Archive for the ‘Success’ Category

chosen to beWe are exactly where we have chosen to be, by the people we associate with, the things we watch, read, and hear.

A speaker had said that at a leadership conference and I wanted to argue with him; I did in my head a little bit. I thought… I didn’t choose to have the job I did at the pay that I got; I would have chosen more! I didn’t choose to be very shy. I didn’t choose for the air conditioning in my car to break!

But then I got to thinking about the people I hung around with up to that point, and other than my A/C not working, they were all in similar situations. You might say we were all just trapped in the financial matrix (which we were), but the main reason I was stuck in it was because I was always around others who were too!

I’ve learned that our results come from our actions, which comes from our thinking, which is influenced by the people we listen to, and the advice we get.

Where do you get your advice from?

Be careful who you listen to; you might end up with their results!

When it came to finances, since it’s not taught in schools I got it from the media, the banks, and the people around me. The media is the advertising, trying to get me to buy their stuff now and pay later, while the banks are happy to help out and make me their slave for my debt. The people around me were other people who were broke!

I don’t know about you, but I wanted to be rich. If that’s the goal, I needed to stop taking financial advice from people who were broke like me! If they had the solution, why were they still broke?

How about relationships? Does it make sense to get relationship advice from someone who has been divorced 5 times? They may be able to tell you what NOT to do, but unless this person has now been happily married for 10-20 years, they may not have the right advice yet.

Sometimes it’s tempting to take the easy way out though, and take advice we shouldn’t.

I remember when I just started college, and I had to take a class in which I had absolutely no interest. At this time I hung around with people who loved board games like me, and who also thought that telling me to skip a class to finish a game was good advice.

I did just that. In the class I missed, the teacher gave us the main class project, explaining what we had to do for something that was worth 50% of our mark!. I had made a new friend in that class though, and asked him what we were supposed to do, and he gave me what I thought was a satisfactory answer

I did what my friend told me, and gave my paper to the teacher on the last day of class. The teacher looked at the paper, looked at me, and said “THIS isn’t what I asked for!”

I took advice from someone who didn’t have the results I was looking for, and got the same results. I failed that class along with my friend. Years later I found out that this friend missed the same class as me! He didn’t even have the information I was looking for, let alone the results!

Be careful who you listen to; you might end up with their results.

This goes for listening to ourselves too. For most of my life I was a very shy person unless you were a close friend that I was comfortable with. I was constantly telling myself that I couldn’t talk to people, so I never did. After all, why would I bother trying to talk to someone if I didn’t believe I could?

I needed to start listening to people with the results I wanted, which in this case was people who could talk to people.

I have since been going through the program put together by Life Leadership, and listening to people who have what I’m looking for in all the areas of my life. By reading good books and listening to CDs like those found in the public speaking pack, I can now talk to people.

By going through their Total Personal Development program, I improve in my ability to lead people, to resolve conflict, to have confidence, to be persuasive and to just win in general. I’ve been able to build the belief that I CAN win and that I will. In essence, it has changed my thinking. It has changed me from thinking like I am who I am and stuck with what I have, to thinking like I can be who I want to be, have what I want to have; if I just follow the formula for high achievement!

By going though their Financial Fitness Program, I’ve started learning financial principles from the millionaires, from those who have the results I want from the principles being taught. I’ve learned how to save money, how to make more money, and even how to pay less taxes!

Be careful who you listen to; you might end up with their results.

Be purposeful in who and what you listen to; you can end up with their results!

The following is a short speech I gave a few weeks ago, that I wanted to share here as there is a good lesson in it: Keep practicing, and find the fun in failure!


Imagine being shy. Very shy. I understand that might be hard for some of you, but that was me.

Well.. unless you were a close friend. But that was hard to become when I was too shy to talk to you.

Imagine being shy because you don’t know HOW to talk to people. Because you had NO confidence in yourself, and having no people skills you just annoyed those people whom you DID talk to.

Because I found I made more friends by not talking to people; which says a lot considering you NEED to talk to people in order MAKE friends!

