Monthly Archives: March 2013

My Story, Chapter 1

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When I started blogging I told stories about myself – moreso than I have recently. Many people reacted well to that.

I received good feedback. Recently a few of you have asked that I return to that sort of thing.

At the same time I wanted to put my story, or at least part of it, out there. My goal is to share my mistakes, successes and the lessons that I learned. Plus if you see me and how I go through some challenges I’ve had, maybe you will be encouraged through your challenges.

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Starting the story is often the toughest part, right?

Do I start telling you about when I thought I might go bankrupt? Do I tell you how great I felt when my daughters were born? When I was promoted in different jobs? When I was self-employed – the freedom, excitement, pride, fear, anxiety? Or do I start talking about “the year” when I was unemployed and we lost 5 family members, they passed-away?

I thought about the many challenges that I’ve faced as an adult – probably similar to things you’ve faced….. I chose to start when I first felt “baptism by fire”, as it was referred to by a family friend.

OK, picture a 20 year old young male. I had been a pretty shy person in grade school, even high school. During my freshmen year at college I was still pretty shy but started to come out of my shell. Now, during my sophomore year, I decided to be a social butterfly. I got a fake ID, I went out, I dated, I had fun. I got to know lots of people at college and at other spots. Lots of road trips were involved. I had my first Spring Break trip to Daytona Beach. Wow, I enjoyed life for a few months. I had lots of fun.

However, you could safely say that I didn’t put much effort into studies and my grades fell hard that year. It was May, school was out, and my parents knew I didn’t do well and although the report card didn’t come home yet, I knew that it wasn’t going to be pretty.

Now, step back for a moment…..My father operated a sales agency in the kitchen cabinet and woodworkers’ industry. He was formerly a cabinetmaker who had a heart attack at age 45. So he became a self-employed sales rep to the same industry. At this time, he was about 58. He was successful, did well and had a nice addition on our home for the home office. I never knew anything of an empty stomach, empty refrigerator, empty pantry or old clothes. However, I didn’t get the name brands and I didn’t live like a rich kid.

Since school let out, I said that I’d take a week off then start working for my dad that summer. (Somehow I thought that I needed a week’s vacation from all the partying at college before I could work.) So I ‘chilled’ for about a week, listening to Ice, Ice, Baby (Vanilla Ice); Blame it on the Rain (Milli Vanilli); Janie’s Got a Gun (Aerosmith); Epic (Faith No More); Without You (Motley Crue); Blaze Of Glory (Jon Bon Jovi), and my favorite of that period, Pink Floyd. Some sweet tunes. I look back, man was I immature.

Monday came and it was time to work. I put in my first day with my dad….. I woke up, didn’t shower, put on the baseball cap and coasted through the day. My mom made us both a big lunch, about 1 hour long; it was going to be a sweet summer. After dinner it was time to cut the grass. We lived on about 30-some acres, about 10 was grass. I think I cut most of it that night on the tractor. My dad was using the push mower to trim around the house and tight spots. I noticed he had a tough time starting it – it was a pull-start – and he was getting frustrated.

Later I finished up, it was getting dark and I came into the house. My mother was out in town running errands. My father was laying in bed – it was perhaps 9pm. He never laid in bed that early – especially with his ‘work clothes’ on. I asked him what happened. He thought that he pulled a muscle starting the mower – his lower left side hurt.

Of course I did the right thing – I went immediately to my room and put on Pink Floyd. My mother came home very soon after, saw him, checked him out and called the ambulance. He was having another heart-attack, she said.

She asked me to go stand by him and talk to him. I did. What was I to say? I tried to joke about something but I could see he was in pain. I told him to try and relax. Easy for me to say.  I recall that he got up at one point or so with dry heaves and other symptoms. It was scarey. This was a serious downer dude.

The ambulance was taking a long time to get to the house. It was before the 911 emergency services named and mapped the roads. Long before GPS. Our address was RD#3 Box 280F. Not much help finding the home.

Through their radio and the dispatcher, they called our house looking for better directions. They went to our neighor’s house about 1/4 mile away. He walked the ambulance back….yes, I said he WALKED the ambulance back to the house.

I recall seeing in the dusk a man walking back our private road – and behind him was an ambulance. I couldn’t believe it….my father was having a heart attack and the ambulance was literally coming to our home at a walker’s pace. It finally arrived, they went upstairs. They came down with my dad on the gurney and they couldn’t get him past our decorative wagon wheels on either side of the sidewalk.

