't get promoted. They don't advance and grow and become powerful in the marketplace. You've got to avoid over-caution.

Do battle with the enemy. Do battle with your fears. Build your courage to fight what's holding you back, what's keeping you from your goals and dreams. Be courageous in your life and in your pursuit of the things you want and the person you want to become.

Jim Rohn, America's Foremost Business Philosopher, reprinted with permission from Jim Rohn International © 2012. As a world-renowned author and success expert, Jim Rohn touched millions of lives during his 46-year career as a motivational speaker and messenger of positive life change. For more information on Jim and his popular personal achievement resources or to subscribe to the weekly Jim Rohn Newsletter, visit www.JimRohn.com.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Clearing Clutter Increases Success
Written by Jack Canfield

Our physical spaces are filled with dozens of minor distractions and irritants, such as stacks of unread books, scuff marks on the wall, and closets filled with unused items. For most people, these things are like gnats – annoying, but generally insignificant and easily ignored.

Rarely do we recognize them for what they really are – potent threats to our productivity, energy, concentration and peace of mind.

For those of us committed to achieving greater success in our lives, a cluttered physical environment produces three negative consequences:
  1. You feel drained. If there are things to do everywhere you look, your mind constantly keeps thinking “I need to fix that.” Eventually, you to feel drained, anxious, irritable, and overwhelmed. To cope, we have to put blinders on and overlook the distractions.


  2. Problems spiral out of control. We often overlook irritations for the short-term gain of being able to continue with our daily routine. The danger, however, is that some problems with grow worse with lack of attention. The chip in the windshield that could have been fixed in 30 minutes grows to a crack that requires replacement of the entire windshield.


  3. You miss important clues and ideas. It’s impossible to selectively numb out your awareness, ignoring only the minor distractions in your physical space while paying close attention to everything else. This is perhaps the biggest danger for success-minded people. Our most powerful insights often manifest in gut feelings, fleeting thoughts and subtle cues. Numbing out to our cluttered physical environments makes us oblivious to these clues, as well.
Physical Space Impacts Mental Space

Seemingly small irritations and distractions also have a dramatic impact on our mental state. It’s common for people who feel overwhelmed by their physical clutter to go into a state of resignation. When you have a sense that you can’t control the little things – such as quickly finding a stapler when you need it – then it becomes easy to tell yourself that there’s no way you can have the other, bigger things that you want, such as a better car, bigger house, prestigious job, or loving relationship.

The good news is that the same concept works in reverse. When you do recognize that you can control little things, such as the squeak every time you open your front door, you recognize that you can control the bigger things in life, too. Taking action to manage irritations, distractions and clutter builds your confidence in your ability to achieve success, regardless of form.

3 Ways to Deal with Clutter

There are three ways to change any environment: add something to it, take something out of it, or modify it in some form.

Go through your environment and figure out what is irritating and distracting you. Ask yourself how it needs to be fixed. Then think about who you might be able to delegate all or part of the task to. One reason that to-do items accumulate is that we feel like we have to do all of the work ourselves. One of the key strategies for getting more done is to master the art of delegation.

To help you move forward with this process, I’ve posted an “Irritations & Tolerations” worksheet on my blog. Use this tool to identify and create an action plan for handling your irritations and tolerations.

Next, scan your environment to identify elements that need to be removed completely, as well as items that can be brought in to increase the energy in your space. For example, you might find that removing the television or computer from your bedroom makes your sleeping space more relaxing and peaceful. On the other hand, you might find that adding a conference table to your office gives you an inviting place for creative work, while adding plants makes you feel calmer and connected to nature.

Spotting “Good” Clutter

Remember that all clutter is not bad. For many people, clutter is part of their creative process.

When in the midst of creation – such as writing an article, developing a presentation, mapping out a business strategy or creating a product – they pull out resources like books, clippings, articles and notepads. More artistic types might fill their work spaces with tools of their particular trade.

The litmus test to use in determining whether your clutter needs attention is how you feel. If you feel inspired, the clutter is serving you and contributing to your creative expression. If you feel contracted, drained, anxious or stressed, the clutter needs to be tamed.

Environments control us, but it’s important to recognize that as human beings, we are one of the few animals that can control their environments.

*Click Here to Download the Irritations and Tolerations Worksheet

Jack Canfield, America's #1 Success Coach, is founder of the billion-dollar book brand Chicken Soup for the Soul©Inspirational Books)© 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/.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Calculating Your Financial Independence Number

If you wish to retire or become financially independent some day you must first find out the answers to the following three questions:
  1. Identify, and accept, reality - Exactly where am I now, and what will happen in retirement if I make no changes?
  2. Set goals to aim for in the future - What do I want in my retirement years? What’s my “Financial Independence Number” - my “FIN”?
  3. Make a game plan and take action - How much must I be investing every month to achieve my desired retirement goals?
There are lots of financial calculators out there, but here is a simple worksheet that can be used to help you find answers to the previous three questions.

By answering a few simple questions and by using just a regular non-financial calculator, you can estimate the amount of money you would need to become financially independent (your Financial Independence Number or FIN). Once your FIN has been calculated, you can then easily calculate the amount of money you would need to put away each month to accomplish your financial independence goals.

Click on the image below to enlarge it for printing purposes and try it out for yourself.



You can also view a short video of me explaining the simple process to my Toastmaster friends.

I hope you enjoy and please leave me your comments below!



If you cannot view the video please click on this link

I'm so excited to share this information with you. If you have enjoyed the information or feel that it would benefit someone else, please share it. If you have any comments, please post them below, otherwise, feel free to contact me.