But I had a DREAM… of being able to talk to people. I had a dream… of being able to talk to girls.

In such situations, we have a choice to make. we can either stay as we are and live the same life, or we can change; and by changing, change our lives.

All I had to do was learn some people skills, and then more importantly, practice them. But practice isn’t necessarily an easy thing to do… especially when the thing to do terrifies you! I mean, we are talking about speaking to people here!

Do any of YOU have anything you want to get better at, but fear stops you from practicing? I heard public speaking fits into this category for most people.

Well, I wasn’t even thinking about the fear of public speaking at this point.. I had to get through speaking to one person first!

I knew that practice wasn’t going to make me perfect (it never does, no matter how much we like that saying). But I knew that by practicing, I could get better. I knew that by taking action, my fear would start to go away (there IS truth to the saying that action conquers fear).

I wasn’t going to let the fear of failure hold me back, What I discovered, is that on top of learning from it, it can be FUN to fail; especially when we get to talk about it later!

Because here I was, super shy… no confidence… and no girlfriend…

But.. I HAD THAT DREAM of being able to talk to people …and eventually to girls.

So I started to practice; I went out and started saying hi to people.

Just imagine how hard it was at first; especially when they responded and said something back. I had worked up the courage to say hi; not to actually have a conversation yet!

But I continued to learn, and I continued to practice. And I eventually started saying hi to girls; including the post office girl!

Picture this, you are going to the post office once a month, and there is a girl that works there who is gorgeous!

She gives you a big smile when you say hi! You had read that it’s good to compliment people, so you do. You tell her she has a great attitude and really nice smile… and It works! She has an even bigger smile, and she thanks you!

All this practice is working out! You are getting somewhere! Unfortunately you haven’t practiced enough yet, and don’t have the confidence to think you have a chance with her.

Here I was, in just that situation. Except here is where I probably did something you wouldn’t do. YOU would have surely either asked her out or walked away. Although I had the dream of getting a girlfriend, which probably showed on my face as I continued to speak, I asked her a different question. Leaning on the counter, with her not knowing anything about me, I asked “Are you open to other ways of making money?”

Ladies… if a guy that you don’t really know, that appears to be coming on to you, asks you that question… what are YOU going to think???

Well, from the expression on her face she thought the same thing. We had a good laugh after I explained what I was really talking about; I am looking to help people be more successful after all, but I definitely wasn’t getting anywhere with her. Bad first impression I guess 🙂

This situation was an epic fail by most definitions, but it was hilarious! It was also a great learning experience in the process. It showed me that smiling and complimenting people DID work, and that accidentally leading someone to think you wanted to pay to sleep with them DOESN’T!

But I still had that dream.. And I continued to practice. I continued to go out and talk to people until I eventually met another beautiful girl with great attitude. I was able to talk to her without sounding like an idiot and I had the confidence this time to ask her out. I got that girlfriend I was looking for!

… well, not the one I was looking for since in the end she wasn’t right for me and I had to brake up with her.. But it was proof that I was better at talking to people due to all the practice!

I’m going to keep practicing and I will keep improving. I will either get the results I’m looking for, or create many more fun stories in the process. Just ask me sometime about the girl who recently wanted me to marry her on our 2nd date!

What do YOU want to improve in your life? How much are you willing to practice?  How much are you willing to have fun?

Don’t worry about looking like a fool. Most people are too busy worrying about what you think of them anyway. And if you DO look like a fool, not only will you grow and learn from it; you will also have a great story to tell when it’s over!

If you are willing to go out and practice every chance you get… you will create stories of your own.

If you are willing laugh through your failures, you will eventually smile through your victory!

A while ago I made a list of my top 100 goals and dreams, explaining the importance of keeping your focus on your dreams in order to accomplish them.

Last Sunday, one of those dreams came true!

I almost feel guilty, as I don’t believe I did the necessary work that I planned to in order to accomplish it – but if anything that makes the following saying even more true; you get what you focus on.

Anytime I’m talking to people about dreams, I always give an example of some of mine; and I ALWAYS talk about wanting to go to a sandcastle competition. It may not have been my biggest dream, but the pictures I’ve seen of them looked so cool that I had to show them to other people!