My dad had put these old wagon wheels he found from the old farm on our property there years early. They were in the theme of my parents’ home, I suppose. On this day, they were barriers to my dad’s medical services, perhaps to saving his life. The ambulance guys were gently trying to move the wheels and delicately trying to push them aside. I recall telling one to step back and I kicked it hard, then watched it fall out of the way.

My mom left to go to the hospital. She asked me to stay, wrap up the home and not come into the hospital until the next morning. She called from the hospital later that night and repeated her wish for me to stay there at home as it would be a long week and she needed me fresh. She gave me a list of clothes and items to bring in the next day.

I hung up and noticed that my hands were shaking. I began to tremble all over my body. What the hell was going on? Two weeks ago I was hangin’ with my buds and a few cold brews. One week ago I was chillin’ in my room. Now my dad was possibly dying? A heart attack – again?

I remember suddenly noticing how beautiful the night was outside. I sat out on our screened porch on that early summer’s night. We lived on the edge of the woods and the noises from the trees comforted me. I heard animals, birds, bugs settle in for the night. I heard the quiet noise from Mill Creek. I was alone but didn’t feel loneliness. I couldn’t calm down though…I kept shaking.

I went inside and tried to watch TV but couldn’t do so. I still was trembling. For the first time that I could recall, I went into my parents’ cabinet and got a shot of whiskey, just one, and took it. It calmed me enough that I went to bed and slept.

Continued……………

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•10 Great Ways to Get Noticed as a Blogger

10 Great Ways to Get Noticed as a Blogger

Getting Noticed with Your Blog ContentSanta Monica

If you’re new to blogging, it can seem impossible to make a name for yourself among the hundreds, or more likely thousands, of bloggers out there covering the same topic, but don’t let that discourage you. Everyone had to start somewhere. I’ve compiled a list of ten things that worked for me. Of course, not every technique will be right for your blog; hopefully, these techniques will help you build a foundation for success over time.

1. Write good content. (This one should come as no surprise to you. If you write amazing content, you’ll attract attention.)

2. Create other forms of content, rather than just blog posts. You can build an audience if you are everywhere doing lots of different things at once. Record podcasts, shoot videos, take pictures, and utilize social sharing and social media.

3. Compile lists. Whether it’s a Top Bloggers list or another kind of “top” list (like Top Travel Destinations), this kind of thing always gets attention. Be prepared for some controversy, since there will always be people who disagree, and make sure you do your research so your list is complete and valuable.

4. Team up with other people. Joint ventures are always tricky to orchestrate, but when done successfully, you both reap the benefits. Think about what you can bring to the table. Otherwise, an established blogger won’t have any reason to want to work with you. An audience isn’t the only important asset you can add to a project.

5. Be personable. Telling interesting, personal, or funny stories can help you stand out in a sea of posts. Tell people about you — storytelling is an extremely popular way to bring people into the fold.

6. Put your nose to the grindstone and write! More content leads to more readers, as long as you can maintain quality.

7. Write great headlines. There’s no faster way to catch the attention of people in your niche than an intriguing headline.

8. Interview someone in your niche who is not a blogger. Bloggers tend to interview one another fairly regularly, and while this is a good technique to use, you can also get noticed if you interview people outside of the world of blogging. For example, if you’re a travel blogger, you could interview a hotel manager or a hotel chef.

9. Do reviews. If you’re new you might not get products for free or be paid to do review yet, but you can still review products you love. Make sure to notify the company/author/etc. whenever you do, and they’ll often share your post via social media or email.

10. Make it easy for readers to share your posts. Word of mouth marketing can drive tons of traffic if you’re a new blogger, but if I can’t really quickly find sharing buttons, I’m probably not going to bother. Don’t make it hard for your readers.

Don’t forget to vote for me in the Biggest Baddest Bucket List Contest at http://www.mydestination.com/users/lesley/bbb#tab

Read more great tips, articles, and stories at Bucket List Publications Online Magazine!

How to Start Your Own Business

I came across this on Early To Rise. Good stuff, good article. http://www.earlytorise.com/

“Profit is a reward for satisfying the desires of others. The more you satisfy those desires, the more you will profit.” – Harry Browne


How to Start Your Own Home Business

By Bob Bly

I’ve started small home business in my 20s as well as in my 50s. Were there any differences in the process based on my age alone? Yes, and if you’re an over-50 entrepreneur, it helps to keep them in mind.
To begin with, when I was younger, I had the boundless optimization that is bred by the naivety of youth. I hadn’t been through much hardship in my life, and so didn’t think anything bad could really happen to me, including the possibility of my business failing. Therefore I went boldly forward with few resources or contingencies in place.
At 50, I had, like many people, been through some very serious problems in my life, including my wife being diagnosed (mistakenly, it turned out) with terminal cancer. Therefore, I considered the pros and cons of my new business plan more carefully, and should things have turned sour, I would not have been badly hurt.
Even though I had only a few thousand dollars in my bank account when I was in my early 20s, I felt more able to take risks because I also had relatively few financial responsibilities: no family, no mortgage, and (living in Manhattan) no car payments. Plus, when you’re young, if your business tanks and you lose it all, you have plenty of time to make it back.
You’d think older entrepreneurs with their greater net worth would be more financially courageous, but the opposite is often true. If you’re 50, and your business bombs and draws down your retirement nest egg, you may not have time or earning power to make it back. Therefore, many 50+ entrepreneurs are afraid to take big financial risks.
Yet for many of the over-50 entrepreneurs who are willing to take financial risks, the money to start a business is there. If I wanted to launch a business with $100,000 start-up costs, I could do it without borrowing. Yet on the TV show Shark Tank, you see people giving away 10 to 50 percent of their entrepreneurial ventures to investors who in exchange pay them a sum in the high five or low six figures.
Younger entrepreneurs are often fueled by boundless – and some might say naïve – optimism. Optimism propels people to action, which is a good thing, but it can give them unrealistic expectations, which isn’t so good.
As an old dog entrepreneur, you have to learn new tricks, and it may take a lot of practice to break old habits. For instance, my children laugh that when I need a business phone number, I look in the Yellow Pages and not Google. When my youngest son saw that AARP sent me a free transistor radio as a premium, he laughed again: “No one listens to the radio on a radio,” he said.
One of the things I envy younger entrepreneurs is their seemingly infinite energy. Some of the more famous Internet marketers I know go at their online business 24/7. I work hard too, but once I hit 50, I saw that my own energy had limits.
Perhaps the biggest difference between younger and older entrepreneurs is this: in their quest to be rich, many young entrepreneurs will do any kind of business as long as they think it can make them quick and significant bucks.
When you are over 50, you are far less willing to do whatever it takes just for money. You want to do what you want to do, when you want to do it. You are reluctant to bow to the will of others just for the money. Your work has to bring you pleasure. You don’t like being told what to do.
So how do you choose a business opportunity that meshes well with your personality, interests, and desires?
Career coach Valerie Young has her clients write a short composition describing their ideal day. You can do the same to discover what your ideal day would look like.
Would you spend it sitting in the backyard alone with your laptop — or working shoulder to shoulder with a team? Do you want afternoons free for fishing and golf? Can you stick to a schedule or do you crave freedom and flexibility? Do you want to make crafts or spend the day with kids? Do you see yourself in an office or outdoors?
Then it’s a matter of finding a vocation that allows you to live, as closely as you can, your ideal day – every day of the year. To find that vocation, make a list of your interests, passions, aptitudes, and favorite activities. Are any of these things other people would pay you to do or make? Those are the realistic options, unless you are independently wealthy.
How wealthy you are determines the degree of freedom you have in choosing your new business, profession, or vocation. Take stock of your financial situation. How much money do you have? Is it enough to retire? If your business failed and you lost money, would you still have enough to retire? Can you do whatever you want? Or does the need for money trump the need for self-fulfillment?
The bottom line: as an after-50 entrepreneur, you want and deserve to have a business that lets you live the life you want to live. And with a little planning, it can all be yours

[Ed. Note. Bob Bly is a freelance copywriter, information marketer, and the author of 80 books including Start Your Own Home Business After 50 (Quill Driver Books, 2013).]

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The Future You !

Here’s something I’ve done for myself and asked my daughters to do for themselves…..

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If you are really honest, in a good state of mind, and really try to get into it, you’ll benefit.

I’d recommend that you revisit these often and save it for years to come…..