I’m visiting my uncle in Los Angeles with some of my family, and when we were trying to decide what to do when we were here, it was one of the first things I thought of; Which just makes sense since I talked about it all the time. I searched to see if there was any in Los Angeles, but no, it wasn’t going to be that easy. I wasn’t going to limit myself to the city of Los Angeles however, and found one only couple hours away in San Diego!

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Only the Disciplined Are Freeshawshank

I think I’ve heard that statement many times over the past couple years, and in many forms. I knew it to be true when I first heard it… but you wouldn’t think I believed it from my actions.

Just look at the previous article I wrote, and you will see I was definitely NOT disciplining myself to continue updating this site!

Seriously though, I wanted to take this time to talk about this concept, because when it comes to being successful, or even just being free in general, this seems to be one of the most important attributes you need; to be disciplined.

I was at Life Leadership’s Masters of Leadership conference in Ottawa this past weekend, and I heard this topic discussed in almost every talk in some form or another. I was in Quebec City a week earlier listening to Claude Hamilton talk about this concept there too, and in greater detail.

It was a sign. It’s time to be more disciplined.

After all, Successful people discipline themselves to do daily what unsuccessful people do only occasionally

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PAiLS by Chris BradyI recently starting doing small presentations and leading discussion groups based on the resolutions from the Mental Fitness Challenge that was created by Life Leadership. I did 2 separate sessions of the first resolution, to discover our purpose. I think many people understand that most people are floundering around with no real destination in mind, and understand the importance of having goals in our lives, and want direction. It became apparent to me that so many of these people just don’t know where to start; they don’t know what their own purpose should be.

I’ve read many books that go over how important having big goals or a purpose is essential to have success in our lives. I’ve read the same, or very similar, awesome quotes so often that they have been permanently etched in my brain. Some of these include “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up someplace else”, “If you don’t have a goal, you’ll hit it with amazing accuracy”, “Begin with the end in mind”. All this stuff is inspiring and makes a lot of sense, but there was something missing.

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Turn The Page, How to Read Like a Top LeaderI’m in the middle of reading “Turn the Page: How to Read Like a Top Leader” and have come to some realizations; one is that I’m certainly not reading enough, and for everything that I have read, I could have gotten more out of the books.

I’ve learned that reading is so important to our future, because when we read the right books, we are getting the life experiences of the author in the amount of time it takes to read a book. Success then becomes less trial and error, and more about leveraging the success of those who went through struggles before; about being mentored on what we should  and shouldn’t do.

You are where you are because of who you are; if you want to be somewhere else, you have to become someone else. This thought has come to me often throughout my leadership journey, as it has been said and taught in many different ways. I’ve learned that when we aren’t reading or listening to someone, we are talking to ourselves; this means we are talking to ourselves with the mind that got us to where we are. When we are reading, we are shutting ourselves up and listening to someone else with good information. This works for listening to great talks on CDs too, but I think reading takes it even a step further, and you get more out of what is written because you have time to think about what is written and reflect on it.

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Last Saturday night I had blast with my friends by organizing a dream session. This is where a bunch of people get together and brainstorm and share what they want there future to look like. As I discuss on my top 100 goals and dreams page, this is super important if you want to achieve greatness. As many leaders have said, if you don’t set goals, you’ll hit them with amazing accuracy!

What was great about this group of friends is how on a Saturday night, when most people are out at bars, watching the hockey game, or some other activity that will give them pleasure for the moment, this group was working on their future and what will give them pleasure for a lifetime. This is one of those things that makes you stand out from the crowd and be above average.

It was actually even more fun than when I used to go to bars and watch hockey games. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my Bruins; but when they won the cup 2 years ago, even though it was fun being in Montreal as a Boston fan, it didn’t do anything for my future. It goes without saying that this future includes being able to go to every Stanley Cup final game, and Olympic Hockey medal round game.

What we did instead was plan our future. Most people spend more time planning their 2 week vacation than they do planning their life time. (more…)