  • Picture YOU, five years from now….
  • Picture YOU, five years older, wiser, happier, better….
  • What do you look like?
    What are you wearing?
    What does your body look like?
    What is your life like?
  • Your career?
  • Your social life?
  • Your relationships?
  • See yourself smiling a bright, sincere smile….what are you smiling about?
    See yourself being excited…..what are you excited about?
  • See how confident, relieved and relaxed you are….
  • OK, what does your Perfect Day look like five years in the future? Be specific.
  • What things are you grateful for?
  • What things are you happy about?
  • Now the future you is going to talk to you….what would Future YOU say to the present you?
  • The Future YOU is going to tell you a secret, something wise and important about your life until then….what is it?
  • The Future You tells you about one great choice you made between today and that 5 year point – what was that choice?
  • What thing(s) can you do today to become the future you?

Write it down. Review it. Save it.

Take care!

5 Common Words That Create Failure

5 Common Words That Create Failure

http://www.inc.com/geoffrey-james/5-common-words-that-create-failure.html?nav=next

Your level of success is predetermined by the words you use every day. Avoid these five “failure” words.

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The words that people use every day determine whether they will achieve failure or success. There are five words that, in my observation, frequently show up in the conversation of losers, much more so than in that of winners. Here they are:

1. Luck

Although it’s true that unforeseen events can affect outcomes, it was not luck that made the difference. It was the events. Luck had nothing to do with it.

Believing in luck focuses your thoughts on an imaginary construct that neither you nor anybody else can change or affect.

What’s worse, luck is an excuse that explains away failure (“It was just bad luck”) and devalues your successes (“It was just good luck”).

2. Enemy

It’s true that you have competitors, and that sometimes, for you to win, they have to lose (and vice versa). Even so, there are no enemies in business.

Enemies are opponents in warfare, when people are killing one another. Business is about making things better, not killing people.

The moment you demonize competitors by calling them enemies, you close off your business options. Today’s competitors are often tomorrow’s partners.

3. Rejection

Wouldn’t it be nice if people always said yes to your ideas? Well, sometimes people aren’t going to like your ideas, or even you personally, for that matter.

You can pathologize such events by thinking of them as rejection, or you can understand that what really happened was that the other person’s desires didn’t match yours.

Rather than using a word that automatically makes you miserable, concentrate on changing your approach or approaching somebody else.

4. Hate

I cringe every time I hear somebody use this word in casual conversation. At work, it’s usually something like: “I hate my boss” or “I hate my job.”

Hate is a sick word, and it creates sickness in your body. Every time you use that word, you might as well be sticking a cancer cell in your body. Seriously.

I’m not saying that you’ve got to be sweetness and lovey-dovey about everything, but why pollute your brain by actually hating anything or anybody?

5. But

I’m sure you know somebody who can’t say anything about any idea, plan, or activity without crutching the sentence with the word but.

It’s always something like “Hey, that’s a great idea, but…” or “I agree that we need to take action, but…” It’s discouraging, and it kills momentum.

There’s a substitute for but that actually creates momentum: the word and. Try it next time a but is about to emerge from your mouth.

Tomorrow, I’ll give you the words that, in my observation, signal that a person is a winner rather than a loser. So stay tuned.

If you like this post, sign up for the free Sales Source newsletter.

Geoffrey James writes the Sales Source column on Inc.com, the world’s most visited sales-oriented blog. His newly published book is Business to Business Selling: Power Words and Strategies From the World’s Top Sales Experts. @Sales_Source

Simple Stuff

(Simple Stuff are a bunch of inspirational, motivational and other quotes meant to make you think, reflect, smile, even laugh a bit. Hopefully helpful, useful stuff….)

BruceLee1 SOcrates

“A mature person is one who does not think only in absolutes, who is able to be objective even when deeply stirred emotionally, who has learned that there is both good and bad in all people and in all things, and who walks humbly and deals charitably with the circumstances of life, knowing that in this world no one is all-knowing and therefore all of us need both love and charity.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt

If your breathing itself was not proof enough that you are loved beyond comprehension, then how about your freedom to feel unlimited joy, in spite of circumstances that surround you?
Big hug,     The Universe – mike dooley – tut.com

    Not having enough money is never the problem it seems.
First, lack is always temporary.  Second, change is only ever a few thoughts away.
And third, it’s not like you haven’t performed miracles before.
Honey, honey –       The Universe, mike dooley, www.tut.com
When you are going through something hard and wonder where God is, always remember that the teacher is always quiet during a test — Unknown

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😉

Clarity is power!

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HERE IS A GREAT BLOG POST ON CLARITY AND GOALS.
I THOUGHT THAT I’D SHARE IT AS-IS.

ENJOY! – JIM

FROM Mario Brown  http://www.mariobrown.net/29/clarity-is-power-my-first-blog-post/

Hello and welcome to my new blog and first blog post.

This blog is all about marketing and lifestyle, it’s for you if you want to know more about me, about how I run my business and my life and how you can implement some of my strategies to grow your business and to live a happier life.

I love marketing and I love life, so that’s exactly what you’re going to find on this blog – tips and insights on both subjects.

Without further ado, let me dive right into it! I’m going to give you a couple of core strategies that you need to implement immediately. If you already have some success, these strategies might help you take your success to the next level. If you are brand new to the game, the strategies will definitely help you get started on the right foot.

This is about making sure that you stay focused and enabling you to work on one thing only in order to grow your business and make more money. You might think that this is basic stuff but let me tell you that I was able to go from making $1,200 working at a front desk to making high 5 figures every single month following the exact steps below – and you can do the same.

Clarity Is Power- What do you really, really want?

If you can’t answer this question, then you might as well stop any efforts immediately.

You need to get clear on this question asap and you must be as specific as possible.

Making more money for example isn’t specific at all. I can give you 1 buck and you’d have more money. And let’s face it, we’re not in this game to just make more money. Money in the bank by itself isn’t going to do us any good, what we really want is piece of mind, knowing that we don’t have to worry about our bills. It’s lifestyle and freedom, doing what you want to do when you want to do it. I’ts being your own boss, determining yourself how much money you are going to make, these kind of things.

These are just some of the examples that drive me and I asked myself as well, what do I really want from life, how does my perfect day look like? I actually invested 2 hours to come up with my perfect day, from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to bed.

It took me 2 hours because I was extremely specific and I wrote down in very detail when I’d get up, what I’d eat and how my day would be. What kind of house with all the rooms, pool, gym etc. – what kind of work, office, employees, friends, food and so forth. I did this exercise just recently and it helps me to stay motivated and on track. We all need goals to work on because with out challenging goals to work on life gets boring and we get complacent.

Here is the kicker though:

I did the exact same exercise 2 years ago at a seminar and 90% of all the things that I wrote down that day became reality. I’m making more than ever before and exceeded the number that I wrote down back then, I’m doing exactly what I wanted to do work-wise, I’m eating healthy and I live in a sunny place near the ocean plus all the other things that I wrote down, they all turned into reality.

Once I checked my notes from back then I realized that everything is now reality and I also realized that I had to create a new perfect day in order to get inspired and motivated again, to have something to work for.

That’s why clarity and writing down goals and your perfect day is so powerful, I’m proof of it and you can do the same.

So before you do anything else today, write down what it is that you really want in life. How much do you want to make every month, what kind of car do you want to drive, who would benefit from you having a successful business, how would it help your family, what kind of house do you want, where do you want to travel to, who do you want to meet and so forth, be very specific.

This can change your life, it did change mine big time!

If you are a person that needs more step by step instructions, here are a couple of questions that will help you get started:

1. What do I really want, what’s my result? (Health, Wealth, Relationships)

Be very specific.

2. What’s my purpose, why do I really want it?

Think about why you want what you want. What’s the outcome, how is it going to help you improve you and your families life, what happens if you don’t achieve your goals, who would suffer and how? Find out the big WHY!

3. Give it a deadline.

Give every goal a deadline by when you want to have achieved it. Separate them by 1 year, 3 years and 5 years and then go work on the most important 1 year goals and focus on the 3 most important areas of life. Health (nutrition and workouts), Wealth (Career & Business) and Happiness (healthy relationships with your loved ones, having a purpose)

4. Massive Action Plan – What specific actions must you take to make this happen. What’s your action plan?

Come up with a massive action plan. What kind of things do you have to focus on to achieve your goals, what habits and distractions do you need to eliminate to move forward. Be specific and take action NOW!

I urge you to go through these steps and in my next post I’m going to explain what you have to do next and I’ll tackle the questions that you must ask yourself when starting a new business. It doesn’t make any sense though so start a business if you don’t have clarity on what it is that you actually want, and when you want it.

Here is a video that thousands of people have enjoyed, I hope it can push you in the right direction:

Please comment below and let me know what you think and what you want to learn about more!

Best wishes, Mario

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It’s Jim back again….

a parting thought…..

When you know what you want….and you’re crystal clear on how exciting it’s going to be to achieve it, have it or do it….

….and you’re actually so excited about the CERTAINTY that you’re about to have that in your life as a result of your actions….

…you won’t need someone to push you.

Your goal will PULL you.

www.checkouten.com

.;)

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